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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Greetings ladies and gentlemen, and Happy New Year!

On this brisk Saturday morning I took part in another Handgun Skill Builder Workshop at the Lytle Creek Firing Line. It was a lovely drive up through the national forest. Yes, there have been some fires in the area recently.



It was 37ºF when the range opened at 8am. I filled out my form and paid my fees in the range office. You can see the snow in the foothills is not too far above us.



I made my way out to the training session area, Bay I (eye), where we are in the shade for a while. It's a few degrees cooler here.



There are actually two firing lines in this bay. We're going to use both of them today. I see Chris, our instructor, has set up some steel targets for us. Sometimes we'll warm up by shooting some steel. The moving target is also set up on the rail.



But today we don't get a warm up. After a briefing about the state of affairs in the world today, we go right into an active shooter drill using the structure as cover/concealment. Here one of the assistant instructors, Doug, is giving Kristen the scenario and instructions.



You see Chris there on the left with the shotgun. Once he starts firing the drill begins. The live fire adds an element of realism. Other students take turns manipulating the moving target while the defender tries to put rounds on target through or over the various openings in the structure. Here Carlos is in the hot seat about to take his turn. The moving target is probably ten yards away on the rail.



Ahh, the sun is above the hill. It'll start warming up now. James, also one of the instructors here at the range, decides this drill is fun enough that he wants a turn.



I actually took my turn before James. And to my surprise, all eight of my shots made it on target. I did have one big SNAFU. When the shotgun went off, I surveyed the situation, being careful to observe without making myself a target. Once I drew my pistol, aimed over the structure, pulled the trigger, and heard a big "Click!" (oops!), I thought I'd just start all over again. But Kristen yelled, "You're still in the fight!" I thought, "Oh yeah, that's right." There's no do-overs when you're in the real thing. I loaded a mag, racked the slide, and put eight rounds on target from three different positions behind the structure. Talk about a learning experience. The huge lesson being, you not only have to rack your slide to make ready, you actually have to load a magazine too! Yep, eight of these holes are mine.



Then we moved over to the secondary firing line in this large bay for a few drills. The first drill was simple. On command, draw and fire one head shot. After we did that a few times we practiced malfunctions. We loaded spent casings in each other's magazines so we could practice clearing malfunctions. Otherwise I had no malfunctions today even though I was shooting a hodgepodge of different ammo, factory Fiocchi, Blazer aluminum, Winchester steel, factory reloads, hollow points, polymer space bullets, just a bunch of leftover stuff.



Our next exercise was a couple of different scenarios of close quarter combat. Another AI, Sen, gave us the lowdown on the drills we are to practice. Don't worry, he's using a dummy gun to demonstrate.



He taught shooting from retention a little differently than I'd learned it before. But that's OK. The class has a good discussion afterwards about various techniques. For the first drill we practiced from arm's length, defeating our garment with the off hand, drawing and shooting right out of the holster, elbow high, gun back and close to your body so the assailant can't grab it. You can see my target is just arm's length away. I think I can leave a mark if I have to.



For the second drill in this scenario we used our off hand to defend ourselves, either putting it on the top of our head or protecting our neck, then both defeated our garment and drew with our strong hand, shooting from retention several times as we stepped back, until we were fully punched out on the fourth shot.



This drill was a little complex because on a few of the counts you were doing two or three things at once. But we practiced it a few times until the class was comfortable.

1) Defeat garment, hand on pistol grip
2) Draw pistol (elbow high and tight, pistol close to your body, perhaps canted a little away, pointing forward probably at the attackers waistline or below)
3) Fire
4) Step back, Join grip with off hand, Fire
5) Step back, Start to extend, Fire
6) Step back, Fully extend, Aim, Fire

Yep, I left a few marks on my target. You don't even have to aim when you're this close.



