Secrets and Keys to snub nose accuracy?

This is a discussion on Secrets and Keys to snub nose accuracy? within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Just one observation, especially concerning the S&W 36 Chief's Special. One of the biggest improvements for me, grip wise was to add a Tyler T ...

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Thread: Secrets and Keys to snub nose accuracy?

  1. #46
    Member Array GJ44's Avatar
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    Just one observation, especially concerning the S&W 36 Chief's Special. One of the biggest improvements for me, grip wise was to add a Tyler T Grip. I've used one for years and has vastly improved the shootability and point of impact without increasing size or weight. They really do work!

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  3. #47
    Member Array Skippys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ally View Post
    The thing that I am finding is working on the flinch. When you think that it is going to kick and anticipate it, the tenancy to over comp is there. As others have said before trigger control is foremost.
    My cure for flinching:
    #1: lots of dry fire at home (the CT laser grip helps you see how much you're moving during trigger pull).

    #2: Practice listening/feeling for the cylinder lock during reeeaaalll slow trigger pulls. That's when the gun goes from DA to SA. Over time you'll notice this point during your normal trigger pulls.

    #3: At the range, ONLY practice with two/three rounds in the cylinder. After a few hundred rounds spread over three or four range trips you'll notice the flinching will decrease and your groups become tighter. Added bonus: you don't burn through ammo as fast and you get to practice reloads more frequently. (I always reload from speed loaders or speed strips.)
    I'd give my right arm to be ambidextrous.

  4. #48
    VIP Member Array TedBeau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archie View Post
    Do not allow yourself to believe the nonsense about how snubbies are inaccurate. They are as accurate as the shooter strives to be competent. I rather like short barreled revolvers. The smallest is a old S&W M36 Chief's Special with 2 inch (actually 1 7/8 inches) barrel, then a Military & Police square butt 2"; a M10 round butt 2", a M19 with 2.5" barrel and a custom M10 with a round butt, no hammer spur and the barrel trimmed to just forward of the ejector lug. They shoot with different degrees of accuracy. The K frame guns shoot just like regular revolvers, ONCE one gets over the barrel length. Yes, the sight radius is a bit shorter, but lining up the sights and pulling the trigger still works.

    Ted Beau mentioned 'adjusting' the non-adjustable sights. Excellent idea. However, one must first decide on the carry ammunition to be used. Then adjust for that ammo. By the way, if the revolver shoots to one side or another, one can take a small safe-sided swiss file and widen the rear sight notch in the direction one wants the bullet to strike. (If the bullet strike is left, widen out the right side of the rear sight.) As Ted says, go slow. Once your duty ammo shots properly, all other practice ammo will be close enough not to make much difference.

    Since I only shoot S&W double action revolvers (with one Ruger Security Six) I only shoot them double action. One simply lines up the sights and presses the trigger all the way through. Yeah, it takes some practice, but it's easier than it sounds. It is also rather fast after a short while. (I will confess I only have the older style S&W revolvers with pinned barrels. I've handled very few 'new' Smiths and I think they handle pretty much the same; but I cannot be sure.)

    Much of it is a matter of practice. Much of it can be dry fire - snapping an empty revolver. However, one must pay the same attention to the sights and trigger in dry fire as in live fire - or it's just finger pushups. For that matter, just pulling the trigger on an empty revolver will build up one's finger and hand muscles.

    The only other problem I find with snubbies is proper grips to allow use of speed loaders. Some of the best grips are the Packmayr Presentation grips. (I'm not sure if they're made anymore, revolvers being so passe.) One must try them and see if the speed loaders will function in a hurry with the selected grips.

    Surely the hardest revolver to shoot well is the J frame Chief's Special. The grip is small and it all but disappears on the hand - and I do not have big hands. Still, sight alignment and trigger control rules the day.

    I don't know how the rules view ammunition, but it turns out that .38 Special wadcutter ammunition has an effectiveness beyond what weight and velocity would suggest. That big flat front delivers energy very efficiently.

    Point shooting was mentioned. Fairbairn and Sykes taught point shooting to the Shanghai Constabulary in the pre WWII days of British China. However, they only taught point shooting to about 16 meters and then taught sighted, aimed fire. (If one hasn't read it, Shooting to Live by Fairbairn & Sykes is an excellent book.) Jeff Cooper found from his studies that a 'flash sight picture' was as fast as point shooting. Certainly, by the time one has fired a second shot, enough time has elapsed to bring the handgun to eye level and actually use the sights.
    Thanks for the kind words and you also made some excellent points. While it may be easier to shoot single action, I only do that if I am attempting to verify point of impact. Since in most scenarios I can imagine it will be rushed and desperate with all the adreniline rush and all that I figure I need the most practice double action. If I got myself into a situation where I actually had cover/bench to rest the gun on and the time to take a single action aimed shot at my leisure I figure the practice I did double action would still serve me in single action mode.

    The police officer that did part of my CPL class training told us about a local guy years ago that was accidentally shot by an officer that had cocked his revolver in single action mode than just slightly touched the trigger. This occured as the guy was being cuffed, I think. He ended up suing the department and they settled.

    I totally agree that just gripping and pulling through the trigger on a snub nose works better for me. I find if I try to aim precisely, stage the trigger and all that other stuff, I just anticipate the recoil to much and end up pulling the shot anyways.

