Firearms Training: The 9-Hole Barricade

In combat, or in any armed confrontation for that matter, you may find yourself unable to stand flat-­footed and launch rounds willy-­nilly as you have practiced at the range. Getting shot at will wake you up if you are lucky enough to survive the first volley.

The smart person seeks cover or concealment as fast as they can, but the fight isn’t over. You must get back into the fight, quickly. This is where the Viking Tactics (VTAC) Barricade comes in as a training tool.

The VTAC Barricade was designed to give shooters an easy, range-­worthy, training tool that can be used frequently to help develop the ability to return fire from awkward, nonstandard positions.

The barricades are made from wood, so accidently shooting a hole through it won’t be the end of the world, but failure to maintain muzzle awareness will be rewarded with a blast and a hole in the barricade.

All safety rules must be adhered to with reverence as you use these devices to enhance your survivability and combat effectiveness. These barricades are here to ingrain good practices and to help you learn and adapt to potential situations.

A quick history of the VTAC Barricade: I stole this idea from Bennie Cooley, a fellow shooting instructor and good buddy of mine. He had a great barricade design, but I didn’t think it was quite hard enough to shoot through. So, we added more holes that were more restrictive and at some crazy angles. So, there you have it; very simple. So, how can we use these barricades to enhance our abilities?

9-­Hole Drill

The 9-­Hole Drill is an easy exercise (ease is relative) that can be used to teach a few things to our shooters. You will take the VTAC barricade and fire one or two rounds through each hole in the barricade at a piece of steel positioned at 50 to 100 yards away.

For close-quarters-battle (CQB) distances out to 25 ­yards, paper targets work great if you want to score close-range engagements from cover. Normally, we use steel for quick feedback as well as ease of training. I prefer to have the steel at a minimum of 50 yards but 100 yards separates the best shooters from the pack.

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Using AR500 steel helps shooters get several repetitions in quickly on the barricade drill. The immediate feedback will get you moving in the right direction without the need to reset anything down range.

When used correctly, shooting steel is a great facilitator to speeding up the amount of time on the gun. Some would lead you to believe you don’t have to shoot a lot to become a good shooter. I disagree with this view. I believe repetition builds habits, good and bad. However, with live fire, shooters can see what works and what doesn’t. That ring of the steel (or the lack of) as well as the numbers on your timer tell the story. Neither will lie to you.

What are we trying to accomplish? 

First and foremost, we want to find the positions that work for you. I want students to experiment with different positions to see what works. You can also change the difficulty of the drill by adding support side shooting on the last low hole or shoot the entire drill from the support side.

Another goal with this drill is to get shooters to call their shots. With the act of calling shots comes speed in movement from hole to hole.

As we squeeze the trigger, we watch our sights. If the sights lift from an acceptable area of the target, which means you have a hit, quickly pull the firearm from the hole and get moving to the next position. I cannot emphasis the importance of this enough. Only those that can make this happen will get a good overall time on the drill.

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With steel at 50 yards, I want everyone to shoot this drill in under 60 seconds. More than likely, a shooter won’t make it on the first attempt. I have seen some students shoot one shot per hole (with good hits) and complete this drill in under 30 seconds. That is a smoking run.

I push shooters to move the firearm from hole to hole quickly. With a carbine, this translates into pulling it up over your shoulder, then driving the gun to the next target. If you leave the carbine on your shoulder and move your entire body to get to the next hole, it is going to be slower than driving the gun from port to port. This applies directly to movement inside of a vehicle, a confined space or around cover. Ensuring that your safety on the carbine is engaged before moving to the next hole. (Safety first.)

As you work your way around the barricade with the carbine, ensure that your barrel doesn’t touch the barricade. This will have serious accuracy and impact effects on even a stiff-barreled carbine. If you are shooting around the barricade with a pistol, use positions that don’t rest on the barricade. If you must get extra support to make a longer pistol shot, use your thumb or knuckles on the barricade for support. Do not use the dust cover or slide of the pistol.

The VTAC Barricade can also be used for simpler drills to increase speed and comfort shooting from the support side. Transitioning from strong to support side seems easy, but when you have to go back and forth from side to side, changing knees etc., it can become a workout. This is exactly why we practice. When you are feeling wore out, it is a good way to see how strong your position is. Smoothly moving from side to side is key.

Huffing & Puffing

Running from barricade to barricade during a scrambler is an eye opener. Once you are winded, you can stabilize your carbine or pistol to make that perfect shot by taking a deep cleansing breath as you come into the position and use body parts with the barricade for stability.

What I like to do on the front of the gun, is to make a simple “C-­clamp” effect with my hand. The rear of the carbine will be stabilized by keeping the my back knee up. This may be different than you have previously been instructed, but take the time and try it, you might just like it.

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If this seems all too easy, wait until Beginning Morning Nautical Twilight (BMNT), otherwise called “last light,” “sunset,” or “nighttime.” Now try the drill again.

You may have to use paper to see the targets since they will need to be a little closer for use with gun-mounted lights. If you are issued night vision goggles, the drill will teach you even more. With lights or infrared lasers, it isn’t only about the shooting, it is about how to activate these devices as you get into and out of positions, or how dust effects the ability to see with your devices. Learning how to deactivate the light or laser when you are moving from port to port could mean life or death in a real fight.

In the end, these drills build much needed combat confidence. Once you are comfortable with the VTAC 9-Hole Barricade drill, safely increase speed and difficulty. Try using the barricade as cover and stay behind it. Increasing the levels of difficulty is really the only way to get better. So, get out there and train!

From Guns and Ammo

AR Myths Debunked

The AR world has by far the biggest following of all the gun niches out there. With that, you get a large mix of people ranging from brand-new gun owners with zero experience to Special Forces operators having fun outside of work. However, too many people are learning from movies and television shows. There are a lot of rumors and just bad information being spread around by those who lack formal training.

Hopefully this will clear up a lot of the common misconceptions you may have heard and believed. There are countless misconceptions out there, but these are the eight most common sayings or beliefs that you may have heard, and I’ll explain why they are either true, false or somewhere in the middle.

AR Myths: “I’m going to pick out parts from different manufacturers and build the perfect custom gun.”

Sometimes true. Not all brands are created equal, nor with they always get along with each other. Unfortunately, there is a lot of trial and error involved here. Some parts will mix perfectly fine, but sometimes mixing brands won’t go very well. Your best bet here is to check forums or with the manufacturers themselves. If you are looking to mix two different brands together, chances are you aren’t the first one to try it. Check to see how it went for the people before you. Websites like ar15.com have forums for almost every possible category.

Most of the time you won’t have any problems and the gun will come together just fine, but it never hurts to double check before buying. While you don’t need to buy the most expensive parts out there to have a good rifle, there are definitely brands to shy away from for different reasons. So, while you may know someone who has a hobbled-together AR that works fine, it’s more luck than a tribute to the brands involved. Also, sticking with all mil-spec parts with help with compatibility.

AR Myths: “If I build a mil-spec carbine, I’ll have a replica of what the U.S. military uses.”

Not exactly true. There are actual mil-spec products you can buy, such as buffer tubes and buttstocks, etc., that will work on actual military M4s, but components like receivers aren’t going to be 100-percent “mil-spec.” Aside from an entirely different trigger mechanism (the military uses an automatic A1 setup) the very milling of the receiver itself is different—which is intentional. This keeps military guys from taking M4A1 parts home from work and dropping them into their civilian ARs to make them fully automatic.

There are minor differences here and there, but military and civilian models are fairly close. You will definitely need to pay attention to accessories like buttstocks. I have two Magpul stocks in my inventory that I used from my time in Afghanistan, but they won’t fit on my civilian ARs unless I switch to a mil-spec buffer tube. Just remember to double check before buying a product to know if it will fit.

AR Myths: “Bigger is always better, especially in terms of caliber.”

Not true. Don’t listen to all the haters here. Take the .223 Remington/5.56mm NATO, for example. People hate on it because of its size and say it lacks knockdown power. But you can get rounds that drastically boost its power and range. Special Forces have confirmed kills at 700 meters with a single 5.56mm shot.

Moving up in size, the 300 Blackout is good for suppressor use and packs a lot of power for shorter distances. The 6.8 SPC has medium-high power and a little better trajectory for medium ranges, and the 6.5 Grendel has medium-high power for medium to long ranges. Choose your calibers based on your personal needs, not on the biased opinion of others. Go with what will work for the primary role of your rifle. You may find that dropping down in caliber size is optimal.

AR Myths: “Using reloaded ammo is fine. Plus, it’s cheap!”

Mostly false. Is it really cheaper if you have to replace your gun because yours blew up when you pulled the trigger? This is an extreme example, of course, but it’s by no means unheard of. You know how a lot of guys with ARs wish they were “operators?” That applies here as well. While there are some out there who can reload well, too many cannot. Far too many.

Many learn to reload from YouTube, where some sloppy and carefree people do what they think is “good enough” work. But you can seriously mess up your gun or cause injuries with even the slightest miscalculation. And I don’t want to buy reloaded ammunition from the guy who doesn’t think it’s a big deal if his casings get just a little too much powder in them, or who doesn’t completely clean out his equipment between working.

It is generally a good rule of thumb to stay away from reloaded ammo all together. The only exception is if it is professionally reloaded through an actual company like Black Hills Ammunition.

AR Myths: “I can use Simple Green or other ‘all-purpose’ cleaners to clean my weapon.”

False! Just because you can buy it and use it doesn’t mean you should. Your weapons have special finishes to protect them. Whether your weapon is black, tan, green or any other color, you do not want to take away from the integrity of the finish. If a product wasn’t made to clean a gun, don’t use it. Many household cleaners have a lot of acidic chemicals in them that will slowly eat away at the finish over time.

The same goes for oil. You need to use the right oil. You wouldn’t put gun oil in your car, so don’t try to put car oil in your gun. In the military, we had different oils for different firearms. Small arms used CLP, the .50-caliber Browning M2 used LSA, and the MK19 40mm grenade launcher used LSAT. These guns could normally run with the others in a pinch, but it certainly wasn’t the best for them. Use the right oil type, with the right viscosity, for your firearms just like you do with your car. If you are a penny pincher, Rem Oil is super cheap and works just fine. You can then explore what else is out there later on that are a step up from that.

To the people who haven’t cleaned their guns “and it’s been 50,000 rounds”—just stop. No one believes you, and bragging about being too lazy to take care of your firearms isn’t something to be proud of.

AR Myths: “The shot should surprise you.”

Mostly false. A negligent discharge will surprise you. Aiming and taking down a target should not surprise you. You need to have full control over your weapon and know exactly when you are on target and when you want to fire. If you are in a hostage situation and there are other people around—especially in your own home, for example—you need to have full control of your trigger. Spend more time at the range and get comfortable with your weapon. Don’t let your weapon scare you. You should know when your trigger is about to break and let a round loose.

AR Myths: “I got a high-power scope, so I’ll shoot better.”

False. The scope doesn’t shoot the rifle; you do. I compare this to finances. If someone has trashy spending habits and loves debt, a consolidation loan or even the lottery won’t save them from bankruptcy—in fact, the opposite often happens. The crappy spending habits follow them no matter their status. The same goes with firearms. If you aren’t hitting a target with a short-range scope or iron sights, you won’t hit it with a longer-range optic. Chances are your fundamentals aren’t quite where you think they are.

 

source: tactical-life.com

Texas Gun Laws for this weekend.

Yes, open carry of long guns, including shotguns, AKs, and AR-15s, is legal in Texas. It also is legal to have a loaded handgun in your vehicle. Texas is a “stand your ground” state, where a person does NOT have the duty to try to retreat if they are threatened by Antifa before using lethal force in self defense.

THE MINDSET FOR HOME DEFENSE

Your “mindset” is the foundational part of your plan and will help you dictate and prioritize the steps you take in its formation. You have to decide who (notice I said “who” not “what”) you are willing to protect, how far you are willing to go to protect them and how best to go about it. You have to be clear on your mission so you can train in the skills you will need to succeed in it. Once you hear that “bump in the night” your chance to plan is over, it’s time to act and I guarantee you that you will act according to your plan. So if you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail.

Set yourself up for success by setting goals

So what considerations are needed to build a solid home defense mindset? It’s best to start with your goals, we need to keep those we love safe at home, so we put plans in place to address the most likely dangers we could face there. If you are protecting against home invasion you need to construct a well thought out and thoroughly rehearsed defense plan. Part of that plan has to be your state and local laws regarding self-defense. These laws vary sometimes drastically, from state to state so be sure to do your homework.

Your family has to be not just aware of but well drilled in their individual parts of the plan. Everyone should know what they are going to do and why they are doing it before the plan is in motion. For example, if you have children someone needs to get to them quickly while someone else calls the police. In my house I’ve had the most training (though my wife is pretty formidable as well) so it’s my job to get down the hall  past the kids room to cover the entrance to the hallway while my wife brings the kids to our bed room and calls 911. My kids are still too young to be an active part of the plan but once they are old enough they will be responsible for their own piece of it.

Getting your head around firearm storage and placement

Because speed will be a necessity, firearms should be staged safely but ready to hand and phones need to be accessible to contact law enforcement. Whatever your defensive tools are they should be in a place that allows you to get to them quickly even if you are still half asleep.

Firearm storage is a contentious issue in the gun community and there are many great options out there, but again, think through what your mission dictates and choose accordingly. Remember, part of being a responsible gun owner is safely storing or staging your guns. Just leaving your gun on the nightstand may not be the best choice, especially if you have young kids in the house.

My personal recommendation is to contact the awesome folks at Tactical Walls. They provide practical and stylish storage options that will integrate well with any home defense plan, but whatever storage option you go with, make sure it works for your plan to provide safe but also fast firearm access.

Everyone’s plan will look a bit different but they should all have similar components, but your plan doesn’t end there. If you want to keep your family safe, fire extinguishers should be charged and ready in the kitchen, first aid kits need to be stocked and easy to get to. It’s a big list, but with a clear and well thought out goal and a well-rehearsed plan home safety and defense is very achievable.

It’s all in your mind

Finally let’s talk about the fight after the fight. If you are forced to defend yourself and your family by employing force, there will be some sort of legal, mental and social fallout. Talk about the realities of violence with your family and research together what will happen after a use of force event. If you can afford it, I would suggest some type of insurance to cover lawful use of force. Also, you need to get right with yourself on use of force based on your own ethical and moral values.

Making sure all of these things are in place before you find yourself in a use of force situation will help you act quickly and decisively as well as help prepare you for everything that comes after. Overall, having a good defensive mindset means being honest and objective. We would all love to live in a world where nothing in this article was a necessity but unfortunately we do not. However, there is no reason to give in to fear or become overwhelmed! If you have a solid plan in place that can deal with the realistic dangers you may face, you have nothing to be afraid of.

source: guns.com

Gun Fights are Dangerous — Even if You Win

By Dave Dolbee in Safety and Training

 

An armed resident and an intruder were both killed. The intruder was killed by the homeowner. The homeowner was killed by a responding officer. Read the following account of what happened. The details are sparse, but the commentary regarding the dos and don’ts in the comment section should be revealing.