I had another SNAFU during this exercise. At one point when I was both defeating my garment and drawing my weapon with the same hand, shooting from retention, I fired and somehow the tail of my shirt became pinched in the chamber of my XD. We had talked about shooting holes in our clothes earlier in the briefing before this exercise. Ironic. I didn't want to rip my shirt. The slide wouldn't rack, I couldn't lock the slide back to get my shirt tail out of the chamber. I ended up dropping the magazine then firing the round that was in the chamber. The shirt popped out when the casing was ejected. (I knew that my gun didn't have a magazine disconnect.) My shirt is no worse for wear. Of course, if I'd been in an actual fight I would not be worrying about the shirt. But it was one of those odd "Well, that's never happened before" moments.

It's just a beautiful, sunny, winter day here in Southern California. We are looking North-ish from our firing line. I 'm sorry I can't tell you where the snow line is right now, but it's not that far above us. Sometimes this firing range gets covered in snow.



After our CQC exercises we practiced some distance shooting with our pistols. We step out to the twenty yard line and fired five shots. I got four on the target.



Then we stepped out to the thirty yard line. I got three on target.



Then we stepped out to the fifty yard line to fire five rounds. I got two on target.



I have to remember, the target is not farther away, it's just a little smaller. Here's most of the students on the fifty yard line. There were eight of us today. I think the only shooters who got four or five on target were those with red dots. There were a couple. I know Kristen uses a red dot on her pistol.



Here's my target before I shot from fifty yards. The "spider" holes (4) are from twenty yards. The horizontal marks (3) are from thirty yards. I got only two on target from fifty yards.



After our class had finished up I still had almost two full magazines on me. I asked Chris if I could shoot his steel targets. He said, "I don't know. Can you?" I asked, "May I? Pretty please?" He said, "Sure". Kristen also had a couple of mags still loaded so she joined us. I shot the 4" steel pretty well (from at least ten yards) but Chris was kind enough to look over my shoulder and told me of a couple of things I can improve. I had too much finger on the trigger. (This could explain why everything seems to go left.) And I also canted my gun to the left slightly when I'm in my two handed grip. I need to hold it more perpendicular to the ground. I made note of that and hit most of the steel I was shooting at. Fun stuff!

Right after we picked up our brass a friend of Chris' brought something for "show and tell". It was a really nice 338 LM rifle. Shane brought it out for a spin on the one hundred yard line on the secondary firing line. It made a big bang!



And that was pretty much my Handgun Skill Builder Workshop on this Saturday. We have another in two weeks. Until then I'll try to get in a few laser dry fire practices and a live fire practice at my local indoor range. This old noob has got to keep his skills fresh. Use it our lose it, right? My Dad always said, "It's better to wear it out than to let it rot."

Happy New Year everyone. God bless.


Thank you for your indulgence,

BassCliff
 

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Awesome! And again, thanks for sharing!

OK, let's go for the dive......

<snip>

The moving target is also set up on the rail.
Again, I can't stress enough how awesome it is that you've got access to a moving target system. I know you will move away from the area eventually, but until then, take advantage of this as many times as you can (and I know, it's up to the whims of the instructional cadre).

But today we don't get a warm up.
Excellent!

If only we were given the chance to warm-up prior to a real-world shooting, right? ;)

After a briefing about the state of affairs in the world today, we go right into an active shooter drill using the structure as cover/concealment.
I also really love it that the instructors try to bring real-world context into your sessions. Well done!


And I've gotta say, their structures are really impressive too, for something that's non-permanent. They've really put some time and effort into this. Bravo!

I actually took my turn before James. And to my surprise, all eight of my shots made it on target. I did have one big SNAFU. When the shotgun went off, I surveyed the situation, being careful to observe without making myself a target. Once I drew my pistol, aimed over the structure, pulled the trigger, and heard a big "Click!" (oops!), I thought I'd just start all over again. But Kristen yelled, "You're still in the fight!" I thought, "Oh yeah, that's right." There's no do-overs when you're in the real thing. I loaded a mag, racked the slide, and put eight rounds on target from three different positions behind the structure. Talk about a learning experience. The huge lesson being, you not only have to rack your slide to make ready, you actually have to load a magazine too!
So, the big lesson here is what?

