So I bought a 50....where the hell do I shoot it? I'm not exactly good with directions, but thankfully my buddy Jay is and he's taken me to more than a few places where we can reach out to 1,000+ meters.
Anyway, it was a long weekend so we decided to drive out to Merritt, BC after work Thursday night and have a fresh start to scout for a good shooting place at first light. We drove around for a couple of hours and explored several FSR (forest service roads) but didn't see any place we could safely shoot. Then we stumbled on this place, wide open area, grassy rolling hills as far as the eye could see.
Anyway, it was still pretty chilly when the sun was behind the clouds and fingers went numb pretty fast, but we settled down on a spot and decided to give it a whirl. We started off with our Savage 10TRs in .308. Jay was load testing, and I was fortunate to have mine pretty close to zero from a few range trips ago so I was ready to go.
We wrapped up zeroing the .308s at 100m, then the 50 came out.
After snapping a couple of pics, we got the 50 set up for zeroing at 100m. As you can see, I decided to run the Steiner on the 50, mainly because of the warranty, lol! I know the Schmidt would have no trouble holding up to the 50's abuse, but the Steiner has life-time warantee where the Schmidt only has 10. In the unlikely event I blew up the S&B and had no warranty, I would be crying, haha!
The Steiner's controls turn in the opposite direction from what I'm used to so it took a few rounds to get the rifle zeroed, but it was a hoot getting there:
Me shooting the 50 for the first time, I've fired .50bmg machine guns, but this was the first time I've ever fired a bolt action rifle in .50bmg. To tell you the truth, my M14 and some of my shotguns kick harder than this rifle, but the PGW was infinitely more fun to shoot than just about anything I have, lol!
Jay's fired .50bmg rifles before, but this was his first time shooting this one.
After every shot, we had to walk down to the stand and set it up again.
There are other splash marks on the gong from .308 but you can distinctly see the .50 strikes which notonly remove paint, but also expose some of the steel under the paint. One is dead centre of the middle dot, one just right of the 3 o'clock one and one on the 6 o'clock dot. The middle dot was our last shot.
The 50 actually dented the 1/2in AR500 plate, lol!
And the spalding cut a line in the ground after only a few rounds
Jay firing a confirmation shot after we got it zeroed.
Another shot from me after zeroing.
Another shot from me after zeroing.
After zeroing the 50, Jay drove his truck out to set up targets while I stayed back on the radio to give him the range. The Bushnell G-Force ARC 1300 laser range finder was a bit finicky because it was so dry and there was really not a whole lot to bounce the laser off of. I managed to get a reading off the targets at 500m and off his truck at about 750m (748). Beyond that, it was pretty tough, but from his point at 750, he was able to get a reading another 250m away for a full 1km. We didn't have enough gongs and stands for 1km, so we figured we'd make sure we could get hits at 500m and 750, first before moving up.
The gong was useless to us after the first shot with the 50, knocking it down, lol!
Since I knocked down the target at 500m, Jay had no choice but to skip load testing at 500m and go straight from 100m to 750m, lol! We only plinked a little, but the 10TRs proved as accurate and precise as ever, taking only 1 or 2 rounds to walk it onto the gong (with the held of Strelok of course, hahahaha!)
So, we learned two things from this range trip. First, we need a heavier gong and a stornger stand. Second, we really need to stake down the corners of our shooting mats, lol!
Anyway, we could have easily reached out to 1km or even two km, but we were losing light and we had a long drive ahead of us so we called it a day. Since I figured we'd probably be shooting under a grand, I only brought American Eagle 660 grain. Next time when we try to go beyond 1k, I'll bring the 750 grain match ammo.
Of course, Jay had to perform at least one act of jack-assery before leaving, lol!