expected accuracy off sticks for .300 winmag?

Discussion in 'Up To .375' started by bdmd5093, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. bdmd5093

    bdmd5093 AH Member

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    So I have my .300 winmag zeroed at 200 yards, and shooting 1" groups or better at 100yds and 2" groups or better at 200 yards in 180gr federal vitalshoks with both accubond and nosler partitions off the bench. Now I am ready to move to shooting off sticks, and I have no intention of going back to the bench unless I need to recheck my zero. My question is, what kind of accuracy off of sticks should I be satisfied with at the distances I will likely be taking shots from on my plains game hunt? Do I need to be able to reproduce these groups off the sticks? I am new to shooting a rifle off of sticks--we just don't do that for whitetail deer down in southeast Georgia! My trip is in May 2012, so I want to be more than comfortable with making accurate shots off of sticks at the distances expected in multiple positions (sitting, standing, etc) well before then. But, I don't want to beat myself up over not being able to get those kind of groups off the sticks if that is an unreasonable expectation...
    Thanks in advance--I would be lost without this site!
    Brian
  2. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    If you can keep your shots inside 3-4 inches at 100 off sticks you are doing well. Understand its not as steady as one might think especially in the field when time is usually of the essence. Sometimes you may be able to keep say 5 shots around 2 inches or so but keep shooting past 10-20 rounds and the group will upen up. Most of your shots in Africa will be between 100 and 200 yards. Prone is better for the longer ranges if grass height allows so get some position (sit, kneeling and prone) practice in as well as the sticks. If there is a post at the range or a tree with branches nearby, employ these as handy rests. It actually works pretty well. Good luck!
  3. bdmd5093

    bdmd5093 AH Member

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    Thanks for the feedback sestoppelman--that is very helpful!
  4. Lpart

    Lpart AH Member

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    I agree with Sestoppelman. However over many years I have come to prefer the sitting position over all others if at all possible. I use a pair of the Primos short Trigger Sticks and always get my right elbow (I shoot right handed) on my right knee. Almost as good as the bench. Shot a Cape Buffalo this way in May. PH was surprised but couldn't argue with my pin point accuracy throughout the entire hunt. Standing with sticks is fine if you can't sit. I still use the Primos Trigger Sticks except the standing model. Very easy to adjust to correct height in an instant (I prefer the standing bipod to the tripod and pull it in tight to my shoulder). PH like them so much I left standing Trigger Sticks with him.
  5. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    I would expect 3-4 inches at 200 yds. And if you are hunting out in the desert or wide open plains the shots can be out to 300 yds.
  6. Red Leg

    Red Leg GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    In several trips across the water, I have never had an opportunity to use prone in the field (and after three decades in the Army, I can appreciate the accuracy of prone position). I have used sitting maybe three times - like Lpart, I used sitting position on a buff last summer. I use a wide canvas sling which I can wrap my left arm into instantly, and I bury my right elbow into the pocket of my right knee. So positioned, I can shoot close to bench-like groups. Unfortunately, one finds very few opportunities with sufficient visibility to take up a sitting positition.

    Sticks just take practice - bipod, tripod, or trigger, and all seem about equally steady to me. Find some of these hi-viz black targets which are about six-inches across and focus on putting every round into them. I find I can now do it consistently out to 250 yards or so. That six-inch circle will center the vitals of anything from a springbok to an eland or cape buffalo. We all love those MOA groups, but that six-inch center of the kill zone is lethal and very achievable.
  7. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I have used the prone position in the field more than once though admittedly not near as often as others like sitting and kneeling. I think most of us would be having a very good day indeed to shoot 3-4 inches at 200 yards standing from sticks, especially in the field.
  8. Upton O. Good

    Upton O. Good AH Veteran

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    It was explained to me that the groups need to be tight enough to stay in the kill zone and knowing the kill zone is critical. Having just finished my first trip to SA for which I practiced a bit off of the sticks for a few weeks, I can say it is important that you are doing it, too. The sticks are not as solid as I would have expected it was very helpful to have the experience prior to my first shot at game. I missed a couple of animals clean but put good shots through the chests of the rest of my quarry. I have been primarily a wing shooter and I have been hitting the rifle range very hard since my return in preparation for my next trip. However, here is a key part from the PH: my next step in practice is shooting off the sticks using Africa plains game targets which I just received in the mail so I can visualize the kill zones in the scope. It was surreal to look through my scope at a live kudu bull when the only others I had seen were on tv or in photos. I wish I had been practicing with kudu targets first. I killed the bull but it took three shots when it shouldn't have taken more than two. I don't know if this helps, I am a huge rookie with plains game, it was just my experience.
  9. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Upton, You did allright, dont kick yourself too much. Everyone misses, and sometimes we shoot poorly, but many wont admit it.
  10. Upton O. Good

    Upton O. Good AH Veteran

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    Sestoppelman, thanks for the note, I'm not really beating up on myself. I was trying, in an obtuse way maybe, to let Bdmd know that he is doing it right by getting trigger time in with his rifle and to replicate his anticipated shooting experience by shooting on the sticks. I think that says a person is taking their sport seriously and has respect for the game they seek. Looking back, I think my PH's advice to shoot at plains game targets was spot on and I encourage anyone else in their preparation stage for their hunt to do the same. I know I will be by the time of my next hunt. And maybe it's fun to pretend, too.

