Our goal is to give you news and information you can use in your pursuit of the shooting sports. We will continue to update this section with a variety of topics such as where to find friendly places to shoot, reviewing the basics, improving your shooting technique, and “How to . . .” articles.
Range Fashion For Women Shooters
Think it through before you go to the range! Although shooting ranges are very particular about requiring eye and ear protection, not all ranges have stated dress guidelines. If you talk to any shooter, you will hear stories about being hit with flying hot brass and having it go down the front or back of a loose-fitting shirt. Please consider wearing a t-shirt like the one on the right vs a t-shirt like the one on the left. You will protect yourself from getting burned by hot brass sticking to your skin. More importantly, you will protect other shooters by not doing the hot brass shuffle while waving around a loaded firearm. Dress smart and be Safe!
A frequently asked question is, “How do I store my ammo long-term?” Generally speaking, you can successfully store your ammunition in the same conditions in which you would be comfortable living. In other words, store it in a stable, room temperature environment and prevent exposure to moisture and humidity. So, the garage is out!
For the most part, the manufacturer’s packaging is probably more than adequate when storing ammo in your house. If you plan on storing it for longer than a couple of years, or plan on burying it, you need to take a couple of extra precautions especially in Florida.
- Humidity Is The Enemy – Humidity is probably one of the biggest issues you need to be concerned about. Keep your ammo in a low humidity location, or use some sort of dehumidifying equipment in your storage area.
- Silica Packets – The silica gel packets that come in just about everything these days are a great way to keep your ammo in top-notch condition. You should place silica Gel or desiccant packets in your ammo cans to help get rid of moisture.
- Vacuum Seal – Vacuum sealing your ammunition can help protect it from water, rust, and even burying it underground.
- Rotate – Just like long-term food storage, the key to successfully storing ammo is to rotate your ammunition as often as possible. Make sure you mark purchase dates on your ammo cans, so you use the oldest ammo first.
- Check It – If you’re not regularly firing your ammo, it’s a good idea to check your supplies at least once every six months for signs of corrosion. Doing periodic checks will help make sure your stocks are ready to fire when you need them.
There are key rules to keep you from doing harm to yourself and others as well as to your equipment. These rules must become natural habits. The top four basic principles in safe firearms handling are:
- Treat every firearm as if it’s loaded, even if you’re absolutely certain it is unloaded.
- Never point a firearm at anything you are not willing to destroy. Always keep your firearm pointed in a safe direction.
- Keep your finger off the trigger until you are on target and ready to fire.
- Always be sure of your target and what is beyond it, you are responsible for the entire path of every bullet you fire.
An easy way to remember these rules: LPTB – “Little Pies Taste Best.”
Once safety is second nature, you are ready to work on shooting technique.
What Am I Doing Wrong?
This is a question shooters often ask when checking their targets after each shot. The short answer is, be consistent in your shooting until a natural pattern of shot placement forms on your target.
To paraphrase Albert Einstein, “If you keep doing the same thing, you will keep getting the same result.” Learning to shoot is no different from learning any other sport or learning how to play a musical instrument. The first step in improving any skill is knowing what needs to be improved. If you are consistent in your shooting, your target will actually tell you what steps you need to take to build your shooting skill.
First, you need to understand Point of Aim (POA) vs. Point of Impact (POI). The center of the bullseye is the goal for POI. POA is where you place the sight image on your target to hit your POI. Your firearm came from the factory with sights set up with one of the following POA vs. POI sight images. Your firearm’s sight image will tell you where to aim to hit the bullseye. If you are unsure about your sight’s set up, check you owner’s manual.
By keeping a consistent POA using your sight image, your shots will naturally group somewhere on the target. Now your target will tell you what you need to work on to improve your results.
Select one of the following Pistol Correction Charts to compare to your target:
- Right handed shooters – Pistol Correction Chart
- Left handed shooters – Pistol Correction Chart
- Right and Left on one sheet – Pistol Correction Chart
You can print them out and take them to the range to use for your target if you want.
Front Sight . . . Front Sight . . . Front Sight!
The two most important components of sighting with your firearm are to:
- focus your eyes on the front sight and
- verify the alignment between front and rear sights:
- the front and rear sights are level across the top
- the same amount of space in the rear sight is on either side of the front sight
- Remember – Same Height and Same Light
The eyes can only focus at one distance plane at a time. The front sight, rear sight, and target will all be at different distances from the eyes. The reason we pick the front sight as our focus object is that it tells us where the gun is being aimed. This puts the target out of focus, just as it does the rear sights, but, in this case, it’s not a drawback, since just about anything we will be shooting at with an iron-sighted pistol will be easy to see.
Getting To Accuracy
More enjoyable shooting comes from achieving your personal goals. For most shooters, this means shooting accurately. Accuracy comes from:
- Training In An NRA Certified Course(s)
- Understanding And Mastering The Basics Through Coaching
- Consistent, Regularly Scheduled Practice
- Practice . . . Practice . . . Practice!
Looking for a place to shoot?
The new pistol range in St. Petersburg at Ted’s Firearms at 6043 9th Ave. N., St. Petersburg, FL 33710 has started off with a bang! The range has become very popular with the community. They are now offering memberships for active range goers. The Silver Level Membership allows one shooter unlimited range days for $250 per year. The Gold Level Membership allows one shooter and a guest to share a lane for unlimited range days for $500 per year. Both memberships include a 10% discount off merchandise (excluding firearms) and a free Ted’s Firearms T-shirt.
Use your GS Custom Ammo along with your pistols up to .44 Magnum. Hours are Monday to Saturday 10 AM – 7 PM and Sunday 10 AM – 4 PM. Daily range fees are very reasonable at $15 per hour. Stop by and check out the new range.
Bill Jackson’s . . . Stay cool while you shoot . . . Bill Jackson, Inc. is a state of the art outdoor adventure outfitter. It is a full service outdoor store for campers, fishermen, hunters, and shooters featuring an indoor air-conditioned pistol range. Their store is located at 9501 U.S. Highway 19 North Pinellas Park, FL 33782. At Bill Jackson’s, it does not matter if you’re a novice shooter interested in target practice or a veteran marksman, you can stay cool while improving or maintaining your skills. Visit their website for all the details.
Wyoming Antelope Club, located at 3700 126th Ave N in Clearwater, FL 33762, is the largest public shooting range in Pinellas County. Whether you are a new shooter or an aspiring competitive champion, they have the facilities to accommodate your needs. You are welcome at Wyoming Antelope Club where they host many activities for every age and interest. Visit their website to get started. You will find the shooting discipline that fits your interest and their hours of operation.