Meet Dutchman & ELR Specialist Harry Drescher, 3rd place at KO2M in Canjeurs, France

Desert Tech 375 Cheytac HTI 

The 375 Cheytac has been a very widely used cartridge for ELR shooting past 2000m and 3200m. The selection of consistently high BC bullets that perform well in the transonic range with doppler radar data to prove this BC consistency has been one of the reasons why the cartridge and its variants in .375cal continue to remain popular notwithstanding the growth of .416cal based rounds. The latter provides more splash or signature when the bullets impact the ground at these extreme distances enabling the spotter to locate his shot more effectively and hence compensate for the changes.

Desert Tech 375 Cheytac HTI
Desert Tech 375 Cheytac HTI with custom 38″ Barrel by SSD.

During this year’s Ko2M, we had the opportunity to witness many 375Cheytacs, at least 3x .416 based cartridges (Barrett and 416 Colossus and Jay Dvorsky’s 460Steyr with Thunder Ammo bullets. We have recorded these performances to understand what it’s like to view 2000m+ impacts using some of the best optics (Swarovski spotter plus digital zoom). Scroll further on to view these video clips.

Above: In the background, Andreas Stunz Massive 416Colossus also built by Harry lies awaiting it’s turn to rattle the shooting grounds at Canjuers!

This time my Extreme Long Range Shooting story is back and with more interesting real world stories of the talented shooters behind Extreme Long Range shooting sports. This time we shall move over to Europe to meet one of the most passionate people about ELR in the European scene, Harry Drescher from Solid Solution Designs.

@rifletalks.com Harry Drescher from Solidsolutiondesigns.com placing 3rd at King of Two Miles in France #375cheytac #408cheytac #extremelongrange #precisionrifle #longrangeprecision #sniper #kingof2miles #guntok #rifles #50bmgcal #barrett #Deserttech #deserttechhti #accuracyinternational #zerocompromiseoptic ♬ The Results Will Come (Motivational Speech) – Fearless Motivation

Who Is Harry Drescher?

Harry’s story is a special one, not only is he a competitor, he also runs a business dedicated to bringing European shooters all the ELR goodies they may need, off the shelf together with custom rifles built by the entourage he has surrounded himself with over the last decade or so. Harry has been running the one mile club called www.EXLRS.nl since 2009. This gave Harry and many other European shooters the possibility to shoot one mile plus in northern Europe, while for the last 3 years, Sicily has given southern European shooters the possibility to shoot 1mile plus.

Harry has expanded to Scotland, France and Italy as well with his regular shoots. We have alot of respect for those that not only shoot ELR but also seek to expand opportunities for other to help this amazing sport flourish! He and his spotter Stefan Van Der Heide, Ko1M 2022 runner Up in France have learned something along the way as he was leading 1st place on day 1 hiking ahead by thousands of points and then slipping into 3rd position on day two after dropping some important points further out. We caught up with this fun Dutchman for a beer during Ko2M and he shared some of his thoughts.

Harry’s 375Cheytac /416 Barrett HTI

Above: 416 Barrett on a Desert Tech HTI built by SSD.

Harry placed 3rd position at the King of 2 Miles in Canjuers with his 375Cheytac barrel this year after leaping ahead to position one on Day 1 earning him massive points and was almost unstoppable with his custom 375Cheytac Desert Tech HTI rifle. This combination of rifle is very interesting and we were particularly keen to feature it. The rifle allows for easy barrel changes and bolt swap enabling you to have one system in place with multiple barrels from 375 to 416Barrett, 460STeyr or 50BMG or any of these variants on these bolt face options.

