The Mid Bead on Shotguns
The Mid Bead on Shotguns
There is a lot of debate in shooting circles about mid beads. Do they enhance a shooters capability? To some extent, just believing they do help can increase your confidence and of course increase your ability.
Some go as far to say that if you are looking at the bead you are not shooting at the target and having one more bead only gives you even more distractions. Every shooter has habits and even so-called rituals or superstitions. Change comes hard to some because they were brought up to believe in one way, and their way works, for them. However, you may never know how well your way works unless you do some comparison. Do what all advanced shooters do, explore new ways to increase proficiency. Soldiers do not train for a few weeks and then declare themselves soldiers and then never explore new training techniques or stop practicing.
Older shooters may have experienced mid beads on firearms designed for target practice. It was in many people’s mind a training tool. The mid bead allows for better alignment because over time your body changes and your sight picture will change. You may position your neck differently and your cheek weld changes. You may only think you have lined up the front bead on target. You think you are focused on the target with your eye when in fact your body is not positioned properly. You would know if your sight picture is off if, you could use the mid bead to verify alignment.
With practice after getting into a shooting position, you will naturally verify bead on bead and on target then blank out the mid bead, essentially you are shooting over the mid bead. Having a mid bead for some people means, they know the barrel is level.
As any shooter knows the bead is not there for the shooter to stare at, and if you do as a shooter you will likely miss your target. Once the bead is lined up, it should blur into the background, it is there and your eyes register it so you can always tell if you have “drawn a bead”. Your eyes can only focus on one thing at a time and you must be focused on the target. The bead is a flag waving in the background to let you know all is ok.
A mid bead can help you learn your natural point of aim and to maintain it. The natural point of aim is that point you always come back to. You may close your eyes for a few seconds and when you open them, the sight picture will not have changed. The mid bead will tell you when you had your eyes closed if you moved your weapon from its mount/shooting position. If you find yourself suddenly looking over the mid bead or cannot see the front bead something has changed. Once positioned correctly you will see only one bead the mid bead fades and then the bigger front bead will fade as you focus on target. It will take some practice but once you shoot using a mid bead you may find yourself finding your true and natural point of aim more easily each time.
Remington 870 Barrels