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Old August 19, 2018, 07:14 PM   #26
ratshooter
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Don't confuse the man, personally with his writing style. You need to understand the style of the times. "Experts" were expected to be a bit smug, arrogant and condescending to us mere mortals.

You will find similar attitudes in other gun writers of the same era, though the degree varies.
At the time Cooper was writing for G&A I was just learning about guns. I read everything I could get my hands on. I had been reading Guns & Ammo for a few years before Cooper came along. And of all the writers I read he was the one I liked the least. He came across as the ultimate Know-It-All. If you were not shooting a 45acp then you were simply not armed and a fool for shooting something like a 9mm.

As far as similar attitudes I never saw it. Most writers wrote stories that taught me something without talking down to me. I trade emails with my most favorite writer of all, Terry Murbach. He used to post here but lately he has been hard to reach. I hope he is well. But he never had any attitude at all. Just excellent, usable information on guns.

I wish there were still smart gunwriters like Jan Libourel, Dave Arnold, Ross Seyfried and a few others that I don't need to name. Most here know who they are.
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Old August 19, 2018, 07:18 PM   #27
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Cooper, born only fourteen years before me, wrote in his third person style as a result of the schooling of the time when engaged in formal writing.

I had much of the same teaching in school, and even more so in writing as a professional engineer.

We are more informal, nowadays, but that does not make the old ways wrong.
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Old August 19, 2018, 10:53 PM   #28
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Man-sized targets at 300m and in, from prone and standing, involving running between shooting positions.
Sounds EXACTLY like a job for a carbine configuration AR-15.

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Old August 20, 2018, 12:11 AM   #29
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targets

I've got to ask the question, what kind of targets? Certainly the .223/5.56mm, with its flat trajectory and modest recoil, makes hitting targets of much size at 300 yds simpler. With a bit of thought as to point blank zero, you could pretty much hold on and shoot and not worry too much about drop.

Great for punching paper and the gun games. Good for varminting too. And our military and others have used it as a combat round. But if we are considering a "practical rifle" as a real world, one rifle, GP nearly do it all firearm, I 'd want a bigger caliber. Not that I'll ever do it, but I can't see wandering Alaska or Africa, or even parts of the U.S. Rockies, with a .223 and feeling like I had enough gun. I see the .223 running out of steam as a whitetail killer much past 100 yds, and it certainly is not an elk, moose or black bear rifle. The .260/6.5 would be my low end,and at the high end, .308/.30'o6. A happy compromise might be 7mm-08, but the .30's would be more common.

I'd want the rifle to be as fool proof as possible......manual/bolt action, so as to feed and function with all ammo types and not dependent on a gas system/recoil system for cycling. Big trigger parts like the M70 and the Mausers, Big extractor/ejector parts too. And I would want a blind magazine.........no mags to loose, no silly floorplate to dump my ammo in the mud. A set of bombproof iron sights, regardless if you scope it or not.

Do I own such a rifle, no, but I have one that comes close.
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Old August 20, 2018, 01:41 AM   #30
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As far as similar attitudes I never saw it.
Of course, it varied with the writer and the subject sometimes it was pretty subtle, sometimes not so much.

I recall an article by no less an authority than Townsend Whelen, where he clearly and firmly stated that the only reason the whitetail deer still existed in the United States was the semi-buckhorn rear sight. (meaning it was very poor)

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Man-sized targets at 300m and in, from prone and standing, involving running between shooting positions.
Sounds EXACTLY like a job for a carbine configuration AR-15.
If you create a course of fire that involves running between shooting positions, I wouldn't find that practical. I'm old, fat, and more than borderline lazy, and I lost interest in shooting games that simulate the run, dodge, & Jump part of my military training decades ago. SO, if you're going to call something "practical" you might consider something that actually IS practical, for more than a certain group of people...

If you need to be a low drag, high speed operator to run the course, fine, but call it something else, other than "practical".
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Old August 20, 2018, 07:52 AM   #31
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If you create a course of fire that involves running between shooting positions, I wouldn't find that practical. I'm old, fat, and more than borderline lazy, and I lost interest in shooting games that simulate the run, dodge, & Jump part of my military training decades ago. SO, if you're going to call something "practical" you might consider something that actually IS practical, for more than a certain group of people...

