Ask the Armed Intelligentsia: What Equipment for Long Range Pistol Shooting?

By Chris Heuss:

I’m a rifle guy. Sure, I’ve always had pistols, but I never shot them much. I trained with a pistol just enough to be confident and effective. Being able to shoot a pistol at 25 yards was always enough for me. My newfound passion for long-distance pistol shooting was discovered like most things: by accident.

I’d been searching for a suppressor host. I decided on a Springfield Xdm 9mm. It ticked all of my boxes: suppressor height sights, threaded barrel, large frame, long sight radius, and aggressive grips.

After leaving my local gun store, I took few boxes of Monarch steel-cased ammo and my new pistol to an indoor range to function test the handgun. I sent the target out to five yards, lined up the sights and bang.

The shot went left, as did the next few. Upon inspection of my front sight, I found the site was not centered. The Springfield’s sights are fixed; I needed a gunsmith or a site pusher to fix the issue.

The sights where off but the shot placement was consistent. At least I had a reliable, accurate pistol.

I moved the target out to 10 yards, held right. Bang! Ten ring. I pushed the target out to 15 yards, held a little more right and hit the 10 ring again. After a mag at 15 yards, I sent a fresh target to 25 yards. Another mag at 25 yards and I was getting bored.

I moved another fresh target out to 50 yards. I had shot my Beretta 92 (with Wilson Combat) upgrades at 50 yards only once before with surpassing accuracy. I raised my Springfield, lined-up my sights, placed the front sight tip to the right, and started scoring hits with relative ease.

I was surprised how easy it was, but I got bored again.

Looking for more of a challenge, I got another clean target and moved it out to 75 yards. I raised my Springfield, lined-up my sights and aimed right again. My front sight was considerably less steady than at 50 yards.

I slowed down my shooting a lot. I concentrated on my breathing and trigger pull as if I was trying to shoot small groups at 300 yards with a rifle. Every time my sight picture was correct, I squeezed the trigger a tiny bit. My first three rounds landed in a five-inch circle.

It’s not great, but it’s pretty good, all things considered. It was my first time shooting a new pistol, steel-cased cheap ammo and off-center sights. Shooting a pistol at 75 yards will turn heads.

After a mag at 75 yards, I was running low on ammo and time. I decided to put a clean target at 100 yards, just out of curiosity. I scored no hits at 100 yards. I couldn’t make a good sight picture. I just couldn’t judge my hold at that distance.

Driving home, I had some time to reflect. I really enjoyed stretching my pistol to an extended range. The desire to shoot further and more accurately overwhelmed me.

When I got home, I did a quick Google search for long range pistol shooting. I found people shooting 200 yards and farther with open sights regularly. I’d discovered a whole world of long distance pistol shooting.

I began to wonder what would it take for me to shoot a pistol at 400 yards. I quickly had more questions than answers. What pistol, caliber, and ammo would work best?

I made some parameters and a loose budget. I needed to keep the pistol in $1,000 range. I don’t have the time to reload so I needed to find the right store bought ammo. Below is a list of basic parameters I have decided on.

1. Semi auto pistol in the $1,000 range

2. Non Custom pistol

3. Over the shelf ammo

4. No optic

5. No rifle rounds or wildcats

6. Target size to be determined

Equipment

As far as pistols go I know I would need a long sight radius, adjustable sights, a good trigger and good ergonomics. I prefer semi auto pistols so I started a tentative list of contenders.

– Walther Q5 match 9mm

– Eaa Hunter in 10mm

– KimberTLE 2 in 10 mm

– CZ75 in 9mm

– 1911 in .45

– Rock Island Armory ultra match 10mm

Goals

My goal is to be able to reliably hit a man-size target at 400 yards. I know a lot of people can do this. People can shoot much further than this. If you want to throw Jerry Miculek into the human category, then humans can even shoot a pistol accurately at 1000 yards with no magnification.

This series of articles is not about them or trying to be as good as them. This series of articles is about my personal journey to 400 yard pistol accuracy.

Questions

I am new to this and need your help. Please comment with equipment, ammo, and technique suggestions.

