Accuracy testing is always a tough one to believe. It seems that everyone gets different results, and that’s with good reason. If you read our earlier piece about accuracy testing you’d know that there are so many variables that it can be very difficult to be fair. Shooter ability aside, wind, ammunition, temperature, target choice, optics choice… the list goes on as to how the same firearm may appear to perform differently each time you take it out. We have the new Ranger Proof Enhanced ELC rifle in for long-term testing and wanted to see what it could do out of the box.
In the name of presenting what a consumer might do we did not follow normal barrel break-in procedures. We did not specially prepare hand-loaded ammunition. We did not mount $3,000 glass on the rifle, nor did we wait until ideal weather conditions. The rifle is Ranger Prof anyways, right? We like to consider our rifle accuracy testing to be fair both to the consumer and manufacturer. Here are the conditions:
- The rifle is mounted in the affordable, but quality Caldwell Stinger Rest: This helps reduce shooter error. We’re testing the rifle, not the shooter.
- Factory ammunition is used: In this test ammo used came from Nosler, Hornady, Gorilla, and Fiocchi.
- A variety of loads are used: Beyond rifling twist rate, it’s been our experience that each individual rifle has a preferred load. Sometimes it can be surprising. For this test 35gr, 62gr, 69gr, and 77gr was used including both .223 Remington and 5.56x45mm chamberings. The Ranger Proof rifle is chambered in .223 Wylde.
- Hot barrel: We do not pause to let the barrel cool or harmonics calm. Though this may hurt accuracy, but unless the rifle is built for bench shooting it’s unfair to expect a consumer to treat it like one.
- Two Shooters: In order to further mitigate shooter skill, mood, and daily luck two shooters each fire five rounds.
- 10-Shot Groups: That’s right, TEN. Running half a box of each load gives a bigger grouping, but also a more in-depth look at how a particular rifle performs with that load.
- Included Optic: The 1-8x Shephard scope that came with the rifle was used.
So how did a rifle hand-built by a Special Forces veteran from select custom parts perform? Comment below with your guess as to which round did best then watch the video to see the results.
Photos courtesy of author.