Thursday, January 09, 2014

Facing SHOT Show and a Couple of Thoughts on AR Calibers...

I guess it's time to get on with it, huh?

Goes without saying I'm not ready for SHOT, either mentally or in terms of clean underwear. The underwear situation I can fix. I've got a "hit list" of must-sees, and Iain Harrison and I talked about his must-sees earlier this week in Phoenix.  BTW, I can't believe I've never spent any time looking at these custom AR handguards from Unique-ARs.com! Hopefully, we'll have approval at DRTV to give away some really nice custom ARs, and maybe a custom handguard would be a nice touch.

Unique ARs "Spiderweb"

Shooting in Phoenix earlier this week for SG, Marc Christenson from DS Arms brought down a custom AR in .204 Ruger with a 20-inch barrel from Montana Rifle. I've never even messed around with the .204 Ruger, with the possible exception of shooting John Paul's personal JP long range bolt gun in .204. A 32-grain bullet moving at 4000 fps...pretty cool. Marc said the .204 was crazy accurate as well as crazy fast. It was developed in 2004 by Ruger and Hornady as the fastest  production cartridge in the world. Uses regular AR magazines. March popped his upper on a registered full auto lower, and it ran like a champ. Might be a fun cartridge to fiddle around with. JP has some interesting parts for building a long-range .204. Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm...

I also finally got to run my 10 1/2-inch .300 Blackout upper on a registered lower rather than a pistol. Shoots just wonderfully...I definitely want to finish up that pistol/SBR project. Another surprise was the AR upper in 5.7 X 28. Sucker ran like a scalded ape, no malfs of any kind and incredibly fun to shoot with those 50 round magazines. The AR57 is a really neat set-up...stuck in the provided heavy buffer, popped the upper on just like any other upper and away we went. I like this!


What didn't work was the .458 SOCOM. The Wilson Combat upper shot great on single shots, but we couldn't get it to run with any magazines. Might have needed a heavier spring to shove that big cartridge in. We were also running reloads — the only rounds we could get, courtesy of my friend Mike Barker — which are always tailored to the gun. It was a thumper, though, and heaven knows Bill Wilson has killed about a million hogs with the .458...his obviously works!

I also got a chance to shoot Iain's "bastard" AR — in 7.62 X 25 Tokarev, of all things, with a Czech barrel, a Russian optic and an weird collection of parts. He built it to make use of the cheap Toke ammo, which has now gone the way of the Great Auk (below):

The Great Auk, as rare as cheap 7.62 X 25

The idea was that he could shoot the cheap Toke ammo when there was cheap Toke ammo in local 3-Gun matches where the longest distances were under 100 yards. It was fun to shoot, although Iain cursed me for condemning him to an evening of cleaning out the filthy and corrosive surplus ammo residue.

JP GMR-12 9mm

I have a similar plan for the superb JP GMR-12 9mm rifle when I can finally lay my hands (and my credit card) on one. A less-than-3 MOA 9mm rifle that takes 33-round Glock mags, topped with the brand spanking new Burris AR-1X, would be killer on local 3-Gun matches with rifle shots at sane distances. Secondly, you can actually buy 9mm ammunition without a second mortgage on your home. still wickedly depressed, but I know it'll get better. SHOT'll be crazy busy, and that's a good thing.


Ron Larimer said...

What are your thoughts about the risks of having .223 and .300 AAC AR's and mixing ammo?

kmitch200 said...

a long-range .204

Define long range...
Isn't the conventional wisdom that light bullets and way off yonder targets don't mix?

Don't get me wrong, I like to play with different calibers in a mix of platforms but expecting a light bullet to not get slammed by wind seems counterintuitive.

KevinC said...

Man, sounds like that second day was a lot of fun! Would have LOVED to seen Iain TokARev (hah!) run.

Darn this gainful employment thing!

Michael Bane said...

Ron, the .223/.300 Blackout issue is a real one, but one we've dealt with before on other calibers (and you can probably add .223 in .204 chamber as an another potential problem). The answer to that risk is to pay attention! Load from the ammo box; make sure you label your ammo correctly. The only time I dump ammo into a pile to fill the mags is when I have only one caliber of ammo to deal with. It's not the responsibility of the ammo manufacturers to make sure you don't blow yourself's on you.

One of the most common shotgun kabooms is dropping a 20 gauge in a 12 gauge barrel double or O/U, then, through inattention, following it up with a 12. I've seen this twice, once took a guy's thumb off.

kmitch, I've shot the .204 at stupid distances, but that was with a REAL rifleman doing the doping. You are right about shoots flat out to 400 yards, and you can probably rationally get another 100-200 yards out of it. I had in mind inside 500 yards.


Overload in Colorado said...

Isn't their a similar problem with 6.8 SPC chambering in a .223?

Trent said...

Sigh I so miss that cheap 7.62x25. I got my hands on some screaming hot Czech sub gun ammo that to put it mildly was ++p. There's nothing like blowing holes in 1/4 inch plate @ 100 yards with a handgun. Oh well at least I didn't go ahead and buy a case of CZ52's as bug out guns.

Trent said...

I've shot the 204 & it can have wind problems. But that argument comes from the guys shooting at 600+ yards. out to 300 yards it's flat out lethal. You can hear the bullet hit. Yotes react far more dramatically than with the 223. My coworkers grandson took a very nice Javalina @ 150 yards with a 204. Not my first choice for a pig but he raved about how it performed. (I'll admit I kept thinking of Robert Ruark's account of the 220 Swift). I like it but I need another cartridge like an extra hole in my head.