What Would it Take to Get YOU out to a Bullseye ("Conventional Pistol" Event?


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Grump
November 10, 2013, 03:57 PM
If you answer would be different for a club event vs. an actual NRA Approved (or Registered) match, please say what's different and why.

Anyway, I tagged along with my Dad (and often Mom too) for a number of regular bullseye pistol matches when I was a kid and there used to be a LOT of participation. Two different clubs within 20 miles of home had turning targets back then (both ranges are gone now, but one of the two clubs is still around).

It's a tough accuracy-centered game, with the same target (black bull out to the 8 ring instead of the 9) at 50 yards slow fire as for the 25-yard timed and rapid fire stages.

The times are generous, 10 minutes for a 10-shot slow fire string of 10 shots, 20 seconds per 5-round string timed fire at 25 yards (two strings), and the same drill in rapid fire except 10 seconds per 5 round string. That's nothing compared to the "splits" in IPSC and IDPA of anywhere from a slow .8 second between shots to the blistering (to me) splits of .18 second.

But it's done with a 3.something inch 10-ring and one-handed.

It IS hard, but is also IS the "National Match Course" for pistol.

And a typical match has one done with a .22, another with any safe centerfire (certain size and other limits apply), then finally with a .45. That's 900 points for a short match. Big matches are "2700"s, with three targets done with each gun at each stage.

Even if just to try it out, what would it take to get YOU to one of these precision accuracy events???

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rockhopper46038
November 10, 2013, 04:10 PM
I'd try it if one of my local clubs put one on.

Grump
November 10, 2013, 04:19 PM
Cool.

How far would you drive and consider a club "local"???

rockhopper46038
November 10, 2013, 04:39 PM
I'd drive a hour, but would really prefer to keep it within 30 min of me to call it "local". If I tried it and loved it, I'd probably drive 2 hours to a regularly scheduled event.

Centurian22
November 10, 2013, 04:49 PM
I would love to participate in something like this if it were available in my area. As far as I know there are no pistol competitions at any club within an hour or so.

btg3
November 10, 2013, 08:17 PM
The OP acknowledges "a LOT of participation" a generation ago. Also, I've seen the "bullseye era" mentioned elsewhere.

What happened?
While there may be an increase in sales of guns, ammo, and carry permits, overall we choose to do things other than shooting with our recreational time and dollars.

For the shooting that does go on, bullseye must compete for those shooters. Most young shooters today have played video games with action type shooting. Is there a video version of bullseye shooting? I doubt that it sells nearly as well as the action games. Any wonder that actual bullseye competition has a significant marketing challenge? How are you going to sell it? This leads back to the OPs question of "what would it take to get you to participate?"

Rather than invite me to show up at a match in a sport that I know little about, invite me to learn about bullseye shooting":
1. Equip me. Share your guns. They do not look like the guns I have.
2. Coach me. Help me to develop skill and proper technique.
3. In time, suggest that we shoot together at a match.

And be honest. Whether you feel that participation in various shooting sports develops a better shooter, or if you feel that a shooter should not focus on too many disciplines, be open to discussion and support the objectives of fellow shooters.

tuj
November 10, 2013, 08:49 PM
make it so a 2700 doesn't take all day long.

Sam1911
November 10, 2013, 09:17 PM
Honestly, I'd love to do it. Bit I only have so much time and so little money and it is already devoted to other shooting pursuits more in line with what I see handguns to be, or to be for. My one "luxury" seems to be Service Rifle matches and even that is a once or twice a year thing.

If my dream comes true and I really can retire someday with plenty of ammo, I'll pick up bullseye along with IMHSA and SASS and BPCR and F-class and all the other disciplines I can't spear myself over today.

Hangingrock
November 10, 2013, 10:20 PM
Forty years of my age!

ljnowell
November 10, 2013, 10:27 PM
I do shoot Bullseye. We shoot the National Match course, however, we only have 5 minutes for the 10 shots of slow fire. Very challenging, very rewarding. My high score is a 281, my index is a 274. Thats with a revolver, btw.

ljnowell
November 10, 2013, 10:30 PM
The OP acknowledges "a LOT of participation" a generation ago. Also, I've seen the "bullseye era" mentioned elsewhere.

What happened?
While there may be an increase in sales of guns, ammo, and carry permits, overall we choose to do things other than shooting with our recreational time and dollars.

For the shooting that does go on, bullseye must compete for those shooters. Most young shooters today have played video games with action type shooting. Is there a video version of bullseye shooting? I doubt that it sells nearly as well as the action games. Any wonder that actual bullseye competition has a significant marketing challenge? How are you going to sell it? This leads back to the OPs question of "what would it take to get you to participate?"

Rather than invite me to show up at a match in a sport that I know little about, invite me to learn about bullseye shooting":
1. Equip me. Share your guns. They do not look like the guns I have.
2. Coach me. Help me to develop skill and proper technique.
3. In time, suggest that we shoot together at a match.

And be honest. Whether you feel that participation in various shooting sports develops a better shooter, or if you feel that a shooter should not focus on too many disciplines, be open to discussion and support the objectives of fellow shooters.

Thats the issue, there isnt enough "action" for people nowadays. The fact is its much more difficult than any other pistol sport I have ever tried. You cannot shoot fast enough to win.

As far as people trying to get people to shoot, I see people loaning people equipment all the time to try the sport. We advertise it. We do everything we can. We certainly dont have the money to pay to have a video game made to get lazy kids off the couch though

Old Fuff
November 10, 2013, 10:40 PM
Been there, done that... All the way to Camp Perry and beyond.

Of course all that happened during the past century. It was a great experience, and I enjoyed every minute of it. More important I learned about and perfected handgun markmanship long before the double-tap generation came along.

The challange is to be able to repeatedly hit inside a small scoring ring at distances that are now thought by many to be impossible. Also to be able to accomplish it while only using one hand.

It takes time and practice, but once you have it down you can go on with any other handgun shooting game and master it in a relatively short time.

Because you've already mastered the basics in the first place. :cool:

twofifty
November 10, 2013, 10:42 PM
Action shooting (or practical shooting) draws people of all ages, but mostly over 40s. We could recruit a few more of those video-addled kids though. ;-)

crazyjennyblack
November 10, 2013, 11:01 PM
What would it take? Not sure!

My problems:
1. I would have to look up what it actually is, and what it costs. I know little about it!
2. I'm a very informal person. It sounds awfully formal to me. I hate registering for
anything, and I don't much like commitment. 50/50 chance on any given day that I
would have to cancel because my life is nuts.
3. I'm not a people person. More than 10 people in a room and I don't want to be there
anymore. The very idea of having to go to a club to shoot is the antithesis of my
personality, and I never liked indoor ranges. I shoot with one or two friends out in
the wide open country for a good reason.

What seems interesting about it:
1. It seems like you use multiple weapons and then have an overall proficiency score.
2. You get to see how well other people are doing compared to you.
3. Maybe a chance to make a new friend? (Not good at this.)
4. Might be fun if I took friends with me.

What are my needs?
1. A come-as-you are basis. Show up or not, no money lost and nobody offended.
2. Someone I already know and trust to go with me. I don't go anywhere new alone.
3. An event that doesn't take all day - 4 hrs at most, and not a lot of standing/waiting.
4. Online scheduling and a site where I can see what events are close by and what
weapons and ammo are required to attend.
5. Something within 30-45 minutes of me, and not always on a weekend because I work
a LOT of weekends.
6. Something that isn't attended mostly by old men. That's who I see out at gun shops
and ranges. I get along with some, but I've run into a lot of loudmouths and would
like to not be interacting with THAT type of people.

waktasz
November 10, 2013, 11:29 PM
Is there anyone under 50 years old that attends these matches? I'm young-ish and have zero desire to attend one of these matches when there is USPSA, 3 gun and IDPA to be had. I have a feeling most people in my age group(I'm 31) and younger feel the same.

Centurian22
November 10, 2013, 11:34 PM
I just turned 29 and I would be happy to compete, in any type of competition. This upcoming year I'm hoping to enter my first local factory rifle competition. If I have off from work and get my reloads dialed in by then.

Grump
November 11, 2013, 12:06 AM
make it so a 2700 doesn't take all day long.
Well, I've thought about that a lot the past few weeks, beginning with my own Service Rifle days when I was in college and for a few years afterwards.

One key I believe is to get off the everything needs to be a 2700 match. To build the sport, IMO, requires a foundation of 900-point events, largely to avoid the all-day commitment thing. Just one target for each gun.

So, would having the shooter in and out and done in no more than three hours work?

I know that when one local club started "Action Pistol" just as monthly club events with one Comstock stage, one speed stage, and one par time (= accuracy match in my mind), it morphed to 3-gun in a year or two, and then *I* quit going when it became a victim of its own success and stage design and I could no longer count on being done my noon or 1 p.m.

Alternatively, I suspect that clubs could do well by having the 900-point events be one gun per week/month/whatever interval. All .45s, then all centerfire the next time, and all .22s after that, for example. What might be nice about three targets per stage would be the chance to essentially "re-shoot" and track progress.

Yes, it's a precision event and yes, it's shot only at boring paper targets and yes, the measurement of excellence is merely a number. Those are certainly challenges for today's "markets".

Turning targets are considered essential by the Bullseye community, but the rules DO allow only audible commands. ISSF (the international disciplines that feed World Cup and the Olympics) is even MORE demanding in pistol, and they now use electronic targets and red and green lights to start and stop the strings. No one has EVER fired a perfect score at 50 meters free pistol slow fire, if I'm reading my sources correctly.

So like running, there's a number to measure performance, and the participants are all about tracking those numbers over time and building improvement.

Though boring as the same course of fire all the time, that also brings what I call the "standard exercise" element, the ability to measure yourself against yourself and also against the rest of the shooters in the nation. The intense interest I see in IPSC forums on the percentage of one's hit factor on the international stage gives me another possible idea of how to increase the appeal of what the NRA still calls "Conventional Pistol".

And I've looked around and also listened to a few other people, with several of us concluding that NRA needs to do a better job of putting descriptions of the game on their website, and especially using a search data filter or something or even having pages with the words "bullseye pistol" in their titles, so newcomers can FIND info easier.

Me, here, now, I'm looking for a bit of market research from the shooting enthusiasts who populate the internet forums.

Thanks for everyone's input!

rondog
November 11, 2013, 01:01 AM
I can embarrass myself shooting all alone, I really don't relish the thought of doing it in front of strangers. But I've never been into competition of any kind, always been pretty much a loner. I'm a lot more social on internet forums than in person. Just an introvert, not unfriendly.

I'd like to watch a match, but I'm the kind of guy who'd watch the whole thing and then leave, without ever saying a word to anyone.

UpTheHill
November 11, 2013, 07:55 AM
Centurian22 depending on where in Maine you are Capital city in Augusta has BE matches and practice sessions and I believe that scarboro and hampden also runs them

http://capitolcityrpc.org/?page_id=27

MrBorland
November 11, 2013, 09:05 AM
what would it take to get YOU to one of these precision accuracy events???

Time.

When I started competing, I had to choose between "practical" (IDPA/USPSA) and "conventional" (bullseye) shooting because of time constraints. I went the "practical" route, figuring I'd work on accuracy on my own, either at the range or in my garage with a good air pistol.

I'd love to start shooting some bullseye, and have been seriously considering it, but I can't do bullseye and IDPA/USPSA. It'd be a good mental break from practical shooting, though, and it'd help round out my skillset, so the "cross training" may be worth it.

btg3
November 11, 2013, 09:15 AM
I can embarrass myself shooting all alone, I really don't relish the thought of doing it in front of strangers. But I've never been into competition of any kind, always been pretty much a loner. I'm a lot more social on internet forums than in person. Just an introvert, not unfriendly.

I'd like to watch a match, but I'm the kind of guy who'd watch the whole thing and then leave, without ever saying a word to anyone.

Rondog, your frankness speaks for an untold number of shooters.

