Curse left-handedness!


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ali9cg8
April 9, 2013, 03:05 PM
Hey Guys,

I know I posted ad nauseam about the Winchester 70 this weekend, but I need some *more* advice. Anyone a leftie out there? I have never had an issue with working a standard bolt action rifle and they are actually my favorites. Until....the Model 70. The scope obviously needs to be replaced or remounted- haven't figured out what I'm going to do there and the stock will not be altered! Not going there, promise.

Does anyone shoot the classic left handed? If so, what adjustments did you have to make? This rifle is never leaving my collection and I would never do anything to ruin its integrity. I just don't have much experience with scoped bolt actions and any recommendations would be great.

*I'm trying to meet up with my gunsmith this weekend for opinions, but if anyone has any experience going in, I would love to hear it.

-Thanks so much- and for your previous comments. This site is the best for expertise and generous sharing of info. I consider myself very lucky to be a member. All gushing will desist now.

If you enjoyed reading about "Curse left-handedness!" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
sleepyone
April 9, 2013, 03:42 PM
I'm a left-handed shooter and own three of the new FN Model 70s. I've owned left-handed bolt rifles in the past and found that I never needed the ability to rechamber a round any faster than I could while shooting a right-handed rifle. I like the Model 70 enough that I'm willing to deal with a right-handed rifle. Besides, I'm always shooting from a rest position; either from my deer stand or on the ground and I just leave the rifle resting on the window sill or on my hunting pack and use my right hand to work the bolt while keeping my left hand on the grip and finger off the trigger. I can work the bolt fast enough to have a second round ready in case I need it.

MTMilitiaman
April 9, 2013, 04:05 PM
I am cross-eye dominant--right-handed but left-eye dominant. I've been shooting rifles left-handed since I was about 10 and started getting into centerfire rifles. My first hunting rifle was a Remington M700 in .270 Win. My dad bought it for me, but forgot I had been shooting left-handed a while and got me a right-handed rifle. I used that rifle for a couple years and thought I had adapted pretty well to it. However, the shape of the stock made a cheekweld difficult for me and I always had problems creeping up on the scope because my cheek was always "floating," for lack of a better term. I replaced that rifle with a left-handed M700 in 7mm Rem Mag and I have to say, I will never, ever, ever, ever go back to right-handed bolt actions.

I don't have problems with most semi-autos, I run a right-handed Mossberg and right-handed Remington 12 gauge very effectively, as well as any lever action I've ever had the pleasure of using. I've even ran belt-feds left-handed. But bolt actions have to have the bolt on the right, er, I mean "correct," side of the rifle for me as a lefty or I won't ever consider it. It made that much of a difference to me. So I've heard nothing but good of the FN M70s and would snatch up one in a New York minute if they offered them in left-hand. Until then, no amount of class, nostaliga, or craftsmanship is going to make up for having the bolt on the wrong side. Your results may vary.

sixgunner455
April 9, 2013, 04:17 PM
My brother (the lefty) had a right-handed M70. I'm not sure how well he dealt with it, since he only had it a couple of years before he sold it and bought a left-handed one.

Punk. The only .30-06 I ever really liked, and he sold it to someone else.

desidog
April 9, 2013, 05:07 PM
These guy will make you a improved left handed Model 70.

http://montanarifleco.com/

dprice3844444
April 9, 2013, 05:13 PM
just google left handed bolt action rifles

DM~
April 9, 2013, 05:18 PM
I'm another left hander who switched from a RH bolt rifle to a LH bolt rifle and will NEVER go back!!!

Then again, i take my hunting/shooting seriously, and i WANT every advantage i can get, to be better at it.

I'd just buy a LH M-70 and be done with it!

DM

BruceB
April 9, 2013, 05:23 PM
My experience as a left-handed shooter with RIGHT-handed rifles extends back to using the #4 Enfield in the Canadian Army (1950s). To this day, I can REALLY run a #4, even left-handed.

