Range Report for 3 June 17- New Guns, Big Fun

After a fruitful trip to the Washington Arms Collector’s show and a surprise early birthday present at Ben’s Loans Linda and I stopped in at Champion Arms for a bit of recreational shooting. Since it was dinner time we were able to walk in and get a lane with no wait- there’s a Pro Tip there. Linda had her ‘new’ Kahr E9 and Vz70, and I trotted out the Taurus m905 9mm revolver and the brand-new-to-me Para Ordinance LDA .45 Carry.  I cover this gun at some length here-LDA .45 Carry.

We shot the LDA .45 first, and I instantly learned not to ride the safety with my thumb the way I usually do with a 1911. Ouch. Like other short 1911s recoil isn’t bad, and while there is significant muzzle flip the gun comes back on target very quickly. Linda and I both enjoyed shooting it a great deal and had pretty good results. We were shooting Freedom Munitions 230gr. CPHP and found these hit a couple of inches low at 7 yards. This was easily compensated for. The novel trigger required almost no adaptation-time, and I was able to produce these as my first and last rapid-fire targets at that range-

The gun performed flawlessly- I think this gun has a bright future as an EDC, and you can expect to see it frequently in future range reports.

We had picked up two boxes of PMC Bronze 115gr. FMC 9x19mm at the gun show, and shooting these through the Taurus showed they were quite a bit milder than the supposedly mid-range hand-loads I took on our last expedition. I will be making a significant adjustment to that load…

The Taurus m905 is pretty snappy, even with 9mm range-loads. It’s an all-steel gun but recoil is comparable to an alloy-frame .38 Special with +P loads. I have reinstalled the boot-grip since the target grip failed, and I ran a few cylinders, strong, weak and two-hand and called it good. Here’s the results of two cylinders full rapid-fired at seven yards-


I need more practice with this gun, and may make a change to the front sight. Despite the rep of Taurus revolvers the trigger is light and smooth. I plan on working up some revolver-specific light loads so that Linda can shoot this gun as well. I’m experimenting with shortening .38 Special cases and loading them with 9mm 115gr. FMC bullets. I use the .38 shell-holder and the 9mm dies. This allows me to dispense with the ‘star-clips’ needed to eject 9x19mm cases, and I cannot accidentally load them into a semi-auto that they would be too light to function in. Since any new cartridge needs a name I call this .355-19R (.355 diameter bullet, 19mm case length, Revolver.) because calling it 9mm Rimmed would be too easy.

The Kahr was next up, and while I love the ergonomics, trigger and soft-recoiling mechanism I am finding that I really don’t like the dot-over-bar sights. They are reasonably quick to acquire but rather imprecise. Other than that it’s a very pleasant gun to shoot and completely reliable. 7 yards, rapid-fire-

Finally the Vz70- though the Kahr is her first love Linda found this gun the most pleasant to shoot. Not surprising; it’s the same size and weight as the Kahr but is chambered for .32 ACP. I do need to apply some color to the front-sight to make it easier to pick up, but the double-action trigger is quite smooth (though a bit heavy) and the single-action trigger is light and crisp with very little over travel.

The only issue experienced with this gun was that it failed to lock the slide back after the last round in the magazine, though it would lock back every time when the slide was operated manually with an empty magazine. We were firing this gun with Fiochi 73gr. FMC which has a rep for being a bit wimpy, so perhaps that is the culprit. We’ll try a different brand next time and see what happens. 7 Yards, RF-

Not an impressive group; perhaps practice and a more visible front sight will help this.

We had a terrific day together, and the range trip was a nice way to finish things up.

Michael Tinker Pearce, 3 June 17

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