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Garrison Joe, SASS #60708

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Posts posted by Garrison Joe, SASS #60708

  1. ANY powder usable for the .45 ACP for an appropriate 160-180 grain LEAD bullet is good for the C45S cartridge.


    I used 160-180 grain bullets with Clays and Red Dot for 3+ years and loved it.


    I have recently tried Clean Shot and also found it a good powder choice.


    And these powders were used in my Ruger 3.5" barrel pistols.


    I haven't tried any of those powders you listed, so therefore, I don't have much to say about them in the C45S case.







    My powder selections in C45S have been 700-X, RedDot and Win WST. Of those, WST burns most clean and meters accurately. If you want a load with any of those, let me know.


    Good luck, GJ

  2. My .45 Colt Starline brass seems to never wear out. Been reloaded so many times I've lost track. 44-40 seems to last around 15 or so reloadings before I start to see splits. .45 CS about the same. Just putting 3,500 Cowboy Specials into circulation with the intention of tracking the # of times it's been reloaded. Easy to do - in principle. Call me in 5 years & I'll let you know how that worked out :lol:




    The most successful brass trackers seem to rely on a physical mark on the case rim to record the count of uses. Like a notch filed with a jewelers triangular file each time you load it. Hard part is finding those marked cases every time they come in to be loaded. Perhaps some brass blacking on the head, or a stripe up the case?


    Good luck, GJ

  3. Starline has a life that, with .45 Colt or .38 Special, exceeds most brands, including R-P. Slightly better than Winchester. Even in sloppy .45 Colt chambered rifles, I usually get about 25 cycles. In .38 special, too many cycles to even try to count.


    The only Starline cartridge case that fails fast for me has been Cowboy .45 Special. I don't think they have the case annealing right on these, as they only run in revolvers about 5 times before a split at the middle of case, running half the length of the overall case length, develops. I get life more like 10 cycles from a used .45 Colt case trimmed down!


    There are a few nickel plated Starlines around. I don't try to count cycles on them because there are so few in my herd. But I have better life with their nickel cases, too, than I do any other nickel plated cases. Just not as good as the unplated brass cases.


    Good luck, GJ

  4. I thought these turkeys were supposed to be the cats pajamas right outta the box! For the price, they ought to shoot themselves. (LOL)



    ALL cowboy guns are kits almost ready to fire.


    Price has little to do with it. If the gun looks good and moves off the shelf, it's "good enough" and now someone else's problem (other than the manufacturer). :lol:


    Good luck, GJ



    I don't see why it couldn't be made to shoot .45 colt.



    The Winchester Angle Eject 94's were chambered for a while in .45 Colt and .357 as well as .44 mag, as NKJ and I discussed above. I've still got a Trapper version of those 94's in .45 Colt. It was ok (other than being only a 9 shot magazine) for the first match I went to. I didn't go to my second SASS match until I had a 73. :ph34r::lol: They can be made to SHOOT .45 Colt and other pistol cartridges. They just can't be made to feed those cartridges in a slick and reliable manner.


    Good luck, GJ

  6. By "38" I suppose you mean .38 special/.357?


    1. It would be a ton of work.

    2. Since the 94 is a long action, it is way longer than the 92, which is the design that it takes to feed pistol cartridges. Winchester themselves cannot even make the 94 length action feed .45 Colt or .38 special well.


    You will be MUCH better off starting with a gun that does not need $1000 of gunsmith tinkering before it feeds well. Let alone having to have a barrel made or scrounged, etc.


    If you really want to try one, I'll bet somebody in a local club has one of the Winchester 94 Angle Eject guns that were made in the late 90s/early 2000s. Try one out if you don't believe me. You'll NOT find happiness in trying to make a 94 run short cartridges.


    A 92 is what you are trying to build. Some are still being built off shore. See:



    A Marlin 1894 or a 73 clone is the conventional approach for Cowboy shooting.


    Good luck, GJ

  7. No, but when a hunter is having difficulty closing on game (like out West here), and might have to attempt a shot at challenging distances, the difference between a 2MOA load and a 4MOA load is often an extra 150 yards for a clean kill...


    Accuracy never hurts. Even if one is a great hunter.


    Good luck,GJ

  8. I have a Browning A-Bolt in 300 WSM. Since it is strictly a hunting rifle I always shoot it clean cold barrel and a follow up shot at the range. Let the barrel cool, swab it a couple of times and repeat the shooting sequence. A session at the range takes a very long time. I have not found a handload that works any better than a Winchester factory 180 grain. It took the better part of a year to figure this out.


    So, depending on your intent, handloads may not be worth the effort.



