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Old July 6, 2000, 11:40 AM   #1
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Yesterday I was out shooting with some friends and we had taken along some 12 packs of generic soda to shoot. After some 10 to 15 yard handgun shooting, we backed it up to about 100 yards and started to shoot with the mini-14 and the FAL. Just for fun, I pulled out my High Standard .22 target pistol and started shooting at a can about 120 yards out, and was coming fairly close to it, according to the little puffs of dust coming up, and I believe could have hit it, if it had not been ripped apart by the FAL.
After a cease fire I set up another can at about 100 yards and went back to the car and proceeded to shoot, resting on the hood of the car. After 3-4 shots, I hit the can, much to my amazement. Interestingly enough, I was shooting fairly flat. I didn't aim over the can, rather right on it. Anyway, so my question is whether or not anyone would think that the .22 is the most accurate long range handgun cartridge or not. I know for a fact that I could not have made this with my CZ, eventhough that has darn good accuracy in its own right.

Sorry for the length.

[This message has been edited by RCS (edited July 06, 2000).]
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Old July 6, 2000, 12:09 PM   #2
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There has been a lot of long range shooting done with heavy caliber handgung.Some of the targets at long range are allmost unblieveable.The 44spec round seems to have been a favorite with a lot of the old timers.I have shot up to about 300 yds with a 4 inch 357 and was very surprised with hoe accurate it was at this range.One thing I did find out is that the hot loads seem to be the most inaccurate.A middle of the ground load or less did the best for me.I was shooting a 158 lswc with 5 gr of unique behind it.Not hot at all just a ++p 38 special.Try it its a lot of fun.

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Old July 6, 2000, 12:12 PM   #3
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.22's are generally very accurate. I think that most of that comes from the fact that people expect them to be like that due to the fact that they are primarily used for hunting and target work, so manufacturers work harder at accuracy with them than with a pistol meant to be used at combat range and self defense. Also, the .22 has a very light recoil, so we tend not to flinch. Even with the light recoil of a 9mm, we probably anticipate the recoil more than with a .22.
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Old July 6, 2000, 12:44 PM   #4
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.22's are pretty accurate. When using centerfire cartridges, the hotloads seem to be inaccurate. I have had good luck with an 8inch Dan Wesson 357 using 38 wadcutters.
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Old July 6, 2000, 12:47 PM   #5
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There are several caliber's that are very
accurate at 100+ yards. They are not necessarily the hyper velocity magnum
caliber's, either. The lowly .22LR
is a real good example, in the hands of
a trained marksman. And there are several
makes and models of weapons quite capable
of a delivery platform. It's quite obvious that a .357, .41 Magnum, .44 Magnum, or .45LC will give you a broader, more exciting impact
upon a target at these ranges!!! The .32H&R
Magnum should be another good example; with
very mild recoil. Hope this helps some.

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member
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Old July 6, 2000, 02:04 PM   #6
Robert the41MagFan
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A 22 rimfire has about a 4-5 inch drop at 100 yards from a rifle. It is even more from a pistol.

The most accurate handguns at long range are wheel guns in the following calibers:

357 Maximum
41 Magnum
44 Magnum
454 Casull
445 Super Mag

We can argue which one is on top.

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Old July 6, 2000, 02:27 PM   #7
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My most accurate guns at 100 yds has been the .32 magnum in a six inch smith & wesson revolver and my .38 super in an STI semi-auto.
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Old July 6, 2000, 02:58 PM   #8
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And can someone tell us, what action type is more accurate generally, a single shot like a T/C, a single shot like a Lone Eagle, or a bolt like Rem or Sav (or a revolver for that matter)? Robert, are you saying that wheelguns are more accurate than the single shots and bolt handguns at long ranges (100 yds)?

[This message has been edited by Futo Inu (edited July 06, 2000).]
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Old July 6, 2000, 03:28 PM   #9
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The question was which caliber is more accurate at 100yds in a pistol and then you qualified it with the .22LR question. Minute of pop can can be done with most any "quality" pistol, the .22LR is more affected by wind drift than the centerfires. The singleshot T/Cs and bolt action "pistols" can be made to shoot sub-minute while the highgrade wheelguns are having an exceptional day when doing minute of angle. henry
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Old July 6, 2000, 04:29 PM   #10
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My vote goes to any top-quality, long-barrelled, scoped .22 semi-auto pistol shooting high-pressure, heavy bulletted, subsonic lead ammo.

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Old July 6, 2000, 06:53 PM   #11
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Have a look at what the Sillhouette shooters are using--they customarily shoot out to 100 yards and more sometimes.
What I see mostly are T/C's(single shot)tho' I also see Freedom Arms revolvers.
Quality gear and loads seem to be the go.The small calibers drop more over distance and therefore the larger calibers are often preferred.
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Old July 6, 2000, 07:02 PM   #12
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Quality of the barrel is extremely important.

