Fly Shoot Statistics

Following are some statistics from the Fly Shoots conducted at the SSAA ACT Range at Majura during 2001 and 2002. As you will read there is a diverse selection of equipment being used by competitors and there is no set outfit that will guarantee a good score. However, the keen reader will notice some trend that should allow them to benefit from the experience of others.

The final point to notice is the column marked "Targets Shot". This is based on a five target match and is used to highlight a statistical trend or pattern of usage.

Components used since 2001

Actions

Heavy Gun

Light Gun

Brand

Targets shot

%

Brand

Targets shot

%

Remington (inc Sleeved)

130

48.1

Remington (inc Sleeved)

170

46.6

M-17

25

9.3

Sako

30

8.2

Tobler

25

9.3

M 98

30

8.2

PCR

20

7.4

Savage

20

5.5

Patsky

20

7.4

Omark

20

5.5

PSECO

15

5.6

Winchester

20

5.5

Kodiak

15

5.6

Barnard

15

4.1

M 98

10

3.7

Grunig

10

2.7

Ruger

5

1.9

PCR

10

2.7

Whitworth

5

1.9

BSA

10

2.7

Parker Hale

5

1.4

Martini

5

1.4

RPA

5

1.4

Wolfman

5

1.4

Stolle

5

1.4

Shilen

5

1.4

Total Targets shot:

270

Total Targets shot:

365

Without a doubt Remington is the action of choice for competitors in the Fly Shoot by an overwhelming margin. What is noticeable is the low numbers of custom actions in the list, reflecting the high price of US equipment.

 

 

 

 

Barrels

Heavy Gun

Light Gun

Brand

Targets shot

%

Brand

Targets shot

%

Tobler

110

40.7

Tobler

130

35.6

Maddco

95

35.2

Maddco

105

28.8

Hart

20

7.4

Truflite

40

11.0

MAB

20

7.4

Black Mountain

15

4.1

Factory

5

1.9

MAB

20

5.5

Shilen

15

5.6

Factory

30

8.2

Truflite

5

1.9

Shilen

15

4.1

Kreiger

5

1.4

Omark

5

1.4

Total Targets shot:

270

Total Targets shot:

365

Australian barrel makers stand proud in the eyes of precision Fly shooters with over 75% of Heavy Gun shooters and 64% of Light Gun shooters choosing to use either Tobler or Maddco barrels.

Stocks

Heavy Gun

Light Gun

Brand

Targets shot

%

Brand

Targets shot

%

ProStock

15

5.6

Self

70

19.2

McMillan

75

27.8

Factory

65

17.8

Six

45

16.7

McMillan

80

21.9

Self

60

22.2

Choate

25

6.8

Taylor

15

5.6

Masden

5

1.4

Heald

10

3.7

Shilen

10

2.7

Shehane

10

3.7

Shehane

20

5.5

Factory

5

1.9

RTM

15

4.1

RTM

25

9.3

ProStock

10

2.7

Blowy Buster

5

1.9

De Wolf

30

8.2

Hart

5

1.9

Brown

5

1.4

Krico

5

1.4

TimBR

5

1.4

Six

5

1.4

Slee

5

1.4

Mastin

10

2.7

Total Targets shot:

270

Total Targets shot:

365

The choice of what stock to use is very much a more individual thing. Custom stocks and stocks made by "Self" figure prominently in the component list but the clear component of choice is provided by the McMillan company. There is no clear delineation between wood and fibreglass as seen in the US long-range benchrest equipment lists as yet with the clear majority of shooters using fibreglass.

Scopes

Heavy Gun

Light Gun

Brand

Targets shot

%

Brand

Targets shot

%

Nightforce 42x

120

44.4

Nightforce 42x

85

23.3

Nightforce 36x

40

14.8

Leupold 36x

60

16.4

Leupold 50x

20

7.4

Nightforce 32x

45

12.3

Leupold 36x

20

7.4

B&L 36x

30

8.2

Leupold 24x

15

5.6

Nightforce 36x

25

6.8

Tasco 36x

15

5.6

Leupold 25x

25

6.8

Weaver 36x

10

3.7

Leupold 18x

20

5.5

Hakko 40x

10

3.7

Tasco 50x

10

2.7

Nightforce 32x

10

3.7

Tasco 40x

10

2.7

Premier 50x

5

1.9

Tasco 36x

10

2.7

Redfield 24x

5

1.9

Leupold 50x

10

2.7

Leupold 20x

5

1.4

Redfield 12x

5

1.4

Weaver 36x

5

1.4

Nikko 10x

5

1.4

Lyman 36x

5

1.4

Redfield 24x

5

1.4

Unknown

5

1.4

Total Targets shot:

