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# Quigley-Bollinger Bucket Challenge

July 5 2009 at 9:13 AM
YF

The recent posts on the Quigley rifle shots has got me thinking about how to maintain the degree of difficulty while scaling this down from a high power firearm to an air rifle.

To match the Quigley bucket shot in air rifle, not only does the proportional size of the image over the open sights need to be the same, as many have suggested, but the difficulty must be similar by matching a proportional trajectory to what Quigley would have experienced.

Roger Clouser, writing in Precision Shooting, first estimated that Quigley was shooting at a 17.5 inch tall bucket at 550 yards, and I have no reason to doubt his estimate.

Some have suggested using an energy equivalent, which Jock Elliot says would be 20yds for an airgun. That is not a long distance shot that the Quigley bucket shot is known for. And, nothing about the Quigley bucket shot has to do with energy output other than it being able to move the bucket.

Several people, including Elliot, I believe, have suggested a 1/10 scale (55yds for 1.75 tall bucket). The 55yd range is arbitrary with no basis in reality to the movie stunt; it is just a convenient choice (correction: it was based on some empirical tests by Tony and his club).

Elliot goes on to say the 55yd distance does not match the time to target between an airgun and the movie shot. To me, the time-to-target proposal is inadequate since the pellet and bullet have significantly different muzzle velocities and ballistic coefficients. Harry proposed a 190yds distance with a full-sized bucket, but not many airgunners have access to such a long range. If this is going to be a successful challenge then it needs to be accessible to as many airgunners as possible. We all can't be Quigley and travel to the Australian outback!

In my opinion, the airgun challenge needs to be matched for a proportional bullet drop or hold over difficulty, so the trajectory is similar and therefore a proportionally difficult long distance shot. Once the that range is calculated, then a proportional sized bucket can be calculated, too. Here are my calculations for that scenario.

TRAJECTORY FOR THE SHARPS RIFLE:

All 3 rifles made for the movie were made by Shiloh and chambered in the 45-110 blackpowder cartridge (not 45-90 as many assume) using a cast round-nosed bullehttp://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0BQY/is_11_51/ai_n15402263/ see Shiloh WWW.SHILOHRIFLE.COM

Shiloh did chronographic tests of one of their identical rifles, also cambered in the 45-110, with a 544grain BPCR bullet (probably the Brooks Creedmore cast bullet)and 90grs blackpowder resulting in 1325-1275 fps. The 45-110 was typically loaded from between 90-110 grains blackpowderhttp://www.brooksmoulds.com/

BC of Brooks Creedmore is probably .4http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0BQY/is_11_51/ai_n15402263/

Trajectory was calulacted using JBM:
http://www.eskimo.com/~jbm/cgi-bin/jbmtraj_simp-5.0.cgi

Result: Drop at 550 yds is 346.5 (9.625yds) with a drop-to-target distance ratio of 0.0175.

TRAJECTORY FOR THE AIR RIFLE:

In .177, the ballistic coefficients for Crosman Premiers are 0.023 and 0.027 for the light (7.9grs) and heavy (10.5grs) versions, respectively. These are among the highest values for .177 pellets.

I selected the .177 Crosman Premier heavy since the bullet Quigley fired was also slow and heavy and it has a high ballistics coefficient, too. As you can imagine, the drop from muzzle varies with muzzle velocity. So, I ran a number of velocity scenarios using the Bal-Coef.xls spreadsheet. In each of these cases, the ratio between bullet drop and range is the closest to Quigley: 0.0175. Based on that range, the bucket size was then calculated to be proportional to what Quigley would have seen over his open sights. Ranges and bucket sizes for other velocities, calibers, and pellets would change these results.

600fps, 90yds, 2.9" bucket
650fps, 100yds, 3.8" bucket
700fps, 115yds, 3.6" bucket
750fps, 125yds, 4.0" bucket
800fps, 135yds, 4.3" bucket
850fps, 145yds, 4.6" bucket
900fps, 155yds, 5,0" bucket
950fps, 165yds, 5.25" bucket

Airgunners have reported shooting at 100 yard ranges with groupings of less than 2 at 100 yards, so this makes me think that shooting at a 4 target is plausible, and such a challenge is possible.

In order to make this airgun challenge uniform and accessible to as many airgunners as possible, I propose that the Quigley Airgun Bucket Challenge for airguns with open sights be set at 100 yards with a 3 7/8 (100mm) tall bucket. Of course, to win such a challenge, you have to hit the bucket three times in a row! (if memory serves, Quigley did, something many have missed). Perhaps a similar challenge for higher velocity and/or scoped rifles could be at the same range, but with a slightly smaller bucket?

100 yard range-100 mm bucket. Works for me.

