My first F-Class match


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Trent
August 4, 2013, 11:49 PM
Shot my first F-Class match today at 300 yards w/ the reduced size targets. We did a 5 shot string, put a center repair target on, then a 10 shot string, pasted, and a 20 shot string. This is what I got when I pulled the center repair target off, all 35 shots.

http://i.imgur.com/8tHSyNEl.jpg

Those 20 shot strings are GRUELING. Man. My neck will hurt for a week!!

I was shooting a 300 Win Mag, Savage action, choate stock, Krieger barrel, Harris Ultralight bipod, and Nightforce scope.

Happy with my first time out, I should have made a windage correction between strings but was afraid I'd get stupid and go the wrong way. :)

Mirage was horrible but conditions were perfectly calm. Couldn't ask for a better day to shoot!

Not sure if I broke the rules, but no one said anything. Halfway through my 20 shot string I couldn't see the target at all anymore due to barrel mirage. So I thought for a minute, then took my t-shirt off and threw it over the barrel to block the heat waves temporarily.

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blarby
August 5, 2013, 01:49 AM
I'm interested in getting into F-class. I'm just trying to figure out if I can do it without a $3000 dent in my pocket.


It looks like you did pretty good !!

Trent
August 5, 2013, 12:26 PM
Blarby;

Another guy there was shooting an off-the-shelf Savage in 223 with a fluted stainless barrel, a $15 non-swivel bipod from WalMart, and a cheap 24x scope that had no parallax adjustment. He put in an aggregate of 92% score.

You don't NEED to throw a lot of money at it to do well.

EDIT: That was at 300 yards, on reduced scale 600 yard targets. If we were doing a 600 or 1000 yard match his rifle wouldn't have been nearly as effective. So range is a factor. In my case, I wasted some money, we don't have access to anything beyond 300 yards in this part of Illinois, so I have a rifle that can do the 1000 yard shoots, but nowhere to do the 1000 yard shoots.

blarby
August 5, 2013, 04:32 PM
Thts refreshing to know.

I have what I believe to be a VERY effective target length Ruger, just don't have the glass. I'd be doing this in .308, so the ability to reach out is certainly there.

I dont have space to shoot 1000 yards either.

Just goes to show that it takes a man ( or woman ) and a rifle- not just a rifle.

I know what my capabilities are at 200- I'm wondering what its gonna take to convince myself to get a piece of decent glass and go farther.

Trent
August 5, 2013, 05:02 PM
The step from 200 to 300 isn't hard at all. With 308 you'll need 12-15 clicks of adjustment up on a 1/4 MOA scope depending on bullet weight and velocity. You'll also notice an inch or so of drift in the direction of your rifling, that's spin drift starting to take an effect. And wind .. it goes from an annoyance to something you MUST pay attention to.

Now, move on out to 500 or 600 or further, and it's a different world.

The longest I've ever been able to shoot was just shy of 1/2 mile (about 850 yards). That was with a 300 Win Mag, and good grief the drop was incredible. I maxed out my old Leupold scope and still had to hold over a good 12 feet above my target. The wind was blowing across steady at 30mph one day, I had to aim about 20 feet to the left. When you are talking half mile plus distances it's a whole new world. Suddenly you NEED a scope that has huge vertical adjustment, or special bases machined at an offset so you can still fine tune your scope and dial it in. And at those distances everything comes in to play, sometimes multiple times. Wind might get channeled by terrain creating a mix of crosswinds, sometimes in opposing directions, might be raining where your target is but dry where you are, etc. :)

I'm saving up money and watching property listings around here, someday I really am going to "buy the farm" so I can shoot at long range. Problem is, around here Agriculture conglomerates snake up every parcel at a premium when an old-timer passes away and their kids don't want to take over the family business. So land is high priced, and very difficult to find, or buy.

Anyway, another problem for another day!

EDIT: There's guys on here like Taliv who are WAY more experienced at long range shooting, who could give better insight. Mid-range I'm great, long range I haven't had much practice due to unavailability of shooting ranges here.

blarby
August 5, 2013, 08:23 PM
At this point, i'm just going to focus on finding a usable piece of glass in that power range that won't break the bank.

Anything past 600 yards is pretty much impossible for me anyway- for the same reasons as you !

Trent
August 5, 2013, 09:08 PM
At this point, i'm just going to focus on finding a usable piece of glass in that power range that won't break the bank.

Anything past 600 yards is pretty much impossible for me anyway- for the same reasons as you !

