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 Post subject: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2020 12:20 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2005 11:25 pm
Posts: 2421
Location: Attica, Mi
I'm sitting in the shotgun room looking out the window keeping score for a couple of guys in our trap league and got thinking - dangerous. After a 35 year or so lay off, the good scores seem a lot harder to come by. I've been trying different places to start the gun at, so I started holding my finger on the center top of the trap house. All of a sudden it seemed quite easy to see the bird quickly, and start the gun following it. So my question is, do you guys find it better to follow the trail of the bird, or just hold a little higher at different spots across the trap house, or hold a lot higher and just move more side ways and cut it off ? When I said this to a friend, he said you have to vary your hold heights depending on how high or low the bird is flying that day. I believe it was more of a timing thing with him. Something new to try tomorrow.



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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2020 9:45 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 6:28 pm
Posts: 1201
Location: Skeet and Trap Fields
Don't ever track the bird. Nothing good comes from it. Once you get on it and like the lead or visual picture, shoot it. FWIW, I hold 3-4 feet above the house and from the left corner on pad 1, the middle on pad 3 and right corner on pad 5. Pads 2 & 4 are 1/2 way between the middle and far edges of the house. I have no problem picking the target up and find that I do better with minimal vertical gun movement. I don't hold so high as to have my gun over the target's apex.


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:09 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2005 11:25 pm
Posts: 2421
Location: Attica, Mi
My problem is I haven't been shooting trap for 45 years. About 20 years ago I came back to shotgun shooting, but it was skeet and SCs. Now, about 6 months ago, I'm shooting a lot more trap. I got use to a " maintain lead " and that doesn't work for trap. I feel it's more of a swing through because the bird beats the gun. I shot yesterday and did my usual crappy shooting until I just tried to shoot as quickly as I could and then didn't miss a bird. What I didn't like is I couldn't tell you where the gun was when I pulled the trigger. I'm afraid sometimes it's going to work, and sometimes not. And then I won't know what to do to correct a problem.

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Venue shotgun chairman of the LCSC and the LPSXSA


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2020 1:38 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 6:28 pm
Posts: 1201
Location: Skeet and Trap Fields
I too am primarily a skeet shooter and took up trap last year. It is a swing-thru game due to the fact we don't know where the target is going and so the target will always be ahead of our shotguns. I find I do better by just focusing in front of the trap and reacting to the target, letting my subconscious take over. The more I try to be precise or start to measure the lead, the worse I do. Trust yourself.


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2020 6:25 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Fri May 09, 2008 9:17 pm
Posts: 2967
Location: Kansas, Land of Oz
It's easier for me to pick up the bird and determine its flight path if I hold on the edge of the trap house roof. Otherwise, I'm trying to look "through" the gun with one eye.


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2020 10:41 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:59 pm
Posts: 1476
Location: Soda Springs, Id.
I don't even know where I'm pointing the gun half the time.
my eyes are focused out just past the trap house.
maybe some to the left on station 1 and some to the right on 5 but pretty much the front of the house ignoring the gun.
it comes kind of in lower focus as I swing on the target.


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:09 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2005 11:25 pm
Posts: 2421
Location: Attica, Mi
Well, you guys made me feel a bit better. Guess I just have trouble letting go of my other style of shooting. I'll try a couple of rounds as twohigh suggested. I seem to have the same problem you have and I'll just learn to trust myself.

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Venue shotgun chairman of the LCSC and the LPSXSA


Last edited by bladesmith on Wed Mar 18, 2020 1:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2020 12:45 pm 
Limited Edition

Joined: Fri Dec 27, 2019 7:22 pm
Posts: 463
Location: NE South Dakota
I always hold just below the roof of the house so I can track it immediately


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2020 10:13 pm 
Tournament Grade
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 08, 2020 7:40 am
Posts: 248
Location: Houston, TX and Fairfield Glade, TN
I am brand new at this, and know nothing ( at age 80, starting a new hobby/sport) Yet, I found this YouTube video pretty clear.

