Author Topic: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?  (Read 1329 times)

Offline Walkingeagle

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #25 on: May 04, 2019, 12:42:40 AM »
I agree that the flash is in the preifereal vision, and can be learned to be ignored, or focus through it, absolutely. I have a hard time when folks say the donít see it.
Fact, it exists and impossible to be blind of. You can train yourself to focus or ignore, yes.
Fact, the faster the flash to ignition, the easier this focus is.
Fyi, I have only a GPR flint to comment on as to personal first hand experience, although very quick, it is not instantaneous and the fraction of a second is enough to throw me off. I tried upgrading to an L&R lock with no improvement. Tried black english flints, cut flints and changed to liner to a chambers white lightning, still no improvement in ignition time. Drilled to 1/16Ē and polished, 3f/4f primer, no go. It still is slower than my cap. I have looked throughout the web to see if I can find a video with instant ignition, also without luck. Am I expecting too much?
Walk

Offline tilefish

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #26 on: May 04, 2019, 03:07:22 AM »
Walkingeagle I am new to flintlocks so I am only talking from my limited experience.But I also have tried various flints and different powders in the pan including goex4f swiss4f and swiss nullB.The swiss nullB is a noticeably faster ignition but still not as fast as my percussion rifles.
Chad

Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #27 on: May 04, 2019, 03:19:17 PM »
I agree that the flash is in the preifereal vision, and can be learned to be ignored, or focus through it, absolutely. I have a hard time when folks say the donít see it.
Fact, it exists and impossible to be blind of. You can train yourself to focus or ignore, yes.
Fact, the faster the flash to ignition, the easier this focus is.
Fyi, I have only a GPR flint to comment on as to personal first hand experience, although very quick, it is not instantaneous and the fraction of a second is enough to throw me off. I tried upgrading to an L&R lock with no improvement. Tried black english flints, cut flints and changed to liner to a chambers white lightning, still no improvement in ignition time. Drilled to 1/16Ē and polished, 3f/4f primer, no go. It still is slower than my cap. I have looked throughout the web to see if I can find a video with instant ignition, also without luck. Am I expecting too much?
Walk
You need a gun with a standard breech, a properly made and installed vent liner and a better lock. BTW, I never have noticed the flash, don't know why. When I flinch it's because I'm anticipating the shot.
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Offline Pukka Bundook

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #28 on: May 04, 2019, 04:14:05 PM »
When going  from percussion back to flint, ignition Can seem slow.

Good old Colonel Hawker suggested getting the slowest old musket you could find , and using that for a while, Then when you go to your "proper" flintlock, it'll seem as fast as lightning in comparison!  (This is paraphrased)

I think we have to see the flash to some degree, unless we shut both eyes as we pull the trigger.  (And how many photos have we seen of that!??...folks hiding under their hats so the  tight shut eyes don't show?   But they still do!!)

I don't think it unreasonable to "draw attention" to the flash and how best to deal with it, as it Is the first thing most folks notice.
I think best remedy is fire priming for  a start, until the person gets the idea the flash is not going to bight them.

Offline Daryl

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #29 on: May 04, 2019, 08:56:12 PM »
Considering this instant gratification age, making it easier for the younger generation seems to be the drift, nowadays.
I wonder if this is a good idea. I know we ALL want to help as we've been there, but if it had been easy, I would not have persisted
to learn to make it work.

When shooting, if I do not "see" the pan flash in my peripheral vision - that means my right eye was closed when the pan went off.  You cannot, not see it
is my way of thinking. Looking at it - no -  looking for it, - no - that would be silly - your focus should be on the front sight and target, but that whoosh to the
right of the eye when right handed, left eye if shooting left handed, is always there. If you don't see it, you are closing your aiming eye-ball. imo
Daryl

"a gun without hammers is like a spaniel without ears" King George V

Offline Darkhorse

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #30 on: May 05, 2019, 02:20:10 AM »
I wrote this up several years ago to give to shooters who came to me for help. All word of  mouth mind you. I have been a teacher of sorts my entire career and also taught Martial Arts for 10 years. I don't go for wive's tales or simple solutions. When I find what works best for different types of people I use that technique and refine it over time. This was posted in 2018 and then as now with a lot of reservations. But somebody out there might actually use it to become a better shooter.

This is how I teach someone to overcome the flintlock flinch. The bottom line is this, if one follows this to the letter they will overcome the flinch. If not, then one fails dismally. Not only will it cure the flinch but most find they become a better, more precise marksman. The key is to not rush it. My way is not a quick way but it produces the best results I've seen.


