Which AR-15 upper for 400-500 yard accuracy?


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mtcur3
August 25, 2007, 12:44 PM
My family and I are going to a RWVA Apple seed Boot Camp in October http://www.appleseedinfo.org/ . I realize the .223 is not the best long-range rifle, but it's what we have and what we'll be using for the shoot. We have two DPMS carbines and a RRA lower. Four of us will be shooting for 8 days. The kids are 13 old and 15 years old. Much of the shooting will take place at 25 yards. To help with the cost of ammo I'm thinking of buying a couple of AR-15 rimfire conversions kits. Does anyone have any thoughts on this being a good or bad idea concerning consistent accuracy at 25 yards?
I'd also like to buy an adequate upper for actual 400-500 yard shooting. Should I go with a 20" barrel or will the 16" work? I'd like to spend less than $600 and I don't want it to be too heavy, the kids are small. The shoot is about 5 weeks away so if you know where I can purchase the upper asap please let me know. DPMS and RRA have a 10-12 week wait. Thank you for your help.

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scubie02
August 25, 2007, 01:11 PM
well, I've ordered uppers from Stag and gotten them within a couple days to a week. They do have a 20" model, but otherwise just 16"ers which it sounds like you already have. Honestly? I personally haven't owned an AR that's so blazingly accurate I'd be expecting to do much better than hopefully hitting a person SOMEWHERE at 4-500 yds, and I know VERY few people that can shoot at those ranges off-hand and have much prayer of hitting anything. You always hear that the AR's are better than AK's because you can shoot them at 400-500 yards, but in my experience if I put a paper plate up at 100 yds and tell someone "hit that" off hand, the majority of people can't do it consistently. Most people nowadays do any kind of shooting 100 yds + off a bench with sandbags or a bipod or something. The standard non-match triggers that come on AR's aren't exactly conducive to amazing long range accuracy either. I would think 20" would be a better bet though probably if that's what you're looking for without too much weight.

funfaler
August 25, 2007, 01:39 PM
Allow me to give you my thoughts on the AR issue and your approach to the Appleseed Boot Camp (great for you, taking your wife and kids, great plan!).

For the price of 22 kits for your AR, you can nearly get a Ruger 10/22, with Tech-Sights. These are great trainers for the 25 meter range, and give a similar sight picture as the AR sights. This approach will allow you to get some loaner/trainer rifles plus dedicated 22lr rifle for future use.

The 16 inch barrels on the ARs will do their job out to 500 yards, I do it often. The issue you really have to deal with, with the 16 inch barrel is the shortened sight radius. Having the 20 inch will do little in the gain of accuracy, outside of the extra 4 inches of sight radius, and I am not sure that the added expense of another upper, or several. One suggestion that I will make for your 16" upper, I would look into a thinner front sight post. Something closer to .050" will give you something useful to use for the smaller targets/longer ranges and help you in the Appleseed shoot.

If you have not been to an Appleseed shoot, I will also make the following suggestions;
-USGI web slings for use as shooting slings
-Ear plugs and Ear Muffs
-Elbow pads, without the hard outer shells
-shooting mats, cheap foam are just fine

If you have not gotten it, get Fred's Guide to Becoming a Rifleman and read through it several times, this will really get your mind set for the upcoming event.

Finally, spend some time 3-4 times a week, getting into the sitting and prone positions, and dry fire your rifle. This will get your body stretched out a bit for the shoot.

PM me if you would like to discuss the Appleseed stuff more in-depth, I would be happy to share my experience. Also, go to the Appleseed forum and ask questions about the program, http://www.appleseedinfo.org

Enjoy your shoot!

taliv
August 25, 2007, 02:50 PM
your dpms carbines are just fine shooting out to 600 yrds. don't spend any money until AFTER you've been through the program and have a really good idea what worked and what didn't. and don't shoot crappy ammo at 400 yrds and then blame the upper/barrel. :) give it a chance.

i've used the ceiner 22lr conversion kits in my ARs before and loved them. however, i stopped using them because of the excessive wear to my bolt carrier and upper receiver. i found them to be picky about ammo, but enjoyable to shoot when you find the right ammo. they will almost definitely shoot to a different point of impact than your 223 ammo, so if you get one, sight them both in before you go.

W.E.G.
August 25, 2007, 03:24 PM
I think the Appleseed shoots expect you to fire quite a few rounds in SINGLE-FEED mode.

An AR-15 with a rimfire kit is an absolute horror to load one round at a time.
Don't even consider a rifle that will be difficult to load for single shots.

The course of fire at an Appleseed strongly favors a rifle with adjustable sights such as those found on an M14 or M16.

I think an optic with a graduated reticle might be OK too. But remember you will be firing from standing, sitting and prone. I can tell you for sure, you better set-up that optic so it isn't digging into your face when you are in the prone position. Its easier to crane your neck for the offhand shots than it is to shoot with blood from an eyebrow laceration running into your eye.

Bartholomew Roberts
August 25, 2007, 04:52 PM
I second taliv's recommendation. Your current rifles are plenty capable of hitting 20" targets at 500yds, especially with good ammo. Doing it with iron sights may be tougher due to the shorter sight radius and thick front sight post if you are using a 16" (That and I can't even see spotter disks with my bare eyes at 600yds); but I would recommend trying the course with what you have and then considering what changes you would like to make.

If there is one thing I've learned from instruction is that it is better to buy stuff AFTER instruction; because it is really disappointing to buy something before instruction based on what you think you might need and then discover you don't need that all; but could stand to change something else (if you still had any money to buy it :))

GoRon
August 25, 2007, 06:33 PM
I think the Appleseed shoots expect you to fire quite a few rounds in SINGLE-FEED mode.

