I don't mean to offend. It's probably going to happen anyway.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tight Groups

Seeing as this past week was Spring break, I had to take the opportunity at least once to go to the range with dad. Due to a shipping mishap, the new .22 wasn't in yet, and the attempt to put scopes on the Mosin's failing due to a slight parts mismatch, we didn't take any rifles. I'm starting to notice some interesting things about my shooting.

First and most noticeably, I can shoot quite accurately, but not consistently. I took 8.5X11 targets out to 75 feet with both the Ruger Single Six and S&W .66 shot single action, leaving 12/12 rounds on paper with the Ruger, and 5/6 with the Smith shooting a low group. Iron sights, slow fire. To me, this is an acceptable level of accuracy with a handgun.

Bringing targets back in to 25 feet, my accuracy with the revolvers was pretty much unchanged. Bringing out then the Taurus pt1911, Ruger 22/45, and Springfield Champion .45, my accuracy changed. I could still get nice tight groups on target some of the time. Sometimes they grouped low left, but that was easily corrected by adjusting my trigger pull.* Overall, my concern was the percentage of flyers. I put 4 rounds from the Springfield through the same ragged hole, then the 5th was about 3" distal. It was worse with the Taurus, where about half the shots ended up in a nice group, and the other half ended up 3-5" outside it, seeming to group either up or low left.

Surprisingly, the worst of it was the Ruger 22/45. The groups weren't large, no more than 4-6" at 25 feet, but shots tended to end up in a slanted line across that space. I have seen this gun shoot <1.5" groups at 25 feet, which makes me inclined to think that this is me. I'm starting to get minorly frustrated with this gun, as I have a harder time explaining the groups. It's a .22, so flinching seems highly unlikely, as recoil is all but unnoticeable. I suppose there could be some residual overcompensation from shooting the 9mm before it, but that wouldn't seem to explain the group shape, especially as I tend to get similar results when I start with it. I can't figure out what I'm doing wrong with it.

I have never had any pistol instruction other than from my dad. While he has been a good teacher, (clearly I can shoot decently at least) I feel like more formal instruction might be a useful thing, especially for things like grip and stance. Dad and I both learn a lot from theory and general guides, but I don't think he's taken a formal course either. I feel like I've come up against a wall that can either be overcome by lots and lots of practice and finding for myself what works (a difficult proposition living on a college campus) or by some more instruction. Hopefully this summer will provide opportunity for one or the other.

*I have fairly large hands, and some longer triggers leave my hand rather scrunched up, causing me to squeeze with my other fingers, drawing the shots low left. I either need to adjust my grip or practice focusing on just moving my trigger finger.

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