Taurus PT 92: what am I doing wrong?


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KJS
October 26, 2010, 07:59 AM
I fired 46 rounds, as I know I started with a box of 50 and have a mag with 4 rounds remaining in it.

You only need to see the bottom half of the target as nothing hit above the center. By my later shots, I was so frustrated by the universally low hits that I intentionally aimed way up high up on the paper, and still this is what I got. By my count there are 41 or 42 hits, so a few entirely missed the paper, and I think I can reasonably guess those few likely blew past under the target.

Before I had the problem of adjustable sights on a Ruger MK III that wouldn't stop moving; now I get the wonder of fixed sights that avoid that issue, but when the 3 dots are lined up on the bulls eye they produce these results.

I've read that when one using a fixed sight gun has a problem aiming, most often the shooter and not the gun is the problem. So what am I doing wrong here? When using the old S&W .38 with fixed sights I actually do well, probably as well or better than I can manage with a .357 two generations newer.

Right to left the shots seem relatively centered with no strong bias left nor right -- yeah, they tend a bit more to the right -- so not perfect, but I'd say centered by novice standards. Clearly, not even close to centered up & down though.

I did notice something about the casing I was able to recover from the range floor. The firing pin didn't strike them dead on center. Actually, it hit them as far off center as any I've seen. I don't know what, if any, significance that might have. I think you can see it well enough in the pic below. My camera, unfortunately, is pretty poor at capturing images up real close to get fine detail.

The rest of the range session I blasted away away fast as I could pull the trigger on my MK III, shown only to prove I actually can hit the center, even if I can't manage a tight group -- though with practice I hope to just have one ragged hole in the middle.

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mbogo
October 26, 2010, 11:14 AM
All that shows is that the ammunition you used does not shoot to point of aim.

Were you using 115gr., 124gr., 147gr. bullets, or something else?

You can try a different brand/bullet weight, take up reloading, or file the sights to match your load.

mbogo

ugaarguy
October 26, 2010, 11:16 AM
Your shots are stringed vertically, rather than horizontally, so that's a good start. The primer strikes on the ammo look fine - yourr camera was more than sufficient.

Based on your shot stringing (vertical), and the MKIII target, I'm going to say it's the gun, and not you. Start with a different brand of ammo, and see if that helps: You could've just gotten a box from a really undercharged lot, but then you probably would've noticied the light recoil and weak report. Still, try an ammo switch. How do you hold your fixed sights? As in X ring sitting atop the front post, or front post covering the X ring? That can also play a role. Last, you may just need a lower front sight, and possibly a higher rear sight to bring the groups up. It could be that your pistol's bbl just points low, relative to other PT-92s - we're talking a few degrees or less - when in battery, and it just needs a set of correct height sights to bring the groups up. If there were any serious full battery lock up issues I'd think you'd see horizontal stringing as well.

Russ Jackson
October 26, 2010, 11:27 AM
Have someone watch you when you shoot. See if you are breaking your wrist?...Russ

braceyourself07
October 26, 2010, 12:14 PM
Any dings on the crown of the barrel? (obviously you'd want to check it after clearing it and stripping--I don't typically recommend looking down the barrel of an assembled gun) :D

Steve C
October 26, 2010, 03:04 PM
I would say your jerking your trigger or breaking your wrist down, drooping your head or anticipating the recoil and pulling against it. Error Analysis (http://www.bullseyepistol.com/training.htm)

Quoheleth
October 26, 2010, 03:10 PM
I'm with Steve on this. You shoot your .22 very well - congratulations - but that doesn't always translate over to centerfires. If you are anticipating the recoil and dipping the muzzle of the gun, it will do exactly what you describe.

Have someone reload a mag for you and slip in one or two dummy rounds without telling you where they are. As you fire, when you get to the dummy, you will be anticipating the recoil and dip the barrel. Under recoil from a live round you don't notice, but with the dummy not firing you will quickly see it.\

Q

larryh1108
October 26, 2010, 05:04 PM
Have you considered an inexpensive bore sighter laser? There are several options and you can see if your sights or bore are out of alignment. If they check out fine then you know it's you. Just a cheap solution.

