Originally Posted by phrogg
...I read an article a while back about a guy who made a thumbhole stock for his Ruger 10/22 and had a special thumb-adjustable screw for barrel harmonics.
That all just sounds fancy and doesn't really help you unless you know what it means, but basically, the guy said he was getting 2 inch groups at 100 yards.
I didn't even know .22s went 100 yards.
Anyway, does anyone have any experience with any .22LR target rifles getting at least mediocre groupings at 100 yards? What would I need? If a Ruger 10/22 and a bull barrel would be the extent of it, I'd probably be willing to invest in a $150 bull barrel/stock and a $90-ish scope (8-32x power) to be shooting at 100 yards.
"match" .22 ammo at Wal-Mart is... what, $5 for 50 rounds, something like that? I know that doesn't compare to the $9 for 550 rounds they've got on the winchester stuff, but it's still cheap as far as ammo goes.
Here is what I've learned:
Regarding 100 yard shooting with a little 22.
Yes, it is certainly possible to do so. In fact, 100 yards is just the beginning. There is also a subculture of gun nuts out there that play with these at 200 yards. It's called "Mini Palma" and it is a hoot to shoot.
Palma is 800, 900, and 1000 yard competitive shooting. Rifles are only allowed to be chambered in 308 Winchester and they must use a 155 grain bullet. Iron sights only and you shoot from prone.
No bags, rests, or bi pods are allowed.
Mini Palma is (this part varies a little depending on where you shoot) 100, 150, and 200 yards with a 22 rimfire. Same general rules though. Iron sights and you shoot from prone. Some matches change the 100 and 150 yard distances to fit their ranges better.
A 22LR at 200 yards is very close ballistically to a 308 at a 1000, in terms of making a windage call anyways. This is why its a great training aid for LR shooters.
Ok, got side tracked, sorry.
Gun specifics. Yes, you can certainly build a 10/22 to hammer at 100 yards. It starts with a premium barrel.
100 dollar drop in "bull" barrels aren't really the answer here if you truly want a high performance 22.
300 dollar barrels are where you should be looking.
If you are like most, you are working within a budget. Given the choice between fancy triggers, stocks, and scopes.
Buying a premium barrel will give you the most significant performance/accuracy increase.
Premium ammunition is the second thing to focus your money on.
Dan Lilja, owner of Lilja Rifle Barrels up in Montana makes a drop in barrel for 10/22's that has the right chamber already cut. Anyone who tinkers with NBRSA knows Dan's reputation as a barrel maker. Great guy and great products!
A competitive bolt gun in 22LR uses a very tight chamber. I learned about all this working for Neal Johnson and Anschutz as a gunsmith on Olympic Target Rifles for resident athletes at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.
The throats on the chambers are short and they are tight. Match grade barrels typically run the minor bore dimension a couple thousanths tighter than what the SAAMI tolerance is.
This "chokes" the bullet and helps insure that it is running concentric to the bore's centerline.
Well, that's great on a bolt gun where you have a powerful camming action when going into battery.
Blow back operated semi autos won't put up with this, so it's modified to what is commonly called the "Benz" chamber. It's a compromise between the two.
The throat region is kept "almost" as tight while the back half of the chamber, the part that supports the case, is loosened up a bit to facilitate operation. (Feeding, chambering, and extraction)
The bullet gets the support it wants and the chamber will let the gun "run" right.
This topic gets so abused and terminology ends up being misused.
I won't go into a long dissertation about grammar.
Simple fix. If you want to devote the time to it, buy a barrel tuner from Neal Johnson's Gunsmithing in Colorado Springs. ( "Neal Johnson's Gunsmithing, Inc. Online Target Shooting Equipment Manual"
Here is a simple way to explain how all this works.
Take a 12" ruler and screw it to your dining room table with 10" of the ruler hanging out in space.
This is your barrel.
Flip the end of the ruler so that it "boings" back and forth.
This represents your barrel as the shock wave from the firing pin spring/hammer drives the striker/hammer into the primer and the cae rim crushes against the barrel resulting in ignition. Chamber pressures rise, and the bullet begins traveling down the barrel. (All this makes the barrel wiggle)
Observing the ruler as it wiggles back and forth will show you there are two locations where the barrel is seemingly motionless for a brief instant.
Time your bullet to leave the crown and enter its flight path at one of these two locations and you gain accuracy.
