New Target Holders in Pistol Bays 4 and 5

Damage to target frames, uprights and crosspieces is not just an issue on the rifle range side of the house, it is an issue in the pistol bays as well.

In an attempt to reduce the damage to frames, a new target mounting system was installed Monday in pistol Bays 4 and 5. This mounting system spaces the cross pieces a lot further apart and gives a place to mount targets well away from the vertical upright posts.

The backer is a 7mm Coroplex sheet (corrugated plastic – like corrugated cardboard, only it’s plastic). This is the material we use for backers on the high power electronic targets and it is pretty durable stuff. There is room on the backer for several targets while keeping impact areas well away from the lumber.

Please read the instructions on the Coroplex, and good shooting!

Be Safe!

Offhand Match – December 12; Shooting in a Winter Wonderland!

As of 7:00 AM, the official Fort Wayne weather outlook was a slight chance of snow after 4PM.  Well, that should have given us plenty of time to get our first Winter Offhand match over and done with and entered into the books.

8:45 – Things are looking pretty good!

We started setup about 8:00 – these guys show up early and get started.  We had to do some work to replace nails to hold target faces, but there were plenty of folks to help and by about 8:45 we had a full relay, we held our safety briefing and the line went hot.  It was dark – not the best day to shoot. We had a light wind out of the northwest – but not punishingly brutal.  Things changed quickly, by the time the first string was finished, it was snowing.  It started out as a few scattered flakes, but it quickly developed into one of those lake-effect snow storms we know so well. 

9:00; AND IT IS JUST GETTING STARTED

Visibility was rotten – but we are High Power Shooters and we don’t let a stinkin’ snow storm run us off the line. (Or maybe we just don’t have much better sense…).

Working with Tayt, early

We finished up about 9:45; cleaned up, put things away and headed home.  It was not a good day to hang around and practice, zero a rifle or chronograph loads – those tasks will need to wait for another day!

Mia uses the under-magazine hold for short-armed shooters. This was early in the first string of fire.
Tayt, later in the match
And it just kept snowing!
Just keep shooting!

But – in spite of the weather the scores looked pretty good.  We have an alliterative list of the top five shooters this month; Mike, Mark, Mark, Marshall and Mia:

Mike King                                          385-9X

Mark Richard                                    367-2X

Mark Walters                                   363-3X

Marshall Rohrbach                          354-3X

Mia King                                            346-4X

It snowed so much ….. !

Congratulations to Mark Walters on wining the Garand Match at Anderson last weekend – even after firing a miss on his first Offhand shot!  Mark has been known to comment that the Garand is useful only as a tomato stick, but it appears that he can do more than just garden with it.

And, late breaking news; a reliable source reports that Mike King took second place in the Garand Match and Mark Richard took at least a share of third place. Another great showing for FWRR. Thanks Guys!

Mark Walters likes playing in the snow while Mike King tends to business.

And, Yes, it seemed like everyone had a good time. Now we all have a High Power story to tell; “There was this one time it snowed so hard ….”. Thanks to the parents and grandparents who showed up to watch the Juniors.

Our next Winter Offhand is December 10th – same time, same place – same format.  Hopefully – less snow, but I can’t guarantee that!

Don’t forget the FWRR Meeting on Monday, December 5th at 7:00 at the VFW/Legion/Marine Corps League Building at the end of Main Street in Ft. Wayne.  This is the meeting where we elect officers, so please plan to be there.

But it does make the lane look pretty!

Range Maintenance – Reducing Damage to Target Frames

A picture is worth a whole bunch of words, so I took a few pictures to illustrate the points I had made in the “Range Maintenance” post from a couple of days ago.

Our covered range is laid out in a strange way with the 100-yard target frames lying in the 25-yard and 50-yard impact area.  This results in the 100-yard frames getting damage from shots being fired on the shorter ranges.  The range layout makes some damage unavoidable, but we can minimize damage with a bit of attention to how we shoot.

100-yard target frames directly behind the 25-yard frames

One of the primary rules of range safety is to make sure that you know where your shots are going to land.  Just landing them in the 100-yard impact berm isn’t really the only goal, hitting as little of the 100-yard lumber should also be kept in mind.