KO2M France Qualification Run

Targets were 1140m Cold bore

1 – 1441m

2 – 1626m

3 – 1819m

4 – 2135m

KO2M Harry Drescher

FINAL RUN KO2M

2488m

2741m

3223m

This is also the same advantage highlighted by Bryan Litz and Frank Galli from Sniper’s Hide in their review of the HTI Model. In a sport where changing barrels and travelling is a recurring part of the formula, this feature makes life simple for the shooter enabling him to test multiple barrels easily while also conveniently tucking it away for travel in a smaller case than if you were carrying one of the conventional ELR rifles that need a pickup. The rifle takes some getting use to but it is very comfortable once you get the hang of the bolt position. If you are single feeding these rounds like most of us do, you may need some adjustment of your position to slide the big rounds into the chamber while maintaining same position. Again it’s a matter of time till you figure out your own way of doing this. The trigger breaks around 580grams/20 ounces once adjusted.

The HTI is a grown up version of the Desert Tech SRS A2 which I have also featured in DT SRS 33XC, Desert Tech 37XC and 300Norma Mag. I chose this rifle for the exact same benefits. The rifle is of a bullpup design with a barrel block like system to keep the barrel in place while 4 clamps tighten around the chamber area where the barrel has a straight taper for atleast the first few inches. There is no real action like a conventional 375Cheytac build, the barrel is inserted from the front, is held in place by the 4 clamps in the aluminium chassis and the bolt lugs lock into an extension piece that is threaded to the barrel.

Drawbacks of the 375Cheytac HTI and Desert Tech SRS?

The system has only one draw back in my experience. Due to the design, the primary extraction of the bolt has low leverage compared to a BAT action for example where the bolt helps to leverage and extract the spent round from the chamber. In case of the Desert Tech, there is only an angled lip in the barrel extension to help the bolt create leverage required to initiate the primary extraction. This means that even if your rifle maybe safe to fire a stout load, you may not be able to extract the spent round after that initial first firing and you will most likely encounter this issue after sizing the brass once and firing it again. To overcome this, keep your loads moderate and work a load that is consistent in that window before you hit the pressure tipping point. This is critical especially if you are going to experience warm weather where pressure spikes. I would fire at least 2 rounds using that same piece of brass, size and reload it on the range to check if the bolt will experience any issues before you settle on a load.

Desert Tech 375 Cheytac HTI
Desert Tech 375 Cheytac HTI zeroing range in France

Below, my rifle, a 37XC built by Harry Drescher with a custom barrel for 37XC to provide 375cheytac-like performance on a 338 bolt face unlike the HTI requiring a dedicated 375Cheytac bolt face. The HTI can also take larger diameter 1.6″ barrel whereas the SRSA2 can only have a 1.25″ shank which means less weight for a similar performance rifle. I had to add a 3.3kg/7.27lbs weight to the forend of my DT SRS A2 below to maintain the recoil of the 37XC within check for a 15 round string.

Loading up some 37XC Loads in this video below.

@rifletalks.com This month we bring you more live firing of this special extreme range cartridge, the only one in Italy #tiroesportivo #tirolungadistanza #extremerangesniper #ko2m #2miles #longrangeprecision #precisionshooting #longrangerifle #precisionrifle #muzzlebrake #cuttingedgebullets #338lapua #408cheytac #375cheytac #416barrett #50cal #300norma #338 #bergerbullets #appliedballistics ♬ original sound – Rod@rifletalks.com

How accurate are these Bullpup Desert Tech rifles in .375?

As accurate as it gets, with my handloads my 37XC barrel in a SRS A2 is holding under 1inch at 300m and around 3-4″ of vertical at 1000yards. Below, a 3 round group at 1082yards pushing a 400Gr Cutting Edge Lazer at 2920ft/s.

These loads have less than 10feet/s extreme velocity spread over 5 shots.

We have asked Harry some more ELR focused questions to help us understand more his viewpoint and mindset on ELR.

How did you get into ELR shooting, which line of the shooting sports did you come from before moving to ELR?
Started in 2001 with ELR, shooting at Military Base Harskamp in The Netherlands. From 2009 on shooting a .300RUM.

