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down and left

Discussion in 'Tactics and Training' started by sciolist, Feb 15, 2010.

  1. sciolist

    sciolist

    3,093
    663
    Nov 11, 2009
    PNW
    Yeah, I'm a noob. Got my G19 in October. Have about 2500 rounds through it, all shooting outdoors.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
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    I try to get out once a week. I use a 24"x36" vertical backboard with six 7" round targets, and a wood rail on top, where I put steel juice cans. That gives me something reactive to shoot from further back.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    So the normal m.o. is to shoot 150 or 200 rounds from 7, 10, 15, 20, 30, 40 and 50 yds. My groupings are about 1.5" at 7 yds, about 2.5" at 15 yds, 4.5" at 20 yds and 6" or so moving out to 30 yds. I can pop a juice can off the top rail about 2 in 5 shots at 40 yds, and was 2 in 5 today at 50 yds.<o:p></o:p>
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    My shots are pretty well centered in the target at 7 and 10 yds. As I start moving back though, they fall down and left. I know this is me, not the gun.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    The main thing controlling lateral position of the shots seems to be position of my index pad on the trigger. I generally center the pad on the trigger, with a little daylight on the outboard side of the frame. I generally need to put POA a little high to get into or above the bullseye beyond 15 yards.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Does anyone have any general comments on this?<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    I think the bore axis of the gun is pretty well centered on my strong arm. Also think my weak hand/strong hand relationship and stance are OK, considering level of experience.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    I'm really wondering about the down/left thing, though. Want to get the groupings consistently centered in the targets as they continue to get smaller.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Thanks for any help. :)<o:p></o:p>
     
  2. NMGlocker

    NMGlocker BOOM headshot

    2,014
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    Jun 29, 2001
    New Mexico
    Low left is poor trigger control along with a little recoil anticipation/flinch.
    Finger position on the trigger and grip have nothing to do with where a slow fire, single shot goes.
     


  3. Gallium

    Gallium CLM

    28,685
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    Mar 26, 2003
    If you are shooting 2.5" groups at 45 feet, I sincerely doubt you have a problem, and I doubt that if you did have a problem, that we'd be able to diagnose with the limited resources here ( not being there in person, etc).

    'Drew
     
  4. sciolist

    sciolist

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    Nov 11, 2009
    PNW
    NMG, am I correct that "trigger control" is the ability to pull the trigger straight rearward, without inducing any lateral movement in the gun? If position of the index pad isn't a factor, what should I be focusing on? I remember someone posted about teaching students to visualize the trigger and front sight as being mechanically joined.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
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    Yes, these are all slow fire single shots. The closest ones are maybe 2 seconds apart, and I'm generally not shooting more than 3 without returning to low ready. Trying to focus on basic 2-hand marksmanship right now.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    I have definitely caught myself flinching a few times, so I know that is a problem. Odd thing is, the diagnostic target I have seems to associate flinching more with shots that go high, not low. The problems it shows at 7:00 and 8:00 are jerking/slapping trigger and tightening fingers. Not sure what latter means. I do try to focus on squeezing the trigger gradually from the index point.<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p></o:p>
    Back to the issue of pad placement on the trigger, the diagnostic target shows too little and too much trigger finger as opposing issues at 9:00 and 3:00. I assumed that meant under and over-insertion of the finger into the trigger guard, and that was the main factor in terms of lateral movement.<o:p></o:p>
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    ‘Drew, as far as there being a “problem”, I am just trying to improve marksmanship and develop good initial habits. I took a formal range class, but it was focused mainly on safety and CHL. Haven’t really gotten any marksmanship instruction yet, although it has certainly improved from reading GT posts and looking at YT videos. Based on some of the targets I see posted on GT, can see I have a long way to go.<o:p></o:p>
     
  5. NMGlocker

    NMGlocker BOOM headshot

    2,014
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    Jun 29, 2001
    New Mexico
    The diagnostic targets are bull****.
    Slow fire it all comes down to sight alignment, trigger control and mental.
    Once you start working on consistent recoil management then grip comes into play.
    If your sight alignment is good (and if you are shooting good up close, then it probably is).
    Then it comes down to trigger press and/or mental issues (anticipation/flinch).
    It doesn't matter how you place your finger on the trigger as long as you press it without disturbing the correct sight picture. I've demonstrated this by shooting small groups while pressing the trigger with a ball point pen.
    My best guess without watching you shoot is that your sight alignment and trigger control probably aren't that bad if you're shooting paper plate sized groups out to 25 yards
    You're probably having a breakdown in the mental aspect of the shot.
    Utilize a "ball and dummy" drill to check for anticipation/flinch and really concentrate on your follow through after the shot.
    Fire the shot and keep your eye on the front sight until it returns to the target then take up the trigger slack and prepare for another shot. THEN lower the pistol to see how you did. I've seen people drop shots by being in such a hurry to see how well they did that they actually lower the gun an instant before they shoot.
     
