Thursday, February 25, 2010

Paper For Sighting In

Perhaps you've had trouble sighting in.  Your first shots aren't on the target, and there's so many holes in the backer, that you just don't know where your shots landed.  You have someone spot for you, but they only see dust kick up from somewhere behind your target.

You need to cover that backer with something, right?  But what?

As it turns out, there is an inexpensive solution readily available.  I found tissue paper at the Rite Aid next to the wrapping paper and gift bags.  For about $3, I got 24 sheets about 2 feet square, which is enough for me to sight in probably 8 times, using several sheets at once to cover the backer.  .22 caliber bullet holes with the soot rings aren't too hard to spot through a spotting scope at 100 yards on the white tissue paper.

If it rains, then you're on your own. =D

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Cabela's/Berry's Tumber Review

For a little while, very little while, I cleaned brass with soap and water, dryed in the oven, and polished by hand with steel wool.  That got old really quick, and I ended up with a few splinters of brass or steel wool in my fingers.

Of the tumblers that were getting good reviews, the Cabela's model and the Berry's were two of the cheapest.  With the exception of external appearances, the two are really the same.  Berry's makes the tumbler for Cabela's.

I believe that the instructions that came with the Cabela's tumbler said to fill it 2/3 with media, and then load in the cases.  The cases seem to come out cleanest and nicely polished when the tumbler is completely filled, and the motor doesn't seem to mind the full load.  You don't have to fill it, obviously, but that's how I get the best results.

I run the tumbler 3 hours with a timer.  Once-fired brass, if not too badly tarnished, comes out nice and clean.  I probably don't need to tumble the once-fired brass from the indoor range the full three hours, and should probably cut that back in the future.  The cases I reload with TiteGroup powder sometimes get scorched, and the tumbler doesn't remove that burn mark.  I don't think that much of anything would remove the burn marks.

I store my cases in 1 Gallon Zip-Loc type bags, and the tumbler will hold about a half gallon worth of brass when filled 2/3 with tumbling media. 

Although I'm not sure when I received it, I ordered it on 2/5/2007, and it's still going, knock on wood.  When I first got it, I didn't have a whole lot of brass, and I was doing a lot of small batches, so I've got a good number of hours on the unit.

Capacity (approximate):
900 9mm casings
550 .45ACP
500 .38SPL
450 .223REM or .357Magnum

Tumbling Tips
You can get big bags of KayTee brand crushed walnut shell at some PetSmart stores sold as bird litter.  It is much cheaper than the stuff sold by reloading suppliers.  I add in some paste brass polish that I picked up from the dollar store, but I hear that NuFinish car polish works well also.

When/if you add liquid or paste polish to your tumbling media, run the tumbler for about 30 minutes without any brass.  If you put in the polish and the brass at the same time, all the polish will end up caked into a few pieces of brass.  It's not good, trust me on this.  If you were tumbling bottlenecked rifle cases, you might have to throw out the pieces with polish and tumbling media stuck in them.

Get yourself a dust mask.  The tumbling media will pick up lead from the primers in the cases, and you don't want to breathe that in.  Besides the lead, dumping the media into a sifter will generate a lot of dust that you'll choke on anyway.

Run your tumbler outside or in your garage where any lead that might get out of it won't contaminate your living space.  The motor in the tumbler can get hot, so don't put it on anything that might melt or ignite, like nylon carpeting or newspaper.

Cabela's Website - It's the model 400 tumbler.  Check RetailMeNot for coupons.
Berry's Mfg. Website - Model 400 tumbler.

WARNING: Vibratory tumblers have been known to attract graboids.  Use at your own risk.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Midway Coupon Code, Expires 10/21/10

From GlockTalk:

Place $50 or more of in-stock products in your shopping cart. Enter Promotion Code 105028104 in the box entitled 'Promotion Code' on the Shopping Cart page.
You will see the discount on the Confirmation page before placing your order.
Remember, this promotion code is valid for orders placed on
Limited to one per Customer and one promotion code per retail order.
Offer cannot be combined with Birthday or Special Pricing.
Offer not valid on MidwayUSA Gift Certificates and Nightforce products.
Hurry, offer ends at 11:59 PM CT February 21, 2010.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Zel Custom Tactilite T1 .50 BMG Upper Recall

From Zel Custom Website:
Recall Notice - Potential for Very Serious Injury. If you have a Tactilite T1 .50 BMG with a bell-shaped handle with 3/16" threading and a roller, there is the potential for out of battery detonation.  If you have a unit that fits this description, regardless of whether you have fired it safely in the past, we ask that you contact us immediately to arrange for replacement components.  We are not aware of any incident of an out of battery detonation or any injury. However, we have been able to make this happen in our shop and out of caution we ask that customers contact us immediately to arrange for free replacement components.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Armalite AR-10 Mag Sale

The Official Armalite Website
Direct Link To Magazine Sale Prices

5 pack of 20-round AR-10 mags - $150
10 pack of 20-round AR-10 mags - $275
I've never seen Armalite AR-10 mags for less than $45!  They have other magazine capacities available on sale too.