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Strong vs. Weak Hand shell reload

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When comparing strong vs. weak hand reload for shotgun, do people tend to prefer strong hand simply because they are manipulating the shells with their dominant hand, or is there some sort of inherent advantage over weak hand still?

I'm technically left handed, but fairly ambidextrous and tend to prefer actions that require fine motor skills with my right hand. Manipulating shells is one of them.

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There are multiple ways of getting the shells from the box to your gun. You have to find the one that suits you best. Many right-handed folk are using the Load-2/quad-load technique with their strong hand. Dismount shotgun, toss butt onto shoulder somewhat inverted while supporting forearm with your weak hand, grab shells from carriers with strong hand and stuff them into the loading port. It works great for most. I think that maintaining your strong hand grip on the gun and rolling it over then stuffing shells with the weak hand is a little quicker and you don't have to worry about a blazing hot barrel in the middle of a big stage.

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Different load techniques are better for different situations. It's best to practice all and employ whichever fits the stage.

I used to believe I was better strong handed because I am a right handed person and have better manipulation, but practice taught me I was better quad loading weak hand.

Become proficient at everything and you'll have many more options during matches.

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Use whichever one is more comfortable for your skills.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Note Mcqueen's advice above as well. Damn near impossible to "load2" or "quadload" while in a vehicle or other confined space.

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I bought a backbone 24 thinking I could strong-hand, muscle my way to quick loading... boy was I wrong! When practicing, remember to setup your gear accordingly as well!

I ended up buying two carbon arms SSL6 plates to break up the backbone 24 and divide up the rounds. Lets see how that works!

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+1 to Mcqueen's advice. Get one down and then practice the other. It pays to be able to load anyway the situation dictates with just a little modification of the caddies.

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I think Strong hand quads from a vest should be the fastest way. Has the least gun and hand movement involved.

But for some reason I'm terrible loading strong hand, and doing weak hand quads I prefer to pull from my belt.

So basically just try them all and do what works best for you. Also agree that being able to use more than one method could be beneficial.

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I have done both. I started with weak hand/roll-over twins, then finally got strong-hand twins working and moved up to strong hand quads from there. For the occasional support-side shooting stage, I have found that my previous experience allows me to do passably good roll-over twins loading with my strong hand that way.

Overall, I like the faster dismount/remount from having it up on the shoulder while loading. I also feel it is easier to keep an eye on the stage with the gun up there when I am loading on the move. Lastly, for truly awkward shooting positions, I can (pretty much) always get the gun from shooting position to loading position up on the strong shoulder, whereas the roll-over position could cause trouble in tight quarters.

That's my personal take, but I agree with everyone else that you should try both and see what works best for you.

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I agree that you need to try multiple types of loading to find what works best for you. That said I prefer strong hand (butt on your shoulder) loading over weak hand bc you have a more control over the muzzle and are less likely to hit it on a barrier. You can tuck the barrel closer to you body(if need be) and still be able to load your shells. Just my opinion.

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My other gear makes the decision for me. My holster is on my right hip, and prevents me from having a sufficient number of shells on that side for a strong hand load. Our club matches nearly always have multiple stages that require all 3 guns, so the shells can't go there in place of the holster. I also prefer prone rifle whenever it is allowed, even if a rickety barricade is provided to lean against, so the chest caddies mean discomfort or scattered shells for me. Since I practice this gear layout most, (holster on the right, shell caddies on the left, pistol mags front left) it is most efficient for me, and therefore best. So I use weak-hand quads, not because it is fundamentally the best (though it may be) but because I have the most confidence in it due to repetitions.

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My other gear makes the decision for me. My holster is on my right hip, and prevents me from having a sufficient number of shells on that side for a strong hand load.

Well, I am a righty and I haven't had a problem with strong side load. For one thing, my pistol and rifle mags are opposite the holster on the left side, so the shot shells go in front, which means it's not a huge difference for strong or weak (I have done both).

For the vast majority of stages I end up running an Invictus 12Q right in front of my holster, slightly angled to match my strong side grab, then I run an 8Q right behind the holster. That's 20 rounds in good location for strong hand, and they don't get in the way when I go prone. For longer stages, I may add another 8Q in front of the 12Q (so, basically appendix carry position). When needed, I run a Chameleon chest rig, which is easy to rotate out of the way if I need to go prone with it.

I am not trying to make you change your mind, of course; I just wanted to point out that there is enough flexibility in equipment location to load with either hand.

