Do you load your bipod

Gil P.

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I've wondered if it's the best practice to load your bipod.

Would loading your bipod be less consistent than only pulling it into your shoulder? It's seems like it might be since we shoot off of many different surfaces, and can't loaded consistently between them.

When shooting prone, I have trouble controlling the butt of the rifle through recoil, and my reticle always ends up high and left (right handed shooter). I load hard into the bipod so pulling it into my collarbone doesn't feel like I'm doing much.

Sometimes my groups will end up high and left as well, or they open up in that direction.
 

Shootin Stuff

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Both of these questions have been asked a million times already.

You are not trying to break the legs off your bipod when you “load” it.

All you are doing is ensuring the slack has been taken out of the system in a forward direction so the rifle will recoil consistently from shot to shot.

As for your up and left tendency, fundamentals fundamentals fundamentals. Do you square up behind your rifle or lay on the ground all cock eyed?
 

Gil P.

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Both of these questions have been asked a million times already.

You are not trying to break the legs off your bipod when you “load” it.

All you are doing is ensuring the slack has been taken out of the system in a forward direction so the rifle will recoil consistently from shot to shot.

As for your up and left tendency, fundamentals fundamentals fundamentals. Do you square up behind your rifle or lay on the ground all cock eyed?
I get square, but notice my npa drifts high left, so I move my body to compensate but it keeps happening. Maybe too much cheek pressure. I'll have to post a video, and maybe start a new thread about it.

So for bipods that have very little slack like the CAL, hardly any loading is necessary.
 

Steel head

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I get square, but notice my npa drifts high left, so I move my body to compensate but it keeps happening. Maybe too much cheek pressure. I'll have to post a video, and maybe start a new thread about it.

So for bipods that have very little slack like the CAL, hardly any loading is necessary.
You can see on the pad that I’m not pushing it at all
More just pinching the rifle between me and the bipod
 
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Gil P.

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Group size, kinda
Group consistency and recoil management?
View attachment 7381195
That's good to hear. I can still get 1/2" groups, but it doesn't matter a whole lot if my recoil management sucks.

I'm going to practice this.

Another question for you all: do you grab the butt of your stock while shooting? I do not because I find it difficult to control elevation with the rear bag while holding onto the stock. I read Frank's article about it, and he knows a lot more than me so I'd like to practice it. Right now it makes me suck more.
 

littlepod

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If your reticle is moving more than just going straight back then you will have issues with group consistency.

I do very little load on the bipod. Just enough to take the slack out. The rear ward pull should feel like holding a 15 pound dumbbell.

I do a lot of dry firing and NPOA. If the reticle is jumping up it means the butt stock is escaping low. So either your bipod/ rifle is not level with the target ( too low ). Or your support hand isn't squeezing the bag and controlling the rear well enough.
 
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littlepod

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That's good to hear. I can still get 1/2" groups, but it doesn't matter a whole lot if my recoil management sucks.

I'm going to practice this.

Another question for you all: do you grab the butt of your stock while shooting? I do not because I find it difficult to control elevation with the rear bag while holding onto the stock. I read Frank's article about it, and he knows a lot more than me so I'd like to practice it. Right now it makes me suck more.
Get a better rear bag if necessary. The rear bag video is pretty good in the training section.
 
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Steel head

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That's good to hear. I can still get 1/2" groups, but it doesn't matter a whole lot if my recoil management sucks.

I'm going to practice this.

Another question for you all: do you grab the butt of your stock while shooting? I do not because I find it difficult to control elevation with the rear bag while holding onto the stock. I read Frank's article about it, and he knows a lot more than me so I'd like to practice it. Right now it makes me suck more.
I use the bag to create a NPA
I kinda pinch/pull the bag rider to lock the butt into my shoulder before firing as well almost ignoring the bag at that point
 

hlee

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I have a Harris and I load it enough to forward bias the rifle on the legs. If the feet slide, too much load. I don’t put anything in front of the feet to stop them from skidding- it’s not necessary.
 

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I have an Atlas and do like @Steel head . Slight forward load, slight pull back into the shoulder. I've heard people say to use as much force to pull back into your shoulder as the rifle weighs. I think that's too much. You're looking for consistency. To be consistent, I like to be as relaxed as possible for the shot. If I'm pulling back with 20 lbs of force, I'm not relaxed.
 
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jpcowboy

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I get square, but notice my npa drifts high left, so I move my body to compensate but it keeps happening. Maybe too much cheek pressure. I'll have to post a video, and maybe start a new thread about it.

