Shooting USA – IDPA Back Up Gun Nationals 2014
It’s the match for real carry guns. The pros, new shooters, and Smith & Wesson executives, take on real life, self-defense scenarios at the IDPA Back Up Gun Nationals. Plus, the 1874 Sharps is one of History’s Guns. And we return to an earlier time for a National Championship that’s preserving our history, the National Muzzleloading Rifle Association’s Fall Shoot in Friendship.
IDPA Back-Up Gun Nationals 2014
In International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) competitions, shooters take on threats in real-life scenarios. It’s a practice of self-defense, and in the IDPA Back Up Gun Nationals or the BUG Nationals, at Smith & Wesson’s Shooting Sports Center in Massachusetts, shooters compete with the gun they actually carry. The simple format keeps the five-shot nationals in line with its original concept that is good training and competition for concealed carry.
“You’re not using holsters,” says Chad Barber, a CWO for the Coast Guard Academy. “You’re not reloading on the move. You’re not really moving much, so for a beginner this is an outstanding opportunity for them to come in here and try this, and you don’t have to remember a lot.”
IDPA stage designers create challenging yet fun stages, including “Tiki Bar,” where competitors must hold a coconut and shoot with the strong hand; or “Hatfield’s Honeymoon Hotel,” where competitors start with their guns in a suitcase. From M&P Shields to J-frame revolvers, the match continues to welcome new competitors, and welcome back those who continue to take on the challenge.
History’s Guns - Sharps Rifle
The Sharps Rifle has always been favored by buffalo hunters on the Great Plains, due in part to its long-range accuracy as a lever-action breechloader. In 1848, Christian Sharps patented his rifle, but by the time the Model 1874 was produced, the rifle was chambered in a metallic cartridge.
“It came in all sorts of different calibers from .40 all the way up to .50, and jillions of different case lengths and styles and configurations,” says Firearms Historian Garry James. “That’s back in the days when you could write a company and say, ‘I’d like a gun made this way,’ and they’d make it that way for you.”
National Muzzle Loading Rifle Association Championship Shoot
Black powder enthusiasts created the National Muzzle Loading Rifle Association (NMLRA) in 1933, to preserve the history and sport of muzzle loading. Not long after, the National Championships began in Friendship, Indiana, which still attracts thousands of competitors and fans today.
“I enjoy the people, I enjoy the shooting, and I enjoy seeing all the people coming from all over the world,” says Becky Waterman, the NMLRA’s first female president. “There’s something for everybody, that’s what’s unique.”
In order to keep the NMLRA’s 80-year stretch of National Championships fresh and fun, the association is constantly creating new matches for muzzleloaders, such as the Double Rifle Match. It simulates a safari in the 1800s, with targets representing the dangerous game in Africa. Though fun, Match Director Alan Hoeweler also knows he’s continuing the traditions of our forefathers.
“When the Second Amendment was written, muzzleloading rifles were the weapon of that day,” says Hoeweler. “We just try to keep alive that heritage.”
G.A. Precision Barrel
John Scoutten’s Remington 700 Precision Rifle has been modified numerous times over the years, but it’s changing again. G.A. Precision has re-chambered the rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor. It’s also been fitted with a Badger Muzzle Break, to prevent recoil, and an oversized bolt knob, to promote ease and speed.
“The upgrade is taking this rifle to a whole new level of functionality for long range shooting. ” says John.
Hornady 6.5 Creedmoor
It’s Hornady’s flat and fast hunting or competition load: the 6.5 Creedmoor. Though there are several options in the 6.5 Creedmoor family, John goes with the 140 A-max because of more bullet weight to buck the wind.
Bushnell’s XRS 4.5-30x 50 mm
Bushnell’s new XRS precision optic is 4.5-30x 50 mm. The adjustments are in tenths of mils, and it also has the G2 reticle. Locked down by 34 mm Millet Tactical low-rise rings, the scope provides high magnification and ease of dialing back to zero
Hornady’s 6.5 Creedmoor
More Info from Bushnell
USAMU Pro Tip: Drawing from Concealment
No one ever wants to be in a life-threatening situation where your personal carry gun is necessary, but how you draw your firearm in an emergency is likely to be the difference between life and death. The U.S. Army’s Sergeant Matt Sweeney shows us how to draw from concealment under pressure, and it may depend on the type of shirt you’re wearing.
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NRA Membership Offer: Jim Pays $10 when you join the NRA through the Shooting USA website.