Bad Day, Bad Shot, or just Bad?


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guitarguy314
December 9, 2012, 01:15 AM
Hey guys, I recently went shooting with my neighbor. He brought out his AR and Mosin. I don't shoot rifles often, so I was excited. The problem was that both rifles were scoped.

At 25 yards, my shots were all over the place, and at 100 yards, my shots were everywhere but the target. Is it just that I wear glasses? Is it just my bad eyes? Could it have been my shooting position (standing with no rest)?

Is there any way to improve short of getting a melon baller and stealing someone's eyes?

Thanks guys!

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Fred_G
December 9, 2012, 01:16 AM
How did your friend shoot?

788Ham
December 9, 2012, 01:20 AM
Your mentioning not shooting rifles much speaks volumes! None of the rest of us were crack shots the first few times we shot either. Continual practice will make things a whole lot better/easier for you. No, your wearing glasses has not a thing to do with it, I wear them also, cause I can't see like I used to. Keep it up, you'll do fine.

guitarguy314
December 9, 2012, 01:23 AM
My neighbor is a State trooper/Gun enthusiast, so he shot very well (as I expected). He zeroed both of the guns before I shot them. I'm an okay shot with my revolvers (not perfect mind you, but most of my rounds hit paper at 15 Yards) I have shot a 45/70 lever gun before, and with iron sights at 50 yards, I shot fine. (this was months ago)

guitarguy314
December 9, 2012, 01:25 AM
Thanks 788Ham, I'm saving up for a browning 1886, and I'll be able to practice more with my dad's 10/22 (even though 22's aren't as fun) once this semester is over.

husker
December 9, 2012, 01:38 AM
Yup/ More trigger time is the answer

jim243
December 9, 2012, 01:40 AM
Shooting off hand is an aquired skill, especially with a scoped rifle. The trick is to not hold on the target too long, but to bring your cross hair down to the target and fire just as it crossed the point you wish to hit. You will have to also find the right spot on the stock to put your chin so that you get a full view with the scope and to hold that spot each time you shoot.

With practice you will do fine.
Jim

MachIVshooter
December 9, 2012, 01:46 AM
The trick is to not hold on the target too long, but to bring your cross hair down to the target and fire just as it crossed the point you wish to hit.

Yup. Off hand is a whole different animal than rested; The longer you try to hold and steady on the target, the shakier you'll get.

Edarnold
December 9, 2012, 04:04 AM
Hey guys, I recently went shooting with my neighbor. He brought out his AR and Mosin. I don't shoot rifles often, so I was excited. The problem was that both rifles were scoped.

At 25 yards, my shots were all over the place, and at 100 yards, my shots were everywhere but the target. Is it just that I wear glasses? Is it just my bad eyes? Could it have been my shooting position (standing with no rest)?

Is there any way to improve short of getting a melon baller and stealing someone's eyes?

Thanks guys!
The problem with shooting offhand with a scoped rifle is that you see clearly just how much you are waving around. Iron sights kind of cover that up because you are concentrating on the sight alignment.

The goal when shooting offhand is to adjust your position and breathing to eliminate vertical movement: when the sights are slowly swinging back and forth in a horizontal arc across the target, you can start hitting in the black consistently. Then it's just refinement to move the hits toward the 10 ring. How do you get to that point? Great natural talent, or ten- to twenty-years of practice.

Never said it was EASY...

IMHO

BinhThuyUSN
December 9, 2012, 09:53 AM
I have to disagree. I have two CZ 22's in my safe and they are fun and inexpensive to shoot. They are valuable in that I can work on my shooting technique and transfer that added range time to improve my shooting technique while shooting my CZ 223. Just my 2c worth.

floorit76
December 9, 2012, 10:08 AM
How about body type and paralax? I can zero a scope dead on, hand it to my 14 y/o, and he will be consistant, but off the target by 3". We haven't had the time to work out the issue yet to be sure, but that is the direction I am thinking.

Double Vision
December 9, 2012, 10:20 AM
FWIW I've had more trouble with scopes than I do with iron sights on rifles. This is something I want to improve on. More practice is needed.

Sock Puppet
December 9, 2012, 10:32 AM
And another thing...don't be hard on yourself! All things take practice to be done well, and shooting is certainly no exception. Buy a decent little rimfire, ad a good scope, and practice to your hear's content. Not only will it be cheap, but you'll have a blast!

guitarguy314
December 9, 2012, 12:52 PM
A-ha! Thanks for all of the feedback guys! More trigger time is most likely what I need.

BinThuy USN: 22's are very cheap to shoot, and valuable in practice, but I just don't find them as fun as a bigger boom.

