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Dogmeat Dad, SASS #48563L

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Everything posted by Dogmeat Dad, SASS #48563L

  1. If you are not desperate, I would but in an order with Starline. While they list it as Back Order, that seems to mean "Not In Inventory At The Moment". I have talked to several pards that put in an order and got their back ordered delivery in just a couple of weeks. It only $131.50 if you buy 500 (about $0.26 ea) and $226.00 if you buy 1000 (about $0.23 ea)
  2. While in reality I don't have a problem with local area's having these specialty categories, each time you add a new category to the mix you are not adding new shooters, instead what you are doing is to further dilute the number of shooters in each of the other categories. At present there are 38 base categories, and when you extend the age breaks into the shooting style categories (Duelist, Gunfighter, B-Western, Classic Cowboy, and the BP Categories) you add another 128 possible categories. Then toss in Outlaw, Josie Wales, Sultan Of Smoke, King of Kaboom, etc, and it only gets worse. I don't necessarily have a problem with adding the age breaks like SASS just did with El Rey/La Reina, but I do think that there is a problem with extending those age breaks into the shooting style categories. If you can't find a category in the current 156 possible categories that already exist, and there is enough local support for that category, then have at it, but at some point there needs to be some level of sanity returned to the category matrix or we will end up having matches that are a competition of 800 categories of 1 shooter each.
  3. Ocala and Brooksville, Florida? I have a hat that I have had since 1972 that could use a little TLC. (Damn, that thing will be 50 years old this summer!) . It will never be "Like New" again, and I don't really want it that way, but it deserves a little lovin'.
  4. If you set them outside to dry here in Maryland, when you went back to get them, they would have mold growing on them. In addition to the JetDry, put usually them on a cookie sheet in the oven at 225 (or what every it is when the dial is set there) for about a hour.
  5. If it really matters, put a squirt of something like JetDry in the final rinse water. Seems to work for me.
  6. Just hit them on the nose with a hammer (Before You Reload Them ) and they will be .356, or .357 or .358 or... All depends on the size of the hammer!
  7. Looks like a great turnout so far! Sure wish we could be there, but Lil is out of commission until August and I just don't look good in a Kilt. Besides, it's just too drafty!
  8. While it is always "fun" to talk about hypothetical conspiracies, I believe that this is nothing more than supply chain issues, the same issues we are facing in every aspect of our life these days. Businesses function by producing just a little bit more than people buy, too little and they loose out to other businesses, too much and prices plummet, so they are always looking for that "Goldilocks" production quantity of just enough. Plants typically have just enough extra capacity to allow for downtime on various lines for maintenance and equipment failure, but certainly not 100% extra capacity, that just costs money to maintain while it sits idle. All was good for a while, and although components were certainly not free, they were reasonably priced and readily available. Then came Covid. You can't shut down the global production lines for components, and the for the components for those components, and not experience delivery disruptions and the pricing pressures associated with supply/demand economics. Everything, everywhere, is still trying to recover from that mess. Add to that the massive increase of new gun owners and existing owners buying everything they can lay their hands on. Panic buying due to the Covid situation or due to the unrest in this country brought about by the riots in this country (excuse me - peaceful political protests where they burned cities ) in the year leading up to the election, the result was the same, reduction in supply, and increase in demand resulting in everything that could be produced anywhere was swallowed up. Couple that with the current geopolitical chaos, not to mention the ineptitude and gross mismanagement of our own country by the current administration, that has resulted in massive increases in fuel costs and put further price pressures on the components for the components. Ask yourself where ammonium nitrate comes from, it's not from bat excrement anymore. And you can expect prices and availability to continue to rise for some time to come. Eventually, prices will stabilize, and likely come down at some point in the future, but for the short term I expect we will be paying $0.10 - $0.15 a piece for primers ($100/1K - $150/1K) for the foreseeable future and I believe that the days of the $0.03 primers are long, long, gone. So, in a typical 6 stage weekly match, that translates to $12.00 - $18.00 per match for primers. Add in bullets and powder, and it's probably $35.00-$40.00 per match in ammo, plus match fee, gas, etc. Certainly not cheap, but not the end of the world. And, if you think that's expensive, try golf, and they have to dress funny too!
  9. Stuff that is for sale now was probably ordered back in late 2019 or early 2020 (or finally being released from personal inventory of many shooters). It is likely just now percolating through the system to the dealers. Just my $0.02. Hope the supply comes back sooner rather than later.
  10. I am glad to see that there is a solution, and I will be working on it over the next couple of weeks as time permits. Going to try and use the tablets at our monthly match next weekend, and again in May. Then, if I haven't brought the entire iOS universe to it's knees through my involvement, we will run it at our State match in June, with a paper backup just to be sure! Thanks to all, and to any others with relevant information. I will add whatever additional information I discover to this thread as well.
