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NEVER MIND... USMC Pistol Team Manual - question

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robert84010
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Post by RodJ 7/15/2021, 2:31 pm

Never mind. I tried a search for “Blank” in the topic title and Shazam!

Hello, first time post here, but have enjoyed reading and learning what I can for a number of weeks.  I am new to precision shooting, made the move because I realized my average range shooting was a waste of ammunition. And boring.  I’m 58 yo and have been wasting ammunition for the majority of those years, but this challenge is really enjoyable.  Thanks to all who provide information, offer advice, and graciously provide criticism/ critiques. 

My first question concerns the very first task in the USMC manual.  To pass, you must fire 2 consecutive 10-shot strings, with a .22 pistol, at a blank target at 25 yards, and the groups must be both round and within a 5.25” circle.  So far, with my uncoached self, I’m struggling to understand how to get there. I’m working on stance, position relative to the target, grip, consistency as far as I can maintain it, tried to develop and written down a shot process (target pistol guy and others refer to a “proven” shot process - that seems to be a daunting search for the uninitiated. So many variables).

So am I unusual in that I can barely shoot 10 shots, round group or otherwise, at a 15 yard target with a black bull to at least give me an area to aim at while aligning and maintaining my eye to my sights?  I don’t know how to begin finding a mentor or coach, though I plan to ask the 2700 shooters at my club range when they return from Camp Perry... hopefully with a trophy.

Btw if it’s useful, in June the club held its first (I think) 2700 match since Covid.  I shot the .22 portion and managed 570 - hopefully none of my shots ended up on another shooters target. Embarassed  My 50 yard target looked like a teenager with a bad acne problem covered in band aids.

Thanks in advance for any insights on whether it’s just going to require lots of dry fire practice, regular practice, and refinement of my process and working on consistency.  Which as far as I can tell is basically the big secret.  It’s hard and that’s why few people do what it takes to improve.  Or whether there are some beginner tips that often elude beginners.

EDIT - if I’ve missed a discussion on this topic, I’m happy to be pointed in the right direction.  My searching didn’t find anything obvious to me.  Thanks


Last edited by RodJ on 7/15/2021, 3:25 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Post by robert84010 7/15/2021, 3:22 pm

Nothing wrong with shooting two handed to get your basic zero. A 15 yard zero will carry over pretty close to what you will use at 25.

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Post by RodJ 7/15/2021, 3:28 pm

Thanks, I’m okay finding my zero, where I was confused is how one shoots at a blank wall, so to speak, and can get groups that pass the task requirements.  Found some threads just now. Apparently it’s a zen / grasshopper thing and I’m simply going to have to suffer.  Makes sense.  Lol

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Post by robert84010 7/15/2021, 3:34 pm

many are puzzled by this step but it comes around fairly quickly. Are you using iron sights or a dot?

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Post by CR10X 7/15/2021, 4:27 pm

No zen, no grasshopper.   Just keep the sights aligned somewhere near the center area of that big white area down range.  The purpose is to teach you that you need to be completely focused on the alignment of the sights (which means the gun is aligned with your intended path) and specifically where does not matter that much. You are to learn how to keep the sights aligned completely through the trigger operation (and continue to try to even after).  

If using dots, then keep the dot in the center of the tube all the way through the trigger press.  Same thing just not as easy to see the mis alignment,  but it will get you started.

And check out the Bullseye Education Library!

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Post by john bickar 7/15/2021, 5:36 pm

RodJ wrote:I shot the .22 portion and managed 570

The first match that I have record of, I shot a 100/300 in a 50' indoor Gallery Match Course.

Everyone starts somewhere.
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Post by Jack H 7/15/2021, 5:49 pm

First dryfire at a large blank wall.  Then fire onto a large safe hillside backstop.  Both these drills are without any regard to a specific target bull, or area.   Pay attention to finding a stance, and position that works to let you see the sight and work the trigger correctly, and you will learn more of what you are supposed to see happen at the gun.
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Post by chiz1180 7/15/2021, 6:10 pm

When I first started, the absolute best thing I did to improve my shooting was shooting with people much better than me. This game is not something that you will master overnight. Strive to shoot good shots, good shots are not always 10’s or x’s. As you start out, work on goals that are achievable, not perfection. At the end of the day have fun and enjoy the ride.
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Post by RodJ 7/15/2021, 6:22 pm

Robert, sticking with irons. I pulled my dots off because the bouncing dot was distracting. Im used to irons.

Cr10x I have read many of your very helpful posts and am working through the library resources here. Amazing how much is written about a rather simple task. Align sights, work trigger without disturbing sights, shoot target. I’ll put away the incense and return the yoga mat to Amazon.

John, thank you. My first goal was to show up and shoot. The next goal is to count 30 holes in the 50 yard target and not need any masking tape on the 25 yard backer. Truly is so much more interesting and fun.

Jack, thanks I’ll try to find a safe hillside but I live in town. But the berm at the club range will work.

You all are really an outstanding group.


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Post by robert84010 7/15/2021, 6:52 pm

RodJ wrote:Robert, sticking with irons. I pulled my dots off because the bouncing dot was distracting. Im used to irons.

Bravo! That is a rare approach these days. My hat is off to you.

The blank target drill was started when everyone shot with iron sights and I think the results are better starting with them.

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Post by Jack H 7/15/2021, 7:00 pm

robert84010 wrote:
RodJ wrote:Robert, sticking with irons. I pulled my dots off because the bouncing dot was distracting. Im used to irons.

Bravo! That is a rare approach these days. My hat is off to you.

The blank target drill was started when everyone shot with iron sights and I think the results are better starting with them.
Years ago, LTC Miller propped a full target back in front of me at 2-3' 
I was totally ready to fire a 25 yard string with the HS, lined up on the 25yd target.  Then the blank surface appeared and I shot through it at the 25y bull.  The group at 25 was actually quite good. 

It all happens at the gun
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