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Old January 14, 2019, 03:05 PM   #1
PAJoe1022
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Ruger 10/22 Groups at 50 yards

I took my 10/22 out to the range today despite the freezing cold weather and got it sighted in as best I could. I have a Nikon Prostaff .22LR 3-9x40 scope on it. I'm still somewhat of a novice when it comes to shooting, but I did my best to sight it in at 50 yards. Once I adjuated the scope to where I wanted it, I was able to shoot consistent 4-5" groups, shooting 18 round groups. I was using Federal Auto Match 40 gr solid rounds.

I know there are a lot of factors involved, but can anyone tell me how terrible or acceptable a my 4-5" groups are? My gun is a bone stock 10/22 with the stock 18.5" barrel for whatever that's worth. Thanks!
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Old January 14, 2019, 04:11 PM   #2
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they are capable of doing much better !!!

Quote:
I know there are a lot of factors involved, but can anyone tell me how terrible or acceptable a my 4-5" groups are? My gun is a bone stock 10/22 with the stock 18.5" barrel for whatever that's worth. Thanks!
By my measure, not too good but as you stated, There are some factors to consider. The last time I set one up for a buddy, mine did better than that but we were shooting off a rest with a less expensive scope. …..

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Old January 14, 2019, 04:22 PM   #3
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I have a couple of target copies from a while back shot with a stock vintage 1988 10/22 from 50 yards, scoped with a 4X scope of the same vintage (Tasco).

I think these shots are decent, but I know others who can group them even closer at the same distance with a scoped, stock 10/22. Pic of target with 1" grids:

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Old January 14, 2019, 04:31 PM   #4
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First thing I would do is go buy a variety of different ammo. First start with the bulk packs, get one of each kind you can find, and see what groups you get from each.

Secondly, don't be afraid to set that target out at 25 yards and see what results you get from that as well.

While you are at it, and since it is enjoyable to shoot, run the target out to 75 and then 100 yards. Document each group in a notebook, so you have a good reference point.

Chances are you will find your gun likes one of them a lot more than the others and you will see this clearly in your groups.

As you are doing these groups with varieties of ammo, don't worry about dialing your scope in, as what you are looking for is the actual group, not whether or not point of impact is at point of aim. Worry about that after you discover which bulk ammo your gun likes.

That brings you to your next step: Do the same thing but with match ammo. Only shoot 4 or 5 round groups, and see how well match ammo performs.
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Old January 14, 2019, 05:09 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies guys. I was on a bench and I know I was fairly steady, but it seemed no matter what I did I couldn't get any tighter groups than the 4-5". I know everyone has their own definition of "accurate", but in the past I've done better with my iron sighted .30-30 at the same distance. I've gotten to around 3" groups at 50 yards with that gun while on a bench. It's been a little while since I shot this 10/22, but the last time I shot it I was at an indoor range and was shooting consistent 1-2" groups at 25 yards with the same ammunition, and I was standing, not using a bench or sandbags.

I think trying some different types of ammunition would be a good start. I'm not trying to play the blame game for my innacuracy but I am genuinely curious as to how ambient temperature and wind can affect accuracy. Today at the range there was a steady light wind and it was about 27°F out.

I'm kinda just spitballing here, so I'm totally open to any thoughts or ideas or suggestions.
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Old January 14, 2019, 05:43 PM   #6
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I won't comment on group size, other than to say a tight 18 round group with a stock 10/22 is ambitious. Obviously any wind has an effect on accuracy.

My 10/22 with a Green Mountain bull barrel, modified trigger, Kidd V-block, Mueller APV scope, and Federal Gold Medal Match ammo can manage dime-sized 5-round groups at 50 yards, but we are talking apples to oranges. I'm sure better shooters than me can improve on that.
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Old January 14, 2019, 06:12 PM   #7
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In my experience 2" groups at 50 yards for 5 shots is about typical with a stock rifle, with ammo it likes. Some do better, some much better. I've been able to get some 1/2" 5 shot groups with some rifles, but that is far from typical. Anything near an inch is pretty good for those rifles.