Kymasabe
October 26, 2010, 05:09 PM
My guess is that you're shooting 115gr practice ammo. I had a Taurus that consistantly shot low with 115. When I switched to 124, my point of impact came up a little and when I went to 147, it was perfect.
The reason, as I was told, was that the heavier bullet takes a fraction of a second longer to exit the barrel, rides the recoil just a hair longer and the result is slightly higher impact. Try it, you have nothing to loose.

lions
October 26, 2010, 05:14 PM
Shoot your 92 in DA for a couple shots and pull the trigger very slowly, making sure you get a surprise break. I also think you are anticipating the recoil and flinching as a result.

If you had a nice tight group that was low then I would suspect the gun or ammo but there seems to be significant vertical stringing.

HK-Freak
October 26, 2010, 05:27 PM
The only way to know for sure whether it's you or the gun is to A) Shoot it from a bench rest, and B) Have a few other people shoot it.

WardenWolf
October 26, 2010, 05:51 PM
Well, the first thing you did wrong was buy a Taurus semi-auto. Beyond that, it can be either the gun or the shooter. My money's on the gun, as Taurus semis have a reputation for being hit and miss. You do well with a .38 and .357, so I doubt it's truly you.

If it's not hitting the primer properly, it can result in poor primer ignition, with variable results from the powder. That indeed may be your problem. Different ammo with a different primer might yield better result, but most likely it's a flaw of the gun itself.

MCgunner
October 26, 2010, 06:00 PM
Well, the first thing you did wrong was buy a Taurus semi-auto.

:rolleyes: Taurus basher, disregard that post. It's just shooting low. I've had many firearms that shot low with lighter bullets. I'll either file some off the top of the front sight or shoot ammo it likes if I find one. Fixed sight guns don't necessarily come zeroed with ANYthing and if they do shoot POA, it'll be with one bullet weight that it prefers.

WardenWolf
October 26, 2010, 06:02 PM
Considering I've seen a number reports of PT1911's with spalling and metal fatigue due to substandard alloys, I wouldn't call it just bashing.

lions
October 26, 2010, 06:05 PM
Considering I've seen a number reports of PT1911's with spalling and metal fatigue due to substandard alloys, I wouldn't call it just bashing.

But without seeing any evidence of those particular problems here you are just throwing out an uneducated guess based on reports from a different gun in the Taurus line.

Mags
October 26, 2010, 06:07 PM
Considering I've seen a number reports of PT1911's with spalling and metal fatigue due to substandard alloys, I wouldn't call it just bashing.

So what doe the PT1911 have to do with the PT92?

I have found the PT92 to be one of Taurus' most reliable and proven designs. I beleive it is issued to Brazilian police and military. I have owned two and never had a problem with either.

What is your experience with the model in question? Not the PT1911.

lions
October 26, 2010, 06:07 PM
Oh, and in my experience, shooters have a reputation of being either hit or miss as well.;)

Taurus semis have a reputation for being hit and miss.

Let's eliminate the easy problems before we take off headlong into random possibilities.

Mags
October 26, 2010, 06:12 PM
I juste reread WardenWolf's post and noticed he says this:I've seen a number reports LOL he's not even basing his opinion of Taurus on first hand experience. What a joke.

We all have seen positive and negative reports on all types of guns but it's the first hand encounters that count.

MCgunner
October 26, 2010, 06:25 PM
See, this is already morphing into a "Taurus is crap"....."NO IT"S NOT" thread. :rolleyes:

Bench the gun at 25 and check groups with a variety of ammunition. If it groups POA with some 147 grain stuff and you don't particularly like 147 grain stuff (I don't), then you can slowly file the front sight down until you're on with whatever bullet you wanna shoot for carry or whatever you're doing with the gun.

That's my MO, anyhow. I've filed a fair number of front sights in my day. Far better than getting a gun that shoots HIGH. Then all ya can do is hold low or change your sight picture to compensate. So, anyway, what I'm trying to say is the situation is normal and your POA is correctable with whatever you want to shoot in the gun.

