Barrel length

Seajack

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Hey everyone,

I'm looking to buy an M14/M1-A style rifle in the future, and have been looking at Springfield Armory's models. As far as marksmanship goes, I'm a pretty good shot, and am on two rifle teams. We just recently bought a small strip of property that opened a hill to hill area that is about 1000 meters.

I am looking at the SOCOM II model (I dig the pic rails), but was wondering if that 18 inch barrel is going to give me decent results at that range (between 800 and 1000 meters). Should I be leaning more toward a 20+ inch? I can make the shots(not consistently center mass, but they are hitting) at those ranges with my PSL-54, but it's 24 inches, and a larger round.
 

pardus

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I have a couple of questions for you.

Why was the SOCOM II developed with an 18" barrel? What is it's purpose? Does that match what you want to do up to 1,000m?
What does Springfield Armory think? Is that their long range gun?

You tell me, I've never been on a rifle team.
 

Headshot

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Between the two you need to consider the bore twist, and the lands and grooves more so than the length. I'm sure the SOCOM II has taken this into consideration; but shooting out to 800+m you will be wanting somewhere around a 1:11.25 on the twists, with an odd number of lands to keep the round concentric. You also need to know how the sides of the lands are cut. Keep in mind that rifles are like printers; you can have the most high tech printer on the market but if you run low grade paper through it, you will get a low grade print. The longer barrel will serve you better at those distances if it is made for the distance, and you run a grade of cartridge through it that is also made to take it.

It sounds like you need to keep doing some research before laying money out for something like that when you only consider yourself a "pretty good shot". :2c:
 

fox1371

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Why do you "dig the pic rails?" Is it just the "cool" factor that you're looking for here?
 

Seajack

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I have a couple of questions for you.

Why was the SOCOM II developed with an 18" barrel? What is it's purpose? Does that match what you want to do up to 1,000m?
What does Springfield Armory think? Is that their long range gun?

You tell me, I've never been on a rifle team.

They have longer range weapons (longer barrels, include optics, etc), but they are much pricier. If I can get acceptable results from something a little cheaper, and more versatile, I'll take that. The specific rifle was designed as less of a long range rifle, but an 18" is still alot bigger than, for example, your average AR.

It sounds like you need to keep doing some research before laying money out for something like that when you only consider yourself a "pretty good shot". :2c:

I'm pretty well rounded with my shooting, I just shoot more than I research, which I will definitely be doing more of before I make a large purchase like that.

Why do you "dig the pic rails?" Is it just the "cool" factor that you're looking for here?

I remove and add on bi-pods rather frequently, depending on what I'm doing. The same goes for scopes, it's just convienient. If I was going for looks, I would steer clear from them, but right now I'd take useful over "cool".
 

The91Bravo

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They have longer range weapons (longer barrels, include optics, etc), but they are much pricier. If I can get acceptable results from something a little cheaper, and more versatile, I'll take that. The specific rifle was designed as less of a long range rifle, but an 18" is still alot bigger than, for example, your average AR.

If accuracy on a budget (we're talking 800+ yards here) then you need a bolt gun that has been bluprinted by a real pro. Wait on a gas gun until you can afford the tool that fits your objective.

I'm pretty well rounded with my shooting, I just shoot more than I research, which I will definitely be doing more of before I make a large purchase like that.

You need to continue with this. But in this case, research more than you shoot, or you are wasting your time.

I remove and add on bi-pods rather frequently, depending on what I'm doing. The same goes for scopes, it's just convienient. If I was going for looks, I would steer clear from them, but right now I'd take useful over "cool".

If your objective again, is a long range gun, then the bipod will stay put. And you do not need a rail for any Harris bipod (one of the preferred brand) just an available sling swivel.

Good luck,
 
8

8'Duece

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The Springfield Armory SOCOM and SOCOM II are both 16" barrels, not 18"

Personally with .308 I'd get the standard SA M1/M14 and then replace the furniture with the Troy industries. You'll get your pic rails and a pistol grip and fancy stock and still be able to reach out and touch someone.

To answer the question. The 16" barrel M1/M14 SOCOM was developed for the civillian "shorter is cool" crowd. I fail to see the uitility in a 16" .308 weapon. YMMV

Picture of SA SOCOM 16" with Troy Furniture.
 

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skeeter

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You also need to take into consideration that for every inch of barrel you choose not to have you will loose about 50 feet per second. Over long distances you will have a LOT more drop with the same round compared to if you had the longer barrel. I also agree with The91Bravo about being able to get an affordable good shooting rifle if you go with a bolt gun. good luck with your shooting.
 
8

8'Duece

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Take into consideration also that the shorter SOCOM barrel, 16" is a 1:11 twist rate with 6 grooves. This requires proper ammunition to be effective out to range. Any BTHT in 168 grain seems to perform the best out of the 16" barrel SA M1A/M14. You can keep under 2MOA with these rounds @ 100 Meters.
 

gits

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I had a SOCOM 16 it was pretty much a 3-4 MOA gun maybe 2 if I was lucky with the right ammo. I sold it and picked up a Scout model and threw it in a SAGE EBR have been waiting on some glass to top it off and get some data on it. If your looking to do some serious shooting, look at buying a rifle made by Smith Enterprises, or get a barreled receiver from them and throw it in a Sage EBR stock or JAE-100.
 

