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Old April 30, 2010, 12:25 PM   #1
GreySmoke
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1" group tails....

I am relatively new to this sport, only shooting since September of last year. I am always bewildered at the tails of <1-2" groups at 25+yards with a handgun. Maybe its just my old eyes, (I'm 52) but I cant even see a 1" target at 75 feet. I can, on a really good day get 1-2" group at 25-30 feet off hand. I've never tried with a bench rest. But getting much beyond 50 feet I'm pretty much in the 8" circle if I'm lucky. And I practice a fair amount, over a 1000 rds a month. By the way I've never met anyone at any of the ranges I've been to that could do this either but then again I do live in the Peoples Republic of Illinois. What kind of discipline does this take to be actually able to do this? Or are they mostly fables...
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Old April 30, 2010, 12:43 PM   #2
DogoDon
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I have the same question!!
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Old April 30, 2010, 12:48 PM   #3
kraigwy
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I'm not that much of a pistol shooter, but I've shot against some pretty dern good ones.

When I was running the AK NG marksmanship unit, I was mostly a rifle shooter, but did shoot on the pistol team a few times, mostly to fill out the team.

I've seen a lot of dern good shooters, but I done recall ever seeing a One Inch group at 25 yards in Bullseye or ISU (international pistol).

Having said that, I've played with a Random Rest a time or two and found I have a couple guns that can do it, Mainly my Model 52 Smith, or my HS Victor.

But I certainly cant come close standing on my two hind legs.

Just keep practicing, moving back a bit as you progress, not saying you can get to 1 inch, but nothing wrong with working toward it.
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Old April 30, 2010, 02:14 PM   #4
JonnyP
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I too have read about such claims, but I think it's just a "that fish was this big" phenomenon. Not saying it can't be done, but I'd have to see it to believe it.

That being said, a handgun with a scope might get you close.

I bought a cheap little Winchester sight vice a while back, and it works pretty well. The only problem is, even after clamping the gun down, it tends to jump right out of the clamp due to the recoil, so mounting it precisely in the same spot again is tough. Then again, even the vice just sits on a table and is not clamped down. If a person had a vice, a big, sturdy one clamped to a table with clamp system holding the gun perfectly still, a "shooter" might shoot a 1" group. But that's the gun, not the shooter.

I shoot at a man-size target at 75 feet with almost all hits in the kill zone, so I don't feel bad. The group size? Probably several inches. At 15 feet, my groups are 3" to 4" on a good day. I'm happy with that as I'll hit what I shoot at.

Practice, practice, practice...
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Old April 30, 2010, 02:35 PM   #5
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It isn't a magic number so don't get hung up on it. A 4" group at 25 yards is a heart sized group and is bad enough to make any boogerman give up his quest for your life and your property. It's also good enough to stop the neighbors mad dog from having your leg for his lunch.

A 1" group has its disadvantages too. I fired a few and actually lost points at the S.E regional championships in Shreveport Louisiana because the scorer and the referees couldn't see evidence of 10 shots and that was with my 45. Fortunately I never fired many groups that size so my shots were easy to count on paper. I have seen people like Harmon, and Pasquarella do it fairly regularly, no tricked out guns, just good guns, lots of sweat equity and careful attention to basics. I figure if I am doing 3" I am doing my job and if its 6" I'm still on target and still doing my job.

Best way to weed out the tall tales from the shooters is to get them on range with you. Then be prepared to hear the excuses of why it wasn't happening at that point and time. An experienced shooter always has his excuses lined up and ready to go. You should hear some of mine.
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Old April 30, 2010, 02:59 PM   #6
B. Lahey
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Don't feel bad, most people don't have tails, and the ones that do usually have them removed when they are very young.

Keep at it and you will get closer. There are some who can do it after they have poured an somewhat-insane amount of dedication into the sport. The only name that jumps to the front of my skull is Zins. That guy can shoot some very small groups at 50 yards, I imagine he could pull off the 1" at 25 you have in mind.

But there is a lot more big talk floating around than world-class shooting actually being shot. People do tell some wild tales.

Best I've ever done with a handgun is 5 shots into 10" at 50 yards. I need to practice, hopefully I can improve that at some point.
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Old April 30, 2010, 02:59 PM   #7
zukiphile
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Quote:
...<1-2" groups at 25+yards with a handgun...
I have done this a very few times, usually with someone else's gun. One was a High Standard Victor, one a Glock 21 and the another a Glock 36. (yes, I know that last one sounds odd.) That is infequent enough to consider those events flukes. However, I have known other guys who could do this regularly.

When I shot, I could generally put five rounds of .45 within three inches at 20 yards (my accuracy deteriorates with distance at a greater than linear rate) but that is an order of magnitude worse than the better shooters I've known.
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Old April 30, 2010, 04:40 PM   #8
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As Old Grump alluded to, internet groups are always tighter than they are at the range with folks standing next to ya.
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Old April 30, 2010, 04:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Greysmoke: I am relativly new to this sport, only shooting since September of last year. I am always bewildered at the tails of <1-2" groups at 25+yards with a handgun.
You're obviously not educated on how to score groups. First of all, you only count the best three and throw out the rest as "flyers". If you still don't have a 1" group, then keep shooting until you get three close enough together. Brings lots of ammo.

Actually, you need a really tuned pistol to do that along with match ammo and good eyes and lots and lots of practice. Even before my eyes went to hell and I had a fine match 1911, I'd only occasionally get a 2" group and that was probably more due to luck than anything else. Even with all the right tools and younger eyes, most groups were between 3 and 4".

There are people who can make one hole groups consistently, but they're rare. I'm talking about offhand shooting, not the guy who sits there shooting off sandbags and then showing them off as "groups".
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Old April 30, 2010, 05:55 PM   #10
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That being said, a handgun with a scope might get you close.
More than close. A Ransom rest would also determine if your pistol has that kind of accuracy. Shooting a 1-2" grp. at 25 yds is both a test of the pistol and the shooter.
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Old April 30, 2010, 05:59 PM   #11
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Glad to see all the replies here. I was starting to think that I was the only one who has trouble even seeing that far.
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Old April 30, 2010, 06:07 PM   #12
Delaware_Dan
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I can get 2 to 3 inches at 30 feet, but anything beyond that, they start to open up a bit. My eyes just aren't good enough to make groups like that at 75 feet.
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Old April 30, 2010, 06:25 PM   #13
OldShooter
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I know a couple guys who do shoot about 870 in a bullseye competition. They don't have to write tall tales on some internet forum.

In my case, I'm creeping up in the scores and just got into the 700s. My eyes are failing faster than my skills are improving. I don't know where I'll end up.
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Old April 30, 2010, 08:25 PM   #14
Hewhois
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It's not a 1" group, but it's not bad 25 yards using a modified weaver stance (two handed, no rest), 6 shots, .44mag Colt Anaconda 8" barrel with a HoloSight. .44mag round included for scale:




I'm working at 50 yards now. Personal goal is to get 12 shots in the 9 ring or better. Why 12? Well, it's easy to get lucky on a 3 shot group. It's hard to get all 12 in, but I enjoy the attempts

Here's my best 50 yard try so far, using a modified weaver stance (two handed, no rest), 12 shots, .44mag Colt Anaconda 8" barrel with a HoloSight. Shoot 3 shots then check spotting scope while resting for the next 3 shots, and so on:



Once I get all 12 in, then I'll be trying my luck at 100 yards. But at 100yds, I'll probably drop the goal down to just 6 rounds within the 8 ring though, lol.

IMO, a good site makes a huge difference. Also, the target/site combo must work well together. You need a good contrast and good cues to line up against.

Reloading ammo to precise tolerances would also help, currently I am using factory ammo, but plan on reloading again sometime.
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Old April 30, 2010, 08:36 PM   #15
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I can shoot .6" groups all day with one of my handguns. Granted, they are one shot groups and the handgun is a 20 gauge AOW.
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Old April 30, 2010, 08:43 PM   #16
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Quote:
I cant even see a 1" target at 75 feet.
Typically a target designed for handgun use will have an aiming point considerably larger than 1"--often up to 8" in size. That is pretty easy to see. The size of the target doesn't determine the size of the group. One can shoot a small group on a target with a fairly large aiming point if they hold consistently on the aiming point.

I can only claim a couple of 1" groups at 25 yards in the 20 years I've been shooting. I can get down around 3" five shot groups at 25 yards in a typical shooting session if the gun & ammo combo is capable of it. Those are shot standing with iron sights--I don't have any handguns with optical sights. I've got four saved groups sitting next to me on the desk that are all under 3" with one coming in a little over an inch and a half. Of course there's a reason I saved those.

There are certainly people out there that can shoot 1" groups with a handgun at 25 yards but that is very good shooting indeed (also requiring good ammunition and exceptional equipment) and it's not unreasonable to greet claims of that kind of accuracy with good-natured skepticism.
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Old May 1, 2010, 01:25 AM   #17
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I can do it occasionally from a rest with my sig/hammerli trailside, red dot scope, and match ammo.

The gun even came from the factory with a target "medallion" with 5 shots in the 1" circle, and 25m printed on it.
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Old May 3, 2010, 10:53 AM   #18
zukiphile
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Quote:
I cant even see a 1" target at 75 feet.
I can see a one inch dot at 75 feet, but not while I am looking at my sights.

To build on what John noted, you don't have to be able to see a target (or center of a target) in order to hit it. You just have to know where it is.
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Old May 3, 2010, 11:49 AM   #19
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I've done it a couple of times w/my ruger MKII and quite a few with my S&W M58 when it had a red dot. All from sandbags mind you.
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Old May 3, 2010, 12:20 PM   #20
MrBorland
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<1-2" groups at 25+yards with a handgun
Well, there's quite a difference between a 1" and a 2" 25 yard group. Logarithmic, probably. The latter is do-able with practice and attention to the fundamentals. Though not common, you might occasionally see someone at the range able to do this consistently.

The former is also do-able, but would take far far more practice and attention to fundamentals. This shooter is, IMO, world class.

Personally, I think most shooters, with practice, can (and should) be proficient enough to be able to pick up their service-sized pistol or revolver and shoot, on demand, honest and consistent slowfire 3-4" 25 yard groups. And wheelgunners ought to be able to do this in double action.

What surprises me most, though, is the willingness many shooters seem to have on forums like this to label any good group as a tall tale or irrelevant, and the shooter a liar and a braggart. Even when a pic of the target is posted, skeptics often dismiss it. Yet, a mediocre-at-best group is posted and huzzahs abound.

Sure, there are claims that stretch credibility, and I feel I know generally where the line is. I'm trying to be a better shooter myself, and their claim doesn't make me any worse of a shooter, so I generally give the benefit of the doubt, and even try to learn from it.
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Old May 3, 2010, 12:34 PM   #21
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Personally, I think most shooters, with practice, can (and should) be proficient enough to be able to pick up their service-sized pistol or revolver and shoot, on demand, honest and consistent slowfire 3-4" 25 yard groups.
I've had bad days I didn't come close to that.

Quote:
What surprises me most, though, is the willingness many shooters seem to have on forums like this to label any good group as a tall tale or irrelevant, and the shooter a liar and a braggart.
I understand it. If I had someone describe to me some of the shooting I've seen others do, I would at a minimum consider it unlikely. Mix that with a medium in which verification isn't part of the program, and a even mild skeptic can become suspicious.

I shot for a long time before I was good enough for the equipment I was using to matter at all. Back then, I'd have considered 3" at 25 yards to be a near circus trick.
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Old May 3, 2010, 12:41 PM   #22
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I can get some pretty darn good "Bullseye" target scores (one handed, offhand, 25 yards) with this beauty.



I seem to average a score of around 90 with my best "really having a good day" score ever being 97. That comes out to about a 1" group for 10 rounds.

This was shot at 25 yards by a friend's wife. She's slow but seriously accurate and there were about 6 of us watching her do it.
(25 yards, two handed-offhand).


So it can be done, heck I've even managed it a few times myself, but I'm sure not gonna claim that -I- could do it on demand
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Old May 3, 2010, 12:46 PM   #23
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I was gonna post up a pic of my 1" group but the targets all powderburnt

Quote:
And wheelgunners ought to be able to do this in double action.
you would say tha wouldn't you? Sigh. I can keep a dime on the front sight but not the front sight on a (Softball) at 25 yds DA. I can get 3" at 50 yds off a rest but not at 1/2 that distance DA.
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Old May 3, 2010, 02:05 PM   #24
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Groups like that could be useful for handgun hunting at long range, but for self defense a group like that is meaningless.

As an example, many years ago my BIL took me shooting. He's in the FBI. I shot slightly tighter groups that he did with his service Glock. That's probably because I trained that way. Small groups offhand.

Then he showed me how he trained. He drew from concealment and placed 4 shots in the black at 15 yards in 3 seconds. Then he did it again to show me it was no fluke. Told me that's how they trained. Usually, the first guy to get hits wins the gunfight. Not the smallest group.

I bought some Speer plastic training bullets and did a lot of practice drawing from concealment in my garage after that. It made a huge difference in my ability to get the first shot on target a lot faster.
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Old May 4, 2010, 02:01 AM   #25
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As long as you can at least hit COM at 7 yards, then your "alright" by my book.
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