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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  CAS FAQ (Moderators: Marshal Halloway, Will Ketchum)  |  Topic: Advice to the New CAS Shooter 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: Advice to the New CAS Shooter  (Read 31031 times)
FloraBama Kid
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« on: May 24, 2004, 07:58:06 pm »


I though it would benefit the new folks to read how some of us got gear for our first match. There is another Topic at this link where pards are telling what they are shooting today. For some of us that was a long journey from our first match to where we are today. Smiley

For me, I found the name and number of the local SASS Club President and called him on a Friday night. I just wanted to ask if I could come out and look at some of the guns and ask questions. He gave me a lot of info on the phone and ended by asking what caliber I wanted to shoot the he said "if ya can find some ammo bring it out, if ya can't don't worry come out anyway."

Here is what I had for my first match:
1 Cowboy hat $19.95 from Sheplers
Black Jean
Western shirt with snap buttons
Cowboy boots
Eye glasses and ear plugs

And the most important thing was 2 boxes of .45 LC Cowboy ammo and a box of Winchester AA 12 guage shells.

NOTHING ELSE!!!

The pard I spoke to on the phone supplied all guns, leather and all the instruction I needed to get my first match under my belt. Grin

The bottom line; if you're thinking about going to a match don't hesitate. Just contact one of the local shooters and tell them you want to "try" and everything else will click into place.

Take your time researching and shopping for guns and don't let that slow you down.

Happy Shooting
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« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2004, 02:10:39 pm »

I read articles in Shooting Times and Guns&Ammo about CAS. I visited the local toy (gun) shop owned by Rat River Ranger. I noticed a flyer about a CAS club on his wall. He told me all about it, what guns I needed, leather, etc. So, I went to GunsAmerica and AuctionArms to find some used guns. I chose .44 Mag because I already had brass, bullets, and reloading dies for that caliber. I bought two pistols, a rifle, and gun leather off of those sights. I bought a SxS from Rat River Ranger. I already had boots and jeans. I bought a couple of Oxford shirts that were on sale.  A friend gave me a nice straw cowboy hat. I loaded up two box a .44 Mag cowboy loads, bought a box of shotgun shells, eye plugs, and headed to my first match. I had a blast.

I have not said this before, but if Rat River Ranger had not had that flyer on the wall and told me how much fun this game is, I probably would not be here now. Thanks, RRR.

Slim
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« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2004, 08:05:27 pm »

I'll always have an extra pair of shooters and ammo for ANYONE who just shows up and wants to shoot.  My rifle and shotgun we can share 'cause I always have the extra ammo.  So, if you ever come to Mississippi, drop in and the Mississippi Peacemakers will make you welcome!  Ain't no excuse NOT to shoot 'cause we're all friendly and willing to share.
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« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2004, 09:29:42 pm »

Howdy to all you new folks.

If you go to a shoot, bring a few things.
First, a big smile.. or one will be provided for you Wink
Second, dress as cowboy as you can.. but don't go buying anything.  You might get a change of mind once you see the folks dressed up at the shoot.
Third, bring a belt in your size, that will fit over your clothes.  It's easy to borrow just about everything but a gunbelt that fits can be hard to find (or at least one that's not being used)
Fourth, bring at least some 12 guage shells.  If you can, bring Cowboy 38s or 45s, but that can get real expensive and we don't mind loaning you ammo for your first time.

Most importantly... GO.  I know you think you are imposing on folks, making them work on their play day.. but we love it!  Getting another one hooked on CAS fun is as good as it gets.

Adios,
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Tombstone Runner SASS#54765
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« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2004, 06:28:45 am »

I just started this CAS shooting....I spent all last winter gathering all my stuff!! I really wish I would have gone and shot a match before I bought the guns. It would have been alot less hastle!! Everyone on here is right....just go out to range and whoever is in charge will take care of you!
TR
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Tascosa
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« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2004, 04:46:13 pm »

When I started all I had was boots, spurs, chaps, 3 or 4 hats, a few wild rags, holster and gun belt, and my Colt SA, .45 colt.
I even had a couple of horses and a few saddles but they hadn't invented mounted shooting yet. I did that my self shooting a rattler from horseback... I never saw my horse jump sideways so dang fast before...or after Shocked I missed the snake's head but hit him in the body. For my second shot, I dismounted. I might have been born at night but it sure wans't last night!!!!
I went to a local match and a pard let me borrow his lever action and his shot gun. I offered to pay for the ammo I shot in the lever gun (I had my own shotgun ammo) but he wouldn't take it. That was when only one pistol wae required.
Everyone made me feel welcome, and it was a few matches before I got a Rossi 92, and another year or two before I got a shotgun.
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« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2004, 08:29:58 am »

I showed up at my first match gimping along on a  broken toe so I din' do any shootin that first time out. But several of the pards there tried purdy hard ta talk me into usin' thier gear ennyway.

