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When hunting predators like coyotes, your choice of scope can make a big difference. The coyote is usually difficult to locate at night, but now any hunter can use night vision scopes to bring the odds back in their favor. A good scope on your AR-15 will allow you to spot, track, and kill the target with a highly-accurate shot, even in low-light conditions.

Best AR-15 Scopes for Coyote Hunting 2020 Review

Best AR-15 Scopes for Coyote Hunting  2020 ReviewWhen hunting predators like coyotes, your choice of scope can make a big difference. The coyote is usually difficult to locate at night, but now any hunter can use night vision scopes to bring the odds back in their favor. A good scope on your AR-15 will allow you to spot, track, and kill the target with a highly-accurate shot, even in low-light conditions. In this article, we look at the factors you should consider when choosing a scope so you can be successful in bagging a coyote in your chosen hunting environment and specific conditions. At a Glance: Our Top Picks for AR-15 Coyote Hunting Scopes OUR TOP PICK: Nikon - P-223 Riflescope Trijicon ACOG Rifle Scope ATN X-Sight Smart Rifle Scope Sightmark - Photon Xt 6.5x50mm Digital Night Vision Rifle Scope BEST BUDGET OPTION: Nightforce Optics 5-20x56 SHV Riflescope Comparison of the Best AR-15 Scopes For Coyote Hunting IMAGE PRODUCT Our Top Pick Nikon - P-223 Riflescope Compact Design for Easy Handling Holds Zero Even Under Harsh Recoil BDC Reticle Avoids Repetitive Adjustments View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Trijicon ACOG Rifle Scope 4x Magnification With Picatinny Rail Provides Sight Picture up to 800 Meters Available in 7 Different Reticle Options "View Latest Price" → "Read Customer Reviews" ATN X-Sight "Smart Rifle Scope" 3-14x Max Magnification w/Smooth Zoom Integration Bluetooth and WiFi Connectivity 50mm Objective Size View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Sightmark - Photon Xt 6. "5x50mm Digital Night" "Vision Rifle Scope" Night Vision Compatibility for Hunting Many Reticles for Versatility and Comfort Digital Calibration and Recording View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Best Budget Option Nightforce Optics 5-20x56 SHV Riflescope High Power for Long Distance Shooting Large Objective Delivers a Crisp and Clear Image MOAR Reticle for Accurate Estimations View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Vortex Viper PST Gen II 2-10x32mm FFP Scope Ideal for Accurate Shooting Fully Adjustable for Windage Elevation and Parallax Versatile EBR Illuminated Reticle View Latest PriceRead Customer Reviews Dealing With Predators Coyote hunting is popular in Southwest and Midwest states, and people hunt them for multiple reasons. The first reason to hunt coyotes is population control. Coyotes are predators and in recent years their population has increased, leading to many states issuing specific coyote hunting regulations. This is because they can attack livestock, be vectors for disease, and decrease other kinds of game available for hunting. Since coyote hunt wild animals like turkey, deer, quail, duck, and rabbit, they are increasingly coming into competition with human hunters. So, hunting coyotes makes sense as we can eliminate our competition for wild game. The second reason to hunt coyotes is disease control. Coyotes can harbor diseases like distemper, rabies, trichinosis, and parvo, as well as parasites like mange, lice, fleas, and worms. The diseases they carry can be passed from coyotes to dogs and from dogs to humans. The third reason for hunting coyotes is for the sheer thrill of the hunt. Coyotes are a notoriously cunning and alert quarry, with an acute sense of smell. Being wary and sensitive to movements that are not quite right in their immediate surroundings, they are a difficult animal to hunt. Another reason to hunt coyotes is to protect livestock from attack, as they often kill and eat fowl and attack sheep and calves. In 2014, 2 8% of adult sheep losses and 36 % of lamb losses were attributed to predators. Of those animals, ranchers stated that 33,510 adult sheep (more than half of total predation losses) and 84,519 lambs (nearly two-thirds of all predation losses) were killed by coyotes. In states where it’s legal to hunt, coyotes usually have a bounty on their heads, as they provide valuable pelts. What to Look For in a Scope When we talk about the ideal scope for hunting coyotes, keep in mind that you’ll need to tailor your scope to your specific hunting environment and time of hunting. Nighttime hunting will have different requirements from early morning or dusk shooting. In this article we’re going to focus on scopes that are good for dusk/dawn/daylight and for shorter ranges up to 100 -150 yards. Let’s understand what factors will affect what you should look for in a scope for coyote hunting. Magnification Magnification is a hotly debated topic when it comes to scopes, with some hunters advocating for the higher the better mantra and others supporting the medium-to-low magnification power. The best magnification is the one that meets your hunting requirements and style of shooting. While hunting in the deep woods, your farthest shot will be no more than 150 yards, so a 1.5-5x may be all that you need. If hunting coyote on the open plains, your shooting range may extend to 450 yards and then you’ll need a scope with at least a 20x-power zoom. So keep in mind the kind of terrain you’ll be shooting in and what kind of habitats the coyotes in your area live in, as well as your average shot distance. Objective Lens This is the light-­gathering lens on the far end of your scope, and when it comes to coyote hunting, the bigger the objective lens, the better the low-light ability and the better you can shoot. The last number in the scope’s description tells you the objective size. For example, a scope with the designation of 5.5-22x56 mm has a 56 mm objective. Simply get the biggest objective you can afford. An objective that is at least 50 mm is highly recommended, but keep in mind that the size will affect your sight picture. Reticle There is no need to overcomplicate things by buying a fancy reticle. You should remember your AR-15 is shooting high-velocity rounds that drop very little out to 400 yards. But memorizing your drop at ranges of 100, 200, and up to 400 yards will allow you to take down any coyote with a simple crosshair reticle. Our recommendation is just a simple crosshair reticle, such as the fine duplex or the wide duplex. Quick Take - Best AR-15 Scopes for Coyote Hunting These are our recommendations for the best scopes for coyote hunting with the AR-15: Nikon - P-223 Riflescope Trijicon ACOG Riflescope ATN X-Sight Smart Rifle Scope Review of the Best AR-15 Scopes for Coyote Hunting The following is a list of the seven best AR-15 coyote hunting scopes currently on the market. We’ll be discussing what new buyers liked, why they stood out to us, and who will benefit from each one the most. As you look further in-depth, be sure to note the features and characteristics so you know which ones will stand out as one of your favorites. Now that we know what to look for, let’s have a look at some of the scopes that will serve you best when you’re on the hunt for coyotes. Let’s begin by taking a look at the first hunting scope on our list: Best Overall: ​ Nikon - P-223 Riflescope CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Very clear picture sight Quick sight acquisition Reasonably priced Cons Fewer features than more expensive scopes What Recent Buyers Report New buyers were quite happy with the scope for a few good reasons. One of them was the overall clarity of the scope. They were able to see images clearly and in high-definition. They also added that the BDC reticle was able to get them to hit their targets from well over 400 yards out accurately. Why it Stands Out to Us Nikon’s scopes are known for one of their major features- image clarity. They just so happen to possess the clearest, highest-definition image pictures of any other scope on the market. On top of that, the scope is equipped with a fine crosshair BDC reticle that makes the shooting sharp and dead-on every single time. To make it one of the more effective coyote hunting scopes on the market, it can collect light to help you see better in low-light conditions. This scope is designed specifically for the AR-15 and is targeted at shooters who don’t need all the high-end features of the more expensive M-223. Because the P-223 scopes are factory-calibrated for 55-grain 5.56 mm NATO cartridges, they’ll be very accurate with those out of the box. However, the user can modify the sighting for other cartridges using Nikon’s Spot-On technology. The coating on the scope is excellent for low-light shooting and the BDC 600 reticle option compensates for bullet drop up to 600 yards. Who Will Use This Most This will likely benefit the coyote hunter that tends to be out and about at dawn or dusk before the sun goes down. They can use it in the daytime but may not find the best luck when it comes to coyotes. Of course, that depends on