If you haven't already watched video of many types of shooting competition on youtube, it's not a bad place to start.

At an actual match, some clubs encourage you to come prepared to participate and will make it a great first time experience... other clubs require newbies to watch a match and come back next time. Generally, the first move is up to you.

bainter1212
November 11, 2013, 09:30 AM
I actually sent out some emails to some local Bullseye shooting clubs, saying that I was interested and would like some more info.....and none of them ever replied!!!

Come on, old timers. Answer your email!!!

Centurian22
November 11, 2013, 02:13 PM
Upthehill, thanks for the info! I'm in the Bangor area. I'll look in to Augusta and Hampden. Do you know if you have to be a member of the clubs to participate in the competitions? That's where I run into problems as those clubs (to my knowledge) require attending meetings. I work away from home a month at a time then I'm only home for two weeks. That keeps me from making the minimum requirements for membership. I will look more into them and possibly call to see if they could make any exceptions for me.

Blue hill does a lot as well but I think more with the cowboy actions scene.

Saleen322
November 11, 2013, 04:08 PM
What Would it Take to Get YOU out to a Bullseye ("Conventional Pistol" Event?

I shoot some conventional and a little international pistol. Club matches get more attendance for two reasons, cost and time. A club 600 match is usually always .22 LR and costs about $3-$4 entry fee, less than $10 for quality ammo, and takes about 45 minutes to shoot a match.

Conventional participation is down (and even fewer shoot international) because it is difficult to do and fewer places offer them now. Many people now would rather shoot something that is easier and where they can hide their lack of skill under cover of time. That does not make them wrong, it is their leisure time and they enjoy that more. Few people like having their mistakes laid out on a paper target where others can see it. The gun industry sells guns accordingly. Many manufacturers sell a pistol you can shoot say IDPA with but there are fewer markets for a pistol accurate enough to shoot intermediate level conventional. I don't see it changing anytime soon at least in the places where I shoot.

tuj
November 11, 2013, 05:10 PM
actually, I think the best way is to do it the way they do up North. Shoot just the .22 in a 900 at 50' using the b2 and b3 targets, on teams, with the other team scoring targets while the first team shoots. Way faster than the good ole walk-to-the-target-with-the-guy-next-to-you, score, walk back, repeat ad-infinitum. Some of us can't walk that well (me, I'm a younger shooter but have a sports injury) and an whole day of 2700 gets old.

Plus shooting on a 50' line is a lot less intimidating for newbies than throwing them out there at 50 yards, only for them to find that only 1 or 2 of their shots hit paper.

[btw, I am ranked sharpshooter and shoot expert-level scores and would probably make expert if I could ever drag myself back out to a match]

Grump
November 12, 2013, 02:41 AM
Other than the wintertime don't freeze element in many parts of the country, how important is it to have an indoor range?

Glock Doctor
November 12, 2013, 03:41 AM
An act of God! ;)

btg3
November 12, 2013, 08:27 AM
Other than the wintertime don't freeze element in many parts of the country, how important is it to have an indoor range?
Generally, poor weather in any season will impact turnout, assuming the match is not cancelled.

Wind may affect targets and shooters.

Do outdoor ranges have the target turners that some insist upon?

For tactical games, I prefer to shoot outdoors. I've never shot bullseye.

ATLDave
November 12, 2013, 09:56 AM
If the range where I'm a member held a match, I'd probably try it. But bullseye has little appeal to me. It seems like a game for those who already have a quiet mind. I, OTOH, shoot to achieve a quiet mind. Too much time lavished on a particular shot, over and over again, would allow me back into the chattering mind that I'm trying to leave behind when I go shooting. But for those who have already achieved inner peace, I'm sure it's a terrific game.

I'm in my late 30's, if that's relevant.

anothernewb
November 12, 2013, 10:11 AM
We have a pistol club that shoots bullseye every wed nite for 2 hours. kinda fun.

btg3
November 12, 2013, 05:15 PM
Frankly, bullseye evokes images of dueling with pistols or regimented volley fire with muskets. Perhaps the perception is that it is a style of shooting with a lot of old school baggage attached to it. So, any thoughts on how Bullseye will fare over the next 20 years? From posts thus far, I'd say the long format (2700?) will die and may already have one foot in the grave.

Old Fuff
November 12, 2013, 05:57 PM
The Old Fuff, having been there and done that, would suggest that those who for any reason want to be superior handgun shooters, ("superior" in the context of being able to shoot very small and consistant groups out to 50 yards and beyond) would be both wise and fortunate if they could spend some time learning conventional bullseye shooting.

This I suppose in contrary to most of the more popular games and other activities that stress close range/fast shootin at the expense of even moderate accuracy.

But accuracy - especially under stress - is important; and should be the principal objective of early training and practice. Once this is mastered go on to developing faster speed. No less of an authority the Jeff Cooper strongly advocated that one should perfect the above cited basics before venturing in to combat techniques.

When I observe someone at a shooting range blasting away at a target cranked out to 10 yards or less and getting a pattern rather then a group; I can tell that person has put the cart in front of the horse - and is unlikely to get much better.

Sam1911
November 12, 2013, 07:08 PM
And that certainly is correct, so long as we accept that the purpose of the exercise is to shoot small groups at long range.

For someone who owns a handgun with the purpose of protecting life in realistically anticipated close-range encounters, small groups that would score well in conventional pistol competition would be unnecessary, possibly even detrimental, and pursuing them would not represent that shooter "getting any better."

Some basis in the fundamentals of marksmanship seems wise, but if the goal is not 3" groups at 50 yards, but well-placed 3"-spaced pairs at 7 yards fast, then spending the time and discipline needed to accomplish the former seems to rob rather than support the attainment of the latter.

Some folks do smile knowingly and opine that since they are accomplished bullseye shooters then they possess the right stuff to prevail in the practical/defensive games -- or in a violent encounter. Nothing seems to make that statement any truer than the reverse.

Mat, not doormat
November 12, 2013, 07:50 PM
More time. More money, but then I repeat myself. There's hardly a shooting game out there that I don't want to try, but quality gear is expensive. I already shoot SASS, and USPSA. Even though I'd like to try Bullseye, High Power, 3 gun, Trap, Skeet, Sporting Clays, 3d archery, actually doing so requires a considerable outlay of funds, and taking one of my precious few weekends, and deciding not to compete in the games I'm already e equipped for, but rather divide my attentions still further.

btg3
November 12, 2013, 08:05 PM
The whole "superior" bit may appeal to some, but is off-putting to others.

twofifty
November 12, 2013, 09:31 PM
....

Anyway, I tagged along with my Dad (and often Mom too) for a number of regular bullseye pistol matches when I was a kid and there used to be a LOT of participation. Two different clubs within 20 miles of home had turning targets back then (both ranges are gone now, but one of the two clubs is still around).

....
When your parents played the game and Bullseye was popular, could this have been in the years before the practical shooting games came along?

LT.Diver
November 12, 2013, 09:35 PM
What would it take to get me out to a bullseye match? Someone to sell me a model 41 for under $500.00
Needless to say, I ain't going!

Old Fuff
November 12, 2013, 10:07 PM
And that certainly is correct, so long as we accept that the purpose of the exercise is to shoot small groups at long range.

No, the purpose of the excise is mastery over both the handgun and oneís self. It involves reducing critical basics to habit so that the attentive side of the mind can concentrate on other things.

In my lifetime I have had the pleasure and privilege of meeting a small number of men who had survived a number of shooting situations. These you understand were not games but the real thing. Within the group three stand out; Charles Askins Jr., Bill Jordan and Jeff Cooper.

Askins was a National Champion bullseye shooter many times over. Jordan, while not a noted competitor held gold Distinguished Metals in all of the recognized shooting sports in both rifle and pistol that offered them during his time. I presume that Jeff Cooper needs no further introduction.

All of them told me at one time or another, that the best way for a new shooter to succeed was to learn the basics and self-discipline while participating in classic bullseye shooting. Cooper was emphatic in making the point that one of the biggest problems instructors at his Gunsite Training Facility had were those who were trying to master advanced combat techniques who hadnít yet learned the basics of marksmanship.

I am not advocating that someone should take up the bullseye game to the exclusion of all others, just saying that it is a great place to start when one has the opportunity to do so.

Old Fuff
November 12, 2013, 10:22 PM
The Old Fuff, having been there and done that, would suggest that those who for any reason want to be superior handgun shooters, ("superior" in the context of being able to shoot very small and consistant groups out to 50 yards and beyond) would be both wise and fortunate if they could spend some time learning conventional bullseye shooting.

The whole "superior" bit may appeal to some, but is off-putting to others.

I put the word ďsuperiorĒ into a specific and limited context for a purpose, and hopefully avoid it being seen as offensive. I will stand on what I posted so long as it isnít seen outside of that context. Should you attend a tournament and examine the targets being made by Master Class competitors I suspect you will see what I mean.

Sam1911
November 12, 2013, 10:26 PM
All of them told me at one time or another, that the best way for a new shooter to succeed was to learn the basics and self-discipline while participating in classic bullseye shooting.I've no doubt that they thought that. Of course, there was little else possible for objective, competitive handgunning back in those days, even for a dedicated shooting enthusiast.

It isn't what very many shooting instructors or top-flite competitors (in any discipline besides traditional pistol), demand, encourage, or suggest now, though. A lot of things seem to devolve over time (hence our many threads on the decline of "quality" in firearms...by whatever internal definition) but I believe they actually evolve and take us to more efficient means -- or even redefined and better understood "ends."

Maybe it is merely a symantic distinction, but...
the purpose of the excise is mastery over both the handgun and one’s self.
... sounds a lot like mastery over the handgun and one's self is still being defined as, "to shoot small groups at long range." :)

To me, mastery over the handgun is highly unlikely to ever involve bullseyes and static targets at 50 yards. Those things are not relevant to my interests, though they may be entertaining as exercises. Now, I haven't mastered the handgun (or myself) and don't believe I ever could or will, but I pursue those goals with some diligence, just with a different focus.

Mauser lover
November 12, 2013, 10:34 PM
Unfortunately, three pistols that qualify, a couple of accurate loads, and a range near me...

Old Fuff
November 12, 2013, 10:51 PM
sounds a lot like mastery over the handgun and one's self is still being defined as, "to shoot small groups at long range."

You still don't get my point:

No matter what you do, basics are still basics. Things like sight alignment and sight picture, how to press the trigger and not disturb either the alignment or picture, and to do all of this one handed. Of course there is much more involved but one advantage is that the learning can be done without the unrelated distractions that are part of the combat game picture.

As much as Iíd like to, I donít think my posts are doing what the O.P. hoped to accomplish. Rather then muddy the water Iíll withdraw.

Sam1911
November 12, 2013, 10:55 PM
Ok, I do see that point and agree completely. I was distracted by the concern over practicing and participating in classic bullseye competition for that purpose.

I think there's a fascinating and deep discussion possible in this, but we probably are wandering from the OP's purpose as you said.

blarby
November 13, 2013, 03:33 AM
An invitation.

It occuring on a day off for me.

Being not more than 2 hours away.

I'm not embarrassed about how poorly or how ell I may shoot. Am I willing to give it a run ? Absolutely. I dont fire one handed particularly well, but I'll do dang near anything for exciting trigger time.

anothernewb
November 13, 2013, 10:19 AM
Our range must be a bit fast and loose with the bullseye rules. We simply do turining and timed target rounds at 50'. you 'choot em with whatever you fancy Nobody cares what you're using, so long as it's range approved (we can't use magnums in our range apparently - something about the backstops and noise limits).

Then we score them up and post the scores for the night. we have 10 lanes. Once I got to #2 with a 93 but that's my best so far.

Saleen322
November 13, 2013, 10:24 AM
What Would it Take to Get YOU out to a Bullseye "Conventional Pistol" Event?