Not in the two day Appleseed I participated in. We fired 5-13 rounds per stage.

I used a 16"AR with iron sights.

Before my next Appleseed I plan on having a 20" AR to use.

mtcur3
August 25, 2007, 07:23 PM
Thanks to all who replied. Here are a few more questions.
What would be good ammo?
I reload. Do you know of a good staring place for the AR-15 with 16" barrel? Powder? Bullets?
Where can I get USGI slings?
Where can I get the narrower front sight?
I would like to get another upper before the shoot. One fellow highly recommend the LMT 16" M4. Could you confirm that it would be a good choice? Thank you very much for sharing your knowledge.

taliv
August 25, 2007, 07:43 PM
i haven't done an appleseed shoot, but the course of fire sounds very similar to the NRA HP and national match courses. In both of those, the slow fire stages REQUIRE you to single feed, even though you shoot 10-20 rounds in the stage. I know people get away with loading all 10 rnds in a mag (the guy next to me at Perry this year did that, but then, nobody was worried about him winning :) )

reloads have a well-deserved bad reputation, but that doesn't necessarily make it bad ammo. i only shoot reloads in HP. i shot reloads when i went to Pat Roger's carbine class and Thunder Ranch and had no malfunctions in either places. However, if your reloads are unsafe or unreliable, you've got no one to blame but yourself. I wouldn't use them if I wasn't confident in them, especially if you haven't reloaded them before.

my normal haunts are all sold out of bullets, and i haven't seen any deals on powder lately. there's a sticky thread in reloading forum with a long list of vendors.

At the Army Marksmanship Unit's Small Arms Firing School this year, they were saying a lot folks were getting the narrower front sights, but that it was a mistake and that it's easier to center the bull on a wide post than to center a narrow post on the bull. They also said for older folks, it is easier to focus on the larger post.

LMT is a pretty well-respected brand, but the M4 is not a target rifle. It's great if you're looking for a general-purpose carbine. If you're mostly going to shoot paper, particularly from a bench or prone, there are certainly better configurations.

Bartholomew Roberts
August 25, 2007, 08:39 PM
I have the narrower sight post on one midlength 16" that needed it with the folding sight. I prefer it for trying to shoot tiny groups over the normal sized post; but for 3gun, the normal post is easier to use. Optics are better than both though. Almost any manufacturer should have the narrower post. I think mine was DPMS.

On uppers, it depends a lot on what you plan to use it for. I like the 16" midlengths for a good general do-it-all rifle.

Dienekes
August 26, 2007, 01:59 AM
Have shot high power .30 cal. in the past and do a fair amount of 300 yard work in the open these days. Of late I have been using a BM M4gery, at usual range of 150 yards but out to 200 and 250. Have only done two things to it--a good optic and a good trigger. Assuming good eyesight a better trigger is the most productive thing you can do for the average AR. The stock trigger will hold you back more than you think, whereas a nice one lets you perform your best (instead of frustrating you--and especially the younger, less experienced shooter). Between the trigger and good practice you will find the 16" barrel capable of more accuracy than most of us can get out of it.

If I really wanted to do 400 yard and out work with an AR I would opt for a separate 20" rifle model and run that. Paper punching aside, however, after 250-300 yards .30 caliber really shows its superiority in all respects.

No doubt that the 5.56 round shoots very well as far out as you can hold and squeeze; but as the old saying goes, "a good big man can beat the hell out of a good small man".

The good news is that a 16" 5.56 is sufficient for most things out to 150 yards and that is all that is really required. Even the US military admitted that after Korea--but dragged their feet all the way.

funfaler
August 26, 2007, 03:18 AM
Keep in mind that the Appleseed shoots are all about the shooter not the equipment. You are going to learn skills, not a competition, or to learn how to "game" a competition.

The instruction will improve your skills, regardless of what equipment you bring (provided it can shoot straight)

I would not buy another 16" upper prior to the shoot, there will be no benefit. If you had a 20" upper, then you would gain the longer sight radius, but that would really be the extent of the benefit.

Ammo, well that is the $60K question. Surplus is fine. Wolf would work if need be. 22LR is fine as well. It is the "shooter" that the focus will be on, there is no reason that a rack/standard rifle and surplus ammo can not make the grade at an Appleseed shoot. Bring what you have. For the boot camp, you will do yourself the favor of having some quality ammo, only from the aspect of rifle function, not "accuracy". Most ammo is accurate enough for Appleseed shooting; ammo is much less a factor in "accuracy" than the shooter, come and learn.

There is NO single round loading at an Appleseed, so that is not a consideration.

USGI slings? CDNN has the best price that I have seen for USGI web slings http://www.cdnninvestments.com/m1greenwebne.html

Narrow front sights? Midway http://www.midwayusa.com/ebrowse.exe/browse?tabid=9&categoryid=17048&categorystring=10636***10560***8807***11619***

Look at the KNS products http://www.knsprecisioninc.com/SIGHTS%20AR-15%20AR-10%20M-16%20SR-25.htm

aloharover
August 26, 2007, 09:53 AM
Personally I see no reason to buy an M4 profile barrelled upper. Every manufacturer charges more for the removed metal and it doesn't noticably effect the rifles weight or handling.
If weight is an issue get a Double Star lightweight upper.
If you want a short barrel and are concerned about the sight radius look for a Disappator. This is a carbine barrel with a rifle length sight radius and handguards.
http://www.evil-black-rifles.com/images/dis01.jpg

If you are serious about long shots with the 5.56 I would get a 1x7 barrel and shoot heavier bullets, otherwise a 1x8 will be fine.
Also if accuracy is the most important issue you will really want the .223 chamber instead of a 5.56.

