Ted’s essays

ammo load testing

I meticulously assembled 7 groups of loads with 165-grain Hornady SST bullets. The hand-weighed charges ran from 5 with 43.4 grains of Varget powder to 5 with 44.0 grains, every group of five separated by tenth-of-a-grain increments. I also loaded up and tested 7 groups of 168-grain Sierra HPBT match bullets. These were pushed out by 42.7 to 43.3 grains of Varget, also groups of five in tenth-of-a-grain increments. My shooting was all done at 200 yards from a bench rest through the Leopold scope my .308-caliber AR-10 always wears. The wind was kind to me, not disturbing us at all. The targets were some 50-foot rapid-fire pistol targets I had a lot of. While not ideal for load testing, […]


100 and 200 yard targetsMy low-rent Romanian AK47 had an awful trigger that was like a pointy stick dragging across broken pavement. Worse, every shot fired would reset the trigger with a smart SLAP on your trigger finger. Not too many shots downrange before anyone and everyone had enough. Today was its first outing with a new trigger. No slap. Hooray! Smooth too. Way Cool! It has very little takeup against a light spring, a little tension for just a skosh farther, then BOOM. Perhaps breaking around 2 pounds, though I didn’t measure it. While a very nice, welcome change, it does take some getting used to. It is quite different from the 4.5-pound 2-stage AR-15 or 6-pound handgun triggers […]

AR-15 rifle options

My best friend, a devout AR-15 builder, built me a ‘utility upper’ for my AR-15 “Service Rifle”. My rifle’s original purpose is to shoot CMP and NRA High-Power Rifle Matches at 200, 300 and 600 yards in very restricted, formatted matches. They have been going on for over 100 years in more or less the same format … though they used to be encouraged and supported by the government and military and are now unsupported and discouraged, but that is a whole nuther story. Today, my rifle doubled its utility. It is no longer a match-only tool, but a utility rifle as well. This was motivated by the upcoming June Vance Cusic Vietnam Rattle Battle Rifle Match. I am a […]