Last weekend we stopped by our friendly local gun store so Craig could go buy a holster. They also happened to have primers in stock (they haven’t for quite some time due to the rush on everything firearm related lately) so he bought some of those too. While he was paying, I went and talked to my favorite employee there about Remington 700 rifles in .308(the caliber), pretty simple bolt-action rifles that are used for a wide variety of shooting sports including hunting and precision target shooting. He tried to get me to buy a different .308 bolt gun that was all done up and one of the fancy names. It was also $1900. When Craig was done paying, I called him over and casually mentioned that he should buy the gun for me. Then he looked at the price. When he balked, the guys informed us that they had a Remington 700 SPS Tactical (varmint contour barrel(thick=stiff=accurate), short barrel, different trigger than normal) that was going to be coming into the shop in the next few days and we could put down a deposit to hold it for us when it came in. I obviously didn’t expect Craig to have any interest in buying me a new gun when he still hasn’t gotten his own Remington 700 back from the gunsmith (having a lot of custom work done to it). He shocked and amazed me by telling me that he’d buy me the gun if he could sell his 1911 (his old competition pistol).
So, we bought the gun, sight unseen. I also ordered 80 rounds of Federal Gold Medal Match ammo that same day, and on Monday morning, ordered a scope, and Craig ordered me a scope mount, rings, and priming tool (for reloading). By Wednesday, everything but the ammo had arrived, and we went to pick up the gun, then assembled everything.
We hadn’t been able to figure out a time to take the gun to the range, but we had this morning free so we decided to head over to the Kenmore gun range (just over the hill from us) before all the father-son duos started showing up and cluttering everything up. My first few shots were used in sighting in the rifle (adjusting the scope so that the bullets hit where the crosshairs are) and then I tried to test my accuracy skills.
It was a disaster. There seemed to be some sort of disconnect between the .22 and the .308. It turns out that it was just me being nervous, afraid of the recoil (which is substantially more than the .22) and pulling the rifle over when I pulled the trigger. Oh, and not holding it tight enough into my shoulder which allowed it to jump and really fucked everything up. I was getting frustrated, so was Craig (who was watching and coaching me). It was costing me over $1/shot to suck, but I wasn’t ready to go home, so I took a breather, got “centered,” and calmed down, then tried again. I was able to pull off a pretty good 5 shot group at 100 yards (twice the distance that I’ve been shooting with my 10/22) and I’m pretty pleased with it, what with a completely stock gun and factory ammunition. The spread (center to center) is .540″ which translates to just over half MOA, which is pretty good. Now I need to work on getting groups like this consistently and see if I can’t tighten them up a little.