Well, I’ve certainly enjoyed my four days away from BigBoxRetailer, but I’m back to the grind as of last night. The highlight of my mini-vacation was from Thursday afternoon through Friday afternoon. I mention Thursday only because Roomie took me out for Chinese (her treat – something that never happens) to celebrate her new job, which she starts this week.
Friday, I awoke around 0500. I hadn’t been asleep long, butI knew that it was going to be a busy day. Larry had planned to show up for his Reloading 101 class, and while I had cleared a path to my workbench earlier in the week, the top was covered with dust, tools, various hardware, and everything else that you can imagine being in a man’s garage. The reloading hardware was underneath of all that crap somewhere, not that anything more than my progressive press could be seen. I spent the better part of two hours putting shit away that had been there since shortly after I moved in here. Yes, I’m lazy. Fuck you!
After I had made room to mount the single stage press that we were going to be using for the tutorial, I came back inside the house proper and got my range bag and other necessary items together. Please note that the press featured in the link and my unit are slightly different. Mostly, this is due to the fact that I bought my press roughly a quarter of a century ago when I first started reloading. It has some surface rust, and the knob regularly threatens to remove itself from the handle, but it remains completely serviceable.
Shortly after 0800, Larry arrived. He wanted to reload first, then head to the range. We spent the next two and a half hours setting up the dies for his ancient boomstick and loading forty-eight rounds (all the brass he had, minus two casualties of the setup procedure). You may read all about it and the subsequent range trip here. I wasn’t a very good teacher. I could claim that it was because I hadn’t used anything but my progressive press in well over ten years. I could complain that having never reloaded rifle before was a contributing factor. There are varying amounts of truth in both of these statements, but mostly, though, I just suck at ‘splainin how to do things.
We got through it, and a 129 grain Hornady SST projectile over a tediously weighed 37.0 grains of H380 powder inside a 6.5×50 Jap case primed with a Remington # 9 ½ large rifle primer makes for a very satisfying BOOM.
While at the range, I was able to stretch my KelTec’s legs a bit. Having been too
busy lazy to load any 9mm ammo, despite having all the necessary components in hand, I opted to buy a 50-round box of TulAmmo. Kellie digested every one with narry a hiccup. At twenty-five yards, accuracy was very good, but the point of impact was a few inches higher than the point of aim. I adjusted for this and did a few slow fire shots. I was particularly proud of the three rounds that I put in and slightly to the left of the bullseye, all of which were touching each other. Even with some rapid fire at the end, every round landed on the paper (a NRA B29 target – 11½”x22″), with only about a magazine worth outside the black. Not bad for the distance, a shooter who probably hasn’t shot five hundred rounds in the last year, and a pocket nine with a less than stellar reputation as to accuracy.
After the range visit was over, we returned home and loaded the rest of the brass for the 6.5 that we had emptied, leaving Larry with no empty brass, four remaining projectiles and slightly less than half of his pound of powder. The experience got me more prepared to load for Annie, which will happen as soon as I get proper priming hardware and a suitable propellant.
Even a bad day at the range (as long as significant bloodshed is avoided) is better than a good day most anywhere else. Last Friday was a very good day.