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Newsletters - 'ON TARGET'

Williams Sportsman’s Club

   “On Target!”


September 2020                                            by Bruce Speirs



A Word from the President

I hope you enjoyed our WSC Newsletter last month.  Your Board of Directors and I feel it is important to keep everyone up to speed on our activities and all the good things and improvements that are happening.  To get you the latest info the newsletter will be published immediately following each monthly meeting. 

As this issue is chock full of important info so you may want to get a cup of coffee and settle in for a spell.  Lots of good stuff in here on Range Safety and improvements.

And if you have not been out to the Range lately just stop by and check things out.  Better yet bring a pistol or rifle along and cap off a few rounds to ‘keep the edge’ sharp!

Keith Heimes, President WSC


Lady’s Only Shoot held on September 12th, 2020 declared a Big Success! 


Event Coordinator & RSO Chuck Corcoran showing the assembled ladies the common characteristics of a revolver.  The class portion was held at the Williams Recreation Center

Even though a last-minute location change for academics had to be dealt with, we had a very successful event.  Headed up by Chuck Corcoran, 10 ladies received a comprehensive day of academics and Range shooting.  First stop was the City of Williams recreation center for classroom instruction in safe firearms handling procedures that included hands on demonstrations of various types of firearms. 

Next, they all enjoyed a complementary lunch provided by "Chef" Ernie Hernandez before heading off to the William's Shooting Range for some practical experience with their own firearms.  WSC Range Safety Officers/Instructors were there to assist them with the goal of providing them a safe, no pressure, no embarrassment, comfortable environment to build basic skills and confidence with their pistols.  Numerous rounds were fired downrange on paper targets and the days event ended with the ladies ringing steel gongs with remarkable precision. Here’s a list of the Ladies –

Cielo Balux                  Mary Freddie              Sherry Freddie-Bain                Dulce Hernandez       

Eva Janes                     Bonnie Jennings          Sally Richards                          Kathy Robertson

Pam Schabacker         Marie Talavera




Keith briefs on sights & targets              The ladies then begin sending rounds down range

WSC President Keith Heimes demonstrates a proper handgun grip          

Range Rules are briefed




Mostly semi-automatic pistols with a few revolvers were used in calibers from .22 to 9mm

It should be noted that two of the ladies drove in from Winslow and two from Phoenix.  When asked what made us so popular they stated that first time shooting opportunities specifically orientated for ladies are difficult to find.

WSC personnel who facilitated the program -

Chuck Corcoran – RSO & Event Coordinator

Keith Heimes – RSO & WSC President

Bruce Speirs – RSO & WSC Vice President

Matthew Fleece – CSRO & WSC Treasurer

Warren Weir – RSO & Sporting Clays Dir.

Ernie Hernandez – WSC Past Pres. & "Chef"

Leyder Ness – RSO

Jack Douglas - RSO

Dale Vicari - RSO

Chris Mayer - RSO/Event Photographer

Mike Schabacker - NRA Instructor


All in all it was a great day and the WSC expects to offer this event program again next year.

1963 Colt Cobra .38 Special “Creep Repellent” advertisement

Range Activities

Range Schedule

The Range was closed to our use on the 2nd – 4th for training by Arizona Court personnel.  It is further slated for closure Sept 23rd – 25th for additional LE training.

Remember - the WSC Range is controlled by the City of Williams operating under a USFS Special Use Permit and Williams PD has overall authority.  That being said we, the members of the WSC, must remain flexible and do our part to maintain our shooting privileges.  Make it a routine to check the WSC website for updates and important announcements.  See the article entitled “New Informational Signage at the Range Gate” under Range Improvements for further info.

Range Procedure Updates – IMPORTANT!

The RSO’s want to remind everyone to please check in with the RSO as soon as you get to the Range and before you bring your firearms out.  The Range may be “Hot” and the RSO busy so be patient and give them a minute to work you into the action.  And for you shooters on the line you may be asked to help out by accommodating the occasional intermission of a “COLD” range being declared to let our fellow WSC shooters set up and join in.

The second item involves picking up spent brass.  Many of our shooters are reloaders and to them brass is gold!  That being said, many have asked if during a “COLD” range, besides shooters being permitted down range to service their targets, if they could also be permitted to pick up their brass from behind and in front of the shooting benches.  This was approved but at NO TIME will shooters be allowed to initiate any activity ON THE SHOOTING BENCH.  The shooting bench is OFF LIMITS during a COLD range!  If you have collected brass, either retain for your personnel use or dispose of in a trash can.  The on duty RSO will specifically approve brass pickup operations.  The RSO must weigh the delay this may impose on the group if a “COLD” range was requested only for a minor interlude vs. the time involved if a mass quantity of brass is to be collected.  We will all endeavor to coordinate our activities as best we can.

