December 2009 Journal

November 30, 2009


Got up at 0500, wheels up at 0730. Drove 300 miles to Las Vegas. Spent about an hour parking the rig. The sites are 68 feet long and not very wide. Needed to get the bus on the left edge of the site in order to (barely) park the ML next to it. Wound up putting the jacks down 4 times before all was right. The 3rd time we realized that the 50 amp plug, water, and sewer hook up were at the very back of the site (???), and the 50 amp line didn't reach. Raised jacks, backed the rig up until the trailer is at the trailing edge of the site. Power cord reached. Had to put the extension on the Sani-Con. Much less trouble than a conventional sewer hose system would have been to get nearly 40 ft.

Went to the Riviera, had drinks, ate at Kady's. Exhausted. Called it a month.

November 29, 2009


Finished getting the shop ready to travel. Put the ML in the trailer. Got everything done we could ahead of time. Want an early start tomorrow.

November 28, 2009


Shot the CCSA Wild Bunch match, 5 complicated stages with a lot of "outside outside, inside inside, middle," etc. Targets relatively close and decent sized. Each stage had at least 20 pistol rounds. 2 also had 5 revolver rounds. I didn't have a revolver with me (forgot) and borrowed one.

My '97 is a takedown model. It tried to take itself down and got locked up. Borrowed Arizona Redneck's gun and 2 short rounds per stage. It worked fine. At the end I offered him 8 rounds of Dooley Gang ammo for the 8 he loaned me. He said he wouldn't shoot them, that he just wanted 2 to put on the shelf at his workbench. Hmmm, Dooley Gang ammo is worth 4 rounds of non-Dooley gang ammo? Heck of a deal.

Finished 3rd OA, 1st Traditional, beaten only Arizona Redneck and Justice B. Quick, who used 2 hands and can shoot.

Got the shotgun straightened out in the shop. Need a spare, obviously.

Got the shop almost ready to travel, lacking about an hour.

November 27, 2009


Spent most of the day at the VA trying to get treatment for my painful left foot. Started at the Emergency Room, which had 3 patients in it. Spent hours and finally got to speak to a nurse practitioner, who said I needed to see a podiatrist (the one podiatrist at the place left as I arrived about 0930). She wouldn't give me a cortizone shot but said that was probably what it needed. She instead offered me crutches, a walker, or a cane and Vicodin or Tylenol with Codeine. She took my phone number and said the Podiatry department would call me about an appointment.

Left at 2:30 PM after walking 23 miles withing the corridors of the Phoenix VA hospital.

How many of you want Obamacare? The VA works MUCH better than Obamacare will work.

November 26, 2009


Thanksgiving, took the day off.

November 25, 2009


Went to Cowtown and worked with Wild Bunch guns.

November 24, 2009


Took George to the vet for his dental work, mostly teeth X raying and cleaning, though an extra front tooth that was growing out funny was removed. They X-rayed his hips and spine, both perfect. Everything else was fine. Picked him up at 3:30. The bill would have bought a nice SASS gun or a lot of diesel. Oh, well.

Between taking him and picking him up I went to Cowtown and shot exercises, no stages. Managed to make the 200 work by turning the barrels more vertical, which, it seems, takes .2-.5 more than my previous method. Hmm.

November 23, 2009


Went to Cowtown. The place was locked up, and there was no one in any of the nearby venues. Creepy. Locked myself in. Reshot some stages I'd done badly in the match. Still had problems with the SKB 200, not with the 100. Back at the shop I flex honed the chambers again, but they were already mirror finish. Hmm.

November 22, 2009


Went to Cowtown and practiced with Wild Bunch guns. Did a 19 on the stage I did in 25 in practice with the cowboy guns. Probably that's the difference between the two genres, another reason they should never be combined in the same match.

November 21, 2009

Saturday The President and First Lady visit a wounded soldier at Fort Hood

Oh, did you think the CURRENT President visited the wounded without photographers, entourage, etc? Isn't he the one who told a group of soldiers they made a good photo op?

