Struggling to see the target!!!!

Discussion in 'Shooting, Hunting and Fishing' started by Nutter, Apr 30, 2009.

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  1. Hi all.

    As the title suggests im having problems when im shooting being able to focus on the foresight of the rifle and the target, can anyone provide any advice??

    When I look at the target and try and aim the foresight of the rifle becomes incredibly blurry, when i try and focus on the foresight blade I cant see the target it just blurs so I cant effectively aim the rifle. I wear glasses, I have checked and the prescription is correct.

    At the moment im just taking my short range quals with the ACF, I understand that in order to be able to effectively function on a range and to instruct at SAA I must be a good shoot myself. When I was in the TA I could shoot a 60 mm grouping at 100m with an iron sight but not im struggling to get that grouping at 25m as I cant focus correctly.

    Thanks for advice in advance.
  2. What rifle are you shooting?

    If its an SA80 with iron sights, then you have a problem shared by many "more senior" riflemen: the sight radius of the SA80 is so short that the foresight can fall into a zone that can be difficult to focus for some people who are developing far-sightedness. There is no solution, as far as I am aware, other than to practice enough to be able to shoot accurately without a clear sight picture.
  3. I think the usual advice is to focus on the foresight at the moment of firing, but I think there is more to it than that. I think I switch fairly rapidly between target and foresight initially and then do the above.

    However, rest assured that there is no one who can focus on the target and the foresight at the same time!
  4. Fitting a scope would be the obvious if not entirely simple solution given your circumstances.

    Of course it's not actually possible to have the foresight AND the target in focus at the same time. When we are/were young, the eye can rapidly refocus from short to long distance so this is less of a problem. With age (even from 25) the ability to do this at speed reduces so it becomes more difficult to do.

    Try getting into a stable position, take a rough sighting on the target and then draw your focus back onto the foresight. Adjust the aim against the mass of the out of focus target. refocus on the target then draw back onto the foresight, final adjustment, focus on FORESIGHT FORESIGHT FORESIGHT SQUEEZE SQUEEZE SQUEEZE as you release the shot.

    Cuts will tell you PRESS instead of SQUEEZE. I find it difficult to argue with him if the truth's known!
  5. Don't know about SA80 but if it was anything like the FN (similar to SLR):

    Focus on the target and be aware of the foresight & rearsight. It is very difficult to explain or teach and when you get it right you see the results.
  6. This is going to sound daft - and range staff probably won't allow it - but it may be worth experimenting with.

    A few years ago, a company came up with a pair of "glasses" that had no lenses and were suitable for all prescriptions. Simply, it was a pair of specs where the lenses had been replaced with black plastic dotted with numerous small holes.

    The small holes restricted the amount of light (i.e. sight picture) that passed through and had the effect of a pan focus lens (i.e. everything is in focus, regardless of distance).

    You can try this using a piece of card with a 2mm diameter hole. Remove glasses and look through the hole. If it doesn't work, try a different hole size. (Obviously, the effect will be more noticeable for people with dodgy eyes than those with 20/20 vision).

    To implement this on a rifle, the job would be to mount a piece of black card on the rear sight, blocking all the light except that which passes through a 2mm diameter hole located at the centre of the rear sight aperture.
  7. Its the cadet version of it. the foresight just blurs when i try and focus at it to the point where it blurs and im just guesstimating where im aiming. I can however focus perfectly without glasses, big problem is that everything else is completely a blur as im short sighted.

    Thanks puttees i will look into that.

    When I said focus i may not have elloborated enough. when I look at the foresight I cant see the foresight, when I look at the foresight in order to aim I cant even see the target. As the foresight just blurs.
  8. Have you tried with both eyes open?
  9. They are called pinhole glasses and they do sharpen up your focus. They work on the same principle as a pinhole camera.

    Older target shooters often use a stick on dipoter, which does the same thing by attaching a single pinhole onto your glasses with a suction cup. Google 'Lyman's Hawkeye Shooters Diopter' to see what I mean. However I rather suspect that you will come in for some serious ribbing if you were to turn up with one of those.

    However - all is not lost! You can achieve exactly the same thing with a 5mm square of black nasty with a central pinhole stuck in the right place on your lens. It's worth experimenting to get the hole the right size - you might consider getting a cheapo leather punch set to get the holes nice and even.
  10. For target shooting, you should be focussed on the foresight and not the target. The problem for some is that when you allow your eyes to wander around the range, they focus out to 25m, and it can be awkward to get back to the foresight (made even more difficult if the firing point and range are in darkness, and the target wall brightly illuminated).

    A trick that you might find useful is to focus first on something bigger than the foresight blade, but at the correct distance. Try focussing on that damn' great foresight post (much easier), and then work your way upwards to the blade.

    Assuming that you had your eyes rechecked recently (and that you don't suffer from astigmatism), you could try a pair of those cheapo "reading glasses" with a slightly lower-power correction. Having said that, I use my normal prescription in my shooting glasses, and it works well for me (although I have got an extension tube on the rifle that extends the sight base a bit beyond what you'll find on an L98).

    Alternatively, next time you're at the optician, describe the problem and ask them to solve it - most opticians I've come across have got all excited at the break from yet another "little Johnny who doesn't like frames", or "old Mrs. Miggins who just wants to see the telly, dear". That's been my approach for fifteen years, and I've never had a problem.

    Opticians who understand shooting sport, and prescribe well for it, is a common query among target shooters. And no, Stewards of Bisley are not high on my list (assuming they ever open that shop in the pavilion)...
  11. I may be in a parallel dimension but I did once see that shop , it was a long time ago though.

    I will try your idea and all the others tommorow as im on the range all weekend.

    Thanks all.
  12. I had free-rein to experiment lots with the L98 a while back, and my conclusions were the following:

    It is just not possible at any distance to focus on the foresight and still see the tin-hat target AT ALL (Fig. 11 etc is a different matter), even with youthful eyes. So, we have to compromise.

    We got best results by doing the following:

    Foresight : lots of sight black. Rather than centering in the RS, touch the protectors to the top of the apeture.
    RS: use the sight flipped up, and block the little crescent of light above the rotating disc with blu-tak. Blacken the blu-tak. Don't bother changing the setting for different ranges, it's only 1 click or so anyway. Position the carrying handle as far forward as you can get it. This reduces the measured sight-radius, but the actual sight radius is the same, and you have the advantage of having the appearance of a slightly smaller apeture, which helps with focus.
    Receiver: shim the TMH onto the upper at the front locating bit with some ammo box card so that the TMH does not wobble.
    Focus: focus just ahead of the FS. Conciously change your focus to achieve the best compromise in clarity between target and FS. Some found that constantly changing the focus helped a lot.
    Stance: mag on the ground, arms spread, left hand as far forward as possible.
    Trigger control: UTMOST importance!
  13. Just thought id post the result, after a bit of experimenting with a few of your suggestions. I managed to shoot a 30mm grouping at 25 m with the L98 (not good i know, but not bad), with both eyes open and with a bit of different position. My before grouping was 110mm.

    Thanks all, much appreciated will continue to try and improve when i next get the opportunity which as an ACF adult isnt very often.
  14. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    To be honest with a short sight base it isnt easy but you should first line up the rifle, focussing first on the target through the rear aperture, then line up the foresight blade on the poa. The target should lose definition whilst fine adjusting your sight picture and become a blur (the amount of blur depends on the size and colour) but when I shot TR I would find that although constant switching of focus could cause eye watering it helped up until the breathing kicked in to its firing sequence and then the target was a blur and the amount of light around the target through the aperture seemed to be the most important thing. I never could beat 98 though, I was probably held back as much by kit as incompetence!