Mine, that is, with credit to the late Bill Jordan who noted in his book, No Second Place Winner
, that many revolver stocks are designed to place the burden of recoil exactly where it hurts the most: In the 'web' between thumb and forefinger. While this is true, there are sometimes ways around it, and I accidentally discovered one with the J-frame Models 642-0 and 638-1.
My 642 came with this type of stocks (shown here on a 640 in .357):
This pair of stocks allowed for a conventional, full-finger grip on the gun with the thumb curled downward.
My 638 came with this type of stocks (shown here on a 637):
This pair of stocks did not
allow for a conventional grip.
In addition to lacking a spot for the little finger, I found I could no longer curl my thumb downward because it interfered with the trigger stroke. The tip of my trigger finger was basically stopped by my thumb. Not good.
In order to get around this, I adopted a 'high thumb' hold. In essence, I use the thumb latch as a thumb rest. (Not quite, but you get the idea.) This in turn required that I flex the muscles in my palm in a different manner than usual in order to get a good grip on the gun.
When shooting, I immediately noticed a huge
difference in perceived recoil: The 638 with the little boot grip seemed to kick far less than the 642 ever did, even though its grips were much larger (and more 'conventional').
Well, for some time, I never bothered to try and figure out why. I was just happy to have an Airweight − and, later, an Airlite − with stocks I could comfortably shoot.
Then one day I finally ordered a copy of Mr. Jordan's book, No Second Place Winner
. I'd read it once before, but that was a long
time ago. In it, he talks about his grip design and the way it directs the kick into the palm of your hand instead of the usual spot where it hurts.
The light went on. That's basically what I'd accomplished with the lowly Uncle Mike's Boot Grip shown in the second pic above simply by taking a high thumb hold!
Amazing. And lucky
Anyway, if it makes any sense, maybe this can help someone else. Basically, pay attention to (and possibly change) the way the muscles in your palm
interact with the grip.
Like most of us, I think, I mainly paid attention to how I was flexing the rest
of my hand when gripping a handgun. If I had figured out the other part sooner (or fully absorbed Mr. Jordans message the first time I read it 30+ years ago), I might have saved myself some pain.
For those who might be interested, you can get No Second Place Winner
at Amazon for only $15.95. Much of it is dated, of course, but a lot of it is timeless. It's even in hardcover