DMHS Round 3 – Furnace Mill

New gun, new pellets, new positive mental attitude. But would it be enough for Round 3 at Furnace mill….

Yesterday I posted my quote of the week (see here) and it turned out to be more relevant than I thought it would be! I made two big mistakes today. I made the first mistake at about 7.30 this morning as I was leaving the house. I have a drawer in the kitchen where I keep some shooting bits, like my gloves for HFT. And that’s where they stayed all day. 
Springer shooters will feel my pain here. These guns do weird things if you change even the smallest detail. So not a promising start. 

The second mistake was not zeroing my gun properly. At the practice range I couldn’t get any kind of grouping. One shot would be a mil-dot high, the next would be the correct height and a mil-dot to the left. After half an hour of chasing lead round the paper I had to give up because the safety brief was starting. The last 2 shots I took at the 15 yard target. They seemed about OK so it would have to do. I’m not sure what the lesson here is. Sometimes shooting straight is just hard. For any beginners reading this don’t be discouraged if you have the same problem. It happens to everyone.

This was also the first time we had shot at Furnace Mill so I should say a bit about the club. Firstly it seems like a great venue although I didn’t get much time to appreciate it. A fancy club house with excellent facilities (for both fishing and shooting) and enough space to have multiple courses laid out. I’ve been told there is always at least one full course out. The practice range is also plenty big enough, with the choice of bench resting or HFT pegs to check zero from. I don’t know what targets are normally out, but for this shoot there were loads of paper targets to use at all the usual ranges. Really well set up and I think the other shooters would agree with me.

Anyway back to the shooting! From the club house we went down to the ‘lower course’ where the course had been set out. We started on lane 26 and apart from the usual first target nerves I thought it would be alright. A fairly simple 20 yarder. Just aim bang slap in the middle of the kill zone and squeeze off the shot. Except it didn’t fall over and there was now a nice black mark at 12 o’clock above the kill. Right, not to worry. Probably just my heart beat and breathing getting away from me….

The second target was 40 yards (or so I thought) and it went over no problems. Then the third and fourth targets I hit half a dot high. That’s 3 of the first 4 targets that hit almost exactly half a mil-dot high. Time to make a tricky decision. Find a marshal and see if I could drop a lane and make a scope adjustment, or carry on and just remember that all my aim points were now different. Not wanting to lose anymore points, I opted to just carry on and make adjustments as I went.

This worked a treat for lane 30, but not so much for lane 1 where I completely forgot to change my aim point. This was the unsupported kneeler. A squirrel with a decent size target at 30-ish yards. Nice and steady, and another miss high. Bugger. Luckily that was the last time I would forget, and apart from a ridiculous doughnut on lane 5 the rest of the course picked up. I mainly dropped points on the further ranges which got me thinking, how well was I actually ranging them?

After the shoot I had a quick chat with Ed from Furnace Mill and he said we could go round and laser range find any targets I wanted (they will be changed before they are shot again). Great. So we did them all! These might not be perfect, but they should be within a yard. Click the picture for the full size version.

Then I compared the actual ranges to the aim points I had used. The next graph shows the difference (i.e how wrong I was).

This was quite interesting. The targets I ranged the worst were 15, 18 and 22. These were 45 yards, 26 yards and 31 yards respectively. I was hoping that would show something useful like, ‘I find range finding over 35 yards more difficult’. But 26 to 45 is quite a large range…
If possible I’ll do this again at the next rounds. So if you make a note of what aim points you used, you can see how close you were.

In the end I finished with 47 (82%). Not bad! Including the free stander, my personal shot of the day. Not quite the 85% I was aiming for but not far off. Good enough for 4th place in the Recoiling/.22 class and only 1 point off 3rd place. If my scope had been setup properly, maybe I could have scraped a couple more points. But hats off to those who were better prepared. Some great shooting today and congratulations to everyone in the podium positions.

Final scores below (thanks Kathy Thompson for putting them together so quickly).

All scores on countback
1st Darren Crofts 57
2nd Simon Howarth 56
3rd Tony Male 56
Jason Bressington 56
Chris Pantling 54
Mark Thompson 54
Ian Millward 53
Andy Hope 53
Andy Dickson 53
Kathy Thompson 53
Theresa Reed 53
Dave Hunter 52
Wayne Marriott 52
Mick Dakin 52
Dariusz Moszczynski 52
Steve Lloyd 52
Rob Mobley 51
Ian Howarth 51
Ken Swift 51
Karl Guest 51
Joff Haigh 51
Jacob Pantling 51
Dave Freeman 51
Nick Parker 50
Kevin Scott 49
Ryan Ashman 49
Simon Minney 49
Andy Watkins 49
Peter Richmond 49
Nick Aldridge 49
Richard Rushton 48
Dave Wheeler 48
Phil Tombs 48
Sarah Pantling 48
Ed Brown 48
Jake Miller 47
Greg Hensman 47
Ian Stoddart 47
Mark Taylor 46
Nigel Smith 46
Mick Boswell 46
Des Finkenzeller 45
Laura McLennan 44
Gaz King 44
Chloe Watson 43
Rob Mansell 43
Dave Smith 42
Steve Thompson 42
Jon Pritchard 42
Jon Oakley 38
Josh Gregory 36

1st Ken Pothecary 56
2nd Graham Cole 48
3rd Ian Hunter 48
Tom Morgans 48
Rob Shepperson 46
Martin Shakeshaft 46
Steve Cartledge 36

1st Ethan Pantling 54
2nd Ewan Pantling 50
3rd Liam Carney 49
Myla Parsons 48
Megan Reed 45

1st Perry Broad 52
2nd Steve Whiting 49
3rd Kev Gaunt 48
Dan Gordon 47
Mick Fern 47
Richard Tinker 42
John Ferrier 42
Nick Stanhope 42 (score added up wrong)
Luke Wells 41
John Bartrum 40
Matt Taylor 37
Andrew Bell 36
Keith Daughtrey 34

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