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Question about a shoot through

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Did you take English lessons from Bill Clinton? Just WOW!

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I am not sure how it could be any more clear. You have access to the rule book; please feel free to use it to prove me wrong.

Edited by alma

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Since Rob wrote the ruleset in question (much copied from USPSA), why don't you ask him what his call would be?

As for the USPSA MG rules, already been through this with RMIs, and the ruling was a DQ as well.

Edited by MarkCO

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I agree with Alma. The shooter only engaged the paper. The steel was set incorrectly. I see no DQ.

As far as UNSAFE in the real world small rifle bullets hitting steel (smooth faced quality steel) will only hurt the steel.

Unsafe as far a rules go, but the rules in my mind support the shooter and not a DQ. It was an UNSAFE Stage.

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What if I shoot a paper target with a rifle and the bullet hits a rock on the range and then that bullet somehow manages to hit and

knock over a piece of pistol steel within 15 yards of me? DQ?

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Rules to follow. Do not make forum posts when drinking whiskey. Don't shoot pistol steel with your rifle. Don't waste your time writing rule books (or quoting them) when what is needed is match directors and RO's with common sense and sufficient intestinal fortitude to take care of the situation.

If the shoot through actualy posed a serious safety threat then DQ the shooter. If not, 300 second penalty and a fine. I was not there, there where no reported injuries, I am not going to get my panties in a bunch about it now.

Our sport is full of opportunities to receive injuries. Not only as shooters, but as RO's and even spectators. We need to do what we can to mitigate the risks, but we also need to make sure the game is worth playing. I do not want my friends or kids to get hurt, but some ankles will be twisted, some burns will be sustained, and some jacket material is going to break skin. It is not the risk of injury that makes an activity more enjoyable, but that many activities that have risk are enjoyable. In the sort of situation described here the shooter induced additional risk by hitting the pistol steel with a rifle. This additional risk was caused completely by the shooter. We are responsible for every projectile that we send down range. Be sure of what is in front of and behind your target. The law is the law. Bad target presentation or stage design is no excuse, but the punishment should fit the crime and only someone who was there can asses the risk that was caused by this action.

Giant rule books are written and quoted in an effort to make events as consistent and fair as possible, and to absolve the book writing party of as much liability as possible. The larger the rule set the more of the effort is spent on playing the rules and not the actual sport. Common sense and reason should be the overriding rule.

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Or we could just do whatever Mr Kelley says. He is after all the "Elder Statesman" of our sport.

Edited by Stlhead

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"Be sure of your target and what is behind it" is not a law or a rule for 3GN or USPSA. You have to go with what is in the actual rule book. If the potential for disaster is as you say then get the RM to modify the stage instead of putting the onus on the shooter to magically know whether there is a steel target hidden behind the big paper thing in front of him that he is supposed to be shooting.

Let me try breaking it down another way.

1. According to the rule book you do not get DQed for hitting steel with your rifle when the steel is set too close; you get DQed for Engaging steel with your rifle that is too close.

2. According to the rule book you have to have a line of sight to be considered to be Engaging it and shooting through other things doesn't count as Engaging.

3. According to the rule book a competitor who legitimately fires a shot at a target, which hits and then travels in an unsafe direction, will not be disqualified.

If someone else was DQed at a 3GN match for doing this than it was incorrect and unjustly. That RO and/or RM should get more familiar with the rulebook and then take the time to remove potential hazards like this from the stages versus blaming the shooter.

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Did you take English lessons from Bill Clinton? Just WOW!

Are those the english lessons where you read the words as they are written?

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Giant rule books are written and quoted in an effort to make events as consistent and fair as possible, and to absolve the book writing party of as much liability as possible. The larger the rule set the more of the effort is spent on playing the rules and not the actual sport. Common sense and reason should be the overriding rule.

The reason we write rules down instead of just letting "common sense and reason" be the "overriding rule" is that things that are self-evident to one party are not always self evident to others. In the scenario that was presented the shooter did not commit a DQable offense. They did not "engage" the steel target, regardless of what they actually hit. I don't think you are allowed to DQ people for violating your version of common sense rules. I am pretty sure you need to support that stuff with the rule book.

