What caliber for LOTS of LR practice

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by cowboy, Apr 21, 2010.

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  1. cowboy

    cowboy Well-Known Member

    Jul 14, 2007
    I have a cohort at work that has gotten the LR bug. He has a couple of rifles that are very capable but are on the barrel burner side. After shooting with us a couple of times he realizes what wind plays in the overall game. He keeps quizzing me on how to read the wind and after telling him everything I know I said "You're only missing one component - Lot's of practice." So now he's on a mission to get something other than his fireburners to practice with. My first thought was to go out and get a Savage Long Range Hunter in a .308 Win or maybe a .243 and have it worked over a bit. If you were to plan on firing a 1000 plus rounds a year on practice out to 1000 yds. what would you suggest? I told my cohort I'd post this up for him - By the way when he sets his mind to something he always follows through so I would like to get him as good of info as I can. Any thoughts? Comments on the .308?
  2. Dr. Vette

    Dr. Vette Well-Known Member

    Dec 30, 2009
    Wanna go cheap? and shoot LOTS as you mention?

    Buy a .22 that is set up similar to your big game rifle. With a .22 you shoot to 200 yards and it's like 800 on a big bore. And, much easier to find a 200 yard space than an 800 yard space.

    At least, it's what I do to learn. I have a .22 bolt action set up like my Weatherbys, and a nice Savage Mk II thumbhole bull barrel as well. Both of them teach me a lot and the barrels will last forever.

    Else I'd think .223 or 6mm if he wants to stay small and find a lot of support for the caliber.
  3. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

    Feb 3, 2007
    6mm br, heavy barrel, 1 in 8 twist, 30 gr of RL 15 under a 107 SMK and a cci 450 primer. Bullets are $26 / 100 and my barrel seldom gets warm.

  4. Oliveralan

    Oliveralan Well-Known Member

    Sep 15, 2009
    +1 on the 6mmBR. On my long list of stuff to buy. I shoot in excess of 2000rnds of .308 alone a year at my current rate... I have the blessing/curse of being able to shoot to 400yards every weekend on my own property.

    The 22 is also not a bad idea... Have loads of fun shooting mine. Am thinking of sticking a 10x SS on it so I can dial in better. 200 yards is very doable however. 250 is pushing it. At 400 the bullets were tumbling and you could actualy SEE them spinning. We (Trebark was my partner in crime) did however land one hit on the target stand. Held over around 24ft. Watching through Trebarks big eyes was almost more fun than shooting with the 22!

    So yes, good advice here. 22lr, 223, 6mmbr will all get it done. I feel if I could only have one of those three I'd get the 6 BR since it is also a good varmint caliber and VERY accurate.
  5. Parkerb14

    Parkerb14 Well-Known Member

    Jan 26, 2007
    Lots of people over at snipershide set up 22lr "trainers" basically the exact gun you hunt LR with but in a 22lr. Cowboy, if you ever wanna do some shooting I get to Billings quite a bit mom lives ther actually leaving tomorrow going to be there for a week.
  6. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

    May 21, 2008
    My approach would be to practice as close to actual LRH conditions as possible. The other calibers mentioned would provide a lot of good shooting but shooting out to 1K with actual ammunition, velocities, bullets, recoil, etc would give a better feel for actual field performance. IMO, 300 WSM is the ideal cartridge for LRH practice. It has a reputation for excellent barrel life and with the right powder and bullet, it's capable of 1K hunting. Shoot a 22 LR and you learn something about windage, but how practical will it be when actually doping and shooting 1K? the 223 would be better and the 308 better yet. The 300 WSM will get it done. You might get 10,000 rounds out of a 308 barrel and 4000 out of a 300 WSM, but how many 308 rounds down range is one 300 WSM round worth for actual no kidding experience?
  7. 4th_point

    4th_point Well-Known Member

    Nov 22, 2008
    I think Zak Smith wrote an article about the cost of shooting. Consumables (bullets, powder, brass, and primers) really add up in terms of cost. A barrel is not that expensive in the grand scheme of things, especially when shooting 1000 rounds per year. Even a magnum should get a couple years of service at this rate depending on chambering.

    You might want to have your friend crunch some numbers comparing the training rifle cost (with consumables) vs using one of his current rifles. The money saved now, could be used towards other gear if he doesn't already have it like LRF, spotter, binos, etc.
  8. mopar440

    mopar440 Well-Known Member

    Apr 6, 2009
    always wanted to fix up my 10/22 now i have reason:D
  9. royinidaho

    royinidaho Well-Known Member

    Jan 20, 2004
    I'm finally getting around to assembling a 6mmBR for more practice. After 850 rounds out of the 270 Allen Mag almost any other smaller cartridge is worth a try.:)

    However, much more compensation for wind will be needed for the .3 or so bc difference.
  10. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

    Feb 3, 2007
    Roy I have only shot this rifle to 1000 yards on two different occasions. Well actually my wife was at the wheel one time.

    Here are some numbers.

    MV according to exbal is 2773 with a 107 SMK and a BC of .527 This is over a moderate load of RL15.

    Velocity at 1000 is 1466 so she is still super sonic but the energy is down to 510.

    My zero is at 140 yards ( i did this because I shoot ittle gophers and I like the point blank tradgectory with this zero)

    Come up is 29.25 for 1000 yds here at the house at 4000 ft.

    Wind at 1000. With a 5 mph full value you need 3 moa and with a 10 mph full value 7 moa.

    I have taken a yote facing me at 653 yards and the bullet exited under his tail with a 1 1/2" exit. I was impressed with this and plan to take a speed goat out to 700 with it this fall.

    I installed a JP brake with the thought I wanted to see gopher hits at closer range. It works and makes shooting varmints a hoot. My wife is just starting to shoot. I dialed her in and turned her loose on the 1000 yard target one calm evening. She fired 3 shots at the 2 1/2 " orange dot. One was a hit the other two were about 3 3/4" off. :rolleyes::cool:


    Note: I had posted the load wrong...!! it is with RL-15 not 19 I changed it now.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2010
  11. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

    Dec 4, 2008
    Lots of good advice! Another good cartridge would be the .260 remington. Everything stock, low recoil, good bullet selection, and relatively easy on barrels, good accuracy.....Rich
  12. Moman

    Moman Well-Known Member

    Feb 7, 2008
    Another vote for a 308. I was faced with this a while back, I had a 300 WM that shot great but didn't last as long as I would have liked. After it was shot out, I made plans to rebarrel it in the same caliber and bought a 308 for practice. The cartirdge is fairly inexpensive to shoot, extremely accurate, and easily capable of 1,000 yd + shooting.
  13. mike33

    mike33 Well-Known Member

    Dec 19, 2008
    I was in same boat, getting ready for a private training session and was wondering what to take besides my new 338 edge. Everything else i have is barrel burners so i went with a standard factory 243. I have the Berger 95 vld shooting good with a nf mounted on so i will be taking it as the second gun. When i return i will use it for a lot of practice and if it burns, so let it be i will re-barrel it.
  14. dodgefan

    dodgefan Active Member

    Apr 20, 2010
    To the OP I'd take a look at your friends ballistics tables for the rifles he has now and try and match those ballistics as closely as possible with smaller caliber. This isn't always possible, but with a little research you should be able to get pretty close. Setup the rifles as close to the same as possible and shoot a lot.