For handloading.
For long range, in a 1x7, single loading look to the 77g or 80g Sierra MatchKings.
The 69g SMKs can be loaded to fit in a magazine and work with a 1x8 barrel.
For a good Gp round that still yields good accuracy a 55g FMJ works well in the 1x8.
I use once fired LC brass, CCI mil primers, 25g of IMR-4895. This is not the max load, but you should still start at 24g and work up.
This load works great in both my 20" and 16" 1x8 rifles.

Bartholomew Roberts
August 26, 2007, 10:34 AM
I see no reason to buy an M4 profile barrelled upper. Every manufacturer charges more for the removed metal and it doesn't noticably effect the rifles weight or handling.

Typically an M4 barrel is about a half pound lighter than a 16" HBAR barrel. Since that weight is all in front of the barrel nut, I've found it improves handling as well. Of course, part of that depends on whether you are getting a true M4 profile (light under the handguards) or just an HBAR with the grenade step cut into it. The latter isn't going to be nearly as light.

Browning
August 26, 2007, 11:54 AM
I'd like to go to that one in October in Texarkana Texas if I can make it. If I'm able to go I'll probably bring a 20 inch RRA AR-15A4 with 1000 rounds of Wolf HP (because that ammo is all I can afford right now and a rack grade rifle with iron sights at distance is what it's supposed to be about). That would be my choice anyway, but that doesn't make it "the best" choice.

That's just what I've got to work with.

I'd think that the 20 inch AR would have an advantage over the 16 inch AR just due to the longer sight radius at the longer distances (4 and 500 yards) because they'd like for you to use iron sights, but if you're good with a 16 inch AR then that extra 4 inches probably doesn't mean much if you can get hits anyway. Just pick whatever rifle you've shot the most as it's better to take something that you've shot alot vs. taking something that you haven't but that looks tacti-cool.

glockman19
August 26, 2007, 02:32 PM
I personally wouldn't rely on an AR-15 for human targets at that distance I'd look at an AR-10 or M1A.

mtcur3
August 26, 2007, 04:37 PM
Thanks again to all, especially funfaler. I'm glad to learn that the shoot is shooter orientated rather than equipment orientated. My concern is getting to the shoot and not having what we need for 8 long days! I've ordered a pair of AR-15 type sights for the kids 10/22s. I hope they come in before the shoot. We are taking our vacation to go to this shoot and I want it to be a VERY POSITIVE experience for the kids and the wife. In fact they are giving up the opening week of bow season, so I don't want them to be frustrated by poor equipment or anything else. We've started working on the various shooting positions following Fred's guide to becoming a rifleman. I'm going to take y'alls advice and just put one of the carbine uppers on the RRA lower and go with that for now. I'll order the smaller front sights and the web slings as soon as I submit this reply. If y'all think of any thing else that would be useful to us let us know.
Sincerely,
Wilson

Bartholomew Roberts
August 26, 2007, 05:23 PM
I'll probably bring a 20 inch RRA AR-15A4 with 1000 rounds of Wolf HP

Wolf is not going to get it done at 500yds and probably not 300yds. I think you will find yourself frustrated with an inability to hit the target that is primarily a result of your ammo choice. If you are limited by your budget, I would recommend picking up at least a small amount of better quality ammo for the longer ranges and just using the Wolf in close where it will be less of an issue.

ken grant
August 26, 2007, 06:21 PM
Unless you and your's are very good shots, for the most part you will be shooting at 25 Meters. Until you are shooting Rifleman scores almost on demand, you will stay at 25 M.
Once you have made Rifleman, then you can move to the longer ranges.
It is true that most any military rifle or ammo will work on the longer ranges on the D targets. The most likely problem will be your skills and maybe sights such as on the AK's.
At one of the Boot Camps at the RWVA Range, a guy was knocking down the pop-up's at 300 yds. with a 10/22. I didn't see it but I heard about it from others.

Browning
August 26, 2007, 06:24 PM
Bartholomew Roberts :Wolf is not going to get it done at 500yds and probably not 300yds. I think you will find yourself frustrated with an inability to hit the target that is primarily a result of your ammo choice. If you are limited by your budget, I would recommend picking up at least a small amount of better quality ammo for the longer ranges and just using the Wolf in close where it will be less of an issue.

I'll be using the Wolf for the 200 to 300 yard ranges, I haven't figured out for sure what I'll use for beyond that range as I think that you're right, after a certain range it won't cut it. I'm going to bring a small amount of match grade ammo (250 rds), I just haven't settled on anything yet for sure. Maybe something like these two as one of the local gun stores had this stuff and my .223's seemed to like it real well...

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/product/standard-item.jsp?_DARGS=/cabelas/en/common/catalog/item-link.jsp_A&_DAV=MainCatcat602007-cat20839&id=0022901215200a&navCount=4&podId=0022901&parentId=cat20839&masterpathid=&navAction=push&catalogCode=IH&rid=&parentType=index&indexId=cat20839&hasJS=true

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/product/standard-item.jsp?_DARGS=/cabelas/en/common/catalog/item-link.jsp_A&_DAV=MainCatcat602007-cat20839&id=0022901215196a&navCount=6&podId=0022901&parentId=cat20839&masterpathid=&navAction=push&catalogCode=IH&rid=&parentType=index&indexId=cat20839&hasJS=true

I've also have shot some new match Black Hills and Horandy .223 ammo through this particular gun, but I don't have enough on hand and I don't think that I'll be able to really buy the really good match ammo in bulk the way I could from Cabelas without breaking the bank. I just usually buy a couple boxes of Horandy at a time. I had a bunch of "Coyote Duster" 55 grain SP that it did well with, but I'm almost out of that. All the gun stores around here seemed to run out of Black Hills remanufactured ammo, I haven't been able to find it anywhere which is what I like the best, decent ammo for a good price.

