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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

I am researching the sport of long range rifle shooting - particularly service rifle in NRA Highpower competition. My M1A is on order. In my search I stumbled upon this forum. Rather than troll through it as an information mooch, I've joined as a member.

Hope I can offer something of value to the members here. I've found a lot of great information here...I'll be keeping my ears (in this case, eyes) open and mouth shut so I can learn. But, if I do have something that might add value to a discussion, I'll throw my 2 cents in.

Hope to see some of you on the line someday.

professorhuber
 

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Prof, welcome. Lot's of good shooter's here and they will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have, so ask away. The M14 is a good, but unforgiving platform with which to start your foray into the sport, and likewise hope to see you on the line as well.
 

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As mentioned there are some active/good shooters on this site and can be of great help.
Suggestion only, but for someone just getting started I would point out some books on the subject written by Jim Owens, One on sling use is good and super important for service rifle shooting plus he has one on reading the wind. Believe Fulton Armory offers these books and can tell you that after quite a few years of such shooting I still find myself picking the books up just to remind me of the basics. Best of luck to you.
 

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Great decision in registering here and most definite you came to the correct place to learn more about the M14 Battlerifle and military surplus ammunition for her nutritional dietary needs, welcome on board and enjoy the site and I hope you post often professorhuber.


DI5
 
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Professor Huber,

Welcome to the forum. Do yourself a favor download the CMP and NRA rulebooks and familiarize yourself with them.

Feel free to ask away any questions you may have and we will try to answer them.

For start where about in Virginia are you? One of the best you can do for yourself is look up the nearest gun club in your area who shoot high power and join the club so you have a place to train up.

If you are indeed new into high power and have the goal to go distinguish and move up in classification, my unsolicited input input is go ahead and get your M1A for it is a great rifle, but get a little black girly gun to shoot high power with to start of. Why?

1. Easier to get better with in the game.
2. Even an off the shelf Rock River Arms NM is highly competitive that you can win matches with.
3. For my circumstances, one of the most compelling reasons, the little gun is cheaper to feed. You can shoot almost twice as much for any given budget.

Just went back to your post you mentioned long range shooting, do you mean shooting from 800 to 1000 yards. If that were the case, then I may retract the above argument just a little. With the good 30 caliber bullets these days the 14 can be made purposely for long range. I said a retract a little. The AR 15 can compete at 1000 yards without much work, the same RRA NM AR with the right bullets can win the service rifle long range. Your off the shelf M1A may not. In 98 I won the state service rifle long range championship against a slew of 14s, using my AR. After a long absence from long range, two years ago I started shooting long range again, this time with my 14. Would have won the same match again had I not cross fired twice. An AR 15 won it.

Not patting my own shoulder, just trying to argue that either rifle will do for long range. To stick to the 14, would take some work and money to make any off the shelf rifle competitive.

For training. New shooters like you I highly encourage them to start from the bench till you can master that sight alignment, sight picture, and breaking the shot without disturbing the sight picture. The interim goal here is shoot groups good enough to clean the target, meaning shoot the group inside the 10 ring of the regulation SR target at 200 or SR1 at 100. If shooting 200 next stop is shoot the reduced 300 at 200 till you can shoot consistently inside the 10 ring.

Why from the bench? This is the best venue for you to burn in what it takes to put a round in the middle.

Next stop is train in prone slow fire with sling. Slow fire means load a round at a time to shoot. The process here is the same as above. From slow fire prone, train in prone rapid. This is the same as the slow fire except shoot from loaded magasines.

After the prone training go to the sitting position start with slow fire first then move to rapid, with the same goal shoot in the 10 ring just like the routine enumerated already.

Last stop train in standing. While you were training on the range in the steady positions, start dry firing at home.

The training strategy I mentioned is what I did when I started in high power. It is time time and money consuming, it boils down to your level of commitment and what your high power goals are.

YMMV
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the warm welcome to all of you.

Instructor: You must have recognized that I am a student of "the game" and want to learn as much as I can about proper technique. I'll check out the books to which you refer.

Roadkingtrax: Thanks for the link. See the comment above!

Bamban: Your advice is well taken. I attended a long range competition at my club last Saturday. I've been a member of Cavalier Rifle and Pistol club for some years. There I've participated in Bullseye matches. I am hopeful that the basics of site alignment and trigger control that work when shooting my 1911 will also help me when shooting my M1A. I've wanted to get involved in NRA highpower rifle for a couple of years, but only recently decided to get serious. The best shooter on the line Saturday made a similar statement to your comment about how shooting the AR platform is easier than the M14. I understand that - it's easier to shoot the .22 in bullseye matches than the .45, but I still like shooting the .45 (especially in hardball matches - probably because of the challenge). That said, I really could use your advice as a good excuse to go buy a nice RRA or Les Bear AR!!

