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scottlep

Is a comp really necessary for a Steel Challenge open gun?

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So I have always questioned the effectiveness and logic of running a comped Steel Challenge Open gun, especially when running light loads. As a test, I fit a bull barrel into my Phoenix Trinity 2011 open gun. The gun is now over 4 ounces lighter and the weight that was removed is from the end of the barrel (comp) so the gun swings much better now. I have a 9mm 1911 that I use as my Limited gun for SC. I run super light loads in the Limited gun so I used the same loads to test the new barrel in the Open gun. The 2011 now shoots super flat and super soft with the new barrel and might mouse fart limited loads.

Here are the results in slo-mo

Edited by scottlep

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what load were you running before in your 2011 that it wasn't as 'flat' or 'soft' as it is now? I tried really light loads when I got my STI but had ejection issues .... changed the load to 145 PF and everything works without a hitch and the gun still shoots really flat ... I don't ever notice the dot moving

Edited by Nimitz

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I like 10gr of SP2 under a 95gr bullet for steel; super flat and crazy loud!

I like 7.6grs of Power Pistol in front of a 95gr Montana Gold JHP. Recoil is very light, but the muzzle flash and report are HUGE!

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My "before" steel load was 6.0 of Autocomp, 115 Xtreme plated at 1.160". Shot flat but still kinda hit hard.

My "after" or "limited" load is 3.8 of W231, 115 Xtreme plated at 1.160". Shot flat, hit the hand like I was shooting a 22.

Same Open gun with the comp I run 7.0 AC with a 125 Bayou at 1.160" to make USPSA major

My stock of W231 powder will go quickly, so I might have to figure out a load to run in the non-comped gun using Autocomp or another available powder.

Another bonus is not having to clean the comp, and another benefit is wayyyyyyy less noise ;) The ROs can thank me later.

(oh yeah, and the slo-mo bouncing brass in the video is kinda cool too )

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I've been waiting for someone to give a answer if the comp. is necessary. Yes?? No??

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No

I agree. I have shot two matches so far (and won both by the way :D ) with no comp and I am loving it. Gun swings much nicer now without the extra weight hanging off the end of the barrel. People that have watched me shoot it in the matches without the comp are amazed at how flat it shoots with the loads I am using. When I want to shoot USPSA I just reinstall the other barrel with the comp.

As far as make up shots I don't feel like it has been or will be an issue. It is not like USPSA where you are trying to double-tap a target and need a super flat gun and hope for .10 splits. In most cases where I have missed, the time it takes to register in my brain that I had a miss I have either already started to swing away from the missed target and have to go back or if I am still at the missed plate the gun has shot flat enough to be able to hammer a second shot.

Edited by scottlep

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I think it's more important for matches like ISSA than SC. You run in to some ISSA stages where there may be a thin band of plates in the same horizontal plane. With a really flat gun you can transition from plate to plate and shoot more quickly. For some loads it sounds like some folks are getting flat enough without a comp.

My centerfire and rimfire open steel handguns all have comps on them. My rimfire steel rifle doesn't. In the three matches I shoot regularly, all of the top open shooters have comps on their handguns. Centerfire and rimfire.

Edited by drysideshooter

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Scott: I'm glad it's working out for you but I'm not convinced that the weight makes a huge difference ... it certainly doesn't for me. when trying to figure out why i shoot rimfire at well over 2 classifications higher then centerfire an analysis of my transition times showed them virtually identical to rimfire, even though the STI is over 24oz heavier.

I've only got 2 matches with my new STI + the Nationals before my surgery took me out so i don't have a lot of data and my Steelmaster was designed as a steel gun not for shooting major PF so I have nothing to compare it to but it shoots extremely flat ... the dot never moves and I have to believe some of that is due to the comp doing its thing. I have a very soft minor PF load for my production gun and it's nowhere near as flat shooting as my STI with basically the same PF load and gun weight ....

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I would not call that super flat. My STI open gun has less muzzle flip than that plus mine has a short comp designed for Steel Challenge shooting that only has 3 ports not one of the big 7 port comps guys use for USPSA/IPSC.. If weight is an issue I suggest you look into the alloy comps for open guns that John Allchin makes. Your gun would weigh just about the same and would still get some effect from the gas.

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Looks like it's 50/50 on opinion's if a comp. is necessary for steel. I guess it comes down to personal preference.

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Looks like it's 50/50 on opinion's if a comp. is necessary for steel. I guess it comes down to personal preference.

I'm having a steel open gun built later this year and it will have a comp on it. Scott has found a setup that works for him so who are we to say it's not an optimal setup.

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when trying to figure out why i shoot rimfire at well over 2 classifications higher then centerfire an analysis of my transition times showed them virtually identical to rimfire

I am getting off topic a bit here in my own thread, but......I think most people will classify higher with rimfire than with their centerfire gun. I think the main difference is low-ready vs draw. Draws are really what set most people apart when you get to the higher levels. Most rimfire shooters can snap a low-ready draw in .6-.8 consistently. Give that same shooter a centerfire gun and most draws are going to be 1.5 or higher depending on the stage (I RO a lot for SC and I frequently check out different shooters' first shot times). Draws really make the difference to get to a higher classification in SC. I shoot with a few M and GM Steel Challenge shooters and where they smoke me (I'm a mid-A) is on their first shot. After that our splits/transitions are almost identical. If you are losing .1-.2 each string to another shooter just on the draws that really adds up across 6 or 8 SC stages. Using the new proposed classification system I would be a GM in Rimfire Pistol Open and still an A in Centerfire Open and I know for a fact that it is my draw that needs work for me to make it to Master.

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Not to get further off topic but I wonder how they plan to handle classification by division. As you know in USPSA you can only be one level down from your highest so if you're GM in RFPO is that going to automatically make you a M in all other divisions where you are classified?

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I think the main difference is low-ready vs draw. Draws are really what set most people apart when you get to the higher levels. Most rimfire shooters can snap a low-ready draw in .6-.8 consistently.

This is what I have found to be true for me when shooting the same centerfire pistol. Practicing for GSSF versus steel challenge. I'm consistently .5-.6 faster to the first shot from low ready than from a holster.

Edited by Pasley

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Some matches are doing just that. Well.....not really banning them. I was talking to Jim O'Young down at US Steel Nationals in Florida and he mentioned that they were doing a low-ready centerfire division this year at the West Coast Steel Championships. I briefly perused the scores after he posted them and saw that they had a half dozen or so people entered that division. Not a bad idea, especially for new shooters that might be intimidated by the draw.

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If you already shoot 9 major for USPSA, and want to shoot steel, what if you just had a second barrel/comp fit to your existing gun? You could use a shorter lighter comp for the minor or sub minor 9mm loads you would be running and the gun would swing better, while still utilizing the smaller volume of gas from the lighter load.

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Some matches are doing just that. Well.....not really banning them. I was talking to Jim O'Young down at US Steel Nationals in Florida and he mentioned that they were doing a low-ready centerfire division this year at the West Coast Steel Championships. I briefly perused the scores after he posted them and saw that they had a half dozen or so people entered that division. Not a bad idea, especially for new shooters that might be intimidated by the draw.

Anybody is welcome to shoot the novice division at Griffin Gun Club which is from low ready. It doesn't really get a lot of participation though. I don't see any downside to allowing it.

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Not to get further off topic but I wonder how they plan to handle classification by division. As you know in USPSA you can only be one level down from your highest so if you're GM in RFPO is that going to automatically make you a M in all other divisions where you are classified?

i think you keep centerfire and rimfire separate ... if you are a GM in RFPO then you are automatically no lower than an M if you start shooting RFPI, all while still only beinga B class Production shooter ....

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