    At Bdmd: which species of game are you hoping to take?
  11. gillettehunter

    gillettehunter AH Fanatic

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    I got back from Africa end of May. I probably went through 150 rds of ammo in the 30 days prior to going. I had bought a trigger stick tri-pod. Took it to Africa with me. Worked so well my son's PH bought them from me at the end of the hunt.
    My longest shot this last trip with sticks was 308 yards. My first trip 4 yrs ago it was around 340 yards. The more you practice with the sticks the better you become. The 2 weeks before I left I dry fired my rifle off the sticks in my basement every day and sometimes twice a day. First trip to Africa, I didn't like the sticks all that well. This last trip loved the trigger sticks and have ordered a replacement for them to hunt locally this year.
    In answere to the original question asked I would suggest to try for 6 inches at 300 yards. If you can consistantly do that you will do just fine. Great planning to start practicing off the sticks this early. Bruce
  12. bdmd5093

    bdmd5093 AH Member

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    Thanks again for the great feedback everyone! This gives me a good idea of what my expectations should be--which is exactly what I wanted so that I won't be getting discouraged if I can't achieve some unreasonable/unnecessary result. And the suggestion regarding incorporating the plains game targets with vitals zones is a great idea, and I definitely plan on adding those in at some point. Like Upton, I have primarily been a wingshooter, and have taken some whitetails but mainly out of a treestand that had a front rest.

    The plains game I have on my list includes:
    Gemsbuck, Springbuck, Impala,Black Wildebeest,Blue Wildebeest,Kudu,Red Hartebeest,Warthog, Blesbuck. May take a few or all of the above, depending. Also, if the opportunity arises, I may considering adding zebra...

    Thanks again!
  13. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    That is why my 300 Win Mag has a muzzle brake on it. The gas is ported forward of the gun.

    Browningbbr is busy at a new job, AH member, but having seen him shoot...he can shoot better than me. He practices a lot. And his 300 Win Mag isn't ported...but he has had adjustments made to his gun and hand loads to find the perfect combination. I wish I had his stock on my gun!

    I have not put the effort in he has..family and work has been killing me for time.
  14. bdmd5093

    bdmd5093 AH Member

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    Mine also has a Vias brake on it.
  15. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Nothing wrong with that in my honest opinion!
  16. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    enysse. If the gas is ported "forward of the gun" as you state, would that not sort of defeat the purpose of the break? Something I dont get there.
  17. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Sestoppelman, you are definately right to a degree. It takes a lot of kick out of the gun. It sure keeps the gun from scoping you in the eye. And any gas or debris goes forward and not out the sides or backwards like the Browning muzzle brake. It makes the gun a ton more manageable...and only costs $125. It calms the gun down to a 270 Win.

    My hearing is far from perfect anymore, I worked on a farm and around a lot of high pressure air compressors in the day. At the end of the day, a gun shooting close to perfect for a cheap costs....in the end saves me money, because I don't miss the target much. My brother think my gun is perfect! I have seen him take off hand shots at deer up to 350 yards and hit them dead as a doornail...again he doesn't like the noise...who likes any load noise?
  18. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Well thats the point right? If "any gas and debris goes forward", then how does the break work? A brake works by diverting the gases rearward, not forward, correct? I only have one gun with a brake an Armalite AR15 (it came that way during the Clinton AWB) and the ports deliver the gases rearward. Silly me, I thought that was how they worked. LOL
  19. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    As you can see you have a great spread in thinking and what should happen...which is good provide you options to try...

    Here is one for you and a little cheaper and you can do every night at home....

    Set you shooting stick up on a rug or carpet so it does not slip...

    Have snap caps for your rifle i suggest 2 to 3...

    Put a target on the wall they sell from Safari press dangerous and plains game targets...

    Get use to putting your rifle in the shooting sticks and squeezing the trigger and re chamber another snap cap and do this nightly while holding a steady eye on the target so you are able to visualize the scope...target and trigger squeeze...you will be surprise how steady you will become on the range using this method...

    This will drive a few things that you need to do all the time...
    1. gentle trigger squeeze so that the scope does not move off target...
    2. Setting of the rifle in the shooting stick will be come natural and fluid...constant
    3. Working the rifle action will be smooth for your second or followup shots..

    I f you have time and who does not have some time take the stick down set them up and repeat the process...now every one is a different height so place your stick low and high to get used to resetting them to where you need to have them to shoot smoothly...

    This process will make you more accurate and smoother...

    Just m2c
  20. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Alright, I'm tired, I get the joke (lol). My gun is ported at a forward at a slight angle...with small holes all the way around the end of the barrel...Ha, Ha...you got me!

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