Interesting rifle! I've assembled a few 15s and 10s, chambered in various cartridges from .223, to 8x51.
I hadn't heard of the AR-180. How about some close-ups of the action? It appears to be a 'lefty', with the charging handle on the left side.
The 7.62x39 had a brief period of high interest when Ruger came out with their "Ranch Rifle" chambered in 7.62x39. Unfortunately , that rifle never shot particularly well, and interest flagged thereafter. US interest was again raised when all the European milsurps entered the market: Particularly the AK-47 and the SKSs from Soviet Russia and China. US interest in the cartridge has flagged again a little in recent years, but it remains popular with those still shooting the milsurps.
Welcome codger! Glad to have you here! Things are a bit slow these days, but if you'll hang in, I think you'll be glad you did.
What are you most interested in, like reloading, hunting, fishing, etc.? Let me know, and I can point you to some threads that may be of interest to you. The search engine is 'useful', but somewhat limited.
Pleas don't hesitate to get in touch with me if you have any questions.
Since I will be hunting at sakorick's with my bow this year, I've had to do some prep work. "You" know me, there's gotta be some number crunching in that prep somehow.
First, since I hadn't even drawn my bow (Matthews Rebel Solo Cam), in a good 10 years, and the string and cable were at least 20 years old, I thought it prudent that the cable and string be replaced. Got that done at the local Sportsman's Warehouse. Also, I had 18 Easton Gamegetter XX75s that needed new fletching. Got that accomplished at the local archery shop. I thought the $3/arrow was reasonable. I also have 8 Beman 65/80s. Unfortunately, 'parts', (i e. nocks and outserts), for those arrows are scarce. I'll have to make do with the 5 that are in good repair. Nevertheless, I thought it prudent to buy half-a-dozen new (graphite) arrows. $12 each with nocks, fletching, and outserts. The new-fangled arrows are pretty spiffy. Finally, I bought s new sight. Not sure I like it yet. While I do shoot a compound (due to a a bad spur on my acromium (shoulder)), I shoot it as 'bare' as I can. I REALLY don't like a lot of 'stuff' hanging off my bow. I learned to shoot 'instinctive' when I was 10, and that has always worked better for me. You shouldn't be 'thinking' about 'stuff' when you're shooting - rifle or bow. I'm using the the new sight with just one pin. That's the way I like "it". I'll adjust for range and windage based on my knowledge of my bow.
So, with new string and cable and new, as well as refurbished, 'old', arrows, I knew there was plenty of tweaking that would be required. First thing was getting the draw weight set. 20 years ago I shot at 68 lb draw weight. With my shoulder spur and age, I adjusted the draw weight to 55 lb. I can draw that without 'grunting'.
Next was getting the sight 'on'. For Alaska hunting, I set the pin to be 'on' at 40yd. Moose and caribou are big targets, AND, they're not nearly as jumpy as Missouri whitetails. Missouri whitetails are smaller targets AND prone to 'string jump'. Therefore, I'm setting the one pin for 'on' at 20yd. It took some fiddling, but everything was dialed in pretty good before too long.
I'd been watching a bunch of YouTube videos, and it seemed like everyone was shooting 'heavy' arrows. Heavy points (125 grains or heavier), at least. Years ago. When I was hunting regularly with a bow, I did a bunch of chronograph work. The conclusion I drew was very simple: The heavier the arrow, the slower it goes. PERIOD. There's nothing complicated about 'it'. I shot, and shoot, the lightest broadheads I can buy that meet the legal requirements. I wondered what the current tendency to heavy was about? Talking with the local shop owners about it suggested that the belief was that heavier arrows penetrated, especially bone, better. Hmm... Sounded 'good on paper', but inconsistent with my personal experience. Having shot moose, whitetail deer, blacktail deer, dall sheep, and black bear, ALL WITH COMPLETE PASSTHROUGHS, I was a bit skeptical about the NEED for heavy arrows for 'penetration'. Furthermore, in MOST of the YouTube videos I watched, penetration was VERY POOR! Often much less than half the arrow! Hmm... I'd have to look into this further.
I dug out me CED Millennium Infra Red chronograph, and got it set up in my basement . (It's cold outside in Alaska right now.) After some stutter steps, I shot all my arrow types with head weights from 65 to 145 grains. From that, I developed a model of arrow speed as a function of arrow weight. Same result as 30 years ago: The heavier the arrow the slower it goes. LINEARLY, AND VERY PREDICTABLY. BUT.. That's not the whole story. In fact, most archery hunters know that it isn't kinetic energy that kills in arrows - it's 'penetration'. Here's the rub: Most everyone was equating arrow KE with penetration. I was surprised. Furthermore, my arrows with the lightest legal heads, had the highest KE! So why on earth would you shoot heavy broadheads/arrows?
So, as I have pointed out 'forever' here at THL with respect to bullet penetration, MOMENTUM is what determines penetration, NOT KE! So I calculated the momentum figures of the heaviest and the lightest arrows I shot through the chronograph. Hmm... Same figure. Then the lightbulb went on. There is a LAW of physics called The Law of Conservation of Momentum. Basically, in the "system" that the bow represents, every arrow, regardless of mass (weight) will get the same momentum from the bow. I calculated the momentum for all the other arrow weights: They were identical. Had to be.
