Using the Hasty Sling

Here’s a topic I’m not crazy about.  Some people love it, swear by it, and use it all the time.  I just don’t quite get it.  I’ve used it and liked it, but at this point I think it’s limiting, and generally works against good form.  Now I have you in suspense, at the tip of your seat, wondering what this thing is.  It’s the hasty sling (I know someone must have found the hidden clue and figured it out).

 

The hasty sling is an attempt to use the rifle sling as a shooting aid to enhance precision, similar in principle to the loop sling.  The difference is that it’s faster to get into than a loop, and offers a different kind of support.  People use this in all kinds of positions, but it’s mostly associated with offhand or standing, where it has the potential to be of the most use.

 

To get into the hasty sling from a standing position, with offhand as the goal…
I know that you actually take me more seriously because of the scary Halloween mask because you understand that although I may be putting all my substantial credibility on the line, I’m willing to do it to make a serious artistic statement.  Or my sense of humor is a little “off”.

Reach your support arm all the way through the sling:

 

                         Reaching the arm in… and I want your brain!

Wrap the support hand around the outside of the sling, just like the loop sling:

Assume the offhand position:

 

     If you think I can actually see anything with this damn mask on, you’d be wrong.

The sling should ride snugly across the top of your chest.  This supports a good deal of the rifle’s weight.  If your rifle weighs a ton, this might be nice for you.  If you plan on using this, you may consider giving the rear sling swivel the same half twist you’d put into a loop sling when installing it on the stud.  This will make the front of the sling ride better on your hand.  I didn’t do that here, and didn’t really notice the difference.

 

Using the hasty sling seems to settle a lot of the movement down as compared to offhand without using the sling.  I say “seems”, and I mean “seems”.  It settles the initial movement for me, where I’m still settling in.  It locks you to where your NPA is, which is helpful, especially if you aren’t very clear on where it is.  

 

What I find is that without the sling in offhand, yes, there will be a moment of big movement as I settle in.  Then everything becomes quite still for a moment for just enough time to theoretically break the shot.  Using the hasty sling, there is a constant, albeit small (8-10 MOA), and consistent box-like pattern of movement that just won’t go away.  I know that in dry fire, I feel a lot more relaxed and in control without the sling.  It took a lot of practice to get to that point.  In live fire it’s honestly a wash.

 

Another reason that I don’t favor using this technique is that it goes against the principles of relaxing and using bone support.  Why would I want to introduce tension into the structure?  You could say that the loop sling induces tension as well, but the difference is it’s tightening up the structure of the position rather than inducing pure muscle tension.  The only good reason I can think of for using the tension offered by the hasty sling is if it were a little windy out,  it would stiffen you up a bit.  If it’s a lot windy out, you need to be in a more stable position.

 

My final reason for generally disliking the hasty sling is that, although “hasty”, it’s a little slow for most of the time that offhand would likely be employed.  This is because the #1 reason for using offhand is speed.  Greazy, lightin’ fast, snapshootin’ speed, Rock.  Offhand is not optimized for target shooting, and even if it were I still wouldn’t use the hasty sling.  I can’t say it any plainer than that.

 

There is a second variation of the hasty sling, for those of you who choose to use it.  It’s a faster version of the hasty.  Appleseed calls it the “Hasty Hasty”.  Marketing is not their strong point.  They should call it something flashier, like the “Super Ultra Improved Faster-than-Ever Speedy Hasty Sling™”.

 

Here’s how to get into the ‘Super Ultra Improved Faster-than-Ever Speedy Hasty Sling™”:

From the starting position:

Without letting go of anything, thrust your support elbow inside the sling’s comfort zone:

 

Now bring the rifle up while pushing the support elbow down, causing isometric tension:

That’s it.  Have fun, sucker!!!  Just kidding.  Actually that was very mean and I’m sorry.  But not really.

7 thoughts on “Using the Hasty Sling

  1. Variation #1:
    For the right handed shooter starting with the gun slung barrel down from the left shoulder,
    1) Grip the forestock by making a little clockwise movement with your hand going over the sling and then under it creating a half wrap of the sling on your forearm.
    2) Slip the sling off your shoulder and rotate/mount the rifle or shotgun’s butt stock to your right shoulder.
    3) You are now in the shooting position demonstrated here and it is fast.

    Got this from the brochure that came with a 1950s sling. I think the “Hasty” in the description refers to steps one and two. Note there was another hasty mount from the left shoulder shown that does not result in step three but does get the gun to shoulder quickly.

    • Those steps explain how to get from African carry (muzzle down, rifle slung on left shoulder) to an offhand position quickly. The hasty sling, as outlined in my article, is a specific term for a method of using the sling as a shooting aid, and has nothing to do with a carry method. It’s also possible to transition from African carry to offhand with a hasty sling, using similar motions and in a similarly quick motion, but those instructions you listed don’t seem to address that. Thanks for reading.

  2. There is still another way of using a sling. When they still used service rifles for Bisley shooting, the rear end of the sling was attached to the sling swivel (sniper swivel) just in front of the magazine. This made the sling/rifle combinationcloser to an equilateral triangle.

    It gives slightly more support in windy conditions than the single point, but is a bit harder to adjust to the correct length.

    Maybe you want to investigate the technique?

    • Is the stud placement you’re speaking of similar to where the 3rd stud would attach for installation of the Ching sling? If so, it sounds like that could be the CW sling before Carlos invented it. It would also be the same as using the Ching.

      I’ll have to try using the Ching in standing to see if it is more effective than the hasty, or no sling at all. I’m still not much of a fan of the hasty.

      • It is a “Bisley 2-point sling” which is pretty much a CW sling. I use this on all my rifles. Admittedly, I do not carry them around for long periods and do not need them as carrying straps. I prefer the 2-point above the single point as it just gives a bit more stability in a strong wind. Speed is not an issue for me. There is an extra twist in the loop before you put your arm through. This makes the Ching sling not quite practical for my purposes.

        Until last night I have not heard of any of these fancy slings. so I did some research. From what I can see, all the modern slings (cuff, TAB, RS), with the exception of the Ching sling, are basically a modification of the single-point sling to allow you to carry the rifle.

        All my rifles are slung by two points; at the fore-end (as yours) and in front of the magazine. The slings are simple adjustable webbing or leather; and short. I have a single-point that I use from time-to-time; mostly for small-bore target rifle.

        If I ever have to choose a sling for carrying, it would probably be the Ching sling.

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