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March 05, 2008

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Paper Versus Meat

Back when I was young and knew everything, I was convinced that a good shot was a good shot, period, and that anyone who could shoot well at paper targets had to shoot well on game, and vice-versa. Now I am not so sure.

Shooting well at targets and shooting well at game require different skill sets. The target shooter must be able to control his breathing and heartbeat, be able to read mirage and wind, have a perfect trigger squeeze, have his shooting positions down to perfection, and be thoughtful and deliberate at all times. Being a good game shot requires that you shoot quickly, from awkward positions, at ill-defined and/or moving targets, and above all, that you be able to kill without hesitation.

This last is a big thing. Taking a life does not come easily to many people, and I have seen many, many otherwise fine shots become completely unhinged when the time came to drop the hammer on something that was breathing. About the only thing you can do about this is shoot until you do everything automatically, but even that is no sure solution.

Probably the best example of the "bad target/great game" shot is an African PH. The ones I've seen shoot at paper can sight in a rifle OK, but that's about it. However, if you want someone to stick a big bullet up the nose of a Cape buffalo that is 10 feet away, coming at full speed, and has payback on his mind, he is the guy to see.

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Comments

WA Mtnhunter

Sounds like an oversized chamber to me.

ishawooa

Alamo:
I wish I coud help with the CZ communications but I have had absolutely no experience with them. My friend only toured the factory and it is doubtful that these people knew any more about CZ than what they were stamping on the guns. They make them but do not market them. By the way back in the seventies CZ motorcycle customer service was just as bad. We had a saying that the CZ dirt bikes were "hell when they were well". The rest of the time you worked on them while Yamaha riders ripped around the countryside or moto track.

Jim in Mo.

Del in KS,
Funny you should make that comment about the double barrel. Me, I'm the exact opposite. I've had two doubles, one stolen other stupidly sold, and I was pretty good in the field. The two barrels seemed to lead my eye to a vantage point. Now out in the dove fields with my single barrel I'm a disgrace. May have to look at the Bobwhite only cause I like double triggers.

Charshooter

I bench rest shoot mainly for fun; I shoot 223 and cartridges based on the 308 case. When it comes to hunting, it is a whole other thing. I have a natural attraction or drive towards killing game; it allows me to turn completely cold and emotionless when I see game. My shots at game have always been much better than what I can do at target shooting giving the same body position and the same necessity to shoot quickly. I practiced a good deal to see if I could improve my off hand target shooting, but it is never as good as it is at game. I think it is also true that the more dangerous the game is the better I shoot. When I was much younger, I lived for confronting dangerous game, perhaps not Cape buffalo or elephant, but bears and even cougars can be dangerous when they know they are being stalked. Sure, I shoot tighter groups on a bench with everything set perfect, but that is not how one hunts.

Trae B.

I have a solution for being jumpy when aiming at a live animal...I imagine that the animal was talking about my mama...lol

Clay Cooper

Got thinking n the trip to Kansas City today, Mr. Petzal I truly believe that it is your job to lead this subject on how to be a better shooter!
A few action footage you might learn something from Sports Fans!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVb0ZiNx7qY&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=imKj19dMvcY&feature=related

Burning 300 rounds AK-47!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNAohtjG14c&feature=related

And David E. Petzal, the following is just for you!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6k-XJHiShB0&feature=related

Del in KS

Jim in mo,

It probably has something to do with what you grew up with. Side by sides just look a mile wide when you look down those barrels. I always endeavor to keep my eye on the target but somehow it doesn't work for me with a sxs.

Charshooter,

I can relate to what you said. After spending 48 yrs shooting (20 in the army) my hearing isn't too good anymore but it is obvious offhand is my best position relatively speaking. My best off hand shot was 8 yr ago in Macon co MO. Big 8 pointer was about to go out of sight walking on a wooded hillside (no leaves on trees). Just had time for 1 quick standing shot. Nailed him 242 yds with 6mmX284 win. Following year dropped into prone and made 355 yd shot across a pasture on 7 pointer with a 270 win. Checked the range after the shot on the first one and before the shot on the second (to estimate holdover). Bought the first laser rangefinder Bushnell made. Still have it and a Leupold. The old gunslinger is right. Rangefinders are worth their weight in gold. Don't leave home without one.

Clay,

My home 20 is in the suburbs of Kansas City on the KS side. We may have passed on the street.

Del in KS

Dave,

Don't look at the last one if you have a weak heart.

Clay,

Did you notice that fool point the burning AK at the cameraman right at the end.

sarg

I , had a Win. Pump shotgun in the '70's that was a killer on birds, Never missing a Grouse or quail, but I could not hit a squirel or beer can with it, I believe it shot a circular pattern with a small hole in the center. It was hard to hit a stationary target. Lead good on birds Didn't keep it long.

Dr. Ralph

I like Trae B.'s idea... pretend the animal was talking about your mama. It works! That's how I "get my mind right" when a big buck suddenly appears, I get mad and that emotion overrides the freak out emotion. Works for me.

I don't like the side by sides either, too wide a sighting plane I guess? As for double triggers I liked them until we started getting Wild Turkey's around here. First time I fired off one of those magnum turkey loads it kicked so much harder than I expected it twisted my fingers and I accidentally fired again and this time the gun was not against my shoulder... ouch.

What's this Cooper? Playboy models shooting full auto? Need a little harder kicking weapon to add to the jiggle factor is what I think...

Clay Cooper

Del in KS

NO JOKE!

That guy is a IDIOT!

Jeff Olsen

I just had to throw in my two cents worth here. Range shooting and field shots are as different as night and day!!! To be sure, one absolutely must zero the rifle. I'm sure no one would argue with that. In this way, we can all be assured that the sights/scope will put a round on its intended target. That's where the two styles part ways. If you want a good range exercise that will come close to the hunting experience, try the following: 1. get a handfull of clay pigeons and place them at various, unknown distances 2. Before addressing the rifle do the following: run a few laps around the parking lot of the range while looking in the direction of the sun, immediately head to the firing line, stand barefoot on green pinecones with one foot on the ground and the other on the bench seat, fill your shorts with the ice water from the cooler, have a friend constantly flick your ear while dropping blades of grass in your face. Do all of these things simultaneously while trying to hit all the clays off hand, one shot after another. This is the closest approximation to a field scenario a non-hunter is likely to encounter. Have one of your benchrest buddies try this, and maybe they will learn to appreciate the true experience.

Jim in Mo.

Jeff Olson,
I'll forgo the ice water on testicles thing but the running or jogging uphill and then trying various shooting positions is a great way to gain experience before hunting season and it will quickly let you know what you need to work on.

Bubba

All very, very good ideas.
At this point in my life, I'm afraid these exertions would bring on cardiac arrest. But, that's almost what happens to me when a deer of either sex appears anyway. Large, mature bucks bring on a palsy along with elevated heart rate, respirations and blurred vision!!
Thanks guys, I'll just try sitting in a stand!

Bubba

Bubba

All very, very good ideas.
At this point in my life, I'm afraid these exertions would bring on cardiac arrest. But, that's almost what happens to me when a deer of either sex appears anyway. Large, mature bucks bring on a palsy along with elevated heart rate, respirations and blurred vision!!
Thanks guys, I'll just try sitting in a stand!

Bubba

Shaky

Alamo; it sounds like your CZ has excessive headspace. It may be chambered for another round entirely. I would not fire it another time until I had it checked by a competent gunsmith, because that much headspace is a definate safety hazzard to the gun,you, and anyone standing nearby. I personally witnessed a Howa blow up, that scattered steel, brass, and the shooter's glasses and hat 30ft. from where it was fired. He was using Federal factory ammo in .243, and the rifle was clearly stamped .243 Win. He said it had been backing primers out from the very begining, and some didn't fire. This is the condition you describe, so please have that rifle checked, it could mean your life.

Clay Cooper

Jeff Olsen
Why don’t you try a few NRA High Power Matches, it will make you a better shooter afield!
You civilians, AAAAAAAAAAAAAAACCCCCCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK!
Mark1, I’ll take those two Prozac’s and glass of wine now!

Dr. Ralph

Hey Clay, if it weren't for civilians like me sending in thousands of dollars in taxes each and every quarterly payment Uncle Sam wouldn't be able to buy all those toys Devil_Dog can't get clearance to use... give us a break. By the way I would suggest Xanax, much better mood altering effect and anxiety reliever.

Alamo

Hey Shaky,

I appreciate your concern. I had it pretty well figured that the rifle's chamber is oversized. I learned only after purchasing that although a SAAMI spec was established for American ammo, CZ apparently believed it was not necessary to adopt that spec for their rifles. Hence my eagerness to discuss that issue with them, and my frustration that they aren't very interested in communicating with customers.

I purchased he rifle from a first-rate gun store and I'm sure I can return it. I was just looking for an explanation from CZ. Surely everyone who has bought this particular rifle is not having the same problem-or are they?

sarg

Alamo, the rifle does have too much headspace, If it had another chamber \, the case would probably split.. Have you looked at the case up close and personal.. I dont know of any other case that would fit the 7.62x39 chamber with out splitting the case. If you load for this round, go through the motion of loading,(No powder or Bullet) then just partially seat a primer. Load in rifle and extract to see if the primer is stil protruding.

Jim in Mo.

Alamo,
This is an issue you really should keep us informed of the outcome. CZ is doing one hell of a lot of advertising in all the gun mags I get. And I get alot. Without customer service I won't deal with any company.
The only reason I came to this blog was to share experiences and hear others, good and bad. Sort of like a sportsmans Consumer Reports.

Jim in Mo.

P.S.
Alamo, have you called 1-800-955-4486, CZ repair. Probably have but if they won't help then take it back to dealer and let us know. Screw em.

Clay Cooper

Dr. Ralph
Listen Doc, I pay just as much taxes as you do! In fact, the only way you got out of paying state taxes on your pay check is only if you were a nonresident and the state you are from didn’t have state payroll taxes such as Florida. So what source you got your info from, need to recheck it. I remember the first thing slick Willy did was retroact taxes in his first year in office. We paid out the yahoo on that one we did! By the way, Hi Doc! How are you? LOL!

Clay Cooper

Laying all jokes aside, there are those that try to compare paper shooters to meat shooters. First of all you got to be able to hit the target wither its paper or meat in the same degree. For you target shooters like to call your accuracy MOA and that’s fine. Then there are the meat shooters that call their accuracy angle of pie plate and that’s ok too! So now what? Ok, if you shoot approximately a group just about 2 moa at 100 yards or just a little larger than size of the palm of your hand shooting sitting at 200 yards, you’re a very good shooter. Translate to angle of pie plate, that’s what? a quarter of pie plate which means you can theoretically reach out to say something like 800 yards!

Bubba

You're right Clay. That's what the GUN is capable of. Unfortunately, that's not what I'm capable of.
Even bagged on a bench, there is a limit as to how far I can shoot both comfortably and reliably! To some folks, that is way "yonder"! I just have to realize that sight picture/hold over/windage and all that other stuff is, maybe not beyond me, but just not my strong point. Ergo: No shots over 200/250 yards on white tails. I would rather pass the shot than chance wounding or losing a deer!

Bubba




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