Federal Premium Ammunition is expanding the popular Fusion MSR line with a 90-grain option in 6.8 SPC. The load joins the existing Fusion MSR lineup, which includes 223 Rem. 62-grain, 6.8 SPC 115-grain, 308 Win. 150-grain and 338 Federal 185-grain options. Shipments of this new product are now being delivered to dealers.
Modern sporting rifles (MSRs) are the most adaptable class of firearms in history, handling everything from tactical applications to elk hunting. Fusion MSR loads are specifically designed for hunting with these rifles, performing to their ballistic peak through 16-inch barrels for AR15 platforms and 20-inch barrels for AR10 platforms.
The skived bullet tip ensures expansion at long ranges, and a fused jacket around a pressure-formed core produces excellent accuracy. Federal’s part number for the new 6.8 SPC 90-grain Fusion round is F68MSR2 and it lists for $29.95 per box of 20 rounds.
Midsouth Shooters Supply currently offers 112 Federal Ammunition loads. Click here to see when the new 90-grain round is in stock.
The Tennessee General Assembly passed a resolution this week making the Barrett Model 82/M107 Tennessee’s official state rifle. Barrett’s plant and headquarters are based in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.
“We are honored by the resolution and proud to have our rifle officially recognized within our home state,” said Chris Barrett, president of Barrett Firearms. “For more than 32 years, we have been committed to innovation in the firearms industry while maintaining the highest standards for precision and reliability.”
Micah Van Huss, an appreciative U.S. Marine who used the rifle in combat and is now member of the Tennessee House of Representatives, initiated the State action. To view the resolution, click here.
The Barrett Rifle is a true Tennessee success story: A rifle born from sketches hand-drawn at a dining room table by then 26-year-old photographer Ronnie Barrett, who was born, raised, and educated in Tennessee with no design training or experience. The firearm design — considered impossible at the time — was a shoulder-fired semi-automatic .50 caliber rifle. Using sketches of his design, Barrett worked in a one-bay garage with a tool-and-die maker to build the first prototype.
His creation, the Model 82/M107, pioneered an entirely new classification of rifle and changed battlefield tactics. The .50-caliber rifle is fielded by the military forces of about 70 allied governments.
Today, Ronnie Barrett is one of only four people in the past 100 years to invent a rifle type classified and adopted for use by the United States military. The M107 was recognized, in a ceremony in Washington, D.C., by the Office of the Chief of Staff of the United States Army as one of the “top ten greatest inventions” for its service.
Barrett now manufactures eight distinct models of rifles and has recently launched a new line of shotguns under the Barrett Sovereign brand. In addition to the Model 82 rifle, Barrett’s MRAD rifle was named the 2012 “Rifle of the Year” by Shooting Illustrated magazine.
Barrett products are used by civilians, sport shooters, law enforcement agencies, the United States military and more than 73 State Department–approved countries across the world.
Midsouth Shooters Supply congratulates Barrett Firearms on earning this well-deserved honor.
We also support hand loading of the 50 BMG rifles. Click here to see our selection of dies, primers, presses, brass, and loaded ammunition.
The following is a specially-adapted excerpt from the forthcoming book, “Top-Grade Ammo,” by author Glen Zediker, owner of Zediker Publishing. Click here to order.
by Glen Zediker
A rifle chamber has a headspace; a cartridge case has a headspace. The first is set by the chamber reamer and its operator; the next is up to us on the loading bench.
This is the loose working definition for headspace necessary to understand for this next: It’s the space from the bolt face to the “datum line” on the case shoulder. SAAMI sets standards for this dimension for each cartridge, and a gunsmith or manufacturer can have a little leeway in establishing the exact dimension in a rifle chamber.
In practical terms: Chamber headspace dimensions are fixed; cartridge headspace dimensions are variable. In a semi-auto, there should be some room, space, ahead of the case shoulder when the round is fully chambered, not be a perfect, flush fit. This is necessary for safe function in a semi-auto. In a bolt-action, the difference between chamber headspace and cartridge headspace can be miniscule to non-existent.
A little extra space helps ensure reliable functioning in a semi-auto, and also, mostly, precludes the chance that the case might bottom out on the shoulder area in the chamber before the bolt is fully locked down.
Back to more definitions. A datum line is actually a diameter; the line itself (the point set by the headspace dimension) is the point along a case shoulder that coincides with this diameter. There are only 5 datums that apply to virtually all bottleneck rifle cartridges. (Modern bottleneck rifle cartridges headspace off the case shoulder. Belted magnums and rimmed cartridges are different stories, for a different story.)
