It’s a Dangerous Game – Fitting a Double Rifle

One of the most frequently overlooked types of gun fitting which I get involved with is dangerous game rifles. It is absolutely vital for obvious reasons that the rifle fits the shooter extremely well and shoots exactly to point of focus.

The fitting of these rifles is not so different from the fitting of shotguns with very similar issues. The main 3 of these being recoil management, ease of mounting and finally but probably most importantly shooting to the point of focus.

The first two of these points are very closely linked as should the gun be too short it is easy to mount but then you run a very real risk of heavy recoil, often resulting in the rifle driving the shooters thumb to hit himself in the nose as the recoil comes in! This can make the second shot almost impossible. That said should the gun be too long and you run the risk of the rifle not mounting smoothly to the shoulder. This can be a real issue as the extra time taken to mount can be life threatening! Recoil pads are often fitted to big rifles but care needs to be taken to ensure the rifle does not snag on the way to the shoulder, leather covering is often one solution.

Make sure that when you go for a fitting of a big rifle that you are wearing the clothes that you are intending to shoot the rifle in, keep in mind that it may be a hot climate and as a result too warm for normal UK shooting clothing.

The final issue is point of impact, I normally recommend that the rifle shoots ever so slightly high i.e if shooting a coke can (what I tend to get my clients to shoot at filled with water!) you aim just at its base. That way you can actually see what you are shooting once the rifle is in the shoulder!

The fitting of these guns is usually carried out with a highly trained and experienced gunsmith also present so adjustments can be made when necessary.

Many thanks to Garry Kelly for helping me with actual in field experience which is vital.

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