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Old February 8, 2013, 09:32 AM   #1
Zachary H.
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How and where to learn to shoot long range rifle

Hi there, I live in central Indiana. Being fairly new to rifles and shooting in general, I'm wanting to improve my skills with a rifle. Are there any classes or clubs that I could join to learn the correct way to shoot a rifle? I'm OK out to 100 yards but I would like to be able to take 300 yard + shots. I just don't want to pick up a lot of bad habits. Also, are there any good books on this?
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Old February 8, 2013, 10:49 AM   #2
Ridge_Runner_5
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An Appleseed shoot will help strengthen the fundamentals and improve your aim.

I know Magpul has a DVD on long range marksmanship, that might help you.
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Old February 8, 2013, 11:17 AM   #3
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The best thing is to get with someone to mentor you. Then the most important thing is practice a lot all the time.
Alsso if you want to limit your shots to say 300-400 practice at 500 once you are good enough. Makes the closer shots easy.
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Old February 8, 2013, 12:27 PM   #4
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A CMP GSM Clinic will get you to 200 yards. The principal is the same, except for the effects of wind and other environmental concerns.

Contact your state Rifle and Pistol Assn. (via google). Most have high power events and clinics for the same, that will get you to 600. Maybe 1000 yards.

Also might want to see about their F-Class events.
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Old February 8, 2013, 03:08 PM   #5
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Google: Indiana long range shooting


http://www.indianashooter.com/long-range-shooting/

http://www.cihprs.org/Home_Page.html

http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=255257
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Old February 10, 2013, 06:13 PM   #6
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Fundamentals are the same at 100 yards, and 1000.
Trigger control. Respiratory control. Consistent cheek weld and sight picture.
Consistency. Did I say consistency?

First time I went from 200M (the longest available at the local range) and made the long drive to shoot long range (565/1000) I was apprehensive. No need to be..

The only thing that's not easily accounted for- and it is a really BIG "thing"- is the wind. While the effect of wind at 100 yards is barely noticeable, this is not so at 200 and beyond.

Being able to accurately dope the wind over the entire distance of the bullet flight is THE key to being able to hit the target at long range. It can be fairly straightforward on rare occasions when it is consistent or of little value- but most often very challenging when gusting at different velocities, at different distances off the ground, at varying points along the flight to the target. An experienced shooter that's expert at doping the wind will outshoot someone less capable with that skill every time with a rifle that's far less "accurate".

It can be very frustrating shooting long range on a windy day when one has little or no experience. While the only way to get the experience is trigger time, no point blowing $100 bucks in ammo if you lack the skills to make it happen. Gain your experience gradually, picking increasingly difficult (windy) days to hone your skills. Here's a good article on wind...

http://www.6mmbr.com/winddrift.html

Elevation is easily adjusted by means of free ballistic calculators online. JBM, Hornady and others are easily used- but you need to know your muzzle velocity, and that requires a chrono for most precision. However, you can "back into" an estimation- when you determine the number of minutes of "up" elevation from your zero range to your long range target, you can extrapolate the muzzle velocity and get it fairly close.

If you have a smartphone, download Strelok- it's a free ballistics program and makes it easy to have the information at your fingertips at the range.
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Old February 10, 2013, 08:44 PM   #7
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IMO the best way to learn long range centerfire is to start with long range .22lr. IIRC when it comes to drop and wind drift, 200 yards with a .22lr is roughly equal to many centerfires at 600. Even if not exact the principles are the same and it's a lot easier to find and shoot 200 yard ranges.
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Old February 10, 2013, 09:23 PM   #8
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L_Killkenny, I've not shot a rimfire 22 at 200 yards but once checking out some excellent match ammo that shoots no worse than 3/4 inch at 100 yards. That's as good as rimfire ammo is these days. . .at 25 cents a round or more.

Best 10-shot groups were about 3 inches. That's 1.5 MOA or more; twice the subtended group size as at 100 yards. Good rifles and ammo will shoot 3 inches or better at 600 yards; that's .5 MOA. My querys from folks who've shot Rimfire Palma at 200 yards say it's much worse than shooting high power at 600 or 1000 yards. Both accuracy and wind issues are not favorably comparable.

Shoot rimfire at 100 yards as the accuracy, wind drift and smallbore target ring sizes are virtually equal to centerfire at 1000. Only real difference is having to hold perfectly still twice as long with .22 rimfire after the sear releases the firing pin firing the round waiting for the bullet to exit the muzzle. Follow through's twice as important in smallbore.