Jim243: Off hand is part of it too then? I do recall trying to steady the rifle on the target. Ideally, ten to twenty years from now, I'd like to be able to pick up a rifle and start plinking away offhand.

chrome_austex
December 9, 2012, 01:09 PM
Zero does change from person to person, its not uncommon to get a bit of windage adjustment when changing shooters. I'm talking more like <2" at 100y, and not enough to put you off paper.

If the scope is set too-high a power it can be a major distraction. Try using the lowest power setting when shooting offhand.

Really great stable offhand shooters use a sling or bone support so they don't have to engage large muscles to get off a shot. Some guys break the shot quickly on the first good sight picture. Everybody has to work hard to gain much confidence and break the shot as it's crossing the target, and not just after when its well-wide. Its as much timing the sight picture as anything else.

Hacker15E
December 9, 2012, 01:13 PM
Two words: Appleseed clinic.

It isn't just you, rifle marksmanship is something that takes technique, skill, and practice.

Although the generic recommendation for more trigger time is legitimate, I also recommend that you read up on or go learn some actual rifle marksmanship techniques. That plus trigger time will give you the best investment.

There are actually a couple good videos online from Appleseed clinics that are helpful if you can't find the time or money to make it to one in person.

kBob
December 9, 2012, 02:47 PM
I find that rifle shooting is like any other skill, it takes learning in the first place and practice to maintain.

I find that even shooting a Daisy "air rifle" is better practice than going online and asking what was wrong. Almost as cheap and a better use of time generally, but I do like to skulk around leaping in to threads like this.

I can do my Daisy shooting even in a city apartment with little noise and no clean up......

Then when I shoot the big boys most of the skills DO carry over.

-kBob

Fremmer
December 9, 2012, 02:53 PM
Take it easy, you just had a bad shooting day and you didn't know those rifles and triggers. It happens sometimes, lol. Bet you shoot a lot better next time.

Warp
December 9, 2012, 02:56 PM
Two words: Appleseed clinic.

It isn't just you, rifle marksmanship is something that takes technique, skill, and practice.

Although the generic recommendation for more trigger time is legitimate, I also recommend that you read up on or go learn some actual rifle marksmanship techniques. That plus trigger time will give you the best investment.

There are actually a couple good videos online from Appleseed clinics that are helpful if you can't find the time or money to make it to one in person.

Yes!

More trigger time will probably just waste ammo and reinforce bad habits. Practicing things the wrong way does you no favors.

Steel Horse Rider
December 9, 2012, 03:01 PM
I have worn glasses my entire life because I like to see things clearly so I don't think that should impact your shooting ability as tlong as the prescription is correct. Using a scope at 25yds could be a problem but I would guess that you were probably flinching a lot after the first shot with the Mosin if you weren't accustomed to the recoil. Shooting without using bad habits is a skill that takes time.....

Dr T
December 9, 2012, 04:39 PM
One additional thing you should consider: You may be flinching. Work with a 22 and other things that do not kick like a mule will help a lot.

BTW, I practice with 22 short barreled (2 to 3 inches) revolvers to help improve my concentration for shooting long guns. I generally use a 20 oz plastic coke bottle or coke can at about 20 yards as a target (they react nicely).

A good day is keeping about 75% for the shots on target.

guitarguy314
December 14, 2012, 12:32 AM
Thanks again guys. Dr. T: The AR was a pussy cat, and the mosin had a padded butt on it. I could have been flinching, but I don't remember any of the recoil being that bad. What exactly constitutes a flinch? How are they corrected?

Warp
December 14, 2012, 12:35 AM
Ball and dummy drill will usually show you if you are flinching

guitarguy314
December 14, 2012, 12:42 AM
that's slipping a spent round or snapcap into the magazine right?

Warp
December 14, 2012, 12:52 AM
that's slipping a spent round or snapcap into the magazine right?

Several, in random locations within multiple magazines, then blindly split up so you don't know where they are.

Works better if somebody else does it for you

twofifty
December 14, 2012, 01:00 AM
Flinching is a shooter's physical reaction just as he breaks the shot.

When a shooter anticipates heavy recoil (=pain), or a loud noise and powerful muzzle blast (= discomfort), he may do any or all of the following:

- close eyes as he pulls the trigger.
- quickly pull (jerk) the trigger in order to "get it over with".
- tension his hands, arms or body.
- lower the rifle prematurely instead of following through as the shot is taken.

Many (if not most shooters) will flinch at some point in their shooting career, or with some rifles and not others.

To tell the truth, if I anticipate very heavy recoil I will often flinch. For example, I took 3 offhand shots with 405gr full-power hunting handloads in .45-70 govt. First two shots were on paper, third shot I flinched because by then I was sore and so I lowered the gun as I pulled the trigger...didn't even hit paper.

Maybe others can pipe in on how they 'cure' flinching?

lefteyedom
December 14, 2012, 02:31 AM
It was you,
But that is fixable
no worries

more ammo and a little instruction

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