Next time out I had already acquired the gunz I needed, a used .45 Remington 75, a Cabelas Millenium in .45, a .357 Rossi lever gun, and a well worn old SxS twelve bore. I wuz dressed in black jeans, an old white dress shirt wif the collar cut off, plain black cowbot boots, an old hat that had been over the mountains 'n down the creek, and a pair of CLIP ON suspenders. Shocked (I prolly looked 'bout as silly as a sunbonnet on a groundhog! Cheesy ) And I had the time of my life!

Bottom line...ain't no reason not to go 'n give it a look see! Ya might/could miss out on the best thing ya ever had chance at..'cept fer that redheaded gal you nebber worked up the courage ta ask fer a date wen you wuz a teenager! Wink
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« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2004, 11:22:42 am »

I bought a couple of 357 Ruger Blackhawks, a used Rossi 92, and a Norinco 97.  I bought some San Pedro Leather. I already had the Western Clothes(standard issue in Texas). I just had to learn how to shoot a single action pistol. Its a lot different than shooting double action. Remembering to cock the hammer with my left hand has been the hardest thing to master.  I'm righthanded.  I'ts been a lot of fun and I have gotten to meet many great folks. I won't ever be a World champ or a Overall champ, hitting the target every time is my goal. Accuracy is more important that speed.
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Vin Weasel
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« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2004, 01:02:52 pm »

Lotta good advice here.  I'm a newbie, and I've started my collection, but don't have a perfect setup yet. 

I've got a Norinco 97 which I love to shoot.  I've got 3 Cap 'n Ball pistolas...a '51 Navy Reb, Walker and a Remington "Buffalo".  The Navy is fine for me, but the Walker is a mite heavy for a feller my size, and the Remington, besides having "modern" style sights, is just too akward with it's 12 inch barrel. 

I've also got a couple Win. 94's, a .44 Mag. Wrangler and a .357 Trapper, and aside from the inherent shortcomings of the 94 action where CAS is concerned, I've read that the 9 round mag. capacity would also be a handicap.  The Trapper is NIB, so I'm probably going to trade or sell it for a 92 copy of some sort in .357/.38. 

I've got a cartridge belt, but I'm waiting on holsters til I make up my mind which pistols I'm gonna get.  I'm planning on starting with the Navy, but I'm looking to get a .357/.38 SAA clone or Vaquero to go with it, and later another one to match.

Suggestions anyone?  Much appreciated.

Vin
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Klondike
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« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2004, 06:15:16 pm »

Really good topic and lots of good advice.
Myself, I had seen a little about CAS on OLN and said to myself, sure wish there was something like this around here. Really thought it was a California thing. My buddy and I were in a pawn shop looking at guns (hunting) and out of the blue this salesman said "well if you boys like shooting, you should come out and watch us cowboy shoot". It has been downhill ever since.
The biggest mistake a new shooter (IMHO) can make is trying to get everything together before going to the first match. I think most of us started with a different set of guns and holsters than we use now, I know I have gone through several sets to get where I am today. If the new shooter will just go to the range and try different options, they will usually save money in the long run.
Like some one else said, GO. I don't think you will be disappointed.
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Doc Shapiro
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« Reply #10 on: August 02, 2004, 06:28:26 pm »

Klondike, how many sets of guns have you gone through?  I'm on my 4th set of revolvers, 3rd rifle, and 3rd and 4th shotguns.  Just ordered my 4th rig.

I don't think it matters what ya start with.  At some point, you're gonna change!

That reminds me.  I have a Marlin in 45 Colt to sell....

Doc
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Doc Shapiro
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« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2004, 06:48:56 pm »

In the selection of equipment, the best thing I can offer is that you need to be brutally honest with yourself.  Are you going to try to be competitive?  Are you going to try to recreate a particular time period?  Do you want to shoot authentic calibers and BP? 

