Getting Started – Safety Tips for the New Shooter
By: Smith n’ Jones
Are you just getting started in cowboy action shooting? If you are, here are some safety tips that are definitely important for a new shooter, as well as a friendly reminder for the experienced shooter:
· It is advisable to use the same caliber for both your rifle and your sixgun. This ensures that you don’t load the wrong caliber in your firearm. You may not think this could happen, but it has, even to experienced shooters, and usually with the rifle.
· Make sure the safety glasses you wear have sides so back splatter does not get into your eyes.
· Keep the barrels of your rifles and shotguns pointed up at all times, except at the loading and unloading table. If you do not have a gun cart and have your firearms cased, then take the cases to the loading table to remove them and recase the firearms at the unloading table.
· Refrain from talking at the loading table while you are loading. If you don’t concentrate on the job of loading, it is easy to load the incorrect number of rounds for the stage, or slip the cylinder on your sixgun so that the empty chamber is not under the firing pin.
· When shooting the sixgun, hold it tightly. This doesn’t mean that one should squeeze it so hard that it is shaking, but tight enough to have a solid hold on the grip. This tighter grip will improve your accuracy and will also give you more control.
· Move through each stage slowly, concentrating on where you put your feet and hands, and how the rifle and shotgun are picked up and restaged, as well as how you draw and holster your sixgun. Don’t worry about speed, for this will come as the process of shooting the stage becomes smoother and more comfortable.
· Always keep the thumb off the hammer when drawing your sixgun, regardless of what class you are shooting in. The hammer should not be pulled back until the firearm is pointed safely downrange.
Hope this helps all you shooters, both new and experienced. Lock up you guns in a gun safe when not in use. Here are a few to choose from: