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View Poll Results: How many shots should be required to make a "meaningful" group?
Three shots are enough. 11 20.37%
Five shots should be the standerd. 36 66.67%
Ten shots should be the standard. 7 12.96%
Voters: 54. You may not vote on this poll

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Old November 5, 2011, 07:06 PM   #26
HiBC
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This does not argue with what 1911 just said.

Brother bought an AR-10 T with a Badger bbl.This rifle shot 168 gr Nosler Competitions pushed by 46 gr a Varget pretty well.Week in,week out,over a long period of time,he would expect a 3 shot 300 yd sight verification group to be about the size if a lemon.If it was not,he would wonder what happened,and try agan.They were three shot groups,but not just one.

After he put about 6000 rds through that bbl,he was getting more fliers.He could not count on that performance.He put a new Kreiger barrel on it.I posted a 3 shot group he got with that rifle the first day out.It was less than 1 in at 300 yds,He said "I love my new bbl"He sent me another I posted here,it was smaller than the orange diamond on a sight in target,3 shots,600 yds.This antelope season,no wind,early day,he confidently dropped a doe dead at 537 yds.
But no claim is made it is a xxxMOA rifle.He is just happy and confident.

If a man bets you he can get a first round hit on an egg at 300 yds,you bet,he fires one shot and the egg explodes,you lost your money.What more do you need to know?

That badger 308 bbl went 6000 rds.You might get a 6.5 -284 bbl that shoots ..320 MOA 10 shot groups!!Good for you.It might shoot 120 or 160 of those groups before it loosens up.But if you shot 3 shot groups,maybe you could shoot 400 groups.

Once I know I have a good,accurate rifle,and a good load,I know it will outshoot me.Sighting,I start one shot at a time,then I go to two shots.For the final group or two,I shoot three.If they are a poor group,that tells me something may be wrong.

Now,if I am trying to decide if RE-15 is outshooting Varget,yes,I might see what 3 different 5 shot groups look like...maybe.Or I might say,better,worse,or within margin of error.

But,I do not need a bragging MOA number,and I make no claim to setting records.

So,please,if I ever post a pic of a three shot group,I can already count to three.I'll call it a three shot group.I do not need anyone to tell me "Now go shoot five" No.The three tell me the rifle is sighted in and all is well.
I will not spend my barrel just so no one can rain on my parade.
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Old November 6, 2011, 08:18 AM   #27
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...No one else knows for sure if I shot at 10 yards or 100 anyway and I'm doing it for me, not them. I don't care if they're impressed or like my decisions or not...
But then, you did post your three-fifths of a group on a public forum. Does that not in itself demonstrate just the opposite ("...don't care...just for me..."), of what you just said in the above post? Maybe I did not understand?
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Three shots are not a "group"...they are a "few".

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Old November 6, 2011, 08:25 AM   #28
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...I start one shot at a time,then I go to two shots.For the final group or two,I shoot three.If they are a poor group,that tells me something may be wrong...
If you combine the shots, "...final group or two...", you are shooting at least six shots, which would suggest that you do not have faith in a single three-shot group as sufficient to indicate accuracy.
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Old November 6, 2011, 09:19 AM   #29
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For me, I can make three shot groups work, like Crankylove it depends on the components. I really like five round groups because at time they give me insight on adjusting my data. But both have their place in my laboratory.
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Old November 6, 2011, 09:33 AM   #30
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When chronographing loads, 10 shots give the requisite number to determine Deviation and Spread. I shoot two three shot and one four shot. When I'm not measuring, I use three.
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Old November 6, 2011, 09:44 AM   #31
Brian Pfleuger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dahermit View Post
But then, you did post your three-fifths of a group on a public forum. Does that not in itself demonstrate just the opposite ("...don't care...just for me..."), of what you just said in the above post? Maybe I did not understand?
Nope. I posted it to show what I was happy about. Don't care if anyone else likes it or not.
Nobody here really knows me anyway. After 9000+ posts, the regulars should have some idea, but who really knows for sure? Am I only partially or am I totally full of crap? Am I honest about the distance, or a braggart who shot at 10 yards and claim 100 just for the accolades?

Nope. I posted that group because I was happy to get a chance to shoot, happy that I did well and I knew there are a few "forum friends" that would be happy with me. What anybody else thinks, I couldn't care less.
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Old November 6, 2011, 10:35 AM   #32
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I do 5 shot groups when load testing. To confirm how well (and CONSISTENT) the load is, I do 10 shot groups.

I can do 1/3 MOA 5 shot groups with a Nosler Varmint 60gr BTBT out of a DPMS 24" Fluted Bull Barrel in .223 Rem. My groups open up a little to 1/2 MOA for 10 shot groups. That to me tells me this round is pretty damn consistent. At 2 & 300 yards, it'll maintain 1/2 MOA groups all day long. I will occassionally get the 1/3 MOA groups in a 10 shot string at 200, but obviously the shooter has influence on this. This is usually off sandbags.
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Old November 6, 2011, 11:50 AM   #33
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It depends. Five rounds is useful, ten rounds is better.

