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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 01:28 PM Thread Starter
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Long range advice/help

I am tring to clear up my very rough understanding of long range shooting for varmits. first lets start w my setup- .22-250 model 700 lv sf - bullet 55grain. I have taken two coyotes with it in between 200 and 300 yards. I would like to be able to shoot at 500 yards. I have a ballistics calculator and understand most of the inputs but of all things I have trouble estimating the wind. I have missed multiple times from 450 to 600 yards so I will list a quick scenario so you guys can tell me what I'm doing wrong EX.- target is at 500, angle is 0, wind is 10mph from 3oclock, would my calculator be relatively close if my readings are "path -39.4in, drift -30.4in" ? Im very interested in getting better at shooting long so does this make any sense to anyone or should I just grab the shotgun and keep it under 50?

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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 01:41 PM
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Re: Long range advice/help

First off, 39.4 inches does not seem like enough of a drop at 500 yards for a 22-250.. YOU need to get to a range with your rifle and your loads and eyes and shoot them on paper and make your own assesment with your equipment.. AT 500 yards a bullet may not have enough left to take out a coyote and I don't think it would exit either..very little blood trail would be found, I've hit groundhogs at that range and they crawled back in the hole so I don't think it would kill a coyote outright at that range.. As with any long range shooting, get to a 500 yard range and let them fly..NOTHING beats shooting on paper, keeping very accurate records of the gaps at each range.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 01:49 PM
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Re: Long range advice/help

Get yourself a 220 SWIFT or 243 for those 500 yard shots.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 02:06 PM
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Re: Long range advice/help

BURK has half a good point..the .243, 6mm or 25/06 will make you smile at that 500 yard mark...especially with wind drift and energy..as far as the swift..I wonder how much more effective a 100 or 200 fps would be at 500, Have you ever dropped a coyote at 500 with a swift ?? I think it would help somewhat but I'm not sure with any .22 cal bullet much past 400..
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 02:20 PM
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Re: Long range advice/help

Unless your hunting in gale force winds, you'd be surprised how 90% of the time, when shooting long range almost every miss due to windage compensation is over compensation. A heavier bullet will solve alot of the windage issues.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 02:46 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Long range advice/help

To the range I go, thanks guys. I guess nothing will really beat trial and error

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 03:05 PM
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Re: Long range advice/help

If you know someone who has a chronograph it might be wise to chronograph the loads that your using just to make sure that you know exactly how fast they are going. I don't think that 100 fps variation would cause a miss at that range but I think that it would be nice to know.

Don't feel bad about missing I've shot at woodchucks that far away and still miss alot more than I want to admit even with a 25-06 and a bipod.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 04:35 PM
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Re: Long range advice/help

you really didn't give us enough useful info. Where's your gun zeroed, at 100? 200? 250? Velocity of your bullet?

I like to keep it simple. I sight in ALL of my varmint calibers from 17FB to 243 to be 1.5" high at 100. This puts me zeroed from 225 to 275, depending upon the caliber I'm using. Then using my velocity and BC for each bullet/caliber, I figure drop tables. Anything inside of 300 yards, hold dead on and kill it. Further than 300, dial in a couple clicks and pull the trigger.

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 06:02 PM
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Re: Long range advice/help

The 22-250 is more than enough rifle. First of all you said a Remington. So I am going to assume a 1in14 twist. That twist will stabilize 55 grain bullets with no problem. And a 55 from a 22-250 at 500 yards is death to those size critters. So get the "too small to get er done" mentality out of your mind. I shoot my 22-250 to 800 yards. However mine is a 1in8 twist and I shoot the 75 grain A-Max. However we are not not talking 800 yards here, we are talking 500 yards.

First off, throw your calculator, and all your trajectory or drop charts in the trash. That is what they are worth, and that is where the belong. THE TRASH.

The only way to know what a rifle is doing at distance is too shoot it at distance. The distance shooting is where the quality in firearms and optics really shows up. Some guys think well if I shot 1/2" at 100 yards then that is a 2" group at 400 yards. And that is also a bunch of BUNK.

You have to shoot your rifle at distance to know if your rifle is accurate to that distance, and to calculate the true trajectory of the bullet that is coming out of your particular rifle.

Long distance is where quality optics really come into play.

Take your rifle to a range that is 500 yards long and shoot your rifle at that distance. You need to know first hand what YOUR rifle is doing at that distance. Then you will know if your scope is of good enough quality to be shooting at that distance, and whether your rifle is accurate enough with the chosen load to shoot that distance.

I have watched a bunch of guys over the years brag about how accurate their rifle is at 100 or 200 yards. Then I take a target to 300 or 400 yards and they cannot even hit the paper. Then the excuses start. I have heard all the excuses.

The answer really is simple. If you want to be a long range shooter then you have to practice at long range. Just trying to calculate what might happen at long range is a complete waste of time.

As mentioned above the wind is a completely different factor. And a person who has mastered how to play the wind really is a true shooting master. But a little more bullet is not going to make that big of a difference at 500 yards if you do not already know how to play the wind. Tom.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-30-2010, 06:02 PM
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Re: Long range advice/help

One of the primary factors in your calculated "path" value is the height of the sight. The sight height defines the upward angle of the barrel in relation to the straight line sight of the scope. Essentially the sight height, zero range, and velocity set the height of your trajectory arc. So your sight height must be accurate for your ballistic calculator to be accurate.

I don't know your setup but I ran what may be a typical setup below, scope center at +1.5 in. above bore center, a nosler 55gr. ballistic tip with .267 BC, 3600 mv, zeroed at 200 yd.



With this setup it is showing a point of impact (path) below sight line of -34.2, and a full value (90 deg, 3 or 9 o'clock) drift of 27.8 in. With my guns I find the ballistic calculators to be quite accurate with accurate input for most hunting applications.

To shoot consistantly accurate at 500+ yards on small targets with most any caliber it is best to use a ballistic scope so you can be aiming on target (dope the scope) rather than trying to simultaneously estimating something like 35 inches of drop and 28 inches of drift.

A 243 is a better choice for 500yd shots but in the Marines, every marine, every year, is required to qualify with the 223 at 500yd using "iron" sights. Not qualifying is not an option. We do it by doping the sights (same as a ballistic scope). We estimate the wind, and dial in the drop and windage on the sights for a dead center hold. I guess maybe if the weather was really excessive qualification day might be cancelled, but in 7 years I never experienced it nor heard of it. I do remember having so much wind that the sight was physically maxed out in windage and then had to add a lot of kentucky into the equation. You just learned how to cope with it.

Drop is a no-brainer with a rangefinder and drop table. But wind is VERY fickle. There is no man-made instrument to measure it across a 500 yard path. It can be going different directions at different values at different locations across the path. Nobody gets it right all the time.

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