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600 yard prone advice

Discussion in 'Competitive Shooting' started by alphapygmy, May 3, 2014.

  1. alphapygmy

    alphapygmy Yamhill County Active Member

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    Looking for advice from experienced longer range competitors. I'm a newbe wanting to try the 600 prone league at Tri-County. I'm shooting a 260 Rem. I did their 600 yard clinic and shot very well but in almost no wind. Typically your supposed to shoot a heavier bullet to buck the wind better. I can't drive the 140's fast enough to beat the 123's in the wind. It seems I'm getting the 123's to move fast but my 140 load is below average. My quandary is the 140 load is much more accurate. .75 MOA vs .35 MOA. Not only more accurate but the node seems to be much wider for the 140's. I don't think I can push up to the next node without getting some pressure signs. So which one would be the better choice and why? Please help a newb! Thanks
     
  2. the4thshake

    the4thshake Portland Active Member

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    Tri County never seems to get too bad of a wind. However it does blow for several different directions due to the terrain.

    Both of your loads seem pretty accurate and would probably work out there. Most of the time I shoot an AR out there and it does just fine.

    Take the BC and velocity of your loads and punch them into a ballistics calculator. Compare the wind drift at 600 yards. Factor that against how accurate they are to make your decision.

    The 140 will probably come out as the better choice. Have you tried using a different powder? Something slower burning may be the ticket to the heavier bullets.
     
  3. best defense

    best defense Beaverton, OR Active Member

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    I was helping out at the long range clinic this year, and I still have much to learn.

    I started shooting the 600 yard match last year, so I am not the most experienced resource. Last year I was shooting a 308, but I was having a problem with recoil. It is probably mostly in my head, but I decided to try a lighter bullet, so I bought a 243. This may have been a mistake, because last Tuesday after I punched the center out of a target at 300 yards, I could not even get on paper at 600. Back to square one. I talked to as many of the best shooters that I could get in touch with over the last week.

    The most popular theory is that I need to shoot a heavy bullet. I tried 100 grain bullets, but my rifle would not stabilize them well enough to get a decent group. I bought 5 different weights of bullet, and the best one for my rifle seems to be 75 grain Hornaday V Max. The gun will shoot 70 and 80 grain bullets pretty well all day long, but it will shoot the X ring out of a target at 300 yards when I use the 75 grain bullets. Unfortunately, that does not seem to translate well out to 600. Especially in the wind.

    My personal opinion is that you will need to find the load combination that works best in your rifle and then tweak it until you find something that bucks the wind well enough at 600 yards to get the results you need.

    You will only shoot 22 rounds in a match, so a box of 100 bullets should last almost all month. The best bullet with the highest BC that your gun will stabilize is probably the best starting point, no matter what the weight of the bullet is. The 260 Remington is plenty of gun for the 600 yard match, with just a little more punch than the 243 that I am shooting. My barrel has a 1 in 9" twist, so if that gives you any clue as to what your rifle may or may not do, I hope that helps. I really need a 1 in 8" twist to stabilize the heavier bullets, but unless I put a new barrel on a rifle I just bought, I can't get that, so I cannot shoot the heavier bullets.

    Last Tuesday may not have been the best day for me to try to work on a new load because of the wind. The wind kept changing direction all evening, so I never even found out where my bullets were going.
     
  4. alphapygmy

    alphapygmy Yamhill County Active Member

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    I was there last Tuesday also and the wind was definitely crazy. My score went down almost 20 points from what I shot in the clinic. I did some ballistic calculator-fu and figured I need to up the 140's to about 2725 to match the 123's in the wind. And as long as the 123's are going at least 2850 they'll shoot better in the wind than my current 140 load running 2665. Just wish I had a few more weeks to work a load before the league starts. I'm trying to go into this like a clean slate and just learn what I can, have fun, and not embarrass myself. Thanks for the advice guys.
     
  5. Mac37

    Mac37 Oregon Member

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    If you are shooting Hornady bullets I'd give the 130gr VLD Berger's a try. If you're stuck on Hornady, you're going to have to weight and length sort them in order to score well.
     
  6. alphapygmy

    alphapygmy Yamhill County Active Member

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    I'm just shooting what I have on hand. I've got almost 1K 123 Lapua Scenar and about 500 140 Hornady BTHP Match. I wanted to try the Norma 130 target bullet but they've been on back order forever.
     
  7. Mac37

    Mac37 Oregon Member

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    I would just develop a load with the 123 scenars.