Once upon a time, I plotted each shot from a particular rifle on what I called a composite target. Every shot, regardless of bullet weight or powder charge. I learned that that particular rifle shoots everything into a 4" group at 100 yards. Not bad for a hunting rifle. Many groups were much better, but it shot everything into 4 inches.

When I get ready to begin hunting and have settled on a particular rifle and load, I start shooting one-shot groups. One shot only from a cold, lightly fouled barrel. I want to know where that shot goes without doubt.
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Old November 6, 2011, 12:04 PM   #34
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Here is a post from 1997

https://groups.google.com/forum/#!to...ns/iL7zv-cktJc

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Old November 6, 2011, 12:16 PM   #35
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There three glaring facts relative to this discussion. First, there is zero, no, nada rifle completions (that I know of at least), that accepts three shots as a group standard. There must be a reason for that minimum number of shots.
For instance, the following link shows the rules for bench-rest hunting rifle completion:
http://benchrest.com/nbrsa/html/hunter.html

Secondly, if three shots are not attributable to chance, most serious rifle shooters, hand loaders, would not have fired those common three-shot groups that are not repeatable.

Thirdly, like it or not, five shots are and has been the default standard for comparing one rifle and shooter to another. If you shoot a three shot group and measure it, other shooters have no frame of reference to compare it to their own shooting. There must be some standard to compare...and it is, and has been five shots which I have read about and observed in competition since I began shooting in 1964 (I remember the ".000" group fired by McMillan in 1964 in the desert South West.)
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Three shots are not a "group"...they are a "few".

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Old November 6, 2011, 01:11 PM   #36
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Ok.

So what?

Don't compare my groups to yours then.

As I've said, I don't care.

Do you realize how many shots it takes to have a statistically valid group?

Five shot groups are only slightly statistically more valid than three shot groups.

In fact, 10 shot groups are marginal.

In truth, it takes about 30 shots to create a statistically valid sample.

By the way, I don't care about statistically valid.

Anyone who thinks my groups are not statistically valid or wants to argue about the validity of the groups is welcome to avoid posting in my thread.

Sometimes I wonder how people have any fun in life at all.
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Old November 6, 2011, 01:27 PM   #37
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dahermit, you pick a poor example using Hunter BR as that is a score shoot sure its 5 shots per target but you shoot one shoot each bull on target plus sighter. As a Score match you can miss the bull only shoot 3 shot per target and get a score.

IBS 1000yd does group,score,X not sure about 600yds. I know one 1000yd shooter and he shoot score he has no desire for group.

I shot group with the 6ppc but I also shot Score Hunter BR they also had VH and VFS score matches.

I admit I shoot lot of 5 shot groups with the 6ppc and score targets but it was more for me than the loads. For the 100yds score target to get a X your bullet had to hit a dot that was .060" with a 6x scope same scope at 200/300yds. On the VFS match IBS you can use any power scope and they have the most entries in that match.

If a guy knows his rifle and he shoot 3 shot groups so be it.
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Old November 6, 2011, 02:16 PM   #38
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The OPs original question was:

“How many shots should be included in a group for the purposes of evaluating a load, the accuracy potential of a rifle, or just boasting?”

Sorry, but I don’t see anything in it pertaining to rifle competition, rules for same, or anything else, but evaluation, accuracy or boasting..... I’m fairly sure competition rules, or any others for that matter, apply to these three....
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Old November 6, 2011, 02:36 PM   #39
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I guess "meaningful" is the key word here but I'm not sure how competition shooting entered this discussion. Peetzakilla's 3-shot group was meaningful to him and I enjoyed his post about it. It's a proven load in an accurate rifle and it confirmed that everything was working as it should, including the loose nut behind the trigger. Works for him, works for me.
I generally load 10 of a given test load and yesterday it came in handy. I was firing some test loads yesterday and the first two missed the 8.5X11 target @ 100 yds. Then I got distracted adjusting the scope and even flinched once (Good ol' Thumper! ). Hits at 9 and 7 o'clock are sighters, 4 o'clock is when I flinched. A tray full of stiff 45-70's and 45-90's does that to me sometimes. I'm pretty happy with the 5 shots that fell into about 2". It's a test load, I'm learning how to cast boolits and this is a hunting load in a hunting rifle equipped with a low-powered scope. I doubt anybody will be much impressed but it told me what I needed to know. Meaningful? Yes.
Just loaded 10 more, think I'll go abuse my shoulder again.
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Old November 6, 2011, 02:46 PM   #40
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Old November 6, 2011, 04:09 PM   #41
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Dahermit,I do agree that three shot groups are not a definitive criteria.

