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Old 07-21-2019, 08:51 AM
justinp61 is online now
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Classic "old school" benchrest?



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I shoot some local fun benchrest matches, these are generally older rifles, 37's, 52's, 40X's and such, we also shoot sporters. We shoot aperture sight and scope matches, no one piece rest, front rest and rear bag only.

This is all pretty new to me as I purchased my first 52 in late April and now have four, two D's a E and a Miroku sporter. My rest is a cast iron Bald Eagle and I use a Caldwell rear bag. As a general rule we all shoot cheaper ammo like SK Standard Plus. For scope matches I have Weaver 24X's and use Redfield Palma, International MK8 rears and International fronts for the aperture matches. For the sporter matches we generally shoot 8X scopes.

I see lots of advice on shooting from one piece rests but seldom see anything on old school aperture sight shooting or shooting off a rest and bag. So if you shoot or have shot the "old school" style benchrest and have some pointers please post them up.

Justin

Last edited by JEE; 07-21-2019 at 03:16 PM. Reason: fixed title
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Old 07-21-2019, 05:57 PM
kseatm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinp61 View Post
I shoot some local fun benchrest matches, these are generally older rifles, 37's, 52's, 40X's and such, we also shoot sporters. We shoot aperture sight and scope matches, no one piece rest, front rest and rear bag only.

This is all pretty new to me as I purchased my first 52 in late April and now have four, two D's a E and a Miroku sporter. My rest is a cast iron Bald Eagle and I use a Caldwell rear bag. As a general rule we all shoot cheaper ammo like SK Standard Plus. For scope matches I have Weaver 24X's and use Redfield Palma, International MK8 rears and International fronts for the aperture matches. For the sporter matches we generally shoot 8X scopes.

I see lots of advice on shooting from one piece rests but seldom see anything on old school aperture sight shooting or shooting off a rest and bag. So if you shoot or have shot the "old school" style benchrest and have some pointers please post them up.

Justin
Good for you! It's a blast shooting the old "workhorses" isn't it? Had so much fun shooting those types of guns.

One thing I wouldn't fall into though. Just because you see a lot of people shooting fancy custom rifles off of fancy one piece rests...don't think they all started out that way. Most started just as you are doing.

The thing to remember is that any of the high end guns factory rifles like the 52D's/E's, 40x's, Anschutz 54's can compete with about anything out there. Where the difference comes into play is consistency. Hence, the migration to custom actions, barrels, etc by those who want to go a step further. But you can do very well with the older factory rifles.

I started with a 40x, 52D and Anschutz 2007. Shot both aperture sights and with scopes. First BR formal BR match I ever went to, I pulled the apertures off the Anschutz, stuck on a scope and went to the IR 50 Nationals. Didn't win, but did pretty well. Have won a few targets here and there with all of those guns in formal matches, and even won a couple of matches when things fell in line. The funniest thing that ever happened was once I stuck a tuner on a Kimber 82G to see if it might help my aperture shooting and while trying to tune the thing (had a scope on it) ended up winning a BR match! Talk about funny! A $400 rifle beating nothing but custom guns!

The moral of the story is you don't need a custom rest or a custom rifle to do well. You've figured that part out. But, and this is a big but, you do need stuff like that when you want to go further up the food chain. Just the nature of things.

As to shooting apertures, I've used the Palmas, Olympic and International sights on some of my guns. Also different Anschutz aperture sights. But the best I've had the pleasure of using is a Phoenix rear with some of the Euro accessories. Takes things to another level. But I mostly shoot apertures at 100 yards now. At 50 I do pretty decent, but at 100 it's another world and it's a blast when you drop them all in the x ring. Try it sometime. The best feeling in the world is shooting a 200/20x on an A5 at 100 with aperture sights. Better than winning any big BR match I've ever won...

I've got some buddies just like you. They shoot off of bipods only, factory rifles, no tuners, and they even stand while shooting. Though, they do have a bench they sit their rifles on while shooting. Went down there one evening to shoot with them. They shoot all kinds of targets, money is involved and they will take your lunch money if you don't know what you're doing. Well, even if you know what you're doing they will take it! Heck after we shot a few different types of targets with scopes, we started shooting apertures with the A23/5 at 50. It was the best time I've ever had in shooting a match. And I've shot in quite a few matches!

