To shoot left handed or right handed?

BugZND1887

Cadet
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
I have a 1861 Springfield and was wondering if it would be better to shoot left handed like I do other modern rifles or shoot just this rifle right handed? Sort of worried about a percussion cap to the face, and I figure if I ever want to reenact later in life it would be easier to learn the drill if I shot it right handed. What do you guys think?
 

Don Dixon

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 24, 2008
Location
Fairfax, VA, USA
I've been shooting caplock muzzle loading firearms left handed for more than 40 years, and never had a problem with the lock being in front of my face. Flintlock is another matter entirely. The question is more about how accurately you want to shot. If you're play acting with blanks [i.e., reentacting] then go for it.

Regards,
Don Dixon
 

BugZND1887

Cadet
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Well Turns out I am Right eye dominant now anyway, still left handed though, I have been shooting left handed for 5 years now but I think I will change to right hand shooting from now on.... Dont know if I messed up the eye dominance test 5 years ago or it has changed.
 

ucvrelics

Lt. Colonel
Forum Host
Regtl. Quartermaster Shiloh 2020
Joined
May 7, 2016
Location
Alabama
I can't say as I collect them, not shoot them but one thing I can say is be careful you could shoot your eye out :nah disagree:
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mofederal

Major
Joined
Jun 27, 2017
Location
Southeast Missouri
No left handers in the Army. All infantry weapons opperate from the right side, all of the pistols, even revolvers became loaded from the right. Bolt actions and semi-automatic and automatic weapons eject from the right side also. Using the right hand goes back to ancient times, when the left hand was considered evil or sinister. I am sure there were people then who wrote with their left hand.
 

7thWisconsin

Sergeant Major
Joined
Nov 21, 2014
I´m left handed, and I always thought it would be cool to shoot left handed, but as it turned out I can´t. I´m a passable shot with a pistol in my left hand, but I can´t hit the broad side of a barn with a rifle that way. I´ve always shot right handed. If you´re reenacting you will ALWAYS shoot right handed. There is no drill command that allows for left handed shooting, and no unit will let you do it in the ranks. Of course, you´re not actually firing anything, so accuracy is unimportant. I´m leery of shooting any percussion lock from the left because of cap explosion, but obviously others have not had any problem with it. I would advise you, though, to get used to shooting it right handed for no other reason than that´s how they were built to be shot, and were handled historically almost exclusively.
 

BugZND1887

Cadet
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
I´m left handed, and I always thought it would be cool to shoot left handed, but as it turned out I can´t. I´m a passable shot with a pistol in my left hand, but I can´t hit the broad side of a barn with a rifle that way. I´ve always shot right handed. If you´re reenacting you will ALWAYS shoot right handed. There is no drill command that allows for left handed shooting, and no unit will let you do it in the ranks. Of course, you´re not actually firing anything, so accuracy is unimportant. I´m leery of shooting any percussion lock from the left because of cap explosion, but obviously others have not had any problem with it. I would advise you, though, to get used to shooting it right handed for no other reason than that´s how they were built to be shot, and were handled historically almost exclusively.
Thanks for everyone input, I will be switching to right hand shooting, it may be a long road to train my non domaint side but you can not train your eyes and you can train you body.
 
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nc native

Sergeant
Joined
Aug 30, 2011
Location
NC Piedmont
I do everything with one hand left handed and everything with two hands right handed so shooting a rifle right handed is not a problem for me since I am right eye dominant. Shooting pistols though was a problem at first but now it comes naturally to me to draw and shoot right handed. Many of the modern handguns have ambidextrous features that put left handers more at ease but long arms, tools and even fishing equipment are still made for a right handed world and takes some getting used to if you happen to be a lefty. Good luck and soon enough it will become second nature for you to shoot right handed.
 

DixieRifles

Captain
Member of the Year
Regtl. Staff Shiloh 2020
Joined
Mar 22, 2009
Location
Collierville, TN
No left handers in the Army. All infantry weapons opperate from the right side, all of the pistols, even revolvers became loaded from the right. Bolt actions and semi-automatic and automatic weapons eject from the right side also.
I always thought that was true but I’ve been told that was not true. However, I cant remember my source. Maybe it related to WW2 or a current veteran.
This interested me after seeing the sniper in “Saving Private Ryan” firing his 1903 bolt action left-handed.
I will look for a photo.
 

7thWisconsin

Sergeant Major
Joined
Nov 21, 2014
I´ve never fired a military arm that wasn´t set up for right-handed shooters primarily. Not that they can´t be fired left handed, but that wasn´t the design intent. I write left handed,bat, catch and throw left handed, but the majority of things I do right handed. I think learning to play musical instruments (piano, violin, guitar) in my youth may have served to even me out so that I´m functionally ambidextrous.
 

Peter Stines

Sergeant
Joined
Apr 10, 2007
Location
Gulf Coast of Texas
I'm a southpaw and have always shot that way. But with blanks its a non issue. A little awkward at first and on occasion I'd find me self shouldering on my "other right". A few barks from the sarge was all it took. Now as far as no left handers in the ranks is concerned they were there but had to comply with the others.
 
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