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Stan,

Powell is referring to the distribution of the mass of the action in the area between the hands, not to moving weight to the extremities of the gun as a whole. He specifically mentions guns of equal weight having a different feel due the action types involved.

In my experience Powell's observations are manifested in guns such as the Darne and Dickson Round Action, which handle well and, like sidelocks, distribute the weight of their action over a longer axis than A&D boxlocks. The extensive lockwork in both types is located well behind the standing breech but forward of the stock gripping hand.

Last edited by Shotgunlover; 10/11/21 10:11 AM.
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Originally Posted by Shotgunjones
Exactly correct in all points Stan, and very well presented.


Well said.

I wish i had the opportunity to shoot more but I'm on the road all the time. And being on the road allows me the funds to buy guns and go on hunting trips. Kind of a catch 22

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Shotgunlover, I used the .410 as an extreme example when I said "moving it to the ends". But the principle doesn't change. When you begin to move it away from the balance point any at all it changes the handling, and begins to move the characteristic away from "liveliness" towards "sluggishness". He said exactly the opposite.

As I said before, this is physics, not some vague or ephemeral concept.


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It would be interesting to see comparative figures from Rocketman's POI meter for the Darne, Dickson, a well made sidelock, a stubby modern boxlock and the Baby Bretton. All with equal barrel and stock lengths if possible. I mention the Bretton since its major mass, the receiver, is compact and near the trigger hand like most boxlocks, while it has light aluminum barrels and a hollow stock.

I do not read Powell's comment as a denial of the physics at all. He is saying that the distribution of the gun's major mass, the action, between the hands affects its handling. He is always referring to the distribution of that particular mass, the action, not the weight of the whole gun. Powell is talking from the point of view of the craftsman who has to make good handling guns to make a living, which he did.

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The analogy of a figure skater is often used.

When a figure skater wants to spin fast, she pulls her arms in. To spin slow, the arms are extended.

If the frame of a shotgun could be made a point mass at the center of gravity, it would rotate about that point very easily.

Stretch it out like a Krieghoff or a Winchester 21, and it rather resists rotational movement.

Powell has it backwards as far as comparing action types.


"The price of good shotgunnery is constant practice" - Fred Kimble
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What Powell might be trying to express instead of 'feels more alive in your hands' could be 'feels more alive when mounted'.

There's a difference. If the weight is moved aft so the gun is muzzle light and butt heavy it will indeed be more 'lively', as in easier to move to the target.

This would be Don's 'mounted swing effort' as I understand it.


"The price of good shotgunnery is constant practice" - Fred Kimble
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I think I know a little about shotgun handling, but I won't beat my drum here. However, let me give you an example. The 3200 Remington has been described for decades as a heavy, ill balanced, eight and three quarter pound slug of a gun. However, in a game that requires the ultimate in gun handling, International Skeet, the 3200 was used to win the 1984 Olympic Gold Medal in International Skeet by an American shooter using this gun, straight out of the box. This shooter could shoot any gun on this planet, but he chose the 3200. There is a lot that can be done to change the balance of a "slug of a shotgun", but changing the position of the off hand on the forend is number one. Nothing else can be done unless you change the gun you are shooting. This winner of the Gold Medal probably didn't even think about changing shotguns. He went to the store and spent $400 on a standard 3200 skeet, just as I did when I became serious about International Skeet. Some guns feel better than others for various purposes, but there are many purposes, and bird hunting for quail and grouse is only one purpose. Dove or duck hunting from a blind is another purpose. However, as I have stated before, learning to shoot is the biggest factor in gun balance.

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Originally Posted by eightbore
...changing the position of the off hand on the forend is number one.

Correct, and a very salient point.


"The price of good shotgunnery is constant practice" - Fred Kimble
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Originally Posted by Shotgunjones
Originally Posted by eightbore
...changing the position of the off hand on the forend is number one.

Correct, and a very salient point.

+1, and can used by a skilled shooter to help compensate when switching guns often.


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no, no, no...you guys are all wrong...

what you really need is about a dozen different gons, wid different barrel lengths, lengths of pull, drops, weights and of course balance points...

an hit jes so happens, dats watt ah hav fur sale at de mo mint...

https://www.gunsinternational.com/edsgunshow-.cfm


May The Christmas Spirit Infect Us All...
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