When ammunition is this unique, it deserves a special way to show what sets it apart. Three state-of-the-art shooting ranges from different corners of the country recently took part in the Syntech Shoot More Challenge, a special event that lets real shooters experience the accuracy and performance of Syntech handgun ammunition. Each stop pitted Syntech against the leading ammunition from other manufacturers in a series of eye-opening tests to show which load truly rules the range. The results left the ranges and shooters who participated with a whole new view of what they expect and demand.
Put To The Test
When Syntech hit shelves in 2016, it immediately stood apart from any other load. Its polymer-encapsulated TSJ bullet prevents metal-on-metal contact in the bore, reducing felt recoil and extending barrel life, while eliminating copper and lead fouling. Matched with clean-burning propellants and the Catalyst lead-free primer, it offers the perfect combination for more consistent, accurate and enjoyable shooting at the range.
But seeing is believing. Enter the Syntech Shoot More Challenge stop at Big Shots in Lincoln, Nebraska. The location serves the southeast corner of the Cornhusker State and beyond with advanced indoor range facilities, nine 25-yard lanes and a pro shop, plus firearms, accessories and ammunition sales. Big Shots closed its doors to regular business Sept. 21, 2017 to focus on the Shoot More Challenge. “We had extra staff on hand to ensure it was a safe and positive experience for everyone involved,” said owner Jim Clark.
“We probably put 3,000 rounds through each of the new pistols and none of them needed cleaning.”—Jim Clark, owner of Big Shots, Lincoln, Nebraska
When the day was out, Syntech had received high marks across the board. “One of our regular customers—who shoots leagues and is probably the best shot I’ve ever seen—was so impressed he’s now ordering Syntech by the case,” said Clark. “A couple of the chiefs of police are considering switching from their current range ammunition, while the casual hobby shooters kept commenting on how the recoil was different than the ammo they were used to shooting, and how Syntech made it easier for them to stay on target.”
Syntech’s clean-shooting properties were also apparent. “We probably put 3,000 rounds through each of the new pistols and none of them needed cleaning,” Clark reported.
It was much the same story on May 9 and 10, 2017, when Top Gun Shooting Sports in Taylor, Michigan, hosted its own Shoot More Challenge.
“The challenge was just the beginning,” said owner Mike Barbour. “We made believers out of customers during the event, and we’re still promoting Syntech as our go-to ammunition.”
Located just southwest of Detroit, Top Gun Shooting Sports serves firearms enthusiasts in Taylor and the surrounding Downriver Community with a state-of-the-art 30-lane indoor pistol, rifle and shotgun range that earned a coveted five-star rating from the National Shooting Sports Foundation. The facility has a complete selection of guns, ammunition and accessories, plus it offers gunsmithing services, hosts special events and conducts a variety of training courses on topics including hunter safety and concealed carry.
Besides getting the lowdown on Syntech technology, participants at Top Gun Shooting Sports put the ammunition through its paces in a head-to-head test against competitive full metal jacket options. “We set up a demo where people shot five rounds of each side by side,” said Barbour.
“Shooters really liked it. They could definitely feel the difference in recoil, which helped them stay on target better.”—Mike Barbour, owner of Top Gun Shooting Sports, Taylor, Michigan
The results were overwhelmingly in favor of Syntech. “Shooters really liked it,” he said. “They could definitely feel the difference in recoil, which helped them stay on target better. They also commented there was less smoke and dust coming out of the barrel.”
Once shooters experience Syntech performance firsthand, the product sells itself. “After they try it, they specifically request Syntech,” Barbour explained.
Shooters had nearly identical feedback when the Shoot More Challenge made a stop at Vance Outdoors, in Obetz, Ohio. Customers were quick to notice the reduced recoil, which allowed them to stay on target easier and enjoy improved accuracy. They also noticed less heat and smoke, and cleaner performance than the competition.
“It encouraged a lot of our customers to try Syntech,” said Ray Joseph, manager of the bustling 24-lane range, training center and retail outlet loaded with guns, ammunition and accessories. He noted that participants ran the gamut from new shooters to long-time customers and training class participants.
Joseph reports the promotion produced repeat Syntech customers and fueled continued sales. “We still have shooters who seek out Syntech on the shelves or ask for it specifically,” he said.
Shooting With A Champ
The Big Shots event was also highlighted by a special visit from world champion shooter Julie Golob. “We set up a small practical shooting course so after everybody got done testing the ammunition, they could run through it with Julie,” Clark said. “That was a real treat for everyone.”
After the challenge, Big Shots opened its doors to the public for a meet and greet with Golob. “Julie stayed for an hour and a half, visiting with people and signing autographs,” said Clark. “It was the perfect way to cap off a great event.”
“Witnessing the side-by-side comparisons and then getting to see everyone’s reaction further solidified my thoughts on this ammo.”—Julie Golob, IPSC World Champion
“As a member of Team Federal Premium, I’ve had the chance to experience all the benefits of the Syntech line, but being able to share it with those who are discovering and shooting it for the first time is a lot of fun,” Golob said. “I know what I see and feel when I shoot Syntech. Watching the tests, witnessing the side-by-side comparisons and then getting to see everyone’s reaction further solidified my thoughts on this ammo.”
All three ranges hosted Shoot More Challenge events to show Syntech’s advantages to shooters. But in the process, they ended up highlighting what the ammunition can do for the ranges themselves.
First, there’s the advantage in sales. Top Gun, for example, has sold out of Syntech and has no plans to change its recommended loads. “We’re one of the only ranges in the area that sells Syntech, which gives us an advantage over competitors who don’t,” said Barbour. “We believe in it. We use Syntech in our rental guns to reduce cleaning and wear, and we recommend it to customers who haven’t tried it.”
Big Shots has had similar experiences. “In January of 2016 we began using all Syntech ammo in our rental guns,” he said, explaining that the arrangement started as a two-month test to see if the ammunition would live up to the claims. “We were so impressed with the results, we continued using Syntech in all our rentals,” he said.
Then there are the benefits of the technology itself. “We have about 120 rental guns, and cleaning is a big cost,” said Clark. “Our cleaning time has been reduced by 25 percent since switching to Syntech, which has been a big savings. There’s also less wear and tear on the guns, so instead of a six-month lifespan I can use them for 1½ to 2 years.”
“We haven’t seen any signs of splashback—even though we’ve looked everywhere for it.”—Ray Joseph, manager of Vance Outdoors, Obetz, Ohio
Vance Outdoors has experienced other advantages. “Obviously, as a range, we like it because it’s a little bit cleaner than other rounds,” said Joseph. “Plus, we haven’t seen any signs of splashback—even though we’ve looked everywhere for it.”
The absence of a copper jacket also minimizes splash-back on steel targets, a fact that isn’t lost on Barbour and his staff at Top Gun.
“From a range standpoint, there’s no chance of the jacket coming off the bullet and coming back anywhere near your shooters even if someone hits the target carrier or something of that nature,” he said. “We do everything possible to minimize jacket issues, and Syntech is a great fit for our safety efforts.”