It will take someone with a desire to be a better shooter. If you go to a match and talk to the better shooters you will soon discover that they are focused on improving their performance as shooters, much more than how they do in the match. If you want to meet some of the best folks in shooting, you will find them here. If you ask people for advice, they are happy to help you out and even let you shoot their guns.

Conventional will always be around as there are always shooters out there who want to get better. In conventional pistol you can go to a sectional match and some months later you will get a small booklet that shows where you rank in the US. You can track your progress from year to year and set measurable goals for yourself as to where you want your scores to go. Unless it changed from when I did it, you can't take your steel scores, for example, and compare them to other matches as each are set up different to keep it fun. Nothing wrong with that but I didn't feel I was growing as a shooter. I shot steel plate matches one season and figured out quickly that if you keep your sights aligned and press off the shot, it doesn't matter what part of the plate you hit. I won about every match I entered that year, was the club champion in steel plates but my skills dropped off as I could be sloppy and still hit the plates. I never had the urge to shoot steel again. IDPA and steel were the hot matches at some of the old clubs I shot at but they are now being replaced with Cowboy shooting as it is now popular. Conventional seems to have about the same participants. It does seem once someone with the desire to be a good shooter tries conventional, they keep coming back.

Saleen322
November 13, 2013, 10:28 AM
What would it take to get me out to a bullseye match? Someone to sell me a model 41 for under $500.00 Needless to say, I ain't going!

The 41s shoot okay but few will out shoot a Ruger for accuracy. The 41 has a better trigger and costs more. Get a Ruger, change the grips and get a trigger job, and you will have spend a LOT more to get more accuracy.

http://i601.photobucket.com/albums/tt98/saleen322/22%20Pistols/RugerMKII2.jpg

nbkky71
November 13, 2013, 02:30 PM
Quite honestly, it's a matter of me getting motivated to start shooting pistol as I'm a CMP/NRA highpower rifle guy. When I start shooting pistol, I'm going to be chasing my distinguished pistol badge.

Grump
November 13, 2013, 02:58 PM
One of the first and few IPSC matches I shot had a bank of 3 MilPark or Metric targets at 40 yards, to be engaged from the prone.

A LOT of competitors missed at least 1-4 shots of the 6 required (I think it was two per target).

To simulate the North Hollywood shootout (which had not yet happened), they should have had hard cover and called for head shots only. Put that into your Practical Pipes and smoke it. And yes, I know that in NH, it was closer to 50-70 yards and the perps were moving quite a bit.

That said, back to the topic. I really appreciate all answers, including the ones that are essentially "Nothing, I have no interest in playing that game." That IS part of what I'm wanting to know.

Thank you.

MrBorland
November 13, 2013, 04:27 PM
Put that into your Practical Pipes and smoke it.

<sigh>... The bullseye community will have a tough time keeping new shooters if their membership has a collective chip on their shoulder. Just some constructive criticism.

taliv
November 13, 2013, 05:20 PM
i just can't bring myself to shoot bullseye pistol. i love competition and socializing at the range, but i prefer practical stuff. even if i had lots of free time to participate in another sport, i wouldn't choose bullseye. i'd rather do F-class or benchrest.

to me, pistol is a tool (no more exciting than a hammer to me) and used for defensive purposes (close range, large targets, speed is critical)

so having a pistol accuracy competition to me makes as much sense as racing dumptrucks or having a screwdriver throwing contest. it's just not right! :)

btg3
November 13, 2013, 05:52 PM
Grump, what motivated you to ask? Trying to bring back the bullseye era?

Grump
November 14, 2013, 06:44 PM
Grump, what motivated you to ask? Trying to bring back the bullseye era?
The NRA Director of Competitions posted an inquiry a little while ago on the Bullseye-L forum, asking about ideas to stem the tide of losing shooters and attracting new shooters.

There was and is major concern over the heavy labor load at the National Matches with the way things have been done over the past 85 or so years, which means that the costs of running the pistol Nationals exceeds the entry fee revenues.

Switching to electronic targets and automatic scoring like what you see at the Olympics is one idea. Whether those systems will last enough to be cheaper *in the long run* than replacing the turning target systems and buying all those targets and backers is beyond the scope of this inquiry, but there is great promise of such a change making matches run much faster and take far less paid and volunteer labor.

But there is great hue and cry over there about abandoning the tradition of turning targets, even with the factor that the Nationals have for decades been a little bit different from most other NRA Registered and Approved matches (mostly the lack of covered firing points and extra prohibitions on accessories like sweatbands, or so I'm told).

Well, I'm wondering if catering to the traditionalists (a very vocal group) runs the risk of keeping things so much the same that their replacements never bother to show up. Sort of a "split market" question.

So my motivation in asking here is to get input from the people who are NOT going to Bullseye Pistol matches. I understand the hazards inherent in the "intent to buy" type questions, but if there is ever to be any growth in Bullseye, the obstacles to participation need to be identified and those that can reasonably addressed, should be removed.

I'm sure it's a LOT more than people just waiting for an invitation and a helpful buddy to guide them along.

So this first inquiry is trying to find out what keeps likely participants away. Listen FIRST before entertaining changes or even crafting promotional efforts.

Thanks!

Sam1911
November 14, 2013, 07:29 PM
Well that's a very well thought through thread premise.

I don't think minor procedure changes are going to bring in large numbers of shooters who don't participate now, but they might make it easier on those who do anyway, and might help prevent the new folks who do come out from getting put off by the work and time commitment.

243winxb
November 14, 2013, 08:07 PM
To get new shooters interested on the local level, start small with the 22 NMC, using a handicap system. This puts new shoots on the same level with high masters. Shoot 1 night/day a week. Each shooter puts a $1 in the pot for the winner. http://i338.photobucket.com/albums/n420/joe1944usa/Firearms%20%20and%20%20Reloading/Bullseye%20%20Scoring%20System/BullseyePistol01.jpg http://i338.photobucket.com/albums/n420/joe1944usa/Firearms%20%20and%20%20Reloading/Bullseye%20%20Scoring%20System/ScoreBullseye.jpg

twofifty
November 14, 2013, 08:23 PM
Grump, that there is some sound thinking.

It often happens in the shooting sports that established shooters -those who run the matches- do not notice the external or societal changes that ultimately, ever so slowly, negatively affect their chosen sport.

The use of scoring technology will speed things up, a good thing. People may not have the patience to wait around while scoring is painstakingly tabulated and averaged by handheld calculator.

Is there any way to shorten the time allotted to each course of fire? We live in a fast moving society, where work and play and commuting and family time have to be shoehorned into short days. Any sport that does not adapt to these time pressures is bound to see recruitment and retention rates crater.

Finally people want to have FUN in their spare time...and watching paint dry (i.e. another Bullseye squad on the line) is not that entertaining.

Mike OTDP
November 14, 2013, 10:20 PM
I concur with the idea of shooting more 900s - especially with rimfire. You can buy enough match-grade .22LR for one of those for $10 (if you buy in bulk). Centerfire ammo is around 7 times that.

I shoot BE...though it's low on the priority list. Top priority is black powder, which I shoot for the U.S. International Muzzle-Loading Team. Then air & free pistol.

taliv
November 14, 2013, 10:24 PM
i think there is a major factor that is overlooked

NRA matches are like the ivory tower rules. one set of rules to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.

essentially, that means no innovation


if you compare that to 3gun and action style shooting, you will find a LOT of clubs run outlaw. house rules. A local club does "IDPA" but they change a lot of the rules due to local preferences. The result is imho, more innovation and more interest. it's sort of a free market where if a match director puts on a good product, he has a popular match, and if not, gets the boot or another one pops up.

It's like the catholics vs protestants. There's usually one catholic church in town and 50 protestant ones that all have their own beliefs.


here's my point... if some dude goes into a gun store and buys wacky brand x of pistol and wants to shoot it, is he going to go to an NRA match? no. he knows he would be a pariah and the pistol wouldn't be competitive. instead, he goes to a local unbranded match. every week, the local range near my house has an informal bullseye league. they shoot "positional" but they change hte positions every week. one week you can lean against the wall. next week it's one handed, or whatever. They do two matches that take maybe an hour. one pistol, one rifle. I think it's like $5 entry and winner takes most of it.

it's not that people don't like the NRA. If the NRA took their heads out of their butts, people would shoot their events.


Here's the net: If the NRA wants to be successful they need to focus on organizing events and marketing (something they're good at) and let the individuals come up with their own rules.

Everybody complains when the NRA calls them or sends letters asking for money. Imagine if the NRA called you and said, hey Bob, there's a little pistol match a few miles from you next weekend. It's going to be fun. You should go.

Grump
November 14, 2013, 11:05 PM
Sam1911 posted:

"I don't think minor procedure changes are going to bring in large numbers of shooters who don't participate now, but they might make it easier on those who do anyway, and might help prevent the new folks who do come out from getting put off by the work and time commitment."

Don't the economists call that something like the "opportunity cost" of a chosen activity or purchase.

Now, since it's been years since I shot an IPSC match, what's the typical time commitment on club match day? 8 a.m. to noon? 9 a.m. to noon? 9 to 3? I'm not sure that anyone other than highpower rifle shooters would turn out for a 7 a.m. match...

Howard Roark
November 15, 2013, 10:28 AM
I’m probably the only person to ever quit shooting IPSC and go to Highpower. Started out shooting F class and quickly changed to conventional, then across the course. I also shoot smallbore prone and silhouette.

NRA matches have their place as do the “run and gun” games. There is no one size fits all in shooting. The key is for people that are interested to pick one and try it, an open mind and humility helps.

To answer the op’s question, more time is what would get me to shoot bullseye. I would love to attempt to become double distinguished. My first priority is across the course shooting because I like it with silhouette second because it gives me offhand practice in match conditions.

Everything involves opportunity costs. With only so many weekends to shoot or spend time with family I have limited my time on a range to two or rarely three weekend days a month. One XTC and one silhouette match.

ATLDave
November 15, 2013, 10:53 AM
they might make it easier on those who do anyway, and might help prevent the new folks who do come out from getting put off by the work and time commitment."

Don't the economists call that something like the "opportunity cost" of a chosen activity or purchase.

Hmm, I'm not sure that's precisely right. The opportunity cost is what other things you might have done with the time (or money or other resources) put into something. So for bullseye, the opportunity cost is whatever someone would have been doing while they were at the match. If they were going to watch TV, the opportunity cost is a few hours of TV. If they were going to go to the gym, then that's the opportunity cost. If they only have the budget or time to do one shooting competition per week, and they substitute bullseye for USPSA, then their USPSA match is their opportunity cost.

Maybe that's what you were ultimately saying.

Mike OTDP
November 15, 2013, 11:51 AM
Grump, I read (and participated in) that thread on the Bullseye-L forum.

We need some advertising. Push the idea that the precision events build a solid foundation of skill. Also push the idea that you get to shoot a lot more.

btg3
November 15, 2013, 03:14 PM
Grump says it's an accuracy-centered game.
Mike OTDP says it's a precision event.

Accuracy is the ability to group shots around the bullseye, disregarding group size.
Precision is the ability to shoot a tight group, but maybe not on the bullseye.

I think you're both right!

BullfrogKen
November 15, 2013, 03:46 PM
Iím probably the only person to ever quit shooting IPSC and go to Highpower. Started out shooting F class and quickly changed to conventional, then across the course. I also shoot smallbore prone and silhouette.

Howard, I left an action pistol discipline to shoot High Power Rifle as well. The days are much, much longer.


What would get me to shoot Bullseye?

Well we had a bullseye pistol league at my club, and they were frankly jerks. I mean they were really hostile and detrimental to the overall business of the organization. They self-selected, and many of the decent people they had on that league left because no one gave the jerks the ultimatum - act decently or don't come back.

So the decent people left. There's no way I'd shoot with those individuals.


But the sport itself? It takes specialized equipment good for little else but the sport. The AR15 I use across the course, and the match rifles other guys use, are very specialized and can't be used for anything else well but that competition. And just like Bullseye pistol, the rifle side of the sport is not what it used to be, either.

