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Ask the Instructor: Self Adjusting Your Comb

Question:

Short of having a gun fitter adjust my comb, how can I be sure that my adjustable comb is in the right place and adjusted properly?

Answer:

Most senior instructors would be more than glad to take a quick look at your shotgun and help you adjust your shotgun without charge. In case you live in a remote area or don’t have access to an instructor or gun fitter, here are a few tips for the “do-it-yourselfer.”

Find a mirror inside your home or in the clubhouse and stand in front of it, facing the mirror, with your unloaded shotgun. Stand just far enough away from the mirror so that the muzzle is about six inches away from the mirror when you are fully mounted to the shotgun (Careful! If you break the mirror, you will have 7 punchless years!). Use a white board marker (e.g., Expo) and place a small dot on the mirror in front of you at the same height as your eye when you are fully mounted. This is the dot you will be mounting to and using as your target. Mount your shotgun to the dot on the mirror three or four times and observe the position of your eye on the rib when your mount is complete. Your objective is to adjust the comb (up, down, left or right) until the eye naturally comes to rest on top of the rib, and centered on the rib, when the mount is complete. “On top of the rib”, means that you want the iris (the entire colored portion of the eye, not just the pupil) to be positioned immediately on top of the rib. The entire colored portion of the eye should be visible, however, you should not be able to see the lower lid of the eye or the white portion of the eye below the iris. Additionally, you should see the iris centered on the rib from left to right, aligned with the center of the rib or tramline if your gun has one. Keep mounting and adjusting the rib until you get it right.

That’s it! Verify your fit on a patterning board and on some close trap targets. If your adjustments look perfect in front of the mirror, but are a bit off on the patterning board or on trap targets, it could be that you are mounting differently on actual targets than you are at the mirror. If that’s the case, you might want to invest in a trip to a nearby gun fitter or senior instructor.

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