If you need to be a low drag, high speed operator to run the course, fine, but call it something else, other than "practical".
Well, Gunsite's multi-day Scout Rifle course, which is designed to be a crucible for testing "practical" rifles and their operators under the blazing hot AZ sun - admittedly, most of those being factory or home-made variants on the SR theme - involves a lot of shootin' and scootin' between field-positions.

Target sizes and distances vary, and the field positions, aside from traditional standing and prone, include kneeling, 'Rice Paddy' prone (low squatting), Roll-Over prone (and reverse ROP), and several other contortions, all while being expected to run hither and yon and work your very 'practical' bolt stick smooth as silk.

Over the years, pictures from Gunsite's SR courses reveal that its students are mainly so-called 'Old Farts' (i.e., distinguished-looking gents over 60). At days end they are very winded, well-sweated, and sore to the point of limping, but still get up the next day and return for more, ah, 'exercise,' for the admirable purpose of testing themselves and their equipment as they strive for reasonable competence, ... which is the happy confluence of practical accuracy and smooth efficiency in using the weapon.

What said 'Old Farts' are doing with their SRs, albeit at a much slower pace, is pushing themselves through the same sort of 'move-n-shoot' drills, intended to replicate real-would scenarios, which the young, tattooed AR-studs do in all the 'tactical' 5.56 AR courses taking place around the country - ... 'tactical' here referring to the set-up of the weapon.

The drills and ambulatory courses of fire in both settings are definitely practical - or perhaps to put it more correctly, are exercises in the practical use of the weapon. But whether for hunting or defense, 'practical use' has no place for motionless 'bullseye' or target shooting, and it doesn't involve a benched position, sand bags, or other stationary or rested aids, other than on the morning of Day 1 to confirm zero at a given distance. Once zeroed, you're up and moving and looking for cover or concealment, real or simulated.

As I once heard an instructor advise: "On the 2-way firing ranges of the real world, only the dead and the dying are stationary."

Gaining practical skill with a practical rifle takes work. It's much like what Thomas Edison once said about the nature of life's 'Golden Opportunities': most folks ignore them, because they come dressed in overalls and look like work.

In any real-world situation where you'll need your very practical rifle to deal with a very real and immanent threat, you won't be doing it leisurely off a bench, between sips of coffee, intermittent texting on your I-phone, and stuffing crunchy Crullers donuts.

Herewith ends the sermon.


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Old August 20, 2018, 08:43 AM   #32
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As I once heard an instructor advise: "On the 2-way firing ranges of the real world, only the dead and the dying are stationary."

Gaining practical skill with a practical rifle takes work. It's much like what Thomas Edison once said about the nature of life's 'Golden Opportunities': most folks ignore them, because they come dressed in overalls and look like work.

In any real-world situation where you'll need your very practical rifle to deal with a very real and immanent threat, you won't be doing it leisurely off a bench, between sips of coffee, intermittent texting on your I-phone, and stuffing crunchy Crullers donuts.
All great points. Having just finished shooting Heavy Scope at RM3G, and people ask my "Why?". My answer is that it is because it is harder. A .45 (with 10 round mags), Pump 12g and .308. Still (being old and fat) managed to be on page 2 of 5 in the overalls. No-one is going to push you except you.
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Old August 20, 2018, 10:40 AM   #33
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The point I was trying to make (and badly, apparently) is that, in my life, returning to the glory days of infantry combat training isn't practical, for me.

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In any real-world situation where you'll need your very practical rifle to deal with a very real and immanent threat, you won't be doing it leisurely off a bench,...
I won't argue that at all. Only that, for myself, I haven't been in that kind of situation in over 40 years, and don't expect to be if I am granted another 40, or even 20. If it's your thing, I guess you can call it what you want, but if it's the rifle equivalent of NASCAR racing, I don't think its any more practical than racing is to daily street and highway driving.
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Old August 20, 2018, 02:18 PM   #34
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Why does it always turn into a discussion about what rifle to kill another person at 300 yards thread? I don't make my gun purchases based on how well will this gun kill my opponent.

