Developing a flinch

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Okay, another photo. Your head is rolling over the top of the stock. Ouch!

Imagine you have a broken neck. You are forbidden from moving it left and right. It stays straight. However, you’re allowed to move it forward. Bring that elbow up closer to a shotgun shooting stance to make a deeper shoulder pocket. Do not roll your head over the top of the comb. Your head moves forward and sits on the side of the comb. And in one photo, the butt plate at the heel is an 1” low on your shoulder. Again, get that comb up by bringing the elbow up.

Also, you’re holding the forend which seems reasonable as it looks like a grip. It’s not a grip, its a wood object to hold the barrels on. Get your forehand further forward on the forend near the juncture of the forend and the barrels. Many folks actually point with their index finger on their left hand. This is helpful because you instinctively will shoot at things you point at. Point your finger down the barrel with it sitting in the recess of the lower rib. Your palm on left hand will be holding the rounded front of the forend.

And above all, you are shooting off your heels and you’re all bent backwards. You should be almost off balance so if your wife gives you a modest shove from behind, you should fall forward on your face. You’re just the opposite, trying to put all your weight on your heels and you’re arching your back and pushing out your stomach.


View attachment 402562


I wish you lived near me. We’d fix all of this over a two day shooting weekend of side by side shotguns and a case of 250 rounds of light loads. Then you’d shoot your double rifle 10 rounds and feel cocky-good. Your form shows you are not a wingshooter and you do not own side by side shotguns. If you really want to be great, go get a SxS and you’ll build a lot of muscle memory very quickly. Even better, get a pair of 20 gauge barrels for that double rifle and shoot the hell out of them.
That line drawing helps a ton! Also do you happen to know where I can get a pair of shotgun barrels for this double? It's a chapuis and I haven't been able to find any! Of course, to be fair, I haven't seen any shotgun barrels for sale for any rifle, maybe a Blazer, not sure though.
 

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Just a suggestion before you drive to Enid. Take a look around Albuquerque for your local NSSA/NSCA sporting club. Odds are they know the best gunsmith/gunfitters in town for fitting shotguns for skeet, trap and all the sporting clay events. All my big bore experience is with bolt actions (416 Rigby, Ruger Safari Magnum), but I shoot competitive sporting clays with a Perrazi MX 2000S and bird hunt enough to be familiar with a lot of other shotguns. Couldn’t hurt as a nearby starting point.
 

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That line drawing helps a ton! Also do you happen to know where I can get a pair of shotgun barrels for this double? It's a chapuis and I haven't been able to find any! Of course, to be fair, I haven't seen any shotgun barrels for sale for any rifle, maybe a Blazer, not sure though.

You cannot add a pair of shotgun barrels to a double rifle through the mail. If you wanted a set, you’d send the gun back to France and they’d build and fit a set, new forend, and ejectors. Not a cheap date for certain, probably over $6000, but it allows you to use that gun of yours a lot more. I’ve contemplated doing this for my double rifle and even fitting rifled choke tubes to make the shotgun a viable 80 yard and under slug rifle so I can enjoy it more often.
 

rookhawk

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Ok, here are the videos!

The video on the right looks better. I see you shoved a piece of plywood under your foot to remind you to get that weight forward to the balls of your feet. Also, I see your shooting with your hand further down the forend. Progress! How did it feel?

The pieces still missing in that video to think about. Look how low the stock is on your shoulder. It’s about 1” to 1.5” low. If you get that right elbow up, and lets exaggerate it a bit to even up and 90 degrees from the ground, your shoulder pocket will get bigger. It will give you a bit of a leaning forward about to bear hug a bro look. When you do that, the stock will come up and you won’t have just your lower jaw on The comb getting a whollup.

I remember as a kid watching an interview with Ricardo Montalban explaining a gentlemen does not lower his head to his soup spoon, the soup is lifted to his lips. Rifles (and shotguns) are kind I’ve like this too. The rifle comes up to your face, never your face down to the rifle. But your weight on the balls of your feet, your arm placement, the reach that is causing a proper shoulder pocket, these all go together into the fit. For years I’d keep a double shotgun in my office and when I’d walk by I’d pick it up and instantly point it into the top corner of the room where walls and ceiling meet. I’d do it eyes closed and then open them up to ensure perfect sight picture without me having to ”search” for alignment. It helped a lot and it absolutely would work for a double rifle, but you’d want to point it parallel to the ground at a reference point, not upwards.

You will get this figured out. I wish you had .22lr inserts for those barrels so you could practice infinitely without any recoil just so you grow to love that rifle and build muscle memory.

I’d suggest getting another opinion from a formally trained shooter on this forum that hasn’t commented yet, @Red Leg would you read the thread and give @Eventually_Africa_Again some of your thoughts?
 