the geographical area and the time of day. Bottom Line The Nikon P-Tactical .223 Riflescope will probably be the go-to hunting scope for you if you’re looking to knock down a coyote or two. It’s durable, clear in the image, and deadly accurate. In short, it’s the epitome of what a rifle scope should be. Runner-up: ​ Trijicon ACOG Riflescope CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Compact and lightweight design Tough scope Illuminated reticle Chevron reticle For easy sighting Sight tunnel retains use of iron sights Cons Fixed magnification What "Recent Buyers Report" One of the best features that new buyers loved was how far this puppy could go. Most of them were able to nail their targets with dead-on accuracy from about 800 yards out. They were also able to see a lot better in low light conditions. One user said he was able to knock down a coyote from about 400 to 500 yards out. Why it Stands Out to Us The design of the riflescope is perhaps one of the few things that makes this bad boy stand out. It also comes with a red and green reticle that will allow you to use the scope in either a day or night setting (depending on the light settings). The red dot will mostly serve you best in a nighttime situation. Not to be outdone, the scope is also easy to attach and detach, especially when using a Picatinny rail to attach your rifle or optics. Trijicon is mostly renowned for making tactical, high-end scopes with illumination for hunting and military operations. This one here is an ACOG scope from Trijicon, with an illuminated reticle to let you hunt coyotes or other game in low-light conditions, which is the time they come out the most. The scope has a fixed 4x magnification which lets you shoot precisely to a distance of 800 meters. It also has a fixed focal plane with a constant eye relief of 1.25 inches. A wide eyepiece allows you to view your target with ease. Coyotes tend to move a lot, so sighting them with this scope becomes a lot easier. The wide 32 mm objective of the lens lets enough light pass through so you can take clear shots even under low light conditions. The large objective, coupled with the Chevron .223 ballistic illuminated reticle, will turn your rifle into a deadly and precise killing machine. The scope measures just 5.8 inches in length and weighs a mere 9.9 ounces, so it doesn’t add any substantial weight to your rifle. The scope is supplied with a TA51 scope mount which allows you to mount it easily over any mil-std 1913 Picatinny rail. The turret caps are tethered to the body of the optic so you don’t lose ‘em. The scope has a matte black finish, so it is also suitable for the aesthetics of your rifle. Who Will "Use This Most" This will likely be used in a night time setting, so it would make total sense if it was somehow used as a nighttime only kind of scope. However, it does have its uses during the day, as well. If you want to use this scope as a reliable hunting scope for around the clock hunting, this might be exactly what you’re looking for. Bottom Line The Trijicon ACOG scope might be right up your alley if you want something that will give you multiple illuminated reticles and the opportunity to reach out and touch something at some pretty far-out distances. Don’t be afraid to tack on this sucker and let a few shots rip at the range, especially when you’re getting it ready for prime time. The Trijicon ACOG scope is the perfect solution for hunting coyotes at a close range. The scope is easy to sight and has an illuminated reticle, which helps with shooting such constantly moving targets. Best for the Money: ATN X-Sight Smart Rifle Scope CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Variable magnification Large objective Durable and tough Myriad of digital features Night vision with changeable reticles Cons Drains batteries pretty fast Weighs 2.15 lbs What Recent Buyers Report One of the things new buyers noticed was the large objective. This gave them plenty of real estate when it came to the image picture and that alone allowed them to acquire their targets a lot quicker than some other scopes. One user said he was able to lock onto his targets quickly whenever he was out in the field. Why it Stands Out to Us The scope is jam-packed with some technical features that you might least expect with an ordinary rifle scope. For example, it can record videos and take pictures. So if you want to use something that will capture every accomplishment while hunting, this could be exactly the scope you’re looking for. Plus, you might pick up on things you might have missed while you’re reviewing the videos and photos. The X-Sight from ATN is probably the smartest scope on the market today. The scope has a large objective of 50 mm and a variable magnification of 3x-12x. This allows you to sight and hit targets over a long range. The scope has a digital interface with a crystal clear imaging solution. Plus, the scope has multiple reticles, which can be chosen using the software. As an added bonus, you can record HD videos and take images with the scope while shooting. It is equipped with WiFi and Bluetooth to allow you to share your images and videos in real-time by connecting it to your mobile phone. The recoil activated video filming feature eliminates the chances of the shooter forgetting to record a video. The e-compass, built-in range finder, and shooting aid solution calculate all the ballistic inputs for you and present you with the right spot to shoot, without having to make any calculations. The scope features an obsidian user interface, with quick access buttons on the top to switch modes and use various functions. It also features a night vision mode, which is extremely helpful when hunting coyotes or hogs. Even packed with so many features, the scope still has a tube size of one-inch to spare some space. Who Will Use This Most This would be an excellent scope for the avid hunter, especially those who want a great scope for around the clock use. With all these technical features, you’ll be able to use them to capture your greatest hunting moments. If you don’t mind all the techy bells and whistles in a rifle scope or if you want to watch your last hunting accomplishment in an endless loop and feel confident about the next hunt, this scope might be right up your alley. Bottom Line The ATN X-Sight is a scope that is a bit more than just an ordinary hunting scope. It has some features that will stand head and shoulders above any other scope you find on the market for coyote hunting. Add this puppy onto your rifle and be ready to take on any target in day or nighttime hunting applications. The ATN X-sight is a technically-advanced scope with a plethora of digital and ballistic features. With this scope, all you have to do is point and shoot, without worrying about ballistics or making any calculations. The scope has been priced well, making it affordable in respect to its qualities. 4. Sightmark - Photon Xt 6.5x50mm Digital Night Vision Riflescope CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Purpose-driven High magnification Six different reticles Cons Bulky Expensive What Recent Buyers Report As expected, new users were quite satisfied with the scope. They were able to see clearly during the night with the night vision mode. One user that he was able to pick up coyote targets situated from about 300 yards out. By the time they got slightly closer, he managed to accurately hit them with a single kill shot each time. Why it Stands Out to Us This scope once again is one of those with technological features that will make it stand out above the rest of the pack. You have a video feature that will allow you to capture the exact moment when you hit your target. This way, you can go back to the video and see your accomplishments again and again. There is no better confidence booster than seeing a video hit your targets. The Photon Xt has 6.5x magnification, a large 50 mm objective lens and 640x480 resolution that allows optimal brightness and vivid detailing at up to 200 yards. This scope comes with a kit and is ready to mount up with rings, so setup is quick and easy. With this scope, you can easily shoot out to an AR-15’s maximum effective range. A few extra features, like a built-in laser designator, allow you to see where you are pointing your muzzle when you look through the scope. The Photon Xt features six red/green/white digital reticle options for a vast range of long-distance applications, as well as offering the ability to capture everything through the video output feature. The device also utilizes a digital windage and elevation adjustment system for guaranteed precision. Who Will Use This Most This will serve as a hunting buddy for those who hunt coyotes at night, especially when they want to place their trust in a great night vision scope like this. So if you are typically a night hunter, this scope is what will set you apart from the others. Plus, you’ll have the advantage each time you have a coyote in your sights. Bottom Line The SightMark PhotonXT is a high-powered, high-tech scope that will help you knock down coyotes or other predators that might be stalking your farm animals