Yes Please…

Via an email from my mom.

4 Star General’s Package

-Introductory tour, history & training

-Driving the Abbott convoy style & the FV432 APC using periscopes simulating a combat driving situation through our scenic wooded course

Test firing three historic machine guns in our indoor range

2 passengers are included    

What really got my attention though was:

Yeah, at $749 bucks I can think of a lot of other stuff I’d rather do, but man it would be fun.  I am a bit sad that their guns have been de-milled though. Honestly I’d rather shoot from the tank than just about anything.

Don’t get me wrong, driving a tank = awesome.  Lobbing a HE round a mile and smacking on target, priceless.  Just sayin’!


Confetti, Non-Dairy Creamer, Charcoal, Steel, and Explosives

Joe, Ry, and I headed out to the Boomershoot site today to do some testing with Chalk Dispenser V3.0.  We had previously tested the chalk dispenser and it did quite well.  The main problems we found weren’t with the design, but with the material being dispensed.  This time we were going to try glitter, Mylar confetti.  At the last second we also added non-dairy creamer and match light charcoal.

In hindsight reviewing the pictures we should have taken a couple from up on the hill because up close it just doesn’t look the same.  From the previous testing though it looked as though we had bruised the hillside. 


As we got into the middle of the colored area, we noticed more evidence of the chalk problem we saw previously.  It had obviously clumped into small balls.


First we tested small charges of 50 grams.  While it did work, they were difficult to load requiring special preparation. 


That is 50 grams of the most fun intoxicant this side of the Rio Grande.  It is so little that it’s hard to place it in such a way to fill the hole to complete a visible target, but it still packs a punch.

Joe forgot the glitter, however we did have the confetti to try as well as the newly added charcoal. First up was the non diary creamer.  We had already done the one 50 gram test when this picture was taken.


The results were lacking in significant difference, it looked the same as without the creamer.


Second up was the confetti.



We packed it in there.  The results though were less than pleasing.  Do you see the confetti, we didn’t as it happened.


Next was the charcoal after that dismal failure.  We were actually hoping to get the charcoal dust to ignite, however these results were still fantastic.


It wasn’t good just once though.  It was repeatable!


And I caught the brass in the air on both of those pictures, how awesome is that!  We attempted another test that I didn’t get pictures of since I was shooting.  I some how got the Boomerite to start burning, with the charcoal above it.  I let Ry finish it off since it was his gun and I was frustrated to say the least.  Still no fireball though.  We wanted to get this thing to toss a fireball, how could we get it to toss a fireball.  We then started going through Joe’s truck looking for things that could be used.  We found a spray can of window deicer.  We put that on 100 grams of Boomerite with and we pulled the Boomerite through to make sure we would hit the Boomerite first, not the can.  We also had attached road flares to help with ignition.


Still no luck.  However we later had a discussion about the road flares and wondering what causes them to be extinguished.  The assumption was that the concussion would result in removing the heat and liquid material preventing the flare from continuing the burn.  It’s only the gases that burn, the burning melts the solid, which will then turn to gas, and burn.  We though maybe the concussion blew off the liquid and gasses killing the flare.  Both this picture and the following one would beg to differ though.



This brought an abrupt end to our testing.  We had done something very stupid without realizing it.  We placed a piece of metal between us and the explosive.  The pressures from the explosive split the welds along the top.


So what is a guy to do when you still have Boomerite left, and no target to test it in?

The answer is quite simple, put 4 pounds in the non dairy creamer bottle, put the target on top and launch it in the air.




The target can be repaired, but I would say it looks no where near like when we got itJoe already has video of the stuff that really matters.  I’ll work on editing the video tonight and tomorrow and see if I got anything worth while.  For now, enjoy the story board and pictures.

Update:Video is here.

Boomershoot Staff Cleanup 2010

I just finished uploading the 2010 Boomershoot staff cleanup video. It provides a few chuckles with different quips.

I didn’t get any video of the shoot down on the berm. We were in a rush because we did a special mini high-intensity event for Michael Bain and his film crew for The Shooting Gallery . I figured since they were filming it they’d probably get better footage anyway.

Private Boomershoot Party

Today I went out to the Boomershoot site to help Joe with a private party with some coworkers from Microsoft. We met up around 0800 at “The Breakfast Club” in Moscow. I had French toast which was extremely yummy, however what was totally awesome was the fact they had “Green Eggs and Ham”.

