Pneumatic Stocks And Style


You have commented from time-to-time that the hydraulic and pneumatic type recoil reducers work better for premounted guns than for low gun. My experience seems to confirm that there is less felt recoil when shooting from the low gun position, but I don’t understand why this is so. Can you comment?



Dear Tom,

Sure. Nothing easier. Your gun mount is probably better than mine. All these “trick” stocks require a good, solid placement into the shoulder in order to work correctly. This is easy when shooting a pre-mounted gun because you have plenty of time to set it into the shoulder firmly.

When shooting a low gun, it all depends on whether or not the shooter gets the stock into his shoulder pocket firmly. I am used to shooting a gas gun which is quite simple to shoot when not perfectly mounted. There is so little recoil that you can take much of it up in the hands and not really notice it. Because the gas gun isn’t as demanding, I tend to get a little sloppy. Of course, this isn’t the best way to shoot, but it’s a fact of my somewhat haphazard shooting life.

When I switch to my O/Us for targets, I find that I have to hold the gun tighter and have to pay a bit more attention to proper placement of the gun into the shoulder due to the heavier recoil of an O/U. Since I don’t use the O/U as much as the gas gun, I’m not as perfect at this as I should be. When I use an O/U with a moving stock, I may not mount it perfectly. This doesn’t let the hydraulic or pneumatic mechanism do it’s job because it can’t push back against the shoulder as much as it should. This is strictly my fault, not a design fault of the stock.

If the trick stock isn’t placed firmly into the shoulder, it will move back smartly as the gun recoils and you will take more recoil. I don’t know if it is a great analogy, but look at it this way: Place your hand right on the surface of the water of a lake and push it down smartly. The hand just splooshes in. No pain. Now do a belly flopper off a diving board. Same lake, same water, mucho pain. The difference is that your body had the opportunity to build up a little speed before hitting the water. Same with a gun butt building up speed before hit hits your shoulder when it isn’t properly mounted. The hydraulic stock still works, but it can’t work fast enough to absorb the hit when it starts off the shoulder. When it starts firmly into the shoulder, it can.

Like many things in life, operator error overcomes brilliant design.

Best regards,

Bruce Buck
The Technoid writing for Shotgun Report, LLC
(Often in error. Never in doubt.)

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