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Discussion Starter #1
Should you rest one elbow on one knee.  Should you try the freehand shot.  Or is there some better ways.

Most of the time unless it is really close I will not shoot without a good sturdy rest.  I have tried shooting with both my elbows on my knees , but , I have better luck shooting behind my back it seems.   There has to be a better way.  Anyone with tips I would be grateful
 

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To what kind of shooting should we address our responses?

After close to twenty years of shooting myself, plus three years as the primary instructor for my alma mater's gun club where we trained a couple hundred newbies, I'd say the tried n' true Weaver Stance is the best non-rested style for any handgunning out to about 50 yards. This is for the typically skilled shooter. Beyond that distance and/or if you have trouble holding steady I'd suggest going prone whenever the foliage allows.  
 

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"Bad Joke Friday" Dan (moderator emeritus)
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Bill,

Of course I know what the Weaver Stance is, but for the "other folks", how about a discription?

Dan "just call me 'other folks'" Kiesey
 

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DOK,

It's similiar to the "Quell" stance but without resting your head on your right bicep and looking out your left eye.

No, I'm not kidding.

Regards, Ray
 

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Sorry to do that. :biggrin: I was yanking DOK's chain.

The Quell stance is a modification of the Weaver stance. Hold your arms out as if you are taking the normal Weaver stance and then you put your right cheek on your right bicep and look at the sights/target with your left eye. Pretty novel sighting stance actually but it works. It adds isometric bracing to your arms.

OK, stop laughing and try it.

There is also what is called an isosceles (sp?) stance commonly used by competitive shooters in IPSC. You hold your arms outstetched in more of an even stance instead of the slight bend in your right arm with the Weaver.

All this assumes a right handed shooter.

Regards, Ray
 

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A word of caution regarding use of the Isosceles stance. It promotes leaning backwards, especially among new handgunners, and works against you when shooting anything more than mild loads. Thus recoil control is not as good as with the Weaver, Modified Weaver (both arms slightly bent), or Quell. It is truly amazing to see many an IPSC competitor used to compensated race guns shoot a snubbie .357 or Officer's-size .45ACP using the Isosceles. Their scores often tumble.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the help.  Even though I have reloading and shooting for years.  I have never known the best way to hold for a good steady shot.  

Not to sound too stupid but how it the best (or correct) way to hold Prone?

I should also say that I usually have some sort of a walking/ shooting stick with me if at all possible.

But sometimes while walking through the thick stuff, I prefer to only have the handgun with me.  Most of the time I can use a rest but sometimes I break out into a field and dont have any rest.  Any Ideas would be great.
 

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I use the Rollover Prone because my left eye is slightly better than the right and I figure if I'm prone it's a long shot. Reference the above mentioned Quell Stance but only on your belly. Strong arm straight, weak side pulling back against the strong's forward push for some isometric tension.

If a walking stick is available and tall enough, jam your gun hand's knuckles against the stick with your sidearm gripped as normal. Wrap your weak hand around the stick and shooting hand as best you can, but unless you have very long fingers you probably won't reach all the way around the stick. Even so some bracing is better than none.
 

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"Bad Joke Friday" Dan (moderator emeritus)
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Mwk177,

My understanding of the Weaver is as follows:

In the "classic" Weaver two-handed stance, your strong arm is slightly flexed and pushes the gun out. Your supporting arm, which is more flexed, counters this by pulling the gun in to create a strong braced hold.

Bill's "Modified Weaver (both arms slightly bent)" is somewhat different than my understanding:

In the "modified" or "Chapman" Weaver, the position of your feet is the same and your supporting arm is still flexed. Your strong arm, however, is kept as straight as possible.
 
An important characteristic of the Weaver is that your feet are apart with weak-side foot slightly forward.

Regardless of the slightly different descriptions, I hope this helps you form a mental picture of the Weaver. I progressed from one-handed Bullseye competition to the Weaver stance for my current .44/.454 off-hand shooting. The Isosceles gets good press from the cowboy shooters, but as Bill indicates, that's pretty low recoil stuff.

Dan
 
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I appreciate the help.  Hopefully I always have a rest.  But if I get the chance at least I have something that has been proven to help.

And it gives me a good reason to shoot.

"Honey I have to practice the proper methods"

Ok so I will have to come up with a better line.

Thanks again
 

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Mwk177

I agree with what the previous gentlemen have said. In addition, I use a kneeling position. I find the kneeling position steadier than the offhand. I never liked the kneeling position with a rifle but it works for me with a big bore revolver. I'm right handed so I sit on my right heel with my left leg half bent and left foot flat on the ground. Revolver his held similar to the Chapman-Weaver grip but the flat of the upper left arm rest on my left knee. My best position is semi-prone using my backpack as a rest....its rock solid but cannot always be deployed. A lot of my shooting is in open hilly desert country where the backpack rest works a lot of the time. However, my best whitetail buck was taken with a kneeling shot  from a .44 mag at about 60 yds in a South Carolina swamp.
 

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I appreciate all of the insight to shooting a pistol in the field.  I will have to try a few of these hints.
Here are a couple of my own:

I once read a article by Ross on getting a rest.  One of his ideas was to use the kneeling position however; grab a patch of grass with your support hand and pull slightly on it to give a little support.  It works pretty good.

This one I use when shooting in open country, flat or slightly down hill.  Sit down with left knee raised (right handed shooter) right leg out straight.  Lay back slightly rest hands on outside of left knee, 2 hand hold.  This is the most rock solid rest that I have found for me.  Just watch out if you have a large cylinder barrel gap it might slap your leg a little.  Not advised to use in shorts.

Good luck and God Bless
Our prayers are with those that have suffered this week!
Will
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hey Will

I tried that hold with the two hands on the outside of the knee.  I find that it is hard on the back.  I take it that this isnt something that is done for a long period of time.  Or is it that I am doing something wrong.

I would like to thank everyone  I have already tried each and everyone.  I need to do alot of practice.  I figure that I will probably not freehand my gun except for ranges around 25 to 30 yards.  I can hit decent enough for hunting at that range.  

Thanks again
 

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Sights and trigger control are the answer. try this. Imagine you are shooting at a 3" bullseye at 25 yards. If the sights are perfectly lined up, it's like shooting downrange inside a 3" pipe. You can move the gun around anywhere inside the pipe and still hit the 3" bull if the sights are lined up perfectly. Next, try starting with the sights lined up just below the target. Move the gun up slowly, and touch off as the sights come to point of aim. This works well if you can't use a rest. A lot better than trying to control the tremors of holding a gun steady on target. As you practice, you will get faster and faster. Soon, you won't realise doing it. Practice,practice,practice.  1,000's of .22's fired is what makes good shots...
 

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Several years ago I had a bad case of tendonitis in my left shoulder and the Dr. sent me to physical therapy.  Much of the therapy involved lifting 5# weights up to shoulder level (I'll describe this if anyone's interested) and pulling elastic bands with my arms extended.  My shoulder got better, but I also discovered that the additional strength in my arms allowed me to hold a 10" TC Contender steadier than I ever had before.  I have since wondered how much of the steadiness problem is lack of arm and shoulder strength.
R. Batteiger
 
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