View Full Version : What could be going on?

April 29, 2010, 05:59 PM
So let me start off by saying that I have shot several other rifles and don't have this issue at all. Well, I got my Browning BAR out to do some shooting with it since I hadn't in a while. I'm sure most of you remember about me having trouble in the past getting good groups. Yet last time I was shooting it I got decent groups and thought I'd found ammo it liked. Well, I got it out today and decided to shoot at the 100 yard target like normal. I shot a few times and saw that I was hitting all over the place. I had the scope zoomed into 9x. It's a Burris Fullfield II 3x9x40mm scope. I almost always shoot on 9x at 100 yards on any rifle. With other rifles I don't have trouble consistently getting under 1" groups. Although I don't shoot any others that kick this hard. That's the only difference I can think of. I was literally shooting about a 5" group it was so bad. So after a few shots and adjusting the scope slightly I zoomed out to 5.5 power. I shot a 5 shot group that measured 1.313" right in the center of the bulls eye. 3 shots were making up one hole in the bulls eye and two were slightly off to the side like I pulled that made it measure 1.313". It literally would have been a .5" group if that if I hadn't had the other two. So I thought man this thing is shooting good and went back to 9x. The first shot I hit 3" high. The next shot I hit 1-2" low. It's like I can't hit the same spot on 9x. However, when I zoom back to 5.5" I'm hitting the same spot over and over. What can be going on here? Maybe this is why I've always got such bad groups with this rifle. Is it something possible to be wrong with the scope or gun? Or is it all me? It's not like the POI is shifting with magnification changes but instead it's like it goes from shooting dead center to shoot all over the target. I shot another rifle right after this and had it on 9x and as usual shot a group well under 1". .6" to be more specific. It was a lighter recoiling rifle though. I just can't figure out what can be going on here. What do you guys think?

April 29, 2010, 07:33 PM
I think its time to buy a better scope.

You can also see if Burris will repair your scope under warranty. But I would have difficulty trusting it again.

Brian Pfleuger
April 29, 2010, 07:43 PM
All Burris scopes carry a lifetime warranty (http://www.burrisoptics.com/warranty.html).

I've seen scopes change POI with a change in magnification but I've never had one get erratic. Anything is possible though, I've had very few scopes fail me in any way, so I can't say as to what the symptoms might be?

April 29, 2010, 08:12 PM
I'm really wondering if it's actually me pulling because I see movement a lot more at 9x. I know this rifle is kind of a pain to shoot. While it's not a super hard kicker it kicks decently hard and has the hard plastic butt plate. I'm really thinking that it may be me just pulling it and at 9x it's magnifying the movement much more so I'm trying to hold it more on the bulls eye and not. I just can't really determine if it's me or if it's the gun or scope. I think I'm going to have to do some more testing. I shot at 5.5x again with my last two rounds and hit a few inches off then too. However, I know it's because I was getting tired and my arm was getting sore. The other rifles I usually shoot have rubber butt plates that make them much more enjoyable to shoot. I just can't figure out if it's me or if it's something that's possible for the scope to have happen to it.

Doc TH
April 29, 2010, 10:05 PM
Could be the scope. On the other hand, you have said that the recoil is a challenge to you, so it is certainly possible that the highly magnified movement of the crosshairs at 9X is inducing you to yank the trigger when you feel you are on target. If it shoots well at 5X, why not just use that magnification?

April 29, 2010, 10:28 PM
Yeah the trigger pull is heavy on this too. I found myself a few times going to squeeze the trigger only to not have it go off because I wasn't pulling it hard enough. Then when I did pull it I could see it jerk. I thought I got until this wasn't too bad but it could have factored into my issue too and it just happened to have happen on the ones when it was on 9x. I like semi auto's but the options of both this and the Remington ones seem to leave a lot to be desired. I didn't realize how much until I shot other rifles with great triggers and nice recoil pads even when the rifle didn't kick hard.

Is there a way to get the trigger lightened on these BAR's? I thought I'd read that most gunsmiths won't touch them but that may have been something else.

April 30, 2010, 12:08 AM
Send the scope in for service, then check everything, remove, clean, and loctite the base and ring screws when you remount it. If it still shoots all over the place, get a good 22LR for practice.

April 30, 2010, 11:28 AM
A good recoil pad would probably help too.

