The USPSA Multi-Gun Nationals &
The Saiga in Competition


Shooting USA - The USPSA Multi-Gun Nationals
30-07-1This time it's running and gunning with rifle, pistol, and shotgun in the desert just off the Vegas Strip. It's the USPSA Multi-gun Nationals with titles for the best  in simulated combat. The scoring will decide the match on speed and accuracy.

The USPSA Multi-gun national is one of the longest running National Championships boasting a track record of over twenty years, Michael Plaxco was the first national champion in the only division contested, the Open class. Back then, the sport was called 3-gun and under the IPSC rules only one gun, pistol, rifle, or shotgun, could be used on any one course of fire.

30-07-2Recently the USPSA introduced Multi-gun rules, allowing for any combination of the three guns to be used on a stage. The rules continue to evolve to accommodate new technology and what today’s competitors want to shoot.



30-07-6The location for the Nationals is the Desert Sportsmen’s Team ranges just south of the picturesque red rocks national park, a fitting back-drop for the fast paced sport of multi-gun, a sport that has always evolved at the speed of firearms technology and this year that evolution continues. The USPSA Multi-gun Nationals brought new firearms and new sighting choices, all based on the evolution in real-world combat uses.

30-07-4USPSA President Michael Voigt explained the biggest change, to allow red dot optics on Limited Division rifles, “One of our big changes this year is we are allowing the red dot sights, the different brands in that, as long as its non-magnified, to be in the same divisions as the iron sighted rifles. And that’s just huge, because the reality these days is that a normal gun is a flat topped AR or FN type gun, with the iron sights as back up sights. So having the optic on there as a primary sight is today’s reality in the field.”

In competition, when the score will be determined on speed and accuracy, limited rifle shooters will now be both more accurate and faster to acquire targets.


Related Links


Phil Strader Shooting Tac-Optics


Michael Voigt Shooting Open Division



Safariland ELS System for Multi-Gun

30-07-7Safariland has a new quick change competition belt system, the ELS. That’s Equipment Locking System. The holes in the outer belt accept ELS receiver plates, mounted at any angle you could want. Then the ELS locking fork mounts to your holster, mag carrier, or shot-shell caddy. So you can snap off and snap on whatever accessories you need for the course of fire you’re about to shoot. The Safariland ELS system starts at $150 with an initial supply of plates and forks. For mounting. 

More info from Safariland 


Leatherman MUT – Military Utility Tool

30-07-8The Leatherman MUT is as useful as any other Leatherman multi-tool for everyday tasks, but it has been designed with features specific to maintaining and servicing your AR rifle. 

The USAMU’s SFC Aaron Hampton consulted in the development of the MUT. He says, “What I wanted is a tool that would allow you to perform all of your utility tasks and then assist you in maintaining your weapon system. I want it to be free of gimmicks, and be a hard use tool that a soldier can take into combat, and truly rely on.”

The key feature to rely on is the bolt override tool at the base of the MUT.  Essentially it’s a hook to clear the action when a double feed has jammed the bolt and the charging handle.

The Leatherman MUT is just under $160, suggested retail. 

More Info from Leatherman


Sighting In with Shooting USA - The Saiga in Competition

SI30-07-2We're sighting in on the Russian designed, magazine fed, shotgun, and it's role in the open division of Multi-gun competition. It can be fast on the course of fire, but only after extensive re-work to make the Russian import reliable.

Taran Butler is the highest ranked Open Division competitor to be campaigning a Saiga in competition.  He’s made some improvements of his own to increase his speed on stages of fire. But so far he has not claimed a National Title.

SI30-07-3There is clearly a divide among the top Open Division competitors on the magazine fed shotgun, and it is worth noting that no one has yet won a USPSA National Title using one. But in the short time that the Saiga has been seen in competition, those who think it’s an advantage have pushed the capabilities far beyond the original design.

In the years ahead, it may become the solution that will replace the tube fed auto shotgun and speed-loaders, but not this year.


