Long range target rifles (HELP!!)

This is a discussion on Long range target rifles (HELP!!) within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I am really wanting to get into some long range shooting, I have been asking around but info is hard to come by. I have ...

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Thread: Long range target rifles (HELP!!)

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array flagflyfish's Avatar
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    Question Long range target rifles (HELP!!)

    I am really wanting to get into some long range shooting, I have been asking around but info is hard to come by. I have been told that I should have a rifle built around one of the actions that I have laying around. I probably will do that in the future as I have a m98 action and a Rem700 6mm/243 action. That being said; I would like to purchase a nice rifle to get started with, I think that I want it chambered in .308. The FN A1 starts at around $1400.00, I imagine spending an additional $800+ for the glass will put me in a pretty good scope.
    If anyone has any input it would be greatly appreciated as this aspect of the shooting sports seems to be riddled with controversy, IE; Heavy bullet vs Small caliber barrel burner, Etc Etc... Thanks, Rex

    The following was downloaded from the FN website:


    The most popular of the FN SPR line is the FN A1. Features a Pre-‘64 Winchester®-type action with claw extractor, controlled round feed and a three-position safety. The FN SPR A1 has a heavy, hard chrome lined 24" bull barrel. It has a McMillan A3 tactical fiberglass stock and your choice of a detachable box magazine or hinged floorplate (300 WSM only available with floorplate).
    Item Number Caliber/Ga Barrel
    Length Overall
    Length Length
    of Pull Weight Magazine
    Capacity

    21792 308 Win. 24" 44" 13 1/2" 12 lbs. 6 oz. 4 DBM...
    21793 308 Win. 24" 44" 13 1/2" 12 lbs. 6 oz. 5 FLP...
    21794 300 WSM 24" 44" 13 1/2" 12 lbs. 6 oz. 3 FLP
    Attached Images
    "These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier
    and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the
    service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the
    love and thanks of man and woman."

    -- Thomas Paine (The American Crisis, No. 1, 19 December 1776)

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  3. #2
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    I'll just mention this - if the USA mil rifle team can do what they do with the .300 WinMag then I'd sure reckon it's worth a look.

    Of course their rifles are built up - and I dread to think of cost - plus rounds are hand loaded to high degree of consistency.

    All that said - a good bull barrel (fully floated) and good home brewed .308's can work miracles IMO.
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


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  4. #3
    Senior Member Array flagflyfish's Avatar
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    Hey Chris, I've already resigned myself to long hours at the loading bench, it's probably good that I don't have a steady GF right now!
    "These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier
    and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the
    service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the
    love and thanks of man and woman."

    -- Thomas Paine (The American Crisis, No. 1, 19 December 1776)

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    it's probably good that I don't have a steady GF right now!
    Haha - well ya know Rex - I have heard it said that the right wimminz can be totally brilliant at reloading
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

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    Any caliber (within reason ) can be accurate. what type of shooting do you want to do? Pick your sport / game shooting , then match the caliber. The military marksman units are using several calibers to punch holes at long distance. Do you have any long range shooting experience?
    If not, it might pay to join a club , find someone to teach you the basics/ coach you. It does get expensive , if you compete and practice regularly.
    "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson


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    Senior Member Array flagflyfish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by P95Carry View Post
    Haha - well ya know Rex - I have heard it said that the right wimminz can be totally brilliant at reloading
    I guess i"m gonna have to revise my newspaper ad:
    Wanted, single female, who loves guns, flyrods, birddogs, and reloading....send picture of reloading bench
    "These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier
    and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the
    service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the
    love and thanks of man and woman."

    -- Thomas Paine (The American Crisis, No. 1, 19 December 1776)

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    I've got a few long range rifles. I've shot pretty much all of them on the market and some that are hand built customs as well as building a few of my own.

    We'll leave the custom builds out of it, because they are expensive.