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A lot of people also break the "treat every weapon as if it was loaded" rule in the gun games too. Seriously, If you can interpret the rules based on how you feel why even have a rulebook? I think any logical english speaker would look at those rules and say the shooter is not liable therefore no DQ. I think Bill Clinton would say I dont care what the rules say the uncodified rules of gun safety say you are DQ'ed and I bet my buddies would agree.

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Down here the local 3 gun matches are not USPSA affiliated.

At each match we always have a few newer shooters. For the benefit of all shooters, the MD starts off the match with a nice brief shooters meeting. One comment almost always heard is "if you shoot our steel with a rifle nearer than 50 yards, it is a match DQ". Nothing is said about "engaging" the steel, only "shooting" the steel.

The stage design attempts to avoid problems like the on that started this thread, but if we want to shoot freestyle, occasionally someone will find a shooting angle that results in a shoot through hitting steel. As a competitor, you are responsible for where your bullet goes. First, keep it within the berms and second, don't shoot our pistol steel too close with a rifle and third, keep it reasonable.

We don't want anyone hurt and we don't want our props tore up.

Now if I'm the RO and Patrick can take down steel with ricochet shots, I'll mark it as "all steel down" and wager him a beer that he can't do it again. After all its just a game.

Sorry to interrupt. The range lawyers may now resume their discussion.

Edited by Flatland Shooter

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Did you take English lessons from Bill Clinton? Just WOW!

I totally agree with Alma. The rule as stated is pretty clear. The shooter was shooting at a legitimate target. After that, the shot went in an unsafe direction. If your tribe wants to do it differently, I would suggest clarifying the rule , cuz right now the rule is on Alma's side. edit: Not quite so sure about this part anymore, and whether or not the analogy below applies.

You could have a semi-analogous situation if you have high targets and a low berm, where a shorter shooter could put a round over the berm by legitimately engaging a target. The rule as written is pretty clear that's not a dq, even if it is an egregious safety problem. That's why we take some time to debug stages to avoid those issues rather than just set stuff up and let the shooter figure it out.

Edited by motosapiens

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Pat, how many club level matches have you shot that have smooth faced quality steel? I don't think I own a piece of smooth faced steel anymore and most of mine is MGM.

:)

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The shoot through in question was at a very shallow angle and the rifle bullet just grazed the steel. Based on the stage design it could have been eliminated by moving targets a little without changing the stage much at all. We had several on our squad that barely grazed the steel targets but we had one shooter hit the steel hard enough to knock it down.

The shot angle was somewhat gamey as the paper target was engaged with a rifle at an angle instead of a pistol target head-on, but the stage was intended to present both options to the shooter as I understood it on the stage walkthrough.

Here's a link to my video. You can see at ~33seconds the targets being engaged at an angle.

http://youtu.be/_E4DAO22pQk?t=31s

One of those shots resulted in the pass-through ricochet on steel with another shooter at this match.

Edited by JoeBoboutfitters

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I will say here that I was the shooter in question. I was engaging paper targets and grazed a popper from about a 110 degree angle, the bullet did not hit the popper square and passed through the paper and into the berm. 10 shooters ahead of me made the same shot, I just got "lucky". I started to ULSC before anyone hollered stop, I'm not a new shooter by any means, and knew that hitting a pistol steel with rifle was a match killer. I was starting to pack my equipment up for the day when the MD came over to ask how it happened. After others explained, he gave me a stage DQ in order to let me shoot the remaining 3 stages, which I graciously accepted.

I knew of the risk and took the chance, and drew the short straw. I agree that striking pistol steel with rifle is unsafe, and I have shot at major matches where I saw shooters engage pistol plates with rifle, and they were given stage DQs.

The level of gaming on that stage I DQed on dropped drastically after I showed what could happen, so I hope others were able to learn from my misfortune.

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Rig pig, I respect your attitude of owning it.

