Wednesday, 10 January 2018

I cant explain the bad shots

Firstly I must say sorry to those of you who don't like word play or those who do not natively speak English, but I just couldn't resist it in the title.

Recently we had been noticing that when I am shooting that I would have a string of good shots, a bad shot being considered an 8 on the air rifle target, but then I would just get a random 6 or 5 on its own and the good shots resuming afterwards. What was most concerning was that those random 6s or 5s actually sounded fairly reasonable. So it was time to do some experimenting to find out what was going on.

One thought was that may be the equipment was doing something strange, may be the EcoAims VIS500 was walking. So to test this I spent an evening at the shooting club sitting down with the rifle on a support rest and the computer connected to the EcoAims VIS500. I did live firing so we could compare where the VIS500 claimed the shot went and where the MegaLink target scored the shot. After around 80 shots, no fliers in the 6 ring and both the EcoAims software and the MegaLink were in fairly close agreement. So seems like its not the equipment, unfortunately that means I was doing something.

One concern I have had for some time with the IR LED based systems like the VIS500 and the VIASS is how the IR LED is offset from the target. The problem with this is that if the rifle is canted over by differing amounts then this might affect where the shot goes. To test if this could account for the random fliers I was getting, it was time to cant over the rifle on the support stand and fire a few shots and see what happens. The original plan was to try 10 shots canted one way then 10 with another cant, however it became very clear sooner this could be the problem. The only thing to notice is that if you mount the IR LED above the target, then the shot goes the other way to wat you might normally expect from canting the rifle. Remember normally because of the path of a pellet dropping over the 10m the barrel is pointing above what you are looking at through the sights, but with the VIS500 it is looking at the IR LED which will be above where the barrel is pointing.

Unfortunately this seems to be a design problem of the IR based systems, with a single LED they cannot see the cant and cannot account for it. Also the further the LED is from the center of the target, the larger the affect from canting the rifle will be, I just hope that WSPS have sufficient wisdom to not standardise the placement too far from the target center.

So looks like we now know what I need to train, detecting and reducing the variation in the cant of the rifle.

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