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All my life, around all the rifle shooters I've hunted, shot with the term accuracy meant how well the gun (rifle or handgun shot). A small group was an accurate gun, a large group meant you needed to trade it in, find different ammo that shot better, or learn to shoot it.

Precision meant how tight the tolerances were on the parts that were used to build up the gun. The idea being that a gun with tight tolerances/high precision in parts vs. the specs. meant the gun might shoot better, but might also malfunction quicker when it got dirty. A gun with looser tolerance parts sometimes still shot nice groups (it happens) and would run longer before getting dirty enough to malfunction.

Then again, I've never been a match shooter. I just like to tinker with guns, reload and shoot them at small targets at varying ranges. Easy to do in the mountains at home, tough to do at these places in the flatlands people call "rifle ranges".

I guess now I see a different viewpoint, but I'm too old to change my thought patterns.

When I was younger, I bought a Ruger Mk1 5.5" pistol. Very good shooting gun I still own. Sort of like a very short .22 rifle with the Thunderbolt ammo it liked. I used to squirrel hunt with it. Headshots only if the squirrel was sitting still. I had a friend who decided he wanted to handgun hunt squirrels with me. He bought a nice High Standard target pistol. Very well made gun, very tight, much more expensive than my Ruger. He also used expensive ammo. That Eley match ammo I grin about every time I see the price of it. When we'd go shooting (getting ready for squirrel season that year) I'd shoot all afternoon. He'd get just over a box of match ammo through the High Standard and it would start failing to completely chamber the next round. He'd have to unload it, pull the slide off it, brush/wipe out the residue, re-lube it, put it back together and it would go another box, box and half and he'd have to repeat the cleaning to get it to work again.

His High Standard was definitely a better made gun (high precision in the parts that made up the gun) but it was no more accurate than my Ruger and it was a pain to keep it running all afternoon.
 
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