Ever since those times, I find no difficulty in using right- OR left-handed rifles from the left shoulder, and there's no problem with the "mental shift" involved, either. My technique involves reaching over with the left hand to operate a right-hand bolt, and even a scope sight offers no particular impediment.

Right now, our racks hold three left-handed bolt rifles (Remington, Ruger, Savage) and a dozen or more right-handers....I like and use all of them. Semi-autos also pose no problems to me.

What DOES pose difficulty are those right-handed rifles with nice, razor-edged "roll-over" cheek-pieces which put a sharp edge just where my cheek wants to go..... but they're so butt-ugly that I wouldn't be caught dead owning one , anyway.

hunttheevil
April 9, 2013, 05:28 PM
I'm with sleepyone. Being left handed and using a right hand bolt, I tend to cycle the next round faster from a rest.

sleepyone
April 9, 2013, 05:31 PM
I don't think you can buy a new FN Winchester LH Model 70 off the shelf. Their Website does not list them, and gun shops I have been to say they are not available. Did they used to make a LH M70 in New Haven before Winchester closed its doors in 2006?

josiewales
April 9, 2013, 05:37 PM
I'm a lefty, I taught my self how to shoot right handed. After many hours of dry fire practice, I can shoot right or left with equal skill and comfort. It was worth it. I had a left handed .243, but I wanted to buy Milsurps, and with their straight bolts I found it very hard to cycle the bolt without completely losing my sight picture. Teach youself to shoot righthanded, you will not regret.

I still wright right handed though. :)

ApacheCoTodd
April 9, 2013, 10:18 PM
Really? That sounds rather sinister.:evil:

I've been living my entire life right handed - you may know it as correct handed - while coping with my own sinister, dominant left eye conspiring to cross up my shooting.

Folk have from time to time tried to convince me to just shoot left handed but then I'll just start stuttering, accidentally dropping mags and generally making a fool of my self.

Point is - because of that darned eye and the sufferings of a wrongly handed sister - I feel some of your pain.

Oddly, as I age my left eye is giving over a great deal of its dominance from year to year.

Deltaboy
April 9, 2013, 10:21 PM
Just shoot it left handed, I have done it for over 40 years.

ApacheCoTodd
April 9, 2013, 10:37 PM
Just shoot it left handed, I have done it for over 40 years.
So you're right handed and shoot leftie in deference to optical dominance?
In general, I'm not opposed to it as so much of our training was ambidextrous/back-up anyhow but do you take it to the extent of leftern hardware on rifles as well?
Fortunately, as I say, my left seems to be giving over some control but I had thought of a full conversion to left to keep shooting iron sights as I aged.
I have always strained my right more than my left to keep on the proper side of the gun.

Txhillbilly
April 9, 2013, 10:45 PM
If your having problems with the factory Monte Carlo style stock,just buy a replacement stock for it. Boyd's makes LH stocks for RH actions,and that will fix your problems.

Agsalaska
April 9, 2013, 11:00 PM
You are not alone. I have a 70 Featherweight in 6.5x55 swede from the 1980s that saw just its second hunt this last year(if it wasnt for one or two handling marks already I probably would have safe queened it). I am left handed and grew up shooting left handed. It generally works OK because, as an earlier poster said, I am usually on a bench or in the stand. Therefore I cycle the bolt with my right. It is not ideal but it works. I have never owned a left handed bolt action gun. I bet I would like it though. This gun replaced a 700 in .243 that was giving me some fits. For some reason it never occurred to me to buy a left handed rifle. I have lots of right handed rifles and dont want to ruin them by liking a left handed one(probably a dumb reason)