This is poor selection of target placement. Note the vertical support directly behind the target

The first picture shows a target set up in the 25-yard frame.  Look down range from that target – there is a vertical support post for the 100-yard frames directly in line with the posted target.  Setting a target like that guarantees that the vertical post in going to be in the line of fire and will take some hits – especially if you are doing a good job of staying in the black.

Good target placement. Note the absence of down-range structures in the impact area.

Now, look at the second picture.  The target is in the exact same position, but if the shooter just moves a bit to the right or left, the point of impact moves considerably – in between two vertical posts.  Ladies and Gentlemen – please pay attention to what is downrange and don’t line up the hot zone of your target face with downrange lumber.

Most of the hits to 100-yard structures from shots fired from the 25-yard line are low hits or ricochets.  To minimize the damage to the bottoms of the vertical supports, we added some sacrificial lumber to the bottoms of the posts. We can replace these pieces of lumber as they get shot away and reduce damage to vertical supports.

Sacrificial facings on vertical supports

Last of all, we see damage to the horizontal cross pieces from ricochets hitting in front of the 100-yard frames.  At times it looks like a farmer has dropped a plow and cut furrows in front of the target frames.  This damage is primarily to three of the center sections of horizontal pieces. 

To further reduce damage, we are requesting that:

  •  If you are shooting at 50 or 25-yards, if the three center horizontal sections at 100-yards are in place, please remove them before you shoot.  Just lay them on the ground in front or behind the frames.  When you finish – just leave them down.  That is their “stored” position.
  •  If you are shooting at 100-yards, the sections of horizontal frames at the south end and north end of the firing line are out of the 25 and 50-yard line of fire.  Those horizontal frames will stay up at all times. If you need to use the three center sections, go ahead and mount them in the frames – but when you finish shooting – please put them back on the ground.  That will protect them from most ricochet damage.
Please leave these horizontal frame boards laying on the ground unless actually in use. Remove them after use.

This will take a little more effort on the part of shooters, but it will make life a lot easier for the people who take time to keep our range facilities in good repair.

Thank You – and Be Safe!

Range Maintenance – 7 November 2022

Several members spent their Monday afternoon at the range repairing the damage at the 100-yard range. Three uprights and three sections of target horizontal frames were replaced at 100-yards, the shot up upright was replaced at the 50 yard target and target horizontal rails were replaced at 25-yards.

Much of the damage at the 100-yard line was due to inattention of shooters firing at targets placed on the target holders at 25-yards. Shooters at 25-yards are not paying attention to where their shots are impacting downrange. One upright at 100-yards was shot off at ground level and it getting it out of the ground was a lot like a dentist pulling a tooth that had broken off at the gum line – yuuck!

Another issue is ricochets from the shots fired at the 25-yard line that bounce off the ground in front of the 100-yard target frames and riddle the cross pieces. Shots fired at the 50-yard targets also hit those same cross pieces.

After the uprights were replaced, we put sacrificial pieces of 2 x 4 lumber on the front of all of the uprights. We hope that these pieces of lumber will absorb stray bullets and preserve the uprights. They can be easily replaced with just a couple of screws when the need arises.

Additionally, to reduce the damage from stray rounds hitting the cross pieces, we left the three new center section pieces (6 pieces of 2 x 6 x 14’ lumber) laying on the ground where they are less likely to be hit by ricochets. That leaves three sections of frames on the low end and two sections of frames on the high end for folks who want to shoot at 100-yards. For matches when we use the entire 100-yard firing line, we can just put the boards in their holders.

Shooters – we ask that you pay attention and help us reduce damage to target frames:

A. NEVER mount targets to vertical posts. NEVER mount targets directly to the horizontal rails. Suspend them between the two rails.

B. In the near future, there will be red paint on the vertical posts as well as red painted areas ON THE HORIZONTAL Rails about 1-foot in from the vertical supports. Please do not mount targets in red painted areas.