  11. Thanks! I tried a couple of different things, including the .csv, but it kept crashing. Probably, as you indicated, there were either data errors or omissions in the fields for the files I generated. What I was hoping to find was a description of the import file format for the CAS software. There is very little documentation that I could find for doing this, from either end of the software. This morning, after seeing your post, and with a sufficient infusion of coffee, it occurred to me that I could have tried exporting the data from the CAS software to see what it required. Guess I will try that later today after Church and the "Training" class. Only Apple product I seem to get along with is... but I'm trying... Thanks for the input!
  12. OK, so a follow-up post. Tomorrow, I am hosting a short class on how to enter scores into the iPad's using the CAS Scoring program. Probably would have been good to know how to do it myself first, but that never stopped me in the past . Basically, I needed to have a group of shooters entered into the database of the tablets so that I could set up a "Test Match". Knowing how cumbersome it has been to enter data into the SASS Premier program, I thought it would be easier to electronically move the database over to the tablets then it would be to reenter all of the data by hand. Since I was unable to figure that out today, I decided to bite the bullet and just enter a subset of the shooters by hand. Well, I was wrong, entering the basic data into the CAS Scoring program was trivial! I pulled 48 paper scorecards from the "History Pile" and manually entered the shooters info, (Alias, SASS #, and Shooting Category), and in less 30 minutes I was done. I am totally impressed! In about another 90 minutes, I had the posse's assigned, all four of the scoring tablets sync'd to my personal iPad that is acting as the master device, and everything ready for the test run tomorrow. We are going to just enter scores from the old score cards and see how we did. Not worried about generating reports at tomorrows class, the goal is to just getting folks familiar with using the program to enter the data. I can work on figuring out how to get the reports generated next week, but from the looks of it, the hardest part will be getting the iPads to play nice with the printer. If the rest goes as smoothly as this went, then I am sold 100%. It is almost trivial to add a brand new shooter to the roster during signup at a match. Still need to figure out a whole bunch of stuff, but so far so good. Dogmeat
  13. Howdy All, I know a bunch of you out there have been using the CAS Scoring application for Apple iOS devices and, as foolish as it may be, I have begun the transition for our club as well in the hopes of solving some other issues we have been having. I have been through the PowerPoint tutorial posted her elsewhere (I will post it again here for those who choose to foolishly follow my footsteps) but I have a question that I seem to be unable to find an answer for in the documentation for either SASS Premier or CAS Scoring. Although the SASS Premier Scoring program says that it can exchange data with both the A.C.E.S. and CAS applications, and I can get it to generate the .ZIP file, even when extracted, the files do not appear to be compatible with the CAS application. Quite possibly, there is something simple that I am missing (and Lord knows I am NOT an Apple guy) but I am stuck at this point and thought I would seek knowledge from the SASS Collective. I am really hoping that I am missing something because I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, don't want to have to reenter a couple of hundred SASS folks into the new database. Any help would be appreciated. Dogmeat 517432226_CASScoringTutorial5.0orig.ppsx
  14. I was raised on Rank Points and never had a problem with them. They were just the way the "Game" was always played, at least in my area, and I didn't know any different. Then I traveled south and experienced a Total Time match for the first time. You know what, I hardly noticed the difference. The fast guys were still fast, the slow guys were still slow, the winners were (mostly) still the winners, and for the vast majority of shooters the effects were so small that it just didn't matter to them. I have followed these discussions for a long time, and there are reasons for, and against, both types of scoring. It all comes down to how you view the game, is a match one big competition or is it a collection of multiple single stage events? The answer to that determines which method you prefer. At the end of the day, the only thing that Rank Points had over Total Time was that it was almost impossible to determine who the winner was prior to the Awards presentation. While that led to a lot of suspense at the Awards Banquet, the fact that it was that in-determinant was probably the best indicator that the Rank Point system had issues. As for me, I think I will just stick with Rank Time Scoring.
  15. Thanks for posting the playlists. I have been spot viewing a couple of the videos when I need a break from my current disaster, but this will make it easier to see them all! Looking forward to an evening in front of the Tube, recovering from both the journey to the Ides and my current battle in Tax Hell. This is the sign on my office wall... Dogmeat
  16. That is truly an amazing feat. We have a couple of folks in these parts that have shot over 100 Clean Matches, Arizona Ed and Shadow Carson. At this point, I am trying to string together 100 clean stages!
  17. Sorry if it came across like I thought WinterRange did it on purpose. I know for a fact that GoDaddy is an expert at scrubbing their servers if something expires. They still have it archived some where, and will let you have it back, for whatever exorbitant amount of money they think you are willing to pay. It's part of their business model, kind of like Pirates. I was just surprised that it was gone from everywhere. Usually, things exist somewhere in the vast array of servers connected to the internet. When someone links to something a residue remains. It was just bizarre to see it was completely gone. I did stumble across the Wild Bunch scores during my search, but never hit on the Cowboy scores. No accusations intended and certainly didn't mean to imply any.
