This is an answer to a post made on alt.hunting
I thought maybe a "couple" of people here might not know this information
>> I am going to purchase a "long range" (400 +) deer rifle. I have
>> personaly shot groundhogs with a Browning Stainless Stalker A-bolt at
>> over 500 yards. That was 15 years ago. Are Brownings still as accurate
>> and what others should I look at? Tikka, Sako, model numbers etc.
> Savage. Period.
I don't know
I have been able to take "any" Remington,, take a few moments ,, sometimes just with a pocket knife, remove the forward pressure point on the stock (thus free floating the barrel), adjust the trigger down to 2 lbs or under, and "everyone" of them "so far", shot under 1 inch at a 100 yds, I had a 308, and 7-08 go under 3/8 inch groups,, the majority averaged 3/8 to 3/4 inch groups. I got the 308 and 7-08 from people who claimed they could not get 5 inch groups out of them, I didn't even shoot them until I floated them and lightened their triggers
One thing though ,, I have found out at the range, when people were getting bad groups out of their rifles from the bench,, it was the shooter, not the rifle or his ammo. When some one would complain about 4 inch groups from their 7 mag, I would ask to shoot it for group, I would end up with 1 1/4 inch groups from that rifle they claimed would not shoot.
I have found very few hunters,, that actually know how to bench shoot, the whole idea of shooting from the bench is taking every possible "shooter" error out of the test, you want to know "only" what the rifle and ammo will do.
Just holding a rifle firmly against the shoulder from the bench will makes groups spread 1 to 2 inches. I found this out the first time I shot a 22-250 from the bench with a 36 X varmint scope, every time my heart beat I could see the cross hairs jump more than an inch on the target.
Trigger pull.. if it is heavy, can easily cause rifle movement just prior to the rifle firing.
The biggest thing though is flinch by hunters shooting their heavy recoiling rifles from the bench, you have twice the felt recoil from bench shooting than while standing, they anticipate the recoil, "before" it happens, sometimes this recoil can be brutal, you mind throws the flinch on, 1/100 of a second prior to the round firing
People flinch even when shooting 223's, it is a spontaneous automatic reaction to a loud noise, (reaction to heavy recoil makes it much worst) everyone does it, even if they swear they don't, no one can stop it. The "trick" is,, make sure it happens "after" the bullet leaves the barrel.
How do you know, if your anticipating the flinch and opening up your groups ?
What color smoke is coming out the end of your rifle ?
I have heard a thousand times "my rifle does not smoke, it uses smokeless powder", the key part of the word smokeless is "less",, it still creates smoke, just a whole lot "less" than Black Powder.
What does knowing what color is the smoke have to do with hitting your target ?
Part of the "flinch" reaction is blinking your eyes, you can't blink in 1/1000 of a sec. of an action that causes it, this blinking reaction is just part of your entire bodies reaction that occurs at the same time, if this happens prior to the bullet leaving the barrel, you will open your groups way up. If you don't flinch until after the round fires, you can't blink fast enough, not to see the smoke leaving the end of your rifle.
Now just how do you control this automatic anticipation your mind has to your rifle firing ?
By not letting your mind know "in advance" when your rifle is going to fire.
There are few hunters that are "startled" (different than flinching by the way) when their firearm fires,, it is more body reaction than flinching,, that heart stopping reaction (jump, like when someone behind and very close to you shoots and your not expecting it)
Being "startled" every time the gun fires, is what separates the true shooters, from the lead slingers,, ever time your surprised like that, when your gun fires,,,,,,, you see the smoke coming out of the barrel
There are a couple of tricks we use to train people on how to do this
SpecTastic Wiggle Rig,
Fishing lure remote control
See lure video you won't believe