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Bryan 45

Muzzle Up/ Muzzle Down

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Bryan 45   

Most multi-gun rules state carry of long guns must be with either muzzle up or muzzle down. Some specifically say muzzle up. I'm not aware of any that specifically state muzzle down.

In being around ROs and RO'ing myself, I've noticed some people have a firm preference for one or the other. I am a muzzle down guy, but if the match rules say up/down, I don't care as long as it's vertical. What's the deal w/ muzzle up?

If I'm going to be swept w/ a muzzle, I'd rather it be my feet than my head. If through the negligent actions of a shooter a gun is hot, it would be better for it to go into the dirt than the air. The only reason I can come up w/ for a muzzle up preference is in the event of dropping a gun, a bore obstruction is less likely. But, that's only a concern for the guy w/ the gun (or the RO if the shooter is careless enough to not check the bore after dropping it).

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Vlad   

I'm with you brother, muzzle down all the way.

Also low ready as start position instead of port arms for the same reasons and now with a HOT gun, but also as I fail to see which scenario we are trying to simulate, being attacked during weapons inspection? ;)

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We've been using low ready for starts for a while with a hot gun.

I agree. I think even the shooter would rather be shot in the foot than the head!

But, empty gun slung, I'd rather muzzle up, 'cause Trapr showed me how you can do it and shoot another gun and you're less likely to get something unwanted in your muzzle!

My .02!

Denise

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MarkCO   

I'm with you Bryan. I sling muzzle down. If you consider safety in general, if the muzzle is down, it has to travel about 90 degrees to become horizontal before anyone would reasonably be swept. Any trip and fall is going to end up with a gun at ground level flat. On the other hand, muzzle up, especially around others, only takes 45 degrees or less for the muzzle to end up in a potential sweeping, or unsafe direction. Also, muzzle blast...muzzle around head v. muzzle around feet...no brainer. I've worked numerous fatal hunting accidents professionally, all guns were being carried muzzle up. Never had a muzzle down fatality. Not a representative sample, but when I researched it two years ago, the overwhelming majority of gun discharge fatalities during hunting are when the gun was being handled muzzle up. If we ascribe to what we teach and preach..."all guns are always loaded" then muzzle down is the way to go. If you unbag a horizontal gun, muzzle down ends up with no possibility of sweeping...not true when you go from flat to muzzle up.

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Muzzle down is always the safest direction for a gun, loaded or not. But I believe how a long gun is placed in the staging rack plays a major role on how it is carried. Everyone puts their long gun on the rack with the muzzle up for several reasons. Those reasons include not wanting any dirt getting in or on the barrel, or not wanting to damage the crown of the barrel, or not wanting to set a long gun down on its red hot barrel. And they are all valid reasons. If a shooter was to retrieve a gun with the muzzle up from the rack or vice versa, they'll have to flip it around to carry it muzzle down. Not a bad idea if the rack was next to a birm. But I see a lot of racks in the middle of where the shooters and spectators are hanging out.

Personally, I don't mind a gun being carried with the muzzle up, as long as it is UNLOADED AND THE BOLT LOCKED OPEN. As for starting positions with a loaded gun, I'd rather have it at the low ready. But if it must be port arms, then require that the safety is on.

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We have instituted a rule for our matches. Muzzle DOWN and Low Ready.

Take a look at how long guns are carried in the 'field' Stock is up, muzzle is down, hand is on the grip with finger extended. Simple fast transition to a firing position, no chance of sweeping the head of your buddy if you bend a little. Muzzle up and the darned thing is flagging all over the place. Much easier to control and maintain awareness.

As for the Rack, IF, and is is a big IFthe rack is properly constructed, then Muzzle down in the rack is fine. Most racks are built and work best Muzzle up. So, the answer there is a bolt block, If the bolt is BLOCKED open the gun cannot fire.I understand the reluctance to put a flag into a hot chamber, but a bolt block solves the problem.

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dchang0   

There are a couple of other reasons muzzle down is superior to muzzle up:

1) In high school physics, we learned that gravity causes something to fall vertically at the same speed as it went up, in a parabola. Of course, there's air friction that will reduce the bullet's speed, but a falling bullet can definitely kill someone far away, as evidenced by the numerous New Years Eve fatalities caused by idiots shooting into the air.

A discharge downwards might hit somebody's legs, but if the shooter is handling a hot gun, he is likely facing away from people around him (downrange, with everyone else behind him). Thus, the discharge downwards is less likely to hit someone than a bullet going upwards which might arc over the berm and fall at a deadly speed onto someone in another bay on the other side of the berm. (Richmond and SMM3G have bays set up like this, where one bay is "downrange" of another, protected only by a berm.)

2) If dropped, a muzzle-down gun is much likelier to stick the muzzle into the dirt sooner than a muzzle-up gun, whose muzzle has further to fall before hitting the ground (and might never stick safely down into the dirt if the gun doesn't flip over enough).

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Good point about the rack location, Jomar.

Congratulations on a fine finish at CMMG too! :cheers:

Only because you were not there.

Looking forward to seeing you in Ozarks.

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Jack T   

Muzzle up muzzle down, doesn't matter as long as the weapon/muzzle is controlled, weapon safed. People need to be muzzle conscious, but you will never fix stupid.

If not slung, I see just as many muzzle down carried long guns pointing out at a 45 degree angle(groin/stomach area) because the stock is tucked under the armpit.

NEVER start a stage with muzzle up, or what some stage descriptions may inadvertently call "Port Arms" when what they want is a "high ready" start. Big difference between the two. Military guys/gals know what I mean.

Stick with "Low Ready" starts.

Jack

Edited by Jack T

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madmax52   

For what it's worth, being in the military we carry our weapons muzzle down. Granted we never really "sling" our weapons in a combat environment, however you'll see most of us have them tied off to our vest/chest rig in some manor. I think the main reason for that is obviously muzzle discipline, but you always have control of your trigger and safety. With a weapon slung on your back and muzzle up you have the possibilities of a negligent discharge and a round flying who knows where in the sky.

Just my .02

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