or stirring up trouble on your property. If you want to do some nocturnal hunting and not create any surprises for your targets, this scope will give you the edge. 5. Nightforce Optics 5-20x56 SHV Riflescope CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros You can make large adjustments in both windage and elevation, making it easier to take long-range shots Optimized for use in low-light conditions and has great resolution The fast-focus eyepiece helps in easy and quick diopter adjustment The MOAR reticle is very simple to use Cons None What Recent Buyers Report Right out of the gate, new buyers were happy with the red dot reticle included with the scope. They were able to shoot at their targets and hit them accurately from as far out as 400 yards. One user added that he was able to sight the scope within a few minutes. Once set, the settings stayed in place through well over 500 rounds. Why it Stands Out to Us The Nightforce SHV Riflescope has an image quality that rivals Nikon's scopes. Even better, it’s got the technology to make the color pop out even more for crisper image quality. On top of that, it stays that way, even when you have a magnification level set. At its highest level, you’ll be able to get clear image quality. No other riflescope on the market could do this quite as easily. The Nightforce SHV 5-20×56 comes with a 5x to 20x magnification range, 56 mm objective lens diameter, and reticles located in the Second Focal Plane (SFP). This scope is particularly useful for long-range hunters and shooters because they can use it for observation for long hours over a vast area. The field of view of this scope is wide, from 17.9 feet to 5 feet per 100 yards. Who Will Use This Most This scope will probably be a hunter’s dream. Whether it’s during the day or at night, you’ll get excellent image picture quality and accurate shooting from various distances. You’ll have a greater chance of hitting a kill shot in one or two attempts. Bottom Line The NightForce SHV Riflescope might be the best hunting buddy you’ve had in both daytime and nighttime settings. Once you install this on your rifle of choice, there is no question of what you’ll be able to accomplish in a hunting application. No coyote will ever see you coming or know what hit them until it’s too late. 6. Vortex Viper PST Gen II 2-10x32mm CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Great for night hunting or low light conditions Packed with features Fogproof, shockproof, waterproof Chevron reticle for easy sighting Sight tunnel retains use of iron sights Cons Scope cover is not rugged enough What Recent Buyers Report Right out of the gate, new users were able to point out how durable the scope was. They even went so far to say it’s so durable that your zero settings will stay the same for a long time, even after multiple amounts of shock. They also reported being able to hit their shots from well over 200 to 300 yards consistently. Why it Stands Out to Us Here’s a little analogy for you: Nikon is to clarity as Vortex is to durability. So if you’re looking for a brand name that is known for manufacturing one of the most durable scopes known to man, the Vortex Optics brand will take the money and run in that category. On top of that, it has some pretty good image quality, as well. Also, you get a scope that makes adjusting for parallax, windage, and elevation easier than pie. So if you want a scope that will give you the smoothest on-the-fly adjustments, this might be exactly what you’re looking for. This Vortex Viper scope offers 2.5-10x magnification and a medium lens diameter of 32 mm. It is a lightweight scope machined from a single block of aircraft-grade aluminum. The FOV is 47 - 10.9ft (100 yards) and the lenses are coated to allow excellent light transmission, making it ideal for low light conditions. Adjustments in the field are quick and easy with tactical-style turrets that are easy to read and adjust. It has an EBR-4 reticle. Who Will Use This Most This scope will mostly benefit hunters, especially those who are usually out and about before dawn or slightly after dusk. Make no mistake, it’s an excellent hunting scope for any kind of game. But if you want something to knock down predators like coyotes, you can bet your bottom dollar that this scope will come through in the clutch before the day begins or finishes. Bottom Line The Vortex Optics Viper is probably the best scope that you’ll want on hand if you want something that is built to last you a long time. Even with the lifetime warranty, you’ll want to stick with Vortex Optics scopes for as long as you live if you want something that will give you a reduced chance of having to re-zero the scope constantly. Of course, you’ll still be able to nail some targets from a pretty good range. 7. Leupold - Mark AR™ Mod 1 Riflescopes CHECK LATEST PRICE Pros Waterproof, fogproof, and shockproof Easy to sight-in Cons Does not come with scope covers What Recent Buyers Report A lot of new buyers were happy with the overall durability of this scope. One user said it was probably one of the more durable, high-end scopes he’s used for an AR-15 rifle. On top of that, he said that once he was able to sight in the scope successfully, he managed to keep the zero settings in place, even after 500 or more rounds. Why it Stands Out to Us This scope might be on the higher end of the scale compared to most rifle scopes. But make no mistake about it, it’s not a scope that is delicate in quality. It’s made from high-quality aluminum, plus has great image quality to boot. But where this scope stands out is the Tactical Power Selector. It will easily allow you to zoom in to get a better look at your targets from some pretty decent distances. Plus, with the magnification power levels, the image quality won’t be as fuzzy as with some scopes. The Mark AR Mod 1 uses a blend of argon/krypton gas for eliminating thermal shock, allowing you to aim better. It comes in various magnifications, ranging from 1.5X4 to 6X18. The multiple coatings on the lens provide a clear, bright image. Some models come with a green reticle that can be illuminated with the push of a button. They feature six intensity levels and automatically deactivate after five minutes of inactivity to conserve the battery. The elevation dial compensates for bullet-drop, factory-calibrated to 55-grain .223/5.56 ballistics. Who Will Use This Most This will be put to good use by many hunters, especially predator hunters who want nothing more than a scope that can work in low-light conditions and during the day. So if you want a scope that is built to last and has easy to use adjustments, this Leupold Mark will certainly exceed your standards in what you’re looking for in a hunting scope. Bottom Line The Leupold Mark AR MOD Riflescope will likely be your best possible choice if you want something that’s on the higher end. While it will rival brands like Vortex Optics in terms of durability, its ease of use will be one of the main reasons why you’ll go for it. Benefits of Getting a New Scope "For Coyote Hunting" If you choose to invest in a new scope for coyote hunting, you’ll be able to enjoy some pretty awesome benefits that go along with it. You have no idea what you’ll be missing out on if you decide not to get one. With that said, these are some of the benefits that go along with your coyote hunting scope of choice: More Visibility Indeed, coyote hunting is best done during the night. So you’re going to need a scope that will allow you the best visibility in either daytime or nighttime settings. For example, a good thermal or night vision scope will have its uses during the day. However, most coyotes are nocturnal animals. So you’re going to need a scope that will get you through a hunting session when you have little to no light to work with. Excellent Durability Better durability will not only be good for longevity but depending on the material used, it can also serve a purpose in preserving the scope’s zero settings. Once you’ve sighted in your scopes, your zero settings will stay in place for quite some time. The better the durability, the less likely your zeros will get thrown off due to shock that stems from recoil. Considerable Accuracy Boost With almost every great quality scope, there is a good chance that it will boost your accuracy. Your rifle will have the ability to go the distance (depending on which AR-15 rifle you own). Granted, it will also depend on the riflescope’s range. Some will reach farther distances while others won’t. Consider how far you want your scope to reach out before choosing one. Conclusion When choosing the best scope for your AR-15 , you need to know the habits of the coyotes in the locality where you plan to hunt. If you expect to hunt in low-light conditions with shot ranges of 100 to 200 yards, choose a medium magnification scope and the right coating for low light. The reticle and objective lens sizes will also determine the best scope for your desired conditions. You may be able to go for a less expensive scope that gives the desired results and save yourself a ton of money if you don’t need the fancy features of high-end scopes.

