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Special Interest => Guns and Gear => Topic started by: socalserf on October 30, 2009, 09:26:30 pm

Title: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: socalserf on October 30, 2009, 09:26:30 pm
I have been reading about F-Class for a number of years. It looks interesting.
Here is a quick write up with lots of links.
The next step after becoming an Appleseed Rifleman?


Quote
...If you already have a Remington 700, Winchester Model 70, or other rifle that can shoot one MOA or better at 100 yards, you can get it tuned up for 1000-yard F-Class. You'll need a good scope with enough adjustment to get from a 100 or 200-yard zero to 1000 yards. The easiest way to ensure the scope will make it is to use an inclined scope base, which usually have 20 or 30 MOA incline built in. The scope should have external target knobs, and top-end magnification at least 12x. Popular scopes for F-Class include the Leupold Mark 4 and VX-III Long Range models, and the Nightforce NXS models.

Next, you need a load that will stay at supersonic speed to the target. As a general rule, a bullet that has a ballistic coefficient (BC) of 0.50 or higher launched at 2600 fps or faster will make it to 1000 yards. Great long-range loads generally have a BC of 0.60 or higher and are shot at 2850 fps or faster. In .308 Winchester, the Federal or Black Hills 175-grain, or Lapua 155-grain loads will work. In .300 Winchester Magnum, the 190-grain loads from Federal and Black Hills are good choices. Rifles that are built specifically for F-Class often use the long, sleek, and high-BC bullets in 6.5 mm and 7 mm calibers such as .260 Remington, 6.5-284 Norma, 7 mm Remington Magnum or 7 mm Winchester Short Magnum.

http://westernrifleshooters.blogspot.com/2009/10/have-you-thought-about-f-class.html
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: securitysix on October 30, 2009, 11:00:04 pm
Finding a .30 caliber bullet with a BC of .5 can sometimes be an adventure.  For example, the only .30 caliber Hornady bullet I can find with a BC greater than .5 is the 208 grain A-Max.  My Remington 788 tends to prefer bullets in the 150 to 168 grain range, so that bullet is out.  None of the other .308" diameter Hornady bullets break .5 BC although some come close.  The 155 grain Palma MatchKing from Sierra runs .504 above 2700 FPS, so it might be a good choice.  My Savage likes the 175 grain MatchKing, which shows a BC of .505 at 2800 FPS.

It is easier to find high BC bullets in .264", .277" and .284" diameters, so guys shooting 6.5's, .270/6.8s, or 7mms will actually have an advantage in the BC game.  The higher ballistic coefficients seem to come from the heavy-for-caliber bullets.  This isn't always going to be the case, of course.  A heavy for the caliber round nose is going to have a pretty terrible BC (think .308" 220 grain RN, for example).  But, heavy for caliber, pointed, and boat tail seems to be the key to a high BC, near as I can tell.

Of course, a guy could always go with a .50 BMG.  The 750 grain Hornady A-Max in .510" diameter has a BC well over 1, which solves the BC problem.

Sounds interesting, socal, but right now, I'll be happy becoming proficient from 200 to 500 yards.  :)
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: socalserf on October 30, 2009, 11:36:24 pm
Sounds interesting, socal, but right now, I'll be happy becoming proficient from 200 to 500 yards.  :)

You know my answer to that problem. ^_^

And yes, 6.5s have a seroius advantage in BC.
I'd love a new Savage in 6.5 Creedmoor.
Quote
This new class of medium-sized 6.5 mm cartridges will fit properly in short actions (308 size) and feed from the detachable box magazine (DBM) systems becoming ubiquitous on tactical bolt rifles. They have less recoil than 308 but provide better trajectory performance for both wind and drop than the standard 190gr SMK load in .300 Winchester Magnum, and have barrel life over 4000 rounds, or about twice what you can expect from Tubb's 6XC, 6.5-284 Norma, or 7mm Remington Magnum. Launching the high-BC 130-142-grain bullets at a moderate velocity is a good recipe for a good long-range performance without the costs of the barrel-burners. Once you're using the same high-BC bullet, adding 150 fps to get 2970 fps instead of a more sedate 2820 fps only gains about four inches of wind drift per 10 mph cross!
http://demigodllc.com/articles/6.5-shootout-260-6.5x47-6.5-creedmoor/
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: slidemansailor on October 31, 2009, 12:31:09 am
Sadly, I seem to need outside inspiration to go shooting ... some family to expose to it, someone asking for coaching, a shooting buddy wanting company and, most often though too rare, a match of some kind.  An F-class match would be a nice draw if it happened within reasonable reach on a day I was available.  That hasn't happened yet, but I almost put a trip to a Montana match together once (does that count? I saw one on a calendar once and thought of it???)

Beyond 600 yards is mostly a curiosity to me. I never expect to try for anything out there.  I could be pleasantly surprised, but will be quite happy, in fact I am quite happy with me'n'my Super SASS at 600 yards where I can put 20 out of 20 in the 10-ring (12-inches across).  I would like a lot more time with it until I am more consistently in the X-ring (6 inches across).  And at least as interested in learning how to, and practicing using the mil-dot scope to estimate and adjust for varying distances.

So in that F-Class might get me shooting and practicing with my best rifle, I have definitely thought about it and will shoot a match if it becomes feasible.

Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: socalserf on October 31, 2009, 01:29:14 am
Quote
...in fact I am quite happy with me'n'my Super SASS at 600 yards where I can put 20 out of 20 in the 10-ring (12-inches across).

I'd be very happy to shoot that well myself, well done!
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: Rarick on October 31, 2009, 05:32:03 am
That's good shooting.  next step, can you do it while "running away"?
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: socalserf on October 31, 2009, 06:02:46 am
One of the reasons I haven't taken up F-class shooting, money.
A basic rig costs 3-5k.
That doesn't include any reloading setup, which is needed to be effective, competitive, and finacially sane.
It's the same problem with High Power shooting. A basic rig is still $$$, not as bad as F-class but still beyond my means.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: slidemansailor on October 31, 2009, 01:21:43 pm
One of the reasons I haven't taken up F-class shooting, money.
A basic rig costs 3-5k.
That doesn't include any reloading setup, which is needed to be effective, competitive, and finacially sane.
It's the same problem with High Power shooting. A basic rig is still $$$, not as bad as F-class but still beyond my means.

That is a problem for sure. When I sold my business my "gold watch for 22 years of dedicated service" was a good trombone and a good rifle. I'd never had either. I was just plain lucky on the trombone, but the rifle was more that I had a serious rifleman for a friend. Both turned out to be just what I wanted.

The Armalite AR-10 Super SASS (http://www.armalite.com/ItemForm.aspx?item=10SBF&ReturnUrl=Categories.aspx?Category=f4bd4a13-55d1-41aa-aea0-49488ec48776) was developed to compete for a federal contract. It is easy to shoot well from a prone position, or any position where the bipod can be utilized using store-bought Federal match ammo. Out to 600 yards, anyone with the basics down can hit within a 12" circle (I'm proof).  It will not win F-class matches, but will run with the pack of those far more specialized guns. At $3,078, it doesn't cost quite as much. While they are designed for the match rules, the SASS is designed as a sniper rifle.

As for high power, an Armalite M15 National Match (http://www.armalite.com/ItemForm.aspx?item=15A2NM&ReturnUrl=Categories.aspx?Category=8e8e5de6-5022-483e-812b-822e58014822) is as good as they get and lists for $1388.  This is even more versatile than the SASS, as it will shoot and handle well in prone as well as sitting and standing positions. As with 99% of the rifles in CMP/High Power nowadays, it shoots .223, which is fine for paper punching at 600 yards, but considered a bit low on power that far out.... but who cares?.. It's real fine at real iron-sight ranges.

That's good shooting.  next step, can you do it while "running away"?

I came to a realization that with the various attributes of my body, some of which I earned by being an exuberant, invulnerable youth, I am no longer designed for running away.  Thus my "dream rifle" specs included adequate power and accuracy at longer distances so I could stay put while the young guys played shoot, run, duck and shoot some more.  I have no intention of running.  I'll cover their movements.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: Bill St. Clair on October 31, 2009, 03:26:54 pm
That is a problem for sure. When I sold my business my "gold watch for 22 years of dedicated service" was a good trombone and a good rifle. I'd never had either. I was just plain lucky on the trombone, but the rifle was more that I had a serious rifleman for a friend. Both turned out to be just what I wanted.

