300 H&H Craig Boddington "Kudu" advice

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EA

Are you shooting sub-moa (holes almost touching, as you said earlier) with this same technique and other rifles?

If so, you are a better man than I!

This sort of shooting position is testing your ability as much as it is testing the rifle.

If you have proven precise with other rifles and this method, then your rifle/ammo combo is not up to snuff.

Your shooting position (butt unsupported and rifle gripped at the fore, with hand resting on bag) is what I use to shoot a .470 Nitro double off the bench and it is less than the most precise way to aim!

But if I read you correctly, you can shoot well this way with other rifles....so there you go.

I would need to support the rifle fore and aft to feel like I am really testing the rifle/load.
Thank you, it's input like this that I need! What do you suggest I do differently? Yes, I shoot moa with my other rifles like this, I don't know any other way to shoot but if you have a suggestion I'm willing to look into it.
 

sestoppelman

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As Tarbe noted have the front bag very close to the front of the receiver and leave it there for each shot, no seesawing back and forth as that will affect grouping. Use support bags under the butt as well, and keep your hands off the forearm or barrel. I know the Ruger book says use your hand under the forearm, but I find that awkward and never do it, preferring to shoot my No.1's like any other rifle. Ignore the front swivel when load testing, leave the sling at home. 200 gr Nosler Partitions shoot very well with R22, about 68 grs of so should give some really good groups. 200 gr bullets and the H&H are meant for each other. Once you find the load the rifle likes, then you can mess around with sling pressure etc., but honestly with a barrel band, its sort of an issue with slings, because its very difficult to put the same pressure on it shot to shot.
 

tarbe

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A rabbit ear type sand bag at the rear, to rest the butt on, and a sturdy front rest.

Bags can work well, but you want the rifle to be held consistently by the rests and that is difficult to do with generic sand bags that constantly change shape.

Take a look here: https://www.sinclairintl.com/shooting-rests-bipods/index.htm
 

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These are all great suggestions, thank you! I just shoot like this because it mimics the sticks, I suppose perhaps I should shoot on the sticks instead of the bags. I do not reload yet (just bought the gear) so I'm only using factory ammo. I'll have to look into some good 200 grain factory loads, maybe I can find something on ammo seeker.
 

wesheltonj

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Forget the front sandbags and attach a bipod. Use the sandbags at the rear and one under your elbow if necessary. If using a bipod with shooting sticks - hold the one bipod leg and one stick leg together for stability.

And nothing wrong with factory ammo.
 

sestoppelman

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Forget the bipod and stay with sand bags.;) Bipod has a tendency to jump around on a hard surface like a bench. Forget all the things you have been doing:rolleyes::D. If you are trying to find out what the rifle likes, whether factory fodder or reloads, you must remove YOU:eek: as much as possible! Once you find out what the RIFLE likes and how well IT shoots, then you can dink aroundo_O with slings, pods and whatever, but you are trying to find out why the rifle isn't grouping well. It should now be obvious.:oops:
 

tarbe

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There are really two different reasons to shoot for accuracy...one is to test the rifle/ammo, the other is to test the shooter.

When testing the rifle/ammo, you want to eliminate as much of the human element as possible.

Once you know what your rifle/ammo combo is capable of, it is time to hone your skills in likely field situations.

Shooting as you are, you are trying to test both the rifle/ammo and shooter at the same time.
 

sestoppelman

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There are really two different reasons to shoot for accuracy...one is to test the rifle/ammo, the other is to test the shooter.

When testing the rifle/ammo, you want to eliminate as much of the human element as possible.

Once you know what your rifle/ammo combo is capable of, it is time to hone your skills in likely field situations.

Shooting as you are, you are trying to test both the rifle/ammo and shooter at the same time.
Great minds think alike.....:D:D
 
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Ha, so I think what you all are saying in a round-about way :whistle: is that I might want to invest in either a lead sled or a bunch of customized sandbags/rabbit ear thingies? Again, thank you all so much for the input. Believe me, no offense taken on my end, I asked for help because I know I need it!
 

tarbe

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Ha, so I think what you all are saying in a round-about way :whistle: is that I might want to invest in either a lead sled or a bunch of customized sandbags/rabbit ear thingies? Again, thank you all so much for the input. Believe me, no offense taken on my end, I asked for help because I know I need it!
Personally, I am not a lead-sled guy.

But a good cast iron tripod front rest and sand bag rear rest...absolutely. Especially for the "light" kickers like .375 H&H and below.
 