Survival Shotgun Part 8: Mossberg M500SP Loadout

Survival Shotgun Part 8: Mossberg M500SP Loadout

To close out the epic Survival Shotgun series Mr. Smashy was gracious enough to give us a full rundown of his personal survival shotgun, complete with lots of pictures, gear recommendations, load ideas, and training tips. Feel free to be jealous. Part 1: 6 Reasons You Need One Part 2: Choosing Gauge and Type Part 3: Choosing The Gun Part 4: Understanding Loads Part 5: Myths Explained Part 6: Cleaning and Maintenance Part 7: Accessories You Actually Need Quick Navigation Mr. Smashy’s Survival Shotgun Upgrades Ammo and Parts Dummy Shells Training Your Survival Shotgun Mr. "Smashy’s Survival Shotgun" My primary survival shotgun is a Mossberg 500 , specifically the M500 Special Purpose. I chose Mossberg because it was cheaper and the safety is located on the tang (my wife is left handed). The Remington safety is not as ambidextrous. Upgrades I swapped out the factory magazine spring and follower for a Wilson Combat hi-viz follower and extra power magazine spring. The pump was replaced with a SureFire weapon light that has been upgraded with the LED bulb. I have a two point sling made by Jones Tactical , mounted to a Specter Gear Side Sling Mount Plate and a Specter Gear 6 Shell Buttstock Shotshell Holder. The buttstock has been swapped from the factory part to a Houge Overmolded 12″ length of pull. Essentially this gives me the most compact shotgun possible while still maintaining ammunition options. I chose to go short because I expect the shotgun to be a CQB weapon. Do You Have Concealed Carry Weapon Insurance? Self-defense can land you into major legal battles, or even jail . USCCA provides top-class CCW insurance plus training for you and your family at $22/mo with $2,000,000 in coverage. Join USCCA Ammo and Parts I understand that shotguns are not rifles; the maximum effective range of a shotgun, using slugs, is about 80-100 yards. I stock a reserve of Federal LE reduced recoil buckshot and slugs, some cheaper imported reduced recoil buckshot that is nickel plated to reduced shot deformation, cheap bulk pack #8 sport loads, breaching slugs, and less lethal rounds. I have a list of known wear parts, which have spares, and I perform preventative maintenance on the gun to check these parts whenever it’s used. I’m also setup to reload for 20 gauge, so I can make my own sport, hunting and, if need be, defensive loads. I hope to expand that capability to 12 gauge soon. Dummy Shells Another highly recommended accessory I use often is a set of dummy shells. These are necessary to practice loading and reloading the shotgun safely. Reloading should be something you can do quickly and proficiently from your on-gun location (sidesaddle or buttstock holder). There are a variety of dummy rounds available, but my favorite are “ Action Proving Dummies ” available from Brownells. They are basically a shell loaded with lead shot but without powder and a primer. The feel and weight is 100% correct, they are very durable, and the price is right. There are alternatives available but I have found these to be the best for my needs. Training You should also learn how to “select slug”, for times when buckshot is too short range or you need the extra accuracy or penetration of a slug. Another good drill is called the “Ball and Dummy” drill, where you load a dummy into your magazine tube substituting one round with the rest being normal loads. You can use this drill to observe recoil avoidance (bucking or flinching), and also use it to train for a failure to fire. "Your Survival Shotgun" So what can you take away from all this? Hopefully you can find a shotgun , ammunition , and accessories that fit your needs and budget, and build the skills to make an adaptable weapon system. As long as you train and understand the shotgun’s limitations and it’s strengths, it will find a solid place in your survival toolkit. To See the Complete set of pictures you can check out mr. smashy’s Flickr Collection . Other interesting articles: Survival Shotgun Part 4: Understanding Loads "Survival Shotgun Part" 2: Choosing Gauge and Type Survival Shotgun: Accessories "You Actually Need" in 2020 (Part 7 of 7) Survival Shotgun Part 1: 6 Reasons You Need One

