Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

What the best way to test pistol accuracy?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Thompsoncustom, Jul 8, 2011.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Thompsoncustom

    Thompsoncustom Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    1,000
    I want to test the accuracy of some of my pistol and was wondering what is the best way to do so. I have never done any shooting with a rest tho i'm sure it will be needed? ideas?
     
  2. Robert101

    Robert101 Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2010
    Messages:
    965
    I've never used a rest to test accuracy in my pistols but I'm sure it would provide valuable information.

    My testing is done off-hand where I evaluate group size as an average of +-100 rounds and not so much based upon a sting of say 5 shots.
     
  3. Shadow 7D

    Shadow 7D Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Messages:
    7,005
    Location:
    Frozen North
    Locked down in a ransom rest...

    Otherwise, shooting from a supported position, but YOU are still a HUGE factor in the size of the groups.
     
  4. Thompsoncustom

    Thompsoncustom Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    1,000
    that's kind of what I want to take out is me, I know I can do fine with my pistols but I want to see what there mechanical accuracy is. I thought they would probably need to be locked down in some kind of rest
     
  5. Blue68f100

    Blue68f100 Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2011
    Messages:
    3,196
    Location:
    Piney Woods of East Texas
    You will also need to try several mfg and weights of ammo. Not all are equal in all guns. I've seen brand X shoot 3" groups and brand y 1.5". Most hand gun accuracy is tested at 25 yrds but depending on the gun 50 yrds is not out of the question.
     
  6. KurtC

    KurtC Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    Messages:
    371
  7. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2006
    Messages:
    11,717
    Location:
    Johnson City, TN
    If cost is no object and you want to test the mechanical accuracy of the handgun itself - taking shooter error out of play - there is no real answer other than the Ransom Rest. You will also need a fairly substantial bench with no wobble to set it up on. Some public ranges have a concrete slab and sometimes even suitable benches, but if you have to set up on uneven ground you will need some way to adjust and anchor your bench.
     
  8. wleoff

    wleoff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2009
    Messages:
    70
    Location:
    North Alabama
    Many gun clubs have a Ransom Rest that usually one of the members keeps until someone needs it. Our club is that way and yesterday several of us borrowed it to check out several 1911s for Bullseye. One has to have a different grip insert for each type of pistol tested. Or you can buy the Ransom Rest from Midway for about $400.

    Caldwell use to make one like the Ransom for half the price, but they pulled it off the market.
     
  9. 918v

    918v Member

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2006
    Messages:
    3,931
    The most cost effective way is to rest the gun on sandbags. Then match your target to the sights. Aim at the 6 o'clock. I test at 15 yards because it allows me to align the sights more precisely against the Bullseye. Colt, Sig, etc used to test at that distance when they supplied test targets with their pistols. It is a good compromise. Not everyone has 20/20 vision.
     
  10. Chris Rhines

    Chris Rhines Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2002
    Messages:
    3,773
    Location:
    Potomac, Maryland - Behind enemy lines!!
    I'm going to go against the grain here. I do my accuracy testing standing, offhand, exactly how I most often shoot my pistols for real. I really don't care much about the mechanical accuracy of the pistol. I care more how accurately I can shoot it, and things like ergonomics, sight radius and trigger make a difference that you won't find with a Ransom Rest.

    If you really need to know the mechanical accuracy of your pistol (ammo testing?), I'd use a sandbag rest.

    -C
     
  11. JohnBT

    JohnBT Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    13,233
    Location:
    Richmond, Virginia
    I'd just find somebody who is a great shot and let them do it.
     
  12. Thompsoncustom

    Thompsoncustom Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    1,000
    Lol I would like to think of myself as an OK shot as on a good day at 10 yards I can get a 1" group standing. There's no way I'm gonna spend 400 bucks even tho the ransom rest looks nice it's not that important to me. I geuss I should have title it the poor man way to test to accuracy. Sand bags are probably the way for me to go I'm just not sure if I can see all that well at 25yards let alone 50.
     
  13. railroader

    railroader Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    1,674
    Location:
    az
    I have to agree with an above poster. Shoot it from sandbags or a rest at 15 yards. I seem to be able to hold my groups together at that distance much easier than at 25yds. Mark
     
  14. dickttx

    dickttx Member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Fort Worth
    Do you rest the barrel on the sandbags, or your hands?
     