April 30, 2010, 12:32 PM

April 30, 2010, 12:34 PM
I have a .22 and I can shoot better groups with it at 100 yards. However, it also doesn't kick or hurt to shoot and I know this so I don't flinch nearly as bad. I think I will have to have someone else shoot it and see what's going on. This gun has been through 3 different scopes and has always had a little bit of a problem shooting good groups. This ammo shoots the best I've found but it's still not a moa gun. I think I'm going to have to have someone else try it out and see how it does for them.

April 30, 2010, 01:41 PM
I have a BAR in .338 Win Mag. A Pachmayr Decelerator makes for a much more pleasant shooting experience. The factory pad turned to rock over the years and wasn't that good to begin with. Much less flinch factor when your rifle isn't hammering your shoulder each time you pull the trigger.

Old Grump
April 30, 2010, 02:58 PM
Their triggers aren't adjustable and they prefer you send it to them for trigger work but I'm afraid they may be CYA on the legal end and won't touch up the trigger the way you would like. A search on the net should get you a few names of local reputable dealers who can offer you suggestions.

If you can find a good smith to do trigger work for you have him put on a good buttpad at the same time. flinching from recoil and bad triggers will mess up your shooting no matter how good a shot you are. Might want to think about digging into your pocket and installing a muzzle brake on the end of your barrel. Every little bit helps. Just don't shoot it without warning everybody around you that your are going to make a eardrum busting largeboomerflashen.

Try the scope on another gun before you send it in. No use packing it up if there is nothing wrong with it.

Just dos centavos from an old dinosaur who likes to make lareboomerflashens.

April 30, 2010, 05:10 PM
After making it to the range again today and doing some more shooting I've come to the conclusion that I'm 98% sure it's me combined with the fact this seems to be a 2moa gun and not the scope. Today I shot a awesome group on 9x then shot a crappy group when I turned it back down to 5.5x and I knew I pulled at least one of the shots. My shoulder also started hurting after about 10-15 shots so I had to stop after a box of rounds. I think it's just me pulling, then my shoulder hurts from the crappy butt plate and then I pull even more. I still need to have a friend shoot but I'm pretty sure it's me. I tried dry firing a little and I noticed that while I didn't always pull as much as the shots were pulled that I did in fact pull a little with it. I think I pull worse when actually shooting because I know it's going to hurt. Today it seemed to do decent at first then at the end I started getting bad groups. I'm just 95% sure it's me at this point combined with the fact the gun is lucky to shoot 2moa anyway.

April 30, 2010, 05:17 PM
BTW what recoil pads would you guys recommend?

April 30, 2010, 06:30 PM
BTW what recoil pads would you guys recommend?
I still like Pachmayr Decelerators, but LimbSavers are getting a lot of fans these days.

James R. Burke
April 30, 2010, 07:36 PM
It could be a few things at the power and range. A better scope sure wont hurt. Sometimes on certain scopes making a shift in power will move you, but that is a whole bunch. My 3x9x40mm I leave on 4 power all the way out to 150 or so. Sometimes I might turn it up for a better look but not very often at that range. But I am just talking deer hunting rifles nothing target wise. On a varmint set up I had, it was set up with a 6.5x20x50mm. It was real sensitve to stay dead on with it. You could see the cross hairs move real easy which I could not get used to. Most folks just seem to handle it good, but I could not. That was just me.

April 30, 2010, 07:41 PM
9x at 100 yards...
Maybe drop back to 3 or 4. 9x at 100 is crazy.

April 30, 2010, 08:20 PM
Take some one with you to the range. Have them load your rifle behind your back and pass it to you. After a couple of shots they should hand you and empty chamber. It has to be done so you do not know when its unloaded. If you are flinching you will know when the hammer drops on an empty chamber.

I have had two scopes fail, one the POI drifted to the low left. Every shot was further in that direction. Another just started spraying them all over. The first a New Monarch and the second an old Leupold. The rifle is a heavy kicker. 300 grains at 2500 fps. Both came back from the factory after the collimater was adjuster.

April 30, 2010, 10:26 PM
Do either that company or Limbsaver make any pads that will bolt on without modifying the rifle? I've seen the slip on options and I just can't get used to them. Yet I don't want to modify the rifle either.

April 30, 2010, 10:33 PM
I think I'm going to have to try that idea with someone else loading it for me.

April 30, 2010, 11:39 PM
BTW what recoil pads would you guys recommend?

