A Range Report for Father's Day
I know it’s not Father's Day yet. I'm submitting it now since I'll be doing more important things on the 17th...
A Range Report for Father’s Day
Firearm: Ruger SR1911
Range Date: Saturday, 09 June, 2012
Location: NRA Headquarters Range, Fairfax, Virginia
Time: 9:20 to 10:15 AM
Manufactured: January, 2012
Acquired: May, 2012
Rnds Shot Prior: 35, approx.
Rnds 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: Monday, June 11, 2012
My brother David and I look alike, but for folks who’ve known us all our lives, we are two very different people. We don’t get together often. Last time was at my father’s home in Southern California. Dad has had time to get to know us during our visits and naturally he made comparisons.
I myself am a father, my wife and I having one child named John, who is loved more than anyone else in our world. He does not mind if we compare him to his cousins, naturally we favor him.
I purchased a Smith and Wesson SW1911 TRS, having given up on getting a Ruger SR1911 any time in the near future. Sure enough, after ten months on a wait list, my number came up at a store in Texas and soon after, the Ruger was mine. Naturally, I had to compare the two 1911’s now in my possession. Anyone can see the results in a range report I submitted a few weeks ago.
Now it was time to focus attention on my newest gun. This next trip to the range, the S&W stayed home. The night before range day, I adjusted the trigger travel out 3/4 turns from the point where the trigger would not release the hammer. Next morning I headed for the range with the Ruger, and a backup, my Glock 29SF, chambered in 10mm. The backup was 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 with a variety of magazines, S&W, Chip McCormick and two Rugers loaded with Blazer and Premium Gold Match. Bench rested at 15 feet, I was a little surprised to see no difference in groupings. I also shot at 8x11 paper targets at 30 and 45 feet. All shots were on paper. Even at the greater distances, I saw no difference in groupings between the Blazer and Federal ammo.
By now, I realized my shots overall were 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 the silhouette targets last month (aiming for COM), and yesterday?
I had no answer until the following 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 it credit for in the last range report! All it took was a return to basics, improving my 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 learn its quirks, capabilities and preferences. After getting back home I noticed the wooden grip panels were loose (typically reported from almost everyone getting a new SR1911) and so I need to re-tighten the 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.
So, that’s it. Try to see all your children as individuals and learn to appreciate their differences by spending some time alone with them.
Happy Father’s Day!