I need suggestions on the following:

1. Pistol (as above)

2. Caliber

3. Ammo manufacturer

4. High quality safety glasses

5. Target size

6. Target manufacturer

7. How do I accurately document my progress?

8. Whats a good ballistics calculator?

I look forward to your feedback.

comments

  1. avatar JDC says:

    Back about 15 years ago, when I had the range to do it at. I regularly shot at 200-300 yards my Smith 67 with 125 Plus P’s. You have to walk them out a little but once you get used to it, you can hit the size of a human head fairly regularly.

    1. avatar Doktor says:

      I can do 75 yards with my Super Redhawk. That’s a 2.5 inch barrel! Not the tightest group but a solid group none the less.

      Keyboard commandos give the impression that there are limits. True but only with them.

  2. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

    You’re seriously compromising your long range accuracy and effectiveness by insisting on a semi-auto pis tol. My advice would be a 6″ Ru ger GP 100 if you’re on a budget and not looking to use a scope or a Super Redhawk if you’re looking to use a scope.

    ‘…a long sig ht radius, adjustable si ghts, a good trig ger and good ergonomics…’ That’s the GP 100 you’re describing right there.

    1. avatar Chris says:

      Thanks for the advice. I had actually considered a gp100. I am a big fan of Rugers. I love my Vaquero in 45 long. I just prefer semiautos over revolvers. If I don’t get the results I am hoping for I will definently try a revolver.

      1. avatar Timothy says:

        I agree with Gov. about revolvers. I would recommend a Dan Wesson in .357. The DW was built for long range shooting. It offers swappable barrels to get longer sight radius and more power from the round. It also allows you to tighten the cylinder gap. It’s design with a barrel shroud which both acts like a bull barrel and puts tension on the barrel, pulling it tight like a guitar string so it always vibrates the same every time. New ones built by CZUSA ship with a 6″ barrel and can be had around a thousand. Used ones price closer to $600 with barrels running $200-300.

        I have a CZ-75 that I’m super accurate with. My Dan Wesson 715 dominates it in terms of accuracy.

        1. avatar DrewN says:

          The actual barrels are only like $30. It’s the shrouds that cost $$$$.

  3. avatar James Ivy says:

    The was 10mm hunter would be my choice here’s why, first I’m hooked on those Tanfoglio pistols my 10mm compact with the help of hennings parts has sent me shooting farther than ever (people scoff at me on the 200yd line only to shut up real quick) second the 10mm is a very forgiving round when it comes to trajectory between my buddy and his m9 and my compact I win Everytime my hard hard cast truncated nose works very well and mullars game :). Thirdly isn’t that pistol gorgeous!

    1. avatar Chris says:

      The 10mm hunter is a gorgeous pistol and it’s top of my list. I have had great success with my previous cz type pistols.

  4. avatar AlexOnTheSeas says:

    For that distance, I think you’re really limiting yourself in regards to gun/caliber choice. If you want rifle performance, you’re going to have to accept a rifle caliber (unless you happen to Mr. Miculeks spirit animal, and hey, you may be, you never know). If I had the lofty goal of a 400 yards from a pistol, I’d be looking at either one of the various “pistols” like the CZ PS1 Bren or an AR pattern, or a Thompson Center Encore in .308 Win or similar. If You’re absolutely dead set on handgun/caliber, maybe look at a .460 Rowland? I know it’s supposed to outperform a .44 Magnum, and you’re going to need all the performance you can get for that kind of range.

  5. avatar 5spot says:

    I know you said semi but please consider a Thompson Contender in let’s say 44 Mag.
    It has the best trigger of all the guns I own. It is the super 14 model. Ultra thin blade front and notch rear. I guess it was designed as a comp silhouette gun.

    At least go look at one.

    1. avatar sagebrushracer says:

      I will second the TC Contender. You will not be able to get more bang for your buck. I enjoy dumping mag’s as much as the next guy, but the is a therapeutic quality to single loading. Also all the TC guns drip quality and if you ever decide to try another cartidge, all you need is a barrel.

