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Good bolt rifle for a newly left handed shooter

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Rustle in the bushes, Aug 31, 2012.

  1. Rustle in the bushes

    Rustle in the bushes Well-Known Member

    recently found out that Im cross eye dominant, making my rifle decision a lot trickier as I plan on learning to shoot left handed. I was initially going to pick up a model 70 sporter but it has a monte carlo stock which is useless if Im going to be firing left handed. The safety is on the other side as well.

    so what do you left handed freaks of nature usually end up doing? pick up a browning left hand model X bolt or lever? Or just learn to operate a right hand bolt quickly and deal with the safety being on the other side.
  2. lefteyedom

    lefteyedom Well-Known Member

    Cross Dominate Eye and hand

    My screen name is Left eye Dominate for a reason :D
    I was well in to my 20s before I discovered why I could not hit a barn wall from inside the barn with a shotgun but could hit a running rabbit with a pistol. Mother was a left hand, Dad was Right handed, I got the mix left eye dominated and right handed. Yes there are people that are left hand and right eye dominate.

    You will shoot better in the long run shooting off the shoulder of the dominate eye. Yes I can shoot right or left handed, but without a doubt shooting left handed produces better scores and hits. Forget eye-patches, taped glass and trying to retrain you eye dominance.

    What to shoot?

    1. Right handed on the left shoulder
    Lefties have been shooting right hand rifles forever... Reaching over with your left hand to throw the bolt is not much of a trick. Reloading is a little slower till you get the hand of it. If you can choose a rifle without a rollover cheek piece all the better. FYI there are left handed stock for right handed rifles, the check well is on the right side of the stock.

    2. Left hand Bolt action.
    I prefer left handed bolt action rifles. A rifle that fit you and the way you shoot can not be under estimated. For the money this is my list

    a. Savage Left hand rifle are the best deal going.
    B. Remington 700 left hand are great and not to hard to find
    C. Winchester finally started making model 70 left handed.
    D. Weatherby Mark V left hand
    E. all other left hand bolts

    3. Lever action,
    A. Winchester, ,
    B Marlin, Pre-cross bolt safety
    C. Browning BLR,
    D. Savage 99 .

    4.Single Shot
    A.Ruger #1,
    B. Browning
    C. TC Encore/ Contender
    D. NEFHandi rifles

    5. All others
    Left hand ARs ect
    Just do a search on Gunbroker for all the other left hand rifles.
  3. Abel

    Abel Well-Known Member

    I am a lefty and if I had to pick a new rifle out, the X-Bolt would be my choice. I currently use an old Marlin 336C as my deer rifle.
  4. jwrowland77

    jwrowland77 Well-Known Member

    I am right handed and left eye dominant.

    I've been shooting right handed guns since I was 7yo and I'm about to be 35. You get used to it. I actually like shooting a right handed bolt gun and its because I don't lose move my sight picture, or have to move my trigger finger. If you have the right handed bolt gun propped up on something, you won't have to move anything which helps with a quick follow up shot if you are deer hunting. Only thing you have to do is slide your right hand back cycle the gun in one fluid motion without moving trigger finger or sight picture, it's a beautiful thing. :)
  5. taliv

    taliv Moderator

    left hand, left eye

    i prefer left hand bolt guns. i do not put safeties on my bolt guns. for AR15s, I actually prefer the normal right-handed version, and use the safety. but for bolts, lefty is the way to go.
  6. helotaxi

    helotaxi Well-Known Member

    Much like taliv, lefty and left eye dominant. My hunting rifles are left handed (a 20year old Savage from back when they were one of the only ones making lots of lefty rifles and an X-bolt that I picked up earlier this year) or lever action (Marlin .308MX), my long range rifles are right handed since I find it easier to shoot from the bench or bipod using my off hand to work the bolt and my ARs are right handed with a couple of ambi-safeties being the only concession I've made.

    Browning probably has the widest selection of lefty bolt guns and also make the BAR in a left hand configuration. Tikka also has a pretty wide selection. Savage releases new chamberings and models in left hand all the time. Remington has some models in left hand. I'd like to own a left handed Model 70 but I haven't seen anything about them, including on Winchester's website.
  7. hang fire

    hang fire Well-Known Member

    I am LED and shoot LH, so long as the stock doesn't have a roll over comb, any RH rifles works fine for me.

    I shoot a handgun RH, with aimed shots, no problem with RE closed. But for instinctive fast snap shooting, (forget the sights, look only at the target, quickly point and shoot) I must have both eyes open, otherwise POI will be off to the left of target.
  8. Gtimothy

    Gtimothy Well-Known Member

    I'm right hand / left eye dominate as well but have ALWAYS shot right handed!