I plan to check this out ASAP with my RWS 54, but first I want to chrony the muzzle velocity of Premier heavies to make sure I'm at the right range.

 This message has been edited by DanBollinger on Jul 5, 2009 10:51 AM

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Tony
YF

# Hi Dan, are you proposing to shoot those distances Off Hand?!?!

July 5 2009, 9:41 AM
 Those are some incredible distances for Off Hand shooting with open sights/non glass sights with airguns! You obviously put a lot of time into drafting up your post which was a very nice read! Using the original Quigley Challege Target or a similarly sized one, I and/or my club have always set it out at 50 - 55 yards and shot it Off Hand, 5-shots. For us mortal shooters that aren't hardcore Silhouette Shooters, the target is hard enough combined with the wind at our club that guys using scoped rifles from typicall 30fpe and under don't hit it 5 times: Now if you are talking shooting it benched, I could see stretching the distances out there but even then, 100+ yards and sub 2inch groups with an air rifle would require glass like conditions and a scope for the vast majority of shooters to keep their shots from being just hail mary shots, lol, at least I know that's how it would be for me!!! Anyways, great post and look forward to your results using a 54 with open sights! Regards, Tony
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Dan Bollinger
YF

# Dunno!

July 5 2009, 10:44 AM
 I intentionally didn't address offhand versus bench rest. First, I think the Quigley shot at 550 yards offhand is more Hollywood than fact, but then I'm not a long distance shooter. I'll ask my neighbor. He used to compete nationally. I can hit an 8" circle at 200 yards 3 out of 5 times with a 4X scoped .22LR sitting, but I don't have enough experience with long distance pellet shooting to speak to that aspect. I'll leave it up to others to decide. Dan
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Doug Owen
YC

# Good thoughts

July 5 2009, 9:48 AM
 I think you're on the right track. Aside from a hard hold and solid trigger control, the challenge in the shot revolves around the long range making range estimation critical as well as dealing with the ever present devil, the wind. This is tied up in lag times and target sizes. We need to set it up so that if a 10 mph wind will blow the Quigley bullet off by 'two buckets', the same wind will blow out pellet off the same two buckets (on the smaller bucket of course). Likewise if a 55 yard error (ten percent) causes a 'two bucket miss', ten percent range error on the reduced course shoud do the same. Then we can strap an extra 8 pounds of lead to our rifles so they weigh the same, stand on our own hind feet and fire away facing the same challenges. Only we'll know the range..... Doug Owen
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Tony
YF

# I forgot about that aspect Doug, Mike's Shiloh weighs in like one of my light FT rigs

July 5 2009, 9:58 AM
 with a Big Nikko or Tasco scope on it!!! It'll be interesting for sure to see how Dan's field work comes along, cool topic for sure! Regards, Tony
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Gary
YF

# whew

July 5 2009, 10:12 AM
 You really want to make it tough don't you Doug. I have tried some 100 yard groups with my .177 cal mod.48 benched and the results were less than expected. If I remember correctly it was in the neighborhood of 3 to 4 inches.LOL Guess I need more practice. Gary PS: It would be fun though.
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Yrrah
YF

# Doug, back when this cycled through three years ago

July 5 2009, 11:26 AM
 I did figure out the 10 mph delay time relationship to the Sharps bullet ballistics. I cannot put my hands on it just now but from memory it brought the distance back at least a third in each case. The USFT rifle should have the weight for steady shooting ( by a stronger and better off hander than me ............... ) ......... Kind regards, Harry.
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Jock Elliott
YC

# Dan, Harry (Yrrah) had some relevant thoughts below

July 5 2009, 10:33 AM
 check out: http://www.network54.com/Forum/79537/thread/1246665317/Quigley+..++air+rifles+comparatives+....+Attention+Jock+Elliot.Jock Elliott Airgun writer, correspondent, Precision Shooting Magazine author, "Elliott on Airguns" http://sites.google.com/site/elliottonairguns/ airgun blog:https://www.airgunsofarizona.com/blog/blog.html
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Dan Bollinger
YF

# Thanks...

July 5 2009, 10:40 AM
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Yrrah
YF

