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Old February 3, 2014, 04:49 AM   #1
rdavidsonjr
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what is the most accurate rifle out to 1000 yards

I just enjoyed reading the 308 vs 30-06 thread. Lots of interesting debate, very educational. My question is leave out the heavier rifles. I would like to see what everyone thinks shoots the tightest groups at 1000 yards between say 243 to 308 and also is a good deer rifle caliber. You know a nice comfortable shooter that covers the bases. Also what is it about any particular round that makes it better or worse from an accuracy stand point.308 has in the past and still leads the pack in long range and sniper choices by most . If you agree what is your reason if you don't what is your choice and why? I ' m not stupid enough to think I'm a world class long range pro and I'm not shooting deer at 1000 yards that's insane.

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Old February 3, 2014, 05:23 AM   #2
trigger643
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The current 10 shot group world record @ 1000 is held by a 6.5mm (.264"), and 1/2 MOA groups with 6mm and 6.5mm will get you in the running, but won't guaranty a win by any means.




After decades of running with the .30 cal dogs on the 1,000 yard range in .308 and .300WM I was ready for something different.

I was impressed by what I read about the 6mm and 6.5mm and decided to give .243 a whirl. Pleased with the results, I punched it out to .243AI and I'm really happy with the results so far.


Next up, I think I'm going to build a 26 Nosler. It's basically an unbelted .264 Ultra Mag.
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Old February 3, 2014, 07:10 AM   #3
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All you have listed are good choices. Given just the list I would still go with the 308 simply because of avalibility. The 243 is a hot accurate set up,but ( sorry all ) it is not a long range deer rifle. More of a over sized varmint rifle to me. I have one and it is dead on accurate,but would not put it with the big boys. Of course that depends on the twist you get. The 25-06-What can you say,still today I think it was the sweetest shooting rifle I have ever shot. The 7-08,can't say much as it will be my next purchase in rifles. The 308 is king in FTR class only because you are limeted as other have pointed out. Now where I shoot,MN,ND SD,Wis. The 308 is not used in F Class mainy because of recoil and time back on target. It has nothing to do with other caliber's shooting more accurate. The 308 will hold very tight out to 1000 yards. Last year in the Grand Master in Montana a 308 took second place at 1000 yards. The 30-06 is just a 308 on steroids. If you want best accuracy for long range get into something down the line of 6 or 6.5 you will love the low cost of reloading,low recoil and accuracy. I went with the 6MMBR and am very happy with it. Very much waiting for Memorial Day. First 1000 yard Match of the year and I just re barrled last week.
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Old February 3, 2014, 07:53 AM   #4
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Matt Kline put 10 shots into just over 2.8" @ 1000 yards with a 300 WSM in 2010.

http://bulletin.accurateshooter.com/...-with-300-wsm/

I don't follow long range target shooting that much so I don't know what the differences may be with the 6.5mm record.

For target shooting any of the choices you list would work at 1000 and be a good choice for deer. But if you do intend to shoot deer at 1000 (I don't recommend this, just answering the question) I'd have to go up to one of the 300 mags. And I like the 300 WSM best. For target shooting you only need enough energy to punch through paper. To hunt, you need energy to penetrate into an animals vitals. A 200+gr 30 cal bullet gives the BC and energy to still do this far better than the 6mm and 6.5mm's.

I own 308, 30-06, and 300 WSM. If you compare them the 30-06 only beats 308 speeds by about 100 fps, but with 25% more recoil. My 300 WSM beats 308 speeds by 400-500 fps, 30-06 speeds by 300-400 fps, but with recoil only about 10% greater recoil than 30-06. If anyone can handle 30-06 recoil, the difference moving up to 300 WSM is barely noticeable.
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Old February 3, 2014, 08:00 AM   #5
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Odds are that a rifle which would be superbly accurate at 1,000 yards would not at all be one which would be comfortably carried in the field.

