October 2011 Barnes Bullet-N
|Randy Brooks Message:|
Utah Governor Gary Herbert visited our manufacturing facility today (10/13/11) as part of a tour of rural businesses to understand how they contribute to the state’s economy. We were excited to have him on-site, and to have the opportunity to educate him about not only our business, but the industry and its needs. Also present for the tour were local city, county and state representatives.
We are fortunate in this state to have a leader who not only served in the US Military, but is also a shooter and hunter. We all found the governor to be very down-to-earth, personable and genuinely interested in our business and history. In fact, his family’s geographical history matches up quite close with mine. He has close relatives in American Fork, Utah, where Coni and I were born and raised. And interestingly enough, further back to my great-grandfather’s and his great-aunt and uncle’s hometown of Circleville, Utah where outlaw Butch Cassidy was from.
After touring the trophy room and manufacturing facility, we stopped by the lab and surprised the governor with the opportunity to shoot my personal Bushmaster 50 BMG, loaded with our 647 grain TSX. He was a great sport! In the midst of two dozen onlookers, he fired a round down-range in our 100-yard enclosed tunnel. As has been my experience with every first-time shooter of this rifle, he appeared to have a lot of fun and amazed at the lack of recoil one does expect from such a large weapon and loaded round!
Left to right: Jessica Brooks-Stevens, Utah Governor Gary Herbert, Randy Brooks and Coni Brooks
pictured behind the Bushmaster 50 BMG rifle the Governor fired in the Barnes 100 yard underground range.
It was a most enjoyable visit. We certainly hope the Governor finds his way back to our neck of the woods for more discussions and trigger time.
I hope your season is off to a successful one.
Great news to share this month! As mentioned in my September column, my daughter Jessica was lucky to draw a bull elk tag on a Utah public unit. She and her husband, Thad, scouted for two months prior to the hunt. I’m happy to report that her hunt was a big success! I am including a picture of her super nice bull shot with a 175 grain LRX in a custom 300 Winchester Mag built by Kerry O’Day’s fine company MG Arms. This rifle was topped with a 3.5×10 Mark 4 LR/T Leupold scope.
I think Jessica’s husband said it best: she shoots some really unique animals. This bull is no different – his firsts, seconds and thirds are quite magnificent. The bulls were rutting hard all around Thad and Jessica on opening morning. She actually passed up a bull that may have scored better, but did not have the character this bull does. He was definitely the king of the mountain with well over a dozen cows in his harem – more than any of the other bulls there. She and Thad worked hard to get her into position to shoot this bull just before he disappeared into the thick cover for his daytime lounging.
As you know, it’s not very often that you recover a Barnes bullet. However, while skinning out the big bull, she was lucky enough to find it just under the hide on the opposite side of where the bullet entered. The recovered 175 grain LRX is pictured below – picture perfect. Elk are really tough, but the bull fell from 240 yards away after taking just a few steps to one LRX moving 2,970 fps at the muzzle. I hope I am as fortunate in November on my own elk hunt. I will be using the same rifle, but shooting 180 grain VOR-TX ammunition.
Jessica Brooks-Stevens with her trophy Utah elk taken at 240 yards with a 300 Winchester Mag 175 grain LRX
Recovered 30 Caliber 175 grain Barnes LRX
Speaking of VOR-TX ammunition, the second piece of great news is that on October 1st, Barnes announced the “Get Caught in the VOR-TX” contest. By submitting a story and a photo of your hunt or shooting experience with VOR-TX ammunition, you will have a chance to win a guided Utah Mountain Lion hunt with Wade Lemon Hunting as 1st prize, a Dakota Model 10 single-shot rifle as 2nd prize, or a DPMS Prairie Panther rifle for the 3rd prize winner.
