Author Topic: 30-06, best range to zero at  (Read 938 times)

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Offline steerclr

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30-06, best range to zero at
« on: February 24, 2019, 02:19:46 PM »
Just got a Ruger M77 Mk II in 30-06.  Went to the range and decided to sight zero at 200yds.  For a hunting rifle it using a 3-9 scope it held about 2-2.5 MOA (4-5" group).  I used Remington factory 165 Gr Core-Lock BTSP ammo.

I was going to start reloading for it and was wondering what is the typical distance for zero?  It was interesting that the Remington ammo sight had some ballistic info and was using a 150 yd zero when it was showing the bullet drop.

Thoughts?


Offline Ron M.

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2019, 02:54:16 PM »
The first question is how far can you confidently place a killing shot on the game animal you plan to hunt? If you plan to not shoot past 200 yards, a 100 yard zero is fine and just practice with your planned hunting load at the maximum range you will shoot to learn your hold over.

If you want to zero for Maximum Point Blank, 265 yards will  insure the bullet drops 3" (the maximum point blank range when zeroed for a 3" rise) out at 300 yards. This will basically insure you can hit the heart/lung area on a game animal with no hold over, between 10 and 300 yards assuming a standard 1 1/2 inch above bore scope.

I based this on the assumption you will use a 165gr bullet loading at 2900fps. Everything changes when you select a different bullet weight or a different velocity. 

A simpler method is to zero 3 inches high at 100 yards and you should be able to hold point of aim out to about 300 yards. This will be a good rule of thumb with any hunting load with a 150gr to 168gr bullet.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2019, 03:04:39 PM by Ron M. »

Offline jwc007

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2019, 04:29:38 PM »
A simpler method is to zero 3 inches high at 100 yards and you should be able to hold point of aim out to about 300 yards. This will be a good rule of thumb with any hunting load with a 150gr to 168gr bullet.

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Offline Chuck James

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2019, 05:22:20 PM »
The first question is how far can you confidently place a killing shot on the game animal you plan to hunt? If you plan to not shoot past 200 yards, a 100 yard zero is fine and just practice with your planned hunting load at the maximum range you will shoot to learn your hold over.

If you want to zero for Maximum Point Blank, 265 yards will  insure the bullet drops 3" (the maximum point blank range when zeroed for a 3" rise) out at 300 yards. This will basically insure you can hit the heart/lung area on a game animal with no hold over, between 10 and 300 yards assuming a standard 1 1/2 inch above bore scope.

I based this on the assumption you will use a 165gr bullet loading at 2900fps. Everything changes when you select a different bullet weight or a different velocity. 

A simpler method is to zero 3 inches high at 100 yards and you should be able to hold point of aim out to about 300 yards. This will be a good rule of thumb with any hunting load with a 150gr to 168gr bullet.

This about sums it up.

Offline Tyerone

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2019, 07:33:26 PM »
I shoot 165 gr Win Ballistic Silver Tips out of a 24" barrel Weatherby Vanguard with a 40 or 44 mm belled 3x10 power scope (currently) and sighted 2,2" high at 100 yards is center bullseye at 220 yrds.  I can aim at the top rim of an 8" gong at 350 yards and hit it every time.  165 gr Core Locts and 150 gr PRVI "M1 Garrand" target loads hit nearly the same as my Win hunting rounds at all 3 distances with same rifle.   8)

My max shot at deer where I hunt would be near 250 yrds.  This gives me comfort in just aiming dead on and pulling the trigger.  No problem with the shortest 40 yrd shot taken either.

IIRC, my set up has a tighter +/- deviation for "point blank range" than often reported for long range hunting.  I didnt feel I needed +/- 4", more comfortable with 3 or less (although I haven't doped it to that extent or entered data into a ballistics calculator).

Offline steerclr

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2019, 09:40:46 PM »
Thanks for all the feedback. 

I use a .308 with a 16" barrel for stuff less than that distance and was setting this up to reach out a little farther. 

If I understand it correctly, the idea is to zero at 265yds so the bullet will be somewhere between 3" high to 3" low from the crosshairs anywhere from 10yds out to 300yds. I doubt I would ever shoot that distance, but good to know.

Thanks again for the replies.

« Last Edit: February 24, 2019, 09:50:47 PM by steerclr »

Offline Tyerone

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2019, 10:15:47 PM »
... then your 200 yd zero will serve you well.  My zero is only 20 yrds further.  BTW, your ammo is likely cabable of much tighter groups.  At least my rifle likes it as mentioned.  Let that barrel build up some copper and I'll bet your groups tighten up nicely!

steider

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2019, 02:10:15 AM »
Just got a Ruger M77 Mk II in 30-06.  Went to the range and decided to sight zero at 200yds.  For a hunting rifle it using a 3-9 scope it held about 2-2.5 MOA (4-5" group).  I used Remington factory 165 Gr Core-Lock BTSP ammo.

I was going to start reloading for it and was wondering what is the typical distance for zero?  It was interesting that the Remington ammo sight had some ballistic info and was using a 150 yd zero when it was showing the bullet drop.

Thoughts?
200 yards is good. 1/2 mile is 880 yards. If it just for shooting paper it doesn?t really matter. Just set it the distance you like. 30/06 is expensive holes on paper though.


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Offline Redcat94

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2019, 10:01:50 AM »
Right now my M1 Garand is zeroed at 100yd.
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Offline razorback1

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2019, 04:01:44 PM »
I always zeroed 30-06 hunting rifles at 150 yds. because open shots beyond 250 or 300 are very rare. Either 150 or 200 you will be good.

Offline steerclr

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #10 on: February 26, 2019, 06:59:33 PM »
Thanks again for all the replies.

Offline M1A4ME

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2019, 07:49:51 AM »
You need to "learn" your rifle/load.

Taking the word of others about trajectory is taking the chance that your rifle isn't different from any other rifle of the same make/caliber/barrel length - and most likely it is different.  The ammo you buy/use may be different as well.  All 150 or 180 grain hunting ammo is not the same.

Once you shoot it at your desired "zero" range. You can come back to 25 yds., or 50 yds. and shoot it and then note/remember POA vs. POI for that bullet/cartridge at that closer "zero" range.  Then, if you have to re-zero for some reason you can do it at a shorter range - for that same rifle/cartridge combo.

I've always been a fan of starting at 25 yds.  Nothing more frustrating that shooting farther and the bullet impacting someplace besides the paper and then having to try to see where the dust/dirt is getting kicked up and making adjustments from there.

I start at 25 yds., get POI about 1.5" below POA and then shoot at 100 yds. to make the adjustments to get POI on POA.  Then I rely on the BDC (bullet drop compensator) reticle or the dial on some of the older scopes (and those won't always be right as you move from 100 to 500 yds.  I've never seen things go south (BDC compensated scope vs. bullet trajectory) inside 300 yds., only once at 400 yds. but it's something you need to confirm vs. just relying on the manufacturer of the scope.
Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it.  So, if you see me walking the dogs with my SIG 556R, its okay.

Offline DOC 1500

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Offline steerclr

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2019, 05:10:15 PM »
M1A4ME - Now that it is sighted in I will put targets at those ranges and record the POI vs the POA.  Thanks for the tip.

Offline M1A4ME

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Re: 30-06, best range to zero at
« Reply #14 on: February 28, 2019, 07:45:29 PM »
I used to shoot with some guys that wrote that info on a small piece of card (like an index card) and then taped it to the left side (if they were right handed) of the stock with some clear tape.  That way they could refer to it when needed.  If you can remember it, no problems.
Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it.  So, if you see me walking the dogs with my SIG 556R, its okay.