It’s about 1:30 a.m. The police have responded to an intruder call. As the police arrive on the scene, they hear gunshots. Fearing for the safety of the home’s occupants, the police rush in and encounter a man holding gun. The police shoot the man with the gun. In doing so, the homeowner, who had just shot the intruder, is shot and killed by the responding officer.

The investigation of whether the officer’s actions were justified is fodder for another place time. We simply do not have enough details, and I have no wish to foster a bunch of comments to bash those who run to, not from, the 911 calls. Nonetheless, this could be most any of us. Maybe you did everything right, perhaps not.

After all, the police shot the homeowner in his own house. Stress levels were high. The officer may not have properly identified himself. In the heat of the moment, adrenaline flowing, the homeowner may have panicked and leveled his gun at the responding officers after they identified themselves. We just don’t know, and there is little benefit to debating the right or wrong actions of those involved without complete details. However, that does not mean that this cannot be a catalyst for a learning moment.

Don’t Get Mistaken for the Bad Guy

You awake to a crash and people yelling. You realize an intruder is in your house. You hear a family member scream and gunshots. Fearing for your safety and that of your loved ones, you move to confront the intruder.

Your neighbors also heard the shots and screams and called the police who, unbeknownst to you, are only one block away. You see the intruder coming down the hall, alone. You confront him and are forced to shoot and kill him as the police pull up to the house

What happens next?

Improve Your Accuracy With These Drills

The purpose of dry firing is to help you develop the proper sight alignment and trigger control without burning up a supply of expensive training ammunition. Dry firing an unloaded firearm can be practiced for hours and will help you develop the most basic fundamental skills that will help you to become a proficient firearms operator.

When you dry fire any handgun you should make sure the firearm is completely unloaded, and you’re in a safe place to train. Once you confirm that your handgun is unloaded, insert an unloaded magazine. It also pays to buy plastic bullets called “snap caps” that allow you to safely dry fire a firearm for long periods of time. Using plastic look-alike bullets also makes it more realistic when training to execute a combat reload.

To dry fire your pistol, find a spot or a specific target on a nearby wall, line up the sights and slowly squeeze the trigger. Learning to focus on your front sight is crucial to properly developing your marksmanship skills. You must keep your sights properly aligned on your target while you squeeze the trigger with just the right amount of backwards pressure required to discharge a round of ammunition. Train yourself to cycle the trigger without pulling the pistol off target.

Learning to rely on your front sight combined with the proper cycling of the trigger is what allows you to keep all shots fired on target. Failure to achieve proper sight alignment and trigger control is the main reason why you fail to deliver the right shot placement on a target during a qualification session as well as during authorized uses of deadly force.

To exert the right amount of trigger control, it helps if you use the right part of your trigger finger to make contact with the trigger. Placing your trigger finger on the trigger of your service pistol, backup gun, or off-duty gun is model dependent in that different types of trigger systems require a different part of your finger to cycle the trigger.

Law enforcement officers who use a single-action pistol such as a 1911 should use the tip of their finger to apply backward pressure on the trigger to discharge this type of pistol. Striker-fired trigger systems such as the kind used on Glock pistols also require that you use the pad of flat skin on the tip of your trigger finger to cycle the trigger in a smooth action. The last thing you want to do is “slap” the trigger.

A double action/single action trigger such as the kind used on a Classic Series DA/SA SIG Sauer pistol requires that you use the area just behind the finger tip where the first digit or joint of your trigger finger is located. This is the same position on the trigger finger that you use to cycle the trigger on a DA revolver. The reason the positioning of the trigger finger is critical to delivering the right trigger control is because you need maximum pressure to cycle a DA revolver, a DA pistol trigger and a DAO trigger while less backward pressure is needed to cycle a striker-fired or a single-action trigger system.

If you have problems keeping your shots center mass, you’re probably “pulling” your shots to the left or right by jerking the trigger to one side or the other. This doesn’t mean you can’t rapidly fire a striker-fired trigger or a DA/SA trigger. All it means is there’s a technique involved that must be properly executed or the bullets you fire won’t be delivered into the right location of your target. Moving your wrist when you pull the trigger and flinching when you react to the force of recoil are other movements that can throw your aim off and make you miss the scoring area by a few inches or more.

To avoid what is commonly called “slapping” the trigger, you should reset the trigger for each shot. The main reason for using a trigger reset is so you can apply the smoothest follow through when you cycle a trigger on a pistol.

“Too many times shooters pull the trigger and then go to a ready position in the same motion,” Deputy Chris Martin, a firearms instructor with the Pinal County (Ariz.) Sheriffs Office, tells POLICE Magazine. “I tell my students they should do everything to fire another shot except pull the trigger. In other words, if the string of fire calls for three rounds, we should be ready to fire a fourth. If we as instructors can instill that mindset in our students we also avoid those shooters that focus on the target, looking to see where their bullet went.”

Deputy Martin and other modern day firearms instructors are training sworn personnel to discharge their firearms with the smoothest trigger pull and ensure the shortest response time possible to facilitate the firing of follow-up shots when necessary.