    2. avatar BLoving says:

      Hey, Gov – sorry, I gotta take the Contender guys side on this one. The TC was made SPECIFICALLY for this purpose. Personally, I wouldn’t limit myself to handgun chamberings either – a TC Contender in .223 would be cheap and delightful to bust steel at a few hundred yards with.
      Okay, if I must use a Ruger… my first thought is the .22 Charger but .22LR is too tiny for the job… I’ll say a Super Blackhawk in .44 mag.

      1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

        As I pointed out in my comment below, I completely overlooked the Contender because I was thinking in terms of a repeating arm. If you’re really serious about long range (>200yrds) ha ndgun shooting I don’t think you could do better than a single shot. Rif le calibers are purported to be much better due to their higher sectional density. And revo lvers have the issue of tending to fire 6 distinct groups from each of the 6 chambers (although you’d never notice it at 25 yards).

        The downside of the Contender is it’s arguably not a ha ndgun but a ri fle with the but tstock cut off. The same issue comes into play with muzzle loaders and bows. For some a compound bow fired with a bow release is not arche ry at all, but insist on a recurve bow fired with your own fingers as God intended. So I guess it comes down to whether you have a traditional interpretation of ha ndgun shooting or a technical definition. There are people who can do amazing things with recurve bows.

      2. avatar PeterZ in West Tennessee says:

        I agree on the super blackhawk in .44 magnum. Back in the late 70’s Ruger came out with a 10.5″ barrel model designed specifically for IHMSA revolver class. IHMSA involves targets at 50, 100, 150 and 200 meters. The steel plates in the shape of animals must fall over when hit to score.

        TC Contenders were very popular in the limited class. Unlimited attracted both Contenders and the Remington XP100 in a variety of wildcat bottle-necked cartridges. For revolvers I imagine that .454 Casul and .500 Remington magnum are popular today.

        There is a used TC Contender at my local range for sale. Now I have a hankering to buy it.

      3. avatar Justin says:

        You have to be careful with that however, I’ve got an Encore pistol and found a sweet deal on a 30-06 14in barrel with no break. There was a reason the guy was selling it so cheap. After I could use my wrist again I sold it for what I paid for it. I did write a little note to be included with the barrel about not shooting it without proper recoil management.

        Even off the bench from a bipod I never want to try that again…. but I know I’ll do something equally foolish sooner or later. I’m lusting after a S&W 460Mag now and my wrist is already telling me to knock it off.

    3. avatar Chris says:

      When I started looking into long range pistols the Contender was what I kept seeing most people using. I will give one a shot if I can’t find a semiauto that wil do the job. I partly want to use a semiauto because I am curious what type of accuracy you can get out of a modern semiauto factory pistol.

      1. avatar sagebrushracer says:

        most guns these days are pretty accurate mechanically. you can see plenty of videos of people shooting glocks and even ruger p95s out to 200 yards.

  6. avatar Norincojay says:

    FNH 5.7
    It is great flat shooting low recoil long sight radius pistol.

    I was at the range a few months back and the range guy was getting good hits at about 125 yards using a 9mm S&W M&P. He was former military. I was getting about the same size groups with my Norinco AK. Lol We were just shooting steel so I can’t say for certain, but the guy was good.

    1. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

      It’s crap ammo for shooting through anything. Unless you have access to the armour piercing stuff. Found that out at a wound ballistics seminar put on by Federal.

    2. avatar Chris says:

      Great suggestion. I had not even considered the 5.7

  7. avatar Nanashi says:

    Assuming 22LR is off the table, a 9mm AR15 “pistol”.

  8. avatar Specialist38 says:

    You’ve already decided on too many parameters to get much advice.

    Quarter mile shooting usually involves breech loading pistols with funny na med cartidges.

    I’ve done a fair amount with 45 and 44 caliber revolvers. I keep them basically Stockard have a lot of fun.

    I would recommend the 45 ACP or 10 mm to go that range. I have shot a Gold cup at that distance with hardball aGoldnd done well. Also a Ruger BlackHawk with an ACP cylinder.

    We used metal plates and silhouettes and had a ball. Wasn’t trying for teeny groups but to get hits. YMMV.

    Pick up a copy of six guns or fast and fancy revolver shooting. Good information about long range shooting.