I note that in many decades of deer hunting, I've had far more shots inside of 200 yards than out at 350 or 450. Just off the cuff? Probably 48:2.
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Old February 3, 2014, 08:12 AM   #6
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Rifle has little to do with it, it's more the question of who's behind it. Sure it needs to be an accurate rifle but accuracy at distance is so much more dependent on the shooter than his equipment.
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Old February 3, 2014, 08:33 AM   #7
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Take a look at the ft/lb of energy of a bullet fired from any cartridge sofar listed at 400 and 1000 yards. By the early 1960 I had shot pronghorn, mule deer, and elk with a accurate Winchester Mdl 70 270 rifle. I started looking at larger caliber rifles for elk hunting . What was available was the 30-06 and the 300 H&H until the 308 Norma Mag cartridge came out. A rifleman shooting the Norma Mag had won a 1000 yard match back then so I started looking for reloading data and ended up getting a Norma sporting weight rifle. Hunting shooting ranges and shooting at known ranges are much different . Then there is the darn wind. Having a bullet hitting a foot off the paper target no problem, but when its a game animal its a big problem.
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Old February 3, 2014, 09:08 AM   #8
rdavidsonjr
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Best long range deer rifle

Let me clarify my statement a little better it may have been a bit vague.A gun with low kick on my end that would be as accurate as possible for a little fun at the range on the bench while being also a good still hunt deer rifle say out to 300-400 yards. Whats your best choice and why. This is getting interesting in the direction it is taking. Thanks
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Old February 3, 2014, 10:03 AM   #9
AllenJ
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Thanks for the better explanation, it makes answering easier for me I would choose the .243 Winchester for what you're wanting. Ammo is reasonably priced and available (at least around here), recoil is nothing, and it is considered an inherently accurate round. The .308 would be a great choice but it does recoil more than the .243 and that can mean something after a full day at the range. I don't think any of the choices you list are bad and would not hesitate to use any of them for your stated purpose.
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Old February 3, 2014, 10:19 AM   #10
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Since your criteria are only 1000 yard accuracy and good deer gun, I take it to mean that ammunition availability and other considerations are irrelevant.

I believe you'd find that the 6.5 calibers would have the highest BCs (G1 BC certainly over 0.6xx)and combine low recoil, exceptional accuracy and plenty of energy for deer at any reasonable range.

6.5 Creed or 6.5x284, big controversy which is better, pick your side.
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Old February 3, 2014, 11:11 AM   #11
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Odds are that a rifle which would be superbly accurate at 1,000 yards would not at all be one which would be comfortably carried in the field.
Not to mention the difficulty of carrying the concrete bench the heavy rifle was sitting on when the nice tight groups were fired.

It's one thing to look at the world record group, but it was fired using match bullets, from a benchrest rifle, on a solid bench, at a known distance, using a rifle that was sighted in for that distance and no other.

Extrapolating that one would get results even remotely comparable from a hunting rifle, with hunting bullets, fired from a field position when you had to estimate the distance and then holdover is a fantasy.
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Old February 3, 2014, 11:36 AM   #12
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The question can be answered a couple of ways.

"What is the most accurate 1000 yard deer caliber"

Could be answered with "30-30 Win" as it can reach a 1000 yards, but has set a number of accuracy records in the Shutzen discipline that lasted for decades.

Could be answered with 338 Lapua because it still has enough energy and momentum to kill a deer at 1000 yards. Sure as heck though it is overkill for normal hunting ranges. Same with the 7mm WSM or any of the magnums.

Of course, after a few hundred yards wind conditions determine group size more than caliber.

So I'll have to say the "30-30 Win" is the most accurate 1000 yard deer caliber.