    I have no rifle for which I do not have one or more handloads that will consistently turn in better accuracy than the best available factory loads. Just depends if I want to work hard enough at it. If you want ultimate accuracy, it will be a load that is tuned to your rifle, not something the factory had good luck with in one or two of THEIR rifles.


    Now, there are some real good factory loads. And perhaps one satisfies your needs in your rifle. But top rifle shooters almost always shoot hand loads. Even the rim fire experts are shooting a very tightly selected factory round, after comparing tens or hundreds of loads and lots.


    The OP already stated that they were doing load development. Indicates they have probably already checked the rather limited factory loads available in 6.5x55 Swede.


    Good luck, GJ

  9. If you are not real fast and fairly strong on the lever work, I'd go with a Cowboys and Indian 3rd generation kit, as it has a little more leverage than the shortest 5th gen kit,a little smoother and a little easier to fit. .45 Colt can use the slightly easier levering unless you are real fast. Your first time at putting a short stroke kit in yourself will be pretty challenging, but if you are mechanically inclined and have a few standard gun smith tools, should not be too hard to do.


    Lifter and lever springs, a lever safety spring (torsion type mousetrap spring), probably a new extractor and firing pin with FP spring would be worth sticking in, too. Stainless magazine spring and follower. (Or at very least, clean mag tube well and check for rust). And think about a lighter carrier block - aluminum replacement or have your brass block milled out. Without lightening the carrier, you don't get but about half the speed improvement that a short stoke can give you.


    I like 3rd gen kits in 45s, and 5th gen kits in 38s.


    Now, all this will be $350+ just for parts. And will take about 15 hours to do,if all works well the first time. (that's why so many folks let a good smith do the work.... they can put in the same parts in about 3 hours)


    Now, if I understand your post, you want a reference to a gunsmith to send it to to have this done. Either Jim Bowie at Cowboys and Indian store (So Cal), or Jared at LongHunter Supply (Amarillo Tx) would do a fine job dropping in the parts. Ken Griner (Farmington NM, who does work on Evil Roy's line of competition rifles) would also be on my list. Or Goatneck Clem out of central Texas, or Joe Brisco of Cowboy's Shooter Supply (Fort Towson OK)


    Good luck, GJ

  10. At none of the 8 or so WRs and 10 EOTs that I have had the pleasure to have shot in, have these requirements been extended, within any posse I have been on or the posses I have Marshaled, beyond the folks holding the timers. Higher level officials at these matches have certainly been highly qualified.


    There's what is applied on the field. And that is what matters to the good folks who have run the matches. Then there's - all the rest of the paperwork, which it seems does not really match reality...


    Most of the confusion seems to stem from the loose, sometimes completely interchangeable, but sometimes differing, use of the terms "Chief Range Officer" and "Range Officer" within the RO I handbook. Then having the Match Contract, which most of us never see, citing "Range Officer" when it probably should be citing "Chief Range Officer" as requiring RO I and II certifications. For example, the (now no longer used) Stage Marshal position is called out as one of the "listed Range Officers" on page 11. Then in the description of his qualifications RO I states:


    It is recommended each Stage Marshal be a graduate of the SASS RO courses

    and for Posse Marshals


    It is recommended all posse leaders be trained in this Basic Range Operations Course


    These are the only 2 positions among the "listed Range Officers" which even hint there is a "recommendation" for RO I training in the whole RO I manual.


    For another illustration of this mixed definition problem, here's a statement from the RO II handbook:


    References in course material to "Range Officer" are generally meant to refer to those persons in official match positions with official duties (Posse Marshals/Leaders, Stage/Berm Marshals).


    All in all, it shows the written materials are VERY poorly organized to have a consistent story on who MUST be trained to RO I and RO II levels.



    Good luck, GJ


    At State and above matches, all Range Officers are to be RO-I certified by contract with SASS.

    Match Director

    Range Master

    Posse Marshal

    Deputy Posse Marshal

    Timer Operator


    Score Keeper


    Loading/Unloading Officer



    Believe you have BADLY misinterpreted the definition of "Range Officers" Most of those you have listed are not Range Officers as described in the Range Operations Basic Safety Course (RO I) handbook! The Range Officer (also known as Timer Operator (badly selling short all the responsibility)) is the role, along with the Match Director, that are (alternatively) either recommended or required to be at RO I level of certification for major matches.


    As has been pointed out, you will not often have spotters who are all RO I level trained, let alone unloading table officers or scorekeepers. NOR do they need to be. The ones we have now :wub: are doing a great job overall!