I mentioned reading Guns & Ammo many years ago. And yes some of the handguns reviewed were for the express purpose of defending your life from an attacker. But many articles were about guns used for trail walking, plinking and back ups to hunting rifles. Now you can't hardly find an article about trail guns or hunting guns. All the write ups are about tactical rifles and handguns and of course shotguns. I stopped reading guns mags many years ago. The forums like this are so much better.

For me a 30-30 is a much more practical rifle than an AR with a 30 round mag in it. A 30-30 or a simple bolt action does about all I need a rifle to do. And if I had to I can hit a man at 300 yards with a 30-30. I know because I have shot my Marlin at that range. It was easy to do.
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Old August 22, 2018, 10:35 AM   #35
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For use on our southern Illinois farm, I found an SKS to be very practical. Can't use rifles on deer here, but coyotes are always an issue with the cattle. They're wily and wary, so if ya ever want to get a shot at one, ya pretty much need to carry a rifle 24/7. On the tractor, in the truck, 4-wheeler, etc. That means it's gonna get beat to heck (and mine did). Don't think I could bring myself to abuse a nice rifle that way, so that's why something that's already ugly, rugged, and cheap fit the bill. Not to mention the ammo is/was so cheap, I didn't worry about "wasting" it. Even blasted field mice and grass hoppers with it. Can I see a show of hands? How many of you in this thread have shot grasshoppers with your centerfire rifles?
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Old August 24, 2018, 04:52 AM   #36
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This is my practical rifle for nearly all big game hunting in North America: Savage 99 chambered for .308 and fitted with a Vortex 2-7X rifle scope. This dandy muley was taken within western South Dakota. Shot distance was approx 150 yards or so.

Jack

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Old August 24, 2018, 05:30 AM   #37
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“In any real world situation”.......for most of us the real world of shooting does not involve the Gunsite curricula. I am not in the military, not in Iraq, not in Afghanistan, have never been in a gunfight (and with any luck at all, that will continue to be so). The real world for me and, I suspect, most others is the hunting fields, the range, and matches.
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Old August 24, 2018, 07:26 PM   #38
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The real world for me and, I suspect, most others is the hunting fields, the range, and matches.
Then you, and perhaps 'most others,' have a very nice hunting rifle, and a very nice, accurate rifle for match competition, and likely another that's just a 'fun' plinker to enjoy on those long, lazy Sunday afternoons at the range. In other words, you have niche rifles.

Good for you.

What you don't have in any of those is a 'practical' rifle where 'practical' is synonymous with a centerfire rifle of 'all-around usefulness,' which includes suitability for sustained defensive use and long-term durability under field conditions. It's not just about deer hunting for a few hours in the fall where you'll take 1 to 3 shots at most.

In my view, those criteria, with some exceptions, break heavily in favor of a semi-automatic Mil-based action. Possum's mentioned his 7.62 SKS as a practical-rifle candidate, and while that wouldn't be my first choice, it seems to fit the "all-arounder" criteria.

Non-autoloader exceptions might include the Madsen M47 mentioned in an earlier post, or the various U.S. Mil bolt guns.

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Old August 24, 2018, 10:52 PM   #39
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What you don't have in any of those is a 'practical' rifle where 'practical' is synonymous with a centerfire rifle of 'all-around usefulness,' which includes suitability for sustained defensive use and long-term durability under field conditions.
OK, now that you have given your definition of "practical" we can have a discussion..

Could you also define "sustained defensive use" and "long term field conditions"? Because without an agreed upon standard, what meets my definition might not meet yours, and vice versa.

And then there is the matter of what can work, vs. what is likely to work best.

If my idea of sustained defensive use is a belt fed HMG and long term field conditions is a year in the mud of Flanders fields with zero cleaning, few single rifles will meet that, in whole or part.


Quote:
Non-autoloader exceptions might include the Madsen M47 mentioned in an earlier post, or the various U.S. Mil bolt guns.
What, no love for the SMLE???
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Old August 26, 2018, 02:10 PM   #40
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What you don't have in any of those is a 'practical' rifle where 'practical' is synonymous with a centerfire rifle of 'all-around usefulness,' which includes suitability for sustained defensive use and long-term durability under field conditions.
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OK, now that you have given your definition of "practical" we can have a discussion.
Mr. AMP sir, or dude, ...