And we are getting more and more shooters – which is good – but this means more oversite demands on our RSO’s.  With SAFETY as goal #1, the RSO’s may find it beneficial to conduct a Range Safety brief before shooting begins.  The Do’s and Don’ts and Meanings of HOT, COLD, CEASE FIRE, COMMENCE FIRE, etc., and the occasional sounding of a Whistle will be covered.  All WSC members are expected to understand and comply with all Safety directives issued by the acting RSO.

Chamber Flags

We just received a batch of new style chamber flags.  They are of two types; one for pistols and one for rifles.  We expect everyone will be pleased with them as they offer a better griping surface and are more durable.  You will find them in open topped trays mounted on two of the shooting ramadas rear support poles.  They were purchased by the club for your use and are an integral part of our established range rules.  Remember – Safety is no Accident!

NEW - Firing Line Status Flag –>  a RED FLAG means a HOT Range

Chief RSO Matthew Fleece monitoring the firing line during a recent shooting session. 

When the WSC Target Range is open the American Flag flown from the top of the flag pole with a large red flag denotes the Range is Open and Shooting Activities are in progress.  As you approach the rear of the shooting ramadas you might happen to see a second, smaller red flag displayed.  This RED FLAG denotes the range line is HOT.  As discussed earlier please check in with the RSO first and await their direction before approaching the shooting benches.

Range Improvements

Range assigned an Official US Post Office Address

Yes Virginia, the WSC Shooting Range now has a real address!  Why is this important?  The WSC’s Range location will now go in to the Williams’ Geospatial Information System (GIS) and then passed on to other users like Coconino County, Google maps, and such to guide in visitors, our friends, and guests.  And if there ever is a fire or other emergency it will serve to direct in our Public Safety First Responders and even a medivac helicopter if need be.  This is important and more so for our fellow Range users – the various law enforcement agencies – as they conduct much more intensive ‘action’ oriented weapons training programs.  Sure beats trying Morse code, smoke signals, flares guns, or jungle drums!

There are no plans to install a mail box to receive club correspondence so please continue to use our long established USPS mailing address of PO Box 131 Williams AZ 86046-0131.

New Informational Signage at the Range Gate

Matthew Fleece, Chief Range Safety Officer, has installed new informational signage just inside the range gate.  This sign is designed as a secondary notification effort.  It is intended to display important open and closure information.  Please take a minute and check the WSC website for any last minute updates before making the drive out.  If you don’t and you happen upon a closed and locked gate when you thought it should have been open this sign will explain the situation to you.  Tip - Make note of any information displayed when you visit the range as it might just save you a wasted drive out and a frustrating drive home.


WSC Shotgun Activities

Planning continues to evolve

The WSC, besides incorporating the equipment and assets of the Flagstaff Clays Target Shooters, also accepted the responsibility for the shotgun range and its equipment.  As the range is located on the grounds of Camp Raymond (south end of Garland Prairie), it has been operating under a cooperative agreement with the Boy Scouts of America, Phoenix Council.  A new agreement for our use has been submitted for approval.  We are anxiously awaiting word on our user agreement and it is expected soon.  Even private organizations have a bit of red tape!

In the meantime work continues with more fine tuning of the target clays throwing machines.  As with anything that operates stuff gets old, needs lubricating, gets out of catty wampus, and then either gets stiff, falls off, or just disintegrates.  Our intrepid “Sporting Clays Division” folks have been busy tightening, cleaning, lubricating, tweaking and just ‘sweet talking’ everything into cooperating.  Now this is not all work and no play as someone, just someone has to test all this out!  As you can see in the pictures an able bodied group of volunteers was forced to shoot a few rounds of clays - and all for the good of the organization mind you!  

Range Safety Officers

Trauma Training for RSO’s

WSC Board Member Annette Perkins arraigned for a second group of our RSO’s to receive valuable lifesaving “Stop the Bleed” training by Adal Lopez from Guardian Air Ambulance.  Adal is a former US Military Special Operations Combat Medic and a Mideast veteran.  A big Thank You Again! to Annette & Adal!

Club Management News

You too can share in the fun!

From the WSC Bylaws - Section 5.  Rights, Privileges and Duties of Members

a)      In that the WSC is maintained for the benefit of every member, each member should strive to share in the responsibility for its continued operation.  Therefore, it is vital to the WSC that each member volunteer a portion of his/her time, knowledge and effort as is possible to achieve the goals and objectives of the WSC so the burden of operating the WSC is not consistently placed on just a few members.


Do you have a skill that would benefit the WSC?  We have lots of different projects and tasks that occasionally require some help.  Stay tuned for ‘Help Wanted’ announcements. 


