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Palouse Practical Shooters April 25th, 1999 Boomershoot

bulletAOL (formerly Rosie O'Donnell) version
bulletCelebrate Earth Day By Blowing Up a Small Part of It (report from participant)
bulletEmergency Contact Info
bulletPrecision rifle seminar
bulletBullets for sale (from Major Econ)
bulletSport Shirts?

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Emergency Contact Info

Joe Huffman's cell phone: 206-499-7279  

I use the word "Emergency" loosely.  If you just want some last minute hints finding the place as you get close, you are going to be a few minutes late, or pretty much whatever you think I might be able to help with at the last minute, just give me a call.  If I'm on site (Saturday about 12:00 until Sunday afternoon) I should have good reception.  If I'm in route someplace reception is spotty in that area (FYI, Lewiston and Moscow are good, but the last I checked Kendrick and Orofino was poor to non-existent).

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It's over. It was a success.  The weather held until the last participants were just leaving the field then it started to rain.  I've put up a separate page for pictures -- see Joe Huffman's Boomershoot for review of the event.  Why it has a reading level of about the 2nd grade is a story for another day...

April 23, 1999 - New picture from the target area looking back at the firing line and the "grassy knoll". We have a forecast of sunny on Saturday and partly cloudy and/or showers on Sunday.  I'm still going ahead with it.  See you there!

April 19, 1999 - Currently the weather forecast  is for rain through Wednesday, clearing on Thursday and either sunny or partly cloudy through Saturday.  If the forecast is correct and the dry weather holds through Sunday the event is on. 

I talked to Major Econ about the clinic today and that is still a go.  He will be selling some bullets (not loaded ammo) if you are interested.  See the details below if you are interested.

I was out on range most of Saturday and Sunday.  Saturday was a little damp, but dry enough to work on the explosives magazine.  It was more work than I thought and even with some help from my wife (she says digging in the dirt together is very romantic and was pleased I would share that special time with her) I didn't get it completed.  It will be secure, but not bullet resistant, by this Saturday night.  That's complete enough to store the explosives for the one night (don't try showing up in the middle of the night to blow the whole thing up -- I'll be camping there and will be shooting back if necessary).  The bullet resistant portion will have to wait for another weekend when my wife has time for another romantic interlude -- this time mixing up mortar mix and building a cinder block wall.

While at the range I put up some reflectors and took some wind readings.  

Interestingly enough, as I was driving back to Redmond today, I got a call on my cell phone from Chuck Spaulding at the ATF.  He was in Lewiston (his normal office is Portland) and wondered if he could stop by and inspect the magazine. I told him it wasn't quite ready, and he said he would be back in the area next month, as long as I wasn't in a big hurry he wasn't either.  We chatted about things and cleared up some stuff.  Everything seems cool.  He even offered to stop by on a weekend to accommodate my schedule.

April 12, 1999 - The weather was good this weekend.  Good weather is predicted until at least late this week.  There were farmers in some of the fields near my home when I left this morning.  If the weather holds I should be able to build the explosives magazine next weekend.

I did some more experiments with explosive mixtures yesterday.  Not as good a results as I had hoped for (I couldn't get it to detonate with a .22 rifle) and I still don't know for certain that a .223 will detonate the stuff reliably at a distance but I think there is a better chance of it working than last year.  See the April 12 update to Project Diesel II for details (including video footage).  They guys helping me (thanks Fred and Mike) seemed impressed with "the wallop" and "the thump you feel in your chest".  Of course they were only about 35 yards away, but it does rattle windows and shake walls of buildings from 400+ yards away...

Another question was asked and answered.  This time about a safety area.  See the Q & A portion of this web page.

I was Cc'd on some email with hints on how to prepare for the Boomershoot.  I got permission to post them here.  If you follow the suggestions closely, be sure ask me to introduce you to "Jerry the Geek" (the author) while at the shoot.  That way you can thank him in person.

April 6, 1999 - First the good news.  I did some tests with the paper milk cartons I plan on using.  The fluorescent red paint I planned to use sticks well, as does the double stick tape (for fastening to stakes or cardboard).  This should reduce the concerns about target visibility at the longer ranges.

I have someone to help when I do some more tests on the mixture(s) this weekend.

It snowed, again, over the weekend. I'm beginning to get a bit worried about being able to get the explosives magazine finished in time (required for storage from assembly from the previous day).  It's just far, far to wet and muddy to do that work now.  The weather is good right now and it probably would only take a week or ten days of  really good weather to dry it up, so it's not out of the question by any means. It just a source of worry.  And as Murphy would have it, of course, rain and snow is predicted for later this week.  If it doesn't start drying up with good prospects for the future by the middle of next week it will have to be postponed.  I'll give out refunds to those that need them if that is the route we have to go.

The shirts are out for this time.  I tried with two different graphic artists and it just wasn't as quick and easy a job as anticipated.  Maybe next time.

March 29, 1999 - Answered another question -- about pizza and beer in Orofino.

March 27, 1999 - I added a map that includes Kendrick, Cavendish, and the event site.

March 23, 1999 - I looked over the site again on Saturday.  Most of the snow has melted.  The lower level is a swamp and the creek is full of water.  The grassy knoll where we will be shooting from was fairly dry - damp but not muddy.  Assuming reasonable weather it should be fine for the shoot -- only five weeks away now.  I updated the directions some based on my traversal of the route. I rearranged some things on this page.  I added a question and answer section.  I added a section about sport shirts.

March 17, 1999 - I have ordered a wheelchair accessible port-potty.  Would-be spectators with access concerns should be encouraged to show up and join the fun or else find some lame excuse not to show up.

March 15, 1999 - I found a link to an aerial picture of the area.  See Site Pictures.

