2017 Spring Newsletter

Membership Meetings

Meetings are held the 3rd Monday of the month. Please try to attend & offer your voice & ideas. This is your club! Meet your fellow enthusiasts.

Next meetings:   5/15, 6/19, 7/17, 8/21 @ 7:30 pm

Come on an empty stomach, there is always a good meal afterwards. $2 beers!! 50/50 raffle!!


Membership applications can be printed from the BVCS web site https://bostonvalleycs.com.  Dave Brooks, our membership chairman, may be reached at 649-8762 or email at daveb45cal[at]yahoo[dot]com.

What's Happening @ Your Club?

Open Pistol Shooting

Tuesday nights; doors open @ 7pm.  Members’ range fee is $4 and nonmembers’ fee is $8 per night.  All are welcome but we encourage frequent non-members to become members and support the club.  Please be aware that non-members must fill out a one-time waiver.  Forms are on hand at the range.

Air Pistol

Schedule for 2017:

  • Relay starts at 6pm, 7pm, 8pm on Wednesdays
  • Cost is $4.00 to shoot per score
  • A prepay $40.00 for 8 weeks will secure a time slot and range position
  • Any additional scores would be $4.00 ( unlimited shoots- top 8 scores used)
  • Pellets available to purchase as needed
  • If you need to borrow an air pistol (call first) 867-4814
  • Distance is 33 feet, sighters shots & 40 shots for record

Match Dates

August: 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 September: 6, 13, 20

Pizza party after the matches on the 20th. **Any questions call Jerry & Betty Dobson 867-4814.


Our BVCS Trap season started Sunday, April 23rd. As in the past, the shooting sigh up times are; Sundays: 9:00am - 12:00 noon & Thursdays 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm. The cost remains the same at $4.00 per round of 25 targets. Hope to see new & OLD faces come out to participate.

Purchase of targets was brought up at the March meeting. The purchase price stands at $5.91 per case as stated at the meeting. Ordering time is dependent on the number of shooters we have for the spring league, as we still have 300+ cases on hand. It takes 5- 6 weeks to process & get an order delivered. The committee will watch this closely!

BVCS hosted the last 2 weeks & the shoot off week for the WNY Winter Trap League. There was a good number of shooters those 3 weeks & the event ran like a well-oiled machine. The trap help was phenomenal! I wish to thank all of those that helped & worked so hard running squads & keeping the traps full of targets & making my job so much easier. Thanks to the bar personnel for doing a great job also. I do believe there was close to $700.00 taken in those 3 days. The YOUNG GUNS!!!! With the adult supervision of Mrs. Hoelsher, the young ladies & gentlemen did a bang-up job feeding the throngs of customers frequenting the ordering counter along with keeping the area clean & helping with general clean up afterwards. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!! The trap committee covered the cost of all the food served by the kids to enhance their profits. We hope they did well, as they surely do deserve it.

Trap person; Ernie.

Young Guns

For information on Young Guns contact Howard Hoelscher at 649-3432.


We try to keep the website as current as possible.  Please check it out as it has a calendar of events posted as well as the newsletter and other information.  https://bostonvalleycs.com


The next Newsletter will be out in early July 2017; the deadline for information will be June 30th, 2017.  Please email information you would like to have published, or to add/edit/remove your email address, to Ryan Rosiek at ryan.rosiek[at]gmail[dot]com or John Battershell at jbdesigns[at]roadrunner[dot]com. Copies of the current newsletter are available at the club or on the website.

To Reload or Not, 12 Considerations

From John Battershell

My first article on reloading will discuss the topic ""to reload or not to reload"".

Next article will be on my personal experiences with equipment and what pieces I would recommend to a new reloader. I will also write an article on some favorite loads and what I have learned from different loads I have made. I am sure I will come up with others on reloading for later.

While doing what I often do, searching around the web, I found an article discussing 12 topics on why you should or shouldn't reload. I am going to copy these topic headers; however, the explanation behind each topic will be of my own experience, thoughts, and opinions. I liked these topics because after reviewing them all, one really can have a reasonable and easy to understand guidance to help with the decision of:  should I start down the path of reloading? I know personally I have expressed my fondness of reloading and how ""great"" it all is. But is it really all that I have made it out to be. Well, if you are wondering yourself, consider the following.

1. Are you, or can you be, detailed oriented?

Ammunition used in modern firearms is pretty powerful stuff. The phrase, safety first, cannot really be over-emphasized with respect to reloading. There happen to be many ways that the reloader can ""mess-up"" the loaded cartridge. And some of these mistakes can lead to catastrophic failure of the firearm and possibly serious injury to oneself. Simple tasks like charging the case properly is likely the number one area that leads to kabooms in firearms. Under charging (yes that can be bad) and the obvious overcharging of powder by a significant amount will lead to a very bad day for the shooter. As an example, when loading target pistol rounds for 9mm, 45acp, 38special, most cases will hold a double charge of powder and still allow a bullet to be seated. So getting mixed up where you are in a cycle, pulling the handle twice by accident after you answered the phone or looked at a text, or fixing a problem on the press and then charging again without checking will all be bad and likely result in a broken gun. Using the wrong powder for a load can also be just as bad. Following the recipes that are published and not deviating from min and max loads is critical for safety. And with all that in mind, the loader has to have a organized, regimented character and be a bit meticulous. Not trying to overly scare someone as it is not hard to load safe cartridges. It's not like making nitro-glycerin or fixing a swiss watch, but you have to pay attention, use proper tools, follow directions, and keep your head on straight. So, if you can do that, you'll be fine. If you mess up making your coffee sometimes, I'd advise to buy factory loads. Oh, and save the beers for after you've loaded for the night.

2. It's a gateway drug.

Once you start down the path of reloading, it is easy to get hooked and move on to all sorts of cartridges. So true, that you will buy a different rifle or pistol just to get a new caliber to load for. I have done that very thing, building a .300 blackout rifle so that I could load that caliber. Or, you will get into smelting your own lead to make cheap bullets out of wheel weights and have a whole foundry in your garage for processing lead and pouring lead bullets, complete with re-sizers, and powder coating station and oven to coat the bullets with cool read polymers. Now you need storage for lead, a place to get rid of scrap, more containers to hold bullets you just made and more space needed. Beware.

3. You'll save money.

You can! This does require that you don't place a dollar amount on your own time needed to reload. But I can just about guarantee that you will save money ""rolling"" your own bullets. Saying that though, you will have to reload enough (that is shoot enough) to recover the costs of the equipment you will buy. In simple terms, if you only shoot a few hundred pistol rounds a year, and just a few boxes of rifle ammo for hunting or for fun, you would be better off, money wise, to just buy factory loads at the local gun store. But if you're like me and believe you will shoot a fair amount of rounds, you can easily recover the cost of the equipment. I can give a couple examples of how the price breaks down. Popular round to reload is .223 remington. Factory blasting ammo, 55grain stuff is about $.40 each up to $.50 each. I don't shoot steel case so I won't compare to that cheap stuff. My pricing goes like this: powder charge is $.11 per, bullet is $.09 per, primer is $.03 per, and cases are like $.01 per considering you reload them 4 to 5 times. So that is about $.24 per round of 55 grain blasting ammo compared to $.45 average factory for around $200 saved per case of ammo. 2000-3000 rounds shot will pay off a nice reloading kit. But I don't load 55 gr blasting ammo too much but concentrate on target rounds for CMP shooting and the like. The savings for this type of .223 is much greater. Still about $.11 for powder charge, $.03 for the primer, $.01 for the case and now up to $.20 for the 69 gr Sierra Match King target bullet. Cost is higher for this reload at $.45 per but the factory target ammo equivalent is easily $1.00 or more. So the savings can add up faster. Final example is 45auto. 230gr 45auto ball ammo is generally around $.50 per. Plus or minus a nickel. To reload this, my costs are $.02 for the 5.1 grain powder charge, $.03 for primer, $.01 for case (these can be reloaded many more times than rifle), and about $.10 to $.15 per for 230gr FMJ (pulled bullets are .10, factory hornady 230FMJ are .15)  If I use the higher bullet cost, $.21 per loaded round of ball ammo. Loading the target 45 ammo is cheaper due to cheaper lead bullet costs of only $.09 for Cliff's lead projectiles for a total of $.15per round. And my 9mm target rounds with coated lead bullets are only about $.12 per round. At that price, I can shoot 9mm for the same price as good .22LR target ammo. It's obvious that the costs for reloaded rounds are less than factory. But let's go on.

4. You'll spend more money.

This is almost universally accepted as fact. You might start off with a basic reloading kit, and if you get addicted, you'll add more elaborate gear. And it is just a fact, when you know your rounds cost less, you will shoot more. However, you have more fun because you shoot more. But there are other things that I have found myself and others to spend more on. Examples: I have bought many of the 50cal metal surplus ammo cans to store reloaded ammo in, more plastic storage containers to store brass in, more bullets and powder and primers now sit on my shelves, more reloading equipment which is a step up from my original purchase (that is why will have an article on recommended equipment for best bang for buck). I bought a different rifle for a new cartridge, I have fancy brass cleaning machine and it goes on. Again, not trying to scare anyone away, but we as hobbyists do have trouble at times controlling our urge to ""upgrade"" or add to our stash. It is totally in your control though if you want to keep costs lower.