CCSA Match

4 posses. Judah Macabee got me on his posse. Good posse. Got to see Hells Comin' shoot a 13 second stage--with a rifle glitch. Would have been 12 otherwise. My best was 27 and clean. 2 misses, one because I tried shooting really fast and left one unfired in the second pistol. Worst stage 36+1/5= 41. Others in the 30s. Won Frontiersman. Judah was second, and he shot clean. I really like Cowtown.

Most of the stages were unduly complicated. The worst had 5 targets arranged in an X. Shoot lower left, lower right, center, upper left, upper right (making a backwards Z). Repeat. Same with pistol and rifle. Lots of Procedurals. Most of the time it wasn't a gunfight but a memory contest. All stages were right-handed except for one that was ambidextrous.

7 stages. TIRED. Feet gave out after 5 stages.

I should note that I spent some time yesterday attempting to find treatment for my foot from one of the many local VA clinics. So far I haven't accomplished anything other than increasing my hatred of Democratic politicians who think this system is actually working. The people working there are very nice. But the system sucks. Logically I should be able to get treatment at any VA hospital. But...

November 20, 2009


Took George and Arthur to the vet. Both sick, probably the same thing. Got drugs, did tests. Scheduled George for Tuesday for anaesthetized dental work, and, while he's anaesthetized, X-rays of his hips and legs and abdomen.

Both given special diets. George won't be happy with his 500 calorie/day diet. Has to lose 5 lb.

The Redhead put me on the same diet, but I have to lose 50 lb. I wish she'd gotten the dry food. The canned tastes like dog food or Vietnamese field rations.

November 19, 2009


Went to Cowtown to practice. Found Arizona Gambler there waiting for Hells Comin'. He arrived without ammunition and left. AZ Gambler practiced for a while, then wanted to talk. He left. I kept practicing. This is where Jack Houston doesn't believe me. Shot 25 sec. stage at the jail, 2-3-2-3 with pistols at P1, 2-3-2-3 with rifle at P2, 4 SG at P3. Time to go home.

November 18, 2009


Went to Cowtown to practice. They were setting up targets for the Saturday match. Offered to help. Waited till they were done. Then finally got to practice. Cowtown is a great place to practice. Enough smoke to challenge you. You can shoot several stages or practice drills. I did some of both.

Took The Redhead to Chili's for dinner.

November 17, 2009


Tire Pressure Monitor went off near Winslow. Couldn't make it to the Flying J. Had to change the left front tire on the trailer on the side of I40 as 80,000 lb. bulls going 75 mph played with me playing matador, or perhaps cape. Slow leak. Used all my tools and changed the tire without incident. Used the warning triangles we'd bought from Camping World, and one broke on first use.

Cheated death once more.

On to Phoenix and Pioneer RV Park.

November 16, 2009


Went to Holbrook on the way to Phoenix. Colder in Holbrook.

November 15, 2009


Took The Redhead to breakfast, then to the good Albertsons. Then I went to Tex & Cat's so Tex could teach me how to use the projector with the Mac. They were both sick from the trip to New Zealand and back.

November 14, 2009


Met Grubstake Charlie at Rio Grande Renegades' Range. Sold him the '92, and we practiced. I practiced Wild Bunch. The Comanchero did well. Charlie set up a target at the berm to zero his long range rifle. The Comanchero was dead on with no holdover or adjustment.

November 13, 2009


Went to Dawgtooth Dave and Sagebrush Molly's for dinner. Outstanding. Dave and Molly have quite a collection of African game on the wall, enough for a special room.

November 12, 2009


Ran errands.

November 11, 2009


Veterans Day

Made it to ABQ and Enchanted Trails. Went to Applebee's for the free veterans' dinner. So did every other veteran in ABQ. We all went at 5 PM to beat the crowd. If you'd come in at 7:30 you could almost just walk in. The line had gotten down to 20 or so, all of whom had been there when we went in at 6:30.

November 10, 2009


Went to Armadillo, Texas and stayed at the RV Ranch. Took the limo to the Big Texan Steak House for the obligatory steak. They've stopped putting jalapeƱos on the rim of the Margarita. The waitress didn't know they ever did.

They had 40 Australians from a tour bus. The weak dollar is doing some good for someone--Australians.

November 9, 2009


As we were getting ready to leave T-Bone and Red came by. We talked. Left an hour or so later. Drove to Vernon, Texas and spent the night at the Rockin' A RV Park.


