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Thread: Camp Perry New Shooter Advice

  1. #1
    Boolit Man
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    Camp Perry New Shooter Advice

    Greetings and Happy New Year!

    For the last several years, I have been doing very well at my local club's CMP matches and have been having a lot of fun doing it. It's been a lifelong dream of mine to shoot with the best at Camp Perry and find out where I stack up. I tend to be an overly practical man and between the cost of quality equipment and the travel expenses, it's been a dream I could put off and ignore for most of my life. However one of the first times, I held my newborn daughter, it occurred to me that one day I would have to tell her to go after what she dreams about. Those words would sound rather hollow if I don't chase down one of my own just to see what it feels like. After a talk with my understanding and supportive wife, we decided to take our family vacation this year to Camp Perry. This July I will be shooting with my wife and 2 year old girl cheering me on.

    I however lack a local source of information on what to expect at Camp Perry these days - the last time my club sent members down to Perry was some time in the mid 60's and I have a funny feeling it's changed a bit. I think its safe to assume that at least a few members here have some experience recently at the National Matches. Would anyone care to help a new shooter out so he at least knows what to expect and does not stick out as a fool?






    Travel Concerns:


    Where would you recommend staying in the area? What would be a good balance between close to Camp Perry and also near other things so the wife and little one can do other things for a couple days while we are out there? Cost and child safety / friendliness are also concerns for us.


    Since we up in North West Wisconsin, our likely travel route will take us trough Illinois and perhaps even Chicago. What special travel concerns will we have crossing a state and city that is decidedly unfriendly to legally owned semi automatic rifles?


    What other things near CP are worth visiting?


    Shooting Concerns:


    It is my understanding that the match uses target pits and all shooters are expected to also act as target setters. Having never worked in a target pit before I would like to get some practice before the big event. Do any ranges in Minnesota or Wisconsin use this system?


    What is your process like for making match loads in the .223? What are you using for bullet weights for the different distances? Any recommended powders for the 600 yard work? I will be using a Compass Lake made AR with a 1 in 8 Douglas barrel.


    What is the best value in shooting jackets that are legal for Hi-Power?

    While we are at it, what's the best value in match grade .223 dies, and bullets?




    As things get closer, I will likely be adding more questions and concerns. Thank you for reading this rather long post, also thanks in advance for any council and advice that you have to offer.

    .455

  2. #2
    Boolit Master


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    Make sure the match is there I remember an article on it being moved elsewhere.

  3. #3
    Boolit Man
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    Small bore has been offsite for a couple of years now, and i think NRA High-power is moving. However Service Rifle matches are still at Camp Perry.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

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    There are Hutments ( Have been recently rebuilt) Modules, and a nice convention center Hotel right on base available while your there. Theres a very nice beach there on the Shore of Lake Erie. Just down ST RT 163 east is Port Clinton and resturaunts a couple Ferries out to islands and some other attractions. Not real far but a drive is Cedar Point. There are some tourrist shops and other things also. For convienience arrive a day early to pick up Packet, get settle read over packet and if need find someone to explain it. The Nationals run at a brisk pace, and you are on a diffrent relay,firing point and diffrent range every day. Not being where you should can result in disqualification. Go to stat office or NRA building and have your packet and everything explained to you. CMP week is Presidents National individual trophy ( leg Match) Rattle Battle, whistler Boy ( Juniors match)Then theres the New matches Garand Carbine ANd some others. Then theres commercial row with all the venders. The arcade, There is a church and movie theater on base also. CMP north is also located on base at Camp Perry

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    I never shot a Camp Perry but I did shoot at Washtenaw in Michigan for a while. I shot an M1 Garand there for one season around 20yrs ago.

    The jacket I used was a Champions Choice cordura shooting jacket. http://www.champchoice.com/store/Mai...yBody&c=SACONR Cheaper than leather and a bit cooler.

    Most of the rest of the things you will need (support hand glove, shooting mat, stool, scorebook, spotting scope stand) can be acquired there as well.

