tHE PERFECT PISTOL SHOT
I enjoy reading the gun blogs and am always happy to receive correspondence from The Perfect Pistol Shot book and blog readers. In answer to virtually everyone's question about their own shooting, please let me say once more: Lighten your grip!
Friends, your gun is not going to beat you to death. When I taught peace officers it was my practice to demonstrate firing a .357 magnum with full-house loads while holding it with only my trigger finger and the web of the shooting hand. Sure, it moves around during recoil (that's what the other fingers are for) but I never dropped it. If you don't crush a soda can while drinking, why do you try to crush a handgun when shooting? Do you give your cell phone four times as much pressure as its weight requires? If so, you must dial a lot of wrong numbers. Pressure is energy, energy is movement, and any pressure beyond what is needed to hold an object must be dispersed through movement. In shooting that movement is dissipated through the motion of the lighter object, which is the handgun. I know what the other guys say and I know what the "sophisticated enthusiasts" say. They're wrong, and they've been wrong for thirty years. If you're a right-hander you most likely shoot between seven and eight o'clock. Most do, and the reason is shooting hand torque which twists the hand down and inward. That's what the fist was designed to do but it is destructive to marksmanship. Of course, if you watch your front sight tip to the point of noticing every scratch, dent, and ding, you will see the tip move down and inward, allowing you to correct before firing. But that, we'll save for another time.
Handguns vary concerning the amount of lubricant necessary for smooth, reliable operation. However, there are some general rules:
1. Apply lubricant with fingertips or saturated patch. The goal is to leave a thin, even trail of lubricant, not to soak the part.
2. Oil only those surfaces designed for friction. Unfinished, polished surfaces which slide against themselves need lubricant. Finished surfaces are not intended for surface to surface contact and do not need oil.
3. Light coating of finished areas to prevent rusting may cause more problems than they cure when excess oil enters the firearm. Use a silicon rage to wipe off your firearm rather than applying lubricate as a rust-preventative.
4. Barrels need to be cleaned not lubricated. Every measure of oil left in the chamber or barrel of the firearm increases chamber pressure. It is possible to injure yourself and destroy your handgun by over-oiling.
5. Handguns will require less oil once broken-in. The Beretta 92F is a good example of a weapon that needs a good oiling of the slide rails to function until broken-in. Once broken-in, the 92F requires very little oil.
6. A little oil goes a long way and its use has no substitute. If you wouldn't drive a car without oil to lubricate the engine, don't fire a gun without oil to lubricate its friction bearing parts.
For decades left-handers have had to switch or add controls to handguns designed primarily for right-handers. It began with the 1911 and continues with more modern pistols. Oddly, that has worked to the advantage of left-handers. Every defensive shooter must be able to operate a handgun with either hand, and in order to do so with the greatest efficiency the handgun needs to be ambidextrous. Left-handers, then, are at least equipped for ambidextrous operation. The majority of shooters (right-handers), however, never set-up their pistols for possible left-handed operation. Think about "the other side" when setting-up your pistol for defensive use.
Albert League is a former Marine Corps and law enforcement firearm instructor who consults on a variety of security topics. He is the founder of the Practics firearms defense system and author of the Practics book series.(www.practicsusa.com)