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Old September 15, 2012, 05:26 PM   #1
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Shooting with one hand, and pistol preference

Is it just me, or is it easier to shoot one-handed using all-metal platforms?

I've been practicing more and more, lately, with unsupported shooting, and shooting from non-standard positions (crouch, leaning over to either side, prone), both right (strong) hand and left (weak) hand.

As a result, I've been getting rid of most of my polymer pistols. I find that when shooting like I have been, lately, that I am more accurate with the first shot, and am better able to control strings of fire, using all metal compact or full-size guns, and all-steel subcompacts. (1911, CZ P01, and Kahr PM9)

When using Weaver, Chapman, or Isosceles, the polymers generally held their own. When not using a stance, the metal guns work better.

Thinking back on it, I traded in my FNX pistols after starting to practice for IDPA. They were great from stances, but I found that shooting them weak hand only was a different ball game, entirely - especially when moving, or shooting around a barricade.

Recently, I've traded all my poly guns, except for my PPS and M&P9c; I'm debating whether to keep those.

(Edit: I still have a PX4 9mm Compact, too, but I've already decided to sell that one.)


(Edit: for drawing and shooting from a one-handed point, I am finding the old-school 1911 with small sights really comes into its own... JMB had some idea what he was designing.)

(Edit: weight really doesn't bother me, with regard to carry; then again, I pay the money for good belt and holster combos.)
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Old September 15, 2012, 11:10 PM   #2
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I agree....the light wt models are an accommodation for ease of carry and in my hands, need both mitts on the stocks to control out past 15 yds. All steel, full weight models handle the recoil better, soaking up more that those that weigh 10 oz. less. For single hand use, there's no comparison.

For carry, I find a S&W J-frame in .38 Special +P does all that I want with 125 - 129 gr JHP's. My alternate carry piece is a Sig P290 in 9 mm....20+ oz seems to be enough in that model and both it and the Smith balance well.

For the big bores, say anything with a "four" in the caliber designation, I'd opt for a full weight .45's are all full weight, even the Commander, actually a Combat Commander, and that's the shortest barrel I'm comfortable using...the shorter ones are just too difficult to rack, and most that I've tried have at least some reliability issues. Follow up shots with a polymer framed .45 would be problematic for me, and I"m no pilgrim with the old .45.

Just Sayin', Rod
Cherish our flag, honor it, defend what it stands for or get the hell out. Our Freedoms are not free, they've been paid for many times over by heros in uniform. Far better men than I, died that we could be FREE.

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Last edited by rodfac; September 15, 2012 at 11:16 PM.
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Old September 15, 2012, 11:27 PM   #3
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I shot with a lot of cowboy shooters. The local top guns shoot "gunfighter," which requires alternate one-hand shooting with both hands. Some of them, like me, shoot heavy 1872 replicas.

The best-cheapest advice I found was to buy a couple of the felt-covered dumbbells in 2, 3 and 5 lb. weight and work up to practicing daily with the 5 lb. ones, for wrist strength. Take 'em everywhere possible.

Full disclosure: I said that the "top guns" I know shoot Gunfighter. I don't shoot in that category. Sure wish I could, but it would irritate the heck out of of the posse waiting for me to finish my stages.
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Old September 16, 2012, 12:18 AM   #4
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I'm old enough that I first learned to shoot a handgun with one hand. I'm still decent right handed, not so much left handed. One reason you might shoot the steel guns better than polymer with one hand is the weight. Small trembles and wobbles won't move a heavy gun as much as a lighter one.
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Old September 16, 2012, 09:09 AM   #5
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Weight does not strike me as negative; I am reasonably strong. Any wobble would be a function, IMO, of trigger pull to gun weight ratio.

I think, generally, that my metal guns tend to also have smoother triggers - though there are exceptions.
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Old September 16, 2012, 11:02 AM   #6
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This is one area where all steel single actions, really come into their own.
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