Saturday, February 28, 2009

Range Day and a New Shooter

A buddy of mine has been thinking about getting a handgun. I offered to take him with me for some time at the range just to get the feel of shooting a bit. He agreed, and we set it up to shoot today.

We started at my place, where we reviewed the 4 laws of gun safety. We then ran through the basic functions of the pistol and how it works. After that we progressed into some basic marksmanship. He was worried about looking foolish on the range. I said to him "As long as you're safe, you won't look like an idiot. You can shoot terrible, but if you are safe people will respect you." I sincerely hope that is the attitude that all shooters carry.

My friend shot reasonably well for his first time. Ideally, we should have started with a .22 pistol, but I just had him start with a 9mm (Glock 17). He struggled with anticipating shots, flinching, etc. I had him shoot a magazine with dummy rounds to help him see what he was doing.
He did fire a couple magazines of 40 S&W through my Glock 23 as well. I will have to say, I quite enjoyed helping my friend begin to learn to shoot, and to handle a weapon safely. Its something I would like to do more of. While not an expert at anything, I love teaching and helping people learn something I might be slightly more proficient at....whether it be guitar, singing, medicine, shooting, or bowling ( high bowling score is 108. Cancel bowling). When doing any "teaching" on shooting, I believe its of the utmost importance to stress saftey and responsibility.

I even loaded up some dummy rounds, which I haven't done in awhile, and was surprised to find there was still a bit of a flinch in my pulls. I was concentrating mostly on slow fire today, as it seems my accuracy has suffered as of late. I believe I am struggling with over travel, as many of my shots are driven left, despite my best efforts to not "milk" the grip.

At close distances, I was no problem. In fact, my buddy looked at me in amazement when I could so effortlessly put rounds through the X at 10 feet. If only I could continue that with rapid fire at twice the distance.....

At 25 feet rounds were placing fairly well with slow fire. I was satisfied with this.

At 50 feet, my groupings are trending up and left, the the target's X is quite safe from the lead I sling at it. While not overly concerned about nail-driving at 50 feet from a self-defense standpoint, the USPSA meets I shoot in have a few more longer shots, and I find that in a hurry my shots do not group at all. Hence, my trigger pull continues to need work.

All in all, a great day at the range, 200 rounds fired, several pieces of paper laid to rest, a fresh shooter with new skills in his hands, and everyone home safe. Satisfying and delightful.

I only wish I could say that for the movie we rented: Bangkok Dangerous starring Nicholas Cage. Do yourself a favor. Don't rent it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I've seen this before with right handed shooters that are left eye dominant.