They say a bad workman blames his tools, but to be fair in some cases it is the equipment that’s the issue.
If you’re struggling with shooting small groups, it could be your rifle but it’s quite possible that there’s something wrong with your set-up or execution. Perhaps your rifle is fine. You are just making a very common mistake that most begginers make.
Below are some common examples of mistakes you may be making that could cost you your accuracy. If you make sure to address each of these, you’ll be able to test your skills much more fairly and avoid being hampered by other avoidable factors.
The Scope Isn’t Mounted Properly
Mounting a scope is a lot more of a precise process than a lot of people think and if you’re not taking the time to do it properly then you will be shooting yourself in the foot (probably not literally but you never know!). It all starts with getting the right bases and rings and then leveling the scope. You can find much more detailed guidance on the web though.
Uneven Shoulder Pressure
The right amount of pressure will vary from shooter to shooter but it’s important to make sure you are applying the right amount for you. Either way, you need to ensure your shoulder pressure is consistent between shots.
Lack of Follow-Through
Remember, the shot is not ‘over’ until the point of impact. Visualize the trajectory of each bullet and make sure you are physically and mentally in-tune with the trigger until it breaks. Keep your head down and married to the stock.
Inconsistent Trigger Pull
Ideally you should be ‘pressing’ the trigger rather than pulling it. This might sound like a subtle difference but it can have a big impact on your accuracy.
Choosing the right ammo also has a big impact on your accuracy. If you are shooting with a factory rifle then make sure to test several loads to see what works best for your gun.
If you’ve ever read The Art of War, you’ll know how important it is to choose the right weather conditions and environment when taking on a challenge. Shooting early in the morning on calm days could mean low temperatures and minimal mirage.