Good luck going forward. All of this is fun. Just don't think that someone needs a fancy rest or a fancy gun to be good at something. Just enjoy what you're doing and don't make it into something it's not. I've still got my Kimber 82G, and if I stuck a scope on it, I would not be afraid to shoot it in any BR match on this planet. But it's too much fun shooting apertures so I just do that anymore. Got burned out with all the stupid side shows going on in BR so took a step back and just shoot for myself anymore.

Do try a bipod though. You might find it's even better than shooting from a two piece rest. Just takes a few minutes to figure out how your gun likes to be shot when there's no rest involved.

JMO

Kenny
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  #3  
Old 07-21-2019, 06:25 PM
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Thanks Kenny. I have some bipods just need to make an adapter to fit the rails on my 52's. I will give them a shot on my sporter.
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Old 07-21-2019, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by justinp61 View Post
Thanks Kenny. I have some bipods just need to make an adapter to fit the rails on my 52's. I will give them a shot on my sporter.
Do try it! My friend George (Win52HR12) here on RFC is a pro at shooting bipods. He's one of the gang I mentioned earlier. They even have a name! The Bi Polar Bipod Posse from Bland! Nice ring to it don't you think?

Hopefully he'll see this thread and chime in. He's very very good at shooting and he almost always shoots off of a bipod. As do the guys he shoots with every Friday night. Heck, George even shoots his fancy custom rifle off of a bipod.

They use different types of bipods as some use the Harris models and some (like George) use homemade models. He made me one and it's awesome. Slips right into the rail of a 40x, 52, Anschutz or Kimber 82G. That's what I have mounted anymore. I do have a Harris that I stuck on my 1712 in case I ever can get to a Squirrel Match here locally.

Oh, a funny story to show how "dyed in the wool" George is when it comes to shooting BR in an unorthodox manner. We were at a match once and George asked if he could try one of my two piece rests. I was using a SEB NEO at the time. Which if you know anything about two piece rests it's, well it's kind of good...Anyway, George goes to the line with my rest and shoots. After he's done I ask how he liked it. He said he didn't use the joystick, just propped the gun on the rest and moved the rear bag to where he wanted as he shot the target. Who shoots like that off a $1200 joystick rest? And they don't use the joystick! Only George....

Anyway, he can give you some great advice on all of that. As well as a few of his friends who hang out there. They don't post much, but if they do, they know of what they speak. And they're all great guys.

Good luck

Kenny
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Old 07-21-2019, 09:04 PM
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I hope George will post his thoughts here.
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  #6  
Old 07-21-2019, 09:32 PM
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Hey, Im in!
Ive never got past the old school gear.....lol
And my sorta 'tuned' factory rifles are more capable of possibles than I am anymore.
That saves a ton o' money!

Last edited by gcrank1; 07-22-2019 at 09:55 AM.
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  #7  
Old 07-23-2019, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by kseatm View Post
Good for you! It's a blast shooting the old "workhorses" isn't it? Had so much fun shooting those types of guns.

One thing I wouldn't fall into though. Just because you see a lot of people shooting fancy custom rifles off of fancy one piece rests...don't think they all started out that way. Most started just as you are doing.

The thing to remember is that any of the high end guns factory rifles like the 52D's/E's, 40x's, Anschutz 54's can compete with about anything out there. Where the difference comes into play is consistency. Hence, the migration to custom actions, barrels, etc by those who want to go a step further. But you can do very well with the older factory rifles.

I started with a 40x, 52D and Anschutz 2007. Shot both aperture sights and with scopes. First BR formal BR match I ever went to, I pulled the apertures off the Anschutz, stuck on a scope and went to the IR 50 Nationals. Didn't win, but did pretty well. Have won a few targets here and there with all of those guns in formal matches, and even won a couple of matches when things fell in line. The funniest thing that ever happened was once I stuck a tuner on a Kimber 82G to see if it might help my aperture shooting and while trying to tune the thing (had a scope on it) ended up winning a BR match! Talk about funny! A $400 rifle beating nothing but custom guns!

The moral of the story is you don't need a custom rest or a custom rifle to do well. You've figured that part out. But, and this is a big but, you do need stuff like that when you want to go further up the food chain. Just the nature of things.

As to shooting apertures, I've used the Palmas, Olympic and International sights on some of my guns. Also different Anschutz aperture sights. But the best I've had the pleasure of using is a Phoenix rear with some of the Euro accessories. Takes things to another level. But I mostly shoot apertures at 100 yards now. At 50 I do pretty decent, but at 100 it's another world and it's a blast when you drop them all in the x ring. Try it sometime. The best feeling in the world is shooting a 200/20x on an A5 at 100 with aperture sights. Better than winning any big BR match I've ever won...

I've got some buddies just like you. They shoot off of bipods only, factory rifles, no tuners, and they even stand while shooting. Though, they do have a bench they sit their rifles on while shooting. Went down there one evening to shoot with them. They shoot all kinds of targets, money is involved and they will take your lunch money if you don't know what you're doing. Well, even if you know what you're doing they will take it! Heck after we shot a few different types of targets with scopes, we started shooting apertures with the A23/5 at 50. It was the best time I've ever had in shooting a match. And I've shot in quite a few matches!

Good luck going forward. All of this is fun. Just don't think that someone needs a fancy rest or a fancy gun to be good at something. Just enjoy what you're doing and don't make it into something it's not. I've still got my Kimber 82G, and if I stuck a scope on it, I would not be afraid to shoot it in any BR match on this planet. But it's too much fun shooting apertures so I just do that anymore. Got burned out with all the stupid side shows going on in BR so took a step back and just shoot for myself anymore.

Do try a bipod though. You might find it's even better than shooting from a two piece rest. Just takes a few minutes to figure out how your gun likes to be shot when there's no rest involved.

JMO

Kenny
for a newbie like me, this has great insights; thank you for posting. fun seems to be the operative word
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Old 09-08-2019, 03:10 PM
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Heck after we shot a few different types of targets with scopes, we started shooting apertures with the A23/5 at 50. It was the best time I've ever had in shooting a match. And I've shot in quite a few matches.
Copied from Kennys post above #3..

No body takes Kennys lunch money at 50 on the A23/5 target. He gets all the others lunch money.

I havent shot my 82G that way the last 2 summers--shame on me. The gun likes the old SK MATCH w/ a dimpled bullet . Im about out of the SK match and have not tried to find a replacement.
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Old 07-25-2019, 10:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinp61 View Post
I shoot some local fun benchrest matches, these are generally older rifles, 37's, 52's, 40X's and such, we also shoot sporters. We shoot aperture sight and scope matches, no one piece rest, front rest and rear bag only.

This is all pretty new to me as I purchased my first 52 in late April and now have four, two D's a E and a Miroku sporter. My rest is a cast iron Bald Eagle and I use a Caldwell rear bag. As a general rule we all shoot cheaper ammo like SK Standard Plus. For scope matches I have Weaver 24X's and use Redfield Palma, International MK8 rears and International fronts for the aperture matches. For the sporter matches we generally shoot 8X scopes.

I see lots of advice on shooting from one piece rests but seldom see anything on old school aperture sight shooting or shooting off a rest and bag. So if you shoot or have shot the "old school" style benchrest and have some pointers please post them up.

Justin
I grew up shooting iron sights on a 52D club gun. Eraned my distinguished expert at 17, I'm 65 now. I shoot it now in club benchrest matches. I might suggest trying colored inserts for your front aperture with a hole large enough to give you some space around your black target. Also make sure you're wearing an accurate prescription pair of eye glasses. I had a pair made with distance in the right lens and reading in the left. That way I can see to shoot as well as make adjustments with the reading lens. Good luck! Oh, I like the pink front aperature. I have Redfield International sights and got the aperature from either Champion Shooters or Champion's Choice...
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Old 07-26-2019, 07:58 AM
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i shoot a bsa martini in the local fun matches- course as far as br is concerned everything about this rifle is wrong. other than a forend plate and the scope on top it is stock. does right well when I do my part and sure makes life a bit miserable for some others (snicker). oh I have 52's 40x, Anny's as well. its just so much more fun with this old girl . original Seb or Farley rest up front eared bag in back. play with the air rifle br game as well. So I have lotsa worms crawling all over the place.
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Old 07-26-2019, 08:43 AM
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I used to shoot a lot of old school position matches when I was younger & Okie is right about the colored front aperture. I never tried pink, but depending on light conditions went from almost clear, usually yellow & sometimes orange.

I now run a weekly "New School" (any front rest, scope)local benchrest match. We do not allow rear bags to throw a LITTLE shooter skill into it. Usually shoot 40-50 shots at very small (flies, ants etc.) targets from 30-40Y. We also have some interesting ones trying to shoot an apple off a head, a pipe in the mouth etc. that can get you negative points if you hit the head! We then move out for about 10-20 shots at 100Y bulls eyes.

A lot of fun- kind of like going for coffee with the guys, but pulling a trigger.

A lot of different rifles & ammo have been tried and usually the high dollar rifle & scope combo with expensive match ammo has a advantage. But, last week a Savage FV-SR on a Caldwell bipod using a cheap $45 Walmart Centerpoint scope and CCI-sv won it! We usually have a little wind here, so breaking the shot in the right direction for the wind is more important than equipment.
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Old 07-26-2019, 09:19 AM
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Thanks for the pointers Okietrader . I shoot both clear and the plastic bar type (with the hole in the center) front inserts and like larger aperture size. Currently I don't shoot with my glasses on but will give it a try.

Do you like the colored inserts because of the contrast with the target?

Justin
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Old 07-26-2019, 11:23 AM
kseatm
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Originally Posted by justinp61 View Post
Thanks for the pointers Okietrader . I shoot both clear and the plastic bar type (with the hole in the center) front inserts and like larger aperture size. Currently I don't shoot with my glasses on but will give it a try.

Do you like the colored inserts because of the contrast with the target?

Justin
Actually, the color just helps with the lighting conditions for the time you're shooting. If you can get that front "ring" nice and crisp, you're going to shoot better.

I originally played with the colored inserts, but found it easier to just use something like this:

http://www.champchoice.com/store/Mai...ions&item=9565

Saves the hassle of changing front inserts/filters.

But then, I use adjustable fronts too:

http://www.champchoice.com/store/Mai...ions&item=9743

These screw into existing front globes. You can buy complete fronts that either clamp onto the front sight block or mount to the existing grooves in some of the Anschutz barrels.

Note: This front is 18mm and that's fine if you want. But would recommend 22 mm fronts, especially if you use any bloop or sight extension.

But again, use what you wish. I kind of took the aperture shooting seriously so was always looking for the best setup I could find. Hence, the fancy Euro accessories and later the more upscale sights themselves.

Personally I always liked the Palma rear sight over the Olympic or International (even the 1/8 adj International). Main reason being, I could screw an adjustable Euro rear Iris straight into the Palma vs having to use an adaptor to mount the same Iris on an Olympic or International sight. Of course if you use an Anschutz, Centra or other Euro type of rear sight you'll be ok. Of all of them, I like the 1/8 min click Anschutz 7020 sight:

http://www.champchoice.com/store/Mai...ns&item=000968

Later I found the Phoenix sight and went with that. Love those sights! There are other options too, just have to decide how deep you want to jump into this.

Good luck. Shooting apertures is by far the most fun thing I've ever done with a rifle.

Kenny

Edit: The Kimber 82G factory sights take any of the Euro accessories. The front globe accepts 18mm screw in sights and the rear will allow any Euro rear Iris. One other note is that if you do use adjustable fronts, make sure you order the correct one. They come in different range settings. Some people like to shoot at the lower settings, some at higher settings. Get one that has the settings you're comfortable using.

Last edited by kseatm; 07-26-2019 at 11:28 AM.
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Old 07-26-2019, 01:14 PM
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Thanks Kenny.
The 52E I recently bought came with a MK8, the sight has a four color filter and an adjustable iris. I have no idea who made the iris as there are no markings. The eye piece screws on to it and is made of brass and has two spanner nuts on the inside plus a gasket.

I shot the rifle with the MK8 but changed it out to one of the Palmas I have with a Gehman adjustable iris that I use on my Feinwerkbau air rifles.

We shot apertures Wednesday night, I shot the E and finished tied for first. As I mentioned in my first post in this thread these are just for fun. We shoot the rifles, and the breeze with some picking and aggravating along the way.

Next week we're shooting sporters with 8X max magnification at 50 yards on A-17 targets. I shot my Browning 52 today and it really hurt my feelings. I'm beginning to wonder if it'll ever like me. LOL
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Old 07-27-2019, 10:23 AM
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Not sure how old school this is, but here is picture of my ranges USBR match from last month.


We have 2 divisions, Match and Sport. The above photo is of the Match division.
Besides new and old Anschutz rifles, we have/had Win 52's, Rem 40X's, a Shul, and several other older target rifles.

However our match does not allow for any kind of mechanical front rest. Also no tuners.
Must be shot off a front bag of any type, or a Bi-pod.
Rear bags are allowed.

Smooth

Last edited by Smoothtrigger; 07-27-2019 at 05:18 PM.
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