    Pulling targets was actually pretty educational. I had the privilege of pulling targets for the man who went on to finish 3rd at Camp Perry that year. First, wear your safety glasses. If you get someone really good they can shoot out (shatter) the pin in the previous shots spotting disk. When your shooter takes his shot, you lower the target, record the score, insert the spotting disk pin in the hole, put the appropriate color pater over the previous shots hole, and raise the target.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    Your asking about dies and bullets, now is not the time to switch up before a match. If your doing well,just stay with what you are using.

  7. #7
    Boolit Man
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    JSH you make a good point and i agree with you. However in previous seasons i have been using my own M1 and hand loads, or a club issued AR with club issued ammunition. At this point my .223 loading experience is pretty close to nothing. I have a stockpile of LC brass, a case trimmer, and a set of Hornaday American dies.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    I used both Forster benchrest dies and RCBS competition. For the 200yd and 300yd rapid courses you will want your ammo to be full length resized for absolute reliable feeding. Some guys will treat their 200yd offhand and 600yd prone ammo differently (neck size, etc) but I just stuck with one loading regimen for all four stages.

    When I was shooting Sierra Matchkings (168gr for 30-06) were very common. Primers tended to be Federal Match.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master

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    Make sure that your NRA High Power classification does not expire before the end of the National Matches. If you do not have a classification you will be classified Master Unclassified and be shooting in the Master Class. If you don't want to be shooting as a Master this means that if you don't have the classification now you will need to enter enough Approved or Registered matches to fire at least 120 shots in order to become classified. This also means that the match directors have to submit their scores and that these scores have to be processed by the NRA before the deadline for entering the Nationals has passed. Don't ask me how I learned about this. At the time I learned about it they would NOT allow assigned classifications or classifications based on Temporary Score Books to the used for the Nationals. You had to have the classification card.

    Have fun. Shooting at Camp Perry is something you will remember for a very long time and may become a regularly scheduled event for you. Are there any members of your local club that have shot Perry recently. If there are, talk with them about their experiences.
    If you get your shots in the black, the 10s and Xs will take care of themselves.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master


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    The NRA rifle matches have been moved to Indiana but the CMP rifle matches are still at Camp Perry.
    The new huts on base are air conditioned with four beds and are $42.00 a night. You provide the linens pillows and covers. I would suggest a refrigerator and a Microwave if possible. Or at least a large cooler. Take a fold up table and an electrical extension cord. Many people grill outside the huts for the evening meal using charcoal or gas. To save money most people eat as much as possible at their huts buying their groceries from local stores. Latrines are near the huts, You will need to furnish all toiletries and towels except toilet paper. Take a pair of shower shoes.
    Port Clinton is a tourist area so there is no shortage of restaurants if you want to eat out. Also Port Clinton is the Walleye and Perch capital of Lake Erie. So if you are into fishing there are charters available. Port Clinton has a public beach (IIRC with a lifeguard). Perry has a small beach.
    About 40 miles east is Cedar Point an amusement park. It is known world-wide for its several roller coasters.
    As far as shooting you have commercial row on base. There is everything you could think of or desire available for the shooting sports. Vendors will include Springfield Armory, Armalite, Rock River, Champions Choice , Champions Shooters and many others.
    Most shooters buy their annual supply of powder ,primers and bullets there to avoid HAZMAT fees with shipping.Prices are usually as good as can be found. So take money and more money and credit cards.
    On base is also CMP headquarters so you can buy anything they have that is available and in stock. Take more money.
    I think the rifle ranges will have electronic targets this year so pit duty may not be necessary. They are working out the bugs with the electronic targets.
    On base is also one of the nicest air pistol and air rifle ranges in the US.(Gary Anderson) You can rent rifles or pistols or it is worth the time to walk through the lobby.
    Small Arms Firing School (SAFS) is almost a must. It is taught by the top shooters of the Army and Marines.
    I will let others walk you through the rifle loading ,I am a pistol shooter.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master RU shooter's Avatar
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    Lots of questions . I'll take on a few . Loads and bullet types . Most shooters will load a lighter 55-69 gr for the 2-300 yd stuff myself when I still shot HP used 69 gr smk and TAC powder . For the longer 600 yd target 75-80 gr match bullets rule the roost most all load them long and are single fed into the chamber . I used the 75 gr Amax and RE 15 and near max load .

