Direction of Recoil

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by J-Bar, Sep 6, 2022.

  1. J-Bar

    J-Bar Member

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    I am right handed. The rear sight on most of my adjustable-sighted handguns have been moved to the right in order to bring point of impact to point of aim. Is this your experience as well? Does handgun muzzle flip move point of impact away from the dominant hand? Maybe it’s a trigger pressure thing.

    I know I could test it myself by shooting left handed, but I admit I am lazy. And primers are scarce. You southpaws… did most of you have to move your rear sight to the right or left in order to center your groups?
     
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  2. murf

    murf Member

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    no, it is just the way you hold the gun.

    murf
     
  3. Driftwood Johnson

    Driftwood Johnson Member

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    I have found that the amount of finger on the trigger has a great deal to do with where a bullet goes.

    I am right handed too. A bunch of years ago at a cowboy match one of my pards mentioned that I was hitting most of the targets on the left side.

    There is no physical way to pull the trigger straight back on a handgun. Our fingers don't work that way. The only thing we can do is curl our fingers to pull the trigger.

    Many of us like to place the trigger in the first crease of our trigger finger, it feels very natural that way. That is a great way for a righty to push the muzzle to the left while pulling the trigger.

    If instead we pull the trigger with the pad of the finger under the nail, we can pull the trigger back a bit straighter than with the trigger in the crease.

    I can't tell you how many revolvers I have bought used, with the rear sight set like this. I am assuming the previous owner was a righty, and he was making up for less than great trigger technique by pushing the rear sight a little bit to the right.

    poSnWINrj.jpg




    Getting back to hitting the steel plates in CAS on the left, a fixed sight revolver will really show up bad trigger technique. We are shooting quite fast in Cowboy, and I don't always take the time to pull the trigger properly, with the pad of the finger.

    Cowboy targets are big and close. We don't really care about tight groups, we just want to hit the steel.

    These days I always aim on the right side of the target, so I don't miss over to the left.
     
  4. Pat Riot
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    Pat Riot Contributing Member

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    J-Bar, a couple of my revolvers had the rear sight moved to the right as well so I could hit POA. I changed my grips out to Altamont Ropers and had to move the sights more to the center. Except for my J frame model 63. It has a Hogue Monogrip. The rear sight is nearly all the way over to the right.
     
  5. Hartkopf

    Hartkopf Member

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    As far as striker fired semi autos goes, all of my sights are stock and I have no problems. Right to left is not usually a problem for me.

    **EDIT**. Now I see that this was posted in the revolver forum. Oops. :oops:
     
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  6. WrongHanded
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    WrongHanded Contributing Member

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    When the rear sight of one of my revolvers is not centered, it's always off to the same side Ruger misclocked the barrel (and therefore front sight) before they sent it to me.
     
  7. BobWright

    BobWright Member

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    Most of my rear sight blades are pretty well centered in the sight base. Those guns which have required adjustment seem to follow no set pattern.

    Bob Wright
     
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  8. UncleEd

    UncleEd Member

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    No, the majority of shooters, especially members
    of The High Road, are perfect. :evil:

    Seriously it probably has more to do with your
    method of trigger pull, grip on the gun and your
    eyesight. Most "combat" guns such as modern
    autos have fixed sights and with the right intended
    factory ammo they work just fine. Of course
    different ammo brands and power levels also
    come into play.

    Certainly smoothed and tuned DA triggers have a
    lot to do with success. Unless you have ridged/serrated
    triggers like Jerry Miculek, you'll do better with
    well smoothed and rounded triggers. Those
    pre-mid 1980s S&W triggers are a hindrance except
    in SA shooting.
     
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  9. csirre

    csirre Member

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    Moving the sight to either side would affect accuracy in distances other than the one you adjust the rear sight for. So I believe it's not a good idea. So the right (right for you) way to hold the gun is the key, I believe.
     
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  10. eddiememphis

    eddiememphis Member

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    You may have an astigmatism.

    That can change the point of aim because your eye is focusing the image slightly to the side but your brain thinks the sights are perfectly aligned.

    Try shooting with your non-dominant eye to see if that changes things.
     
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  11. DR505

    DR505 Member

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    You can train your finger so it does not curl as you press the trigger. Though it still doesn't push the trigger straight back, it diminishes the pushing left affect that a curled finger can cause. While I was at the academy we used to practice pressing the trigger without bending the joint closest to the tip of the trigger finger. You isolate movement to only the finger joint closest to the palm...it makes your finger look like the letter "L". Then you press the trigger with the finger pad. It reduces the tendency to push the handgun left (for righties). It also helps to keep your trigger finger clear of touching the frame where some people also push the weapon out of alignment. But this technique took a LOT of practice, working with a rubber band, dry firing, and on the range. It also takes a conscious effort and I find myself paying more attention to the basics. On SA or Glock type actions it works fairly well, but takes even MORE practice for DA handguns.

    It did look rather humorous when there were a whole room full of us in the academy practicing by hauling with our trigger fingers on a rubber band. FWIW I don't know if they still teach this at the academy since that was quite some years ago.
     