To correctly resize cases, we need a gage. Of course we do! I prefer the one shown in this article. It reads from case base to datum line, just as it’s done in chambering a barrel.
I talked before about how semi-autos can often exhibit case shoulder growth in measurable excess of the chamber. Meaning: the case shoulder can be free to expand beyond the confines of rifle chamber dimensions, and that is from the premature bolt unlocking that accompanies most every gas-operated rifle. Even when the system is working optimally, the case shoulder can advance slightly as the bolt just begins to unlock and move away because the case is still containing pressure. The severity of the discrepancy has mostly to do with how much the gas system is overloaded.
To refurbish a spent case, the case body outside needs to be shaped up to near-to-new dimensions, and also the case shoulder needs to be “set back” an adequate amount to ensure positive chambering with just a tad of “rattle” between the chamber shoulder and the case shoulder. In a bolt-gun, the case emerges from the chamber holding essentially a dimensional mirror of the chamber itself (minus, always, the 0.001 “spring back” inherent in the brass material).
For best results, and case life, we need to figure out how much to set the shoulder back. Too much really won’t affect load performance, but, in my belief, deliberately creating what amounts to excessive headspace is not wise. It’s just that much more expansion, that much more “working” the brass has to endure. However! That’s not nearly as bad as leaving the shoulder too high! That’s dangerous.
For day-in, day-out use, I suggest setting back the case shoulder 0.004 inches from fired case dimensions for semi-auto ammunition. If you keep the chamber clean, then go with 0.003. I think that 0.002 is not enough in a semi-auto, but that is plenty enough in a bolt-gun, and 0.001 is the minimum. Commence argument, but I’ll stick by those numbers.
The numbers we need to get from our gage are these: new, unfired case shoulder height (where we started); fired, unsized case shoulder height (where we went to); sized case shoulder height (where we need to get back to).
Owning firearms takes money, which comes as no surprise to anyone here at MSS. So one important question is, when you’re building your collection, what are your must-haves and can’t-do-withouts?
Everyone’s list is different, but here’s one that makes a lot of sense to us for five guns every shooter should own:
.22 LR rifle and ammunition to feed it. What action and brand of rifle? Your pick. How much is enough rimfire ammo to have on hand? We think keeping a rolling stock of 5,000 rounds minimum is about right.
.22 LR handgun. A complement to #1, so it can be semi-auto or wheelgun.
Defensive concealable handgun. Most will prefer semi-autos, but wheelguns are fine. Need to keep on hand at least 500 to 1,000 rounds minimum — and extra mags or speed-loaders depending on your pick.
Semi-auto battle rifle. 5.56 chambering is a mainstay, of course, but 30-cals do more farther away. Again, money raises its ugly head when you’re counting round inventory, but we think 1k is the minimum to have on hand for this.
A 12-gauge shotgun. Pumps are famous for their reliability, and upkeep is minimal. Rounds to have on hand include at least 250 bird-suitable shotshells (#7’s), a similar amout of buckshot loads, and a similar amount of slugs.
If we were to expand the list one slot, we’d next include a bolt rifle chambered in the same cartridge as #4, which would suggest the semi-auto and bolt gun both be .308s. Another way to go would be to co-chamber #3 and #4 in a handgun round, such as the 45 ACP. A handgun-cartridge-chambered carbine has a lot going for it, but you would have to accept reduced range.
What’s your lineup of five must-have firearms? Let us hear about it in the comments section below.
Midsouth Shooters Supply customers buy a lot of Hodgdon powders because the company makes great products and because Hodgdon’s staffers support the efforts of reloaders in a number of ways.
We previously noted here that some of the company’s available materials appear in the Hodgdon Reloading Education section. Click here to see the landing page on which Hodgdon begins the education process. Click here to see Safety precautions. Then click the Reloading for Beginners tab to get an overview of the basics of handloading. Click here to prob
e more deeply into the data available for reloading rifle cartridges.
This time we’re going to explore the Hodgdon Pistol Reloading Data page. Like the Rifle page, the Pistol page gets you started by asking you to select a cartridge from a pulldown menu. The lineup of available cartridges begins at the 17 Bumble Bee and continues through the 500 S&W Magnum. There are dozens choices of currently available commercial favorites, such as the 380 Auto, 9mm Luger, and 45 ACP, plus a bunch of popular high-performance loads that can be chambered in handguns as well as rifles.