History’s Guns – The M-14

SI30-07-5The story of a famous service rifle, a design that's still in service, but it had a short primary service life when it was expected to perform too many roles for the infantry. When the Army adopted the M-14 it was intended to replace four firearms in warfare—the M1 Garand, M1 Carbine, the M3 Grease Gun, and the BAR.




That proved to be too much to expect of one weapon. So while the M-14 is back on the battlefields of Afghanistan, it is also one of History's guns.



More Improvements for the M&P 40 Limited Gun

SI30-07-7John’s has been modifying his M & P 40 Pro Series to get competitive in the Limited division of USPSA. It started with the Apex Tactical competition action kit that got the trigger down under 3 pounds.






Then he upgraded the guide rod and recoil spring with the help of speed shooter specialties. He also added one of their mag wells and some base plates for the magazines from Taylor freelance.




Storm Lake Barrel

Now it’s time to tighten up the groups a bit and with a Storm Lake replacement barrel. This is match grade and machined from 416R stainless, then hardened to 40-42 HRC for durability. It has specially cut riffling that will  accept either jacketed or lead bullets. It’s a simple drop in fit.  Retail $160.

Storm Lake Website


Apex Tactical RAM

Next, John wanted to address the soft reset which is common in the M&P and Apex Tactical has a simple part to do that. They call it the RAM, that’s Reset Assist Mechanism and it consists of a little spring and plunger, and it’s pretty simple to install as long as you have the right size punch to take out this take down pin. Retail $23.

Apex Tactical Website  


Blackhawk Sportster Range Bag

Suggested Retail under $60

Multiple On Line Stores


Mech Armor Tac-Ops 1 Charge Handle

The AR rifle design never anticipated having a scope on top… never anticipated a flat-top receiver… But now that scopes are common the charge handle can be difficult to manipulate, because you can’t reach over the top to pull the release. MechArmor has the fix, the Tac-ops 1 charge handle for all AR platforms,  both AR 10 and 15. Developed and tested by a former Ranger Battalion sniper, this design allows the user to manipulate the charge handle with either hand, with the rifle in any position, with or without an optic. The Tac-Ops 1 latch still operates like a traditional charge handle, but the latch can also be released with the press of the rear lever.  It’s just over $100 and, yes, it’s patented.

Shooting USA Viewer Special Pricing:  $87.95 plus shipping.

Hunting Tips – Wade Bourne on Shooting Rests

SI30-07-9When you’re shooting a rifle, a rest is absolutely imperative to get a good rock solid Aimpoint and to hold those crosshairs steady.

I don’t care where you are, or what you’re hunting, if you’re shooting a rifle you need to use a rest if at all possible.  There are a number of different things you can use.

You can use a tree trunk, log, fencepost or a rock.

There are several commercial rests that you can take with you, shooting sticks in particular.



You can buy sticks like this, they are adjustable. Just carry them along with you like a walking staff. If you need to take a shot lay the rifle in the brace and you’ve got a good solid rest and foundation for your aimpoint. 





Here’s another type of commercial rest that I like. It’s attached by bungee cords. It folds up like so. To get ready to hunt, pop them together and you’ve got the rest.





One that I’ve seen recently that I really like is the Little Sure Shot. This is a very simple item that fits in your pocket. I use it with my walking staff. I take this a lot with me in the woods. And this Little Sure Shot will clamp on at any height that I want it to. Screw it down tight and you’ve got a good solid rest.


Or if you don’t want to spend any money you can find a couple of sticks. I put sharp points on the ends. When I spread them they lock into the ground and I’ve got a nice “Y” on the end where I can lay my rifle. I guarantee you this one is just as solid as any of the other three.

So the point is, use a rest every time if possible. Plan ahead to take a rest with you and practice using it in the woods during your shooting sessions. Take it with you when you go hunting. A rest will keep you on target. You’ll be a happier hunter.


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