When revolvers were widely used in law enforcement, firearms instructors taught sworn personnel to use a technique called “ball and dummy” to deliver accurate shot placement without flinching or reacting negatively to the force of recoil and muzzle blast. The ball-and-dummy technique requires that you load several but not all of the cylinders of your revolver before you close and lock the cylinder. When shooters anticipate recoil and flinch, their hit potential suffers. The point of this exercise is to be surprised when your revolver discharges.

Training with the ball-and-dummy technique helps you to develop the proper trigger control when shooting a revolver. When you train, it’s important to use snappier .38 Special +P and .357 Magnum service ammunition.

The same concept applies to semi-autos. Every time you pull the trigger, focus on your trigger control, on your breathing, your sight alignment and even on the speed in which you cycle the trigger. It’s better to be a tad slow and hit what you are aiming at, rather than be the fastest shot in town and miss the target. Many LEOs will blast away when there’s plenty of time left in each stage of fire during qualification. Firing too quickly can create a bad habit and foster a conditioned response that you may take with you into the field when you’re forced to discharge a firearm during an authorized use of deadly force situation.

A “ready up” drill can be one of the best exercises to help you improve your proficiency with firearms. It works with handguns, patrol rifles, sub-machine guns, select fire tactical rifles and shotguns. To conduct a ready up drill, first load your pistol. Keep it holstered while you face the same target you use when you qualify.

For the drill itself, draw your pistol and fire one round as soon as your front sight covers the scoring area of the target. You can repeat a ready up drill until your firearm is empty at which time you should execute a combat reload and return to firing one shot at a time.

A ready up drill helps you to develop faith in the use of your front sight because you pull the trigger in the split second that your front sight covers the scoring area of a man-size target. When you repeat this process over and over again, you develop confidence in relying on your front sight each and every time you go hot to engage targets.

Ready up drills can be modified to prepare you to meet different types of threats. You should have some fun when you’re training, so don’t be afraid to be innovative, as long as you are safe in your execution. Every time you draw your pistol, fire one more round each time before re-holstering. A modified ready up drill helps you to get away from the typical firing of one or two rounds at a time. In real-life situations, you may be required to fire multiple stings of shots that involve different numbers of bullets.

To train for this situation, draw and fire different numbers of multiple rounds. For those targets that no longer score head shots you can fire strings of different numbers of rounds of ammunition into the chest or pelvic area of a man-size target. The point of this exercise is not to develop one conditioned response every time you draw and fire a handgun. The same goes for patrol rifle and shotgun training.

The beauty of ready up drills is that you can see your progress with every shot fired because these drills should be conducted at fairly close ranges not to exceed 15 or 20 feet when engaging paper targets. Shooting at these distances enables you to see where your bullets are impacting the target so you can adjust your fire accordingly.

As a law enforcement officer, it would be irresponsible to be mediocre shot and not try to improve your firearms proficiency. The time has come for law enforcement agencies to hold sworn personnel more accountable by requiring all LEOs to do more than barely qualify with firearms they carry on and off duty.

source: policemag.com

Surviving A Home Invasion

ShieldWall Editorial Note: Once, a group of Antifa decided to break into a home occupied by three skinheads in Pittsburgh. Their home invasion turned bad when my friend Mike Stehle came down the stairs opening fire, hitting one of them in the top of the head with predictable results. Sic Semper Antifa. Charges were dropped in the justified shooting, which you can read more about here. 

Imagine this scenario: You’re sitting at home watching reruns of ‘The Simpsons’ and there’s a knock at your front door.

“Who’s there?” you say. Hello, my daughter is selling Girl Scout cookies to raise money for military veterans and we’d like to show you her selection.”

Being the real patriot you are, you’re tempted to open the door to “do your part” – but are smart enough to look first and notice two tough-looking thugs with guns… and no little girl in a uniform.

You’re about to be the victim of a home invasion. So what do you do? Reach for your .45? Your shotgun? Claymore mine?

As a tried and true gun owner, your first instinct may be to start blasting away, but a home invasion requires tactical thinking BEYOND just the “point and shoot” reaction many gun owners have instilled in themselves from typical range training…

Here Are Four Tips To Survive A Home Invasion

  1. You need a “code word” for your family so that they all know how to spring into action, even if they’re in separate rooms from each other. Forget the Spec Ops secret code – “ESCAPE” works much better than “RED WOLF”. 

Simple…to the point.
  2. Have a “safe room” set up in your house where everyone can retreat to at the same time.
It needs to be stocked with several items to be prepared for surviving the upcoming fight, including a phone you can use to call law enforcement.
  3. DON’T leave your safe room!
 Assuming you have those you love with you, don’t be one of the idiots who puts on his cape and decides to go take the fight to the guys invading your home.
  4. Create a “fatal funnel”. Hunker down in a corner to the opposite side of the opening of the door so you have maximum time to make a shooting decision and are the last thing the home invaders see when busting in.
You have the advantage in this case because they have to assess the room before making a move (is anyone in the room; where are they; recover; reorganize; act)
. You just have to decide whether to shoot or not and you already know that either it’s a bad guy coming for you or the police coming to rescue you (hint: don’t shoot the police)
. Stay in place until the police arrive, even if you think the threat is gone.