    I just had LASIK done and my right eye was done for close vision and left eye for distance (Mono vision). It presents problems when I shoot with iron sights but most of my rifles are scoped so there isn't a problem. I also have a pair of glasses which correct for the distance issue. I refuse to switch to left handed anything because left handed stuff is EXPENSIVE!
  9. helotaxi

    helotaxi Well-Known Member

    No premium really until you get into the AR's and IMHO they are a solution looking for a problem. The only thing changed is the side that the brass is ejected. The lower, and all the controls on it, and the charging handle are still right handed.
  10. cougar1717

    cougar1717 Well-Known Member

    I would consider cross eye dominance (CED) a toss up. There's never been a question about being RED, RH'ed, and having a RH bolt rifle. Today, it's similar for being LED, LH'ed, and having LH rifles (unless you're an old timer or someone whose "never needed a LH rifle"). I admit, there are a lot of LH'ers who shoot RH guns. But being cross eye dominant is a different animal. It's up to the individual. I have several relatives who are CED and avid hunters - they've never owned a LH rifle. While it would be best to shoot a rifle that caters to your eye dominance, if we're just talking hunting and not competitive shooting, get a rifle that you're confident with - be that a lever, bolt, or single shot. If you're willing to switch hands and practice until it's not awkward - that's a great discipline. But if not, you will still be minute of game animal with your non-dominant eye.
  11. anothernewb

    anothernewb Well-Known Member

    just bought my first bolt gun for my Bday. Left hand/eye dominant here as well - enough to the point where I doubt I could shoot the dirt with any reliability right handed...

    shopped around and bought a savage trophy hunter xp in 308. Tried every bolt action I could get my hands on that came in lefty. Rem, Tika, savage were all I could find. Of them The Tika was really nice, but couldn't find one in 308. didn't care much for the rem 700, just didn't feel comfortable for me.
  12. Reloadron

    Reloadron Well-Known Member

    Right handed but left eye dominant and shoot bolt rifles left handed. When we were in the gun business we had a good niche with left handed rifles. We put them out with a sign reading defective guns, bolts on backwards. You could see over a thousand rifles at a large gun show and not a single left hand rifle.

    My go to hunting rifle is a Ruger Model 77 MK II in 7mm Rem Mag even though I seldom hunt anymore. Had a nice Weatherby in 257 Weatherby Mag I sold some years back.

    My remaining bolt guns are right handed but you just adapt. After awhile it just comes natural.

  13. Andrew Wyatt

    Andrew Wyatt Well-Known Member

    it's really six of one, half dozen of the other.

    The remington 700 series, especially in short action is hard to load quickly.

    the Model 70 series is easier, because of the design of the port.
  14. Vaarok

    Vaarok Well-Known Member

    Levergun or a straight pull. I'd say Ross.
  15. oldpapps

    oldpapps Well-Known Member

    Do what works for you.

    I am left-eyed and tend to be right handed. Although I right with both hands, better with the left and faster with the right. I have always shot right handed.

    I didn't know that I was left eye dominant until going to an FBI Firearms Instructor's school in the early 80s.

    I hold right handed and sight with my left eye. I have found that mounting scopes high and tilting my head over works quite well for me. I do get told often that the lace on leather cheek piece I have on my M1A is too far forward. I have it at the grip and use it for a 'chin weld'.

    With hand guns, few ever notice.

    With open/hard sights on a long gun, I am far from the best shot, but then I do have both eyes open.

    It all comes down to personnel preference and what works for you. Yes, we can and should learn from others but that doesn't negate what works.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2012
  16. DM~

    DM~ Well-Known Member

    So, you consider your self to be a "freak of nature??"

    I'm left handed, but i'm no freak of nature!

  17. berettaprofessor

    berettaprofessor Well-Known Member

    Remington makes left-handed 700's if you look for them.

    Savage makes a bunch of left-handed bolt rifles.

    Either are great rifles.
  18. greyling22

    greyling22 Well-Known Member

    I personally like supporting savage since they've been lefty friendly the longest, and they make a heck of a gun, but when you start comparing rifles in the store I sure like the tikka's and brownings. Or for teh money, savage axis and ruger american.

    One of the gun magazines recently compared all the top bolt action rifles and (as I recall) found the savage to be the most accurate, but gave the top prize to a version of the winchester model 70.
  19. Reloadron

    Reloadron Well-Known Member

  20. hentown

    hentown Well-Known Member

    You really going to shoot with iron sights? I'd always use a scope on a bolt rifle.

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