A day of good news/bad news at the range. The good news is that the Walker Conversion put all it’s shots in the same hole. The bad news is only three of the fourteen rounds that I had loaded went off. It wasn’t striking light either, as you can see in the photo-
I’m pretty sure I screwed up somewhere and contaminated the primers- annoying. Well, that’s why I have a bullet-puller. The good news is that the bullets stayed put nicely under recoil, so the ‘chemical crimp’ is working just fine. The brass fire-formed nicely in the chambers-
How is it to fire? Well, recoil isn’t painful, but you know you’ve fired a gun! There’s a definite snap to it, but the gun’s 3-1/2 lb weight really takes the sting out of it. Range wasn’t very far, but consistency was easy to attain- for what it’s worth here’s the picture of the three shots that worked. Obviously I’ll need to adjust the sights a bit:
I had also done some test-loads in .44 Colt for The Dandy using the new collet-crimp die. They were consistent- consistently underpowered, at least one of them very much so. I’ll keep working on that.
The Steampunk Snubby has a new front sight so I wanted to test that. It’s shooting a bit high with a six o’clock hold, but I’m pretty happy with it, and with the 150gr. .361 LSWC load. It’s definitely got more pop than factory ammo, but that’s pretty weak stuff. I ended by firing five cylinders at seven yards as fast as I could pull the trigger. Not the best shooting I have done by a long shot, but big fun!
Finally I decided to wring out the S&W m1905 and see what I could do with it. I rested it on my shooting bag, thumb-cocked the hammer and fired as carefully as I could. I got a one-hole group high and slightly left at ten yards, then moved the target out to fifteen yards and enlarged the hole slightly. Moved the target to twenty-five yards and things went to poop. The group expanded to four inches and was noticeably furthe.r off to the left. Huh. Pretty sure it’s me, not the gun.
I’m not used to shooting a double-action revolver single-action, and I never shoot handguns from a rest so I decided to do what I am used to- standing unsupported double action. Given that this gun is over a century old and has a rudimentary rear sight I’m not embarrassed by the result- about a 4-1/2″ group. Pretty sure I can improve on that, so I’ll be shooting this gun at 25 yards regularly from here out.
The JP Sauer & Sohn single-action caused some consternation- it was not firing reliably and I thought I had more bad primers… until I realized the the primers weren’t showing any hits. Um… not sure how that could happen. I mean, the gun is pretty basic; there really shouldn’t be any way the firing-pin would not hit the primer. Unless the cylinder wasn’t rotating… yep. Bad hand spring- easy to fix. I’ll fabricate a replacement and she’ll be good as new.
So once again it was a mixed bag, but overall I came home pretty pleased. We’ll see if I can do better next time out.
Michael Tinker Pearce, 18 Feb. 2018
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