The Harsh Reality Of Home Invasions

Look, home invasions don’t just happen in high-crime neighborhoods.

They happen EVERYWHERE (even in rural areas where home invaders know that there’s no one around to hear your screams).
OWNING a gun isn’t the same as knowing what to do with it tactically should you ever be faced with such a violent invasion of your castle.

And I’m not just talking about “point shooting” or getting a 1″ shot group between the eyes – I’m talking about all the other sneaky tricks that support your firing skills and are even MORE important.

source: moderncombatandsurvival.com

Tactical Pistol Refresher

Pictured: ShieldWall Network Coordinator Billy Roper exhibits his BUG (back up gun) for everyday concealed carry (ECC) usage. 

A difference exists between typical Bullseye marksmanship and tactical shooting. However, the fundamentals remain the same. How we apply them is where we see a division.

Bullseye shooting, or a focus on marksmanship, is typically accomplished on a clear, flat range with a small bullseye-style target set at a specific distance, such as the NRA B8 25-yard target featuring a 5½-inch bullseye. The shooter ensures their upright, Weaver-style, semi-bladed stance is perfect, and a natural point of aim with the target is obtained. Their firearm is presented in a methodical manner, and they take the time to ensure the sights are perfectly aligned. The trigger is slowly squeezed rearward as the shooter’s vision bounces back and forth between their sights and the target, making minute changes to their sight alignment and point of aim prior to the shot. When the shot goes off, the shooter prefers to be surprised. This minimizes any chance of anticipation or flinch, which could disturb their sight alignment. Bulls-eye shooters generally rely on an outside-the-waistband (OWB) holster and are not concerned with concealability or cover garments. They also typically reload while at the shooting bench.

The tactical shooter, on the other hand, chooses an athletic, forward-leaning, Modern Isosceles stance that allows them to aggressively shoot and move in a 360-degree environment without changing their shooting style. The tactical shooter relies on an acceptable sight picture given the distance to their intended target and engages that target with multiple rounds in a quick and efficient manner. The tactical shooter’s “bullseye,” if you will, closely resembles an 8-inch circle of an IDPA silhouette target or the 6-inch-wide by 14-inch-long A-zone of an IPSC or other humanoid target. Tactical shooters tend to shoot from concealment or from duty-style rigs and work on obtaining a full firing grip from the draw. They rely on a fast yet efficient draw stroke. Speed reloading their firearm is an important and practiced skill for the tactical shooter.

The following 11 tips will help you become a more skillful tactical shooter:

Stance
A good, forward-leaning, athletic stance is the foundation of consistent shooting. Your feet should be positioned approximately shoulder-width apart, with your non-firing foot a half step forward of your firing foot. For right-handed shooters, that means your left foot is forward of your right. Your upper body should be forward enough for you to feel the weight over your toes and balls of your feet, and your knees should be slightly bent. Ensure your upper body remains erect, and your forward lean is accomplished with your lower body and knees. You shouldn’t be bending at the waist when distributing your weight forward.

Clear your clothing
IWB—When the decision is made to draw, both of your hands should be working together to clear your cover garment if your pistol is concealed. If carrying on or behind the hip, use your support hand to lift your garment in an upward motion, and use your firing hand to begin sweeping your clothing in a rearward movement, completely exposing your holstered firearm. Don’t let go with your support hand.

AIWB—If carrying appendix inside the waistband (AIWB), use your support hand to grasp a handful of your cover garment and aggressively pull upward toward your sternum (the higher the better). Place your firing hand on your pistol grip.

OWB—If carrying outside the waistband (OWB) without a cover garment, move your support hand toward your upper chest while simultaneously swinging your strong hand rearward toward your exposed pistol, elbow facing the sky. Place your strong hand on the grip of your pistol.

Full firing grip on the draw
Wrap your strong hand as high on the grip of your handgun as possible, with no space between the web of your hand and the tang of the pistol, and obtain a full-firing grip. A full-firing grip is when your hand is positioned in such a way that it does not require any additional movement or fine-tuning once the gun is drawn. The grip should resemble a firm handshake when folding your fingers around the front strap of the pistol.

Draw, or remove your pistol from its holster, in an upward motion. Once it clears the holster body, rotate the grip of the pistol downward, leveling your barrel horizontally in the direction of the target. Begin pushing the pistol upward and toward the target like it’s riding on an escalator, not up toward your chest like an elevator. Release your support-hand grip on your clothing and allow it to meet with your pistol once it appears in your lower peripheral vision, and drive both toward the target.

Solid support hand grip
The key to shooting multiple rounds as fast and accurately as possible is an efficient support-hand grip. To obtain this, extend both arms toward your target and make a finger gun with your support hand. Point your support-hand finger gun at a 45-degree angle toward the ground. Open your support hand and use it as a clamshell, wrapping it around your firing-hand grip on the pistol; ensure that you do not change the angle of your support hand. The heel of your support hand should cover the exposed portion of your pistol grip, and your fingers should be as high beneath the trigger guard as possible. Your support-hand thumb should be pointed at the target, and your wrist should be nearly locked, relying on bone support instead of your tendons. This is your support-hand grip.

