Stacking Beads


When I mount my gun I like to stack my beads in the figure 8, just had an adjustable comb put on my gun, the question is will I still be able to stack the beads as I raise the comb to get it to shoot higher or will I have to change my way of stacking the beads? thanks



With an adjustable comb, as you raise the comb you will begin to see more and more space between the center and front beads. Has to be. Got to be. That figure “8” is going to stretch as the beads move further apart. The more you raise the comb, the further apart the beads will be and the higher the gun will shoot. You will have to accept a different bead spread picture if you want the gun to shoot higher. It is just something that you will get used to.

I suppose you could always install a higher center bead if you insist on maintaining the same figure 8 sight picture, but there is really no reason for it. Just get used to the new figure 8 sight picture and look for that when you pre-mount your gun. What won’t change is the most important lateral alignment. No matter how high your cheek piece, you will still want the center bead to be centered underneath the front bead with no left or right variance. This way at least you know that your head is centered on the stock and the gun won’t shoot to one side.

Bruce Buck
Shotgun Report’s Technoid

This entry was posted in Shotgun related, Shotguns. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Stacking Beads

  1. Bob says:

    It is my belief that the stacked bead issue is there to excuse the ones that do and will get away. It is important to remember that the eye behind the rib is your rear sight, and the comb/ cheek contact is the rear sight mount. People swear that the beads must be stacked.
    Once upon a time, I purchased an over bored barrel for an 11-87 trap gun from Moe Bragg. It has a steep down pitch to top face ie. high shooting barrel. After breaking a seventeen on the first trap, I lowered the comb about 1/8”-3/16” (1992 or so). All that I could see was the receiver on the 11-87. A fellow who watched the adjustment said that I would not hit a bird w/o the magic beads. I ran seventy four of the next seventy five. What beads? On Monday after a phone call to Moe, and a discussion of desired point of impact, patterns “over the hump”, and down the rib(beads behind each other) the barrel went back to Shooter’s Emporium for another rib higher in front. Back to the pattern board for a comb adjustment, POOF!!
    The magic is in your brain, not the beads. The gun must fit your body size and condition. Picking up a gun and lining up beads before calling for a target puts your eyes and mind in the wrong place. People buy $12,000 shotguns that do not fit, and bitch at the puller.
    Do you cut the pretty upgraded wood, add some cast-off, trade for a reliable gun that fits,…..or keep on missing? Giving a man stocked shotgun to a woman is shameful. The last trap gun that my wife still has is an 11-87 skeet gun 28” w/ choke tubes and a Soft Touch butt stock made from measurements taken by Moe at the Grand.


  2. James Jones says:

    Doesn’t “stacking the beads” take a lot of focus away from the target? I’ve been shooting sporting clays for many years and I don’t see how it’s possible to do this. Maybe it’s different in trap? Anyway, I can see using the beads to fine tune gun fit (although there are better ways) but once the gun is set up shouldn’t the beads be in the periphery? Or even disregarded?


Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.