I bought a dedicated low-cost Trap gun today. I won't get it for a few days, but when I shoot trap, I will follow Gil's advice. I understand he gets $500 a day for a Group lesson, and fills his group every time. Must know something....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOcxjSE ... ex=2&t=30s


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2020 10:01 am 
*Proud to be a*
*Proud to be a*

Joined: Wed Sep 08, 2004 2:32 pm
Posts: 7048
Location: Creston, Iowa
Blade.......trap shooters always approach from under the target unless they spot shoot (trap) the target by holding high or at the peak of the targets path. If your POI is set higher than a flat shooting field or skeet gun you have a built in vertical lead and or have no need to ever put the bead visually on the target while breaking it. With a higher POI setting almost exclusively used in trap, you can hold lower anywhere within the targets potential angle of presentation path and respond by moving the gun up to the target. Never to lose sight of the target during the entire shot sequence. A huge advantage.

Maltz

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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2020 6:47 pm 
Crown Grade
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 5:55 pm
Posts: 2130
Location: Indiana
bladesmith wrote:
My problem is I haven't been shooting trap for 45 years. About 20 years ago I came back to shotgun shooting, but it was skeet and SCs. Now, about 6 months ago, I'm shooting a lot more trap. I got use to a " maintain lead " and that doesn't work for trap. I feel it's more of a swing through because the bird beats the gun. I shot yesterday and did my usual crappy shooting until I just tried to shoot as quickly as I could and then didn't miss a bird. What I didn't like is I couldn't tell you where the gun was when I pulled the trigger. I'm afraid sometimes it's going to work, and sometimes not. And then I won't know what to do to correct a problem.


When you shoot quickly like you describe you are shooting with your eyes. When you do that your subconscious does all the calculations. Wish I could do that every shot!


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2020 1:57 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2005 11:25 pm
Posts: 2421
Location: Attica, Mi
Maltzahn, thanks for the tips but I was already aware of what you said. I hold on the trap house, and with my old SxS guns that shoot pretty flat I hold my head up so I see more of the rib. I have three Remingon 1894s that have on the right barrel, F grade trap gun. Other than straight grips, they're pretty much B grade guns. The solid rib does extend ever so slightly above the barrels at the breech and actually is below them at the muzzles. Hey Winmod, wish I could also, every shot. So far it's working much better than anything else.

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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 10:27 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2016 1:49 pm
Posts: 115
richg99 wrote:
I am brand new at this, and know nothing ( at age 80, starting a new hobby/sport) Yet, I found this YouTube video pretty clear.

I bought a dedicated low-cost Trap gun today. I won't get it for a few days, but when I shoot trap, I will follow Gil's advice. I understand he gets $500 a day for a Group lesson, and fills his group every time. Must know something....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOcxjSE ... ex=2&t=30s


This is a terrific video! I found it on YouTube a few years ago while looking for instruction and tips on how to shoot trap. My scores were in the mid-teens at the time, and I was becoming very frustrated by my inability to improve.

At first when watching the video I didn’t “get it,” so I watched it several times. Once I caught on and practiced Gil’s technique my scores instantly went into the 22-23 range, then all of a sudden I hit 25 for the first time. WOO HOO!! I have found that when I start missing the bird it is almost always because I am not looking out beyond the trap house as I call for the bird. As a result my eyes don’t catch sight of it quickly enough, so then it becomes a game of “catch-up” and I can’t swing fast enough. The concept of “hold” point that Gil teaches is also very important — especially on station 3 — because the barrel of the gun can get in the way of seeing the bird when it comes out of the house, and that makes it harder to catch sight of it quickly enough to shoot it on its upward trajectory. Subsequently trying to catch it on the way down is really tough.

I highly recommend this video for all trap shooters looking for that “magic bullet” for shooting higher scores.


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2020 10:33 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2016 1:49 pm
Posts: 115
ClaysOnlyShooter wrote:
richg99 wrote:
I am brand new at this, and know nothing ( at age 80, starting a new hobby/sport) Yet, I found this YouTube video pretty clear.

I bought a dedicated low-cost Trap gun today. I won't get it for a few days, but when I shoot trap, I will follow Gil's advice. I understand he gets $500 a day for a Group lesson, and fills his group every time. Must know something....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOcxjSE ... ex=2&t=30s


This is a terrific video! I found it on YouTube a few years ago while looking for instruction and tips on how to shoot trap. My scores were in the mid-teens at the time, and I was becoming very frustrated by my inability to improve.

