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What's a good measure for off-hand accuracy?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Tennessee Jed, Aug 24, 2012.

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  1. Tennessee Jed

    Tennessee Jed Member

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    I'm trying to develop my double action revolver skills, mostly using a very smooth shooting S&W 28. I'd like to know what others consider to be a reasonable level of accurate shooting with double action revolvers, shooting off-hand (not off a bench).

    Been focusing on sight picture, trigger press, proper grip, follow through, etc. When I do my part, I'm almost able to get 10 - 15 full power rounds inside a three inch circle at 15 yards. Usually I yank one or two rounds that land just outside the 3 inch circle, but I'm getting better with practice.

    What do you consider to be good, reasonable double action shooting accuracy, not shooting from a bench, but standing up with a 2-hand grip? I'm more interested in setting a reasonable goal to develop my own skill than I am what a certain revolver can do off a bench, in a Ransom Rest, etc. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. murf

    murf Member

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    are you using the stock grips?

    murf
     
  3. Tennessee Jed

    Tennessee Jed Member

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    I am trying out different grips. Latest is Spegel Boot Grips, the ones that extend about 1/4 inch below the frame. Trying to get a reasonable combination of control and concealability.

    I know a square butt N-frame isn't high on everyone's list of CCW guns, but it is high on my list.
     
  4. Dithsoer

    Dithsoer Member

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    "I'm almost able to get 10 - 15 full power rounds inside a three inch circle at 15 yards."

    I'd say that was pretty good right there, and of course with practice will get even better. How long have you been shooting it this way?
    For comparison, the late, great Ed McGivern could put 5 d.a. shots into a playing card in well under a second.
     
  5. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Member

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    Tennessee Jed, 3" at 15 yds is about what I do in DA with revolvers. I am not an accuracy fanatic when it comes to hand guns and usually shoot DA revolvers single action anyway. But there are times that I really strive for that good old 1" group at 15 yds or further. 15 yds is a comfortable shooting distance as you can see your holes without walking up to the target.
     
  6. Tennessee Jed

    Tennessee Jed Member

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    Dithsoer, I've been shooting for years, but never really focused too much on groups before. Previously, I was ok with hits inside a 6" circle at closer distances (5 yards, 10 yards), focusing more on quickness than accuracy.

    I re-read an article recently about an old SWAT team leader who wanted his people to be able to hit an eyeball at 10 feet, and a fist sized target at 50 feet. I decided to work on making more accurate shots more consistently. I also want to get really good with that N-frame.

    So, with practice over a few months, focusing on fundamentals (mostly sight picture, trigger squeeze, and grip) I've gotten the groups down from around 6 inches at 15 yards to around 3 inches. I thinking it might be time to strive for keeping everything within 2 inch circles at 15 yards.
     
  7. murf

    murf Member

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    the reason i asked about the grips: the stock hiway patrolman grips are a little small for good double-action shooting. you can do it, but it is not natural.

    grip the gun as high up on the frame as possible. dry-fire the gun (unloaded of course) altering your grip until you can pull the trigger without the front sight moving in the rear sight window.

    when shooting on the range, make sure the front sight is centered side-to-side and top-to-top with the rear sight when the shot breaks. every time!

    with a consistent follow through after the shot, your shots should be touching at your distance.

    with decent ammo, the model 28 will shoot better than 99% of all shooters.

    good luck,

    murf
     
  8. Tennessee Jed

    Tennessee Jed Member

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    Thanks Murf. That gives me my new goal.
     
  9. MrBorland

    MrBorland Moderator

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    I've offered my thoughts on this many times before, but IMO, "very good" (but not exceptional) is an honest and consistent 3" 5-round unsupported group at 25 yards. For a wheelgunner, that'd be in double action, of course. ;)

    3" @ 25 yards is far and away better than anything you'll likely see at your local range, but it's very do-able with practice and strong fundamentals.
     
