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Backyard Shooting

This is a discussion on Backyard Shooting within the General SA-XD/XD(M) Talk forums, part of the XD Talk category; Hello All, I'm pretty green to handguns (had a shotgun for 20 years, and have rifles before) and recently picked up an XD9 Service. I've ...


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Old 04-13-2011, 01:01 AM   #1
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Backyard Shooting

Hello All,

I'm pretty green to handguns (had a shotgun for 20 years, and have rifles before) and recently picked up an XD9 Service. I've only put 100 rounds through it, all just in my back yard. I must say all the recommendations on here about grip,stance, and dry firing practice really helped between the first 25 rounds I shot just after I got the gun, and the ones I shot today. I still need a lot of practice to get better groups, but they are much better then they were, and I feel much more comfortable shooting the gun.

The real questions I have for those that are just shooting "out back" like me. I'm finding it's a whole lot easier to keep track of shotgun shells when shooting clays then, spent casings from semi auto's. Do you have any recommendations for keeping the site clean and safe? When I just got the gun about a month ago, there was still snow on the ground, and with the help of a well placed box, I was able to keep track of most of the spent cartridges (only couldn't find 1 of 50). Today since the snow is gone I'm using a blue tarp as well, as the brass blends way too well into the grass, and was able to keep track of all the cartridges. Anybody have anything else they use?

Also the target I've been using is just a 12"x9" box tipped up on end with newspaper used to cover the old holes (will probably need a new box next time) sitting on the ground with an old 10# weight in the bottom. I like this because I'm always shooting into the ground, but I'm a bit worried that I may develop some bad shooting techniques since I'm always pointing down. Any opinions? I wounder if this is part of the reason I'm tending to shoot low even though I'm only 10-15 yards away.

Thanks much for everyone's insight,

John
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Old 04-13-2011, 01:21 AM   #2
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I would rethink using a weight if its steel... ricochets are not fun...
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Old 04-13-2011, 04:37 AM   #3
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Beginners shooting low typically is a case of anticipating the shot (and thus, the recoil) and flinching, pushing the barrel forward (and thus down) to compensate.

Pretty much everyone does this and has to train themselves not to do some dry firing and get familiar with when the trigger breaks, so you can train every other fundamental without reacting to recoil.
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Old 04-13-2011, 06:45 AM   #4
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I use a blue tarp as well. It makes it easy to pick up my brass for reloading.
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Old 04-13-2011, 07:08 AM   #5
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I've seen folks that reload bring a contraption that looks like a big butterfly net on a pole to catch the shells as they eject. That was at a range. I assume they reload. You could probably set some lips on your tarp so stuff wouldn't bounce off of the edges.
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Old 04-13-2011, 07:46 AM   #6
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It sounds like you might not have a REALLY safe backstop for your shots. A bullet has a much longer "injury" range than you might think, even a ricochet. Believe it or not, bullets can ricochet off dirt. I'd work on safety first. The blue tarp idea is good. Use 2 x 4s to weight the edges and catch roll-offs.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:10 AM   #7
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I use an old umbrella. Open the umbrella, turn it upside down, and rest it on top of a box, bucket, or whatever keeps if from tipping over. Place the umbrella where your brass is likely to land. Works great, lasts a long time, cheap. The trifecta of solutions.
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Old 04-13-2011, 07:44 PM   #8
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+1 on the blue tarp, works great but the only thing you need to remember is to bring something with you when you shoot to hold the tarp down or stake it down. First time I used one a big wind gust sent about 300+ empty casings flying through the air. I was not a happy camper
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Old 04-13-2011, 08:29 PM   #9
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Thanks for the suggestions and take on things. I'll raise the target and find a place/ way to not shoot it into the weight or ground, but still have a backing, just not so close. I think I'll make a little wood frame to hold unfolded 12pack boxes. I might have to go into the woods a bit so I'm on at least a bit of an inline.

By the way, I was weighing down the tarp, but I like the idea of the 2x4 forming a lip. I'm not reloading, but I do like to keep the area clean.

Thanks again,

John
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Old 04-13-2011, 08:37 PM   #10
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To catch brass:

Old plastic pickup truck bed liner, kid's wading pool, or sandbox.
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