Monday, June 21, 2010

Range notes...

Went to the range yesterday, but the place was all full up with people milling around, calling each other "buckaroos" and "buckarettes" and whatnot and occasionally engaging in some shooting.

I run hot and cold on the idea of getting into cowboy action shooting. I'm usually most favorably disposed within thirty minutes of re-watching Unforgiven or Tombstone, but much of the rest of the time I just don't really see the point in spending a hojillion dollars so I can buy a bunch of guns for which I have no real need or desire and play dress-up while shooting great big steel targets at practically muzzle-contact distances with mouse-fart loads. I mean, the participants are obviously having a blast, but so are the people in a bass fishing tournament or a round of pasture pool and you don't see me running out to buy a boat or a set of golf clubs. Different strokes, as they say.

We wound up going to the steel critter range. Hitting those turkeys solidly enough to knock them down with a 4" Ruger Mk.III is tricky. And the rams? Pfffft. Even if I somehow got a lucky hit, they weren't impressed.

I worked some on my "press outs", too; I'm hoping to not look like a total twink when I attend Aim Fast, Hit Fast this October.


Weer'd Beard said...

"pasture pool"

Heh good one, I have something to add to my snarky name-calling of sports. I'm still a huge fan of "Tree Hockey" : ]

Desertrat said...

I've really and truly lived in the world of cows and horses and all that. I've also lived in the world of cities and engineering.

CAS is fantastic play-therapy to get away from the stultifying world of the stockbroker. More power to 'em. Keeps 'em off towers playing Charley Whitman, maybe.

Might not be your deal; fine--but you likely know some folks who could use the therapy...


Don Meaker said...

I have a pistol make just exactly for those rams: XP-100 in 7mm bench rest. Puts 130 grains out at around 2300 feet per second.

Not much use for social occasions, but fun as heck.

Michael Bane said... you state, it's truly a "different strokes" things. I love the guns (first gun I ever shot was a Single Six; first centerfire was a flat-top Ruger .357), and CAS is a great opportunity to shoot them. Sort of like the strange affinity you seem to have for small vintage semiautos! LOL! After a few years I discovered that, hell, I even liked the hats!

CAS is just like any other shooting sport...the top level shooters are masters and would excel in any shooting sport (think Randi Rogers and Jessie Abbate). The 80% bulge in the middle is in it for fun, but I suspect that's the case with most shooting sports (including IDPA). The great benefits of sport shooting — safety, gun-handling, jam clearance, marksmanship basics and artificial stress — come with every sport, which is why I urge everyone to participate in some shooting sport.

Finally, a funny story...I was filming at Bianchi Cup and got to talking about an old friend of mine about cowboy action shooting. He said, "Love the guns, but I just can't get into dress-up..." Then he looked down at his outfit, which was sort of Junior NASCAR Driver's Club electric green covered in sponsor logos. EVERYBODY looked like Junior NASCAR club members..."oh shit, Michael," he said. "I get it...I'm sorry."

BTW, I have a Nazi-marked Mauser HsC, MRA Good that some 30 years ago master gunsmith Mike LaRocca turned into a super-slick retro carry pistol...

Michael B

Michael Bane said...

Make that "NRA Good"...


Uno Mas said...

Aw, heck: I was going to wax rhapsodically about pasture poo.. 'scuse me, Cowboy Action Shooting, but Wolf Bane was definitely the firstist with the mostist.

Give it a try, Tam. I'll bet you'll find it fun and the pards great. And BTW, most pards are deeply involved in the firearms culture; doing many other things in addition to CAS: NRA, RKBA, new shooter introduction, PPC, long range, trap, skeet, collecting, etc. CAS is also a gateway to the shooting sports for many women. About a third of our pards are the gentler, faster, more accurate, meaner, better looking sex.

And not a mall-ninja in sight! ;^)'

Jenny said...

Michael - :)

.. the once or twice a friend dragged me out to a CAS match, it was great fun, funny lines and silly costumes and all. The best part I think was how light hearted the whole thing was - no sense of grim determination this or SHTF that... just people at *play* with each other in the big blue room. :)

Anonymous said...