Randy Brooks will accompany the 1st prize winner on the Mountain Lion hunt which will take place not far from the Barnes Bullets factory in May of 2012. Believe me, hunting lions in the west is super exciting and a lot of fun, so put your heart and passion into your submission for the chance to win this or one of the other two great prizes! Details about the contest and contest rules can be found by clicking on this link.
We appreciate your membership in Club-X and we wish you a fun and successful hunting season this year.
Your friend in hunting,
This will be the first in a series of articles touring Barnes Bullets where I’ll be your tour guide. In this first episode we’ll start by introducing you to our in-house machine shop and some of the guys who work there. The Barnes machine shop is very important to our manufacturing operation. Basically, it insures that bullet and ammunition production runs smoothly and efficiently while producing the highest quality products.
At the heart of the machine shop are the EDM’s (Electric Discharge Machine). These machines use electricity to cut our dies. We have both wire feed EDM’s and plunge EDM’s (otherwise referred to as a sinker EDM.) Because the dies are made of extremely hard material, some of them have an incredibly long life span.
The wire EDM sends an electrical current through the wire via electrical contacts in the upper and lower heads, which move independently giving the machinists the ability to cut very complex shapes. Below is an example of what the wire EDM is capable of. The machine was programed to cut a #1 on one side of a solid steel block and a #2 on the other.
The sinker EDM is used to machine various shapes into very hard materials. We use these machines to cut the shapes of the bullets nose or ogive as well as other applications in the bullet building process. This machine uses an electrode to burn its way into the material. The EDM’s can hold very tight tolerances – up to .0001 of an inch which is equal to the diameter of a human hair sliced lengthwise into 30 equal pieces. As an example of its capabilities, pictured below is an item produced by the Sinker EDM machine. This is a solid piece of steel that has been machined to produce a ball inside that cannot fall out.
Another critical part of the machine shop is the 5-axis CNC grinder. Barnes uses this machine to produce punches and other various tooling used in the bullet production process. The pinpoint accuracy of this machine means that the bullet you buy today and the bullets you’ll buy next year will perform identically. Among other things, we use it to produce a large variety of cutting tools used in the machine shop on a daily basis.
Other machines in the Barnes arsenal include Vertical CNC Machining Centers and the Horizontal CNC Lathe with live tooling. They are used for manufacturing various parts needed throughout Barnes Bullets.
Barnes also has Swiss-Type screw machine. Its primary purpose is to build the Banded Solids and Muzzle Loader Aligner tools.
Of course, not every piece of equipment is run via computer. Barnes also has a lot of manual equipment commonly used in a typical machine shops including lathes, mills, surface grinders, cylindrical grinders, band saws, drill presses, heat treat ovens and welders. There are just simply too many to list but the photos below will give you a general idea.
As good as the equipment is, the guys that run this equipment are a most valuable asset. The Barnes employees are passionate about the products and it shows in the quality that you receive when you purchase and use each Barnes bullet.
I hope you enjoyed this month’s Tips, Tools and Techniques. I look forward to continuing this virtual tour of Barnes Bullets in next month’s article. Be sure to tune in as I’ll be taking you through the initial stages of the bullet making process.
Consumer Service Representative
Barnes Bullets is the proud recipient of the North American Hunting Club’s seal of approval for the TTSX. The TTSX received an outstanding 97% approval rating from the NAHC field test members. Click here to view the article.
Here is a picture of a mountain goat that was shot on Kodiak Island with the new Barnes LRX 7mm 145-gr bullet. Goat hunting provides for some long range shooting due to the sparce cover in their mountainous home. Testing of this bullet at the range proved it’s accuracy out of my 280 ack imp rifle. Groups were at one inch at 200 yds with 5 shots. All of the shots that we were presented on Kodiak were in excess of 300 yards. All three goats and the blacktail that I hunted were one shot kills and all dropped in thier tracks when hit with the LRX bullet.