Once you’ve selected a cartridge, which for our purposes here is the 45 ACP, you’re then able to select a range of bullet weights. In the case of the 45 ACP, that ranges from weights from 155 to 230 grains and a variety of bullet profiles.
When the user selects a bullet weight (or weights), the site returns a range of data for that load. We’ve been looking at building a lower-recoil training load with a 155-grain bullet, so we clicked “155” from the bullet-weight menu, and then perused the two load-data selections the site presented: a 155-grain cast bullet and an SFire projectile. The cast load was what we’re looking for, so we then expanded that window and saw additional information about that choice, including Case: Winchester, barrel twist (1:16 inches), primer (Federal 150 Large Pistol), barrel length (5 inches), and trim length for the case (0.893 inches).
Then, in more detail, the window for the 155-grain cast LSWC (lead semi-wadcutter) load lists the recommended powders, starting loads, and maximum loads, along with estimated pressures. For our training load, a promising starting load for the 45 ACP 155-grain round is 4.9 grains of Winchester WST, which will produce a velocity of 919 fps and develop 13,100 copper units of pressure (CUP).
If we wanted to work up hotter and hotter loads, there are plenty of powder choices — 15 others, to be exact. Just among the starting loads we could run up to 1,019 fps with 7.8 grains of IMR 800-X, which is estimated to produce 13,600 CUP. Then, if we wanted to really push that 155-grain round, we could work up to maximum loads producing as much as 1,132 fps and 17,000 CUP with 6.2 grains of Hodgdon’s Titegroup.
Also, you can narrow your selections by manufacturer or specific powder if you have already have pet loads you like to work with.
The Hodgdon pistol-cartridge reloading table lets you select proven, safe, and varied mixtures of bullet weights and powder choices to build nearly any recipe of handgun performance you need.
The Hodgdon Pistol Reloading Data page displays a pulldown menu with a lineup of available cartridges from 17 Bumble Bee through 500 S&W Magnum. See the image above for a detailed look at the 155-grain lead semi-wadcutter bullet.
Top-level shooters from across the U.S. are gearing up to shoot in the Midsouth Shooters Supply 2016 Crawfish Cup NRA Action Pistol Regional Championship, which will be held on April 22-23, 2016 at the Southwest Louisiana Rifle and Pistol Club located outside Lake Charles, Louisiana. What makes this shooting competition so inviting to the best Action Pistol shooters in the game?
“Here’s a bit of trivia; most of the Bianchi Cup winners since 2011 have won the Crawfish Cup the same year. We are excited to have so many World Class shooters shoot our match,” said George Mowbray, match director for the Crawfish Cup.
The Southwest Louisiana Rifle and Pistol Club has been hosting NRA Action Pistol Tournaments since 1987. Starting out with portable, static targets that had to be set up and removed for each match, volunteers who run the Crawfish Cup have slowly and continuously built the range into one of the best Action Pistol ranges in the country.
“We strive to duplicate the range experience of the Bianchi Cup with very similar equipment and procedures,” Mowbray said. “We want to build the identity of the Crawfish Cup as a competition where pros can hone their skills, and amateurs can match their skills against some of the best in the country.”
Under several different names, the match has been run near Lake Charles since the late 1980s. In 2011, Mowbray said the organizers adopted the name Crawfish Cup to draw attention to the Cajun delicacy that is in its prime season during April and May.
“He went on to say, “We also shifted the date of the Crawfish Cup to late April, typically about four weeks prior to the Bianchi Cup, in hopes of attracting more attendance from top competitors who start focusing on Action Pistol in the spring and from International competitors coming to the U.S. to compete in the National Action Pistol Championship. We have regularly had competitors from New Zealand and The Netherlands, as well as Australia. For many years, attendance at our regionals ran from 40 to 45 competitors. When we renamed the match the Crawfish Cup, and moved it closer to the Bianchi Cup, we instantly saw an increase of about 15 more competitors.”
In 2013, Doug Koenig and Carl Bernosky attended the match and have apparently spread the word that not only is the range constantly improving, but is also a well run match.
The organizers also made a critical decision to reschedule the match so that competitors who wanted to attend the NRA’s Annual Meeting and shoot the match that fell on that same weekend, could be squadded to shoot the match on a Friday, and then leave to attend the NRA’s Annual Meeting.
“In 2014, Doug Koenig flew in, shot the match, and flew out to attend the NRA Annual Meeting,” Mowbray said. “We think that says something about the quality of the Crawfish Cup Regional, and Doug’s commitment to the sport.”