It takes an investment in both equipment and time. And lets face it, for those who really want to have a fun in a sport, bullseye competitions really aren't a whole lot of fun. Not the kind of fun an action pistol match is.

Bullseye matches are the same target, the same course of fire, over and over. There's a challenge there, and it's a slow dedicated process to get there. During the growth process it's not much fun, and a lot of frustration.


What can be done to help? I have no idea.

Times have changed. The shooting world has changed. The concealed carry movement has influenced the reason why people own pistols, and opened up entirely new worlds in terms of competitions built around that interest. Unfortunately the NRA may just have to change the rules, and its sport to stay relevant. You'll see a whole lot of resistance to that.


The CMP has seen great success with the "Games" portion of the matches at Nationals, and at clubs back home shooting those Garand matches. They're fun. They're still a bullseye sport, but they're at reduced ranges and more generous scoring rings. We've seen quite a few guys bring a Garand out to a vintage CMP match, get hooked, and move up to the more challenging aspects of the more formal NRA and CMP matches.

The participation is still not what it once was, but the sport isn't on death's door, either. The CMP did quite a bit to spark interest in a sport that had been languishing. There's probably a lesson in there.


If you think it's tough finding a range to host bullseye pistol, try finding ones than can host the NRA and CMP rifle matches.

ljnowell
November 16, 2013, 03:11 PM
I don't think minor procedure changes are going to bring in large numbers of shooters who don't participate now, but they might make it easier on those who do anyway, and might help prevent the new folks who do come out from getting put off by the work and time commitment.

The work and time commitment is part of being a good bullseye shooter. Thousands and thousands of rounds downrange. Its easy in my league to see really practices and takes it serious and who doesn't.

We all want more shooters in the sport but if they arent going to commit time and work they probably shouldnt bother. Bullseye is difficult, yet very rewarding.

ljnowell
November 16, 2013, 03:14 PM
But the sport itself? It takes specialized equipment good for little else but the sport. The AR15 I use across the course, and the match rifles other guys use, are very specialized and can't be used for anything else well but that competition. And just like Bullseye pistol, the rifle side of the sport is not what it used to be, either.

It doesnt take that much specialized equipment. I have used a standard stock S&W 686, irons. Later I added a cheap 35 dollar reddot. I see lots of box stock 1911s. As far as 22s, plenty of cheap rugers competing. Eventually most people upgrade, like I did, if you stick with it. You certainly dont need 1k dollar comp guns to start though.

Sam1911
November 16, 2013, 03:24 PM
We all want more shooters in the sport but if they arent going to commit time and work they probably shouldnt bother. Oh, of course. We, in all our various disciplines, would like every shooter who comes out to be dedicated to their practice and also put in the time to help make the sport go.

But then we also want to see our sports grow (not shrink into nothingness) and wonder why we can't get more folks to come out.

Want more folks to come out? Make it easier for them and less of a commitment. Want more commitment? Accept that only a few shooters are going to give that much of themselves so much. Lots of things in the world to spend time on, and if someone looks at your sport and says, "fun, worthwhile, but I can't devote hundreds of hours a year to this...wife, kids, work, etc." then you're going to find a lot more people who just "probably shouldn't bother."

Want them to "bother" coming out? Make it easier for them so they can without disrupting their lives any more than absolutely necessary. Want only the committed? Accept that only a very, very, few will ever be so.

The OP is asking how to get more folks out to the matches and your answer is really, pretty much, "we don't want them anyway."

Sam1911
November 16, 2013, 03:35 PM
Put another way, if you want to grow the sport you have to be willing to carry more weight on your own shoulders to make that happen. (Working more at set-up and tear-down, accepting changes to help more people to participate, etc.)

I work REALLY hard on setting up and running the best IDPA match I can once a month. It is a large investment of time my family would much rather I didn't take from them. I have about 10 guys who I know I can count on to help me make it come off well that Sunday morning. I've got another probably 60-80 people who might, will, won't, could, should, can't, perhaps, sometimes show up to shoot the match. And a world of folks I'd be very happy to see come out someday if I can cajole them into it. I'm working for all those folks. I don't expect anything in return but the pleasure of their attendance. (And their match fees for the group, of course, though a lot of that goes to the lunch we serve them.)

Now some other day of the month, I might enjoy a bullseye match. I can't devote myself to hundreds of hours of practice for that. I can't take another whole day out of the month to hang out shooting and working it either. If I come out it needs to be a pretty minimal investment of time. I'm coming out to try my skill and enjoy myself. I know I'm leaning on those who do the work. I'll pay the match fee and be the best, most polite and helpful competitor I can be, but this isn't what I've dedicated my life to doing.

Do you want me at your match? Or should I just not bother?

btg3
November 16, 2013, 05:00 PM
The 2 clubs where I shoot IDPA have the opposite problem: too many shooters. But it has become a cash cow for those clubs -- such that some nice upgrades have been made to the rustic facilities.

I like to shoot matches that do not last thru lunch. Best days for that are cold and/or wet which suit me, but keep others at home.

In other words, my level of commitment is $15, a short drive, and a quick match. I have other interests/duties to occupy the afternoon.

An indoor range here has a nice following for some weeknight matches (various) that have zero impact on the weekend. They get it done in 2 or 3 hours and go home.

MrBorland
November 16, 2013, 05:01 PM
Something I think bullseye can do to help themselves is market the similarities, rather than the differences between it and, say, practical shooting. Both camps see themselves as occupying opposite ends of the shooting spectrum and tend to poo-poo the other, but in today's environment, it does more damage to bullseye than to the practical shooting sports.

I've been thinking about something Brian Enos once offered on his forum. Enos is one of the great practical shooters, and literally wrote the book: "Practical Shooting: Beyond Fundamentals (http://www.brianenos.com/)" is still held as the definitive guide to the sport. Anyhow, on a thread about the fundamentals, BE once opined he thought he could've chosen a better book title, since "you never really go 'beyond fundamentals' - you just apply them better and faster."

The better one applies the fundamentals, the better one shoots, no matter the discipline. Practical shooting is popular, and may always dominate bullseye shooting. Yet if some portion of bullseye were to aggressively market themselves to the practical crowd using BE's argument above (i.e. that it's effective cross-training), I'm betting participation, at least in the off-season, would grow some.

BTW, Grump - I'm a practical shooter, but see the value in target shooting. As I mentioned, I'd love to try bullseye shooting a whirl. I practice my practical skills at the range, but I threw my MkIII in my bag on my last visit, and finished up my session with a pair of 25 yard 10-shot strings - a 95-2x and a 96-4x (shown). There's room for improvement, to be sure, and I'll keep working at it, but many practical shooters are certainly capable of far better accuracy than they're often given credit for. ;)



http://i415.photobucket.com/albums/pp239/becke016/GunsTargets/11-15-13Ruger25yards_zpse6da4542.jpg

243winxb
November 16, 2013, 05:28 PM
At one time the winner got cash, then it became NRA metals or NRA Award Points. Cash is better IMO.

Old Fuff
November 16, 2013, 07:48 PM
MrBorland

You didn't mention how much time you took to fire those 2, 25-yard strings, and that could make a lot of difference.

In any case the points you made concerning fudamentals is the same I pointed earlier, and we are in complete agreement.

That said, at most bullseye .22 matches the Expert and Master class winner usually shoot a clean 100/10 shot score in timed (2/20 seconds/5 shots) and rapid (2/10 seconds/5 shots) fire, and win by breaking ties by the highest x-ring count.

But you are coming along nicely, and when things get back to normal .22 RF amminition can facilitate a lot of affordable practice. ;)

ljnowell
November 16, 2013, 08:56 PM
Oh, of course. We, in all our various disciplines, would like every shooter who comes out to be dedicated to their practice and also put in the time to help make the sport go.

But then we also want to see our sports grow (not shrink into nothingness) and wonder why we can't get more folks to come out.

Want more folks to come out? Make it easier for them and less of a commitment. Want more commitment? Accept that only a few shooters are going to give that much of themselves so much. Lots of things in the world to spend time on, and if someone looks at your sport and says, "fun, worthwhile, but I can't devote hundreds of hours a year to this...wife, kids, work, etc." then you're going to find a lot more people who just "probably shouldn't bother."

Want them to "bother" coming out? Make it easier for them so they can without disrupting their lives any more than absolutely necessary. Want only the committed? Accept that only a very, very, few will ever be so.

The OP is asking how to get more folks out to the matches and your answer is really, pretty much, "we don't want them anyway."

That wasnt even the point. The point is that if you want to be competitive than you need to practice. That goes for any pistol discipline. I see a lot of people in this thread with the attitude that "If I cant just pick up any gun and be competitive my first time out it isnt worth it to me."

Those people are right, it isn't worth it to them. If you want to be competitive you had best be ready to put in time. Bullseye, by nature, isnt a pick it up once or twice a year sport. It's like 1000 yard rifle shooting. It takes practice and effort.

Sam1911
November 16, 2013, 09:05 PM
That wasnt even the point. Oh. ..oh? The OP asked "What would it take to get you out to a bullseye event?"

I thought you were responding to that.

Obviously no one will be in the running for awards in any discipline they don't practice.

I see a lot of people in this thread with the attitude that "If I cant just pick up any gun and be competitive my first time out it isnt worth it to me." I hadn't noticed that. Maybe I should read the thread again.

Bullseye, by nature, isnt a pick it up once or twice a year sport. It's like 1000 yard rifle shooting. It takes practice and effort.Are there any sports like that? I mean there are sports that are fun just to participate in, whether you've spent a lot of time practicing or not. And I'll grant you that bullseye pistol isn't one of those. (Though a lot of folks feel the "practical" sports are so.)

But I'm not sure there are any sports, from marbles, to frisbee, to curling, to shooting sports SASS, IDPA, USPSA, Conventional Pistol, IMHSA, PPC, International Free Pistol, and on and on -- that you'll be successful/competitive/winning at without intense practice.

I mean, you wouldn't shoot bullseye all year and then show up to a USPSA match and expect to be in the top 75% any more than I'd shoot IDPA all year and expect the same in a bullseye match.

...

Which I guess leaves us back to the question I asked you before: Do you want more shooters to participate, even if they can't be dedicated and "serious" competitors? Or would you prefer they didn't bother?

GBExpat
November 16, 2013, 09:10 PM
What Would it Take to Get YOU out to a Bullseye ("Conventional Pistol" Event?
Quite frankly, I cannot imagine such a circumstance. I have never had any interest in participating in or observing shooting competitions ... but, for the welfare and future of shooting sports, I am glad that many do.

All of my shooting is done in my backyard or, if I feel like walking a bit (like when I am not testing loads on the Chrony or checking sight settings), over on the farm.

Saleen322
November 16, 2013, 10:44 PM
...The point is that if you want to be competitive than you need to practice. That goes for any pistol discipline. I see a lot of people in this thread with the attitude that "If I cant just pick up any gun and be competitive my first time out it isnt worth it to me"...

That is only true in part. When I lived in east-central PA, I shot in the William Penn Pistol league, a Bullseye league that has been going since the 1940s and is still in operation with like 10 teams. I would practice some but not every week and I was almost always on the Gold team (top 5 shooters on the team) my last 3 years living there but I did not start out like that--I got better shooting a difficult sport. Occasionally I would go to Lebanon to shoot PPC, never practiced, and would win Master class over half of the time I went. Bullseye was harder and it made me a better shooter in everything else. Think of trying to hit a nickel shooting with one hand @ nearly 17 yards and then shoot PPC where the X ring on a B-27 is big in comparison and you could use two hands on the gun. If I was going to an International match, I practiced hard because the events are hard. Even still I was lucky to be in the top 1/2 of shooters but it made me better. If you have any doubts, look at the 10 ring on a free pistol target and compare that to an 8" -0 on a IDPA target. Every good shooter I knew/know, shoot to improve themselves and much less to win matches. The best ones were striving to shoot personal bests and would much rather do that than win the match.