Figure out what you like and apply that to your personality.  At that point it should dramatically reduce the list of options and you can more easily select the firearms that best suit your personal goals and tastes.

I started out without any sort of introspection.  As a result I went through several different sets of guns.  I'm still not totally satisfied with what I have.  One more change and that'll be set.  Should be done by the time September rolls around.

The more honest you are with yourself, the less money you'll end up spending and the happier you'll be.  This translates to more fun!

Doc
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Klondike
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« Reply #12 on: August 02, 2004, 07:29:00 pm »

Doc,
Right now I have 4 sets of main match pistols in the safe, I have gone through at least 4 other sets, mostly different calibers. I am on my 5th rifle, started with 92 in 45, went to Marlin in 45, Marlin in 38/357 , Marlin Cowboy Comp, and finally to 73's in 38/357 (not counting the brief stint with a Lightning). Have stayed with the 97'a all the way through, but have gone through several, did try SxS's but really was not for me. OK some of it is in the trading and aquisition of guns, but that goes unsaid, it is all part of the game and fun.
You are right, a new shooter needs to decide whether they are going for period correct and authenticity or going to be competetive. Makes a lot of difference in leather as well as firearms. Not to say that a shooter cannot be competetive with BP and authenticity in the right category.
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Big Hext Finnigan
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« Reply #13 on: August 02, 2004, 10:39:08 pm »

Howdy,

This continues to be a good thread!  Nice!
I'm not even sure that brutal Smiley honesty will stop you from evolving.  Because CAS has so many facets, you just keep trying on different angles and see what fits. 

I guess the main thing is buy middle of the road stuff when you first start, cause you can almost always sell it off, if and when, you change your mind.  You can add to your stockpile or rotate out.  Right now, there have never been more and different guns available.. Enjoy!

Adios,
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Klondike
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« Reply #14 on: August 03, 2004, 11:14:36 am »

One thing I advise against for any new shooter (not trying to start a war, but being honest) is buying a Winchester 94 for CAS. It is a tried and proven hunting rifle, but does not really work all that well for CAS.
Most new shooters wind up in a pawn shop or gun show and see 94's in pistol caliber and they are inexpensive compared to other CAS rifles, and next thing you know they have one and it does not fit their needs, or does not work (jams) and it is hard to get rid of. I try to advise them to try other guns before committing to any one brand or caliber.
Also if they are not presently re-loading cost of ammo becomes an issue, and 45, 44/40, 38/40 ammo is not cheap. These are just some of the issues new shooters have to face and decide on. It is also where seasoned shooters can be the most help, so we need to guide them as to what is best for the new shooter, not by what our personal likes or dislikes are.
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FloraBama Kid
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« Reply #15 on: August 03, 2004, 07:06:13 pm »

Klondike you have a good point about selecting caliber. I wish I had started reloading BEFORE I got into CAS. I almost thing reloading is a must for CAS especially if you want to practice between matches.

I started with .38/.357 because of the price of ammo and have since learned all about Mr. Dillon and now also have a .45LC set of Rodeos and a '66 too.

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« Reply #16 on: August 03, 2004, 07:22:23 pm »

Howdy,

I'll disagree with the reloading as a must.  I don't and I shoot a bit.
I buy from Ammodirect, but there are other good online sources for ammo.  It comes down to the value of your time. 

And Klondike is right,  the Win 94 is the roughest of all rifles to gentle. Wink 

One more thing... 45LC rifles, even Win 94s tend to work pretty well.  The big, dumb, happy cartridge just keeps on working.  I do love it.  And that makes a difference when you are starting out, cause a balky rifle is no fun at all.  If you need to go with 357 in your rifle, then please skip past the Win 94 and the 92 and get a Marlin 94C or carbine.  It is the most likely to keep on working, with 38s.

But again.. Get out and go visit the friendliest folks in sport, you'll be glad you did.
Adios,
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Klondike
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« Reply #17 on: August 03, 2004, 08:49:26 pm »

BHF,
I agree with reloading not mandatory to start. I, like you, used Ammodirect for a while before I started loading, very reasonable and consistent loads. When I got to the point that I wanted specific loads with specific bullets is when I considered and started loading my own, plus I do experiment every now and  with different loads or bullets. I also find it relaxing (zen? Grin)
For the entry level shooter, reloading is not needed!
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FloraBama Kid
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« Reply #18 on: August 03, 2004, 09:02:03 pm »

On reloading you both are right and I did not mean a new shooter needed to reload but in the long run I "almost" think reloading is a must....(put those wips away!!  Smiley)

I was checking into the bulk ammo when I decided to start reloading. The costs do look pretty reasonable. Hey, afterall, reloading IS fun.