3 – Lbs. quail or dove
1 1/2 – Tsp. salt
1/2 – Tsp. pepper
1/2 – Tsp. paprika
6 – Tbsp. butter
15 – Oz. can artichokes (optional)
1/4 – Lb. mushrooms
2 – Tbsp. flour
2/3 – Cup chicken consomme
3-4 – Tbsp. sherry (cream or cooking)
Salt, pepper, and paprika quail or dove and fry in 4 tbsp. butter. Place in casserole. Place artichokes between quail or dove. Saute mushrooms in 2 tbsp. butter. Add 2 tbsp. flour. Stir in consomme and sherry. Cook 5 minutes. Pour over quail or dove. Cover and cook at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
Karl enjoys hunting, target shooting, and all other outdoor activities. he has an anterless elk hunt scheduled for this upcoming December near Ely, Nevada. Karl plans on using the Barnes VOR-TX Ammunition for his hunt.
Thank you for being a member of Club-X. Karl won a custom made hat by Rands Custom Hats!
In the early west, one of the cowboy’s most important pieces of equipment was his hat. It shaded his eyes from the sun, kept the rain off his neck and, in a pinch, served as a bucket for water and feed. It was an integral part of his existence, and he was seldom without it. It was the first thing he put on in the morning, and the last thing he took off at night. Today’s cowboy, and those who fancy western apparel, expect no less from their hat than the cowboy in the old west. It reflects their taste and lifestyle. In this age of cheap workmanship, it is difficult to find the hat to fit these needs. It’s with that thought that Rand’s approaches the design and construction of their custom hats. Utilizing traditional artisan’s tools and skilled craftsmen, we have achieved a quality product that combines the skills of the past with the concerns of today. Antique copper steamers, wooden sizing blocks, curved pencil curling irons and other traditional implements abound at Rand’s, reminding us that the skills of the past are still with us.
For more information about Rand’s and the products they offer, click here.
Barnes Apparel Package
Barnes is pleased to announce that we now have a new line of Barnes Bullets apparel! For the October prize we will be giving away a package that includes a stylish Barnes hoodie, Barnes t-shirt, a Barnes camo ball cap, as well as a Barnes Beanie. So no matter the weather, you can be comfortable in your Barnes Bullets attire.
For more information on this prize, please click here.
Correctly guess a new cartridge that will be introduced in the 2012 Barnes VOR-TX lineup.
Guess the right answer and win a free box of Barnes VOR-TX Ammunition or Barnes Components. The posting may begin on or after Wednesday, October 19th at 7:00 am Mountain Time. Posts made before that time will not be accepted.
We will be posting this announcement on our Facebook page on or after Wednesday, October 16th by 7:00 am Mountain Time so be sure to get there first! Good luck.
Congratulations to Joshua Roblee for guessing the correct answer on the contest featured in last months newsletter. Joshua won a box of 300 Win Mag 165-gr TTSX Boattail VOR-TX Ammunition!
I just thought I would pass on a note regarding the superb accuracy I have found with your products. Over the years I have found tremendous accuracy from many different hunting calibers using Barnes bullets. From 270 Win, 308 Win, 30-06, and 325 WSM being the bulk of my loads. All have come in
under 1 MOA and most closer to 1/2 MOA.
The latest round I loaded was a .338 225-gr Tipped Triple Shock. This one loaded in a Winchester case, Federal LRM primer, and 75gr of Reloader 19 powder. This group fired from a stock Ruger M77 in 338 Win Mag. I have not measured the group, but quite small for a 200 yard target! I know the rifle
was not sighted for point of aim. This happened while testing for groups and velocity. Velocity spread was from 2650 to 2672 FPS.
I hope these bullets perform like I have come to expect on game. I have loaded the TSX bullet for animals as large as elk in 270 Win, and had great results. Whitetail deer don’t do well either from any of my 30 caliber rifles. The 325 TSX has also taken it’s share of elk, with just a few steps after the shot. This should be good medicine on a hunt this fall for dall sheep, and brown bear in Alaska.