What should I use for IDPA?


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Bigchessie
February 2, 2011, 01:12 PM
I have finally decided to give IDPA a shot at a local club I belong to. So my question is what would be best suited as a beginner weapon? Here is what I have "on-hand".
1) Para 14-45
2) Kimber Custom II
3) H&K Full Size 45

If needed I would consider picking up another handgun to just use for competing. Is the 45 something that most guys would not use? I know I need to do more research on the rules and such and what weapon falls into what class. But just looking for some suggestions to what I should start off with. I am going to reload so that cost of ammo won't be much of a factor.
Thanks! BC

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Bigchessie
February 2, 2011, 01:13 PM
What the heck is IDAP:confused::confused:
I guess I'm starting my own personal competition :banghead:

ny32182
February 2, 2011, 02:58 PM
Your best bet is likely going to be to enter CDP class with the Kimber; you wouldn't be at any real equipment disadvantage there and will only be shooting against other .45's. I think you could take the HK into that same class too. Before long you will need to confirm that those gun(s) are within the size/weight rules.

Jim Watson
February 2, 2011, 03:19 PM
Whichever one you
a. shoot well
and
b. have at least three magazines and a strong side straight draw holster for.

The PO and Kimber would naturally enter in CDP with the rest of the single action .45s.
The H&K could shoot there or if you wanted to go with a double action first shot, in SSP versus all the Glocks.

But don't worry about such fine details, just go shoot.
Look at www.gadpa.com and read the new shooter introduction and briefing under the IDPA tab there. Their stuff is a lot clearer than the rule book.

Bigchessie
February 2, 2011, 03:40 PM
Thank you for the advice. I have been considering doing this for a couple years now. Just haven't been able to make myself go "pull the trigger" so to speak.:o
I would like to think that I am a decent shot and put in as much ranch time as the average guy. But the hesitation is of course being the "new" guy and holding everything up or totally looking foolish:uhoh: Decided this would be the year though I WILL step up to the plate and give it a go.

ny32182
February 2, 2011, 03:49 PM
The first match can be a humbling experience, especially for those who go in with an ego telling them they are a hotshot. The best idea is to not do that. (Edit: I'm not saying you sound that way; it is more of a general comment.)

Nothing wrong with looking at the scoresheet afterward, but during the course of the first match, don't worry about trying to keep up with any faster shooters that might be present; just focus on doing everything deliberately and safely. The only thing anyone wants to see out of a new shooter is safe gun handling, and this will be discussed at the new shooter briefing. After that you can get into the competetive aspect if you wish.

Bigchessie
February 2, 2011, 04:17 PM
I have looked over some of the COF from some of the events. I hope this doesn't sound to naive, but it seems a little over whelming. Do you have someone there to point you in the right direction or tell you what you should be doing? I guess I may be jumping the gun with a lot of these questions. Would it be better to just go and watch a few before actually trying it out. Just to get a feel for how it is run and how guys do it? Thanks again for the advise. It sure it a lot easier to set here behind a keyboard and receive advise without the fear of looking to foolish.

David E
February 2, 2011, 04:30 PM
Most clubs have someone available to guide you thru, so to speak.

Don't go watch it, go SHOOT it.

Tell them it's your first match. Don't let them make you shoot first or until you are ready. Again, tell them you're new.

Realize that you will not win the match your first time out, so relax, be safe, and have fun!

ny32182
February 2, 2011, 04:34 PM
No worries about looking foolish. As long as you keep your gun pointed down range and follow the range commands safely, you will not look foolish to anyone with a brain at your first match.

You can go watch one first; many people do that to acquire a certain comfort level before shooting. Personally I don't think it is necessary, but there is nothing wrong with it. Chances are you will wish you brought your gun about 5 minutes after the match starts.

Every club I've ever seen has a five minute "new shooter briefing" prior to shooting where they will explain the general ground rules. Really, it all boils down to "keep your gun pointed down range, and don't take it out of the holster until instructed to do so". Most clubs have a designated safe area to put on your gear and kind of frown of people messing with their gun in the parking lot... just a heads up on that. When you arrive at your first stage, just tell the SO you are new and would like to be rotated down in the shooting order. This will give you a chance to watch several people go first. Then just do what they do, at your own comfortable/safe pace. If you have any questions, ask. By the time it is your turn, you will have seen it done enough times to have a good idea of what to do.

You will NEED (none of this stuff is optional): Gun, enough mags to hold at least 18rds, strongest belt you own, strong side belt mounted holster (IWB or OWB is fine), concealment garment that covers the gun (printing is fine), Eye/ear protection, and enough ammo to cover however many stages they are shooting... usually 100rds will do it for a club match.