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I want to thank you all for this help, looks like I'm heading to a gunstore tomorrow to see about getting a side by side to practice with. Normally I'm a skin flint when it comes to guns, but my guide pointed out that on this hunt a flinch could end badly for all of us, so the cost is justified.
 

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I want to thank you all for this help, looks like I'm heading to a gunstore tomorrow to see about getting a side by side to practice with. Normally I'm a skin flint when it comes to guns, but my guide pointed out that on this hunt a flinch could end badly for all of us, so the cost is justified.

It’ll be a bit tricky to find a side by side with a similar stock at local gun shop. A nice, functional English box lock for about $1500 in 12 gauge with 2.75” Chambers will be your cheapest path I can think of and that will take a bit of searching.

The low cost modern side by sides have a pretty odd fit. To keep costs down, they use huge timber for a stock and channel out a hollow cavity for a through-bolt to fasten it to the action. Easier to make and less defects than a svelte little stock of proper proportions. In fact, I bet you can buy a brand new Chapuis for relatively low cost to compose a pair with your double rifle. Not $1500 cheap, but certainly way less than half of an identical double rifle.
 

bruce moulds

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I shall respectfully disagree :)
The pistol grip shape allows for a solid grasp of the shooting hand, which avoids the painful issue of hitting the rear of the trigger guard with the second finger, and the drop at the heel is designed to allow lining the sighting eye low on the barrel iron sights.
I have shot extensively Chapuis double rifles in European and African calibers, and they are well proportiwell
well we will just have to disagree.
personally i would not touch that design with a bargepole for the reasons mentioned.
just goes to show, 1 mans feast is another's famine.
bruce.
 
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It’ll be a bit tricky to find a side by side with a similar stock at local gun shop. A nice, functional English box lock for about $1500 in 12 gauge with 2.75” Chambers will be your cheapest path I can think of and that will take a bit of searching.

The low cost modern side by sides have a pretty odd fit. To keep costs down, they use huge timber for a stock and channel out a hollow cavity for a through-bolt to fasten it to the action. Easier to make and less defects than a svelte little stock of proper proportions. In fact, I bet you can buy a brand new Chapuis for relatively low cost to compose a pair with your double rifle. Not $1500 cheap, but certainly way less than half of an identical double rifle.
AH, see, that is a bit outside of my price range. Ah well, looks like I'll just sink the money into more ammo for more practice. I might look at some of the used gun stores around here though, could get lucky heh.
 

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I looked at some of the old German side by sides, made by Merkel, Sauer and Sohn, Suhl . There are a pile of them for sale in Canada in Great shape for well under $500.

I purchased a few of them, before I even ordered my Double Rifle. It would be great fun to practice with them, with the two triggers. Length of pull on mine are close to the double I purchased.

I also purchased a Husqvarna 310, and a older CZ sidelock, all for under $400 each.

Hopefully some practice with these will help with the double rifle. I haven't fired a.double barrel anything, so I am sure it won't hurt.

In the USA I would imagine you could find one of these side by sides for a.fantastic price. Just be cautious with the older ones to be aware some have 2.5 inch chambers. Not a big deal but ammunition is more plentiful , or a better price for the 2.75 .

If nothing else it is a great excuse to buy a neat old side by side shotgun!

Craig
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I looked at some of the old German side by sides, made by Merkel, Sauer and Sohn, Suhl . There are a pile of them for sale in Canada in Great shape for well under $500.

I purchased a few of them, before I even ordered my Double Rifle. It would be great fun to practice with them, with the two triggers. Length of pull on mine are close to the double I purchased.

I also purchased a Husqvarna 310, and a older CZ sidelock, all for under $400 each.

Hopefully some practice with these will help with the double rifle. I haven't fired a.double barrel anything, so I am sure it won't hurt.

In the USA I would imagine you could find one of these side by sides for a.fantastic price. Just be cautious with the older ones to be aware some have 2.5 inch chambers. Not a big deal but ammunition is more plentiful , or a better price for the 2.75 .

If nothing else it is a great excuse to buy a neat old side by side shotgun!

CraigView attachment 402634View attachment 402635
That's a beuty!!
 

Sabattiboy

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This thread may be old but am throwing in an add on to dealing with flinch in general.
Years ago I was told by more then one person that to fix a flinch have someone else load the gun so the shooter never knows if it will go off when the trigger is pulled.
As long as the body is rewarded with recoil when expecting it the habit remains.
Long ago I read an article by Col Askins where he fired quite a few large caliber double rifle rounds from the bench. Even he as a recoil proof man acknowledged losing his delicate trigger touch and needed a break. My Sabatti 500 NE dispenses 80 to 100 ft lbs recoil because of being underweight so will always be a challenge to avoid flinch. The same load in a 12 lb rifle is around 65 ft lbs which would be much more manageable.
 