See your sights
If you’re able to attain full extension (i.e., your arms fully extended in front of you with your pistol pointed toward the target), your sights should be utilized. Always. When an efficient support-hand grip is obtained as outlined above, the muzzle of your pistol will not flip up vertically but will recoil rearward. This equates to your sights traveling on a horizontal plane, which your eyes can track as they move throughout the cycle of operation. During rapid-fire strings, your sights will consistently return to the position they were prior to the previous shot being fired, allowing for quick and accurate follow-up shots.

Move toward cover
When in an active shooting environment, it is always a good idea to practice moving toward solid cover. Cover will not only offer some level of concealment, but it will also stop bullets. Good examples of this are concrete or brick walls, larger trees and engine compartments of vehicles. When at the range, time should be allotted to practice shooting accurately on the move, both forward and laterally toward cover. Time should also be spent shooting from behind said cover in standing, crouching and kneeling positions, paying careful attention to minimize how much of your body is exposed when engaging targets.

Carry a reload
Always carry a spare. Extra bullets on-hand are only one of the benefits of carrying a reload. Most malfunctions can be tracked back to faulty magazines. A quick remedy to this is out with the bad, in with the good. Get that malfunctioning magazine out and get a fresh one in, and your functioning problems will likely be solved.

Index your magazine
A good rule of thumb is to carry your magazine(s) on your weak side and ensure the bullets are facing your belt buckle when positioned in a belt-mounted magazine pouch or pocket holster.

When it comes time to perform a reload, drop your support-hand palm onto the baseplate of your spare magazine. Extend your index finger along the front of the magazine as you draw it upward and out of its pouch. Whenever possible, the tip of your index finger should contact the exposed bullet at the top of the magazine.

Everyone can point at objects with an extended index finger, and we do so every day. This orientation allows you to point your finger, and subsequently your magazine, in the direction that it needs to go — into the magazine well. This should be so ingrained that it can be accomplished in all lighting conditions.

Cant your pistol
When it comes time to reload your handgun, pull it into your workspace, which is the area in front of your face. When retracting your pistol into this zone, your firing hand elbow should contact your lower ribcage and your elbow should be bent as if you’re at the apex of a bicep curl. You should be able to view your target through the trigger guard of your pistol, and the magazine well will be pointed toward your left pants pocket. In this position, the mag well will be open to accepting your reload.

Press the magazine into the grip until it stops. With upward pressure on the magazine, utilize your firing hand thumb to sweep the slide release downward to close the slide and chamber a fresh round. If your firing-hand thumb is not strong enough or long enough to complete this action, utilize your support-hand thumb to depress the slide release. These two methods are the quickest, most efficient techniques to reload your pistol.

Be efficient in your movement
Move in straight lines from Point A to Point B. Excessive movement is wasted time and motion. When your pistol clears the holster, it should be riding an escalator toward your target until it meets your line of sight, not being brought up to your chest and then forward in an L-shaped arch. The same is true with your reload: Your magazine should be correctly oriented to the left of your center line, bullets facing your belt buckle (for right-handed shooters), and follow a straight line out of your magazine pouch or pocket and into the mag well of your pistol grip.

Be sure of your target and what’s beyond it
You’re responsible for each and every round fired. Quickly make the determination to shoot or not. If the decision is to shoot, be aware of what is behind and to the sides of your target.

Read more: http://www.gunsandammo.com/shoot101/11-tips-for-tactical-pistol-shooting/#ixzz5K7z3BIJh

Proofing Self-Defense Guns

By Dave Dolbee in Safety and Training

 

Here is a little tale that teaches a good lesson. While at the local gun show, I found a sweet deal on a new compact handgun. Having plenty of experience with the brand, I decided to offer it a home. The safe where it would primarily reside ensured it would be in good company. Due to its diminutive size, I planned to ensure it received plenty of time in the fresh air filling a role as my BUG (Back-up Gun). My new BUG looked so great, two of my buddies decided they needed to buy its siblings, so after a bit of paperwork and a few days, we walked out with three identical handguns.

malfunction clearance drills

About a week later, I headed to the range with a handful of different loads. I needed to proof the gun before carry. My two buddies showed up, each carrying their new guns—unfired, loaded, and concealed. I did not agree, and wondered (silently) whether that was a smart idea…

Shrugging off the worries of what others were doing, excitedly I loaded up the BUG and started punching holes in the target. I made it through the first two rounds. After that, the gun would fire the round in the chamber, but failed to eject and therefore load a new round. I fieldstripped, cleaned, and lubricated the piece to no avail. I tried my spare magazines as well as proofing my magazines in the other two pistols.

A new pistol with a failure is a shame, but certainly not unheard of. While disappointing, I discovered the problem and quickly shipped it back to the manufacturer for repair. That is not the point of this story though, neither is the particular make or model.

How many times have you heard a friend or relative talk of owning a gun they had never fired, yet relied on it for defense? They bought the gun, loaded it, and locked it away for an emergency. Or, just as bad, they carried the gun for self-defense without function firing it to ensure it would tolerate a steady diet of the intended self-defense ammunition.

