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The Liberty Pole

Center up!
Welcome Shooter, to the August edition of The Liberty Pole, Project Appleseed’s newsletter.  We have a great issue lined up for you this month. As always, "Shooters! Your Preparation Period Begins Now!"
Words from the Founding Fathers
 "Wear none of thine own chains; but keep free, whilst thou art free.”
   William Penn
"Some Fruits of Solitude"
August's Event Highlight
In each issue of our newsletter, we highlight one of our events. In this issue, we want to showcase a recent event in Manchester, Tennessee on July 1-2, 2023. 

Below are some words from the Shoot Boss, Tennessee Beast.

"I appreciate all the patriots that came out this past weekend...both students and volunteers.  It was a hot one and Calienteseed patches were earned!!!  I have respect for everyone that came out and am very grateful for the visiting instructors from Florida and Georgia.  They were a great asset! "

Click HERE to view the full After Action Report.  
August's History Article:
Battle of Oriskany
On August 6, 1777, British forces under the command of Sir John Johnson engaged American forces under Nicholas Herkimer in the Battle of Oriskany, resulting in one of the few battles of the war where all the participants were North American.

In the summer of 1777, British forces under the command of John Burgoyne moved into the Hudson Valley to cut off New England from the rest of the Thirteen Colonies. Burgoyne hoped to move through the valley and reach Albany. British Lieutenant Colonel Barry St. Leger was ordered to support this column by attacking Fort Stanwix in the Mohawk Valley.

On August 2, 1777, St. Leger arrived outside Fort Stanwix. In the meantime, American forces in the area were alerted to the British presence and began to dispatch troops to relieve the fort. General Nicholas Herkimer was the first to be selected to relieve the fort; with him were almost 800 militiamen and 60 Oneidas. Apprised of Herkimer’s column, St. Leger dispatched Sir John Johnson, Joseph Brant, and about 100 Loyalist light infantry, supplemented by about 400 Mohawks. 

By August 6, Herkimer’s men were within a day’s march of the fort. He had hoped to send word to the American defenders and coordinate an attack, but the couriers were delayed. Herkimer decided to press on to the fort. Johnson planned to ambush the Americans six miles from the fort, in the dense undergrowth of a ravine, where the trail crossed a small stream. He and his Native allies designed the perfect ambush, with the Loyalists blocking the path and their Native American allies poised along either side. 

At 10 a.m., the American column moved into the ravine, with Herkimer mounted near the front. Johnson wanted the Americans to run headlong into his Loyalists and have their Native American allies swoop in to decimate the column trapped in the ravine. Instead, some of the Native Americans at the rear of the American column opened fire preemptively. As a result, the portion of Herkimer’s men who were outside the ambush zone quickly fled. Herkimer himself was struck in the leg. His men laid him against a tree, but when they suggested he retire to the rear, he replied, “I will face the enemy,” and calmly sat, directing the brutally close and intense battle. A thunderstorm halted the fighting for nearly an hour before the fighting resumed.

By 11 a.m., Herkimer’s messengers had reached the fort, and a supporting party was organized. When the thunderstorm passed, American Lieutenant Colonel Marinus Willett led 250 men out and proceeded to raid the unoccupied British camp. Growing tired of the fighting Johnson’s Mohawks, the light infantry eventually withdrew.

Herkimer and his men withdrew to Fort Dayton, where Herkimer’s shattered leg was amputated. He died of infection on August 16. By August 21, an American relief column lifted the siege of Fort Stanwix.

Click HERE if you want to join in the discussion on the forum.
August's Marksmanship Tip
"How to establish an effective BSZ with a non-standard rifle"
This month's article is another one from our archives. It comes from one of our Master Instructors, ItsanSKS.

At Appleseeds across the nation, we work with our students to zero their rifles at 25m (82').  This is done for many reasons, not the least of which is the suitability of this distance in how it correlates to an effective Battle Sight Zero for many, many rifles.  Usually without any further adjustment, a military pattern centerfire rifle can take a 25m zero onto the KD range, and ring steel out to about 300 yards.

That's all well and good, but what about your scoped .30-06?  Or how about any number of different rifle/ammo/sight combinations that would invalidate the 25m zero?  Or, what if you aren't using military-spec ammunition?

There is a simple, yet effective means of determining a BSZ for *any* rifle/ammo combo, and I will attempt to explain that procedure below.

Start by establishing an exact 100yd zero on the rifle (meaning POA = POI) *DO NOT USE 6'oclock hold! (explained at the bottom)
Shoot at 200 yds with the 100yd zero.  Record the difference in POI vs POA.
Shoot at 300 yds with the 100yd zero.  Record the difference in POI vs POA.
Shoot at 400 yds with the 100yd zero.  Record the difference in POI vs POA.
Shoot at 500 yds with the 100yd zero.  Record the difference in POI vs POA.

For illustrative purposes, I will add some numbers to the above:  (The following is based on the amalgam "Rifleman's Trajectory" of 3,3,3,4 )

100@100 =  0"
100@200 = -6
100@300 = -15
100@400 = -27
100@500 = -47

Next, we need to know the size of the target we wish to be able to 'effectively' engage with our BSZ.  Let's keep with the AS standard 20" target.
In order for our round to be effective against a 20" target, it can neither rise, nor fall, more than 10", and less is better!