I would not eat green eggs and ham.

I do not like them, Sam-I-am.

If you don’t get it, well you need to go read more Dr. Seuss. From there we drove out to the Boomershoot site. Joe stopped off for a couple quick history lessons like showing the grade school he went to growing up, as well as stopping by the farm he grew up on as we left.

The weather for the event today was downright miserable, the Explorer said it was 36 degrees out. I’m extremely happy it didn’t happen last weekend. Winds were about equal to Saturday for the PRC, what was bad is the fact that it was raining, sleeting, and snowing most of the time. Everything was so moist as a matter of fact a new possible issue with manufacturing was discovered. The PC in the high humidity had a tendency to re-clump while sifting. This created issues in getting correct measurements. We had about 7-8 crates of left over targets from last weekend. Joe attempted to detonate some of the targets which provided an extreme disappointment.

Lesson learned: they will not store for a week.

TMW and Kim then proceeded to mix up targets for the private party. Only about 15 were mixed up, however while they mixed I burned. About 7-8 crates of targets were burned and I only lost the hair of the back of my left hand. That oxidizer lights up fast when it finally goes, and boy does it burn hot. After that we fully introduced Joe’s coworkers to the world of firearms and explosives. We pounded stakes, let the current squal pass, performed the saftey lecture and then got into it. I was going to destroy some harddrives for a friend however it appears I had left them at home. Another time do an Idaho Stress Test/data reduction method. For today it was going to be an extreme test as we were going to destroy them under the fireball as well.

The conditions continued to deteriorate; I was soaked through my Carhartts, inner layer, and base layer. What makes it worse was it was ice that was pelting us and quickly melting so it chilled to the bone.

Notice how my coat is glistening from being saturated.

Joe the ever vigilent instructor.

The productive results.

The happiness doesn’t fade either

The next shooter with Joe giving position instruction.

A successful hit.

As Joe says, people who complain are puritans.

Another happy customer. The white streaks are hail.

A smile attempting to hide.

Why Joe does it.

Proof that’s why Joe does it!

Satisfaction, He hit it… Finally. Where’s the grin, we assume just straight satisfaction!

After that everyone took a second boomer, some used my rifle instead, others used Joe’s. As a finale we attempted a fireball. Key word attempted. Unlike the blogger day the year before where we set the field on fire, it failed. It was too freaking wet and windy.

So after we finished up we then headed to the viewpoint overlooking Dworshak Dam. Joe gave us a short history lesson and thankfully we were able to stay out of the rain somewhat. After Dworshak we went to the Ponderosa for some dinner and conversation. Interestingly we discovered that Joe’s daughter, Kim, was married on the same day, same year, and same exact time as my wife and I. Amazing the little things you discover. Enjoy the pics from the dam.

Stress Relief, Death to pumpkins

I saw a post on Joe’s blog last night about heading out to the Boomershoot site for some pumpkin destruction.

I arrived just after one as was asked. Good timing evidently because he was just finishing up the explosives as the wife and I showed up.

We spent the next bit chatting, I met a coworker of Joe’s, Kris, and I proceeded to gut and dismember the pumpkins much like Hannibal Lecter would to feed a man his own brains.

We then crated up the poor little victims and moved them to their zone of destruction.

This was a pumpkin that was in dire need of destruction. It was molding and becoming extremely soft. Big enough however it required two to move.

Six pounds of HE however would deal with this quite well. Besides the two that were rotting on top, well that was just nasty when it covered my hand.

We then proceeded to their destruction, first my wife, ladies first and all…

Followed by Kris…

And finally, here’s the video of my shoot. Along with a pic. Joe said “Just the big one left, give me a count of two so I can get the whole thing.” Sweet!!!! So I get to shoot this mother! AWESOME, Thanks JOE!

And as a final closing statement, we found pumpkin chunks 71 yards away. It quite literally rained pumpkin. Wife got hit in the leg, nothing major, I danced to get out of the way. The final dance move was to the right.

We drove back through Orofino to eat at Ponderosa, and gassed up outside the Casino for a low $2.18 a gallon. Thanks for a mini vacation Joe, much, much appreciated.