Which trombone did you get, slideman? I'm still playing the King 3B with an F-attachment that I bought in high school in 1972. Has a few dents, and the slide needs water spray more often than it used to, but it still sounds good.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: Radio Flyer on October 31, 2009, 07:20:39 pm
Finding a .30 caliber bullet with a BC of .5 can sometimes be an adventure.  For example, the only .30 caliber Hornady bullet I can find with a BC greater than .5 is the 208 grain A-Max.  My Remington 788 tends to prefer bullets in the 150 to 168 grain range, so that bullet is out.  None of the other .308" diameter Hornady bullets break .5 BC although some come close.  The 155 grain Palma MatchKing from Sierra runs .504 above 2700 FPS, so it might be a good choice.  My Savage likes the 175 grain MatchKing, which shows a BC of .505 at 2800 FPS.

It is easier to find high BC bullets in .264", .277" and .284" diameters, so guys shooting 6.5's, .270/6.8s, or 7mms will actually have an advantage in the BC game.  The higher ballistic coefficients seem to come from the heavy-for-caliber bullets.  This isn't always going to be the case, of course.  A heavy for the caliber round nose is going to have a pretty terrible BC (think .308" 220 grain RN, for example).  But, heavy for caliber, pointed, and boat tail seems to be the key to a high BC, near as I can tell.

We also have a huge problem with mathematical BC measurements because it does not take into effect far too many environmental factors, it can be a general guide but things like VLD (Very-low-drag) bullet design and RBBT (rebated boat tail) designs throw a kink into mathematical formulas but gain performance often over 15% per additional feature.

The smaller the diameter to bullet the lessor effect the nose shape has on the flight of the bullet once the ogive is over 6s, boat-tail designs add to this but that is also less to some extent with small diameter bullets - RBBT bullets make little improvement at .228 and under while with .24 and greater they have a huge impact.

An interesting side note is that the Swiss started the "Scheutzen" spitzer and spire pointed bullets (jacketed spitzer bullets generally credited to the Swiss Captain and inventor Edouard Rubin) to improve small arms ballistics then later the French were the first to introduce a jacketed boat tail bullet into military use.


Ogive - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ogive

Very-low-drag bullet - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Very-low-drag_bullet

A long PDF about the RBBT - http://www.swage.com/ftp/rbt.pdf

One of the other issues is the shank of the bullet making a very long and pointed bullet impractical because some of the bullet has to contact the rifling and enough of the bullet has to block the expanding gasses and create a block to force the projectile out without becoming deformed.

If you want great long distance bullet performance you will have to load bullets of the VLD designs and the best are RBBT-VLD bi-metallic jacketed bullets.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: gridboy on October 31, 2009, 08:54:11 pm

http://www.savagearms.com/12f_class.htm

Savage has a very nice-looking rifle for this.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: Radio Flyer on October 31, 2009, 09:45:24 pm
Here is a good short run down of this on a site I visit often... (but for other reasons).

http://www.6mmbr.com/Fclass.html


VLD bullets for loading...

http://www.customprojectile.com/30-Cal-RBT-AT-180_p_42.html

http://www.bergerbullets.com/Products/Target%20Bullets.html

I have 8s VLD dies to make RBBT in .308 cal I use in a 700 I have set up for 800 to entry level F class, but I use from a bench at our local range with a small group of local guys that like to shoot 500, 800, 1000 and 1500 just for fun (all of us load our own, but I am the only swage die user).

The best shooter from 1000 plus is one guy's .300 Win Mag that shoots some 180 flat base and RBBT bullets I make for that rifle, he is waiting for a set of Corbin dies based on my experimental dies Corbin made for me in the late 90's.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: securitysix on November 01, 2009, 12:24:56 am
One of the reasons I haven't taken up F-class shooting, money.
A basic rig costs 3-5k.
That doesn't include any reloading setup, which is needed to be effective, competitive, and finacially sane.
It's the same problem with High Power shooting. A basic rig is still $$$, not as bad as F-class but still beyond my means.


Not necessarily.  I used to hang out on the HuntAmerica forums years ago.  One of the guys on there had a stock bolt-action .30-06 (can't remember if it was a Remington 700 or a Winchester model 70) with a Leopold scope that he claimed to be able to hit a 10" gong at 1000 yards consistently.  You may not need to do anything super special.  Then again, you might.

If I were building one from scratch, I'd probably start with a Savage action (easier to find left-handed ones), add a Timney or Jewell trigger, 6.5-20x50 Burris Fullfield Tac 30 scope, and chamber it for either .260 Reminton or 6.5x55 Swedish Mauser.  If I could find a lefty Mauser action, I might entertain the idea of building up one in 8mm Mauser launching 200 grain SMKs instead, but I think the 6.5s are probably a better way to go.