Apple does it again

Apple Computer announced today that it has developed a computer chip that can store and play high fidelity music in women's breast implants.

The iTit will cost between $499.00 and $699.00 depending on speaker size.
This is considered to be a major breakthrough because women have always complained about men staring at their breasts and not listening to them.


November 8, 2009


Awards day, Comin'At'Cha

Because of the muddy conditions, RVs were crowded into the high ground, primarily the road with new gravel about a foot deep.

Tow vehicle--$50,000

Big 5th wheel--$75,000

Cheap construction generator--$395

Starting it at 0300 and waking everyone within 5 rows--Priceless

You'll note I didn't show the RV and tow vehicle to protect the guilty. The owner also dumped his grey tank Saturday morning. He was uphill of several RVs, and the grey water went through their patios and on the trail. I believe the owners of the nearby RVs would have burned his RV down if they hadn't been so close together that the fire would have spread. The fact that there was no retaliation speaks well for most CAS shooters.


This is the high rent district with power. It's also pretty hard packed.

The row between the barn and the road. This is a wide angle shot. It's tight in there.

The back view of our row. The tightness caught up with a truck on the row behind us. A 5th wheel came in and turned left to park on our row. The tail end of the 5th wheel, of course, arced outward and took out the front of a pickup parked in the second space.

Larsen E. Pettifogger and Dan Diamond bought near twin Itasca Navions, small class C RVs built on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis (sold by Freightliner and Dodge in the US). They can get to matches at automotive speeds, not big-rig RV speeds, and they get diesel fuel economy in the teens. They were in spaces near the exit, so they were able to head for Phoenix right after the awards ceremony

A view of the RVs from the lake


Yeah, it was still wet...

...and the RVs were packed in like sardines on the high ground

The main "road" in Badlands Bar 3. That's Hamilton Dry Goods on the right


November 7, 2009


A little story about standing here and talking with the folks here. I was telling them Saturday morning that my breaker was tripping without adequate cause (30 amps). A guy next to me asked where I was parked. I told him. He said he'd go check it out. A few minutes later he told me he had changed the breaker. He was the electrician. Later T-Bone told me he would upgrade to 50 amps for $100. I'll get that handled before next year's CAC.

Shot the afternoon shift. Made it to our next-to-last stage and shot the little rifle chicken targets clean only to hear "and one" when I finished shooting. They said I missed the first shot with the second pistol. It's a big chicken on a chain, and all 3 spotters were standing right behind me. The timer operator said I hit it, and I think I hit it (amplified ear plugs heard something hit), but that ended the quest for a clean match. After that I had to reshoot a shotgun on the last stage. That was 2 shotgun makeups for the whole match despite those @$!#%!! shotgun targets that T-Bone loves. It would be significant.

The Saturday evening "Fiesta" went well. I didn't participate in the theme costume contest as I figure it would cost $1000 to do a good vaquero costume or Mexican Army officer, which I wouldn't do anyway, being a Texian. Dusty Lone Star was given the Best Ranch hand award and was soon offering everyone drinks from the bottle of Dooley Gang Crown Royal that went with it. It was almost gone when I last saw it. Giggles had one of the special awards, too, don't remember which.

The dinner, catered by an Outback Steakhouse from Texarkana, was again memorable. The wait was a little long. They drew table numbers, and we were next to last. But it was good.

Then Fireworks.

Oh, yes, The Redhead brought a gallon of Margaritas to the party and went back for another gallon. She was very popular

Day 2, Comin'At'Cha

November 6, 2009


Day 1, Comin'At'Cha

Shot stages 1-5 in the morning. I really need to be on posse 6-10 next year. The morning light and calm cost me dearly on 3 out of 5 stages. On stage 1 I fired one pistol round and spent the next fifteen minutes trying to see through the smoke enough to shoot the other targets. (Slight exaggeration.)

I had to make up one shotgun on those lousy shotgun targets, and I had a problem getting the timer operator to yell Down or Up on each shotgun target. This is another reason for a BP posse. Smokeless shooters don't know how important this is. I gave the posse a quick lecture that the Dooley Gang was helping the shooters, and you heard a chorus of UP or DOWN after every target with a '97, or every pair with a double, and if one was up, the number was called out, because with these !%!$%$! targets, you can't tell under the stress of "combat."