Walther CCP handgun showing a failure to feed

In manufacturing, failure rates are a fact of life. In fact, it is such an important part of reliable manufacturing; it is represented by the Greek letter λ (lambda) and calculated during the design process. This is important when we think of carrying a new gun before properly proofing or dumping it in a handgun safe by the side of the bed for home defense.

When the SHTF, you’ll be the one whose carcass is on the line, so be sure you are comfortable with the testing you perform. If you are unsure of how to, or how much, you need to test your handgun, the following regimen is a good minimum.

First, let me back up and caution you to not give up on a new gun too soon. While most firearms today are good to go out of the box, others will require 50-200 rounds to properly break them in and work off any rough edges. For this, I use less expensive range ammunition. It has the quality I need to trust the ammunition, without the added expense. Besides, to be dependable, the gun should shoot inexpensive ammunition as well as it does premium self-defense ammunition.

Practice trigger control at home with dry fire drills, and plenty of live fire at the range to proof the gun and hone your skills.

I start by loading all magazines to capacity with the ammunition I plan to load for defense. I fire the first 10-20 rounds one at a time, and check the gun and my grip after each shot. Next, I fire at least 10 rounds of double taps. After that comes at least 10 rounds fired while rotating the gun from 9 o’clock to 3 o’clock to ensure the pistol fires at any angle. All magazines are tested by shooting each, fully loaded, to ensure the magazine release holds when fully loaded and the last round feeds as well as the first did.

After passing, without a single failure to feed, fire, or eject, I give the pistol a thorough cleaning and proper lubrication. Finally, I fire a couple more rounds, just to ensure everything went back together properly, and before topping of the magazine and relying on the pistol for self-defense. Remember, this is a minimum. You’ll need plenty of practice to ensure you are fully comfortable with the handgun’s controls, reloading and sights. Live fire is always best, but dry fire practice is a critical element to developing these skills as well, and its free!

Have you ever carried or kept a firearm for self-defense without properly testing it first? How do you test your firearms? Share your testing procedure in the comment section.

They’re Coming To Us

Yesterday, April 14th, tens of thousands of 2nd amendment supporters held dozens of rallies at state capitols all across America. Most of them are emerging from Civic Nationalism into an understanding that the government is the enemy of the nation and its founding people. As such, they are radicalizing in our direction. We are actively recruiting them, true, but they are finding us just as rapidly, on their own.

The ShieldWall Network encourages you to find them at firearm shops, shooting ranges, gun shows, online, and in local NRA meetings. Cherry pick those most near to us in maturation of ideology. Bring them in. They will be standing with us when the time comes. They might as well go ahead and understand why, now.

Second Amendment rally in Hartford implores hundreds to ‘fight, fight …

22 hours ago – Bearing banners, placards and American flags, hundreds of gun-ownership and Second Amendment supporters gathered in front of the State Capitol in Hartford Saturday, protesting gun-control and anti-gun legislation here and elsewhere nationwide. The rally, organized by the Connecticut Citizens Defense League, a gun …

Second amendment rally held in Concord – WMUR.com

16 hours ago – Gun owners and Second Amendment supporters called on lawmakers to enforce current gun laws and refrain from creating newer, stricter ones.

Hundreds rally at Utah Capitol to support 2nd Amendment | Deseret …

16 hours ago – Hundreds of gun-wearing, Second Amendment supporters rallied Saturday at the Utah Capitol. The pro-gun rally lasted several hours, featuring speakers who argued the right to bear arms is under attack in the aftermath of mass shootings.

Gun rights supporters hold rallies at state capitols across US | Fox News

9 hours ago – Protesters have gathered in more than a dozen states to defend the Second Amendment. … The National Constitutional Coalition of Patriotic Americans sponsored the 45 planned rallies across the U.S. in support of the right to bear arms, according to the paper.

ktvb.com | Hundreds rally for Second Amendment in Boise

16 hours ago – BOISE – A rally in support of the Second Amendment brought a few hundred people to the steps of the Idaho State Capitol Saturday. Rallies in support of gun rights were planned for every state capital — held simultaneously across time zones. … “(A gun) is an inanimate object.

Second Amendment Rally Held In Nashville – NewsChannel 5 Nashville

12 hours ago – Saturday on the streets of Nashville, a group held a response to the gun control marchesseen across the country in March, including right here at home. This time, those taking a stand were people…

People rally for the second amendment at Americans for America – KFYR

16 hours ago – People rally for the second amendment at Americans for America. BISMARCK, N.D. … The Americans for America rally is being held at state capitals all across the country, where supporters voiced their opinions on the constitution and their rights.

Kentuckians rally for gun rights, Second Amendment in Frankfort

20 hours ago – People gathered outside the Kentucky Capitol, some with guns slung across their backs, as part of a national effort to rally for gun rights.

Hundreds gather in Harrisburg for gun-rights rally | PennLive.com

18 hours ago – Several hundred people gathered Saturday afternoon at a pro-Second Amendment rallyon the steps of the state capitol in Harrisburg.