I do not jump to major conclusions on one 3 shot group.

Especially if I am trying to evaluate a load combination.

When I worked in the machine trades,there were different inspection routines.

Some of them just monitor if the process is stable.

I think three shots is fine for checking to see if a known combination is working.

If I was shooting in terms of a "first part inspection" where I was checking every dimension on the print,as a machinist,then I think at least 5 shots is in order.I recall in Precision Shooting someone suggested statistically,7 shot groups gave the most info for the least ammo.I could not say.Seven seems good.

Still,if you are checking out a rifle at 100,200,and 300,or farther ranges,shooting 3 shot groups,and all day you get 3 shot groups sub MOA,say,in all 15 three shot groups sub MOA,no,there are a lot of claims you cannot make.
But it is VALID to say,"I can generally count on it to put three shots into 2 inches or less at 200 yds."

If it is true,that is very meaningful.

Another way to look at it:I can look at a deer and say,thats a nice buck!!Good size!!Elegant form!!
That is enough for me.I just have absolutely no interest to know the Boone and Crockett scoring.It is meaningless to me.I do not care how it ranks.

Those who compete,keep score,etc,have an interest in the sport of "group size".For them,.060 or .080 difference is meaningful.For the game,shoot ten,or five,whatever the rules are.

What is meaningful to me,the rifle is performing up to expectations.I can trust it to make the shot.I can keep tabs on that three shots at a time.
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Old November 6, 2011, 08:46 PM   #42
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Here's a little story, my favorate rifle is my Savage 243. It does not get taken out that much because of limited accurate barrel life. However, this year it did see the range because I purchased 300 95 grain Hornady Interbonds 243s on sale.

I know I am getting old, because it took me 6 shots to fine tune the scope this time at 100 yards (normal is 4 shots). After the tune in, the 0.50 inch red dots on each of the corners was used to verify zero. One shot for each corner so you can say my groups were one shot each.

Do I need three shot groups, do I need 5 shot groups, do I need 10 shot groups, hell no. Place a single shot into the bullseye each time and I will respect you as a marksman and a serious reloader.

I have 10 243 cases to resize sitting on my bench. Any more would have been a waste of ammo.


Here's the sight in target: Shot 1 at 1:00 o'clock, shot 2 at 1:00 o'clock, Shot 3 at 3:00 o'clock (too much adjustment), shot 4 at 6:00 o'clock (I held too low) and shot 5 & 6 at ZERO.

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Old November 6, 2011, 09:04 PM   #43
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Quote:
It seems there's a consensus that 10 is over doing it
I'm not of that group.

First, I'll assume we are talking about testing for accuracy of the round/rifle and not zeroing the rifle (different story)

The number of rounds should be determined by how you plan on shooting the gun. For HP rapid fire stages, two 10 shot strings like you're going to shoot the match. Slow fire, then 10 to 2o rounds slow fire. Same postition you're going to shoot in a match.

Hunting. I zero then my accuracy is checked by shooting 3 6 in gongs. One at 110, one at 200 and one at 300. Then work my way back. I use featherweight winchesters so I'm limit the shots to 6.

Now if you want a good zero, shoot twenty rounds. Then draw a line from 12 to 6 oclock, then another round from 3 to 9 oclock. Now count the rounds in each quarter. Adjust until you get an equal number arounds in each quarter.

For zeroing a hunting rifle. I do the same. only 10 rounds is enough. The difference is shoot one round a day, for 10 days. regardless of weather. Use the same target and again divied it into quarters. Adjust until you get an equal number of rounds per quarter. On each day you shoot the one round, take a note book and record every thing possible about the weather and other enviormental condition. This will give you a true zero for your hunting rifle.

Unless you pack a shooting bench with you when you hunt, don't zero from the bench. Vary your positions, prone, setting, kneeling, standing, leaning against a fence post or tree, etc. Also record this with each shot you shoot.

You're only testing the first cold bore shot, Thats the one that counts anyway.
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Old November 6, 2011, 09:12 PM   #44
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Quote:
You're only testing the first cold bore shot, Thats the one that counts anyway.
A+ on that.

Jim
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Old November 6, 2011, 10:10 PM   #45
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I usually can't decide how many is enough or too many,but I generally like to shoot 7 or 8 shots for making sure a load shoots well enough for me.In rifle can get away with 3 to 5 because I am more sure of my own abilities in that platform.
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Old November 7, 2011, 12:51 AM   #46
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Gotta agree with the hunters who feel that the first shot from a cold bore is the most important shot. Having confidence in that shot is equally important, if it takes 3, 5, 10, 20 or more rounds in a group before heading to the field then that's what it takes. At some point it becomes a numbers game or competition but that's OK, if you're into that.
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