Is there a simple way to control barrel jump without adding weight to a rifle?
I don't know what others do to shoot well, but I'm always learning.
What I learned about shooting military M-16s helped, but some things about shooting a bolt action hunting rifle are quite different.
Shooting with a scope, for instance, requires certain techniques, which probably come naturally to anyone who grew up hunting - like setting up with the correct eye relief, and sight picture.
But of all the things I've learned so far, it's the role of the nonshooting hand that's changed the most. All range shooting/practice has been done from a solid rest - sand bags on a bench.
What the nonshooting hand needs to be doing during firing:
1. 22" high at 100yds? At first, what I learned about the nonshooting (nontrigger) hand was that it should seat the rifle butt in the pocket of the shoulder and apply gentle pressure during firing. The result though, I found, was that with my 7.5#, .325WSM rifle in this position, there was significant barrel lift. I had an experienced friend shoot my rifle too, and the rifle shot a measured 22 inches high at 100yds
2. 0" at 200yds. What's working best right now with my nonshooting hand, is to place my hand over the top of the scope to brace the rifle (without downward force). Other factors, the scope, sight picture, breathing, trigger pull sequence seems to be quite consistent and so, a nonissue so far.
Some shot opportunities might not offer a solid rest though. This past weekend, while sitting in a brush thicket watching for deer in Prince William Sound, I had lines of potential fire in 2 directions. I was in good viewing position, with good cover, but realized that any deer up close (50-100yds), wasn't going to sit still through the noise of me moving my back pack (shooting rest) to shoot in the other direction.
Someone I know, recently made a 400+ yard shot on a sheep with the same 7.5#, .325WSM rifle. When I asked him how he sets up with the nonshooting hand on his rifle, he said he just gets a firm grip on the forearm. When I've tried this technique, I've found it tough. Jeff Cooper recommends a shooting sling and maybe a glove would help. It might take some practice, but would be simpler, if it works. We'll see. Anyone with other thoughts?