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Determing max range based on rifle accuracy

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Unread 08-04-2004, 08:17 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 32
Determing max range based on rifle accuracy

How do you guys classfy your rifles? I mean, if for an instance you got a rifle (dont mind the cal) that shoots 1 moa a 100yards, whats the range you consider as max for that rifle? Letīs say it is small deer/coyote targets.

Just wondering where the limit for accuracy and range is. Dont mind that I used 1 moa @100Y... just an example..
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Unread 08-04-2004, 09:14 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: CT
Posts: 28
Re: Determing max range based on rifle accuracy

For me, I prefer to have 1000 ft/lbs of energy for minimum killing power on deer/elk size game. That being said 1K of energy is also much farther out than I would be willing to shoot for an animal that I am going to eat.
For instance:
180gr bullet at 3000fps muzzle velocity
850yds = 1000+/- ft/lbs
but at 850yds the flight time is 1.17 seconds. To me a lot can happen in 1+ seconds in relation to where the target was and where it might be at 850yds. Additionaly if the gun is 1MOA your shooting a 8.5" group at that range. That would AssUMe that you have the wind and light doped perfectly [img]images/icons/rolleyes.gif[/img] . All that being said I personaly am not comfortable at that range on game.

I make the distinction of on "game" on purpose.

I prefer a round that meets my energy requirements and arrives in .5 seconds or so. Which gets me roughly 400 - 500 yards max distance for a shot on game. That range also fits within the paramaters of everything I hunt with, 308, 30-06 & 300 WM.

Just my $.02

Cheers [img]images/icons/cool.gif[/img]
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Unread 08-04-2004, 04:41 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: NC, oceanfront
Posts: 4,222
Re: Determing max range based on rifle accuracy

I'd say it's pretty easy. Shoot at something & if you miss, move closer til you hit it. Thats your max range.

I recently checked a rifle in .223cal(40grVmax). Fired on a 6" bull, cold barrel, at various ranges and conditions, over a two week period.
This was a factory rifle with a decent load worked up, out to 300yds. It would group under .3moa consistantly at my range, while warmed up, but everything changes in the real world.
In the field(literally,lying,off a bipod), I found that I could consistantly hit the bull still, out to 300, shooting single cold barrel shots. But the real world groups at this range were just under 1moa. And at 350, forget it. All over the paper.
My call on this is that it's a 300yd rifle.
Those tiny little groups at the range:
Hell, you can train a monkey to drive a clown car around a circus tent.
But let's see him drive to Baltimore. [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]
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Unread 08-04-2004, 05:37 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 2,369
Re: Determing max range based on rifle accuracy

As I've stated in previous posts (as I recall) I generally use a 2 MOA rule. I allow 1 MOA for the rifle and load and 1 MOA for me and the environment. So for a game critter that has a 12 inch kill zone (deer) I'm stuck at 600 yards. (I still have a 650 yard limit no matter the size of the beast (game animal).)

Varmints!!! There is no limit on distance for varmint, "wing a round and correct" if need be.
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Unread 08-04-2004, 08:04 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 1,103
Re: Determing max range based on rifle accuracy

I've always figured energy like DOC 76251 can run program and come up with appr range and 1K energy is about right for elk and deer. Well good luck.
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Unread 08-04-2004, 08:06 PM
Writers Guild
Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 1,459
Re: Determing max range based on rifle accuracy

For mule deer, consistent hits on a milk jug size target with an impact vel of at least 1750fps.

This gives me excellent penetration and expansion for lots of internal damage. The size of the target is about the size of kill zone for the avg mule deer in my area.

Larger animal, longer range as long as impact vel is correct. This refers to 'small cal'. With something like a 300gr 338 MK, impact vel can go lower because you have so much weight at impact. MK seem to do well on game at vel above the speed of sound.

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Unread 08-05-2004, 03:20 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 86
Re: Determing max range based on rifle accuracy


I presume you are talking about roe? As you say the issue is not killing power but accuracy.

For heart and lung shooting you are looking to hit something the size of a CD cover. That being around a 4-5inch square. Given a group the size you displayed with the Barnes the limit is determined by your ability to hold it steady, the effect a slight breath of unseen wind will have and the time of flight (in case the animal takes a step just as you release the shot)

I personaly feel that with a great rest and an absolutely immobile buck 100m away looking straight at you, a rifle should be accurate enough to allow a neck shot. This means no worse than 0.75moa

I have rifles that shoot .3moa and rifles that shoot 0.75moa. The range I can shoot with them is not affected by their accuracy.
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