    1. avatar Chris says:

      Thanks for the advice. I am actually just getting into revolvers as well. I just bought my first nice revolver. I got an older large framed Vaquero in 45 long. I love it.

      1. avatar Specialist38 says:

        You will be amazed at the accuracy of that vaquero at long range. Especially if it is a 7.5 inch bbl

        Big fun

  9. avatar Michigunner says:

    5″ groups, at 75 yards, with cheap ammo, using a 9mm pistol with sights that are out of adjustment, that you just bought? And you have never shot pistols much? It sounds like you should be the one giving advice, not getting it.

    1. avatar Chris says:

      Sight alignment and trigger squeeze. That’s it. I have the basics down. I am just looking on pointers from TTAG readers. I need more equipment pointers than anything. I would hate to go spend $1000 on the wrong pistol.

  10. avatar Ken says:

    With a discounting of revolvers and single shots like the Contender, Sig 220 SAO in 10mm

    1. avatar Chris says:

      I had not considered the Sig. I will go check one out and see how it feels.

    2. avatar BLoving says:

      An excellent choice, so excellent you’re cheating! He did specify keeping it under a grand!

      1. avatar Chris says:

        Just checked out the Sig 220 online. Looks great but it’s a little over budget.

  11. avatar Curtis in IL says:

    “The sights where off but the shot placement was consistent. At least I had a reliable, accurate pistol.”

    Nope. You had a reliable, consistently inaccurate pistol.

    As for any attempt at shooting long range with it – Well, just call me baffled. For every job there is an appropriate tool. Your quest makes as much sense as trying to haul ready-mix concrete with a motorcycle.

    1. avatar Joel says:

      After reading the headline, I intended to suggest getting one of those shoulder thingy’s for your pistol to help with long range shooting. After reading the article I will say it sounds like you have set a resonable goal.

      Good luck on your quest!

      1. avatar Chris says:

        Thanks! You will be seeing updates on my progress here.

    2. avatar Chris says:

      Accurate to me means a good group. If your sights are off but you can still get a good consistent group then your pistol is mechanically accurate. No one says a custom bolt gun is inaccurate if the shooter is holding high and to the right. My sights might have been off but I still figured out my hold after a few rounds.

      1. avatar Curtis in IL says:

        Let’s not kid ourselves. If you’re shooting at a deer and you put five rounds, in a three inch group, into the oak tree just beyond the deer, your hunting buddies are not going to congratulate you on your accuracy.

    3. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      Gotta side with Chris on this one, if you’re sites are off but the weapon shoots to a consistent point of impact then you’ve got an accurate gunn with misaligned sites, not an inaccurate gunn.

      1. avatar Chris says:

        Thanks Gov

        1. avatar Eric Lawrence says:

          I believe we are confusing accuracy and precision,

          Accuracy is the ability to hit what you are aiming at. You were accurate, and would be more accurate with aligned sights. Accuracy relies more on the user than the firearm.

          Precision is the ability for all rounds from a firearm to land in a very small area. Your gun was precise. Precision relies more of the build quality of the firearm.

        2. Without looking up the technical definitions of the two words, I would say accuracy is the ability to hit the desired point on the target. Precision is the ability to repeat the process continuously.
          I think both the shooter and the gun can be precise.
          Precision is the process. Accuracy is the result.

        3. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

          However if the weapon is precise and the shooter knows exactly how far off the sites are then it will also be accurate in the hands of it’s owner. Kind of picking at nits anyway. It’s not like he said clip when he meant magazine.

  12. avatar TommyJay says:

    I spent some time last summer shooting my Ruger 10/22 at 200 yds; my range’s max. I had a great time and was able to put rounds into a 10 inch circle most of the time. My problem was that while I had a mediocre spotting scope, I still couldn’t see .22 holes in a black bullseye.

    My target was a standard B-8 bullseye but I flipped it over to the all white backside. The paper is 24″ x 36″ I think. I punched a tiny hole thru the X and then placed 1″ painters masking tape over the tiny hole in the backside to make a large X. Now the hits are against a white or blue background and I can see them at 200 yds. When finished, you can still score your shooting using the bullseye rings.