This is the stuff that my AR is usually loaded with, but I can't buy a whole lot of it if I want to stay married.

http://www.ableammo.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=10480_14658_14743_14902_14766&products_id=75720

http://www.ableammo.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=10480_14658_14743_14902_14766&products_id=75657

I should have included that in my previous post, but it skipped my mind. I've used Wolf to make hits out to 300 yards before, but it wasn't on demand at a range in front of a whole bunch of people. It was in a relaxed atmosphere out of the back of a pickup bed. I'll get to find out if I can do it under pressure.

I probably end up getting 250 rounds of the 55 grain V-Max from Cabelas for $114 unless I can find some of that 52 grain Black Hills Match somewhere at a cheaper price. I can't seem to find any.

aloharover
August 26, 2007, 06:30 PM
Typically an M4 barrel is about a half pound lighter than a 16" HBAR barrel. Since that weight is all in front of the barrel nut, I've found it improves handling as well. Of course, part of that depends on whether you are getting a true M4 profile (light under the handguards) or just an HBAR with the grenade step cut into it.

Good point, but again, why not just get the pure A1 diameter barrel?

ken grant
August 26, 2007, 06:46 PM
I have never tried any Wolf Ammo as I laid in a good supply of good ammo before things got so tight, but I wonder how many can out shoot the ammo when shooting from positions and using iron sights.
I am not talking about Target shooters but the normal everyday shooter.
I attended the first Boot Camp at the RWVA Range and I shot over a 1000 rds. and didn't shoot everyday. This was with an M14A.
I was 69 yrs. old at the time and wasn't in good enough shape to shoot everyday. Tired,stiff and sore was the name of the game for me.

DID MAKE RIFLEMAN THOUGH

Bartholomew Roberts
August 26, 2007, 06:46 PM
Yeah, my AR loves all of the Hornady ammo. That will definitely do the accurate part; but unless you can find some of the steel-cased Hornady Practice ammo, the cost is a bit steep.

That makes sense, but again, why not just get the pure A1 diameter barrel?

Always an option if the manufacturer offers it.

I wonder how many can out shoot the ammo when shooting from positions and using iron sights.

In my experience, if you can hold tighter than 4MOA in field positions, you can outshoot Wolf ammo.

taliv
August 26, 2007, 09:08 PM
heck, i can outshoot wolf/surplus ammo standing and i'm just shooting scores in the high expert to low master class range.

Pacer
August 26, 2007, 09:24 PM
I'll respond to the issue of "single loading" as a "formerly active" and still current RWVA instructor for the appleseed program, as is Funfaler, I believe.

Most of the course of fire is NOT NRA hipower NOR CMP national match stuff.

There is a "preference" for loading using a "2+8" configuration, like prior garand loadings, mostly to "force" a magazine change during the string....and its concomittant NPOA reset.

The course IS about the operator, not the gun, hence the 25 meter/ yard predominance. Keeping all rounds in 4MOA (1 inch at 25) is harder than it looks.

It is ALSO about most stable position, so "Offhand" (which to us is "standing WITH A SLING) is reserved for the 100 yard stage...kinda like a shoot in a quik break while evac'ing.

400 Meters (yard) and up are shot prone. But even slow prone is at "rifleman cadence" which is typically one shot every 4 seconds (--Breath in/out and check NPOA, breath in-out to respiratory pause, focus hard on the front sight as the trigger is independantly pressed to the surprise break, eyes open to "follow through" (count two) before trigger reset, and repeat.--)

THERE IS NO "MANDATORY" SINGLE LOADING in this program of instruction.

Event the initial trial calls for a minimum of 8 rounds, and all "zero'ing" is based on GROUPS, not single shots.

Come out, I promise you will get something you didn't know/understand before!

And if you are that rare guy or gal that absolutely knows better than us, come on out and show us, then become an instructor.

There is a standing challeenge, that to my knowledge has never been met.

Come out and fire your rifle and your ammo COLD BORE at the 25 meter targets for the 40 rounds in the target times established, in the position sequence established. Clean our clock and get your money refunded!

Pacer

ken grant
August 26, 2007, 09:51 PM
Maybe a HIGH EXPERT/ LOW MASTER can outshoot Ammo in Standing Position or any of the others but shooters of this class are a very small percent of normal everyday shooters who number in the 1000's or more.
These are the shooters an Appleseed is set up for and I would bet for the larger part, most of the shooters will not outshoot any Wolf or Surplus ammo.
At the prices of ammo today and the fact that it is hard to find, how many of the normal shooters can afford or even want to spend what it takes to become an HIGH EXPERT/MASTER SHOOTER?
An Appleseed is set up to run what you have and learn how to use it. From .22's to most any rifle will work for you if you will listen and do what the Instructors tell you.
]The only score you are shooting against is your last one,trying to do better[/U]. A RWVA Boot Camp will be one of the best times you can have even if the only rifle you have is a .22 or SKS.
And yes, people have made rifleman scores shooting an SKS with Wolf ammo or suplus ammo.

Bartholomew Roberts
August 26, 2007, 10:12 PM
These are the shooters an Appleseed is set up for and I would bet for the larger part, most of the shooters will not outshoot any Wolf or Surplus ammo.

