Length of Pull


June 20, 2007, 05:27 PM
I checked to see correct LoP for a couple of my rifles, and boy, was I surprised. If I understand the procedure correctly, you're supposed to measure from the crook of your arm to the tip of your trigger finger, and then subtract 1". I've got long arms, so the measurement was 19". I took my two deer rifles and measured the distance from the butt to the trigger, which was 14" on both. In other words, if I understand LoP correctly, my rifles are 4" too short!

That seems like a lot to me.

I also wonder what it would be like I were able to add 4" to each rifle. Wouldn't that then mess up scope eye relief? Seems like I'd have to really push my head way forward in order to see through the scope.

What am I not getting about LoP? Thanks.

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Jim Watson
June 20, 2007, 05:41 PM
The crook of the arm measurement is somewhere between rough approximation and old wive's tale. Are you doing it right at that? It is not a straight line measurement, the hand should be on the grip in a shooting grasp, the buttplate in the crook of the arm.

The right stock length is either the longest you can swing or the shortest that doesn't bump your nose... which often works out about the same.

June 20, 2007, 05:46 PM
Using the length of the forearm to determine the correct LOP is a load of BS that goes back forever and a day. The only way to determine the correct LOP is to do it dynamically -- shoot with different length stocks and see which feels the best and gives the best results. Shotgun fitters use an adjustable tri-gun which allows the shooter to shoot using a wide variety of stock dimensions until he finds the combination that work best. Measuring the length of the forearm is not part of a proper fitting process.

June 21, 2007, 01:06 PM
Thanks for the help, guys, but I guess I'm missing the fundamental concept. Bear in mind that I'm talking rifle LoP, which I understand would involved a whole different set of issues than shotgun LoP.

I'm not sure how the lenght of your arms matters, which is I guess what you guys are saying. I can see how it'd be important with a little kid who's too small to reach the trigger. But with an adult, our arm moves enough where we can always touch the trigger.

With a scoped rifle, to me the critical distance is eye relief. I have long arms, 19" from crook of arm to end of trigger finger, but an 18" LoP would put the scope too far away from my eye, or I'd have to really crane my neck to see through the scope.

What am I missing? Thanks again.

May 15, 2008, 10:15 PM
Along the same lines- where do you measure length of pull on a rifle? I just replaced the stock on my Rem 700 w/ a composite youth stock preparing for my kids to use it. The distance between the trigger and the middle of the recoil pad was 13 1/2" before. Now it is about 12 inches. Because the rear of the stock is shorter, am I going to have to move the scope up a corresponding amount as well? I thought I could use a slip on recoil pad to increase LOP when I want to shoot it.

May 16, 2008, 01:47 AM
The "proper" LoP is affected by the length of your neck and the slope and thickness of your shoulders, and the fullness of your face because those factors directly affect how/where your cheek will contact the stock and thus whether your head is within proper eye relief of a scope and not have the back of your trigger hand ready to bloody your nose at the shot. Comfortable LoP can also vary slightly depending upon the height of the comb and/or drop at heel.
The old "crook of the arm" thing is just a homespun measurement that was/is about as scientifically correct as an Ouiji Board. Generally, stocks that have a LoP of from 13.25" to 14.25" "fit" American rifle shooters fairly well. If you are ever actually fitted with a stock by a truly good stockfitter you will be amazed at how the rifle seems to fly into the correct and most comfortable position as if it actually knew where it belonged. It's absolutely eerie !


May 16, 2008, 03:17 PM
My rule of thumb is to just throw the gun up against your shoulder and see how she feels. You'll know if she's too long or too short. Remember when hunting you're probably going to be wearing heavy clothing which will probably make you wish you had a shorter lop. That said remingtons fit me like a dream while brownings are too long.

dagger dog
May 16, 2008, 03:58 PM
Shoot the gun in question, if you wind up with a black eye, or bloody nose, the lop is not correct!

May 16, 2008, 05:29 PM
What "351" said.

Short of spending a bunch of cash for a professional stockfitting,
351's method is the best I've found too. And try the rifle when it has a scope on it if you can, not just the "irons".


Vern Humphrey
May 16, 2008, 05:43 PM
Two ways to correctly measure LOP:

1. Shoulder the weapon quickly. Do you have to push it forward to clear your armpit? The LOP is too long.

2. Aim while shouldering quickly. Does the scope objective bell hit your brow, or do you have to slide you head back to get full field of view? The LOP is too short.

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