 

Where abouts are you based? Do you have access to ELR shooting grounds nearby?
I live in The Netherlands, Europe.

Featured

 

Which are the most important ELR matches in the US today in your view?
King Of Two Miles in Raton NM, Moccasin Valley ELR
RATON ELR SPring Canyon

Have you won any ELR matches you can share with us?

Not yet (At this rate, he may just snatch the next one)

How often do you practice shooting beyond 1500m and what’s your favourite training round?

3 times a year, 375 Cheytac
Which one of these describes you best?*
Can you share one ELR experience that really got you going in the sport? (success stories, a moment you remember well or a training experience that you remember)
Shooting with EXLRS.nl “One Mile Club” in France got me really hooked.

Coldshoot exlrs

Cold Shoot ELR EXLRS
Pieter and Harry who run this club together.
What do you look for when you set out to build an ELR rifle?
Zero tolerance on all parts, index matching components, a full custom rifle like Solid Solution Designs builds.
What rifle are you currently running for 2-mile shooting and can you share some info about the rifle build?
DT HTI Solid Solution Designs full custom .375CT. Bartlein barrel
Bedding: Is the barrel bedded forward of the action or is it the action only?
Action only (note the DT has no bedding, it is a barrel block design that keeps the barrel in place.)

Which scope are you using for ELR?

ZCO 527 CCW MPCT3X
__________________
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WATCH 37XC IN ACTION WITH NEW MARCH HIGH MASTER
_____________________________________________________________________
How far out can you get with your setup before mounting a prism device?
<1500yds
<3500yds
nightforce wedge prism
How do you dial in the elevation required for 2 mile shots? 

Are you using an offset Zero system at 100m? (read about offset zero system in Ryan Cheney’s interview.)

No.

Do you use an adjustable mount or base?*

What magnification do you use for ELR shots past 1500m -3200m?*

27x

What do you look for when picking a barrel for this sport, how important is velocity and barrel length for you?
Going for the best and optimal within the wight limits of the ko2m.

Do you anneal your brass and if so how often?
Do you find yourself trimming your brass regularly on these big calibers?
Yes using an AMP. Trimming hardly as my dies are custom made by Dan Warner of WTC USA

What’s your bullet of choice and how do you test your loads?

(Short range tests, long range group test, (ladder testing, round robin, any other method?)

Warner Flatline 400grs .375cal. Seating depth tests on range.
___________________________________________________________________________
Sponsored Snippet
TPM Balle in France makes
custom made 375Cheytac
Dies for your rifle based on the fired brass.
Simply send them 4 fired cases
and they will do the rest.
___________________________________________________________________________

What’s your powder of choice? Do you change the charge weight of your loads in winter/summer to maintain the same velocity/node?

Vihtavuori N570. Just 1 load, rest is being calculated using ballistic software.
ELR rounds can be hard on barrels and wear out the throat pretty fast increasing freebore.

Do you chase the lands to maintain the same bullet seating depth as the roundcount increases?

Furthest Distance shot to date and how many rounds to connect?

3200m at Eskadalemuir in Scotland range 6 shots
Shooting ELR in Scotland!

What is the barrel life of your 375 Cheytac?

1300 to 1500 rounds before I dump the barrel.
Do you use a mandrel to keep your neck tension consistent or bushing style dies?
Mandrel
___________________________________________________________________________________
Sponsored Snippet
Based in the UK, they offer high precision made handloading tools for the discerning handloader and precision shooter. We load our ammo using their mandrels which come in various sizes together with their dies.
They also make a beautiful case trimmer which can mounted on bench drill. Read about it here 

ARC Ballistics mandrels

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Where do you see the Extreme Long range sport heading?

Do you feel we have more control over 2 miles shooting performance today from what you see at the matches?
I foresee a continuous rising of ELR shooting in Europe, however ranges capable of the largest distance are drying up.

WATCH BENJAMIN SAN MARCO OUT TO 2 MILES!

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