18 shots tends to increase the chances for flyers, but 4-5" would be a disappointment. I'd try another type of ammo, it can make a huge difference. And limit yourself to 5 shots at each target. I tape over the holes and reuse the same target multiple times with each range visit, but shooting too many times at the same target makes it hard to see what is happening. I want to know exactly where each shot hit the target. It helps you figure out what is going on.
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Old January 14, 2019, 06:41 PM   #8
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18 rounds in one group is a ton, I bet if you did 3-5 shot groups it would make a difference.

Other than that its just practice and figuring out what works for you.
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Old January 14, 2019, 07:22 PM   #9
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IME the accuracy you achieved isn't unusual for a standard barrel factory stock 10/22. I've had three of them over a course of about 40 years. All were disappointing with regard to accuracy. Great plinkers, but generally a poor choice if good accuracy is your goal.

I currently have a standard barrel model that has been worked over a bit that shoots much better than the others I had. Not sure what all has been done to it, but the crown is not stock and the trigger doesn't appear stock either.
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Old January 14, 2019, 07:30 PM   #10
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I have encountered loose scope mounts

I suspect that you mounted the scope yourself and nothing wrong with that. Whenever I go through the procedure of mounting a scope, I index the base to the receiver, rings to base and finally scope to rings. This way I routinely check for any movement. My marks are hardly noticeable and can be easily removed. I would also suggest trying different ammo. I usually do a three-shot group and once in, a full mag. .. ….

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Old January 14, 2019, 07:44 PM   #11
Drm50
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There is a problem. 10/22 stock should shoot a lot better than that. 1 1/2" inches would be
more like it. Factoring that everything is tight, I would say you have a combination of a
scope parallax problem combined with cold weather. Ammo is a factor but I don't think it
could be responsible for that kind of spread.
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Old January 14, 2019, 07:49 PM   #12
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Do four things. The first three are here:
https://thefiringline.com/forums/sho...69&postcount=5

The fourth is to set the Federal AutoMatch aside, and go get some CCI Std Velocity
https://thefiringline.com/forums/sho...8&postcount=10

With these minor factor accomodated, the 10/22 can produce truly superb accuracy.
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Old January 14, 2019, 07:53 PM   #13
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This question is not on topic with the accuracy question, but I'm really curious...

Why 18 shot groups??? The 10/22 OEM mag is ten shots. Did you shoot two mags loaded with only 9 rounds??

5 shot groups will help you track performance without burning so much ammo.
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Old January 14, 2019, 09:58 PM   #14
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With a strong but variable crosswind, I've had 22lr 100 yards groups scattered horizontally 3-4". At 50 yards, with better shooting conditions, your rifle should be capable of much better accuracy.
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Old January 14, 2019, 10:52 PM   #15
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I would try some other brands of ammunition. It can give radically different results. It doesn't necessarily have to be high end target stuff either, although it helps(sometimes)

Did you happen to try with iron sights at the same distance? Sometimes that can help rule out a scope issue.

I don't have a 10/22, but I wouldn't be happy with those results.
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Old January 15, 2019, 10:06 AM   #16
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The reason for 18 shot groups is the range I was at only allows you to put 6 rounds in the magazine at a time, and you only get to change targets every 15 minutes or so. So I set up 3 targets, and shoot 3 magazines of 6 rounds at a time. I have tried shooting with iron sights and achieved about the same results, it just takes me a little longer to get aimed.
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Old January 15, 2019, 10:31 AM   #17
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Here is one of my targets from yesterday. This one is pretty average. I actually used a measuring tape to see how big the spread is. The diameter of the ring between the 6 and 7 is about 4 1/4". So my group was right at about 4".
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_20190114_121206673-1002x1336.jpg (194.3 KB, 45 views)
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Old January 15, 2019, 11:00 AM   #18
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My 10/22 didn't group worth a hoot (5-shot groups) with various brands and types of ammo until I finally found "The One". Suddenly I had a truly useful rifle. One-inch groups at forty yards instead of five-inch groups.
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Old January 15, 2019, 07:57 PM   #19
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My 10/22 target rifle does best with CCI Standard Velocity. I got there by way of about a dozen different loads and manufacturers. And as stated above, stick to 3-5 round groups.
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Old January 15, 2019, 08:09 PM   #20
spacemanspiff
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I think I have the most fun when I go to the range with just my 22 rifle and a variety of ammo.

Reduce your groups down to 3 or 4 shots each, then choose a different point of aim.

