Is "canted" good, or bad?

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Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by mikemyers on Mon Mar 11, 2019 11:30 pm

I tried a search, and didn't find any topics on this.  Maybe my body is just wired differently, and nobody else here has this issue.

Now that I'm only shooting one handed, I notice that the natural orientation of my hand/gun seems to want to be canted "in" up to ten degrees.  If I fight this, I can keep the gun vertical, but with so many other things, maybe we're also supposed to do what the body feels is "natural"?  I guess that's my question.

Slow fire - I'll bring up my arm (which now stops with the dot over the target, finally!), and as per Brian, start applying pressure to the trigger immediately, while aiming to get the "wobble" to settle within the 10 ring if possible.  Because it's training, and I want to get in the habit of always doing "follow-through", and because I think it's helping build up the appropriate muscles, my follow-through is 10 or 15 seconds.  During that time, my hand just naturally wants to twist so it's "canted inward" at the top.  (Also during that time, I try to keep the wobble right over the 10 ring, which is getting easier to do, the more I do this.)

Is it better to just ignore the canting, and let the hand/gun do what it wants, or to force them to stay vertical, which starts to feel like I'm straining.


As a side comment, I dry-fire in half hour practice sessions, the first half wearing a one pound wrist weight over my right wrist, and the second half without the weight.  While the weight is on, my hand and gun has a very strong tendency to "cant".  When I take the wrist weight off, it's easier to keep my hand and gun vertical.  My guess is the "canting" is caused by my arm trying to support a 3.6 pound weight out in front of it, plus the weight of the arm, plus the one pound wrist weight.  Maybe when I get acclimated to the weight of the gun (which now has the Aimpoint 9000sc on it), the tendency to cant will go away?


In doing a Google Search, I did find this, but I'd rather know what you guys recommend:
http://concealednation.org/2015/05/one-handed-shooting-canted-or-vertical-do-you-even-practice-this/
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by NKF on Mon Mar 11, 2019 11:44 pm

For me I cant the gun about 20 degrees with my 22. I started shooting it that way and noticed my groups was getting better. Give it a try and see what it does for you.

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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by Founder on Mon Mar 11, 2019 11:44 pm

There is nothing wrong with cant. Just remember that your sight adjustments will need to involve both screws for what is now "up/down" and "left/right". When you lift the gun with your gun in the proper grip and your wrist and elbow extended, try rotating your entire arm so that the gun is canted the opposite way as far as you can. Some of the rotation came from the forearm, and some came from the shoulder. Now rotate the gun vertical. I'm betting that rotation came only from the forearm and feels stronger, right? Try that.

Also, don't get in the habit of "following through" like that--holding for seconds over the aiming area. Your finger should be pressing the trigger when you are holding on the aiming area.

Don't call the area where you are holding "the 10 ring". Just get it in your mind that you are holding the best hold you can and shoot a good shot within your hold.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by mikemyers on Mon Mar 11, 2019 11:54 pm

Founder wrote:.......When you lift the gun with your gun in the proper grip and your wrist and elbow extended, try rotating your entire arm so that the gun is canted the opposite way as far as you can.........

Also, don't get in the habit of "following through" like that--holding for seconds over the aiming area. Your finger should be pressing the trigger when you are holding on the aiming area.

Don't call the area where you are holding "the 10 ring". Just get it in your mind that you are holding the best hold you can and shoot a good shot within your hold.
That first thing you wrote is brilliant!  I will try that.   I'll also cut back on the follow-through.

Regarding the last thing you wrote, at the range, I do what you just suggested I do, but when I'm home dry-fire practicing, shouldn't I be trying to force myself to do better than I already can?  My practice dry-fire target is the B-8 10-ring, but mathematically scaled down so that it looks as big on my wall as it does at the range.  I alternate between using that, and using a blank wall.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by Founder on Tue Mar 12, 2019 12:11 am

It's impossible to force yourself to do better than you already can--that's "over trying" and it's detrimental to success. If you are reaffirming good performance, you will realize that you are already better than you used to think you were. Just execute your process.

Have you read Lanny Bassham's "with winning in mind" yet?
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by willnewton on Tue Mar 12, 2019 8:17 am

I have slight cant to my shot. Rob posted good advice and I would add to make sure your cant is natural and not caused by a lazy arm or shoulder. Careful body to target alignment and a short counter-cant arm rotation when lifting will help minimize cant. Even changing the spot you lift the pistol from can help.

It is not as big a deal when shooting with a dot, but I am pretty mindful of it when shooting irons and work to minimize it, as my eye like to see a level plane across the top of the sights.

