Headed out to the SekritRange this weekend with an AR I just finished building, the 15-22SBR, the 37SBS, and a couple new plate targets.
The AR? Ran like a top. It's hands-down the softest-shooting AR I've used. 21.5" barrel, heavy components, and a good muzzle brake (Nordic Components Corvette) combined to make a wonderful gun. Light recoil, decent trigger (Velocity 3lb single-stage), just a pleasant gun. I didn't get it REALLY dialed in, but we were dinging the 8" steel plates at 100-some yards with boring regularity.
The SBR ran as beautifully as always, and at 25 yards it was easy to just ding the plates back and forth as fast as the sight lined up.
The plates are 8" AR500 that I ordered from Gong Target Systems via Amazon... and they were great. One tiny ding where a 5.56 round winged the edge in the heat-affected zone, otherwise they are still perfectly smooth after 100 rounds of 5.56, a hundred or so .22s, and a box of .380 ball. (Six inch version here.)
And finally, the Ithaca 37 SBS.
I pulled it out of the case, grabbed a round of 12ga birdshot, and started to load it. Tried to. The shell inserted into the mag tube about 80% and then stopped moving. Using a finger I confirmed the mag follower was moving freely, so I tried a different shell. Same problem.
I finagled a shell past the loading fingers and chambered it, pulled the trigger, and it went bang as expected. I pulled the fore-end back, and ... nothing. Shell was stuck tight. I worked the slide a few times with no luck, then tried removing the barrel and prying out the shell ... still no luck. I set the shotgun aside for the afternoon and went back to the AR.
When I got home I stuck a rod down the barrel and popped the shell right out; when I have a free couple hours I'll tear down the action again and make sure everything is put together right, as well as carefully oiling everything up.
To those who recommended a strap for the handguard - I stopped at the local Tandy Leather and picked up some 1-1/4" latigo strap and the hardware to attach it. Now I just need to grit my teeth and start cutting on the mint fore-end on that 37 ... OR find a donor piece to cut on.
1 month ago