# Dan, it was me who suggested the example of 190 yards in a post some years ago.

July 5 2009, 10:48 AM
 The full context can be read in this reference along with the comparatives. http://www.network54.com/Forum/79537/thread/1147319691/Quigley---+air+rifle+comparator+figures+slightly+revised+-------- The BC, of the Sharps bullet indicated to me by the past Secretary of The Sharps Collectors Association was factored in and the trajectory apex AND time of flight ( which of course are related ) were matched closely for the examples indicated. The assumption being that each rifle would be zeroed for the respective range . Importantly the reason for using the same sized bucket as for Sharps Quigley in each example was because at each suggested range the pellets would be dropping at a similar vertical rate per unit of travel as the Sharps bullet, relative to the computed distances. ( JBM was used for the Sharps and Chairgun for the pellets ). Your example of Sharps bullet weight and MV is very close to the same. Below is a quote from the reference post above: ..."With some further input from a past secretary / treasurer of the Sharps Collectors Association I have slightly revised my Quigley comparators. These are based on a 520 gr ( Quigley may have used 550 gr ) Lyman 457125 bullet at 1365 fps..... I won't be held to the last fps or 3 rd decimal of anything but as near as I can estimate the following comparisons may hold: "Sharps rifle 520 grain .45 cal bullet at 1365 fps mv shot 550 yards has a time of flight of say 1.54 seconds and a trajectory apex of 117 inches at 300 yards when zeroed at 550 yards.. "A .22 JSB Exact at 800 fps mv zeroed and shot at 250 yards has a TOF of 1.56 seconds and reaches a trajectory apex of 111 inches at 142 yards. "Edit Extra: A .177 Kodiak or CP heavy from a 20 fpe FT rifle at 921 fps zeroed and shot at 240 yards has a TOF of approx 1.56 seconds and a trajectory apex of 106 inches at 141 yards. "A .177 Crosman CP light shot at 650 fps mv zeroed and shot at 190 yards has a TOF of 1.66 seconds and a trajectory apex of 107 inches at 109 yards. "A .177 wadcutter BC 0.012 at 580 fps mv zeroed and shot at 140 yards has a TOF of 1.638 seconds and a trajectory apex of 112 inches at 84 yards. "I have juggled the trajectory apexes against the TOF to make this as fair as possible.... " End quote. You are of course right in implying that many would not have access to the longer ranges (as in my examples); and perhaps a target size resulting in a similar sight picture also has merit. Back when I wrote the above, I tested the Excalibre .22 at 300 yards ( 50 yards further than the range for that example but 875 fps from memory ) and after sighting in for hold over was able to hit a smaller 10" x 10" plastic bucket with three successive shots from a bench rest. Thus establishing the rifle / pellet combination had the necessary precision. Kind regards, Harry.
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Dan Bollinger
YF

# Thanks...

July 5 2009, 10:54 AM
 ...I corrected my post. My hope was that we could use a knock-over target like Tony made. The movie shot 'moved' the bucket, so that's part of the allure for me.
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Yrrah
YF

# I too like reactive targets and often shoot silhouettes and

July 5 2009, 11:16 AM
 silhouette swingers at obscene ranges. You may have seen my post on tumbling 5 standard air rifle rams out to 60, 70, 80 and 90 yards with the FWB 300S in still air with 8.4 gr Exacts ... bench rested of course. That in itself tells me that your proposition is possible for the rifle and pellets. But I'm afraid I would have to incur the services of a couple of my top silhouette mates to see it done with open sights standing off shoulder ....... on a very good day..... Bed time now in OZ ...... Kind regards Harry.
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Tony
YF

# Hi Dan, I didn't make that target, years ago, somebody made a run of them

July 5 2009, 11:23 AM
 and the metal bucket is attached to a coil spring so that it will move and reset itself. Hopefully someone can clarify who made these original targets. Looking forward to your follow up posts with field testing. Regards, Tony
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chuck
YF

# pellet vs bullet

July 5 2009, 11:27 AM
 i would take this to be an offhand challenge btw. we have to harmonize the distance to allow for the differences between a pellet and a bullet. there would be a certain distance where a heavy bullet would lose accuracy, and a distance where the much lighter pellet would begin to degrade accuracy. i'm not a long distance shooter at all, and can only assume this to be in the neighborhood of about 75 yards. it would be far more entertaining to me to scale the target down to where i know the ammo is flying well at say 75 than to attempt to wing one out to a larger target at 100/125. for those who know, at what distance does the pellet ... begin ... to acquire random 1/2" deviations? that would be my distance, and the target scaled accordingly. further comparison between the sharps and a pellet gun. the sharps with a 4" deviation at distance is a relevant and deadly hunter of beast or man. a pellet gun with a 1" deviation quickly becomes a red ryder. it's not only about accurate scaling, it's about the nature and spirit of the weapons.small caliber joy
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Tony
YF

# Chuck, you nailed it for my personal perspective at Playing the Quigley Challenge...

July 5 2009, 12:38 PM
 for me, it is about the Nature and Spirit of shooting the Original Quigley Bucket or similar at 50 - 55 yards...not the scaling, though I perfectly understand and respect the spirit of that approach/perspective in approaching the game as well. It's an interesting discussion topic and can't wait to read what Dan finds in field testing/observations as he move forward with it. Regards, Tony
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chuck
YF

