Arms Locker banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,165 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm pretty surprised at some of the comments on "range". I trained as an Infantryman with a 7.62MM M-14, and routinely hit 3/4 size sillouhettes at 400 meters, 8 times out of ten. With an M-16, the same at 300 meters. I got an "Expert" rating, but the "Sharpshooter" rating was still 6 hits out of 10. "Marksman" was 4 hit's out of 10. It wasn't that difficult. When I went to work for the DOJ, All your shot's had to be in the kill zone at 25 yards to qualify as a trainee instructor. (S&W M10 Heavy barrel, 15 shots). When I was instructing later with the Ruger P89 9MM, everyone who held a LEO position had to qualify once a year by hitting a Transtar 1 target 21 times out 30. Were talking secretary's who fired a gun once a year. 30 round course at 5, 15, and 25 yards. It took a lot of one on one training, but they all qualified. Why does 200 yards with a rifle, or 25 yards with a handgun strike people as "long range"?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,609 Posts
It only qualifies as long range if you have limited shooting experience.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,118 Posts
Why does 200 yards with a rifle, or 25 yards with a handgun strike people as "long range"?
Mostly because as pointed out, people lack experience at longer ranges, but there are other reasons. One of these other reason, is also why people lack such experience - many ranges only go out to 25 yards or maybe 50 yards. Another reason that these seem like long ranges is because many people who train in firearms only do so at ranges that are way too short - fault of their instructors or because no long range ranges are available. Another reason for such consideration of these as long ranges is the fact that most handgun fights in civilian life take place within 7 yards. Rifle use in an urban or suburban environment are also likely to be at no more than about 125 yards. Most hunting is done within 100 yards (note I said most).

Now as far a really practical matters go, 25 yards is actually a fairly long range for a handgun. Sure you can shoot out to 50 accurately at a stationary target, or even out to 100. Try that on a moving target in an area where there are innocents beyond your target but in the line of fire. I am not of the full auto fire sweep to let G(g)od sort them out frame of mind, nor am I of the frame of mind to shoot at targets that far away if I do not absolutely have to with a pistol. I have to be selective when I fire in order to maintain my integrity. If I shoot to kill, not caring whom I will have killed or wounded, there would have been no point for me to kill in the first place with very few exceptions. A distance of 25 yards is not midrange for a pistol, it is long range, that is a fact, just as would be 50, 75 or 100 yards. In fact 100 yards is in the great majority of caes way to far to be fioring a pistol. You should rather be thinking of tactical retreat, or of how to get in closer if you absolutely have to shoot the other guy.

As for a rifle, no 100 yards is not very long range unless you are firing something like a .22LR, or maybe a carbine with open sights. It would be, in my opinion, mid range. Some people just never get the opportunity to fire long range with a firearm so they may think that 100 yards is far off in a firefight with a rifle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,890 Posts
Glenn, perhaps I should clarify something.
My life doesn't revolve around SHTF or defensive shooting.
No, I wouldn't use a handgun at 100 yards for a "defensive shooting", but it has taken game at that range, and does well at the shooting range.
For rifle, uless you're talking about pistol-caliber rifles or something, 200 yards is short range. I guess some people just can't shoot is all. <~~ [Nuke countdown. . .10...9...8...7...]
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,118 Posts
Well I beg to differ on the rifle range, 200 yards is not short range but mid range for some rifles and the great majority of shooters of those certain rifles, and it is pretty long range for others for almost all shooting situations except at stationary targets. A for instance would be the .35 Remington. This is a rifle round, and 200 yards is a long range shot with this round as per the hunting experts out there whose works have read; this even though someone could shoot it lots further. It don't think it was designed to be fired at much longer ranges, therefor anything at or over that limit or about that limit would be long range for a rifle in that caliber. There are many others too.

As for short ranges for a rifle, in general I don't believe 200 yards is short range except maybe for a well fitted sniper rifle in extremely competent hands or maybe some supercartridge, but that is just my opinion.

As to the pistol or revolver, shooting game at 100 yards in a very long range for that type of firearm even one with a huge barrel length although then you are getting closer to a carbine. Pistols and revolvers were designed as close in firearms, anything over 50 yards is pretty long range for them despite your abilities. I too can go to the range and consistently hit targets at about 90 yards (that is the range limit at one of the ranges to which I go) with a pistol or revolver with open iron sights. I would not choose to hunt game at that distance but would rather have them come in close because of the greater risk of only wounding or completely missing an animal at that distance. Sure I could hit them in most cases, but that does not make those shots short or medium range for a pistol or revolver, they are long range shots for a regular handgun (by regular I mean about 4 to 6 inch barrels, scoped or not; and I do not mean a single shot pistol with a 10 or 12 inch barrel or a revolver fitted with 8 inch or better barrel and so on). I guess what I am saying is that regardless of your shooting skills, 50 yards of more is long range pistol shooting simply because of for what the gun was designed.

