View Full Version : Question on sighting, form and sore cheeks

November 13, 2006, 10:26 AM
I shot my new 870 for the first time yesterday. I was shooting Remington 1oz Slugger rifled slugs. Not what I would use for a HD load, but I wanted to see how accurate I could be with the bead site at home defense ranges. At 50 feet I was easily able to place slugs in the center of mass of an 18" X 18" target. At 25 feet (the longest distance I would have to shoot in my house, I was able to put 5 slugs all nearly in the same hole. I was actually impressed at what the bead site could do.

However, while shooting the slugs (along with about 15 rounds of 00 buck) I noticed that while my shoulder was doing fine, my cheek was taking a real beating from trying to aim and not point. I was trying to maintain a tight hold on the gun while shooting, but I have to admit that after the end of a 5-shot box, my grip was a bit looser.

After shooting, and through this morning, my cheek feels like someone took a baseball bat to it. No visible bruise, but damn it hurts. Do I need to work on my form, or is this just a natural function of trying to sight in?

Any advice? Thanks!

November 13, 2006, 01:28 PM
Suck it up ;)

After I patterned my pump gun in the first time for turkey season - shot several 3 1/2" 12ga shells of 5 different kinds of ammunition - I had a little bit of black eye thereafter. Not really black, but a light bruise. Needless to say that week's interview didn't go so well.

Slugs always hurt. You could certainly do something field-expedient, like wrap some towel or a shirt around where your cheek meets the stock, but I think if you're taking some friction to the face that means your form is pretty good. I'm under the impression you want to keep your head down.

I'm the farthest thing from an expert though, so we'll see what others think.

November 13, 2006, 03:37 PM
Slugs can be tough but if you were shooting from a bench, they can be brutal. Once you're sighted-in, you may find that when you shoot without the bench, you will be fine. If you still have pain in the cheek, you'll want to look at the fit of the gun. My 870 needed to comb lowered due to bruising of my cheek. This was only necessary after I switched from the rifle-sighte barrel to a "notmal" barrel. The high sights on the rifle-sighted barrel allowed me to mount higher and not hurt myself.
If you were shooting from a bench, I would almost expect you to be bruised.

PS. I had this same trouble sighting-in my '56 336 but only from the bench.

November 13, 2006, 04:05 PM
Thanks both of you for your input. I actually wasn't shooting from a bench, but rather standing up (I assume you thought I was literally sitting with the gun resting on a bench). This was an indoor range I was at.

Good to hear that it is possible that I can be doing everything right and still have a sore cheek (which I can live with).

Kick and all, I still enjoy shooting my 870 more than my Glock!

November 13, 2006, 04:27 PM
If you are shooting from the standing position and hurting yourself, you should really look at fitting the gun. It sounds like it might be too high against your cheekbone but diagnosing on the net is kinda pointless.
FWIW, I can shoot slugs, 00 & 000 from my 870's and not bruise my cheek. So should you.
And I agree, shooting my 870 is more fun than my Glocks!

PS. If you're in SE PA, you are welcome to try my rifle-sighted 870's to see if they are better for your purpose.

November 13, 2006, 04:30 PM
I have a Knoxx Spec Ops stock and Powerpak on order. I agree that I probably need to fit the gun to myself better, and hopefully the adjustability of the Knoxx stuff should help, thanks!