    I agree with the Gov. that a semi-auto with the flip-flopping barrel probably isn’t a good choice. Secondly, most pistol bullets are shaped like the G2 standard, and will be moving quite slow at 300 or 400 yds. The FN 5-7 is much faster and has a better shape, but you are back to the flopping barrel. Plus, most 5.7 bullets are very low mass and will slow down a lot.

    I’d consider a .357 Mag revolver with a relatively heavy bullet.

    I like the ShootersCalculator.com if a website is OK.

    1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      Not only does the ba rrel flip-flop but the si ghts are attached to the slide which reciprocates on rails on the frame to which the barr el is attached by some sort of lug – all subject to tolerances loose enough to allow freedom of motion. As opposed to a front si ght that is firmly attached to a bar rel that is firmly screwed into a frame that firmly holds the rear si ght. Add to that the necessity of feeding am munition through the grip on semi-autos requires the use of low sectional density bullets that do not perform well at long ranges.

      In fairness, if you are really serious about long range shooting with a revolver you need to find where each chamber shoots. Microscopic misalignments between the chamber and the forcing cone can cause six distinct points of aim that no one would ever notice at 25 yards, but at 250 could be significant.

      The TC Contender fans have an excellent point I overlooked do to the fact that a single shot is an even bigger leap from a semi-auto than is a revolver, which is at least a repeating arm.

      1. avatar Chris says:

        Great advice. Thanks a lot. If I can’t hit the target after a fair shot I will give a revolver or contender a try.

        Oh and, The sheriff is near!

        1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

          No dadnabbit, the sheriff is a DONG!

          Yea it all depends on how serious you are. If you’re going for quarter mile shots the Contender would be the deal unless you’re name is Jerry Miculek and you just happen to be a cyborg.

      2. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        Governor,

        I had never heard nor thought of cylinder tolerances affecting point of impact with revolvers. It makes perfect sense. I will DEFINITELY keep that in mind when I try stretching a revolver out to 100 yards.

        1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

          I’ve never actually tested mine, but then I don’t think it would make much difference when your goal is to hit a 12″ target at 100 yards with 6″ GP 100. I’m confident the gunn shoots far better than the shooter. In fact I’d probably have to get a ransom rest to even accurately measure the differences. But if you’re looking to put 6 in the 10 ring at 200 yards, that’s going to be a necessity. Now if you’re shooting an older revolver that’s getting out of time the chambers could shoot drastically different, but I’ve honestly never heard of a GP 100 going out of time.

          The other thing you could find is that one or two of the chambers shoot tighter groups than the others because they are better aligned with the forcing cone.

    2. avatar Chris says:

      I will check out the website. Thanks a lot.

  13. avatar Andrew Lias says:

    I will say personally for ammo I’d be looking at reloaded stuff. Expect to spend time, money and effort in figuring out what bullets work for you and your gun. Some stuff is easy to develop for IMO (.357 magnum) and some not (9mm) but that’s also based on what guns you have in semi auto. I have my doubts I’d be looking at another gun currently, but rather developing consistent loads for what you have and eeking accuracy out of them and practicing more. Those aren’t low quality guns and seem to be doing okay.

    In terms of caliber selection I’d go with smaller, higher velocity lower recoil rounds over heavier and slower ones just to get flatter shooting; May not matter as much at fixed ranges if you are okay with compensating for it.

  14. avatar Jon in CO says:

    I’ve scored hits on milk jugs at 207 with a G19. Granted, it took almost 3 mags to find a hold, but I did it. If I were to suggest something that didn’t require anything special, I would say a 6″ (or longer) .357 mag, or. 5.7 FN.

    1. avatar Chris says:

      Thanks Jon. A few people have suggested the 5.7. I will look into that. When you got shots at 207 with a g19 had you had long range pistol experience? Did you use sand bags?

      1. avatar Jon in CO says:

        Sorry for the delay.

        No, never shot that far before, with a rifle or handgun. My AR with a SPARC2, was no issues, zeroed with the 50/200. I was standing, unsupported. Like I said, it took 40-50 rds to get there, the slide completely blocked my view of the target. I wasn’t hitting every shot after, but I connected a few times. Having a single action trigger would probably aid in hitting a bit easier.