I like your approach to learning the sport (i.e. benchrest, prone slow...working up to off hand). Our club hosts a match where we shoot old bolt action military rifles (e.g. 1917 in my case) at steel targets 300 yards downrange with iron sites, off hand. That's pretty challenging, but that competition is unstructured (we do it just for fun). There is something about the conventional high power competition that I find alluring (maybe the structure or the history of it?).

Finally, yes to your question about long range (up to 1,000 yards). I've been studying Brian Litz's book on long range ballistics. Just so you know, I majored in physics as an undergraduate for two years before I bailed and got a marketing degree. So, I get into a kick out of knowing about the physics of shooting...and yes, Brian Litz says that reading the wind is the one of the toughest factors to master.

Once again, everyone, thanks for the warm welcome. The shooting community is such a cool place to be because folks are always willing to step up and help a fellow shooter.
 

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professorhuber,
Some 40+ years ago a very wise gentleman w/ lots of experience with various Gov't "alphabet deparments" was kind enough to give me some instructions regarding Off Hand w/ service rifles. That position is usually the one that gives both young and old hand shooters the most trouble and his basic instructions were to learn to "plot" my shots in all positions.
Simply take a sample target and BEFORE looking at the actual shot on the target, place a dot/x, etc. on your sample target where you think it went. It's called "calling your shot" and if the bullet impact is not where you called it, then something is wrong. You, gun, wind, light, stance, etc. Now, for Off Hand the technique he gave me was to do a great deal of "dry firing" and calling your shots as if you actually shot the target(do this at the range if possible) and do this by taking Standing position, dry fire rifle and mark down on sample target where you think it went. Do this 4 times in a row, 5th time take the shot.
Was the 5th shot anywhere near you called it?? This technique does several things for you aside from the practice you gain, it also saves a lot of ammunition/money. Off Hand/Standing is done at 200yds. and if you look at the target used at that range and if you can keep all your shots in the black off hand you will have a score higher than most.
Unlikely all your 10 shots will be 8's and odds are good that one or two or even more will hit in the 9,10 or X ring. Similar to a firm's Profit and Loss statement, keep 'em in the black. Just a suggestion.
 

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Welcome from central MS. You will get great advice from friendly and skillful shooters here. The advice Bamban and Instructor gave you above is just a scratch as to what those guys can teach you. I have not been an active high power shooter in years but am looking at getting back on the range this year. I ventured into ATA trap shooting a number of years ago and it consumes most all my shooting $$$$$$........trust me, you think shooting rifle and pistol is expensive.......try competitive trap or skeet. Fixed income of retirement is moving me back to rifle shooting as I have the rifles, have a good bit do components on hand and I assure you the range fees are much cheaper for rifle pistol than shotgun.
When I did shoot rifles a lot, I developed a huge respect for the skills of 3 position rifle shooters and bullseye pistol shooters, those sports require skill and discipline.
There are much better and more knowledgeable shooters on this forum than me.....but I will offer these 3 things in this post: 1) get the best equipment and ammunition you can- when a shot comes up off call you want to wonder what YOU did wrong and not what your blankety blankety blank rifle did or bullet did or primer did. #2) long long ago when I first started shooting I was on the same post at Camp Perry with a fellow from the 101st ArCom and I will pass his advice to you.....after watching me and helping me he said, " son, you just need to get ass deep in brass". #3) a tip to save ammo in rapid fire- load your mags with 2 rounds each.....give your self the range commands and when you hear fire when your targets appear...start your timer (you need to get a little timer at some point to help your cadence) and go to position, break 2 good shots, reload, break 2 good shots. You can do that sequence 2 times for the same ammo as one rapid fire string and IMO getting in position for the 1st and 3rd shots is critical. In rapid fire one of the most important things is to get in the proper position and natural point of aim for your first shot and then back into that same position for the 3rd shot.....after you practice that, shoot full strings to work on timing......shoot enough to know how much time you should have after the reload and et cetera....practice .....and I will add a #4) dry firing is your friend as Instructor said....
Listen to those guys, they know of what they speak..
 

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Where's the thanks?

Instructor and CottonDoctor:

Thanks for the additional advice. I would rather listen to you guys and learn from YOUR mistakes than waste my time and money making the same mistakes again. I really appreciate your willingness to share.

...and up to my ass in brass sounds like a good thing!

One question to all: What is that "thanks" and how do I use it. Where can I find it to thank people for their posts?
 

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Welcome aboard and to the sport of Highpower.
 
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Also order glen zedikers book reloading for competition.......then use it to prop up a table. Great book full of great info. Writen like two drunk men having a conversation.
 

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Dist1646:

I've shot bullseye at Quantico in years past, but they stop letting civilians shoot on base about 7 years ago. Maybe that policy has changed?

I also heard some good things about Fairfax as well. Thanks for the heads-up.

BTW, how can you stand to live the people's republic of Maryland?? I lived there about 20 years ago (Camden Yards was under construction) and it's worse now then when I lived there...
 
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