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View Full Version : Bench Shooting: Selecting front rest, many questions



Rock63
06-18-2008, 06:08 PM
New guy checking in :D Hopefully this is not a dumb question.

I am a beginner in .22 LR (100 yards) and .243 (100-600 yards) bench rest shooting. Currently are using a loaner front rest and rear bag, very old, no adjustability for windage, no fine adjustments for elevation. But to get started and learn the basics I'm glad to have the loaner product.

The question: What should I look at for my next front rest (hopefully I can use the same one for both calibers)? I'm not looking for a cadillac, but would like to avoid having to buy 6 different bench rests as I move up in skill.

brad541thb
06-18-2008, 06:17 PM
Rock,

Hard to beat a Fudd front rest.

I have one. Kent Owens told me about the Fudd. They are around $400 I believe new. You can find a used one sometimes on here for around $325 shipped that is probably close to new condition.

Rock63
06-18-2008, 06:19 PM
Rock,

Hard to beat a Fudd front rest.

I have one. Kent Owens told me about the Fudd. They are around $400 I believe new. You can find a used one sometimes on here for around $325 shipped that is probably close to new condition.

Thanks Brad, what features of the Fudd put it ahead of the rest in your opinion?

brad541thb
06-18-2008, 06:29 PM
In a word, price.

Here's my Fudd rest I bought from Brian Brandt on here.

http://www.hunt101.com/data/500/medium/23790Fudd_Rest_And_Horton_Rear_Rest.jpg

http://www.hunt101.com/data/500/medium/23790Fudd_002.jpg

I paid $325 shipped for mine and I got the Paul Horton adjustable rear rest as well. I later sold it for $60 I believe.

The Fudd is a good cast iron heavy rest. It has a windage top, and it also has the adjustable sideplates for different width forearm stocks.

It works like a dream.

Kent Owens loves his Fudd rest and he has won a lot of wood. You can buy more expensive rest, but the Fudd in all probability will work just as good.

ultramag44
06-18-2008, 07:59 PM
Rock63,

The only dumb question is the one you DON'T ask!

The SEB front rest and rear bag are the goods! Cheap? No. However, it's the first and last rest and bag you, or your grandchildren will EVER have to buy.

http://i137.photobucket.com/albums/q228/ultramag44/100_0688.jpg

http://i137.photobucket.com/albums/q228/ultramag44/100_0665.jpg

http://i137.photobucket.com/albums/q228/ultramag44/100_0662.jpg

Best Regards, ultramag44

brad541thb
06-18-2008, 08:15 PM
The SEB is a good rest. They are about $800 I believe with shipping. The Fudd I believe will work as well. It's all about how much money your wanting to spend. The Fudd I believe will move from bull to bull about as fast. You could always buy a Loggins or Fulgham if you want the pricier top of the line rest. But they ain't cheap. And I believe you have to go on a waiting list.

brad541thb
06-18-2008, 08:29 PM
Here's a few pictures of the Fulgham rest.

brad541thb
06-18-2008, 08:39 PM
Here's a not so good picture of a Loggins rest.

Rock63
06-18-2008, 08:41 PM
So the Caldwell Rock BR @ $145 is not in the correct league?

brad541thb
06-18-2008, 08:58 PM
Rock,

The Caldwell BR model is the cheaper end benchrest model. They aren't really heavy enough. They will work, but I doubt many will use them in rimfire matches on a national level. I would say for informal bench shooting it may serve the purpose, but more than likely you will end up selling it and buying better.

Maybe Kent Owens will chime in about the Fudd rest. I think he has a Fulgham rest now too. Don't know which one he likes the best now. But I do know he won the sporter nationals off of a Fudd rest. ;)

LHSmith
06-19-2008, 09:26 PM
................Are you planning Bench Rest shooting Competitively? ..........or just shooting informally from a bench with good equipment. In competition , we have a set time limit ............informal shooting allows you to wait out conditions.



The Caldwell has a heavy base, but the bags should be upgraded, I have shot BR in practice with one with a Shade Tree coaxial top and shot quite well with it. The vertical rise adjustment is course, however.

I am on my 4th rest, 2 bald eagles with windage tops, a Shade Tree top, and a Farley.

My advice....go to a match and try as many as you can.

If your shooting competition, you'll eventually want to get your shots off in the same conditions, hence the popularity of coaxial rests.

