A.S.R. 121st National Skirmish

A.S.R. 121st National Skirmish

Great job Guards!  Every last one of us should be very proud of our shooting during the musket match. With a 2nd place finish for the “A” company, and 7th place for the “B”, while missing some of our good pards, we showed that we do have some depth with our musket companies. Make no mistake about it this is a good start for the 2010 season.  A very good start.

While the above is all good, we need to improve our carbine and smoothbore performance. We have not been in the National “A” class medals with the smoothies since the 115th Nationals and with the carbine since the 116th.  While we spend time making sure our muskets and their loads are perfected, I often wonder if give our carbines and smoothbores the same amount of attention. So let’s all take a good hard look at those 2 firearms. If you shoot a Smith / Maynard insure that the action is tight, the touch hole in the breech is not burned out, and the trigger pull is what you desire. Check your cone and make sure it has not burned out also. Check your powder charge, lube and bullet combination to make sure it gives you the best group possible. Take a look at your tubes. If the touchhole in the back is enlarged replace with new. I make it a habit of starting the season with new tubes. It’s a minimal investment that I find gives me better performance.

For our Sharps shooters, check you gas check plate and cone along with your powder charge, bullet and lube combo. And make sure the trigger pull is what you like.

For smoothies, trigger pull and the condition of the cone are important. Along with the touchhole burning out, the cone tends to get battered down due the strong mainspring used on the smoothbore musket so check it often and replace as necessary.  Check your load and see if it holds up at 50 yards. When you practice work at 50 yards as much as possible. We all know that is where many matches are won or lost.

If you need help on any of the above, just ask. We have the people and expertise to help you get the results you desire from your firearm.

And finally practice, practice, practice!!!

Notable Observations from The 121st

  • Kudos to Paul Lycan for one hell of a musket shot to stop the clock during the 100 yard tile event. When he took that shot, I happened to be watching his hold, and follow through. It was so solid, I knew he hit without looking downrange.  Well done “Smiley!
  • Mike Simpson has worked harder than any member of the Guards to improve his shooting over the last 2 years. The payoff came with a very solid musket performance on Sunday. Well done Mike. Nice example to all of us.
  • Tom Robey overcame a horrific carbine day, and shot a very solid skirmish with his musket Sunday.  Tom is a fine example of the old “I sucked, but I got better” theory of shooting!  The lesson here is not to dwell on the previous shot or match, but to get back at it and attack those targets.
  • Scott Yarling made a solid return to shooting at the Nationals. Shot well with the Grundy Boys during the Henry match, and followed that up with a very solid musket match. Well shot Scotty. Glad to have you back in Virginia with us!
  • Bill Jordan got some help with his vision…and had a fine match on Sunday. There is no doubt in my mind that the “Old Dawg” can still hunt a bit!!!
  • Congratulations are also due to all of the Guards who won individual honors at the Nationals. Never forget that your individual shooting accomplishments reflects well on all of the members of the Guards.
  • And finally a heartfelt thanks from me, for your support during the awards ceremony on Saturday night. What a long strange trip it’s been to receive the DSCA.

Upcoming Events

Please let Ernie know by email if you will be attending the Centerburg and Batesville skirmishes and what matches your will be participating in.

We will be sending a team to the Allegheny regional to be held at the Dormont / Mt. Lebanon Sportsman’s Club, July 9th to the 11th. After this skirmish some of us will be heading to Fort Shenandoah to rebuild the back porch of the bunkhouse into Greco Roman style shower area. Then after the destruction and construction of our new shower / bathhouse facility is finished we will be attending the Vets skirmish to be held the weekend of July 17th and 18th.

Links to both of these events follow:

http://www.mdi.net/dml/ – info and directions only. No invite available yet.


We will have a team meeting on Sunday at Batesville to discuss the two skirmishes we will be working this summer along with various and sundry items of import.

A mention should be made that Saturday August 28th is the 148th anniversary of the Battle of Brawners Farm.  We have Father, Sons and Friends booked for the concert that night, but I think we should come up with some sort of ceremony to commemorate “seeing of the elephant” for the 19th.  Any and all ideas are welcome, but let’s get something put together.

2010 Goals

There has been some discussion of setting some goals for the Guards. Below is what I have come up with. They compare favorably with the winning times at the 121st Nationals and given the talent on the Guards are very reachable.

National Event Goals



Bird Board -120 seconds / 180 seconds

50 yard tiles – 50 seconds / 80 seconds

Hanging Birds – 60 seconds / 90 seconds

Pots – 65 seconds / 120 seconds

100 yard tile – 60 seconds / 90 seconds

Totals                355 seconds / 560 seconds



Bird Board -110 seconds / 165 seconds

50 yard tiles – 45 seconds / 80 seconds

Hanging Birds – 50 seconds /75 seconds

Pots – 55 seconds / 100 seconds

100 yard tile – 50 seconds / 65 seconds

Totals                310 seconds / 485 seconds



Bird Board – 75 seconds / 100 seconds

50 yard tiles – 50 seconds / 60 seconds

Hanging Birds – 50 seconds /60 seconds

100 yard tile – 60 seconds / 100 seconds

Totals                235 seconds / 320 seconds

Single shot

100 yard tile – 35 seconds

Bird Board – 85 seconds

50 yard tiles – 35 seconds

Pots – 50 seconds

Totals                205 seconds

122nd National Goals


A – 1st

B – Top 5


A – Top 5

B – Top 5


A – Top 4

B – Top 4

C -1st


Top 4

Now how to we achieve the above?

  • We will use the regionals as good competitive practices.
  • Individuals must practice using the above times as their goals.
  • We must all shoot within ourselves. We don’t need heroes. We just need to do what we each can do and take our best shot every time. In short, stay within yourself.  Our musket performance at the 121st exemplifies this. We were all solid and showed no quit.
  • Have fun with your shooting.
  • And finally, let strive to get 100 percent participation for the 122nd Nationals. We are the strongest when we are shooting together towards  a common goal.

That’s all for now. Remember to take a moment this upcoming weekend to remember the “Boys of ‘61” who wore those damn Blackhats so well. No quit in those boys. No quit in us either.


PS – I love this quote from an Old Johnny who soldiered in the Army of Tennessee to a member of Longstreet’s Corps when they arrived at Chickamauga in September of 1863. I think it sums us up quite well when we journey east to Virginia.

Roll on boys. Roll on.

“Them fellers out thar you ar goin up against,

ain’t none of the blue-bellied, white-livered Yanks

and sassidge-eatin’forrin’ hirelin’s you have in Virginny

that run at the snap of a cap -

they’re Western fellers,

an’ they’ll mighty quick give you a bellyful o’ fightin.”

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