Saturday, November 11, 2006

Easy Shooting Guns or Marksmanship

I was talking about my new Browning 1895 rifle (.30 US aka .30-40) on a forum and mentioned (as I did here) that it was easy to hit the 4" plates to 150 yards from off-hand. One respondent thought that I must be a grand shot if I could do that. After some reflection, I'm thinking that he either didn't believe me or didn't understand what I was talking about.

First off you have to understand that the 4" plates are either 4" on a side squares, i.e. 16 square inches OR 4" in diameter or about 12.5 square inches area. That's not precision shooting by any means but good enough to bring a deer to bag.

Next, you have to understand that easy doesn't imply that you hit it with the first shot or even every shot only that it is a relatively simple and uncomplicated exercise to accomplish those hits. In this particular situation the Browning's sights are easy to see (at least in the conditions that existed at the time I was shooting) and easy to see against the target (again, in those particular conditions), the rifle was comfortable to hold and fit me well, the trigger wasn't influencing my shooting, the cartridge shot relatively "flat" (in other words it didn't require a lot of hold over out to that range), and the cartridge/rifle combination is balanced in that it doesn't generate excessive/intimidating recoil which might affect the shooter.

I don't think the task of hitting a 4" metal plate at 150 yards is anything any rifle shooter can't accomplish, it is just easier with some rifle/cartridge combinations. This Browning seems to be one such combination.

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