  6. Gallium

    Gallium CLM

    28,685
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    Mar 26, 2003
    I would have to agree with this to about uh, 100%.

    I will repost here (soon as I find it), what I posted on another thread here on GT. Unfortunately, I am probably out of my league with NMGlocker, as my range only goes out to 50feet, but I've resorted to shooting post it notes at that distance to really tighten up my groups. :cool:

    'Drew
     
  7. sciolist

    sciolist

    3,093
    663
    Nov 11, 2009
    PNW
    Thanks NMG.

    'Drew, would like to see your repost, if you can find it.
     
  8. fredj338

    fredj338

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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    I'll agree w/ NM, you are breaking down in your fundamentals pat 15yds for some reason. Peeking after the shot, no follow through &/or using too much left hand. I see this all the time w/ newer shooter. As the target moves further out or you are required to shoot faster, you squeeze more w/ the support hand. This almost always results in a shot going lower left. Ease up on your support hand grip, even shoot w/ your support fingers open to reduce lateral tension on the gun.
     
  9. sciolist

    sciolist

    3,093
    663
    Nov 11, 2009
    PNW
    That's interesting. I have been making an effort to use a tighter grip with my weak (left) hand, and relax my strong hand. There has to be some method of generating that stabilizing force - two main options being grip tension and push/pull between the two hands. The push/pull approach seems to make me more shaky in terms of keeping the gun on target. Gripping tightly with the strong hand definitely interferes with trigger control. Gripping tightly with the weak hand seems to allow for a more neutral application of force to the trigger, without the push/pull shaking.
     
  10. fredj338

    fredj338

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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    The push/pull tension is just that, tension. The harder you squeeeze your support hand, the more it influences the shot. Your string hand grips, but not chokes the pistol. This allows a beter trigger control. Again, try using your support hand only in tension, your support hand fingers should be relaxed, your forearm/bicep pulling back providing tension.
     
  11. NMGlocker

    NMGlocker BOOM headshot

    2,014
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    Jun 29, 2001
    New Mexico
    Grip has NOTHING to do with firing a single shot.
    It doesn't influence where the rounds go AT ALL.
    I've demonstrated this by holding the pistol upsidedown with just my thumb and index finger. That's about as horrible of a grip as you can simulate.
    Guess what, as long as I press the trigger without disturbing the sight picture the rounds go exactly where I want them to.
    Sight alignment and trigger control.
    That's it.
    Don't complicate things.
    Sight alignment... trigger control.

    On another note:
    The push/pull tension grip is horrible for managing recoil in a consistent manner.
    The straight-thumbs 60/40 clamshell grip is the best grip for consistent recoil management and trigger manipulation under rapid fire.
    http://www.handgunsmag.com/tactics_training/combatg_100306/index.html
     
  12. fredj338

    fredj338

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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    ThAT is kind of what I am saying. To say grip doesn't influence the shot is just not true. Maybe we are talking semantics, but you say "clam shell", I can agree w/ that. It's why I said using too much tension w/ the supprt hand influences the shot, because it does, it moves the sights off target at the moment of trigger break. I see it all the time in students. One thing I have learned instructing, there are few absolutes, every shooter is diff. You have to work w/ their strengths & weakness. What works for some, does not work for others. What I can do others can't. Forcing them to work only one way will only slow their progress, JMO.:dunno:
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2010
  13. j-glock22

    j-glock22

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    Sep 20, 2001
    Central Ohio
    for a newbie you are off to a great start! Keep up the practice, your shots will tighten and your skills will improve. Keep up the good work.
     
  14. NMGlocker

    NMGlocker BOOM headshot

    2,014
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    Jun 29, 2001
    New Mexico
    The support hand does NOT influence the shot.
    That is poor trigger control.
    I see anywhere from 25 to 100 shooters a month in classes.
    The root cause of misses is always trigger control or anticipation/flinch.
    Press the trigger without moving the sights and the pistol will shoot exactly where it's aimed. One handed, upside down, flat on a table, whatever. As long as you press the trigger without disturbing the sight picture you'll get your hit.
    You can either have your students thinking about 100 different nuances (which all come right back to the trigger press) or you can have them work on trigger press.
     
  15. fredj338

    fredj338

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    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    Ok, since semantics seem to escape you, the support hand influences the trigger control if used improperly. This I have also seen. I don't teach 25-100 a month but have seen this many, many times in classes w/ new shooters having a death grip on their pistols. You are right, it is proper trigger control, but many things influence that. FWIW, I'ld like to see the flat in the table thing, not buying it beyond contact distance.:dunno: Seen barracade & cover positions influence POI from hard surface rebound regardless of how perfect your trigger control.
     