  18. It's actually kind of bizarre, the old Winter Range scores (as is almost everything associated with Winter Range) seem to have been scrubbed from the internet. Even the WayBack Machine internet archive has almost nothing. I'm actually kind of impressed that they were able to completely remove it from existence. Once something hits the internet, it usually takes on a life of its own.
  19. As reflected in my previously posted SASS "Official" Category Matrix (and I do apologize for that wall of text, too much coffee!) there are 38 “Base Categories”, 19 Ladies categories and 19 Open (Men’s or Ladies). I have reattached the graphical representation of that matrix here so folks don’t have to back track. The extension of the age breaks to the Shooting Style categories (defined here as the Costuming Categories, the Black Powder Categories, and the Duelist/Gunfighter Categories) to create the Optional Categories created 128 additional “Optional Categories”, 64 Ladies and 64 Open (Men’s or Ladies), bringing the total number of possible categories to 156! Mathematically, using the SASS guidelines of 7 in the Optional Open Categories (OOC – highly appropriate acronym ) and 3 in the Optional Ladies Categories (OLC), plus the one each in the Base Categories (OBC and LBC), gives us the following: 19 OBC + 19 OLC + (7 x 64 OOC) + (3 x 64 OLC) = 19 + 19 + 448 + 192 = 678 shooters So, in a match like Land Run and EOT, or any match where the number of shooters exceeds 678, it is entirely possible to have 156 First Place awards and in that instance, it is also likely that there will be twice that in Second Place and below awards, easily exceeding half of the total number of shooters present who are receiving an award. I used to always say that 85% of the shooters paid for the awards for the top 15% of the shooters. No real complaint about that, it was just the way of things, and some what necessary if the awards were to be really nice without the match fee exploding. The current trend however is getting us to the point where 50% of the shooters are paying for the awards for the other 50% in order to support the larger number of categories and, as a result, the pricing pressures are pushing the awards to be less elaborate so they can be less expensive. (I do realize that everyone pays the same cost so that the 15% or 50% are also contributing to the cost of the awards, but the “excess” generated by those who do not get an award is dwindling. The point still stands) In my opinion, there are two ways that this will end. Either we will continue to see a reduction in the quality of the awards as the number of awards rises, or we will see an increase in the price of the matches so that the awards can return to their former glory. There is really no other option or mechanism that I can see other than to reduce the number of categories. Ultimately, the shooters will decide what they want. They will either pay the higher match fees, or accept the less expensive awards, or stop going to those matches. For those that say there are too many award categories, start by never putting your age down on a Match Application and just sign up for the Base Category. That is already an option for anyone to do, and it is what I choose to do. While I am technically eligible to shoot Silver Senior Frontier Cartridge Gunfighter, I always sign up for FCGF without the age break. Having gone from Traditional to FC to FCD, to FCGF, I have never shot in an age category, Base or Optional, and probably never will. That is my choice, everyone is free to do the same or not. SASS Official Category Matrix 26_2.pdf
  20. That is pretty much my wife's load, except she uses a 115gr 32-20 bullet. Puts out a lot more smoke then 1cc of real BP in a .38.
  21. Sorry for the wall of text. I hesitate to toss my hat into the ring as this topic has been a bone of contention among a great many folks for a great many years, even among folks that work on the same match. I personally doubt that there will ever be a “Right Answer” as there are so many folks that participate in this activity for very different reasons and each person’s answer depends where they draw the line on the sliding scale between competition/sport/game. A few years ago I generated what I called the SASS "Official" Category Matrix which is a graphical representation of my interpretation of the available categories based on information in the Shooters Handbook. I updated it this year to reflect the addition of another age break, El Rey and La Reina and I have attached it here for any who may be interested. If you take a look at the Category Matrix, you will see that there are 38 “Base Categories”, 19 Ladies categories and 19 Open (Men’s or Ladies) categories. These constitute what I consider to be the minimum set of categories that, at least in my opinion, should be offered and honored with an award at every major match regardless of the number of participants, even if it is only one. While there are undoubtedly folks that do category shop just to get an award, in my experience there are a great many more folks who shoot the same category at every match, year after year, regardless of the number of participants. It is “Their Category”, even if it is just a generally an under-represented category at all but a few of the larger matches. In my opinion at least, it does those folks a disservice to not offer, and award, that category. When SASS made the decision to extend age breaks to the Shooting Style categories, they caused an explosion in the number of available categories and, by extension, an explosion in the number of awards. For the sake of this discussion what I refer to as the “Shooting Style” categories includes the Costuming Categories, Black Powder Categories, and Duelist/Gunfighter Categories. By allowing these age breaks, SASS created 128 additional “Optional Categories”, 64 Ladies and 64 Open (Men’s or Ladies). That is more than triple the number of base categories, and this increased the total number of possible categories to 156! And that