I want to shoot long distance on a budget...


PDA






leadcounsel
May 6, 2012, 09:49 PM
So, I'm not looking at a $5000 gun here folks, just to be clear...

This came up because Vanguard rifles are on clearance for $350 and they have a 7mm that I think would be great for long distance; but I don't want to unnecessarily replicate what I can already accomplish or dublicate my equipment and need to buy yet another expensive caliber...

So what equipment do I already have. First, I have a range that offers regular 200 yard gongs and has the capability of 600 yard shots. I can probably find someplace that offers 1000 yards.

I have a scoped Savage 110 .3006 with a stash of ammo...

I also have a scoped Savage 111 .300 win mag with a couple hundred rounds...

I've never spent much time sighting in these, but intend to.

Now here's the question.

I have a bunch of .308, mostly surplus stuff. I have a bunch of quality and surplus .3006, and about 200 rounds of .300 win mag ammo.

If I wanted to get into semi-serious (no- I don't want to reload), long range shooting with hunting rifles and calibers, what would you recommend??

So, what would you recommend?

If you enjoyed reading about "I want to shoot long distance on a budget..." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Boomie
May 6, 2012, 10:12 PM
Shooting up all of what you have at ranges you can hit at before you go specialized and reach out further.

BCRider
May 6, 2012, 10:25 PM
If I wanted to get into semi-serious (no- I don't want to reload), long range shooting with hunting rifles and calibers, what would you recommend??

It's simply not about calibers. It's about control and consistency. Long range accuracy starts with both. You can't have either if you do not know exactly what ammo you have. And the only way to do that is reload your own.

I know you said you don't want to do that for now but it's the way you have to go if you want to achieve better results than factory stock guns and factory stock ammo at any distance.

Any military surplus ammo you have is not going to be as consistent as factory hunting rounds. So from a standpoint of consistency, which is what accuracy is all about, this is the worst possible ammo to base your shooting on. Your factory ammo will do better but even it can't match the control and consistency you can achieve even with a fairly modest reloading setup and some learned skills and experience.

As for longer distance calibers I think others will confirm that you have two great options already. The rifles you have may or may not be up to the task but the calibers are proven long range champs. It's a question of how well and consistently the rifles can launch the bullets on their way to the target. The good news is that there are various modifications such as bedding the action and free floating the barrels and having a gunsmith put match level muzzle crowns on the barrels that can aid in making the guns you have into tack drivers. Or at least take away any excuses that the guns may have built into them.

Do you NEED another caliber to achieve this goal? Most certainly not..... which is likey not the answer you wanted to see if you're in the market for a new toy. But sometimes the truth is ugly and we simply need to deal with it.

I'd suggest you put that money burning the hole in your pocket into a jar or ammo box for now. Take the factory ammo you have for the rifles you own and go out and sight them in and tune them up and see just how well they do on factory fodder. As for the surplus ammo set it aside and consider it as plinking only ammo. It's not the sort of thing you want to pass down the barrel during any serious accuracy shooting time. Learn what the guns and glass you have now can do and see if it's good enough for what you want or if you want to do better. If you find you want to do better than a new gun wont do it. You simply need to step up and get into reloading and learn to make very consistent ammo to let the guns you have "be all they can be".

BCRider
May 6, 2012, 10:34 PM
Oh, and since you said you want to shoot long distance ON A BUDGET I'd like to add that you can do this on a far smaller budget if you don't buy another rifle. Instead spend a fraction of the cost of a new gun and glass on the stuff you have making them as good as they can be.

And from a budget standpoint I'll add that getting into reloading can not only improve the quality of ammo you shoot but it will also reduce the cost. I'd bet that you can reload 30-06 for about half of what factory ammo costs. And likely your .300 Win Mag can be reloaded for about a third or maybe less than the cost of factory.

TonyAngel
May 6, 2012, 11:00 PM
You mention .308 ammo, but not a rifle in that caliber. For what it's worth, .308 is a nice 600 yards round. It's also relatively inexpensive and you won't be burning barrels as quickly as you would with the other calibers that you mentioned.

BCRider had some good advise. Use what you have and see what you can do with it. You don't NEED new equipment until you can out shoot the equipment that you have.

I know you said that you don't want to reload, so be prepared to pay $1+ per round of match ammunition, if you are truly any sort of serious about shooting long range.

Since you already have rifles, I'd say that you need to concentrate on ammo and glass. When getting out past 300 yards or so, just having a scope with 20 something X magnification isn't going to do it. You're going to need magnification and resolution and getting both together costs money.

Of course I'm assuming that you're talking about long range precision shooting. If you are just trying to bang gongs, you'd be surprised at what you can accomplish with a decent 10X scope, like a Bushnell fixed 10X or the equivalent SWFA SS fixed 10X.

gamestalker
May 6, 2012, 11:49 PM
I agree with BCrider, reloading will help to make an accurate and less expensive shooting experience with what you already have for rifles. Those are decent production rifles you mentioned.

One of the rifles I load for is the 30-06, and I can put together a box of really good ammo for that cartridge for about $7 - $8, less if I'm picky about where I buy my components. And if a guy wanted to shoot anything that would even get close to the quality of the reloads, they would have to have it custom loaded for no less than $60, if lucky.