A side note with a story. I am somewhat ambidextrous, though it is not absolute. I can throw right handed relatively well in a controlled environment. I can switch hit and am a 70s golfer right handed. But I cannot write right handed at all. So late this deer season I was in an old rickety deer blind that made noise every time you took a breath. The only reason I was in it was it was a real windy day and it was buried back in the trees. Some deer popped out behind me in a place that kind of surprised me. I couldnt get turned around all the way to make a left handed shot but could, barely, to take a right handed shot. I don't think I have ever in my life shot a rifle right handed. But I put the scope on this doe at about 80 or 90 yards. It felt good so I shot. That doe could have been a dime and I would have hit it square. She dropped on the spot. IN hindsight it was probably irresponsible of me to take that shot but it didnt cross my mind at the time. It was strange to me how easy and natural it felt though. I am a decent shot left handed but by no means great so I think I may be on to something. I told myself to try it again on targets but have not done it yet. I have taken the Remington 121 out a few times to plink around the farm but keep forgetting to try. If I am better right handed, especially if it cures this jerk I occasionally have, I will not hesitate to switch sides.

ball3006
April 9, 2013, 11:06 PM
I am ambidextrous so I don't really care which hand I shoot with. I often shoot right hand against the left hand. It depends on the day which shoots better......chris3

toiville2feathers
April 10, 2013, 03:31 AM
I am right handed and blind in my right eye. I own quite a few left handed rifles. 3 of them are left handed, model 70 classic winchesters, stainless steel with walnut stocks. They are chambered in 243 win, 270 win and 338 win mag. They came out in 1996.
If you are going to hunt with a right handed rifle and the safety is a problem, carry the rifle with a full magazine and don't carry a round in the chamber. Carrying a rifle with an empty chamber is the only safe way to carry a rifle IMO. When game is spotted you have plenty of time to chamber up a round and fire. If you don't your more than likely taking a low percentage shot any way.

eastbank
April 10, 2013, 05:34 AM
being left handed i used rem pump 760,s untill remington started to make left handed rifles,now i own six,a rem 581 in .22, rem 700 in 708,rem 700 in 3006 and three win 70,s, a win 270,a win 7mm mag,and a win 300win mag.. and i still use the rem pumps at different times and hunts. left hand rifles that i could afford were not available in the 50-60,s so i used right hand rifles and i still was not that slow on a second shoot if needed. eastbank.

CB900F
April 10, 2013, 03:19 PM
Ali;

I'm left handed & left eye dominant. When I were but a stripling lad, I shot competition .22's and since my folks weren't rich, I had to do it with a right hand bolt gun. Here's the quickest way to cycle a right handed bolt gun from the left shoulder:

BANG. Gun starts to drop from the shoulder & left thumb moves to the left, right hand moves from the forestock & palm contacts the bolt handle as it's coming down. The momentum & weight of the gun dropping raises the bolt handle, left hand controls the gun & either drastically slows the drop or stops it. Right hand allows the bolt it's rearward travel and the left starts to push up, muzzle is almost straight up. Left hand starts to let the muzzle drop & right hand pushes the bolt forward picking up the new round, left thumb comes over the wrist as soon as the bolt movement allows it. Right hand seats the bolt & slides to the forestock as the left hand brings the buttstock to shoulder. Aquire sight picture & BANG.

You will undoubtedly have to practice a lot to figure out just exactly the best way to get this to work for you, but that's the basics of how it's done.

Now then, the easiest way is to go out & buy a Tikka T3 LHB .30-06. Keep and treasure the pre-64 model 70, but use the Tikka when you're hunting. You'll hate yerself if you ding up the Winchester anyway. I've spent a good portion of my adult life getting the left hand bolt battery that I want, it can be done. And, gone about with the proper attitude, is fun also. There's no need to curse being left handed, things are much better for you today than when I was shooting competition with a backward Remington 40Xb. Never really have forgiven Remmie either.

900F

Abel
April 10, 2013, 04:50 PM
Hey Guys,

I know I posted ad nauseam about the Winchester 70 this weekend, but I need some *more* advice. Anyone a leftie out there? I have never had an issue with working a standard bolt action rifle and they are actually my favorites. Until....the Model 70. The scope obviously needs to be replaced or remounted- haven't figured out what I'm going to do there and the stock will not be altered! Not going there, promise.

