Tuning Vs Performance

Discussion in 'Piston & Spring' started by skires, Oct 9, 2018.

  1. skires

    skires Well-Known Member

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    A few threads on tuning at the moment.

    Genuine query ...

    Is all this tuning relating to better performance in the real world?

    Re target shooting ... are we seeing shooters that maybe used a lesser tuned rifle ... maybe one with just a decent fitting set of guides etc ... now using mega tuned ones and their scores noticeably improving?

    Are springer scores in general improving because of the number of mega tuned guns out there?
     
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  2. NeilM

    NeilM Well-Known Member

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    Looking at this subject as an ignorant but interested bystander, there is no one rifle or no one shooter who dominates.

    I am not sure the top shots want to give their trade secrets away, but I have seen some impressive scores within our region, all shot with rifles that have factory standard internals.
     
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  3. RobF

    RobF Administrator Staff Member

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    Performance is performance.

    Tuning is tuning.

    They're not the same thing but some confuse them. You don't tune suspension to move better or get more power, that's performance. You tune suspension to behave how you want it to or the engine to deliver power how you want it to. The overall envelope of numbers don't have to change with tuning, they do with performance.

    As far as I know the two standout shooters of the year in the UK, Jack and John, use pretty standard gear. Jacks is setup by someone but is running pretty standard apart from that, and John is running standard internals with just a seal change (might be something else, forget now).

    I think springer scores are improving because 10 years ago there wasn't much on what worked and what didn't. When I ran into problems there was a lot of shrugging of shoulders saying that's what springers do and no real reason why, even from candid experts. Roll on and at least we know the main cause of problems and we also have a lot more giving it a go and that breeds competition and therefore improvement.
     
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  4. Musicville

    Musicville New Member

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    As someone starting out in the sport, this is a subject that im intrested in too.

    My opinion is that i am at the bottom of the learning curve and have to first learn and improve my technique and the impact on my rifle.

    Once i feel that plateaus then i may look at tuning to eek out the final gains. However, i am a long way off that yet!
     
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  5. Cooper_dan

    Cooper_dan Well-Known Member

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    I don't think you will be able to get a real answer to this because the data set you want will be tiny.
    You need to find someone who used a standard configuration for a long time to get a baseline, let's say a full year. Then changed to a mega tune and shot that for a full year (without making any changes).
    They also need to have been experienced from the start so any improvements arent due to just becoming a better all round shooter.
    Then you need to check they haven't just learnt how to shoot all springers better, so they would have to go back and shoot another year of the standard rifle.
    An 'A-B-A' test.
    I don't think that person exists.

    There may be some genuine improvements from using the mega tune. For example less hold sensitivity will help on angled shots where hand position becomes very important and will affect the POI. But my guess would be that most improvements will come from practice and familiarity with the kit. Regardless of the tune.
     
  6. FPoole

    FPoole Active Member

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    I've won our little State match several times, once with a pro tuned gun and 3 or 4 other times with pretty much standard guns. I don't have a large field of folks I shot against, but a few were very good. I was only 3 shots down on the top pcp score one year and the gun was just about standard. Tuning makes for a much more comfortable feeling shot cycle, but it doesn't help the accuracy of a good standard gun. I just like a standard MarkI set up with a good seal.
     
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  7. Phil Kennett

    Phil Kennett Active Member

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    I am new to shooting, since June this year so not particularly experienced. I have acquired several guns in my short time (TX200, HW97, LGU, HW99, HFT500) I merely started shooting down the local indoor range but soon wanted to see how I was improving and by how much and also which gun shoots the best for me at least.
    So I started to use 25 metre BR as a measure of accuracy between guns. This discipline got quite addictive and also takes no prisoners, 25 shots with millimetre precision required, not easy.

    I then score the results using the official 25 metre BR targets and input the results into a spreadsheet. This is building me some data to see firstly how I am improving, and secondly which gun is performing. Further to this I have now added some tuned guns into the foray to see if tuning has improved performance. Using a spread sheet I am able to plot average scores and see any trends.