Personally, except for deep concealment (pocket) guns, I do prefer adjustable sights, especially if I'm going to shoot two loads, light and hot, as I do with my .357 magnums. Just adjust the sight and shoot the load appropriate for that sight setting.

larryh1108
October 26, 2010, 06:40 PM
Well, the first thing you did wrong was buy a Taurus semi-auto.

Whatever.

Considering I've seen a number reports of PT1911's with spalling and metal fatigue due to substandard alloys, I wouldn't call it just bashing.

How many links do you want me to post about any other gun line's problems? Kimber? Colt? Sig? Glock?! Please, man, every line has their lemons. You'd think you could add some substance instead of useless innuendo.

Steelshooter101
October 26, 2010, 06:46 PM
I had a taurus PT92AFS for about 12 weeks and had the same problem. If you have small hands make sure the gun is comfortable to hold. I traded mine in for a loss on an FNX9 an love it.

Yarddog
October 26, 2010, 07:02 PM
I've owned a PT92 about 20 yrs ago, Wish I had NEVER sold it ; )
Y/D PS As stated above Bench test deferent gr bullets

Mikhail Weiss
October 26, 2010, 07:03 PM
Here's my 2-cents, in a nutshell. Firm up your grip. Maintain the consistency of that grip from shot to shot. You put six(ish) in the black, demonstrating ability, but dumped the rest.

Details below:

At what range was the target shot, and what sort of sight picture did you use, and were those rounds fired SA, DA, or both?


when the 3 dots are lined up on the bulls eye


Your Taurus shows less L/R dispersion than the .22, but not quite as much vertical. Since what you're using sounds like a center hold (front sight dot centered between rear ones, front sight dot superimposed on the middle of the bullseye), I'd guess the following (assuming trigger control is relatively okay):

Sights

If the front sight blade is too tall, then leveling it in the rear sight notch will cause shots to go low, relative to point of aim. Likewise, if the front sight dot is too high, then aligning the front sight dot between the two rear ones will cause shots to go lower than point of aim.

You

This could be grip or trigger issue, so ...

...since you've clearly hit the middle at least six times, this indicates that you can, and the gun can, too. The likely cause of dumping the other forty-ish shots may be that you're anticipating recoil, thus either letting the barrel dip via relaxation in grip (which can sometimes be the result of trying too hard to make too perfect a shot), or you're subconsciously pushing the muzzle down just a tad before firing (as if you're trying to stop a rise with well-timed dip), or...

...you're not holding firmly and consistently from shot to shot. That is, you may be relaxing your grip between shots, working the sights and trigger correctly, but re-tightening your grip as you fire, a common consequence of which is vertical stringing, which varies by the degrees to which grip firmness does.

I could be completely wrong, of course, but if even good shooters or bench-resting the thing yields the same results at the same distances, I'd think of the sights, first. (Though I'm told that different loads may yield different results, I've not seen any that dramatic, at least not at seven to ten yards.)

KJS
October 26, 2010, 07:06 PM
It was 115 gr. ammo. Sellier & Bellot brand as most of you likely know from the distinctive red lacquer they apply to seal the primer.

Yeah, I too had been wondering about bullet weight, knowing that fixed sight guns are normally designed with a particular weight in mind -- like a .38 revolver designed with a classic 158 gr. load in mind.

I know all guns point down slightly when sights are aligned to compensate for the rise of recoil during the milliseconds between ignition and bullet leaving barrel and heavier bullets will give more recoil and thus should hit higher I guess.

KJS
October 26, 2010, 07:14 PM
I had a taurus PT92AFS for about 12 weeks and had the same problem. If you have small hands make sure the gun is comfortable to hold. I traded mine in for a loss on an FNX9 an love it.

If it's too big for my hands, then it's going to be too big for most of the population. Size feels comfortable to me, unlike most guns that clearly were made with average-size hands in mind, rather than my XL paws.