Just my 3 cents.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,890 Posts
7.5" SRH, they don't make 'em any shorter than that, even though it's longer than a "regular" handgun. If my post was still around, it'd be seen that I said 100 yards was a LONG range shot for a pistol, and that I also wouldn't choose to FIGHT with one at that range.

As for rifles at 200 yards, most of the guns that are said to be "200 yard guns" (.30-30, .35 Rem, 45-70, .450, etc) are that way beacuse of the SIGHTS put on at the factory. With proper sights, these rifles have quite a bit more range than that (and enough killing power).

I suppose if you want to get down to brass tacks, the proper question would be "For X firearm, why do people think Y range is long range?"

However in the general sense of Terry's question, for MOST rifles, 200 yards is short range, and most full-medium sized pistols 25 yards is short range.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,062 Posts
This thread made me think of something. Seems to me that you guys who learned how to shoot an iron-sighted battle rifle proficiently might have a bit of an edge over those who didn't when it comes to shooting scoped guns. Haven't digested the thought yet, but when compared to iron sights, especially at ranges past 100 yards, I know that I have a more basic feel for the flight of the round than I do when using a scope. Again, this is an immature idea (haven't really though it through), and I have not had it my head long enough to think it through. What do you guys think? Do you even understand what I'm gettin' at - the "feel" for the round you get when shooting under irons vs. a scope?

Best,
Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
720 Posts
BJ,
I think you're onto something there. There does seem to be more "zen" involved for me when shooting irons, the communication with the weapon thru the front sight and what it's told me before about resting the post on a part of the target to acheive the desired point of impact, etcetera...
SatCong
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,117 Posts
irregardless, it's a LOT easier to see or hit with scope

because you can SEE mirage, SEE the wind's effects (on vegetation, dust, etc)and see the target more clearly, in bad light, thick cover, PICK a hole in that cover to shoot thru, NOTICE that he's standing at a slight angle, etc, etc. with the scope than you can with just your eyes. Iron sights shoot to quite diff POI'S, depending upon the angle of the sun, too. As much as 2 MOA diff, at dawn or dusk, for instance. Why do you THINK long range rifle matches have wind flags and spotter shots, hmm?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,165 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I disagree totally with this. A teloscopic sight helps you see better, not hit better. You still have breathing, trigger control, and weather conditions to contend with. 'Scopes are kind of fragile, too. My hunting rifles have 'scopes, but my "Oh, S***, What was that?" rifles do not.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,118 Posts
All other things being equal, sure it helps you hit better if only because you see it better. I also understand the thing about the Zen sort of feeling about the flight of the bullet. This is what Kentuckey windage was based upon more or less, or as John Wayne once said "windage and elevation...". It is a lot more obvious with the bow and arrow but is kind of the same thing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,062 Posts
I think your disagreement is my fault - I could have stated my thought more clearly. Let me see if I can remedy that: Let's say you have two riflemen, both shooting under optics, and one has substantial experience shooting irons and the other none. It occurs to me that, everything else being equal, the former would have a better - admittedly very slight, but still better - subconscious "feel" for the shot.

Terry is completely correct that an optic helps the shooter see better, not hit better. That is a crucial point that, unfortunately, is lost on many riflemen, especially the hunters with whom I regularly come in contact, many of whom seem to think that one's ability to competently hit a target increases in direct proportion to the cost of the scope he's using (e.g.: "I want to hit a more distant target, so I bought a higher-magnification scope.")

Certainly, the pure-scope guys enjoy the benefits of substantial practice, and the absorbed information that goes with it. This is the same zen, as SatCong so aptly described it, which I would argue is possible only through substantial experience shooting rifles, sighted with irons OR optics, and absorbing both the observed and subconsciously imparted effects of the bullet on its way to the target - andy's point.

The difference I am suggesting - and again with two well-practiced riflemen it would be admittedly slight - is that the information the iron-sight guys have picked up over time might be more detailed and of broader scope. Why? Because over time it has been received directly from the reactive indicator instead of through the scope, and without the scope to filter the incoming data, the entirety of the situation surrouding each piece of reactive indicia is received.

Clear as mud?

Let's approach it from another direction. Let say you have the same two experienced riflemen, all things equal as before, one experienced with both irons and optics and the other with optics only. Would I be incorrect in assuming that in a heads-up contest (remember, this is a question in a vaccuum - no external factors to contend with - sorta like the rifle version of the IROC races? :D) that the shooter with the additional iron-sight experience might have a slight edge? Or perhaps even more precisely, have a slight edge IF an unusual set of shot factors presented itself?

Regards,
Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,062 Posts
Glenn Bartley said:
It is a lot more obvious with the bow and arrow but is kind of the same thing.
Yes! Exactly my point! The analogy would be two archers, both with substantial experience shooting bows with in-string peep sights, but only one also having substantial experience with instinctive shooting (meaning without a peep). A big deer appears and presents only a small opening through which the hunter must thread his arrow. It's windy, and a branch is moving in and out of the intended arrow path. I'd say the guy with the substantial un-sighted experience would have a better feel as to when to precisely time the shot so that the arrow passes when the limb is out of the way.

Regards,
Jon
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top