[Beginners Guide]: Rimfire vs Centerfire Ammunition

[Beginners Guide]: Rimfire vs Centerfire Ammunition

Trending: Best Places to Buy Ammo Online and [Buyer's Guide] 7 Best AR-15s Want to know the difference between rimfire vs centerfire? Rimfire and centerfire are two categories of primer ignition systems for ammunition cartridges.  The firing pin in rimfire guns strikes the rim of the cartridge base to ignite a primer while in centerfire the firing pin strikes a center primer. um….wut? Not understanding that 100%?  We’ll walk you through it in detail. First…how does a bullet work? Table of Contents Loading... Parts of a Cartridge A standard cartridge, or round, consists of four parts—the bullet, propellant, primer, and a case.  Keep in mind that a “bullet” means just the projectile, not the entire cartridge.  These components are all present regardless if a round is a rimfire or centerfire. Parts of a Bullet Cartridge In the grand scheme of things, all bullets work the same…the firing pin of the gun hits the primer which creates a tiny explosion. That tiny explosion sets off the gunpowder which forces the bullet itself forward and out of your gun through the barrel. More on how a gun works . The difference between the rimfire and the centerfire is in where that primer is located. Deconstructed 9mm Cartridge Centerfire vs Rimfire Appearance The easiest way to tell them apart is to see if you can see a circular primer in the center at the base of the casing. *Gasp* The primer in the center = centerfire ! If you see a smaller cartridge with no overt primer, it is likely rimfire. Rimfire vs Centerfire Cartridges Different Ignition Systems You can see that the names really make sense when you look at the ignition systems. Rimfire ammo gets its name from the firing pin striking the “rim” of the cartridge to ignite the primer.  While centerfire ammo is where the firing pin strikes the primer that is located at the “center” of the cartridge base. Centerfire vs Rimfire Primer You can see the firing pin marks on the spent brass above.  Again, centerfires hit the center primer while rimfires hit the rim. Rimfire vs Centerfire Primer Strike Common Types of Rimfire Ammo Rimfire ammo is limited to smaller calibers since the cartridge walls need to be thin enough to be able to be crushed by the firing pin and ignite the primer. The downside? Well, the nature of the casing means it’s pretty much limited to small calibers.  You have to have some relatively flimsy brass to handle the rimfire set up.  As a result, the powder necessary to propel a larger bullet would blow the brass apart. The most common type is the .22LR (long rifle).  Check out our Best .22 LR Ammo for Accuracy, Plinking & Hunting guide. .22LR (CCI vs Winchester vs Super Colibri) .22 Short: Used in some revolvers, not too popular .22 Long Rifle (LR): Most popular round in the world and the starting point for many shooters. .22 WMR: Winchester Magnum Rimfire. Used to hunt vermin and is between the .22LR and the .223 centerfire round. .17 HM2: Hornady Mach 2: Higher power than the .22LR but smaller. Didn’t really take off. The smaller brother of the HMR. .17 HMR: Hornady Magnum Rimfire. Newer round that is flatter shooting and more powerful than the .22LR .22LR vs .17 HMR Pros of Rimfire Ammo Cheap .22LR can be found for 5-10 cents while the AR-15 .223 round is between 25-40 cents each. It is so cheap since it is easier to manufacture a thin-walled case with a flattened primer at the bottom. The downside? Well, the nature of the casing means it’s pretty much limited to small calibers.  You have to have some relatively flimsy brass to handle the rimfire set up. As a result, the powder necessary to propel a larger bullet would blow the brass apart.  However, there has been some hoarding in the last few years which makes it a little difficult to find in stores and online. Low Recoil The .17 and .22 caliber bullets and a small amount of gunpowder make for extremely low recoiling firearms. Perfect for the beginner or for training. Cons of Rimfire Ammo Not Reloadable The primer is inside the bottom of the case and so cannot be reloaded like centerfire rounds. But rimfire ammo is so cheap comparatively that it doesn’t matter. Reliability Issues Even with top shelf ammo like CCI, I still manage to get 1-2% failures to fire (FTF) in my 10/22 rifle. This is because, in manufacturing, the primer compound is “spun” at the bottom of the casing and sometimes does not make full contact with the entire rim. Rimfire is great for range plinking and varmint hunting, but I would not trust it for personal defense. Small Calibers Again, because of its design, rimfire is stuck with small calibers.  There are some exotic larger caliber rimfires out there but they are very rare. Recommended Ammo Looking for some centerfire or rimfire ammo?  Check out our Best .22 LR Ammo for Accuracy, Plinking & Hunting …or our exhaustive Ammo & Reloading guides. What do you like best, centerfire or rimfire? Let us know in the comments!

Should You Unplug From Your Ballistic Calculator?

Should You Unplug From Your Ballistic Calculator?

