First Range Report For My New Bavarian Carbine ***FINAL UPDATE***

Discussion in 'General Sako Discussions' started by XTrooper, Aug 24, 2019.

  1. XTrooper

    XTrooper Well-Known Member

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    While waiting for the scope and rings I ordered for my new rifle to come in, I took it to the range today to sight-in the iron sights. I had two boxes of ammo with me. The first was a box of Winchester Super-X 150gr Power=Point cartridges and the second was a box of Sako 150gr Super Hammerhead loads. Since the Winchester ammo was less than half the price of the Sako, I used it first to get it fairly well sighted in before trying the Sako stuff. It was supposed to be sighted in from the factory, but the POI was around 6"-7" to the left and as many inches low from my POA when I began shooting. It took more rounds than I expected to get it sighted in because of the touchy and impossible-to-measure adjustments of the sights. In any case, I got the iron sights dialed in well enough today, at least with the Winchester ammo. Interestingly, even though the bullet weights are the same for both loads, their POI was significantly different. This isn't uncommon, but to have the POI of one load a good six inches or more above the other with the same sight adjustment is more than I'm used to seeing. In any case, don't take for granted that if you have your rifle sighted in with one load of a particular bullet weight that another load of the same bullet weight will be "close enough" because you may be in for a surprise! :D
    Weatherwise, it was nice at the range today and though it was cloudy and threatening rain, it stayed dry. A bonus was that I'm guessing because of the threat of rain, I had the whole range to myself.
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    Now keeping in mind that I'm two months shy of my 67th birthday, that my eyes aren't what they used to be, and that I'm using iron sights at 100 yards, this first target photo is of my best group with the Winchester ammo. The second photo shows my last six shots after a long three hours at the range shooting the Sako and my old Spanish Mauser Model 1943 7.92x57 rifle. As noted on the target, the top four holes are the Sako Super Hammerhead group and the lower two holes are the Winchesters. These six rounds were fired back to back using the same hold and sight adjustment. You can plainly see how different their respective points of impact are. The stick-on targets are 12" in diameter.
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  2. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    That's impressive shooting at 100 yards with open sights, with a very nice looking Sako. Keep us posted; I bet it will be a tack driver with a scope on it.

    About the POI shift - I just had the same thing happen playing around with my CZ .22 Hornet. I had zeroed the scope with junk 45-grain reloads that some lying SOB at a gun show sold me as factory loads. When I switched to the same weight PPU factory loads, the POI moved down eight inches and right about six.
     
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  3. XTrooper

    XTrooper Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, icebear! I hope to never have to use those iron sights again! :D
    Yeah, I've often seen some differences in the POI of comparable rounds, but nothing that great. I guess it does happen on occasion as our experiences prove. I think I'll always take the time to check from now on.
     
  4. XTrooper

    XTrooper Well-Known Member

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    For those interested, the two smaller circles within the 12" circle of these stick-on targets are 3" for the orange center one and 7" for the black "middle" circle. I didn't actually measure the groups, but it appeared they were all 2"-3" in size which, for me using the iron sights, is acceptable. The Sako ammo was more accurate and generated noticeably more felt recoil so I'd say it's definitely hotter than the Winchester Power-Point. This probably explains why it shoots higher than the Winchester stuff.
    I really liked the Sako ammunition, but, unfortunately, it seems that it has all been discontinued, at least here in the United States. It's almost impossible to find in stock and the remaining stock that Beretta has for sale on their US site is being sold off at 60% to 75% off the normal price! If they have what you want, now's the time to grab it! Sadly, they don't have anything left in .308 Winchester or I'd have snagged as much as I could.

    Link to Beretta's remaining stock: https://www.berettausa.com/en-us/store/gun-accessories/ammunition/
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
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  5. XTrooper

    XTrooper Well-Known Member

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    I got back to the range today with my Bavarian Carbine after having mounted the Steiner GS3 2-10x42 scope on it to both sight it in and test it out with several different brands and bullet weights of ammunition. Besides the aforementioned Sako 150gr Super Hammerhead and Winchester 150gr Power Point rounds, I also shot groups with Browning 155gr BXRs and 168gr BXCs, Nosler Trophy Grade 165gr Accubonds, and Winchester 150gr Ballistic Silvertips and 180gr Power-Points. The results of my testing revealed that surprising to me, it preferred and shot the tightest groups with the two Browning loads. I thought for sure the Nosler 165gr Accubonds would be the most accurate, but this wasn't the case with my rifle. I've posted below a photo of my last and best group of the day shot with the Browning 155gr BXR load (my notation on the target incorrectly states XCR 150gr - I was tired by that point :D). The Browning 168gr BXC was a close second and actually grouped very close to the BXR load using the same scope settings. I am very pleased with both my rifle and scope and, at this point, have no plans to change a thing. Two thumbs up to Sako and Steiner!

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    Last edited: Sep 19, 2019
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  6. Tomball

    Tomball Well-Known Member

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    That is nice, if you bought from a store go back and buy the rest of the lot. Different lots may not shoot as well
     
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  7. XTrooper

    XTrooper Well-Known Member

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    Actually, I bought four boxes of each of them so I have a fair number of the "good stuff" and a lot of practice ammo now! :)

    For those that may be interested, that group measured 0.43 inches. Not too shabby!
     
  8. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    So much for the old wives' tale that full-stock carbines aren't accurate. Nice shooting.
     
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  9. XTrooper

    XTrooper Well-Known Member

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    Thank you, icebear! I appreciate the compliment. I learned all I know about shooting a rifle from the United States Marine Corps. The fact is, I had never touched a real firearm until, at the age of 17, I was issued my M14 rifle during boot camp on Parris Island, SC. The two things in the world I really did and still do well are driving fast and shooting so lawman or gangster were my two best options for the future after my discharge from the Corps in 1971. I chose the former. :D

    One thing I failed to mention earlier and which may be of interest to some is that before I went to the range this morning, I did adjustment the carbine's trigger pull weight down to about 2 1/2 lbs from the 3 1/2 lbs it was at when I brought it home. The trigger is, I might add, superb.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2019
  10. XTrooper

    XTrooper Well-Known Member

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    I went to the range early this morning while the dew was still heavy which is why the targets are wet in the photos. This was my second outing with my Sako carbine since I mounted the scope and my purpose for going today was to make final scope adjustments and get my POI dead-center and approximately 1.8" high at 100 yards using the Browning 155gr BXR loads. After accomplishing this, I shot the Browning 168gr BXCs to see where they grouped with the scope sighted-in with the 155gr BXRs. As you can see, the BXC rounds didn't group quite as tightly and, when I did my part, their POI was slightly lower and farther to the right than their BXR counterparts. I wasn't shooting at my best today, but well enough for you to see that these Sako carbines are capable of repeatable sub-moa groups if the shooter does his/her part.

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    Last edited: Sep 27, 2019
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  11. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for posting. It's always interesting to see actual shooting results with various combinations of Sako and ammo. I'm not surprised that the carbine shot better with 155-grain bullets than 168. 150 is pretty much standard for a .308, except for target and sniper use, so I would expect that barrel twist is optimized for the lighter bullet. My AIII carbine in .30-06 also shoots best with 150-grain bullets.

    One of these days I'm going to do an ammo comparison in my 26" Steyr SSG .308 sniper rifle, to see if the sniper rifle shoots heavy match bullets better than 150-grain Norma ball. (The SSG wears the same 2-10x Steiner scope as XTrooper's carbine, but with a mil-dot reticle.)
     
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  12. XTrooper

    XTrooper Well-Known Member

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    I would be very interested in seeing the results of that test, icebear!


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