    I tend to shoot approx 3 targets per gun per session, I do switch around the order in which I shoot to keep things as fair as possible and allow for fatigue or an off day etc.

    This little project has been useful not only to see an improvement in my performance since I started, but seeing which gun suits me, also has gun tuning helped, and also customs stock which are coming into the equation. I also know how much more accurate I am with a PCP than a springer (no surprise) but again it is a tool for measuring.

    Will this carry over into other disciplines, who knows, I have also just started shooting HFT, not particularly well I add, but the 25 BR project has help me concentrate on technique which should carry over to any other discipline. Either way this project is building me some usable data as to my own performance and improvement and my own guns performance in standard trim, and when tuned.
     
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  8. bootneckbob

    bootneckbob Active Member

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    Slightly pedantic here but I'd disagree. It depends on why you are tuning your suspension. A race car will likely be tuning it so the car can handle maximum power delivery to achieve maximum speed at all times.
    Luxury car manufacturer probably looking to ensure the passengers are unaware of the terrible state of the road they are driving on. Both to increase performance in the there relevant field. No one in their right mind would tune and accept they had made it worse in my example.
    So the two are interlinked. Even detuning a rifle (springer) by bringing the power down is a effort to make it shoot better/more accurately/better firing cycle etc but ultimately increase performance for the user in that sense. If you want outright power but not being able to use it (?) then I'd agree, a tune doesn't mean better performance.
     
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  9. skires

    skires Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the comments guys.

    Dan ... Excellent post ... thank you ... but we all keep saying the above ... but have we actually proved it? Are people actually proving that in comps? Are their scores actually improving because they are getting more angled shots because the mega tune has tuned out some sensitivity to the slight change in hold.

    It's something I KEEP saying I'll do. Set up a target at say 40 yards. Shoot it with a known good springer with a known good batch of pellets. Take a few groups of ten HFT prone at ground level ( comfort zone ). Then elevate the target and take a few more groups. Try the springer against the PCP. Then just whip out the internals of that springer and replace with a highly tuned set of internals. See if there is any difference. I really must try and do it this winter.

    ... but ... back to your excellent points ... it's just a test of one shooter, so hardly proves anything ... and one could argue that I would need to shoot the first rifle for a year and then do the tests ... and then shoot the tuned version for another year, so I was used to both set ups.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2018
  10. skires

    skires Well-Known Member

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    Totally agree Bob

    I was stating performance in terms of end result. Does it get better or worse after tuning. So in this scenario ... does tuning the rifle relate to higher numbers on scorecards.

    So, yes, tuning the suspension may not give more power but if it knocks half a second of the finishing time ( in a racing scenario ) ... it's improved performance. If the passengers say it gives a more pleasant ride ( in a comfort scenario ) ... it's improved performance.

    I haven't really looked for a while ... but it has always interested me looking at shooting results from around the country ( Nerd Alert ). Over the last couple of decades I've seen very similar stories. The top names keep appearing at the top of the lists ( PCP ) and they've usually missed just a couple of shots. The best springer shooters come in about 6 or so shots behind them. Probably no different whether everyone was using a Pro Target and an older version of FT scope, or a modern day rifle with the latest top end scope with a multi adjust hamster and a Gimp jacket.

    In cricket, bat technology has gone mad over the last ten years and batsmen have taken advantage of that and one day scores have got higher and higher. You now see teams getting 300 as a minimum ( 50 overs ) where that was bizarre a few years back. Balls are now been hit much further than they used to be.

    So have FT courses evolved with the kit so that the courses are tougher and that compensates for the better kit? I wondered how springer tuning came into that equation?
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2018
  11. biwain

    biwain Tree bark and paint chipper Champion

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    The only way to prove this is to go on a shoot with John and swop guns, I will guarantee the outcome.

    IT'S YOUUUUU not the gun!!!!!

    The best score I ever had was when my gun was shooting the worst.

    The only thing about a "tuned" gun, it's nicer to shoot.

    Give me a 9015 and a March scope and i'll still be lucky to make 50%.

    My gun now shoots off the bench, hft, or ft, standing or kneeling with the same poi and no loss of sight picture, doing 11.6 with a 8oz trigger, but my competition scores stay the same.

    The only improvement I've made is it's a joy to shoot!
     
  12. Amac

    Amac Active Member

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    A couple of shooters at my club, both extremely good and well known with their Steyr's in HFT shooting circles, have recently "gone back to their roots" and embarked upon a campaign with a new TX each.
    Upon purchasing the new guns, both spent many a happy hour at our indoor range getting to know their new equipment and managed to produce 40 yard groups that were pretty damned close to what they would achieve with their PCP's.
    Once on the HFT course however, scores were five or six shots at least behind their usual high fifty averages. Rather than consider just the shot cycle of a tuned gun and how it obviously effects downrange accuracy, they were more concerned with stock fit as being just as important as what the action does following shot release.
    Never being a pair to be afraid of purchasing any item of equipment that might lead to improvements downrange, they have now both purchased custom fitted stocks and had a Tony Leach 22mm conversion.
    The combination of a far superior shot release and the properly fitting stocks has certainly made a huge difference to their recent HFT scores, with the average now down to only two or three points behind their usual competition winning high fifties scores.
    They would both confirm that the combination of tuned internals, and just as importantly, the custom Warren Edwards stocks has made a massive difference to the standard guns.
    If they continue to use their springers for the full round of UKAHFT nationals next year, I honestly believe that they now wont be far behind what they would anticipate to normally achieve most years. So yes, the full-tune and custom stock approach has most definitely helped them to maximise their own performance.
    The guns are a genuine delight to shoot. So much so that my own TX is now in the process of receiving exactly the same "treatment." Not that I will be capable of matching their regular performance, but I do hope to be biting their heels on occasion with my own "transformed TX."
    Cant wait!
    Andy
     
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  13. blacklab

    blacklab Active Member

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    All this pixie dust in springers only leads to more headaches and frustration ;);););););)
     
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  14. skires

    skires Well-Known Member

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    I was convinced that, with a springer, the recent, tougher, HFT courses at higher level, had been pushed to a point, with some wind, that shooting the springers, highly tuned or not, included far too much 'luck'.

    I've been waiting for a HFT PCP shooter that does have pedigree and has scored very well in PCP ( Open ) class to give springer a serious go to see what the comparison is.

    Gary, I believe, has won the Recoil Class now for the last two years so many congratulations to him. My laptop won't show all the scores for some reason but it looks like Gary's scores were a spread between low 50's and the odd mid 40's score in 2018.

    There was a guy about a year ago that said he had scored well with a springer over winter but I suspect he shot PCP over the National summer series.

    I still think that a good PCP shooter will struggle to CONSISTENTLY get within a few points of his PCP average in a series of tough courses. If their normal National series scores are say between 53 and 59, then I expect they will get some springer scores in the 50's, but I also expect them to have a number of scores with the springer that will be well down on what their PCP minimum would be ( so mid 40's scores ).

    Probably just stating the obvious above, but it would be interesting to see if a top PCP HFT shooter could give it a year or two at National level, with a tuned/custom stocked springer, and put a series of scores in that are just a couple of points behind what they would get with the PCP.

    Maybe these latest level of tunes from Tony, and from others, really are making the springers 'easier' to shoot, or ironing out some of the sensitivity issues. So if someone is willing to also put the time into getting the stock right and then the obvious time required practising, then maybe we are getting to a point where they can consistently perform close to the PCPs on tough HFT courses.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2018
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  15. Nick G

    Nick G Active Member

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    I shoot a gun at present which I believe to be the most highly tuned springer there is, ie a hand made aluminium action based loosely around a tx200, utilising a cz barrel , with my own ally 21mm x ring piston based internals , does it make me a better shooter ? the answer is no, it allows me to see where my shots have landed which in field target I believe to be an advantage , and it is far less hold sensitive than a standard gun, I am not at a level as a shooter where I win tournaments , I have had scores in the past in the mid thirties ( again with a heavily tuned rifle ), sadly not at the moment. It is an easy mistake to blame the gun whether it be pcp or springer , but the reality is the best shots out there have high levels of skill which I believe is down to good practice , and the desire for perfection. So by all means get your rifle tuned , it will be nicer to shoot and probably more consistent, but if you want higher scores you need to practice and improve yourself.
     
