Gun-Day Sunday: High Demand, Triggers and “Dicks”

Anyone go to the Nation’s Gun Show here in NoVa ths weekend? I missed it but MDL went on Friday afternoon, and reported that the line to get in was extraordinary. He also reported on some ammo prices, such as 1000 rounds of Tula 7.62×39 for $390. I do need to stock up on that caliber, but in this case– no pun intended– I passed.

Like we said earlier, don’t believe reports that America has a hard-on for gun control. Not with gun store shelves bare and PMags back-ordered and ammo prices back up in the stratosphere.

Being now a Farnam alumnus, I get his Quips by email before they appear on the website. He’s put out some good ones lately, but here’s an excerpt from one of the best, “Trigger Technique,” concerning the best way to hold on target when shooting offhand:

Holding sights perfectly still on a target happens only in movies! Sights
will always move as you’re pressing the trigger, no matter how you’re
holding the rifle. In addition, remember that your sights, no matter how
steady, only approximate the actual path of the bullet. In our business,
nothing is exactly exact!

When your judgement is that the hit-probability for your next shot is in
excess of 80%, you need to take the shot as soon as you can, as circumstances
are unlikely to get any better! 80% is, of course, an arbitrary rule.
You can select any standard you want, but 80% is useable and realistic for
most serious scenarios.

So, when you’re holding the dot on target, and it is weaving as you
described, just hold it as steady as you can. When it remains on the target more
than 80% of the time, start pressure on the trigger. You’ll still miss two
shots out of ten, but, when you wait until you’re 99% sure of a hit, you
won’t do much shooting!

When you’re unable to maintain an 80% hold, then (1) get steadier via (a)
changing shooting posture, or (b) resting the rifle (with your body parts as
a buffer) against a solid object, or (2) take a leap of faith and let the
shot go at less than 80%, with all risks that choice entails, or (3)
disengage and withdraw. Those are your choices. There is no risk-free option!

Being able to accurately predict your individual hit-probability in any
circumstance, before you take the shot, is a critical skill, and you sharpen
it by trial and error during live-fire, range exercises. Precisely making
such predictions with consistent accuracy is more art than science,
particularly under ‘field’ conditions, and your best ally in this regard is
practice and experience, as noted above.

In a typical Operator-grade AR, you have a 2MOA rifle, and you’re likely
shooting 3MOA ammunition. Within that prison of circumstance, make things go
your way!”

(BTW, Farnam’s 2013 course schedule is up. Based on my one experience last year, I recommend him strongly and I intend to take another one this year.)

Finally, avoid Dick’s Sporting Goods when going to buy guns, ammunition or any hunting gear. SEE HERE for one example. That corporation has chosen to be a good little stooge of the gun-control movement. They don’t deserve your business.


  1. Russell says:

    I love the sentence [2 MOA rifle and 3 MOA ammo]! It really sums up precision shooting before taking into account shooter input. In engineering school, they teach how error in measuremen propagates as you process the data and shooting seems to be the same. If you have ever been frustrated not knowing why you were missing your mark (like when zeroing), you know what I am talking about. I remember trying to zero my shotgun with very, very expensive sabots. I wanted to get on paper real quick so I moved to a close range after missing at 100 yards and not knowing left or right, up or down. Each miss was costing about 3 bucks. Unfortunately, at closer range, the red plastic wad was punching holes in the paper as well and that unhappy little oddity caused me to go back to slugs which still work just fine.

    I suppose the moral is that there really is no substitute for KD style shooting and lots of it. While perhaps less important in three gun, or combat, when you air it out at longer ranges, you still need to be able to "shoot the box". Even with rack rifle and Lake City ball, you will end up back where you started if you know your rifle and apply the fundamentals.