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Old February 3, 2014, 01:45 PM   #13
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Does it have to kill the deer at 1000 yards?
.270 Winchester with a stout hand load, and Nosler's Accubond 'long range' 150 grain bullet fired at 3000fps will have 1020ft/lbs @ 940 yards and 946ft/lbs of energy @1000 yards. It's flat shooting, has bullets with decent BC's, it's capable of being used in a light rifle. And the cartridge seems to be very accurate. The only reason it's not used in 1000 yard competitions commonly, is because the bullet selection in 6.8mm isn't great, and certainly not as good as the .30 cal choices. That doesn't mean it wont work, though.
.280rem with heavy VLD bullets could work too.
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Old February 3, 2014, 01:50 PM   #14
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All those "deer" cartridges listed in the OP's original post will shoot under 6 to 7 inches in the right rifle with the best handloads. That's as good as the best long range benchrest rifle and ammo made these days. That "right rifle" will be one weighing about 20 pounds mounted on an adjustable 3-point return to battery support well anchored atop a bench when touched only by the shooter's finger tip touching its 3-ounce trigger after making a really good wind correction.

What about an 8-pound hunting rifle hand held by a hunter afield shot off his shoulder in any position; prone, for example, which is the most stable? While it may well shoot 6 to 7 inches with superb ammo properly tested at 1000 yards, even the best shots will be hard pressed to put their first shot within 10 inches of point of aim on game somewhere around that distance. And will be challenged to put 5 more inside a 20 inch circle that far away.

A reminder to those quoting benchrest record 10-shot groups. The barrels that shoot bullets do do that shot the other 99% of their 10-shot groups larger; sometimes 3 times as large. Shouldn't we count them too?
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Old February 3, 2014, 02:38 PM   #15
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Yep, I was wondering if any of those groups was fired with a rifle the OP could carry on a deer hunt. We used to call those long range rifles "railroad guns" because the thing weighed as much as a section of rail and the stock was like a tie.

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Old February 3, 2014, 03:16 PM   #16
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I could carry my 12lbs .243 deer hunting, but I don't see any point to it.
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Old February 3, 2014, 03:27 PM   #17
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Before the OP seriously considers a 1,000 yard shot at a live animal, he should think about time of flight and the possiblity that the animal might move during that time- unless the animal is bedded down, how can the hunter be asured the animal won't turn/take a step in the time the bullet takes to get there?

OTH, if the animal is bedded down, why not get closer?
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Old February 3, 2014, 03:45 PM   #18
rdavidsonjr
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In the debate over the 30-06 vs the 308 there were a lot of differing opinion, but some points were made to argue for the 308 . For the lighter rifles are there any logical reasons to place one over the other in accuracy.
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Old February 3, 2014, 04:12 PM   #19
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OP re-stated his desires, 300-400 yards on deer, and the potential for 1000 yards on paper/steel.

I'd suggest you look in the 26 caliber range, or 6.5mm. The long range competitors really like the 6.5mm, so there are a lot of projectiles for it, more than 24, 25, or 28 calibers. Relatively good barrel life, factory ammo in different brands.

I like the .243, and I enjoy it, but the bullet selection and cost is not as good as for the 6.5s and the barrel life will be reduced. Going up, the 7mm-08 is close to the 6.5s, but a tad more recoil.