  15. avatar Bernard says:

    For CZ 75’s: CZC Accu-Shadow or you can get a 10X barrel bushing from Cajun Gun Works.

    1. avatar Chris says:

      I have heard nothing but great things about Cajun Gun works. I am wanting to stick with a factory non custom gun. If I can’t hit the target at 200 then I will explore revolvers, contenders and custom semiautos. Thanks for the advice.

  16. avatar kenneth says:

    At 200+ yards you are severely handicapped with any semiauto. The moving barrel and short sight radius create serious problem that are not consistently solvable. You are much better off with a revolver, .357 mag, .41 mag, or .44 mag, with as long a barrel as you can stand, even the 8 3/8″. The higher velocitys and longer sight radius will pay you big dividends, guaranteed.
    Its just math. Revolver cartridges are faster and more powerful than auto rounds, and that is what is needed for long range shooting, along with a long fixed barrel if the agenda is iron sights.

  17. avatar Michael Bane says:

    Suggest you take a trip to Cody, WY, for John Linebaugh’s Big Bore Seminar, where there’s a whole line of revolver shooters going for — and hitting — targets out to 1000 yards. There is more knowledge there on long range handgun shooting than anywhere else in the world, or Internet for that matter.

    Michael B

  18. avatar strych9 says:

    For ranges 75 to 100 yards I’ve found my .40S&W Desert Eagle to be pretty effective. The average drop listed for .40 at that range is 3.3″ IIRC.

    I’ve never pushed it out further because I haven’t had a place to do it where I knew the distances. The targets get pretty small in relation to the front sight so unless that’s exactly what you’re trying to push the boundaries of you might consider some type of optic that’s more precise.

    I don’t know what the new ones sell for but my full sized steel frame Eagle was $550+tax NIB when I bought it around 2006 and it’s sent quite a number of people with much pricier guns home with their tail between their legs. Generally speaking however I suspect others here are correct that if you really want to get into this a revolver or single shot would be preferable. A semi-auto has too many moving parts for real consistency at long range.

    1. avatar Chris says:

      I assume you are talking about a baby eagle Jericho 941. If so I have had 2 one in 9mm and one in 45. I absolutely loved them. Unfortunelty Inhave sold both of them. I always regret selling my guns.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        Yes, the Jericho 941. I alternate in how I refer to them rather randomly. Many people look at you funny if you say Jericho 941 but know what a Desert Eagle is.

        The older Eagles didn’t come with the name “Baby Eagle”, that’s a newish thing. I’m unsure if it applies to the full sized pistols, and actually I think IWI went back to the Jericho name anyway. My older full sized pistols are stamped “Desert Eagle Pistol”. The newer one I got in 9mm that’s a compact model and it’s stamped “Baby Desert Eagle”.

        Ever since IWI and IMI split up and became separate companies I’ve been unable to keep complete track of the names for small arms from IWI, in terms of pistols, especially since Magnum Research started changing names around. But then I don’t actually try that hard either!

        All I can say for sure is that my older versions in .40 shoot well at 100 yards provided you’re shooting at a reasonably sized target. I also know they’ll cut a cigarette in half at 20 yards (provided I have clean contacts in).

        1. avatar Joel says:

          As far as pistol designs go, a CZ styled pistol will be hard to beat when it comes to intrinsic accuracy.

          I would recommend a full sized steel framed model. Probably a SSA. They come in everything from 22.lr to 10mm. OR a Sig P210. 😉

  19. avatar Geoff PR says:

    Buy an inexpensive folding bicycle and put puncture-resistant tires on it.

    Less time walking means more time shooting… 🙂

    1. avatar Chris says:

      Haha thanks.

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        Oh, another thing –

        Consider rigging up a lockable case with a chain to secure your guns while you make that long walk to the berm.

        It beats constantly looking back over your shoulder to see if some dirtbag may be thinking about stealing your guns.

        Oh, BTW, TTAG had an article recently on that High-Power with the rifle rear sight:

        http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2016/12/joe-grine/obscure-object-desire-chinese-contract-inglis-hi-power/

        1. avatar Joel says:

          The hi power feels better in my hand than any other pistol I’ve ever shot. Love that gun. I’m hoping my CZ will feel close to the same once I get around to buying the thin aluminum grips for it.