So for bipods that have very little slack like the CAL, hardly any loading is necessary.
Less cheek pressure helped me.
 

Steel head

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I have an Atlas and do like @Steel head . Slight forward load, slight pull back into the shoulder. I've heard people say to use as much force to pull back into your shoulder as the rifle weighs. I think that's too much. You're looking for consistency. To be consistent, I like to be as relaxed as possible for the shot. If I'm pulling back with 20 lbs of force, I'm not relaxed.
Same here, I pull back with probably just a few pounds of force.
Just enough to lock the butt pad into shoulder.
 

Rocketmandb

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Same here, I pull back with probably just a few pounds of force.
Just enough to lock the butt pad into shoulder.
The other thing that hasn't been mentioned yet is shoulder tension. It takes A LOT of practice to pull back with your bicep and NOT use shoulder muscles, which then tenses them up, which then causes a whole host of other issues. If you are not good at isolating your bicep, then more pullback force = more shoulder tension.

Another example of less is more :)
 
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Zack_va248

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Same here, I pull back with probably just a few pounds of force.
Just enough to lock the butt pad into shoulder.
Just make sure your "rear pull" is actually to the rear. Many shooters I see often are pulling the rifle with slight tension to the right, then when the shot breaks and recoil causes the rifles muzzle to snap left. I pull the rifle back and almost palm it toward my nipple line so when the rifle recoils it's a straight back movement with the reticle jumping ever so slightly up. This is with a 6.5 creed too so it's not just a tiny 6gt or similar variant that's easy to cover up positional weaknesses. If you send me your number I'll send you a video showing what my recoil looks like from different positions.
 
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Steel head

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Just make sure your "rear pull" is actually to the rear. Many shooters I see often are pulling the rifle with slight tension to the right, then when the shot breaks and recoil causes the rifles muzzle to snap left. I pull the rifle back and almost palm it toward my nipple line so when the rifle recoils it's a straight back movement with the reticle jumping ever so slightly up. This is with a 6.5 creed too so it's not just a tiny 6gt or similar variant that's easy to cover up positional weaknesses. If you send me your number I'll send you a video showing what my recoil looks like from different positions.
 
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Gil P.

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I have an Atlas and do like @Steel head . Slight forward load, slight pull back into the shoulder. I've heard people say to use as much force to pull back into your shoulder as the rifle weighs. I think that's too much. You're looking for consistency. To be consistent, I like to be as relaxed as possible for the shot. If I'm pulling back with 20 lbs of force, I'm not relaxed.
I never understood this either. I've heard lowlight say to do it in the online training videos, but he never explains why. Why would I use 15 pounds of pressure to pull a 15 pound braked 6.5x47 into my shoulder, and then use 8 pounds to pull an 8 pound 7mm rem mag with a pencil barrel into my shoulder?
 

Dthomas3523

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I never understood this either. I've heard lowlight say to do it in the online training videos, but he never explains why. Why would I use 15 pounds of pressure to pull a 15 pound braked 6.5x47 into my shoulder, and then use 8 pounds to pull an 8 pound 7mm rem mag with a pencil barrel into my shoulder?
Its just a rule of thumb so people have an idea. People want something as an example, so that’s an example.

Also, if you pull more that the rifle weights, much easier to move the rifle around when you don’t want to.
 
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Gil P.

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Its just a rule of thumb so people have an idea. People want something as an example, so that’s an example.

Also, if you pull more that the rifle weights, much easier to move the rifle around when you don’t want to.
I get it, I'd just prefer for teachers to describe things better. I know you can't please everyone, but blanket statements have never helped me understand anything.

What you said makes a lot of sense. So the amount of pressure should be firm, but not so much that it disturbs the rifle.
 

Zack_va248

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I get it, I'd just prefer for teachers to describe things better. I know you can't please everyone, but blanket statements have never helped me understand anything.

What you said makes a lot of sense. So the amount of pressure should be firm, but not so much that it disturbs the rifle.
If you watch your reticle during recoil it’ll tell you when your muscling too much. It’ll also tell you if the pull isn’t straight into the pocket. Too little pressure and the rifle will bounce against you and cause an “erratic” inconsistent reticle movement. When it’s just right the reticle will jump up about a mil /mil and a half or so straight up then fall right back on target.
 