The purer, the harder the event; usually the fewer rules are required. No one will be called for air gunning in Free Pistol. I don't even know how you could cheat if you were so inclined as, for example, you can't fake a double shot into an Air Pistol target as you only shoot one shot per target, etc. All shooting sports are not created equal any more than all stick and ball sports are the same. You can play baseball or you can play croquet. One will make you work hard to improve and the other can provide an enjoyable afternoon with the spouse. It all comes down to what you want to achieve.

Sam1911
November 16, 2013, 10:48 PM
If you have any doubts, look at the 10 ring on a free pistol target and compare that to an 8" -0 on a IDPA target.

The big difference being that you don't have to shoot each of those free pistol targets twice in 1/4 of a second, while moving, to be competitive! ;)

Saleen322
November 17, 2013, 12:02 AM
The big difference being that you don't have to shoot each of those free pistol targets twice in 1/4 of a second, while moving, to be competitive!

As I said, to each his own and it is all about what you want to do and if you want to get better. Not everyone does nor are they required to.

FYI: I am no expert on the subject but it doesn't appear that he is shooting a round every 0.125 seconds.....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nftbepOtVVc

MrBorland
November 17, 2013, 02:13 AM
If you have any doubts, look at the 10 ring on a free pistol target and compare that to an 8" -0 on a IDPA target.

<sigh>...It's beyond me why some insist on suggesting practical shooting events are purely target events. Look, folks, practical shooting is about taking advantage of as much of that 8" as you can in the shortest time possible, and all while each 8" is presented in a new & unique context that you only get 1 unrehearsed whack at. Getting the balance of planning, speed & accuracy right enough to win matches isn't quite as easy as you might think. At any rate, as I mentioned earlier, the "us and them" dichotomy is likely to hurt bullseye participation moreso than IDPA/USPSA participation, so IMO, it'd be best to highlight the complementarity between the 2 forms of shooting, rather than the differences.



The big difference being that you don't have to shoot each of those free pistol targets twice in 1/4 of a second, while moving, to be competitive!
.
.
FYI: I am no expert on the subject but it doesn't appear that he is shooting a round every 0.125 seconds.....

1/4 = 0.125 :confused: ;).

Again, each 8" target is presented in it's own unique context. Some shots are pulled off quite quickly - often quicker that 1/4 second - while it pays to slow down for others. It's all about knowing your ability, quickly coming up with a plan, and executing it with your best balance of speed and accuracy.


MrBorland

You didn't mention how much time you took to fire those 2, 25-yard strings, and that could make a lot of difference.
.
.
That said, at most bullseye .22 matches the Sharpshooter and Master class winner usually shoot a clean 100/10 shot score in timed (2/20 seconds/5 shots) and rapid (2/10 seconds/5 shots) fire, and win by breaking ties by the highest x-ring count.


Old Fuff - Point well-taken. I shot somewhere between slow- and timed-fire. Just some schmuck who picked up his MkIII and shot a pair of 25 yard targets 1-handed, so I take my result as my baseline. I look forward to the improvement, though. ;)

btg3
November 17, 2013, 07:24 AM
Think of trying to hit a nickel shooting with one hand @ nearly 17 yards...
I could also strive to become proficient whilst hopping on one leg with a dynamically-stabilized handgun. Would it make me a "better shooter"?

I freely admit to know nothing about bullseye. So help me understand the disciplines of bullseye that make one a better shooter, assuming one-handed shooting will rarely be required elsewhere. And thanks!

Sam1911
November 17, 2013, 08:07 AM
FYI: I am no expert on the subject but it doesn't appear that he is shooting a round every 0.125 seconds.....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nftbepOtVVc
Neat irony!


That's my hand holding the timer and me giving the "Standby" command. (PA States 2013, Hollidaysburg, PA)

Saleen322
November 17, 2013, 08:11 AM
The big difference being that you don't have to shoot each of those free pistol targets twice in 1/4 of a second, while moving, to be competitive!

Originally Posted by Saleen322

FYI: I am no expert on the subject but it doesn't appear that he is shooting a round every 0.125 seconds.....

1/4 = 0.125 :confused: .

0.125 X 2 = 0.250 or 1/4 second

I could also strive to become proficient whilst hopping on one leg with a dynamically-stabilized handgun. Would it make me a "better shooter"?

I don't know if it would either nor do see much purpose in it.

Sam1911
November 17, 2013, 08:25 AM
so IMO, it'd be best to highlight the complementarity between the 2 forms of shooting, rather than the differences.

Utterly and perfectly true! I pointed out the "twice in 1/4 second" issue to merely reinforce the reality that just about ALL sports have levels of high performance that the advanced practitioner strives to achieve and beat. And approaching the champion's circle in any requires intense commitment, practice, and skill. One is not truly "harder" than the other.

Some sports may be more approachable, more "fun", more entertaining, to the neophyte - or may reward the new shooter with modest but heartening success more readily, but that's not the same thing as really being LESS of a challenge at the levels where competition is fiercest.

Now the focus needed to truly excel in either competition probably precludes a shooter from applying sufficient dedication to two (or more) sports needed to succeed in both, but many do appreciate the idea of being a "well rounded" shooter. That means different things to different people but well rounded shooting ability could certainly be improved by doing the best you can in several disciplines rather than being completely focused on just the one. Of course, we could extend that pretty broadly and say you might not be well-rounded until you can handle everything from a straw and spitball to the 16" guns of the USS Iowa...but most folks draw a line SOMEWHERE! :D


...

As a complete aside and not to further an argument in any way:

I'll suggest that theoretically the "practical" sports (IDPA, USPSA, and so on) are potentially MORE challenging for one simple reason: In bullseye you COULD shoot a perfect score with all "X" hits. It COULD be done. You CAN'T do better than that, ever -- that is THE goal. In the practical sports there really is no unsurpassable "best" that could be humanly achieved. Because the event is scored for shortest time as well as accuracy, there is always a chance that someone could be faster with all "A" or "Down 0" hits than the best you can do. You cannot record a "perfect" score. Only the best anyone DID achieve that day. Of course there are actual physical limits -- if nothing else, competitors are prevented by law from advancing through a stage faster than 670,616,629 mph -- but those physical barriers are so far beyond human capability as to provide no practical horizon.

Sam1911
November 17, 2013, 08:29 AM
0.125 X 2 = 0.250 or 1/4 secondSplit times of 0.12 - 0.15s are recorded pretty regularly in competition. Not on every target as Mr. Borland says. What you need to do on one target might be completely different from what you need to do on another target. Knowing what and how, and deciding instantly, is part of the challenge of the "go-fast" sports. As is the athleticism to move quickly and smoothly through the stage, to handle your equipment and reloads in the shortest time possible, to deal with courses and props which you've never seen before, and so forth. As a simple marksmanship game, IDPA or USPSA would be unchallenging. Taken as a whole experience there is PLENTY of challenge for the top-flite competitor to overcome.

I'd imagine there are as many USPSA types who mistakenly believe that Bullseye is "easy" because you're just doing the same simple thing over and over and over again -- as there are Bullseye guys who believe USPSA is "easy" because the target rings are large. Neither opinion should stand up to more than a second's worth of scrutiny, but they prevail anyway.

Sam1911
November 17, 2013, 09:12 AM
Some sports may be more approachable, more "fun", more entertaining, to the neophyte - or may reward the new shooter with modest but heartening success more readily, but that's not the same thing as really being LESS of a challenge at the levels where competition is fiercest.

Maybe I'm ignoring a facet here that I shouldn't. There is an element in some sports, felt or expressed by some participants, that there is a level of exclusivity to simply participating in their sport, and that may be counted as part of how "hard" their sport is.

Long hours, complex rules and procedures and etiquette, stern and focused (i.e. not welcoming and jolly) participants, perhaps involved in an insular and patriarchal/hierarchical social setting, and even (meant with no prejudice ... I just can't think of a better word) the relative "boredom" of a slow, monotonous exercise -- are all seen as the dues one pays to get to be a participant in this elite discipline.

By the time someone has earned their badges they've showed due deference to the group, respect for the traditions and culture of the sport, and service and persistence and investment of time and funds both to earn the right to be there. A high threshold to buy-in, as it were.

If all that is counted, I could see an argument for one sport being "harder" than another -- as a total experience. There's a level of difficulty in simply participating that contributes to the overall difficulty of participating AND scoring well.

Saleen322
November 17, 2013, 10:27 AM
Maybe I'm ignoring a facet here that I shouldn't. There is an element in some sports, felt or expressed by some participants, that there is a level of exclusivity to simply participating in their sport, and that may be counted as part of how "hard" their sport is.

Long hours, complex rules and procedures and etiquette, stern and focused (i.e. not welcoming and jolly) participants, perhaps involved in an insular and patriarchal/hierarchical social setting, and even (meant with no prejudice ... I just can't think of a better word) the relative "boredom" of a slow, monotonous exercise -- are all seen as the dues one pays to get to be a participant in this elite discipline.

That may be valid and perhaps you are getting to the core of it. My read on the OP is sort of why don't folks shoot Bullseye and if not, why not.

Bullseye is a simple sport with few rules, three phases shot on two different targets with just three different time limits at set distances. The firearms rules are also pretty straight forward. There are no complicated rules for Procedural Errors (PE), Air Gunning, Failure To Do Right (FTDR), etc.

Just about everyone you meet is friendly (as I stated in a previous post), willing to give advice if asked and it is a good place to look for a used pistol to get started with. The average club match is 60 shots, with a .22 LR, and will take you less than 1 hour (usually closer to 35 minutes) and can handle as many people at a time as firing points. If you tell one of the match folks you are just starting they will almost always offer to have someone coach you through the first match. You can be in and out in 90 minutes or less if that is what you want.

As you said yourself, you believe Practical Matches are harder. Apparently they need complex rules to keep order and even list the most common ways to disqualify someone;
Unsafe firearm handling as defined in the Safety Rules Section.
Receiving more than one FTDR during a single match.
Unsportsmanlike conduct
Violations of the Shooterís Code of Conduct

I have been shooing some form of Conventional Pistol for about 20 years give or take but I have yet to see someone be disqualified that I was aware of during a match. But it must be common in IDPA as I saw more than one DQ on the sheet just at the Hollidaysburg state match.

We can keep this going but it makes little sense to do so. The OP was asking a question and he got some responses. I try different things but some folks just will not and no one can make them. I guess I don't have what it takes to be one of the elite.

Sam1911
November 17, 2013, 11:31 AM
That may be valid and perhaps you are getting to the core of it. Ironically, I was projecting those impressions onto the more rigid traditional sports like bullseye and position rifle shooting (hence the reference to slow, monotonous repetitive exercises)! :) And it just shows how things look to the uninitiated from the outside. If you could see complexity and barriers to entry in IDPA and I could see them in bullseye, that's pretty telling!

Bullseye is a simple sport with few rules, three phases shot on two different targets with just three different time limits at set distances. The firearms rules are also pretty straight forward. There are no complicated rules for Procedural Errors (PE), Air Gunning, Failure To Do Right (FTDR), etc. Exactly so! And IDPA is a simple sport that says: Use a pistol to stop these simulated threats. Each has it's intricacies and befuddlements, I'm sure.

Just about everyone you meet is friendly (as I stated in a previous post), willing to give advice if asked and it is a good place to look for a used pistol to get started with.Which is a common theme I've heard from every member WITHIN every shooting discipline: "Best folks in the world, everyone's friendly, everyone's willing to lend a hand and want folks to come out and shoot. Will lend guns, lend ammo, do anything to help someone get into it. Etc., etc." But still folks wander why some sports seem to decline and others thrive. And none of our sports gets the attendance we think it should!

As you said yourself, you believe Practical Matches are harder.I pointed that out as a theoretical limit. I don't actually believe that either discipline is harder than the other from a practical, real world effort standpoint. Only that if you shoot a perfect score, with all "X"s in bullseye you cannot be beaten, merely tied. In the practical sports, someone could ALWAYS be faster.