    Know your elevation changes for your gun and load from 2-3-600 yds.

    Shooting jackets, I've had the leather fancy hot and sweaty shooting jackets I actually bought and used Dave Tubbs used coat from him about a year after I started into it . Some like them some like me don't . All it did for me was make me uncomfortable it in no way was going to make me shoot from master class to high master by just wearing it . For me anyways a plain usmc padded cloth coat worked every bit as well especially laying in the sun on a 90 degree day . Some I'm sure will disagree .

    Good luck , Tim
    If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck!

  12. #12
    Boolit Man
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    Thank you for all the help and advice so far. I have been hunting for other matches in my area to attend, and have some good options. The more that i can travel, set up, shoot, and pack up the better. Shooting small bore back in college it was pretty common to have a shooter forget to pack something or get intimidated by a new range and have the score take a dive. Also meeting more shooters from my area might give me a chance to try one of the team matches.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master



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    Don't forget the mosquito spray !!

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    How far NW are you in WI?
    There are Edit:600 yard ranges with "pits" just outside of La Crosse and Eau Claire WI.
    IIRC they are called the La Crosse rifle club and Eau Claire rifle club. Best to contact them directly to find out when they will be holding across the course matches on weekends in the summer. You might try contacting WIFORCE formerly the WRPA, if you are not already a member also. There are also Mosquito infested ranges at Red Wing Minn. and Wood county WI, Wood county has the added benefit of ticks and biting horse flies too.

    As for the shooting jacket I would try to borrow one or get the cheapest cloth ones you can until you can get one properly fitted to You at Perry, IMO Creedmore would be my choice. Good ones are not cheap so you want it to fit properly!

    Most folks use 77g matchkings or 75g Hornadys for 200 &300 yards with either Varget or Reloader 15. For 600 It gets pretty strange as folks use whatever they think gives them an advantage. Bergers, DRTs, ABCDs, Customs, Powel river labs ... .

    If you live far enough North I would recommend going through da UP der rather than going through the flatland. Mich. is much nicer than Chiraq any day. If you chose to go south fill you tank and relieve yourselves in Kenosha county before you cross in to Ill. If you have a Wi CCW you can keep your pistol near you But you can Not leave your vehicle with it! You will need to keep those nasty rifles out of anywhere they can be accessed by Anyone in the vehicle down there. In the unlikely event ther is not a traffic jam in Chiraq it is recommended that you keep up with traffic so as not to tick anyone off. Expect traffic jams 24/7 due to construction or whatever.

    If you want to get housing on base act Now! It books up fast. If you really want to take the whole family I would recommend getting a condo east of downtown Port Clinton, your wife will be much happier than in a hut and they cost less than staying in a hotel in town, are much more comfortable, have a kitchen(oddly nice to be able to eat in rather than always going out,plus easier to make your lunches), laundry area, much more user friendly and are often less $ than most folks think. But again act fast as many are pre-booked by the regulars at least a year in advance.

    There is a large amusment park East of Port Clinton, the Mon Ami restaurant/winery has fine dining, the usual "marts" etc. Best to contact AAA and the local chamber of commerce for more info.
    HWY 2 is your best friend for quick movement in the area.

    As for making a fool of ones self, Obey all Range commands and safety rules! Failure to do so can get you bounced off the base in a heartbeat!!! and they don't usually make exceptions!
    Other than that Most folks are friendly and helpful, so enjoy!

    Other things to bring: Good rain gear, shooting mat with rubber areas for elbows in prone position, spare bolt assembly, small allen wrench(for clearing primers stuck under trigger groups), anti fog for glasses, sunscreen, a good umbrella for use when Not on the firing line for rain and shine, food for lunch, plenty of water/Gatorade for match days, plenty of earplugs, Lots of $ or good plastic for commercial row(candy store for shooters, can be costly if you let it), some kind of cart to haul All of your gear.

