Wednesday, May 14, 2008

It Does WHAT?

Above The Groucho Line
Mike McCarter ("Mac") competed in a "Plastic Gun" match in Idaho last month. As ARPC Executive Officer, when he saw an innovative new IPSC-type target in the Vendor Tent, he couldn't resist the temptation. He bought it.

This is the guy who brought the first Texas Star target to the Columbia-Cascade Section (CCS -- Oregon) a few years ago.

Mac, being Mac, couldn't resist the temptation to premier the new target in a highly restrictive, challenging stage design, either, as you can see from the accompanying video.

The Groucho Line

The thing is, we've got a video of a stage with two main elements:
  1. You can shoot the majority of the targets from the side curtains (ala "The Wizard of Oz"), or you can shoot them from ...
  2. The Barrel. "I once shot an elephant in my pajamas. God only knows how he got in my pajamas".
Why would you engage the targets from the barrel? Well, it's the only way to save the stage-time which would otherwise be spent moving from one side of the stage to the other. "Time spent on movement is time lost'".

Why would you NOT engage the targets from the barrel? It's impossible to push your body into the barrel unless you're tall, lean, agile, and can point-shoot because HEY! It's hard to acquire the target, and achieve sight alignment, when you're cramped in this confining environment.

Yes, the position not only sucks, competitively, but it is awkward and undignified. Still, a small percentage of the competitors CAN manage to successfully engage all of the targets through the barrel and (arguably) save some stage-time by doing so.

Still, it makes you look like Winnie the Pooh, cramming himself into a small hole in the hillside, just to grab a jar of "hunny".

Below The Groucho Line:
I don't know what would be an appropriate name to assign to the target array. I know the names that The Squad used, but they are not appropriate in a Family Blog.

Those of you who competed in this match ... heck, anyone who has watched the video ... are invited to suggest a name for it.

For now, we are merely calling it "The Idaho Bobber".

You can download the full-fidelity 10mB version at Jerry the Geek's Video Shooting Gallery, or you can access the YOU TUBE URL here, or you can watch it here:

I don't know what to call it, but I know what it looked like at the match.

I've got a quarter to award the person who suggests the best name ... see me at the next match.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


You will recall that yesterday I posted a video which included a mere few seconds of Jan (pronounced "Yawn") shooting the "I Love Steel!" stage.

My camera had failed me (details not important here) and I was disappointed because this young competitor had specifically asked me to film his performance on this challenging and fun stage.

Fortunately, reader (and squad member) Mitch was also filming, unknown to me. In subsequent correspondence, I mentioned my disappointment to Mitch. He graciously edited and uploaded his "YAWN" video to YouTube, and I am grateful to him for providing the opportunity to make good my promise.

Jan did an excellent job on the final Texas Star target ... much better than I did the first time I attempted to drop all five plates on the rotating platform. He remembered the advice given him: "Always shoot the Top Plate" and never lost track of this goal.

Congratulations, Jan, and all the other New Shooters who successfully completed their Certification Match.

Monday, May 12, 2008

ARPC May, 2008: I Love Steel

After an extended period of not-shooting-many-matches, I think I'm getting back into the swing of things. I'm way out of practice, but assuming I can get the minor problems with my XL650 (decapping die 'broken') fixed soon I'll be shooting at least 3 times a month in the near future. Unfortunately, SWMBO is still fighting the "Walking Pneumonia" which has plagued her for the past month, so while it's fun to shoot the matches, it's not as much fun to attend without her.

This match, the March, 2008 Albany Rifle & Pistol Club match, was a gas!

The weather was just about perfect ... warm (60+ degrees) but overcast, no wind, no rain.

We had 86 competitors turn out, which was expected because MD Mac had broadcast a 'local' alert that it would be an exceptional club match. And it was. I'll be blogging about this match for a couple of days, time permitting, and providing some video as well.

Just for a teaser, here's a video which Squad Member Mitch posted on You Tube this week.


