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Old October 3, 2012, 08:56 PM   #1
Join Date: July 10, 2012
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Lefty vs Righty Question


I'm new to all this. I've shot a 22 rifle.
Even though normally I'm right-handed, I went for a lefty position naturally.
I realise now, I think, because I can close only my right eye, but not only my left eye.
I shot well but got some casings and singing on my right arm.
Should I get a lefty rifle?
2 things:
Loading will be with left hand, which isn't my strong hand.
And not a big issue, but I'm picturing if I shot from the hip (not often) I would feel more coordinated shooting from a righty setup.
Any advice would be welcome.

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Old October 3, 2012, 11:36 PM   #2
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I'm having trouble understanding you.

Let me paraphrase, and maybe we can figure out what you want.

You are right handed, but for some reason you want to shoot it lefty?

I'm only asking, because if this is the case, you're right handed, why are you shooting lefty? If it's because you're normally a righty, but shoot lefty, and the brass is bothering you, a lefty rifle might be the best option. You might be able to have someone (preferably a gunsmith, of course) make some adjustments to the gun, and have the angle the brass comes out change to work better for you.
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Old October 4, 2012, 06:20 AM   #3
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As a lefty, I feel your pain with right handed semi autos. With that, I really just find it a minor issues and it has never bothered me enough to hunt down a lefty version. If the hot casings bother you, a long sleeve shirt will take care of it.

I'd suggest staying with right handed rifles as they are easier to find giving you more options.
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Old October 4, 2012, 07:23 AM   #4
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Yah, unless I train myself to close my left eye alone, but I still seem to prefer the other side.

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Old October 4, 2012, 07:34 AM   #5
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The important question is not which eye you can close, or which hand is dominant, but which of your eyes is dominant. For most people, their dominant eye is the same as their dominant hand and life is easy. For a few, their dominant eye is on the other side, a condition known as cross-dominance, and that makes life more difficult.

There are a few different ways to determine eye dominance, but I find this the easiest: hold the back of your hands out at arms length and make a smallish "hole" with your thumbs and index fingers. With both eyes open, put a distant object in the hole, i.e., so you can see it when you look through the hole. Then, keeping the object visible through the hole, bring your hands to your face while keeping both eyes open. You will bring the hole to your dominant eye.

The new conventional wisdom is that you should shoot from the side of your dominant eye, even if it feels a bit difficult at first. Thankfully, I don't have the problem so I can't speak from personal experience.
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Old October 5, 2012, 12:26 AM   #6
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I am the same way. You are right handed but left eye dominant, keep shooting left handed, do not fret. This can actually be an advantage. I personally have never bothered with left handed rifles, I don't like them. Ive always used right handed rifles and gotten used to it.

With a bolt action rifle firing from a supported position such as a bipod it means you can keep your firing hand in place, your eyes somewhat in the scope, and work the action all at the same time.

With an M16/AR15 it means you are actually using you strong hand to perform a tactical reload. I was much faster than most guys in my platoon and even many infantry guys just due to this simple fact.

I'm sure there are others that I don't know about.
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Old October 5, 2012, 05:36 PM   #7
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Another, perhaps easier way, to determine which eye is dominant: Extend one arm (left or right doesn't matter); with both eyes open, point your first finger at an object across the room; close one eye and continue to look at your finger pointed at the object. If your finger still seems to be pointing at the object then your open eye is dominant; if your finger seems to be pointing off to the side of the object then your closed eye is dominant.

I am right handed and left eye dominant - discovered these facts between 55 and 60 years ago shooting a .22 rifle. I cannot write with my left hand but I shoot long guns and a bow left handed (and I prefer left hand bolt action rifles and compound bows). I shoot handguns right handed and usually attempt to keep both eyes open.
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Old October 5, 2012, 06:49 PM   #8
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You should be shooting with both eyes open regardless. Especially with handguns and shotguns Some people struggle to do so paricularly with a rifle and optics. Having quality glass helps.

First determine which is your dominate eye. You should be shooting from that side. It will be easier to retrain your arms and body You will not retrain your brain and eyes. Learning to always shoot with both eyes open with any gun will make you much better and cancel some of the effects of cross eye dominance.
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Old October 5, 2012, 07:43 PM   #9
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^ Yes (not just handguns as I mistakenly implied.) Learning to shoot with both eyes open is easier without a scope on your firearm (whether it is a rifle, shotgun or handgun.) I believe it becomes easier with a scope after you have learned to shoot with both eyes open without a scope. Both eyes must be open for depth perception, that is, perception of the distance to the target.
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Last edited by lefteye; October 6, 2012 at 09:59 AM.
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