"And BTW, most pards are deeply involved in the firearms culture"

Ummm, maybe but this has not been my experience when I RO's for a CAS. I referred to their sporting implements as "weapons" and they immediately broke into tears.

"They are for sport, not war!" cried they of the pointy elf shoes and big silly hat clan.

I pointed at the point on his belt,

"What's that?"
"A Colt."
"What kind of Colt?"
"A .45."
"Is that not a Single Action Army? Did not the Army use them to shoot people not steel and cardboard?"

Crickets chirped.

To this day I have not been asked to RO a Cowboy match. :-)

Shootin' Buddy

Kristopher said...

Shootin" Buddy:

You are shooting with easterners. A lot of them are retarded like that.

We had one person bitchin' about a stage where the targets were referred to as "bad guys". We just laughed at him ( it was a good thing he left before the stage where we were shootin at "Injuns", he might have collapsed from a case of the Vapors ). Cowboys did'nt carry pistols as fashion accessories.

leBolide said...

Come on, Tam. It'd give you great new excuse to wear assless chaps again while you're between motorcycles.

Anonymous said...

"You are shooting with easterners."

Kristopher, I was not.

from what I remember they quoted SASS rules that prohibited the mention of "weapons" during matches.

Apparently the rules must have been written in Boston?

Shootin' Buddy

Anonymous said...

I like shooting a SA Colt.
I like shooting a lever action rifle but perfer my Savage 99.

I have horses, cowboy hat (straw, used mostly for bush hogging) and boots that are older than most readers of this blog (1977)

The dressing up like a movie dude leaves me cold.

But if gets people shooting is a great idea.... for somebody else.


Michael Bane said...

Shootin; should listen to my last week's podcast (which brought down big heat on moi), where I said all guns were always weapons, but that they could be used for sporting purposes (and, I suppose, opening boxes to stretch the metaphor). Golf clubs, bats, polo ponies, etc. were sporting tools that could be used as weapons...BIG difference!

The only time I've ever been "corrected" about calling a gun a weapon was at a USPSA match, where a person explained that "raceguns are sporting tools, no different than golf clubs." I asked him to step downrange and allow me to point my .45 ACP "sporting tool" at his chest and fire a 3-round group into same, then I'd be interested in his comments. He shut up.

I totally agree with no truck with political correctness nonsense...


Uno Mas said...

Shooting Buddy,
I just searched the applicable SASS handbooks and found no prohibition on using the term "weapon". I'm SASS RO-II certified, and I've never heard of any such ban. I liberally sprinkle weapon in my cowboy discussions. The NRA Certification courses apparently do shy away from weapon, which is foolish in my estimation.

May I remind everyone, even though we may snicker behind our hands at "those not like us", we are all brothers and sisters of the RKBA.

Lewis said...

I've never done a formal SASS shoot, although one time I got together with a bunch of redneck (and I mean that as a compliment) sixgunners and we cut down a tree with .44 Specials, .44 Magnums and .45 Colts, almost all from Ruger single actions. I think there might have been a .475 and .500 Linebaugh on the line as well.

My favoritest thing about CAS/SASS is the emphasis on fun. I like guns and I like shooting, and I'm aware that firearms can be used to protect life, limb and patria . . . but I like the fun, too. We don't always have to be all grim-jawed and serious!

Then again, I remember the looks I got when I put up a silhouette target at 100 yards and popped at it with my Guide Gun. As my dear old Granny might have said, "I swan! Their eyes got big as teacups!"

Anonymous said...

Uno Mas,

I knew the were BSing me!

Thanks for the confirmation, UM!

Shootin' Buddy

Tam said...

Uno Mas,

"The NRA Certification courses apparently do shy away from weapon..."

Oooooh! Don't get me started! :;)

Kevin said...

Don Meaker: I have that same gun and use that same load (Sierra 130gr. MatchKing over - I think - 31.0 grains of BL(C)-2 use at your own risk I take no responsibility etc.etc.etc.)

Tam: I follow one of Oscar Wilde's rules to eschew enterprises that require new wardrobes. Other than that, yes, they do seem to be having a lot of fun.

Uno Mas said...

"Oooooh! Don't get me started!"

NEVER! Especially not a wimmens cradling an EBR.

