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I am a new SASS member, (#108735), I have my Ruger Vaquero and holster,  my Henry Big Boy, (both .357/.38) my alias, and my cowboy clothing. I was really looking forward to CAS and contacted the SASS club in my area. The wind went out of my sales after talking to the club contact.  I was told all that I needed was another Vaquero and a shot gun to shoot in the club stages. Now, money is not the problem for getting what I was told I needed, but I have my own personal reasons for not having the extra firearms. First, I am a right handed shooter and I don't shoot left handed and I won't switch hands to shoot, so I don't see the need to have a second revolver.  Second, I don't like shotguns and I don't like shooting them, so I won't own one. Bottom line, I won't spend the extra money for another revolver and a shotgun.

 

I do understand the "spirit of the game" that SASS espouses and I have no problem with that and I'm not complaining, but I was under the misguided belief that CAS was to resemble as close as possible the old west cowboys of yesteryear. Now in most of the movie and TV westerns I've seen, (and I've seen most of them) the cowboys usually carried just one 6 shot revolver, (preferably a Colt) and a rifle, (preferably a Winchester) in the scabbard on their horse. Very few cowboys back then carried 2 revolvers (except for Roy Rogers and the Lone Ranger) and a shot gun all at the same time. Most of the old west cowboys back then could not afford the extra firepower, as most were just ranch hands or drovers who made very little money. Those who chose the life of an outlaw might be able to own the extra guns but most preferred just their 6 gun and rifle (both in the same caliber to save money by not having to buy different caliber bullets).

 

This leads me a couple questions that I have. First, do all SASS shooting stages require that you have to have 2 revolvers, a rifle and a shot gun to shoot and compete in these stages? Second, if having all those firearms is a SASS requirement, then are there any CAS clubs that don't have that requirement that I could join, preferably in Arizona in the Verde Valley area?

 

 

 

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If you’re talking real old west, then you’d better start with shotgun and add on from there seeing how that’s the true gun that won the west and owned by more cowboys than any colt or Winchester.. I think you can shoot with one pistol and reload every stage, but that’s going to make for a really long match. Your local club may allow you to shoot what you got and then add misses for unfired guns, but if you really want to play this game then you need to play by the rules, just like any other game. I don’t know of any game out there where you can jump in and start changing the rules before even playing. 

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Posted (edited)
Quote

 

COWBOY ACTION SHOOTING

™ Cowboy Action Shooting™ is a multifaceted amateur shooting sport in which contestants compete with firearms typical of those used in the taming of the Old West: single action revolvers, lever action rifles, and side by side double barreled, pre-1899 pump, or lever action shotguns. The shooting competition is staged in a unique, characterized, Old West style.   Contestants shoot in several four firearm stages (courses of fire) in which they engage steel targets in a specifically designed scenario and shooting sequence.   American history buffs and serious shooters alike agree the use of vintage firearms, authentic costuming, unique targets, and fast action make Cowboy Action Shooting™ one of the most interesting of all shooting sports

for both spectator and contestant.   

 

Shooters Handbook page 2

 

 

Edited by PaleWolf Brunelle, #2495L
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Posted (edited)

Some clubs offer an unofficial “working cowboy” class with just one pistol and rifle. But most matches are going to have 2 revolvers, rifle, shotgun. Most shooters only shoot with their dominant hand, many using a cross draw holster. Some use a right and left straight hang, draw and transfer gun on weak side to strong side. 

As for shotgun, most shoot a very light load, and typically 4 targets to a stage. 

Check with a club. Somebody will take you under their wing and get you started. 

 

Welcome to the fire!

Edited by Hoss
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This is just a suggestion but maybe you could attend a match or two and see first hand what CAS and SASS are before you give up on it. You may be pleasantly surprised at what you find. The Yavapai Rangers are a great bunch of cowboys and cowgirls and I’m pretty sure they’d do all they can to help you fit in. I hope you give that a try. You can shoot both revolvers with your right hand if you want, it’s called duelist.

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Posted (edited)

One would think that before joining a shooting organization - one might want to find out what they do first  !

 

Edited by Hells Comin
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12 minutes ago, Hells Comin said:

One would think that before joining a shooting organization - one might want to find out what they do first  !

 

You're right, my bad for not reading the shooters handbook first.

 

Maybe there is a club here in Arizona that would at least welcome a "working class" cowboy to shoot with them.

 

I'm not trying to change SASS rules, just want to do some CAS shooting within the parameters of what I am personally comfortable with.    2 revolvers and a shotgun unfortunately are out of my comfort zone when it comes to shooting.

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I believe if u use a cross draw holster setup you can use your right hand to pull and re-holster each  pistol without transferring them. So now all we have do is figure out the shotgun issue.

 

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Most of us enjoy shooting so the more guns the better and yes while a lot of cowboys had lever action rifles, most hunting and defense of a home(stead) was done with a double barreled shotgun. 

 

But since you you want to play “the game”, you may want to put your personal preferences aside, or as other suggest, visit the various clubs near you to see if one would let you shoot just your 2 guns in a non-competitive entry in their monthly matches. Good luck and hope you change your mind about the second pistol and shotgun. 

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Howdy

 

It has been said many times that SASS is not historical reenactment.

 

It is a shooting sport loosely based on the Old West and Hollywood's version of the Old West.

 

When I first started shooting CAS around the year 2000 there was one club I attended that only used one pistol. But they soon got on the bandwagon and began using two, just like every other SASS club. The way they (and I ) figured it, the more guns the better.

 

If you don't want to handle a revolver with your left hand you can put your second revolver on your weak side and pull it cross draw. I have been doing this since day one in CAS (2000, remember).

 

Of course, everybody will be watching you like a hawk to make sure you don't break the 170 when pulling or reholstering your 2nd pistol.

 

Don't let anybody give you any guff about having to do 'the dance'.

 

There is no requirement to move your feet when pulling or reholstering your cross draw pistol.

 

You do have to be sure not to break the 170, just like anybody else. This can often be done by swiveling your hips without having to move your feet if you don't want to. Anybody who tells you you have to do 'the dance' does not know what they are talking about. They should be watching the gun, not your feet. Yes, I have been dealing with this for almost 20 years.

 

Can't help you with the shotgun. I love shooting my old Stevens hammer double.

 

stevens%20hammergun%2003_zpsi2udi3im.jpg

 

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Wow, uhm ok.......At a loss here.

 

where's Phantom when you need him :D

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Arizona Ranger Captain said:

Maybe there is a club here in Arizona that would at least welcome a "working class" cowboy to shoot with them.

 

All of the stages are written for two pistols, a rifle, and a shotgun, but we'd love to have you come shoot with us in Tombstone. We shoot CAS the first Sunday (OPSA) and the third Saturday (Los Vaqueros) each month. You can still get the Old West feeling, the camaraderie, and most of the shooting, but we'd just score you a little different.

 

We occasionally have a fella who shoots one revolver and reloads it on the clock -- I think he calls it the "Hired Gun" category. He does still shoot a shotgun, but we're usually open to folks trying new things (as long as they are safe). At our Wild Bunch matches (4th Saturday - OPSA), we've had a shooter show up with a Luger and a Thompson, and it was fun for all of us! Sometimes these rule breakers don't get counted in the overall standings, but we all have fun, and we'd be glad to have you.

 

Please do read the SHB -- safety is always first. Aside from having the correct number of guns, all other rules still apply (ammunition, holster wear, range ops, etc.).

Edited by C.N. Double
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If recoil from the shotgun is a concern, trust me when I say, I hear what you're saying.

 

For many shooting this game, that is a big concern.

 

Many of us have wives and children who also shoot with us.  For my wife, her biggest reason initially for not shooting SASS was the shotgun as the only experience was with three inch duck or heavy field loads.

 

Those aren't what we need for SASS.

 

Ask around and you will find some folks shooting some pretty tame shotgun loads. Some of them are about as tame as rifle rounds!

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The stage calls for 10 shot pistol. Take a five shot reload or five misses.

Don't shoot the shotgun targets and take the misses.

It is obvious you just want to shoot and don't care about the timer or category you compete in.

 

Clubs allow Josey Wales. Talk to the club.

 

Your post indicates you'll do what you want, not what the stages requires. Join a range, get dressed up and play cowboy on your own. You may even find others that want to play your game. I would not expect SASS to create another category so you can compete against yourself. We have guys show up and shoot Dirty Dozen guns at a cowboy match. We have shooters that have a broken shotgun etc. and don't shoot that part of the stage.  So again talk to the club.

 

Hard to believe you made it to this stage of the game and now realize you don't have the gear you needed. Though you said it's not, money is obviously the issue (from your post). I'll bet $100 if you show up for a club match someone will help you work things out in time. I shot for several months (and a State Match) with all my neighbors gear when I started out. You can't just go to Walmart and find Cowboy guns and ammo. Takes time and they give you time. 

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Posted (edited)

Well, I was the club contact, i.e. Whiskey Row Gunslingers, here in Prescott, AZ that he chose to contact. When I made it clear that all the clubs here in Arizona generally have a round count of 10, 10, 4, he was surprised to find out he needed a 2nd pistol and a shotgun to compete.  While it seems accommodating to let him reload one pistol to complete in a local match it's very unfair to the rest of the shooters on his posse, as it would make for a very long day for him as well as everyone else. He admitted he failed to do adequate research before he jumped in to the game. I invited him to come to our monthly match and talk with the shooters before he gave up his desire to shoot in this game. As of yet he has not taken the opportunity to visit a local club. I told him we certainly could fine some equipment for his to use on a short term basis but he had his own reasons for not shooting a 2nd revolver and a shotgun. He was also informed he would need a shotgun belt to hold his shotgun ammo and probably need a gun cart to transport his gear. He seemed quite surprised at those suggestions. I directed him to look at the SASS shooter's handbook. Hopefully the Arizona Range Captain reconsiders his decisions. 

 

TB

Edited by Turquoise Bill, SASS #39118
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46 minutes ago, Blast Masterson said:

The stage calls for 10 shot pistol. Take a five shot reload or five misses.

Don't shoot the shotgun targets and take the misses.

It is obvious you just want to shoot and don't care about the timer or category you compete in.

 

Clubs allow Josey Wales. Talk to the club.

 

Your post indicates you'll do what you want, not what the stages requires. Join a range, get dressed up and play cowboy on your own. You may even find others that want to play your game. I would not expect SASS to create another category so you can compete against yourself. We have guys show up and shoot Dirty Dozen guns at a cowboy match. We have shooters that have a broken shotgun etc. and don't shoot that part of the stage.  So again talk to the club.

 

Hard to believe you made it to this stage of the game and now realize you don't have the gear you needed. Though you said it's not, money is obviously the issue (from your post). I'll bet $100 if you show up for a club match someone will help you work things out in time. I shot for several months (and a State Match) with all my neighbors gear when I started out. You can't just go to Walmart and find Cowboy guns and ammo. Takes time and they give you time. 

 

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Blast Masterson, thanks for your input. I'm not that interested in my time or a category per se, I just want to dress up and shoot cowboy style like all of you. I did talk with Turquoise Bill of the Whiskey Row Gunslingers in Prescott and he did invite me to his range to shoot. If his group doesn't object to me taking 5 shots with my revolver and 5 misses and take the misses without a shotgun during their club match, I'm very inclined to take him up on his invitation. I'm not looking for SASS to make a special category for me, although there may be others out there like me who may not want to shoot with every gun SASS requires, for whatever reason they may have.

 

Thanks to everyone who have responded to my post, I appreciate all of the input I've received. Who knows, after some time I just might opt to shoot 2 revolvers and a shotgun.

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2 minutes ago, Arizona Ranger Captain said:

Who knows, after some time I just might opt to shoot 2 revolvers and a shotgun.

 

A vast majority of us hope that is indeed what happens, so go and enjoy yourself.

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maybe try to find a NCOWS group near you. But if SASS is where you want to play then ya kinda gotta play by the rules. You only shoot right handed and dont want to transfer a gun from one hand to the other. That's fine lots of people use a crossdraw holster. Historical accuracy the issue? We arent a reenactment group. So again maybe try NCOWS? I know lots of clubs will let you play the way you want to but I certainly dont think your times should be in the running. If you're only going to use 1 pistol then you absolutely should reload it on the clock. As for the shotgun i'm not sure what the issue is other than you just dont wanna. Any way best of luck in whatever direction you decide to go. 

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Very few of us shoot both right and left handed.  There is a gunfighter category that requires it, but no other category does.

We essentially all shoot our pistols with our strong hand. 

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Posted (edited)

OP-Just get your tail-feathers to a match, and ALL of your concerns will be answered.

Why have you not taken up the invite from TB to shoot? :huh:

OLG

Edited by The Original Lumpy Gritz
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I am a member of the board of the Arizona Yavapai Rangers and our club shoots on the 4th Sat of the month on Forest rd 9571 between Cottonwood & Sedona. Our next match will be on Aug. 24th. I suggest you come out and see what all the fun is about, as well as the need for appropriate firearms. Feel free to PM me with your phone # and we can talk.  Turquoise Bill & members of his club are most always there too.

 

DC

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Posted (edited)

CAS is an umbrella term for a shooting completion using old west style guns.


SASS is the most prolific version of CAS

NCOWS allows for a few guns that SASS does not, but is much more strict on historical accuracy.

Western 3 Gun is even rarer, and allows for different types of movement with a loaded gun that the others do not.

 

Then then are SASS clubs that might have some "unofficial" variants of the game from time to time just for fun, but they revert to a more strict adherence to the "SASS Standard Rules" for their annual big matches.

 

But in pretty much all the variants, you need 2 pistols, a pistol caliber rifle and a shotgun.   That's just the way it is.

 

That being said, I showed up to my first SASS match with what I had, a Colt .45, a Merwin and Hulbert spur trigger pocket pistol 38 S&W, a Rossi 92 .44 Magnum (using .44 Special) and  Winchester 97 12 gauge.   Was told I could not use the Merwin cuz it was a "pocket pistol" and I did not know yet what that meant.   No problem though.   Another shooter had an extra revolver and he loaded that to me and ammo for it so I'd have the needed second gun.   Bring what you have, and there's an excellent chance that someone will loan you anything you don't have yet.

 

As far as not being able to safely shoot a gun with your left hand goes, well, Driftwood mentioned the cross draw option.   Another possibility, one I see a lot and that some of our top shooters here in New England use, would be to draw the pistol with your left hand, transfer it to your right, shoot, transfer back to left for holstering.   Might take a while to master this method, but I've seen it used to great effect.  

 

And if you really want too, you can train yourself to shoot your pistols ambidextrously.   It's not all that hard to learn.

 

Good luck.

Edited by H. K. Uriah, SASS #74619
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It feels like winter. I’m going to check for snowfall. See ya all in the spring

 

Gringo

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I’d like to start golfing but I don’t want, and a have no use for irons. I have no intention on get them either, money is not the issue. I do have knickers, golf shoes, a driver, and a putter. Can I still golf?

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 Sounds like you did some research knew and what  type of firearms to purchase. But I don’t think you truly understood what the game was about before diving in.The rules clearly describe what the sport is about. Two Revolvers one rifle one shot gun.It’s been that way from the very beginning of SASS. We would love to have you come and play and enjoy the camaraderie.  With dozens of different categories in clothing style ,age and shooting style. There tends to be something for everyone. Nobody wants to offend you and tell you that you aren’t welcome. But remember if you go to a tennis club they play tennis not baseball not soccer. 

 I hope that you reconsider and take others suggestions by visiting some clubs meet some people watch what they do. This is the best game there is. It’s open to everyone and we would love to have you. That’s my little bit of Phantom for y’all thanks 

Oak Creek Martin. 

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4 minutes ago, oak creek martin said:

 ...It’s been that way from the very beginning of SASS...

Errr... no, only from about 1994/5 on.  Before that only one sixgun was required.

