MARKSMANSHIP BASICS - Trigger Control

Dry Heat?

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Apr 1, 2018
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142
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Tucson,Az
Great advice on this thread. The Dummy Round exercise will definitely either cure you of your flinch or make you stop shooting, especially if you have several friends and family along to witness and laugh at you. First time we tried it, I flinched so bad it looked like I was electrocuted when I pulled the trigger. Once you find the shooting protocols that suit you best, it’s all about consistency. Do everything the same way on each shot from; shooting position, grip, trigger squeeze, breathing and follow through. Dry Firing is important because is all about Muscle Memory. Consistent repetition will make you a better shooter
 

Mike Matteson

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Jun 26, 2017
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291
it's starts with placement of firearm. Putting the firearm where it's steady is always a must. All the trigger control doesn't do a thing without the firearm being steady. Then breathing and trigger control are next. Dry firing is a must to learn breathing control and and the holding of the firearm. Placement of the thumb should run with the stock and not over. The thumb over the stock can get you a bloody nose. Holding the firearm butt tightness to your shoulder, should be about equal to the recoil of the firearm with the 3 remaining fingers so it doesn't bounce or jump out of your hands.

When I go to a range and set up. I dry fire several times before sending a round down range.

Triggers: The set up of lighten triggers should be done by a gun smith. Generally requires a different trigger installed. Even with that the gun smith should cleanup and smooth the shear so there isn't any hard spots. If a round is in the chamber and the firearm is dropped or the butt hits the floor or ground hard the trigger should not allow the firing pin to be released. Almost all of my firearms have lighten triggers install or worked over including my Colt Phython. if anybody knows about them. The trigger is very light to start with.

Back to placement of firearm: Bench rested to work on trigger control can be done at home "DRY FIRE ONLY" . You can find a table around home to work off of to rest the firearm and dry firing for trigger control rather than waiting to go to the range "MAKE SURE THE MUZZLE IS POINTED IN A SAFE DIRECTION AT ALL TIMES". Support devises will needed to support the front and rear of the firearm at home and the range. When hunting that a difference thing. Most of the time laying down isn't possible. Standing and shooting isn't good either. Learn to sit and use you knee's and elbows to support your firearm. Neal and using one knee and elbow to support is good. The other is be aware of rocks, tree's and tree branches that can support your firearm. Holding your offhand on a tree truck creating a notch with your thumb works good too. It you are carrying a day pack can take a place or rocks or other things. Laying down you have to see over the brush. all these styles should be practices and applying breathing and trigger control.

You will need all this to work up loads for your firearm if you are hand loading your ammo to shot.

Mike
 

Itsadryheat

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Feb 5, 2020
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Location
Bullhead city, Az
I have read some good info and like the varied experiences.. I will add that there is no substitute for trigger time and a good trigger. I have used milspec triggers on various rifles over the years... there is a night and day difference in the way a massaged trigger breaks compared to a stock or milspec trigger! It makes a big difference in precision shooting and for proper shot placement when shooting out to distance ...
 

nksmfamjp

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Jan 5, 2004
Messages
690
#1 Describe what portion of the trigger finger touches the trigger. (My personal description is 'the trigger should be placed directly under the cuticle of the trigger finger'). Agree?
The trigger should touch the center of my finger print.(under the cuticle is about the same.) The finger should be bent about 90 degrees at the second knuckle. The pull force should be applied straight to the rear.

#2 Describe the position and tension applied by the thumb.
The thumb should be used as a stabilizer. I put mine on the opposite side on a pistol grip, or on top on a Sporter. One must not forget that the thumb position controls finger tip rotation on the trigger face. Lower is lighter, higher is crisper.

#3 Describe the position and tension applied by the bottom three fingers.
Kind of loose, but just enough strength to pull gun back into shoulder pocket. Lighter pull seems more consistent off the bench. A bit more in the field.

#4 Describe the importance of follow-through and how long you consciously remain on the trigger after the shot.
To me, follow through starts at the point you begin applying pressure and goes through pulling to stop. Then holding and letting up only when you start the next action.

#5 Do you try to cup your palm if your stock does not have a palm swell? Some instructors teach that you should have "air in your palm", no direct contract with the pistol grip. Comments.
Not really, I think this is really related to rotation of the finger to the trigger face. I do focus on that.

#6 Do you practice trigger control by dry-firing?
All this trigger focus is the result of many trigger pulls and learning how to work through each step of the shot. Dry fire is critical to developing the fine touch required for accurate fire.
 

Mike Matteson

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Joined
Jun 26, 2017
Messages
291
The trigger should touch the center of my finger print.(under the cuticle is about the same.) The finger should be bent about 90 degrees at the second knuckle. The pull force should be applied straight to the rear.


The thumb should be used as a stabilizer. I put mine on the opposite side on a pistol grip, or on top on a Sporter. One must not forget that the thumb position controls finger tip rotation on the trigger face. Lower is lighter, higher is crisper.


Kind of loose, but just enough strength to pull gun back into shoulder pocket. Lighter pull seems more consistent off the bench. A bit more in the field.


To me, follow through starts at the point you begin applying pressure and goes through pulling to stop. Then holding and letting up only when you start the next action.


Not really, I think this is really related to rotation of the finger to the trigger face. I do focus on that.


All this trigger focus is the result of many trigger pulls and learning how to work through each step of the shot. Dry fire is critical to developing the fine touch required for accurate fire.
Like your Post! Add and helps clean up the trigger control.
Thanks
 

kiwiken

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Joined
Jul 28, 2019
Messages
10
Location
New Zealand
Yes!! Thank you for this thread. Good shooting, I've found, is in the details. Small issues become huge by the time the bullet hits the POI
 

dwightb

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May 2, 2013
Messages
41
Location
Cuero, Texas
A lot of good advice! Perfect practice makes perfect. You can practice wrong enough till it becomes set! Do the same routine every time. If you concentrate on your shooting routine its hard to have buck or target fever! I start mine with breathing. If you study your breathing you will notice that you stop your exhale at the same spot every time. There is also a slight pause at the bottom of the exhale. Inhale slightly deeper than normal two breaths, then extend the pause at the bottom of the second exhale. Your eyes are the first thing to falter with lack of oxygen. You cannot hold the pause too long. If it does not come together in 15 to 20 seconds, start over. A good trigger really helps but too light and it can get hard to control!
 

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