The canonical 4 Golden Rules is really a lowest-common-denominator setup, isn't it? ;)

"Treat the gun as if it's always loaded" is something that's succinct and easy for the novice/beginner -and children- to follow, but you're no longer part of either of those demographics, right?

The expansion to that, that I like most, is "Always know the status of your weapon."

This isn't just important in terms of our daily lives - i.e. the staging of these lethal force weapons for potential lifesaving use or making-ready on the firing line in competition and classes - but also comes into play in other ways, too. For example, sometimes, an unloaded gun is just that -unloaded- and is essential in being an unloaded weapon for training use. In some instances, all we have to use for training is that unloaded gun.

The corollary of this is of-course that we must NEVER get this wrong, for the price is so high.

The gun going "click" instead of "bang" whether you're at a high-stakes competition or if you've unholstered it for self-defense is something that's all too easy to imagine, but we'd all do well to understand that even in the training context, death, grave injury, or just simple embarrassment ( LAYERS OF FIREARMS SAFETY: A TEACHABLE MOMENT | and Lessons from a Negligent Discharge at MAG-40 – Safety Solutions Academy are very candid and detailed looks at just such an incident that, luckily, resulted in no injuries or deaths ) can be the result.

And brudda, I'm not "preaching from up on high" on this one. I've been there.

I've been exactly in your place, and it was even more embarrassing for me because I was among the more experienced (arguably the most experienced) students in that class. The instructor had asked us to clear and make-safe for lunch.... but to replace the magazine into the gun after clearing out the chamber and dropping the hammer. When we stepped onto the line afterwards for the first drill of the first evolution, I got a click instead of a bang. I worked through it, of-course, but afterwards, the discussion focused on the fact that I had suffered a mental lapse: that I didn't truly know the status of my weapon.

If you're unsure at the beginning of an evolution -if there's even the remotest doubt- check or request to check. If the instructional cadre doesn't allow you to do so, they should be willing to provide you with a reason why (i.e. "You were supposed to be ready when you stepped up to the line."), because when you step up to shoot, that's the equivalent of you getting ready to open the door of your house, as you step off to face the world at the beginning of the day.
  • "Always know the status of your weapon."
  • "Muzzle awareness."
  • "Trigger discipline."
  • "Be aware of your target's 360-degree (including Z-axis) surroundings, and what may come into their surroundings (e.g. panicked innocents running into the line of fire."
For me, this is the true distillation of the canonical 4 Golden Rules.

Yep, eight of these holes are mine.
Excellent! I am very happy that you were able to recover from your blunder, and fight your way through!

After we did that a few times we practiced malfunctions. We loaded spent casings in each other's magazines so we could practice clearing malfunctions. Otherwise I had no malfunctions today even though I was shooting a hodgepodge of different ammo, factory Fiocchi, Blazer aluminum, Winchester steel, factory reloads, hollow points, just a bunch of leftover stuff.
Yup.

Modern service handguns are incredibly reliable and durable items. Practically speaking, the only time that you should experience any stoppages is when you induce them (including prolonged neglect from maintenance - and this is part of the reason why I elect to only so rarely clean my training guns). I can virtually guaranty you that as long as you are using ammo that you've vetted and as long as your XD is well-lubed and free of mud or excess dirt (I'm -NOT- talking about carbon, you can have enough carbon on there to carbon-date the gun, it won't matter - I'm talking from-the-ground DIRT), you won't have an issue, ever.

About that mix-match of ammo, though.....let's skip to the day's ending walk-back exercise......

After our CQC exercises we practiced some distance shooting with our pistols. We step out to the twenty yard line and fired five shots. I got four on the target.

<snip>

Then we stepped out to the thirty yard line. I got three on target.

<snip>

Then we stepped out to the fifty yard line to fire five rounds. I got two on target.

<snip>

I have to remember, the target is not farther away, it's just a little smaller. Here's most of the students on the fifty yard line. There were eight of us today. I think the only shooters who got four or five on target were those with red dots. There were a couple. I know Kristen uses a red dot on her pistol.

