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Old March 8, 2012, 06:02 PM   #1
mikthestick
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Fantasy and reality

I think Cowboy action shooting is fantasy. I'm all in favor of that BUT. I watched some very informative Utube stuff on how to do it. I looks like great fun and everyone was having a great time. Now the downside.
The equipment was wrong, wearing a belt of shot shells is fine but the design was obviously meant for a 2 at a time fast draw and the cartridges didn't look to secure. I know You could have had anything made the way you wanted even back then but that would smack of the professional gunman. I thought the professional gun (other than lawmen) was a hollywood fiction. I could be wrong.

What I feel is pure fantasy is a man armed with rifle and/or shotgun plus 2 or more pistols. That's $80-100 worth of weapons. The fantasy is everyone going round with all that gear.

I can live with all of the above, and would even be tempted to participate. What I have difficulty with is the rules. Don't know exactly what they are though it looked very safe and regulated. All guns seemed of (low caliber not realistic) I know 45 and 44cal get used BUT I CANNOT BELIEVE ANYONE THINKS THE TARGETS AND STYLE THEY ARE SHOT AT IS REALISTIC, THE GUNS ARE EMPTIED AT INCREDIBLE SPEED WITH APPARENTLY LITTLE ACCURACY. I felt the targets were a bit nearer than I would let a bad guy get. By the time 10 BP shots were fired the target would be hard to see. This is not the way Wyatt Earp would have done it. I would make a very big penalty for a miss (missing gets you killed). This would force competitors to do it Wyatt's way rather than speed is everything.

Hope I haven't upset anyone too much just trying to do constructive. criticism
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Old March 8, 2012, 06:09 PM   #2
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Ummmmm, it's not intended to be realistic. It's all about speed and if you think it's easy hitting a 16 inch steel plate from seven yards firing as fast as you can then you need to try it and see how slow/bad you really are. There are some that use warthog loads and full bp loads that don't try to compete. They're just there for the fun. It's all what you make of it.
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Old March 8, 2012, 06:30 PM   #3
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Well you are right about obscuring targets when using black powder, thats why our times are usually slow.
The match winners are more than likely to shoot clean with very low times, also they practice a lot
I dont know what kind of targets you think would be realistic
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Old March 8, 2012, 07:08 PM   #4
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I don't shoot CAS because I don't enjoy shooting as fast as I can. But that's just me - I like to read Patrick O'Brian novels, too. I'm sure CAS participants enjoy their sport as much or more than I enjoy sporting clays (probably because they're better at it!).

Now, with that preamble, I'm not sure where anyone ever said CAS was supposed to be realistic. They do say that they try to be fast, and they do ask you to dress 'in the spirit', so to speak, but they don't get all bent out of shape about being exactly period correct. Reenactors are the ones who try for realism, so maybe you have your events mixed up?
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Old March 8, 2012, 07:31 PM   #5
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You can make CAS whatever you want it to be. I dress as period correct as I can. My guns, while slicked up some, could have belonged in the Old West. I shoot gunfighter. My loads are not light. I try hard and sometimes do OK. I have also been in some gunfights and find CAS better training than most of the schools I've been to.
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Old March 8, 2012, 07:36 PM   #6
g.willikers
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Try these guys - http://www.ncows.org/
They are more into the realism of the old west.
The larger Single Action Shooters Society is more about the west of the silver screen, as portrayed in B movies.
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Old March 8, 2012, 07:42 PM   #7
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NCOWS are few and far between.
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Old March 8, 2012, 10:58 PM   #8
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It's not reenacting, it's a competition.