C. WHEN FIRING AT TARGETS MOUNTED ON THE 25-YARD FRAMES – WATCH WHERE YOUR DOWN-RANGE IMPACT WILL BE. ADJUST YOUR SHOOTING POSITION AND TARGET PLACEMENT SO THAT YOU DO NOT SHOOT THE VERTICAL SUPPORTS AT 100-YARDS!

If your 25-yard target hides the 100-yard vertical post – move your target or your shooting position!

For a quick review of Range Rules, click here:

Making a Smokeless Powder Cake (Sorta)

We reload our Junior ammunition with a surplus powder, WC-844.  It is available only once or twice a year and we jump on an opportunity to buy 24 or 32 pounds in a single purchase just in case it doesn’t show up again.

But, unlike commercial powders which are manufactured to be consistent from container to container, military powders do not have the same lot-to-lot consistency.  Different lots may vary and when the military arsenals load ammunition, they vary the charge weight in the cartridge to get a specified velocity within pressure limits.  So, an M193 round loaded at Lake City in 1998 may have used 24.3 grains of WC-844, but an LC 2015 cartridge might only have had 23.8 grains.  When we use powder from pulled down ammunition, the powder can be a mix of who knows how many different powder lots – we only know that it is WC-844.  We need all of our powder to be the same for accuracy and safety reasons.

We need all of this powder to be the same. Time to do some mixing!

As the picture shows, we had five different jugs of WC-844.  Now, they might all have come out of the same drum of surplus pull down powder — but then again they might not. To make sure that all the powder is the same, I have to blend it together – a process not terribly different from mixing flour, sugar, baking powder and salt to make a cake.  You pour a little out of one jug, add in some from another, and stir well (with a wooden paddle).  Then you repeat until you have all of the powder from the five jugs in one big bucket – all mixed up into a consistent batch.

That is when you realize that you have about 35-pounds of smokeless powder sitting in an open bucket in your garage – pucker time.  You pour it back into the black anti-static plastic jugs with a glass cup and once it’s all back – you give a big WHEW! 

Now we have our powder blended for the summer of 2023.  I have to do test loads to make sure that we are not going to have any pressure issues – but that should be done by mid-November.  Mark Walters and I have looked at many fired cases, and we think we will reduce our load by a half-grain for 2023 – a basic load of 23.5 grains from the 24.0 we used in 2022.  That should not have any real difference in zeroes and muzzle velocity, but it will make life a bit easier on rifles and cases.

Sniper Match; Saturday 8 October 2022

It is amazing what ideas can come out of a trip over to Port Clinton, Camp Perry and a session at Small Arms Firing School and National Matches.  Once the Juniors saw everything that was happening over there – they wanted to do it!

So, over the end of summer we managed to put on a Rattle Battle – but the Juniors wanted to shoot a Sniper Match.  As we all know, the Vintage Sniper Match is shot with old guns; M1903’s, M1903A4’s, M1C’s, M1D’s and several rifles from other countries.  The Juniors don’t shoot those old wooden guns, so we thought we would just shoot a Vintage Sniper Match format and let the Juniors shoot their service rifles just to get the flavor of the match.

I first thought we could shoot a Sniper Match on a Thursday at practice – but several “not Juniors” said they would like to shoot as well, so someone (not me) had the great idea that we could shoot it after the Mid-Range Match last Saturday; so we did.  I set up two classes for the match; Vintage Class for “old  wooden guns” and an Open class for everything else.  We would shoot the usual SR-3 target at 300 yards and then just to add some interest – we moved about 80-yards back to a firing line at the front of the mower house and shot on the MR-63 target.

The Sniper Match is a Team Match and teams are known for their imaginative team names.  We had four teams initially sign up for the match –but one team had to drop out (a casualty of old age, cold and Arthurite-is) and we had a three team competition.  The overall favorite team for the Match was the team of Mark and Mark (Mark Walters and Mark McKee).  Mark McKee, the old bear, came out of hibernation just for this match!  This pair are serious shooters –  a nationally ranked team in the CMP Vintage Sniper Match competition at Camp Perry – usually finishing well into the medal classes with their scores.  They bring a pair of well-tuned M1903’s to the line, both with the Unertl 8X externally adjusted scopes shooting optimized match loads.