But if you aren't dedicated and constantly working at either sport, you won't be a top competitor. So in my mind they're equal in that regard.

Apparently they need complex rules to keep order and even list the most common ways to disqualify someone;
Unsafe firearm handling as defined in the Safety Rules Section.
Receiving more than one FTDR during a single match.
Unsportsmanlike conduct
Violations of the Shooter’s Code of Conduct Well, I'll grant you that the discipline does require a certain level of heightened attentiveness that firing from a fixed point at a static target may not. We do have to have a safety officer in charge of each shooter and only let one shooter fire at a time, per bay. The safety concerns are taken extremely seriously.

And, yes, since the game isn't JUST about shooting marksmanship, there are rules to cover all the other facets of the competition. Movement, reloading, use of cover, and so forth. Considering the number of folks who do participate in these matches nationally and internationally, those rules must not be such burden.

I'd imagine, however, that someone would be booted from a bullseye competition for unsafe firearms handling, repeated rules violations, or cheating just as quickly as they would from an IDPA match. I'd certainly HOPE so, anyway!

I have been shooing some form of Conventional Pistol for about 20 years give or take but I have yet to see someone be disqualified that I was aware of during a match. But it must be common in IDPA as I saw more than one DQ on the sheet just at the Hollidaysburg state match. Yes. Those were instances of someone creating an unsafe situation. To be frank, they "swept" themselves with their gun's muzzle while moving through a course of fire.

We have such a low tolerance for safety violations that no one who does that is allowed to continue.

How does Conventional pistol handle such things? Or does the simpler, more static, shooting form -- coupled with not having an individual Safety Officer watching each shooter's motions -- mean such things do not "officially" happen at your matches?

I guess I don't have what it takes to be one of the elite.If you've survived this long in Conventional bullseye shooting, then you've certainly paid your dues as I referenced in post 85, and you indeed are one of the elite! :)

Saleen322
November 17, 2013, 04:57 PM
Look, I used to shoot some conventional pistol and still do a little but I have shot 3 and 4 position rifle, prone rifle, service rifle, international pistol, silhouette, PPC, steel plate, and what I started just this September is EIC pistol where I shot my first 3 matches plus some stuff I am sure I forgot about. I was packing up some of my dust collectors and just for memory sake, I put what plaques, trophies, and metals I collected over the years and placed what would fit on the table and snapped this picture before I stored them. I won these awards plus a fair number of matches that paid money, points, a handshake or pat on the back.

Picture of dust collectors here.

I have been a NRA LE firearms instructor in pistol, shotgun, patrol rifle, and long range rifle for about 30 years total and have NRA Instructor certifications for home safety, pistol, rifle and shotgun. I only mention these things to make the point I have fired a couple of shots in my life and I have learned enough about shooting to realize there is a whole lot that I don't know about shooting.

However this I did learn in my short experience, anyone who applies sound shooting fundamentals can do most any type of shooting effectively. Bullseye is simple, requires little equipment, and is great for making you better as it shows through performance the importance of sound shooting fundamentals. I am not trying to change the mind of those who know it is practical shooting or nothing; this is just for the benefit of those reading the thread who are looking for helpful advice and may want to try to be better shooters.

Sam1911
November 17, 2013, 05:08 PM
That is AWESOME! You've done well and obviously have a lot to give the next generation, too.

However this I did learn in my short experience, anyone who applies sound shooting fundamentals can do most any type of shooting effectively. True. But learning to apply those fundamentals in the specific way required by varying disciplines is what makes them all so challenging and fun!

Applying them in wildly varying ways and circumstances and at speed is what makes the "practical" versions entertaining to those of us who enjoy that sort of thing.

I am not trying to change the mind of those who know it is practical shooting or nothingI sincerely hope you don't believe that I am such a one. I've not said that at all, in fact I think I said quite the opposite. All are challenging, equally, and all can be very rewarding.

this is just for the benefit of those reading the thread who are looking for helpful advice and may want to try to be better shooters.And that is a worthy goal -- for someone who already wants to be that kind of a better shooter.

But do you have suggestions for the OP, who's trying to get more people out to matches? Or to answer ljonwell's point about those who "shouldn't bother?"

twofifty
November 17, 2013, 08:56 PM
I agree with the point made that one of Bullseye's strengths is that it provides an opportunity to hone pistol fundamentals. Any error in form or technique is readily made apparent on the tiny targets. Certainly those fundamentals are applicable to all disciplines, incl. the high speed action games.

At this time of year our IPSC group is challenged by the cold miserable weather. Having to clear snow off the range does not help. Nor do the short days. Since setting up a couple small exercises is about all we can do, the off season takes a toll on our skillset.

Three years ago one of the IPSC guys suggested that we keep ourselves conditioned through the winter by shooting bootleg NRA smallbore handgun metallic silhouette.

To start off we nailed together some 2x4 target stands and some long tables for the firing line (12 can shoot at once). We plasma cut some cheap steel CPTRs. Then secured a supply of wood pallets for the warming fire. We have since saved up match fees to buy NRA cast targets, and we fabbed steel target stands.

Anyhow, this informal handgun sil game is very popular. The match takes very little time to set up, to score, to tear down. If you want to shoot one match, squad up early and you can be in and out in an hour.

We are more than preserving or honing our fundamentals. We are recruiting new shooters, a few of whom gravitate to IPSC.

Tim the student
November 18, 2013, 12:44 AM
What would it take me? More than what folks would be willing to do I reckon, and more than what would be fair.

The bottom line is that it just doesn't interest me, and I'd rather shoot in other ways. If I had more free time and an abundance of disposable cash, maybe I'd give it a go. As it is now there are other areas that interest me much more than the thought of bullseye ever has.

In fairness, I don't live near a club that does bullseye. But if I did, I still don't think I would be interested in doing it. Maybe not though.

Turn it into a rifle, turn it into XTC, and I'll be there though!

Buck13
November 18, 2013, 01:05 AM
I see a parallel here with some other sports:

Road biking is fairly nerdy, and the off-road version cyclocross was never a big deal, at least in the US. Mountain biking became rapidly popular after it was invented in the late 70s because it is more fun and exciting. I don't know the stats, but I'll bet more people have fat-tire bikes than road bikes.

When I first tried it in 1995, whitewater kayaking was just finishing the phase when almost all recreational boaters used 11 foot boats, which were not hugely different in length from the slalom racing boats, so you could at least try running a slalom course and it would be physically possible to make most of the gates. Soon, recreational boats began to be drastically shortened until now I can get into a boat that is shorter than my height (with only minor crushing of my feet), opening up the possibility lots of weird stunts if you are a gymnast (look up "whitewater rodeo" on YouTube) but making impossible the speed of paddling against the current that is needed to make the gates on a slalom course.

Compare the amount of money people are willing to spend per day and equipment on downhill skiing vs. cross-country skiing, and the number of participants (huge, full parking lots at the downhill area vs. a few or a few dozen cars at the XC trailheads.)

Olympic-style archery now has to compete against NFAA, etc, which shoot shorter ranges and use more field-worthy equipment.

In all these cases, varieties of the sport that are more oriented toward hootin' and hollerin' do better than those that rely more on dedication and contemplation (with archery being the weakest example of this thesis). Not to say that people doing SASS, whitewater rodeo or downhill mountain biking can't be dedicated or thinking hard about their sport, but each day is more exciting if it's fast and/or loud, not slow and steady.

Decades ago, how many different pistol events were there? How many are there today?

Saleen322
November 18, 2013, 03:41 AM
But do you have suggestions for the OP, who's trying to get more people out to matches? Or to answer ljonwell's point about those who "shouldn't bother?"

Sam, I am a numbers guy and I like to deal in measurable terms. One of the matches I make about 2/3 of the time is the Marine Corps League state championship match at the Gap. It was a couple of years since I been there and I think the last time had an attendance of over 170. You run matches and that is a big turnout in this area in my experience. This year, unless I miscounted, there were 208 participants. If anything, it is growing.

Most of the matches I attend I have not seen much change in numbers. However, what has effected Bullseye (and smallbore rifle) is that there are more indoor shoots than outdoor as they are more a winter thing in this area. EPA regulations about lead have ranges scared and some are just closing as it is getting so expensive to upgrade filtration and to a greater degree, they are afraid of being sued so some take the safe route and close down. This is causing fewer club matches to be available. Outdoors, I have not seen much change in the matches I attend or have went to on a regular basis.

The good news is there are starting to be some NRA sanctioned International matches now in PA. It looks like Palmyra is running both the state championship match as well as a Jr. Olympic qualifier. International events are limited to iron sights only so it saves the expense of an optical sight so popular in Conventional. To run international air and free pistol it takes no equipment other than something to hang the targets on plus the lead is low--air very, very little lead and free is low because the pace is so slow. To run standard pistol and international center fire, the same stuff used for Bullseye works. Only rapid fire needs special equipment.

As far as getting people out, Conventional/Bullseye and most International events you can try on your own and get a very real sense of where you are from a skills standpoint. Where practical courses are all different, setting one up yourself may not be practical and you can't compare someone's time in one course to another course somewhere else. In Bullseye or International, you can compare your score to anyone else in the world because the conditions are the same. This also makes it easier to track your progress to see where you are improving and what you need to work more on. For Bullseye, if you have a shot timer, set it for 20 seconds for timed fire, per 5 shots; and 10 seconds for rapid fire, per 5 shots. The link to the rule books below give the details as far as equipment, targets, etc. You can look up scores on the net for any match you want and I think you will find folks with scores below you as well as above so it makes that first match easier. Trying them on your own prevents the anxiety of going in cold so to speak. Good luck.

http://compete.nra.org/official-nra-rule-books.aspx

flightsimmer
November 18, 2013, 06:08 AM
Here in Indianapolis we have an excellent 25 yard indoor range with 20 lanes. Full ventillation/filtration, heated in the winter, cooled in the summer. It's well lighted and can take any caliber up to and including 300 Winchester Magnum. There are no shots per second restrictions and machine guns are allowed.

On tuesday evenings we offer shooting matches with either pistol/revolver or rifle competition.

Shooting classes for new or experianced shooters are also offered as well as a Lady's only class as well as Police qualification/instruction classes.

You can check it out here. http://bgfrange.com/Beech_Grove_Firearms_%26_Range/BGF_Range.html

btg3
November 18, 2013, 09:57 PM
Compare...

This http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=735055

to Post 14 in this thread http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=731080

xxjumbojimboxx
November 19, 2013, 01:41 AM
My first thought was free beer!... then decided i should probably stop thinking for the evening

1SOW
November 19, 2013, 02:50 AM
Back to the O.P.

I'm just a C-Class action shooter now and was only a 265 avg .22 cal Bullseye shooter 40+ years ago.
I can only relate to what initially brought me into the Bullseye shooting in a local venue weekly "League" format that was a great way to start.

I went to a new range to shoot a .22 rifle I used to hunt jack rabbits with friends. While shooting the rifle, I see pistol shooters with the large Bullseye boxes carefully drilling targets at 25 yds with 1911s and some great looking .22 pistols. I walked over to have a closer look.

The Bullseye shooters invited me over, showed me the equipment and handguns and asked if I'd like to try shooting one. A H.S Victor was sure an amazing pistol to me.

Like many shooters in all the venues, these gentlemen's generosity were key factors in my gaining interest and getting involved. The league shoot wasn't set up as a "loners game". It was run almost exactly like a bowling league year round every Wednesday evening under lights.
Don't frown. This format resulted in 5 person 'teams' based on average score totals-- shown on a chalkboard at the club-house. Every team had high, medium and low average shooters who were handicapped until they reached proficient scores. Every time a new league started one member was the R.O. and ensured scores were totalled etc. etc..

This meant "everyone " contributed to the team as long as they progressed or shot really well without handicaps. Good shooters helped/taught newbies on each team. Everyone participated. A monthly supper was scheduled and families invited.

I could go on about the small trophies, gaining of skills and trying out all the various pistols & revolvers being used , etc etc.; but the key element was social to get people involved and actively participating.

I know this isn't practical everywhere for various reasons, but a method of stimulating interest can be found IF that's a goal.

Format was 30 rds at a 25yard slow fire targets. two 5rd strings in each slow, timed and rapid fire.


Sorry I ramble, but it still brings back fond memories 'of people'.

flightsimmer
November 19, 2013, 07:35 AM
Here in Indy we currently get together on Tuesday evening and we start at 6:00, 6:30 and 7:00pm. You pick the time you want to start.

You don't have to be here every week so if you miss a match that's OK.

We only shoot 30 rounds total because of the problems finding ammo sometimes although some shooters shoot more than one match and more than one caliber/firearm.

It is free style where you shoot any way you want, you just cannot touch or lean against any supporting object.

You may shoot any firearm or caliber you have. You don't need any special equipment, just a firearm and a handful of ammo.

We shoot three targets, 1, NRA B-2 and 2- NRA B-3 and we shoot at 50 ft.
(16.5yds.).

The first run is 10 shots in 10 minutes if you care to use all of it.
The second is 10 shots in 1 minute and the third is 5 shots in 10 seconds which is repeated again for a total of 10 shots.

We do this to encourage fun and fellowship among shooters and to help them shoot better.

If your ever near Indy, stop in and see them.

Saleen322
November 19, 2013, 10:51 AM
My experiences are very similar. Most of us had families and often they would come along. Weekends are busy, the kids had activities, and you didn't want to tie up the weekends with shooting matches so we always shot on a week night. You tried to pick the night best for most, usually Tuesday or Wednesday. Similar thing on the relays, different times so you could get in and out if you had something going. We rotated range responsibilities but some folks just liked to do it so that was never a problem. There were 4 leagues pretty close to me, the farthest was 45 minutes away. Each was a little different. New shooters or ones that were not comfortable shooting with one hand could use two. Two leagues shot the 30 round National Match (NM) course-.22s only; one shot the NM with .22s and you could go again with a center fire if you wanted. One shot a double, 60 shots with .22, and then if you wanted, a 30 round course center fire course. Most had a big banquet at the end of season and it was great fun.

The Bullseye leagues are great if you want to improve your skills, have limited time to shoot, and still have your weekends open.

Sa-tevr
November 19, 2013, 11:12 AM
My brief experience so far is that Allen Fulford explained Bullseye very well:

"In my job as a County Agricultural Agent, I found that I was working many hours and weekends, and the pressure of the job was really getting to me. For many years I was a plinker and I always liked shooting. I wanted to become involved in competitive shooting, so I really picked up the sport as a kind of therapy through a stressful period. When I was out on the range concentrating on my shooting, I put all of my worries out of my mind, and I found that it was a wonderful source of inspiration for the rest of the week. I was able to go back to work and accomplish a whole lot more. Competitive shooting has added years to my life because it has allowed me to relax, enjoy life more, and allow me to get into something that I could set goals, reach those goals, set more goals, and so on. This process of shooting, and the fellowship that goes with it, I'm sure, has added years to my life. If I had to put one thing above all facets of shooting, it would be the fellowship with other shooters. I think that by and far, shooters are some of the best folks in the world."

Supposedly several top level Camp Perry competitors are in my state. I hope to meet them someday.

kylec
November 19, 2013, 04:02 PM
I didn't read through the thread but the topic of competitive shooting grabbed my attention. I live in Alabama and don't know of anyone who shoots competitively or of any competitions for that matter. I would definitely be interested in attending a match/competition if I knew when one was going on or knew someone there.

BullfrogKen
November 19, 2013, 05:09 PM
Where in Alabama?

And what kind of competition?


I know that's a tough question for someone who doesn't know the landscape. So let me approach it this way.

What sort of firearm do you want to shoot in competition? Pistol? Shotgun? Match/Service rifle? What do you enjoy shooting now and have a preference for when it comes to making a challenging shot?

How much time can you commit? How much in funds?

Do you pursue fun, enjoyment and comraderie over doing something difficult? Or do you find time spent mastering a challenge brings greater satisfaction than time spent hanging around socializing?

Esoxchaser
November 19, 2013, 06:47 PM
I can embarrass myself shooting all alone, I really don't relish the thought of doing it in front of strangers.

I used to feel the same way, until I figured out that if I am bad, most shooters really suck. And then there are the top 5% that are amazing. After deducting all expenses for ammunition and entry fees, I win enough to win or lose a couple bucks each year(still have to pay for fuel to get there etc....). Any sport/hobby that almost pays for itself is a good one. ;)
Give it a try, you are probably better than you think you are.

kylec
November 19, 2013, 07:23 PM
I enjoy all types of shooting. If I had to pick one, I enjoy shotgun clays the most. I would like to attend any type of competition or match just to see it. I would probably lean more toward fun/camaraderie for now. I'm in north central alabama. Pretty much equal distance between Birmingham and Huntsville.

kylec
November 19, 2013, 07:25 PM
Where in Alabama?

And what kind of competition?


I know that's a tough question for someone who doesn't know the landscape. So let me approach it this way.

What sort of firearm do you want to shoot in competition? Pistol? Shotgun? Match/Service rifle? What do you enjoy shooting now and have a preference for when it comes to making a challenging shot?

How much time can you commit? How much in funds?

Do you pursue fun, enjoyment and comraderie over doing something difficult? Or do you find time spent mastering a challenge brings greater satisfaction than time spent hanging around socializing?
Meant to quote this response in my above post. Sorry.

Sa-tevr
November 19, 2013, 08:34 PM
kylec

There are monthly Bullseye matches March to October around Atlanta, at River Bend Gun Club and South River Gun Club. Yes it's a pack-a-lunch trip, but both draw competitors from surrounding states.

Keep an eye on activities at Fort Benning too. They do some shooting sports there.

Queen_of_Thunder
November 19, 2013, 09:06 PM
what would it take.

an extra weekend in the month

ljnowell
November 20, 2013, 12:50 AM
Are there any sports like that? I mean there are sports that are fun just to participate in, whether you've spent a lot of time practicing or not. And I'll grant you that bullseye pistol isn't one of those. (Though a lot of folks feel the "practical" sports are so.)

But I'm not sure there are any sports, from marbles, to frisbee, to curling, to shooting sports SASS, IDPA, USPSA, Conventional Pistol, IMHSA, PPC, International Free Pistol, and on and on -- that you'll be successful/competitive/winning at without intense practice.

I mean, you wouldn't shoot bullseye all year and then show up to a USPSA match and expect to be in the top 75% any more than I'd shoot IDPA all year and expect the same in a bullseye match.

...

Which I guess leaves us back to the question I asked you before: Do you want more shooters to participate, even if they can't be dedicated and "serious" competitors? Or would you prefer they didn't bother?

Yes, in many of the action sports you can shoot one match and skip two matches then shoot another match, no big deal. In every single bullseye match around my area they are league events with teams. These arent something you can just show up and shoot a single match and then disappear for two months.

There are plenty of people that dont want to take it totally serious. There are a few teams in the leagues that i shoot in that are in last place every season. They dont care, they are just there to have fun. Thats great, more power to them. But they also show up and shoot every week, whether they are winning or not. Thats dedicating yourself to it. Being dedicated and serious doesn't mean winning. It means showing up week in and week out and showing respect for the sport and your opponents/team mates.

oneounceload
November 20, 2013, 08:24 AM
What would it take?

New eyeballs so I could see both close and far - probably why I like sporting clays - no close sights to focus on, just the birds at a distance

Mike OTDP
November 20, 2013, 10:08 AM
Ah, but with iron sights, you should be focuesd on the sights. Seeing the target clearly is not desired. And if you are shooting NRA Bullseye pistol, they are allowing red dots.

Problem solved either way.

Queen_of_Thunder
November 21, 2013, 08:54 AM
Before this shortage I was shooting a match every Sat and Sun. Its all about when the match is scheduled, start and end time that kind of stuff. Also shooting static targets gets old real fast which is why I started spending time on the Trap,Skeet and 5 stand side of the sport.

g_one
November 21, 2013, 02:14 PM
Dirt cheap ammo so I could shoot 200 rounds every weekend until I was good enough to participate. I'd love to be able to enter a competition like this but I'm just not a good enough shot. At all. If I could cheaply and easily reload or buy .38 and .45 at .22 prices I'd be all over it. Just not really an option.

Queen_of_Thunder
November 22, 2013, 07:40 PM
If we all waited till we were a great shot there would be no matches. Bag your stuff up and go shooting. You are just putting off some fun times.

twofifty
November 22, 2013, 09:55 PM
agreed.
There is so much to be learned such as better stances, techniques, strategy, etc
by competing with others. Nobody that is starting up should expect -or is expected- to win or even do well. Just keep the rounds downrange and watch the gun handling.

oneounceload
November 22, 2013, 10:55 PM
Ah, but with iron sights, you should be focuesd on the sights. Seeing the target clearly is not desired.

Very true, but if I use glasses to focus close, I have no idea where the target is! It is either close or far so keen sharp focus on sights won't help if I don't know where the target is...... ;) (sucks getting old)

frankmako
November 22, 2013, 10:59 PM
i use to do them in the 70's and 80's. Got a great 1911a1 build for them. they were not as easy as it looks. but were lots of fun.

Mat, not doormat
November 23, 2013, 04:07 AM
One of the things I've noticed, in trying to get people to come out to a match, any kind of match, is that most are are deathly afraid of being embarrassed. They'll come up with all kinds of reasons that sound better, but that's generally at the root of it. The first requirement of any competitor is a willingness to suck in public.

Guns in particular have a way of affecting people's egos. Most would like to believe that they're good shots. It's often a significant part of their self image. The idea of being exposed, and maybe worse, finding out themselves that they're not, is the biggest bar to entry.

twofifty
November 23, 2013, 06:12 PM
Mat, I've heard those excuses at metallic silhouette matches, at IPSC matches, at Trap shoots, at informal club rifle matches. I totally agree with the reasons you put forward.

A guy hears about a match so he shows up (IF he shows up) to see what it's about. Too often he's 'forgotten' his rifle or HG at home. Or he "will practice more and come back another time". Rule of thumb: if there is an excuse we never see him again.

Which is really too bad because most regulars remember what it was like to start at ground zero, or as Mat put it "to suck". And we need newcomers to rejuvenate our sports, to diversify the conversation.

To anyone thinking of shooting in a match setting, please consider that regular competitors have no real expectations of you other than to be safe. We won't ridicule or make fun of you. We try and make new guys and gals feel welcome: through encouragement not pressure; through lending guns and free ammo; through 1-on-1 coaching if that is what you need and want; through including you in the socializing and BS.

Give it a try, there's nothing to lose.

Sa-tevr
November 24, 2013, 05:38 AM
Mat,
The first Bullseye match I came out to watch had a older couple shooting. The woman was about medium height and slender, with a serene smile. She would stick a 45 wad gun out in a rock solid offhand hold and put everything in the black on the 50 yard line, nipping at the heels of the score of a high master also shooting that day.

I thought, wow, I want to shoot like that.

It is also nice to get your first NRA competition card in the mail.

Mat, not doormat
December 4, 2013, 09:00 PM
Well, prompted by this thread, by an article by Patrick E. Kelly about cross training for shooters, and partly by monkey curiosity about all shooting sports, I just shot my first bullseye match tonight.

It was a weeknight indoor league shoot at the Cincinnati Revolver Club. It was a little bit last minute, so I didn't get a chance to call ahead, like I probably should have, but just walked in, introduced myself, and said I'd like to try the game. They were very nice about it, and gave me a walk through, and put me firmly under the wing of an experienced shooter, who guided me through the match procedures. They even loaned me a pair of binoculars, to stand in for the spotting scope I didn't have. Not at all standoffish, as some responses in this thread had warned.