How do you zero a rifle if you can't shoot better than 4MOA?

taliv
August 26, 2007, 10:37 PM
don't let the name fool you... "expert" isn't a prestigious or impressive classification in NRA HP :) which is kind of the point of the example. I'm not saying I'm the best evar and can outshoot the ammo. I'm saying I'm in the bottom half of competitors and if I can outshoot it, then everybody else can too.

funfaler
August 26, 2007, 10:46 PM
How do you zero a rifle if you can't shoot better than 4MOA?

Once a shooter gets consistant groups, that are in the 4 moa range, it is just a matter of determining how far off the center of the group is, from the desired point of impact.

To "zero" the rifle is nothing more that adjusting the sights to move your groups to the location that you want on the target.

So the "job 1" for any shooter is to get consistant groups. This is a function of the shooter mechanics, less so of the ammo. No doubt that once a shooter gets to the 4 moa level, they can take advantage of "external" improvements to make their groups smaller (better ammo, better sights, better barrels), but the fact is that if you take a 12 moa shooter and hand them all match everything, they are not going to become 2 moa shooters, they will more than likely remain 12 moa shooter.

It is all about the shooter, not the tools. If you hand a bad shooter top shelf equipment, they will still be a bad shooter. Take a good shooter, give him average equipment, he will still be a good shooter.

The fact remains that most shooters have a lot of room for improvement of their skills, even to get to the potential of their rifles.

The Guy
August 26, 2007, 11:06 PM
Here we go....




5-13 round stages are how we do things.

.22's work great for the 25m program, and then use centerfire for the extended ranges. I recomend "a .22 to learn, a centerfire to confirm" (a Guyism).

Well said Pacer.

We have a loooong thread on using a 10-22 with a GI sling and techsights to train with at http://appleseedinfo.org/smf/index.php?topic=32.0 Works great to reduce costs durring the 25m course of instruction.

We do not teach highpower shooting. We teach practical marksmanship, from standing, sitting and prone, using both hasty and loop slings.

Fact: To hit a human torso at 500 meters, all you need to do is to shoot 4MOA or better.

At an Appleseed, you will learn IMC, NPOA, 6 steps to firing a shot, Rifleman's cadence, the importance of follow through, and history. You will also learn how to diagnose your own and others groups, ball and dummy drills, how to use your sights as a range finder, and how to teach others.

For a lousy 70 frns for a weekend, or 200 for a Bootcamp.



How do you zero a rifle if you can't shoot better than 4MOA?

You don't. Just get them close (ish), and adjust as they improve. Almost ANY rifle/ammo will get you 4moa. Some won't, so change either one or the other. Kinda like a .22, find the ammo that will work best, and find the cheap ammo that will work "good enough" for practice.

heck, i can outshoot wolf/surplus ammo standing and i'm just shooting scores in the high expert to low master class range.

Good, but it sounds like you consider an Appleseed as a compitition. It isn't. It is only you, your rifle and ammo, and that target. And the timer. I have yet to see wolf shoot below the 4moa standard. Infact, the only really substandard ammo I saw was barnaul, once in 5.56 and once in 7.62x51.

However, if your rifle doesn't like a "cheap" brand for real time long distance, get a couple hundred rounds of the "good stuff" so you can participate in the long distance work. I wonder if the problem with wolf (maybe) is a lower velocity causing issues, and that it may be with in 4moa close, then fall appart on out...... Maybe less evident in a 20 incher over a 16? I don't know.



Other things that I remeber, but don't want to go back to find the quotes for.

Disapator barrels are nice, full sight radius, short barrel. Be sure it had the gas block in the right place, about 4-6 inches back, and that it isn't just a chopped off 20 incher.

Ceiner conversions work well, AFAIK. I heard they are on back order though, depending on the source.

16 inches are fine for the AR. Alot of the basic learning is done at 25m. Then, when you get to full range you will know enough to learn if you want to get a longer barrel or a longer sight radius.

Open sights work fine. If you have bad eyesight, we won't laugh at you if you use a scope. A scope won't make you shoot better, but it will help you see better. We may laugh if you break out the bi-pod though. With a proper sling, you won't need it.

GI web (or nylon, dependent on you) are a perfect, if non flashy sling. We don't train for kicking doors and ninja stuff. We train you to hit far away in the feild with practical gear. That other stuff is found elsewhere for more money.

2 mags per rifle minimum, prefer 4.

Any questions can be researched at www.appleseedinfo.org/smf.

Pacer and I are both Instructors. Funfaler should be. Ken has been with the program for as long as I can remeber.

Give an Appleseed a try sometime. I bet you will learn something.

All we ask is that you leave your ego at the door.

The Guy



ps, we all do this for free because we love doing it. No one makes money off of this thing. We are doing it for the memory of the past and the hope of the future.

For me, the best part is when a kid starts putting things together for the first time, and you see the pure joy at getting nice groups down range.

Or seeing someone come back for the second time, demonstrating that the things you taught them the first time were practiced, and now they want to show you just what they can do now.

I also, along with some other Instructors, have loaned out my rifles and ammo for others to shoot. Wanna shoot my XCR? My NM or loaded M1A? Try out my pistol grip stock on your M-14? Borrow my 10-22 Liberty Training Rifle for your kid? Just ask....

Muddogg
August 27, 2007, 12:18 AM
You can bring what ever rifle you like, and the instructors will teach you how to shoot. Of course, things will be a lot easier for you if you have a sling and military style peep sights. A 10/22, with TechSights and a USGI web sling won't fail you at 25m.

Any AR-15 upper will give you good accuracy if you are consistant. If you do the same thing everytime the bullet will go where went last time, and you can adjust your sights from there.

Appleseed will help you do that, which is a great(if not the greatest) reason to attend.