Diamondback 2/2

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With running that short of a barrel you are going to need to run 173/175 grain loads and run them very hot on the charge. I would not use anything less than a 20 inch barrel and even with that your ganna have some loose accuracy. As for barrel twist, 1:10 is where you are going to want to be, 1:11 will be okay but again your ganna have to run a hot load. Running hot loads in a M1-A is going to play hell on your action as well. Personally for those ranges I would look at a National Match M1A1 and then change out your chassie/stock to get the feel you want. There is already plunty of load/dope data out for that rifle at 600 to 1000 yards from NRA/CMP/AMU.


By the way, what shooting teams are you on? What dicipline?
 

gits

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Lets put it this way, what is your budget like for purchasing a precision gun? We can talk about this all day and give you recommendations but a budget will at least be able to help us narrow down your choices.
 

The91Bravo

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In a van, down by the river...
1. Buy the shittiest Rem 700 you can find so you can poach the action. ($300)

2. Remove the barrel and get a Shilen barrel. ($300)

3. Find a COMPETENT smith. to square the face of the bolt, locking lugs, and barrel, and install the barrel. Also have him tune the existing trigger. ($150-450)

4. Find a decent stock. I recommend HS Precision, but I am biased. Used works perfectly as long as it is still true. ($150(used)to $650(new w/ adj butt and cheek))

5. Get good glass. Now here you can go from $200 (fair, will last a good while if it does not get damaged) all the way up, and I mean UP! like $3500-4000 for a nice US Optics piece. You can probably settle for a good scope WITH a MilDot reticle used for... lets say $350. Eventually you will want an optic that allows you to zoom your reticle with the magnification (called being in the Front Focal Plane) I have a Leupold MKIV LR/T 3.5-10x40 with Tactical Milling Reticle, in the Front Focal Plane. Law enforcement discount on this $1500 piece was just under $900. BUT it has a lifetime... go drive over it... shoot a hole in it.... drag it behind your truck warranty that helps me tell my wife that if thei $900 black tube breaks I get a new one for free.

6. Get a Harris Bipod. $60

Let's see, what is the total?

$1160 Low ball side
$1700 for a fantastic sub MOA gun
Above $3000 to 5000, a sub 1/2 MOA gun.

You can go cheaper, but if you hit a 1000 yard target, it will only be by chance.

Hope this helps.
Steve

p.s. I found my Remington Long Action BDL Magnum receiver on GunBroker about 3-5 years ago for right around $360 IIRC. They are out there.

p.p.s. as for a super custom like an Accuracy International, Surgeon, or other brands like that. I know for a fact that you are not going to get a better gun than listed above IF, I say again, IF you find a good gunsmith. He can make miracles happen. And when you find that Smith... you had better take care of him, because they are getting harder and harder to find.

p.p.p.s. Whatever you do, dont go lay a chunk of cash down at a smith you have never worked with (in this scope and level of precision) until you see ALOT of his work, in person and talk to his customers at length... The old, "Bubba done me good on my turkey gun, he oughta be able to get yer tack driver with no sweat.. he just got a new DEE-Walt drill to drill out them barrel thingy's" will leave you angry at yourself, your friend that referred you, and at God for letting you be so stupid. TAKE YOUR TIME and do it right. and you will have something like this;
 

Seajack

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Lets put it this way, what is your budget like for purchasing a precision gun? We can talk about this all day and give you recommendations but a budget will at least be able to help us narrow down your choices.

I'm gonna say $2,000, excluding optics.

I had a SOCOM 16 it was pretty much a 3-4 MOA gun maybe 2 if I was lucky with the right ammo. I sold it and picked up a Scout model and threw it in a SAGE EBR have been waiting on some glass to top it off and get some data on it. If your looking to do some serious shooting, look at buying a rifle made by Smith Enterprises, or get a barreled receiver from them and throw it in a Sage EBR stock or JAE-100.

Those two stocks you mentioned look awesome, I'd love to feel one.

By the way, what shooting teams are you on? What dicipline?

From the sounds of it, I might be looking more at a 20+ inch barrel. Something a little more specific and less versatile maybe. I'd really like to hit those targets out there. I've got a lot of time to think about it,but I've always loved M1-A's. One would fit well into my collection, I think.

I'm on my high school's shooting team,and a local county's team. I wanna start high power, and maybe three gun, but I am not sure if I am old enough.
 

Diamondback 2/2

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I'm on my high school's shooting team,and a local county's team. I wanna start high power, and maybe three gun, but I am not sure if I am old enough.

If your going to shoot High Power in the future I would again tell you too buy a NM M1A1 or even a NM AR15, I run an 80gr load for my NM AR15 in order to shoot long range that will hold 1MOA at 1000yds. You can pick up a NM AR15 for roughly $1100 from Rock River and its a great rifle to learn high power/service rifle on. If you pick up a A3 model you can still mount an optic for plinking, however you will have your carry handel and irons for comp's.

Are you shooting small bore?
 
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