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getting basic handgun skills

Old 05-30-2020, 02:50 PM
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Default getting basic handgun skills

one of the local guys has a son whos about 16 years old,
that has expressed a wish at numerous times,
while I was talking with his dad,
to learn how to hunt with a handgun.
He knows from years of hanging out with his dad and I while we work on our muscle cars ,
in my garage and listening to both his dad and I talk about decades of hunting in florida,
that I frequently use a handgun.
The father has never owned a handgun and thus his skill in that area is rather non-existent so far
and thus his sons is also non-existant.
his dads one of the guys that while not at all against hunting,
but he has a deep-seated opinion that an Ithica 37, pump action 12 ga shotgun, which hes used for 4 decades with slugs to hunt around here with good success,


is both ideal for hunting deer and hogs here in FLA, where ranges in the areas we hunt rarely exceed 50-60 yards.
and that theres simply no reason, or even a need to purchase a handgun, to hunt any large game with.
now he is not opposed to having his son own and use a handgun for hunting deer and hogs,
but to him, it seems like simply a way for his son, to spend more time and effort in buying more firearms, and potentially reloading equipment, ammo etc.
and learning to use something, that will cost more money to do something that a 12 ga pump shotgun is ideally made for.
Now on the plus side ,there's a large local orchard,(almost 2300 acres) that the local farm owner, (the kids uncle )
has given this kids dad (his dads brother) and the kid permission to shoot a few hogs,
deer and rabbits in.
(obviously following the local game laws and dates and licensing laws)
that orchard is overrun with rabbits, I suggested to his dad that he might let his son borrow a 22lr revolver
I own, and under his strict supervision only, learn to use it on targets, until his skill with that 22lr revolver


increases to the point that he can consistently hit a couple of coke cans at 50-60 yards,
and once that's been accomplished he might want to further add additional experience hunting the local rabbit population in that orchard,
before he borrows or purchases a decent quality hunting caliber handgun.
my suggestion here would be a similar Ruger or S&W choice in a higher quality 357 mag revolver.
mastering a 22lr before you consider a centerfire cartridge is always a good idea.
getting the basics of handling a revolver and marksmanship down before advancing further up in the revolvers power, level
,as is generally a good idea.
A 357 mag is certainly able with the correct 158-grain hand loaded ammo,
to easily handle all hogs and deer etc. at typical under 60-75 yard ranges he will see in that orchard.
only after that is mastered that 22lr should he consider any further cartridge power increases.
To my way of thinking that progression in adding to his experience can only help
, and it certainly won,t cost much other than some time to gain the required skills as a brick or two of 500 22LR cartridges is certainly cheap and easily obtained,
and a couple of hours a day using a revolver on targets certainly won,t hurt his odds of becoming a better revolver shot.
https://www.surplusammo.com/products...00-rounds.html

His dad seemed to agree, to the idea.
I think one of the big factors that the dad liked, was hes only out the cost of some 22lr ammo until the kids proficient with a handgun.
looking back thats basically how I developed some familiarity with a revolver and its certainly helped out later, to begin with a decent S&W 8" revolver in 22lr,
before I purchased a longer barreled 357 and eventually a 44 mag revolver I generally hunt with.

Last edited by hardcastonly; 05-30-2020 at 04:20 PM.
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Old 05-30-2020, 07:01 PM
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Was that a K-22?
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Old 05-30-2020, 07:03 PM
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In my experience 95% of pistol shooters cannot hit a coke can at 50 yards with a handgun, no matter what you give them to accomplish the task. But I grew up in a city- everyone practices at 7yds at indoor ranges, and owns a handgun for the purposes of concealed carry or home defense.
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Old 05-30-2020, 09:13 PM
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as with most skills repeated practice is mandatory to maintain that necessary edge.
learning to use the first finger joint pad tip of the finger near the first joint crease, on the trigger in single action rather than a death grip also helps
with frequently repeated practice and some competent repeated instruction, and not having to rush your shots making hits on a coke can sized target,
start at 20 yards and once consistent there, move out in 5 yard increased distance steps until the longer distance is mastered, then repeat,
is not all that difficult to do, especially with an accurate revolver in 22lr with a 6"-to-8.375" barrel/
once the basics of aligning the pistol sights and trigger control are mastered with the 22lr revolver I generally progress to loading 1 or 2 or 3 random cylinders ,with loaded cartridges and the rest with fired cases,
and watching the way the person I train, as he masters sight alignment and trigger control,
the trainee learns a great deal from slowly squeezing the trigger and maintaining sight alignment, with the way the sights must stay perfectly aligned as and after the triggers pulled in single action use
on the empty cylinders as at first they tend to not maintain proper sight alignment, once they master that process they may want to master double-action use.
placing a 24" square white poster board with a single black 1/2" dot on the center on your bedroom wall, and watching the sights very carefully with the revolver loaded with snap caps to verify your sights don,t move repeatedly at home
also helps train hand-eye coordination.