I used a stock Ruger 22/45 for the 22, and my STI Lawman .45 for the centerfire. I shot a combined 371 out of 600.

Having shot a match, I can't but agree with the folks who said that being a competent bullseye shooter can't but make one a better practical shooter. I was surprised to find that I, experienced USPSA Single Stack shooter, had more trouble with the timed and rapid fire events than the slow fire. Definitely a skills tester.

That said, I can't see myself pursuing bullseye in lieu of practical shooting, but I do think it'll make an enjoyable and beneficial adjunct.

NOTE: if you're thinking about trying it, go do it. You'll enjoy it. If you're telling people why it's irrelevant, and you don't want to try it, try it anyhow. You might be surprised.

Mat, not doormat
December 4, 2013, 09:01 PM
Mat,
The first Bullseye match I came out to watch had a older couple shooting. The woman was about medium height and slender, with a serene smile. She would stick a 45 wad gun out in a rock solid offhand hold and put everything in the black on the 50 yard line, nipping at the heels of the score of a high master also shooting that day.

I thought, wow, I want to shoot like that.

It is also nice to get your first NRA competition card in the mail.

Also, just wanted to say, your description of that grand dame has stuck in my head ever since I read it. Lol. Good word picture.

HitFactor
December 4, 2013, 10:18 PM
I was shy about attending my first match. I went to two and watched. The third time I took a Glock and finished second from last place. I was surprised by that since I shot well at all of my police qualification courses.

I stuck with it and really improved my abilities. I have won a couple matches, mostly because I stayed local when the big guns traveled to a major match in the area.

What I really learned is that the other competitors are my friends. I look forward to seeing them at the matches and learning skills from them.

Eventually, I became a Range Officer, then Chief RO and a local Match Director. Putting on a match for my friends meant I got to spend more time with them.

It's not just about the shooting for me. For some it is, I call them friends as well.

Sa-tevr
December 5, 2013, 01:48 PM
A fun parlor trick is to take some form of laser pointer, bore sighter, aimer, etc and take a stance then see how small of a hold you can have for about twenty-twenty five seconds. This is the poor boy's version of a SCATT or RIKA training system. Using bar napkin math, the 8 inch black ring of a 50 yard target's 8 ring would be about 1.6 inches at 10 yards, 0.8 inches at 15 feet. Can you settle and hold in that circle? It is also a good exercise to see what a cup of coffee does to your hold, even hours after drinking it. If you get really still you'll see your pulse, just like with a rifle.

I only started shooting at the beginning of last year, after taking a NRA basic pistol class. My instructor asked what my goal was, and since I have been reading Jeff Cooper's The Complete Book Of Modern Handgunning since I was a kid, Cooper's standard at the time was to be able to shoot a ten shot four inch group at 25 yards with a 22 pistol offhand to demonstrate mastering pistol fundamentals before moving on to other pistol skills seemed like a good goal. NRA Conventional Pistol (Bullseye) seemed the next step to mastering shooting skills. My current goal is to shoot Expert scores with 22 then try to break into Sharpshooter with iron sights on my 45 and 22.

A fellow shooter in the Bullseye group loaned me the Civilian Marksmanship Program DVD set Mind Over Matter: Bullseye Pistol Competition Shooting. http://www.odcmp.com/Comm/Publications.htm While the narrator is an annoying expensive haircut and the safety messages are lengthy, the members of the Army Marksmanship Unit explaining the fundamentals, gear, training and range performance is top notch. Checking their names with the Camp Perry results is impressive, particularly Sgt. Adam Sokolowski shooting a high score with his left hand due to a right arm injury.

another_luser
December 15, 2013, 01:11 AM
At the risk of irritating many for adding a response (almost) two weeks after the last post, nothing would get me to attend.

To echo Mat's post #117, I don't have the need to prove that I suck in public. I can experience that anytime I look at my targets at my local range.

While I would like to shoot bullseye, between the failing eyesight and lack of hand-eye coordination, my targets at 50 yards would look like they were shot with weird, fat shotgun rounds.

And while I'd like to believe that TwoFifty's experience (#118 friendly people willing to lend a hand to newb's) my experience align more with CrazyJenny's post #14 regarding loudmouths at the range.

As an aside, I had a hankerin' for an M1 Garand a while back and wanted to buy from CMP. Their rule that one needs provide proof of firearms activity led me to inquire at a local Garand club about participating. I received an e-mail asking why I wanted to join. I indicated I wanted to shoot a M1, and it might be fun to compete with one. I was told to check "x" "y" and "z" places rather than inquire at their club, because "there were darned few reasons" to join their club.

Maybe I was reading too much into it, but if there were "darned few reasons" to join their club, there were darned few reasons to have anything to do their rifle as well. After getting the same vibe from a few supposed participants at an almost local (1.5 hours away, give or take) club that has bullseye shoots once a month, I have no desire to subject myself to that. I consider shooting a fun activity, and I won't associate with those that need to show their superiority.

JohnKSa
December 15, 2013, 01:42 AM
I was very interested in Bullseye at one time and actually shot in a few matches. Placed third in the rimfire portion of the first match I shot.

The bullseye competitors at my local gun club managed to convince me that I didn't belong there. They had made up rules that they used to discourage anyone from competing that might break up the homogeniety of their group. One of their main "concerns" was that I wasn't using a 1911 as my .45ACP centerfire pistol.

I shot with them for awhile but it was apparent that they weren't interested in bringing in new competitors. I decided I wasn't interested enough in shooting bullseye to put up with the BS.

Some years later, one of the competitors who shot with the group approached me and tried to get me to start coming to the matches--they were mostly older fellows and I guess their numbers were dwindling. By then I had sold the guns and accessories and moved on to other things.

Pete D.
December 15, 2013, 07:10 AM
About old eyes and focus.....that is why so many competitors have put red dot sights on their Bullseye guns. Sure does change the game for older eyes.
Aside from dots, there are devices like the Merit adjustable iris which work marvelously well with iron sights.
My experience over the years with Bullseye shooting is that whatever problem you have, someone else has had it and found a solution.
Pete

fordfan485
December 20, 2013, 09:56 AM
I would love to try it out because it sounds like the pistol equivalent to high power rifle which I shoot fromm time to time. Only problem is of the two local clubs to me, one requires that you be a member or a guest of a member (e.g. you cant just show up, and membership is closed). The other has .22 league match at 11am on weekdays. Sorry but 11am on a weekday is a no go for me cause of work. I picked up a nice Springfield Custom 1911 Hardball gun for CMP EIC pistol shoots that I would love to try it out in a match. I do need to get a decent .22 pistol though, I doubt my Walther P22 would cut it.(Looking at a Ruger MkIII 22/45 Target). Btw I am 28 years old

RAT807
December 20, 2013, 04:33 PM
I just happened to show up an hour before our club's Bullseye match started. I decided to watch as it is something I want to try later when I get a good load worked up for paper targets and not steel. lol I had several guns offered to me and they waived the entry fee to get me to shoot. So with a borrowed Ruger .22 and used my stock 9mm and shot the 3 courses and had fun. Needless to say I experienced several things I was not expecting or preparred for but managed to improve as the match went on. There is a big difference between a 1.5 lb .22 trigger and a 5+lb Glock trigger :what:

TRX
December 22, 2013, 08:06 AM
I'd love to. And there are even ranges within half an hour that sponsor such events.

But they want a $300 membership, plus bench fee, plus $125 or so for an "event fee." $425, plus ammunition.

FU

They don't really have any desire for non-current-members to contaminate their facility, of course. I'm not entirely sure why they keep posting the dates on their web sites.

murf
December 22, 2013, 06:45 PM
grump,

my suggestion is to start a two-handed class. all legs to be shot with the same centerfire gun, same rules otherwise.

seems the problem here is no love for the one-handed game. may get the idpa guys interested in improving their basics. most people shoot two-handed anyway. this might make getting into the bullseye game a little more palatable.

murf

tuj
December 22, 2013, 07:35 PM
bullseye is not shot two-handed. The technique is very very different than conventional defensive modern pistol.

maybe if we put up a 'wall' for the IDPA guys to hide behind and make them run to their targets, they would come shoot bullseye. :rolleyes:

Sa-tevr
December 22, 2013, 08:47 PM
Some clubs allow new shooters to use two hands.

The two clubs I participate at charge about $15 bucks to compete in a 2700 (22, Centerfire and 45). No membership fees or anything, so I was really surprised at what I was reading about other clubs.

Trent
December 23, 2013, 06:22 PM
How to draw shooters? Put a row of 10 3" clays at 25 yards and count how many shots it takes the person to hit them all.

Yeah I know so far off base it's ridiculous; but that's the point.

It's why the weekly Trap meets at my gun club draw 75+ people every week but the sporting rifle match I run, draws 10, and the F-Class and Benchrest event draws 2 or 3 live bodies.

People like the immediate feedback.

We're a "fast food generation". Our previous generation was an "I'm OK with preparing dinner 8 hours early in a crock pot" generation.

The current generation has the sum expanse of human knowledge on the internet at their fingertips so learning and remembering aren't really necessary. Putting time in for a reward doesn't make sense anymore, to the new generation. The last generation, if you wanted to know something, you best read, and REMEMBER it because you couldn't just pull your phone out of your pocket and get the answer to any question on the planet in any field, in 3 seconds or less.

There's very few shooters that ever use the 25 yard bank on our pistol range. I'm one of the few who does, because, frankly 7 and 10 yards just don't do anything for me anymore, and the plywood backing is always in superior shape to the swiss-cheese-head-sized-holes in the plywood on the shorter range berms, so it's easier to staple up my targets.

Patience.

You're fighting to keep a sport alive which involves patience in a world that has NONE.

I don't think it's possible, at least, nowhere near the numbers that the last generation drew.

Trent
December 23, 2013, 06:25 PM
Please note that while my previous post was dripping with venom, it wasn't directed at the sport. There's nothing wrong with the Bullseye / Conventional Pistol sport. Rather, there's something wrong with the world. :)

murf
December 23, 2013, 11:00 PM
trent,

the world is constantly evolving (yes, i looked up the definition in a dictionary, not the internet). if bullseye doesn't evolve with it, it will eventually go the way of the dodo.

i got rid of my slide rule a long time ago (still have my hp 12c though). i understand the venom, but realize it makes no difference in the end.

and, making sarcastic fun of the other disciplines won't help the shooting sport as a whole. i, for one, think a change to the sport of bullseye shooting is a good idea and way over due.

murf

twofifty
December 24, 2013, 12:09 AM
....action bullseye

Trent
December 24, 2013, 02:35 AM
Zombie bullseye.

Heck, you want to get the kids involved, put the target on the head of a zombie picture.

"10 points for an eyeball."

Game over, that'd take off.

murf
December 24, 2013, 10:36 AM
zombie bullseye will be on xbox360 by next christmas. reminds me of playing "duck hunt" with the kids on our nintendo.

i like your idea better, trent. more of an audience. i bet if you polled the idpa guys, a lot of them would be gamers. just a logical progression.

murf

MrBorland
December 24, 2013, 11:04 AM
i got rid of my slide rule a long time ago

i bet if you polled the idpa guys, a lot of them would be gamers.

This IDPA shooter's interested in bullseye as it is, and I doubt putting some cutsie dressing on it would attract other practical shooters, either. I don't hear IDPA guys talking about all the silhouette matches they shoot, for instance.

I don't think the slide rule analogy is very valid. Though bullseye competition may not have the participation it once had, the skills it develops are far from obsolete and/or irrelevant. Brian Enos, the great practical shooter once wrote "You never really go 'Beyond Fundamentals (http://www.brianenos.com/)', you just apply them better and faster.

PiratePenguin
December 24, 2013, 11:04 AM
I'd do bullseye if it were:

In my city
Inexpensive
On a weekend (I work 9-5)
Possible to be competitive with a stock gun


It may actually be all of these things, I'm not sure. I will probably look around after I actually have a gun and see what's in the Pittsburgh area.

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