Posts Tagged ‘spot drill’

Oct
7

The Spot Drill: Revisited

You may remember my post about trying a spot drill.

In that exercise, I shot one round each at twenty 1″ targets, with the object being to hit each target. I hit 18 out of 20 with the Varmint AR in that exercise.

I wanted to try this drill with the Savage Model 10 Tactical, but I feared shooting 1″ spots from a bag on the bench would be too easy. So, to make the challenge a little more realistic (and a lot more challenging!), I decided to shoot at 1/2″ targets from a prone position using only a front bag.

Shooting a prone spot drill with the Savage Model 10

Shooting a prone spot drill with the Savage Model 10 Tactical

As it turns out, this was more challenging than I thought it would be, mainly because I was in the prone position. Lying flat on the ground, every beat of my heart made the crosshairs jump off target.

Needless to say, I did not do as well as I did previously. I ended up hitting only 8 out of the 20 targets, with a few more being very close.

I was only able to hit 8 out of the 10 spots

I was only able to hit 8 of the 20 spots

I tried the same setup with the WOA Varmint AR-15, and scored another 8.

I know it sounds easy – we can shoot 5-shot groups in 1/4″ all day long, how can it be so tough to put a bunch of shots in spots twice as big as our groups?

All I can tell you is, give it a try.

If you’re new to this game, here’s a few pics to help you understand what we’re trying to achieve…

Target is 100 yards away - no magnification

Target is 100 yards away - no magnification

View of the target through the scope at 4x magnification

View of the target through the scope at 4x magnification

View through the Nikon Monarch X at 16x magnification - the maximum

View through the Nikon Monarch X at 16x magnification - the maximum

In that last picture, you’re looking at exactly what I’m seeing when I’m shooting this drill. As you can imagine, the slightest bit of movement, even that from the shooter’s own beating heart, will move the crosshairs off target.

Of course, I can’t blame my low score on the rifle or the ammunition, because it’s a demonstrated shooter. The only thing I can do is keep practicing. We’ll revisit this again soon.

Sep
6

The Spot Drill

Accuracy. Precision. Repeatability. These are the things we strive for, the things we put so much time and effort into achieving – We’re constantly looking for any edge to improve the accuracy of our firearms.

Today we’re going to work on the weakest link of the accuracy chain: The shooter.

We’re all familiar with shooting groups, and with the right rifle, we can easily shoot a 5-round group in under 1″ at 100 yards. But can we shoot a 1″ target with one shot at any given time?

Practice the spot drill and find out.

I was first made aware of the spot drill on Sigforum, and the member speaking about the drill saw it on Sniper’s Hide forums, so credit where credit is due. It is an excellent exercise that will force you to concentrate on shooting fundamentals like breathing and trigger control.

The idea is simple: place 20 1″ dots (targets) approximately 3″ apart. From 100 yards, fire one round at each dot… if it touches the dot, it counts as a “hit.”

Warning: this is NOT as easy as it sounds, and it’s unlikely you’ll clear all targets on your first try. In fact, if you’re not used to doing a drill like this, you’ll be doing good to clear half of them.

I do have a some experience in similar practice, having done a bit of silhouette shooting in my time. I decided to run a spot drill today with the new varmint AR.

Twenty 1" targets set at 100 yards - one shot each

Twenty 1" targets set at 100 yards - one shot each

It was a beautiful day out today – high 60’s, sunny, but a wind that was constantly blowing from 10 to 15mph. But hey, I like a challenge.

Starting with a clean rifle and a 20-round PMAG full of Black Hills’ 40-grain VMAX, I shot a 10 shot group to foul the barrel and check for drift. The group measured 1.069″, a bit of a spread from my .9″ group from a few days back.

After a scope adjustment, I fired off another 10 rounds, and the group measured .969″. Not too shabby, considering the wind.

Two groups of 10 shots for fouling and adjustment

Two groups of 10 shots for fouling and adjustment

Time to start the drill.

The first shot hit almost 1″ high. Whether it’s me or my rifles, the first round I chamber out of a magazine is almost always a flier, so this did not particularly surprise me. I missed again on my eighth shot, but managed to clear the rest. Again, not bad, considering the wind.

The Spot Drill Target - 18 out of 20

The Spot Drill Target - 18 out of 20

The spot drill is definitely an excellent training tool, and I highly recommend practicing it to improve on your shooting fundamentals.