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  #1  
Old 11-26-2006, 06:34 PM
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Question Biathlon Sport & Biathlon Rifles



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BIATHLON: For those that live in Cold Country - reason to own a BI 7-4 & Rifle Video

Kevin Brooker is a biathlon competitor and semi-pro writer.



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The purpose of this site is to inform visitors of the adventures and activities the crew at 6Q.
To read about Kevin's latest races and experiences at the range, please visit his blog.


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Kevin helps promote the sports of biathlon by writing articles about the sport.
Many of them have been published on-line and in print.
He currently writes a bi-monthly piece about his adventures for the website FasterSkier.com
Articles by Kevin - Search for: Kevin Brooker




Related Post & Thread:
Rifle for someone training for a biathlon - Recommendation: Ammunition & Rifle
Left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER

Last edited by aom22; 04-27-2009 at 07:50 AM. Reason: Add Information, Modify Text for Clarity & Add Source Thread Link
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  #2  
Old 11-29-2006, 09:23 PM
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Biathlon

Biathlete.org Equipment



Quote:
The Biathlon Sport

Imagine skiing around a turn at twenty miles per hour with a rifle harnessed on your back.
Out of breath; your heart pounds in your chest as you ski up to a rifle firing point.
Quickly pulling the rifle around from your back, you settle with the first target in sight.
Better calm your nerves quickly to knock down the targets; the clock is running.

Winter Biathlon is a combination of cross country freestyle skiing and rifle marksmanship.
Competitors ski with rifles and shoot at small metal targets fifty meters away.
Missed targets add either fixed penalty time to the final time or require penalty laps on a 180 meter loop.

Summer Biathlon is a combination of cross country running and rifle marksmanship.
Competitors run without rifles, however.
They leave rifles at the shooting range, which is either 25 meters or 50 meters in length,
and pick them up to shoot during the race.
Air rifle (pellet gun) competitions are a variant with a typical 10 meter distance to the target.
In some race formats missed targets require running a penalty lap,
and in others target hits subtract 30 seconds from the final race time.

Shooting
Biathlon competition uses .22 caliber rifles,
except for some summer events which have .177 caliber air rifles.
A race have an even number of stops to shoot prone and standing.
An athlete will shoot at five metal targets at each shooting stop.

Rifles
I get the most questions about rifles.
A biathlon rifle is a .22 caliber rifle, with mechanical sights,
five shot magazines, and a form of bolt action.
No optical sights are allowed.
Often biathlon rifles will also have snow covers for sights
and the end of the barrel, to keep snow out.
Rifles are outfitted with a hand stop and sling for shooting prone,
and a backpack harness for wearing the rifle while skiing.
Trigger weight must be more than 500 grams, and the rifle must be heavier than 3.5 kilograms.


Currently I divide rifles I see at races into three groups
based on price range: entry, amateur, and olympic.
Often clubs already have rifles that you can use, find a club near you and ask.
The downside of using a club rifle is that it
may not fit you well (especially if you're left handed)
and might not be sighted for you during a race.

The common entry market rifle is the marlin 2000 modified for biathlon.
There is a kit which adds a backpack sling and magazine carrier.
I'm not sure if Marlin is still selling the 2000 model.
Find a dealer from their web site.
If not, it's likely you could find one from the biathlon community.

The most common amateur rifle that I've seen lately
is the Baikal 7 made by Ishmash in Russia.
This rifle has been selling in the US for about $1000 US.
If has a quick level bolt for fast reloading.
Compared to the olympic rifles this one is a great value.

Anshutz sells a 1451 model biathlon rifle in this price range as well,
though I haven't seen any at events.
Let me know if you have any experience with them.

The king of the olympic rifles is the Anshutz Fortner biathlon rifle.
By far the majority of the world class athletes use this rifle
or the barrel from this rifle with another action like the Baikal.
Unfortunately this will cost you
about $2500 US with the basic accessories.
I noticed a few athletes on the German team
using lever action rifles from Krico or Suhl as well.
The lever action rotates the grip to reload.

Dealers for these rifles:

Neal Johnson in Colorado
Champion Shooters in Ohio
K.G. Larson in Norway

Accessories and Ammunition

Rifles don't always come with all the necesssary accessories,
make sure to ask what you're getting.
Anshutz rifles don't usually come with a rear sight for example
and you'll need to buy that separately.

Biathlon magazines hold five rounds,
and most will have additional space for carrying three more rounds
which can be removed manually from the bottom.
The five round limit is important for safety,
so an athlete doesn't accidentally ski with a loaded magazine.
The extra rounds can be removed manually
and are in case of a misfire and as extra shots in the relay format race.

Biathletes buy expensive ammunition,
though there's no rule for which manufacturer is best.
Common mythology is that certain rifles
shoot certain brands of ammunition better than others,
so you should try different types and see what works for you.
I recommend ammunition from Eley, Fiocci, and Federal.
Do not buy super-sonic ammunition,
as you'll damage the metal targets.
Super-sonic is actually less accurate
at the biathlon shooting distances anyway.
Make sure to buy sub-sonic.

Expect to pay between 10 cents to 25 cents US
per round for competition quality ammunition.
I train with middle of the road quality ammunition as a result,
and save the good stuff for races.



Quote:
This rifle is a duplicate of the
one-piece walnut stock also featured on our website.
It was built for the same owner as a "backup" rifle.
Features include one-piece beech construction
with palm swell and cheekpiece of cocobolo.
The butt plate was requested to help with better positioning in prone
and standing and features dual, adjustable hooks.
An Izhmash action is re-barreled with an Anschutz Sprint Nitride barrel.
Anschutz sights complete this custom package.

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 01:09 AM. Reason: Edit Text, Reorder Posts
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  #3  
Old 02-02-2007, 06:25 PM
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Arrow Biathlon

How Biathlon Works by Ed Grabianowski

Izhmash 7-3 Biathlon Rifle with Larsen Stock

Biathlon Basics
Quote:
The word biathlon has Greek origins, and translates to "the joining of two contests."
Any sport that combines two different disciplines into a single event
can be referred to as a biathlon.
Events that involve running and bicycling, running and swimming,
or even skiing and running are also biathlons,
but the official Olympic biathlon combines skiing and shooting.
A typical biathlon event requires participants to ski for a certain distance,
usually between 3 and 5 kilometers (between 1.86 and 3.1 miles),
with .22 caliber rifles strapped to their backs.
When they reach the firing range, they must shoot five targets placed 50 meters (165 feet) away.
They only have five shots, and for each shot that misses a target,
the competitor must ski around a penalty loop of 150 m.
This process repeats over three or four additional segments of skiing and shooting.
Izhmash Recruit Rifle from Larsen


Quote:
Although skiing and shooting might seem unconnected,
the sport actually grew out of hunting and military practices in use for centuries.
In Scandinavian countries, skiing to get around while hunting for food was a common practice.
Rock carvings (petroglyphs) in Norway indicate that ski hunting goes back to prehistoric times.

Finnish soldiers were able to fight off a 1939 Russian invasion
although they were heavily outnumbered.
The Finns used the cold weather and terrain to their advantage,
striking quickly with ski-mounted units and targeting Russian food supplies.
Inspired by this, the U.S. Army formed the 10th Mountain Division in 1941.
This specially trained unit comprising experienced skiers and rock climbers
fought towards the end of World War II in the Apennine Mountains in Italy.


Quote:
Various "rifle and ski" clubs had competed informally
in Scandinavian countries in the 18th and 19th centuries.
Early biathlons differed in some important ways from the modern biathlon.
There was one basic event, a 20 kilometer ski, with rifle targets placed 150 to 250 m downrange.

Recreational skiing and shooting has a long history as well.
In the early 1900s, the Norwegian military began holding organized biathlon contests,
which developed into a demonstration Olympic event known as Military Patrol.


Quote:
By 1948, the biathlon was governed by the Union Internationale de Pentathlon Moderne et Biathlon (UIPMB).
It then became an Olympic sport in 1955.
The first Olympic biathlon event was held in 1960 at the Squaw Valley Olympics.
Additional events were added through the years,
and 1984 saw the first women's biathlon world championships.
Women's biathlon became an Olympic event at the Albertville Winter Games in 1992.
Biathlon finally got its own international governing body in 1993,
when the International Biathlon Union (IBU) split from the UIPMB in an amicable agreement.
Izhmash Rifles from Larsen - Photo by HIL

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 01:27 AM. Reason: Original Poster: juano2001 - Reused Space for Other Purpose
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  #4  
Old 09-25-2007, 07:23 PM
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Straight Pull Bolt

Newbie 7-4 Question: Larsen Biathlon Rifle Video & Toggle Bolt Images

Quote:
Originally Posted by HockeyBob View Post
Does the 7-4 have a bolt that is a straight pull? Meaning, can the operators thumb just flick it back and forth "easily?"
Awww .... more like pull, push.
Well, maybe a deliberate flick of the wrist causing the fingers to move back (pull).
Then, a flick of the wrist foward causing the thumb to move foward (push).
Anyway, the video shows it all.

Larsen Biathlon Video

Have you read this thread?
CM-2 (SM-2) Sport Rifle & Biathlon 7-3, 7-4 Sporting Rifles IZHMASH
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W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 02:26 PM. Reason: Add Thread Link
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  #5  
Old 10-12-2007, 08:34 PM
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Mounting The Carring Harness

7-4 Sling (not harness - the sling): BI Arm Sling with Firing Cuff & Shoulder Sling

Do you mean "Mounting the Carring Harness"

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W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 02:25 PM. Reason: Add Source Thread
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  #6  
Old 10-12-2007, 09:17 PM
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Arm Sling & Firing Cuff

7-4 Sling (not harness - the sling): BI Arm Sling with Firing Cuff & Shoulder Sling

Or, do you mean the Arm Sling with Firing Cuff that provides stability during firing?

.
Quote:
U.S. Olympic biathlete Jay Hankken fires prone with his arm sling securely attached to his firing cuff.
(Photos courtesy Eberlestock)
Quote:
When it is time to fire, biathletes hook an arm sling made of webbing to a firing cuff on their upper arm.
This connects to the rifle, and provides stability


The Arm Sling and Firing Cuff are not in-use.
Note how the Arm Sling is attached to the forearm rail
__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

Last edited by aom22; 08-07-2008 at 06:52 PM. Reason: Add Source Thread Link
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  #7  
Old 10-13-2007, 04:59 PM
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Joint Use of Slings

7-4 Sling (not harness - the sling): BI Arm Sling with Firing Cuff & Shoulder Sling

Quote:
Originally Posted by aom22 View Post
Or, do you mean the Arm Sling with Firing Cuff that provides stability during firing
Biathletes firing in the standing, or off-hand position, 2002 Winter Olympics

(Photo courtesy La Presse)

Note the first shooter, how the Shoulder Sling is wrapped under and around the Left Arm for stability.
It appears, the Arm Sling is under tension via the Firing Cuff.
The two sling systems are employed jointly.
__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

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Old 12-15-2007, 06:26 PM
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Left Hand Biathlon 7-4 with rear sight

left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin6q View Post
.... LH 7-4 biathlon rifle if you'd like to see ....
These are the initial batch of photos provided by Kevin6q of his rifle.












With Magazine Inserted


Without Magazine


__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

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Old 12-15-2007, 06:27 PM
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Left Hand Biathlon 7-4 Without Rear Sight

left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin6q View Post
.... LH 7-4 biathlon rifle if you'd like to see ....
These are the initial batch of photos provided by Kevin6q of his rifle.







__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 02:36 PM. Reason: Add Source Thread Link
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Old 12-20-2007, 07:59 PM
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Left Hand Biathlon 7-4 Barreled Action & Stock

left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER

More of Kevin6qs Rifle.







__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 02:38 PM. Reason: Add Source Thread Link
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Old 12-20-2007, 08:33 PM
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Left Hand Biathlon 7-4 with Rear Sight

left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER








__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

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Old 12-20-2007, 08:49 PM
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Left Hand Biathlon 7-4: Trigger and Stock Details

left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER

More of Kevin6qs Rifle.













__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 02:40 PM. Reason: Add Source Thread Link
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Old 12-20-2007, 09:05 PM
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Left Hand Biathlon 7-4: Trigger, Bolt, Muzzle & Rear Sight

left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER

More of Kevin6qs Rifle.

















__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 02:42 PM. Reason: Add Source Thread Link
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Old 12-20-2007, 09:29 PM
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The Shooter Training for Winter Biathlon & Daughter with Rifle

left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER

Kevin6q
Quote:
Here are a few shots of me at the range.








Quote:
My my daughter; a pretty good shot in her own right. The rifle is a re-stocked Marlin 15Y.
__________________
W. Edwards Deming ... Quality: It is not enough to do-your-best;
you must know what-to-do, and ... then ... do-your-best.
Ever-Onward ... Through the Fog ---- Fort Stockton TX 79735

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 02:43 PM. Reason: Add Source Thread Link
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:54 AM
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left hand 7-4: Want to try one before buying? PHOTOS & More PHOTOS & SHOOTER

Hi TS,
The action and mechanics of the rifle have remained stock. I have made a few mods to the butt plate and cheek comb to have a better fit and made up a new sling to save weight. The sling has a carbon fiber hook and my shooting cuff is a custom fit carbon piece for weight and distribution of load. I have a new CF butt plate and comb I need to finish up. Again these are to save a bit of weight. Photos to follow of the new pieces.

The action on my rifle is super smooth and I have not noticed any problems when changing brands of ammo. The closing pressure seems constant but my rebolting just slaps the bolt forward and yanks it back as quickly as I can so I'm not paying attention to the finer points of the feel.

I have shot a stock Larson but it didn't fit me too well. The Ethan Allen Biathlon Club has one in the club locker. The lift of the stock was very high and I spent a bit of effort rebolting as my shooting position has no way to really stabilize the gun during rebolt. Look at the pictures for reference. I felt as though I was always "catching" the gun to keep it on my hand so never really paid attention to the feel of the action. Next time I'm there I'll fire a few rounds prone instead of offhand so I can pay more attention.

I do know the rifle really likes RWS and Fiocchi. I've shot my most consistent groups with these brands. In the really cold weather, <15F, the Fiocchi biathlon ammo is just great. Too pricey for everyday shooting but worth the cash for races.

Last edited by aom22; 06-16-2008 at 02:45 PM. Reason: Add Source Thread Link
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