At first when watching the video I didn’t “get it,” so I watched it several times. Once I caught on and practiced Gil’s technique my scores instantly went into the 22-23 range, then all of a sudden I hit 25 for the first time. WOO HOO!! I have found that when I start missing the bird it is almost always because I am not looking out beyond the trap house as I call for the bird. As a result my eyes don’t catch sight of it quickly enough, so then it becomes a game of “catch-up” and I can’t swing fast enough. The concept of “hold” point that Gil teaches is also very important — especially on station 3 — because the barrel of the gun can get in the way of seeing the bird when it comes out of the house, and that makes it harder to catch sight of it quickly enough to shoot it on its upward trajectory. Subsequently trying to catch it on the way down is really tough.

I highly recommend this video for all trap shooters looking for that “magic bullet” for shooting higher scores.


I forgot to add...Gil Ash if you see this post, I want to give you a big “THANK YOU” for vastly improving my trap shooting by making this video available free of charge to all who will “listen” to your advice. I recommend it to all my trap friends when they are struggling. It is a true game changer!

{hs#


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2020 10:13 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2014 9:17 pm
Posts: 256
Location: Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex
All of the fundamentals are important, including hold point & where to look before calling for the pull. In my experience the most important thing, however, is being aggressive and shooting as quick as possible. Lead comes with instinct, but your instinct must have baseline experience to draw upon.

My instructor told me to get a MENTAL PICTURE of a successful POA for the different angles and stations. Freeze that picture in your mind. That becomes what your instinct draws upon when you shoot aggressively.

Clear your mind of everything except of focusing on the bird and being aggressive and say “Pull.”


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2020 12:30 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Tue May 19, 2009 6:57 pm
Posts: 2693
Don't try to shoot as quick as possible. If you do, then you have to be thinking "shoot quick as possible". Shoot without thinking. The quickness will come with experience.


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2020 6:18 am 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2010 11:29 am
Posts: 236
I shoot my best when I am not thinking about it. I know this is said a lot but it's so true "just see it and shoot it".


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2020 9:08 am 
Presentation Grade
User avatar

Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2016 5:18 pm
Posts: 683
See it, understand it's trajectory, and then shoot it. Don't wait for it to peak. The concept of "trapping" the target only works so well, as it becomes a timing game. After so many thousands of rounds you begin to be able to consciously recognize the barrel target relationship (see the gun) but in the interim you'll struggle. Better IMO to shoot subconsciouly all the time (like Sporting and Skeet).

One good video I use is this below. Some might think it's outdated, but dang if it don't work. It does talk about aligning the sights, but more or less it's looking where you're shooting.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_u_SdV_7phY

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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2020 1:45 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2005 11:25 pm
Posts: 2421
Location: Attica, Mi
pintail, I most certainly don't shoot subconsciously at skeet and SCs - there it's mostly intercept or maintain lead. But trap, because the bird beats the gun, it's just a swing through. Thanks for that old Remington tape. I think it about says it all. Back in the 70s I learned with their little booklet that said about the same thing, but no video back then.

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Venue shotgun chairman of the LCSC and the LPSXSA


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 Post subject: Re: tracking the bird ?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2020 10:07 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Fri May 09, 2008 9:17 pm
Posts: 2967
Location: Kansas, Land of Oz
ClaysOnlyShooter wrote:
The concept of “hold” point that Gil teaches is also very important — especially on station 3 — because the barrel of the gun can get in the way of seeing the bird when it comes out of the house,

Some very good points that Gil brings forth for the beginning trapshooter. One thing I have to question is that explanation of hold point for station 3. A gun held slightly to the right of dead center will STILL obscure the bird that comes out at a certain right-angle. Very few "straightaways" are indeed perfect straightaways, most have an angle, however small, to them.
You see, no matter where you hold the gun, in Gil's range of hold points, the chance of it obscuring an emerging target is the same. The only way to prevent this is to hold the gun BELOW the top edge of the trap house....and many do exactly this. In reality, holding just above the top edge of the trap house will only obscure the target for a tiny fraction of a second, and this is during the time when the target is never in sharp focus anyway.
As Gil said, as our experience deepens, we'll incrementally change the way we do things, sometimes unconsciously. But, he give us a great place to start that is probably way ahead of where we'd be starting if we were left to our own devices.




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