THEREFORE... Shooting heavier arrows in order to increase penetration is wrong-thinking. If you want to increase momentum (penetration) in a given bow, you have to increase the momentum of the 'system'. The only way to do that with a compound bow is to increase its draw weight. Arrow weight has NOTHING to do with it. Can't do it with a recurve/long bow. What you see is what you get. (There are minor tweaks with string length and draw length, but minor is the operative word.)
Finally, in the context of 'tweaking'/arrow speed/arrow spine/precision, I needed to calculate the balance of the arrows. Just like in bullets, and all projectiles, they travel less erratically if more than 50% of the weight is forward of the center of form. In arrows, this is called "Front of Center %", or FoC. It has been determined by the "experts" that in hunting arrows, an FoC of 10 - 15% is "best". For target shooters, an FoC of about 5% is 'best'. I understand the rationale, and agree - sort of. Anyway, I calculated the FoC of all my arrow types, and found that the new ones had an FoC of 12% with my 82-grain, 4-blade, Wasp broadheads. Works for me.
Now... ALL OF THAT SAID... I have almost NO confidence that I will even SEE a shootable deer this year, let alone get a decent shot at one. You'll be the second to know!
As some may recall, I have been seeking Accubond bullets in various calibers for some two years. Primarily 225-grain bullets in .338, but also AB bullets of any weight in 6.5mm and recently, .270. I have also had on "notify me when back in stock" status a .257 caliber bullet: The 60-grain flat point from Hornady, #2510. An excellent bullet for the .25-20. Two years waiting on that!
Well, as you suspected, I got notified that the .2510s were in at a place in Texas. Got right on it, and ordered some. However, I was told "We can't send ammunition through the mail." IT'S NOT AMMUNITION YOU BLEEPING MORONS!" I expect this stupidity from Marxist idiots, but not from a gun store. IN TEXAS! AND... They wanted to charge me SIXTY DOLLARS to ship it to me in Alaska! (UPS of course.) And that was after having to pay $45/100 for them. I politely (yes, actually), declined their 'offer'.
It occurred to me that if one place had received them from Hornady, maybe somewhere else had too. Voila', I found them for $24/100, and $10 shipping. I ordered a couple of hundred. Ha! Fie on you Texas gun store.
Next, I went to Nosler's site to renew my "notify me when back in stock" on the .338 caliber, 225-grain, Accubonds. Still not in stock. Neither the .270 ABs. But... They did have IN STOCK 6.5mm, 140-grain, ABs! FOR $25/50! Unheard of price, especially direct from Nosler! (They are 'blemished' though. ) I got four boxes of those!
Fortunately, I found some 130-grain, .270 cal, ABs at another site a few days ago. I also got, (from an auction site), some 60-grain Partitions in .22 caliber to use in the .22-250.
So, with the exception of .338, I am set for reloading cartridges for the rifles Caitlin and I will be hunting with this year.
I guess all things come to those that wait. Except .338 Accubonds.
All of Alain's rifles were fitted with supressors. Since getting a supressor in the US is 'difficult', no suppressors came with any of his rifles. Instead, they were all fitted with muzzle brakes. I don't like muzzle brakes. I don't like what they do - make muzzle blast uncomfortably loud for the shooter and those nearby, AND, to my eye, they're ugly. Sauer 90s come with muzzle brakes standard. The 90 I have in .338 Win Mag has one, and so does the .270. So I decided to make a thread protector for the .270.
As usual, the camera exacerbates microscopic lines in metal. It looks better than the picture looks. One thing I don't like about thread protectors is that with the barrel heating up and expanding and contracting, they can get stuck on. In order to combat that the DoD puts "compression washers" between the flash supressors on M14s (AR-15s) and the shoulder of the threaded muzzle. I decided to just put an O-ring. I also milled a couple of flats in it so I can take a wrench to it if I need to.
I'm going to make one for the .338 next. Then work my way through all of Alain's rifles.
I 'colored' it in the kiln - 20 minutes at 650F - but I think I'm going to use some Birchwood Casey bluing to try and darken it a bit more.
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I thought about hardening it, but I recently bought a pair of scope rings, (for the Sauer 90 .270), and to my surprise, they mentioned the steel they used to make it: 12L14. That surprised me for two reasons: 1) 12L14 is 'free machining' steel, meaning that it has lead in it to facilitate machining, and 2) since I have some 12L14, I know from personal experience how 'soft' it is. (It does machine very nicely.) Of course a pair of scope rings should never see the use a reloading die expander ball will see, but... as I have said many times, I'm not a production shop, and my dies don't see in my lifetime, the use 'commercial' dies see in a week. So, the short answer is "no", to both hardening and buying a 'factory' backup. If I break this one I'll just talk like a sailor for a minite and make another one.
I have considered making a custom, two-stage 'reamer' to facilitate fabricating these things. (I'd still drill the initial 1/16" hole with a separate bit.) That might be fun if I do it before I need it.
PS - This expander is made of cold rolled 1018, which is harder than 12L14. Also, I forgot to mention that hardening, especially in a threaded piece as small as this, can result in the threads being sufficiently distorted that they wont work. Machine shops have means at their disposal that prevent that distortion, that I don't.