5. What's your time worth?

In the example of .223 target ammo, I calculate a savings of $.55 per round. So if I was a business, my labor costs better be less than $.55 to make one round. I do load on a progressive loader which I easily get 400rounds of rifle or pistol ammo per hour. But, I also have spent probably 2 hours to prep those 400 pieces of .223 brass when figuring in cleaning, resizing and depriming, trimming, chamfering case mouth, and removing the crimp from military brass. The total then is closer to 3 hours to make 400 rounds. Let's say your take home pay is $20/hour after taxes. That would be $60 total to make those 400 rounds. In this case, it still pays to reload since my example saved $220 for those 400 rounds but only cost me $60 in labor. But some examples, the savings may not be as large, such as reloading 55grain blasting ammo in .223.  The savings are about $80 for the 400 rounds ($.20 savings per round x 400) and my labor was figured to be $60 to make them. Savings is still there, but not as big. IMO, I don't worry about labor because it is a hobby and I suspect most others don't. But if you do value your time differently than me, it can be considered

6. Do you shoot often, or do you want to shoot more often?

Reloading will make the most sense if you shoot often or desire to shoot more and want to reduce the price per round so that you can shoot more for the same amount of $$ spent. Like was said a bit earlier, reloading may not make much sense if you are a casual shooter.

7. Do you like to tinker?

From some of the examples above, it seems clear that reloading takes a bit of time to do, some skills to learn, and a near continuous learning curve. To enjoy the savings in $, you need to enjoy the process of reloading. I do enjoy the process, I like to learn, and I find it really rewarding to roll my own ammo. In the politically charged world with so many politicians trying to take our gun rights away, I value the new skills learned to load ammunition more than I ever thought I would. I don't mind the repetitive steps required (and there are lots of repetitive steps, doing the same thing over and over again) but I turn on the radio, have a pop to drink and go to town. Usually at only 1 to 2 hours at a time. Sometimes only 30 minutes at a time. Walk by the shop, go in and prep another 100 or more cases by doing the trimming. Maybe I spent 15 minutes but I am closer to prepping that batch of 1000cases.

8. Do you compete?

This is an area that can really pay off for a reloader. If you are a competitive pistol shooter, you will go through piles of ammo. Reloading maybe the only way you can keep up with competing. For the Bullseye shooter at our club, lead only bullets must be used. Reloading will allow you to get lead target loads to keep up with your weekly shooting. I also like the fact that when I practice or shoot with my kids and wife, the target loads I made are lower recoiling and more enjoyable to shoot a bunch during a range session.

9. Do you shoot rifles?

Pistol reloading saves money, but rifle reloading really saves money. The example above for .223 target ammo is at least $.55/round savings. But if you like some hot shot calibers, the savings will be even more. Strange calibers that are not very popular have very high factory ammo costs. But the reloaded costs are just as low as about any other common rifle round like .223 or .308.  It would not be surprising to save more than $1 per round for some stuff like 300 win mag and the like. My one example for me was the .300 blackout. Factory ammo for this cartridge is usually about $1 per and that is why not as many shoot it. But reloads are only $.33 each.

10. Do you live for accuracy bragging rights?

If you want to milk the best accuracy out of your particular rifle, there isn't a better way than to reload. Factory loads will be loaded with quality components and if it is reputable, be accurate. But those factory loads are built to standards that work in any rifle out there but that may not be perfect for your rifle. Reloading will allow you to tailor the round to be just right. Such as adjusting the amount of powder (to get a specific velocity), the type powder, the type of projectile, how far the bullet is set from the lands of the rifling, or how far the case is resized (for bolt actions, you can resize just enough for your chamber whereas factory loads will be to SAMMI specs and have more headspace). And there are other tricks that can be done to improve the load for your rifle. Too many to list for this article.

11. Do you hunt?

You can hand craft your hunting load using just the bullet you want, at just the velocity you want, and tailor the accuracy to be better than factory. And you also would get the satisfaction of using your own handload during the hunt.

12. Does your family like you?

You're going to spend a bunch of time in the basement or garage. Do you need to get away for the family for stretches of time? Do they need you to get away for stretches of time? Who knows really, but as long as my ""chores"" are done, the time spent by myself loading is peaceful and stress free.


Erie County SCOPE Chapter holds monthly meetings every 3rd Thursday of the month. Meetings are located at Harvey D. Morin VFW Post, 965 Center Road, West Seneca, NY 14224 and begin at 7pm.

Erie County Chapter

Carl Leas Chairman carlpride[at]msn.com 716-656-0350

Frain Boncore Secretary frankboncore[at]hotmail.com 716-674-3523

Please show your support for your 2nd amendment rights with your membership to the NRA and SCOPE. There are many links through these organizations to support your gun rights. Be pro-active in contacting your politicians.