But the stages were good. The mine car was stationary. Shooting Slim through the Texas cut out target required tall and medium sized guys to squat down to get a clear shot.

The Wild Bunch awards were given out. I was stunned to get a buckle for 3rd in Traditional. Traditional was a pretty big field here, 12 I think.

By the way, there were no safety problems with this Wild Bunch match.

That night a bunch of us went to a new restaurant, The Captain and the Cowboy, on 37 north of 82. Good country food, mediocre desserts. I recommend it.

November 5, 2009


Blonde Joke:

During a recent password audit, it was found that a blonde was using the following password:


When asked why such a long password, she said she was told that it had to be at least 8 characters long and include at least one capital

Vendors at CAC

Mose 'n Bella do custom embroidery and were doing a booming business. They were working till midnight to keep up with orders. If you see an embroidered jacket or duster, they might have done it. If you see a Dooley Gang ribbon with "Dooley Gang" on one leg and the wearer's alias on the other, they did it.

Dodger Targets and Lily B. Haven. Dodger Targets made a coup of gargantuan importance. T-Bone Dooley said he was buying shotgun targets from Dodger to replace the AWFUL, WORN OUT targets they've used at Badlands Bar 3 for a long, long time. Now, if they could sell T-Bone some targets to replace the @!%!# chickens. I don't mind the small part. I mind the part that since they're hung from chains their behavior is not consistent. The little chickens often don't make a sound when hit, so if the spotter doesn't see it move, it's a miss. The pistol chickens are dead, too, as my only miss proved. (Also, DO NOT let spotters stand right behind a BP shooter. The BOOOM covers the Ding if the target is close, and if they're behind the shooter, they can't see the target move through the smoke.)



Chuck wagon cooking

Old Scyene travels a lot, showing up at events where not many vendors show up. This is a good thing.

Earthwalker Boots are backordered 6 months or more, as usual

Custom Ear Plugs made here


The Brisco Kid and Kiamichi Queen's Cowboy Shooters Supply. I spend a lot of money there on percussion supplies. That's the good news. The bad news is The Brisco Kid read Frontiersman for Dummies and followed it and now shoots Frontiersman. This is not a good thing for the rest of us in Frontiersman

This lady did neck, back, and foot massages.

Wild Bunch Match, Comin'At'Cha

Started at 3 with a safety meeting. You signed up for posses then and were given stage diagrams. Anyone whose name wasn't on the sheet at the match or who didn't have a stage diagram. We were told all equipment would be inspected prior to the match. (Remember that.)

We shot 3 stages. We started with the Shoot House. It has 2 sets of fore-to-aft decreasing size plates. The ones on the right all fell after 4 shots normally. The ones on the left were a problem. The front ones fell, but not far. This meant you probably missed the last one, especially in the afternoon light. I thought I was shooting BP the rounds were so smoky. I need a different powder for .45 ACP.

I had a miss and a mediocre time there. At 10 I had a clean stage with a good time. At stage 8, our last, I jerked the trigger and missed with the test Comanchero. I had swapped sights with The Brisco Kid, who flat tops them in batches. No charge. I did 2 of the 3 '73 rifles I have. Worked very well.

At the first stage we had a problem. I was clearing 1911s, and a shooter had a Wilson magazine in the gun. Wilson magazines, even with the low profile basepad are illegal. I had to bring it to the attention of the posse marshal, Matt Masterson. Matt said, "That's a stage DQ, isn't it?" I let him look it up. It is.

But the shooter said, "I used them at Winter Range and EOT." I had to explain that if they did it wrong there, it doesn't mean we have to do it wrong here. T-Bone was adamant that the SASS Wild Bunch Handbook rules would be used. He got the stage DQ.

Full house for Margaritas, Ate jambalaya donated by the people in the RV behind us. The Redhead stepped outside for something and came back with jambalaya. Very good, but attacked at midnight. Gastric Reflux.

Wound up in the clubhouse, and someone insisted on buying me drinks, that since I'd bought him Margaritas, he had to buy me one. Shotglass was bartender, and I was handed a tumbler of tequila and ice. I refused another since I have to shoot in the early AM.