Demitrios
October 26, 2010, 07:20 PM
Your first mistake was buying a Taurus. . . . . I'm just kidding. While all these answers seem pretty valid and are sure to help any shooter why not try something a bit different. Try hanging your target roughly 6 inches higher than you normally would. You might find some interesting results.

uspJ
October 26, 2010, 07:30 PM
I had a Beretta 92fs that had the same problem. From what I understand the Beretta 92 and Taurus pt92 were designed to shoot 147 grain ammo. I used to get good groups with the practice ammo but they were low...very low. Switch to a heavier bullet and see what happens. Using a high grip also helped even when using the practice ammo.

KJS
October 26, 2010, 08:42 PM
I had a Beretta 92fs that had the same problem. From what I understand the Beretta 92 and Taurus pt92 were designed to shoot 147 grain ammo.

Interesting. That seems odd, as 147 grain certainly isn't the most common 9mm weight. I have a Beretta 92 owners manual and it doesn't suggest what bullet weight to use, but in the specs it states what the weight is when fully loaded with 115 gr. NATO Ball, which implies they think that weight would actually be used in their gun.

The Taurus manual that covers all "Metallic Pistols" instead of just the 92 states the maximum levels of "hotness" you should fire in them with 9mm being given as 124 grain with a muzzle velocity of 1,225 ft/sec max. Again suggesting they might expect something lighter than 147 gr bullets to go through their guns.

I don't know. You guys have all given lots of suggestions for me to consider. Guess this is just a case of get a loader so I can actually put ammo in the mags (thumb still slightly sore even 5 days later!) and try this out on a range to see how things go. I'd hope I'd get far better with more practice, regardless of what ammo I use. Practice tends to help all things, and see how that goes.

MikePaiN
October 26, 2010, 10:40 PM
My PT92 shot low also, I brought it to the shop and had them trim the front sight .020", and now its perfectly on POA
Nice job too....
http://i181.photobucket.com/albums/x298/Mikepain_pics/Pt92%20complete/DSC02964.jpg

hardworker
October 26, 2010, 10:46 PM
I've got a 92fs and it too shoots low with the 124 gr fmj walmart stuff. First few rounds on the first few trips out with it went into the dirt 4 feet in front of the target. Had to learn to hold the front sight slightly higher than the rear sight and put it right on the target, not slightly under it.

BCRider
October 27, 2010, 12:21 AM
Is this a brand new gun? If so then clean the barrel every 50'ish rounds and just keep shooting. I've had three brand new guns that went from a shotgun like pattern of strays to suddenly tightening up to a nice group. Maybe it's due to some burrs on the rifling that need to be polished off by some rounds down the pipe? I dunno. But in anywhere from 40 to 200 rounds all three came in and shot fine after that.

And before anyone says it was me getting used to the guns in one case I'd shot someone elses identical gun just fine before I got my own version. And in the other I had bought two cheapie identical guns to work on my beginner's gunsmithing chops. One "came in" after only about 50 rounds fired so it COULD have been partly me. The other took a good 150 rounds before it too came in. And meanwhile I was shooting the other one just fine with nice groups.

Given your skills with the .22, and I'm assuming you can shoot your revolvers as well, and the widely scattered hits on the Taurus I'm betting that the barrel and perhaps some other fits just need to smoothen up or bed in which should occur after maybe as much as a couple of hundred rounds.

uspJ
October 27, 2010, 05:24 AM
Interesting. That seems odd, as 147 grain certainly isn't the most common 9mm weight. I have a Beretta 92 owners manual and it doesn't suggest what bullet weight to use, but in the specs it states what the weight is when fully loaded with 115 gr. NATO Ball, which implies they think that weight would actually be used in their gun.

The Taurus manual that covers all "Metallic Pistols" instead of just the 92 states the maximum levels of "hotness" you should fire in them with 9mm being given as 124 grain with a muzzle velocity of 1,225 ft/sec max. Again suggesting they might expect something lighter than 147 gr bullets to go through their guns.


KJS

You are correct, I had a brain fart. I meant 124 gr was what the 92 type guns where designed to shoot (according to the Beretta forum).

bigfatdave
October 27, 2010, 05:55 AM
KJS:
What distance were you shooting at?
How many rounds do YOU have down the pipe on THIS gun?