Note: Strelok's free ballistic app's only available for Androids. Winchester has a free one for iPhones.
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Last edited by Bart B.; February 10, 2013 at 09:33 PM.
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Old February 11, 2013, 03:58 PM   #9
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Shooting prone with a .22 rimfire is good substitute when longer centerfire ranges are not available. 50 foot gallery is all about following the fundamentals of marksmanship. No wind to consider but the international target[A36] is not easy by any means. 50 and 100 yards adds the challenge of some mirage and wind. The target closest to the old official 200 yard is the Highpower SR42. At that distance the 40 grain bullet has a real rainbow trajectory. I never shot for group but keeping 95% or better shots in the ten ring required watching conditions and releasing good shots. The same skills needed for Mid and Long range centerfire.
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Old February 11, 2013, 04:50 PM   #10
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If I had the time and money, I'd give Dan Newberry's camp a shot, (pun intended) then I'd circle back around and visit the captain over in Wyoming, and see how much I could pick up from those dudes.
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Old February 11, 2013, 10:09 PM   #11
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+1 on starting with a 22lr.
im in the same boat trying to figure out wind. it really turns a nice group into swiss cheese when ya dont know what your doing. and that 22 drops fast after 125 yards.
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Old February 12, 2013, 12:52 PM   #12
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Shooting 22's is a great suggestion.. However, In my experience it can be much more frustrating than most make it seem. Once you are comfortable enough to shoot better than 1moa, is when it starts getting frustrating.

My 22 rifle with regular ammo (not the cheapest bulk but not the expensive stuff) cannot produce better than 1moa. Maybe even no better than 1.5moa. When I'm used to 1/2moa out of all my centerfire rifles, 1moa just doesnt cut it. You never know if its you doing something wrong or you got a bad round. This can lead to bad habits being formed, as your trying to fix something in your form that might not need fixing.

Now, I know that if you buy a high quality 22lr and shoot expensive 22lr from it, then you can get pretty good results. However that defeats most of the reasons of practicing with a 22 in the first place! If you can afford to buy a $700+ rifle and practice with 25 cent rounds, then you might as well get a 223 bolt rifle and shoot your reloads (both of which will cost less!). The only reason I can see the 22 having an advantage is if you absolutely have nothing longer than 200 yards, then it can help you tune your wind reading.

Who knows, maybe its just my 22 that isn't a 1/2moa rifle. I've heard the relatively inexpensive bolt savage's are fairly accurate. My marlin 795, not so much.
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Old February 12, 2013, 03:25 PM   #13
L_Killkenny
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Quote:
My 22 rifle with regular ammo (not the cheapest bulk but not the expensive stuff) cannot produce better than 1moa. Maybe even no better than 1.5moa.
There in lies the key........... You don't need an MOA .22lr to learn, practice and become proficient. Due to the shorter range and keeping the proportions the same, .22lr's that shoot groups 3 or 4 times larger than their centerfire counterparts is perfectly acceptable. In other words any 1.5 or 2 moa .22lr compares well to 1/2 moa centerfires and is just fine. Something most Savage bolts, CZ bolts and slightly tuned 10/22's are capable of. Heck, even the lowly Marlins can cut that mustard a good percentage of the time.
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Old February 12, 2013, 03:34 PM   #14
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I'm also looking at easing into long range shooting. Presently I only have basic .22 rifles. Good to know I can start with them until I can cash up to something larger. Thanks!

Last edited by zincwarrior; February 12, 2013 at 03:45 PM.
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Old February 12, 2013, 03:57 PM   #15
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The ten ring on a NRA 50 yard target is about 1.75 MOA. Bulk high velocity ammo might not be the best choice but a standard velocity ammo with a good , not a big buck$ model, rifle can make a pretty fair showing. Shooting for score rather then group is one way to record your progress. Keeping a little diary of the results keeps your head in the game when you're not at the range. It's something to remind you of good days and what it took to have that good day. Of course it has to be fun. If it's to frustrating it's not worth the effort.
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Old February 12, 2013, 04:17 PM   #16
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I used to spend about as much time working on wind flags as I did reloading. I had spinners and ribbons that would tell a story that I understood. I have placed as many as 10 flags between me and the target. Wind conditions are not the same over 300 or 400 yards. The wind can stop dead at 200 yards and blow 15mph at the target. Or do just about anything really. In bench rest rifle we shoot wind conditions. That means you shoot on a condition you are reading from your own personal flags and you shoot all 5 shots on the same condition, if possible.

Without wind flags, there is always luck.
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Old February 12, 2013, 04:45 PM   #17
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Quote:
Without wind flags, there is always luck
Without wind flags there is always mirage.
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Old February 12, 2013, 05:15 PM   #18
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I never learned to read mirage.
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Old February 13, 2013, 03:43 PM   #19
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Zachary H,
Books about rifle shooting. "Ways of the Rifle" by Gay Buhlman, "High Power Rifle" by David Tubb and Check the CMP web site for their books. All great reads.
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Old February 13, 2013, 07:33 PM   #20
emcon5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eldermike
I never learned to read mirage.
Then you are overdue, aren't ya?
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Old February 14, 2013, 02:27 PM   #21
Lt. Skrumpledonk Ret
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I said the same thing once. "I *need* to move up from 100 yds to 300 yds".
Someone suggested, "Stick with the 100 yds and 'move up' from bench rest (or prone) to off-hand." There are little challenges here and there to improve your skill on the same 100 yd range. Put a phone book under one foot, then the other foot.
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Old February 20, 2013, 02:09 PM   #22
emcon5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eldermike
I never learned to read mirage.
Just found this in another thread:

http://southtexasshooting.org/multim...xt/mirage.html

Decent overview.
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