How to cure the flintlock flinch
Donít rush the process. The point is to drill this into your subconscious and create muscle memory that will last, and improve over time.
Replace flint with a whittled down piece of wood. You can dryfire inside your house at this step if you wish. Cock your rifle and aim at a defined point. Try to drive the front sight into that point. Now while concentrating on the front sight pull the trigger. Is the front sight still on your mark or close? Or is it a few inches away? If it has wandered off target this is because of the flinch, and you are trying to watch the hammer and flint strike the frizzen.
Now do it again and concentrate harder on ignoring the hammer fall and more on your front sight. Keep trying to drive that front sight into the target.
After a day or two you will start to notice youíre paying more attention to that front sight and less to that distracting flintlock. What ever you do donít rush to the next step because youíre not ready. You will just relapse. Continue to practice this step for one to two weeks. 2 weeks are much better as it takes time to teach  your mind and develop muscle memory. Just keep doing this over and over until that front sight remains stuck on the target every time you pull the trigger.
When you are satisfied that you have mastered this step put the real flint back in the lock and plug the touchhole with a toothpick, you can push it on through into the barrel later. Now go outside and pick you out a new target. Prime the pan. We are now introducing a distraction to the process. Cock your rifle, aim hard at the target and pull the trigger. Donít be surprised if you flinch. Just keep doing it over and over until you ignore the flash and that front sight remains pasted on the target. If you continue to flinch go back to step one and repeat at least one week because you didnít do it long enough the first time.
Again I want to stress that you not rush the process. Continue a minimum of 7 days and 2 weeks is not too long.
 You should not be flinching at all before moving to the next step which is a rifle loaded with a light charge. If you practiced step one and two long enough then you wonít flinch with a light charge. If you find yourself flinching just go back to step one and start over.
The keys to success are learning to concentrate on that front sight and ignoring the flash in the pan. The longer you practice both steps the greater the success at conquering the flinch. If you keep at it you will begin to notice that the front sight is really pasted on the target, and then the rifle goes off and when the smoke clears that front sight is still pasted on the target.
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Offline little joe

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #31 on: May 05, 2019, 09:37:58 AM »
Walkingeagle I am new to flintlocks so I am only talking from my limited experience.But I also have tried various flints and different powders in the pan including goex4f swiss4f and swiss nullB.The swiss nullB is a noticeably faster ignition but still not as fast as my percussion rifles.
Forget about percussion guns and concentrate on the flinter, however as fast as it gets it will most likely never be as fast as a percussion piece.

Offline Daryl

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #32 on: May 05, 2019, 07:52:57 PM »
Walkingeagle I am new to flintlocks so I am only talking from my limited experience.But I also have tried various flints and different powders in the pan including goex4f swiss4f and swiss nullB.The swiss nullB is a noticeably faster ignition but still not as fast as my percussion rifles.
Forget about percussion guns and concentrate on the flinter, however as fast as it gets it will most likely never be as fast as a percussion piece.

I shoot percussion shotguns EXACTLY the same as I do modern shotguns - same leade, same style and it busts birds, clay or feathered.
With a flintlock shooting shot, I have to shoot it differently, passing the bird by a foot before slapping the trigger, instead of instantly the gun 'touches' the bird. This 'extra' leade makes up for the slower ignition & it busts birds very well indeed.  I like the swing-past method as it automatically gives the proper leade to the bird, no matter the range. Of course, you must follow through.
When shooting ball, this same flintlock gun gives me very fast ignition - certainly no slower than any other flint lock I have witnessed shooting.
Daryl

"a gun without hammers is like a spaniel without ears" King George V

Offline David Price

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #33 on: May 07, 2019, 02:46:22 AM »
Make it a habit to call your shot before looking into the scope.  If you can't call the shot you have closed your eye.  I call every shot I shoot good or bad.

David Price

Offline OldMtnMan

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #34 on: May 07, 2019, 04:50:37 PM »
Make it a habit to call your shot before looking into the scope.  If you can't call the shot you have closed your eye.  I call every shot I shoot good or bad.

David Price

That would be annoying.

I went fly fishing with a friend once. Once being the keyword. Every time he'd hook into a fish he'd yell out.......GOT ANOTHER ONE! After 10 fish I was ready to knock him out.
Pete

Offline Pukka Bundook

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #35 on: May 07, 2019, 05:34:56 PM »
I must say, that a tube sight placed at the breech, (like on my matchlock) makes the flash much less noticeable, even though there is no flash fence on this gun.
Not that this has anything to do with flintlocks and new shooters!

I still can't see how anyone can Not get a  view of the flash  at least in their peripheral vision, unless they close both eyes as the shot is fired!

Offline Craig Wilcox

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #36 on: May 07, 2019, 06:05:26 PM »
Richard, I had a vision of you mounting the latest offering from Leupold on your matchlock.  Nice 3-12x, Duplex illuminated reticle....

The Marines taught me to shoot when I was 11-12, living in the Philippines.  That old (probably 30 or so) Gunny Sergeant harping at me to "focus on the front sight!  Focus on the front sight!".  To the point that many times, even now, I do not hear the shot or feel the recoil.  Concentration!
And yes, 11 year olds can shoot the Garand or 1911 pretty well.  But no flinters in the armory!
Likewise with a flint lock - concentrate!  You WILL be aware of the pan flash, but is just something to be ignored.
Craig Wilcox
We are all elated when Dame Fortune smiles at us, but remember that she is always closely followed by her daughter, Miss Fortune.

Offline Arcturus

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #37 on: May 07, 2019, 08:56:35 PM »
I'm another one not bothered by the flash.  And I understand those who say they don't see it;  I'm the same way.  In reality, I "see" it, but don't "notice" it, if that makes more sense.  I focus so strongly on the front sight, that after the shot I don't remember a giant flash having occurred, or having blinked (but believe I usually do blink).  But I recall my view of the target is temporarily obscured, by the flash and/or my eye blinking.  I would love to see video evidence of shooters with thousands more flintlock rounds fired than me showing that they can fire without their eye blinking.  I think it's just a reflex with a fireball exploding that close to my eye.  It doesn't cause me to move the gun though, and that is key.  Does anyone not blink?
Jerry

Offline tddeangelo

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Re: Are we doing new flint shooters a disservice?
« Reply #38 on: May 08, 2019, 12:16:14 AM »
I'm 43 and have been shooting flintlocks since, well, I'm not sure when. Pennsylvania has a flintlock-only deer season, and I know I was shooting for a few years prior to starting to hunt that season at the age of 13.

I spent the VAST majority of those years with a flinch of varying degrees. One of the "ways to cure a flinch" that was used on me was to charge the rifle, then not let me know if the pan was primed or not.

I will 100% recommend against this tactic. It made my anxiety worse and my flinch got much, much, much worse.

It wasn't until I decided I'd had enough of not shooting a flintlock well, and was gonna come to terms with it, that I got to terms with it.

This involved, as Darkhorse mentioned, a substitute "flint". I cut the tail ends off clothspins and used them as replacements for the flint. I put a blue piece of painter's tape on a blank wall, and set about dry firing. Over. And over. And over. My only emphasis was sight picture. That's all I thought about. All I cared about. I didn't about the trigger, lock working, etc. Sight picture. Sight picture. Sight picture.

When I went to the range, that went out the window and the muzzle dropped like a rock off the Empire State Building.

And I realized what was different....firing of the gun. Recoil. I was anticipating it.

Soooo.....

Pull the gun tight...tight....TIGHTER....into my shoulder. More accurately, I pulled in and then also pushed my shoulder into the gun to take a slightly weight-forward posture. Nothing was so tight that it made me white knuckled nor shake/vibrate from tension, but things couldn't be slack.

Then I took a page from shooting compound bows. Back tension is how one releases the trigger on the release when shooting a compound. Pulling the trigger is a flinch or miss in the making. Squeezing the back muscles, pulling the elbow back, and letting the hand's rearward motion bring the "dead" trigger finger along for the ride is what activated the trigger.

So....

Back to the dry firing. Buttstock into my shoulder. Shoulder into the buttstock. Sight picture. Sight picture, sight picture.

Focus on the action of snugging the gun into the shoulder as what subsitutes for "back tension" on the bow. Let that trip the sear.

Dry fire and more dry fire.

Back to the range, now.... safety glasses on. "I can't get anything in my face because I have my glasses on." Repeated that.

Then.... "If I worry and flinch, I KNOW I will miss. It can't be worse than that, so just do what you practiced."

Form. Form. Focus on all that practice you did and replicate that form.

Boom....hit!

Again. Boom...hit!

Again. Again. Again.

Some relapses occurred, but now I knew what a clean shot felt like.

And I did a lot of shooting. Shooting up amounts of powder that would suffice for many PA hunters' lifetimes, and in a single range session.

Now.... I'm far from an expert marksman, but 50 yards offhand, a deer isn't safe by any means. Squirrels aren't, either, although their chances are a bit better than the deer, lol. At 25 yards with my 36-cal schimmel, if I don't get sloppy when the sear breaks, the squirrel dies.

Long way to say.... Practice is important, but it has to be GOOD practice. Be critical and be honest with yourself, and address what's not right. Don't sugar coat anything to yourself. You know what's wrong. Admit it, then attack it. And then you'll fix it.