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timawa

New to precision rifle shooting

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Please help me figure out how to prepare for my 1st precision rifle shooting match.

 

1. I already have an AR 15 18” 556 chambered that I wanted to shoot, I’ll be using 69gr smk,  does 50yrd zero maximizes the ballistic performance of this particular bullet?

 

2. Is tripod necessary/sandbag?

 

And any more suggestions that you can add?

 

Thanks!

 

 

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A 50 yard zero will get you just that, accurate at 50 yards...

 

Use at least 100 yard zero,  (some use 200) and verify ballistics at all distances. Crono, crono, crono...and make a chart for all distances for come ups. Hopefully you have a external turrent scope so you can dial distances.

 

Tripods, yes

Rear bag, yes

Pump pillow, yes

 

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I shot my first PRS match with a 20" AR15 shooting the 69 SMK.

I did pretty well until I had to engage targets beyond 600 yds, then things got a little dicey.

 

I never used a tripod, but a bipod is a necessity. A good bag is also helpful.

 

You should zero at 100 yds.

Then you will need some way to compensate for drop at different ranges.

A ballistic calculator and a tactical scope that you can dial (or reticle with a holdover grid) will get you in the game.

I use a Kestrel for ballistics but if you don't have access to a calculator, I think there are some decent apps that can be downloaded to a smart phone.

 

You need to chrono the ammo you will compete with.

Once you have your bullet speed, your load and gun data should be fed into the ballistic program.

The drop and windage tables produced by a program are theoretical but should be pretty close.

However, before the match, you should go to the range and confirm the drop data.

You will want to fine tune the data with actual results to get solid long range dope.

 

If you are not accustomed to long range shooting, the first thing you discover is that the wind is not your friend.

Another difficulty of the .223 is that even when you manage to get downrange hits, you may not always get the score.

At great distance, small light bullets don't make much of a splash or induce a lot of movement on heavy steel targets.

Even with a spotting scope, the R.O. may not always be able to see the impact.

He can't call what he can't see.

 

Keep your expectations real, have some fun, and don't worry about the score.

No matter how talented you are as a marksman, you won't challenge the alpha dogs in your first match.

There is a learning curve for this type of competition and there are no shortcuts.

Just get out there, enjoy the moment, and learn as much as you can

 

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Thank you so much gentlemen! Really good informations here. I will eventually switch to larger caliber, just want to get me started and learn the basics. The 3gun match that I used to go to just recently stop holding matches and they usually include long range target up to 500yards. The nearest 3gun match from me is 1.5hrs away. Then I found out our that the same  shooting range that I used to go to 3gun have monthly PRS matches. Just 15mins away. 

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2 hours ago, IPSCLUVERRR said:

does anyone shoot gas rifles over their bolt guns?

 

 

I know a few guys that do, but they are harder to shoot well.

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Assuming you have a FFP scope to at least 16x, can dial your comeups, and have a good ballistic app.

An accurate AR with 69SMKs will hold its own out to 850 yards IF the targets have electronic light indicators, otherwise hits can't be spotted consistently.

You will have to push your ammo hard and tweak your BC beyond 600. The 69TMK is a little better bullet.

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13 hours ago, timawa said:

How big are the targets?

Most targets are 1moa, ie at 1000 yards the target is 10inches for easy prone shots, positional target sizes vary.

 

A tripod is necessary for some matches, and not needed for some, buy once cry once get a RRS

Rear bags are an absolute must have, most of us have a collection, the Weibad Taco is my new favorite

A shooting sling is a must have, and most of us have a collection, I greatly prefer a sling with a bungee in the rear like the Rifles Only one

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8 minutes ago, 427Cobra said:

Most targets are 1moa, ie at 1000 yards the target is 10inches for easy prone shots, positional target sizes vary.

 

 

 

Cripes.

 

I'd have a hard enough time just seeing a 10 inch target at 1000 yards, nevermind hitting it.

 

What's the magnification on the scopes you use?

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On 9/1/2019 at 10:20 AM, 38superman said:

I shot my first PRS match with a 20" AR15 shooting the 69 SMK.

I did pretty well until I had to engage targets beyond 600 yds, then things got a little dicey.

 

 

I have a 19" AR-15 and am thinking about trying PRS...  Looks like you are reloading your ammo...  Do you have a recommendation for ammo that I could purchase?  I reload pistol ammo, but not rifle.

 

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8 hours ago, 124gr9mm said:

 

 

Cripes.

 

I'd have a hard enough time just seeing a 10 inch target at 1000 yards, nevermind hitting it.

 

What's the magnification on the scopes you use?

It’s not about how much magnification you have, but the quality of the glass, I have a Gen2 Razor 4.5-27x56 on my rifle, I normally shoot around 15-18 power or less, and don’t F@#K around with MOA scopes, go MRAD.  