    Good luck, GJ

  12. No, all categories shoot .38's except for Classic Cowboy.


    Clearer way of stating this -


    Competitors in all cartridge categories (except Classic Cowboy) may shoot any of the allowed cartridge sizes. So, yes, if you shoot .38 special cartridge guns, you will have some of your competitors (in any category you might shoot) shooting anything from .32 H&R up through .45 Colt.


    As has been stated before, Classic Cowboy is the only cartridge category where there is a tighter restriction on the cartridges allowed, where all that is allowed is a .40 caliber or above rimmed, historically used, cartridge. By the way, .38-40 is a .40 caliber cartridge.


    Category is one of the harder things for a new shooter to wrap his head around. Come out to a few local matches and this topic (and lots of others) will be explained. Don't go buying guns before you come out to some local matches!




    Good luck, GJ

  13. Don't worry. Keep on running the timer.


    If you make a bad call at a match, I'm sure one of your pards will be glad to post a WTC right here and you'll "get taught" the errors of your ways.




    I'd ask myself, Self, why haven't you taken a refresher? Then pick up the timer and get to it.


    Good luck, GJ

  14. ...and shove tightly into the neck, fire the gun with the muzzle up in the air. How's that sound?



    All sounds about like normal fire forming process except there's no need to point muzzle up when firing.


    Other fireforming technique - get a supply of the cheapest slugs you can, load a light load of Red Dot or Unique (see Lyman loading manual) (plinking load), fire them. Examine first one or two to make sure you are not stretching the case down at the base, and that you have enough powder for full case expansion in the shoulder. Most of the reloading manuals should have instructions for fireforming cases.


    Good luck, GJ

  15. The best advice is always - "Try out Cowboy guns at several local matches before you buy even one". The opinions you almost always get here are what each individual likes best. That may or may not come close to your real needs.


    We are very willing at local matches to loan out guns and ammo to let you try things out before you start the buying process.



    Now, what are a fair number of duelists running for their guns and cartridges?


    The Ruger Vaquero is more used than any other revolver "platform" in Cowboy shooting. Lots of duelists with large hands then specialize the platform down to a Bisley grip, a Bisley or a Super Blackhawk hammer (due to the spur of the hammer being lower and closer to the firing hand), and fairly often, they have a short-stroke hammer modification made to shorten and speed up the distance the hammer must be cocked and then fall back down during firing. The 4 5/8" or 5 1/2" barrels are most commonly used, real short and longer barrels than those are fairly rare. You don't NEED a long barrel to shoot BP any more than you need it for smokeless. Most folks find a 7 1/2" barrel is a little slow coming out of holster.


    But, there are a large number of variations, a large number of preferences and opinions, which I'm sure you will gather due to your questions.


    And to add to the "survey", as a Classic Cowboy duelist style shooter, I run short-stroked Ruger Bisley revolvers with the Bisley hammer, gunfighter grips, .45 Colt chambered but shooting Cowboy .45 Special cartridge (the Colt shortened to the length of a .45 auto), and either smokeless or Black Powder. The barrel-to-cylinder gap has been enlarged to about 0.007" so that Black Powder shooting is less troublesome.


    But the most common and easiest to shoot and cheapest to get ammo for cartridge in our sport would be .38 special. Hard for a beginner to go wrong with .38 special, except for one category (Classic Cowboy - which requires .40 caliber or larger).


    Good luck, GJ

  16. Nope, lots of categories right now.


    If ammo cost is holding you back, reload your own cast bullets.


    Pards in the old west did not go to gunfights armed with 22s. :lol:


    The game is what it is, and probably will stay there for a while.


    We would welcome you, and as stated above, local matches will probably carve out a special category to let you shoot as you start up in the game.


    Good luck, GJ

  17. Ditto on trying to look period with shooting glasses. There WERE no shooting glasses back in the day. And the small lenses that movies show folks wearing provide almost NO protection. Cowboy shooters get lots of lead back in the face! You don't want it in the eye.


    ESS ICE model is what I use. Prescription inserts. Hi-contrast orange/rose or gray shields depending upon how bright. I'm standard eye (R eye, R shooting) dominant and need "bifocal" type correction - I do it with master eye set to focus on front sight of rifle, weak eye set for distance. This makes the lenses single vision, so they are 1. corrected vision at any point in lens and 2. cheaper than progressive or bifocal lenses. Not everyone can adapt to this two-different-lenses style. But with inserts, if you want to change one or both lenses to a different lens, it's EZ-PZ.


    The hardest thing to do if you get progressive lenses put in is to shoot accurate prone rifle long distance. Almost no way to crank your neck up far enough to get a clear front sight picture.


    Good luck GJ

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