Thursday, February 18, 2021

Ballistic therapy


Fifty yards. He is getting close to having it dialed in.
The kid up the road has a new (for him) .22 that he is dialing in for squirrel hunting.

Since I was tagging along he let me shoot the .38 Special, Double-Action

Firing from 10 paces, two-handed. Slow makes smooth. Smooth makes fast.

Overall, 85% (28/33). I still need to work on sight-picture and firming up my grip. Most of the fliers to the left were first-of-string-shots.  I was doing some tactical reloads with Bianchi speed-strips. A "tactical reload" is where I don't shoot the gun dry  but dump the empties and top it off. Consequently, many of the shots counted as first-of-string.

The best shooting were quick strings-of-six. The head-shots were a string-of-six plus a random, additional round. The additional round is the one that hit low.

One of the other shooters at the range was a nurse in radiology. It was his educated opinion that "most of the shots would have hurt" but "The ones in the center of his face...they wouldn't have hurt at all"

In real life, heads are hard to hit because they bob-around so much. Still, that might be the only target you are offered.

This is not an example of fabulous shooting. Like Rocky Balboa replied when asked to assess his skills as a fighter, "I'm a ham-n-egger". This is ham-n-egg shooting, nothing special but good enough to get the job done much of the time.

You can also see that my target selection is informed by my experience harvesting animals for meat. Hunters don't aim for guts. We aim for the blood vessel rich heart-lung area. A liver-shot deer is good for a half-mile run and more than two hours of functionality. Too many bad things can happen in two hours.

No absolute standards in firearms

It is interesting that the kid is off by an inch-and-a-half at fifty yards and that isn't good enough while I am grouping 9"-by-9" at one fifth that distance and consider that "functional"


  1. Replies
    1. When the target has the ability and wherewithal to shoot back, there is much to be said for trading a little bit of accuracy for a quicker first-shot.

      It is a fine line. Any first-shot that hits meat is a good first shot. Unless totally tanked up on drugs or anger, the aggressor is likely to be distracted by the addition of holes in his hide. Hopefully, it will decrease his accuracy.

  2. A former neighbor from Mosherville Station Mi.

  3. Both elk I shot in the liver with bow and arrow stopped very soon.....

    1. The wound-track of a broad-head is huge.

      I was once told that the average guy who falls out of a tree-stand and lands on an arrow is usually dead within 20 feet of the accident.

      There are accounts of multiple hits with pistol rounds that SHOULD have been fatal not putting the person down. One account from here ( ) a very long read

      "A subject walked up to the back door of the station once. He had been involved in a fight with another subject and told the first Officer that he had been shot. He raised his shirt and showed 5 entry wounds to his chest. I followed the ambulance to the hospital and looked at the X rays with the doctors. Every single round missed every single vital organ. It was FMJ .380. No organs, bones or ribs were hit. It was amazing. "

      I cannot imagine surviving one hit with a broadhead in that location much less being able to walk to the police station.

  4. The kid is after minute-of-squirrel groups, you're after minute-of-dirtbag. I'd say you're both pretty much there.

  5. To increase the value of my dry-fire practice and conserve precious ammo, I bought a Mantis X10 last month. I'm very impressed with its capabilities, including the sensitivity and detail of the feedback and draw/shot timing. At today's prices it's already paid for itself.


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