    On the earplug note there is usually someone there that will make custom molded ear plugs. I find these to be much more comfortable for extended wear once you get used to them and they are more effective than the foam or cotton plugs IMO.

    Oh boy more later.
    Last edited by DCM; 01-08-2017 at 06:02 PM.
    "Don't worry what they think. In the end it is not between them and you, it is between you and God."

    Je suis Charlie!


    "The impossible just takes longer."

    "Don't let them beat you down with their inexperience."

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    link to CMP http://thecmp.org/
    "Don't worry what they think. In the end it is not between them and you, it is between you and God."

    Je suis Charlie!


    "The impossible just takes longer."

    "Don't let them beat you down with their inexperience."

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    I keep my boat at Marblehead just next door. I've fired a spring clinic there and the Garand Matches a few times. I've qualified there probably 5 times in the Guard. Never stayed on base except when qualifying for the Guard. I had a boat in a marina just down the road after all. Get your room booked. There are very few rooms available that week unless booked in advance. The base has RV parking as do other RV park marina combinations out the gate. You can't carry concealed on base IIRC or carry your rifle into the PX.

    Pulling targets is fun. No Gas Mask Relay like when I was a Marine. That showered you with dirt and crud. They will put you on a target with someone that know what is up.

    Bassetts Market is phenomenally good. It is on the east side of Port Clinton. They have food in small enough portions that two can eat but not waste it. Great wine and beer selection as well. Ice in Port Clinton is dirt cheap compared to Central Ohio. Lots of coolers get filled every weekend during the season. Gateway Restaurant is good. The Mexican joint downtown PC is execrable.

    As to Chicago, I would look seriously at the UP to the Mackinaw bridge to the LP of Michigan. Might be a few more miles, but what a trip. If you decide to chance it, no gun stickers in the vehicle. Or mail your guns to yourself insured. You pick them up at the post office with id. Legal as the day is long.

    PM me on both weekends. We can do a sunset sail. Same goes to any other board members. We can make a trip out on the lake. We don't drink underway. Once anchored or tied up to the dock we will have a few.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master
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    Likely want to bring or buy bottled water there, it seems to have odd flavor to us non-locals.

    DanishM1 has some good points about carrying on base that really never crossed my mind until now. You can carry an unloaded rifle slung over your shoulder around most of the base except the PX, theater and a few other buildings. just watch for signs.

    I believe CCW on base is not allowed, but never felt the need to find out one way or the other. With all of the wack jobs out there now I guess it wouldn't be the worst idea to keep a loaded mag of frangibles handy for the rifle over ones shoulder. :/

    You will need an open bolt indicator for the rifle, You want to purchase one that is specifically for the AR so it will not get jammed in there in the worst way. IIRC it must protrude in to the chamber, not just the port.
    "Don't worry what they think. In the end it is not between them and you, it is between you and God."

    Je suis Charlie!


    "The impossible just takes longer."

    "Don't let them beat you down with their inexperience."

  18. #18
    Boolit Man
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    Its a shame now that i have to work up loads for 200yds-300yds-600yds and violent crazies at unknown distances.

    I appreciate the heads up on water nothing worse than funny flavored water over a week in July.

    My heartfelt thanks to all of you who have taken the time to give me advice and share your experience with this.

  19. #19
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    Make your vacation a little better and avoid IL/ Chicago go around the top side and take the big bridge, the ride is slower/ longer but much less stressful. The YUppers would love to have ya. The other option is to go way around Chicago to the west, longer but a bit less traffic congestion. Go through Chicago/ IL. and you will sit there in traffic, pay Tolls and wish you were not there.
    FOR SALE BEESWAX, TAC 1, TAC X, LANOLIN, CARNAUBA WAX and more check out the link below
    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/foru...e-amp-products

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
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    Cedar Point definitely worth the drive, if you enjoy roller coasters. This year may be a bit early for you with a 2 year old.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check