Leupold has some models that are affordable and have very clear optics. But there's so many newer companies making scopes, I can't begin to keep track of them all. What was "great" a decade and a half ago is now "entry level". Modern machining can make things with so much more precision.

I've got a few pieces of Leupold glass and I'm not disappointed in the purchases, after all these years. But recently, after buying that nightforce, I understand that the more expensive pieces are worth it for clarity; that 32x Nightforce is just as clear, or clearer, than my Leupold spotting scope. However, the old Leupold spotting scope doesn't sit over a barrel that gets hot, so it still gets some use once my barrel heats up. :)

BillB204
August 6, 2013, 11:08 AM
At this point, i'm just going to focus on finding a usable piece of glass in that power range that won't break the bank.

Anything past 600 yards is pretty much impossible for me anyway- for the same reasons as you !
In a 32x, your looking at $1500+ for Leupold or Night Force. You can get a great Sightron SIII for about $1000. If you're inside 600 yards, I have a 32x Mueller that's extremely crisp to 500-600 yards. Only $250 at Optics Planet Mueller 8-32x44 (http://www.opticsplanet.com/mueller-optics-8-32x44mm-side-focus-fogproof-target-riflescope.html)

blarby
August 6, 2013, 11:14 AM
Wow- thats a good price !

Thats now #1 in the running for me !

stargeezer
August 6, 2013, 09:07 PM
Now Trent, I'll have you know I spent $29.95 on that tripod. :D

If I'd grabbed the right box of ammo, and I'd not spent the whole time trying to keep that tripod from folding up like a cheap lawn chair and if the 3-9 scope (that I bought at K-Mart) would have allowed me to actually SEE the target, I might have done a lot better. :D:D

As far as 92% miss rate, I'm shocked!!! I was certain I hit the paper with more than 8% of my shots. :D Talk about kicking a guy when he's down. Gee wiz pal. :D

Seriously, it was a lot of fun. It also the first time I'd tried anything like that. My shooting was certainly "handicapped" by my poor equipment. Not the best I could have fielded, but I hope to do a little shopping soon. I was checking out Gander Mountain Monday looking at scopes. I have a old Millet scope on another of my rifles (I should have used that rifle) and I was checking their Millet LRS 6-25x56 with a 35mm tube http://www.gandermountain.com/modperl/product/details.cgi?pdesc=Millett-LRS-6-25x56-Riflescope-Illuminated-Mil-DotBar-Matte&i=613434&r=view It's not a Night Force, but it costs a lot less too. And yes, I was checking out bipods too. :D

I may give things a shot next month with that 308 I used a couple months ago, with a better scope mount and scope, it might do fair. The point is, next month, I just might get my equipment to match the rest of my skills. :D

Get ready buddy, get ready! :D

Trent
August 7, 2013, 12:04 AM
Now Trent, I'll have you know I spent $29.95 on that tripod. :D


No I was talking about Chris above, not you. You were shooting 22-250. Chris also shot F-Class after the highpower event ended. He had an off the shelf Savage in 223 with a laminate stock, a cheap scope, but some reasonably good handloads. He scored 92.5% over 40 shots.

He had me put 10 rounds through his setup for comparison on a fresh target after he was done, I held a 2.25" 10 shot group with his rifle at 300 yards, easily good enough accuracy to lay down perfect scores. He was getting about 2x that. But it's just a matter of practice before he's throwing perfect scores down.

Your son, by the way - first time ever on my rifle (or any long range rifle), started dropping them in to the X ring after about 15 minutes of coaching. You'd left by the time we were doing that. But you should be proud of Mike, the man can shoot, too. Just needs to learn to relax and control his breathing/posture.




If I'd grabbed the right box of ammo, and I'd not spent the whole time trying to keep that tripod from folding up like a cheap lawn chair and if the 3-9 scope (that I bought at K-Mart) would have allowed me to actually SEE the target, I might have done a lot better. :D:D

As far as 92% miss rate, I'm shocked!!! I was certain I hit the paper with more than 8% of my shots. :D Talk about kicking a guy when he's down. Gee wiz pal. :D


You scored a 79.25% overall aggregate. (Points scored / total points possible)



Seriously, it was a lot of fun. It also the first time I'd tried anything like that. My shooting was certainly "handicapped" by my poor equipment. Not the best I could have fielded, but I hope to do a little shopping soon. I was checking out Gander Mountain Monday looking at scopes. I have a old Millet scope on another of my rifles (I should have used that rifle) and I was checking their Millet LRS 6-25x56 with a 35mm tube http://www.gandermountain.com/modperl/product/details.cgi?pdesc=Millett-LRS-6-25x56-Riflescope-Illuminated-Mil-DotBar-Matte&i=613434&r=view It's not a Night Force, but it costs a lot less too. And yes, I was checking out bipods too. :D

