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Prone position with AR 15 and 30 round mags

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Peakbagger46, Sep 4, 2020.

  1. Peakbagger46

    Peakbagger46 Member

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    Shot at 300y with my AR today with a 30r Pmag as a rest. It felt quite unstable and a lot of movement was noticeable with the 1-6X dialed up to 6 power. Managed 3 out of 4 hits on a IDPA target in a rather large pattern. The fourth round went who knows where.

    Other than adding a bipod (not where I want to go with this basic rifle) any tips on shooting prone with a 30r mag? Do MagPod magazine bases help at all?

    Not trying to shoot this thing like a precision rifle, just trying to be proficient as possible.
     
  2. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    Magpods only offer better stability when your target is in the same plane as the shooter, and they don’t do anything to improve the short support radius. A bipod or pack as a front support is the better answer. Using a shorter mag to allow lower, better support with the shooters arm secured with a sling is another better answer than a magpod.

    I would guess you have a lot more going on than just a squirrelly mag pivot balancing act in prone. The group pictured above appears to be ~8” - what’s the raw potential of the rifle at 100 from a bench or bipod? Do we know it’s not a nearly-3moa rifle with the ammo being fired? If we know the rifle and load to be capable of say, 1” at 100 when benched, there’s a lot going on here which will need a pretty comprehensive overhaul.
     
  3. jeepnik

    jeepnik Member

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    Yep, use a twenty. If you are using a thirty you are that much further off the ground. If prone fire is needed you want to be as low, preferably lower than the surrounding ground, as possible.
     
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  4. daniel craig

    daniel craig Member

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    Don’t shoot prone unless you have to and then use a shorter mag. That or use the sling pinned under your arm for extra stability.
     
  5. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    Use a sling, and use a 20rd magazine. Even a hasty sling will help with accuracy in prone.

    I understand the 30rd AR magazine is THE generic magazine... but I've found 20's to be far more practical in everyday shooting. I probably have as many 20's as I do 30's... and the 20's get used a lot more.
     
  6. briansmithwins

    briansmithwins Member

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    Prone had the best stability of any shooting position. If you need to shoot at 300 yards prone offers you best chance of actual getting hits. And if you need to shoot at a person at 309 yards you’re probably not going to have time to use a shooting sling either.

    Don’t forget the context either, three out of four on a human sized target at 300 yards would get the job done. Most people are going to quit playing after getting shot once...

    BSW
     
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  7. 12Bravo20

    12Bravo20 Member

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    Simplest answer is to use 20 round magazines for shooting prone. The US Army was still using 20 round magazines on qualification ranges at least up to 1996 when I got out. Standard load out for our LBE was 6 30 round mags while all the 20 round mags were used for when we had to qualify.

    Yes we did quite a bit of shooting from the prone supported and prone unsupported position using 30 round magazines. This is where guys with long arms have an advantage.
     
  8. entropy

    entropy Member

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    20's or Baghdad Prone.
     
  9. Dunross

    Dunross Member

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    Prone position is precisely the reason I chose to standardize on 20rd mags.
     
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  10. bassjam

    bassjam Member

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    I don't have any 20 round mags, but I do have several 10 round mags that I use for prone and bench shooting, which is plenty because I'm taking my time between shots then anyway.

    The 30's are reserved for standing/kneeling/sitting.

    You could use a shooting bag or bipod with the 30 round mag, but you don't really want to be up that high if you're trying to be precise.
     
  11. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    Patently false. Lack of experience and understanding of proper sling technique. It’s faster to get slung than to drop to prone.
     
  12. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Member

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    I shot an Appleseed a few years ago using an A1 carry handle AR15. I was sure glad that I had a bag full of Vietnam era aluminum 20 round mags.
     
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  13. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger member

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    Jam the mag into the deck, put your support hand thumb over the hand guard applying downward pressure. Get a good cheek weld and put downward pressure on the stock. If you don’t do either and let it fulcrum on the magazine without controlling both ends of the carbine your results will be poor.
     
  14. d2wing

    d2wing Member

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    I use 10 round mags for bench and prone
     
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  15. WrongHanded
    • Contributing Member

    WrongHanded Contributing Member

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    Back when I had an AR, I quickly decided 30 round mags were not for me. I kept the few I had, but bought 20 round mag after that. I also preferred the balance and handling. This was back before I'd ever seen a rifle range, and I used to shoot in grasslands (backstopped of course) lying in the dirt, and getting sunburned on the back of my legs from wearing shorts and spending hours in the prone position. Good times.