Mark and Mark with their M1903’s. Note the vertical sandbags.

The next Team was the Branson Bunch, the father-daughter team of Geoff and Emma.  Geoff and Emma had an ammunition shortage, so they had to borrow FWRR Junior ammunition and both of them shot Emma’s service rifle.

Miss Emma and Geoff working on sighters

The final team was The Coot and The Cutie; Larry Beardsley and Kileen Shaffer.  Larry was shooting an M1903A4 with a  4X Weaver K25-F and LC66 M2 Ball ammo and Miss Kileen shot her service rifle.

Larry and Kileen working sighters at 300-yards

We had never shot this match at FWRR – so it was a bit of a learning experience, but once we went through a couple of the LOAD AND BE READY, TARGETS, UNLOAD AND DISMOUNT command cycles – things went very smoothly.

After the first stage at 300-yards, the competition was pretty close.  The Branson Bunch, with their modern service rifle, was narrowly out in front with a team aggregate of 193-3X.  Astonishingly – The Coot and The Cutie were in second place with a pair of 94’s for a team aggregate of 188-3X.  Mark and Mark had a couple of shots wander out into the far regions and came off the line at 300-yards with a 182-5X.

Then, we packed up, switched to the MR-63 face and moved back to the extended range.  This was a true unknown distance – we had not lasered the move-back so all shooters had to establish new zeroes after some sighting shots.  The five-minute sighter period was a bit hectic, and the wind had picked up a bit as the afternoon wore on.

Mark and Mark’s experience showed as they quickly settled into a steady pattern of good shots.  The wind blew them around a bit, but they also hung a lot of shots into the middle of the target ending up with another 182-5X; a very consistent team effort.  It goes to show that Old Age, Cunning and Practice do pay off after all!

The Branson Bunch struggled a bit after the move back.  Their second string had a number of shots wandering wide both upwind and downwind as they fought wind conditions.  They ended up at the longer range with a 159-1X.

The Coot and The Cutie shot last.  The door was open for them to snatch a victory off the table if they could hold their performance from 300-yards.  But, then The Coot made a very bad strategic decision.  He decided to change from the LC66 M2 Ball ammo he had shot at 300-yards to 168-grain Hornady BTHP Match loads.  BAD MOVE BUBBA!  The heavier ammo shot to a different zero – not just elevation, but windage as well. The Coot started turning knobs and promptly turned the windage knob the wrong way – then turned it further the wrong way on the next shot. Then, getting flustered – he proceeded to cross fire on the third shot for record.  After turning the windage so far right that the next shot was a Miss, he finally managed to get back into the scoring rings for the last few shots.  The Cutie did what she could do to salvage the day, but the damage was done. Her 88-1X only brought the team up to a 143-1X for the extended range stage.

At the end of the day, Mark and Mark – with their pair of old wooden Vintage M1903’s carried the day with a match aggregate of 364-10X.  The Branson Bunch followed with a 352-4X and The Coot and The Cutie trailed with a 331-4X.

It was fun though.  Gary Mabis, who was watching – made the comment that we should do it again when he could shoot.  I suspect that once the girls get over their distrust of the big gun, they will want to try the Vintage Match at Port Clinton.  And, I suspect we will work one of these into next summer’s schedule.

Thanks to everyone for a fun match to close out the year!

Mid-Range Match; Saturday October 8, 2022

What a Glorious day for a shooting match!

On Saturday, October 8th we closed out the 2022 High Power season with a Mid-Range 300-yard Prone Match.  The weather co-operated with brisk but not brutal temperatures and cloudy bright to clear skies.  The winds made shooting as bit challenging with winds fish-tailing from southwest to northeast at as much as about 10 MPH – but with periods of calm as well.  Fourteen shooters came out and we had almost two full relays.

All of our shooters were well experienced shooters, so we were able to run the match as an infiltration match.  The shooters were allowed to decide how they wanted to come on and off the line and we gave a total block time to finish the match.  Some folks decided they wanted to shoot straight through; some shot alternate shooters and some shot two matches and rested one.  It worked very well and things moved as smoothly as just about any match has in a long time.

