A Range Report for Father's Day


June 10, 2012, 01:29 PM
I know Father's Day is a week away, but I figure I'd submit it now since I'll probably be doing other things more imnportant on the 17th...

A Range Report for Father’s day
Range Date: Saturday, 09 June, 2012
Location: NRA Headquarters Range, Fairfax, Virginia
Time: 9:20 to 10:15 AM
Firearm: Ruger SR1911
Date Manufactured: January, 2012
Date Acquired: May, 2012
Rounds Shot Prior: 35, approx.
Rounds Shot After: 120, approx.
Ammo: 1) Federal Premium Gold Medal, 230 Gr, FMJSWC, 45 ACP
2) Blazer, Aluminum Cased, 230 Gr, FMJ, 45 ACP
Report Date: Sunday, June 10, 2012

I have one older brother and two sisters. To an outsider, my brother David and I might appear to look alike. But to our family and friends who have known us all our lives, we are two very different people. Rare is the occasion when my brother and I are together; rarer still we are together at my father’s home in Southern California. But Dad has time had to get to know us during our visits and quite naturally he has made comparisons. The more time he spends with us, the depth of our understanding between each other increases. I myself am a father, my wife and I having one child. John is loved more than anyone else in our world. He does not mind if we compare him to his cousins, because quite naturally we favor him.

I had previously purchased a Smith and Wesson SW1911 TRS, having given up on acquiring the Ruger SR1911 any time in the near future. Sure enough, after ten months on a waiting list, my number came up at a store in Texas and after a 90 Lay-Away, the Ruger was mine. Naturally, I had to compare the two and anyone can see the results in a range report I submitted a few weeks ago.

Now it was time to spend a little more focused attention on my newest gun. For the next trip to the range, the S&W would stay home. In preparation the night before, I adjusted the trigger travel out 3/4 turns from the point where the trigger would not relase the hammer. The next morning I headed for the range with the Ruger, and for a backup, my Glock 29SF, chambered in 10mm. The backup was only in case the Ruger stopped working – I would feel silly paying for an hour at the range and not be able to shoot something. As it turns out, the 29SF stayed in the range bag.

I started out with loading a variety of magazines, S&W, Chip McCormick and two Rugers with the Blazer and the Premium Gold Match. Bench rested at 15 feet, I was a little surprised to see virtually no difference in groupings. I also shot at 8x11 paper targets at 30 and 45 feet with all shots on paper. Even at those distances, I saw no difference in groupings between the Blazer and Federal ammo.

By now, I began to realize my shots overall were much more accurate compared to my last range visit, when I was shooting both the Ruger and the Smith and Wesson 1911’s! Next, I tried both types of ammo at 21 feet, standing, two handed and strong hand, one second intervals. Targets were 8x11 sheets and WOW - what a difference from last month’s shot results! What was different, besides shooting silhouette targets (aiming for COM), and yesterday? I did not have the answer until this morning, after a good night’s sleep, a cup of coffee and looking at the targets again. Last month, during my rapid fire drill I concentrated on just that – rapid fire. The S&W and I had already been through this drill before. The SW1911 TRS has a different center of gravity with slightly more weight towards the muzzle, so returns to POA are pretty quick. Groups were much tighter on the man-shaped target, compared to the Ruger shot placement, which seemed to be all over the place on the same target and distance.

This time around, my intent was to make one –second interval shots, but instead of shooting as fast as I could, my main focus was to ensure that the sights were back on POA before pulling the trigger. I was enlightened. The Ruger was so much more accurate than I had given to credit for in the last range report! All it took was a return to basics, minimizing my inconsistent shooting technique and getting used to shooting that particular gun.

Can guns talk? Maybe not, but I learned that if I take my time and treat each gun as an individual, there is an opportunity to get to know its quirks, capabilities and preferences. After getting back home I noticed the wooden grip panels were loose(typicaly reported from almost everyone getting a new SR1911) and so I need to re-tighten their screws with a drop of Loctite applied. Oh yeah, I learned something else – the Ruger does NOT like the Semi-Wad Cutter ammo – I had about a dozen failures to go to battery. I’ll look into maybe taking the gun to a smith and see if the ramp needs polishing. The SWC shells seemed to be catching on the edge of the ramp.

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June 10, 2012, 01:40 PM
Here's a picture of one of the Federal Match Gold, FMJ SWC that Failed To Feed. You can see the nick on the edge of the shell...

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