Teaching Mother in Law how to shoot.

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Thread: Teaching Mother in Law how to shoot.

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    Teaching Mother in Law how to shoot.

    Tomorrow I am taking my mother in law shooting down at the local range. She (to my knowledge) has never fired a gun in her life.

    So any tips would be helpfull.

    She has taken the general NRA gun safety course, but besides that not much else so I will be going over the basic range/gun safety with her just before we leave again.

    I am bringing my wife's revolver (38spec/357) and my pistol (9mm) as I have no access to any other handguns at this time.
    Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.

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    Array SIXTO's Avatar
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    Let her learn at her own pace. Dont force anything. Stick with .38's. Dont give her a bullseye type target to shoot at. Just turn the paper around to its blank side, and let her shoot at that. If she does OK with that, then make a "bullseye" with a marker. Just on dot is all you need on the paper. Start her at 7yds, no need to go further first time out.
    The first lessons are about safety and confidence, not about marksmanship.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    Distinguished Member Array LenS's Avatar
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    Too bad you don't have a .22 to start her on. But work with what you have.

    I recommend plastic milk jugs filled with water as targets.

    The expression on a newbie's face when they hit the jug, the top pops off and water spout comes out the top is precious.

    Not everyone is into bullseye shooting and gets excited about hitting black circles.

    I did the above with my late MIL many years ago and she really enjoyed it (first time for her too).
    NRA Instructor

  5. #4
    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tips, never thought about just turning the target around. and yes the main focus is going to be on safety. If she shoots like her daughters the marksmanship will come on its own.

    The milk jug idea is a great one, but impossible currently as I have to shoot paper at the range, and we have no other place to shoot. However I will keep it in mind as it is always fun to blow holes in those things.
    Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.

    www.Lonelymountainleather.com

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    Array Bark'n's Avatar
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    When you are finished... Be sure and show her how to clean and strip the guns. I always show new people how to do that. If you don't want to make her physically clean the guns and get her hands dirty, that's fine, but seeing how they work and the parts interact is imperative to them learning safe gun handling skills.

    I find that new people get an opportunity to see how the gun works and that it is just a mechanical tool with no hidden brain with evil intent lurking somewhere inside the mechanism tend accept them better.

    She is already one up on a lot of new shooters by already attending an NRA safety class. That is great! More people should take advantage of what the NRA has to offer if available locally.

    Have fun and stay safe.
    -Bark'n
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    "The gun is the great equalizer... For it is the gun, that allows the meek to repel the monsters; Whom are bigger, stronger and without conscience, prey on those who without one, would surely perish."

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    Distinguished Member Array AnimalKracker's Avatar
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    I'd only put one round in for several times. That way she gets to load and become more familiar with the process. And you don't have to worry if she becomes nervous after the first shot. After she shows no bad habits like turning around and pointing in the wrong places go up to two rounds. Then you can work at her pace. And she can still have fun as she learns and gains experiance.

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    I suggest reviewing the rules first. Start with light loads. Use the biggest target you can find (the silhouette ones are great if it won't freak her out to shoot at it). Start close it, increase distance slowly. Start with the revolver (no slide bite and fewer malfunction possibilities if she holds it wrong). Don't show her up with your better shooting.
    eschew obfuscation

    The only thing that stops bad guys with guns is good guys with guns. SgtD

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    Member Array aepilotjim's Avatar
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    I'd find her targets that are man shaped with your picture. I'm sure she'd shoot at those all day long....

    I couldn't resist. I really tried too.

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    Depending upon your relationship with her...you might have her hold the targets...

    ret
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    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    Ok, I took her shooting today and have to once again thank all that posted with your tips. The ones that I did not see before I went, I will probally use next time.
    Before we went, I worked on demostrating the opperation of both the handguns I had. Safety with her is very ingrained from her father's weapons. (he never taught her how to fire them, but did teach her good safety) She never put her finger on the trigger until ready to fire, always pointed down range, and best of all she was not scared of them.

    We worked at a distance of about 4 yards, far enough to similate the range she would have to use in her home, close enough where she could build confidence without feeling patronized.

    First up was the revolver loaded with 38 special full wadcutters (the lightest recoil round I had) Her first two shots missed the paper (largest I had, 100 yard pistol I think), but after that she put the remaining 3 in the bullseye. However, after that she said "Now I want to try the big one" Big one being my CZ75 in 9mm. First I see if she can rack the slide, she couldn't get past about halfway. Then I lock the side open and see if she can slingshot it, also could not budge the slide. Finally I have her push on the slide release with it locked back, and she finds that easy and not a problem.

