- January 19, 2017 at 8:07 pm #32863
Kens, on the Woodland Safari Rifle thread asked me to start a thread on how I sling carry a rifle. I’m not saying this is the “best” way just saying carrying it this way I have no problems with longer barreled rifles in dense brush or forests. It’s become such a good way I now also sling carry my short barreled rifles the same way. I’m not a professional model and not a young lion anymore but you’ll get the idea. Doesn’t take much practice to get it down. Once so you’ll really appreciate how easy it is to “present the rifle” if a shot is to be taken without having to swing the rifle around and rotate the barrel up/down 90 degrees as in other carry methods. Hunting in rain/snow I have also appreciated how this method protects the scope and action. You will also appreciate the absolute control of the muzzle you have with this method.
Notice the right hand clasps the sling at its attachment to the forend.
This will be a series of posts.
This the general carry position. I use this method with leather strap slings, Safari leather slings and Whelen style military slings. However my preferred sling is the US Military web sling made for the M1 and M14 rifles. I do not favor nylon slings of any style as they are slippery and prone to slipping off the shoulder too easily. Note in this position the rifle is upside down on the strong/shooting side. The sling is adjusted so the scope and action are between the fore arm and the body which gives them protection. It also holds the rifle close with little to no effort so it doesn’t flop around. The muzzle is angled to the left about center of the body. This way as I move through and around dense brush the muzzle goes first and does not catch on anything. The rear stock angles to the rear and there isn’t anything for the brush to catch or snag onto.
- January 19, 2017 at 8:20 pm #32864
If someone steps in front or you are following someone simply raise the front of the rifle so the muzzle comes up in front of and centered on your face. This also is a preferred move if moving through REALLY thick stuff as you have absolute control of the muzzle so it threads through nothing but the path you are taking. If someone steps in front you can also swing the muzzle to the left and down.
- January 19, 2017 at 8:27 pm #32865
If a potential shot arises the rifle is thrust forward and rotated so the scope/sights are toward and in front of you. The sling may or may not slide off the shoulder on its own. If not the left hand can simply flick it off as the hand moves to grasp the forend behind the right hand.
As the rifle is rotated so the sights are vertical the rifle is pulled back into the shoulder pocket and a proper shooting position is assumed. If a position other than off hand is to be used the rifle at a ready position (modified port arms) and in position as you move to a rest or assume another position.
This method also works very well with a back pack or pack frame on, The rifle isn’t banging into them. I also carry binoculars in a chest harness and it’s easy to release the sling with the right hand and use both hands with the binoculars. The right arm keeps the rifle secure. Anyways, that’s how I sling carry a rifle (the M70 has a 24″ barrel btw) while hunting.
- January 19, 2017 at 8:42 pm #32867Rattlesnake CharlieParticipant
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Thanks for sharing. I’ll try it.
- January 19, 2017 at 9:12 pm #32871GoodsteelKeymaster
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This is simply brilliant. You had me at “… the scope and action are between the fore arm and the body which gives them protection.”.
I also see the value of this method for carrying the M1A with the 20 round magazine captured and not digging in my back, side, or hip. I’ve never seen someone carry a rifle in this way.
- January 19, 2017 at 9:48 pm #32872kensParticipant
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I had looked at some youtube videos, and found the ‘african carry’ is similar to what you describe.
I tried it this past weekend on my .50 inline muzzleloader. I turned the sling around for muzzle down carry.
Ahhhh, much better !!
My next scouting/hiking I’ll try your upside down level style.
I already see that the better carry style is muzzle down (or level) on the strong side, actually muzzle up or down or level is no deal at all since the sling’s position is still the same.
Also it is very easy to mount the rifle with the left hand grabbing forearm and simply present the rifle.
This is good info, and the sling type and position of sling studs taken into the build of the rifle.
Does it matter if the sling studs are near the grip or the butt? or matter if they are on forearm or barrel forward?
- January 20, 2017 at 1:54 am #32882uber7mmParticipant
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My uncle described a variation of this carry method to me about 15 years ago.
He carries his rifle barrel vertically and his hand on the pistol grip, but the shouldering method would be the same.
Thanks for sharing Larry!
- January 20, 2017 at 2:16 am #32884IzzyjoeParticipant
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That’s about the same way I carry my shotgun when I’m turkey hunting, and I’m usually crawling about going though some thick bushes. That’s not the same way I carry when I’m deer hunting, I sling it on my shoulder the traditional way, and if if need to shoot I can grab the wrist of the stock, and wheel it off the shoulder, and come up and shouldered the rifle. I’ve practiced that way so it comes second nature!
- January 20, 2017 at 2:21 pm #32896
My method is certainly influenced by the “African carry”. I have quite a collection of African hunting books and gleaned the method from the writing of Taylor Ruark, Hunter, Capstick and numerous others. I certainly don’t claim any credit for it……I only claim to use it.
I’ve never actually considered placing the sling studs for the carry method…..I just used what was there. The sling stud positions on the M70 used in the photos (my current favorite big game hunting rifle) are factory positioned. I’ve not considered moving them…..if it ain’t broke…….
Yes this carry does indeed work quite well with the M1A, I’ve used it a lot.
- January 20, 2017 at 10:09 pm #32904kensParticipant
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Placing the swivel studs on this build is like a blank canvas. There is noting here, I don’t even have the stock yet, but I am trying to think out all the holes to drill and placement there of.
- January 21, 2017 at 6:06 pm #32915ScrewboltsParticipant
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Thank you for sharing this with a great write up and photos. Ken
- January 21, 2017 at 7:12 pm #32918Bodean98Participant
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Being a slope shouldered, knuckle dragging Neanderthal (yes I voted for Trump), I adopted a style of carry much like this as well. The sling stays on my shoulder much better this way.
I am different in that I carry on the weak side with a firm grasp of the forearm, muzzle forward and up. Just a quick flip of the wrist and the sling clears the shoulder and the rifle is brought to bear very quickly. It helps to have a well balanced rifle for this to work.
An added benefit of this style of carry is not only is the scope protected but the safety and bolt handle as well. While not absolutely protected they are much less inclined to be flicked off or wedged open from errant saplings, limbs, greenbriars, or clothing. Too many times I have unslung my rifle from my back to find it off safe and even the bolt open! I have never had an accidental discharge from that but I don’t want to start now either.
Thanks Larry for the post.
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