This is what a barrel tuner does. Tape a penny to the ruler. It alters the ruler's "wiggle".
Change the location of the penny on the ruler, and it will alter this yet again.
A barrel tuner uses a threaded, rotating cylinder that has graduations marked on it. Much like the barrel on a micrometer. By fiddling with the clock position/location of this cylinder, you can "time" the barrel to the ammunition.
This has much the same affect as when you suddenly gain substantial accuracy from bumping a charge a few tenths of a grain on a centerfire rifle cartridge. People call this the barrel's "sweet spot."
Tuners work, but they can also drive you nuts because if you change ANYTHING you must be prepared to start your testing all over again.
Here's a list of things NOT to change if you don't want to spend another full day fussing on the bench:
1. Lot numbers on ammo
2. Guard screw torque.
3. Changing a scope (torque load on ring screws)
4. Changing/replacing any internal fire control parts. (10/22 titanium hot rod parts for instance)
All this should be considered with barrel tuners.
You also need to glue (epoxy) the sleeve to the barrel when using one of these. Clamping it won't work. It'll move and goof you up.
Ok, next subject:
Semi autos and how they kill accuracy.
22LRs are rimfire cartridges. Stack them up in a magazine and what happens? The rim of the case being chambered is pushed over the bearing/sealing ring of the bullet beneath it as the bolt strips it out of the magazine and chambers it.
Because the bullet is soft lead and the case is brass, an inclusion is formed from the brass rim scraping over the bullet. This causes a very subtle change in the center of rotation for the cartridge.
Typical match grade 22LR ammo has a muzzle velocity of around 1050 to 1200 fps. There's a reason for this big deviation that I'll get to.
Barrel twists for target/bench guns are usually 1-16. Doing the math, that breaks down to the bullet spinning between 47,250 and 54,000 rpm.
Now, just imagine a football being thrown with a tire weight taped to the outside. It's going to wobble. The bullet does the same thing.
This wobble will induce a subtle change in flight path and it will cause a group to spread more than if this didn't happen.
I'm not claiming that its a huge difference, but it is there.
Match ammo velocity. One would think that supersonic ammo is for longer distances and subsonic is for close up.
Actually, it's the opposite. The supersonic won't stay supersonic out to 100 yards. It'll shed enough velocity to where it passes back through the sound barrier. This causes a reduction in accuracy.
Subsonic will stay subsonic through its entire flight path so its better for longer ranges. (100 yards and beyond)
All ISSF (International Sports Shooting Foundation) competition for rimfire is held outdoors at 50 meters. (Olympic type shooting) The supersonic ammo will stay above the sound barrier at 50 meters. This is helpful because it reduces time in flight just a little and makes it just a bit more resistant to conditions.
Back to gun stuff:
The other obvious reason for larger groups in semi auto 22's is the use of energy to operate the fire control of the rifle/pistol.
Bolt guns don't do this, all energy generated by the powder charge is used to propel the bullet.
Ok, class dismissed.
No quiz today. . .
Here's a sample of a highly accurate 22LR rifle.
I built this for Cathy Winstead. Cathy is the only person in the history of smallbore silhouette to win both world championship events in small bore rifle silhouette. She won in the heavy gun unlimited class and the hunter lightweight class. Lucky for me, I built both of her rifles. (woo hoo!)
This was done in South Africa in early 2004.
The rifle pictured is an Anschutz 54 action with a custom barrel. The stock is a Boyd's design intended for a 10/22 Ruger. I ordered it as a blank and did the inlet and bedding work.
The scope on it is just a test scope that I use for performance testing on the bench. The gun would never make weight with that big monstrosity on it.
Cathy has always shot a pink gun. She's been shooting since she was very young. We decided it was time for a "ladies pink" instead of the "Gawddy Miami Vice pastel Pepto "dismal" pink" that she had been using.
So, "Rose Quarts Metallic" from PPG it was.
I like it personally. Looks sexy to me.
At 100 yards using Eley TENNEX EPS the gun shoots a five shot group that averages right at about 3/4's of an inch.
Now, five shot groups aren't all that impressive to me. What I was taught with 22's is to shoot TEN five shot groups and then average the spread.
So, you end up shooting a 50 shot group to achieve a "real world" average and expectation for performance.
So, thats the story about the Pink gun.
Hope this helped someone.
Thanks for listening to my rant.