Also, If you use a .223 rifle, and have a 1 in 7 twist barrel, use 62 gr bullets. If you have a 1 in 9, use 55 gr bullets.

1911Ron
August 27, 2007, 12:35 AM
I have a 10/22 with tech-sights and love it, when you put them on make sure the front sight is on tight (don't ask me how i know this:o)

As others have said this is not an equipment race or a compitition(well i guess you could say everyone who attends wins:D)

Dienekes
August 27, 2007, 01:04 AM
Followed up on the 10/22 Liberty Trainer link--an excellent idea! Years ago in high school I shot the Springfield M2 rifle and loved it; eventually got one of my own and prize it.

The 10/22 with a sling, decent trigger, and AR-type sights should make a very good and economical trainer. There are some very old articles in the American Rifleman from the 1930s and 40s concerning .22 caliber shooting all the way out to 300 yards. I copied the elevation and windage charts and still have them. Always thought that was a good way to train good shooters at minimal cost, not to mention good sport.

Nice to see someone thinking outside the box for a change. Sometimes less is more...

salty
August 27, 2007, 08:29 AM
+1 on funfaler 10-22 recommendation - the AR upper conversions only work so - so in my experience. You need the 10-22's in your inventory anyways - Butler Creek mags - if you can find it PMC Zapper copper plated shells generally work well in 10-22's - they are a bit more than Walmart specials at about $15 a 500 round brick but are worth it as the accuracy gain is significent. As you have an extra lower I would get a DPMS upper as they seem to be the best value for the money at this point - Stags and RR's are great but it sounds as if you are on a tight budget and ammo would be a better buy than a more expensive upper.

Nickle
August 27, 2007, 08:53 AM
Thanks to all who replied. Here are a few more questions.
What would be good ammo?
I reload. Do you know of a good staring place for the AR-15 with 16" barrel? Powder? Bullets?
Where can I get USGI slings?
Where can I get the narrower front sight?
I would like to get another upper before the shoot. One fellow highly recommend the LMT 16" M4. Could you confirm that it would be a good choice? Thank you very much for sharing your knowledge.

.

mtcur3, for the equipment, try MidwayUSA.com. They will have about everything you are going to need.

As to what to load for those AR's, I suggest trying to duplicate M855 ball ammo. That will get the job done, and can be made cheap enough.

I would also consider getting a few Ruger 10/22's and tarting them up, like the Liberty Training Rifles. There's a wealth of info on them at the Appleseedinfo forum, and they work AWESOME. You could do a bunch of the training with them, and since the rifle, parts to modify it and a couple thousand rounds of decent .22 ammo will cost you LESS than 1 thousand rounds of decent 7.62 NATO or .223 ammo, they actually pay for themselves right off. I've built a few of these, and can answer any questions you may have on them.

The only "single shot" work you are going to be doing is Ball and Dummy drills.

colonial shooter
August 27, 2007, 09:03 AM
I would also consider getting a few Ruger 10/22's and tarting them up, like the Liberty Training Rifles. There's a wealth of info on them at the Appleseedinfo forum, and they work AWESOME. You could do a bunch of the training with them, and since the rifle, parts to modify it and a couple thousand rounds of decent .22 ammo will cost you LESS than 1 thousand rounds of decent 7.62 NATO or .223 ammo, they actually pay for themselves right off.


+1 Nickle, I can't imaging doing the short distance stuff without the .22lr. With the cost of ammo today it is better to practice with the 22 and save the good stuff for when you really need it.

ken grant
August 27, 2007, 09:43 AM
4 MOA standing????????. I would say if you picked 1000 shooters or even 10,000 at random from the normal people you see at most ranges, you would find that less than 1% could do it.
Most couldn't do it sitting. A lot couldn't do it in prone. This is based on many years of shooting at various ranges(from the late 1950's) I have seen very few that would even try it. They want benches,sandbags and super duper scopes.

For many years I have worked Sighting-In Days at several ranges and very few shooters could shoot 4 MOA off the bench. Most had problems with FBJ(flinch,blink and jerk.)

I go to the range a lot and any time anyone else is there, I talk about Appleseed and the training it provides. MOST ARE NOT INTERESTED!!!!
Some frown on shooting at 25 M. and look down on it but I put up a target and let the ones who will try it. Changes their out-look right away.:D

mtcur3
August 27, 2007, 07:45 PM
Thank you all very much for the encouraging words and for giving me more specific answers and directions in which to go. I haven't found the USGI web sling yet. It is sold out everywhere I've looked. I have an open order at Midway and am trying to decide what sling to get. Could you recommend one of the ones at Midway?
I have ordered three sets of Tech-Sights to build the 10/22 trainers and three sets for all the suggestions for the Liberty trainers. In addition I've got the narrower front sight post for the AR as suggested by funfaler.
How much ammo should we bring for the .22? How much for the .223? We are doing the Boot Camp and the weekend shoot.
I've got another family with three or four kids who are trying to make arrangements to go with us to the Texarkana BC. Hopefully we can carry the fire back down to South Louisiana afterward.
Sincerely,
mtcur3

ken grant
August 27, 2007, 09:38 PM
www.targetsportsinc.com $6.99 ea. NEW
Just got some from them this week. item #TACM14

You can figure about a 1000- 1200 rds. for each person at the Boot Camp and another 400 for the Appleseed to follow.

No way to tell how to decide how many between the .22 LR and the 5.56. It all depends on the person doing the shooting and which rifle they use.

At Boot Camp #1, I shot over a 1000 rds. and didn't shoot everyday(too old,tired, stiff and sore). Didn't shoot any at the Appleseed after Boot Camp.
That was before the ammo problems and before using the .22's as training aids. I shot a M14A for the week.

docgary
August 27, 2007, 09:45 PM
My .02....