<snip>

Here's my target before I shot from fifty yards. The "spider" holes (4) are from twenty yards. The horizontal marks (3) are from thirty yards. I got only two on target from fifty yards.

^ highlighted for-emphasis

Yup, the far/close versus small/large Zen. You've got it. (y) "There is no spoon," Neo. "Free your mind."

So, it's somewhat hard for me to tell what the target size portion of the metric is - is that a full-size torso silhouette? or is it half?

If it's a full-size, I really think that you're dropping those shots mentally. At what I've seen of your current skill level, there's no other excuse - you should've been on it.

If it's half-size or otherwise reduced, by the 50, I think it is possible that unique-gun-to-unique-ammo issues could have you falling out of the silhouette metric and onto the cardboard backer.

Why?

Because I honestly believe (I mean, who am I to say otherwise, right? 😊😬😅) that Larry Vickers' "accuracy" standards for service handguns is a very realistic ask, as I've routinely seen good shooters put up 3 or even 2.5-inch groups at the 25 yard line, with nothing but bulk, range-fodder ammo.

That said, I've also seen these same shooters struggle to consistently hit an 8 and 1/2 by 11 piece of common printer paper at that distance, when their gun simply doesn't "like" one or another ammo.

Frankly, @BassCliff , I'm very impressed at the progress you've made on your B8s. At this point, you really are starting to push into the next level, and I really don't want to see you frustrated by the occasional mis-pairing of ammo:gun that leads to unexpected and seemingly random (but it's not!) bad performance by you as the shooter. I think it's worth it to see if there's someone local to you who can show you how to properly bag yourself in, and to spend a less-than-fun but very-important "work" day at a range that will allow you to at least get 25 yards out, so that you can get some solid data in terms of accuracy/precision from the cache of very diverse cartridges that you currently own.

This way, you can be sure that either when you're practicing by yourself for accuracy/precision at-distance or when you're attending a training class that you're using ammo that you've vetted for performance at-distance, and that you're not throwing those shots because it's something that you've done badly, as a shooter.

With a full torso, that target is large enough that if you're aiming COM and you're tossing shots at the 25 or even at the 50, I'm willing to believe that it's on you, the shooter.

But if that target has been shrunken by half, aiming COM, it's possible that the fliers could potentially be a result of ammo, especially when you push out to the 50.

You know from our previous exchanges that I start falling apart past the 75 yard line, which, at my level, should really not be as problematic as I find it to be. 😬 Really stretching distance is one of my own continuing points-of-improvement. 😅 But one weekend, I had a rather dismal showing at-distance at a local class - after which I was extremely browbeaten.

As luck would have it, a friend of my shooting buddy was in the process of setting up his own back-yard private range, and gave us permission to shoot a few rounds. We set up our usual Tac-Strike Quarter-Scales, and after some drills, I decided that it was a good place as any to cycle-out my carry ammo for the year. So I walk back to my car, exchange my training 3.8 Compact for my EDC 3.8 Compact, and as I'm walking back, I realize that, hey, I can see the target clearly from where I'm standing at the front of the house, and the backstop is still perfectly in-line. So, after letting my shooting buddy know that I was about to take some pot-shots from that distance (~100 yards), I squared up, took a few deep breaths, and tried my luck.

What do you know - from a full 13+1, I must have rang steel at least 10 times.

Sometimes, it really is the ammo.

OK, we're finished at-distance, let's go to the close-quarters stuff -

He taught shooting from retention a little differently than I'd learned it before. But that's OK. The class has a good discussion afterwards about various techniques. For the first drill we practiced from arm's length, defeating our garment with the off hand, drawing and shooting right out of the holster, elbow high, gun back and close to your body so the assailant can't grab it. You can see my target is just arm's length away. I think I can leave a mark if I have to.
My belief is that retention isn't just a shooting technique - it's a full martial response to any kind of aggressive, incoming threat at the limits of our "personal distance" (i.e. "public space," between 4 to 8 yards).

