Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

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Lee
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Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#1 Postby Lee » Sun Nov 29, 2020 3:40 pm

After having spoken to number of people in various shooting comps one of the main things that come up for reasons why people don't wish to shoot F-Class is the fact they cant use a brake. Given the advances In technology and designs on brakes and the fact that they are making brakes that are specifically for range style competitions,would it be worth easing restrictions to include brakes specifically designed to be "Competition Shooter Friendly" thus encouraging more people to move into the sport and essentially helping it to grow. Just a thought....

argh
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Location: Central Coast, NSW

Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#2 Postby argh » Sun Nov 29, 2020 4:18 pm

No.
Difference in handling a braked rifle vs no break, especially driving heavy projectiles, gives an advantage in recoil management. The line is drawn there as far as i am concerned for the major fclass disciplines. Hunter class, no worries. Fopen, fstd, ftr. NO.

F Class is about more than just shots down range, just like benchrest (where, as far as i know breaks also arent allowed). You need to put ALL parts of the puzzle together. Loading, rifle setup, technique (including recoil management) wind reading, mental ability. All of a suden people will be shooting 300wsm, 250gr projectile, with a break it will recoil like a dasher, give you all the advantage of bucking the wind, without the disadvantage of heavy recoil.

JMO

Gyro
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Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#3 Postby Gyro » Sun Nov 29, 2020 4:23 pm

I wonder Lee if u have largely canvassed shooters from the "PRS type" crowd who often use brakes ?

Guess I'm essentially with argh's comments ....... NAH !

F Class is a great class/discipline just like it is.

Lee
Posts: 26
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2016 1:17 pm

Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#4 Postby Lee » Sun Nov 29, 2020 5:17 pm

Actually no, I have not spoken to any PRS shooters specifically to save you wondering. I have however spoken to hunters and just a few others who shoot targets in general down the local SSAA range of which I am also a member. Both male and female and most don't' really understand the concept of being able to see the fall of shot as on the most part they only shoot at ranges under 200 yards where they can see perfectly well where the fall of shot is. They mainly speak of the fact they are not fans of recoil and don't wish to shoot a .308 nor 7mm untamed by a brake. As I said it was just a thought in reference to "Helping the sport to grow." Me personally. I use a .308 with heavy loads and heavy projectiles so I really don't care about about recoil and yes it is a great sport the way it is BUT, in order to grow the sport some changes may make a difference to some of the other shooters out there that are slight of build or simply don't wish to be going home sore after shooting all day. My take after talking to them, their point was more one of recoil taming and management. Also I have friends that have never shot at a range and were interested in coming down and did but lost interest when they realized they would be removing the brake from their rifle every time they wanted to shoot at the range. In reference to having an advantage or disadvantage, I tend to put it in the same basket as tuners and expensive hi BC projectiles. Some use them and some do not but for under 200 bucks for a decent one that is comp specific, the relative cost, compared to the other costs involved in F-Class, is negligible.
I was more thinking along the lines of if F-Class was a bit more accommodating to a wider range of shooters then the numbers would possibly grow and improve the competition and inject more money back into the sport for better facilities , especially at clubs who are struggling to get people to join and have large numbers of shooters on their doorstep that are inaccessible but for a small change in the rules to allow comp specific brakes and perhaps sway their thoughts and interest towards F-Class.

argh
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Location: Central Coast, NSW

Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#5 Postby argh » Sun Nov 29, 2020 5:25 pm

Lee, serious question, but how much F Class competition shooting have you done?
And secondly, you are aware that hunter class does allow the use of breaks, so long as the local range allows their use. Many ranges over the years have tried, but most of the time, the increase in noise behind the mound, and the increase in muzzle blast to the competitors on either side have been major downsides, and that rule has not stuck

Lee
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Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#6 Postby Lee » Sun Nov 29, 2020 5:48 pm

Been shooting F-Class since Hmmm at least 2010 maybe a bit longer, been to a few queens matches and shot long range F-Class in match rifle, so yeah a bit. Noise is not a issue as there are plenty of sets of hearing protection out there more than capable of negating the noise. The newer brakes are more advanced than the old and although not pulling up a freight train they still mitigate the recoil to acceptable levels for most without the sideways and slightly rearward blast thus not being as much of a concern for other shooters on the mound. I guess this is why they come under the guise of competition specific. I fully understand that the old brakes were a pain and I wouldn't wish it on anyone to have to lay next to a shooter using one and try and concentrate on their own shooting. Yes there may be a few issues to iron out but surely a few small inconveniences would be better than watching the sport diminish or stagnate rather than grow.