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This loading of a blank (somewhere in a string of live rounds) by someone else is used in the Field Guides shooting course - possibly for the PH course also?

It is done as part of the ''miss fire'' drill

However it is a great exercise for first identifying, and then reducing, flinch from recoil

Try it - it's quite revealing
 

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well we will just have to disagree.
personally i would not touch that design with a bargepole for the reasons mentioned.
just goes to show, 1 mans feast is another's famine.
bruce.

Interesting. To each our own indeed :)

Having actually shot Chapuis double rifles, as well as Merkel, Kreighoff, Heym, Browning O/U, Le Beau Courally O/U, and a pre WW II Belgian Jules Burry, I do not remember having noticed any significant handling differences. Some rifles certainly have a little more, or less, drop, cast, length, grip angle etc. but it never had any effect on my shooting. Actually, for what it is worth, regarding head position, the more drop the stock has, the easier it is to keep the head straight and avoid cheek-rest slap.

This is the first time I hear such a categorical judgement passed on the Chapuis, and it seems that I stand in good company feeling comfortable about these rifles. For example, here is what the aforementioned "Dean of Double Rifles" George Caswell says about them on the Champlin Arms website. I doubt he would endorse them so definitely if they were ill proportioned, but, again, to each their own indeed...

1621484832627.png
 
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Wyatt Smith

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I have a Winchester model 70 pre 64 featherweight that slapped the crap out my cheek when I would use the iron sights. I mounted a scope in medium rings and that all went away. I guess I hold my head up off the stock a bit higher with the scope.
 

bruce moulds

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those old pre 64 feather weights had 2 things against them with recoil.
light weight and the excessive drop at heel still accepted in those days.
the later iterations are far better in the drop at heel dept, and scopes can be mounted using low rings.
bruce.
 

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I think you have some good ideas on to fix the problem on the gun side of things. As for the flinch I have a non traditional way that I remove one when I get one. I use my 10gauge that weighs 7lbs with 3.5 inch 2 and 5/8 oz loads. Since it kicks harder than my 458 when I go back to anything else it feels like a pop gun and I settle down real quick. This is not a perfect method but I does work for me.
 

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Perceived or felt recoil or one of it's effects, like the vector that bites the cheek, seems at times hard to pin down. But to me seems to be one of or some combination of the following: length and weight of barrel, overall weight of the firearm, length of pull and drop at heel. I remember well those guns that really were uncomfortable to shoot. Most of the time they were relatively light, have shorter than my preferred length of pull and more than average drop at heel- designed obviously for low mounted iron sights. These guns seem to recoil all out of proportion to their empirical recoil numbers like velocity of recoil and ft lbs of recoil. In the end it also probably has something to do with the individual's shooting style and physical "geometry".
 

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Thankyou everyone. This thread from beginning to end has been an education. One that I needed badly. I have been shooting 12 ga for years and never thought of them as being heavy recoil At least not as bad as my first experience at the age of 10yrs, shooting a classic 45-70 in the prone position loaded with smokeless powder. (74 years ago!) That was recoil.
It was my fathers idea of a way to teach me something....dont remember what......
I am now getting into ULRS with first a 6.5 CM to 1000 yds. and now moving up to my Savage 112 in 338 Lapua, out to 2 miles. So far, recoil has not been anywhere near as bad as the 12 GA which I dont see as excessive anyway. But I am now having a single shot bolt action 50 BMG custom built for an assault on 4 miles. We are still working out the details of the design but this thread has been very important to my thinking. It has taught me a lot about how I will approach the design of the 50 BMG. Yes, I know, 4 miles is NOT African Hunting, but I can learn a lot here and I thank you guys/gals for letting me look over your shoulder as I advance.
 
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Hey all! Just wanted to give you a quick update. I took a lot of your advice and decided to try to apply it to shooting my shotgun. It's the closest aproximation I have, and one heck of a lot easier on my wallet to shoot. I went and tried a few rounds of trap, and realized my posture is far, far worse than I thought. Actually, I didn't realize that at all, my wife did, and she yelled it to me from the sidelines (she had shot the previous set). Well, I fixed my posture, put my shotgun up to my face instead of my face down to the shotgun and probably shot the best set I have ever shot. 14 out of 25, which is still crummy but I'm a rifle guy not a shotgun guy so I was happy with that! Anyway I will be trying it out with my double here soon and I'll let you know if it continues to translate. The other good news is, no flinch with the 12 gauge, so thankfully the double didn't give me a perma-flinch last time.
 

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You’re on the right path. Get as much wingshooting instruction as you can with a double. Then go back to your rifle and you’ll be in way better shape to shoot effectively. Weight off your heels, arms forward, elbow up, most of the weight on the left hand forward of the forend. Comb to face, not face to comb.

it will come together and the recoil will diminish.
 

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