270

Total Targets shot:

365

Australian shooters have a strong interest in using high magnification scopes and with Nightforce providing 63% of the Heavy Gun and 42% of the Light Gun sighting systems there is a strong show of confidence in the Adelaide company’s product. The cross-over from the shorter range benchrest is also evident with the high usage of Leupold scopes ranging from 18 to 50 power.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scores 2001-2002

Light Gun

Bore Size

Groups Shot

Av. Target

Av. Score

0.224

15

14

72

0.243

35

22

107.87

0.257

10

19

92.55

0.264

75

35

153.42

0.277

15

15

110.55

0.284

50

33

164.72

0.308

165

22

115.37

0.338

0

0

0

 

A breakdown of the Light Gun statistics reveals that shooters are choosing three main calibres: .308, .264 and .284 for their rifles. The average score breakdown by both target and match indicates that of the three, only the .264 and .284 calibres average over 30 points per target out of a possible total score of 60.

Discounting any calibre with less than 20 targets shot at this stage, it appears that the metric options of a 6.5mm and 7mm in a 17lb rifle offers shooters a headstart in competition.

Heavy Gun

Bore Size

Groups Shot

Av. Target

Av. Score

0.224

0

0

0

0.243

0

0

0

0.257

5

34

172.1

0.264

10

20

198.5

0.277

15

20

99.7

0.284

55

37

185.01

0.308

185

33

170.75

0.338

15

33

165.4

Turning to Heavy Gun the bias is very much towards the big 30 calibre cartridges with the 300 Win Mag being the most popular. Noteworthy, however, is the breakdown of average scores per target and match indicating that a 7mm will give a big 308 a definite run for its money.

 

 

Bore Size

Av. Score

Total Targets

0.224

36

15

0.243

54

35

0.257

132

15

0.264

176

85

0.277

105

30

0.284

175

105

0.308

143

350

0.338

83

15

Combining both classes shows how close the results are for the metric calibres over a match.

Bullets 1996-2002

Sierra is the perennial favourite bullet maker for Fly shooters since 1996. The Matchking range of bullets seem to provide the necessary quality and choice of weight and ballistic co-efficients required to consistently shoot tight groups at 500 metres.

Manufacturer

Tgts Shot

Sierra

980

Lapua

285

Berger

205

Hornady

130

JLK

100

Nosler

45

Kuehn

25

Unknown

20

Norma

10

ADI

10

 

Breaking the bullet weights used by shooters down into their rawest form regardless of calibre shows that the 168 grain is the most popular. This bullet is available in a 7mm form from Sierra with a B.C. of .488 and in a 30 calibre version with a B.C. of .462. Results in 30 calibre however do not appear to justify its ongoing popularity.

The 300 grain 338 Sierra Matchking offers the highest BC at .768 while the 162 grain 284 Hornady A-Max with a BC of .625 has a developing following. The .264 field offers a rich selection of high BC bullets with the Lapua 139 grain and the Sierra 142 grain Matchking proving popular with their .615 and .595 BCs.

There are three spikes in the graph of numbers; the first at 155 grains, the second mentioned above at 168 grains and the third at 185 grains. The 185 grain projectile in 30 calibre is used extensively by shooters in both 308 Win and 300 Win Mag (or equivalents). The better results with this bullet weight come from using the bigger case in a heavy shooting rig.

Manufacturer

Weight

B.C.

Tgts Shot

Sierra

180

0.475

95

Berger

185

0.569

65

Lapua

185

0.521

125

 

The Perfect Fly Rifle?

There is no absolute answer to what makes a perfect cartridge for 500 metre Fly Shooting but statistical analysis of the results over a period seems to give a strong indication as to what is working and what to avoid. The tables set out above give a guide to building a competitive rifle while the section on Scores and Bullets will act as a guide to choosing a competitive cartridge.

The Rifle

Assembling the following components will go a long way to produce a rifle that should be able to produce competitive scores off the bench. Across both Heavy and Light disciplines, a Remington action (sleeving optional) with a Tobler or Maddco barrel has been chosen by the majority of Fly shooters. A McMillan stock and a Nightforce scope, preferably in the highest magnification range of 42 power rounds out the selection.

The Cartridge

The choice of cartridge is endless, both in the standard factory chamberings as well as choosing from vast list of wildcats. What does stand out form analysis of the figures is the significantly and consistently better results produced by the .264 and .284 calibres. As noted above, these two calibres have produced higher average scores in both Heavy and Light Gun, often by a considerable margin.