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Old September 9th, 2009, 06:40 AM   #1
ddn3f
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Proper Sight Picture

My friend and I went to the range (Blue ridge arsenal) yesterday to shoot my new M&P 9 FS. We are both new to shooting and we were having lots of trouble getting the shots to hit close to center even at 5-7 yards. We figured out it was the way we were lining up our sights that was causing the problem.

If we lined up the 3 dots horizontally, the shot was pretty low.

If we lined up the top horizontal edge of the back sights with the top horizontal edge of the front sights, it went on target.

Can anyone point me to a place or show me what it looks like to have a proper sight picture on the M&P 9 FS. I would be nice to show me what I should see when looking down my sights.
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Old September 9th, 2009, 06:58 AM   #2
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Keep the front and rear horizontals lined up, equal gap on either side of the front post, and the center of the target centered on the front post's front edge.

Does this help?


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Old September 9th, 2009, 07:07 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddn3f View Post
We are both new to shooting and we were having lots of trouble getting the shots to hit close to center even at 5-7 yards. We figured out it was the way we were lining up our sights that was causing the problem.

If we lined up the 3 dots horizontally, the shot was pretty low.

If we lined up the top horizontal edge of the back sights with the top horizontal edge of the front sights, it went on target.
Sounds like you need to work on trigger control. If you jerk or yank the trigger your shot will be low. Sounds like you compensated by aiming higher.


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Old September 9th, 2009, 07:13 AM   #4
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thats a typical anticipation issue

same thing when I first got my pf-9 - I was anticipating a lot of kick and subconsciously pulling the gun down as I pulled the trigger.

a little practice in letting it supprise me fixed tha sighting issue.


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Old September 9th, 2009, 07:56 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddn3f View Post

If we lined up the 3 dots horizontally, the shot was pretty low.

If we lined up the top horizontal edge of the back sights with the top horizontal edge of the front sights, it went on target.
These should end up with the same final sight picture. The dots are the same distance down on the front and rear sights. If you line up the dots, you should line up the top edge.


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Old September 9th, 2009, 07:58 AM   #6
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On M&Ps and many other combat pistols you have to "run the dots", meaning you line the sights up, but the actual point of aim is at the center dot instead of "cutting the bullseye" as shown above, or a "6:00 hold" where the sights are lined up with the bullseye sitting on top. A shooter may even use 2 different sight pictures at different ranges, this was typically how target pistols were sighted, where a 6:00 hold is used within 25 yards, and a standard hold past 25 yards. Now with 3 dot and dot and dash combat sights the focus is usually on the front dot, if you cut the bullseye with a pistol that uses a combat hold at close range, you will hit low. With any hold though you want to align the sights vertically and horizontally. There are also exceptions to this, and it can depend on ammo used. Some pistols with 3 dot sights use a standard hold, or may use a combat hold with lighter bullets, and a standard hold with heavier bullets. Novak makes a really nice adjustable sight (Xtreme duty) that is adjustable for elevation only(windage requires pushing the sight in the dovetail), it usually requires a taller front sight, but makes adjusting for different loads, or different distances easy, I have one on my M&P pro, paired with a fiber optic front that is quick and easy to aim with a combat hold, simply put the bright green dot over the bullseye, and you will hit it, and simply adjust the elevation screw for different loads, or different distances.

target400.jpg


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Old September 9th, 2009, 11:35 AM   #7
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Thank you for the help and diagrams. I am going to try and use the combat hold on the M&P to see if it works. I guess I just need to shoot more.
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Old September 9th, 2009, 12:03 PM   #8
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Old September 9th, 2009, 01:03 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddn3f View Post
...We are both new to shooting and we were having lots of trouble getting the shots to hit close to center even at 5-7 yards. We figured out it was the way we were lining up our sights that was causing the problem.
Quote:
Originally Posted by herr.baer View Post
Sounds like you need to work on trigger control. If you jerk or yank the trigger your shot will be low. Sounds like you compensated by aiming higher.
^^ This. It's one thing to know how to line up a proper sight picture and something else entirely to shoot accurately. How tight were your shot groups? If you managed at 5-7 yards to put your shots within an inch or so of each other it might be a sight picture thing. Otherwise, it's very likely that it's related to shooting technique. Finger placement, trigger control, grip, etc.

If you are new to shooting, you need to put some rounds down range, first and foremost, simply to get used to the gun and to get yourself to where you are grouping well. Having said that, you also need to make sure you aren't developing a flinch. A flinch will be a larger detriment to your accuracy than anything else.


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Old September 9th, 2009, 01:41 PM   #10
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I have a problem with trigger control...my shots are always to the left and down.

I saw a website once (I believe) that showed where your shots were landing and what it probably meant...like, down and to the left probably being due to trigger pull if you're right-handed. Can't remember where that was...

I don't think anyone's recommended it yet, but one thing that's helped me is getting some snap caps and dry firing at home while looking at a blank, white surface (like a wall) to make sure my sights are lined up.

