New SSAA discipline - Field Rifle 3-Positional Scoped Air Rifle
For those of you who have a passion for hunting but enjoy the camaraderie of a shooting club, the Sporting Shooters’ Association of Australia (SSAA) now offers a new, affordable discipline to help hone your hunting skills.
The SSAA Field Rifle and 3-Positional Discipline sub-committee recently decided to develop a set of rules for shooting competition Air Rifle and the match is starting to see a strong following in several states.
Scoped Air Rifle comprises two different events shot over 10m, and can be held indoors or outdoors. The 3-Positional Scoped Air Rifle match is a 60-shot match fired in the order of 20 shots of prone position, 20 shots of standing position and 20 shots of kneeling position. The 10m Precision Scoped Air Rifle match is a 40-shot match fired from the standing unsupported position. All details are broken down into 10-shot strings, with two shots per target in 15 minutes.
Shooters can use compressed air, gas, pump or spring-type air rifles. The match is designated for air rifles of .177" (4.5mm) calibre so to minimise damage to pellet traps. Any sight type, aperture, partridge or scope sight is permitted, and there is no limit on the weight of the rifle. Shooting gloves, coats, pants and rifle slings are also permitted.
As far as rifles go, a new expensive rifle is not necessarily needed - unless you are lucky and have a very understanding partner! There are many second-hand target and semi-target air rifles on the market, if you look around. Air rifles retain their accuracy and an older, second-hand rifle will shoot just as accurately as a new expensive one, and it’ll be more accurate than most can shoot at 10m.
If your budget will allow an international target rifle or a high-velocity field competition air rifle is great for Scoped Air Rifle competitions. With the additional price of a scope these can cost several thousand dollars. Make sure a scope can be properly mounted on the rifle before you buy.
Some pellets shoot more accurately in some air rifles than in others. Just as you would with a rimfire or centrefire rifle, it is important to try as many different brands and weights of pellets as you can get your hands on. Don’t be afraid to experiment as there is almost an endless variety of pellet weights and styles available. Benchrest testing is definitely recommended.
The competition is graded, and a shooter moves to a higher grade only when the grade level score is equalled or exceeded on three occasions - the same as in Field Rifle competition. Proficiency awards will be available in bronze, silver, gold and masters. A shooter must shoot the event at least once to be graded.
The normal target suppliers - ACS Swan Print in WA - have the targets, which are similar in layout to the SSAA official Field Rifle and Scoped 3-Positional targets, except that they are scaled down so the sight picture at 10m is similar to the sight picture at the longer distances shot in rimfire and centrefire competitions.
Scoring is best-edge scoring. Outward scoring gauges can be used where the scoring line has been shot away.
Separate classes of state and national records will be kept for indoor and outdoor competitions.
If your club is interested in starting up the match, the rulebooks are available from SSAA Merchandise. For more information, contact your state Field Rifle and Scoped 3-Positional Rifle delegate.
If you are up to having a go at the Inaugural Championships, they will be held at Para Range in South Australia from October 27 to 29.
Enquiries can be made to Rod Frisby, the Field Rifle and Scoped 3-Positional Discipline Chairman on 0401 124 777.