    Since it was her first time and it was my standard fjm target ammo I loaded only one round into the mag and had her chamber and fire. It hit 2" straight down from bullseye, and all she said was "Wow now that is much louder". Then I load a full mag for her she takes aim, and procedes to place all in a 3" grouping, completely blowing out a huge section of the target.

    Sadly our time was almost up then, so I changed targets and gave her a fresh mag, because she "wanted to try something" That something turned out to be firing as fast as she could. Went about 3x or 4x faster than she had done the last time, and also ended up with about a 3" circle blown out of the center.

    So I have learned a few things today.

    1) The trigger pull on the revolver really hurt her hand, so she hates it with a passion. (She could only pull it back twice, had to use the hammer, hated how long that took)

    2) The slide of the 9mm is way too strong for her, but she can handle everything else with ease. Meaning the slide lock is her friend

    3) She shoots like her daughters. Granted it was close range, but I do not think it will take much for her to extend the distance

    4)Considering that my wife, one of my sisters in law, my father in law, and now my mother in law all are proficient with handguns (or becoming so) I will endevor to become the best possible husband/in law that I can. Only yes ma'am, no ma'am, and what you need your roof rebuilt in 3 hours, sure thing right away.

    5) She seems to really want to get a conceal carry permit now (after some practice), So my diligence will be eternal.
    Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.

    www.Lonelymountainleather.com

  12. #11
    Distinguished Member Array LenS's Avatar
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    My Wife has issues with her hands (both had carpal tunnel operations) and slides. She found that she COULD operate the slide on a Glock 17 reasonably well. Talking to Glock Tech Supt I ordered a reduced recoil spring and rod (Wolff) and once I install it (trying to compress it the first time gave me fits), we'll see how that works out.

    See if you can borrow someone's G17 and have her try that. You might be surprised.
    NRA Instructor

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    Distinguished Member Array AnimalKracker's Avatar
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    My suggestion would be to check into one of the smaller 38spl+ from S&W, Taurus, or Rossi and put in a Wollf spring, this makes a world of differance with the D/A trigger pull. Look at one of the smaller semi auto pistols and let her handle and try out several to see what feels good to her and what she can rack a slide on. More than likely one of the 9mm or .380's will work for her. Something with a good grip where she can grip it and get some speed while pulling back. The slow racking can be hard for a lot of girls and women. I taught my cousin how to rack the slide on the Mak. She can't do it well slow. Same on the CZ100, fine if racked with some speed with the pull. Hope she gets her permits and continues to shoots.

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    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    The main problem with her hands is that she has nerve damage from a shattered wrist some years ago. Never healed right, and caused a condition known as RSD which basically means that the damage on one hand caused the other to experiance the same symptoms but without being injured.
    I was thinking of taking her to a range that has rentals and having her try out a 380, or even a 32 to help with the slide issue.

    Anybody know if those little tomcats come in 380, as that would probally be ideal, as there is no slide to rack.

    She will probally continue shooting, she seemed to have a blast. When we got home first thing she did (we didnt even get inside the door) was to start showing people her targets.

    Sadly I am the only one I know that owns pistols or firearms of any kind. So no borrowing is possible. People borrow mine to try out. The range that rents is very pricey as well, but still probally going to be worth it when we start trying to find a carry piece for her, but in the meantime she is learning great habits with the weapons we have at hand.

    Thank you again for the suggestions.
    Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.

    www.Lonelymountainleather.com

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    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
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    Shadow , unfortunately the grip/pull issue you cited on slides and DA triggers is not uncommon . Tho it shows up more with women than men ( or women admit it more ) it is an issue . Basic hand excersises with a ball will fix some of it . a lot of dry fire can fix some more . Most .380 will recoil as much as a 9mm due to the fact that mose .380 are not a locked breech design and most 9mm are ( unlocking soaks up some recoil ) . Put her on some type grip work be it a tennis ball , or a loaned handgun that is dry fired 25 times a day . wait a month on that and see what she can actualy run . BTW congrats on having a mother in law who wants to go shooting with you rather than at you LOL .
    Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
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    Distinguished Member Array AnimalKracker's Avatar
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    Now that she is interested is a good time to go to several gun stores to let her look around, handle different pistols and it's opens the door for her to meet fellow shooters. Do some window shopping.

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