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Old 10-18-2016, 05:02 PM
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Autos easier to shoot "well" than bolt?



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I do most of my shooting off the bench with peep sights. I pretty regularly post in the "50 yard iron sight match" shooting vintage bolt target rifles. I am no expert but have a pretty good feel for technique and what it takes to shoot these guns well. I am in the camp that believes that generally speaking, bolt guns are potentially more inherently accurate than auto loaders (debate for another day!) That said, it seems to me that autos can be easier to shoot "well" for the average shooter than bolt guns.

I come to this conclusion anecdotally and have done no testing to try and prove it. It certainly seems to me that my target rifles are much more sensitive to hold, trigger pull, set-up and shooter related inconsistencies.

When I set up to shoot for record I am very meticulous about setting up my rest, bags alignment etc. That said I generally need to shoot several bulls to get the kinks worked out and make adjustments to begin shooting at an acceptable level. These guns seem to be "divas" and demand that everything, including ammo selection be exactly right before thy will perform. It seems to me to take only the slightest variation in releasing a shot to cause a bad miss.

On the flip side, I have a mildly modified 10-22, (by no definition a target rifle) that can shoot nearly as well without all the drama. Slap it down on a bag, feed it nearly any decent ammo, put the retical on the aiming point and pull the trigger. All the "rules" about hold, free recoil or gorilla grip, tracking seem to make little difference. As long as the sights are on the aiming point when you pull the trigger the shot is pretty much going where you aim.

So is it just me or has anyone else found autos easier for the average shooter to shoot "well" (though maybe not spectacularly) than the dedicated target bolt guns?
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Old 10-18-2016, 06:13 PM
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Some questions

I am a dedicated iron sight shooter but since I don't shoot under the protocols you list I cannot reply but I will be interested in what the replies will be relative to your thread but would like you to clear something up for me.

You say that you do most of your shooting with iron sights....specifically peep sights, but then you say that with your 10/22 that you "put the retical on the aiming point and pull the trigger".

That would imply that the 10/22 has a scope mounted on it. Does it?

noremf(George)
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Old 10-18-2016, 08:11 PM
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Yep the 10-22 has a scope on it. I was trying to keep the post short enough where the readers didn't loose interest before they finished reading it. . The 10-22 is pretty accurate for what it is. It does have a GM barrel but is in a Hogue overmolded stock and the scope is a UTG 3-9 bug buster with a retical that is about 1/2 MOA thick Trigger pull is about 4-5 pounds. It would never be confused with a target rifle.

While I do most of my shooting with the peeps on the target rifles I have shot them both (52B and 82G) a lot at various times with target scopes and at 50 yards I shoot about the same with the peeps or scope. The "finnikyness" is there whether I have a scope mounted or use the peeps.
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  #4  
Old 10-18-2016, 09:28 PM
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With a semi-auto, you don't have to break your cheek weld, move your hand/arm to work the bolt, or take your eye off of the target/re-acquire the target.
With my AR zombie gun I can probably go through ten 30 round mags in seven minutes and go home to watch reality TV re-runs.
That said, I prefer to use a bolt action, taking my time, breathe, squeeze, fire, look at target, sit back, breathe, look at the sky, listen to the birds, look around, and generally enjoy the moment. Work the bolt, chamber the next round, and be happy that I'm alive, at the range doing something I enjoy, and just enjoying nature. And hopefully bettering my accuracy.
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Old 10-18-2016, 09:50 PM
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Trying to figure the best way to respond. As far as comparing a 10-22 to a bolt gun for the type of shooting we do at our long-range matches we all kiddingly call the 10-22 a 150-175 yard gun. We've had custom builds, Kidd, Volquartsen and an X-ring and if you look at the scores that distance is where they start to open up.

I shoot scoped and peep bolt guns and give the same routine to each when shooting them. The one thing I've noticed after shooting our rimfire and CF guns is I find myself shooting and realizing I made the shot without scrutinizing every detail. I think we become so accustomed to doing it correctly it becomes second nature.

Personally I feel that new shooters may develop bad habits with a semi-auto due to them just squeezing the trigger again. They tend to shoot faster and tend to overlook not only the basics but the subtleties that create good groups.

I'd much rather tutor a new shooter on a bolt gun, preferably a single shot. It lets them set up each shot by itself and not just continue whatever poor technique they might be doing when they just keep pulling the trigger with a semi-auto.

More than likely I'm all wrong with my thinking and view on this but it's my perspective about it. Be interested to read what others have to say.

Topstrap
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  #6  
Old 10-18-2016, 10:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by katonahjohn View Post
With a semi-auto, you don't have to break your cheek weld, move your hand/arm to work the bolt, or take your eye off of the target/re-acquire the target.
I would suspect this to be a big part of the equation. It still seems to me that the semi-auto is more forgiving of shooter related technique. For instance if I "muscle" my target rifles on to the target using shoulder or cheek or hand pressure it is going to produce a bad shot no matter how good the sight picture and trigger release. The 10-22 does not seem to care. Then again, maybe my imagination is running away with me.
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  #7  
Old 10-18-2016, 11:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by katonahjohn View Post
With a semi-auto, you don't have to break your cheek weld, move your hand/arm to work the bolt, or take your eye off of the target/re-acquire the target.
IMA you can squeeze off more shots faster when the wind is right.
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  #8  
Old 10-19-2016, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patriotpappy View Post
I do most of my shooting off the bench with peep sights. I pretty regularly post in the "50 yard iron sight match" shooting vintage bolt target rifles. I am no expert but have a pretty good feel for technique and what it takes to shoot these guns well. I am in the camp that believes that generally speaking, bolt guns are potentially more inherently accurate than auto loaders (debate for another day!) That said, it seems to me that autos can be easier to shoot "well" for the average shooter than bolt guns.

