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SHOOTING ACCURACIES

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OLDGUNNER
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SHOOTING ACCURACIES

#1 Post by OLDGUNNER » Sun Dec 03, 2017 10:56 pm

In about 1959 I lived in LA and a neighbor had just bought a rifle from a local gun maker and it wasss ‘pretty’ and he just paid an even $500 for it, which was ‘super’ high for then. He was telling me that the guy had guaranteed that it would shoot a 10 shot, 1 inch group at 100 yards...but he couldn’t get it to do it, and was going over to the guy that night to talk to him about it and ask if I would like to go with him...sure. I met the guy and he told me what he did. This was his specialty...he would go to the Pasadena Gun Store which always had hundreds of 1903 Springfields for $29.95. He would pick out a few after looking down the barrel and looking them over. He had found out that the 2 groove barrels shot just as good as the 4 groove. He brought them home and didn’t even shoot them before building them up. He would get to that later after he had finished them. He would pick out a piece of Walnut plank typically for 175 to 200 dollars, and make the stock...lap the barrel and reblue the gun...free float the barrel and bed the action with epoxy, put on a Weaver V8 scope, they were only like $40 at the time. And then work up a load just like a I had said that I did – I got that from him, for it to shoot like a half an inch group just so it would shoot the ‘guaranteed’ 1 inch. Give the customer the gun, 10 cartridges and the reloading info, for ‘that’ rifle...for the 500 dollars. Most of that was for labor in making that stock. So he will meet us at Hutton’s Shooting Range the next Sunday and he will shoot the 1 inch group that he guaranteed – fair enough. And of course he did. And the neighbor said, right there, my wife’s birthday is coming up, make one for her, and I thought oh yeah, for his wife. The guy just took a surplus 1903 off the shelf and did it. He knew what he was doing...he wasn’t going to some guy at a gun show and asking him what he did.
I later went to Hutton’s Gun Store and bought a 175 dollar Winchester in 30-06. That 500 $ was way out of my range. Hutton said that he was one of the first three contributing editors to the new Magazine,
GUNS AND AMMO.
The real point being, I have learned not to blame the gun first for any inaccuracies – just one’s self.
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Re: SHOOTING ACCURACIES

#2 Post by Rapidrob » Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:08 pm

I love old school rifles. For no other reason than they have worked for many decades. I wanted to build a Mile Rifle. It would be old school and in a caliber to just pi$$ off other shooters.
The trend nowadays is to spend 25,000 bucks on a rifle and "can" with state of the art optics and blast away at targets in the next county.
I wanted the loudest muzzle brake made and the longest barrel that could held in a lathe and be turned for the action.
Looking around I found a very well carried and used Weatherby Athena rifle in .300 Why Magnum. The action was like new with worn bluing.
The barrel was shot out. I got it for 175.
I contacted Shillen Barrels and order the longest 8mm ( .323) barrel blank in XX Grade they could make. These barrels are known for the high quality. I've been using their barrels since the 70's.
The Athena action is made by Howa and is very long. The quality of the action and the very adjustable trigger of this early action is first rate. I hand lapped the locking lugs to the action,not much needed by the way.
I installed a J&P muzzle brake. This brake is a copy of a PAK38 anti-tank gun muzzle break. It is large and ugly. It reduces felt recoil by 90% or more. For real.
I went with a Remington 700 Match rifle plastic stock for the soul purpose of rigidity and weight. It was easy to inlet for the Howa action
The barrel was chambered for one of my favorite cartridges ever made. The Remington 8mm Magnum. This is a modified .300 H&H Magnum and is a large cartridge holding 100 grains of powder or more. Brass can be made from several cartridges out there,most are Weatherby magnums.
What killed the cartridge was the lack of good powders and worse yet,crappy bullets. The design was very sound and with a heavy bullet will still be supersonic at long range.
The 32" barrel was fully free floated and the stock pillar bedded. The muzzle brake was timed and needed no crush washer.
As for powders, I looked up several of the new powders out there. All are triple based ( look up my articles on these new powders)
I settled on WW-Supreme 780. This powder was noted for two things. Very LOW chamber pressure and the highest velocities possible.
Sierra Bullets was notified and I was able to get a few hundred of a test batch of their new .323 Match bullets in 220 grains. ( no longer made,they went down to 200 grain)
With a load of 89 grains I could push the 220 grain bullet to 3,300 FPS at 58,000 PSI! ( normal 8 mag pressure is 65-68,000 PSI)
I placed a top of the line Vortex scope on the rifle.
A trip to the range was impressive to say the least. After bore sighting the rifle and checking the brass for head spacing problems I settled down for a test at 200 yards.
My spotter got me on target after two shots.
I fired five shots. The first shot went center in the bull. The other four could not be seen. We walked down to the target. All five shots could be covered with a dine.
Muzzle blast is not as bad as you'd think but very loud. However an unintended consequence is that there is NO recoil. While that sounds nice it is not. The rifle jumps FORWARD with such force it breaks the rifle scope lens mounts. Think scoped air rifles. I've been through four scopes now. Vortex finely made me one that has lasted for 100 shots. They honor their warranties very well.
The mile Club Shoot was interesting. All the .40 caliber rifles and their Cans firing barely scaring the rabbits and my old school rifle.
I touched of the first round and half the guys complained like Little Girls on the noise and dust kicked up. But I was darn close to the target. After the fouling shot and adjustment for all the long range factors, I proceeded to hit the target with my shots.
By the end of the day everyone tried the rifle and was very impressed with how it shot. All asked what it cost to build. I told them less than 2,000 bucks. ( I did get a deal on the barrel and scope) That did no go over well with them. I have not been invited back to shoot with them since. That is OK. I proved my point. A well made and thought out rifle will shoot well in the hands of someone who has taken the time and worked it out.
Can anyone do it?,Yes. Good parts,a little homework on ideas and a little skill is all that is needed.
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Re: SHOOTING ACCURACIES