We understand from the canonical Tueller Drill the implications of the "21 ft. rule," but what we rarely take into account is that even if we mortally wound that charging threat, by the time we land our first shot(s) on-target, that threat, even if he/she "drops," will still carry enough momentum to pose a threat to us if we remain "on the X." Even for range-drills where we're asked to "take one step off-the-X," this cursory movement doesn't truly allow us the ability to escape from that physically aggressing threat. So, not only do our movements off-the-X need to be physically definitive and aggressive in and of themselves, we also need to realize that by the time we draw in response to such closer threats, it is actually rather unlikely that we'll be able to come to full-extension - or that if we do, the risk that we then become engaged in an entangled fight with our own gun in-play is now an increasing possibility.

Weyer's rather unconventional draw stroke has the shooter drawing the gun to-retention and "flowing through" it towards full presentation, and I think that this - even though it slows down the time-to-first shot if that first shot is taken only at full presentation, really does present significant advantages to those who would be using the gun defensively.

Especially towards that last, Weyer, in the Handgun Diagnostic class, taught us techniques which allowed for consistently accurate shots to be taken "at retention," all the way out to the 10 yard line.... and beyond, which, when paired with the fact that we're skipping the last and often most time-consuming part of the draw-stroke, meant that sub-second shots from out of the holster -concealed- were a routine reality.

That all said, "retention" is one of those things, I believe, that truly needs context - so I am very glad to read that the instructional cadre gave some in-depth discussion time to this subject even as they taught you the physical skills. That's good stuff.

[ One thing to keep in the back of your mind - While the "strike/draw/step back, stitch from bottom-to-top from retention-to-full-presentation while continuing to back up" drill is an excellent skill set, understand that in real-life, at that distance...

(1) ...you may need to first engage hands-on to solve the problem. As Craig Douglas/Southnarc points out, he entangled fight is one of timing, errors in timing - including when you attempt to bring your weapon into the fight - can be devastating. If you have a chance to get in some physical integrated combatives classes, this is something to work on, there, to see what happens when you're going against a training partner who is set to "non-cooperative and competitive" mode. :)

(2) ...stepping back may not always be the best thing to do. Look at video repositories such as the Active Self Protection Youtube Channel, and you'll see just how many -particularly police OIS incidents- sees the officer, on-the-defense, moving backwards during this type of engagement - only to slip/trip/fall. When you start to game this in force-on-force, look for alternative ways to move (which may not be possible due to safety, on a flat-range, live-fire class), to actually improve your physical situation. Remember, even though closing with the threat is counterintuitive, the larger angular displacement you effect with larger, rapid movement at closer distance can work to your favor as a better-trained shooter: aggressively cutting the angle forward and through can potentially be more advantageous than a slow, uncertain retreat.
]

You don't even have to aim when you're this close.
Or, rather, "aiming" is done differently, right? ;)

Aiming can also be done kinesthetically.

Aiming can also be effected by using the silhouette of the slide, once the gun is up in-sightline.

I had another SNAFU during this exercise. At one point when I was both defeating my garment and drawing my weapon with the same hand, shooting from retention, I fired and somehow the tail of my shirt became pinched in the chamber of my XD. We had talked about shooting holes in our clothes earlier in the briefing before this exercise. Ironic. I didn't want to rip my shirt. The slide wouldn't rack, I couldn't lock the slide back to get my shirt tail out of the chamber. I ended up dropping the magazine then firing the round that was in the chamber. The shirt popped out when the casing was ejected. (I knew that my gun didn't have a magazine disconnect.) My shirt is no worse for wear. Of course, if I'd been in an actual fight I would not be worrying about the shirt. But it was one of those odd "Well, that's never happened before" moments.
Would you believe it if I said I had a separate set of clothes - my old, worn ones that are no longer suitable for social wear - that I reserve specifically for training use?

The only difference here that I've found is that as my clothes age, they may stretch/lose-elasticity, shrink (from repeated washing/drying) or otherwise change in texture a bit from when I'm still wearing them socially.