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  12. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

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    This is my problem. All of my handguns “shoot left” for me, auto or revolver. So, almost all of my sights are moved slightly right to compensate for my eyesight.

    My Model 67 no dash is centered, but that may be because of the light on the stainless sights rather then the black or FO sights on all of my other guns.

    Stay safe.
     
  13. Pat Riot
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    Pat Riot Contributing Member

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    @J-Bar
    Is the point of impact the same if you shoot single action and double action?
     
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  14. Smaug

    Smaug Member

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    Me too. I've experimented with different grips, and they always shoot right. Even when I pull the trigger with the tip of my finger, which would normally tend to push it left.

    I really learned a lot when I got the laser grip on my SP-101. I can really see that POI jump from across the room with the laser dot on the wall. There's no preventing it; you just have to anticipate where it's going to jump and aim a bit left in DA. I bet the jump is less on a revolver with a really nice and light DA pull.
     
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  15. Smaug

    Smaug Member

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    I would say that on a single action trigger pull, it is poor technique to pull with the crease under the knuckle.

    On a double action pull, by moving down the finger, we get more leverage and hence more power, so that we are able to move the gun LESS by pulling under the knuckle. (especially on a heavier DA pull)

    Also, I guess it's a matter of perspective, even for SA shooters. If we can adjust the gun's sites to ourselves rather than vice-versa, there is one less habit to have to break. Why not make it easy on ourselves, when possible? (fixed sights; that's why, hehehe)

    Last thing: pulling with the inside of the knuckle tends to pull the shot right, for me. (I'm right-handed) Maybe my fingers just aren't long enough for the geometry to work out to push it left...
     
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  16. barnfrog

    barnfrog Member

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    Then why would they make the sights adjustable in the first place?

    You should be able to adjust the sights so that POA and POI are aligned at all distances, at least as far as left-to-right alignment is concerned. Consistent trigger technique is obviously a necessary part of the equation, too.
     
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  17. J-Bar

    J-Bar Member

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    Shooting a S&W Model 14 .38 Special with target handloads, two- handed (right hand gripping the gun, left hand supporting) single action: with the rear sight nudged to the right, I can chew out the 10-ring at 10 yards slow fire. Same gun, ammo, grip, and range, shooting double action, six shots in 10 seconds: group increases 50% in diameter, centers at 4 O’clock just outside the 10 ring. Shooting double action as fast as I can: group opens to 6-8” at 4 O’clock farther to the right.

    Hopeless I guess for competition, but I could keep them all on a yellow man silhouette.
     
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  18. RA40

    RA40 Member

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    Mine are centered as best I can adjust them. The gunsmith smoothed trigger jobs makes them easier to shoot so compensating for a high DA pull does not shift the POA and POI. Before they had trigger work I would shoot them a bit left but not significantly. I've seen enough handguns with sights like Driftwood Johnson had posted.

    One of the guys let me shoot his revolver and I didn't examine his sight adjustments till after I let a cylinder full downrange. I held his like mine and put the shots 2-2.5" right at 12 yards. I was thinking I'm a righty how can I pull in that direction. LOL
     
  19. trackskippy

    trackskippy Member

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    For the most part, my handguns with adjustable rear sights have them mostly centered, and maybe favoring the right a little.

    My Glocks are the only handguns that I have that I need to move them pretty far right, almost to the edge of the dovetail. Dont know why, dont have to do it with all the others.

    All my revolvers with fixed sights seem to shoot to POA just fine. Not sure why I would have to move the rear sights a tad right on my 2.5" 19's, when all my 2" model 10's all shoot to the sights without any adjustment. Same basic gun, frame, grip, grips, etc, just some of them have adjustable sights, the others dont.
     
  20. eddiememphis

    eddiememphis Member

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    If your trigger finger is torquing the gun, you are not gripping tight enough.
     
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  21. Archie

    Archie Member

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    I have a similar experience as Driftwood Johnson.
    The first few handguns I owned all shot left and low. This was firing largely one handed, I'm a right hander. I finally realized I was pushing the trigger which resulted in the whole handgun moving to the left and low. (Probably had a 'buck' and 'snatch' as well.) Some work on it myself and a good coach or two along the way and I was shooting pretty well.
    The bad news is I cannot tell you any secrets to fix the problem. You'll have to realize it yourself and work on your trigger action to avoid it.
    Do not concentrate on what you do wrong and fix it. Concentrate on doing it right.
     
  22. .45Coltguy

    .45Coltguy Member

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    What Driftwood Johnson and Archie mention on S/A trigger pull is how I was shown to correct the "low and left" hits. It truly works. A big improvement.
     
  23. murf

    murf Member

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    @J-Bar, my brother came up this past labor day weekend and we went shooting. i put all but two shots out of 18 high right, shooting my lcpII left handed (my off hand),at a 6.5" gong @ 30 yards (the two actually hit the gong). thanks for reminding me to pull straight back on the trigger.

    the "brother" story is to note that the last time i shot the gun was the last time he came up back in mid-march [i need to get out more]. i don't then remember a "sight" problem.

    so, i guess the sight offset happens with either hand.

    murf
     
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