  15. 918v

    918v Member

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2006
    Messages:
    3,931
    I rest the barrel or the frame on the sandbag. This is more solid than resting your hand. Before I got my L-Tek rest, I used a three sand bag setup where I arranged them so that there were two on top of eachother and third immediately to the rear. The slide/dustcover would rest on the front bags and the grip would rest on the rear bag.
     
  16. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Messages:
    18,710
    Location:
    northern california
    The only way to do that is with a Ransom rest...we have a couple of guys at the local range who will do this for you for a fee (cheaper than buying the rest). If you have a common gun, there won't even be the cost of the grip inserts to fit the gun to the rest

    This would be the next best option.

    The gunsmith who does most of my work tests service guns meant for competition off bags at 50 yards and they have to meet his personal standard (inside 2") before being sent back to the customer. Most guns are just tested at 25 yards while shooting off hand...but we refer to him as the human machine rest
     
  17. Thompsoncustom

    Thompsoncustom Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    1,000
  18. Canuck-IL

    Canuck-IL Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2005
    Messages:
    1,590
    ...other than the fact that's it's discontinued by the manufacturer and had a history of problems - short lived since they rendered it too inconsistent.
    /Bryan
     
  19. Thompsoncustom

    Thompsoncustom Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    1,000
    ah thats to bad...
     
  20. railroader

    railroader Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    1,674
    Location:
    az
  21. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Messages:
    18,710
    Location:
    northern california
    The major issue will always be the trigger press. It isn't the smoothness, although pressure straight to the rear is important, but consistency between presses.

    This is truly an instance where the Olympic style small bore rifle trigger management would come in handy...gradual pressure increasing until letoff, of course you'll have to take breath control and heart rate into consideration too
     
  22. bds

    bds Member

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2010
    Messages:
    13,675
    Location:
    Northwest Coast
    I normally test pistol/ammunition accuracy off hand at 7-10-15 yards (5 round shot groups). For most semi-autos, they tend to produce 1"-2"-3" corresponding shot groups. If I achieve consistent, reproducible, tight shot groups with certain pistol/ammunition combinations (1"-2" at 15 yards), I continue my testing to 20-25 yards.

    For very accurate pistol/ammunition combinations (usually match grade reloads), I'll use sand bags (1"-2" at 25 yards). Recently, I have started to use lasers for pistols with accessory rails - good training tool that really helps express what you are doing to the trigger at 10-25 yards.

    Determining the slow fire accuracy of pistol/ammunition is one thing, I want to know the "real life" rapid fire tactical accuracy for me (my pistols and my "actual" trigger pulls). To test this, I do double-tap accuracy testing at 7-10-15 yards. When I can get all of my shots placed on several 1/2 sheets of copy paper targets on the card board (double taps and front sight flash rapid fire), I consider the pistol/ammunition "tactically" accurate.
     
  23. Furncliff

    Furncliff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2005
    Messages:
    2,216
    Location:
    Western Slope of Colorado
    Do a google search for
    Shooting handguns from a rest.

    There are a few articles out there with accompanying photos which will help you decide how you want to do it.
     
  24. SwampWolf

    SwampWolf Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2005
    Messages:
    3,928
    Location:
    North Central Ohio
    The op expressed a desire to determine to "test the accuracy" of some of his pistols, not how well he shoots. And the minimal use of a sandbag rest, as you suggested, would be a good start; and a Ransom Rest a good finish.
     
  25. Walt Sherrill

    Walt Sherrill Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2003
    Messages:
    5,073
    Location:
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Several mentions of Ransom Rests. That's good, but you have to have a specific "insert" for the gun being shot, to make it fit the rest properly, and it's effective only with steel-framed guns. (A Polymer framed gun won't give reliable results with a Ransom Rest, as the natural give in the frame may not allow it to return to exactly the same position each time.)

    As noted, you can get good results from sand bags, cheap bags of beans or rice (in a second plastic bag) or two, or something else of a similar nature.

    The key point is to use the rest to minimize YOUR involvement. I've been told to rest your hands on the rest/bags, and not the gun on the bags -- but don't know whether this is correct or not. I'm sure there's a way to do both (hands and gun.)
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page