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Learned a lesson in handicap this weekend

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by tallengnr, Mar 5, 2007.

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  1. tallengnr

    tallengnr TS Member

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    I've been competing since September and I learned a lesson this weekend and got spanked learning it. I had previously bought ten flats of my regular Estate 7.5's, 1-1/8oz, 3d loads and apparently mistakenly grabbed two flats of 7.5, 1-1/8oz, "HDCP" loads. As I was unpacking the flats at home, I saw that these "HDCP" shells were 50 ft/sec faster than my regular loads.

    Since I had recently been bumped to 24 yards I thought these might just be the ticket for my new yardage. So, without practicing with the "HDCP" loads, I went to a shoot this weekend, taking them with me. I shot an 85 in my first handicap and thought I was having an off day. Next day I shot an 80. I felt like I couldn't hit the traphouse if I tried.

    I was disappointed, then a friend told me it was probably the "HDCP' shells. So to test the theory, immediately after the competition, I went and practiced at +1 yardage with my regular 50ft/sec slower loads...shot a 24,24,24 and 22 (my arms were getting tired from shooting by myself)...shot a 94 within an hour after shooting an 80!!

    Lesson learned, shoot with what you know...or as my friend put it, "stick with the chick who brought you to the dance" :)
     
  2. Neil Winston

    Neil Winston Well-Known Member

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    . . . and the next thing you will learn, TG, is that jumping to conclusions about trapshooting - particularly ascribing a particular difference in score to a particular difference in shells - is one of the most dangerous traps we all fall into. It's hardly possible the speed made the difference in the scores.

    According to Ed Lowry's Shotgun Ballistics for Windows, the time difference to a 40-yard target between the two shells is only 0.004 seconds. Even on a hard right from post five, the difference in bird position is only about one-and-third inches.

    Still, if you can trade off the Handicaps you might as well. Why take the recoil abuse when you don't have to?

    Neil
     
  3. shannon391

    shannon391 Active Member

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    The mind is a powerfull tool.
     
  4. zzt

    zzt Well-Known Member

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    One of the things you might try is shooting each load for POI while standing 13 to 15 yards from the target, or up to 20 yards. I found that different velocities made a big difference in POIs; quite enough to account for your results. If you find a significant difference, try examining your shooting form. My stance and form were "adjusted" at a clinic last fall and now there is virtually no difference, except for recoil.

    The mental aspect of this game is important, so dance with who brung ya is good advice. You always shoot better when you have confidence in your load (and equipment).
     
  5. tallengnr

    tallengnr TS Member

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    Neil - Since I am 6'9" and 330+ pounds, most of my friends have called me a recoil sponge :) So the handicap loads were not bothering me.

    The engineer in me already went through all the speed calculations before and after the shoot and concluded the 50ft/sec difference would be insignificant, and I tend to steer away from anything that does not give me hard evidence. But, something dropped my average by 10-20 clays...and the only thing I changed was the shells. As a side note, I used my regular shells for singles during the competition...and shot a 96 to win and a 95 the second day. For my own curiosity, I will practice again using the handicap shells (or maybe do a blind test :) ) and see what happens.
     
  6. AAtrap

    AAtrap Well-Known Member

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    Tallengnr, Were these the Max. dram loads?(says on the top of the box--MAX DRAM EQ.)SS12XH.--STEVE
     
  7. FarmerD

    FarmerD TS Member

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    If your really 6' 9" and 350 lbs (I figured the plus was probable 20 lbs) you don't need a gun, just throw rocks at them. FD
     
  8. Hap MecTweaks

    Hap MecTweaks Well-Known Member

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    Tallengineer, do the same experiment with the 1300 FPS sporting clays loads? That will give new meaning to what acceptable recoil levels we're comfortable with also. Recoil is accumulative regardless of how we perceive it at the time. Your normal loads was acceptable and the more recoil from the 1250s weren't! Lesser recoil allows more correct POAs than those harder recoiling loads, irregardless of your size and weight. Hap
     
  9. Setterman

    Setterman Well-Known Member

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    Options:
    Recoil....pick up head
    Choke.....Some 1250 loads don't pattern good w/o a full choke. Some don't pattern good ... period
    Bad Day....we all have'em.
    Mental doubt....Grows w/ every miss

    not being critical...these are my typical problems. Experiment and have fun!
     
  10. perazzitms

    perazzitms TS Member

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    More likely, your gun doesn't like the higher handicap pressures generated by the hotter handicap Estates with the small unflexable overpowder disc found in the Estates and Federal Top guns.

    Most guns favor one 'type' of load over others. To say Handicap shells don't work is to say Harlan, Kay, Ray, et'al who shoot the Nitros from 27 don't know what they're doing.

    The other thing is, assuming that because the shot leaves the bbl at 1250 fps that it's still moving at 1250 fps at 40 yards (hence the .004 second difference) is outright false. If shot retained that sort of energy, crown me ruler of the world because I just discovered perpetual energy. It would NEVER FALL TO THE GROUND. Air resistance (known as induced drag) starts to slow the shot the second the powder stops burning.