https://www.amazon.com/ZOOM-Special-Snap-Cap-16118/dp/B0014VVI1E/ref=pd_lpo_200_t_0/135-2768558-2733022?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B0014VVI1E&pd_rd_r=de05e4c8-3d2a-4639-bf33-b0bc759b2d0a&pd_rd_w=f4L72&pd_rd_wg=Gzy11&pf_rd_p=7b36d496-f366-4631-94d3-61b87b52511b&pf_rd_r=JHYX7Q4Z0398774C93F3&psc=1&refRID=JHYX7Q4Z0398774C93F3 https://www.amazon.com/ZOOM-Special-Snap-Cap-16118/dp/B0014VVI1E/ref=pd_lpo_200_t_0/135-2768558-2733022?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B0014VVI1E&pd_rd_r=de05e4c8-3d2a-4639-bf33-b0bc759b2d0a&pd_rd_w=f4L72&pd_rd_wg=Gzy11&pf_rd_p=7b36d496-f366-4631-94d3-61b87b52511b&pf_rd_r=JHYX7Q4Z0398774C93F3&psc=1&refRID=JHYX7Q4Z0398774C93F3

Last edited by hardcastonly; 05-31-2020 at 04:24 AM.
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Old 05-30-2020, 09:37 PM
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most pistols are more accurate than the owners are,
at one point in my career, I taught pistol shooting skills at one of the local ranges, to guys who were becoming security guards
most people who are new to pistol craft could not consistently hit a sheet of typical typing paper that's 8"x 11" at 7 yards,
I have heard dozens of guys state the pistols are just not accurate,
now I'm not the worlds best shot by a wide margin,
but most of the ruger and S&W quality revolver's will allow a decent shot,
who has been in practice, to keep six double-action shots, fired at a rapid pace, at 7 yards in a 2" orange dot rather effortlessly,

and if you do that rather effortlessly, (and thats hardly impressive if you have developed skills ,)
but it tends to get their attention.
from guys that your trying to instruct that have a hard time keeping 6 shots on a 8"x11" sheet of paper,.
They quickly realize it's them not the pistol that requires improvement.
the conversation about lack of accuracy due too the pistol or ammo used is eliminated,
as an excuse in the eyes of the newer guys, your training,
and once they do realize that its not the gun, they tend to concentrate, and follow your instructions about sight alignment and trigger control.
yes it takes time and practice and hundreds of cartridges fired but getting to the point you can hit a 3" -4" target,
with a single action shot from a quality revolver at 40-50 yards is certainly a teachable skill level,
especially from a sitting position or with something like a tree to steady your arm against for most guys.
and yes guys with decent eyesight and trigger control can become consistently better shots.
and yeah, many indoor ranges have horrible lighting,
making seeing your revolvers sights or the target clearly much more difficult

Last edited by hardcastonly; 06-01-2020 at 09:58 AM.
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Old 05-31-2020, 12:48 PM
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I used to snipe coke cans at 100yds with my FN Five Seven. It was always good for some oooohs and aaahs from my fellow range goers.

2300 fps from a handgun is kind of cheating though.
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Old 05-31-2020, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Valorius
In my experience 95% of pistol shooters cannot hit a coke can at 50 yards with a handgun, no matter what you give them to accomplish the task. But I grew up in a city- everyone practices at 7yds at indoor ranges, and owns a handgun for the purposes of concealed carry or home defense.
You must be quite a shot. The only handgun I could do that with was a long barreled target contender in 30-30 with a scope LOL
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Old 05-31-2020, 03:39 PM
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I didn't say I hit with every shot ....but enough to keep the beer can dancing. 5.7mm has almost no recoil, so you can keep up quite a steady pace, and it has a 30rd magazine.

For the record I was also leaning on the shooting bench.

Last edited by Valorius; 06-01-2020 at 04:01 PM.
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Old 06-01-2020, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Valorius
I didn't say I ht wiith every shot ....but enough to keep the beer can dancing. 5.7mm has almost no recoil, so you can keep up quite a steady pace, and it has a 30rd magazine.

For the record I was also leaning on the shooting bench.
So was I...LOL still pretty damn good shooting with a handgun Val. I often practice with silhouette targets and draw a little bow tie...Family joke that I best not elaborate on here though. That gun is sweet must be fun to shoot.

Last edited by Champlain Islander; 06-01-2020 at 09:30 AM.
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Old 06-01-2020, 04:20 PM
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It was a blast to shoot, but I sold it after the sandy hook buying panic for a huge profit. Capitalism still rules.
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