Considering there were many shooting competitions, as well as exhibition shoots during the time period, and shortly after, it actually isn't all that unrealistic when thought of from that point of view.
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Old March 8, 2012, 11:03 PM   #9
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It's a big tent. You can pretty much make it into whatever you want it to be. The people involved are usually the salt of the earth (very few aren't and those clubs dwindle). I heard someone once say that SASS is a social/historical group that happens to put on matches. Where I shoot there is a potluck or one helluva good and affordable feed after the shoots (Wolverton Mtn Peacekeepers [WA] and Molalla River Rangers [OR]). There is a nice, monthly get together where we actually hold a match but you are mostly competing with yourself and maybe a friend in the same class in good hearted fun. I love it 'cauyse the folks involved are truly "salt of the earth" types that are honest and happy in their lives who appreciate the joys of doing your best without the pressures of money prises. Pretty much everything is "bragging rights" and nobody really brags. It's fun. Try it. If you don't like it, try another club.
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Old March 8, 2012, 11:59 PM   #10
Fingers McGee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hellgate
It's a big tent. You can pretty much make it into whatever you want it to be. The people involved are usually the salt of the earth (very few aren't and those clubs dwindle). I heard someone once say that SASS is a social/historical group that happens to put on matches.
There is a nice, monthly get together where we actually hold a match but you are mostly competing with yourself and maybe a friend in the same class in good hearted fun. I love it 'cauyse the folks involved are truly "salt of the earth" types that are honest and happy in their lives who appreciate the joys of doing your best without the pressures of money prises. Pretty much everything is "bragging rights" and nobody really brags. It's fun. Try it. If you don't like it, try another club.
What He said +1. I've got friends across the US and around the world because of CAS. Every match I go to I get to see old friends that I hadn't met yet. Oh, yeah, I shoot percussion revolvers & BP cartridges and dress as period correct as possible cause I like to. CAS is what you make of it. And, it's not for everyone.
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Old March 9, 2012, 12:52 AM   #11
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I wouldn't disagree with the positive remarks made about the cowpokes, and probably owe them thanks for the copies and chamberings that would not be available if not for the cowpoke craze. However, you folks ought to include some full power longer range matches if for no other reason so the folks that spend time working up real loads for those particular firearms don't giggle behind your backs. Maybe some hundred yard or more matches with those exploding targets using '73s, '94s (Marlins) and '92s, or maybe some Tutt/Hickock type pistol matches where an accurate load and marksmanship are important (.38 wc midrange loads not encouraged). That's just a thought, not meant to be contentious.
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Old March 9, 2012, 05:51 AM   #12
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Who cares if they giggle?

If one wants full power, there are plenty of NMLRA matches and clubs around.
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Old March 9, 2012, 07:38 AM   #13
mikthestick
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Here is my little fantasy.
If I were around in the 1870's I wood have a good rifle and pistol (cross draw) and perhaps a back up gun (45 colt 3" barrel). I would wear the back up angled in a holster in the small of my back. I think you Americans call it Mexican carry.

For practice targets are naturally in front of you. For CAS 3 in front 1 or 2 behind would be more realistic but much harder to do safely.
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Old March 9, 2012, 08:59 AM   #14
mykeal
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'Mexican carry' generally refers to the practice of carrying a pistol tucked in your waistband, without a holster. The location is not implied - that is, it may be anyplace around the waist area, not just the small of the back.

It's a somewhat dangerous practice.

You don't mention wearing a coat; in that event a pistol in the small of the back is very vulnerable - a virtual invitation to someone to take it from you.
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Old March 9, 2012, 10:20 AM   #15
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If you want to stage a gunfight as most were held in the "Old West" then you would have to sneak around the back of the target area and shoot the targets in the back.

Yes, a lot of us dress funny, but you don't have too. Leather footgear, jeans and a long sleeved shirt are all that is required.
Wimpy loads? 800 fps out of a 45 Colt? That's the max allowed because of damage to targets with hotter stuff. If that load sounds familiar it's because that's what your garden variety 45ACP will do. Most shoot lighter loads but you don't have to.

As a lot of folks have said above, it may not be for everyone but if you like old guns and a good time with the only pressure to do well is that which is self imposed then come try us out.

If you want to run with the big dogs then you will want to shoot 10 pistol rounds out of 2 single action pistols drawn from and replaced in holsters, 10 rifle rounds fired from a rifle staged on the table, hammer down on an empty chamber and restaged open and empty and 4 shotgun rounds fired from an open and empty shotgun staged on a table and returned to stage open and empty.
The targets as generally 16" square and there are recommended ranges for each type.
Oh, yeah. Do it with out misses in less than 14 seconds and you'll be competitive. Even if you can do this, don't be surprised if one of our 12 year old shooters beats you like a rented mule.
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Old March 9, 2012, 04:44 PM   #16
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The nice thing about the occasional CAS match that I shoot in is that our local club has that proverbial "big tent". There are guys like me who are just having a good time and there are some serious competitors. Seems like there are about as many reasons for participating as there are guys at the match and everybody has a good time, as far as I can tell.

It's not even close to realistic, of course, but it's good, clean fun.
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Old March 9, 2012, 06:48 PM   #17
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SASS rules call for a maximum velocity of 1000fps in the handguns, 1400 in rifles, regardless of the bullet weight. Local clubs may have their own limits because of target damage. It's funny though that some people will think that a hotter handgun round, 250 gr. bullet at 850fps for example, will damage their target. But then when that 250 gr. bullet is shot out of a rifle at 1100 or more fps at the exact same target maybe out a couple of more yards, they don't perceive the ammo to be hot enough to damage the target.. The handgun round sounds and looks more powerful but isn't.

