Well, a few months ago when I wrote the last article, I had a few tests I decided to run at our spring Precision Optics Workshop and the great folks who attended were all willing guinea pigs.
In the previous article, I postulated that the ability to accurately estimate the range to a target using a graduated scope reticle would be limited by the capabilities of the human eye, and that capability would be somewhere between 1 and 5 arc-minutes, but I didn’t exactly know where to set the bar. My best guess, given glass quality and atmospheric effects was about 2 arc minutes.
To test this, we played a little game with 10 participants. 5 “shooters” with optics greater than 20X and 5 “shooters” using optics less than 20X. The scopes used were a fairly representative sample of the common glass out … Read More »
I suppose it is in my nature to try and resolve certain observed phenomena down to the mathematical formulae that can reliably and logically explain them. This is surprising, given that I flunked Calculus 2 three times consecutively in college and eventually had to change majors because that dog just wasn’t going to hunt.
f(x)dx notwithstanding, I did eventually graduate and go on to work as a research and development chemist for one of the world’s largest producers of consumer products.
No one was more surprised than I when a sudden impulse arose in me at lunchtime today to calculate and chart the potential error in range estimates induced by the limits of visual acuity of both the reticle and the target. Let me restate that in simpler terms: I wanted to figure out just how screwed up reticle range estimates could get for someone with … Read More »
Some of mankind’s first applications of the principles of ergonomics were with weapons. It probably started with the smoother rock,and evolved into the club or spear that was easier to grip, to the more balanced sword, down through the ages until eventually we arrived at the blocky polymer grips of today’s popular autopistols. Rifle stocks also, through this process of evolution and engineering continuous improvements, have come to be a good general fit for the average shooter. “Good general fit,” however, has never appealed to the “precision” rifleman. Now, this peculiarity isn’t just about looking cool and basic comfort. The shooter’s physical control over the rifle is dependent on their interface with the action, barrel, optics, and stock or chassis.
When everyone was still having gunsmiths carve wooden stocks, the answer to optics was the Monte Carlo style raised comb, which … Read More »
The generally accepted measure of the mechanical precision of a firearm/ammo/optic combination along with the skill or consistency of the rifleman is the ability to shoot tight groups. Too much time shooting groups, however, can encourage an excessive reliance on precision rather than accuracy and the ability to hit a mark with the first shot. Also, ask yourself how many times you have seen articles showing tight groups 2 or 3 inches away from the bullseye? Those types of groups are useful to take a repeatable measure of a rifle’s performance, and a baseline for adjusting the sighting system, but unless we make the necessary adjustments to get the rifle accurately hitting point of aim=point of impact, all of that precision is wasted.
Off the square range, the rifleman doesn’t get to fire groups at a target, but has to rely on one well-aimed shot doing … Read More »
We don’t need any more posts, videos, articles, memes, epistles, or other complaints about the state of the industry. They were interesting at first, but we have had quite enough of them now, thank you. The shark has been thoroughly jumped. Any additional kicking of the dead horse just makes you sound like a bitter, grumpy, tactical snob… and buddy (and I swear this isn’t targeted at any one person), it doesn’t look good on you.
The English-speaking world already knows that you think there are just too many “firearms instructors”;
too many unqualified posers;
too many wannabe operators;
too many altered DD214’s;
too many “mall ninjas” and “cop-erators”;
too many chairborne rangers;
too many competition shooters teaching tacticool classes;
too many plumbers, and accountants, and engineers teaching “concealed carry” classes;
too many fancy terms for simple techniques;
too many people who have more … Read More »
For those of you who don’t remember the Clinton-era “assault weapons ban” or weren’t part of the shooting community at that time, this article is for your benefit. Let’s turn back the clock a few years… 1993 sees Arkansas democrat Bill Clinton elected to the presidency of the USA, he quickly appoints staunchly anti-Second Amendment Janet Reno as the first female Attorney General. Thus began one of the bleakest periods in US history for firearms enthusiasts.
Soon after being appointed, Attorney General Reno initiated a reign of terror on firearms dealers, gun-show promoters, gun collectors and anyone else the government considered “undesirables.” Keep in mind, several Federal Law Enforcement agencies were already heading down this road, after all, they had just made an example of Randy Weaver of Ruby Ridge, Idaho for being an accused “white separatist.” Federal agents entrapped Weaver … Read More »
One day in the late 90’s I went shooting with some friends from work out on a piece of rural property one of them owned a little east of Cincinnati, Ohio. I remember my hearing and eye protection drew a guffaw from one old timer who made some remark to me about just having to “toughen up my ears,” to which I responded “isn’t that called hearing loss?”
I have almost 20 years of professional experience protecting people’s hearing in the workplace. I could go into all kinds of scientific details about the effects of impulse noise on hearing, but that wouldn’t be helping the “too long, didn’t read” crowd – you know who you are. So here’s the quick and dirty version:
There are 2 ways to prevent sound from entering the ear … Read More »
So I’m going to try really hard to stay in my lane in this article, as the saying goes. The question at hand: to chest rig or not as a “citizen carbine operator. “ Before anyone freaks out too badly, because I can already sense blood pressures rising from an army of keyboard commandos ready to deal out a tirade of punishing remarks, let me advise you to just chill for a second. Let’s apply some logic and work our way through this, mmmk?
Let’s talk nomenclature first, from back to front: when I say “operator” I realize that in military circles this refers specifically to members of SEAL Team 6 and 1SFOD-Delta. In this article, we’re not talking about them. We’re talking about John Q. Public who owns, and may find occasion to use or “operate” a carbine for defensive … Read More »
Prioritizing Your Defensive Dollar – By ADC Instructor Michael Lake
We all know that time and money are finite resources and most of us normal folks have to make careful decisions about how to spend them, after all, most of us hand more than 1/3 of it to Uncle Sam so he can piss it away. That doesn’t always leave much for keeping a roof over our heads, meat on the table and the wolf from the door. Most of us know what our rent or mortgage payment is, and we budget for that. Most of us have some idea how much money we spend to feed ourselves and families, and we budget for that. We keep track of our time and plan for our day jobs, domestic chores, and recreation time. When it comes to keeping the wolf from the … Read More »
By: Instructor Jeremy Decker
Precision rifle shots can be taken from a variety of field positions, however, it is widely accepted that shooting from prone offers the most stability, it’s also typically the first position used while learning scoped rifle-craft. What makes the prone position most stable is its low center of gravity and maximum contact with the ground for both the rifle, and the shooter. The most stable geometric shape is the triangle; therefore, the rifle is most stable when it has 3 solid points of contact with the ground. The front of a rifle supported by a bipod creates 2 of these points of contact. Stabilizing the rear of the rifle when shooting from the prone position can be accomplished in a number of ways; but is made much easier with a physical support of some kind, such as … Read More »