    We'll leave the sub calibers out of it, because you said "long range". Although there are a multitude of sub calibers out there, most of them are hand loading propositions on custom built rifles. Sub-caliber meaning anything less than .30 caliber.

    The best ballistic coefficients are with the heavier .30 caliber bullets.

    One of the best starter rifles out there is still the Remington PSS in .308. Its accurate, parts are readily available and its customizable, but in reality, there is no need to mess with it. The biggest accuracy factor in any long range rifle comes with load development,which is a lot of time,trial and error.

    If you don't reload, the Federal Custom Match is about the best ammo going for the money and is what many Police snipers use.

    My favorite for the .308 uses Hornady 168 grain AMAXs moving at a chrongraphed 2700 FPS. With this load I can splatter flys at 200 yards or hit a 6 inch gong at 600 till I get bored with it.

    Another option, and one of my favorites is the .300Wing Mag Sendero. This is the Rem. long action that is basically much like the .308 but in long action. This is another tack driver. The load it likes is the 180 grain Nosler Ballistic tip moving right at 3100FPS. Slapping a 12 inch gong at 1000 is not hard if the wind is not blowing.

    The biggest thing is not the actual gun, although it must be capable, but the glass. I cant tell you how many times Ive seen otherwise accurate guns be hampered by cheap scopes. Its a fact that any scope will do for 400 yards or less. After that the differences become very apparent.

    People tend to forget that they cant hit what they cant see. It doesn't make any sense to spend big bucks on a rifle and scimp on the scope. A decent scope will cost as much, if not more than the gun. Forget the Asian junk and go with either American or European.

    Remington actions, due to the CNC method of manufacture, are more consistent now than they ever have been. Even so, they are production guns, and the tolerances are somewhat loose on the bolt to receiver fit up and the locking lugs need to be trued up. Blueprinting the action will gain some improvements in the accuracy dept. Shimming the bolt will help, but this must be weighed with the true purpose of the gun, as decreasing the tolerances also decrease reliability...meaning that the gun must be kept very clean to shoot or the bolt will simply lock up when it starts getting dirty. Not a problem at the range punching paper, but could be if you are whacking prairie dogs at obscene ranges out in the middle of nowhere.

    I've shot a few FN's and they are so so. Some have been great shooters and I know of two that have been sent back to the factory several times, they just would not shoot up to par.

    As for controversy on what is best, people often give advice for their style of shooting without taking into account what the person seeking their advice and their style of shooting.

    And there will always be the heavy vs. light wars going on. It really depends on what you want to do.

    If you want to shoot chucks, a heavy bullet isn't needed. If you are shooting at 600 yards and you have a 12-15 MPH cross wind, a heavy bullet will drift less than a light one. If you want to deer hunt on a large clearcut and think you can hit a deer at 740 yards, you don't want a light bullet, you want a heavier bullet for penetration.

    There are lots of variables here,that must be taken into account.

    To the above average shooter, the factory rifles will work for hunting and just messing around shooting targets that are a long ways off. For a match shooter, the factories aren't good enough, and custom actions along will cost several thousand dollars. In reality though, when the difference between winning and losing is measured in thousandths of inches, every little bit of accuracy helps. If you aren't doing that though, spending 5 grand on a rifle is really kinda of pointless and useless because you'll never use it to its full potential. I might add that all of those guys load their own for their rifles, and if you don't do that, you may as well forget it.

    The thing is...what exactly are you looking to do?
    I would rather stand against the cannons of the wicked than against the prayers of the righteous.


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    Senior Member Array flagflyfish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rocky View Post
    Any caliber (within reason ) can be accurate. what type of shooting do you want to do? Pick your sport / game shooting , then match the caliber. The military marksman units are using several calibers to punch holes at long distance. Do you have any long range shooting experience?
    If not, it might pay to join a club , find someone to teach you the basics/ coach you. It does get expensive , if you compete and practice regularly.
    I've always been pretty handy with a rifle, and I understand ballistics but I have no formal training at long range shooting. The nearest range is about 145 miles away, but we have lots of places up here to shoot 1000yrds. My goal is to hit a target (2'x3') at that range consistantly. I would like to get into some competition matches as I think that I could do very well at it, a few people I know are talking about starting a club so I will probably get involved.
    "These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier
    and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the
    service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the
    love and thanks of man and woman."