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1 hour ago, 427Cobra said:

 and don’t F@#K around with MOA scopes, go MRAD.  

Oh no he didn't!

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23 hours ago, 427Cobra said:

Most targets are 1moa, ie at 1000 yards the target is 10inches for easy prone shots, positional target sizes vary.

 

A tripod is necessary for some matches, and not needed for some, buy once cry once get a RRS

Rear bags are an absolute must have, most of us have a collection, the Weibad Taco is my new favorite

A shooting sling is a must have, and most of us have a collection, I greatly prefer a sling with a bungee in the rear like the Rifles Only one

 

You mentioned about Wiebad Taco, I just realized they are only 5 min away from me. I’ll check them out later today.

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2 hours ago, timawa said:

 

You mentioned about Wiebad Taco, I just realized they are only 5 min away from me. I’ll check them out later today.

I grew up in College Station,  and my kid is in Grad school at A&M, David and Robert are good people. 

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I would seriously recommend not buying any of this stuff.  Take your rifle and your scope to a match and shoot.  Guys will loan you their equipment and you can try it there.  You'll suck, probably just like anyone else does the first they try a new sport.  You'll find most of the guys there bought gear they didn't need because they didn't try it first.  If your gear is a limiting factor, you'll have the opportunity to see what will help you the most.  This stuff seems to vary regionally as well. Suck to go buy a fancy tripod and find out your local MD hates the things and designs all his stages to either prohibit them or make them useless.  

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Not a PRS shooter, but I've got lots of rounds down range with an AR while shooting Service Rifle...out to 600 yds. 

I would look at trying some 77 gr bullets. Sierra makes a great one. BC of .362 v .305. And its made to function in magazine length rounds. 

Black Hills and Federal both make factory loads with a 77 OTM bullet.

There really is a difference in performance between the 69 and 77.

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10 hours ago, Stumpnav said:

Not a PRS shooter, but I've got lots of rounds down range with an AR while shooting Service Rifle...out to 600 yds. 

I would look at trying some 77 gr bullets. Sierra makes a great one. BC of .362 v .305. And its made to function in magazine length rounds. 

Black Hills and Federal both make factory loads with a 77 OTM bullet.

There really is a difference in performance between the 69 and 77.

I am in the processes of gathering load data for 77smk bthp ,  77tmk and 69tmk which ever one will work on my rifle. I might probably switch to higher caliber like 308 or 6.5 Creedmoor in the near future. 

 

One obstacle I have is that the farthest distance I could verify my loads is 200 yards. 

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Data is critical for long range. I haven’t found a better way to verify BC. There are lots of great options for getting the velocity right now, but that’s only one component. You really need to be able to shoot a ways to find that out.  A lot of PRS matches open up the day before to verify data. You could attend one and get what you need pretty quickly. You really need to get past 500-600 to figure out your true BC. 1000 is ideal if you work your way out incrementally. 

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The matches I have shot were all know distance targets. As others have stated above shoot your loads across a chronograph. There are lots of good ballistic calculators like Strelok and GeoBallistics. For bags I use a Wiebad fortune cookie, it’s a very versatile bag that does everything pretty well. 

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I would seriously recommend not buying any of this stuff.  Take your rifle and your scope to a match and shoot.  Guys will loan you their equipment and you can try it there.  You'll suck, probably just like anyone else does the first they try a new sport.  You'll find most of the guys there bought gear they didn't need because they didn't try it first.  If your gear is a limiting factor, you'll have the opportunity to see what will help you the most.  This stuff seems to vary regionally as well. Suck to go buy a fancy tripod and find out your local MD hates the things and designs all his stages to either prohibit them or make them useless.  
Exactly the best advice so far. I did this for 2 matches before I purchased anything and never once did any shooter say no. I've even shot numerous rifles that I would never have an opportunity anywhere else at matches.

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On 9/8/2019 at 7:16 AM, timawa said:

I am in the processes of gathering load data for 77smk bthp ,  77tmk and 69tmk which ever one will work on my rifle. I might probably switch to higher caliber like 308 or 6.5 Creedmoor in the near future. 

 

One obstacle I have is that the farthest distance I could verify my loads is 200 yards. 


if you have a chrono while doing load development, you really won't need to verify past 100 yards.
- 100 yard zero
- bullet BC
- muzzle velocity

everything else will be a calculation based on your ballistic software
- this isn't bench rest or F-class where you are trying to hit sub MOA paper bullseyes on a static range
- name of the game for PRS is recoil control, so you can call your shots, and adjust on the fly

yes you can true your BC if you have a longer range, 
but it's not required, if you and your gear is up to it,
you should be able to true your BC after your first couple shots

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On 9/23/2019 at 7:57 PM, timawa said:

Got another question, are targets at known distances?

 

Very few stages are “Milling” stages, ie figure out without a LRF what the range is, the course of fire is spelled out in the match book, and range to target/targets is spelled out. 

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