... as much as I appreciate the implied compliment, the above was not 'my' definition of 'practical' or 'practical rifle,' but the one more or less given by several others, including Jeff Cooper, but most recently as summarized by Richard Mann in his exhaustive 'The Scout Rifle Study.' (A read which I highly recommend even if you can never ever see yourself buying or building one). Mann supports that definition with characteristics derived from a thorough historical review, Cooper's writings, and a variety of modern commercial specimens which he fully critiques.

So if you haven't read the book, trying to discuss the relevant attributes (or lack thereof) of what makes for a 'practical rifle' is, at best, like talking to a wall.

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Could you also define "sustained defensive use" and "long term field conditions"? Because without an agreed upon standard, what meets my definition might not meet yours, and vice versa.
'Long term field conditions' would be at least several months of use without regular cleaning. Not necessarily shots fired everyday, but shot routinely - maybe 3-4 days out of 7 without cleaning. I've done that with some of my 'beater' M1s without cleaning, although, technically, I don't consider running a bore snake through the chamber and barrel to be the same as cleaning it with a rod, brush, patches, solvent, and a chamber brush.

If the modifier 'sustained' rankles you, just omit it in favor of "suitability for defensive use," which is more than 5rds fired in anger and likely less than 500rds in one engagement, even among a group of a half-dozen civies armed with 'practical rifles' who are hunkered-down on rooftops or barricaded in an alley in an L.A. Riots scenario.

At the level of the 'practical rifle' in civilian hands, there's a limit to how much ammo an individual can carry, and unlike the military there's no guarantee of re-supply once the shooting starts. But regardless, once the shooting does start, your very 'practical rifle' had better be up to it. It's no longer just Fudley's hunter.

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And then there is the matter of what can work vs. what is likely to work best.
No debate there. But you've needlessly brought up a strawman in the form of a 'distinction without a difference' where the 'practical/all-around rifle' is concerned. The endgame of the 'practical rifle' isn't that it's 'likely the best, or 'likely to work best' for a particular use, but that's it's the best among competing choices for a variety of uses (multi-tasking) for which you would choose a centerfire rifle.

Your perspective for what would be a 'practical/all-around rifle' might grow more accurate if you image a situation where by law you could only own one centerfire rifle that would have to 'do it all.' Think of it that way.

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If my idea of sustained defensive use is a belt fed HMG and long term field conditions is a year in the mud of Flanders fields with zero cleaning, few single rifles will meet that, in whole or part.
Red-herrings that aren't relevant to civilian situations.

You're talking about a military context and military engagements years long, whereas the 'practical rifle' concept is about the civilian context and what 'all-round' centerfire solution will work across a variety of scenarios. Hunting is one. Defensive use is another.

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Non-autoloader exceptions might include the Madsen M47 mentioned in an earlier post, or the various U.S. Mil bolt guns.
Quote:
What, no love for the SMLE???
Do like the SMLE!

And certainly in the 'practical bolt gun' category, it's a great choice if you can readily source .303 Brit ammo or the components.

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Old August 26, 2018, 06:26 PM   #41
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Nothing to see here.
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Old August 26, 2018, 08:25 PM   #42
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Ratshooter, dude, if only I were just twenty.
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Old August 26, 2018, 08:32 PM   #43
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When someone refers to someone else as "Dude" your argument goes right out the window. Even if your argument is a good one with many well founded points to support your point of view. When you call someone "dude" my first, and last question is "how old are you"? Are you a 20 year old kid?
Whoa! Easy does it there, ah, dude.

It was intended as an alternative form of address (hence the use of the disjunctive 'or'), not as an insult.

I've never met the said Mr. 44 AMP. He might well be a distinguished older gentleman, in which case "sir " applies. Or, he might be a young 20- or 30-something buckeroo-ski, in which case "dude" applies. It is a modern and totally appropriate term of address which is used everyday among younger men and always without the slightest offense taken by the recipient.

In fact I heard the term referenced just this weekend at our Trap & Skeet Club. Two well-dressed young men (late '30s) shooting clays. First dude cleaned two birds on a quick swing, and then cleaned a second pair without breaking form.

Second dude exclaims: "Dude! That was awesome!" First dude is all smiles. Certainly no one appeared insulted.