My personal choice, for a lot of reasons, is the .260. Based on the .308, so easy to make brass. I have deer and Pronghorn out past 500 if the conditions are perfect, but that is rare.
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Old February 3, 2014, 04:33 PM   #20
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Quote:
I like the .243, and I enjoy it, but the bullet selection and cost is not as good as for the 6.5s and the barrel life will be reduced.
Not necessarily. Comparing .243 win with .260 rem, they both use the .308 Winchester case. The .243 is more overbore, in this case and would generally have less barrel life than the .260 Remington. Any 6.5 cartridges with less case capacity and/or lower max pressure should have even more life. This would likely include 6.5 creedmoor, 6.5 Grendel, 6.5x47 lapua, 6.5 Arisaka and the 6.5x55 swede. Cartridges like the 6.5-06, 6.5 win mag, and 6.5 rem mag will have less life because they generally operate at higher pressures and are more 'overbore'. For some reason it seems that all the 6.5 cartridges got a bad reputation as 'barrel burners' on the interwebz, likely due to the 6.5win mag being a 'barrel burner' before we had things like chrome lined and melonite treated bores and chambers.
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Old February 3, 2014, 05:16 PM   #21
rdavidsonjr
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Keep the info coming this is becoming more fruitful as it goes. I m alot analytical and I find the more input I get tends to make for better decisions. Will be helpful with my next project.
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Old February 3, 2014, 06:17 PM   #22
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Im on a 243 kick right now because thats what i just bought for a rifle. Im not looking to shoot 1000 yds more like 400 tops. Most of my shooting will be done from 100 to 200yds. I researched and read tons of write ups on all calibers when i was rifle shopping and what ive learned(in my opinon) is that the 308 will prob be best for what youre looking to do. Unless youre looking to kill a deer at 1000 yds then throw my opinion out the window.lol but 308 is a great deer caliber out to 200 or 300yds and has been used for long range shooting forever. Also, there is a wider range of bullets for the 308. I think you can shoot 110 or 120 grn all the way up to 200 grn.
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Old February 3, 2014, 08:07 PM   #23
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OP re-stated his desires, 300-400 yards on deer, and the potential for 1000 yards on paper/steel.
I re-read the original post and now that you've pointed it out I see what you mean, the OP seems to want a rifle for deer hunting AND 1000 yard targets, not deer hunting at 1000 yards.

If you title your thread "what is the most accurate 1000 yard deer caliber" it's not too surprising when people come to the wrong conclusion.

Anyway, there are some limitations to that goal as well. Sights are going to be a challenge, because a rifle sighted in at 1000 yards requires shims / special mounts to give enough holdover, so much so that you'd have to switch scopes and mounts to do normal hunting.

In general there's no way to make a true dual purpose deer / 1000 yard target rifle. The two uses are so different that any attempt at doing both will result in a pretty serious compromise in one use or the other or both. I'd suggest making a deer rifle with some sort of quick change scope mounting system. If you get serious about 1000 yard targets, you're going to need a dedicated rifle anyway.

260 Rem / 6.5 Creedmoor / 6.5x55 would all be good choices.
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Old February 3, 2014, 08:35 PM   #24
rdavidsonjr
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best 1000 yard deer rifle

Sorry the OP was to broad and vague.Lets adapt the post to be more beneficial. I will try to do better in the future. Since the 1000 is an unrealistic target for a 300 -400 yard deer gun and scope without modification. And the weight of an actual competition 1000 yard bench gun is to much for hunting. I know the 308 is a top choice in 1000 yard and is more than adequate for deer. My intent is to get input into how the other lighter rounds between 243 and 308 stack up. Is there something that gives one an edge over the other. I've seen a lot of input on the 6.5 and 243 but there are several others. I have heard cost and bullet selection as some reasons. Are there others maybe powder fill, bullet weight,diameter and length balance, action length vs overall bullet length complications, or any adverse physical properties a bullet has that affect accuracy ect. Or is the 308 the best to fit the bill.
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Old February 3, 2014, 10:18 PM   #25
Brian Pfleuger
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what is the most accurate 1000 yard deer caliber

There are other factors, but it depends on if they matter to you. Most of them have nothing to do with accuracy.

I disagree that you need a special gun, optics or "shims". A 20 MOA base gives all you need and still allows adjustment for close range. A good scope will get you to 1000. Which one, depends on budget. There's a thread running here where the guy shoots over 1,000 yards with a Mosin (IIRC). Any modern rifle can do it. Again, depending on budget you're not going to get a gun that shoots world records but are YOU going to shoot WR groups even if you have a world record gun? Most of us aren't as good as our guns, even our $300 guns. Modern guns are plenty good.

Regarding the bullet, the Ballistic Coefficient takes care of everything you need to know about it's flight characteristics. The only numbers that matter is B.C. (G1 and G7) and muzzle velocity. BC is BC. It's caliber/cartridge independent.

What makes a particular cartridge better or worse in terms of accuracy? Usually, it's the nut behind the butt. Unless you're a world class shooter, the differences are academic.
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