# tony is that what it is

July 5 2009, 1:25 PM
 would you peg the thing at about 55 yards? we have to keep the distance manageable. my open sight gun will be a peeped r1 and there will be the obvious limitation of shooting at something i can actually see with it. i am not a long distance guy at all nohow, but i will play this game being an offhand shooter. this is good stuff. the r1 is in .177 and now thinking about it the 50/55 distance and a 3" circle (?) seems the medicine. now one more thing. if this is an offhand challenge, wouldn't it be appropriate to allow scoped shooting as i can see there would be a bunch of rapid .22/.25 and similar owners who could have a 75 yard distance. we have to be practical and let people shoot with their rigs and we won't find many iron sighted rapids.small caliber joy
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Tony
YF

# From what I remember, the target I have, pic above, is shot at 50 - 55yds. off hand

July 5 2009, 1:51 PM
 It was posted here years ago, iirc, back in 2000 or so but the distance was between 50 - 55yards. You are right, there are very few pcps with open sights and I remember the first time I shot the Quigley Bucket, it was with my bud Mountain Lyon and I used my R1 Carbine(.20) at the end of a day of hunting/hiking. At 50 yards +/- as it was walked off in a pasture. It was a tough target, I only got it once for sure. To be honest, dunno as far as pushing the distance out further for the scoped guys...at our Fun Shoots, I think the most it was hit was 3 or 4 times out of 5 shots by Lonnie and that wasn't his first round of shooting at it. I figure, keep the distance the same until someone starts showing consistency with a scoped rifle that they can hit it 5 out of 5 times. Keeping crosshairs steady at 50 - 55 yards on a squirrel head sized target off hand for 5 shots is a challenge for sure, especially when there's a bunch of other shooters standing all around ya watching, lol! Regards, Tony
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Carl
YC

# I think you are over thinking it

July 5 2009, 12:00 PM
 Quigley didn't know about ballistic coefficients and time to target and blah, blah, blah. It was just an incredible shot with a heavy caliber rifle. If you start complicating things by trying to make things "equal" you will be chasing your tail. There are too many variables. Muzzle velocity changes x percent, bullet drop changes a different percent, wind effects the pellet differently than a 45-110, weight of the guns is different, ballistic coefficients are different, nobody has factored THE WEIGHT of the bucket, etc, etc. Just keep it simple. Anyone that can hit a soda can (or if you want to just "move it" an empty soup can) at 100 yards with an airgun, offhand with iron sights 3x in a row is making an equally impressive shot. If anyone here can do it, please post video. I would love to see it.
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Steve in NC
AR&P

# I like your interesting analysis very much, Dan. Thanks for sharing it.

July 5 2009, 12:07 PM
 Here's a small factor that may be worthy of a second look: Neither bullets nor pellets are perfectly uniform. Consequently, neither are their BCs. Therefore their velocity loss over range will vary from shot to shot, and so will their drop, even if MV is perfectly consistent. This reasoning suggests there's an accuracy-limiting term related to the fraction of MV lost in flying from muzzle to target, which (due to the ~15:1 ratio of bullet-to-pellet BCs) is much larger for your suggested airgun ranges than for the Creedmore at 550yds. For example, at 150yds, a CPH (using BC = 0.028) will have lost 50% of its MV, while the Creemore (BC = 0.410) will lose only 20% at 550yds. So perhaps the equal-drop criterion somewhat understates the difficulty of the shot for low-BC projectiles. There's a simple (mostly empirical) formula that relates BC to MV and difficulty of range: MV * SquareRoot(BC). When it's applied to a BC = 0.028 and various MVs, this table of Quigley-equivalvent ranges and bucket dimensions falls out: MV -- Yds -- Bucket Inches 600 -- 66 --- 2.1 650 -- 72 --- 2.3 700 -- 77 --- 2.5 750 -- 83 --- 2.6 800 -- 88 --- 2.8 850 -- 94 --- 3.0 900 -- 100 -- 3.2 950 -- 105 -- 3.3 They're not really that different from yours - but perhaps a bit fairer to the airgun.Steve
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Lonnie Smith
YF

# Sounds to be about the same size ratio that we had at our Quigley shoot. . .(bucket pics)

July 5 2009, 3:12 PM
 It was about a 2" high piece of 1" diameter copper pipe. I thought it was out at 60+ yards yards but I can't rememeber now for sure. But even with a scope it was a pretty tough shot. Some of the silouhette shooters took a crack it. I only hit it 2 or 3 times and that turned out to be good enough for the win. Some time afterwards, my wife found some little metal buckets from Oriental Trading Company. They may be a useable item for the challenge. I just did a quick measure. They are: 61mm tall 42mm across the bottom 55mm across the top Here's a quick pic of the bucket off my cell phone.
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