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My DMR VEPR 54R with 23" Barrel


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#1 Gary

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 02:42 PM

Got around to taking photos this morning.... and as someone long ago said, "a picture paints a thousand words" (or some such shit), so here ya go!  Hope the photos convey just how nice the rifle really is (well, of course that's just my opinion).  

 

I accessorized this VEPR 54R for what I consider to be a Designated Marksman Rifle (DMR).  Some will disagree with me, and that's cool of course (go fu@# yourself if you don't like it 021.gif).  Before anyone asks, I decided upfront that I did not want to bipod this puppy.  I have several semi-auto long guns with bipods and this one, I want to shoot from a bag.

 

CIMG6029_zpstbwruuw4.jpg

 

One of the nice things about using an USGI M1 Garand Sling is: it easily allows for the sling to be tightened up and made snug against the rifle.  Many modern slings don't.

CIMG6031_zpsdrcud96z.jpg

 

CIMG6034_zpsv3ehxc32.jpg

 

 

CIMG6042_zps2kac0ifx.jpg

 

 

CIMG6036_zps6b4itwux.jpg

 

 

Here are some closer photos of the Vortex Viper scope:

CIMG6043_zps85qtr81s.jpg

 

CIMG6045_zpswtvirm7z.jpg

 

 

One of the things that I did to the Red Star Arms FCG was to contour the trigger blade.  I think the appearance of the blade as it comes out of the box is nothing more than a crude, slab-sided piece of metal; it looks substandard at best... especially considering how much one of these FCGs cost.  So.... a little filing and sanding worked wonders.

CIMG6039_zpsy1ux9nlq.jpg

 

CIMG6040_zpsyfpkj542.jpg

 

 

And for those that are somewhat familiar with my previous firearms' photos.... here is the gratuitous photo containing one of the solid resin skulls I have hanging around. laugh.png

CIMG6055_zpskvhlebf9.jpg

 

 

 

Here is the list of accessories that I put on her:

- Polish AKML Flash Hider

- Black Horse Arsenal VEPR Composite Forearm with Standard Gas Block
- Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50 FFP EBR-1 scope
- Vortex Precision Matched 30mm Rings, high
- RS Regulate AK-303 Modular Optic Mount system
- TROMIX Extended Charging Handle
- RAM Enhanced Speed Catch
- Krebs MK VI Enhanced Safety Selector Lever
- Ronin's Russian Molot grip - Second Generation
- Canis Design VEPR Slant M4 Fixed Stock Adapter
- XLR Tactical Butt Stock
- (internal) Red Star Arms Adjustable AK Trigger System for VEPR .308/54R
- (internal) Recoil Buffer
- Sling info: Blue Force Gear Universal Wire Loop / USGI M1 Garand Cotton Sling / QD Sling swivel


Edited by Gary, 04 July 2015 - 11:49 AM.

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#2 Spacehog

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 02:54 PM

Terrific job as usual Gary!
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#3 Dad2142Dad

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 03:01 PM

Very sweet Mr!

Thanks for the gratuitous skull shot. Would like to hear back when you get a chance to stretch its legs.
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#4 DaveM

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 04:01 PM

Looks great Gary. Your taste in firearms is impeccable.

You also have a knack for photography. mind sharing some techniques you use?
Camera, lighting, f stop setting, background material, etc.
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#5 Gary

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 04:57 PM

Looks great Gary. Your taste in firearms is impeccable.

You also have a knack for photography. mind sharing some techniques you use?
Camera, lighting, f stop setting, background material, etc.

Thank you for the kind words.  Okay... I'll try to be succinct:

 

Personally, most often I visually prefer photos with black backgrounds (but that's just me).  The easiest way that I have found to accomplish that, is to use a big scrap piece of black velvet cloth which I purchased off of eBay (the friggen thing is really more the size of a queen bed sheet) for a background.  The most important aspect for the most part, to any photograph is its lighting.  Such is why photos taken outdoors are always best and usually the easiest to get right.  Alas.... 'ole Gary likes to make things hard on himself, and often I try to "control" the lighting environment, which habitually proves to me a major PITA.  Anyway, to obtain the black-hole; obsidian black backgrounds that I often do, I take the photos indoors and muck-around with fluorescent lighting and sometimes flashlight lighting.  Thing of it is though, depending on your digital camera... you need to make sure that it is set for the appropriate 'source' of lighting, otherwise the photos come out looking jacked-up color wise.

 

So, black velvet cloth, a simple digital camera (I've been using a simple Casio Exilim for well over a decade).... good lighting, and lastly... a camera tripod (or something to stabilize your camera during photoing).  NOTE:  I routinely set my camera's self-timer to 2-seconds.

 

IMG_1222_zpsizeghlxv.jpg

 

IMG_1224_zps7uhvitxj.jpg

 

Then, the rest is up to experimentation and the experiences and final products derived thereof.   The first 'photo session' I conducted with my VEPR 54R turned into being a major PITA.  I actually suspended the rifle from a long pole laid horizontally between two chairs (this was trying something new for me), and later edited out the coat hanger wires from the photo.  I took well over 20 photos... and managed to keep only the single one below, for the rest looked like crapola to me (not that the below is terrific or anything).

 

CIMG6029_zpstbwruuw4.jpg

 

So.... I typically take a shit-load of photos, at different angles to add interest, and then once I download them to my computer I start the editing process and routinely end up deleting three quarters of the photos that I took, due to jacked-up lighting or poor image focus.

 

For my Galil AR photos I used a large piece of brown velvet fabric:

 

CIMG5147.jpg

 

 

So.... is what I conveyed what you were seeking to learn?

.

.


Edited by Gary, 03 July 2015 - 05:28 PM.

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#6 DaveM

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 06:09 PM

Thanks for the info Gary.

I've been doing photography professionally for over thirty years and I am always amazed at what folks can do now with sometimes the most basic setups.

You have a real ability and a great eye for lighting and composition. Not to mention a kick ass collection.

thanks again for taking the time to explain your technique.
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#7 Gary

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 06:43 PM

Thanks for the info Gary.

I've been doing photography professionally for over thirty years and I am always amazed at what folks can do now with sometimes the most basic setups.

You have a real ability and a great eye for lighting and composition. Not to mention a kick ass collection.

thanks again for taking the time to explain your technique.

Dave, you are a true gentleman in every way.  Thank you!

 

Ahhhhh.... by the way, some 32 years ago (boy... if that ain't tell'n how long in the tooth I am sad.png), I completed my Undergraduate Degree in Fine Arts (BFA), with an emphasis in Graphic Design.  So.... artsy-craftsy stuff and visual composition, aren't exactly strangers to me.  wink.png

.

.


Edited by Gary, 03 July 2015 - 06:45 PM.

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"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing." ~Edmund Burke


"Life's too short to shoot an ugly gun!"

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#8 Spacehog

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 07:04 PM

What I would like is for you to "convey" to me that Galil. :) It is a near work of art, and love everything about the way you set it up. Very nice!
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#9 Gary

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Posted 03 July 2015 - 08:10 PM

What I would like is for you to "convey" to me that Galil. smile.png It is a near work of art, and love everything about the way you set it up. Very nice!

My Galil has been away for more than two years, with the guy that assembled it for me (Jeff Miller of Hillbilly Firearms).  I'm having Jeff install a custom barrel on her which will be a little longer, and significantly heavier in profile (I'm tying to squeeze every lil' bit of accuracy out of her that is possible).  I'm also mounting a heavy duty bipod to her and a pistol scope out on her gas tube.  Allegedly, some time this year I should have her back.

 

Sometimes I think I've redefined the definition for the word "patience."

 

rolleyes.gif


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"Life's too short to shoot an ugly gun!"

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#10 ChileRelleno

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Posted 04 July 2015 - 01:55 PM

Very nice DMR Vepr you put together there Gary.

As usual your firearms are worthy of a little envy.


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#11 YOT

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Posted 04 July 2015 - 08:16 PM

Classy!


"It isn't always being fast or even accurate that counts, it's being willing. I found out early that most men regardless of cause or need aren't willing. They blink an eye or draw a breath before they pull the trigger and I won't." - The Shootist (John Wayne)

 

"You have enemies?  Good!  That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life" - Winston Churchill

 


#12 saltydecimator

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Posted 01 September 2015 - 03:09 AM

yep thats the most important thing about guns. ok maybe seocnd most important, behind function, is how to take a good pic of em!  the ole, heres my toes and theres my 50 year old bed spread is just terrible. on top of leaving blinds closed.... grainy muck bs!  but you have done a fine job.

 

maybe we need like a photography sub forum?  all this crap goes hand in hand.  blades, booze, babes, bazookas?


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#13 YOT

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Posted 01 September 2015 - 06:59 AM

......and theres my 50 year old bed spread.......

 

maybe we need like a photography sub forum? 

 

If you have a 50 yo bedspread it probably deserves a picture, and a frame. Somebody made it to last.

 

We have plenty of picture threads for guns is all of the sub-forums, and you see great photos pop up in various threads.


"It isn't always being fast or even accurate that counts, it's being willing. I found out early that most men regardless of cause or need aren't willing. They blink an eye or draw a breath before they pull the trigger and I won't." - The Shootist (John Wayne)

 

"You have enemies?  Good!  That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life" - Winston Churchill

 


#14 Spacehog

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Posted 10 December 2015 - 10:39 PM

Gary,
You have had some time to play with her now. I am curious, what is you opinion of the XLR stock? (Function, weight, balance?) Second question is what is your opinion of using it on an AR carbine build? I really like the look of all their stocks, but I will take function over form any day of the week. Look forward to hearing your thoughts and TIA.

#15 Hawk451

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 12:11 AM

I've got to do some digging through my library & find an article by Dean Grennell.  One of my favorite gun writers, he was also an advanced photographer. One rig he used was a medium or large format camera with variable-geometry lenses, allowing crisp detail on an angled subject while using a WFO aperture (with attendant shallow depth of field) by angling the lenses to match subject angle.

 

Something like this IIRC:

 

8x10FieldCamera.jpg

 

I should get myself a digital SLR & start playing around again myself, but it's hard to divert disposable funds from ammo/parts/components, etc. 


Edited by Hawk451, 11 December 2015 - 12:30 AM.

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"They couldn't hit an elephant at this distance."
Last words of Major General John Sedgwick, Battle of Spotsylvania.

 

“The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles.” ―Jeff Cooper, Art of the Rifle


#16 Gary

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 11:12 AM

Gary,
You have had some time to play with her now. I am curious, what is you opinion of the XLR stock? (Function, weight, balance?) Second question is what is your opinion of using it on an AR carbine build? I really like the look of all their stocks, but I will take function over form any day of the week. Look forward to hearing your thoughts and TIA.

I really, really like the XLR stock... on this particular rifle (of the long guns that I own).  I would not call it light or heavy, all of its component parts are metal except for the thin neoprene cheek rest pad (XLR makes a similar, heavier stock which litterally encorporates a weight, called the "xtreme butt stock")... but for my rather stout VEPR-54, the weight somewhat helps to counteract the rifle's forward heaviness.  The stock's cheek riser and overall length adjustability settings are infinite due to the tightening/tension screws; there are no presets, etc. for precisely where one wants the riser a stock's length to be set at.

 

The XLR design likely isn't everyone's cup-o-tea aesthetically.  Like I said up-front, on my particular VEPR rifle I think it's terrific, but others might find it butt-ugly.

 

Were I to encorporate an XLR rear stock on a carbine build, I'd go with the "tactical lite butt stock" XLR offering which reportely weighs 23 ounces.

 

I hope my comments help with your decision.

 

~Gary


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"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing." ~Edmund Burke


"Life's too short to shoot an ugly gun!"

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#17 Spacehog

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Posted 11 December 2015 - 04:48 PM

They absolutely have. Thank you Gary. I am going to pick one up for a fairly light carbine, or I might get one of the heavier ones for a bull 20-24" bench rest build. Decisions decisions.
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#18 Ak Monty

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Posted 03 February 2016 - 04:58 PM

Where are the pictures of groups on target?
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#19 Gary

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Posted 04 February 2016 - 10:06 PM

Where are the pictures of groups on target?

Nawww.... I'm not doing that with this particular rifle.  But thanks for inquiring. cool.png


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"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing." ~Edmund Burke


"Life's too short to shoot an ugly gun!"

Posted Image


#20 Ak Monty

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Posted 05 February 2016 - 02:18 AM

Your not doing what? Shooting it? If not what's the point? I was thinking about buying one of these and was curious about accuracy.

#21 Gary

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Posted 05 February 2016 - 10:25 AM

Your not doing what? Shooting it? If not what's the point? I was thinking about buying one of these and was curious about accuracy.

I'm not shooting it.... much (I'm already onto other projects).

Regarding my VEPR's accuracy.... IMO it isn't anything to get excited about, but it does okay.  Yea; I know.... that doesn't tell you much.

Let me put it this way:  Although I am not markedly disappointed with my rifle's accuracy, the groupings are not as tight as I had hoped or wished they would be.


"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil, is for good men to do nothing." ~Edmund Burke


"Life's too short to shoot an ugly gun!"

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