Monday, December 1, 2014

New Shooter and Range Report

My brother-in-law's kids are heavily into baseball.  They are good at it.  Their team went to the playoffs  this year.  With four kids across a broad age spectrum, they always seem to be doing baseball all the time so I didn't really expect any reply other than "sorry, we have a game that day" when I sent brother-in-law a message on Thursday suggesting that we all go to the range on Saturday.

The Lovely Bride took our niece shopping on Black Friday and I spent most of Friday wrestling with a problem on my home computer so I was a little surprised when TLB came home and said that her our niece had invited us to go shooting with her, her mother (TLB's sister), her other uncle ("the brother-in-law") and three of his kids.   TLB wanted to know if I knew anything about it.  Being the honest and upstanding kind of guy that I am, I agreed that I might possibly have been the instigator.   I hadn't heard from her brother so I had just assumed that he had a game.   When I checked my messages on Facebook, he had replied that they all wanted to go.   I hadn't checked all day because of the computer trouble.  I really didn't think I needed to.   Might be why I "didn't get" his reply.

Brother-in-law (TLB's brother) had run into Sister-in-Law (TLB's sister) sometime on Friday and invited her and the niece along.  Between my computer headache and the bunch of them text messaging, everybody knew about it before I did.

We got our plans coordinated with the brother-in-law and TLB told her sister that she and the niece had to ride with us because we had to go over rules and how to operate the various types of guns before we got to the range.   You aren't allowed to touch your guns until the range is hot and there's too much shooting going on to show them anything once the range goes hot.

So we picked up the Sister-in-Law and niece and took a shortcut from their place to the Hernando Sportsman's Club.

Got there a few minutes early, checked out the club house, paid our fees and got our stuff all set up.  Their website won't let me copy any more pictures but its a really nice place.

Sister-in-Law recently completed her safety class for her carry permit.  She was familiar with revolvers from the class but had no experience with semi-autos so we brought a few of each for her to try out so she could decide which she preferred.

TLB and Sister-in-Law started out with the new SCCY 9mm whilst the niece and I took the next bench over with the little bull-barreled H&R .32 Magnum.  I know, H&R is supposed to be a cheap gun and far beneath the status of any serious shooter but this one has a rounded grip frame and a bull barrel and its easy and fun to shoot.  Kids like it because its "a magnum" but its comfortable in their hands, has good, adjustable sights, the trigger is smooth and its accurate.   Its a nice gun. I like it.

Niece did  pretty darned well for a first time shooter.

All of her shots were on the board and a lot of them were in the black. 

When they called the range cold, the RSO told me he thought she did pretty well since she didn't shoot the target stand like so many people do and he was really impressed when I told him that this was her first time ever pulling a trigger.  That got him wound up.   As I passed the niece on my way to put up a new target, I told her that the RSO wanted to talk to her.  She got a worried look on her face and asked "what did I do?" and I told her to just ask him to tell her what he told me.  By the time I got back, she was beaming and the RSO had gone to his truck to get a semi-auto .22 rifle with a red dot sight on it.

There were pieces of orange sporting clays targets strewn about underneath the target stands.  When the range went hot again, he had her shooting those orange fragments with that rifle.  She tore them up!

I know; she has that girly, reverse shooting posture thing going on but she's a girl so its OK and we weren't trying to make her into a three gun champion.   We were giving her a fond memory.  We   were   having   fun.   That mission was accomplished.

This  is one of the reasons I like the Hernando Sportsman's Club.   Think about it.  We were shooting at maybe fifteen yards.   The RSO keeps a rifle in his truck with a red dot sight on it and its sighted in at 15 yards.   He keeps that rifle set up just so kids and new shooters will have a good shooting experience!   To me, that's what its all about.   I hate to think what he spends on ammo every month just to be kind to kids like that. 

Along the way, we tried out a few other pistols.   TLB had one failure to feed in the SCCY.  She was shooting Remington FMJ ammo.  I've really been disappointed in their rimfire ammo lately but their center fire stuff seems to work fine so I don't blame the ammo.  I'm not going to complain about the gun yet either.  I've read good and bad reviews about the SCCY guns and most of the bad ones were obviously written by morons.  I'll probably write a rant about that later.   The manuals for a lot of high dollar "carry guns" tell you to shoot 200 or so rounds through the new guns before you consider them reliable.   This was less than 40 rounds into the first 200.   It did fine with some 147 grain Gold Dots that I had loaded for my Luger several years ago.   The Beretta Tomcat had three consecutive failures to feed shooting Privi Partizan hardball.   It wasn't ejecting the fired cases fast enough.  I put in some 85 grain Hornady JHP loads that I worked up to make a friend's Lorcin actually function and it sure didn't have a problem ejecting those cases. I think maybe the Privi stuff was a tad on the mild side.

Actually, its TLB's friend that has the Lorcin.   Just want to make that clear.  K?

To my eye, few guns are more elegant than the Luger so I made sure sister-in-law and niece both got to fire it a little.



Neither of them liked it much.  Mushy Luger trigger and crappy Luger sights.

Naturally, the Glock was boring as stale bread.  It just worked perfectly all day long.


Nobody wanted to try the big scary .45 so I had it all to myself when I wasn't keeping magazines loaded for the ladies. I got the sights set where I want them so that was a good thing.

Sister-in-Law didn't like the automatics nearly as much as the revolvers.  Hmmm.   Maybe Lugers are good for something after all.  She's decided on a revolver and its going to be a .38 Special.    That's another mission accomplished. 

After making about a gallon of brass, we packed up and headed North to Crystal River for lunch at Crackers

(that's the only picture their site will let me copy)

and to check out a new store called "Rural King." 

I call it "new" because I had never heard of it before this weekend but their website says they have seventy-six stores in ten States and they've been around since 1960.  Reckon I oughtta get out more.

Its kind of like a Tractor Supply Store but its huge and has more of everything.  It even has a nice little gun department with prices that didn't look bad. 

They even had one of these in stock:

When we dropped Sister-in-Law and niece off they thanked us for the good time and the niece asked why the RSO kept calling her "Annie Okra."   I told her that he was saying "Oakley" and why it was a compliment. 

I suggested that she Google it.

I know the tradition here is to post some "brass catcher" pictures whenever actual shooting occurs but this was a family outing.  I'm going to keep it respectable this time.  That Black Friday post ought to have enough pulchritude to last anybody until Wednesday anyway.

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