One of the most common questions asked about Highpower concerns the equipment used.
Highpower Rifle competition is broken down into Service Rifle and Match Rifle categories.
Service rifles are actual military or civilian versions of rifles that are or were standard issue rifle for our armed forces. The approved Service rifles are the M-1, M-14, and M-16. The civilian versions of these are also acceptable. This can be considered similar to NASCAR stock cars in that the exterior bares a resemblance to the original mass produced product, but the interior is quite a bit different.
This picture shows the three NRA and CMP service rifles. From the bottom, the M-1 Garand, the M-14/M1A, and the M-16/AR-15.
Match rifles are custom built rifles that are limited by few rules. This means that many people have built match rifles to conform to them and their style of shooting.
Service rifles must shoot .30 caliber or 7.62mm for the M-1, 7.62mm for the M-14, and 5.56mm for the M-16. Match rifles can shoot any ammunition up to 7.62mm.
Ammunition may be the most tweaked part of Highpower shooting. Competitors are always looking for an edge and a lot of them feel that they can get that by optimizing their equipment. With the majority of shooters using hand loaded ammunition, the opportunity to load the perfect ammo will always be the ever elusive goal.
There are all kinds of forces pushing and pulling on you when you shoot. The sling is tight. The buttplate pushes into your shoulder. Your elbows are grinding on the mat. To make life more comfortable, highpower shooters wear a special jacket that keeps all those forces from wearing you down. There are also rubber pads to allow you to plant a non-slip surface and buckles to tighten the jacket around you.
With a lot of gear to haul around it helps to have a shooting stool. I use it to hold my glove, magazines, ammunition, eye protection, data book, hat, etc. They are also handy when you have to sit and score for another shooter.
Being able to see your shots in slow fire helps you center up your groups. To this end a spotting scope is used. Some are fancier than others but they all function in the same way. A higher quality scope will allow you to see the mirage downrange. This helps to gauge wind magnitude and changes. When it's your turn to score, a spotting scope will help you see the chalkboard and value disk locations.
You'll be more comfortable laying on the firing point if you use a mat. It doesn't have to be fancy, lot's of people start off with an old piece of carpet or blanket.