Thread: Group sizes
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Old 28th January 2016, 07:56 AM
skires skires is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 950

I feel myself climbing into my King Canute costume again.

I'm not sure why but this seems a subject that irritates me.

Regarding accuracy ... I asked recently what was an acceptable group at 55 yards and Conor replied and said that he'd like 15mm ( I asked edge to edge ) but he was happy if he was consistently getting 20mm or less.

Here's a question for you FT guys ...

If you took 10 top target rifles ... Steyrs etc and found the best pellets for them. Then took 10 non top end target rifles ( but good quality hunting pcps ) and found the best pellets for them.

If you then got a top FT shooter to shoot 10 shot groups at 55 yards with all of the rifles. Would the overall groupings of the target rifles be obviously tighter than the other rifles?

Shots taken rested indoors.

My own views on this are ...

To get an accurate rifle you need a decent barrel, and you need to find the right pellet for that barrel ( pellet batch ... not type etc ). You need an action that is delivering the air consistently so that the muzzle velocity spread over a decent string is tight ( under 20fps spread ... ideally under 10 ). You need a decent two stage trigger that can be set so that the second stage let off is light and crisp ( maybe you don't need two stage? ). You then need a stock that fits the shooter. So a stock that is either made to fit or is adjustable in length of pull, buttpad, fore end depth, cheekpiece. Maybe an option to adjust the weight at the front or the rear to get the balance right for that shooter.

Now I can see why people just buy the target rifles and why the comment above about how many non target rifles used at the Worlds etc ... because the top end target rifles should tick all of those boxes above.

However, are you guaranteed the best barrels on those target rifles?

I've seen rifles that are basic hunting pcp's but with the right pellet the grouping is superb. I'd imagine the right barrel with the right pellet and a fairly consistent action would be more accurate than a top end target rifle where the barrel isn't fantastic or you can't find a batch of pellets that shoot superbly in that barrel.

So, technically, if someone has a hunting pcp that happens to have a great barrel/pellet batch combo, and the action gives under 20fps and the trigger aint too shabbly ... and you pop that in a custom adjustable stock ... it should be as good as anything?

Is there a situation in FT and HFT where it's almost becoming embarrassing to not be shooting with a dedicated out of the box target rifle ( Steyrs, Walthers, FTP900, EV etc [ and in HFT HFT500 or Goldstar ] ... so rifles from 900 quid up )?

I have always understood that the top shooters ( maybe most shooters ) will want to have every last possible percentage of advantage to knock down every target.

Ok ... for the decent FT guys on here that have been shooting FT for a few years now ... what advantage have you gained ( and what points ) from shooting one of the top end target rifles as opposed to an old pcp that you had that was in an adjustable FT stock?

There was an example given below where a Huntsman had won the SWEFTA Championship in 2012 and 2015 ( so that's just last year). There must have been loads of decent guys using top end target stuff and coming in behind that guy ( I'm presuming it was the same guy ). We all know that it's the indian and not the arrow blah de blah.

AA launched the FTP900 ( presumably as an upgrade from the EV2 ) but I think Andy Calpin still uses the EV and I think I read that Jack went back to the EV from the FTP. I know the EV is hardly an S200 or common hunting rifle.

It's this old argument ... Everyone using top end target rifles and gimp suits etc probably gives a more professional image of the sport. How does that balance with how it may be offputting for any new interesting parties wanting to give it a go? They probably won't have the budget or inclination to spend that sort of money, just to see if they like it, but they won't see many people on the courses using less expensive ( maybe more basic ) kit.

What are the cost differences between say having a decent hunting pcp with a decent trigger and spending money putting that into a FT style stock ( with hamster and adjustable cheek and butt ) ... and just buying a top end target rifle?

What prices are the top end target rifles starting at? ( er just remembered ... the AR20 is cheaper than most higher end hunting pcps. Maybe we have to ignore that one as a lot of shooters won't class them as 'top end' although there will be examples that an AR20 is more accurate than a Steyr ).

As an example ... can someone provide details of the Huntsman that won the SWEFTA Champs please? I'm presuming it wasn't in a standard Huntsman hunting stock etc?

Sorry for all the questions ... it just interests me.

Last edited by skires; 28th January 2016 at 08:04 AM.
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