American Hunter - June 2014 - 60

A Return to the Range

In an effort to reclaim some of my youth,
I recently borrowed a Remington Fireball
and a Ruger Hawkeye. Even better for
nostalgia's sake, both guns were equipped
with old-style Bushnell Phantom .
scopes. The Phantom has a large housing
around the central part of the tube with
an open bottom to clamp on a mounting
base. The housing also contains the adjustment knobs that control windage and
elevation. For you younger shooters who
never saw a Phantom, it has a rather fragile
looking tube about half an inch in diameter with a slightly flared eyepiece. As you
would expect, field of view is quite limited
and eye alignment with the scope's axis
is critical. The Phantom on the Hawkeye
was fairly clear, but the one on the Fireball
was clouded, which probably accounted
for my limited success on the range.
If I owned the guns, my inclination
would be to shoot the Hawkeye with iron
sights and put a modern pistol scope on
the Fireball. That's because the Hawkeye
has decent factory iron sights and balances nicely offhand, whereas the Fireball
definitely warrants a solid shooting rest.
But the Phantom represented what was
available to pistoleros of the 's, and
since the guns were not mine, I went to
the range with everything as issued.

R

THE XP-100
COULD POP
PRAIRIE DOGS
AND SIMILAR
CRITTERS
OUT PAST 200
YARDS IN THE
HANDS OF
REALLY GOOD
SHOOTERS.
Remington still makes . Rem. Fireball ammunition, so I didn't have trouble
obtaining a supply for shooting. Alas,
Winchester no longer produces . Win.
Mag. ammo, but my friend Phil furnished
some old factory loads with the Hawkeye
he lent to me. He also dug up handloads
for both rounds, although he admitted
they were probably  to  years old. I
had some newer . Win. Mag. handloads developed for another single-shot
pistol, which I also threw into the mix.
I shot for accuracy over sandbags,
and because of the cloudy scope on the
-, I limited the range to  yards
for both guns. In a nutshell, both turned

in 1¾-inch group averages with factory
ammo. The Hawkeye also put Phil's old
handloads containing -grain Sierra bullets into 1¾-inch groups. It did better with
my handloads firing -grain Hornady
bullets, producing groups that measured
slightly more than  inch. The - with
the old handloads produced groups of 
inches. The Hawkeye's performance was
about what I'd expected, and I was pleased
with the results. Not so with the Fireball,
because I know from past experience with
other -s that the pistol can do much
better. Still, 1¾ inches at  yards isn't all
that bad from a handgun.

Going, Going Big, Gone

When handgun silhouette shooting came
along in the mid-'s, Remington's Fireball
got a new lease on life. A few shooters tried
the original pistol in the Production class,
and while accuracy results were terrific,
the . cartridge's power wasn't adequate
to reliably knock down the heavy metal
targets. But modified versions of the bolt
gun ruled the Unlimited class. Customized XP-s built to handle larger cartridges firing .- and .-caliber bullets
took targets cleanly. The pistol's accuracy
potential meant that shooters had to clean
the basic course just to qualify for the real
competition in the shoot-offs.

From the Firing Line to the Field

emington was quick to market the XP-100 to both
target shooters and hunters when it introduced the
bolt-action pistol in the 1960s. Early ad copy touted it
as "the amazingly accurate varmint and target handgun that
outshoots many rifles." Throughout the '80s and '90s, the
company released several variations of the XP-100 named
for specific pursuits, including the Silhouette Target Pistol,
  ❘

the Hunter and even the Repeater with a Kevlar-reinforced
stock and a blind magazine. The latter appeared in the
1991 Remington catalog alongside a pair of warthog tusks,
presenting the XP-100 in larger chamberings as a handgun
for serious hunters. For more information on the progression
of the XP-100, and to read a few tales of its success in the
field, visit the "Field Test" blog at AmericanHunter.org.

 ❘  .


http://www.AmericanHunter.org http://www.americanhunter.org

American Hunter - June 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Hunter - June 2014

Table of Contents
American Hunter - June 2014 - Cover1
American Hunter - June 2014 - Cover2
American Hunter - June 2014 - 1
American Hunter - June 2014 - Table of Contents
American Hunter - June 2014 - 3
American Hunter - June 2014 - 4
American Hunter - June 2014 - 5
American Hunter - June 2014 - 6
American Hunter - June 2014 - 7
American Hunter - June 2014 - 8
American Hunter - June 2014 - 9
American Hunter - June 2014 - 10
American Hunter - June 2014 - 11
American Hunter - June 2014 - 12
American Hunter - June 2014 - 13
American Hunter - June 2014 - 14
American Hunter - June 2014 - 15
American Hunter - June 2014 - 16
American Hunter - June 2014 - 17
American Hunter - June 2014 - 18
American Hunter - June 2014 - 19
American Hunter - June 2014 - 20
American Hunter - June 2014 - 21
American Hunter - June 2014 - 22
American Hunter - June 2014 - 23
American Hunter - June 2014 - 24
American Hunter - June 2014 - 25
American Hunter - June 2014 - 26
American Hunter - June 2014 - 27
American Hunter - June 2014 - 28
American Hunter - June 2014 - 29
American Hunter - June 2014 - 30
American Hunter - June 2014 - 31
American Hunter - June 2014 - 32
American Hunter - June 2014 - 33
American Hunter - June 2014 - 34
American Hunter - June 2014 - 35
American Hunter - June 2014 - 36
American Hunter - June 2014 - 37
American Hunter - June 2014 - 38
American Hunter - June 2014 - 39
American Hunter - June 2014 - 40
American Hunter - June 2014 - 41
American Hunter - June 2014 - 42
American Hunter - June 2014 - 43
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American Hunter - June 2014 - Cover4
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