I don't get it.....

When I get serious with accuracy/precision shooting,
I try to get EVERYTHING in my favor.
Now, I'm just regular shooter...no ranking, maybe enter 2 or 3
'official' competitions a year. My personal enjoyment and
challenge is beating my last best 'personal record'.
If I shot a sub MOA, well, I gotta practice until I get it smaller.:o

Now, I dont have the resources or $ for a $5000 AI rifle.
So, I gotta live within certain limitations.
However, when shooting in a competition, you are MANDATED to
use the absolutely BEST ammo for your rifle!!
Even if it costs nearly a dollar per round, the competition is when
you let it all hang out!!
Find out what works in your rifle for precision shooting
(dont use 3 shot groups!) by practicing and more practicing.
Finally, stock up on that make ammo when its on sale
or when ya got a cuppla extra bucks in your pocket.

I never broke MOA with my ARs until I 'gave in', spent some money,
and got some Black Hills .223 69 g Sierra Matchking HP.
After a couple of boxes of various bullet wts, manuf, I
couldnt believe what the Black hills ammo was printing!!!
How about consistent .6xx to .7xx MOA 10 shot groups over and over!!!

The results will be extremely satisfying - nothings wrong with a little pride now and then!!

Docgary

RRA AR15, 16 " brl, Tact carb, Grippod, Eotech,(sometimes 1.5-5x20 Simmons) light and simple - SHTF gun.
custom AR15 Krieger 26" 1:9 SS, Les Baer upper recr, (no FA) VTAC FF HG -
...................Magpul PRS stock, RRA lower, NM 2 stage trigger SHTF gun + hunter and sniper
Beretta x 3 - 9 mm Elite II, Inox italian, .22 Neos
Kimber 45 1911 - Gold Match II
Remington 1187 lefty 12g, Condor 12g O/U

ken grant
August 27, 2007, 10:05 PM
docary, you are correct in what you are saying but this thread was started about the Appleseed program and learning to shoot a rifle in normal field positions( standing,sitting and prone), no sand bags, no benches and no bipods. Just you and your rifle and ammo.
A rich man could go broke buying Match Ammo to use while learning to shoot himself , much more so if the wife and kids are along.
Once YOU learn to out shoot your rifle or ammo,that is the time to upgrade to the more expensive stuff.
If you attend a RWVA Boot Camp, you will most likely see the better rifles(AR's,M1's & M1A's) but most shooting suplus ammo.
At the regular Appleseed shoots, you will see all kinds of rifles, from WW1 military rifles,lever actions,.22s of all kinds to the lastest semi-auto military rifles. There may even be one or two match rifles but I wouldn't bet on it.

The Guy
August 27, 2007, 10:15 PM
Ummmm, yeah,

The key word you used there was competition.

There is none at an Appleseed. Just you and yourself. There are no "top shooter" prizes. The only reward is to hit 210 pts on the AQT (Army Qualification Target), then we give you a Rifleman badge.

What we teach could be used in a competition. Or in hunting, or in a "real life open tactical" situation.

If you can shoot sub MOA, that's cool, we will still teach you things.

If you can't hit the broad side of a barn, we will teach you things, abeit alot more than for someone who can already shoot sub MOA with 10 rounds in 50 seconds going from standing to sitting with a mag swap and a target shift.

This ain't no country club shoot. This is rain (we do stop for lots of lightning) or shine, hot or cold, no benches, no cover (unless we get really lucky, or we are at Ramsuer NC) and no alibis.

It isn't about how good you can shot, not really.

It is about History, and why we can shoot, and why we all should shoot, and about passing it on to Posterity.



The day after 19 April, 1775, John Adams rode along Battle Road, stretching from Concord to Boston, surveying the carnage. He saw the wounded still shuffling in. He saw the dead, being piled on wagons. Some of the dead were burried in hedge rows, for fear fo British reprisals on the bodies, or the survivng families if the dead were identified.

Houses were burned. Others were full of bodies, as if a shot was fire from a house, the British stormed it, killing everyone found with in.

Adams was shocked to his core with what he had witnessed, and he remarked, "If Posterity ever forgets what we have done here, we shall Regret ever having done It."

We are the very Posterity he was talking of.

Are They looking down right now on us, with Regret?

I prefer to think that They see a little Reason for Hope. I prefer to think that They see what the Appleseed program is trying to accomplish.

To bring back the memory of what they did for us. Posterity.

Appleseed stands on four legs.

Shoot
Recruit
Educate
Communicate

Shooting sub MOA is only the first step. In reality, shooting at least 4 moa is really the first step.

Recruting new shooters to the Ranks is next, because with out new shooters, the tradition of self relianceand self defense will be all but gone in a generation.

Our Posterity. What comes after us.



It isn't what you want, it is about what you want to leave behind.















The Looking To The Future Guy

colonial shooter
August 27, 2007, 10:35 PM
Great post TG. That really sums up the overall mission of the Appleseed program.I wish I could have stated it so eliquently.

mtcur3

I only hope you can bring the fire south into LA. We are trying to find locations there to bring the tour. Can you stand on the line, and find that elusive spot? If you have one let one of us know( funfaler, The Guy, Pacer, Nickle, ken grant or myself ). We will make sure you get the info you need to get the ball rolling there. Hope you have a wonderful time at BC and pass the tradition on...

ken grant
August 27, 2007, 10:52 PM
I will say this, if anyone can shoot sub-MOA or even MOA or 2MOA from normal field positions(standing,sitting or prone) I WANT THEM ON MY SIDE:D

Chris Rhines
August 27, 2007, 10:59 PM
Almost any AR-15 upper from an A-list manufacturer will be able to hold 4MOA if the ammo can. Keep in mind, that 4MOA group adds to your natural wobble area as well as the environmental conditions. If you want to learn, it helps to have good equipment.

