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CPF

How to Deal With Anticipated Recoil

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I recently converted my Saiga rifle. Upon taking it to the range yesterday, I have fallen in love with the gun even more. It is as accurate as I could ever want, my only issue is that I am not. I found that at the 100 yd range, when I wait and calm myself before I take the shots, I was actually less accurate, with my reticle (I use a scope) ending up to the left of the bulls eye, which I was aiming for. I am a lefty, so the way I see it, when I pull the trigger I tense up and the gun moves with the trigger pull, making my aim go to the left hence my rounds hit to the left of my target. I also find that when I don't think about anything and nearly rapid fire (at the 100 range for me this is a round every two seconds) I am more accurate. If I pull the trigger without me anticipating it, I am also far more accurate.

 

So, what would be a good way to get rid of this bad habit of anticipating recoil. Keep in mind that I am shooting off of blocks (sort of unstable). Any recommendations on how to improve my accuracy?

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I had a problem with recoil anticipation when I got into handguns. I ended up doing lots of dry-firing, and just putting rounds downrange, and it eventually went away. People also recommend putting snap-caps randomly into your magazines, so you can see exactly what you do when you anticipate the recoil, when you go to fire off the dummy round.

 

If your problem only comes up when you're firing really slow and deliberate, just squeeze the trigger slowly and let it surprise you when it goes off.

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I actually did the things you suggested when I went to the range. Of course, I had so many rounds in one target that I couldn't tell, but I am pretty sure both worked well. I see exactly what happens when I fire off a dummy round. The reticule moves a little up and to the left. Hopefully using the technique you described last I will eventually get over it.

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Load up a few dummy rounds. Next time you go shooting, mix them randomly in your magazines. That should help you cure it, plus, it's a good drill.

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Or do "Ball and Dummy" drills if you do not have dummy rounds. Have a buddy "prep" your rifle whether he is chambering a live one or empty chamber, then have him observe you and see what you are doing on an empty chamber.

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I do not see how the dummy caps will help the problem though. Of course they will show the problem, but how to physically correct it?

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I do not see how the dummy caps will help the problem though. Of course they will show the problem, but how to physically correct it?

 

Exactly. I know what I am doing, its just fixing it that is the trouble.

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CPF, If you do nothing but concentrate on maintaining your sight picture while slowly squeezing the trigger your brain shouldn't have a chance to anticipate recoil. The theory is that if you focus entirely on these two tasks the shot will come off as a surprise.

 

My personal experience is that it is a sound theory.

 

Hope that helps.

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Ok, I will definitely try that next time out at the range. Thanks everyone!

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What GunnyR said is true. You can practice this with lots of dry fire concentrating on trigger squeeze and sight picture. Repetition will develop muscle memory to help offset the anticipation. Try balancing a coin on your FSB while squeezing the trigger without it falling off.

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I do not see how the dummy caps will help the problem though. Of course they will show the problem, but how to physically correct it?

 

Lol, good point, now that I think about it. I guess I was just reiterating what I was told when I had the anticipation problems with handguns. Like I said, the problem just went away after awhile, so I never actually tried the snap cap/dummy round method.

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I do not see how the dummy caps will help the problem though. Of course they will show the problem, but how to physically correct it?

 

Lol, good point, now that I think about it. I guess I was just reiterating what I was told when I had the anticipation problems with handguns. Like I said, the problem just went away after awhile, so I never actually tried the snap cap/dummy round method.

By dry fire exercises, you developed muscle memory of the gun not going off while refining your trigger squeeze and sight picture. Then when you shot with live rounds, it came as a surprise like it is supposed to.

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A wise old Gunners mate told me a long time ago: Let the shot surprise you. In other words slowly and gently squeeze the trigger until it goes off. If you are a little surprised by the "bang" it will probably be a good shot.

 

Having someone load your weapon for you with or without ammo (or with a snap cap mixed int) and have them return it to you. When you squeeze the trigger and the chamber is empty your problem will become apparent.

 

Enjoy!

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do some bench shooting. & when you shoot.. do the slowest increase of pressure on the trigger that you can do (like 10-15 seconds per trigger pull), so that the weapon actually "surprises" you when it goes off....

 

Fixed the same issue for me when I was in the corps!

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In my Ruger Blackhawk, I sometimes I load one or two .357 mag rounds in with a cylinder of .38s, just to test myself. An empty chamber mixed in there somewhere will definitely show a flinch problem.

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funny, I have the opposite recoil anticipation problem: I drive the muzzle down!

 

Then you anticipate recoil in a simple way. The barrel goes up due to recoil, so subconsciously, your mind tells your hands to drive it down. That causes your issue. I would much rather have your issue, as all you need to do to practice is have the gun set up on blocks or a bipod to prevent downward movement while you practice.

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Actually, I will throw another theory out there. If you are left handed and you are hitting left or high and left you are doing what we call in competitive shooting "bending the barrel". You mention in your post the awful 4 letter word "pull". You should be thinking about what MT Pred and TimBob mentioned and that is "squeezing" the trigger. It may sound silly but if I ever even say the words "pull the trigger" in a conversation, I immediately correct myself and say "squeeze the trigger". If your forearm is moving then you are pulling the trigger and most likely pulling the rifle to the left prior to the trigger actually breaking. That is the main reason that bench rest shooters like a 2 oz trigger, they want the trigger to break before the rifle moves. Really concentrate on a squeezing motion instead of a pulling motion.

 

Just my 2 cents worth..(and that's what it's worth because I got it backwards...)

 

I think you are "heeling" the rifle stock with your left palm anticipating the recoil. If you were "pulling" the trigger you'd be hitting high and right. Sorry for the confusion, I am right handed and I was thinking right handed eventhough I said left handed... I think I'll just be quiet now...

Edited by TxStrat

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What TxStrat said is a very valid point. So is finger placement on the trigger. Sounds like you are pulling the barrel with your finger. Try using the second pad of your finger, just behind the crease. Try this....

post-23857-0-20984400-1311368280_thumb.jpg

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I would be heeling (lefty is opposite of target I'm sure).

 

So now I just need to observe my shooting next time.

Edited by CPF

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i think the best thing to do is practice, maybe get some kind of aftermarket recoil reduction too.

 

what caliber saiga are you working with?

 

*edit*

 

another good method is to get some kind of cheap laser pointer sight and do snap cap practice. do it over and over again until you can squeeze off the trigger without moving the laser dot. then practice some more, preferably at increasing lengths.

Edited by Cali_Armz

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I was advised to think of the trigger as more of a pull....as pulled slowly and consistently straight back towards you. And, that squeezing would cause your finger to curl and pull the shots in the opposite direction of your strong arm. Applying this did indeed improve my accuracy.

 

As for anticipated recoil, the best thing you can do is put more rounds down range. I don't blink, flinch, anticipate, or even usually notice at all the noise or recoil. I felt I was really comfortable and relaxed once I stopped blinking entirely.....during shooting that is. I shoot 7.62x39 and .223 primarily though. I haven't shot a larger caliber in so long, I don't know how I'd react.

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