Barring that, I'd probably go with either my Remington 788 or my Savage 12FLV, both in .308 (probably the Savage since it likes 175 gr. SMKs and it's already wearing a 6.5-20x42 Simmons).
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: socalserf on November 01, 2009, 06:46:09 am
Here is a good short run down of this on a site I visit often... (but for other reasons).

http://www.6mmbr.com/Fclass.html


VLD bullets for loading...

http://www.customprojectile.com/30-Cal-RBT-AT-180_p_42.html

http://www.bergerbullets.com/Products/Target%20Bullets.html

I have 8s VLD dies to make RBBT in .308 cal I use in a 700 I have set up for 800 to entry level F class, but I use from a bench at our local range with a small group of local guys that like to shoot 500, 800, 1000 and 1500 just for fun (all of us load our own, but I am the only swage die user).

The best shooter from 1000 plus is one guy's .300 Win Mag that shoots some 180 flat base and RBBT bullets I make for that rifle, he is waiting for a set of Corbin dies based on my experimental dies Corbin made for me in the late 90's.

WOW. Great links RF.
That 6mmBR looks like the cats meow.

Say have you ever done a bullet making thread?
That stuff on rabbeted boat tails explains a lot.
You make those? Whey Kewl.


As for high power, an Armalite M15 National Match (http://www.armalite.com/ItemForm.aspx?item=15A2NM&ReturnUrl=Categories.aspx?Category=8e8e5de6-5022-483e-812b-822e58014822) is as good as they get and lists for $1388. This is even more versatile than the SASS, as it will shoot and handle well in prone as well as sitting and standing positions. As with 99% of the rifles in CMP/High Power nowadays, it shoots .223, which is fine for paper punching at 600 yards, but considered a bit low on power that far out.... but who cares?.. It's real fine at real iron-sight ranges.


Yeah those are tempting, for sure.
The one time I did high power I was paired with a serious shooter using an AR.
Dude could shoot! His rifle was Service Rifle class, and he was slamming one X after another.
It is hard to beat the AR platform for accuracy and ergonomics.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: Radio Flyer on November 01, 2009, 12:36:24 pm
A 1000 yard world record holder...

Benchrest, 3.048 inches for a .308 bullet shooting an "Ackley improved" 300.

Note the rifle - a new idea for BR shooting - Water cooled in the "heavy class".

http://longrangeshooter.com/2009/06/new-1000-yard-shooting-record/


The one general theme from record holder to record holder is handloading and high quality bullets, extreme record holders are all using hand swaged bullets and the one rule for hand swaged bullets is that there is not enough time in the day to get orders finished - finding hand swaged bullets is difficult because of the demand.

Most of the high quality hand swaged bullets are available to within one grain of weight from each other.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: Radio Flyer on November 01, 2009, 01:12:34 pm
New thread on bullets.... was thinking about that...

For now here is a page on bullet design with drawings to make it simple.

http://www.corbins.com/design.htm

Terms and photos.

http://www.corbins.com/specs.htm
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: socalserf on November 01, 2009, 10:10:35 pm
I was looking through the Corbins site.
They have a page on bullet making as a business.
Quote
Relatively low investment of from about $600 to $10,000 make the risk fairly low, and return on investment very high, on the order of 500% annually.
It looked great until I read that you need a FFL Class 6 license.
Now the cost is low, 30 FRNs for 3 years, but we all know that once you get involved with the
BATFE they OWN you.
'Simon says, You are now a felon.' (You forgot to dot an 'I', go to prison for ten years.)
Too bad. Though it might work in MT/TN if you sell only with in the state.
(Not that I would want to be the test case.)
http://www.corbins.com/business.htm
Quote
There is a lot of misinformation and unfounded fear surrounding the license. Some people think the BAFT can just storm in at any time without a warrant and demand to see your records. No. Wrong. They probably couldn't care less about your records in the first place, because people who manufacture bullets to sell and do not load ammo or sell guns are just about the last people they care about. There's little or nothing to trace. But they do have the right to inspect your records, during the normal hours and days of operation that you put on your license. If you work part time, that could be Saturdays from noon to four in the afternoon. Whatever you say on the license application is your business hours for the term of the license. That is when the agent can visit and ask to see information. All the talk about warrants and searches has to do with criminal cases, not ordinary business! For heaven's sake! It would be funny if it wasn't such a wide-spread misconception.
Yeah right. The Feds are always perfectly reasonable, you can trust them with your life.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: Radio Flyer on November 01, 2009, 11:02:56 pm
I was looking through the Corbins site.
They have a page on bullet making as a business.