  5. #49
    Senior Member Array marcclarke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skippys View Post
    #2: Practice listening/feeling for the cylinder lock during reeeaaalll slow trigger pulls. That's when the gun goes from DA to SA. Over time you'll notice this point during your normal trigger pulls.
    Not quite. No, that is not when the snubby goes from double-action to single-action. The snubby is using the double-action sear the entire time that you draw the trigger back to rotate the cylinder and then fire the cartridge. Yes, the cylinder is being locked into place by the cylinder stop rising up out of the bottom of the frame to engage the slot in the cylinder. But no, you are not changing over from double-action to single-action. What you are describing is called "stacking the double-action trigger".

    I have a S&W 638 which has a hammer and both single-action and double-action sears. To use the double action sear you pull the trigger. To use the single-action sear you first manually cock the hammer (which engages the single-action sear) and then pull the trigger (very gently compared to the double-action trigger pull).

    Some snubby revolvers only have a double-action sear, such as the S&W 442.

  6. #50
    VIP Member Array shockwave's Avatar
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    When I think about snubbie accuracy, I always think about this video:



    Also, any time you spend on strength development will be time well spent. Physical conditioning - both strength and cardio - pay bigtime in holding a gun steady and on target, on pulling the trigger smoothly, and dealing with the effects of stress and adrenaline. Practice and rangetime and all the other good tips mentioned in this thread apply; a physical training regimen gives an extra edge.
    "It may seem difficult at first, but everything is difficult at first."

  7. #51
    Senior Member Array boatail's Avatar
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    As stated, a firm high grip, and I have found that a smart, smooth trigger pull is key. Whether you use your first finger pad, first joint, whatever..depends on your finger length and grip. Just make sure you pull STRAIGHT back no matter what grip you use. Squeezing the trigger as in a single action usually will not work well. You must squeeze, but once you start the pressure on the trigger, keep it moving smoothly without stopping the squeeze. That takes practice, either live fire or dry. You must get used to the required pressure to get the shot off without stopping the finger pull. Concentrate on keeping it smooth, then concentrate on keeping it on target. Speed will come with repetition. One of those laser targets is perfect for this kind of practice. I have learned that a 1 5/8" barrel will produce very nice results when done right.
    Light travels faster than sound...thats why some people appear bright before they speak

  8. #52
    Senior Member Array mastercapt's Avatar
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    snub accuracy

    That is an oxymoron. The gun is there for maximum concealment, so you can get yours out (and use it if need be) before the BG does. This is done usually, at bad breath distances. It is not a 25 yard range gun
    Practice drawing it, and shooting at a sillouette target at 10'. It should be instint and almost an automatic move.

    If I thought that I would be engaging BGs at 25 yards, my best defense is to not go there

    My $.02
    kwoodford likes this.

  9. #53
    Member Array kwoodford's Avatar
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    I use to carry a Colt DS for a number of years and have been thinking of going back but how I practiced and shot it...it's an extension of my trigger finger. Everyone can point at something and that how I look at the front sight as I am pointing my finger. I'm not concerned about hitting the third button down on your shirt...I'm concerned about getting lead in the BG's direction and if I am pointing at his/her 3rd button I know I will put lead somewhere near that area.

    If the gunfight is going to be 20 yards and further I'm going to find cover and concealment. Just my opinion.

    edit: Just please don't ask if you should carry one in the chamber like many semi auto handgunners ask!! Just kidding.
    Last edited by kwoodford; June 25th, 2012 at 07:18 PM. Reason: add text

  10. #54
    Senior Member Array wjh2657's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=kwoodford;2298610]

    If the gunfight is going to be 20 yards and further I'm going to find cover and concealment. Just my opinion.

    QUOTE]

    <25 feet= fire all five COM!
    >25 feet <25 yards= hide!
    >25yards= run like h***!

    KISS prevails!
    kwoodford likes this.
    Retired Marine, Retired School Teacher, Independent voter, Goldwater Conservative.

  11. #55
    Member Array kwoodford's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=wjh2657;2299210]
    Quote Originally Posted by kwoodford View Post

    If the gunfight is going to be 20 yards and further I'm going to find cover and concealment. Just my opinion.

    QUOTE]

    <25 feet= fire all five COM!
    >25 feet <25 yards= hide!
    >25yards= run like h***!

    KISS prevails!
    This made me laugh!!! I'm glad I wasn't drinking anything!!

  12. #56
    Member Array XDshooter's Avatar
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    If you are going to carry a snubbie, practice at around 10 yards with drawing and point shooting with a double tap. Shoot quickly, but smoothly. Target shooting is fine, but for a purpose-built gun like a snubbie, practice with it in the way that you will be deploying it. My practice drill with my Smith and Wesson model 66 snubbie goes like this: Draw (single handed and\or both hands) and administer two quick rounds into center of mass, move the gun to the position of low-ready (gun down at 45 degrees), 360 degree scan (do it, don't think it) either administer another double-tap or reholster and start the drill over again. I'm by no means an expert, but this drill works for me. As a side note of interest, although my Smith is chambered in 357, I don't carry it with magnums. I like the Speer Gold-Dot 135 grain 38 +P's and lately I've been courting Buffalo Bore 158 grain 38 +P's. I am concerned with the overpenetration potential of full-house magnums and also the Smith K-frames don't like a steady diet of these.

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