Membership Report

Welcome new members!

This is a list of the new members who have joined since our August 2020 WSC membership meeting.   While we wanted to recognize everyone who joined a new WSC members since January this proved to be a challenge.  As a compromise and starting with the next newsletter we will announce the new members as they come aboard.

 Recent signups as received by the September 9th meeting -

Arno Dilanchian

Jerry Dolbow

Raymond Christian

Dennis Granquist

Nate Hedges

Christopher Heth

Jerry Smiley

Michael Montoya

Marie Montoya

David Pulley

William Pulley

Janice Romstad

Brandon Trevino

Bill Vance


Quotable Quote

“The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse, hearing the snap, gets the cheese.”

Snap ‘Shot’ Caption -> “Group Therapy by Dr. Launching One Downrange”

I find my time at the range ‘cathartic.’  Say what?  Well per Webster’s dictionary my range time ‘produces a feeling of being purified emotionally, spiritually, or psychologically as a result of an intense emotional experience or therapeutic technique.’

I wonder if I can write it off my taxes as a medical expense…..


“Got Magazines?” – Submitted by WSC member Chris Mayer

“For any of you who might need magazines, here is a link for Magpul AR-15 30 rounders for $10.44 each when you buy 10 with a discount code at Brownells.   The best buy I ever had was from a dealer at the big December gun show for 11 mags for $100 (no tax or shipping) and that was 2 years ago.  Just an FYI and pass it on to anyone you thing might need mags.”  Chris


WSC Lock, Stock & Barrel Twist Trivial Pursuit

“When did the first carbine version of the AR-15 (M-16) appear?”

The answer is in 1966 with the prototype “XM177E1.”  This effort resulted in the refined “E2” version in 1967.

History - First issued to US Army Special Forces for use in Viet Nam, what most distinguished the CAR-15 from its M16 cousin was its telescoping buttstock, patented in 1966 by its designer, Colt engineer Robert Roy.  It had two simple settings: extended or retracted.  And instead of the M16’s foot-long, triangular handguard, the CAR’s was about half that length, round and ribbed. 



Long before the “M-4A1 Carbine” came on scene in the first Persian Gulf War the first successful version of an AR-15 Carbine was the Colt XM-177E2 issued to Green Berets in Viet Nam some 54 years ago.

While the M16 had a three-prong or birdcage flash hider, the CAR-15 sported a unique 4¼" “moderator” of machined steel with six gas-vent slits and an expansion chamber that slightly reduced the CAR’s sound signature, acted as a counterweight, and reduced muzzle flash.

Colt’s first CAR-15 version had a 10" barrel and, like the M16A1, included a forward bolt assist.  When it was acquired by the U.S. Army in 1967, it was designated the XM177E1 with more than 2,800 fielded, mostly to U.S. Army Special Forces units.  Internally, Colt called this version the Model 609. 

But the XM177E1 was too loud and incapable of launching a rifle grenade, while, just like the early version of the M16, it sometimes experienced extraction problems that raised its chamber pressure above the specified 52,000 p.s.i.  In response to these and other issues Colt developed the CAR-15’s final version, the XM177E2, dubbed by Colt the Model 629.  First, the barrel was increased to 11.5", which notably reduced muzzle blast and sound signature; the chamber was chrome-plated to eliminate extraction problems; and a ring was installed behind the moderator to allow the firing of rifle grenades.  This final version had a slightly longer overall length, adding 1.5", and a weight increase of about half a pound.

Today - In response to the recent “Retro” craze involving everything from cars, boats, and guns, Colt’s Manufacturing, besides bringing back the Python revolver and some single action pistols, has just released the “XM177E2 Retro Carbine.” 

The Colt website states – “This Retro Classic Carbine is built to the Original Colt Model 629 specifications from the 1960s.  The 11.5" Barrel has an extended flash hider designed to replicate the original moderator that was so iconic for this model.  We've cut no corners, reproducing the original Vinyl-Acetate coated Aluminum Buttstock and reproducing the US


The XM177E2 Commando Returns!

Property Marked rollmarks.   This is a true collectible that's as comfortable on the range as it will be in an enthusiast's display.  Colt is making it available just like the original in almost every way except one – the MSRP is not the 1967 $147 price but a modernized $2499!

Old Guy Logic

“I didn't fight my way to the top of the food chain to be a vegetarian!”


(I was overwhelmed by many telling me that this old codger is a close likeness to yours truly.  Balderdash!  I don’t have elbow patches on my jacket, I have a moustache, and I wouldn’t be caught dead without my baseball hat!  Other than that we just might be related as we most certainly need our fiber!)

William Tocci,
Aug 26, 2020, 6:57 AM
William Tocci,
Sep 17, 2020, 11:18 AM