Also, believe me, you don't have to shoot 14 second stages to be competitive. Yeah if you plan on going out and beating 800 shooters at the national or world championship, you'd better be able to shoot in the mid teens. Other than that, depending on your category, if you shoot in the mid 20's or so you can be pretty competitive. And it can be a youngster or a senior that will be able to whip most of us, you never know. Mark
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Old March 9, 2012, 08:20 PM   #18
Shotgun693
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Most clubs also do the side matches that can and do include whatever that club happens to like. The Wild Bunch Shoots came about that way.
I would like everyone to shoot period correct guns and wear period correct clothing but I'm in the minority so 'Oh well'.
BTW, I'd shoot NCOWS if they were in my area but again. 'Oh well'.
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Old March 9, 2012, 10:24 PM   #19
salvadore
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SASS rules call for a maximum velocity of 1000fps in the handguns, 1400 in rifles
I was thinking maybe a minimum power factor match or two. Something requiring more robust loads and greater distances/accuracy. The game doesn't have to change, maybe just side matches.

The fella that writes about SAAs for 'Guns' and 'Handgunner' indicated he lost interest in the sport because it became a speed game with reduced loads etc. The guy below demonstrates a lot of skill, but maybe he would be more appropriately clothed with ball cap and running shoes. Just a tweek or two might get other shooters interested.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ah6SKcMkT3E
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Old March 9, 2012, 10:29 PM   #20
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Lead Dispenser is one of the best.
http://youtu.be/_99_K1v2LdQ
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Old March 9, 2012, 10:45 PM   #21
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BUT I CANNOT BELIEVE ANYONE THINKS THE TARGETS AND STYLE THEY ARE SHOT AT IS REALISTIC, THE GUNS ARE EMPTIED AT INCREDIBLE SPEED WITH APPARENTLY LITTLE ACCURACY.
Well youngster how far away do you think most fights occurred? They didn't happen in the middle of the street at 50 yards with the sun high in the sky, that was HollyWeird, They were up close and personal often indoors where you couldn't get more than 20' away from each other. Or they were outside near your living/working space and a shotgun was often the only gun the defender owned.
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Old March 9, 2012, 10:51 PM   #22
Andy Griffith
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The NCOWS group caters to the more authentically dressed and armed individuals, are are closer to a "reenactment" mentality than most SASS/ cowboy action shoots. There can be a difference in $$$$ too, as the more historically correct you want to go, the more $$$$ you'll likely have to invest.

There is a little piece in it for everyone if you are willing to work toward what you want and ignore the gamers and others that want to push personal agendas onto other shooters that just want to enjoy themselves at a pleasurable hobby.

Just try to find some like minded folks locally, and go shooting with them.
If you don't- just be a curmudgeon and have fun by yourself like some of the rest of us.

Maybe instead of "cowboy action" I'll suggest we have a "cowboy slow motion" match at the range...with pistol targets at 25 yards, and rifle targets at 50 and 70 yards- that'd throw a wrench in the works. It'd sure be interesting.
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Old March 9, 2012, 11:27 PM   #23
mykeal
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how far away do you think most fights occurred?
It's only about three feet across a poker table...
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Old March 10, 2012, 05:10 AM   #24
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It's all about speed and if you think it's easy hitting a 16 inch steel plate from seven yards firing as fast as you can then you need to try it and see how slow/bad you really are.
Well, back when I shot comp, it was see how many 8" plates you can hit as fast as you can ... one pistol round was seven plates at 7yds, seven more at 15 and seven more at 25yds - all with full power loads and usually after sprinting through an obstacle course ... so what's your point? Not trying to be rude but one wishing to be capable of defending their family, let alone a gunfighter, ought to be able to make a respectable number of hits on a 16" bull at 21 feet with their eyes closed.

I don't get into the rules issue, whatever they are, they are and as long as the CAS matches are getting people out shooting and promoting responsible gun ownership, I'm all good with it!
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Old March 10, 2012, 10:37 PM   #25
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What shooting discipline is "comp"?

" Not trying to be rude but one wishing to be capable of defending their family, let alone a gunfighter, ought to be able to make a respectable number of hits on a 16" bull at 21 feet with their eyes closed."

True, but do you think you'd never miss on these targets if shooting at top speed?

Did someone claim that this was supposed to be tactical training? Mark
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