AR15.Com Archives
 Is it possible to shoot 500 yard prone matches with a basic hunting rifle?
Couch-Commando  [Team Member]
11/28/2009 11:19:41 PM
Hey folks. I recently attended a clinic for learning how to shoot 500 yard prone matches. I came with an M1 garand, but I noticed most people shot scoped rifles rather than service rifles. Most of their rifles appeared to be very expensive set ups, with free floated barrels, top quality glass, trigger jobs, etc. I am wondering, would it be a good idea to shoot these matches with a basic hunting rifle? In particular, I have a winchester model 70 chambered in 270 that I use for deer hunting. I'm looking at ways to practice with stuff I have on hand, since I can't really afford to buy stuff suitable for NRA highpower in the service rifle category. Any input would be appreciated!
kevhogAZ  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 12:35:22 AM
I did just the opposite. I took my iron sighted M1A to a silhouette match, and beat a bunch of guys that had rifles just like you described. It's more about the man behind the trigger, and his training, than the rifle.

I pissed off many people with that rifle. All that money they spent on their space rifles, only to beaten by a guy with an M1A, and no scope!
Couch-Commando  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 12:48:20 AM
Yeah. I could either shoot a stock M1 garand, stock colt AR15A2 or try a hunting rifle. I started getting the hang of a National match AR15 a coach let me borrow. It was fun, though I can't afford crap right now.
Madcap72  [Member]
11/29/2009 3:06:16 AM
Originally Posted By Couch-Commando:
Hey folks. I recently attended a clinic for learning how to shoot 500 yard prone matches. I came with an M1 garand, but I noticed most people shot scoped rifles rather than service rifles. Most of their rifles appeared to be very expensive set ups, with free floated barrels, top quality glass, trigger jobs, etc. I am wondering, would it be a good idea to shoot these matches with a basic hunting rifle? In particular, I have a winchester model 70 chambered in 270 that I use for deer hunting. I'm looking at ways to practice with stuff I have on hand, since I can't really afford to buy stuff suitable for NRA highpower in the service rifle category. Any input would be appreciated!


That .270 is probably your best bet. It was at one time the premier long distance round.
THellURider  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 4:23:49 AM
Absolutely doable.
phurba  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 5:23:00 AM
Originally Posted By THellURider:
Absolutely doable.


Yup. Check out the Appleseed events - the point is to teach you how to hit a 20" target at 500 yards with irons on a rack grade rifle.

Info here
Couch-Commando  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 12:31:41 PM
Interesting. The rifle was purchased at walmart. It has potential though. It has a 24'' barrel. My only complaint is the trigger, which is adjustable from what I read. It looks like it would be easy to fix up in a way that would make it suitable and good to use in these competitions. I am also thinking of getting a cheap surplus rifle like a 91/30 to shoot in local C&R matches. I can shoot for free until I'm 21, so I'd like to take advantage of that and get some real practice in.
Couch-Commando  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 12:34:58 PM

Originally Posted By kevhogAZ:
I did just the opposite. I took my iron sighted M1A to a silhouette match, and beat a bunch of guys that had rifles just like you described. It's more about the man behind the trigger, and his training, than the rifle.

I pissed off many people with that rifle. All that money they spent on their space rifles, only to beaten by a guy with an M1A, and no scope!

At the beginning of the clinic, I was all over the paper. But once I got back in the swing of shooting prone, and the instructors helped me with my position, I started to get the hang of it. Some of the guys with fancy rifles got very small groups with few fliers, while others looked like shotgun patterns. I was in the middle of the pack, and I think the winner had an old sporterized 1903, while 2nd place had a stock standard M1A.
Couch-Commando  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 12:35:40 PM

Originally Posted By phurba:
Originally Posted By THellURider:
Absolutely doable.


Yup. Check out the Appleseed events - the point is to teach you how to hit a 20" target at 500 yards with irons on a rack grade rifle.

Info here

I've seen this mentioned before. It looks like the next one I can realistically go to is in january. I'll see if I can make it.
87GN  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 1:49:58 PM
I do it with M4 type weapons at 600. I am nowhere near the top shooter, though. The people that show up are not the type to dick around (other than me, that is).

Oh and we bent your pitchfork in half yesterday.
Couch-Commando  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 3:54:31 PM
Well, I talked to my dad, and he said that he got the rifle for me to use, and that I can do whatever I want with it and/or to it. So I think I'll make it my little project for winter break. My only real complaint with it is that the trigger sucks. It's long and ragged.
kevhogAZ  [Team Member]
11/29/2009 4:35:39 PM
Originally Posted By Couch-Commando:

Originally Posted By kevhogAZ:
I did just the opposite. I took my iron sighted M1A to a silhouette match, and beat a bunch of guys that had rifles just like you described. It's more about the man behind the trigger, and his training, than the rifle.

I pissed off many people with that rifle. All that money they spent on their space rifles, only to beaten by a guy with an M1A, and no scope!

At the beginning of the clinic, I was all over the paper. But once I got back in the swing of shooting prone, and the instructors helped me with my position, I started to get the hang of it. Some of the guys with fancy rifles got very small groups with few fliers, while others looked like shotgun patterns. I was in the middle of the pack, and I think the winner had an old sporterized 1903, while 2nd place had a stock standard M1A.


I forgot to mention that I shot all the silhouette matches out at Rio Salado, and that I always used SA ball ammo. I'd just bring one box with me, open it up right in front of everybody, and go for it.

I think my highest score was a 13/40 which according to the guys that would talk to me, was pretty good for an iron sighted rifle.
Madcap72  [Member]
11/29/2009 4:36:25 PM
Originally Posted By Couch-Commando:
Well, I talked to my dad, and he said that he got the rifle for me to use, and that I can do whatever I want with it and/or to it. So I think I'll make it my little project for winter break. My only real complaint with it is that the trigger sucks. It's long and ragged.


You may be surprised how much aftermarket support there is for, here's a link;


Link

Hope that helps!
slashsplat  [Team Member]
11/30/2009 12:59:41 AM
So long as the rifle is allowed for the particular match, go for it. The key is shooting. Work on the Natural Point of Aim and proper sling use. That training will do you well for any rifle you choose to shoot.

You can also consider putting 1 to 3 pounds of lead shot in the front of the buttstock and fill the rest with closed cell foam. This will minimize the slappy 270 recoil and allow you to remain on target better and re-acquire the Point of Aim more quickly.

Dry firing is EXTREMELY valuable (and really cheap) and will greatly improve your scores. It certainly helps mine.