Also, Mowbray pointed out that last year, past Bianchi Cup Champion Bruce Piatt was among the 75 competitors who participated in 2015. At the 2015 Crawfish Cup, Piatt beat Koenig by three Xs, but Koenig came back to win at the 2015 Bianchi Cup. Other former Bianchi Cup Champions have included Kevin Angstadt, who in 2014 won the Crawfish Cup and followed it with a win at the Bianchi Cup.
Also, Mowbray notes that several people have set national records at the Crawfish Cup. In 2014, Martin Johnson set new records as a Senior competitor using a metallic sight firearm in the Practical Event, the Barricade Event, and the Falling Plate Event. Also that year, Vance Schmid set a new national record for a Senior competitor using a Production Firearm in the Moving Target Event (Modified).
“With all the improvements that we’ve been able to make to the range with the help of Midsouth Shooters Supply, we’re able to increase our range capacity,” Mowbray said. “With the addition of another moving-target range, we’re able to accommodate about 120 competitors at the one-day match.”
Mowbray noted that in 2015, the Crawfish Cup surpassed $11,000 in donated merchandise, which was awarded via random drawing, giving all competitors an equal chance to leave the match with some very nice prizes. Mowbray said, “The more we get the word out there, and the more folks we’re able to bring on as sponsors, the more we can grow the competition.”
In addition to top-level competition, part of the match’s draw is its Cajun flavor. Competitors are all invited to dinner at a locally-owned and operated restaurant Friday night before the match, featuring boiled crawfish and other Cajun cuisine. Also, the owner of the restaurant brings his big grill on a trailer to the range and grills chicken, burgers, and sausage for the competitors on Saturday as his contribution to the match.”
“The Crawfish Cup is more than just a competition. It’s quickly becoming a time for friends to gather, take in some local culture, and compete in a sport that’s unlike any other,” Mowbray said. For example, in 2014, the match staff organized an airboat tour of the Atchafalaya Basin, enabling competitors to get up close and personal with alligators and other wildlife in their natural swamp habitat.
Mowbray said, “We are recommending this tour this year as well, although we’re not officially organizing it. It’s located about 80 miles from Lake Charles, and can be arranged individually at www.basinlanding.com.”
“We’re looking forward to the shoot this year,” Mowbray said, “and we’re up to the challenges that a growing competition brings, and the anticipation that starts to build as we get closer to The Crawfish Cup!”
Click the date below for Crawfish Cup Results from:
One of the latest photos beamed back to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) from a Mars rover appears to show the first handgun ever spotted on Mars. Some commenters say it’s a spitting image of a Glock 17. Others argue that the big slide and overall size make it a spitting image of a Desert Eagle. What’s your take?
United States Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, the author of the Court’s landmark Second Amendment decision Heller v. District of Columbia, has died at age 79. Scalia was nominated to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1986 by President Ronald Reagan.
Associate Justice Antonin Scalia was found dead of apparent natural causes Saturday on a luxury resort in West Texas, federal officials said.
Scalia, 79, was a guest at the Cibolo Creek Ranch, a resort in the Big Bend region south of Marfa.
According to a report, Scalia arrived at the ranch on Friday and attended a private party with about 40 people. When he did not appear for breakfast, a person associated with the ranch went to his room and found a body.
In a statement, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said, “As liberals and conservatives alike would agree, through his powerful and persuasive opinions, Justice Scalia fundamentally changed how courts interpret the Constitution and statutes, returning the focus to the original meaning of the text after decades of judicial activism. And he authored some of the most important decisions ever, including District of Columbia v. Heller, which recognized our fundamental right under the Second Amendment to keep and bear arms….”
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott released a statement Saturday afternoon, calling Scalia a man of God, a patriot and an “unwavering defender of the written Constitution.”
“He was the solid rock who turned away so many attempts to depart from and distort the Constitution,” Abbott said. “We mourn his passing, and we pray that his successor on the Supreme Court will take his place as a champion for the written Constitution and the Rule of Law. Cecilia and I extend our deepest condolences to his family, and we will keep them in our thoughts and prayers.”
President Obama has said he will try to name a Supreme Court successor to Scalia immediately. Should the Senate try to block such a move? Let us hear your strategy in the comments section below.
U.S. Law Shield and Texas Law Shield, the largest legal-self-defense membership organizations in the country with more than 170-thousand members, responded to social-media-giant Facebook’s recent announcement that it is shutting down gun sales by individuals. Please see Midsouth Shooters Supply’s previous coverage of Facebook’s decision here.