number doesn’t include any of the “Specialty Categories” like Outlaw, Josie Wales, Pale Rider, etc. It has truly become a Match Directors nightmare. The philosophy we have chosen to follow here at the MD State Match is that we will award any of the 38 Base Categories at the match, regardless of the number of participants. Folks are welcome to sign up for any Optional Category they want and, if there are a sufficient number of participants, we will also award that category. If there are not enough participants, they will be given the option of either switching to another category or shooting their chosen category with the understanding that there will be no award. Because of the size of our match, we have selected a minimum of 3 for the Open Optional Categories and 2 for the Ladies Optional Categories, making sure that there is always some competition, more than that and we might as well just ban the Optional Categories from our match. At a much larger match, something with 500+ shooters, I could easily see that number bumping up to 7 in the Open and 3 in the Ladies categories as recommended in the Shooters Handbook. And sometimes, it really doesn’t matter. We had a match here where there were three folks signed up as Silver Senior Duelists and no-one signed up as Duelist so, in the end, it didn’t affect the number of awards. As to how deep to go into the category awards, at the MD State Match and the Mason Dixon Stampede when it was the North East Regional and subsequently the Eastern Divisional, we historically awarded Categories down to the 50% mark, with a max of 10 places for a category of 20+ participants. I generated a spreadsheet that keeps track of this and will post it if anyone cares to see it, but ultimately each match makes its own call on this so it likely doesn’t matter. There have been exceptions to that, especially at the Regional and Divisional, where we extended the number of places by one or two in the larger categories because we had already purchased the buckles and throwing them into the recycling bucket seemed like a tragic waste. Associated with the proliferation of categories is the guessing game that the Match Directors have to go through when trying to ascertain the number of awards to purchase. Awards like Buckles and Plaques can be expensive and typically have a long lead time. Unless the match completely sells out early, there is no way to accurately predict the number of awards needed, and guessing wrong can be either an expensive mistake, or leave some very unhappy participants. Generic buckles are just a further result of the increased number of categories and the lackluster registration speed for a great many matches. There was a time when the number of categories was more limited, and the matches sold out 6+ months ahead of their start date, and the buckles included the Category Name, and Placement, along with the Match Name and Date. These days, that is effectively unaffordable due to the number of categories. It is one of the reasons why I am happy to see matches like EOT and Land Run selling out so quickly. While there are likely more opinions on how to address this situation than there are available categories, I am personally of the opinion that there should be an award for the Top Shooter in each category, either Base Category or Optional Category that meets the “sufficient number” test, and that award should be commensurate with the associated SASS Championship level. After that, a more generic award for the next few places up to whatever threshold the Match Officials deem appropriate, but something less than 50% in each category would be my opinion. This differentiates the awards for the Top Shooters from their compatriots and prevents the proliferation of awards to Optional Categories that have no competition. Does it solve the issue of having the Top Wrangler in a field of 20 Top Competitors, half of which are in the Top 10 at the match, from getting the same award as someone who finished first in a category where their overall finish was in the middle of the bottom third of the competitors? No, it does not, and that is just the nature of this beast called SASS. The Categories are not equal, somewhat by design; but it’s just the way it is and it is just not fixable under the present format. The only way I see to prevent that is to eliminate any awards for anyone that didn’t finish in the Top (Insert Number Of Your Choice) Percent of the shooters and one just needs to look at the proliferation in the number of categories to see that will go over like a lead balloon. At the end of the day, everyone knows who the Top Shooters are, they are in the Shoot-Off, they are in the Top 10% at every match, and they likely have a wall of awards and buckles, all of which are hard won, well-earned, and represent countless hours of practice and untold thousands of rounds of ammo. They are the ones that the rest of us look up to and wish to be able to shoot like. Reminds me of the scene in Quigley Down Under where the young gunslinger is practicing his fast draw in front of the villain Marsden. The gunslinger asks if he practices will ever be as fast as Marsden. Marsden responds by saying, “What, if you practice? A lot? No!" Describes me perfectly! That being said, the person that won their buckle, in “Their Category” may not have put in as much work as those in the Top 10%, almost certainly doesn’t have the same skill level as the Top 10%, and likely hasn’t fired as many rounds in their entire SASS career as the Top 10% has fired in the last year, but they did in fact win their Category at that match, on that given weekend, under whatever conditions existed. They played by the rules, they earned their buckle, and they take pride in their accomplishment, but, at the same time, they shouldn’t pass it off as being something that it’s not. That’s my $0.02 anyway, and that won’t even buy the fumes off a drop of gasoline at the moment. Dogmeat SASS Official Category Matrix 26_2.pdf
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