Just a quick FYI. The school went well. There were seven of us in the school. Six guys had bolt guns and I had my LRP-07. I shot very consistent and had no problems getting consistent hits out to 1000 yards. That was as far as we shot for the class. Before the class started, a couple of the guys with bolt guns asked me, "why did you bring a semi auto to a sniper class? You're going to have a hard time when we go long."
One of the instructors was a Navy Seal sniper and used an SR-25 for the past few years in Iraq and Afghanistan. He said he loved the SR-25 gun but he had a lot of malfunctions. He was surprised that I only had one during the entire class. And it was because the magazine got sand in it. We were on our bellies in the sandy dirt the entire time so everyone was surprised that I was not having malfunctions. Even the bolt guns had a couple.
Towards the end of the training we went long. My first two shots at 1000 yards on a 12" by 12" target were direct hits. The Seal was spotting for all of us and I heard him say "son of a bitch, he hit dead center in the exact same spot both times, Jesus." Then I pulled my third shot 12" high. My fourth was 6" high. Then I hit it again on my 5th shot on the upper right corner.
Some of the bolt gun guys seemed a little pissed because most of them only hit once or twice on their first 5 shots. Only one guy hit three times like me. They knew I am a pistol and shotgun shooter with no precision rifle experience. So, it was kind of fun. Especially since half of them were using custom built bolt guns that were very expensive.
The other thing we did was to do man on man drills. We were put one on one against each other. We would have to run, throw down our packs, get down on our bellies, wait for the instructors to call out various targets at all different ranges and take them out. We were expected to get down, load one round, make the necessary scope adjustments, and fire. The first guy that hits wins. But, they were calling out 3 to 4 different targets at all different areas and all different ranges right in a row. So some targets might be at 425 yards at 2 o'clock, then 310 yards at 9 o'clock, 150 yards at 1 o'clock etc.
Each time we were only allowed one round. So once I fired I would have to drop my magazine, load a round in the same magazine that just dropped, make my rifle hot, find the next target, make adjustments on the scope and fire before the next guy did. Then immediately repeat the process and engage the next target and so on. The entire time the instructors were kicking our feet and yelling, "faster, faster, people are dying! Take the target out now. He's shooting children, while you are fumbling around!!." Then another kick.
I was using a Hours Falcon scope so I had an advantage because I didn\'t need to speed dial my scope and worry about dialing it in. But, I also had a disadvantage because it\'s easier to manually load one round into a bolt gun than having to drop a magazine and then load one round back into the magazine, insert it back in, and make it hot. But, I won about 75% of the time. So, that was fun too.
Finding the targets was the hardest thing. I never knew how hard it is to find targets quickly under pressure. But, it was excellent training. I just wish they would have let me load up my 20 round magazine and go head to head with the bolt gun guys. I would have destroyed them. But with only one round, it took away my advantage.
I'm going back in October for part 2. We will be engaging moving targets out to 1000 yards, shooting thru glass, barrier penetration, night sniping and shooting in moderate to high wind.
Thanks again for everything. The rifle performed well for me and I appreciate it. Also, a huge thanks to Eric for getting my rifle to me so I could use it in the class.
The LAPD SWAT sniper instructor told me is looking to get a semi auto .308 next year. He looked at my rifle very closely and actually studied it. I think he wants one.
I was using Sheep Dog Ammo and it performed perfectly. It had similar ballistics to Federal Match Ammo. I used one of the instructors "dope" info and I only had to make a few slight changes once I hit 800 yards. But the Sheep Dog ammo was very consistent.