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  1. #1
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    Not so good this time...

    I thought I had really made a breakthrough after my last trip to the range. But this Sunday, I was back to my old ways of hitting low and to the right consistently. (I'm a lefty.) Groups are pretty good, just not hitting exactly where I'm aiming. I think I just don't get out often enough to practice. I know it's not my gun or my sights, because I've been in the zone a couple times where 80% of my shots were bullseyes or at least in the 10 ring.

    I have a question: I've seen people here talk about "yanking", "slapping", and "mashing" the trigger. Are these all the same thing, more or less? Meaning that one is pulling back too fast and without dexterity on the trigger?

    Is it correct to have the trigger pull all the way to the rear after the trigger breaks? Or is this "mashing"? Just trying to think of every little thing that I do that could be causing my trigger squeeze to go awry.

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  3. #2
    BeefyBeefo's Avatar
    BeefyBeefo is offline Senior Member
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    I'm a lefty and I had the same problem when I first started, but it was quickly fixed. I cannot stress to you how much it helped me to have someone at the range with me that knew how to shoot. He would watch me shoot and load my magazines for me, putting in a dummy round every once in a while. At that point, when I would get to the dummy round in the mag, I knew exactly what I was doing wrong and I didn't even need his input. All of my hitting low and right was me anticipating the recoil. I was yanking on the trigger as well as pulling the gun down in anticipation of recoil. This has helped me tremendously and as a result many people I know have benefited from this by way of me Try this and you will be very pleased.....

    -Jeff-

  4. #3
    Wyatt's Avatar
    Wyatt is offline Member
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    I'm a "goofy finger" too! Another thing that helped me is to think "smooth squeeze". Pull straight back. I've had the tendency to torque the gun sideways when pulling the trigger until I got the hang off pulling straight back and being "surprised" when it breaks rather than anticipating the gun going off.

    Keep practicing and you'll be back on target soon. I think it's like golf, sometimes you have it and it feels right and sometimes it don't and you struggle.

  5. #4
    JeffWard's Avatar
    JeffWard is offline Senior Member
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    Don't control the recoil with the trigger hand/finger. ontrol with the off hand (right for you, left for me).

    The dominant/trigger hand pushes, the off hand pulls. If you are pushing with the trigger hand, you are only pulling with the trigger finger.

    The release/shot should come completely by suprise. Hard to do if you have a 12# or creaky gravelly trigger...

    Focus completely on the front sight/sight picture and squeeze subconsciously. Hard to do, but essential.

    JW

  6. #5
    Mike Barham's Avatar
    Mike Barham is offline Senior Member
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    All those terms essentially mean the same thing: you're not getting a surprise trigger break. Letting the trigger break surprise you is absolutely essential to getting good hits at any kind of range. I prefer to think of it as a trigger "press" - the isolated action of the index finger only - rather than a "squeeze," which has implications of the whole hand tightening.

    This doesn't necessarily mean you have to have an open-ended time frame for your trigger press. The compressed surprise trigger break allows very fast shooting in very short time frames, but you need to be able to control the trigger slowly before you can do it quickly.

    The other thing is trigger reset. Keep your finger in contact with the trigger face, and allow the trigger to go forward only far enough to feel/hear the "click" of the sear re-engaging, then begin to press off your next shot. This is much easier than allowing the trigger to fly fully forward after each shot.
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  7. #6
    Charlie's Avatar
    Charlie is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyatt View Post
    Keep practicing and you'll be back on target soon. I think it's like golf, sometimes you have it and it feels right and sometimes it don't and you struggle.
    Lordy, I'm glad I can shoot better than I play golf!!! (which by no means indicates I can shoot worth spit!)

  8. #7
    niadhf's Avatar
    niadhf is online now Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie View Post
    Lordy, I'm glad I can shoot better than I play golf!!! (which by no means indicates I can shoot worth spit!)
    DITTO

  9. #8
    1911 driver is offline Banned
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    trigger control

    Try taking the "slack out" first...pause...then start pressing the trigger slowly to the rear. Stay focused on your front sight while continuing the rearward pressure. The shot will break on its own. LET THE GUN FIRE ON ITS OWN....DO NOT MAKE IT FIRE...!!

  10. #9
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    Thanks everybody. Sometimes you just need to hear the basic tips again. And again... and again...

    But hey, no one answered my question about the trigger flying all the way to the rear after the trigger breaks. I can't imagine this not happening since at the time it breaks, I go from 5 lbs of resistance to almost nothing. Am I to assume this is not a problem?

  11. #10
    BeefyBeefo's Avatar
    BeefyBeefo is offline Senior Member
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    When I'm surprised by the trigger break, I'm pretty close to having the trigger all the way to the rear but it's not there. Dry fire a ton to practice and like I said above have someone that knows how to shoot there with you watching and loading your magazines....

    -Jeff-

  12. #11
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    Maybe I'm not using the right terminology. What I'm referring to is the "over travel" after the trigger breaks. When I shoot now, after the trigger breaks and the gun fires, my finger is instinctively pulling the trigger all the way to the rear, taking up all the slack of the "over travel". Then I slowly relase it again until I feel the click of the sear engaging again and the I start my squeeze again.

    My question is basically this: Does mashing the trigger all the way through the "over travel" after the trigger breaks (even if you've done it right and it is a surpise break) affect the shot? Or should you strive to have the trigger still floating in the over travel area after the trigger breaks? I just don't see how this is possible if it is supposed to be a surprise when the trigger breaks and the gun fires.

  13. #12
    zhurdan's Avatar
    zhurdan is offline Senior Member
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    Well, surprise is a pretty good word for it. There are set screws in some 1911's to adjust overtravel to a minimum. Think of it like this, unless you are REALLY jerking the trigger, the bullet is going to be gone before you reach the maximum overtravel. (perhaps a bit of an overstatement). The point is, the 'break' should be just as the sear trips and that's it, so to answer your question, you really have to practice to not go the full length of overtravel. I can stop before then when firing slow and methodical or when using my .22 target pistol, but if I'm shooting with haste, mmmmm not so much. I know it hits the back of the overtravel in the trigger, but my resets are right off the sear. I'd say that the reset is probably a little more important than fear of overtravel. I may be incorrect, if so, I'd like to know so I can fix it too! hehe

    Hope that helps.

    Zhur

  14. #13
    michael P. is offline Junior Member
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    Your trigger press is your main problem, classic anticipation problem that can be fixed with all the tips above and a lot of dry fire practice. However I suspect that the reason you are shooting to the right is due to your grip. Grip is a touch issue and is hard to explain. I prefer the straight thumbs method, which gets my support palm high on the gun. What I was taught and what has helped me and others I know, is to push with your palms. And push harder with your support palm than your strong hand palm. Again I only suspect that this part of the problem. It is hard to say without watching you shoot.

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by michael P. View Post
    Your trigger press is your main problem, classic anticipation problem that can be fixed with all the tips above and a lot of dry fire practice. However I suspect that the reason you are shooting to the right is due to your grip. Grip is a touch issue and is hard to explain. I prefer the straight thumbs method, which gets my support palm high on the gun. What I was taught and what has helped me and others I know, is to push with your palms. And push harder with your support palm than your strong hand palm. Again I only suspect that this part of the problem. It is hard to say without watching you shoot.
    Yeah, I figured it was those things. Thanks.

    Sorry for beating this one to death everybody. Just trying to learn as much as I can. I really need to just pony up and find a good hands-on class of some kind. Thanks for all your comments.

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