  20. avatar William says:

    “What Equipment for Long Range Pistol Shooting?”

    For me, it’s a handgun and a range with a target that’s more than five paces from me.

  21. avatar Cknarf says:

    How about a rifle?

    1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      I’m not aware of any modern handguns that aren’t rifled.

    2. avatar Chris says:

      Mercia

  22. avatar J. Justiss says:

    Look for a Ruger Redhawk, 7 1/2″ barrel, in .357. Maybe not as accurate as a .41 mag on paper but a soft shooter. Plenty of grips, sights, and loads to choose from.

  23. avatar anonymoose says:

    How about a 10″ Desert Eagle in .44 Magnum?

    1. avatar Chris says:

      Over budget

      1. avatar anonymoose says:

        Oh, well. I really think you should go with the .44 Mag and a really long dongle-barrel if you plan to shoot at true long range. Trying to push normal pistol cartridges out that far is just stupid. Ruger makes 9.5 inch Super Redhawks and 10.5″ Super Redhawks in .44, and there were 10″ Model 29s at one point.

  24. avatar James69 says:

    Glock 17L. Biggest thing to overcome is not being able to see the target at longer ranges. But Browning solved this issue with the Hi-power artillery model. Look it up. When I shoot long range standing I place the pistol in one hand then push it into the crook of my other arm reaching back to my torso. (just don’t get your face in the slide) I use a crossbow red dot with the stacked 3 dots kinda gives you a good referance point for shooting depending at what range you set the top dot. (or bottom) With the scope rail installed you can really reach out and whack stuff. (my personal best steel silouette at 200 yards, ding, ding,ding) Bullets at that range don’t have alot of hitting power (9mm) so game hunting is out. AT that range you are lobbing lead on an arc. Best ammo I have used is the PMC 124gr fmj white box, plain jane.

    1. avatar Chris says:

      I found a browning hi power rear adjustable sights model. It has a notched rifle type sight. Is that what you are talking about? Interesting pistol. I had not concedered at 17L. I will check one out. Thanks for the tips.

      1. avatar Skoon says:

        I didn’t want to be the first person To bring up glock. G40 in 10mm 6 in barrel stock and kkm makes even longer barrels for it out. Just replace sights and a trigger upgrade can be had for well under a hand

  25. avatar VerendusAudeo says:

    I’m a big fan of the Ruger Blackhawk personally.

    1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      The Super Blackhawk Hunter with a scope would be about ideal. Especially in .41 magnum. At 53 ounces plus scope I don’t imagine recoil would be harsh at all.

    2. avatar Old Air Force says:

      I am a fan of Blackhawks as well. I have one in .41 mag and it shoots like a dream. I never really tried it at 100 yards till I was at the range with a buddy and we set up my chrony for his Mosin. After getting the data he wanted I decided to get some data on some loads for my .41. I aimed at the target to make sure I shooting across the sensors and saw dust behind the 100 yard target. My buddy saw it and spotted for me. On paper high right. Cool. 11 more shots and all of them on paper with 8 of them in a 4 inch group high right. I was hooked on distance with a pistol. Chris, if you consider revolvers the ballistics on .41 mag is ideal. You should even be able to do 100 yards with your 45 . With whatever you decide on the best investment you can make is to start reloading. Your accuracy will improve and after the initial investment your price per round will go down.

  26. A hand
    An eye
    A big ass target

  27. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    Chris,

    BALLISTIC CALCULATOR
    Have you looked at Hornady’s ballistic calculator? They even provide two flavors of ballistic calculator.

    You can find them here:
    http://www.hornady.com/ballistics-resource

  28. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    I have no knowledge to offer on handgun shooting past 100 yards. A family friend used to shoot .357 Magnum revolvers to 100 yards with amazing accuracy. He claimed that it simply required a fair amount of practice.