Because your target, while surely not great, isn't all that bad for someone getting used to a new handgun. Don't get out the dremel just yet, get some more range time, try for a tighter group and focus on the basics.
You should be doing ball and dummy drills, if you don't have a shooting buddy load up all your mags with three live rounds and two snap-caps in them and grab them from the bag at random. If you only have one magazine, why do you own a semiauto?

Seriously, if that's the target size I think it is, you're at minimum defensive accuracy already, everything from here on out is refinement and will require actual practice with live ammo or at least dry-fire at home (look up the corneredcat article on dry-fire if you haven't, it has all the precautions AND how to make dry-fire valuable training)

rbernie
October 27, 2010, 10:21 AM
I have owned three older PT92s and they were all wonderfully reliable and trustworthy; there is no issue with the platform or its construction. I might quarrel with specific other Taurus semiautos, but not the PT92.

but when the 3 dots are lined up on the bulls eye they produce these results.Black out the dots and align the sights the old fashioned way, to see what happens. Also - I assume you're shooting SA and not DA?

I would expect you to find that the gun is regulated fine and that the dots are misleading you because they are misplaced.

JLaw
October 27, 2010, 10:35 AM
"It was 115 gr. ammo. Sellier & Bellot brand as most of you likely know from the distinctive red lacquer they apply to seal the primer.

Yeah, I too had been wondering about bullet weight, knowing that fixed sight guns are normally designed with a particular weight in mind -- like a .38 revolver designed with a classic 158 gr. load in mind." - KJS

My Beretta shoots 115 grain stuff pretty close to POA, but I have a Smith 908 that shoots pretty low with 115 grain...load that Smith with 124 grain and it shoots to POA. Maybe try that next?

Nice pistol, by the way!

JLaw

Dionysusigma
October 27, 2010, 01:02 PM
Slap a set of Pachmayrs with finger grooves and a Streamlight TLR-1 on it, and you've got my bedside gun. :)

NavyLCDR
October 27, 2010, 01:28 PM
A couple of suggestions:

1. Get a cheap laser (even one for a pellet gun) for $20 or less and put it on the rail of the PT-92 (assuming you have a version with the rail). Practice keeping the laser on target through a long DA trigger pull, first dry firing, then live firing. This will help your trigger pull immensely and help if you are anticipating recoil and jerking the trigger.

2. If you think the sights are a problem, verified by other people shooting the gun low as well, get an adjustable rear sight from:
http://www.lpasights.com/

I put one of their adjustable rear sights on my PT-92 and loved it. My PT-92 was my all time favorite gun and I lost it in an ugly divorce :fire:

KJS
October 27, 2010, 07:16 PM
Black out the dots and align the sights the old fashioned way, to see what happens. Also - I assume you're shooting SA and not DA?

I would expect you to find that the gun is regulated fine and that the dots are misleading you because they are misplaced.

I'm thinking you may be right about that, but I'm not going to black out the dots just yet.

I took out the gun last night just to look at it and I see that if I align the sights without regard for the dots, I end up with the front dot higher than the two rear dots, forming a triangle if one plays connect the dots. Perhaps simply getting used to looking at such a triangle formation would be all it takes?

KJS
October 27, 2010, 07:33 PM
1. Get a cheap laser (even one for a pellet gun) for $20 or less and put it on the rail of the PT-92 (assuming you have a version with the rail).

Yes, my PT-92 has a rail. I always assumed the 'T' in PT-92 was a reference to the rail though I've never seen a P-92, so I don't know for sure.

Hk Dan
October 27, 2010, 07:40 PM
A couple of questions for ya:
1) How far were you from the target? (Within 15 yards the weight of the bullet CAN'T matter)
2) How much experience do you have with centerfire pistols?
3) Does the gun group well if you keep a single point of aim? In other words, if you aim in the same place for 5 shots, does it make one raggedy little hole, just low, or does it string 'em out a little?

1KPerDay
October 27, 2010, 07:42 PM
Yes, my PT-92 has a rail. I always assumed the 'T' in PT-92 was a reference to the rail though I've never seen a P-92, so I don't know for sure.
Probably "Taurus". My PT101 doesn't have a rail.