Good luck!
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Old September 9th, 2009, 01:47 PM   #11
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I don't think anyone's recommended it yet, but one thing that's helped me is getting some snap caps and dry firing at home while looking at a blank, white surface (like a wall) to make sure my sights are lined up.
I usually make sure to aim at something specific when doing dry firing exercises because that way I also know that I'm holding steady as well as maintaining a good sight picture.


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Old September 9th, 2009, 01:53 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinjin View Post
I have a problem with trigger control...my shots are always to the left and down.

I saw a website once (I believe) that showed where your shots were landing and what it probably meant...like, down and to the left probably being due to trigger pull if you're right-handed. Can't remember where that was...

I don't think anyone's recommended it yet, but one thing that's helped me is getting some snap caps and dry firing at home while looking at a blank, white surface (like a wall) to make sure my sights are lined up.

Good luck!
Here is one
Right handed
http://www.reloadbench.com/pdf/files...ightHanded.pdf

Lefty
http://www.reloadbench.com/pdf/files...LeftHanded.pdf
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Old September 9th, 2009, 04:53 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Jim Sr View Post
Jim
I have thought about getting this for my Ruger Blackhawk 357/9mm convertible.
Dose it actually help with the sight picture?

According to the Chart I am "Pushing" (Anticipating Recoil)
with my SR-9, Single Six, and blackhawk 357/9mm

Funny thing is with my 44mag @ 25ft i can usualy get 3 out of 6 in or tutching the red and it has more Recoil than the others.

Guess maybe I'm going to have to get some coaching on what I am doing right with the 44mag and wrong with the others


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Old September 9th, 2009, 05:12 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjdreams View Post
Jim
I have thought about getting this for my Ruger Blackhawk 357/9mm convertible.
Dose it actually help with the sight picture?

According to the Chart I am "Pushing" (Anticipating Recoil)
with my SR-9, Single Six, and blackhawk 357/9mm

Funny thing is with my 44mag @ 25ft i can usualy get 3 out of 6 in or tutching the red and it has more Recoil than the others.

Guess maybe I'm going to have to get some coaching on what I am doing right with the 44mag and wrong with the others
I have shot 2Ό in, 5 shot groups, @ 40 yds, with my Old Army. (Hunting load / 1036 fps)
I have also put venison in the freezer with that combination!


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Old September 9th, 2009, 05:22 PM   #15
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If it is a new gun read the manual that came with the gun. Every manufacturer has different ways of setting up sights. My XD says to use a 6 o'clock hold, my Ruger is different. The same manufacturer with a different model or caliber could be different. The XD 9 & 40 is a different frame then the 45 and may sight differently. Read the manual to see what type yours has.


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Old September 9th, 2009, 05:29 PM   #16
tjdreams
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I have shot 2Ό in, 5 shot groups, @ 40 yds, with my Old Army. (Hunting load / 1036 fps)
I have also put venison in the freezer with that combination!
Well I guess that answers that. I'm also going to try some of that Ghost Glow
on the front sight. any particular color u recommend?

Thanks


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Old September 9th, 2009, 06:09 PM   #17
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Well I guess that answers that. I'm also going to try some of that Ghost Glow
on the front sight. any particular color u recommend?

Thanks
I don’t put "Glow front sight" on muzzle loaders.
X


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Old September 10th, 2009, 12:25 PM   #18
ddn3f
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I went to the range again yesterday to practice my shooting. I used the combat hold or running of the dots and it went on target. I shot better this time around. But then again you can never tell since I can't hold the gun steady. Anyone know what it the manual says is the recommended way to set up sights for a M&P 9 full sized? Combat, standard of 6 O'clock?
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Old September 10th, 2009, 12:49 PM   #19
alucard0822
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Originally Posted by ddn3f View Post
I went to the range again yesterday to practice my shooting. I used the combat hold or running of the dots and it went on target. I shot better this time around. But then again you can never tell since I can't hold the gun steady. Anyone know what it the manual says is the recommended way to set up sights for a M&P 9 full sized? Combat, standard of 6 O'clock?
The manual says nothing about it, just a crapload of "DON'T DO THIS" instructions, however both my M&P compact and M&P pro were set up for a combat hold. The compact shoots anything from 115gr winchester value packs to 124+p and 147gr ammo to about the same point of aim, however the Pro shot 115gr wwb or UMC about 2-4" low(even with a combat sight hold), 124+p and 147gr hit dead square in the center, this is all sighting in at 20 yards on a rest, that takes most variables out of the equation. I guess the longer barrel and wider range of velocities affects the 5" pro more than the compact when it comes to point of aim. I replaced the sights with a Novak adjustable in the rear, and matching(taller) green fiber optic sight in the front, and now it will drill the bullseye all day long, as long as it is adjusted to compensate for ammo and distance.


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Old September 11th, 2009, 01:50 AM   #20
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By all means practice generally, and trigger pull specifically.
BUT ... I dislike 3 dot sights. "for me" they frequently havee different POI than real sight picture. But 3 dots can be easily cured. They can all bbe blacked out for an Old School sight picture. Or if desiring a higher vizability sight picture, I brightly color intire front sight. I know the majority opinion goes the other way, but my prefenennces are firm.
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