I’d say I am a fair shot with a pistol. Not great, but OK. I certainly know guys that are far better. Having been asked several times over the last few months how I got to be such a good shot, it’s starting to occur to me that perhaps I’m better than I thought I was. Anyway, I’m always ready to help, where I can, so I thought I’d put fingers to keyboard and write something up. It this helps you, great. If it doesn’t well, I’ll provide a full refund J So, without any further attempts at humility, here’s my thoughts on accurate handgun shooting.
Shoot. Shoot lots. There is no substitute for putting rounds on target if you want to improve. I fired more than 2200 rounds of .40 S&W last year, all from one Smith and Wesson M&P. I didn’t keep track, but somewhere north of a thousand from my old Colt Detective Special, along with several hundred rounds from half a dozen other handguns. If you only pick up a handgun twice a year, you’re not likely to hit what you’re aiming at. Simple, huh. Just like anything else, practice makes you better. I guess an article on reloading is going to be next… I couldn’t shoot near as much as I do if I didn’t roll my own ammo.
Grip: Anyone reading this, if you’ve ever taken a class on positional rifle shooting, hearken back. A good solid prone position, forearm resting gently in your hand, indexed to the same point every time, elbow under the rifle, nice tight sling, good body position, buttstock tightly in the pocket, good, solid cheek weld on the stock, handshake grip on the wrist, nice ‘C’ shape curve, trigger engagement always in the same place... bringing back memories? Good. Now, on a handgun, you’ve got your two grubby mitts on the grip, and that’s it. I’m not going to try and teach a handgun grip by describing it, watch a youtube video, take a class… the point I’m trying to make is that the grip is absolutely essential. It must be stable, and (keyword) CONSISTENT. Grip the same way, every time, and practice it. I keep a bluegun replica of my M&P next to the couch, and practice my grip while watching TV (yeah, I’m a geek, get over it). Get a good grip, and practice it until it’s automatic. The same grip, every time.
Targets: Aim small, miss small. I’m as big a fan of shooting steel as the next guy, but really, you put that IDPA size steel plate out there, hits are easy, but _where_ are you hitting it? Who knows. Get yourself some 4” circle plates, spinners, something of that nature. Then, when you’re practicing, you’ve actually got to AIM to make it react. Paper targets work too, but reactive targets are more fun. I really like bowling pins for pistol targets, from 10-20 yards. Save those big targets for doubletap and speed drills. Small targets help improve accuracy.
Drills: There are as many pistol drills as there are instructors. We’ve all come up with something that we like. All of them are valuable. I like to keep things simple. Set up 8 bowling pins or 4” plates, walk back to 10 yards, and work from a holster. Draw by the numbers, AIM, fire, re-holster. Over and over and over. Same grip, same draw stroke, same sight picture, same trigger squeeze… consistent. Getting to where you can’t miss? Great! Back up some, or switch to a smaller target. No rush, remember, we’re working on accuracy. Speed will come, right now, concentrate on smooth, consistent hits.
On the off chance that someone reads this who has never had a class in basic handgun, or rifle marksmanship, I highly encourage you to do so. Take a look at the United States Rifleman Association (http://www.usrifleman.org) They (we, actually) offer excellent basic rifle and pistol marksmanship classes, along with some more advanced classes. Check it out, you won't regret it.
50 lbs from ReefCleaners. Nice stuff. Just an initial 'stack'... to see what I could do with it. Slow and easy :)
Much like my original design :) Tank is in place, sump, plumbing, return pump, electrical supply... That's just tap water, I wanted to run the pump for a while, test the plumbing, see what I can do to reduce noise. It's not bad, there is a vacuum relief hole in the top of the return line that makes a bit of splash... I've got a plan to silicon a bit of PVC in as a guide that should quiet it down without increasing the risk of an overflow. The sump, an EShopps R100, has a couple of problems... 1, the return pump compartment is 3.5" wide, which severely limits your choices on a return pump. I bought a cheap Chinese DC pump that will work for now. The 2nd problem is the splash down area of the sump. Needs a bit of a redesign, to keep the gurgling down. I'm working on it :)
Next step, rock formation. I've ordered 50lbs of dry base rock, and will begin sculpting as soon as it arrives.
I find myself enjoying the process... Not really in a hurry to get it 'done'... despite my wife and daughter asking when I'm going to put fish in it. Slow and steady :)
Planing out a new reef tank. Took my old one down nearly a decade ago... and I miss having one around.
I'm seeing a bunch of pro 2A folks posting about how happy they are that Sarah Brady has passed. Wrong, folks, just wrong.
In my opinion, she was dead wrong on the issue she dedicated the last half of her life to, but this is a person we're talking about. Somebody's daughter, wife, mother... I don't care how much you disagree with her, dancing on anyone's grave is just wrong.
Her husband was permanently disabled by an idiot with a gun.
I've had a similar event in my life... my nephew and namesake, who I loved dearly, committed suicide with a handgun that I helped him purchase. I assure you... something like that will make you sit down and really think through your position on guns. I disagree with the conclusion that Sarah Brady made... strongly... but I can understand it.
I'll continue to fight against the organization that bears her name, and any other groups or individuals who attempt to disarm the people of this nation. You want to challenge the positions she took? Good. I'm right there with you. Celebrating her passing? Nope. Not going there. Neither should you.
Sound and prudent judgment based on a simple perception of the situation or facts.
Noticed lately how every call for more gun control laws are labeled as ‘Common Sense’? It’s the latest rhetorical device, designed to make all those who disagree look unreasonable. By labeling their arguments as common sense, they are declaring that their argument is valid, without the tedious process of actually presenting their case. In high school debate, this would be called Informational Fallacy.
Gun control proponents can’t win on facts, so they rely on emotional arguments and intellectually dishonest tactics to promote their ideals.
Don’t let them get away with it.
You labeling something as ‘Common Sense’ does not make it so. Common Sense was the argument used to prove that the earth was flat. The verdict at the Scopes Monkey trial relied on the ‘Common Sense’ of 12 jurors.
If you look at the facts, none of their agenda items are anything of the sort. There is no evidence that anything on their agenda will reduce criminal use of firearms in any way. Over the last couple of decades, concealed carry laws have swept the nation… and crime rates have fallen drastically. As John Lott has been saying for 20 years now… more guns, less crime.
Those facts don’t fit the gun control crowd agenda, so… shut them up. Call every draconian gun ban ‘Common Sense’. Tell the world that a huge majority supports their ideas… never mind that it’s all a lie, doesn’t matter, nobody is going to call you on it. Make the other side out to be nutcase, extremist, knuckle dragging cavemen. Not true… the fastest growing segment of people purchasing guns today is women, but that truth doesn’t fit the agenda, so ignore it.
As the old saying goes, if you have facts on your side, pound the facts. If you have the law on your side, pound the law. If you have neither, pound the table. The gun control crowd has lost the argument on the facts, they’ve lost the argument on the law, all the ‘Common Sense’ argument shows is that they have been reduced to pounding the table.