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Old August 27, 2016, 09:34 PM   #1
WestKentucky
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Competition dreams.

My wife got all jacked out of shape over the olympics shooter who was relatively new to the game, and she is wanting to give it a try. We have very different opinions on sticker price, each with s different version of sticker shock. I am surprised at truly good gun prices being so low. She is looking at entry level competition guns and is surprised at how high they are. We have been talking about different games to play, IPSC, various 3 gun, bullseye, etc. sounds like she's wanting to give it all a try. Realistically we would be on the cheap end of the spectrum, at least to learn. For pistol I think she likes the 22/45 lite. For shotgun she would keep running the 20 ga youth pump gun. Rifle would be the problem, she doesn't like rifle, but we could build an AR pretty easily for that purpose.

For me, I think I would be looking more along the lines of a witness limited or witness elite 10mm, mossberg Miculek gun, and an m1a. I would prefer a long range rifle competition (PRS) and would be looking at a custom built 700 or savage 10. I can build either of those pretty easily myself, so why not.

So if you were to get a sudden itch, what would scratch it?
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Old August 28, 2016, 09:28 AM   #2
Howard Roark
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I usually steer people toward small bore silhouette as an introductory competition sport. Start up costs are fairly cheap and the matches are lots of fun. The instant feedback of the bullet impact sound on the animals and them flying off the pad is addictive.

Good rifles that will take you to AAA class are pretty cheap, 10/22, CZ 452/55, Savage or Ruger All American. Put a 4 -12 scope on it and you're good to go.

To get started in any type of competition find an active club near you that has monthly competitions and go watch/talk to the folks there. They'll hook you up with information and loaner equipmentto get you started.
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Old August 28, 2016, 07:48 PM   #3
jmorris
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Don't buy what you think might be good first.

Instead find competitions in your area and go spend a little time watching one. Talk to the competitors (most like talking more than the shooting part) and see what they use and why.

You might even come across some decent gear for a great price from someone that has already been there and done that.

If that sport doesn't seem like the one find another and do the same thing.

That alone should save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
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Old August 29, 2016, 06:03 AM   #4
Bart B.
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Yes, go to a local match and see what is used. Your wife will learn a lot. Bring binoculars or a spotting scope so you both can see what happens down range on the targets. Your state shooting association can provide outfits to contact for different competition disciplines. They'll clue you in to what and where that interests her. Here's the NRA's list of coming events with different types of matches all over the USA:

https://www.ssusa.org/media/1535125/sep_2016_ce.pdf

Here's the NRA's rule books for different types of matches. Pick one of interest then download it. It'll explain the types of equipment allowed and the conditions the matches are fired in.

http://rulebooks.nra.org/

After watching a match being shot and talking to those competing, you'll have a better idea where to start. That way, you won't be buying something that's not really decent for her interests. Biggest problem is when people pick a rifle whose stock is not shaped well for best results in a given type of shooting. For example, hunting rifle stocks are poor for shooting prone matches at any range.
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Last edited by Bart B.; August 29, 2016 at 06:11 AM.
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Old August 29, 2016, 09:53 AM   #5
ATLDave
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The shooting sports generally break down into 3 big branches as I see it:

1. Precision events. Bullseye, high-power rifle, silhouette, etc. The focus is on making one perfect shot at a time, with varying degrees of time pressure, but with victory measured in/determined by precision. You're not going to be moving around much.

2. Breaking clays. The targets are moving, so each shot is time-pressured (wait another second and the pigeon is just gone), but you're only shooting 1-2 shots at a time, from static positions. Shotgun only here.

3. Race events. USPSA, 3-gun, IDPA, etc. The focus is on shooting well fast. Victory is measured/determined by a combination of accuracy and speed, but there's literally no way to win shooting slow, no matter how precise you are. You have to have some mobility/agility afoot.

All three branches are great, but different branches will appeal to different folks. You may want to pick one to explore for a while.
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Old August 29, 2016, 08:10 PM   #6
WestKentucky
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Agreed AtlDave. As neither the wife or I are fit nor trim I think the precision games are where we will focus.
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Old August 29, 2016, 08:34 PM   #7
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You may also look at cowboy action shooting. Most every time you go to the line you shoot 2 SA revolvers a 10 shot lever gun and a SXS or '87 or '97 winchester.

You shoot against people in your age group as you age. People are still competing in their 80's.
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Old August 29, 2016, 09:31 PM   #8
WestKentucky
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She's not much on traditional arms. At least for now I have to stay with semiauto on both rifle and pistol. She doesn't care for shotgun either but will shoot her 20 pump
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Old August 29, 2016, 10:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
For me, I think I would be looking more along the lines of a witness limited or witness elite 10mm, mossberg Miculek gun, and an m1a.
What competition are you going to use those for??? Witness Elite and Limited are perfectly fine competition pistols, but in 9mm or .45, not 10mm. I have a pair of Elite Match pistols for competition shooting myself. And the Mossberg is a good gun, I have the Mossberg Rhythm model which is essentially a Miculek with a 28" barrel, 11 round mag tube and a fancy painted stock. Everyone that has shot it in 3 gun loves it. Now the M1A? Get a decent AR for less money and you'll be much more competitive.
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Old August 29, 2016, 10:59 PM   #10
WestKentucky
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10mm is essentially lower pressure 40sw when loaded just to reliable operation. Sure you can crank it up but no reason to do so in competition. And the m1a would just be to run something different. I have an at to run if I chose to do so, but I don't see a downside to the m1a for most purposes
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Old August 30, 2016, 07:57 AM   #11
jmorris
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Quote:
She doesn't care for shotgun either but will shoot her 20 pump
I have a an 1100 LT 20ga that will hold its own against 12 ga in 3 gun and is very soft, that said a gas semiauto 12 can be softer than a pump 20.
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Old August 30, 2016, 08:56 AM   #12
Jim Watson
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One big question is: What is shot in your area?
I used to shoot ATA Trap. International Trap sounded interesting, faster birds but two shots allowed. But there was one field in this part of the country, still 350 miles away.

