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Thread: Dean Bircher 85 today and still shooting (500 34X) last shoot

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Rockford Il.
    Posts
    68

    Dean Bircher 85 today and still shooting (500 34X) last shoot

    My good friend Dean Bircher is 85 today and still shooting. Due to health issues friends help him set up equipment and hang targets. He can no longer see the target well enough to shoot sporter, buy does shoot 10.5# and 13.5#. If you look at Willow River range in Wis. on june 9th he shot a 500 34X in 2 gun. Dean sometimes has trouble remembering things, but in this case he remembered where to place the crosshair.
    Through the years Dean built a lot of the guns being used in Minn and Wis at that time. He built 2 for me. Dean also helped a lot of shooters get started in shooting and he was always ready and willing to help other shooters improve. He helped me a great deal in my first two years.

    Bircher "Super Gun Story".
    In 2010 Dean had a gun that wasn't shooting good. He wanted to re-barrel it. A friend told him he had a Brux 4 groove (cut rifled) that he would sell him. At that time word got out that Chet Amick was using a 1 degree reamer in all of his great shooting guns. They had an article on him in Precision Shooting magazine after he passed. We got that that 1 degree reamer from Dave Kiff and Dean chambered 4 groove Brux barrel with the reamer. He mounter the barrel on a Hall action and a Larsen stock. He was using a frozen Leupold scope. I will also mention that Dean told me several times the barrel had no choke when he slugged it. Dean said the slug pushed to same from breech to muzzle. It was late in the season and getting cold in Minn. Dean took it out to try, just to see if it would shoot. Dean said in just a few shots he knew he had something outstanding. The following year when shooting started he started winning an unbelievable amount of matches. That year Dean was placed 1st on both heavy gun classes on the IR50/50 list. He also shpt (2) 2500's in ARA that year. He has his (2) congratulation letter from Killough framed hanging on his wall. After the ARA Nationals Dean got a call from a guy stating he was calling for a friend that wanted to buy the gun for $10,000. Dean said offering that much the guy would want to look at it. The guy said no as he had looked it over good at the ARA Nationals. Dean didn't know what to do and finely decided not to sell. The following year the rifle started falling off in accuracy. He cut off the chamber and re-chambered using a 11/2 degree reamer thinking the 1 degree throat was wearing out to quickly. The gun never shoot good from that time on. Dean ended up selling the rifle for $3200.
    I'm writing this story as I thought some would find it interesting. By today's standards and thinking, it was a gun that shouldn't shoot, but did!!
    Anyone wanting to send Dean a Happy Birthday note I will print it off and mail to him.
    Gene Stroyan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    upstate, N.Y.
    Posts
    2,566
    I had a gun built by him some time ago, with one of Tony’s great stocks.
    Had a couple chats with him, a real gentleman.
    Kindly send my regards
    Tim Simbari

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    south dakota
    Posts
    129
    Tell Dean that Wayne in Yankton SD says Happy Birthday. He came to a match in Yankton many years ago and taught us how to shoot. Thanks!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    40

    Happy Birthday to Dean!

    Please tell Dean I miss shooting with him! We shot together at the Pontiac 50/50 Regionals for a number of years! What a guy, just loved him!
    Bill Schertz

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Posts
    17

    Happy Birthay Dean

    Hope you keep going for many years , but remember, No Dancing on the tables or shooting out the lights after our age of 80 plus years!

    John Spafford

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