    Now, if you assume (always a bad thing) that all shot slows at the same rate, and that the extra 50 fps does translate to only a .004 second difference, you don't consider the total drag of the mass (sort of like drafting in racing). Now you have soft shot (in the promo loads), with more deformed pellets, you reduse the core mass, and the shot as a whole slows quicker......yada yada yada.

    In the end, you have the right idea - shoot what got you there - but don't think that 'handicap' shells have no use in shooting....you might eventually obtain a gun that likes them.....
     
  11. BDodd

    BDodd TS Member

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    I'm also going to support Neil's point, tallengnr, you say you changed nothing but the shells to achieve the far better score than before but in fact you changed a lot. You wern't on a 5 man squad, you were shooting at a much faster pace, you were focused entirely on how your usual shell performed, you were shooting with shells you had confidence in, yada yada. I've had just the opposite results than you when first trying Nitro 27 - 1 oz loads over my personal favorite. I would say that by all means you should stick with what you have confidence in but I can't find a way to attribute your change in scores entirely to the shell's speed.....breakemall....Bob Dodd
     
  12. Big Az Al

    Big Az Al Well-Known Member

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    FROM zzt,

    "The mental aspect of this game is important, so dance with who brung ya is good advice. You always shoot better when you have confidence in your load (and equipment)."

    A really good shooter has been telling me for a couple of years "TRUST THE GUN"
    That is when I can stop looking to see where the gun is and totally focus on the target, I will be a really good shot also!

    I took a laundry list of things that I neeeded to, undo, that had gotten into my shooting lately to a small shoot yesterday, and while I won't say that I cured All the little mistakes, if I could have back the 40 to 45 birds that I lost solely because I had to look for the barrel it would have been A wildly wicked day for me!

    The shots that are burned into my vissual memory that I see in great detail at just the slightest thought of yesterday, can only be descirbed as my eye bouncing back and fourth between the bird and the barrel everybit as fast a superball that gets into a space of a foot or less at full speed!

    That and the first great self taught truth that I ever learned in this game,


    If I use the word "EASY", in any way shape or form, to descripe what might happen in the near future, take birds off my average, because I am going down!

    Al
     
  13. W.P.T.

    W.P.T. TS Member

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    Before I would put the blame totally on the shells, I would mix them with the shells you shoot on a regular basis and not look at the hull until after you have shot it ... I did this little test with 7 1/2's and 8's (Nitro 27's) only to find that I can miss with either one of them from 27 yards as well as smoke targets with either also ... I did the same test with 1 Oz shells mixed with 1 1/8th Oz (Nitro 27's) and found the same thing ... I figure it must be the damn gun because it sure as hell can't be me, or maybe it can be but I'm done testing ... WPT ... (YAC) ...
     
  14. shannon391

    shannon391 Active Member

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    You will have days that you shoot an 80 on the first 100 and a 97 on the second despite the shells. That's what seperates us from the top shooters.

    You could give any of the top shooters a "mixed box" of shells and it would not effect their scores much. I've watched them shoot all kinds of different loads and brands when they run out during shoot-offs. However if you really have trust in a load shoot it. Untill one masters the mental aspect of the game minor items can steal your focus and distract you from the work at hand.
     
  15. dverna

    dverna Active Member

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    Yesterday I saw a decent shooter miss 8 birds in a row. This same person has run 125+ as their personal best.

    Sometimes the trap gods want to yank our chain.

    Test the loads on the pattern board (10 sheets of paper - 5 shots each shell). If the POI is way different, or you see more "holes" in the HCP loads MAYBE you have an answer.

    Sacrificing a goat may help too!

    Don (who shot a 25 and 17 back to back yesterday)
     
  16. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    Never get hooked on a shell and never get hooked on a starting post. It will screw your mind when you don't have them.

    Lucky socks are a different matter.
     
  17. Jerry944t

    Jerry944t Well-Known Member

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    The difference in the scores was the space between your ears. It doesn't take much to throw you off your game. Just the suggestion that something is different will tilt the equilibrium. It's the nature of the sport.

    Smash Em,


    Jerry
     
  18. tallengnr

    tallengnr TS Member

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    AATrap - you asked if the handicap loads were product code:SS12XH, yes they are.

    I don't discount what Neil said at all, and if my message indicated that, I'm sorry. I was just stating that I had reviewed the speed calculations myself as well and agreed with him that I felt it did not think it mattered in the grand scheme of things. What I "saw" when I was shooting was that I could hit the straight-aways just like normal so I think POI was ok, but the mild-angled shots were giving me heartburn. I knew I was "leading/on" most of those missed angled clays too when I pulled the trigger...it just did not make sense to me at the time why I was missing with regular consistency.

    Maybe the real lesson was to take an unfamiliar shell to a competition, and not have patterned or practiced with it at all. Meanwhile, I'm going to go find my old dance partner :)
     
  19. Johnny

    Johnny Well-Known Member

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    zarathrusta, Interesting comment about recoil and size. I've watched Nora Ross shoot, kicking AA Handicaps over her shoulder, didn't seem to bother her. She's just a little bitty thing. I wonder how many of those she shoots a year.
     
  20. Hap MecTweaks

    Hap MecTweaks Well-Known Member

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    Nora has shot enough of those to know the results. Hap
     
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