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Recoil Management / Staying On Target

This is a discussion on Recoil Management / Staying On Target within the Guns forums, part of the Gun Forum category; Being able to spot your hits as you fire is a nice thing. Your rifle staying put, your scope never moving off your target, and ...


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Old 08-02-2016, 04:18 PM   #1
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Recoil Management / Staying On Target

Being able to spot your hits as you fire is a nice thing. Your rifle staying put, your scope never moving off your target, and spotting your hit or splash enables you to make a quick adjustment and re-engage your target quickly.

Shooting prone you lay in a straight line to your rifle. An imaginary line straight down your rifle, through your spine, and down the inside of your right leg, if your a righty, keeps the recoil straight back and the rifle not bouncing of your target. You can watch where your bullet hits without having to muscle your rifle around trying to find your target again.

Now shooting off the bench is a bit hard staying square to your rifle. Small calibers like 223/556, 22-250 or 308 are no problem keeping your scope on target as you shoot. But what about the heavier recoiling rounds like the 338 Lapua?

My bipod will start sliding forward keeping me from loading it forward as much as I want and I can't stay square behind my rifle resulting in it jumping up and to one side or the other on recoil. Then I have to zoom down to find my target, set up, and zoom back in. No bueno!

So I've been reviewing SHLowlights YouTube videos looking for an answer. What I found was that as he shot of a bench, he stood behind the bench resulting in a standing prone position.
So I decided to give that a try along with another hairbrained idea.








I noticed that on the McMillan A5 stock that the buttstock has a hook to use to pull it back towards you and to help steer the rifle. So what I did today was to use my monopod in its shortest vertical position in conjunction with my TAB rear bag. The monopod is great for making quick accurate shots but the rear bag gives me more stability for precision shots.
Combined I had the bags stability while being able to push back against the monopod.
I assumed the standing/prone position, a little wierd at first but you get used to it.
I only brought 7 rounds wanting to verify my coldbore shot and my drop between 100-200 to see how it's matching my ballistic curve that I have to 600 yards so far.









My coldbore shot was .525" high off center, and my second shot just below it .182" off center. I slipped off to the right .814" on my third shot. Not bad considering learning this new position. Even better was being able to stay in my scope and spot my hits as they happened.








Moving out to 200 yards I didn't do any dialing on my scope knobs. I was wanting to check the drop to see how close it was to what my ballistic app was calling in this mornings conditions. My ballistics chart showed a 3.1" drop and I measured 2.979" off my good shots center. Close enough as my elevation is dialed in at 600 with this velocity curve.
As you can see, I screwed up my first shot. I called it as my trigger broke and as soon as the dust cloud blew away I could see it was right where I called it. I need to get more comfortable in this new position, nothing more trigger time won't help. My second and third shots felt great and as the dust blew away I was able to verify them as my scope never moved off target. But once again I moved as I broke my fourth shot. I need to work on horizontal stability from this position, but my elevation is staying good and I'm able to keep my rifle/scope on target.

So this standing prone position has proven itself right off the bat. Nice not having to chase my rifle around looking for the target after each shot. I'd call this a successful day experimenting with the Hornady Match ammo. Even though this ammo averages 4 thousands out of concentricity, it's started grouping better as I get more rounds down the barrel and get more familiar with this rifle.

Last edited by Twistedracer; 08-02-2016 at 08:31 PM.
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Old 08-02-2016, 06:23 PM   #2
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I suck at staying on target shooting from a rest unless I am kneeling with just one knee on the bench where I can get behind the gun. I don't like sitting and shooting from a rest as much. I might try shooting from prone my next trip and see how well my shots are grouped versus kneeling behind the rest. My range is up hill after 200 yards though. I have never used bags in the rear so far
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Old 08-02-2016, 06:43 PM   #3
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I suck at staying on target shooting from a rest unless I am kneeling with just one knee on the bench where I can get behind the gun. I don't like sitting and shooting from a rest as much. I might try shooting from prone my next trip and see how well my shots are grouped versus kneeling behind the rest. My range is up hill after 200 yards though. I have never used bags in the rear so far
Unlike in this pick I had extended the bipod on click up to compensate for my shooting position. A rear bag can really help steady you out.
I'm using the standard size TAB bag. It's a lightweight design with a loop that you can use a D ring to clip to your gear to carry. It's got straps to run your hand through to help hold it in place wether you're holding it in the lower horizontal position or the taller vertical position in my pic. I've been quite pleased with this bag.

If you try shooting from a bipod you want to load the bipod with some forward pressure. A little tough of a slick bench though. I could only place a very light pressure on the bipod of the bench I shot off but I just make sure to keep the pressure consistent each time.

It's fun trying and learning new tricks, especially when you find it works.
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Old 08-02-2016, 07:12 PM   #4
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Unlike in this pick I had extended the bipod on click up to compensate for my shooting position. A rear bag can really help steady you out.
I'm using the standard size TAB bag. It's a lightweight design with a loop that you can use a D ring to clip to your gear to carry. It's got straps to run your hand through to help hold it in place wether you're holding it in the lower horizontal position or the taller vertical position in my pic. I've been quite pleased with this bag.

If you try shooting from a bipod you want to load the bipod with some forward pressure. A little tough of a slick bench though. I could only place a very light pressure on the bipod of the bench I shot off but I just make sure to keep the pressure consistent each time.

It's fun trying and learning new tricks, especially when you find it works.
I try loading up on the bipod some and thats why I prefer the Atlas Bipod over Harris. I cannot load up with my harris bipod because it has no give at all and just slides. I need to buy another Atlas bipod and will probably get the taller one next. My atlas has the quick clamp so its easy to switch and figure I will only need one gun at a time anyway. I put the Harris on my Daniel Defense Mk12 just because thats what specs show for the Mk12 and will probably just leave it there.
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Old 08-02-2016, 07:23 PM   #5
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I try loading up on the bipod some and thats why I prefer the Atlas Bipod over Harris. I cannot load up with my harris bipod because it has no give at all and just slides. I need to buy another Atlas bipod and will probably get the taller one next. My atlas has the quick clamp so its easy to switch and figure I will only need one gun at a time anyway. I put the Harris on my Daniel Defense Mk12 just because thats what specs show for the Mk12 and will probably just leave it there.
Tha Atlas is great. I also use the QD to use it on my other rifles. U can also get the leg extensions for it instead of buying the taller one. Gives you more options.
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Old 08-02-2016, 08:01 PM   #6
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Nice write up! I have not shot from a bench as out here in the desert I put out my shooting mat and lay down. I found that even with my 308, before I had it customized so it had no muzzle brake, it would jump and I would lose sight of my shot. Now with my muzzle brake it barely moves straight back into my shoulder and I stay right on target. I love that muzzle brake!
Anyways really nice write up on your shootin!!
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Old 08-02-2016, 08:21 PM   #7
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Nice write up! I have not shot from a bench as out here in the desert I put out my shooting mat and lay down. I found that even with my 308, before I had it customized so it had no muzzle brake, it would jump and I would lose sight of my shot. Now with my muzzle brake it barely moves straight back into my shoulder and I stay right on target. I love that muzzle brake!
Anyways really nice write up on your shootin!!
Nice getting to use your shooting mat. Mine hasn't been used yet.
When I first started shooting my 308, R700 5R Milspec, it would come of target on recoil. That's when I started doing research and learned about loading the bipod and most importantly getting square behind the rifle. Now even without a brake it stays put. The 338L with its greater recoil placed more of a demand on being square behind the rifle for it to recoil straight backwards. I watched SHLowlights video shooting of a steel bench top. Not being able to load the bipod the rifle was still recoiling straight back. That really hammered in the point of being square behind the rifle.

I think that we've all seen the pics of shooters in the prone position with their body and legs kicked of to their weak side. I guess those pics were just wrong learning for us. Fortunately these newer techniques are there for us to seek out.

Tomorrow's my last day on vacation so I'm heading back to the range and going old school. 03-A3 Smith Corona, iron sight day.
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Old 08-02-2016, 08:36 PM   #8
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J shooting my 338 LM and the rifle bouncing all over the place.









My grandson behind his Desert Tech 338 Lapua. Bipod loaded and square behind the rifle. No bounce.




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Old 08-02-2016, 08:48 PM   #9
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Yes I get square behind the rifle and I load my bipod. My shooting mat has that lip thing for loading the bipod. I have a friend that still doesn't get behind his rifle and his body is off to his weak side. He's a nice guy but he's hard to teach.
At this time what I need is more trigger time as I haven't been out with my rifle this year. I've had a lot of health problems which makes it difficult and it's been too darn hot out in the desert.
I'm still learning the long range stuff. It's so much fun. I never thought I would like it but I truly do love it.
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Old 08-02-2016, 09:45 PM   #10
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Yes I get square behind the rifle and I load my bipod. My shooting mat has that lip thing for loading the bipod. I have a friend that still doesn't get behind his rifle and his body is off to his weak side. He's a nice guy but he's hard to teach.
At this time what I need is more trigger time as I haven't been out with my rifle this year. I've had a lot of health problems which makes it difficult and it's been too darn hot out in the desert.
I'm still learning the long range stuff. It's so much fun. I never thought I would like it but I truly do love it.
Hope you get some time to play and have fun. I'm still learning myself and really enjoying the process. I've always been a pretty good shot for a hunter, but this is a totally different step up the ladder in accuracy and and making those long first shot hits. A fun game to learn.
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