    -- Thomas Paine (The American Crisis, No. 1, 19 December 1776)

  10. #9
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    Long range shooting involves more than just basic trigger control. Wind and weather conditions factor in alot more with distance. 2' x 3' isn't bad to start, but for competition you will need to tighten up the groups considerably.
    "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson


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    I lean more towards Remington actions. I think they safety is easier to operate & the bolt is smoother.

    As to floor plate....a box isn't that big a deal either. I have one Remington 700 with a detachable box & all the other have floor plates. With a bolt gun the box just isn't that important. It's not likely that you'll be putting rounds down range fast enough to need a 'quick' reload. As soon as the barrel heats up POI can chance.

    It's also good that your not going to skimp on the scope. I've seen a lot of great guns that can't shoot because of cheap glass.

    7.62Nato (.308) is a great road. It's accurate & it doesn't beat you half to death like the .300WM. However pushing it much past 500meters is not easy. For 1000meters, the only thing I have that can go that distance is a .338Lapua.....Like Rocky said, wind is a big deal at that range (not to mention the shooter).

    No matter what caliber you use, you will have to find a load your rifle likes as well. That will entail bullet weight, type & amount of power....but once you find it for your firearm....You can drive nails with it!
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    1000 yards is a looooong way :)

    .308 win is one of the absolute best 'do it all' calibers available. It can shoot that distance, but if I were going to buy a rifle specifically to shoot 1000 yards, it wouldn't be a .308. 1000 yard shooting is a specialty activity, and calls for a specialty caliber. Id' have to look into 6mmbr or 300wmag, or one of the other cartridges that were designed for this sort of range.

    1000 yard shooting is something I've always wanted to do, but I don't have the range facilities available, and I'm far from perfect at 200 yards! I'll get there eventually.
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    Senior Member Array MR D's Avatar
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    a man wiser than I once said

    "a man could do a lot with $600.00 and a .30-'06."

    they used to shoot the Wimbledon with '06...


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    HotGuns, the 7mm 162gr A-Max has a BC of .625, higher than most .30 cal bullets. I run them in 7mm-08.

    The 140gr 7mm-08 will have less drop and more energy past 400y than the .308 Win.

    If I went long range target, I'd get a 7mm Dakota and use Berger 180gr VLDs.

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    the 7mm 162gr A-Max has a BC of .625, higher than most .30 cal bullets
    Yep it, does. The light bullets tend to be harder to hit with at long ranges though due to wind drift. I dont know of anyone that shoots long that handicaps themselves with the 7MM-08. I'll admit that its an exellent round, but pushing it to 1000 is asking too much from it.Thats why most will use the various .300's,plus the bullet stays supersonic longer for stability at really long ranges. Once a bullet goes makes the transition from supersonic to subsonic, there's no telling where it'll end up.
    I would rather stand against the cannons of the wicked than against the prayers of the righteous.


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    Well if you are planning on a custom build, The 700 or Savage actions would be the best to start off with. For a Factory rifle, the Savage "F-class" would be an excellent choice, though it is pricey. The Sendero would also be nice but it's about the same price as the Savage, and you get alot more with the F-class gun. When it comes to Caliber it really depends on what range you're planning on shooting, and whether you plan to use the rifle for anything other than punching paper. Out to 1000yds the sub calibers do fine, a whole lot of matches are being won with the 6mm BR and other wildcats. When you start getting out past 1000 the bigger magnum cartridges are where its at, The higher BC bullets are just necessary when you're pokin' out there at that range. 300winmag, various .338 wildcats etc.

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