Square ZERO. The fundamentals.

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by Opinionated, Nov 6, 2011.

  1. Opinionated

    Opinionated Monkey+

    I guess I have mentioned this before . . . if not, I'll still keep it brief:

    I'm the faculty/staff adviser for a collegiate "rifle association". This is my first year with them, and their second year in existence.

    . . . after seeing their facebook page, I have been afraid to ask what happened to the last adviser. :rolleyes:

    Anyway, they approached me a while back about them wanting to seriously learn High Power and Long Range shooting skills. Having some idea of the commitment and dedication required, I was extremely pleased. If more than a little skeptical.

    Anyway, I started pulling strings and calling in favors. If they really want to do this, I really want to help them.

    Fast forward to this past Saturday morning. First day of "The Program". Their first opportunity to meet the instructor in person, their first opportunity to meet the (starter) rifles and to see the range they would be learning on.

    Let me set this up for you . . .

    The instructor is about to celebrate his 90th birthday.
    He brought out refurbed Mossberg 85 .22 target rifles (bolt action, iron sighted .22 rifles used by the military for rifle training during *at least* WWII and Korea).
    The targets were setup at 25 feet.
    And the poor old guy, first thing he tells them is that he is the youth program director at the range and his students are usually 5 to 8 years old.

    There stood 10 male college students (and two females) full of piss and vinegar thinking they would at least be shooting optic equipped center fire rifles at 100 yards to start. While I didn't actually hear anyone groan, their faces said it all. And it was not good.


    Fast forward an hour and every one of those kids were hanging on every word that old guy said. He hooked them!! At the first break I DID hear one of the kids say "If anyone would have told me it was this hard to shoot a bullseye consistently at TWENTY FIVE FEET I would have laughed at them. Not any more!" and about 10 others nodded their heads in agreement.

    The twelfth guy? He was still laying on the shooting mat with a make believe rifle (the instructor made them rack the rifles at the break) trying to zero in his natural point of aim!

    Three hours after that; every one of those kids made their first ever "in the black" hits at 300 yards unsupported with my iron sighted M1A shooting surplus ammo. I only gave them 3-rounds each, everyone got one in the black, some got two, one GIRL got all three.

    To the person those kids walked away at the end of the day with a well deserved huge sense of accomplishment.

    Next time, they start learning why they missed (reading the wind, mirage, and ballistics).

    Huntinbull, buzzz, Gray Wolf and 5 others like this.
  2. Cephus

    Cephus Monkey+++ Founding Member

    I have one of those OLD Mossberg 85's and it still shoots great .These kids are going to learn a lot and I would bet on it . Old school is still the way to teach shooting ,nothing has changed but the equipment and the accuracy of the ammo .
    Hope you have as much fun as they do !!!!
    Opinionated likes this.
  3. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator

    Mine is a Winchester Model 52 pre A with the Bull Barrel. Still have it, and take it out once in a while, and shoot pop cans at 100 Yds. One shot, one Can..... YMMV.....
    Cephus and Opinionated like this.
  4. -06

    -06 Monkey+++

    Shot small bore comp a bit and am confident with rimfires. That all changed when my "red headed stepchild" from Goose Creek, SC came back to visit with his old ragged beat up Glenfield 22 deer gun. He had it sighted in at 100 yds and I laughed at him as he told of the 100+ deer killed with it. I laughed until he shot pine cones off at that range and then handed it to me. Was amazed at it's accuracy at that range. Now I have two of mine sighted in at 100 yds. I use Stingers (they shoot 4" higher than regular rounds) and do not hesitate to shoot a squirrel at "great" distances. Try it and be amazed at the little rounds.
    Gafarmboy likes this.
  5. Opinionated

    Opinionated Monkey+

    I've gotta tell you Cephus, I'm walking on clouds. To see those kids light bulbs come on and them focus willingly on the task at hand was one of the most fulfilling things I have ever experienced.

    I'm not sure I could have more fun even without my clothes on.

    . . . yeah. I'm getting old. [dunno][footinmouth]
    Cephus likes this.
  6. Opinionated

    Opinionated Monkey+

    Modern weapon technology is indeed truly amazing - and the older stuff ain't half bad either! But I can't wait to get my hands on my first laser rifle! :D

  7. Gray Wolf

    Gray Wolf Monkey+++

    Good job!
    Opinionated likes this.
  8. GrandpaDave

    GrandpaDave Monkey++

    Okay I know your not training Marines... but here's a link to the official Shooting manual...
    of course they are talking about the M16/M4 in this book but the things you'll find in there talk about the principles of basic marksmanship and that's what you want to teach your kids right?

    Sight alignment sight picture trigger control prone kneeling standing etc etc etc etc...
    FM3 22x9 Rifle Marksmanship Chan 4.9412913
    Opinionated likes this.
  9. Opinionated

    Opinionated Monkey+

    Thanks Grandpa!! [applaud]
  10. Capt. Tyree

    Capt. Tyree Hawkeye

    A Unique Mind Exercise

    There is something uniquely challenging, yet widely achievable in the learning process when it comes to precisely sending bullets downrange. It's a reward to see the immediate feedback as to where on the target the last round hit; and the adjustments one makes to improve the outcome with the next round.

    In today's society, young shooters in training are using a rarely exercised part of their reasoning skills when they apply mind and body in developing their shooting accuracy.

    At the same time they develop a special focus and self-confidence that is akin to that derived from playing a musical instrument (rather than listening to recordings of others), and participating and improving in sports (rather than watching it on TV).

    We have too many young "couch potatoes" linked to their electronic devices that lose out on the rewards of really doing something on their own. Basic shooting success can be quickly achieved with proper training, and can create a "begin>>learn>>success>>learn more>>greater success" cycle that can keep young people believing in self-accomplishment and wanting to do more.
    Opinionated likes this.
  11. GrandpaDave

    GrandpaDave Monkey++

    Cephus, Opinionated and buzzz like this.
  12. buzzz

    buzzz Monkey+

    Very nice Opinionated ! I couldn't think of a more rewarding " hobby " . Thanks Granpa , I bookmarked your web page , good stuff there !
    Opinionated likes this.
  13. Seawolf1090

    Seawolf1090 Retired Curmudgeonly IT Monkey Founding Member

    The USMC Sniper Manual helped me a lot with tightening my groups, reading the wind, etc. And, having gotten in good with an old retired Gunny - most folks swore at him, but I found him a font of shooting knowledge and I swear BY him! Being ex-military myself, the crusty ways weren't a problem for me.
    He even allowed as how I became a pretty fair shot, for a swabby! :D

    He had me hitting the pop bottle TOPS at the 110 yard berm most of the time with a good .22 rifle. Other fellers were shooting patterns on the 10" paper plates at 35 yards.... with scoped .22 rifles!
    Gunny and I would pop golf balls over the berm before they roofed them.
    He could make soda cans DANCE on the berm - with his 10" barreled Ruger pistol - open sighted! He had very good eyes for a man in his 70's.
    He's gone to bolster God's Corps now. I miss the old Marine!
    Cephus likes this.
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