I've got enough trouble with my with the wifey, her brace of six guns, her Marlin lever, and her SxS splattergun she's nicknamed "Payback".

No prob, Shootin'.

Michael in CT said...

I've played many of the shooting games, plates shoots, a little silhouette, pin shoots, some local versions of Steel Challenge, IPSC & IDPA and I'll still play some of them if my schedule permits, but since starting Cowboy shooting 1997, all the other shooting games come second. Cowboy has the biggest "tent" out there: you go real fast and try to win, you can be period correct, you have a choice between smokeless and blackpowder, you can dress fancy or plain or you can just do it for fun and not care about your score.
Yes, the targets look close, but you'd might be surprised how easy they are to miss when you are trying to go really fast. The shooting got me into Cowboy, but the people kept me there. Cowboy shooters are almost 100% friendly, encouraging and helpful. If you gun breaks in the middle of a match, you'll have a bunch of people offering you the use of theirs. Far too many of the shooting sports are so very serious, Cowboy is just FUN.

BobG said...

I don't see where SASS is any more goofy than Star Trek conventions; at least the SASS people are wearing clothes that real people used to wear, not like a bunch of Trekkies with rubber ears, green faces, and imaginary uniforms.

Michael Bane said...

I once went to a Dr. Who convention, where I almost spent $200 on a mechanical Dalek that said, "Exterminate! EXTERMINATE!" over and over. Luckily, I put my head between my knees, took a couple of deep breaths and got over it...nice rayguns, though...


Bubblehead Les. said...

Well. if you don't want to do Cowboys and Indians, you can always go Roarin' Twenties and play with the Zoot Shooters ( loved you show on them, Mr.Bane!). Colt D-frames, 1911s, Full-Auto Thompsons, SIGH! I there was only some way to get around the NFA and one could get hold of one of Clyde Barrow's Whip-its or his cut-down BAR's.....

DirtCrashr said...

You could go Steampunk where the (ray)guns aren't real but you could impress if you carried a .450 Rigby Nitro Express - or the SCA where the swords sometimes are real and people say "M'lady" instead of "Mam"- but I'm with Kevin eschewing play that includes the necessity of haberdashery, including the tactical.

Tirno said...

Could we start up some Spy Movie Action Shooting, where you can shoot anything you want as long as you can conceal it on your person while wearing a tuxedo or evening dress plus fashionable handbag.

Last stage of the day concludes with martini to stop the clock.

We could have a zipline stage, so Caleb doesn't have to be wistful any more.

Kristopher said...

I knew the were BSing me!
Thanks for the confirmation, UM!
Shootin' Buddy

Mheh. I still think geography was a factor. Like I said ... out in this side of the US, we just laugh at those fuddites.

Of course, with all those damned caltards moving in, that may change, and I may end up eatin' them words.

Tam said...


"Could we start up some Spy Movie Action Shooting, where you can shoot anything you want as long as you can conceal it on your person while wearing a tuxedo or evening dress plus fashionable handbag."

Sign me the heck up. :D

Matthew said...

The only shooting sport to feature the "La Femme Nikita" reload.

Ian Argent said...

In re sporting tools vs weapons; I don't think I'd volunteer to stand within a yard of someone with a golf club and let him tee off anywhere on my person, much less let him try for a home run with a louisville slugger. (Giggled a bit when I was that I was supposedly contractually obligated to not carry any "dangerous item" onto the cruise ship, I did. Though it did cause me to leave my bigger pocketknife at home, to my later mild regret when I wanted to open something)

That having been said - there are events at which I will stand downrange, though those involve either paint or plastic moving at a speed limit, and I get to dodge :)

Tirno said...

Tam said, "Sign me the heck up. :D"

You will be required to produce a groan-worthy situational pun or a catchphrase as a signal to the range officer that you are ready to begin the stage.

Scene: Warehouse full of crates, steel plate minions dressed in silvery overalls (spraypaint), one steel henchman at long range sitting on The Bomb (boomerite). Don't shoot The Bomb.

RO: Shooter ready?
Spy: I say, that petard makes your arse look big! (Flicks off the safety on his red and silver AR-15 pistol chambered in .458 SOCOM)