rifles and guns

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Robin Mitchell, Feb 24, 2011.

  1. Robin Mitchell

    Thread Starter Distinguished Member

    Oct 25, 2009

    Im right handed. If i hold a rifel (or any two handed weapon) i pull the trigger with my left hand and aim with my right. But why does everyone else hold the gun the other way rounds so their worse hand is aming?

  2. nerdegutta


    Dec 15, 2009
    How ca you do that?

    I've done some shooting, and I'm right handed. When I'm shooting I hold the left hand under the "pipe" (I don't know the english word) and the right index finger on the trigger. The left hand is helping to guide the gun towards the target. My right chin is down on the gun so I can aim with the right eye.
  3. DumboFixer

    Active Member

    Feb 10, 2009
    It sounds like you are holding the rifle left handed (i.e. placing stock into your left shoulder).

    I am left handed yet I fire a rifle right handed (i.e. placing the stock into my right shoulder). Just feels more comfortable that way. One handed weapons (ie pistol) I can use either hand.
  4. Wendy


    Mar 24, 2008
    I agree, you're using a leftie stance. I've been shooting guns since I was 6, and while not currently active do have a passing knowledge of the subject, as do most Texans. We tend to drive the rest of the United States nuts on the subject, except maybe the rest of the south (who agree).

    You want your left arm supporting the rifle if you are standing. For the record, laying down or using support always improves your aim. You right hand is handling all the controls such as the safety and trigger whilst using the target sights, though in general I have the safety clicked off by then anyhow.

    Your best hand needs to be on the trigger, slow, and gentle, so when the rifle goes off it is a surprise. I didn't mention breathing or anything else, this is the bare bone basics.

    If I am using a pistol, either revolver or semi, it is my right on the grip and trigger, and my left supporting.

    It is a tool, why would I switch hands with a deadly tool like this? I want my most dexterous hand in use.

    The best gun control is hitting what you aim at.
  5. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
    Sitting on a log,finger on the trigger eye on the hog.
  6. jpanhalt


    Jan 18, 2008
    @#3 If he his aiming with his Right eye, it would be quite awkward to put it on his left shoulder, to say the least.

    Shooting right-eyed and triggering with the left hand may seem odd to some, but if it works, do it. The non-dominant hand is often better at fine movements. For example, I am left-handed, left-eyed and tune a radio with my right hand. I may try triggering with my right next time. It may cut down on jerking.

    What I don't like about left-handed shooting is when the shell casings eject across my nose, but you get used to it. Left-handed guns are about as useless as left-handed scissors.

    @Bill Marsden: Amen to your last sentence.

  7. VoodooMojo

    Active Member

    Nov 28, 2009
    during AIT training it was explained to me as satisfying your dominant eye.
    makes sense to me. I have tried aiming with my non-dominant eye with poor success.
  8. magnet18

    Senior Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    I'm from Indiana, our summer camp gives 22's to 11 year olds and black powder to 12 year olds :)

    A friend of mine is right handed, and right eye dominant*, and he shoots left handed.

    For the first 2 days of camp he couldn't hit anything, and apparently he remembered doing it differently sometime before, so much to the dismay of the instructor, he switched hands. Bullseye.

    *(if you don't know what that is, make a triangle with your fingers, put something in it, and pull the triangle to your face, you'll see what eye you end up looking through.)
  9. nsaspook

    AAC Fanatic!

    Aug 27, 2009
    Here is a trick I learned long ago. When focused on a target always aim at the smallest detail you can see on the spot you want to hit. Learn to always to hold your weapon exactly the same way then focus only on the target moving your body and not eyes to keep on target. This has the effect of moving the brains aiming actions to a unconscious/ automatic level like riding a bicycle or walking a beam. With lots of practice even fast moving targets seem to move in slow motion.

    And yes, I'm a Texan, born with a gun in my hand.:D My father sometimes went quail hunting with a bow when I was young, like these guys but with fewer misses.


    Last edited: Feb 24, 2011
  10. shortbus

    AAC Fanatic!

    Sep 30, 2009
    I agree, the dominant eye is more important than the dominant hand.

    Are any of you old enough to have been able to take a rifle to school so you could go hunting after school? You had to have permission from both your parents and the school principal and leave the rifle in the school office but it was allowed. Don't think it would happen today though :)
  11. Markd77

    Senior Member

    Sep 7, 2009
    Another seemingly strange thing is that right handed guitar and violin players use the left hand for the complicated fingering and the right hand just for hitting or bowing the strings.
    Also I was taught to snowboard regular stance (left foot forward) which is most common but I found out a few seasons later that I was actually better goofy (right foot forward). The first few snowboards I used were the old style with one square end that couldn't easily be ridden "backwards".
  12. nsaspook

    AAC Fanatic!

    Aug 27, 2009
    I remember when you could buy guns mail-order (pre 1968).
  13. magnet18

    Senior Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    If none of you were ware of this the Boys Life magazines (aimed at 11 year olds) still advertise guns :)
  14. Kermit2

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 5, 2010
    Why this concern for aiming?

    just use a shotgun with steel shot loads and no choke for maximum spread... :)

    Be ready to replace the barrel if you fire it very often. Steel shot is hell on steel barrels
  15. nerdegutta


    Dec 15, 2009
    BTW: I grew up reading Guns 'n Ammo. :D

    Dad had a big pile of them...
  16. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
    You are a lefty!

    Some people are right handed at nearly all task, but for some reason, are left dominant at shooting. Sometimes this has to do with eyesight, others its how you were taught.

    To get pedantic on terms:
    gun - howitzer/battleship gun (though it is used interchangeably with any of the below:)
    rifle - man carried small caliber firearm
    handgun - any handgun (pistol or revolver)
    pistol - semi-automatic handgun
    revolver - handgun with a cylinder to hold rounds, typically 6

    The others that people mix up a lot are "magazine" and "clip"
    Magazine is a self contained feeding and storage mechanism for ammo. Magazines include a spring and follower for feeding the rounds.

    A clip only holds rounds, it is used to fill (charge) a magazine.

    Revolvers use "moon clips" to fill all 6 rounds at once.
    Pistols use pre-loaded magazines for an ammo "refill".

    Rifles are found in both forms. The M1 Garand uses a clip to charge the internal magazine, while with a Ruger 10/22, the magazine is replaced for more rounds.

    Sorry, got off track. Have fun plinking!
  17. Georacer


    Nov 25, 2009
    Nice test, I was surprised by the unconscious move to the right side of the face.

    I think that apart from inherent predominance, habit is a major factor too.
    When I started driving I was taught to have both hands on the wheel. I got my licence this way but later I started to keep my right hand on the stick all the time.

    Now I feel awkward when I drive with both hands and it actually feels more wobbly. I place the right hand on the wheel only when I want to turn it a lot and fast (in a hairpin), or when I drive fast and want to steer fast (when speeding in a winding road).
    Otherwise, it feels more precise with one hand. I know however that every racing school demands you to keep both hands on the wheel at all times.
  18. magnet18

    Senior Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    Same here, When I drive I can't have a hand floating around, I almost always keep my right hand on the stick in my car, I can put both on the wheel if I'm in an automatic, but the right hand has to be at the bottom of the wheel, not doing anything most of the time.
  19. GetDeviceInfo

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jun 7, 2009
    In Alberta, we love our guns, even with a federal lid on short arms. I'm right handed and shoot right hand (right on trigger). If I had an opportunity to increase my accuracy, the first thing I'd do is replace my left hand with a steady (although the connection of touch is required). The heart of a firearm is in it's grip, where you feel it's personality. It's where you want your dominant hand.

    As for eyesight, I use my weak eye, only because it's the one that lines up when I hold the firearm. For shotgunning, and rough sighting with a scope, I use both eyes, and go to one for the shot itself. That doesn't come naturally and must be practiced. I follow most missed shots with a curse of 'both eyes, remember, both eyes'.
  20. Adjuster

    Late Member

    Dec 26, 2010
    In my country quite a lot of cars are manual (stick shift, pedal clutch control). In addition, we drive our cars on the left side of the road. The gear stick and the handbrake are usually situated to the driver's left.

    As a result, the work of changing gear, and the precise handbrake control needed when starting off uphill is done with the left hand. It does seem to be a bit of a struggle for a lot of learner drivers, although most seem to get the hang of it in the end.

    I've never driven abroad, but wonder whether driving on the right would be easier? Of course, anyone who had driven one way for decades would no doubt find that way more natural, but I wonder which way might be inherently better. Perhaps other factors would be more important than the transmission controls.