KJS
October 27, 2010, 07:56 PM
What distance were you shooting at?
How many rounds do YOU have down the pipe on THIS gun?

What you see is the first 46 shots. Not certain as to distance. I was shooting at a 75 foot indoor range. The target was likely about halfway down the range.

As for target size, that's an NRA Official 25-Yard Timed And Rapid Fire Pistol Target, same as the one I pictured having been blasted by my .22. To give some further idea of target size, here is that same .22 target from earlier compared to my hand below.

Because your target, while surely not great, isn't all that bad for someone getting used to a new handgun. Don't get out the dremel just yet, get some more range time, try for a tighter group and focus on the basics.

That's my plan. No point in more extreme measures till I get more practice, as that might be all that's needed. I ordered a mag loader and will put it to use as soon as I can after getting it. My left thumb is still a bit numb from 6 days ago after loading those mags from hell! Makes one truly appreciate the wonder of revolvers: low capacity, but never a sore thumb.

KJS
October 27, 2010, 07:59 PM
Probably "Taurus". My PT101 doesn't have a rail.

OK, so now I know "T" doesn't stand for rail.

Having a rail is one of the things I liked about this gun. I didn't buy it with any specific plans to add a laser and/or light, but I liked having a rail so I'd have that option should I want to at some future point. No rail, and the option is gone.

KJS
October 27, 2010, 08:11 PM
1) How far were you from the target? (Within 15 yards the weight of the bullet CAN'T matter)

I'd been wondering how much bullet weight could possible matter given the relatively short distance I was shooting at. I'm sure it wasn't more than 45 feet, so looks like it's me and not the gun or bullet weight in that case.

2) How much experience do you have with centerfire pistols?

I'm a novice.

So little that I can tell you down to the exact number of shots, 396 rounds:

-200 rounds through a rental Beretta 92 December 2009
-150 rounds through a Glock 22 January 2010
-46 rounds through PT-92 six days ago

Revolver experience:

About 1,700 rounds of .357 Mag, 550 rounds of .38, 100 rounds of .44 Mag, 50 rounds of .44 Special.

3) Does the gun group well if you keep a single point of aim? In other words, if you aim in the same place for 5 shots, does it make one raggedy little hole, just low, or does it string 'em out a little?

Don't really know. Will definitely have to pay attention to that at next range visit.

KJS
October 27, 2010, 08:18 PM
1) How far were you from the target? (Within 15 yards the weight of the bullet CAN'T matter)

I'd been wondering how much bullet weight could possible matter given the relatively short distance I was shooting at. I'm sure it wasn't more than 45 feet, so looks like it's me and not the gun or bullet weight in that case.

2) How much experience do you have with centerfire pistols?

I'm a novice.

So little that I can tell you down to the exact number of shots, 396 rounds:

-200 rounds through a rental Beretta 92 December 2009
-150 rounds through a rental Glock 22 January 2010
-46 rounds through PT-92 six days ago

Revolver experience:

About 1,700 rounds of .357 Mag, 550 rounds of .38, 100 rounds of .44 Mag, 50 rounds of .44 Special.

3) Does the gun group well if you keep a single point of aim? In other words, if you aim in the same place for 5 shots, does it make one raggedy little hole, just low, or does it string 'em out a little?

Don't really know. Will definitely have to pay attention to that at next range visit. Trouble is that my skill level is clearly novice, so making one little hole isn't something that happens even when I try.

Here is some idea of what I manage with a .357. This pic was taken in June after that target had decorated my front door since March. It was hit with 80-some shots. And my 'door decor' is still up on display:

Steve C
October 27, 2010, 10:52 PM
Just wanted to show that the Taurus is capable of good accuracy. My Taurus is a pre decocker model I'd bought around 1986. Its been shot a lot and I did have to replace the locking block last month as after probably f5K rounds or more it did fracture.

This is a target shot testing a hand load using Green Dot and the MBC 125gr RN bullet. Ranges are indicated and the bottom right bull was shot at 25 yds was from the bench but the rest where either 2 handed or 1 handed at 15 yds.
http://www.members.cox.net/scollins15/Pictures/Taurus%20PT92%20MultiTarget.jpg

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