  10. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    I've never measured 10-15 round groups. I think 3 shots are plenty and more than 5 shots don't tell you much more.

    Having said that, at 15 yards, standing and holding the gun in both hands, shooting DA, I work with clients to keep 5 rounds inside 1", with the goal to have them all touch, while taking their time shooting

    A reasonable goal is everything inside a 2" group shooting at a pace where the trigger doesn't ever stop moving...so about 2 rounds in 1.5 seconds
     
  11. GP100man

    GP100man Member

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    I have an 8" gong I practice up a bit on before hunting , I like to ring it 6 outta 6 for any given distance .

    I think I shot a 2.5" group for my ccw.
     
  12. BCRider

    BCRider Member

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    With my old guy eyes and old guy nerves I'm happy when all mine are within 3 inches at 15 yards. On the days when I'm in the groove I can steadily pump out sub 2 inch groups of 6rounds at 15 yards. But while such days are not rare it's less than half the time. The rest of them are sub 3 inch with the odd flyer a couple of inches out from that.

    Did you by any chance mean to say 15 FEET instead of yards? If you're badgering them to produce 1 inch groups at 15 then they are well on their way to being invited for the Olympic handgun team... :D
     
  13. 45_auto

    45_auto Member

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    2 shots into the eyeball in 1.5 seconds at 15 yards? Repeatable on demand? The Sky Marshalls, FBI, and every SWAT team in the nation wishes thay had "reasonable" shooters like that.
     
  14. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    At 15 feet (3 yards), I'd expect all the all the rounds to overlap.

    I don't think they'd let them shoot using a two handed grip on the Olympic teams
     
  15. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    I'm not sure how large eyeballs are in your area, but 2" would be pretty big.

    There is also quite a difference in shooting .75 sec splits and putting two shots into a 2" group in 1.5 seconds.

    It is easy to shoot accurate .5 second splits, so .75 sec should be very reasonable...ranges require 1+ second splits to avoid rapid fire

    With a grip/stance that returns the sights to the same POA after each shot, resetting the trigger in parallel during muzzle flip, prepping the trigger and allowing the appearance of the aligned sights on the target to cue your final press, .25 second splits are reasonable...that's 4 accurate shots a second. (usually into half a 3"X5" card)...I'm only asking for one-third that speed
     
  16. 45_auto

    45_auto Member

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    Indoor pistol records (50 feet) - these are with competition .22's, but according to you, your "reasonable shooter" can easily outshoot the national record holders while shooting 3 times faster and using an off the shelf DA .38 pistol.

    http://www.nrahq.org/compete/natl_records.asp

    NRA B3 (Timed and Rapid Fire Pistol) 10 ring is 1.80" in diameter. Shooting a .22 caliber bullet, that gives an effective circle of 1.80 + (.22 x 2) = 2.24" where the bullet will break the 10 ring shooting a .22. Shooting a .38 like the OP means you have a 2.56" dia circle where the bullet will break the 10 ring.

    Rapid fire for the course is 5 shots in 10 seconds, a 2 second split as opposed to your .75 split. You do that 4 times.

    All the "reasonable shooter" has to do is shoot a perfect score on NRA indoor pistol rapid fire (50 feet) while shooting about 3 times faster with a heavier recoiling gun than the current record holders . If your "reasonable shooter" is a woman, she just set the US national record (men's record is 200, women's is 199). To break the men's record they would have to keep 18 within a 1.66" dia circle (X is .90", .38 bullet means 1.66" you have to keep it within), which would be 18 X's - record is 17.

