Gary's Gun Notes #55

April has come and gone so fast, I hardly realized it was here. It has been a tumultuous time in our shop with 2 of my best guys leaving in the last few months and trying to get new guys fully trained to fill in. Both left due to personal problems with family so I couldn't say anything but it sure left me hanging. My new guys are just about to where I want them to be but if your order is a bit late, just hang in there. We are on time with most but a few are going to be a bit later than I had expected.

More price hikes in the works on reloading supplies and ammunition. But we knew they were coming and if nothing else we had a chance to stock up somewhat. Remington announced another price hike in the last month as did ATK Industries. This is the holding company that owns Federal, Speer, CCI and a couple of others. Big price hikes came from them too. 

These price increases will continue for the foreseeable future. My advice would be the same as it was last month and the month before that..stock up as best you can. The prices aren't going to go down. China is buying up everything they can get their hands on and are in the middle of a huge industrial revolution that I don't see slowing down for a long while, if ever. 

Some good new is cropping up in the firearms industry though with several companies releasing guns and accessories that they either announced at the SHOT SHOW or leaked out news in the months since. 

As I mentioned a while back, Smith & Wesson is getting into the long gun market in a big way. They have released their double barrel shotguns and they are some really classy doubles, both over & unders and side by sides. They have also just released a few of their brand new I-Bolt rifle. It is being manufactured at their Springfield Mass. plant. This in itself is a bit of a new thing for S&W. Their last efforts at a long gun line were rifles and shotguns made by Howa in Japan for them. These were excellent guns and very attractive rifles and shotguns. Howa has long been known for making some of the most striking long guns on the market. They build shotguns and rifles for Browning and have built them for Mossberg and S&W.

The few I-Bolt rifles that are out are in the hands of gun writers and they hope to release a batch to the public before the next hunting season. The first ones will be chambered in the 3 most common calibers, 25-06, 270 and 30-06. The new rifle incorporates a whole new bolt design and new trigger set up. The triggers are designed in conjunction with Timney Triggers. You can adjust the triggers from 3 to 6 pounds without removing the barreled action from the stock. 

As most of you know by now S&W bought out Thompson Center a short while back and TC is building the match grade barrels for S&W's new I-Bolt rifles. S&W will incorporate a crown very similar to our own Deep Dish Crown for added accuracy.

On another front Savage is now making their match grade actions available to custom gunsmiths. The Savage rifles have always been known for extreme accuracy if not for extremely good looks. Now they make this available to the custom gun guys for special rifles and in both right hand and left hand actions. 

The college shootings in the last week or so in Virginia have again brought gun control into the worlds headlines, with every liberal mouth saying the same things that they always have. These anti gun slogans seem to be falling on deaf ears though, as Americans do not want more gun control. Most believe that if there had been guns on the campus, legally carried by CCW holders, the chances of 32 people dying would have been much slimmer. 

The liberal crowd are simmering and sputtering trying to find someone to blame for this rather than simply putting the blame on the shooter, an evil insane young man. They want to blame everything but the one place the blame should lie, on the shoulders of the shooter, and in a lesser degree, on the shoulders of the college hierarchy who wouldn't let firearms exist on the campus, making it another Gun Free Zone. 

I think personally that we will continue to hear the diatribe from the anti gun crowd but don't really believe we will see any more gun bills passed. I am sure they will try but I just don't believe they can pass more of them. 

On the brighter side our newest calibers and guns are doing well with quite a few orders and inquiries. We still don't have the bullet moulds for our new 610 GNR and 586 GNR rifles. I have the prototype guns built on the super strong Ruger #1 action but am holding off beginning the testing sessions until we get the hard cast bullets in here. The jacketed bullets in .620 and in .585 calibers are 750 to 900 grain solids and soft points and these are simply too heavy for our new cartridges. The moulds will cast a hard cast 450 and 550 grain bullets. These will be easier on the guns and on the shooters and make these two new cartridges viable calibers for the North American hunter. 

We have taken quite a few orders for guns in the new 429 GNR and the 256 GNR. The 429 is sort of a 44 magnum magnum. It is simply a 454 case necked down to 44. The case holds from 8 to 11 grains more powder than the standard 44 mag so it should fill a niche easily. We are rechambering Rugers heavy duty Redhawk and the Super Redhawk and also building a whole new series of single action revolvers in this caliber.

The new 256 GNR is also taking off very well. It is a 357 maximum necked to 25 caliber. 75 and 80 grain bullets at 2700 to 2800 fps are my goal out of a revolver with an 8 inch barrel and a tight barrel/cylinder gap. We are building this new revolver series on the Ruger 357 Maximum revolver that is furnished by the customer. It is also being chambered in the G-2 and Encore barrels. 

I haven't received the dies for the 256 GNR or the 429 GNR yet but by the time the guns are finished the dies will be here. The same holds true for the 586 GNR and for the 610 GNR. 

Our 455 GNR is doing very well. This one is the 475 Linebaugh case necked down to 45 with our typical short neck and sharp shoulder. We have shipped several guns in this one and dies are available and Sean Harper has all the loading data for this new cartridge. 

Our Beast series of large caliber rifles is doing very well also. The new June 2007 GUNS magazine has one of our new Beast rifles featured as the playmate of the month and we are in the process of building 4 or 5 at this time. We test fired one this afternoon in the new 375 Ruger cartridge and it shot very well. Open sights at 25 yards, it put 8 rounds in one ragged hole with 2 people doing the shooting. This one is going to be a good one. 

Not all the news is bad these days. We have some black clouds out there on the horizon but there is quite a bit of sunshine too. Hang in there. 



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Reeder Custom Guns
2601 E. 7th Ave.
Flagstaff, AZ 86004

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