My most accurate pistols are all Redhawks; 357 (7.5" tube, spooky), 41, and 45LC. My 4" GP's are pretty good, too.

"All my ammo is factory ammo"

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Old July 6, 2000, 10:49 PM   #13
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I remember an (about 1995?) article in Guns and Ammo by Ross Seyfried, on the elusive MOA accuracy sometimes achieved by revolvers (single shots or similar "handrifles" routinely group half MOA or even better). The revolvers were ussually 357, 44mag, or sometimes less powerfull, the the trick being perfect alignment of chambers, good ammo (most of the time pretty hot), good barrel, and good relationship of the nonrifled portion to bore size. He had one revolver built on a ruger frame by H. Bowen, with chambers bored in alignment with the barrel while mounted on the frame, just like the Freedom Arms, probably the most accurate (long range) out of the box handguns in the world, and got pretty close to MOA.
I live in Paraguay, south america, and our supply of guns is very limited, but our local IMHSA team beats the ones from Brazil and Argentina, sometimes shooting perfect scores up to 200 m with very normal S&W 686, 8 3/8" revolvers. They just pick the 4 or 5 better chambers and do all the serious shooting with them. They also have great success with long barreled (10"), out of the box 22's like the Brownings and High Standard.
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Old July 7, 2000, 03:14 AM   #14
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Hands down, the 7mm Bench Rest out of a Remington XP-100.

Make mine lean, mean, and 9x19!
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Old July 7, 2000, 11:11 AM   #15
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I had a 10" barrel T/C Contender in 30 carbine. Fine at 100 yards, but at 130 was all over the place - course I was shooting it in Mark Twain's "Washoe Zephyrs". There are a few days here where Twain understated our little breezes. Semi's seem to start blowing over around 80 mph winds.

John Moses designed it, I trust it, and that settles it.
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Old July 7, 2000, 11:24 AM   #16
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Ruben, I like your style, revolver used in match shooting out to 200m.

Some of the old long range match scores fired with the .44 Russian and .44 Spec would be very hard to beat today.

Heavy bullet is good for consistancy, tailoring the load to the individual gun is very important.

My favorite 9mm is the 9X32R, Get some turkey knock downs at 150yds.

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Old July 7, 2000, 11:43 AM   #17
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Hey 9x19, what loads do silhouette guys typically use in 7mmBR? Is is more accurate than the PPCs in a handgun? And is the Remington really the hands-down accuracy winner over a single-shot, without regard to caliber? Is the Lone Eagle single shot even more accurate than an T/C? Or are the accuracy differences among these basically negligible?
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Old July 7, 2000, 12:14 PM   #18
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I do't have any experience with the PPC rounds from a handgun, but if they are more accurate than the 7mmBR it can only matter to the purist.

The XP-100 I had in mind was a single shot, so I can't talk about the repeater version.

I've shot a TC Contender and the Remington was clearly superior to it, but it may have more to do with the 7mm than the platform.

I don't have any experience with the Lone eagle, but, yes, I think the accuracy differences are likely negligble for all but the most dedicated Bench Rest shooters.

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Old November 28, 2010, 01:18 PM   #19
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Everyone has their favorite....

With the information gained from reading the 'accuracy' posts here, you can easily extrapolate that a small caliber seems to be the most accurate.
My personal favorite of all, as far as the 'shock and disbelief' factor is the small caliber but a bit hotter .22 mag.
I have a Taurus six shooter (4" barrel) and a Henry pump action in .22 mag. They are both quite accurate. Mostly shooting big bore guns I was certainly in a state of disbelief when I started shooting some 100 yd targets with my .22 mags that were usually just used for my 30 06 and my 45/70!
Havent tried em with my .45 Colt or .44 mag. revolvers.
Hey, what really matters tho is that we are out there
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Old November 28, 2010, 03:16 PM   #20
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I knew a fellow who was hit by a .22LR round fired from a mile away by some kids shooting what appeared to be (according to witnesses) a handgun with a longish barrel, perhaps a Ruger 6-inch auto. No one got a license tag, but they only fired a few shots, then got in their car and took off.

A mile away, this fellow was doing some work on his house, cleaning gutters, and felt a sharp stabbing "sting" in his back. At first he suspected a wasp, but by the time he got to the bottom of the ladder, he felt sick and that he was going to pass out. He got to the phone and did pass out. The next thing he knew, he woke up in a hospital, where he was told he almost bought the proverbial farm.

The ensuing investigation showed that witnesses placed the shooters a mile away (by map). The kids were never caught, but investigators were amazed that a .22 round fired by a pistol could have been so deadly. Had the paramedics not arrived and rendered medical assistance, my friend would have died.

