Monday, October 09, 2017


Talking about Saturday's post, I mentioned that it is entirely possible to miss a 24 inch plate at 6 feet.  Judy asked the question in comments:
What do you figure was the problem that caused y'all to miss the plate?
The simple answer is Speed.  Ours is a game of milliseconds.  The goal is to draw the revolver and hit the target before your opponent hits the target.   The targets are outfitted with electronics to tell us who hits fastest, and an average shooter will hit the plate in just a shade over half of a second.   Sounds simple, right?

But, we're using guns that replicate the equipment available in the 1880s.  Single action revolvers.  So, to be successful, you have to draw the revolver, cock it with your thumb, level it, find the trigger and fire the revolver, all in the space of about half a second.    If you do the math, you'll find that the muzzle of the gun has to be within a 5-degree cone at our match distances of 21 feet.

Target distance, 21 feet
This is instinctive shooting.  No one uses the sights.  In fact, if you look at the rules, the front sight is optional. We don't care if you have a front sight on your gun at all.    It's like pointing your finger at something and letting fly.  Sounds simple, right?

Not really.  This is a game we can't perfect.  But, we've come up with drills that help us.  One of those is to drop the target down to belt level and get close.  Go as fast as you possibly can and hit the target.  It gets you out of your comfort zone and lets you see where your natural point of aim is located.   After just a little while, you'll start to see a pattern on your target, a place where your bullets cluster.  That's your natural point of aim.  Then, when you've found that "sweet spot", translate it back to the match distance of 21 feet.

Target distance 6 feet.  Belle's going fast.
Most of my misses were to the left of the target.  Most of Belle's misses were low.  She was getting on the trigger before the gun was level, and that translated into low misses.  This is useful information that will help us in the future.    It's a drill that we'll do once in a while to help us build muscle memory, to push ourselves a little, and to have fun.  It's like drag-racing with revolvers.

1 comment:

Judy said...

Thanks, for explaining the 'why' of the exercise.