/* custom css */.td_uid_2_5f379d5d64a2f_rand.td-a-rec-img { text-align: left; } .td_uid_2_5f379d5d64a2f_rand.td-a-rec-img img { margin: 0 auto 0 0; } Remember: Your ballistic calculator is designed to complement your shooting, not become a crutch. Why you shouldn't solely depend on your ballistic calculator: Data provided before shooting is unproven. Not practical to expect 1-MOA accuracy before shooting. Doesn't account for the human element — how you shoot. Blows some variables out of proportion. You need to dope your rifle to gather actual data. The need to focus more on the fundamentals of marksmanship. Every single day, I’m fielding questions regarding ballistic software. And here’s the problem: People go out to the range with software in hand and can’t quite understand why it’s not matching their setup, or they have trouble “truing” that software after the fact. The Sniper’s Hide Forum is full of people struggling with ballistic software errors. Tools of the trade on display. There are several reasons why your software might not line up correctly, but part of the problem is using the software first and not doping the rifle before exploring the ballistic calculator. When using the software before shooting, I call anything the computer spits out as “try dope,” because you’re just trying to touch the target, not much more. It’s not practical to expect 1-MOA accuracy beforehand. Remember, the manufacturer’s drop data was designed to get you on an NRA 6×6 target board — it’s up to the shooter to fine-tune that drop to hit the center. We never questioned it, and we just knew we needed to put in the effort. It’s just a starting point. My argument has always centered on the human factor. No amount of tinkering with software can account for the human element, and this has a much bigger say as to where the shot hits versus an untested solution. Simply put: It comes down to recoil management. It’s why one shooter will hit using Solution A; the next shooter needs Solution B or C. How they manage the recoil matters, and it’s why your zero and your friend’s zero are inches apart. No software out there considers you — it only finds an empty, near-perfect world. Measure the distance from the center of the bore to the center of the scope when inputting this data into your ballistic solver. The default setting of 1.5 inches is not correct. The next problem involves the promotion of “drifts.” We have a lot of new data that points to a series of drifts that can affect the placement of the shot, and the promotion of these is a relatively new phenomenon. More Long-Range Shooting Info: Buying the Perfect Precision Scope Ballistics Basics: Initial Bullet Speed The Effects Of Air Temperature On Bullet Flight Mils vs. MOA : Which Is The Best Long-Range Language? When I went to Sniper School back in 1986, we didn’t worry about spin drift — it wasn’t even mentioned — we didn’t worry about Coriolis, cross-wind jump or any of the other examples we see today. Today, there are about four drift factors that are discussed, and some people start employing a correction for them as close as 400 yards. Am I saying they don’t exist? No — but I am saying they’re blown out of proportion. I think much of it is used to take the blame away from the shooter. Here’s Why Testing Is Mandatory If we gather our dope by walking our shots out — actually shooting each yard line distance and recording the data — we include everything. All the drifts are built into that number. There’s no such thing as a “no wind day.” If you experience one, consider yourself lucky … but practically speaking, no wind doesn’t exist. If it did, Coriolis would not exist. So, under normal circumstances, we zero and dope our rifles with everything already included. Then, when we go to our “data on previous engagement,” it’s taking into account these factors. We have a lot of tools to gather information on the firing line. Do not go into information overload trying to use them all at the same time. Let’s say that, today, I’m shooting to 1,000 yards and used 7.4 mils of elevation to hit center along with 0.75 mils of wind for a 5 mph breeze, that assumes all the drifts and drop data is in there. If conditions change because of the location or atmosphere, a computer will help account for it rather than the old, outdated rules of thumb. Still, hitting the target usually happens. We see this every week in tactical rifle matches around the country. Guys travel from their home location to ranges 500 miles away — and they hit. Why do they hit? They practiced and recorded their dope. Talking to several high scoring PRS shooters, they strive to nail down their data so elevation is a given and their only question becomes wind. In known distance courses, they consider this information their “zero” data. They essentially re-zero the rifle for each yard line. Related GunDigest Articles Pushing The Limits With Extreme Long Range Shooting Competitions Mils vs. MOA: Which Is "The Best Long" -Range Language? How To: The Effect Of Gravity On A Bullet's Path Learning To Beat Drift Employing the processes above, the wind has become the most significant drift factor we have, and it will actually offset some of the other drifts. Drift influence still depends on the direction and speed, but it will cancel out or increase several of the other factors. So, it’s important to understand the wind. There’s no dispute that you need to know what’s going on with the current wind because it can control so much of how we hit the target. There are a lot of ballistic solvers on the market. Many have features common to the others. Find the one you like. This also includes elevation changes. It’s not uncommon to have a terrain feature in or around a specific yard line that causes an elevation issue, so even if everything with the computer lines up, your 700-yard dope might be off because the wind changes the flight path of your bullet at that specific location. It often has people scratching their head. Why does that one range not line up? Well, it could be the wind. Still, if we recorded our data, we know what the wind was doing, so if we doped the rifle in a 5 MPH wind, going to an 8 MPH is not like starting from zero. While they might say an 8 mph wind will move the impact 0.1 mils up or down, it’s only 3 mph we’re dealing with. We already accounted for 5 mph, so why add 8 mph on top of that? If you’re modeling the shot on a computer, I can see the importance of all this. However, it’s not the same as shooting it — not to mention that we miss out on adding our personal spin to the bullet. Poor fundamentals will not line you up with the model. All you need is your ammo and a hardcopy of your data to be successful. Let’s say you’re adding 0.2 mils of trigger hook to your shot and you want to call it spin drift — okay, but are we talking about the same thing. Why did I not use any and you’re using 0.2 mils with the exact same wind call? Fundamentals make or break a shot at longer distances. The point is, while all these factors exist, they’re not equally distributed among the shooters. We all release the shot in our own unique way. So, before you go adding all the drifts to your ballistic calculator, try doping your rifle first without any software. Develop your dope to distance and record everything, then true the software to what you shot rather than worrying about what the computer said before your first round went downrange.

