Snap Shooting at Moving Objects with a Rifle

posted on June 14, 2011
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From the April 1, 1923 issue of American Rifleman

Don’t forget to make allowances and closely observe your mistakes when you miss try to find out “why.” Be honest with yourself and don’t jolly yourself along when you know you are not right. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t seem to make rapid headway, for some of the shots you have seen some expert make and which look easy is, perhaps the fruit of many weeks hard work.

Your first lesson.—Take it for granted that you are a pretty good shot in a general way at stationary objects and you wish to learn snap shooting. Then go about it as follows:

Go out somewhere, where you have a good open space for at least a mile (these little .22’s go a long way), where you are perfectly sure not to injure anyone. Select for your target a tomato can, a large one, strip the labels off (this is so you can see your bullet holes better), have a friend to stand, say fifteen feet, in front of you and toss the can straight up in the air about twenty feet high. Let him repeat this until he can toss it just where he wants it—follow his arm with your eyes, and the push of the can up until it turns to come down. Do this several times. Now you know just how and where the can will be thrown. Now load your gun (being careful of course, not to point it in your friend’s direction). Follow the can up (being sure to look through your sights) until just before the turning point. Then hold your sights just below the can, and squeeze the trigger. Don’t pull it. The front sight should touch the lower part of the can to make a hit. If you are a close observer, you can note just where your bullet hits the can. If too high hold still lower. Most of your misses will be high. One of these cans will, perhaps, last you a long while before it becomes useless. Don’t get discouraged. Keep at it.

Remember, always aim low on a falling object.

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