RV Parking

The fields have not dried out. Several RVs got stuck testing the ground. Eventually T-
Bone started parking them all on the gravel. This meant parking them in very close together and blocked in so that the last ones in would have to leave before the next ones, etc. Over 100 RVs are here.

November 3-4, 2009


More getting ready for the match, clean guns, ammo ready, etc.

Margaritas at 5. Dinner with friends. Tuesday the Italian Restaurant. Wednesday, after the twin Navions arrived from Phoenix. That's the RVs of Larsen E. Pettifogger, Dan Diamond, and Weaver Gal. There were enough people along both nights that I lost some.

Advice from the Newmar Diesel Pusher Forum:

A lot of what people think is steering problems are actually over-correction on the drivers part. I thought I was having trouble with our 2000 DSDP on FL chassis until I leaned to drive it correctly. Support at FL told me to plant my elbows on the armrests and steer with my wrists. It's more like piloting a boat rather than driving a sports car. I look further ahead and gently guide the MH that way rather then micromanaging it.

November 2, 2009



I've been working with Sweetshooter for two reasons, to find something that makes clean up of the recoil shield, hammer slot, and hammer of the ROAs easier and keeps the "snakeskin" of wad plastic from sticking to the barrels of the shotgun, and for a test for the CC specifically about its use on black powder firearms. I have coated both ROAs with it and heat treated them to "condition" the metal per the instructions. I took the SKB 100 to the range to do the barrel conditioning. This is done by swabbing the barrel with Sweetshooter, shooting a round, swabbing with Sweetshooter, repeat 20 times. I ran out of patches soaked in Sweetshooter after 12 rounds or so. But it doesn't have to be done all at once. I'll continue with it.

After shooting at the old target graveyard that is set up for practice, I cleaned the '73 and conditioned it with Sweetshooter. I hope it works, as a dry film sounds perfect for the '73. The innards get coated in oily black gunk because the BP residue is sticking to the oil and grease in the gun. I haven't ever let this get to the point of gumming anything up, but I'd just as soon not have it.

Red ordered a bunch of pizzas for the group. So we ate pizzas and sat around and talked SASS. T-Bone is convinced Wild Bunch is very dangerous and swears that 3/4 of the Winter Range or EOT field could be Match DQed for breaking the 170 with their 1911s. He's seeing something I'm not seeing, but what do I know? Anyway, that explains the requirement that contestants not at the meeting at 1500 won't be allowed to shoot Wild Bunch. Apparently it'll be a Come to Jesus meeting. I'm looking forward to it.

He's also not in favor of the cone. If it's passed, Badlands Bar 3 will be a "No Cone" zone.

You should know that Badlands has a "no moving with a round in the chamber and no loading a shotgun on the move" rule because of some problems in the past. That rule was in place at the US Open, and still one lady forgot it, loaded her '97 on the move, and had an AD. She blamed the rule on costing her the match. Hmm.

November 1, 2009


A few of the smarter workers and vendors did not shoot all 10 stages of Comin'At'Cha yesterday. (See October Journal). Nuttin' Graceful acted as posse marshal, and Omaha John and I helped, along with relatives and friends of the shooters. T-Bone was occupied with a significant plumbing problem. I think he got it fixed.

Honey Graceful had fixed her rifle problem. Basically the bore needed cleaning, as I suspected. It wasn't hard, according to Nuttin'. They have a large cache of Cowboy, so they'll be running a Bore Snake and some Windex through the bore after every stage. Honey is a little leery of American Pioneer Powder, but that's because at the 2006 EOT, when the smoke standard was first enforced, she went to the voluntary check station and was told her 8 gr. load was too light. It wasn't the APP, though, it was the fact that 8 grains by weight isn't enough powder. I suggested 12 for major matches. That should exceed the smoke standard, which is 15 gr. (1 cc) Goex Cowboy, lightly compressed, 140 gr. bullet lubed with SPG, Federal primer.

They switched to a bit heavier load of Goex Pinnacle, which has darker smoke than APP.

The problem was she was using BP with smokeless bullets. This results in hard fouling that destroys accuracy. It cleans up pretty easily, so you can do if if you clean often enough, perhaps after every stage.