John23
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Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#7 Postby John23 » Sun Nov 29, 2020 6:17 pm

If recoil is the issue I believe shooting a appropriate cartridge within the current rules would be a simple solution.

Also fitting quality recoil pads will tame a rifle a lot .

I shoot 6br and 6.5x47 lap with a McMillan stock with no recoil pad .
I have always found it comfortable until last match when I tried a mates rifle
In 308win that featured a quality recoil pad .

It was like getting tapped by a pillow and changed how I feel about my current set up.

jasmay
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Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#8 Postby jasmay » Sun Nov 29, 2020 6:37 pm

It would be interesting to see what the same shooters from SSAA $
& Hunters said when you popped them down behind an 8.25 or 10kg rifle.

The weight of F-Class rigs goes a long way to mitigating recoil.

Lee
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Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2016 1:17 pm

Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#9 Postby Lee » Sun Nov 29, 2020 7:10 pm

Just to be clear I'm not for one minute saying that the rules on brakes are wrong. But what I am saying is something needs to be done to save our sport. After a quick think about it I have actually been in the game since 2008. I have seen it grow, plateau and now die off because largely of not so much brakes in general but the lack of changes people are willing to make in the sport to encourage new shooters to join and to keep existing shooters interested. in the last 2 months I have seen the best part of 30 shooters leave the sport here in Tas and yes they were PRS shooters but some crossed over to F-class at times. point being they were paying funds into the TRA but are no longer. Lots of politics which I'm not going to enter into and no doubt there are people within these forums that know a lot more about it than I. There is also a new SSAA range opening up that goes out to 1000 meters/approx 1100 yards for long rang precision shooting and guess what they already have 30 shooters on the table without a shot being fired on the range as it wont be ready until late January at the earliest. 30 shooters! That's more than a lot of clubs around Australia! And given the sport of PRS and Long Range Precision, along with ELR styles of shooting are growing fast, guess where the large numbers making these shooting disciplines grow are coming from. Our beloved F-Class, it's time we opened our mind and took the blinkers off and if that means allowing a certain type of brake or someone shooting a 338 Lapua or lil bobby to try his hunting type rifle against a BAT action with a Bartlein Barrel and EC tuner worth the best part of $10000 then hey I am all for it. yes keep F-Class essentially as it is but a few small changes here and there wont change the sport into an unrecognizable state. If anything it will be good for it as lil bobby sees the difference between his rifle and the 10 grand Lamborghini of rifles laying next to him and wants one so he too can be competitive with the big boy and girls. he may even have a good day at the same time your day was a write off and beat you hands down sending home with a smile and new enthusiasm for the sport of which he will tell his mates about inducing them to come along as if he could do it then they cant see why they wouldn't be able to do the same.

Increasing incentives to make it worth the while of shooters traveling for miles to have a great day, win an OPM in their class and go home with 50 bucks and a medal. yes its nice but really? 50 bucks wouldn't cover the cost of the ammo let along the fuel and accommodation if they need the full weekend to get there shoot and get home. I'm sure there are plenty of people here that own businesses. Perhaps if they got on board for a bit of advertising and a tax write off and donated a few clam shells into the pot then the prizes would be more appropriate for the outlay. Just another suggestion. At the end of the day all I am saying is we need to change and we are the ones who need to make it happen if we want F-Class to be here in another ten to fifteen years. Lets work together rather than come up with excuses why we cant like the NRAA don't do enough or too much noise or to bigger caliber or it hasn't worked before. Lets make it work with an open mind and a bit of give and take.

Cheers

On that note I'm off to load a bit
Take care all.

jasmay
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Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#10 Postby jasmay » Sun Nov 29, 2020 7:18 pm

Lee, I did hear quite a bit about the Tasmanian saga, the one thing I would say is it wasn’t anything to do with the rules, it was a local range issue, I doubt any rule change would have saved those shooters and I think TRA should be disappointed that they could not come up with a workable solution.

Lee
Posts: 26
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2016 1:17 pm

Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#11 Postby Lee » Sun Nov 29, 2020 7:34 pm

Initially it was case of we want to join in but rules need to be changed to facilitate. When it went to the stage of arguments thats when it started to go beyond the point of no return and yes a rule change in the end would not of satisfied either party. I think personally there is a bit of blame on both sides to how the whole thing was managed both from the TRA and from the party of shooters and the approach they took in some ways but nether the less I agree with you 100% it was a disappointing saga one I hope is not emulated anywhere else. I just think we as a group of sportsmen and women need to start thinking outside the box to. Firstly stop that scenario from repeating and secondly, to try and make F-Class the most exciting shooting sport to enter into as it was years ago. I like tradition but I love my chosen sport more. I have had a few years break due to personal circumstance and am returning to a shadow of the sport it once was but I hope in way or another to get it back its attraction at least here in Tas.

Wingnut
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Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#12 Postby Wingnut » Sun Nov 29, 2020 7:52 pm

Lee, while I agree we need to do something to revive the sport I sometimes wonder if people are looking in the right areas. What’s the one constant in everything we do? The people. I’m relatively new to the sport, I enjoy the challenge and trying new things within the rules. The one thing that frustrates the hell out of me is the old guard who, come hell or high water, won’t pony up the required cash to keep the sport alive and vibrant. Ask people to pay an additional $5 per year for membership and you’d think you’ve cut out one of their kidneys. Shooting is expensive, the days of old where rifles and components were inexpensive and plentiful are gone. It’s all too easy to moan about other clubs, state and national bodies, but at the end of the day we are the ones who set the tone of everything we do. You want decent prizes at shoots, pay more money to compete. Cut back on all the superfluous bull dust like badges for a third of the field, it’s a bloody excuse to have an award for participation. Make it so that only he top three positions get the prizes, if people won’t come out and compete because they won’t get a badge, then they’re part of the problem. Why are we also putting all of the money raised at OPMs back into prize money? Why isn’t an OPM an opportunity for the club to generate funds to allow them to improve infrastructure and other stuff around the club?

Further to all of that, what advertising is everyone’s local club doing? Does your club have an online presence that’s managed and opens the door to the newer, tech savvy shooters. Is your club welcoming of new members or is it full of know all’s who scoff at the idea of someone shooting their hunting rifle to have a go. Are the various clubs advertising Hunter class? If not, why not? There are so many people who don’t want to buy a dedicated target rifle, but will happily shoot their hunting rig at long range as it’s something they’ve always wanted to try. Again, it’s easy to place the blame elsewhere, but it’s hard to look at ourselves and take ownership of the problem.

Food for thought.

Lee
Posts: 26
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2016 1:17 pm

Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#13 Postby Lee » Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:23 pm

Yep I agree with you. My first rifle was a Ruger M77 with a Burris Multi Plex scope for $700 second hand before I moved to a Mod 12 Savage both I added bits to along the way and spent lots of hours tuning loads to make.things work. Yes the old Omarks have since gone and the newer rifles are expensive but we all have to start somewhere and if that is a hunting rifle with a tuned load with or without a brake shot at long range then so be it. I'm all for that and more than happy to help people obtain the info they need to be able to do that. Our club has and online presence and yes we do try to engage new shooters and encourage them to come along with what ever rifle they have to remove the initial cost. We have a shooter as young as 16 shooting with us and to be honest shes a doer. kicks arses with the best of them in the club. Me personally I don.t care much for the prizes nor the medals. I have a few and they sit in a draw gathering dust. The only one I look at is one from the Tas Queens a number of years ago because the gold bits in it impress me the way they still glint. I'm also happy to pay a bit extra in annual fees if that will make the difference. When I was the secretary of our club putting advertising in the local gun shops trying to get people to maybe get a bit of a stir inside at the thought of shooting 1000 yards as opposed to 1 or 200 was a bi-monthly thing. though not of late admittedly due to me not being around much as I mentioned above. I'm sure or at least would like to think that other clubs do the same where possible. However at the time it did wrangle a few shooters and I'm hoping it will again. The club Pres. and current Secretary try as best they can to keep the website updated and do a good job given the hours they work as it would be with lots of small clubs and the multi tasking that goes into keeping things running. I'm sorry for not being a bit broader in my comment about the prizes that was just an example. It could of as easily been having more shoots with different organizations such as the Police Force/Army/Air Force /Navy or the SSAA as we used to Sharing rifles with them to give them the bug hopefully. It would be a day for them to come and test their skill against ours. The local TRG used to come down now and then with their sharp shooters and have combined shoots. Some of them used to come back in their own time they liked our style that much. Any number of things can be adopted if we are willing to have a go and get out of the basics of just showing up for club meets then once a month to an OPM and time and money allowing the State Queens and then the national Queens for those who can travel. There is no on solution I get that and ok maybe brakes or more calibers might not be the answer but it may be too. The old thing of give it a go and see if not, then back to the drawing board but at least we as a sporting group are being proactive in our approach towards the longevity of the sport. In no way did I mean to blame anyone or any one thing for the way the sport has shrunk in numbers and I apologize to anyone who got that impression. I simply, as having been away for a while and now returning have a different perspective as I have had a chance to talk with others in other disciplines and clubs/associations. The Brake thing stemmed from just conversations with others outside of the walls that have surrounded this sport and in doing so made it somewhat redundant in its current form compared with some of the newer disciplines the have come to surface over the last few years. Having said that I do honestly believe that we can reboot F-Class and make it compete for numbers among the shooting society. The thing is we have to want to and not just kick along as we have done for too long as that is clearly not working. Hit the ELR scene for example but running F-Class matches out to 1500 yards or even a mile or two. old farmer bob would excel it that kind of stuff with his win-mag or 357 H and H. But to do that we need to reset the rules to allow larger calibers. I know some ranges cant but others can so make it part of the OPM for a club that can extend ranges out past the norm and has the means within the range profile. I personally don't have any one answer to fix it but as a group we should be able to come to some arrangement and it all starts with a suggestion. If its shut down before it can gain ground then the next person who was going to make a suggestion thinks twice. Its heard quite often the ole phrase of why bother suggesting stuff it wont change anything. The thing is if we don"t change then we will be forced to as we wont have an F-Class in the future. One of the things that surprised me the most was the amount of comments on here where there was a suggestion or a comment aiming towards making a change to "GROW" one of the threads had over 12000 views and 25 replies, another had over 58000 views and just over 250 replies. Do people in the sport care that little about where we are heading. If so we should probably wind it up now and save the time and frustration of those who want to revive it. And yeah I can go to SSAA and shoot ELR, LRP or PRS but I choose to be here and shoot F-Class for the love of the competition not prizes and not because I have a crap load of cash to spend because I don't. The same as a lot of others i spend what I need to to be able to enjoy it and get to shoots if and when I can. What I do have is a passion for it and a drive to try and make it better for all who already shoot the discipline and those who may do in the future. so change the rules a bit if thats what it takes. open it up the old sniper class or any other class that has gone by the way side. promote the crap out of it and raise the annual fees by 20 bucks. If it helps then I'm all for it. Lets just not sit on our hands and watch it all disappear as people loose interest and go else where for their trigger fix.

johno
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Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#14 Postby johno » Mon Nov 30, 2020 12:41 am

Some good ideas, reality how many ranges go to 1000 yds or beyond. How many clubs are BEHIND SPORTER and HUNTER CLASS and really promoting it. Our club have dedicated the second Sunday of each month to it . 100yd sight in get new shooters on the board and check their gear, accuracy and safety attitude, then onto main range Hextas 300 to 500 yds. I think that there is heaps of room on country ranges for muzzle breaks to distance themselves so as not to be too offensive to anyone . Always have people interested in it, and those with better gear will come back and shoot further , anyone who is a bit competitive doesn't take long to get the bug.Personally I don't think enough clubs push S H class hard enough, 223 off the shelf, shoot 69gr factory back to 600-700yds . No need for breaks get them in at a low cost entry level rifle scope and ammunition . Keep it as simple as and fun for them , some will want to get a bigger better S and H class rifle , some will want to try F class . You must get them in and encourage them and keep them interested. Don't let members shoot their F class and F open rifles with all their flash gear on those days , you can make them feel inferior. Encourage their participation they will build your club numbers and help your growth . But it must be fully encouraged by every club. As for clubs that don't want to encourage it and changes along the way , maybe those committees should step aside and let the sport grow.

Gyro
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Location: New Zealand

Re: Lifting Restrictions on Brakes in F-Class

#15 Postby Gyro » Mon Nov 30, 2020 4:18 am

We had a guy over here begin his F Class foray with a factory 26” barrelled Remmy 700 in 7mm Dakota. It was NOT pleasant to be beside it. With a brake it would have been farking horrible. Brake ‘technology’ and the different ways to port them is NOT new. How and why they work is not rocket science.

Awesome ideas Lee in a discussion that’s been previously thrashed. F Class has been a great outlet for my shooting interest. One of the ‘problems’ with F Class IMO is it is too technical for most. To be a good F Class shooter now u need to be all over the technical side, which starts with having the right gear right from the get go !!! Not having the right gear or the help needed to make it all work and u WILL be a long way away from the podium, which is likely demoralizing for most.

Banging steel is so much less technically demanding. I would rather watch paint dry, but seems lots of guys want to play that game and of course they can jump straight in there and do it with the ‘tacticool’ toys many of them already have.


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