    Anyway, as has been mentioned; a bipod, backpack, sandbag or a shooting sling will really help your stability. If I recall correctly, with a shooting sling I could get just high enough of the ground that the 30 round mags didn't hit the deck. But I've got long limbs, so it may not work for you.
     
  16. BigBL87

    BigBL87 Member

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    As others have said, 20 round mags are your friend for prone/bench shooting. I'd say 70% of my mags are 20 rounders for that reason. I have a 30 rounder loaded in the safe in case of social situations, but otherwise really don't use them.
     
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  17. Chuck R.

    Chuck R. Member

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    I shoot quite a bit using a mag as a mono-pod, in 3Gun the "open division" guys get to use bipods, the rest of us use what we can, which is usually the mag when in the prone. We normally have one long stage per match with 4-6 tgts at 300+. I also run a 1-6X.

    Unfortunately, the real solution is to practice more....and try switching to a 40rd PMAG. It gets you a little higher off the deck. It's counter intuitive, but it also really depends on your TGT angle. A lot of time the TGTs are on stands, and higher than the shooter. I use Coal Draggers' method of leaning into it quite a bit.

    https://www.recoilweb.com/the-rifle-mag-as-a-monopod-53211.html

    https://www.gunsandammo.com/editorial/shooting-with-your-magazine-on-the-ground/248036
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2020
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  18. Peakbagger46

    Peakbagger46 Member

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    The rifle shoots pretty well, around 1-1.5moa benched. Here’s 4 shots at 300y using a backpack with no rear rest and a ten round mag:

    94E20ED0-1167-4633-B02E-92CEEADD4D96.jpeg


    That’s not great, but the position definitely wasn’t uber stable either.

    Thanks for all the responses, lots of good ideas to try here.
     
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  19. Garandimal

    Garandimal Member

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    Yep.

    Gib me dat smooth bottom rifle...

    WP-20190721-14-44-30-Pro-50-crop.jpg



    GR
     
  20. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger member

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    At 300 yards all else being equal that Ruger Mini is gonna get crushed by a quality AR.
     
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  21. daniel craig

    daniel craig Member

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    I don’t disagree with anything you said. I do think, because I can do it myself, that with enough practice you can do just as well from kneeling. It’s also faster to get in to and out of compared to prone and requires no change in mag size for a stable platform. Prone imo is for longer ranges when you have fewer shots.

    I also believe that if you have to get to prone to hit your target you’re probably better off disengaging and ****.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2020
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  22. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    In the army, I used to keep a dozen old 20 rd mags in the range box for the guys to zero their M4's from sandbags without the 30 rd. mag getting in the way. For the MK12/SPR series of rifles (a hot rodded M16 "light duty" sniper rifle) the guys that used them carried some 20's. The unit ordered them from Brownells and later on Pmag. Using them also enabled the shooter to use a short Harris bipod VS the long one that came with the MK12. 20's are the best option for prone.
     
  23. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    That's what I used... all my rifles that have slings have the generic M1 carbine web sling with the quick adjust latch thingy. A leather sling may be superior on the line at Camp Perry, but for 90% of use where a sling is useful or needed, that web sling is better... IMHO.

    I quickly learned... while everyone was fighting for 30rd mags, I had my pick of all the 20rd'ers. Meanwhile, everyone was catching them on their LBE, on their jackets, in the chow line, pretty much everywhere... and I was gliding along with my little 20.
     
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  24. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

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    As the other guys have said, we were shown to use the 30-round mag as a hasty monopod when dropping to prone . It’s not the perfect solution, but it’s more stable than not.

    Stay safe.
     
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  25. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    I never really liked using the magazine as a pivot point, if you don’t have a 20 round mag, you should buy one. They are about all I use outside of 3 gun matches.

    Anyway, try something like this next time, keeping the mag out of the equation and see if you get better groups or at least all 4 on an 18x24” target at 300 yards.

    2F605EC8-FA48-44D3-814E-4355BCE6AD66.jpeg

    If that doesn’t help, get a bipod.

    B368231F-DD09-4491-B771-1505BEC55E14.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2020
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