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I failed to mention that I usually shoot open division, and the optic and giant mag means the pistol takes up a lot of belt space on the right side. I could maybe fit one dual quad in front of the holster, but that would mean loading some right handed and some left. I am not saying it won't work, just saying that it is the way I set my belt up.

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Looking at Shotgun World Shoot results in my class (IPSC Standard Manual): winner used weak hand reloads, 2nd place - strong hand. And everybody used quad-loading of course.

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Flipping the gun over I definitely noticed the heat on the hand. Brought a left moto glove next match. Worked well until I am using the pistol and found the glove on my weak hand was different as had not shot that way before. Pedestrian shooter at best. Load duce at a time strong hand.

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I load quads strong hand, but from what i have seen, the ones who load the fastest do it weak hand.

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When comparing strong vs. weak hand reload for shotgun, do people tend to prefer strong hand simply because they are manipulating the shells with their dominant hand, or is there some sort of inherent advantage over weak hand still?

I'm technically left handed, but fairly ambidextrous and tend to prefer actions that require fine motor skills with my right hand. Manipulating shells is one of them.

I am right handed and left eye dominate so I became a left handed shooter at about 5.

With a load 2 vest, I roll the shotgun over and place the butt into my armpit while keeping it level with my left hand still on the pistol grip. My Mark Otto vest is up on my chest and I load 2 with my right hand. Returning the gun to action is a flip of the wrist and it is already pointed at the target. If I have to go prone my shells don't end up scattered all over the range. This works for me. The only disadvantage I see for left handed shot gunners is that I cannot load 4 as the bolt release gets in my way.

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I can load with both hands under 4 seconds, but prefer strong hand because the barrel is more parallel with the body and less likely to snag the mag tube on walls and barricades while moving and loading.

I'd challenge anyone to try to beat Nathan Payne's 2.6 load 8....regardless of hand. My best have been JUST under 3 seconds, and this weekend doing shot to shot load 8's were 3.28 seconds. I don't see a big advantage to one method over the other.

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Weakhand might be faster from a table.

Stronghand is more maneuverable in tight spaces or tight turns.

Either one will do you fine, I havnt ran into a stage yet that prevented me from loading stronghand, and Ive been in some tight spots. I dont really go nuts for reload time, but Ive seen people pull sub 3 with either method.

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I can run and load faster strong hand with the gun over my shoulder loading strong hand.

I can load 8 standing faster weak hand. Surprisingly I'm faster bringing the gun all the way down then up again then simply tossing it up on my shoulder. It feels like a port arms start which I've practiced for hours.

The weak hand load is especially useful when you want to pick the gun up and load 4 immediately I f the gun is on a table versus in a barrel. I can have four in my left hand pick the gun up with my right hand and toss a quad in no time. If I go strong hand I need use both hands to pick up the gun, then grab the shells, then load.

Being able to load equally fast with both hands allows my to run about 60 rounds on my belt. I run a similar caddy setup on each side of my center line. I use a 12Q, 8Q, 4Q, 4Q and I can tuck some 4-6 round load two caddies or an old school weak hand caddy behind my back for slugs/buck.

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I can load with both hands under 4 seconds, but prefer strong hand because the barrel is more parallel with the body and less likely to snag the mag tube on walls and barricades while moving and loading.

I'd challenge anyone to try to beat Nathan Payne's 2.6 load 8....regardless of hand. My best have been JUST under 3 seconds, and this weekend doing shot to shot load 8's were 3.28 seconds. I don't see a big advantage to one method over the other.

Is there video of that posted anywhere? I would very much like to see it, that is crazy fast.

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I can load with both hands under 4 seconds, but prefer strong hand because the barrel is more parallel with the body and less likely to snag the mag tube on walls and barricades while moving and loading.

I'd challenge anyone to try to beat Nathan Payne's 2.6 load 8....regardless of hand. My best have been JUST under 3 seconds, and this weekend doing shot to shot load 8's were 3.28 seconds. I don't see a big advantage to one method over the other.

Is there video of that posted anywhere? I would very much like to see it, that is crazy fast.

Just a loading video, or shot to shot? If I can get someone to come practice with me or help at an upcoming match, I should be able to get a video shot to shot. It's not crazy fast tho....Aaron Hayes had the same around 2.9 seconds IIRC!

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if you can get really good at weak hand reloading out of a shell caddie, i have seen guys loading while shooting and moving. that is something I am trying to get down without having my own "shotgun shell yard sale" all over the stage

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Load 8 shoot 1, 2.93 seconds

Pavel Orlov from Saint-Petersburg. Weak-hand loading, Remington 870.

Edited by Llandaff

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