And for a good piece of glass that will get the job done without breaking the budget, Leupold has a 3x9x40 that is crystal clear, great eye relief, 100% water proof, won't fog, and holds zero for life for about $250. Speaking of life, Leupold won't even ask questions if anything should ever go wrong with their glass.

GS

tryshoot
May 7, 2012, 02:32 AM
The Vangard is a great rifle. 7mm kicks like the .300 mag.

BCRider
May 7, 2012, 02:36 AM
I'd think about a better barrel and maybe some trigger work on the rifles you own. That's probably your fastest and cheapest way to a great long distance shooter.

The trigger work for sure. A range only accuracy gun doesn't need to have a stiff trigger to make it safe during hunting trail mishaps. So putting time and effort or some money into lightening the trigger falls into the "tune what you have already" thinking. But I'd put seriously reloading to learn how to make match grade ammo for cheap well before spending money on a barrel replacement. Wring out what you have already for accuracy both with truly consistent reloading your own ammo and fine tweaking the gun parts you have already before taking that sort of serious plunge.

MtnCreek
May 7, 2012, 09:23 AM
I have a scoped Savage 110 .3006 with a stash of ammo...
What scope/mounts are currently on this rifle?

Driftertank
May 7, 2012, 10:47 AM
The statements "I want to get into long range shooting cheaply" and "no, i don't want to reload" are contradictory.

Decent precision can be had for a manageable investment when it comes to rifle and scope, but being able to consistently at long range also requires VERY consistent ammunition, and enough practice at various ranges to account for wind and other atmospheric effects. In other words, you'll be shooting a lot of very expensive ammunition unless you start rolling your own. And even the expensive factory stuff doesn't have the ability to be custom-tailored to your gun like handloads can.

You really shouldn't rule it out, IMHO.

taliv
May 7, 2012, 11:11 AM
shoot the rifles you've got.
those calibers are both much heavier than i'd recommend for new shooters and you will have to work on not developing a flinch and lots of bad habits due to heavy recoil. but they'll work.
spend your $ on decent glass to go on them.

you'll want to move that steel out to at least 200 and preferably a bit farther. 300wm is a lot of energy up close

Cesiumsponge
May 7, 2012, 11:50 AM
If you want long distance practice on the cheap, take a .22lr out to 200-300 yards. The bullet drop and wind issues at that relatively short distance is a decent simulator for larger calibers at long range and gives you the chance to call dope on the cheap. If you research on the precision rifle-oriented forums, you will see folks build $5000 .22lr trainer rifles to compliment their $10,000 rigs. I have a good .22lr that I routinely practice at 200 yards with. Even with match .22lr ammo like Lapua or Eley, its much cheaper than match ammo in a larger caliber.

If you insist on moving into the 600-1000 yard ranges, stick with .308. Going with more powerful calibers is pointless (and expensive) since you aren't taking full advantage of the increased range capabilities. The .308 is more than capable and solid at the 1000m line with the 155gr Lapua Scenar and 175gr FGMM. It might not shoot as flat or resist wind as well, but that'll just challenge you more.

St8LineGunsmith
May 7, 2012, 06:14 PM
If you want long distance practice on the cheap, take a .22lr out to 200-300 yards. The bullet drop and wind issues at that relatively short distance is a decent simulator for larger calibers at long range and gives you the chance to call dope on the cheap.
THIS^ +1
check out the 17 Remington fireball
check out the numbers on the balistics calc
http://www.remington.com/pages/news-and-resources/ballistics.aspx
pretty impressive numbers IMO

Tempest 455
May 7, 2012, 06:37 PM
I would consider this if you are interested in .308. This is a Savage 10BA I just bought a few weeks ago. I only shot it a total of three times. Once at 100 and twice at 400. After some scope adjustment, here is how it did last time at 400 yards.

That's an 11" target, the group was 2.25" at widest point for 400 yards. This rifle should be plenty good out to much farther distances.

To say I'm pleased is an understatement. The total investment (rifle, scope and bipod) was pretty reasonable considering the performance

https://home.comcast.net/~ericdouthitt/DSCF0720.jpg

My son shooting it.

https://home.comcast.net/~ericdouthitt/Collin_Savage_BA2.jpg

Best group only 3rd time out, less than 70 total rounds through rifle.

https://home.comcast.net/~ericdouthitt/DSCF0742.jpg

St8LineGunsmith
May 7, 2012, 08:05 PM
apparently you didn't see the part where he said on a budget:scrutiny:

Tempest 455
May 7, 2012, 08:13 PM
apparently you didn't see the part where he said on a budget


I did, I spent less than half what his original "not spend" number was. I consider this a budget rifle considering the performance.

St8LineGunsmith
May 7, 2012, 08:32 PM
the savage 110 FCP-K would be a good rifle to consider also.

chaser_2332
May 7, 2012, 08:52 PM
Spin a 308 barrel on ur savage, top it with a bushnel 10x mil/mil and start feeding it as much ammo as ur budget allows! That simple set up will out shoot u for a long time.

If you enjoyed reading about "I want to shoot long distance on a budget..." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!