“U.S. Law Shield and Texas Law Shield lawyers have reviewed Facebook’s recent announcement and the related media coverage, and have concluded that because Facebook is a private social website, it can have whatever policies it would like,” said Edwin Walker, a program attorney for U.S. Law Shield and Texas Law Shield based in Houston. “However, this action does speak to the general lack of knowledge about how legal gun sales, even by private individuals, are actually consummated in the United States.”
Walker quoted an Associated Press story describing Facebook’s move: “Facebook has announced a new policy barring private individuals from advertising or selling firearms on the world’s largest social network. The new policy applies also to Facebook’s photo-sharing service Instagram… Facebook had announced some restrictions on gun sales and advertising in 2014, saying it would block minors from seeing posts that advertised guns. But the social network did not ban private sales at that time… Also, licensed firearms retailers can still promote their businesses on Facebook, but they aren’t allowed to accept orders or make sales on the site.”
Walker said, “Anti-gun-rights groups, such as the Brady Campaign and Center to Prevent Gun Violence, who are quoted in the AP story, claim that ‘it’s too easy for anyone to buy any gun they want online without a NICS background check.’ In reality it is quite difficult, if you follow existing federal and state law.”
Walker explained that if individuals were to contact each other on Facebook or any other social-media system, a “sale” cannot be completed online — because the product cannot be delivered without the buyer going through a background check, in the vast majority of cases.
Walker pointed out that some elements of a transaction can occur — product description, promotion, price negotiation, even funds transfer. However, the firearm cannot be delivered to the buyer, unless both buyer and seller can meet face to face and are residents of the same state.
Otherwise, Walker explained, “If a gun goes into the UPS, Fedex, or U.S. Post Office delivery systems, it has to identified and shipped to a designated Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL). The receiving FFL is then required by federal law to run a NICS background check on the buyer, who must complete an ATF Form 4473, before the firearm can be physically delivered. An FFL would never risk his or her license, livelihood, and freedom by failing to do so. It’s already a felony for an FFL dealer not to run a NICS check prior to delivery, except in very limited circumstances, such as when the new buyer has a state-issued handgun license or permit that has been pre-approved by the ATF.”
“Effectively, the new Facebook policy is nothing more than a business regulating what happens on its premises,” Walker said. “Facebook is a private business, and we respect its ability to manage the business as the owners decide. So if they don’t want guns mentioned in commerce on their social-media platform, that’s their prerogative. But let’s be clear that what Facebook is actually regulating with this new policy is speech, pure and simple. The actual act of selling a firearm is highly regulated, even for private individuals. Facebook is only shutting down conversations between individuals because the subject matter is about guns, and nothing more.”
About U.S. Law Shield and Texas Law Shield
The U.S. Law Shield and Texas Law Shield Firearms Legal Defense Program is dedicated to preserving 2nd Amendment rights for all legal gun owners and ensuring legal representation for our members who ever have to use a firearm or any other lawful weapon in self-defense. Click for more information on USLawShield.com and Texaslawshield.com., or learn more at a GunLawSeminar.com.
Facebook has announced a change in its Community Standards that will ban negotiations of private sales of guns on its social network and Instagram, its photo-sharing service. Licensed gun dealers and gun clubs can still maintain Facebook pages and post on Instagram.
The updated language under Facebook’s Regulated Goods tab reads, “We prohibit any attempts by unauthorized dealers to purchase, sell, or trade prescription drugs, marijuana, or firearms. If you post an offer to purchase or sell alcohol, tobacco, or adult products, we expect you to comply with all applicable laws and carefully consider the audience for that content. We do not allow you to use Facebook’s payment tools to sell or purchase regulated goods on our platform.”
Although Facebook was not directly involved in gun sales, it previously allowed gun sales to be negotiated. The new policy supposedly arose because the company is expanding e-commerce on the site, including allowing users of its Messenger service to send electronic payments to other individual users.
Facebook spokeswoman Monika Bickert, who oversees the company’s product policies, said in a statement,
“Over the last two years, more and more people have been using Facebook to discover products and to buy and sell things to one another. We are continuing to develop, test, and launch new products to make this experience even better for people and are updating our regulated goods policies to reflect this evolution.”
The company did not highlight the substantial legal safeguards built into delivery of firearms whose prices were negotiated online and then paid for. Facebook is based in Menlo Park, California.
Is curtailing private guns sales on Facebook a big deal to you? Let us hear your thoughts in the comments section below: