Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Because I Need More Expensive Hobbies.

I finally got my ass and the 1908-vintage Winchester 1897 (takedown model, 30", full choke) to the Skeet Trap range, and brought a co-worker. Between the two of us, 200 rounds of #7 1/2 birdshot disappeared in about five minutes (subjectively). Trap singles has the same 'one...more...round' appeal of, say, Strange Adventures In Infinite Space, except each new round totals $15.50 when range fees and shotshells are considered. (Bizarrely, the trap field has cheaper shotshells than Big 5's on-special stuff. So until I reload, I guess I know where my cash is going.)

For a centenarian, the old girl still gets it done, when the shooter steps up (ahem). 8 pounds even is a bit much to swing around, but ergonomically the gun is right on point - the elegant semi-pistol grip points intuitively. With a $20 Uncle Mike's recoil pad slipped over the stock I can shoot low-brass birdshot all day. (I keep hearing that fit is everything; my friend's shoulder doesn't get along as well with the gun as mine does, so perhaps that's what's going on.) The 4-5lb trigger is all sorts of manageable. Plus, 1897's just sound awesome, and all the moving parts popping out has a certain steampunk appeal to it. About the only bad thing about the design is that while taking down is easy, re-assembling is a bit fiddly - you have to feel around quite a bit to get the lugs lined up.

The fellow running the machinery recommended sighting down the barrel rather than following the bead, which works well, at least for deflection shots. Just park about a clay's width of daylight between the muzzle and the clay and good things seem to happen.

That said, with an average score of 10/25, I need to A) pay attention more and B) practice. Co-worker mopped up, with a high score of 20/25 on his first time out. Between pistol shooting and paintball, I don't know how much of that I can really justify these days. However, the co-worker and I are hopefully splitting on the reloading setup, so once we can actually get some fucking primers practice will be a viable option.

No comments: