Friday, 22 May 2015

Introducing Havalon knives - Experience a new kind of sharp

JMS Arms is proud to announce that they have acquired a new brand for distribution in the UK - Havalon Knives.

We are please to be given the sole distributorship for UK ( Ireland, Scotland & Wales) of the Havalon knives brand. These knives will benefit hunters, fishermen and hobbyist and provide an easy way to swap replacement blades and allow for easy cleaning.While Havalon Knives is a relatively new brand to the UK retail market, the brand goes back to 1980, and it’s parent company Havels Inc in the US with many thousands of happy customers. This folding pocket scalpel  has been specially formulated for the hunting and outdoor market and is now available through JMS Arms as the UK distributor.

 Havalon’s surgically sharp knives are the fastest, sharpest and longest lasting replaceable cutting blades in the field. The surgically sharp blades lock onto lightweight handles with secure Quik-Change fitment, saving you valuable time and energy.

The knife comes with a supply of replacement blades with new additional replacements in 10,50 and 100 packs. The product is back by a lifetime warranty (excluding wear and tear).

The Havalon knife is an essential tool for DIY hunters as it truly offers something no other product currently offers: a lightweight and effective solution, all in one knife with a set of extra blades - no sharpening needed. And so,  you can eliminate all the extra weight in your pack.

The proprietary blend of high-quality from Havalon steel maximizes the edge life and durability of all of our blades. These blades are custom made for skinning, caping, quartering, field dressing and any other type of processing work for wild game.

The Havalon Knife has the following Havalon models available:

  • Piranta Knife Series with Piranta replaceable blades - perfect for skinning &  butchery
  • Baracuta Knife Series with Baracuta replaceable blades perfect for filleting meat or fish
  • Havalon Baracuta-Bone Saw

There are also various blades for taxidermists, hobbyists, crafters, hunters and fishermen

The Havalon brand is associated with:
  • Exceptional quality you can trust.
  • Great value for the price paid.
  • Exciting innovation that meets customer needs (no need to sharpen in the field).
  • Outstanding customer service and a product backed by lifetime warranty

JMS Arms is excited to align with these core values and a long-lasting partnership in providing you with the obvious choice when it comes to faster, safer and more efficient skinning and field dressing options.

To see the Havalon knife in action, check these testimonials

Also, we have listed some videos where you can see the products being demonstrated by hunters in the field.

Steve Rinella gutting a wild pig and skinning a hanging animal


fish filleting

Steve Rinella field dressing a deer - Havalon Torch seen in demo

How to change a Blade

JMS Arms is committed to giving our customers the best leading brands. 

For the first 20 UK orders, JMS Arms is offering free postage for Havalon.

JMS Arms                                                                                                 
for Havalon Knife

(article by JMS Arms Customer)


Thursday, 7 May 2015

Special offer to JMS clients - 25% off Deer Stalking in the wild and beautiful scenery of Scotland

For all our,, & customers

If you are looking to experience deer stalking in the wild and beautiful scenery of Scotland, we are pleased to announce a special offer of 

25% OFF 

when you book your stalking with Hendry Ramsay & Waters (

Please use the offer code of 


Please email 

Tel + 44 (0) 1337 840600
Ask for Davie or Vernon

(Offer is valid for 60 days from 01/05/2015)

For deer stalking season in Scotland see here 


Tel JMS Arms 01444 400126 / 07771 962121

Quickload and QuickTARGET

Monday, 27 April 2015

Wildcats by B.Potts - 24/04/2015

Wildcats love them hate them , what are they? Do we need them, waste of time? All apply in some way or other dependent on your own views and needs as a hunter.
To the vast majority a standard factory round is more than sufficient and that’s fine, my favourite calibres are .308 Win and .22LR but without development and experimentation these two great rounds would never be in existence. They all emanated from a wildcat at one time or other the difference is most factory loads are just the last development of a series of Wildcat rounds to get to the final design.

As with so many things in life people like to push the boundaries and experiment and improve almost anything to achieve a better product and something truly different. Whether this is for your own personal satisfaction or derived for the need to succeed financially the end result is still the same, a sense of being part of the process and owning something unique.

What`s a Wildcat

Primarily a Wildcatted round is one that has been modified to improve its performance both in terms of accuracy, velocity, and case life. You usually start by reforming an existing cartridge case soyou can then improve the case by removing any body taper, increase the shoulder angle both increasing powder case capacity and hopefully velocity increases. Or just necking up or down so that larger or smaller projectiles can be shot from the parent case, to name but a few modifications. True, this can seem a daunting task to many shooters but in reality most shooters are all ready shooting some sort of wildcat already. Many of the great cartridges available on the market are commercialised wildcat rounds such as the .22-250,.243, not to mention the .270, .25-06, .280 Rem are all standardised wildcats from the parent .30-06 Springfield round. The list is endless.

Getting started

But before you start you have to consider a rather technical list of priorities regarding donor rifle, reloading equipment, availability of brass, dies, cases etc as well as barrel manufacturers and custom chamber reamer makers to chamber your new barrel and dies if necessary.
Although all Wildcats utilise, different cases and consumables there is a uniformed criteria you must follow to achieve your dream rifle.
Do you go the existing wildcat round route such as 6mm AK, .22 Cheetah or say the 500 Whisper or do you go for a unique unknown of your own?
Choosing an existing Wildcat takes a lot of the quess work out of it as reamer prints, load data and reloading technique has been explored before. If you are a Wildcat virgin then this is the route to go first.
The more adventurous canstart bending their own brass to create their very own Wildcat. Some people take an existing case, say a .308 Win and then shorten the case, lengthen the neck and improve the shoulder angle. It may only be a few thousandthsofa inch different than the standard .308 Win but in essence it is a Wildcat and legitimately call it a new name. look at the .204 Ruger this was originally the .20 Terminator!
For the more adventurous a complete calibre change and “real” advantage is what keeps Wildcatters pushing for more. Look at the .260 Rem,originally the 6.5mm Panther it now has .260 Rem AK Imp, 6.5 Creedmoor and similar 6.5x47L, all very similar but with their own individual differences.

Trouble is where do you start. Here`s how I do it.
It all starts with the bullet, yes bullet. I look for a particular bullet I like and want to push at a velocity that interests me. Usually this means a high BallisticCoefficient bullet for better down range performance. Then I see what is out there in terms of ballistics from existing cartridges and see if there is any “room for manoeuvre ” Its getting harder as most cases now have “Wildcatted “ in some form or other.
I would love the luxury to make my own dimension cases but that`s just not economically viable which is why a parent case is used.
Take the .20 Satan Wildcat for example. I love small calibres and when the 50 grain and later 55 grainbullets arrived on the scene I jumped on them.
Here the same weight bullet had a better BC than the standard .224 version so now you need to look at a case that can take advantage of it.
That’s easier said than done. Too big a case and bye bye rifling, to small and there`s no real advantage.
What I do is use Quickload and QuickDesignballistics program to design a new Wildcat from the existing database. In the 20 Satans case I wanted to use the 6x47mm Swiss Match case and then later 6.5x47L case as donor cartridges.
I use the program and actual cartridge cases in front of me to re-design to a form I am happy with.
By changing or completely from scratch building a case in Quick Design you can change at will in the “Virtual world” your new creation.
Alternatively, and I use this method a lot also is to use existing reloading, form dies and change the neck bushing sizes eitherlarger or smaller dependent on final bullet diameter to swage the neck. Then use alternativedies to reform the body or shoulder angle to get a “partial” wildcat . this way you can visualise in real time a prototype.
 With an initial new case design I weigh the case and measure H2O capacity to check internal powder capacity.
I then run these dimensions through the QuickDesign program to see if I am close on my virtual case. Differingmanufacturers cases vary a lot.
Now you need to decide whether you want a tight neck or standard neck dimension. I.e. will you go for a thinner neck and thus necessitate neck turning to gain more precision and neck tension.
With the dimensions sorted I shoot it in the Quickload program with a variety of bullets and powder combinations. This gives a very realistic result for the true ballistics your new creation will take.
It’s here you cross your fingers and the pressure scale stays safe and the velocity figures exceed the factory loading if there is one.
If it works, fine, if not go back re-compute and change a few dimensions, smaller is better, in ballistic a small change can make a big difference.

Now what?

I now print off a case design sheet as a reference as you need to give this to your reamer maker. Here the more info the better as not only does the chamber reamer need to suit your new design but you have to decide on seating depth and thus throat length, neck diameter. If I use a print out I tell the reamer maker the bullet I am shooting and suggest a COAL based on ogive touching lands.
If I have a case made from a parent case I will send three copies but drill out the primer hole and through the case and engraved ”DUD” on it, because my reamer makers are in the USA.
Now wait for the reamer to be made, I use a standard steel reamer but with a live pilot so you can change this to get a true fit into your barrel and with it I order a “Go gauge” to check headspace. Yes only a go gauge and the reamer is a finisher only not rougher.

Now you need to choose a barrel , correct twist rate to stabilise bullet weight, maximisevelocity, rifling lands and profile then barrellength flute or non  flute and of course stainless or moly steel!
Here formulas are available to ascertain best twist rates but when shooting a Wildcat you have to consider barrel erosion extra pressure from too tight a rifling twist. Is three lands better than six? Should the leade in be 1.5 or 3 degrees?, Ratchet, polygonal or flat rifling lands? And of course enoughlength to achieve the extra velocity you hope your new creation will deliver. Trouble is at this point is whether you do really have to just go for it and suck it and see.

Load up

Right you have your barrel newly reamed, chambered and fitted. Now the fun starts.
If the Wildcat is a simple neck down or up you can fire form your load in the chamber to its new dimensions, usually with the bullet in the lands to stop case creep but with amild load. (not always)This means that although the case is formed using mechanical dies it still needs to be shot in the chamber of the rifle to expand it to the correct proportions.

Trouble is you will need some resizing dies and seater die to reload your case. If it’s a known wildcat then there may well be a set of dies out there. I.e. Redding custom shop, CH4D good source.
Sometimes I use existing dies and cut then down or modify to neck, body re-size or even seat. Ie as with the 300 Broad sword and 30-47L, 300 WSM and 308x1.5 respectively.
But for a real one off when neck length case and shoulder all differ then you need a set of dies tailored to your case.
I tend to use blank dies form Wilson or Newlon and then have the gunsmith use the chamber reamer to cut a two dies.
The first will be a neck die where the use of either Wilson or Redding neck bushes can be used to achieve correct neck tension. Plus using the correct seater stem the other die can be used as a seater die If you want a full length die you will need a smallerreamer dimension than the one that cut the chamber or sometimes I use a body die that may fit your new case.

Is it worth it?

On first inspection it may seem a complete faff and also unwarranted expense to go to all this hassle. I cannot agree more but that’s not the point,withoutexperimenting there would be no advantages and in any case some of the Wildcats whether factory adopted or not still desire a look at.
Some only deliver a meagre 5 % velocity gain but the new “look” can be fantastic aka .308 Win AK or you can try a .250 AK that is well worth the performanceincrease. And full blown Wildcats like my .20 and .22 Satan, 6.5 Rapiers and 300 Broadsword keep me happy and out of the wives hair.


That in a nutshell encapsulates the Wildcat ethos, maximum input and effort affords the best final results. If we all drove around in Ford Escorts what a boring life it would be, since time began people have been customising and improving what exists and that’s what interest`s me.
Wildcatting is not for everyone and yes the std calibre’s will suffice for 90 % of all your shooting needs let’s not cloud the water here, but for the shooter who really wants to explore their reloading and creative ideas the Wildcat bug is mighty hard to shake off, tell my wallet!  

JMS Arms                                                                                                 
for Quickload and QuickDesign

(article by JMS Arms Customer)


Tel JMS Arms 01444 400126 / 07771 962121

Quickload and QuickTARGET

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Game transporter - 14 Foxes, Rabbits, Magpies, Squirrels and many Fox bait trips.

A very helpful bit of hunting kit! When I am clearing the foxes for the local Keeper and Goose Farmer I collect what's been shot and then dispose of them in a suitable place where they can decompose without offending any walkers. 

Once again the Game Transporter proves its value with a mixture of foxes, rabbits, squirrels, magpies and fox bait.

This  bit of kit is so helpful. I keep it in the back of the landrover, fastened by a bungee  and from there takes a few seconds to drop on the tow bar and fix.

When I am clearing the foxes for the local keep and goose farmer I collect whats been shot and then dispose of them in a suitable place where they can decompose without offending any walkers.

Using this means I keep smells, blood, any urine and other bodily fluids out of my vehicle and this also means I keep parasites  from the vehicle and away from my dog. I generally use ballistic tips so that there is maximum expansion and energy transfer on the target animal and this tends to look and be a bit messy and generate leakage of fluids so I cant think of anything better.

If you have a pickup - you need to wash the vehicle out and using one of these game transporters saves time. When I have finished using it I give it a quick hose off, dry and fix it back in the landrover for the next time.

A full list of shots from the July fox control period are below and I have also added a few here:

(article by JMS Arms Customer)
Gametransporter used for carry fox bait.
2 foxes shot ( brother and sister shot together with 223 about 130 meters and 30 meters apart)
Shot with 223 whilst sitting in long grass looking at the lamp with head and neck only available - about 60 meters
Two more shot again 223 - 60 to 100 meters
Mixture of rabbits and magpies shot with 17 HMR and dropped in the game carrier for later fox baiting
Pigeon and rabbit shot during the day with 17 HMR, foxes shot with 223
Side profile of the gametransporter two foxes shot with 223

Sunday, 12 October 2014

20 PPC, Custom rifle from second hand base rifle

We all know how popular the PPC cartridge has been to Benchrest shooters although newer designs are now shining through. It is partly due to the fact that Dr Palmisano and Ferris Pindell designed a superb efficient cartridge shape from the off (Palmisano Pindell Cartridge, PPC). Some cartridge designs just work much like a well tuned race engine.


We all know how popular the PPC cartridge has been to Benchrest shooters although newer designs are now shining through. It is partly due to the fact that Dr Palmisano and Ferris Pindell designed a superb efficient cartridge shape from the off (Palmisano Pindell Cartridge, PPC). Some cartridge designs just work much like a well tuned race engine. It’s a blend of internal and external design, where the harmonics and thermal dynamics of the powder burning cycle just synergise to their maximum thus producing super efficient, clean and un-turbulent and consistent propulsion for your chosen bullets.

It’s no chance that the original 6mm PPC case has been expanded, necked down and modified since its design. I run a nice Venom .17 PPC and at the other end of the Spectrum is the improved 6mm Dasher, I have even seen 30 cal versions.

But like the original 6mm design the .20 PPC is a real honey and specifically designed for the varmint hunting market but also doubles as a great benchrester as well.

Cartridge design

I have said this before but think about those tiny .20 cal bullets as they fill a very efficient void between the .17 and .22 centrefire, in fact 0.172 and 0.224 calibres is some 0.052 thousandths of an inch which in ballistic terms is huge. That’s like having a 0.243 calibre and 0.308 calibre with no 0.257, 0.264, 0.277 and 0.284 calibres between them, and where would we be without the 25-06, 6.5x55mm, .270 Win or any of the 7mm calibres? 

The 20 PPC and 20 PPC Pup are a classic varmint round. The PPC is based on a modified .220 Russian case and is transformed when necked down to 20 calibre, the case is super efficient and uses less powder than larger .20 calibre rifles to achieve the same velocity. This means less fouling and barrel erosion. The .20 PPC with 24 inch plus barrels launches a 39 grain Blitz King at 4000 fps whilst using 28 grains of VIT N 133 powder, a 1 in 11 rifling twist is best although a 1 in 9 would be superb for the larger 50 grain Berger bullets for extreme range Varminting. A 32 grain V-Max can be pushed to 4300 fps with only 27.5 grains of H 4198 powder. The .20 PPC Pup is just a shortened 20 PPC case for use in Benchrest matches but also makes a great vermin/fox load.

Bullet Choice

At first only Hornady offered a 33 grain V-Max projectile and Berger a 36 grain hollow point. This was enough to wet the appetite of small calibre shooters worldwide, me included and from this we have four main manufacturer`s producing bullets as well as several small, independent bullet makers.Hornady offer a 32 and 40 grain V-Max bullet designed to expand rapidly on the target yet deliver superb accuracy at long distances. The 32 grain bullet has a BC of 0.210 whilst the 40 grain V-Max has a BC of 0.275 making them great varmint bullets. There is also a 45 grain Soft Point design and is good for foxes and has a BC of 0.245.

There are also a non toxic NTX weighing in a 24 grains and a new Z-Max 32grain varmint bullet that I have not seen yet.

This is also true of the Sierra Blitz King range, again a 32 grain bullet, BC 0.221 was chosen as the lowest weight bullet and at the top end a 39 grain Blitz King, BC 0.287 offers great accuracy long range potential and terminal ballistics.

Berger synonymous with Match grade bullets had a great range of .204 bullets but have reduced them sadly. Still the lightest is now the 35 grain Match Grade FB Varmint with BC of 0.176 then the 40 gr Match Grade BT Varmint BC 0.225 and finally highest BC 0.381 for the 55 gr Match Grade Long Range BT Varmint but requires a fast twist rifling for stability.

Nosler joined the Twenty calibre race late but now produces two .204 calibre bullets from their Ballistic Tip range. The 32gr and 40gr Ballistics have good BC`s at 0.206 and 0.239 respectively.

Rifle build

It`s nice to have a custom rifle build but let`s face it, they can be very costly so there is no reason a suitable donor rifle cannot be sourced for the purpose. Only problem with the PPC case is that the head size is 0.441 in between the .223 of 0.378 and .308 of 0.473 inch.

Therefore a PPC bolt or some modification needs to be done by your gunsmith, not a big problem but needs to be done and also if the rifle is to be a repeater then feeding a boxy shaped PPC can also be problematic.

As luck would have it a Sako 75 in 22 PPC turned up and was the perfect donor rifle. The barrel was shot out so a new barrel was all that was needed to get the project under way.

A Shilen Select Match grade barrel was chosen and supplied in a number 17 profile which translates to Rem Varmint profile. Rifling choice is key to stabilising those .20 cal bullets. 1 In 11 or 12 are good for the lighter bullets of 30-45 grains but if you want to use the heavier 50 or 55 grain bullets it needs a 1 in 9 twist rate.

We opted for a 1 in 12 twist as the 39 grain Sierra Blitz Kings were our choice and we wanted to push them as fast as possible without over pressure or stress to the bullet. A half inch UNF thread was also cut to the muzzle.

Chambering options are plenty for the 20 PPC dependent on the bullet and thus throating needed. You can go neck turned dimensions or non neck turned if you like and I like a tight throat myself oh ah and so went for a 228 neck dimension on the reamer so a loaded round would have 226-227 thou loaded diameter with bullet for a 1.0 or 0.5 thou per side clearance on firing, tight but very concentric which is why you go the neck turning route in the first place.

A set of Wilson 20 PPC or 22 PPC neck dies can be used and a bush of 0.225 inch was used for a 2 thou neck tension.

The seater die was a 22PPC with a 20 cal stem fitted and manual set for bullet depth although a calibrated replacement head can be ordered if necessary.

Cases are virgin Lapua .220 Russian brass necked down to .204 cal with a series of nitride bushes and there is then a neck turn with a K and M turner for a close chamber to neck fit.

As the Sako 75 was a heavy barrel varmint version anyway the barrel was still free floating and so all that was needed was to fit a moddy.

A new MAE super short compact was fitted because I like the look, reliabilty, superb noise reduction and stainless steel construction.

This mod was chosen because the most important part is that the rifle had to be used for foxing and lamping so it had to be short. Therefore a barrel length of 19 inches was settled on.

Yes that is short but a quick run through Quickload ballistics (custom case design by me) program and you will find how efficient the 20 PPC is.

Overall length of the rifle with sound moderator fitted is a very handy 44 inches.

See the video here of the first rounds fired:


Bullet Weight Powder Velocity fps Energy ft/lbs
Blitz King
39gr 26 gr grains of Vit N135 3614 1131

27gr 3733 1207

28 gr 3885 1307

26gr of Hodgdon Benchmark 3655 1157

27gr 3781 1238

28gr 3897 1316

40gr 25gr of Vit N133 3623 1166

26gr 3710 1223

27gr 3876 1335

32gr 26 gr grains of Vit N135 3722 985

27gr 3821 1038

28 gr 3978 1125

Berger Varmint Match 40gr 28.5 grains of RL15 powder 3778 1268

All loaded with Federal Match primers.

Field use

It never ceases to amaze me how efficient some cases are even if you do cut the hell out of a barrel. Those velocities are from a 19 inch barrel further proving how good that PPC case is.

This rifle really liked the 39 grain Sierra Blitz Kings that shot bug hole size groups from the off. Watch the video on YouTube 

A load of only 28grains of Vit N135 powder under a 39 gr Blitz King with and COAL of 52.14mm achieved 3885 fps for 1307 ft/lbs energy. Largest group was 0.5 smallest was five through the same hole!!

Proves to me also that sometimes you do not have to go the full custom rifle route and you can save yourself a lot of cash with a very good Match grade barrel on a standard action like this Sako 75.

Fitted with a NightForce NXS scope and zeroed at 100yards the Quick Target ballistics program was used to generate some down range performance for the 20 PPC/ BlitzKing load with be -0.9 inches low at 200 yds, -5.6 inches low at 300 yds, -15.0 inches at 400 yds and at 500 yards only -31.0 inches.

That’s a great set of ballistic results and makes for a very good fox or long range varmint load in my book.Fitted with a MAE Super Short Compact sound moderator the muzzle report from only 28 grains powder is like a sparrows fart and you can spot every shot as there is zero muzzle lift.


Once again a wildcat cartridge has surprised me into wondering how those ballistics are achievable but the results are the results. Nice thing is it was on a semi custom rifle so in reach of most people and cartridge prep and loading is a doddle. Julian from JMS Arms whose rifle it is can be contacted on 07771 962121 for a similar rifle built and MAE sound moderators and Quickload ballistics program.


Tel JMS Arms 01444 400126 / 07771 962121

Quickload and QuickTARGET