Gunmann News Roundup July 23, 2018

Good news for gun owners in California as the NRA injunction, against the magazine possession ban, won. Some competitions just around the corner, and Ruger releasing beautiful new rifles. Also, some tips on how to clean a Ruger and bit of history about the manufacturer in case you want to buy one of the new models. This week, we also share a Red Sparrow kind of story that looks a bit unreal, but it is not. Take a look and have fun. 2018 NRA YHEC National Championship Kicks Off July 22 in Pennsylvania The 2018 NRA YHEC National Championship is pretty important information for those who like some competition. It starts on Sunday, July 22, and runs through July 27 at the Mill Cove Environmental Center and Mansfield University in Mansfield, Pennsylvania. The participants are being tested in eight skill areas, and the completion of a hunter safety course is a prerequisite to compete. The skills test includes rifle, bow and muzzleloader shooting at life-sized targets, wildlife identification, map and compass orienteering and more. DoubleStar Exhibits at 2018 Triggrcon DoubleStar’s new ARP7 Pistol will be among the firearms on display at the 2018 Triggrcon, July 26 – 29, 2018 in Bellevue, Washington. The exhibition includes a range day and an industry day for media and shooting industry professionals. The last two days are opened to firearms enthusiasts. NRA No Longer Has to Identify Major Donors to the IRS It has been a long-sought goal for the organizations affected by the decision. The Treasury Department no longer requires non-profit groups to disclose the names of the donors to the IRS (Internal Revenue Service). Groups that don't receive tax-deductible donations can now remove the names of those who give $5.000 or more from their IRS. NTOA Releases Updated Tactical Response & Operations Standards for LE The National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA), a nonprofit organization that serves the law enforcement community announced an update to its Tactical Response and Operation Standard for Law Enforcement (TROS), a document that sets and improves the standards for law enforcement agencies. The Justice Department Just Charged a Russian National That Tried to Infiltrate the NRA The Butina case has been on the news everywhere! It seems that a russian spy was trying to influence the US politics at Russia´s behest.  The Justice Department not only charged Butina, but announced her arrest. An FBI agent told that Maria Butina tried to get close to the NRA to influence the republican party. The russian spy was at the same time working for a top Russian central bank official. A story that looks taken out of a movie! Rimfire Challenge World Championship We will be talking more about the "Rimfire Challenge World" Championship that is taking place in Lucas Oil Range in Missouri between 5-7 October 2018. In this championship, top competitors dispute world titles in an all-steel speed challenge, but new competitors are also welcomed. Ruger Introduces Four New Firearms Products to Kick Off Summer 2018 Firearms manufacturer Ruger announced four new products, releasing new models of the SR1911, Security-9, 10/22 Target Lite and Ruger 77/17. The latest model in the 10/22 Target Lite series has a red and black laminate stock and BX-Trigger, as you can see above. The Ruger 77/17 is chambered in .17 WSM and has a green colored stock. It features a stainless steel barrel measuring 18.50-inches mounted in a Green Mountain laminate stock. The Security-9 comes with the option of a Virdian E-Series laser. The .45 auto chambered SR1911 Officer-Style pistol touts a shorter 3.60-inch barrel with a shortened grip frame. Compact design and sturdier style, with concealment in mind. The new products are available now from Ruger and dealers all across America. A History of Ruger 10/22 Rifle Models Since we are talking about Ruger's new releases, we share with you some information about Ruger Rifles throughout History. An interesting flashback to a brand that has been continuously producing firearms over the last 68 years. With facilities in five states and over 400 variations of more than 30 product lines, The Sturm, Ruger & Company is an American success story. Through the years, the 10/22 became one of the best-selling .22 rifles in history. Ultimate Guide on Cleaning Your Ruger 10/22 Rifle And if you´re interested in buying a Ruger, we have some interesting tips on how to clean it. Cleaning is essential for maintaining the accuracy and the functions of the gun. It is important to have a schedule and a cleaning method, because rifles just like any other machine need some attention. The parts that you need to clean are the barrel and extractor bolt, the receiver and bolt assembly, the trigger assembly, and the magazine. Here is a list of the tools you´ll need  to clean your 10/22: Gun Cleaning Solvent. Aerosol Spray (optional). Lubricating Oil. Bore Snake (used instead of cleaning Rod). Cleaning Rod. Cleaning Rod attachments: Swab, Metal Brush, Slotted tips/Patch tips. Rags. Small Brass or plastic Brush. Q-tips. Flat Blade Screwdriver. Small Hammer (for ejecting the pins). NRA Junior Smallbore Camp Helps Shooters Reach New Personal Best Scores This year’s NRA "Junior Smallbore Camp" was a success! A five-day camp, for intermediate-level shooters, where juniors from California and Alaska participated.The camp was an introduction to this week’s National Smallbore 3-Position Championships at the Wa-Ke-De Range in Bristol, IN. California: Federal Court Upholds Decision to Block California’s Magazine Ban The California Rifle and Pistol Association lawyers, with the support of the NRA, sought an injunction against the magazine possession ban, and won! A federal district judge agreed that the ban violated the Second Amendment and the americans´due process rights. California appealed the decision.