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If you watch your reticle during recoil it’ll tell you when your muscling too much. It’ll also tell you if the pull isn’t straight into the pocket. Too little pressure and the rifle will bounce against you and cause an “erratic” inconsistent reticle movement. When it’s just right the reticle will jump up about a mil /mil and a half or so straight up then fall right back on target.
Yep. It’s one of the “I see heartbeat” culprits.
 

Gil P.

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My recoil impulse is consistently up and left and then I have a hard time settling back perfectly where I was aiming before, like in fighting my rear bag.

Since I started holding the rear of the stock with my thumb and forefinger, the rifle doesn't move up and to the left as much as it did before.

I'll practice what you guys suggested and get back to you by Sunday. Thanks for all the help, I really do appreciate it.
 
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Zack_va248

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My recoil impulse is consistently up and left and then I have a hard time settling back perfectly where I was aiming before, like in fighting my rear bag.

Since I started holding the rear of the stock with my thumb and forefinger, the rifle doesn't move up and to the left as much as it did before.

I'll practice what you guys suggested and get back to you by Sunday. Thanks for all the help, I really do appreciate it.
Try getting the stock as high and medial as you can as well. The more centered on the clavicle it is, up and down, the less it’ll jump “down” into the bag through recoil. The best way I found to fix this position is actually to shoot without a rear bag. If the position is correct you’ll get the same recoil impulse. Yes your reticle wobble will be slightly more before sere break , but that’s not what your trying to fix. Using your position to fix the recoil pulse then enhancing your stability with the rear bag is what your after. Let me know how you like it and if it helps!🤘🏻
 
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Near miss

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I shoot mostly rimfire but I use same method with CF too.
I have noticed I keep my groups the smallest when I keep the rifle in tension between my shoulder, hand and the bipod.

If I let my hand down the rifle will not fall from my shoulder.

While shooting I have load on the bipod, and the firing hand pulls the rifle backwards to the shoulder.

At first this was quite hard setting up because after loading the bipod you start pulling the rifle back into the shoulder, which then dramatically reduces the bipod load, but it works very well!

In practice the load of the bipod is eased to a decent level by the hand pulling the rifle firmly into the shoulder and this way the free recoil travel is minimized, reducing felt recoil and POA change to the point of minimal movement.

I think this works the best because good accuracy requires more pressure at the shoulder than what a bipod can hold without being overloaded. This might have something to do with bipod's angular movement, friction hold or something else.
 

Tono

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Here are a few videos that have been mentioned in other threads...

Phillip Velayo - Rifle to Shoulder Connection on a Precision Rifle



The Science of Recoil - Part 1: Your Shoulder and Recoil



The Science of Recoil - Part 2: Getting Behind the Rifle



The Science of Recoil - Part 3: How Recoil Relates to Accuracy

 

Gil P.

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Try getting the stock as high and medial as you can as well. The more centered on the clavicle it is, up and down, the less it’ll jump “down” into the bag through recoil. The best way I found to fix this position is actually to shoot without a rear bag. If the position is correct you’ll get the same recoil impulse. Yes your reticle wobble will be slightly more before sere break , but that’s not what your trying to fix. Using your position to fix the recoil pulse then enhancing your stability with the rear bag is what your after. Let me know how you like it and if it helps!🤘🏻
I tried this. Without a rear bag the recoil moves the reticle up and then it comes back down on target. With a rear bag I'm still getting 1 mil high and 1 mil left of target at 100 yards.
 
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Dthomas3523

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I tried this. Without a rear bag the recoil moves the reticle up and then it comes back down on target. With a rear bag I'm still getting 1 mil high and 1 mil left of target at 100 yards.
This means you’re likely supporting the weight of rifle with rear bag.
 
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Steel head

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I'll try less pressure on the bag and see if it helps.
I try really hard to get the rifle on target without even squeezing the bag at all.
Reg fill PU bag is awesome at that.
Then the grip hand and bag hand are pretty free to just lock butt into shoulder wit rearward pressure.
 

Steel head

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Bag is just there for minor adjustments.
Lol
When I first started I’d squeeze the shit out of the bag To get it on target and it was as stable as dancing on stilts.

That and floating the butt pad equals each shot would have me aiming at the next county afterwards.
 

Steel head

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Yeah that's what I'm doing wrong now. I've got the ELR and 3D ELR PU bags.
I karate chop in a pocket on the bag and use it more like a wedge rather than squeezing it till it’s basically on target, then a tiny bit of squeezing at most is Needed and once it on target I lock the butt into the shoulder