Gary L. Simmons  rev 06/17/03  http://webwonks.org/Extra/NRA/Target.html
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I first learned how to shoot in the United States Marine Corps. I was hooked from then on. I was trained in a number of weapons, specifically the M1911A1 .45 caliber auto pistol, the M14 7.62 mm rifle, and the M16... hell what did that thing fire? Was it BB's at relativistic speeds? No matter, they were a hoot to shoot. There is nothing like unloading a magazine on full auto. We also got some brief training and familiarization firing of .50 Cal machine gun, the M60 machine gun, the M-something grenade launcher and a fricka frackin flame thrower. Hey was this cool or what? There were lots of other fascinating firearms in the service that were all around me, I wish I could have gotten the chance to shoot them all. There was this thing called a "grease gun" that really did look like a grease gun, 6 inch barrel, tube body and a wire frame sholder butt. It fired .45 cal acp pistol ammo full automatic. So slow that you could almost count the shots, but it was firing full auto. I would have liked to have a go with the combat shotguns that were common too. As it was, whenever there was a fam fire (familiarization firing) I would show up and burn some more ammo.

As I have touched upon on other pages, I am a target shooter. Although I have no stand against hunters, I just don't have the heart to plug an animal for sport. If I had to depend on hunting to put food on the table then I would certainly have a change of heart though. I think hunting is a valuable survival art that should not be lost. Fishing is the most barbaric blood sport anyway if you ask me. Hunters nail the fuzzy little bastard with a high power round, it's over in a minute, sometimes seconds. A fisherman takes glee in the long, hard and desperate struggle of a terrified animal trying to escape a painful jagged barbed hook in it's mouth. Science has proven that fish have plenty of nerve endings in it's mouth, at least as many as a human being. You just can't call fishing the "humane" blood sport that fishermen like to think of it as. "Hey we catch em and throw em back". Well, they are probably better off dead, they have a tremendously painful, massive trauma wound in their mouth and are likely to either starve to death or die from infection as they are to recover. That ain't no sterile lab dish you're tossing them back into. Anyway, we need fishermen too, I just thought I would hammer home a point that I once heard skewed to say just the opposite side of that argument.
  But I am not here to glorify firearm hunters or vilify hook fishermen. What I am trying to get at with all of this is, I really enjoy shooting as a sport so I have opted to take up target shooting. There are a number of shooting ranges in my area as well as places in the nearby mountains that are set up for firearms enthusiasts. When I am at the range I shoot official targets, while in the mountains I do other kinds of shooting. I practice "double tapping" a tricky technique where 2 rounds are fired in rapid succession. I also like to bring wacky things to shoot like one gallon plastic water jugs filled with tap water. The only good water jug is a dead water jug. Those suckers explode when hit with a supersonic projectile! Hehehehe wheeeeeeeee!!

People bring things to the mountains that they are really POed at like that damn TV or radio that has been giving them misery for so long. I have yet to do that but what I will typically take with me is materials that I want to test for their resistance to the rounds from the weapon I am firing. This usually consists of the construction materials identical to the ones found in my house. This way I know what parts of my house are "invisible" to a bullet and which parts are barriers or cover as the case may be. Yes, one of the functions of my firearm is to protect my family. This is one usage that I pray to the good Lord will never come to pass, but it is something I must be prepared for. It is getting to be a pretty nasty country. I don't want my family to be hurt by one of those nasties and we have always been unwilling victims.

I keep getting off the subject. Target shooting. I have a Ruger P89 9mm auto loader. This is a real beauty, I named her Betsy after Davy Crockett's flintlock. It is not the most expensive gun by far nor is it a match grade target shooting pistol but you get a lot of bang for your buck and it shoots good enough for me. It feels nice and solid in your hand and if you have a good site picture it lands a round right where you think it should. It has never once misfired on me.

So, enough of this and on to the graphical presentation part of this page. To start with I have a few targets I saved from the indoor shooting range. As I get them, I will post other graphics of interest here related to target shooting.

Target 1

25 yards, 6 shots. The size of this graphic is represented realistically although the graphic has been cut to show only the black portion of the target. The top of the target is actually the upper left corner, that is how it hung in a clip while I was shooting at it. I am standing up holding the gun using two hands unsupported. There is a 3 inch spread between the shots furthest from each other.

Target 2

25 yards, 6 shots. The size of this graphic is represented realistically although the graphic has been cut to show only the black portion of the target. The top of the target is actually the upper left corner, that is how it hung in a clip while I was shooting at it. I am standing up holding the gun using two hands unsupported. This has a 3.5 inch spread. One of those shots went wild. I hate it when a pretty girl walks by as I'm shooting at the indoor range: Bam! A picture frame goes flying off the wall, Bam! The guy next to me drops. Bam! A trophy in a display case spins like a top.

Target 3

25 yards, 6 shots. The size of this graphic is represented realistically although the graphic has been cut to show only the black portion of the target. The top of the target is actually the upper left corner, that is how it hung in a clip while I was shooting at it. I am standing up holding the gun using two hands unsupported. A 2 inch spread. As Duke Nukem would say, "Damn I'm good".
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