Shooters spread out and shared the line in the infiltration match

We had planned the match as a late start match to let shooters from distant places come over without having to get up at oh-dark-thirty and the scheme worked out well.  We had three shooters come over from the Lima Sabers – it was good to see those guys at our FWRR range.

And – to top the day off; the shooting was excellent. Fourteen shooters shot three matches each, for a total of 42 matches.  There were 8 iron sight matches, the rest were scope matches.  Of the 42 matches, 19 matches scored 190 or better – pretty good shooting.

In the iron sight matches, Joe Bakies from Lima Sabers took top iron with his third match score of 200-11X.  Norb Norden took second iron with a 184-4X and Mark Walters closed out the money with a 178-6X.

In any-sight, the top shooter was Geoff Branson with a 200-15X.  Ron Dague was second in any-sight with a 200-8X. Bob Working dropped a point and took third with a 199-6X.  It was a tough day and it only took one little error to cost you!

The High Match Aggregate was shot by Joe Bakies with a 596-32X.  (Joe shot all three matches with iron sights).  Geoff Branson took Second Aggregate, down by one point, with a 595-39X.  (Geoff takes the X-Man award with the 39X count; he wins bragging rights).  Ron Dague rounded out the top three places with a 592-24X.

The Range Officer always seems to have no shortage of help.

The top Junior for the day was Miss Emma Branson, continuing her sharp eyed hot streak from the Atterbury State Weekend, with a fifth place overall score of 577-17X.

Miss Emma hard at work on her 577-17X
Addiysn and Kileen, the Dynamic Duo, on the low end.
These guys just have too much fun!

Thanks to all of the shooters who came out for the day.  It was fun and it was a great way to close out the 2022 High Power season.  Our next match will be Winter Offhand on Saturday, November 12 at 9:00. We will shoot our usual 100-yard format; two strings of 20 shots for record (first string will be 22 shots, drop the low 2 as sighters).  We’ll see you then!

October 2022 Newsletter

Web Note: The web version of the Newsletter has pictures that the mailed version does not because we try to minimize the page count of paper mailings.

October 2022 FWRRC NEWSLETTER

FWRR Club Meeting

The next meeting of the Fort Wayne Rifle and Revolver Club will be held on Monday, October 3, 2022.  Meeting Place: VFW Post 857, located at 2202 West Main Street in Fort Wayne.  Meeting Time: 7:00 p.m.  Food and drink will be available at very reasonable prices before and after the meeting.

Meeting Agenda: Standard meeting format.  In addition, nominations for Club offices will be addressed.  Please make an effort to attend meetings, as a quorum is required to conduct club business.

A Message from the President

“We have an election coming up in December.  If anyone is interested in running, nominations can be made in October.”

“I would like to thank the grass mowers.  This year, the grass could have been cut every week… [due to] rain.

Overall, the range looks good.”

Mowing Crew

The following individuals were members of the 2022 mowing crew:  Bob Bausser, Marty Didion, John Halter, Joe Harbor, Matt Hice, Jim Johnston, Russ McCurdy, Dennie McNabb, Ozzie Ostheimer, Shannon Parks, David Rinaldi, Rick Schwaiger, Ted Smeltzer, Jim Sweeney and Gary Walker.

Mowing Schedule

The 2022 Mowing Schedule is available on the club’s website.  The mowing dates that are scheduled to occur before the December meeting are: 10/5, 10/19 and 11/2.  Dates are tentative, depending on weather and ground conditions.   Mowing times vary according to volunteer availability.  Efforts will be made to provide mowing date and time updates on the website.  The Main Range is closed during mowing and other range maintenance activities.   Pistol Bays 4 and 5 remain open during mowing.  It is recommended that members check the website for updates before traveling to the range.

Newsletter Delivery

Approximately 80% of the membership receives the newsletter via email.  Those members who have email accounts and who currently opt for postal delivery are asked to consider receiving the newsletter via email next year.  Doing so will save printing and postage costs and significant manual labor.  Changes in delivery method will go into effect in February, 2023.