Someone has posted a picture of a champion free pistol shooter with a 90 degree cant, so it can be worked with as long as you are consistent.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by willnewton on Tue Mar 12, 2019 8:22 am

Found it.  Slartybartfast posted this a while back.  He even has the sights rotated to work with his cant.

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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by mikemyers on Tue Mar 12, 2019 8:26 am

Nope, I never heard of "With Winning in Mind".  If you think it's a good read, I'll buy it or Kindle it:
https://www.amazon.com/Winning-Mind-3rd-Ed/dp/1934324264

If I was going to a match, (or just a practice session at the range) I agree with not being able to do better than I already can.  At the few matches I've been to, I shoot like it's practice, and don't even think about the results.

For practice though, I can't agree.  In anything I do, shooting, photography, cooking, whatever, I have been trying to do better than I think I can do.  Example - I know I can't hold a heavier gun up comfortably, but if I do so over a time, adding a weight to make it even a bit heavier, and gradually force myself to be able to do it over longer and longer amounts of time, and then I remove the weight, I find I can then hold the gun comfortably.

When I put live ammo in a gun, and head for the range, I follow Keith Sanderson's advice to "just shoot".  Do the learning at home in dry fire, and think of the range time as a "test" to see what I've learned.  (I suspect that for many people, it's the opposite - just do what you can at home, and try your hardest when you're at the range with live ammo.).   

Using a tiny circle that looks like the 10-ring at home for dry fire means many "misses", but it's a goal.  
It's also enjoyable now for every shot to "call it", as to where the hole should be if the gun had really fired.  One more thing I couldn't do before.



.......and after reading this just now "it is not as big a deal when shooting with a dot", since I'm using a dot, maybe I should just ignore the whole thing?
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by james r chapman on Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:50 am

Sound advice.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by dronning on Tue Mar 12, 2019 11:25 am

mikemyers wrote:Nope, I never heard of "With Winning in Mind".  If you think it's a good read, I'll buy it or Kindle it:
https://www.amazon.com/Winning-Mind-3rd-Ed/dp/1934324264

(I suspect that for many people, it's the opposite - just do what you can at home, and try your hardest when you're at the range with live ammo.).   <=== NEVER a good idea! - Elite performers work hard in preparation and easy in competition
Mike, I am a little disappointed, I have suggested to you the book WWIM at least 4 times in some of your earlier threads and this is the first time you have mentioned you might read/listen to it.  Remember 95+% of this sport is mental and if you haven't figured out how or what to train in regards to the mental aspect you will NOT progress as fast as you could/would.  Once you understand the process of mental training the phrase "Elite performers work hard in preparation and easy in competition." will make perfect sense.

I have with winning in mind on eBook I listen to it often and every time I fly.  AFTER you listen to WWIM I suggest Freedom Flight, also by Lanny this is a story inspired by true events and includes the 14 success principals.

This is the quote that got me to read ALL of Lanny's books.
"Bassham’s work in the area of mental training has been monumental. If was the cornerstone of a massive training change in the way the US Navy Seal’s train their snipers with a result that makes them…among the most successful in the world."


- Dave
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by mikemyers on Tue Mar 12, 2019 1:15 pm

dronning wrote:........I have suggested to you the book WWIM at least 4 times in some of your earlier threads and this is the first time you have mentioned you might read/listen to it.  Remember 95+% of this sport is mental and if you haven't figured out how or what to train in regards to the mental aspect you will NOT progress as fast as you could/would......
That's probably because to me, Bullseye isn't a sport.  It's an enjoyable way to spend my time, since I first started to shoot at paper targets.  
They do have matches at my range, and I guess a lot of people want to "win".  For me, the only person I want to beat is myself, from my previous match.
I realize there's a lot more to Bullseye than the part that I'm into.  I guess I'm into everything except the competition.

Whoever first told me about The Pistol Shooter's Treasury, I had it on order immediately.  If I ever get serious about competing, then the books such as this one would undoubtedly improve my score, but until then, that's not my goal.

If I'm missing something (once again) please elaborate.  It's not like things that Chris, or Jon, or Brian, or you or so many other people write here - if they're going help me shoot better, I'll read them over and over and over.  Or watch them, if it's video.  Brian has a whole section devoted to "Anticipation" - another great video. It doesn't apply to me (yet) as I don't have any problem with that.  I just treat everything like controlled practice.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by DA/SA on Tue Mar 12, 2019 1:19 pm

dronning wrote:Remember 95+% of this sport is mental and if you haven't figured out how or what to train in regards to the mental aspect you will NOT progress as fast as you could/would.  Once you understand the process of mental training the phrase "Elite performers work hard in preparation and easy in competition." will make perfect sense.
- Dave
Thank you for the timely reminder!

I have just been working on basic fundamentals and equipment up until now and pretty much dragging my feet as to the mental aspect, but it's now time to get serious about the whole picture.

Book ordered!

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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by dronning on Tue Mar 12, 2019 1:47 pm

mikemyers wrote:
dronning wrote:........I have suggested to you the book WWIM at least 4 times in some of your earlier threads and this is the first time you have mentioned you might read/listen to it.  Remember 95+% of this sport is mental and if you haven't figured out how or what to train in regards to the mental aspect you will NOT progress as fast as you could/would......
For me, the only person I want to beat is myself, from my previous match.

Your statement right there in bold is the ONLY reason to study WWIM & the mental game.  It's not about competition it's about being the best you can be.  The only way to continue to improve beyond fundamentals is to work on the mental game.  Once you understand this everything becomes so much more enjoyable.  You really understand how to train, you see the results and when you do go to a match and you document it in your performance journal you will have the path you need to improve and train for.  Not because of the competition but because you want to improve.   

There are many Sharpshooters and Experts that have perfect fundamentals but they plateau because of the 95%+ mental part of our sport.
- Dave

added:  The earlier you learn about the mental side of the sport the better.  For one thing it will help you avoid mistakes you will later have to "unlearn"!
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by mikemyers on Tue Mar 12, 2019 2:13 pm

Ha!  Thanks, Dave, I've got over 30 years worth of mistakes to correct.   :-)

Book is on order from Amazon.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by WesG on Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:15 am

Canting? The least of my worries. 20+ years of an outboard cant, sitting with a service rifle. A sight picture with the post at 7:00 is natural to me. Doesn't make any difference, 6:00 o'clock (7:00), or CM. Line it up radial/tangent, and start pulling the trigger. Never managed to shoot 10 X's, but one 9 and a bunch of 8's.

(years ago, hearing someone down the line telling a multi time state champ at the match rifle championship; 'hey, check target 23, maybe you should shoot with a post' ... LOL)

Feels, and looks, completely natural to me with a pistol. Started out converting to shooting left handed (right hand tremors make it basically impossible to shoot that way anymore), right eye dominant. Advice from an acquaintance (GS), DR, DPS, DSBP, said to cant the gun until the sights aligned with my dominant eye.

Works a treat, as the Brit's would say. I haven't yet, at my level of skill (rather low), been able to see any difference in zero between 25 and 50 yds. Considering ballistics calc's show a 6:00 hold at 25 and 50 being self compensating with irons, with the 50 yd targets being 'smaller' in MOA, for a BE 45 load ... Yeah, a CM hold with a dot might be different...

Gonna take me a few years, if ever, before I worry about changing elevation between lines.

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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by Founder on Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:17 pm

Mike,
Get "freedom flight" as well. I think I got more from "freedom flight" than I did "with winning in mind"....the story speaks more to me.

...to your points about bullseye is a passtime...you will still get strong mental preparation tools from the reading in order to get the results that YOU want from training, league, or whatever you are doing. It's just good mental practice.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by mikemyers on Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:32 pm

Thanks!

It's in my Amazon Shopping Cart.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by Ed Hall on Thu Mar 14, 2019 3:34 pm

As to the original title and post, if you haven't seen it, I have an article on cant posted on my site:

A Detailed Study of Cant Effects

Cant effects are not diminished by any particular sighting system.  It is greater at greater distances and/or slower velocities.  As long as trajectory plays a part and the bore has to point above the impact point, cant will have an effect.

As to the reading materials suggested, I, too, promote With Winning In Mind, The Inner Game of Tennis and Zen in the Art of Archery.

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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by Slartybartfast on Thu Mar 14, 2019 4:03 pm

Ed Hall wrote:As to the original title and post, if you haven't seen it, I have an article on cant posted on my site:

A Detailed Study of Cant Effects
From the article: "any tipping from the normal hold"
If your normal hold is canted, there's no worry. Correcting sights for range is just more difficult than simply adjusting one screw on the rear sight.
The vitally important trick wrt cant is being consistent.

Also, Moritz Minder was an incredible shot because he was an incredible shot. His cant won't be of any specific help to anyone else. It was simply his most comfortable repeatable arm and hand position (necessitated due to an injury).
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by mikemyers on Thu Mar 14, 2019 6:05 pm

Ed Hall wrote:.....As long as trajectory plays a part and the bore has to point above the impact point, cant will have an effect. .......
If this were true, let's take a revolver with a round barrel, and hold the gun in a device that clamps on the barrel.
Take one shot normally, 
Then take one shot after rotating the gun 90 degrees, 
Then take one with the gun upside down, and
Then take one with the gun at 270 degrees.

It seems to me that the bullets will all go to the same spot, as long as the barrel doesn't change.  
While shooting, the aiming might be rather confused, not not the orientation of the barrel.
If the barrel needs to be pointed "up" say, 10 degrees, that barrel will need to point to the same spot when you cant the gun.
If the gun is at 90 degrees, and the bullet is going to drop "down", the up/down sight would be controlling right/left, and vice versa.
A red dot sight won't be doing what people expect it to do.

......which means when you "cant" your gun, what is critical for the bullet is to rotate the gun around the barrel.

Having read all this, I'm trying to minimize my "cant" but it's hard to eliminate it.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by dronning on Thu Mar 14, 2019 6:22 pm

Mike you need to read the article.  What you say is true but it was talking about the effects of a cant on POI if you start to or change your cant.  It isn't an easy adjustment if you begin to cant more than a few degrees.
- Dave

from Ed's article
"So, what's the problem? Sights adjust for the variance. Why all the math and interest? Because, the sights, whatever they may be, are adjusted for the drop to be along a definite path, at a particular angle relative to the sight/bore relationship. To illustrate, let's assume a gun is held with a red dot scope directly above the bore. Looking from the back, if we drew a line from the dot to the center of the bore, it would be along the same path as the bullet drop. If the same gun is now tipped to the left by 10 degrees, the drop is no longer in line. In fact, by calculation, if the gun is tipped 90 degrees from where it was sighted in, using the above numbers, the error on paper can be as much as 8.5 inches from the sighted in point at 50 yards. Let's show how: First we'll assume the tilt is counterclockwise from the shooter's perspective. There is no longer a six inch drop in line with the sight/bore. Now the drop is six inches in a direction 90 degrees from the sight/bore, or to its left (still toward the ground, of course). By moving the angle of the sight/bore to the drop, the hit should now be six inches left and six inches down, from the original point. By calculation, six inches over by six inches down gives about 8.5 inches diagonally from the original point."


Last edited by dronning on Fri Mar 15, 2019 11:39 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by Wobbley on Thu Mar 14, 2019 7:03 pm

All of what Ed wrote in the article is true.  But a 90 degree cant is extreme.  A cant of 30 degrees points the gun 3 inches to the left or just at the 9:00 o’clock edge of the ten ring.  It also drops the vertical point aimed at about .84 of an inch.  So instead of that 100-10x knot you’ll have a 95-1x at 8 o’clock.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by Slartybartfast on Fri Mar 15, 2019 10:21 am

mikemyers wrote:

If this were true, let's take a revolver with a round barrel, and hold the gun in a device that clamps on the barrel.

Mike, you're correct that the ballistics of a bullet leaving a straight barrel held solidly and no possibility of moving off point of aim don't care where the action is located.

Rotating the action round and round would generate no difference in POI.

But use the sights to realign the POA according to the sights after every rotation. POI will change. Then give the firearm a point of rotation around the action such that recoil moves the barrel (like a ransom rest does) more change in POI.

Hands aren't clamps. Wrists move/rotate differently depending on how they are aligned. As do elbows and shoulders. (also all reasons that a ransom reset will not get the same results as from bags or even the best freehand shooting)

Not that Moritz Minder had a heavily modified set of sights. While the pistol was canted, his sights were level. And to get repeatable performance his SIGHT cant was held flat and consistent. So actually Moritz Minder shot with 0 deg cant and the article on cant applies equally to how he shot.

If you choose to shoot with a cant without sights that can be adjusted for firearm cant what you do is complicate sight adjustment and change the 0 of the sight level.

I wonder, would a bubble level similar to what is sometimes used on rifle sights be a good training aid for pistol shooting?
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by mikemyers on Fri Mar 15, 2019 10:26 am

That's what I was trying to say, but you said it much better.

When I'm sighting in my gun, it is vertical.
When I hold it up to shoot, it is still vertical.
If I continue to hold it, with or without shooting, it tries to "cant". 

I'd like to fix how I do things, such that I can't cant.     :-)
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

Post by Slartybartfast on Fri Mar 15, 2019 11:23 am

mikemyers wrote:I'd like to fix how I do things, such that I can't cant.     :-)
I'm no expert. My .22lr precision shooting has gone into the dumpster and all my shooting now seems to be consistently low and left.
I've developed some seriously bad habits to fight to overcome.

But I see that you have two choices, either train very hard to fight the natural cant, or train very hard with the natural cant and make consistent and repeatable.
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Re: Is "canted" good, or bad?

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