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Needless to say I never read your post.
Sadly, your loss, for you would've benefitted immensely.
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Old August 26, 2018, 08:51 PM   #44
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I deleted my post because I decided I was wrong and out of line for taking Agtman to task. Bottom line is he is just as intitled to his opinion as I am. So live and let live.
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Old August 26, 2018, 09:51 PM   #45
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Ratshooter, dude, if only I were just twenty.
Hell I would love to be 50 again.
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Old August 26, 2018, 10:44 PM   #46
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Hell I would love to be 50 again.
when I was 50, I could still see to shoot well, didn't have as much brick dust in my eyes...

I don't take personal offense at "dude", though I might remind our younger "dudes" that it didn't always mean "bro, buddy, pal..etc. Once upon a time, still in living memory for some of us, "Dude" meant you didn't know what you were doing. Think "dude ranch" for city slickers, who didn't know how to ride, etc...

I'm a curmudgeon, not denying it. And I do get a bit peckish about terminology. What I'm seeing with the requirements for a "practical rifle for civilians" seems more to be a practical rifle for military use, instead.

Since I haven't read the book you mention, it wouldn't be just talking to a wall, it would be talking to a blank wall.

I am, however familiar with a lot of what Cooper wrote discussing his Scout rifle concept. Some of the features he thought useful have been derided by critics, mostly because the military doesn't operate in a way where they would be useful, TODAY.

Cooper built at least one of his prototype Scout rifles using a Remington 600 action. I have several 600s, and while not perfect they are very good and close to Coopers concept in several important aspects.


Quote:
Do like the SMLE!

And certainly in the 'practical bolt gun' category, it's a great choice if you can readily source .303 Brit ammo or the components.
Despite the "antiquated" rimmed case it uses, the SMLE is, arguably, the best combat bolt action ever fielded. Hell on case life, though.

If you are talking civilians, not tied into any resupply net, then all the ammo you have is all the ammo you have. You are the supply net, and so, any caliber and cartridge you stock pile is just as "practical".

Choosing something you might be able to get from someone else would make resupply simpler, or give you more options, but how likely is that to be something needed, IF it does actually occur?

I guess the biggest problem I have with calling this or that "practical" is that it implies that anything not in that group is impractical. Reality is that what is practical or impractical can vary hugely with the situation.

Most folks hunting elephant wouldn't consider a 5.56mm AR to be practical for that use. Most people don't shoot prairie dogs with a .458 Win mag, either. (though it is a fun challenge with the right handloads! )

Make a game (call it training if you like) with what ever rules you like. Be clear about the rules, and call it anything you like, its yours. But don't confuse game practical with real world practical, because while there is overlap, there are also distinct differences, at least as I see it.
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Old August 26, 2018, 11:29 PM   #47
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Here’s my “practical rifle”.
Nothing it can’t drop at 1,000 yards (including Volvo’s downrange)


Low recoil that any 12 year old can shoot with a little training.
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Old August 27, 2018, 12:37 AM   #48
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I don't have what I consider to be a 'practical' rifle. "Practical" for what?

I do have a rifle I think of as my 'anything' rifle. I am confident it will perform any task for which need it in the contiguous forty-eight states. I am a bit less confident of it with large dangerous bears, but I'm not around them much and I think it would do with proper bullet placement.

It is a M1894 Swede carbine in 6.5x55mm Swede. The action and barrel are fairly original with a forwarded mounted low power scope ala the Scout rifle concept. The stock was 'sporterized' by a prior owner, but it fits me very well. It shoots reliably within the trajectory range out to two hundred yards or so - about as far as I see a problem. With 160 grain projectiles, it has excellent penetration power.

Additionally, it is fair innocuous looking and fits in small spaces. Like the trunk of my car.
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Old August 27, 2018, 10:58 PM   #49
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The purpose of Practical Rifle is both competition and skills development. This is an opportunity to get your rifle "off the bench" and challenge your marksmanship skills while developing new skills most shooters can't practice on a range. Competitors will face new scenarios each month.
"

http://aurorascpr.org/practical-rifle/
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Old August 28, 2018, 07:22 AM   #50
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M1894 Swede carbine in 6.5x55mm Swede
Good rifle. My truck gun is an FR-8 like this one. Even have the bayonet. It is accurate, packs a punch, light, and I do not care if it gets banged up in the truck.



pic is representative...not my rifle.
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