#3 Post by OLDGUNNER » Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:06 pm

Okay Rapidrob - I have never had a muzzle brake...I have never shot a rifle with a muzzle brake...I have never been near anyone using a muzzle brake, but I have always wondered about certain aspects of them. Maybe you can help clear up some things. I have shot the Hi Standard .22 Short Olympic Model and every since I have wondered why its features are not more common on firearms. The basic muzzle brake seems to be made to deflect the muzzle blast to the sides...why, why not upward and rearward?
1. You say you had one that reduced the recoil maybe 90%. Why then would it tend to harm a scope? If it had a little more recoil reduction, say to zero, to me without knowing, I would think that it should have no, or minimal effect on a scope. I have a couple of these air rifles with 1000 fps and 1200 and always just put regular scopes on them and never have bothered one.
2. I have a couple of these screw-on Flash Surpressors. Why can’t one modify them to deflect the muzzle blast upward and rearward to keep the barrel right where it is when fired just like the Hi Standard Olympic? Or just make clamp-on muzzle brakes that can be made for any direction and deflection.
3. I assume that since these brakes are in general one-size fits all, and most are not custom made, this will tend to keep the variations to a minimum, I understand this. But to me it should be able to modify a standard one to ones custom needs.
4. Another thing, they make little tube with mercury affairs that just insert into the rear of the stock. That’s about all I know about them but they sure sound like they would work pretty good. One could insert as many as he may like into a stock.

Anyway these are just some thoughts with no experience....Thanks.
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Re: SHOOTING ACCURACIES

#4 Post by ghostdevilguy » Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:30 pm

I can answer why muzzle brakes deflect to the sides. With a rifle, when prone it will kick up a lot of dust, and the blast would bounce off the ground and probably destroy something, and it would not be a pleasant experience for the shooter either because in order to be effective, muzzle brakes vents are slanted towards the shooter to pull the rifle forward, in other words that hot gas is pointed right at you. That make sense?

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Re: SHOOTING ACCURACIES

#5 Post by Rapidrob » Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:59 pm

The HG "Recoil Reducers" stunk. I had them in my trap shotgun and they did little to stop felt recoil. I put on pneumatic recoil reducers and had the barrel Magnaported and that really works.
The muzzle brake on my rifle is huge by today's standards. There are two layers in the bake that catch a lot of the gasses leaving the barrel and push the whole rifle forward with quite a bit of force.
All rifle scopes are made to have their lenses resist a reward,fast movement. A forward movement just as fast can unseat the lenses or even dislodge the recital. This happen on the second scope.
Many of the spring air pellet rifles have special scopes. A standard rifle scope can be broken by this forward mass movement of the piston/weight.
The felt recoil of my rifle is about the same as a AR15 firing a 55 grain bullet. There is a double felt force as the rifle fires. A slight shove on the shoulder than the jump forward.This happens quickly and feels strange. The rifle moves about three inches forward when fired as the gasses work on the brake.
The brake is getting eroded by the hot high pressure gases. It may have to be replaced soon.
I'm pushing the 220 grain bullet between 3,200-3,500 FPS out of the 32" barrel and without the brake the rifle could not be shot more than a few times in a row due to the recoil.
106546.jpg
The design of a muzzle brake is critical as to how the gasses are redirected. Many makers say they reduce felt recoil and look "cool" but all they do is increase noise.
A friend of mine designed a brake for the M-14 for the US Army in order to fire the rifle in full auto. It works very well with no muzzle rise. I have one on my M1A and it makes rapid firing very easy to stay on target.
Another friend put a JP muzzle brake on his .308 Contender pistol and it impressed me so much I put one on my 8 mag.
The bullet exit hole must be drilled to a known size for a given caliber. Get it wrong and the brake will not work well.
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