Friday, December 14, 2012


How to Use the Sling, Part 4: Getting it Tense (but not two tents)

Now that the half twist is put into the sling let’s adjust the sling’s loop tension.  One of the things that will easily mark someone as a novice with a shooting sling is a lack of proper tension.  This renders the sling ineffective.  Why take the time to loop up if it’s not going to help?
If you get right down to it, every position will have an amount of sling tension that is appropriate for a specific shooter.  That’s why competition folk use slings that adjust.  They also have the luxury of shooting predictable courses of fire at known distances and a measure of time to setup their equipment.
If I really nitpick about it, I find that as my position gets higher (prone→sitting→squatting→kneeling) I require more sling tension.  It gets pretty easy and quick to adjust if you do it a lot and your sling adjusts easily.
Sling tension is kind of a preference thing and varies a lot from shooter to shooter.  Competition guys have a reputation for liking it very tight.  I don’t think this is as practical in the field as a sling that is “snug”.
I think a good amount of tension requires that the rifle’s butt be pushed forward in order to get it into the shoulder pocket.  I use the firing hand as I’m getting into position and push from the top of the butt.  As I push it all the way forward it doesn’t become so tight that it simply won’t go forward any more, but it’s tight enough to push back on my shoulder after it’s been placed there. 

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