It’s no secret that precision counts in marksmanship, especially when it comes to battle rifles. In fact, the most accurate battle rifles might surprise you.
At my local ViMSAR match, the rifles that performed the best were the ones that tend to win the match, or come close to it. Keep in mind, these are not precision rifles, but military grade 20th century battle rifles. In fact, many of them are Korean era or earlier, reproduction, or original.
The results were impressive and surprising.
Most Accurate Battle Rifles
It is important to keep in mind that the rifles listed here are some of the more popular battle rifles brought out to ViMSAR. So, there are other rifles that came out to the matches, but they either failed to win much, if at all, or were not brought in significant numbers.
The way I scored the rifles is as follows:
- two points for each time a rifle of its type was the winner of the match
- one point for each time a rifle came in second place
Then I took that total number and divided it by the amount of times that specific rifle was brought to the match over that period of time. Here are the results.
#6 CETME Model C (or G3/HK91/C91)
This .308 rifle is the only one in this list that failed to win the match a single time during the course of my data collection. It did come in 2nd place though. It wasn’t brought out nearly as much as many of the others.
#5 M1A (M-14 Clones)
The M1A was one of the most common of the battle rifles to compete in these matches. That isn’t shocking, considering that this was a rifle that was fielded by the US military. However, for as much as it appeared, it didn’t win nearly as often.
#4 Springfield M1 Garand
Also an extremely popular rifle at the matches. This rifle was actually the most commonly used battle rifle at the matches. However, it only scored slightly ahead of the M1A.
This wasn’t the most popular rifle at the matches, but it did manage to be the winner of a match. These rifles are chambered in 8mm Mauser and have a similar tipping bolt to the SKS and the FN-49.
#2 Ljungman AG42B
This is one of the favorites of the “serious shooters” at the matches. It’s reputation for being an excellent rifle for accuracy at these matches is well deserved. You might even be able to make an argument that this is the most accurate of the rifles in this list.
#1 FN FAL
The FAL was once known as the right arm of the free world. Not only is this an accurate and reliable battle rifle, but it is very ergonomic and user-friendly. It’s surprisingly not incredibly popular at these matches, but it has performed extremely well in the time it has appeared in them.
So, there you have it. The most accurate battle rifles, according to my ViMSAR match scoring system. I bought my FAL for competing in these matches several years ago. However, I was surprised by the results shown in this data. The FAL is simply a more accurate rifle, and better in a whole host of ways as well.
It is no surprise that during the selection process for a new standard battle rifle, the US military actually came to the conclusion that the FAL was the better rifle. However, they ended up choosing the M-14 anyway (probably because the FAL was Belgium made and the M-14 was made in the US by Springfield Armory).
The majority of our NATO allies went with the FAL, and for good reasons.