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Sights or Target Drill


benos

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I was just remembering a drill that taught me a lot.

Set up two IPSC paper targets at 50 yards.

Shoot 10 shots at the left target, then 10 shots at the right target.

The goal is to shoot the smallest 10-shot group possible on each target.

Shoot shot slow fire.

Raise and lower your gun for each shot.

Take all the time you need for each shot to the most accurate shot possible.

For the left target, be sure you are focused right on the target at the instant the shot breaks. For each shot, set up your grip and position, then lower the gun and mentally review what you are going to do - Look right at the center of the target, raise the gun, align the sights (you may go back and forth from the target to the sights a time or two to be sure you have the best alignment possible in the center of the target), then bring the target into focus and hold as still as possible until the shot fires. (You'll still be aware of a coarse sight alignment, the sights will just look blurry because you are focused on the target.) Repeat 9 more times.

For the right target, be sure you are looking right at the front sight at the instant the shot breaks. For each shot, set up your grip and position, then lower the gun and mentally review what you are going to do - Look right at the center of the target, raise the gun, align the sights (you may go back and forth from the target to the sights a time or two to be sure you have the best alignment possible in the center of the target), then look right at the front sight until the shot fires.

Walk down and check out the targets.

Also do the exact same drill at 25 yards, then at 15 yards.

be

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I imagine once WE experience it Brian will share his.

I know how well I can place shots on a 50 yard plate rack using both and I would only use one.

Patrick

Thats what I thought the answer would be !! :bow:

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Would the drill be the same if you were shooting an open gun with a dot?

I wouldn't think so. But, I am sure you could do some variations? You could try a focus on the dot, versus a focus on the target. But, I might try a target focus using the whole dot (super-imposed on where you want to hit), versus using just the top or bottom edge of the dot as your aiming reference.

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BTW, I am pretty sure that Brian has posted the outcome of this drill before. He didn't go into detail on the drill, as I recall. He just talked about shooting groups at 50y, with a target focus and with a front sight focus.

We are shooting a 50y classifier tomorrow. I might have to load some extra ammo and stick around after to do some of this drill. (Thanks, Brian)

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I was just remembering a drill that taught me a lot.

Set up two IPSC paper targets at 50 yards.

Shoot 10 shots at the left target, then 10 shots at the right target.

The goal is to shoot the smallest 10-shot group possible on each target.

Shoot shot slow fire.

Raise and lower your gun for each shot.

Take all the time you need for each shot to the most accurate shot possible.

For the left target, be sure you are focused right on the target at the instant the shot breaks. For each shot, set up your grip and position, then lower the gun and mentally review what you are going to do - Look right at the center of the target, raise the gun, align the sights (you may go back and forth from the target to the sights a time or two to be sure you have the best alignment possible in the center of the target), then bring the target into focus and hold as still as possible until the shot fires. (You'll still be aware of a coarse sight alignment, the sights will just look blurry because you are focused on the target.) Repeat 9 more times.

For the right target, be sure you are looking right at the front sight at the instant the shot breaks. For each shot, set up your grip and position, then lower the gun and mentally review what you are going to do - Look right at the center of the target, raise the gun, align the sights (you may go back and forth from the target to the sights a time or two to be sure you have the best alignment possible in the center of the target), then look right at the front sight until the shot fires.

Walk down and check out the targets.

Also do the exact same drill at 25 yards, then at 15 yards.

be

Being nearsighted, my shooting glasses are corrected to give me accuity on the front sight with the target down range being not that sharply focused. Would you suggest I wear my normal correction on the left target to see it clearly in focus to do the drill properly?

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BTW, I am pretty sure that Brian has posted the outcome of this drill before. He didn't go into detail on the drill, as I recall. He just talked about shooting groups at 50y, with a target focus and with a front sight focus.

We are shooting a 50y classifier tomorrow. I might have to load some extra ammo and stick around after to do some of this drill. (Thanks, Brian)

I think it is also in his book.

BK

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Would the drill be the same if you were shooting an open gun with a dot?

Yes, you could substitute "dot" for "front sight." For me, the results were quite different with a dot than they were for iron sights.

Being nearsighted, my shooting glasses are corrected to give me accuity on the front sight with the target down range being not that sharply focused. Would you suggest I wear my normal correction on the left target to see it clearly in focus to do the drill properly?