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The main point we are trying to make and Tarbe put it well, one thing at a time. Rifle first, you later. Remove all hindrances (the human factor) to the RIFLE's potential to find out what IT will do. No.1 rifles can be finicky, but all those I have seen and shot, and that's more than a few, made in the last 10 or so years have been excellent shooters without messing with them. Just gotta know how to treat them.:rolleyes::D
 
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The main point we are trying to make and Tarbe put it well, one thing at a time. Rifle first, you later. Remove all hindrances (the human factor) to the RIFLE's potential to find out what IT will do. No.1 rifles can be finicky, but all those I have seen and shot, and that's more than a few, made in the last 10 or so years have been excellent shooters without messing with them. Just gotta know how to treat them.:rolleyes::D
Roger that, and I appreciate it. Think I'll head down to Sportsmans or Cabelas this week and see what I can pick up. I see what you mean, and I have to agree about making sure the rifle is true (no reason it shouldn't be, I understand the Bodington series was very well made and I like Rugers in general) before I start criticizing myself too much. It's just really a hit to know you can group up other rifles from my 6.5 Swede, 270 all the way up to my .375 shooting like this, but the 300H&H isn't doing it. You get into a "expectation" and when that isn't met you start to question yourself and your rifle. Sadly as I'm sure you all know this puts up a bit of a mental block and your confidence and accuracy decrease rapidly with that. Add to it that this is my first #1 (my wife thinks I'm a bit daft because it's a single shot, but I prefer the term "eccentric" heh) and knowing that I don't know enough about the rifle and you end up getting groups that look like they were made with a shotgun instead of a rifle. Thank you all again for the advice and I'll be sure to keep you all posted.
 

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EA,

I discovered something on my first safari, practicing shooting from the sticks.

I’m right handed...so get this: My LEFT hand absolutely messes up my shooting! Whenever I support the forearm of the rifle with a hand the way your pix show, I get groups like you are getting. I saw it shooting from the sticks as well. If I supported the rifle from the sticks with my left hand, I flubbed the shots. I cannot explain it but my left hand anticipates the shot and my groups look like almost exactly like yours. BIG 6” spreads.

My answer: get rid of the left hand. From the sticks I either let my left arm hang loose or loop a thumb in my belt and ignore it. I let the rifle “free recoil”.

From the bench I slip my left hand in a triangle to my right shoulder, under the rifle stock. I’m not sure that makes sense. I call it “military style” from the bench. It’s how my dad said the Army taught him back in the day. My alternative from the bench is that I let my left hand rest gently on the shooting bench, basically pointed in the same direction as the rifle.

As the others have said, work on the shooter first. Rifle second. Damned if my left and wasn’t screwing up ALL my shooting.

As an aside, it was DaveDavenport of Leopards Valley Safari who saw the flaw in my shooting from the sticks. It completely changed my shooting, for the better.

PS: I have a dozen rifles. Excepting my .22LR, my Garand with Irons, and my 9.3x74...ALL of my rifles are capable of shooting sub 1” groups at 100 yards. .223, .257 Roberts, 6.5x55, 7x57r, 7 SAUM, 7RM, .308, 300 H&H, 9.3x62, .375 H&H...

No, seriously. No joke. Granted, they won’t do better than 1/2” on my best day...but the hardware themselves...there’s just nothing wrong with them. Any of them will shoot and will shoot confidently enough that I would give any of them to another shooter and know, with absolute confidence, they will deliver if the shooter does.

Damned if my left hand wasn’t screwing up my shooting so badly.

Good luck man!

PPS: yeah, I know. It’s not a conventional shooting style. It’s simply what I have to do to get the accuracy I need for hunting. Much as I’ve tried, I can’t break the left hand twitch. So the answer is, eliminate the problem.
 
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EA,

I discovered something on my first safari, practicing shooting from the sticks.

I’m right handed...so get this: My LEFT hand absolutely messes up my shooting! Whenever I support the forearm of the rifle with a hand the way your pix show, I get groups like you are getting. I saw it shooting from the sticks as well. If I supported the rifle from the sticks with my left hand, I flubbed the shots. I cannot explain it but my left hand anticipates the shot and my groups look like almost exactly like yours. BIG 6” spreads.

My answer: get rid of the left hand. From the sticks I either let my left arm hang loose or loop a thumb in my belt and ignore it. I let the rifle “free recoil”.

From the bench I slip my left hand in a triangle to my right shoulder, under the rifle stock. I’m not sure that makes sense. I call it “military style” from the bench. It’s how my dad said the Army taught him back in the day. My alternative from the bench is that I let my left hand rest gently on the shooting bench, basically pointed in the same direction as the rifle.

As the others have said, work on the shooter first. Rifle second. Damned if my left and wasn’t screwing up ALL my shooting.

As an aside, it was DaveDavenport of Leopards Valley Safari who saw the flaw in my shooting from the sticks. It completely changed my shooting, for the better.

PS: I have a dozen rifles. Excepting my .22LR, my Garand with Irons, and my 9.3x74...ALL of my rifles are capable of shooting sub 1” groups at 100 yards. .223, .257 Roberts, 6.5x55, 7x57r, 7 SAUM, 7RM, .308, 300 H&H, 9.3x62, .375 H&H...

No, seriously. No joke. Granted, they won’t do better than 1/2” on my best day...but the hardware themselves...there’s just nothing wrong with them. Any of them will shoot and will shoot confidently enough that I would give any of them to another shooter and know, with absolute confidence, they will deliver if the shooter does.

Damned if my left hand wasn’t screwing up my shooting so badly.

Good luck man!

PPS: yeah, I know. It’s not a conventional shooting style. It’s simply what I have to do to get the accuracy I need for hunting. Much as I’ve tried, I can’t break the left hand twitch. So the answer is, eliminate the problem.
Thank you for the heads up, I'll give it a whirl!
 
 

 

 

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