Entry Level Class F/TR Setup


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Hammilton
April 11, 2011, 09:54 AM
Hello,

I'm looking into Class F/TR shooting (TR being target rifle, where only .223 and .308 is allowed), and I'm looking for a rifle that will get me through first learning and initial competition.

I currently have a Savage Model 10 in .223 (wood stock,standard light barrel), and I think I want to stay with that round just because it's fairly cheap, even by comparison to .308, so I'll be able to put many more rounds down range more often, with the added benefit of being less physically demanding. I also have a Savage 93R17 (.17HMR) with the thumbhole stock, good heavy barrel, and a 12X variable power scope. I thought, perhaps, about learning wind reading with the .17, but I've been told that the extreme micromanagement of wind it teaches isn't that transferable to the .223, and probably won't be worth

I already have a suitable 6-24X scope (suitable for where I am now, it's not competition quality) which will be good enough for now.

Would it be more cost effective and still good enough for learning to sell one of those two guns and use that to partially pay for a suitable rifle, or to purchase a heavy new barrel for my Model 10 and have a bipod or other front rest attached?

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WNTFW
April 11, 2011, 10:42 AM
My suggestion is use the .223 you have to get going. One of the reasons is you may find you don't like it. I say that because 2 of my shooting don't like shooting in competition as much as I do.

I shot my best score with a borrowed .223 @ 600yds

Break your shooting down into shot execution, wind reading, rifle setup and ammo. The whole shot cycle becomes identifying the problem. If your shot execution and your ammo is not up to par, you will have problems identifying what was wrong. IE was the flyer you, the ammo or both. Then the wind call becomes a third variable.

Shot execution can not be compromised. I believe quality trigger time is applicable almost regardless of what you are shooting. Shot execution can be practiced with a .22 or air rifle. You .17 would be good as well. Calling you shots and NPA can be practiced. This will avoid chasing the spotter.

Wind reading is the hardest to pick up. You have to put in the time. Some times a shooter will just shoot each shot dead center with no wind correction to see what the correlation is to wind drift. I can screw up a wind call fairly well! Chasing the spotter is a common mistake.

Rifle setup should be good enough with what you have. Things like getting the parallax out of your scope are what I mean by rifle setup. Dry firing for extended periods will help get you position down. Not getting on the stock with you head is a common mistake. Holding your head up will show up as neck fatigue. Resting the full weight of your head on the stock is better.

Bad ammo won't cut it. Handloading is a big advantage, once you get a good load working. The cost difference between .223 and .308 is minimal when handloading in the scope of total cost once you start using match bullets.
Vertical stringing could be an indicator of 'bad ammo'.

I have a tough time choosing between F class and Service rifle, which I think can complement each other. For that matter I like the pistol events I have tried. Bottom line is get out there and try it.

taliv
April 11, 2011, 12:09 PM
welcome to THR

definitely shoot that 223 a few times, maybe even a whole season. keep in mind how many folks shoot AR15s at 600 yrds with iron sights as part of CMP. it is completely doable, even though you will be at a bit of a disadvantage.

experience with 223 will be a great opportunity to learn to read the wind, which is most of what you need. and it is cheap enough that you can practice at short ranges (50-100 yrds) to get your position down and learn how to hold the gun w/o moving it around.

RStewart
April 11, 2011, 03:59 PM
I have been shooting .223 in F-T/R for a couple of years. I like it because it challenges you to learn wind better because with a 80 grain bullet you don't have as much margin of error as you do with a 175 grain.
Start with what you have and decide if you really like the sport first. You do want a decent bipod and a spotting scope. You can get a scope for around $200. This helps you see the mirage downrange.
If you find you like the sport you can upgrade the rifle and optics as your budget allows.
My rifle started life as a stock Remington 700 SA. The stock has been upgraded to HS Precision. It has a Bartlein barrel and the rifle and bolt blueprinted and trued. It has a Nightforce 12-42x56 scope. It will shoot documented .245" 10 round groups at 100 yards.
Upgrade what you have as you go and later on if you wish have a custom built rifle.
Main thing....get out there and have fun!

Hammilton
April 12, 2011, 01:14 PM
Thanks

I think I'll probably put a heavier barrel on it and obviously the bipod. That seems to make a lot more sense. Besides, I'd rather have a heavy barrel anyway.

One more question: in Class F/TR are all matches held at 1000 yards or are there 600 yard matches as well? I ask because the local private range only goes up to 6 or 650. The public one goes up to 100 though.

I turned the trigger weight down as low as I could yesterday and while much better, it's still surprisingly heavy (to guess, I'd say it's about 2.5-3lbs). I'm thinking I might take some advice and remove 1/3-1/2 a turn of that spring to get it down just a little lower. I don't think I need a 6oz pull, but 1-1.5 would be perfect. I know a lot of people don't like the accutrigger, but I love the thing. Right after I got it adjusted yesterday I was turning it over when it slipped a bit out of my hands. Didn't drop, but I heard a click- somehow the trigger got jarred and tripped. If I hadn't been dry firing it I'd have kept it on safety of course, but I can definitely see someone doing the same thing when loaded.

Jim Watson
April 12, 2011, 01:51 PM
There are F class matches at whatever standard distance is available.
I have shot mostly at 600 and 1000 yards but know there are targets for and records set at 300 and 500 yards as well. I have also shot F class alongside Palma shooters using the 1000 yard F target at 800, 900, and 1000 yards.

The F class ten ring is about 1 MOA, the X ring about .5 MOA for the appropriate range.
The center is black out to the 5 or 6 ring so you get a 6 MOA aiming area; except at 1000 where the center is black only to the 7 ring and you see 4.4 MOA.

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