    I have had a lot of trouble with consistent accuracy past 25 yards with all manner of handguns and rifles. How much of that is me, I don’t know. Example: I was trying to sight-in a .44 Magnum rifle (scoped no less) at 25 yards and shooting two inch groups (which is gross). When I found the “right” ammunition, I proceeded to put multiple bullets through the same .43 inch diameter hole. It doesn’t seem possible that a break-action rifle (or ammunition) would shoot a 2 inch group at 25 yards. And yet it did.

    I am starting to believe that ammunition selection can dominate inherent accuracy at “long” ranges. Either that or the inexpensive firearms that I purchase are inherently inconsistent.

  29. avatar jwtaylor says:

    What position(s) will you be shooting from for your 300+ yard shooting?
    Is the goal solely to punch paper, or are you trying to get a cartridge to hunt with as well?

    1. avatar Chris says:

      More than likely I will be shooting prone with sand bags. Possible sitting with a tripod and a sand bag. No intention of hunting at that range, just want to put holes in paper.

  30. avatar GS650G says:

    My .44 Redhawk is zeroed at 50 and I’ve hit 6 inch areas at 100. I have a 2×20 Leopold scope on it. A 7.5 inch barrel gives enough velocity and stability for 100 yards. I’ve tagged deer at 75 already and my shots were right were I needed them to be.
    I switch to copper 225 grain from lead 240 and didn’t need to move the scope much. The 225 was a little higher at 50 yards.

  31. avatar Matt says:

    I’d posit that if it goes into a pistol, it is no longer a rifle round.

    And for shame! Only one mention of the XP100! You could split the difference and go bolt action with the XP100, it repeats, but manually.

    I’d think more velocity is more better for this, so 10mm would be the better choice, but I could be wrong.

  32. I don’t care for long range pistol shooting because it has no practical application.
    50 yards is long enough for me.
    I get the skill it takes and it is a challenge that is rewarding. I just like my shooting sports to mimic real world scenarios otherwise, I feel like I am missing out on valuable training time.
    Just seem like a Fudd sport to me.
    Take the lumberjack games for example. Almost every event has practical application except for the axe throw.
    Long range pistol is the axe throw of the shooting sports.

  33. avatar John Clark says:

    No deer is safe within 150 yards with my 7×30 waters contender, They are equally unsafe with the 45 colt barrel within 100 yards. I have shot a few with my 45 colt Redhawk at 100 yards but that is pushing it, prefer to stay within 75 with the redhawk. From the deer stand I shoot all deer to my right with one of the two.

  34. avatar Sam Damewood says:

    Actually my favored long range target is the Football,
    Each Stuporbowl Sunday, my friends and I shoot them at 2-300 yards with handguns.
    lately my favorite is the mighty Herters .401 PowerMag, just because I have 2 of them I and I like it.

  35. avatar JohnH says:

    I would suggest you study yourself some Elmer Keith. He first wrote on article on long range handgun shooting for American Rifleman in the 1930’s. He wrote of practicing at 600 yards and was called not so nice names. A fellow from east went and stayed with him and found all Elmer said to be true. Most of his shooting at long range during that time frame was done with Smith and Wesson Hand Ejectors 1st and 2nd Models (Targets of course) chambered in 44 Special, but stoked with a load of 18 grains of 2400 driving 250 grain cast bullets at circa 1200 fps. People been doing this a long time. Of late, self defense shooting and handguns for such have been all the rage. I fear much is being lost, especially considering that Bulleys competition is fired at 25 and 50 yards, Hunter Pistol 25-100 meters and International Handgun Silhouette is fired 50-200 yards offhand. No matter what your end choice is, BRAS. Breath Relax Aim Squeeze

    1. avatar Chris says:

      Thanks a lot for your advice.

  36. avatar skiff says:

    In the 1980’s, I was member of the Wallum Lake Gun Club in RI. A friend of mine was shooting steel rams consistently at 200 yards with his 9mm German Luger handgun. He handed me a full magazine and told me to shoot at the ram. After walking a few rounds, I too was hitting the ram at 200 yards. Hearing the sound of the bullet hitting the steel was so cool.

  37. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

    my brother has a contender in .357maximum. it reaches out pretty far.
    i see that there is not much resale value on the (probably discontinued) lone eagle pistols.
    i see a .44 mag one for three hundred…

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