I hope the match director learned an important lesson, one which is not covered by any rule book.

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If I now understand it correctly, the competitors saw a shooting position that may have saved them some time but they also saw that there was a risk of hitting the pistol steel while shooting at a rifle target.

Some weighed the risk and won. Others such as Real Pig were not quite so lucky. But they knew hitting the steel was a DQ.

Real Pig handled it honorably. Would be happy to shoot with him at any match.

Bill

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This example is from a match ran under 3GN rules. Those are the rules that should be applied to this case. I will not comment on the interpretation of those rules as they apply to this case, others have chased this around plenty. I should have been more clear in my first post. The matches I attend are "outlaw" matches. I like matches where the MD, and or the RO's, don't refer back to a rule tome, but instead just attempt to make the right call. Sometimes the call goes the way I think it should, sometimes not, but I can predict the call most of the time because I KNOW the MD's and many of the RO's that are making the calls. When I sign up for the match I agree to the terms.

Mr. Stoeger, your consistency point would be valid if there where other matches that would require consistencey. 3 gun matches are not a part of a larger series or even organization. Each one is a separate and distinct entity all it's own. Each one is ran, scored, and managed with it's own special flavor, and they each offer different challenges. USPSA gives rules on how stages can and can't be constructed, the matches I like are not bound by such rules, so the target presentation and match conditions vary greatly from match to match. What is important in 3gun is not match to match consistencey, it is the year to year consistencey for each given match. If you sign up for the Ironman you can be very certain of what you will see and how the match will be run, same for the Rocky mountain, or the hard as hell. If you go to any area USPSA match you will have a similar experience. Thats great if you think USPSA is the pinacle of the shooting sports, but if you want more, or if you think that it could be better, it is the variety and induvidual style of the various experiences that make 3 gun unique. If a 3 gun match is well done with good stages and is ran in a fair and consistent manner, it fills up to capacity every year, if it fails to impress the shooters, they fail to return and it eventualy dies or improves. The free market economy and natural selection decide what is a good match, what rules are best, and how and who should make the descisions about the match. I recommend people try as many matches as they can and choose thier favorites. If you think you can improve a match volunteer, offer to help set stages, RO, or go all in and put on your own match, at the bare minimum take the time to tell the MD what you think of the match.

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On a related topic, what do the 3GN rules say about shoot through paper to paper.....provided it was possible?

It doesn't seem as clear in the 3GN rules. Here is as close as I can find.

3.4 Additional 5 Seconds: Will be assessed for Firing shots through a vision barrier to engage a target. This will result in the target being scored with an additional penalty "Target Not Engaged' (rule 9.1.5 b, 9.1.8, 9.1.12)

9.1.13 All props, walls, barriers, vision screens and other obstacles are deemed to be impenetrable "hard cover". (rule 3.4)

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The shoot through in question was at a very shallow angle and the rifle bullet just grazed the steel. Based on the stage design it could have been eliminated by moving targets a little without changing the stage much at all. We had several on our squad that barely grazed the steel targets but we had one shooter hit the steel hard enough to knock it down.

The shot angle was somewhat gamey as the paper target was engaged with a rifle at an angle instead of a pistol target head-on, but the stage was intended to present both options to the shooter as I understood it on the stage walkthrough.

Here's a link to my video. You can see at ~33seconds the targets being engaged at an angle.

http://youtu.be/_E4DAO22pQk?t=31s

One of those shots resulted in the pass-through ricochet on steel with another shooter at this match.

On your vid I will agree the steel is a little close to that paper but as a shooter you are the one pulling the trigger and I believe that stage awareness is a major factor in matches. That you have a walk through a stage briefing and a chance to plan that engaging that target some angles can lead to a chance of hitting the steel and meaning dq. I think Rig Pig said it best if it happens I think you need to own up to it and take what ever the outcome will be.

We are constantly as shooters trying to shave off seconds on times even tenths of a seconds but the main idea behind these matches at least in my mind is safety and that means looking at the course of fire and understanding ya I can save a few seconds shooting here but is it worth the risk for the outcome.

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