I was especially interested in this match because most of the 13 students we hosted at the Certification Class last weekend would be competing, as well as some of the OSU Pistol Club members who have been turned on to IPSC competition by Mac (Mike McCarter, USPSA Junior Coordinator). We are all glad to see so many new shooters, and are determined to see that they have a safe yet rewarding Certification Match.

(FYI: Match Results are available here.)

It's difficult to demonstrate the full flavor of a single club match in one article, without making it too long and eventually too boring. So for now, we'll focus on the single most exciting stage of the match:

Stage 6: I Love Steel
Two Texas Star targets, seven other steel targets (Pepper Poppers and U.S. Poppers, mixed), and two cardboard IPSC targets are combined to test accuracy, reward hits with falling targets, and include some Cardboard which (in real life) are easy to forget because they blend in with the cardboard-brown background of the berm.

This was our last stage, and in many ways it was the most challenging because it forced the competitor to shoot accurately yet quickly.

How did I do? Not so well; I ended up 35th out of 86 competitors, and I felt that I was lucky to do that well. I definately need to practice.

In fact, while we were leaving the range at the end of the match, I caught up with one of the Certification Shooters, Jan (pronounced "Yawn".)

"Well, Yawn, what do you think?" I asked.

Jan didn't slow down his trudging, but turned to me and said: "What do I think? I think this IPSC shooting is a gas. And I think I need to practice!"

Well, Yawn, you've been hooked. And you think exactly that which you should think.

Welcome to the USPSA.
This video can be downloaded (15MB) here. All videos from this match can be downloaded here. All still photos and all available videos from this match can be downloaded here.

The evolution from camera to website may take a while. I'm lazy.

You Tube is "down for maintenance" right now, so we'll show the Blogspot version.

UPDATE: Tuesday, May 13, 2008

The YouTube version of the video is now available here.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

CCS 2008 (May) news

News from the Columbia Cascade Section (Oregon, NW Corner)

What’s New:

  • The points standings thru April are on the website at

  • Look for a call to a work party soon to build props for the AREA 1 match. If you can spare a couple of hours on a weekend it will be a great help.
  • Dundee will not have a match in June due to the conflict with the AREA 1/CCS Championships
  • Area 1 is filling fast. The only slots left available are Friday (26th) all day. If you are not signed up yet, have a special need and can’t shoot all day Friday, email Chuck Anderson []. The 2008 Area 1 and Columbia Cascade Section combined match will be at Tri-County June 26-29. This match is the culmination of the CCS 2007-2008 points series. More details at
  • On September 26, 27, 28th, the COSSA Practical Shooters in Bend will host a clinic given by Todd Jarrett. It will consist of two days of clinics and critiques followed by his shooting the Bend September IPSC match with the group as a squad. They will be moving the IPSC match for September to the 28th from the normal third Saturday. The course fee is $500. Arrangements have been made for group rates on lodging, etc. If anyone is interested, please contact Mitch Mora at 541-480-0716. There is additional information and a registration form on the COSSA website at Click on COSSA Practical Shooters and then click on Training for details. The class minimum is 10 with a maximum of around 15. They have 8 firm commitments so if you are interested, time is of the essence.
  • The US Steel Shoot Regional Match will be at Albany. The match will be September 27 and 28. Additional information to come at

Other News:


Note any of the classes below may be cancelled if a conflict with a major event occurs.

The new Safety Manual is posted on the website. Look under CCS Business.

  • The first Saturday of each month at TCGC is the certification course which meets the CCS requirement for training as well as the TCGC requirement for members to shoot unaccompanied in the pistol pits. Next class is May 3rd. Registration for the class is handled by Mary Renfrow

Upcoming events:

May 3 DRRC USPSA Training Match

May 4 Man of Steel at TCGC

May 10 Albany Regular USPSA Match

May 11 Mother’s Day

May 11 Albany Multi-gun

May 17 Bend Classifier Match

May 18 TCGC Regular USPSA Match

May 24 Dundee USPSA Points Match

May 31 Oregon Single Stack Championship

Columbia-Cascade Section Information Officer.

"If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane"