Gun or shooter?

Gun or shooter?

This is a discussion on Gun or shooter? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I am a very long time shooter, probably longer than many of you have been alive. However, I am pretty new to gun forums. I ...

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  1. #1
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    Gun or shooter?

    I am a very long time shooter, probably longer than many of you have been alive. However, I am pretty new to gun forums. I have always talked guns with my fellow gun club members while waiting for a shooting match to begin or in the lounge at the indoor range. All my friends are what I like to call "shootist". Guys who have been shooting a long time, are good at it and can shoot any gun, semi auto or revolver, you put into their hands well, after adjusting to it for a magazine or cylinder or two. These days we see a lot of new club members who shoot their gun well but as soon as you take that Glock out of their hands and give them a gun with a DA trigger, you could swear that they never shot before. :) And yet, they have very strong opinions that the gun is the problem and not the shooter.

    That brings up an interesting question. Does the gun or the shooter make someone a "shootist". No doubt I have seen some guys who are really good with their SA guns but not so much with other types. I guess I am struggling to understand today's definition of a "good shooter". Is someone a good golfer if he is great with a driver but sucks with a putter? Is someone a good baseball player if he can field but not hit with pitchers being the exception these days (stupid new rules)? I think you get what I am saying.

    Stepping out of an environment of serious shooters and gun collectors into the world of gun forums where people vigorously defend their opinions about guns they never shot or things they never experienced has been somewhat of a shock to me. So I am wondering, what is considered a good shooter or shootist these days? I guess the fundamental issue is whether the gun makes the shooter or the shooter makes the gun? I have shot with some national champs, some still hold the title, and I learned from them that a good shooter can shoot anything good. They just know how to shoot and apply their skills to whatever gun they are shooting at the time. They may think a trigger a little too heavy but they will still shoot circles around me using my own gun. :) What do you think?
    manolito and WC145 like this.
    The chief danger in life is that you may take too many precautions. - Alfred Adler


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    VIP Member Array NC Bullseye's Avatar
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    Just because a musician plays professionally doesn't mean he's not a pro musician when you take his saxophone away and hand him a tuba and you find out he can't play it.

    There are some that can "play" many different guns but it's not the deciding factor in stating who is a proficient shooter.
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    VIP Member Array 10thmtn's Avatar
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    Some shooters are "specialists." They can shoot really well, but only with a limited selection of arms. Take those guns away, or give them something different, and their performance suffers.

    Others are more "generalists." They can shoot just about anything reasonably well. They are more well rounded and adaptable, though they may not be as good as a "specialist" in a given area.

    For defensive purposes, I think it is best to be a "generalist." You never know what you might have to pick up and use. An example would be the folks who shoot well with a light SA trigger, but who cannot hit the walls of a barn from the inside with a DA snubbie. Lord help them if they had to pick up a snubbie and use it!

    IMHO, if you have the basic fundamentals of marksmanship down, you should be reasonably proficient with just about anything that goes bang.
    The more good folks carry guns, the fewer shots the crazies can get off.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NC Bullseye View Post
    Just because a musician plays professionally doesn't mean he's not a pro musician when you take his saxophone away and hand him a tuba and you find out he can't play it.

    There are some that can "play" many different guns but it's not the deciding factor in stating who is a proficient shooter.
    Yes and no. The musicians I know can play just about anything. I think you can say that the person in your example is a saxophonist which is a type of musician. Think of a shootist as a multi instrumentalist and someone who shoots one gun well as a shooter. That is probably closer to what I am thinking.

    "A multi-instrumentalist is a musician who plays two or more musical instruments[1] with some degree of proficiency."
    The chief danger in life is that you may take too many precautions. - Alfred Adler

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    Quote Originally Posted by 10thmtn View Post
    Some shooters are "specialists." They can shoot really well, but only with a limited selection of arms. Take those guns away, or give them something different, and their performance suffers.

    Others are more "generalists." They can shoot just about anything reasonably well. They are more well rounded and adaptable, though they may not be as good as a "specialist" in a given area.

    For defensive purposes, I think it is best to be a "generalist." You never know what you might have to pick up and use. An example would be the folks who shoot well with a light SA trigger, but who cannot hit the walls of a barn from the inside with a DA snubbie. Lord help them if they had to pick up a snubbie and use it!

    IMHO, if you have the basic fundamentals of marksmanship down, you should be reasonably proficient with just about anything that goes bang.
    Well said and so true. I always love when I read stuff like this on gun forums. They highlight the difference between informed opinions and opinions.
    USM1976 and tcox4freedom like this.
    The chief danger in life is that you may take too many precautions. - Alfred Adler

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    VIP Member Array Kennydale's Avatar
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    I watch Hickok45 on youtube. he alway impresses me. I have also watched some very well trained people some close to my age, that are also extremely impressive. I have one gun. Sometime in the next year i would like to add another handgun. possibly the same as i have now but in 9mm (Shoot 40S&W).... Or maybe another 40 but by a different manufacturer. before i start collecting, Id like not to forget why i bought a gun in the first place. That is for personal and family protection. The price and lack of decent practice ammo is bugging me. I'd really like to be able to be proficient shooter. Not to impress anyone, but for peace of mind.