I would say yes, probably. ;) That's going to throw a bit of wrench into it though. Because you will loose a bit visual acuity for the sights on the left target. Maybe try it both ways.

It has been a while since he wrote the book. Maybe he has some more (or different) insight to it now.

Good angle. ;) But no not really.

I did that drill originally with no expectations other than that I would probably learn something. And I did learn two things that influenced everything I did after that.

Another thing I'm just remembering that seems interesting to me just sitting here thinking about it... When I first did that drill, I was already a fairly good shot. It might have been in the late '80s. But it still really woke me up.

be

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  • 4 weeks later...
No one's learned anything yet?

;)

I read this thread some time ago, but had observed what it took for me to shoot As at 100 or even 200yds with my dot. If I look at the target at that distance I would be lucky to hit anything... it takes very intense dot focus for me to hit at long distances. I shoot head shots at 25yds at the end of my practice sessions and I found that a light grip with dot focus was the way to put them in the A-head. My best was 8 shots all touching in the head from 25yrds with one shot off the group about an inch. I can't call that a flyer, but a loss of focus as I broke it. I still have that target on the wall downstairs. :)

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No one's learned anything yet?

;)

I read this thread some time ago, but had observed what it took for me to shoot As at 100 or even 200yds with my dot. If I look at the target at that distance I would be lucky to hit anything... it takes very intense dot focus for me to hit at long distances. I shoot head shots at 25yds at the end of my practice sessions and I found that a light grip with dot focus was the way to put them in the A-head. My best was 8 shots all touching in the head from 25yrds with one shot off the group about an inch. I can't call that a flyer, but a loss of focus as I broke it. I still have that target on the wall downstairs. :)

I never tried this exact drill with a dot. But when shooting a dot for years, I felt like I shot better if I burned in on the dot for long or accurate shots. Especially for stages like at the Bianchi Cup.

But then some years later, when training for the Sportsman's Team Challenge, I had an "ah-ha" moment that changed my approach to dot shooing.

I was practicing the "third leg" of the pistol event - 10, 4" steel squares at 35 yards. Those are some tough targets. Especially because you never felt like you had enough time to just shoot them - I always felt rushed.

By the time I had the "ah-ha" I'd shot those targets a zillion times practicing over some years. I was shooting a string, and for the first time ever I saw the bullet splatter on the plate and actually watched the plate fall over. (The plates were on a rack, like a Bianchi Cup plate rack, and flipped over really quickly.) At that moment of course I realized that I had to be looking right at the plate to have seen that. That's the only way I could have seen that.

But what was even more remarkable than seeing the bullet his was the feeling that accompanied it. It seemed so "easy," the shot broke without any "effort" on my part. I was just looking at the target - and then the bullet hit the target and it fell over.

So my goal for that string became to never look anywhere other than right at the target, until I saw the bullet hit it.

And this is really hard to explain... After some time practicing that way, whether shooting in practice or the match, I'd have this almost eerie sensation that the dot was "in the way." It's like the dot was preventing me from seeing the target as good as I wanted to see it. I know that doesn't make any sense but that's what it felt like.

be

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Well, I shot this last night at 50 ?? :unsure:

I'm not sure of what I ecxactly learned ? I'm thinking it's that the wobble does not come into

play since I cant see the wobble with a target focus yet the results were almost the same ??

Sight focus target, 8 A's, 2 C's

Target focus target, 2 A's, 7 C's, 1 D

But the groups were the same size only the target focus target had the whole group moved 3" to the right.

Probably just a visual effect with my eyes and the light condition ?? :rolleyes:

Now my buddy who was with me :surprise: he's not as expirienced and his was completely different ? Sight target

all over the place with 2 mikes, target target all 10 withing the C zone ?? <_<

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No one's learned anything yet?

;)

I read this thread some time ago, but had observed what it took for me to shoot As at 100 or even 200yds with my dot. If I look at the target at that distance I would be lucky to hit anything... it takes very intense dot focus for me to hit at long distances. I shoot head shots at 25yds at the end of my practice sessions and I found that a light grip with dot focus was the way to put them in the A-head. My best was 8 shots all touching in the head from 25yrds with one shot off the group about an inch. I can't call that a flyer, but a loss of focus as I broke it. I still have that target on the wall downstairs. :)

I never tried this exact drill with a dot. But when shooting a dot for years, I felt like I shot better if I burned in on the dot for long or accurate shots. Especially for stages like at the Bianchi Cup.