Like I said earlier, the Pachmayr Decelerator has made my BAR .338 Win Mag tolerable. It's not an all day shooter and wasn't meant to be, but the Decelerator does a good job of mitigating recoil. I had the pad tailored for my rifle maintaing the correct LOP for me. I haven't found a need for a compensator so shooters at either side of the bench don't have to run for cover when I am checking zero on my scope. At the ripe old age of 36 my BAR has never failed me and it has been rode hard and put away wet on more than one occasion.

Old Grump
May 1, 2010, 04:58 PM
Even with the good recoil pad when I am shooting the big boomers I put on my shooting vest. Worth its weight in gold. If I am planning on a long day of it I slip into my tight fitting shooting jacket.



May 1, 2010, 08:03 PM
You, the recoil and the trigger are all the same at both magnifications.

I'd blame the scope.

May 2, 2010, 12:22 AM
They are but after hitting the range for a second day I realized that it must have been a fluke that I got a good group at 5.5x and not at 9x. I got a better group at 9x the second day. Then I shot similar groups at both 9x and 5.5x. This is why I think it was me and just a fluke that I got better groups with 5.5x power the first day.

44 AMP
May 2, 2010, 02:13 AM
Yeah the trigger pull is heavy on this too. I found myself a few times going to squeeze the trigger only to not have it go off because I wasn't pulling it hard enough. Then when I did pull it I could see it jerk.

The single most important thing you need to shoot well (after an accurate gun/ammo) is a good trigger. You can shoot a better group with a rifle with poor sights and a good trigger than you can with one with great sights and a poor trigger. Its about uniformity. You can do everything the same, but a poor trigger goes a long way to negating the best efforts of a good shooter.

If you add in optics that are..inconsistant, it just gets worse.

And, you might have a bit of a flinch. Consider having a friend (who's a good shot) shoot your BAR and see how he does.

May 2, 2010, 10:47 AM
I think your scope has a Parallax issue at higher magnafication. Send it in for warrantee work.

May 2, 2010, 11:08 AM
I wondered that too. So I sat the rifle in the sand bags and then moved me head around and while I could see black around the edges like you do if you aren't at the proper distance the cross hairs never appeared to move and looked perfectly center no matter how I moved me head. So I don't think it's parallax either.

May 11, 2010, 11:53 PM
Well, I bought one of the Limbsaver recoil pads the ones that also have Winchester on the package from Walmart and this is one of my favorite gun purchases I think. It took my rifle from hurting to shoot to feeling like shooting a .243. I can't believe the difference. Plus it's easy to just slip off when I'm done shooting and doesn't look too horrible when on the gun either. I'm just super impressed with this thing for $20. I wish I had gotten one a long time ago.

Old Grump
May 12, 2010, 02:20 PM
And how is your shooting now that it doesn't hurt?

May 13, 2010, 01:16 AM
Well, I shot a little better. This rifle has always been super picky about ammo. I at first only found that I got good groups with the Federal Fusions. I tried Winchester Power Points, Ballistic Tips, Silvertips, and Remington Core Lokts. I tried different grains too. None of them shot well at all. Then I found the Fusions where a 1.5" groups seems to be about normal for this gun with. It's the best I've found. I finally tried the Federal Power Shoks and found that while they didn't shoot as well they still shot decent and were half the price. So I stuck with them. I wonder if they changed them a little since Walmart switched to the red box for them. Anyway, I shot decently with them. Then I decided I was going to get a box of the Fusions out since I hadn't shot them in a while. I shot 6 shots and put 3 in the bulls eye and the other 3 not far from it. One I know I pulled on as I felt it pull to the left before I even got the trigger fully pulled. Sure enough it hit about half and inch to the left. Then one the wind was blowing the target around and I hit about half an inch low. The next one was in a similar spot. Overall, I shot a great group with the Fusions right in or near the bulls eye. I forgot how well it liked these bullets compared to the others. I even shot decent with the Power Shoks just not as well. They are fine for hunting and are cheap.

This recoil pad definitely helped. I think it was part of my problem as well as forgetting that these bullets don't group the best. Sometimes I get a 1" group. Other times it's a 2" or even 3" group at times. The Fusions shot a lot better and the rifle is soo much easier to shoot now that it doesn't hurt.

I don't know why this gun is soo picky on ammo.