Yep, and I sold mine keeping only select hand operated tools and dies...

I did have a C/T-6 and FFL (Type 1) you can get any of the "Types" by themselves but what is called a "Class 1,2,3" requires one of the FFL "Types" first... We all end up messing up the class and type designations mostly because the red-headed step child Type 6 is manufacturing as is the addition of a "Class 2" but to have a class 2 addition you have to have other "types" not a T6.

All very confusing and you are correct the risk is "what you pay" to be in "business" just like making a firearm any "civilian" can make any non-special (short barrel, automatic, or sonics suppressed) that complies with import laws - as long as you don't sell that "made for yourself" firearm. (Pissed off yet?)

The position is that if you want to be in "business" you have to render onto the .gov what .gov thinks is .gov's....

You would be surprised at how many T6 manufacturers are out there - reloads for sale, cast lead bullets for sale, and often other components require a T6 if you want to SELL the product...

I think I am getting ill typing this crap - yes it is a nightmare, but the cost of a T6 is one of the lowest as is the chance of having a "visit" there are many T6 that have been in business for over 20 years and never had even a letter or a call... They just don't care.... now the Excise taxes are a different story...

Gee, I can't remember why I got out of business both T1 and T6 with C2,3 associates....  :rolleyes:

Think that is bad try to import medicine :BangHead: or become an importer for computer parts....   :puke:
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: socalserf on November 01, 2009, 11:21:04 pm
The more I read about Swaging the more tempting it is.
Just the hobby aspect is wonderful, all the advantages of casting with none of the downside.
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: Radio Flyer on November 02, 2009, 09:16:49 pm

Sure it costs that sort of money if you wish to be competitive , that said one can have a great deal of fun in F class just in the 'getting out and shooting ' factor.
...

It's great practice for finding out *exactly* what your rifle will do way downrange from what you're ever likely to shoot it in the field.

Fun - I think a lot of us who choose one type of shooting or another and even get involved in competitive shooting forget the fun part...

Who can tell you what is good for you or not? If you want to win be prepared to spend lots of money, but if you want to challenge yourself and have some fun...

Benchrest, Highpower, service rifle, F class and others have some hard core competitors but you do not have to shoot to win... you can just shoot for yourself and sometimes a group can make that more fun...

Not everyone wants to sit at a bench alone for hours working on loads and it is not necessary depending on your end desire...

I can have just as much fun with an inexpensive .22 and junk targets (or even better rats at a junkyard or crows at the river) I am trying to get my kids to see shooting as fun... One likes "cowboy" guns, one likes .22 autoloaders, and one just likes anything that goes boom...

I have an option I picked up on a whim several years ago that has to be the single best scope for the money I have ever bought.

http://swfa.com:80/SWFA-SS-Scopes-C1719.aspx

I have the 10x42 (I prefer a fixed power scope) and I was shocked at how good this was for the money I paid, I would not hesitate to suggest this series of optics, are they perfect, no but you would have to drop almost twice the price to get the functional equal. This company also makes some inexpensive mounts that are of very good value just for this series of optics.

I have been thinking about getting the savage Model 12 Varminter with that "AccuTrigger" (I like that laminated stock) with the above scope and mounts for a shooter or that new TC Icon...
Title: Re: Have You Thought About F-Class?
Post by: slidemansailor on November 03, 2009, 12:57:16 am
Quote
Who can tell you what is good for you or not? If you want to win be prepared to spend lots of money, but if you want to challenge yourself and have some fun...

Benchrest, Highpower, service rifle, F class and others have some hard core competitors but you do not have to shoot to win... you can just shoot for yourself and sometimes a group can make that more fun...

SO TRUE.  I left N. Calif. and sports car racing an obsolete street car on street tires, enjoying it to the ultimate, caring not a whit about where I finished, but coming surprisingly close to the top. In Idaho, the sports cars became guns and race track became the shooting club.

The game is the same. The winners are completely focused and committed both financially and emotionally. They have ONE hobby; one driving force in their lives. That's not a bad thing, it's just not my thing. There is a whole bunch to learn from them and they are eager to share it with you. 

I can do at 600 yards what they can do at 1,000...  I guess I'll have to sit closer to the action. I can do in 60 seconds what they can do in 25... I guess I'll have to be more alert.

The point of organized shooting is to shoot. If having company motivates you like it does me, go join the gang and find a nice comfy spot in the middle... strive to outgrow your mediocrity and find good coaches willing to share their knowledge, tools and talent.