I can get all the action shooting games, USPSA, IDPA, SS, 3GN, CAS, which is fine with me because I have settled into IDPA and shoot it every weekend.

But my friend the Long Range shooter is very limited in what he can do. Good thing he has private 600 yards to prep for the occasional match worth the travel... like the National and World championships.
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Old August 30, 2016, 10:14 AM   #13
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It sounds like you probably just want to go observe several different kinds of competition and decide what most appeals to you. ATLDave did what looks like a pretty nice high level summary above. Just look around where you live, see what is available, and then go watch some matches.

From there, you can look to see if you can try whatever most appeals to you with gear you might already have.

Then once you decide you actually like a certain type of competition and would like to get better at it, you can look to start buying some specific gear to that end.

Trying to buy gear first and then go find a competition in which to make it fit is going to result in buying the wrong thing, and needing to fix it later.
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Old August 30, 2016, 01:23 PM   #14
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Quote:
10mm is essentially lower pressure 40sw when loaded just to reliable operation. Sure you can crank it up but no reason to do so in competition.
Keep in mind that policing brass during a match can be a serious pain and expect to loose a lot of it.
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Old August 30, 2016, 03:14 PM   #15
Jim Watson
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So true. A friend has a deal in with a commercial reloader for 10mm brass because they do not have a large demand. Blew up his Glock 20 last Sunday. The extra room in the 10mm case makes a double charge of fast target load powder hard to spot.
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Old August 30, 2016, 03:52 PM   #16
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OTOH, that extra room in the 10mm case means that a little bullet setback isn't the kaboom factor that it can be in .40!
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Old August 31, 2016, 09:57 PM   #17
Don McDowell
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I would suggest you see what the local clubs are shooting, then decide if you want to get into that competition. Most clubs have a small bore league of some sort and that's the place to start.
Shooting competition is a great thing, but beware the folks that win matches put a ton of time,effort and money into it. Olympic dreams are great, but the first thing you need to do is get Master classification in your chosen venue, and then go for the try outs.It will be a long hard road, and I hope you can reach that goal.
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Old September 2, 2016, 05:46 AM   #18
HetchHetchy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WestKentucky View Post
My wife got all jacked out of shape over the olympics shooter who was relatively new to the game, and she is wanting to give it a try. We have very different opinions on sticker price, each with s different version of sticker shock. I am surprised at truly good gun prices being so low. She is looking at entry level competition guns and is surprised at how high they are. We have been talking about different games to play, IPSC, various 3 gun, bullseye, etc. sounds like she's wanting to give it all a try. Realistically we would be on the cheap end of the spectrum, at least to learn. For pistol I think she likes the 22/45 lite. For shotgun she would keep running the 20 ga youth pump gun. Rifle would be the problem, she doesn't like rifle, but we could build an AR pretty easily for that purpose.

For me, I think I would be looking more along the lines of a witness limited or witness elite 10mm, mossberg Miculek gun, and an m1a. I would prefer a long range rifle competition (PRS) and would be looking at a custom built 700 or savage 10. I can build either of those pretty easily myself, so why not.

So if you were to get a sudden itch, what would scratch it?
I would recommend .22 rimfire 2-gun. The NSSF is the national sanctioning body but there are all kinds of matches across the country.

The Ruger 10/22 is by far the most common rifle. From stockers to $4K super open "race rifles."

For pistols, Ruger, Browning and S&W all have their fans.

It's fairly cheap to get into and it's fun. Shoot rimfire 2-gun for a while, see if you like competing in general and talk to people you squad with. Soon you'll find what you actually enjoy.

I personally shoot NSSF rimfire, Steel Challenge (both centerfire and rimfire), skeet and black powder muzzleloaders. They're all fun and all very different.
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Old September 16, 2016, 09:29 AM   #19
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My wife and I started by shooting Steel Challenge matches using .22LR Ruger 22/45 Lite with red dot sights. You stand in one position and steel a set of steel targets against the clock. No running around and the satifaction of ringing steel keeps things interesting. I've got to admit that shooting cardboard targets holds little interest for me. For us we love the 'thrill' of banging steel and using .22 pistols keeps things affordable. We do shoot long range rifle and .22 benchrest rifles but Steel Challenge can get you hooked real quick. SS also shoots centerfire pistol classes as well and we do shoot those classes on occasion (shoot both .22 & centerfire at same match)
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Old September 20, 2016, 02:38 PM   #20
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As everyone has pointed out, go to some different local events and watch and talk to the competitors. Most club level competitions will let spectators try out guns / stages.

I shoot some club level 3 gun. I would STRONGLY recommend the Stoeger M3K over the Mossberg 930 as an entry level gun. I've seen all sorts of issues with the 930 and by the time most people have dumped the money into them to get them to run right, they could have had an M3K with an extended tube.

I sold my Mossberg and switched to a Benelli and haven't looked back, but that's a lot of cash to lay out for an "8 Saturdays a year" gun.

Specific to 3 gun, keep in mind you're going to be manipulating guns under stress. AR safeties are easy, some other rifles, not so much. It's also easier to throw down a Glock than it is to remember to flick the safety on a 2011 or CZ clone.
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