View Full Version : Slings and studs...

Dave McC
November 19, 2001, 06:13 AM
Since someone asked in an E mail, I figured I'd cover a few things about slings and carry.

I'll leave the so called "Tactical" slings alone, There's other folks with much more experience with them.

On HD shotguns, there's little need for a sling. They tend to snag on things,possibly at a horribly wrong time. And, one does not usually need nor want to put the weapon down for a while under those circumstances.

But, HD shotguns should also be WIHTF tools outside the house, in case of civil unrest, natural or un-natural disaster, or Al Queda in the 'hood. These may badly need to be slung.

Consider the words of Horace Greeley....

"No man should treasure nor hold dear more than he can carry clutched to his chest at a dead run, for he may have to one day"....

And believe me, carrying a shotgun at a fast pace across broken terrain is loads easier if it's slung. And then, your hands are free to use as needed.

Slings other than Tactical ones fall into either the sporting "Cobra" type or the military strap style. I prefer the QD style swivels and studs for convenience, tho some rattle. I use both styles of slings interchangeably, with some differences in carry style.

And while I preach the virtues of extra ammo, the bandolier sling is a POC. All those shells swinging during fast handling has a pendulum effect that must be experienced to be believed, but some folks do not survive the experience. I exhort you to shun the bandoliers.

As to whether the studs should be on the bottom or side, personal choice comes in here also. Neither, IMO, has a clear advantage. Use what you like. I prefer bottom studs. No bad jokes, please, this is a family bb.

There's two main styles of carry for general purposes. First is the common one, weapon slung over the strong side shoulder, pointing up.

Second, what they call African carry. The weapon is slung over the support side shoulder, pointing down. The support side hand grasps the forearm, controlling the weapon and ready to bring it into play if needed. I find this one faster and safer, but I'm tall and use short shotguns mostly. Either method works,but as when carrying any weapon (or even if not) Condition Yellow is called for.

And of course, the muzzle and bbl should be checked if they even come close to contacting the ground or whatever.

TIP: sew a large button on top of the shoulder area of your hunting coat to keep the sling on the shoulder.

And, learn to increase your field accuracy by using a hasty sling method.

Mount your shotgun. The sling will hang below the weapon. Insert your support side elbow and push it forward until the sling is tight and you're in shooting position. Note how much less you're wavering.

This does not work quite as well with pumps, but since the first shot is more important in hunting than a fast repeater, it's a good tradeoff.


November 19, 2001, 02:43 PM
Thanks for the advice.

I have slings on every gun of mine that will take a sling.

I carry different though, I run my guns from my right hip to left shoulder pointed up across my back. The fit is tight and they won't go anywhere. To take off, I push the butt with my right hand out ahead of me and then grab the pistol grip with my right hand as the gun comes around. Basically spin it off. For my frame and build, it comes off real smooth in a gentle but fast controlled spin. Obviously this is not to be done when hunting in groups for fear of pointing gun at someone behind you. Works for me, maybe others too. It also keeps the barrel in the same point of reference regardless of my orientation to the ground which important to me when I am walking underneath brush and trees.

November 19, 2001, 03:13 PM
My Beretta riot gun (1201fp) comes with a sling and I have found it invaluable especially when carrying stuff out to the clay fields of the lord.

November 19, 2001, 03:49 PM
I have heard that when hunting you can place a piece of electrical tape over the muzzle of your rifle or shotgun. This will prevent anything from getting into your gun. And when fired the tape should blow out of the way before the shot or bullet gets to it.

Dave McC
November 19, 2001, 04:30 PM
I tend to use the African carry when still hunting, moving to a stand, or any other activity where the weapon may need to be employed PDQ. All are encouraged to try both ways, and also the cross carry Kharn mentions. I find that one good when dragging meat out of the woods.

Cross carry is better for retention, but a bit slower.

An advantage to African carry ,besides speed, is the muzzle is pointed down and most of the action shielded. This can be a very good thing in wet or dusty conditions.

ENC, we used to use condoms for this in the military. I'm not enthused about having a tight seal on the bbl, but that may just be my native caution. In truth, I haven't tried it.

November 19, 2001, 09:56 PM
My experience is somewhat less (to say the least) than Dave's with regards to SG's but this is what I have found.
I do not like the nylon "combat" slings for any pump shotgun. It is way too easy to trap that style of sling between my hand and the fore-stock/pump handle. I tried this many times in practice and I could not come to terms with the wimpy slings.
What I do like is a stiff leather sling that is far less likely to get in my way. I have tried this and it works great for me. It does not dangle and flop about like the nylon slings.
I still need to get a dedicated sling for my 870 as I sort of stole the old leather sling from first rifle (.22 cal marlin 780). It already had quick releases on it and it popped right onto my 870.
It does not look as scary but it works much better for me.

Edited to remove extraneous renegade text.

Dave McC
November 20, 2001, 06:49 AM
Good tip, Erick, thanks.

Almost all the long arms here at Casa McC are set up with studs, and I've 3 or 4 slings I move around as needed. One M/L has a dedicated sling, for the life of me I couldn't find a set of swivels that didn't rattle and clink loudly on this one, so I gave up and mounted a sling with leather thongs. It's quiet, but removal requires untying.

Dave McC
December 23, 2001, 06:57 AM
Back up for Melglock...