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    Member Array DanMN's Avatar
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    The shooter is what makes the difference. Practice with many different weapons. I like the golf analogy. I can't hit my new driver worth a hoot. I can give it to another guy and he can kill with it. He also can usually out drive me with his putter....... It's because he plays a lot more than I do and has better ability (more than likely).

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    I am not a long-time handgun shooter and don't put thousands of rounds downrange every year, although I'm no babe in the woods at it either. While there's no 1911 in my stable for comparison, I have put a few rounds thru them. I find I shoot a DA revolver as well as I shoot my DA/SA S&Ws and shoot those as well as I do with my Glock. I'll never claim to be an expert shooter as many do, but CoBG isn't a problem with any handgun I pick up. My preference for carry is a DA/SA S&W 3rd Gen, with my G30 a very near second. I guess I'm saying the type of trigger doesn't make a lot of differnce to me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kennydale View Post
    I watch Hickok45 on youtube. he alway impresses me. I have also watched some very well trained people some close to my age, that are also extremely impressive. I have one gun. Sometime in the next year i would like to add another handgun. possibly the same as i have now but in 9mm (Shoot 40S&W).... Or maybe another 40 but by a different manufacturer. before i start collecting, Id like not to forget why i bought a gun in the first place. That is for personal and family protection. The price and lack of decent practice ammo is bugging me. I'd really like to be able to be proficient shooter. Not to impress anyone, but for peace of mind.
    I hear you. My shooting buddy, who is my cousin emailed me today to tell me that he only has 20 rounds of ammo left and cannot afford to buy more at current prices so he will not be going to the range any more. This is a familiar refrain in the retirement community I live in. Most are on a fixed income and will buy an inexpensive gun, shoot it once or not at all and then put it away in a closet for just in case. My own relative bought a $250 pocket gun and carried it daily and never shot it due to the cost of the range and ammo. I treated him to a range session, bought him a pocket holster, gun belt, cleaning kit and laser because his two kids are our godchildren and I want them protected. On the other hand my 70 year old cousin only carries when he is walking from his car in a hotel parking lot to his hotel room and at no other time. He has a specific fear that motivated him to spend the money for a gun and license. He probably stays in a hotel once or twice a year but had a scare once. The funny part is that he carries the gun in his luggage and thinks that he will spot a suspicious person and have time to take his gun out. For him, no free ammo. :)
    The chief danger in life is that you may take too many precautions. - Alfred Adler

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    Distinguished Member Array chuckusaret's Avatar
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    I have been training and carrying the same primary gun and BUG for the past five years and I am very proficient with both. I do shoot all of my other guns at least quarterly but I do no SD training with them other than with my HD shotguns. I would consider myself a specialist and not a generalist, because I'd much rather be an expert shooter with my SD weapon than a marksman with all weapons.
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    Senior Member Array USM1976's Avatar
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    I like this thread very much. However, I will never claim to be a great shooter. However, I shoot very well with every handgun I own (not someone else's), and I think that's what counts. I carry .40 S&W and .45 ACP full size handguns.

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    Quote Originally Posted by USM1976 View Post
    I like this thread very much. However, I will never claim to be a great shooter. However, I shoot very well with every handgun I own (not someone else's), and I think that's what counts. I carry .40 S&W and .45 ACP full size handguns.
    That is what counts as far as defensive shooting goes. As they say, beware the man who only owns one gun.
    The chief danger in life is that you may take too many precautions. - Alfred Adler

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    Senior Member Array patri0t's Avatar
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    As is often stated, shooting is a perishable skill.
    At one time, I was a professional LE trainer with '3 Gun Combat' skill sets to match and could hold my own with the best. Also, I was responsible for all firearm training in the department as I had to coordinate regular Quals + Swat skills, etc. (had all the trophies & Titles).

    Don't have all those skills anymore... use 'em or lose 'em!! I stay practiced at what an old retired LEO needs. Besides ammo isn't free & unlimited anymore.

    Odd, some people never are trainable to be decent shooters... I never was capable of learning how to dance... doubt I'll be getting the hang of it in this lifetime.

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    VIP Member Array Kilowatt3's Avatar
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    I had a shooting buddy about 35 years ago who was pretty good with just about any handgun - but what blew me away was watching him put cylinder after cylinder into a paper-plate sized target with a 2" Colt Detective Special at 100 yards! The real kicker was that he only had one eye! (I'm not making this up!) He was sure a "shootist" with that ol' DS!
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    Distinguished Member Array hardluk1's Avatar
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    I never could understand why a person could not shoot any type of trigger group if smooth or handgun style. Might take a few rounds to become more accustomed to it.

    And then some shooter say I hate this or that trigger or handgun type and sells it just because,,, I have SA, DA/SA revolvers and semi-autos , stricker fired, long pulls , heavy pulls and oh so lite target range only triggers and all work fine. Only trigger I ever felt needed improving and that was a m&p gritty trigger but new that could be the case going in to it. . Did a apex kit and its way smoother and lighter now. But would never sell it or whin about it because of a trigger pull. I to am not as good a shooter as i was I was 20 years ago but still find ways how to enjoy shooting just as much as in the '70's. Finally added a 1911 to the stable to play with. I also have 26 years of CC'n a DA type trigger but now its stricker fired. Love them all I think.

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