Quote

We would love to have you come and play and enjoy the camaraderie.  With dozens of different categories in clothing style ,age and shooting style. There tends to be something for everyone. Nobody wants to offend you and tell you that you aren’t welcome. But remember if you go to a tennis club they play tennis not baseball not soccer. 

 I hope that you reconsider and take others suggestions by visiting some clubs meet some people watch what they do. This is the best game there is. It’s open to everyone and we would love to have you. That’s my little bit of Phantom for y’all thanks 

Oak Creek Martin. 

That I fully agree with.  

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Take TB up on his offer and don't forget to budget time to go with the group for lunch after the shoot.

kR

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You haven't state what your "issue" is with shotguns... but... if it happens to be recoil, and isn't a physical thing, a TTN double with Winchester Low Noise/Low Recoil shotshells is not much different than shooting a pistol caliber lever-action rifle.   A bit more push, but slower....  and I do mean a "bit".  

 

The TTN is probably the heaviest shotgun available on today's market that suitable for CAS... I have a coach gun model and a longer barreled field gun.  That 26" barrelled version weighs 9-½ lbs.  that's a LOT of recoil absorbing mass.  

 

Not to mention that there are recoil tamers that make that 12 gauge recoil seem more like a .22.  And whatever you do, don't let someone talk you into a 20 gauge, although their shot loads are lighter, most are built on a smaller frame than their 12 gauge brethren, hence felt recoil is usually much greater.

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2 hours ago, John Barleycorn, SASS #76982 said:

I’d like to start golfing but I don’t want, and a have no use for irons. I have no intention on get them either, money is not the issue. I do have knickers, golf shoes, a driver, and a putter. Can I still golf?

 

NO-You must have that funny look'n hat...........:lol::P

 

OLG

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When I was a MD I would have let you shoot without a second revolver or shotgun, but you would have been penalized for misses and get a P for failure to engage on every stage. I probably would have suggested using a second pistol, but staging it since you don't want to carry two.  You would get a P for staging it, but you could avoid 5 misses that way.

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4 hours ago, John Barleycorn, SASS #76982 said:

I’d like to start golfing but I don’t want, and a have no use for irons. I have no intention on get them either, money is not the issue. I do have knickers, golf shoes, a driver, and a putter. Can I still golf?

Sure, you can still golf if you don't care what your score would be.....in fact, I'll be your caddy.....carrying a driver and putter for you would be a cinch. ;)

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AZ Ranger Capt.,

When I started ('99) there was no CAS or SASS on the internet, so it was a lot harder to find out what it was all about, the requirements, etc.  I had just started getting into guns in '98 and it was all handguns.  I did not own a long gun at that time and had no desire to.  When I decided to do CAS, there was a dealer at a gunshow selling CAS guns and promoting a local club.  I asked if there was a separate category for pistols only and was told no, I needed the two long guns.  Well dang, I had no interest in those, but got them and started.  And boy am I glad I did, the long guns are quite enjoyable as well.

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2 hours ago, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

 

NO-You must have that funny look'n hat...........:lol::P

 

OLG

 

Don't forget that it comes with a free bowl of soup;)

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Posted (edited)

Arizona Ranger Captain-- Your concerns are valid to you, and I can understand them.  If you just want to show up and shoot what you have, I'm sure one of the two clubs that invited you out will surely do their best to help you out on making that happen.  So long as you don't care about misses, or procedurals, then I think you may actually be what this sport needs a lot more of--someone who just wants to play cowboy.  That's the main reason me and a couple others I know do it.  My times and scores are probably never going to garner me a buckle (unless they start giving them out for longest time or most embarrassing misses).  I enjoy playing cowboy, shooting cowboy, and the friendly, like-minded people I meet when I'm doing it. Hell, I live in Las Vegas and we are currently under "summer dress rules" at my club, which means basically--wear a hat.  But as hot as it is, I'm out there every time in boots, western shirt, hat, jeans--because I like to do it.  Yes, It's hot, but it's also a lot of fun!  Go to the range, have your version of fun and enjoy it.   Oh--and welcome to SASS!!  Hope to shoot with you one day!

 

Edited by Smoky Pistols
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