To add or remove your Email address just send an Email to billmac099@yahoo.com with the subject FWRRC-Add  or FWRRC-Delete.

Maintenance Activities

Nothing new to report.

New Members

Please welcome new member Derek Hatman.  Derek was accepted as a member at the August meeting.  

Discipline Reports

ACPDL & USPSA

Tim Wunderlich, reports that ACPDL & USPSA, “…had some great turnouts in the last few months. Tim also notes that “…USPSA practice is getting very busy.”

High-power (HP)

Match Results

August 13th  50/80 Match. 1st Place: Jim Jackson, 770-22X;  2nd Place: Mark Walters, 758-24X;  High Junior: Marshall Rohrbach, 702-5X.

August 18th  Junior 100-yard Fun  Match. 1st Place: Marshall Rohrbach, 479-13X;  2nd Place: Kileen Shaffer, 463-8X;  3rd Place: Mia King, 451-10X.

September 10 th 50/80 Match. 1st Place: Carl Johnson, 773-24X;  2nd Place: Mark Walters, 763-9X;  High Junior: Mia King, 728-10X.

Wildcat Valley 300-yard Championship.  State Champion: Madelyn Schnelle (Junior Girl), 791-31X; First Master: Mark Richard, 779-29X;  First Expert:  Mike Habel, 757-12X, High Junior: Marshall Rohrbach.

Dave Schnelle (CMP Silver), Madelyn Schnelle (State Champion, CMP Gold), Mark Richard – FWRR (High Master, CMP Bronze), Doc Habel -FWRR (High Expert) and Marshall Rohrbach – FWRR
(High Junior)

Indiana Juniors and a Grand Senior

Fall Creek 100-yard Championship. State Champion:  Mike King, 786-20X. Other Participants: Mark Richard, 772-17X; Mike Habel, 736-11X; Kileen Shaffer, 678-4X; Addisyn Shull, 517-0X.

ISPRA Full-Course State Championship.  State Champion:  Madelyn Schnelle, 1589-52X; 2nd Place (Silver): Mark Richard, 1581-49X;  3rd Place (Bronze) Mike King, 160-46X; Other Participants: Geoff Branson, 1543-57X: Emma Branson (Junior Girl), 1501-28X.

Leonard Johnson Memorial Match. First – Jerry and Doug Johnson; 764-10X. Second – Jay Werhle and Mark Walters; 761-15X. Third; Tom Easley and Norb Norbert; 742-7X.

Camp Perry, Small Arms Firing School (SAFS)

Four of our five Juniors attended the SAFS at Camp Perry.  (Colton Eads had to travel to Texas A&M for the start of the school year.)  Marshall Rohrbach finished 17th out of 267 competitors in the Excellence in Competition Match to win four points toward his Distinguished Rifleman Badge.  Kileen Shaffer, Addisyn Shull and Mia King placed 79th, 176th and 220th, respectively.

Marshall Rohrbach and his EIC Medal

LtCol. Eric Andreasen, former CO of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit (USAMU), served as FWRRC’s Junior team coach.  Col.  Andreasen stated that they (USAMU) see a lot of Junior teams when the they run matches.  He went on to say that it has been a long time since the AMU staff has seen a group as polite, respectful, courteous, and attentive as our Juniors. Congratulation to our Juniors, their parents and their shooting mentors.

SAFS Juniors with LtCol Eric Andreasen

Girls will be girls – even at a Rifle Match

Notes and Reminders:

DO NOT HANDLE FIREARMS WHEN PERSONNEL ARE DOWN RANGE! Proper range etiquette involves opening actions, removing all ammunition from firearms, and stepping away from the firing line.  

MEMBERS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE BEHAVIOR AND ACTIONS OF THEIR GUESTS.  Members may take a maximum of two guests to the range per visit, not counting family members.  Do not take more guests and/or family members than you are able to directly supervise.  If your guests or family members are new to the shooting sports, it is strongly recommended that the member refrain from shooting so that all of his/her attention can be devoted to supervision.

Please make certain to close the outhouse doors and to lower the toilet seat covers.