We all start somewhere on our path towards being a marksman. Don't beat yourself up about 4 inch groups, for all you know that's ammo-related more than anything.

And thats another reason why I like shooting at 25 yards as well, you can see where the point of impact is at closer range, if you have it sighted at 50, and then go out to 75 and 100. Document so you know at a glance what you need to do at various ranges to get your shots to go where you want.
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Old January 17, 2019, 10:33 AM   #21
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mehavey gave you good advice.
Federal Auto Match manages around 1-inch 5-round groups at 50 yards with experienced shooters. CCI Standard velocity will average just about 1/2 inch at 50 yards.
In addition, the standard 10/22 trigger can be pretty stiff and the tendency to jerk a heavy trigger instead of smoothing it will cause big changes in point of impact.

But you also need to consider temperature when shooting .22LRs. and the fact that a 10/22 is a light rifle.
1) Below 40 degrees, I find that at least one out of 5 shots is a drop because the powder-primer combination is very temperature sensitive even with expensive match ammos. Some ammos show the drops just below 45 degrees. Drops can be more than 1/2 inch at 50 yards, even for very experienced shooters.
2) The 10/22 standard carbine is a very light rifle. Any muscling of the stock creates variations in Point of Impact. Changing the amount of pressure between shots can create variations in multiple directions.

Recognizing that you indicate that you aren't a regular shooter and maybe not an experienced scope user, variations in set up technique between shots can create big changes in the point of impact when shooting groups.
Something as small as changing your position behind a scope can cause significant changes in Point of Impact. Moving a little as 1/8 inch closer to the scope can raise the POI by 1/4 inch. Being consistent with every shot can be difficult shooting a light semi-auto even if a 10/22 has almost no recoil.
Placing the stock too far out on your shoulder can easily cause over 1 inch changes in POI to the right.
Add a variety of changes in set up when added together in successive shots and you might get 4 inches of variation, especially when adding bullet drops because of the cold.

Granted that your shooting 18-round groups at 50 yards, you don't have much of an opportunity to see the effect of your technique and immediately correct it. I would suggest shooting 5-round groups so you can identify lapses in technique and correct them shooting the next group. Consider it a training exercise.

I've shot a lot of 22LR ammo over the years with a lot of different rifles. When I bought my wife her first 10/22 carbine years ago, I naturally tried it out when I zeroed her scope. I got 1 inch 5 round groups at 50 yards with good ammo. I changed the trigger and got just over 1/2 inch groups with the same ammo.

Don't be discouraged. A 10/22 is a good rifle to practice with because it is fun to shoot and, being so light, it magnifies variations in technique so you can easily identify your contributions to inaccuracy. I learned a lot about shooting technique shooting my 10/22s when I started to get serious about accuracy.
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Old January 17, 2019, 10:48 AM   #22
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10/22 carbine

I use my stock 10/22 in rimfire challenge meets and find the accuracy quite acceptable with a red dot.

Make certain the scope to rifle connection is solid as well as the scope rings to scope.

Are you shooting with your dominant hand and eye on the side side, ie: right hand with right eye?

As others have mentioned, set the target much closer and no need for so many shots. Use a stabilizing set up, whether sand bags, a rolled up jacket, etc.
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Old January 17, 2019, 11:51 AM   #23
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About five years ago, I found a LNIB 10/22 made in 1965. It was in the box, with a Sears price tag on it...$58, when new.
With a cheap Barska 4x scope, it does dime sized 10 shot groups at 50yds, using Blazer bulk.
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Old January 17, 2019, 04:12 PM   #24
PAJoe1022
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Thanks for all the advice everyone. I'm going to buy some better targets and couple boxes of different ammunition tonight, and I'll reduce my groups down to 4 or 5 shots. I'll try to get out to the range next week to see if I can improve my results. If I'm lucky I'll get there on a weekday when no one else is there and I'll have the place to myself so I won't have to wait to change my targets out.
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Old January 17, 2019, 05:56 PM   #25
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I was a cheer leader for 10/22, I bought one when 1st out and bought each new style that
came out. I only have my original Sporter left. With nothing aftermarket and only a home
polish trigger job this rifle will do under a 1" at 50yds with about anything you stick in it.
The exception being CCI Stingers. With CCI Green Tag it will do less than 1/2" at 40yds, the
range it's sighted for with a K4x scope.
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