November 1998

Experiment

Much recreational shooting easily falls into traps of a sort, in that we practice certain types of shooting and leave some vital experiments out of our practice—stuff that could come in mighty handy some day.

For example, many common tests involve how well a person can shoot a handgun at, say, 15 or perhaps 25 yards. This is all well and good, and certainly shows us either our own personal limitations or — if we are among the very best handgunners — the limitations of the handgun. This shows us where the gun hits, which is very important with fixed-sight pistols. Yet do we know where the gun hits at, say, three feet? Can we take the head off a snake or put the bullet within half an inch of where we want it at off-the-muzzle ranges? Most shooters cannot.

This is a common failing, but still a failing. Unless we know where the gun shoots at all ranges, we don’t have complete control of it. Will you ever need this knowledge? Probably, if you’re anything of an outdoors person. There will come a need to hit a small target at close range sometime in your outdoor experience.

Elmer Keith wrote that to make hits at very close range, hold the front sight blade up, just as is done for extreme-range handgunning. Elevate the front blade out of the rear notch and perch the target on top of the front blade. Try it sometime, and find out where your handgun shoots at off-the-muzzle range. You might try it at 200 or more yards too, but you’d better be a very good shot at 25 yards before you can expect to hit anything at 200.

Another failing recently pointed out to me, something I’ve often overlooked in my own firearms testing, is how well the controls of the gun work when you’re wearing gloves. A friend just acquired a Smith & Wesson Centennial Airweight. He lives in a northern state, and carries a gun frequently. He tried his new gun while wearing thin leather gloves, the thickness of the leather being 0.035 to 0.040 inch at the finger. He found that the leather was squeezed upward from the pressure of his finger on the trigger, and after the hammer fell, the leather got caught between the flat top of the trigger and the frame, and prevented the trigger from returning fully forward. The gun would fire one shot and then was useless until he cleared the jam.

Another friend discovered that he couldn’t fire his Walther P99 one cold day because his glove got caught between the trigger and the inside bottom of the trigger guard.

What all this means is if you’re betting your life on a gun, you can’t leave anything to chance. Be very sure it works no matter what you’re wearing on your hands. Test it, try it, experiment with it, make sure it’s fully reliable. Redfield Warranty Information

As we stated in the August 1998 issue, Redfield, Inc. has ceased operations and gone out of business. However, arrangements have been made for all warranty work to be done by a special independent repair service at the cost of $26.00 to cover handling and return shipping.

For warranty work, send your Redfield scope or binoculars directly to:

The Redfield Optics Repair Center (ABO)
615 SW 2nd Avenue
Miami, Florida 33130

All returns for warranty service must include a check for $26.00 made out to ABO (USA), Inc. For further information call: (305) 860-4858.

-Ray Ordorica