Cheek Pressure

Tiny Tim

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Jan 26, 2015
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I noticed last year during load development on a rifle with a stock pack that wasn't properly adjusted, that I was slightly side loading the rifle. As my charge weights increased, and recoil along with it, my shots started stringing to the right. The gun was about an moa shooter, but at 300 yds it was consistently moving to the right. Probably wouldn't have noticed at 100 yards. As long as charge weight was the same, I could shoot at various ranges and still be on target. Load development simply showed a flaw in my setup/shooting form.
 

milo-2

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Wouldn't cheek pressure differ in different shooting positions?
If I am shooting from a bench and have a rock solid position, I will use considerably less cheek pressure than when prone. When prone, I may have a tendency to use the cheekpiece as a rest, ease up on the neck muscles.
Shooting offhand, would your cheek not be a 3rd point of contact for stability?
If you are shooting from a bench and want accuracy, I would say the least amount of cheek pressure will result in less manipulation of the rifle.
 

Gwine

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I have contemplated adding a small “button” as a contact reference to be able to be more consistent. Could be as small as a dot of glue. Similar to archery. I have a tiny knot on my bow string that needs to always touch my nose in the exact same place. No pressure needed just contact.
 

P7M13

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Shoot from the hip, problem solved. :p

What should be important is that it feels comfortable to you, and that you can do it the same.....every time. you dont want to be pushing so hard that when the gun goes off it hits your cheek like a hammer.
I find light lends itself to the most consistency.
I also find, in contrast to the quote above, on guns that dont fit well or recoil hard upwardly, a light cheek results in more face smack. I'll have to analyze that.
 

Alex Wheeler

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I have contemplated adding a small “button” as a contact reference to be able to be more consistent. Could be as small as a dot of glue. Similar to archery. I have a tiny knot on my bow string that needs to always touch my nose in the exact same place. No pressure needed just contact.
You need this in archery or iron sights because you eye is part of the sight. With adjustable parallax in scopes it doesnt matter where your eye is.
 

jmcmath

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I shoot better with just a light touch as a reference point i think

I think people have gone overboard on cheek weld now because tactical forums talk about it all the time. It seems that may be because those tactical trainers are often ex military, and they are often thinking about 1. Quick target acquisition, so lining up your eye to the scope as fast and as repeatedly as possible, and 2. Being able to reduce neck strain during an extended session behind a rifle.

I may be totally off on this, and I’d love someone with military sniper training to let me know one way or another but those are the reasons I can place the emphasis on more cheek weld in tactical training, vs precision groups like f class and benchrest worried more about raw world record accuracy than shots on bad guys.
 

Rich Coyle

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I find light lends itself to the most consistency.
I also find, in contrast to the quote above, on guns that dont fit well or recoil hard upwardly, a light cheek results in more face smack. I'll have to analyze that.
Weatherby solved the face smack with his stock shape.
 

Bravo 4

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I shoot better with just a light touch as a reference point i think

I think people have gone overboard on cheek weld now because tactical forums talk about it all the time. It seems that may be because those tactical trainers are often ex military, and they are often thinking about 1. Quick target acquisition, so lining up your eye to the scope as fast and as repeatedly as possible, and 2. Being able to reduce neck strain during an extended session behind a rifle.

I may be totally off on this, and I’d love someone with military sniper training to let me know one way or another but those are the reasons I can place the emphasis on more cheek weld in tactical training, vs precision groups like f class and benchrest worried more about raw world record accuracy than shots on bad guys.
I’m not going to speak for every military sniper but you have some good points. I drive my rifles and may stay behind them for extended periods. No way am I going to have to hold my head anywhere. If the rifle fits you correctly then you don’t have to, in about any position. I don’t force my head down, I just let it naturally sit.
I think that different equipment and disciplines can do it differently. One of my guys shoots PRS competitively (and very well), but his rifle is 20’ish pounds chambered in a little 6mm thingy (😄). He free recoils that sucker. Very little movement and spots his own hits. Not as likely going to happen with a .300 WinMag that weighs several pounds less. I can spot my hits with a 12 pound .338 that sends 300 grain Bergers at 3150 fps.
 
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Blackhawk

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In order to achieve a good cheek weld while maintaining correct eye relief I myself prefer as light a contact with the comb as possible.
However this cheek pressure varies from rifle to rifle depending on the stock and its physical dimensions.
I must find that comfort zone for each rifle, and then settle in comfortably and brake my shot accordingly.
Before I do that however I will make a mental note to relax my jawline by not clenching my teeth in anticipation of taking that shot !
I will either exhale deeply, or sometimes swallow once in order to relax my jaw and related muscle groups.
In that light I also subscribe to the light contact and cheek pressure group.
My thoughts!
 
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Blackhawk

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In order to achieve a good cheek weld while maintaining correct eye relief I myself prefer as light a contact with the comb as possible.
I will settle in comfortably and brake my shot accordingly.
Before I do that however I will make a mental note to relax my jawline by not clenching my teeth in anticipation of taking that shot ! ( sometimes just exhaling a deep breath , or swallowing once is enough to relax my jaw muscles )
In that light I also subscribe to the light contact and cheek pressure group.
My thoughts!
 

26Reload

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You need this in archery or iron sights because you eye is part of the sight. With adjustable parallax in scopes it doesnt matter where your eye is.
I really don't like the comparison here...
A bows peep sight and front aiming pin is only different in configuration to a scope...if your eye is offset in either situation you will be shooting inaccurately....if you see black edges in your scope you are misaligned from back to front....is that not correct....
 

jmcmath

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I really don't like the comparison here...
A bows peep sight and front aiming pin is only different in configuration to a scope...if your eye is offset in either situation you will be shooting inaccurately....if you see black edges in your scope you are misaligned from back to front....is that not correct....
as long as your parallax is set correctly you may have shadows or un enjoyable viewing but you will not have a poi discrepancy. That’s why you can move your head all around when you are parallax free without your reticle moving on the target.
 

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