Also, don't neglect the importance of a good rear bag and it's proper hardness.

Rock63
06-19-2008, 11:23 PM
Yes I plan to bench rest match with .22 and .243.

My local club members have quite a variety of front rests (best being the caldwell rock br).

LHSmith
06-19-2008, 11:47 PM
............your talking about unsanctioned "club matches".............if so the Caldwell BR with a protector bag, or their new Coax should keep you competitive with that match format.

May I suggest you go to the IBS website, click on the IBS icon on this (BRC) sites' homepage to get a true understanding of Registered BR competition. If you are interested in what you see, check out if there are any clubs near you, and also the schedule, maybe you can attend an actual match. If they run a factory class you can actually participate.

BTW , I can only help with centerfire point blank 100/ 200/ 300 yards.

I know nothing about rimfire BR

Rock63
06-19-2008, 11:55 PM
The local .22 matches are ARA Sanctioned
100-200-300 yard is unsanctioned
1,000 yard is unsanctioned

However I seek guidance in acquisition of equipment that I cannot ever shoot better than. Buy once cry once instead of over and over again ....

LHSmith
06-20-2008, 12:12 AM
Some of the best shooters still shoot with a basic Sinclair, or Bald Eagle rest, leather bags front and rear..........no windage top ............they adjust the sight picture by squeezing the rear bag..............The original set-up they learned on.

However, if your CF matches are run under a time constraint, a coaxial rest will allow you to get those shots on paper quicker--------allowing you to shoot in one conditition or at very least similar conditions.

You guys are using flags ,right?

Rock63
06-20-2008, 12:19 AM
Yes there were bag squeezers at the match, and lots of different styles of wind flags.

Phil Deese
06-20-2008, 09:05 AM
I've got Fulgham rest and have been very pleased with it. I use two different tops for my rifles. I know there are many good rests out there, you might want to try one of your fellow shooters rest out to see what fits your needs. The Fulgham unit runs around $800.00, but to me it seems like money well invested!! I used a Bald Eagle for years, but when a wind condition came that I liked I couldn't get very many shots off before it changed....I don't have that problem with the Fulgham. I tried to pass the Bald Eagle off to son-in-law, but once he used the Fulgham he was spoiled........so I sold the Bald Eagle.
In our game you have only have 30 minutes to shoot 25 targets and some games only have 20 minutes..............so when your condition comes you need to shoot as fast as possible!!

ultramag44
06-20-2008, 05:16 PM
[QUOTE=LHSmith;423527]
If your matches are run under a time constraint, a coaxial rest will allow you to get those shots on paper quicker---allowing you to shoot in one conditition, or, at very least similar conditions.QUOTE]

Exactly! W/ a QUALITY coaxial, you just work your joystick & shoot.

crb
06-20-2008, 05:31 PM
For score I like the joystick, for group I would like to have a Loh. What I have right now is a Farley Compact and the Caldwell BR. The Caldwell is usable but does have some deficencies that have to be either considered, worked around or eliminated. The Farley works fine but I don't think it is quite as precise as a normal windage adj rest.

I think the wrong rear bag causes more problems than a properly used front rest, no matter what make the rest is. Not having all the leveling jam nuts or spindle locking bolts tight on the rest is a group killer.

On rear bags I have used the Caldwell, a Sinclair/Protektor bumblebee and my current Bald Eagles on donuts. The construction of the Caldwell is too weak. The Bumblebee is great if your benches are flat, ours are not so the hard bottom rear bags can rock on certain benches.

The Bald Eagles have stout construction, cordura ears, and with a separate donut they conform to any bench whoop-de-do's. I have one with tall rabbit ears for the Edge type buttstocks. The other has short bunny ears that is also fine for the angular rear stocks but I use it mainly for the round bottom old style stocks. Both have 2 rows of stitching so the 1/2" flat bottom stocks sit down in them perfectly.

Rock63
06-24-2008, 10:51 AM
Regarding flat benches: The range I use has two types of benches. 3" thick concrete tops, or 2" thick plywood tops. Both very flat and in good repair.

crb
06-24-2008, 11:10 AM
My range also has concrete bench tops and most of them are not flat at all. The worst has a nice hump right where the rear bag wants to sit. My first match with a new hard bottom bumblebee bag I drew this bench. I didn't realize I had an issue until one of the experienced shooters showed me how much my bag was rocking.