It was running into an issue similar to the one you'd just written that spurred me to start a "training clothing cache," and also why I try as best I can to completely copy/mirror my everyday setup to my training setup. As you start training and practicing more and more, you'll start running in to these "WTF" moments that you'd otherwise never thought possible (I once launched my multitool from my pants pocket some 6 shooters down the line to my right, as I ripped my t-shirt up to start the draw), and which may cause you to reassess how you do things, from then on. ;)

... but Chris was kind enough to look over my shoulder and told me of a couple of things I can improve. I had too much finger on the trigger. (This could explain why everything seems to go left.)
^ That's definitely a possibility.

How's your index on the gun?


And I also canted my gun to the left slightly when I'm in my two handed grip. I need to hold it more perpendicular to the ground.
So......

Hand Muscle Cap Sky Baseball cap

Glasses Hand Photographer Camera lens Reflex camera



That's Robert Vogel. ;)

He pushes so hard with his support side (he doesn't just grip the gun [which he actually calls "pinching"], he "torques" the gun starting from his pecs forward) that the gun ends up tilting.

At the distances that we typically shoot the handgun (inside the 100 yard line), with our target sizes, the relative position of the sights to-plum is, well, pretty much irrelevant. We can literally shoot our guns upside-down, much less have a biased sight picture one way or the other. ;)

Remember this one, where Andrew is on one foot, shooting the gun upside-down, loosely held between his fingers, using his pinky to actuate the trigger....at 65+ yards?


The universal truth is [ Sight Package ] + [ Trigger Path ] = [ Target ]. The amount of variance from perfection on the left side of the equation translates directly into deviation from perfection on the right. In order to hit what you're aiming at with your sights, the bullet must exit the muzzle without the sight package being disturbed before that can happen, and that's the Zen that Rob Leatham tries to convey in the following video:


Until you can get that bullet to exit the muzzle without disturbing the sight package, it's simply pointless to even bother aiming, right? ;)
 

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As always awesome report. You did good on the long distance pistol shots. I keep saying I have to make it out to 1 of those skill building classes. Good stuff Cliff 👍
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi Mike,

As always awesome report. You did good on the long distance pistol shots. I keep saying I have to make it out to 1 of those skill building classes. Good stuff Cliff 👍
I'm sure you'd enjoy this class and get a lot out of it. This has been an ongoing class for years. There are some regulars who come pretty much every week and others who, I suppose, have been regulars but don't come quite as often. There's been someone in the class every week that's new to me but not to the rest of the class. There's only one other shooter in the class who seems to have less experience than I. I'm not the FNG any more. ;)

Tony, the new FNG, has been to the last two classes and seems to be an affable fellow, a little bit beyond the beginner level. During our CQC drills he flagged Kristen, who was standing between us on the line. She very nicely, eloquently, but definitely let him know what had happened and how to avoid it in the future. This class looks out for one another and doesn't mind helping everyone/anyone become a better/safer shooter. No ridicule or animosity. I've asked my noob questions and offered my noob opinions and suggestions, all answered respectfully and taken in the proper spirit. It's a good bunch of folks and I regret that I'm moving away. I hope I can find something similar in Wisconsin.

I'm planning to attend every 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month until I move (sometime in March?). Hopefully we can meet up there. Even if not, you'd do good to hook up with this group.

Are you close enough to the Rancho Magnum Range for us to get together? Maybe some other spot?


Thank you for your indulgence,

BassCliff
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi,

Awesome! And again, thanks for sharing!

OK, let's go for the dive......
I certainly appreciate your deep dives and sharing your brilliant and not-so-brilliant experiences with the class. Great stuff. Thank you.

If only we were given the chance to warm-up prior to a real-world shooting, right? ;)
I must remember to train properly, get in the proper mindset. In the class I have a tendency to think, "Oops, I messed up. I'm supposed to make my mistakes in class." But I must start thinking "what if this is a REAL scenario" and treat it as such. Follow though, stay in the "fight", do what it takes to overcome.