  16. timbo813

    timbo813

    105
    2
    Jun 28, 2006
    SE Ohio
    Hold your strong hand like you are shooting a gun and move your index finger like you are pulling the trigger (With your hand empty). Most likely, this movement causes your other fingers to close a little as well. What that means is that as you pull the trigger on your gun the other fingers tighten up a little as well. Now, hold a gun and tighten your lower fingers. For me, that causes the sights to move down and left.

    Working on pulling the trigger without tightening the other fingers helped to center my groups.
     
  17. Sam Spade

    Sam Spade Lifetime Member

    14,807
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    May 4, 2003
    It just may be a lack of clarity, but this isn't so.

    Hold a suitably safe prop gun, get on target, and squeeze/loosen with the ring and pinky finger only. You'll see the muzzle move down and to the support side.

    We're closer here, and I agree completely with what's in your last sentence. The real question is, "Why do the sights move?" This isn't limited to jerking or unsmooth manipulation of the trigger finger. It can also be related to the shooter's tendency to flex all of his fingers at the same time, or to "wipe" with his support hand or other things.

    So in a nutshell: Yes, the things that the shooter does with his grip or his support hand can cause a miss.
     
  18. NMGlocker

    NMGlocker BOOM headshot

    2,014
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    Jun 29, 2001
    New Mexico
    If you're flexing all your fingers and it throws off the shot... that's the inability to properly isolate the trigger finger... aka poor trigger control.
    Like I stated previously, you can either give your students 100 different things to work on or you can distill it into one single sentence.
    "Press the trigger without disturbing the sight alignment."
    Placing a single shot into the bullseye does not require any kind of grip on the pistol, much less a perfect grip.
    It does require sight alignment and trigger control.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2010
  19. Sam Spade

    Sam Spade Lifetime Member

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    May 4, 2003
    Different training philosophies, I guess. I prefer to tell the individual what the specific issue is, rather than go for a one-size fits all answer. To be clear, I don't tell everyone everything that can possibly go wrong with the shot; that's what's implied by "giving them 100 things to work on". If they don't need it, they don't need it. But if they do need to isolate their index finger, then telling them to shoot without disturbing the sights is both accurate and pretty near useless.

    Now, I can't do that without watching the individual delivery of the shot and sometimes touching him while he does it (if a trainer is wondering about this specific one, you place a finger lightly on the arm just above the wrist and see if you can feel movement in the pinky/ring tendons).
     
  20. sciolist

    sciolist

    3,093
    663
    Nov 11, 2009
    PNW
    We had a beautiful 50* high pressure day today, so I went back out to the pit. Warmed up with some juice can shots, and then moved into the ball/dummy drills per NMG's recommendation. Lol. In more than three decades of analyzing the physical and behavioral aspects of my sporting endeavors (obviously not shooting sports), don't think I have EVER seen the truth so nakedly unmasked. I flinch like a beaten dog. It is amazing.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
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    I had 200 live rounds and 3 of my dummies to play with. Started out by loading one dummy and 4 live rounds into each of 3 mags. I was alone, and it’s too easy to remember the sequence of rounds if you only load one mag. The flinching was so bad though, that I tried just loading the mags up with every other round a dummy. Even then I flinched. Then I tried dry firing the dummies a few times before progressing to the next live round, and that really helped. I’ve been dry firing at home, so am familiar with that. Was able to get some pretty darn good groupings out to 25 yards using this technique, and a few 60 yard juice can hits, so very happy with that.<o:p></o:p>
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    It’s interesting how the diagnostic targets show flinching as elevating the shot. My flinching was down and a little left.<o:p></o:p>
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    Re timbo and Sam’s posts, I am able to hold my hand out sans gun and actuate the trigger finger completely independently of the other three. When I hold the gun on target and squeeze the fingers of my strong hand with no support hand, the front sight moves down and left. When I do the same with the support hand in place, the front sight moves straight down.<o:p></o:p>
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    Based on what I saw today, would say that my grip is pretty good. Trigger control needs some work. I definitely need to get rid of the flinching.<o:p></o:p>
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    I guess the next step is to work on getting the follow-through to land the sights back on target post-recoil. What’s the best way to work on that? I was trying hard to stay focused on the front sight and the follow-through today, and it seemed to me that the gun wanted to come to rest high and right of the bullseye for follow-up shots. So at this point, I still have to reposition the gun slightly prior to each successive shot.<o:p></o:p>
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    Thanks a lot for all the help it’s much appreciated.<o:p></o:p>