Looking at the numbers above, we can already see that our 100yd zero does pretty good against the 20" target, falling only 5" too low at 300.  We can do better than that!
If we add 2MOA to our 100yd zero, our resulting impacts should be thus:

100 + 2 @100 = +2
100 + 2 @200 = -2
100 + 2 @300 = -9
100 + 2 @400 = -19
100 + 2 @500 = -37

1" inside the target @ 300 isn't very comforting, as that's just 1/3 MOA! Can we do better?  YOU BET!  Lets add another MOA to our initial 100yd zero, and see what that does for us:

100 + 3 @100 = +3
100 + 3 @200 =  0
100 + 3 @300 = -6
100 + 3 @400 = -15
100 + 3 @500 = -32

It looks like setting our sights to be 3" high at 100 yards (in essence using a 200yd zero), will give us a nice BSZ, capable of making an effective hit at somewhere between 300 and 400 yards.  Not bad, right?
Why not keep going?  Why not add more?  Because of Maximum Ordinate (MO).  Changing the departure angle of the round is going to affect how high the round eventually gets above the line of sight before it starts coming back down.  Without consulting ballistics tables and whatnot, it is extremely difficult to determine the MO of a particular rifle/sight/ammunition combination.

BSZ should be your rifles default sight setting, or Base Sight Setting.  That is to say, that whenever you put your rifle into the safe, it's sights should be set to its BSZ.  This enables the Rifleman to grab his rifle and engage targets out to ~300yd  without even touching his sights.  If he knows the target is beyond 300, say at 400 yards, it would be a simple matter of dialing in an additional 3 MOA to his sights.  To engage a target at 500yards, starting with the BSZ above, the Rifleman would need to add only 6 MOA to his BSZ.  In essence, the Rifleman would then only have to remember two numbers: 3@400, 6@500.

I have used the above process for establishing a BSZ with a number of different rifles (20" iron sighted AR-15, scoped 7.62x54r PSL & iron sighted .303 British) and found that it worked exceptionally well.

If you have the time, inclination & the facilities to do so, please test out the above with your rifles, and report your results.  We already know what the M1's BSZ should be- 200yd zero +2 MOA, resulting in a 275yd BSZ.  Let's see how close to that the above process gets us.

Now, why not use 6 'o clock?  Let's say you're zeroing on a 4" target @ 100yds.  If you hold a perfect 6 'o clock, and adjust your sights so that your rounds impact the center of that target, your rounds are already hitting 2" above your POA.  Change the size of your initial zeroing target, and now you have to adjust your sights again to impact the COT, and you haven't even changed distance yet.  By holding COT throughout this process (for the initial zeroing @ 100yds, and doing the same for each subsequent distance) you remove this layer of inconsistency, and it doesn't matter what size targets you use (as long as they are large enough to see, of course).  Personally, I use 4MOA squares for this procedure. 

Editor's Note: You can purchase 4MOA square targets like we use at our events from the Appleseed store HERE.

Read the full thread HERE. And please, I urge you to take part in the discussion yourself and share your own experiences.
Appleseed Store
NEW PRODUCT!!! BULK Appleseed Pens!

You asked for it and we answered! Brand new to the Appleseed Store you can now purchase BULK! 100 Pens for only $75 (a 25% discount). Or as we prefer to call them, Appleseed Trigger Training Devices. Click HERE to buy yours today! 
Rifleman Wisdom Hoodie (Limited Availability)

Rifleman Wisdom Zip Up Hooded Sweatshirt. Great fall item for your collection. This garment is offered in Ash, Dark Green, Chocolate Brown or Purple. Limited availability. Get yours while they last. Only $34.95. Click HERE to buy yours today! 
Upcoming Events
We have TONS of upcoming events lined up all across the country. Below are just a few of the special interest events that we want to mention. Reserve your spot today!  

Click HERE to find a 25m event near you!
Rimfire Known Distance Clinic
Known Distance Clinic
Instructor Boot Camp
Rifleman Boot Camp
Half Day Clinic
Pistol Clinic
Want to Support Project Appleseed?
If you'd like to support Project Appleseed, there are plenty of ways to do so.. You can buy tickets, buy store items, or make a 100% tax deductible donation. We accept and are appreciative of all donations. Of course, the thing valued above all is time. Volunteers; those that can give up their time and help us out, in whatever capacity it may be, are what this program runs on. 
Thank you! Let's stay in touch!
I hope you enjoyed this issue of Project Appleseed's, "The Liberty Pole". Please follow us on the social media links below and keep an eye on our schedule for future events to stay up to date about Project Appleseed. Lastly, if you would like to reach out to the editor, please send an email to Thank you again for taking the time to read this newsletter and especially for being a part of Project Appleseed.

In Liberty,

Roswell "Ross" Crutchfield
Project Appleseed - a 501(c)3 Organization
Lead Newsletter Editor
Designated Shoot Boss 
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