I don't know how many of you have had very bad wasp stings, but they're not something you want to experience. That he said it was like a "very bad" wasp sting indicates that he immediately knew he was in trouble.

Now how does this relate to 100-yard shooting? Simple. The .22 is a wholly unthreatening gun to shoot. You can take a Ruger Mark II and use it for self defense or for plinking. It's fun, accurate and though shooting at 100 yards is pushing it, I, too, have had fun shooting it at that distance. And I've broken my share of clay pigeons at 100 yards. But the best caliber of all for shooting at a hundred yards is, in my view, the .357 magnum -- the second greatest round of all time. Yes, the .22 is in many ways the perfect survival gun. You can fill the air with a great deal of lead with one, just like a shotgun; however, if I were going to be air-dropped into a remote territory with only one gun and several thousand rounds of ammo, it would be a Ruger .357 Security-Six with rubber grips and mixed 158gr and 125gr JHPs.

When shooting at a hundred yards with some friends, I left him and some other friends a good distance away so they could shoot his new .454 Casull, a gun and ammo I wanted no part of. I took his wife, who had never fired a handgun, over and started her off with .22 ammo. She was soon kicking up dirt all around the clay pigeons and occasionally hitting them. (Not bad for a new shooter!) But she soon tired of the diminutive cartridge and wanted something a little stouter. We tried .38 rounds, but got mixed results at the greater distances; but when we switched to some of my handloaded 125gr JHP magnum rounds, I was surprised to see her actually connecting. And when I put five shots into the cylinder to see if she was flinching, I saw that she wasn't.

Now here's the kicker. (No pun intended.) The gun she fared the best with was my Ruger 2 3/4-inch Security-Six. I'd always thought of it as a weak sister to the other barrel lengths, but we both did very well. I theorized that the shorter sight radius was easier for us to draw a bead on. With a 6-inch barrel, the front sight seemed to be all over the place and it did not inspire confidence. But the shorter barrel, with the right breathing and stance, was surprisingly good. Ditto with the 4-inch. We had a great day and lots of gun. My buddy and his friends, however, returned with bruised hands and a flinching problem. And my friend had a significantly lighter pocketbook, as the ammo for his Casull was outrageously expensive.

So my vote is for the .357 Magnum. My .44 Magnum (a nickel S&W 29) wasn't nearly as accurate as I had hoped, but it came close to the targets and hit its share. I've heard the oft-told story of Elmer Keith's 600-yard shot with the .44, but for a hundred yards, make my caliber the .357. And don't discount the .22LR as many do.


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Old November 28, 2010, 07:04 PM   #21
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I'm having a little problem following this thread because I think we're mixing apples and oranges. When you think about accuracy you're thinking of, at minimum three variables: (1) the gun; (2) the round fired; and (3) the shooter. When those three are thrown together it becomes very hard to predict which will outperform which. For example, a .22 lr round may perform with splendid accuracy in a S & W Model 41 but not so well in a cheap Colt SAA knockoff. Then again, a particular brand of .22 may outperform another brand in the same gun. And, finally, who's doing the shooting makes all the difference in the world. So, trying to predict which caliber is inherently more accurate is, in my opinion, an exercise in futility. There are just too many variables at play.

Moreover, there is no reason why any particular caliber should be more accurate. If the bullet mates correctly with the gun through which it fires, it should perform well. Why, for example, should a .22 lr be inherently more accurate than, say, a .40 S & W? I can think of no logical reason why that would be so.
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Old November 28, 2010, 07:42 PM   #22
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Most accurate handgun at 100yds?

Thompson/Center 6mmPPC with custom 15"bbl. One hole groups, sometimes actually ONE hole 3 round group that is diameter of the bullet!
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Old November 28, 2010, 07:58 PM   #23
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There are handguns, and then there are HANDGUNGS!

Quoting "handgung" from the 2d post. I like it. I think it means someone who is just NUTZ over their handgun. Gun-Ho! Why not?? It fits. For accuracy, you bring your .22, and I'll bring my Desert Eagle, .357Mag with the 14" barrel. Accuracy may be comparable, but "getting the job done" will be accomplished by the .357 Mag. Or I could use my T/C 14" barrel, and Lone Eagle in 14". Really fun noise-toys. And it's not jargon about apples and oranges: Who can make the fewest holes in he target. That's all.
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Old November 28, 2010, 08:09 PM   #24
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Hands down, the 7mm Bench Rest out of a Remington XP-100
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Old November 28, 2010, 11:09 PM   #25
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I think this is the oldest zombie thread I've ever seen...

Nine years! WOW!

BTW - 7mm TCU
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Let's eat, Grandma.

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