For Sale

1) .224 diameter, 90 gr., Sierra, Matchking, BTHP bullets, Qty 250.  Per Larry Beardsley, ‘[will] swap for something”. Contact Larry at FWRRHPDirector@aol.com.

2)   Jewel single-stage trigger for a Remington 700 or 40X. Incorporates safety and bolt release, $180.00.  6.5 mm, 142 gr., Sierra, Matchking, BTHP bullets, Qty 4 boxes.  $50.00/box.  1 lb of Reloader 16, $60.00.  1 lb of  Vihtavuori N550, $65.00.  Contact Mark Strahan at (260) 927-5515 or  ms9568@gmail.com

3) 98 Mauser Sporter in Cal. 270 Win.: Forged bolt handle; Buehler-style safety; Leopold, one-piece base and 1-inch rings; Walnut Monte Carlo stock that accommodates a receiver sight.  $525.00.   Contact Dave Dolezal at (260) 433-1505.

Members who wish to sell shooting-related items may send ad information to Marty Didion at martindidion4@gmail.com

Ads must be received three weeks before meetings in order to appear in the next newsletter.

Saturday – 10 September 50/80 Match

Labor Day has come and gone – so even though the calendar hasn’t said “end of Summer” yet – unofficially summer has drawn to a close. Saturday September 10th was our last 50/80 XTC High Power Match of the summer and we could not have asked for a more beautiful day for a rifle match.  And, as is usual at the end of shooting season, we had some match conflicts with other Clubs and our attendance was down because we had five shooters from FWRR go to the Fall Creek Conservation Club for the Indiana 100-yard State Championship Match.  Nonetheless, we had nine shooters at the line for Saturday’s match.

A beautiful day for a match; 63-degrees and no wind

We had a couple of special guests for the Match. Carl Johnson, an FWRR Distinguished Rifleman (Badge 2160) currently living in southern Indiana showed us that he still has the chops as he was the overall match winner with a score of 773-24X. Carl also had a personal best in Prone Rapid with a 200-11X and was the high Prone Slowfire shooter with a 196-8X.  Jim Schieltz made the trip over from the Lima Sabers – he had a rough day as he had ‘scope issues but before things went sour, he managed to shoot the top Offhand score with a 194-4X.  200-yard Rapid Sitting honors went to Mark Walters with a 197-3X. 

Carl Johnson; Match Winner 773-24X
Jim Schieltz; Offhand High Score – 190-4X

And, congratulations to Miss Mia King – one of our Junior girl person shooters.  This is Mia’s first season shooting high power and on Saturday she put together a score of 725-10X (90.6%), putting her solidly into NRA Expert territory and just into CMP Expert classification.

But, to match the high points of the day, there were several examples of how quickly things can change in high power shooting.  When we started the rapid fire strings, Gary Mabis found that his rifle would not strip rounds from the magazine – making it a straight pull AR-15 (a condition not conducive to shooting in a time limit).  After putting up great Offhand and Sitting Rapid scores, Jim Schiletz’s scope developed issues – shots that were called in the 10/X rings wandered out to the 7 or 8 ring.  Normally, we would blame this on the shooter – but not this time – it was an equipment issue.  The most baffling issue of the day was the disappearing bullets that Mark Walters was shooting. Mark was beating up the 10/X rings. He would fire a shot and it would not plot.  This might happen again on the next shot. We did some experimenting and the only explanation we could logically figure was that the bullets were blowing up as they went downrange – strange indeed.

We are going to shoot a fun match on Thursday afternoon, September 22nd after a quick practice session to get zeroes for .22 rimfire rifles.  The Juniors have wanted to shoot a Rattle Battle Match ever since they learned about it during their SAFS trip to Camp Perry.  We will shoot a mini-Rattle Battle that afternoon.  The Juniors have gotten fairly well organized (they’re doing it all themselves) and Captain King is assigning shooters, figuring out strategies and deciding how she is going to divvy up the 200-rounds of ammo allowed for the four person team for this match.  We are looking for an Old Coot Team to shoot against them, so if you guys want to shoot this match – I have a set of rules and you just need to figure out a Team.

