Accuracy

Alex Wheeler

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I decided to make this post after some conversations and posts I have read. I tune at 1000 yards, strictly. From my experience the tune window at 1k is pretty narrow and hard to pin point without shooting at distance. I also have respect for the animals I hunt. That said, its my opinion and experience from 1000s of rounds though actual paper targets at 1000 yards that tuning a hunting rifle to shoot sub .5 moa groups at that range is far more difficult than it is to do the same at short range. Yes I am saying that a .5 moa tune at 100 doesn't mean much at all about how the rifle will group at 1000. I have seen posts with 3/4moa groups and guys are happy to go "long range hunting". My personal criteria is sub .5 moa at the max distance I plan to shoot. Im not trying to tell you how well your gun should shoot, how you should tune, or how far you should shoot. What I am saying is to shoot a paper target at distance and you may be surprised. Shooting rocks will always make you think they are going in the same place. Shoot a paper target at the max distance you want to be able to hunt before you decide that your rifle is ready to take into the field.
 
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kiwikid

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New Zealand
Alex there are a lot of great posts on this site and your's is one of the best. In a single line you made a great point and I quote " I also have respect for the animals I hunt."
In all the years I have been hunting I have never come across a Deer Hospital in the forest, valleys or mountains, no Elkahologist to repair a shot off leg. We see videos of long range shots where the animal runs around for a couple of minutes before it finally expires, that had to hurt. How many other videos are out there of animals that were hit but never recovered that we don't get to see.
If we wound a 100 paper targets no one will care but it will sure show us if we and our gear is up to the mark. Alex I applaud you!
 

Alex Wheeler

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Montana
I dont want people to believe the marketing. Those lr hunting shows DO edit out the gut shots. And theres plenty of them. You cant buy long range accuracy for any price. Its takes skill and hard work. Paper doesn't lie. Take the extra couple minutes and hang a paper target.
 

gpo1956

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Hot Springs, Ar
Good points. If in the contextof long range hunting, very valid. I see you're from Montana. Probably very easy to find places to comfortably shoot to 1,000+ yards Not so for much of the rest of the country. In Arkansas, it's not easy to find someplace to shoot at much over 3-400 yards, much less 1000+. If someone is heading out west to hunt long range, then indeed, they better be prepared and know what their dope is. But lets not be too condescending if someone is just happy with the performance of their rifles, loads or abilities just because they don't have the opportunities to stretch out to long range. I cruise this forum as much as anybody and I don't recall seeing many posts about 3/4 MOA at 100 yards being good to go at long or extreme longrange.
 

Alex Wheeler

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I feel your pain. But its does not change my advise. Im not just talking dope, but actual grouping ability. It is our responsibility to know, not guess. Its irresponsible to shoot at a living animal at 1000 yards with a rifle thats never been shot past 300-400 yards for example. If thats condescending then Im condescending and wont deny it. I dont think you really believe that was my intention though. The only point Im making is to hang a target at the distance you want to take an animal and that 3/4 moa at 100 does not equal 3/4" moa at distance. Dont rely on rock/steel hits. Those rock faces or dirt mounds always look like you shooting small, but the groups on paper tell the truth. The reason for this post is not from things I have read on this site either.
 
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Jjeffhunter

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Aug 4, 2018
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Montana
I love this post most guys are ecstatic to hit a 20" plate at a grand then figure there qualified enough to shoot at a bull that far it's really getting to be a joke and giving hunters a bad name I've watched guys trying to hit elk at over a mile and although they missed that's not the point they should never pull the trigger I agree completely that if you can't keep a 1/2 or under Moa at a distance you have no right to be shooting at animals that far!
 

WildRose

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N. Texas and S. Africa
I feel your pain. But its does not change my advise. Im not just talking dope, but actual grouping ability. It is our responsibility to know, not guess. Its irresponsible to shoot at a living animal at 1000 yards with a rifle thats never been shot past 300-400 yards for example. If thats condescending then Im condescending and wont deny it. I dont think you really believe that was my intention though. The only point Im making is to hang a target at the distance you want to take an animal and that 3/4 moa at 100 does not equal 3/4" moa at distance. Dont rely on rock/steel hits. Those rock faces or dirt mounds always look like you shooting small, but the groups on paper tell the truth. The reason for this post is not from things I have read on this site either.
It isn't even about groups, it's about making that first cold bore shot count every time.

In the field realistically you're rarely going to get more than that first cold bore shot and two quick follow ups before your target disappears into the woods or over the hill.
 

Alex Wheeler

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It isn't even about groups, it's about making that first cold bore shot count every time.

In the field realistically you're rarely going to get more than that first cold bore shot and two quick follow ups before your target disappears into the woods or over the hill.
I agree with you, but its very much about groups as well. You need a rifle thats grouping well to be confident in that cold bore shot. Which is another skill you cant buy and takes a lot of practice shooting cold bore at long range. I will typically shoot 3 shot groups cold bore. It will give you data on the accuracy of the rifle, whether the cold bore shot stays in the group (color it with sharpie), and your wind/dope call. All in 3 shots.
 

Joefrazell

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Yep see it every year. Guys go sight in at 1 to 200 yards and are shooting 400. Even that isn't responsible. If you want to shoot at an animal at 1000 yards you better be able to hit a 12" metal gong with the first shot day in and day out. I personally am not there. For me it would be iffy. I bet I'd hit the animal but who knows if it would die. 600 yards is much more practical to me and I shoot much further on a regular basis.
 

Jjeffhunter

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Montana
Yep see it every year. Guys go sight in at 1 to 200 yards and are shooting 400. Even that isn't responsible. If you want to shoot at an animal at 1000 yards you better be able to hit a 12" metal gong with the first shot day in and day out. I personally am not there. For me it would be iffy. I bet I'd hit the animal but who knows if it would die. 600 yards is much more practical to me and I shoot much further on a regular basis.
Twelve inch margin isn't very good you better be looking at six and under to make a good clean shot on a game animal
 

Joefrazell

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Twelve inch margin isn't very good you better be looking at six and under to make a good clean shot on a game animal
I disagree. I hunt mule deer and elk. The kill zone is much larger then 6". I guess it's going to depend on what your hunting.
 

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