If you want to shoot out to 500 yards, and you're not competing in something that mandates iron sights, think about getting a scope. No reason to make things any harder than you have to.

Something to consider: I reload Hornady 75grn. BTHP match loads for under 20 cents per round. That's less than what Wolf goes for. The couple-hundred-dollar initial investment in a cheap single-stage press and dies looks better all the time. :D

- Chris

mtcur3
August 27, 2007, 10:59 PM
We are members of a very nice range with 500 plus member families. It has a huge 300 yard rifle range set up for bench rest. I believe they have 30 concrete shooting benches with a lot of room between them. As well as several 30 yard pistol bays. We shoot rimfire rifle with the kids in the pistol bays. Check it out at http://www.southernshootingcenter.com/
I've been teaching classes since it began with the specific goal of reaching non-shooters. I've done many kids classes and the owners have always been very supportive of my efforts esp. where the kids are concerned.
mtcur3

jpwilly
August 28, 2007, 12:13 AM
Mine is a DPMS with a 20" bull barrel and will shoot between .75"-.5" all day at 100yrds.

http://i124.photobucket.com/albums/p38/jpwilly/ARBULL20.jpg

WILDMAN1159
August 28, 2007, 01:05 AM
I just wanted to say thanks also for all the great info from all who have replied to my good friend's post. My family and I (wife and 5 1/2 children) will be travelling from south Louisiana to the Appleseed event with mtcur3's family. I will be bringing some .22 bolt actions and 1 Colt 6700 and 1 S/S Springfield Loaded M1A. If you guys feel a Norinco SKS is OK, I may bring that for one of my kiddos.
So far, it promises to be an exciting time to visit and fellowship with lots of like minded people at the Appleseed Boot Camp. WILDMAN

funfaler
August 28, 2007, 02:49 AM
The SKS is a fine rifle and would work well at an Appleseed, there is usually a couple at each shoot.

I have asked for help on the ammo requirements for the Boot Camps, as I am not sure, don't want to mess it up.

Those that hold a higher knowledge, should be posting the info here soon, thanks for all the interest.

ken grant
August 28, 2007, 08:57 AM
If I were planning on attending a Boot Camp and the Appleseed Shoot afterwards, I would want to have at least 1500-1600 rds. of ammo total( better to have extra than to run out) for each person if they are going to shoot everyday.
That is an average of 150-160 rds. each day for 10 days and some days you will most likely shoot more than the average.
With the costs and hard to find surplus ammo,.22 LR should be the larger part of what you shoot for most of the Boot Camp.
Once you can shoot Rifleman Scores on demand with your .22, then you can start on the centerfires to learn to do the same.
The mechanics of firing the shot are the same,no matter what rifle you chose to use. The only thing different with the centerfires is the noise and recoil.
With adjustable sights or a scope on your .22, you could shoot out to 300 yds and be effective with it.
Shooting at the longer ranges with a .22 will also help teach you to read the wind and hold-offs(if you don't have sights that you can adjust with ease)

P.S. , Just found out I might have stated too high on ammo needs.
The Head Honco(FRED) said " a couple of bricks of .22(1000 rds.) and about 200 centerfire. I don't know if he meant just for Boot Camp or for both B.C. and the Appleseed to follow.

The Guy
August 28, 2007, 03:06 PM
Considering that 3 briks take so little room, bring three, and up to 400 rnds centerfire.

Also, BE SURE YOU HAVE SLINGS ON THE KIDS RIFLES! (yours too!) It makes it soooo much easier to follow the course of Instruction, and the better they do, the more fun they will have.

The best thing to do would be to get some GI web slings, and mount them up with some Uncle Mike's 1 1/4 QDsling swivels.

This really eliminates fustration factor, as slings, when used properly, are every bit as good as a bench.

Scopes are fine, esspecially for bad eyes. No bipods though. I haven't used a scope in over three years now.

Bolt rifles work fine, and if you are at one of the RBC's I will be running, I will be glad to loan out my 10-22 to the children so they can get the feel of the full corse.

And the SKS is fine as well.

The Guy

Lex
August 29, 2007, 06:38 AM
Anyone have pics on the proper mounting/use of the GI web sling.

I have a M4 w/ standard sling attachment points ( under FSB) and on the bottom of the A2 stock.


I'm doing the Appleseed shoot this upcoming weekend.


Lex

funfaler
August 29, 2007, 07:02 AM
Here is a link that has some good pictures.

http://www.ray-vin.com/tech/websling/webslinghelp.htm

Lex
August 29, 2007, 07:47 AM
I think I got it.

I'm sure the instructors will help us neewbies if we're doing it wrong.


Thanks!

Lex

funfaler
August 29, 2007, 07:48 AM
They sure will, that is why they get paid the big bucks ;)

You will be amazed at how stable you can get with just a sling. I took the bipods off of my FALs, why carry the weight for something that you don't need.

Enjoy the shoot! And report back with your experience!

booray
August 29, 2007, 02:05 PM
I'm looking forward to the Davilla, TX bootcamp. I plan to bring my AR with a dedicated Kuehl .22lr upper and my FAL for the longer range. I've been waiting for one of these in southeast Texas, but I guess this is as close as it will come this year :)

The Guy
August 30, 2007, 01:26 AM
booray,

If you make it, I will have the pleasure of meeting you there!

Guy

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