Does anyone shoot the classic left handed? If so, what adjustments did you have to make? This rifle is never leaving my collection and I would never do anything to ruin its integrity. I just don't have much experience with scoped bolt actions and any recommendations would be great.

*I'm trying to meet up with my gunsmith this weekend for opinions, but if anyone has any experience going in, I would love to hear it.

-Thanks so much- and for your previous comments. This site is the best for expertise and generous sharing of info. I consider myself very lucky to be a member. All gushing will desist now.

Why would you need to alter it in any way? What is wrong with the scope the way it is?? Is it mounted off to one side?

BruceB
April 10, 2013, 05:01 PM
Now, CB900....

You are perfectly entitled to your opinion on what might be "the fastest" left-hand operation of a right-handed bolt.

Others, including myself, will differ.

All the shifting of hand positions is unnecessary.

My rifle doesn't leave the left shoulder, nor does the right hand leave its firing position on the fore-end.

Instead, the rifle is simply rolled a bit to the left which brings the bolt-handle to a more-convenient location. The LEFT hand reaches across and hooks the handle with the side of the open palm, raises it and pulls to the rear in one motion, and then pushes it closed with one motion of the same open-hand. The handle is NEVER "grasped" and all manipulation is done with the open hand.

This was the "official" or "approved" Canadian Army method that was taught for the .303 #4 Enfield Rifle, and it's served me very well for decades. Interestingly, they never did try converting we southpaws into firing right-handed. Mind you, the Lee Enfield rifles are very accomodating to left-handers, with rear-mounted bolt handles and VERY smooth actions.

One of the "Tests of Training" (i.e.: Did you LEARN what we've been teaching you???) was this:

-Standing on the firing point, go to prone on the "FIRE" command.

-Load ten rounds from chargers

-Fire all ten rounds for a MINIMUM REQUIRED SCORE at 200 yards in a total elapsed time of 45 seconds.

That is, 45 seconds to assume the firing position, load the rifle, and fire a ten-round qualifying score.

It wasn't all that difficult, even left-handed.

I do believe those WWll and Korean combat-vet instructors knew a thing or two...

Roadking Rider
April 10, 2013, 05:29 PM
Curse left-handedness??
You know I never looked at being left handed as a curse. It taught me to learn how too use things like tools and pistols/rifles with both hands. I grew up in a time where everything but a baseball glove was made for right handed people. It definitely made us more ambidextrous than most people. About the only thing I can't do right handed is write and throw a ball.

CB900F
April 10, 2013, 06:24 PM
Bruce;

Re-read my post. The word "grasp" was never (gasp!) used.

900F

dak0ta
April 10, 2013, 06:35 PM
I'm left-handed by right-eye dominant. I see straighter through my left eye so I switched over to the right side. It took about 8 months to feel comfortable doing it, but you just practice picking up the rifle/shotgun and shoulder it on the right shoulder till it feels natural. I can now shoot with both eyes open too which is great. I practice standing, prone, and kneeling with snap caps to get the muscle strength and muscle memory programmed in the brain. Now it's second nature.

The positive is that I can still shoot left handed with my left eye, so I'm now trained ambidextrous.

palmettokat
April 30, 2013, 05:34 PM
I have always shot long guns left handed and done so with guns make for right handed people. Looking now for left handed bolt rifle and the hunt is hard. Some companies seem not to realize there are many left handed shooters. Having learned to shoot with a single shot bolt action 22 did fine with that but would never consider high power right hand bolt for myself. Funny with handgun normally shoot it right handed due to easy to wear right hand holster toting long gun in left hand ready to use in hurry. (Shoot hand gun equally poor with either hand.)

My suggestion get what feels most comfortable to you. Even if it takes just a split second to use the second best set up you never know when you may not have that split second. You don't need to have to stop and think but it to be fully natural. I am right eye dominate, but not to the degree it bothers me.

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