March 12, 1999 - 20 people say they are definitely coming.  Unless someone didn't actually send in the money or has to cancel -- the event is closed to further entries.  I've confirmed that we can have toilet and hand washing facilities for a reasonable price.  I have some more options for people that would like to camp close by.  See accommodations for details.  I have pictures of the site now.

March 11, 1999 - I now have 19 people that say they are definitely coming.  I talked to Major Eugene Econ (the seminar instructor) today.  He would like the seminar to start at 1:00 rather than 2:30.  He really needs the extra time.  I realize this makes it very hard for the people coming from the Seattle area (it's six hours of driving time), but I'd hate for people to not get the full benefit of the seminar too. We discussed provisions such as the wind flags (only for the seminar) and made a few more plans.

March 8, 1999 - We are getting close to full.  Although I only have the money from eight, another seven say they are either dropping off the check or it's in the mail.  Four of those are people from the old Blanchard Blast -- they thanked me for "having the shoots live on".  I only hope that I can put on a half as good event as J.R. used to.

March 7, 1999 - The site has been chosen. For those of you who went to the previous Boomershoot, this is a different location. I'll get a map up in a few weeks. This site will be better for several reasons; 1) Much better road to the site, 2) Better parking, 3) More room for more shooters -- we probably could have 100 shooters on line at a time (maybe someday), 4) We can see targets at the various ranges much better. The only drawback is that we are limited to about 700 yards. But since we are decreasing the size of the targets slightly and no one got the 800+ yard target last time, I don't think anyone will mind. Let me know if this is a big disappointment for you and we can probably find a special spot for you to set up. <grin>

March 2, 1999 - There are two locations being considered for the site.  The final decision will probably be made in a couple weeks. Things are on schedule.  All systems go. 

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Precision Rifle Seminar

Major Eugene Econ (retired -- see his credentials if desired) will be giving a seminar on Saturday (the 24th) at 1:00 PM, the day before the shoot.  This will primarily be on "wind doping" and range estimation.  There will be an additional $25 fee for this.  Bring an extra 50 rounds if you will be attending.

Here is a brief outline of the seminar from our instructor (slightly edited):

bulletFirst, I want to give a class on shooter / observer dialogue so that the two-man team may be more readily able to get on a target and get a higher hit probability for the same. I will be covering calling shots here as well as coaching techniques.
bulletSecond, I want to cover the use of a range card for the range. This is pretty much doctrinal stuff and I think I will make up some blank range cards on some card stock for the guys to do their own range cards. Involved with the range card will be range estimation as you can't do a range card without estimating the range itself. This range estimation will be somewhat difficult as some of the guys don't have a ranging reticle but I am toying with the idea of having them shoot using a known elevation -- say 500 at a target they think is 500 and then using the area where the bullet struck to be 500. They then use the range card to identify where the bullet struck and follow up with cutting the distances in half etc to fill in the range card itself. Also, I will go over milling and pacing off distances. I could use triangulation but this requires a damn good compass with mils in it and I have never seen this work for rifle stuff, only artillery.
bulletThird, I want to get involved in wind doping via the use of the wind flags we will set up.
bulletFourth, a practical exercise with two man teams of shooter/observer to give them all a chance to practice this more scientific approach to dealing with the range you have created. In addition to the range card, I will come up with some type of score card for them. This is so they can record their shots and then compare their performance with their judgments on winds and ranges. In this manner they will learn -- by doing the best they can do and then comparing their results with reality.

Also, I got this email on April 19, 1999.  I am virtually certain these are .30 caliber bullets (.308 diameter).

I can make up some of my 185 and 190 grain VLD's if anyone wants to buy them. I prefer my 185's over the 190's but different strokes type of thing. The 185's are rebated boattail and a 10 ogive. Cuts a couple of minutes off the elevation at 600 yards from the 175 Sierras at least for my rifle. The 190's can take the 10 ogive or a ULD design which is a straight taper of about ten degrees or so. Prices for each are $19.00 per hundred. I will make up seven hundred of the 185's and about four hundred of the 190's this week and bring them.

The After Action Review of the Clinic is most instructive.

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Sport Shirts?

It has been suggested that it would be cool to have some shirts made up.  One of the participants (Jim, there are only three attending -- you figure out which one) suggested a sport shirt with artwork and a "cheesy slogan".  Sounds good to me.  I suggested a mushroom cloud, he suggested "PPS Boomershoot 1999 - Thar She Blows!"  Other suggestions include:

bulletGrassy Knoll, 1999.  (from Jerry)
bulletThis is NOT your father's Turkey Shoot! (from Jerry)
bulletAction Shooting for those who do not play well with other children.  (from Jerry)
bulletBang BANG! (from Jerry)
bulletNow, THAT'S a KaBOOM! (from Jerry)
bulletDanger: eXtreme range. (from Jerry)
bulletGeek Hi-Power. (from Jerry)
bulletIf it blows up, they will come. (from Joe)
bulletAnd you thought black rifles were politically incorrect! (from Joe)
bulletBoomershooting -- It's a BLAST! (from Joe)
bulletPPS Boomershoot -- A REAL blast! (from Joe)
bulletReach out and blow something up. (from Joe)
bulletWhen it ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY has to be blown up! (from Jon)
bulletA picture of a toddler with a stick of dynamite in his mouth, with the words "Baby Boomer" underneath. (from Jim B.)

Any more suggestions?  The original suggestion was for high quality "Sport Shirts".  These would be in the $30.00 range rather than T-shirts which would be more reasonable.  But finding good custom made T-shirts in limited quantities is an unknown.  There is a sport shirt company that will do a good job for us.  Comments?  Would you buy one?

Due to time and money constraints there won't be any shirts this time.  Maybe next time.

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Email: Joe Huffman
Last updated: February 06, 2006