So, the big lesson here is what?
<snip>
  • "Always know the status of your weapon."
  • "Muzzle awareness."
  • "Trigger discipline."
  • "Be aware of your target's 360-degree (including Z-axis) surroundings, and what may come into their surroundings (e.g. panicked innocents running into the line of fire."
For me, this is the true distillation of the canonical 4 Golden Rules.
Yes, OK. Now that I'm not a true "noob" any more, I need to take this seriously. I should know what "make ready" means by now, and what it takes to "make ready". Sheesh. 🙄

About that mix-match of ammo, though.....let's skip to the day's ending walk-back exercise......

So, it's somewhat hard for me to tell what the target size portion of the metric is - is that a full-size torso silhouette? or is it half?

If it's a full-size, I really think that you're dropping those shots mentally. At what I've seen of your current skill level, there's no other excuse - you should've been on it.

If it's half-size or otherwise reduced, by the 50, I think it is possible that unique-gun-to-unique-ammo issues could have you falling out of the silhouette metric and onto the cardboard backer.
I'm not sure if I'm ready to blame the ammo just yet. ;)

Those cardboard targets were about 18" wide, so the silhouettes were a little smaller than that.


OK, we're finished at-distance, let's go to the close-quarters stuff -

My belief is that retention isn't just a shooting technique - it's a full martial response to any kind of aggressive, incoming threat at the limits of our "personal distance" (i.e. "public space," between 4 to 8 yards)
Yes, 21 feet can be covered in less than two seconds by an attacker. Scary stuff. Hopefully I can take what I learn in these various training sessions and apply the necessary techniques to the situation presented. We always talk about avoidance first, getting to safety second, and actually engaging/fighting/shooting last. For anything more than a couple of yards, I'll need to practice quite a bit to get more accurate shooting at retention. I'll add that to my list. I can do that with my laser.

Or, rather, "aiming" is done differently, right? ;)
Um, yeah, sure. That's what I meant. ;)

Would you believe it if I said I had a separate set of clothes - my old, worn ones that are no longer suitable for social wear - that I reserve specifically for training use?
But we don't exclusively wear our training clothes on the street, or to work, or to church, or out to dinner. I've been trying train with similar attire so that I can be prepared even if I'm not wearing my tactical pants and Springfield Armory polo shirt. :D I don't weary my Sunday-go-to-meeting clothes to the range but I try to use different styles from my wardrobe, just in case.

How's your index on the gun?
Yes! My index is good. You're saying the cant is not necessarily a bad thing, only if it's throwing off my shots. ;)

Remember this one, where Andrew is on one foot, shooting the gun upside-down, loosely held between his fingers, using his pinky to actuate the trigger....at 65+ yards?
That was from 65 feet (~22 yards) but point taken. Maybe I'll try it upside down on one foot. :ROFLMAO:


The universal truth is [ Sight Package ] + [ Trigger Path ] = [ Target ].
Indeed! I'm sure I'm still moving the muzzle as I pull the trigger. It's getting better but I'm going to work hard at it. With the tips you and my live fire instructor have given me, I'm getting a handle on what I need to do. Thanks again. :)


Thank you for your indulgence,

BassCliff
 

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Hi Mike,



I'm sure you'd enjoy this class and get a lot out of it. This has been an ongoing class for years. There are some regulars who come pretty much every week and others who, I suppose, have been regulars but don't come quite as often. There's been someone in the class every week that's new to me but not to the rest of the class. There's only one other shooter in the class who seems to have less experience than I. I'm not the FNG any more. ;)

Tony, the new FNG, has been to the last two classes and seems to be an affable fellow, a little bit beyond the beginner level. During our CQC drills he flagged Kristen, who was standing between us on the line. She very nicely, eloquently, but definitely let him know what had happened and how to avoid it in the future. This class looks out for one another and doesn't mind helping everyone/anyone become a better/safer shooter. No ridicule or animosity. I've asked my noob questions and offered my noob opinions and suggestions, all answered respectfully and taken in the proper spirit. It's a good bunch of folks and I regret that I'm moving away. I hope I can find something similar in Wisconsin.

I'm planning to attend every 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month until I move (sometime in March?). Hopefully we can meet up there. Even if not, you'd do good to hook up with this group.

Are you close enough to the Rancho Magnum Range for us to get together? Maybe some other spot?


Thank you for your indulgence,

BassCliff
Sounds great, those classes do sound like fun. I will definitely be checking out LCFL in the next few weeks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hi,

The gun going "click" instead of "bang" whether you're at a high-stakes competition or if you've unholstered it for self-defense is something that's all too easy to imagine, but we'd all do well to understand that even in the training context, death, grave injury, or just simple embarrassment ( LAYERS OF FIREARMS SAFETY: A TEACHABLE MOMENT | and Lessons from a Negligent Discharge at MAG-40 – Safety Solutions Academy are very candid and detailed looks at just such an incident that, luckily, resulted in no injuries or deaths ) can be the result.
Just wanted to let you know that I've read these two blog posts. "Problem stacking", "cold range mentality", "bystander effect", "fatigue", "complacency (the look that doesn't see)", etc, are important terms and situations that everyone should be aware of. (I'm sure they are, and it's just me who's bringing up the rear of the heard.) There's a lot to learn from the two articles. I was surprised that Paul Carlson seemed to berate himself for not calling out Mas Ayoob at the time but instead did it after the fact in his article. Carlson did not agree with Ayoob's 5th layer of safety. I must say neither do I. It was sheer luck, or as I like to put it, God's grace, that no injuries occurred. That was a good study into AD/ND. It also makes me appreciate the Skill Builder class I've been involved in lately. Everyone is willing to speak up when they see something that is not safe, share the concerns, give the instructions, make the corrections, and then move on with the class. It certainly makes you improve faster, and makes you want to improve faster, when you are training with better and more experienced shooters, as long as they are not afraid to speak up. Thanks again.


Thank you for your indulgence,

BassCliff
 
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^ Absolutely - safety is everyone's business when you're in an atmosphere like that. No class should ever breed an atmosphere that's anything but. (y)

I think that a lot of times, folks get a bit "star struck" at some of the bigger names in the industry...and that causes problems, too.
 

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Hi,



Just wanted to let you know that I've read these two blog posts. "Problem stacking", "cold range mentality", "bystander effect", "fatigue", "complacency (the look that doesn't see)", etc, are important terms and situations that everyone should be aware of. (I'm sure they are, and it's just me who's bringing up the rear of the heard.) There's a lot to learn from the two articles. I was surprised that Paul Carlson seemed to berate himself for not calling out Mas Ayoob at the time but instead did it after the fact in his article. Carlson did not agree with Ayoob's 5th layer of safety. I must say neither do I. It was sheer luck, or as I like to put it, God's grace, that no injuries occurred. That was a good study into AD/ND. It also makes me appreciate the Skill Builder class I've been involved in lately. Everyone is willing to speak up when they see something that is not safe, share the concerns, give the instructions, make the corrections, and then move on with the class. It certainly makes you improve faster, and makes you want to improve faster, when you are training with better and more experienced shooters, as long as they are not afraid to speak up. Thanks again.


Thank you for your indulgence,

BassCliff
If you can find one, take the 8 hour NRA RSO course.

Here it's about $150 for the class and then $30 every two years to renew the credentials.

Its been more than worth the money for me on more than one occasion.

I do not recall seeing the "complacency" blog you described. If you have the source pm it to me, please.
 

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^ It's a part of the two write-ups that I cited in the previous post that he quoted (hypertext links). ;)

The gun going "click" instead of "bang" whether you're at a high-stakes competition or if you've unholstered it for self-defense is something that's all too easy to imagine, but we'd all do well to understand that even in the training context, death, grave injury, or just simple embarrassment ( LAYERS OF FIREARMS SAFETY: A TEACHABLE MOMENT | and Lessons from a Negligent Discharge at MAG-40 – Safety Solutions Academy are very candid and detailed looks at just such an incident that, luckily, resulted in no injuries or deaths ) can be the result.
Probably missed it because my word-wall had put you to sleep. 😬 :p
 
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