But then some years later, when training for the Sportsman's Team Challenge, I had an "ah-ha" moment that changed my approach to dot shooing.

I was practicing the "third leg" of the pistol event - 10, 4" steel squares at 35 yards. Those are some tough targets. Especially because you never felt like you had enough time to just shoot them - I always felt rushed.

By the time I had the "ah-ha" I'd shot those targets a zillion times practicing over some years. I was shooting a string, and for the first time ever I saw the bullet splatter on the plate and actually watched the plate fall over. (The plates were on a rack, like a Bianchi Cup plate rack, and flipped over really quickly.) At that moment of course I realized that I had to be looking right at the plate to have seen that. That's the only way I could have seen that.

But what was even more remarkable than seeing the bullet his was the feeling that accompanied it. It seemed so "easy," the shot broke without any "effort" on my part. I was just looking at the target - and then the bullet hit the target and it fell over.

So my goal for that string became to never look anywhere other than right at the target, until I saw the bullet hit it.

And this is really hard to explain... After some time practicing that way, whether shooting in practice or the match, I'd have this almost eerie sensation that the dot was "in the way." It's like the dot was preventing me from seeing the target as good as I wanted to see it. I know that doesn't make any sense but that's what it felt like.

be

I think I understand what you are driving at here... I have had a similar feeling when practicing many draws to a small plate at around 20yds. My standard draw and shot used to be around 1.4 for a shot on an A sized target for that distance... now after many draws picking a spot on that plate and "pushing" my draw and first shot... I got to a point where I wasn't really seeing anything but the plate. Well, that is I was conscious of nothing, but that spot on the plate. That's how I had my first shots down to 1.2 and then 1. With that same feeling was my personal best on a plate at that distance. It basically felt like... beep-clang and I don't remember even seeng the dot.

I have not felt that, but maybe a few times and mostly under 25yds, so I'm not sure it's relevent to the longer shots, at least for me.

That is some very good stuff to think on Brian, and I have cut it and pasted it into my docs of relevent shooting info and advice, that I have gleened from the forum from the last year. Thanks for taking the time.

Jim

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You're welcome Jim.

It might have not only been the difficulty of the shots, but also that you had to shoot 10 in a row under intense pressure in a short time period, that pushed me into a "visual zone" I'd never experienced before. It felt like the way a successful shot in Zen Archery is described - not a single trace of any sort of effort was there, including the decision to fire the shot. Or in other words, (at the risk of sounding cheesy) when you become the target, the shot fires itself. That would be equally true if you become the front sight, if you have one.

Dirty Chamber,

Other than the score and shot placement, did you notice anything "else"?

be

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I experienced this at the TSLC last weekend on the spinning star stage. After the target fell away from the port, I could see the plates. I don't remember picking one, but suddenly something went clang and it was gone. 2nd plate when the same way and then the star stopped spinning. :cheers: I remember then pulling in to a front sight focus and picked up the third one easy enough but had to take an extra shot on the last two. For me this always seems to happen on steel when I'm coming into an array. I remember it screwing me up once because it was an activator and I took it while still moving - then my timing was off cos I wasn't in the sweet spot! :P

Cool post Brian!

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I cant say that I did ?? :unsure: All this talk of a target focus at 50yd when applied to

irons goes against the grain for me. Lots of things happend during those shots but my

focus was not on a difference of feel but the outcome ?? :blush:

Well there was one thing I do remember after rereading your earlier post. If this is on the right track, I did

notice during the target focus target that the sights were in the way of me seeing the target. I remember wanting

to look over them like you would to quickly shoot an open target from 1-2yds, point style ??

I'll try again this weekend !!

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I only shoot the 50 yard part today and my groups were smaller when I focused on the dot (shooting open). With a target focus, the dot seemed to move to much and I felt myself either stopping a smooth trigger break and trying to rush the shot. When I focused on the dot, it seemed to not move and my trigger control was smooth, didn't have to think about it, it just happened. I will try again tomorrow I forgot to do it at 25 and 15 yards), maybey set up some steel as well.

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