On September 24th, we will shoot the Leonard Johnson Memorial Match.  This has sometimes been called “The World’s Toughest Team Match”.  Each shooter on two person teams will shoot 20 rounds with .22 rimfire rifles at 200-yards on the NRA SR-42 target, a reduction of the SR-3 target to simulate the 300-yard stage of the National Match Course at 200 yards.  Now, as if this was not already a hard enough target – shooters will move back to 300-yards and fire another 20-rounds each at that same target! It is a challenging match and it draws a number of shooters with unique rifles!

We close the high power season on October 9 with a 60-round Mid-Range match.  That match will start at 11:00, so if folks want to come from afar – they won’t have to start out at oh-dark-thirty. We resume Winter Offhand Matches on Saturday, November 12 with a 40-round offhand match.

FWRR WELL REPRESENTED AT 300-YARD STATE CHAMPIONSHIP

Wildcat Valley Rifle and Pistol Club hosted the Indiana 300-Yard Reduced Course State Championship on Saturday, August 27th and the Fort Wayne Rifle and Pistol Club was well represented at the event.  Mark Richard, Mike Habel, Mike King and Juniors Marshall Rohrbach, Kileen Shaffer and Addiysn Shull made up the shooting contingent and Mike Grannis and Larry Beardsley were there as the support group.  Larry acted as the Range Officer for the match and Mike was the Statistical Officer as scores were tallied at match end.

ISRPA Reduced Course State Championship Trophy; 300-Yards

The 300-Yard Reduced Course State Championship title was captured by Wildcat Valley Junior Madelyn Schnelle with an impressive 791-31X score.  Madelyn dropped 5 points in the first 10 shots in Offhand and then dropped only four more points across the rest of the match.


Madelyn Schnelle accepts the ISRPA 300-Yard Reduced Course Championship Trophy from Randy Vonderheide

FWRR’s Mark Richard took First Master with 779-29X.  Mike Habel continued a season long hot streak taking First Expert with a 757-12X.  Marshall Rohrback came away with First Junior, two points behind Doc with a 755-12X.

Match Award Winners
Dave Schnelle, CMP Bronze; Madelyn Schnelle, CMP Gold, Indiana State Champion; Mark Richard, CMP Silver, First Master; Doc Habel, First Expert; Marshall Rohrbach, First Junior
FWRR Shooters owned the High End of the line
Mike King, Mark Richard (not shown) , Doc Habel, Geoff Branson, Emma Branson, Addiysn Shull, Kileen Shaffer and

Marshall Rohrbach
FWRR Range Officer Larry Beardsley watches as the first relay shoots Offhand

Miss Addiysn gets the recovery and heart attack award for the day.  In her second string of prone rapid fire, she had a round mis-feed about halfway through her second magazine.  Addy racked the bolt, ejected the misfed cartridge and then finished off the magazine, but she was still one shot short of the ten shots she needed for the string.  Time was running out and the last round was somewhere underneath her. She rolled over on her right side (she’s a lefty), found the loose round, reloaded it – closed the bolt, got back in position on target and got off the final shot just as the last second ticked off the clock and I whistled “CEASE FIRE”.  She closed out her second rapid fire prone string with a 96-1X score!  GREAT RECOVERY Young Lady!

Addisyn and Kileen – Here we go!
Marshall on his way to a 189-2X Offhand
Indiana Juniors and a Grand Senior
Front : Marshall Rohrbach
Rear: Kileen Shaffer, Madelyn Schnelle, Larry Beardsley, Emma Branson, Addiysn Shull
Let’s see, an 83-degree sunny day, not much of a breeze and an 80-round Match with heavy shooting coats and sweatshirts – and a bunch of little roses? Ewhhhh…!

And just a note: Once they come off the firing line, they turn back into teen-age girls!

The next match in the Indiana Triple Crown of State Matches is the 100-Yard Reduced Course Championship at Fall Creek on September 10th and the series completes with a two-day dual 80-round tournament (1600 point aggregate) at Camp Atterbury on September 17 and 18.