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« Reply #19 on: August 05, 2004, 05:42:29 pm »

Dan,
You will get every kind of advice on which pistol is best and why. The best I can tell you is go to a match and talk to shooters there, you will find they will be more than glad for you to try their guns. Sort through them, see what you like best and what you don't and what you can afford.
If you want to just jump in I would go to Ruger Vaqueros to start with, they are reasonable in price and very durable (strong), then if you decide you do not like them, you can usually re-coup most of your money fairly easy. My personal preference is 4 3/4" barreled models in 38/357, they seem to balance better for me in this barrel length. as we have said in this thread 38/357 is the least expensive for some one that does not reload, if you reload it is still the least expensive. Good Luck and welcome to cowboy shooting.
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« Reply #20 on: March 23, 2005, 09:59:18 am »

Just getting interesting in checking out this cowboy shooting thang, I've researched a little and found a friendly looking club near me called the "Mississippi Peacemakers", but couldn't help notice the thread starters moniker, "FloraBama Kid".  For a guy who has visited the "Redneck Riviera" on a regular basis over the past 40 odd years, the "FloraBama" rings a notoriously significant bell.

What is the club name over there in the Bordertown, pard?  Website? Range location? Match dates?

Thanky much,
Deputy Dog
Dixie, MS
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LazyK Pejay
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« Reply #21 on: August 23, 2005, 03:18:23 pm »

Do most people do shoot guns and rifles besides pistols. I just have my Uberti Cattleman for this. Thx.

LazyK Pejay
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Coop Trawlaine
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« Reply #22 on: September 07, 2005, 07:37:18 pm »

Hi Fellas and Pretty Gals,

I joined SASS about six months ago,  one of the Postal Workers at my local post office and I got taliking and I mentioned that I write western novels and he suggested I check SASS out and invited me to come watch the next meet of The Hole in the Wall Gang.  I have been wearing western gear for decades now so a basic outfit was not too much a problem... I wore a black high crown Stetson (well used), banded collar chambray shirt, black jeans and a black leather vest.  I already owned one '51 Sheriff's Colt .36 B&C, a slick belt and a drop loop holster, and one of my many pair of boots, this pair very plain with rounded toe and riding heel.

Anyway I was a spectator for a couple of months and was enjoying just being there, finally one of the participants asked why I wasn't shooting and I mentioned that my now new '78 Remy's had never been shot and I didn't even know how to load them.  I have this hinkyness about BP loading, don't trust myself, yet.  So he said don't worry come next time and we will give you a pair of guns to use and free ammo.  No way I could refuse.   I was lent a pair of .38's that were like Colt Peacemakers with 4 1/2 in barrels and a '97 pump shotgun and .38 lever action, I never had so much fun in a month of sundays, I am hooked.

You will never participate in any sport that has nicer people than CAS, unlike other sports where it is almost a cardinal sin to touch another's gear, theses cowboys and cowgirls are down home friendly and always ready to lend a helping hand or revolver, rifle or shotgun, until you get settled in and get your own basic arsenal.
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« Reply #23 on: September 07, 2005, 08:16:27 pm »

A big OOPS!  I am afraid I will have to break my fingers just to teach them to write what I think....LOL
I meant '58 Remys.
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« Reply #24 on: November 03, 2005, 04:12:55 am »

I started out in mounted shooting so 45 cal was a given. I already had one pistol and located a second on Auction arms.I had the western wear already in my closet.When I realised that my horses werent ment for mounted shooting, I made the change to SASS. I have several Double shotguns, but none that I wanted to shoot that much or make changes to. So I got a Russian sxs that is modified just for cas.I also got a marlin lever gun in 45. I went to my first match thinking that I had it all! Boy was I wrong.The leather that is best for mounted doesnt work well for SASS,I needed to add shotgun loops,And riding boots arent much fun to walk in. The one piece of advice that gets repeted over and over [ that I didnt listen too ] is Go to a couple of matches before you buy!
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