I may give things a shot next month with that 308 I used a couple months ago, with a better scope mount and scope, it might do fair. The point is, next month, I just might get my equipment to match the rest of my skills. :D

Get ready buddy, get ready! :D

Hey man I've seen you shoot, and I'm a believer. You've been putting consistent sharpshooter scores down on highpower, I have no doubt you're going to come back and bring your A game. Remember, you BEAT me back in June - handily, I might add! :)

stargeezer
August 7, 2013, 12:34 AM
You had a off day - I have off decades :D I forgot about Chris having that rifle in the rack. Mighty good shooter too. I'm glad he got such a good score.

Mike can do a good job when he takes his time and remembers the fundamentals. Thanks for letting him fire your rifle. He came home all excited about shooting Long Range (for him). He also has not had a lot of experience with scopes. Now that he's getting a bit older and his eyes are "tired" quicker, scopes will give him some edge back.

Dontkillbill
August 7, 2013, 12:52 AM
Looks like fun. I just picked up a savage to shoot although not a FCLASS rig it will keep me shooting to 600 yards. 10fcp-k . I need a better bipod and cheek rest and lots of practice shooting not to mention fine tune my reloading.

stubbicatt
August 18, 2013, 11:28 AM
My barreled action left for MasterClass Stocks. I can hardly wait to get it back. I bought the Sightron SIII 10-50x60 scope, and BAT rings to fit the 20MOA BAT rail... It has adequate clearance even with that 60mm objective lens, which is a relief. The image seems plenty clear, and the scope is pretty nice.

When all is done, I'll have a 6.5x47 Lapua rifle ready to go. I hope it is accurate enough, and more importantly, that I am able to "keep them up the middle."

I have yet to fire a single shot in a match. This is a project to get me through rehab from a broken neck and broken spine from an accident. I may never recover enough to fire a rifle again, so I may have a super nice setup for sale here in the near future.

I hope to see you guys on the line sometime in the near future.

Trent
August 20, 2013, 03:38 PM
I was checking NRA official records the other day, and noticed that the civilian 300 yard F-Class Open record for 15 shot is 150/14x. The law enforcement record is 150/13x.

For 300 yards 20 shot strings Civilian record is 200/20x (+6x), and law enforcement is 194/2x.

My first time out, my last 20 shot string was 196/10x. I would have beat the law enforcement record in F-Open if this had been a sanctioned event. (I'm not law enforcement, but it's a good feeling, nonetheless.)

I think I need to drag my rifle and lazy butt out to a sanctioned tournament sometime, to see how I do, and to learn more. (It's all about learning!)

(EDIT: I only have access to 300 yard ranges locally. So I have to travel to gain any experience at longer range shooting - 1000 yds. Been on my list "forever", time to make it a reality... learn to read wind signs better.)

stargeezer
August 21, 2013, 08:58 PM
Today I added a new Savage 10 FCP-k .308 to my collection. I'll be moving my Millet 4-24x56 over to it until I can get a better piece of glass. Then I've got to get to the range for a little break-in time. Do you want to hit the range sometime Trent?

Mike and were playing around this past weekend with his Ruger GSR and he put down a nice group at 100yds - a very nice triangle shaped hole. The scope I stuck on for him is a real piece of Chinese garbage - a BSA. But he did pretty good with it.

I guess I better get started loading some 308!

Trent
August 27, 2013, 06:07 AM
Had zero time for practice this month, Larry. We've picked up more clients at work, which means even more workload for all of us there.

I might need to call the match Sunday, or at least postpone it to the designated rain date. NOAA long range forecast shows mid to upper 90's. That's really nasty weather for an F Class or highpower shoot. I was barely able to get through the 20 round string with my rifle when it was mid 80's, had to take my shirt off and throw over my barrel to be able to see the target through the heat mirage. Don't think I could even COMPLETE a 20 round string in the upper 90's.

We'll see how it goes, might need to do 5 round strings with long breaks for barrel cooling.

Howard Roark
August 27, 2013, 06:50 PM
Cheap mirage shields:

Buy a package of vertical blinds from Home Depot. Cut them to size for the barrel length and attach Velcro to the barrel and blind.

Eureka!! A mirage shield.

Trent
August 28, 2013, 12:20 AM
Hey great idea Howard. Sure beats taking off my shirt and having half the earth stick to my sweaty chest!

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