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Shooting for groups... should you (or do you) shoot at 200 or 300 yards?


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I zero for 200yds, as it is easier to do the math for further out (for me).  For the .308 round, most ballistics charts I have looked at show the .308 round traveling flat to out 50yds, then a slight rise, then back across zero at 200yds as the bullet drop starts for real.

So, for your question, I'd go with whatever scope zeroing process you have used in the past, as the muscle memory will be better overall.  You can adjust better with what is familiar, rather than trying to learn a new distance for zeroing / problem identification, etc.

I had intentions to go out to Pawnee Sportsman's Center this summer to use their long-distance range, to really dial in my rifle for distance...alas, life happened in a myriad of ways.  (sad panda)

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On 9/29/2022 at 3:02 PM, 308USK said:

(Snip great advice)

I had intentions to go out to Pawnee Sportsman's Center this summer to use their long-distance range, to really dial in my rifle for distance...alas, life happened in a myriad of ways.  (sad panda)

I have been shooting lately at Great Guns. Range goes out to 300 yards. Not too busy and STILL  a great price.

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2 hours ago, FOGeologist said:

I have been shooting lately at Great Guns. Range goes out to 300 yards. Not too busy and STILL  a great price.

Great Guns?  Have not heard of that range; just looked that up.  It's a ways north, but is also NOT out in "boonieville USA" like Pawnee (lol) and is about 45 minutes less driving (one-way) for me.

That range looks like it could well be a good place to spend some time; is it very busy?

Thanks for the heads up @FOGeologist!!!

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5 hours ago, 308USK said:

Great Guns?  Have not heard of that range; just looked that up.  It's a ways north, but is also NOT out in "boonieville USA" like Pawnee (lol) and is about 45 minutes less driving (one-way) for me.

That range looks like it could well be a good place to spend some time; is it very busy?

Thanks for the heads up @FOGeologist!!!

NOT busy; although the last time I went the local law enforcement authorities had the 300 yard range locked up for some kind of weird departmental training. Doesn't seem to happen often. You can shoot at shorter distances on the longer ranges. It's a great range. Fees are about $25 and you can stay there from 0-dark morning until sunset. There's no pestering dopey Range Police constantly bothering you, either.

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1 hour ago, FOGeologist said:

NOT busy; although the last time I went the local law enforcement authorities had the 300 yard range locked up for some kind of weird departmental training. Doesn't seem to happen often. You can shoot at shorter distances on the longer ranges. It's a great range. Fees are about $25 and you can stay there from 0-dark morning until sunset. There's no pestering dopey Range Police constantly bothering you, either.

SWEET!  Sounds like a good 'place' to send lead downrange...

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Going back to your original question...

Shooting for groups... should you (or do you) shoot at 200 or 300 yards?

On 9/29/2022 at 1:06 PM, FOGeologist said:

Seems like a good way to see any problems you might be having.

Or do you just stick to 100 yards?

My magnified optics get zero'd at 100 yards.  Red dots at 50 yards.  Iron sights - depends on the gun/caliber/purpose.  Some guns/optics setups get zero'd at 36 yards.

Shooting groups?  I only shoot "groups" at my zero distance.  To zero the rifle or optic at it's given zero distance.  An accurate gun is an accurate gun.  Period.  The distance doesn't matter.  If it's sub-moa at 100 yards, it will still be a sub-moa gun at 1,000 yards - if your shooting fundamentals are sound.  I test all my new handloads at 100 yards, to determine the best load for that gun. 

At greater distances, more comes into play.  Range estimation is number 1.  Wind reading is number 2.  On a fixed-distance range, you don't have to estimate range, but you need to read wind.  Out in the middle of the desert, you need to be able to estimate range and read wind.  Or, you'll just suck.  Or, you'll learn fast. 

So, my answer is simple - I don't care about groups at any range greater than my zero distance for the optic I'm using.  If my gun is accurate, and I can estimate range, read wind, and know how to run my scope - then I will hit my intended target.  If I miss, it's because I didn't pay enough attention to one of those things.

Edited by 98Z5V
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8 hours ago, 98Z5V said:

Going back to your original question...

Shooting for groups... should you (or do you) shoot at 200 or 300 yards?

My magnified optics get zero'd at 100 yards.  Red dots at 50 yards.  Iron sights - depends on the gun/caliber/purpose.  Some guns/optics setups get zero'd at 36 yards.

Shooting groups?  I only shoot "groups" at my zero distance.  To zero the rifle or optic at it's given zero distance.  An accurate gun is an accurate gun.  Period.  The distance doesn't matter.  If it's sub-moa at 100 yards, it will still be a sub-moa gun at 1,000 yards - if your shooting fundamentals are sound.  I test all my new handloads at 100 yards, to determine the best load for that gun. 

At greater distances, more comes into play.  Range estimation is number 1.  Wind reading is number 2.  On a fixed-distance range, you don't have to estimate range, but you need to read wind.  Out in the middle of the desert, you need to be able to estimate range and read wind.  Or, you'll just suck.  Or, you'll learn fast. 

So, my answer is simple - I don't care about groups at any range greater than my zero distance for the optic I'm using.  If my gun is accurate, and I can estimate range, read wind, and know how to run my scope - then I will hit my intended target.  If I miss, it's because I didn't pay enough attention to one of those things.

That right there pretty much sums it up a 1/2 MOA gun at 100 yards is a 5 inch gun at 1000 whatever you are shooting at from zero to 1K will never know the difference... wind and consistent reloading practices and knowing your velocity not guessing or thinking i am around this or that speed will make Long range shooting a ton more precise .

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