View Full Version : Marksmanship

October 19, 2011, 11:56 PM
I am working on improving my marksmanship using an AR with factory ammo and iron sights (small aperture). I did not do so well at a match that had targets at 200 yards but I do fine at 100.

What is a respectable group size for standing/kneeling/sitting/prone when the target is at 100 yards? at 200 yards?

What bad habits need to be eliminated to get good hits at 200 yards that don't get in the way of decent hits at 100. I'm familiar with the appleseed sticky circulating on the net. Last time at the range, I saw some improvement by using NPOA.

An unrelated question is in regards to barricades and cover. In classes I have taken, I've been instructed to not smother cover but instead be at arms length away and not to extend my muzzle beyond cover. This looks to go against what I am seeing people do with the vtac barricade. Folks put their muzzle in the holes cut into the barricade. When shooting from the barricade sides, their hand is against the barricade as a brace to support the rifle. Is there a contradiction or am I confusing two different concepts?

Yankee Doodle
October 20, 2011, 07:32 AM
You have GOT to join a local shooting league. If you have not received quality coaching, you will never be able to pick up on your mistakes. You will be making a bunch.
Try to locate a league or club that shoots the NRA Service Rifle course, and I guarantee you will be much better off for it.
You can't learn to shoot by reading a book or getting information from the 'net.
Just my $.02 worth.

October 20, 2011, 08:38 AM
Quality stuff or mil-surp? Match shooting require consistent QC for ammo, don't buy the commercial match, roll you own.

Variation in case length, neck thickness affect groups.

A decent group @ 100 yds (presume using the SR-21 (reduced 200 bull @ 100yds), you should be within the 10/X-ring, occasional flyer into 9 ring are you slips.

Is there a smith that can go over your rifle to make everything tight, any part loose will vibrate and that detract accuracy.

What type barrel & chamber? NATO, Wylie, or SAMMI?
Continue in the matches you are doing, ask and listen to experienced competitors as we love to help.

October 20, 2011, 10:25 AM
If you really want to learn to shoot an AR with iron sights, buy this book, $6.95 from the CMP, written by the AMU, best shooters in the world:


If you want to learn to shoot from barricades, get this DVD, also $6.95 put out by the same people CMP/AMU


You want the muzzle extended past the barricade, if not the muzzle blast is gonna disturb you big time. If you're shooting from barrels, (as in some matches) do not stick the barrel in the barrel, back up a bit, again the muzzle blast will interfere.

Don P
October 20, 2011, 01:21 PM
My advise is to attend an Appleseed shooting match.

CTA Trainers
October 20, 2011, 07:29 PM
Seek out a club in your area that holds the USMC or Army rifle clinics. The amount of information and instruction is unreal.

October 20, 2011, 09:48 PM
See if you have any NRA Certified Rifle Instructors in your area. Some charge for their services and some do not.

Here are some of the common mistakes people make with long guns and handguns.
Changing the grip between shots or moving the hands between shots.
Changing the grip pressure during the shot.
Too much or too little trigger finger.
Poor alignment of the firearm to the strong hand and body.
Inconsistent pressure of the long gun against the shoulder.
Inconsistent and poor balance/stance.
Not doing breath control.
Not doing follow through.
Moving the head right after a shot to see POI - not doing follow through.
Moving the firearm right after a shot to see POI - not doing follow through.
Not focusing on the front sight until follow through is completed.
Moving the trigger finger after a shot before follow through is completed. The pressure of the trigger finger on the trigger should not change after a shot until follow through has been completed.
Incorrect sight alignment or sight picture.

Here is a link to shooting a rifle. One thing the shooter does that you should NOT do is he moves his hands between shots. This changes your grip, and has the potential to reduce accuracy.

Shooting sports can help to develop skills, BUT for many it also produces bad habits. Those bad habits could be very costly in a real life situation. Your muzzle should not go into the plane of a port. Some competitors will also stand in the middle of a doorway and shoot. It may take some time off for competition, but it is a very bad habit. What shooters do in practice or competition is what they are more likely to do in a real life situation. If your instructors have good credentials and are teaching sound techniques, I suggest sticking with what they are teaching you. I would also look for second opinions from other instructors to help ensure you are receiving sound advice.

Here is a clip of Todd Jarrett. He starts out with a 1911 and moves to an AR. He covers shooting through a port.


October 21, 2011, 12:50 AM
I'm using the cheapest brass cased factory ammo I can find. Mostly federal 193 and PMC varieties.

The rifle I am using is a colt 6920. From what I've heard, it is a 2 moa rifle. If true, does that mean the best group I can get is 2 inches @ 100 yards and 4" @ 200?

I would estimate my groups at 100 yards are 4" and high left @ 10-11. I think my sight alignment is sloppy - I am not sure if it is consistent with each shot. Before the shot, I focus on the front sight and try to call my shot but I miss that microsecond. I just see the muzzle rise and settle back on target.

Thanks for the tips.