What Shall I Do With That Old Mauser? Part 2

/* custom css */.td_uid_2_5f379d6a7c89a_rand.td-a-rec-img { text-align: left; } .td_uid_2_5f379d6a7c89a_rand.td-a-rec-img img { margin: 0 auto 0 0; } The tools the author used for barreling the .45.  A finishing chamber reamer, Go and No Go headspace gauges, floating reamer holder, the rifle’s bolt, Kuhnhausen shop manual on the Mauser rifles, the prepared, painted receiver, and the indispensable depth micrometer. With a little imagination and a lot of skill, you can create a .45 ACP Mauser rifle. It doesn't matter why. This project is just plain fun. Last issue we played around with modifying an old 8mm Mauser into a .45 ACP.  It was just one of the mostly meaningless jaunts into guncrafting goodness that turned out to be a fun, creative challenge.  I’ve already completed the magazine modifications and the construction of a new magazine well to make use of .45 ACP cartridges.  The remaining tasks to be done are to fit a barrel to the gun and figure out how to shorten the bolt throw, without of course, cutting out a chunk of receiver (and bolt) and welding it back together. Getting Started The first thing to do was the most difficult, or at least the most time-consuming chore. Initially I determined just how far I wanted the bolt to cycle, and where the ejector should be located.  The receiver had a “thumb hole” in the left side to accommodate thumb clearance when using a stripper clip to load the gun.  Basically it was a scoop out of the left side of the receiver just above the bolt rail way. Cutting a taper using the compound rest is pretty easy, as long as, like the author, you can temporarily control your caffeine shakes.  Using 180 sandpaper to smooth out the contour after the cutting is done blends it all together seamlessly. I decided to move the ejector up to just in front of this scoop and to make use of that scoop to place the new bolt stop.  In order to accomplish this job, I milled out from a piece of half-inch square steel bar stock a new ejector housing that spanned from the housing screw hole and arms on the left rear of the receiver (where the original ejector housing and bolt stop had been) all the way to an inch or so forward of the scoop.  I then had to make a slot just in front of the scoop so the ejector could project into the bolt way from the ejector housing. Forming the ejector housing was pretty easy, making measurements with a caliper of the bends, turns, and corners of the receiver, and then milling the block to fit.  The original hole where the bolt stop projected into the receiver and the original ejector slot were used as guides to align the new housing along the receiver.  A small flanged projection fitted in this area to align the housing.  In the “scoop” area I simply left a whole big block of material that pretty much made a false wall in the scoop.  I drilled and tapped a hole near the front of this blockish mass and inserted a quarter-inch long 4-40 socket head screw. Related GunDigest Articles 7mm Mauser: Still A Dandy Sporting Round Gun Review: The Mauser Brothers and the Model 98 Savage Arms B.MAG Bolt (17 WSM) Recall Notice Then I ground a slight bevel on the rear of the tightened screw.  When pushing the bolt forward, the left side bolt lug contacts that small bevel, pushing the housing out slightly and allowing the bolt to pass, while pulling the bolt back forces the lug to impact the unbeveled front of the screw, stopping it in its tracks.  To finish this piece off, I cut an angle on the outside front of the housing and then milled a few flutes into the top, bottom, and left sides of the housing.  I then painted the housing with the same black Aluma-hyde II that covered the receiver. How to Make it Go BIIING! Now that the bolt stop had been created, I now had to make the ejector work.  I wanted to keep the original ejector and not have to fashion a new one from scratch.  I milled into the front end of the housing a slot to fit the ejector and drilled a hole for a roll pin for the ejector to rotate upon.  Then I slowly modified the ejector to project out sufficiently to insert itself in front of the bolt when the bolt was fully open.  I made two small cuts in the outside of the ejector, creating a spring guide of sorts for a small spring (just happened to be the bolt stop detent spring from an AR-15). This spring pushes the ejector against the bolt, forcing the front of the ejector into the ejector slot on the left side of the bolt face as the bolt is pulled back, making contact with the left rear face of the cartridge case head.  Of course a relief hole was drilled in the ejector housing to accommodate the spring.  I effectively did all this by eye in little increments, and it was pretty time-consuming.  In the future, if I do this thing again, I will spec out some measurements based on this housing, but this time I was shooting as I went along.  Fortunately, the housing slot aligned perfectly with the slot cut into the receiver.  This is probably because I did precisely calculate that particular task, and it was rock steady because of the “guides” previously mentioned. See! I’m not a complete “wing it” gunsmith. Frustration and Correction The completed ejector block. I should also make note of the ejector housing ears on the left rear of the receiver.  I thinned them out by a few thousands by polishing to reduce the friction back there.  My first thought for a tension spring was to place a small loop spring in between the ears.  That didn’t work.  This tension is, of course, very important as it serves to keep the entire housing flush against the left side of the receiver, and it has to be stronger than the ejector spring that was pushing against the bolt.  This one really stymied me; I had no room or leverage to work with in the back, and there didn’t appear to be any other way to make this work. Then, with a 100-watt light bulb pulsing above my head, I cut off a piece of the original flat magazine spring, still slightly curved, and about one inch long.  I drilled a hole near one end and used the bolt stop screw to hold it in place on the inner false receiver wall of the ejector housing.  This spring extended back to make contact with the inside wall of the receiver, back where the original ejector entered the receiver.  It was thin enough to not interfere with the bolt, but had enough tension to just barely keep the ejector housing pressed tight to the receiver, and just enough give to allow the housing to be pulled out enough to allow the bolt lug to pass by the stop screw so that the bolt could be removed from the rifle.  This detracted a tiny bit from the clean lines of the gun, as when the bolt was pulled out there appears this ugly foreign-looking flat spring thing.  But it works and that was enough for me. Last But Not Least Barreling the gun was vanilla.  I first contoured the barrel down to about what the original barrel’s diameter measured, and made it 16 ¼ inches long.  It’s truly amazing how much lighter a barrel blank becomes after you cut a third off the end and turn it down a bit.  I wanted to make sure that the outside diameter and bore were concentric the whole way so I trued the muzzle end and reversed it, put that end in the lathe chuck and stabilized the barrel with a live center and steady rests on the other end before the final contouring cut. I can say with pretty certain authority that this barrel, unlike ANY you get on a factory gun, is truly concentric. The ejector block from the left side.  The author was quite proud of the way this assembly turned out, as it looks really darn cool. I put a taper in front of the chamber that roughly matched the factory barrel, though not exactly, as the original 8mm barrel was stepped.  On the muzzle I installed a completely unnecessary muzzle break.  I say unnecessary, as a .45 produces little gas to redirect, and the recoil from a .45 carbine is best described as a gentle push.  But it looked cool, so I did it anyway.  I also permanently attached this brake since there would be no reason to remove it in the future.  I threaded it on, timed it to align properly, drilled a hole through it, pinned it, and took it to my gunsmith buddy Mark to weld the pin in the hole (I didn’t have welding equipment readily available, and besides, he’s better at welding than yours truly). I was also able to cut a superb chamber with minimum headspace thanks to the virgin reamer I purchased from Dave Manson Precision Reamers.  New, quality reamers like this one cut as if the steel was actually butter, as long as you don’t reverse the cut and dull the tool.  Or allow the reamer to get clogged with chips.  Or not use sufficient cutting fluid.  Or feed the reamer too fast.  Or not use a floating reamer holder.

Summary

When hunting predators like coyotes, your choice of scope can make a big difference. The coyote is usually difficult to locate at night, but now any hunter can use night vision scopes to bring the odds back in their favor. A good scope on your AR-15 will allow you to spot, track, and kill the target with a highly-accurate shot, even in low-light conditions.