Accessories

Give Precision Reloading a Shot

How do you succeed in at least approaching the levels of accuracy you’d like? It’s common knowledge in accuracy circles that although correctly mating the barreled-action and stock will usually shrink groups from factory rifles, the greatest improvement (short of screwing on a custom barrel) typically comes from working up a good handload. In fact, a firm that specializes in accurizing factory hunting rifles recently noted that compared to factory ammunition, optimum handloads often trim group sizes in half.

The term “working up a good handload” conjures an image of nothing more than arriving at the right bullet driven by the correct powder charge touched off by the proper primer. What...

Lee Hand Priming Tools More Convenient Than RCBS Tool

Your loading press comes with a priming attachment of some sort, but it’s not entirely satisfactory. The problem is too much leverage; you can’t feel when the primer is fully seated. In other words, you can’t tell when the primer has been pushed to the bottom of the primer pocket. Continued pressure beyond this point will distort the outer cup and may even crush the primer compound pellet. Failure to seat the primer all the way to the bottom causes another set of problems. The firing pin may expend so much of its energy pushing the primer down into the pocket that it doesn’t have enough left to fire the primer. Or, if friction holds the primer cup in place, the firing pin may drive the pelle...

Peltor Tactical 7 Our Choice In Electronic Earmuffs

Youth and hearing have something in common: once they are gone, they don’t come back. Youth and hearing also have something not in common: you can preserve your hearing.

According to information in the public service brochure entitled Noise, Ears, and Hearing Protection, published by the American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery, 1 in 10 Americans has a hearing loss that affects his ability to understand normal speech. Excessive noise exposure is the most common cause of hearing loss.

If you think you have become accustomed to loud noises, you have probably damaged your ears. There is no treatment, no medicine, no surgery, or hearing aid that will truly correct your hear...

Howard Leight Optimuff: Good All-In-One Eye and Ear Protection

We can remember a time when few people wore any kind of safety equipment while shooting a firearm. So, a number of them no longer hear and see as well as they did. Learning from past misfortunes, smart shooters now wear both ear and eye protection.There are two problems with wearing safety glasses and earmuffs together. First, earmuffs press the temples of the safety glasses against the sides of the shooter’s head, which becomes a source of discomfort. Second, the glasses’ temples can break the earmuff’s cushion-to-head seal, lessening the effectiveness of the muffs.

One solution to both of these problems is the Optimuff by Howard Leight Industries. It is an all-in-one unit consisting...

Nikon 20X Spotting Scope A Best Buy For The Shooting Bench

The evolution of spotting scopes seems to have maintained pace with other advancements in the firearms and shooting accessory industry. This fact was strongly realized when we compared the equipment in this test to the spotting scope one of testers has mounted in his pistol box. It's an O. F. Mossberg & Sons Model A "Spotshot" 20x. In 1963, its list price was $29.95. It has a 38mm objective lens. Its 10mm ocular lens is mounted at the end of a sliding tube, which is pulled in and out to rough-focus, then rotated to fine-focus. Considering inflation, we certainly get a lot for our money today, in quality, warranty, and advances in manufacturing and the science of optics.

However, the Mossb...

RCBS PowderMaster An Accurate Electronic Powder Dispenser

A few years ago (December 1995 issue), we tested a Lyman Autoscale electronic powder dispenser and it didn’t work very well. The loads were always overweight; dangerously overweight some times. We think the problem was caused by the inertia of the beam balance scale, which was built into the dispenser.

The subject of this test is the RCBS PowderMaster, and it’s a winner. This electronic powder dispenser probably dispenses loads more accurately than you can weigh by hand. There’s no inertia problem because it uses an electronic scale. But the PowderMaster’s price is a little high—$214 plus the cost of the scale—and its speed is a little slow, compared to a volumetric powder measure. That’...

Burris Signature 6-24x Tops Other Varmint Rifle Scopes

For most kinds of deer hunting, a 3-9x rifle scope is a good choice. It provides a fairly wide field of view, which makes acquiring the target relatively easy, and a good range of magnification. However, when hunting varmints at long distances, a much more powerful scope is needed. A 6-24x scope with at least a 40mm objective lens is generally considered to be a good varmint scope.

However, this rather limited definition of a varmint scope promptly expanded when we started buying scopes for this test. We found two 20x scopes that outperformed most of the 24x scopes, and a 44mm scope that was smaller than most 40mm scopes. Our final choice of optics for this evaluation included the eight...

Variable Power At Your Fingertips: Tasco Gets Our Best Buy Nod

Shooters of many different stripes enjoy the flexibility 6-20X and 6-24X variable riflescopes give them. These products' extended power ranges allow them to be used at their low settings for indoor air rifle or rimfire and centerfire hunting use. Dialed up, they allow shooters to shoot spots on silhouette targets or pick their spots on long-range game animals with .300 Win. Mag-class beanfield rifles. With the right glass and mounts, a shooter can easily make one of these variable scopes work in several scenarios, assuming its owner has the skills and steadiness to use the high-mag settings.

Ideally, such products should provide crisp looks at targets and accurate adjustments to compensat...

Chronographs: Buy Oehler’s 35P For Reliability, Handiness

Shooters often need to know the actual velocities of the loads they’re using. Whether to know the downrange energy of a particular hunting load, or to plot the trajectory of that new match-grade load, knowing what it is actually doing once it leaves the gun’s barrel is essential. A chronograph should be a simple, painless source for this information.

We selected three models for testing, choosing some that had some evaluative capability, but without printers or computers attached. Most models can be upgraded with software that downloads load performance results to your computer, and can be converted to accept a dedicated printer for instant hard copy readouts. The models we tested were: t...

Chronographs: Buy Oehler’s 35P For Reliability, Handiness

Shooters often need to know the actual velocities of the loads they’re using. Whether to know the downrange energy of a particular hunting load, or to plot the trajectory of that new match-grade load, knowing what it is actually doing once it leaves the gun’s barrel is essential. A chronograph should be a simple, painless source for this information.

We selected three models for testing, choosing some that had some evaluative capability, but without printers or computers attached. Most models can be upgraded with software that downloads load performance results to your computer, and can be converted to accept a dedicated printer for instant hard copy readouts. The models we tested were: t...

DuPont IMR-7828 A Top Slow-Burning Rifle Powder

The velocity of a bullet is a function of the pressure behind it, or the chamber pressure. Higher pressures develop higher velocities. That's why a .30-06 shoots faster than a .30-30. Velocity is also a function of the length of time that the pressure is applied. A longer barrel shoots faster because the bullet stays in the barrel longer. That's also why slower burning powders develop higher velocities. The hot gases generated by the burning powder push on the bullet for a longer period of time.

Chamber pressures are generally limited by the brass case to 65,000 psi (52,700 cup), although we've never tested a commercial load that "hot." Belted cases may withstand a little more pressure t...

Sporting Clays Shotguns: Benelli and Remington Go Head To Head

These two companies make largely unheralded shotgun models purportedly earmarked for the competition clay market. We test them to see if we'd pay their steep prices.

Russian Ammo Ban Is Here

Well, no surprise, it looks like the Biden Administration is trying its best to choke off a major supplier of inexpensive ammunition to the...