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Shooting Prone - Off hand on scope?

 
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Old 03-09-2013, 04:34 PM
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Shooting Prone - Off hand on scope?

I have seen this a handful of times on some of the long range hunting shows, where a person who is shooting prone will actually put their off hand on top of the scope. I assume that by applying a little bit of pressure pusing down, it would help reduce the 'jumping' of the rifle when it recoils. My question is, would doing that have any affect on the scope? I would just think that it could affect the scope accuracy. I would love to hear some thoughts on this because I actually think it would be easier to do that to reduce the 'jumping' of the rifle then to be holding on to the stock. Thoughts???
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Old 03-09-2013, 04:53 PM
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Re: Shooting Prone - Off hand on scope?

I have also seen it on a few shows. I would think that it would affect how the rifle recoils from shot to shot. I like to place my free hand under the but of the stock to help fine tune.

Mike
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:06 PM
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Re: Shooting Prone - Off hand on scope?

There is a bloke from down under who wrote an article on this topic. My summation of his thoughts are that by only supporting the rear stock with your non-trigger hand leaves the forend of the rifle to rise freely. This rise may not be consistent depending on many vairables including the angle of the rifle. This free rise can cause verticle stringing. His suggestion is either rest the free hand on the scope or hold down on the forend stock or front sling.
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:51 PM
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Re: Shooting Prone - Off hand on scope?

Whether prone or from a bench, I never rest my off hand on the scope or the stock. I still remember what my Dad taught me many years ago and can hear his voice coaching me before the shot, "Don't hang on the rifle son, that hand is for the sandbag. Relax and let go. Get Johnny (me) out of the equation as much as possible and let the rifle shoot."
I think the "jumping" of the rifle happens more so when using a bipod on a fairly solid surface. Just my experience, though. If you are experiencing this while using a bipod, some on here may can explain how they use their bipods. I think the term is called "loading" and uses the springs to keep tension on it. I own a bipod but rarely use it.
As for the hand on the scope, I don't think it will effect the scopes accuracy but rather the consistency of the rifle from shot to shot. Most modern scopes, worthy of residing on a dedicated long range rifle, are sturdy enough to withstand this pressure with no deflection of the tube. The phrase "aircraft grade aluminum" keeps coming to mind. JohnnyK.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:12 PM
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Re: Shooting Prone - Off hand on scope?

I have a Winchester Coyote .243 WSSM that if put on a front & rear rest that I use for bench rest comp. at 100, 200 & 1,000 yds. will shoot 1+1/2" five shot groups at 100 yds. If I hold down on top of the scope with some "good" pressure the same rifle & ammo will consistently shoot 5/8" five shot groups at 100 yds. This is the only rifle I have had to do this to.

I have even seen similar rifles in the .243WSSM with a handle screwed to the bottom of the forearm that you would have on a screen door at your house. They used the handle to pull down on the forearm instead of pulling down on their scope.

joseph

PS: Don't know why it may be necessary, but It works for my one rifle.
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:28 PM
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Re: Shooting Prone - Off hand on scope?

There are three things I tell shooters for long range consistancy.

1. Set up in a shooting position so that the rifle is not help in position by force. What I mean there is that if you come off the rifle, the reticle stays on target, you do not want to have to lean into the rifle to keep the reticle on target because under recoil you will get unconsistant bounce.

2. Never touch the barrel while shooting, EVER!!!

3. Do the EXACT SAME THING every time you shoot. Consistancy before, during and after the shot are key to consistancy.

Other then that, do what feels comfortable and do the same thing every time.
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Old 03-10-2013, 06:17 PM
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Re: Shooting Prone - Off hand on scope?

Thanks for all the replies! I should have mentioned that the reason I need to hold it is because I am shooting a 300 RUM without a break. So just placing the hand under the stock for support won't exactly work

I guess since I haven't seen anything too negative about trying this, I might give it a shot and see what happens!
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