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Ngrumba Offline OP
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Is it like a concussion? Does it just happen only when you shoot or does it linger afterwards? I’m LH and after I shoot my 416- my right (opposite) shoulder hurts. I read that a recoil headache can affect shoulders as well. Maybe it’s just poor shooting form- I’m going to have my shoulder checked for arthritis too- I have some in my lower back.

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I get them. It's like a shock to your brain...above about the 6.5x55 level of recoil...say 8 pound rifle, 2600 fps with a 140 grain bullet...

Also noticed slower recoiling loads...big bullet, slower...don't affect me as much.

For sure, the "snappier" the recoil, the worse for me. It's an odd sensation...almost like an invisible force slams into my skull.

Not pleasant, and annoying, because my shoulder and body can handle recoil just fine.

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Have a Remimgton 700 DBM srainless in 300wby with a factory break, shoot 5 shoots and your have a headache, only gun I have that does this to me

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Originally Posted by steveredd1
Have a Remimgton 700 DBM srainless in 300wby with a factory break, shoot 5 shoots and your have a headache, only gun I have that does this to me
Could it be the stock?

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Could it be something of a misnomer? The fumes from expended nitro compounds can cause vicious headaches...in extreme cases, a debilitating headache similar to migraine. High percentage dynamite is brutal in underground mining and tunneling. Not everyone suffers from it, and eventually the new miner builds a resistance to it. I worked for an underground mining outfit in Idaho briefly, the miners would shoot their shot just at quitting time, let the face ventilate overnight before going back the next day to muck out. New miners were advised to smear a little dynamite on their hardhat headband to get over 'powder headache'. I think it was nothing more than a cruel joke.


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I'm pretty sure it's about the recoil impulse and not fumes. The 243 and 308 Winchester are both burning a bit over 40 grains of powder, so if it were the fumes from combustion there'd be little difference.

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My wife Eileen has been getting them since around 2007. Before then she regularly used an Ultra Light Arms .30-06 with full-power 165-180 grain handloads, and a couple of light 12-gauge shotguns.

Her first recoil headaches were with one of those shotguns, but soon afterward she couldn't shoot a Ultra Light Arms .270 with 130-grain loads. But she's had to steady step down since then.

Today her "big" rifle, used for elk, is a .308 Winchester with 130-grain Barnes TTSXs loaded down to around 2850 fps, and year or two after starting to use it she also added a muzzle brake. Her deer/pronghorn rifle has been a Tikka .22-250 for the past several years, using the Hornady 70-grain GMX bullet at around 3300 fps. Her shotguns are usually either a 28-gauge SxS for upland or a Browning Gold 20-gauge autoloader for waterfowl, a gas gun that also mitigates recoil.

It doesn't generally have anything to do with stock shape (much less powder fumes) but how hard and fast the butt-end hits the shoulder. Like Eileen, many people find recoil headaches get worse with time, mostly because people's bodies become less flexible with time.


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I knew a dude once......it wasn't me...
This dude built a lot of large caliber rifles, 458's, 500's, etc. After about 10 rounds of anything more than a 338, the target would start to get blurry. This went on for years. He was running his lathe one day and got light headed. Turned the lathe off, fainted and fell back on the concrete floor. Bloodied the back of his head, and somehow bit through his bottom lip. Called the ambulance, they checked him out, said he was ok. Next day he went to a doctor. They did a MRI with dye in his veins. Turns out he had been getting concussions for several years. Doc said to quit this or you will die. So he quit shooting large caliber rifles with full power loads. Want my advice ? Do not fart around with recoil if your brain is telling you its too much. You wont win.
Charlie


The data and opinions contained in these posts are the results of experiences with my equipment. NO CONCLUSIONS SHOULD BE DRAWN FROM ANY DATA PRESENTED, DO NOT, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, ATTEMPT TO REPLICATE THESE RESULTSj
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It's happens at 9 years old when your dad hands his double barrel 12 gauge to you and points at the rabbit.

Dad was big on learning through personal experience


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Some get "lucky" and don't get recoil headaches, even though they shoot hard-kicking rifles (or shotguns) a LOT.

But I know two such people who in the past year had to have their "shooting shoulder" replaced/rebuilt because of the damage done by years of such shooting. Maybe their shoulders starting to stretch/break didn't transmit as much "bounce" to their heads....


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Ngrumba Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Today her "big" rifle, used for elk, is a .308 Winchester with 130-grain Barnes TTSXs loaded down to around 2850 fps.

Like Eileen, many people find recoil headaches get worse with time, mostly because people's bodies become less flexible with time.