    If all 20 of your shots are within a 2" circle, you will easily be competitve at the national level. I guess that's one way to look at "reasonable".
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2012
  17. Onward Allusion

    Onward Allusion Member

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    3" at 15 yards is more than acceptable. Of course, you're gonna get those who will tell ya that if you can't land all shots on a pie plate at 50 yards with a handgun, you stink... ;)
     
  18. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    Why would you aspire to less?
    The goal of the exercise is learning good trigger control that carries over to shooting more rapidly with better accuracy. Folks who want to shoot faster often forget that the same fundamentals apply

    I think you're still missing the style of shooting...there is a reason I gave up shooting in one-handed bullseye competition and sought out competition that allowed the use of the other hand also. I also gave up air pistol shooting because I don't have the self-discipline needed for the follow through
     
  19. BCRider

    BCRider Member

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    9mm, you're one tough instructor then. Although I have to admit that at a 15 FEET, or 3 yards, I'd expect the rounds to mostly touch as well.

    I hang with some fairly decent IDPA shooters I think. And over the winter we do the "dot torture" drill a couple or three times from about 5 to 6 yards. I have yet to see anyone shooting this at a reasonable measured speed manage a perfect score out of that group.

    For those that have not had the dubious pleasure of seeing the "dot torture" target here ya go;

    http://pistol-training.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/04/dot-torture-target.pdf


    So all in all I'm sort of glad that you were not my instructor.... Even if the goal of what you said is a good one..... :D
     
  20. MrBorland

    MrBorland Moderator

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    Since his goal is a good one, I'm more inclined to be bummed 9mmEpiphanny wasn't my instructor. Would've saved me a bunch of time and ammo. ;)
     
  21. 45_auto

    45_auto Member

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    You really need to look up the definition of "reasonable".
     
  22. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    Merriam-Webster
    Definition of REASONABLE
    1
    a : being in accordance with reason <a reasonable theory>
    b : not extreme or excessive <reasonable requests>
    c : moderate, fair <a reasonable chance> <a reasonable price>
    d : inexpensive

    I believe my usage falls squarely under "b" and "c"
     
  23. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    You should have trained under my instructor. It wasn't that he was demanding, he just had high expectations and was able to show you that they were attainable.

    Before I'd studied under him, I'd never:
    1. understood how there was no advantage between trigger actions (DA or SA) to the first accurate shot, from the holster
    2. understood how one shot accurately at a rate of 4 shots/sec, much less 5 shots/sec
    3. known that all accuracy is about trigger control
    4. understood how one learned to see the aligned sights faster or how to shorten the time between seeing the aligned sights and pressing the trigger
    5. known that the greatest impediment to accurate shooting is trying to place your shot on target.

    He is of the old school that believes that accuracy isn't independent of speed in shooting.
    He can:
    1. Shoot as accurately at 25 yards in DA as SA
    2. Shoot as accurately at 15-20 yards as a machine rest
    3. Shoot a freehand ~3" group at 50 yards, with a gun he can shoot 1.10" group off a range bag
    ...and yet has only ranked 6th at the IPSC World Championships
     
  24. Pete D.

    Pete D. Member

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    I get real impatient when I read comments like that. I suppose that there are prodigies of shooting around but they seem to be everywhere one turns on the Internet.
    Maybe he is that good....who am I to doubt.....but in perspective it is hard to swallow. Did he ever shoot Bullseye matches? I ask because the ten ring on the 50 yard precision target is ~3". I assume that by "freehand" you mean one hand unsupported. (Two handed is not freehand as neither hand is free) You describe a man who can outshoot the national champions. Do we know his name? Who is this fellow? I am not sarcastic....it pains me whenever I see or hear about someone who is described as a great talent and who has apparently not aspired to the highest levels that his talent would reasonably take him.
    The same is true about air pistol match shooting - that marvelous game of tens. It is all about discipline and precision - why would anyone aspire to less?
    About the OP, I like Mr. Borland's three inches at 25 yards.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2012
  25. beag_nut

    beag_nut Member

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    I regularly do that well at 50 feet (five feet further) with my Ruger GP100, which does not yet have quite the DA smoothness of a Smith. About a round per two seconds.
    In the '70's I was a NRA "Distinguished Expert" at 50 feet.
     
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