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How to Shoot a Revolver with Smooth Single and Double Action Pulls?

How to Shoot a Revolver
Written by Erik Himmel

Most people have doubts as to how to shoot from a revolver. It is strongly advised to not try loaded guns if you are a beginner. There are certain things to master before actually firing the gun. 2 sights (front and rear), standing position, and understanding recoil are some of those.

In this article, we will let you guys know everything about shooting a revolver. Read to the end and start practicing the same way. Within no time, you will start shooting without any problems.

Let’s Learn to Shoot a Revolver: Tips for Effective Shooting

Handgun Techniques

Why Is It Difficult to Shoot Accurately Using a Revolver? -Basics of Shooting

Just as said above, you need to care for a few important factors to master the art of shooting. Let’s divide the task of shooting revolver into mini tasks. These are the basic things to learn at primary level.

Basics of Shooting

  • Load your gun
  • Grip the revolver
  • Stand right
  • Aim

load your gun

Let us evaluate each factor in depth to know more about them.

1. Load Your Gun

This is where your efforts for how to fire a revolver start. The task of loading ammunition may differ from guns to guns with slight differences visible. Once you know how to load and unload your gun (let’s say revolver); you will get the idea of how to load/unload with other guns too.

Try to get used to handling the gun without loading the ammo at the starting level. This will help in reducing anxious feel while shooting the gun with ammo loaded.

2. Grip the Revolver

The way you hold the gun is important. It will help in controlling recoil. Every gun has recoil and so holding the revolver in right way is crucial. So, hold the gun with your dominant hand. You will pull the trigger with your index finger.

Use the non-dominant hand too for holding the gun for more support. Do not go hard on holding the revolver as it is not at all comfortable for the shooter. Some people say 60% of the dominant hand and 40% of the non-dominant hand should be used for better grip.

grip the revolver

But it is all about your comfort levels. Hold the gun with both hands and start shooting. Feel the recoil. Modify the grip (loose or tighten hold) accordingly to manage the recoil of the gun.

3. Stand Right

The backward movement of the gun after shooting the bullet is called recoil. Pretty much every gun has recoil. It is directly proportional to the power of the bullet. The more powerful ammo is, the more will be recoil.

Along with grip, proper standing will help in controlling recoil. In order to understand why this is important, you can try a small exercise.

Stand straight and shoot with a single hand or both hands. Due to recoil, you will feel going backward. The effect will be little as it’s a revolver but still, this will affect aiming. Now try doing this exercise.

common arm style in firing a gun

Put one leg back at an angle of 45 degrees to the other leg. Bend your legs a little for firm support. Hold the gun with both hands. Now shoot it and even though you feel recoil, bullets hit the target or near to it. This is the reason why standing right also plays a key role.

4. Aim

Front and rear sights are very helpful in hitting the target. Focus on the front sight but not on target. What I meant by focus is that your eyes will blur out remaining things that are out of focus. If you are not seeing the front sight and only focused on the target, bullets will not hit the target.

We have to deal with recoil and focus on the correct part of the gun. Remember the point that bullets will go down with time due to gravity. So, if you are hitting longer targets, you may want to place the aim of the gun a little above.

Coming to a revolver, place the gun in front of the target where you want to hit. Make sure your front sight of a gun is rightly aligned with the target point. Now focus only on the front sight and pull the trigger. Based on recoil, you can place the gun a little above or below for accurate shooting. More information on aiming a revolver is available on another article.

The Proper Way of Shooting a Revolver

Now we have come to the exciting and final part of shooting the revolver. While shooting the revolver, a few more problems have to be faced by the beginners. Some of them are as follows.

 how to shoot a revolver properly

  • Shaking of hands
  • Pulling the trigger either fast/late
  • Getting surprised with recoil

These are some of the problems which many people experience in reality. To help you overcome these issues, we will try to break down each problem with a working solution.

1. Control and Continue to Breathe

Shaking of hands while trying to aim the target or during pulling the trigger is because of anxiety. Anxiety is a state where you will worry about something that is about to happen in the future. It may or may not happen but in mind, they will think of worst and start feeling worried.

Coming to this case, thoughts like this will come in mind.

  • I may not hit the target
  • Am I holding the gun, right?
  • I need to learn fast but not getting it

The solution to all these thoughts is believing in yourself and to continue breathing. Without your control, you stop breathing and this further increase anxiety. Make sure to breathe during the whole process.

2. Squeeze the Trigger

One important rule is that we have to put the index finger on the trigger only when you are about to shoot the target. It is because the gun is loaded and is dangerous. If you are keeping the finger all the time on the trigger, there may be chances of accidental firing.

squeeze the trigger

Make sure to squeeze the trigger with the center of your index finger. With good grip, balancing stance, focus on front sight, you can pull the trigger.

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3. Learn How to Handle the Recoil

The only way to handle the recoil is to hold the gun in such a way that the body absorbs most of the recoil effect. I am pretty sure that if you handle the gun lightly, it will fall off your hands right after shooting due to recoil.

First thing would be to hold the gun with your two hands. Stand or sit at a comfortable stance and start shooting. Make sure to bend your arms a bit so that recoil will spread out to your body. Failing to do this will put more force on hands during recoil.

learn how to handle the recoil

Maintain the right posture and good grip while shooting the gun. In a few days of practice, you will learn to handle the recoil.

Understanding the Differences Between Single and Double

There are two types of revolvers namely single and double action revolvers. Working of both the types is the same but there exist notable differences in action between them.

In single action revolver, you will need to cock the hammer and then pull the trigger. Cocking the hammer must be done for every single bullet.

In double action revolver, you just need to pull the trigger. During that time, the gun itself cocks the hammer and shoots the bullet.

Let’s also discuss how not to shoot a revolver to avoid misfiring or any other potential issues. Do not put hands to the sides of the cylinder when firing the gun. You only have to hold the gun at the bottom grip and pull the trigger with the index finger when needed to. But avoid placing hands near the cylinder or else you will end up with first or second-degree burns to skin.

By following the methods above, you will be able to shoot the revolver with ease. We hope that the answer to the question you were looking for has been made clear by now. However, don’t forget to learn to handle the gun properly first, then move on to the actual shooting.

About the author

Erik Himmel

A Part-Time Firearm Instructor

Hi, this is Erik. We all know firearms are dangerous, but only when one doesn’t know how to use and care for them. I have 15+ years of experience with different types of guns and for the last 10 years, I have taught numerous people how to hold and shoot a gun while staying safe and keeping the surroundings unharmed. My neighbors are some of my biggest admirers who enjoy talking to me about their guns, firearms safety and maintenance.

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