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  16. Cooper_dan

    Cooper_dan Well-Known Member

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    I'm still convinced that stock fit is much more important than the tune. In the last few shoots I'm sure I've only missed because of windage or range, and that's mostly because I've not been shooting HFT very long.

    I haven't once in the last year thought that I've missed because the shot cycle was too harsh or had any weird sensitivity issues.

    I'm rooting for the guys mentioned above and hope to be able to keep up with them over winter and into UKAHFT next year if they continue. They've got the skills to prove how accurate springers can be.

    I've put in a few scores a couple of points off the PCP's (final round at quarry was probably my best shoot) but can't do it consistently (yet!)
     
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  17. Amac

    Amac Active Member

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    It will certainly be interesting to note how they manage next year. I wouldn't be at all surprised if the two shooters in question continue to use their springers throughout the courses of next years season.
    Their last performance at the "Gathering" saw them probably only a couple of shots behind what they would have normally achieved with Steyrs. Following a few more months of competitive shooting I honestly believe that they wont be far behind, if at all behind, the top PCP shots on the day. It will be very interesting to see if they continue to improve at the present rate. As I said, I am aware that they consider stock fit to be just as important, if not more important than any state of tune. Following that, its all about the amount of practice and time spent with their individual guns that will help their cause.
    One thing is for sure though. They are both fully committed to the cause, and more importantly, are enjoying the new challenge of springer shooting. I have been telling them that practising with a springer would only improve their performance for years. This has fell upon deaf ears for a long time, despite both of them using springers extensively in the past and being aware of what is required for top grade results.
    I cannot remember either of them being so enthused about their shooting since first starting to enjoy competition success about a decade ago. Quite why the penny has finally dropped that shooting a living rather than dead rifle is just so damned enjoyable I have no idea, but it has.
    I will certainly be encouraging them and may well join in the official competition fun next year with a replica of their TX set ups myself. Not that I am in the same league unfortunately, but I have shot springers for fifty odd years and have been known to record the odd decent score with my trusty Venom 80.
    The bottom line is that as long as the individual shooter is both enjoying shooting a course and the challenge of using a gun that actually moves when fired, enjoyment levels will undoubtedly increase. If a tune and a new stock helps this then great. If you cannot afford the expense of these modifications, I would still recommend having a crack with a springer as you really do receive a great deal more pleasure when achieved with a mechanical gun. There again, I am a sad old bastard.
    Onwards and upwards!!!!
    Andy
     
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  18. skires

    skires Well-Known Member

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    Watching the NW scores with interest.

    Also ... interestingly ... with lots of people talking about making the rifle fit the shooter ( I think there is a big difference between making the rifle fit the shooter as opposed to making the stock fit the shooter ) ... is there an advantage of the shooter 'naturally' fitting the rifle ( in various positions )?
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2018
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  19. Cooper_dan

    Cooper_dan Well-Known Member

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    Do you mean making the stock fit the shooter being butt pad/cheek piece etc

    And the rifle fitting being length or barrel/balance etc?

    I'm making myself a very adjustable stock which I'll be testing with both full length and HC versions of the TX. Is that the kind of thing you mean?
     
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  20. skires

    skires Well-Known Member

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    Yes that's basically it Dan ...

    Stock fitting the shooter ... Length from butt to pistol grip. Length from pistol grip to trigger blade. Depth of fore end. Height of cheekpiece. Position of buttpad etc.

    Rifle fitting shooter includes balance points and contact points with rifle and adjusting weight in horizontal and vertical planes.

    The shooter fitting that rifle ... that's a different story.
     

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