What load do you use for 130G TTSXs in a 308?

Do the recoil headaches remain a while after shooting? Or do they dissipate when you quit shooting?

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There have been concussion research going on in football and hockey leagues . Rather reluctantly I might add.


You can hunt longer with wind at your back
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It's something that only affects us wimpy types, not REAL MEN.


Not a real member - just an ordinary guy who appreciates being able to hang around and say something once in awhile.

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Originally Posted by duke61
Could it be the stock?

Not for a real "concussion headache." Your head is porous- sinuses, ear canals, mouth and even your eyes. All of these allow the concussive force of explosions that happen around you to interact with your brain, and it is very well established that the results of this are immediate and bad at best. Essentially, every round that goes off near your head is a small traumatic brain injury if you're not using good ear pro that is worn properly. Really the best case scenario is to wear both "over ear" and "in ear" when shooting anything big.

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Originally Posted by Ngrumba
Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Today her "big" rifle, used for elk, is a .308 Winchester with 130-grain Barnes TTSXs loaded down to around 2850 fps.

Like Eileen, many people find recoil headaches get worse with time, mostly because people's bodies become less flexible with time.

What load do you use for 130G TTSXs in a 308?

Do the recoil headaches remain a while after shooting? Or do they dissipate when you quit shooting?

With Eileen the headaches start after 3-4 rounds with rifles where she can tolerate the recoil, and get worse with each round. Taking more time between shots, say while sighting-in a rifle, helps. They remain but start to dissipate after she quits shooting.

The handload with the .308 and 130 TTSX is 45.0 grains of IMR4895, in RWS brass with CCI 200 primers. It shoots very well--the last time she confirmed zero she only shot two rounds, which touched at 100 yards.


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Originally Posted by OXN939
Originally Posted by duke61
Could it be the stock?

Not for a real "concussion headache." Your head is porous- sinuses, ear canals, mouth and even your eyes. All of these allow the concussive force of explosions that happen around you to interact with your brain, and it is very well established that the results of this are immediate and bad at best. Essentially, every round that goes off near your head is a small traumatic brain injury if you're not using good ear pro that is worn properly. Really the best case scenario is to wear both "over ear" and "in ear" when shooting anything big.

It's not just report, it also involves the shoulder being somewhat connected to the "headbone."

Eileen has always worn very good ear protection, but we were eventually able to pin it down to rifles that recoiled more than about 15 foot-pounds, according to the standard recoil formula. And after she had the muzzle brake installed on the .308 she could definitely tolerate shooting the rifle more before the headache starting to show up, even though brakes are louder.


“Montana seems to me to be what a small boy would think Texas is like from hearing Texans.”
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i Get them, sometimes ultra fast, sometimes very slow. For me, very debilitating..can take 8hrs or more for relief
They are concussions, just like football. If you know football, they are now checking lineman to see if they get mini concussion on every play.
I know, I have had them from years of sporting events.
My limit now is 270win, even a full power 44 mag will do it.
I use a lead sled, and will still get them. Sometimes??
I also think the concussion of the rifle, and or when you put your head down on the stock, and it picks your flap up can cause it.
I shoot inside a cabin, so IMHO, that ups my exposure.
I am experimenting with different conditions to try and help,
Yes, different stocks can help, or hinder recoil.
Just sold a savage super light that recoiled way above its weight in 6.5prc.
I shoot a Forbes Ultralight in 270 that recoils half of what the Savage did. It should not according to powder volume, and bullet weight, but it did
Anyway...

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This is a most unpleasant combo. I can only fire a few of these before I have to stop. It just plain hurts. And leaves me with a sore cheek and a mild headache.

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

666 grain slug at 1,604 fps in a gun a little over 7lbs generates about 64 ft/lbs of recoil energy. More than a 10 gauge 3.5" 2 1/4" load at 1,200 fps in a 10.5lb gun. That's several ft/lbs more than a .458 Win Mag 500 grain at 2,100 fps in a 9lb gun.

Just about any 12 gauge 3.5" heavy load will generate more recoil than a lot of the African big bores.

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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Eileen has always worn very good ear protection, but we were eventually able to pin it down to rifles that recoiled more than about 15 foot-pounds

For really heavy recoiling rifles, it doesn't matter how good your ear pro is- they still release enough concussive energy to cause damage to anyone around where they're going off, whether you're on the gun or not. Another great reason not to shoot magnums

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Yeah, I know that--but she has never hunted with a rifle chambered for a cartridge larger than the .30-06.


“Montana seems to me to be what a small boy would think Texas is like from hearing Texans.”
John Steinbeck
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