I come to this conclusion anecdotally and have done no testing to try and prove it. It certainly seems to me that my target rifles are much more sensitive to hold, trigger pull, set-up and shooter related inconsistencies.

When I set up to shoot for record I am very meticulous about setting up my rest, bags alignment etc. That said I generally need to shoot several bulls to get the kinks worked out and make adjustments to begin shooting at an acceptable level. These guns seem to be "divas" and demand that everything, including ammo selection be exactly right before thy will perform. It seems to me to take only the slightest variation in releasing a shot to cause a bad miss.

On the flip side, I have a mildly modified 10-22, (by no definition a target rifle) that can shoot nearly as well without all the drama. Slap it down on a bag, feed it nearly any decent ammo, put the retical on the aiming point and pull the trigger. All the "rules" about hold, free recoil or gorilla grip, tracking seem to make little difference. As long as the sights are on the aiming point when you pull the trigger the shot is pretty much going where you aim.

So is it just me or has anyone else found autos easier for the average shooter to shoot "well" (though maybe not spectacularly) than the dedicated target bolt guns?
I concur with your perception that the autos are more accurately shot - casually. Whereas my bolt
Kimber 82, Mossberg 46, and lever 39A are sensitive to how rigidly the rear of the gun is held or supported- which limits gun rotation, the Marlin 60 seems indifferent, I suspect, because the bullet leaves the barrel before the floating bolt mass imparts significant recoil to the stock. Can also count on the Marlin 60's first shot (squirrel hunting), while the others produce cold shot flyers.
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Old 10-19-2016, 09:08 AM
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Can also count on the Marlin 60's first shot (squirrel hunting), while the others produce cold shot flyers.[/QUOTE]





I've noticed that too.
My Marlins.
Do not have a cold first shot flyer.
Don't know how or why.
But I'm happy about it.
I pretty much just shoot the Marlins and the Browning sa22 , these days.
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  #10  
Old 10-19-2016, 03:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tttt View Post
I concur with your perception that the autos are more accurately shot - casually. Whereas my bolt
Kimber 82, Mossberg 46, and lever 39A are sensitive to how rigidly the rear of the gun is held or supported- which limits gun rotation, the Marlin 60 seems indifferent, I suspect, because the bullet leaves the barrel before the floating bolt mass imparts significant recoil to the stock. Can also count on the Marlin 60's first shot (squirrel hunting), while the others produce cold shot flyers.
I was thinking that as well. Also the shorter barrel would allow a shorter time for recoil/tracking to effect POI?
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Old 10-19-2016, 04:20 PM
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Nope, not buying it.

I'm guessing this is more about stock fit and accuracy expectations than anything else. If I shoot one of my bench guns and the shot misses one of the 1/4 inch 10 rings by 10/1000 of an inch at 50 yards its a bad shot, if my Browning ATD hits the 10 ring one quarter of the time we're doing great!
If you find one of the rare autos that will shoot consistent groups (not just one occasional lucky group) in the low twos you'll find that bad handling will throw a shot just as far as any bolt gun, maybe worse.

Dennis

Just my opinion of course cause I'm bored at work today.
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Old 10-19-2016, 04:57 PM
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Been waiting

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis D View Post
I'm guessing this is more about stock fit and accuracy expectations than anything else. If I shoot one of my bench guns and the shot misses one of the 1/4 inch 10 rings by 10/1000 of an inch at 50 yards its a bad shot, if my Browning ATD hits the 10 ring one quarter of the time we're doing great!
If you find one of the rare autos that will shoot consistent groups (not just one occasional lucky group) in the low twos you'll find that bad handling will throw a shot just as far as any bolt gun, maybe worse.

Dennis

Just my opinion of course cause I'm bored at work today.
I have been waiting to see what other folks said and am going to go along with what "Dennis D" posted above and add an opinion you normally don't see much in today's technology driven world.

Over a formal shooting career of 40 years I have had a number of guns that either "fit" or did not "fit" me for whatever reasons.

The latest was a Kimber 82G which was close to being a MOA rifle at 100 yards, which is what range I shot at when I did complete, but it just felt like I was holding on to a 2"4" and because of that it was work for me to shoot it well instead of fun. I sold it.

Conversely, I have a Chiappa Mini-Sharps (.22lr) which is a true MOA rifle at 100 yards and even with the fact that it is an exposed hammer rifle, which is the most difficult to learn how to shoot well, it "fits" me to the proverbial "T" and is my favorite go out back and shoot stuff .22 rifle.

I have confidence in the Mini-Sharps both in it's mechanical accuracy and my ability to approach that whereas I never felt that way about the Kimber.

I think confidence in your weapon, whether conscious or sub-conscious, is a major factor often overlooked in conversations like this thus this post.

noremf(George)
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Old 10-19-2016, 05:14 PM
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Autos shoot better groups for amateurs because they don't have to break cheek weld or grip for the follow up shot.Pros grip and cheek weld in the same spot every time. Try coming off the gun between every shot and you wI'll see that advantage disappear. Then you can truly compare the performance of the gun not the shooter.
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  #14  
Old 10-19-2016, 05:40 PM
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I've been down to Blackwater/Academi in Moyock NC. for some long range shooting. One of the drills is five shots at five plates at 500 yards as fast and as accurately as you can with a bolt action.

10.8 seconds.

Although the only guys that beat me with shorter times were two FBI HRT Snipers.

Yes you can shoot quickly at multiple targets with a bolt action. You just have to learn and practice to manipulate the bolt without losing your line of sight through your scope or lifting your head.

Try it slow with dry firing and move up to live fire as you get comfortable with the movement.
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Old 10-19-2016, 06:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al the Infidel View Post
IMA you can squeeze off more shots faster when the wind is right.
Or the target presents itself...

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