Jim Watson
February 2, 2011, 05:42 PM
There is no reason to worry about looking dumb. You will, but so does everybody else at one time or another. I completely bombed the first stage on Monday and I have been shooting IDPA since 1997. As long as you are safe and make a serious effort to follow rules, procedures, and stage instructions, you will be made welcome.

Check the site I gave above and also consider my Four Priorities:

1. Be safe. Don't hurt anybody, don't scare anybody, and don't get disqualified for safety rule violation.

2. Execute the Course of Fire. Pay attention to the directions, watch a more experienced shooter, and shoot it like you are supposed to. Minimize (you will never eliminate) the procedural penalties.

3. Hit the target. Hit the target in the middle (or head when called for.) You cannot miss fast enough to win.

4. Move along. Your time from the Go buzzer to your last shot is your base score. Don't run before you walk, LITERALLY, but don't dawdle around.

VT Deer Hunter
February 2, 2011, 06:07 PM
What ever your better at shooting/controling or comfortble shooting.

RH45
February 4, 2011, 07:43 PM
It is a lot easier to hit a reload with the double stack magazines vs single stack magazines. Just download them to 8.

pittspilot
February 4, 2011, 08:12 PM
All of the matches that I have ever shot have been very beginner friendly as long as we know that you are a beginner.

Show up early and let them know you are new. They will take care of you. You will discover that it is a ton of fun. Even when you screw up, and you will.

Bigchessie
February 4, 2011, 10:00 PM
Went out and shot a couple hundred rounds with both the Para-14-45 and H&K V1. Pretty much am loving the HK and moving the Para down the list. Going to put a couple rounds down range with the Kimber beside the HK and see what pans out. Figure I will narrow it down to the "one" and shoot at least a few times a week until the weather breaks, I think that will go a long way toward my 1st trip out. Hope to just relax and enjoy myself. Thanks for all of the advise

Jim Watson
February 4, 2011, 11:45 PM
There is a lot of stuff you can practice at home dryfire while it is snowing at the range.

IDPA requires drawing from concealment most of the time. So you need to know how to clear a jacket and draw the gun cleanly and safely. Oh, yeah, you have to get the gun IN the holster without sweeping yourself as you hold the cover garment out of the way.

Look at some videos and read the rules. You will frequently be shooting from behind cover. High cover you can stand behind but must have your feet and at least half of the rest of you behind cover relative to the target(s). Low cover you must kneel behind and lean out around. Your family will think you eccentric as you get behind the recliner and snap in at the villans on TV, but it will be good practice.

You will have to shoot on the move. Dryfire while walking and concentrate on smooth movement so the sights don't bob around tto much.

You will have to reload. Practice ejecting the empty magazine, inserting a fresh one, and closing the slide. Some dummy cartridges will help weight the magazine and give a natural feel as the slide chambers one. You have to conceal your reload magazines and dig them out when needed, too. You will occasionally have to make a tactical reload or a reload with retention. Study the requirements and practice.

You have two hands. Most of the time you can shoot with both, but there will be strong hand only and weak hand only requirements. Aim lefthanded and watch the wobble, whee!

That is DRYFIRE. Be extremely careful not to have live ammunition even in the same room after you have checked the gun and magazine three times.

Bigchessie
February 6, 2011, 08:41 AM
There is a lot of stuff you can practice at home dryfire while it is snowing at the range.

IDPA requires drawing from concealment most of the time. So you need to know how to clear a jacket and draw the gun cleanly and safely. Oh, yeah, you have to get the gun IN the holster without sweeping yourself as you hold the cover garment out of the way.

Look at some videos and read the rules. You will frequently be shooting from behind cover. High cover you can stand behind but must have your feet and at least half of the rest of you behind cover relative to the target(s). Low cover you must kneel behind and lean out around. Your family will think you eccentric as you get behind the recliner and snap in at the villans on TV, but it will be good practice.

You will have to shoot on the move. Dryfire while walking and concentrate on smooth movement so the sights don't bob around tto much.

You will have to reload. Practice ejecting the empty magazine, inserting a fresh one, and closing the slide. Some dummy cartridges will help weight the magazine and give a natural feel as the slide chambers one. You have to conceal your reload magazines and dig them out when needed, too. You will occasionally have to make a tactical reload or a reload with retention. Study the requirements and practice.

You have two hands. Most of the time you can shoot with both, but there will be strong hand only and weak hand only requirements. Aim lefthanded and watch the wobble, whee!

That is DRYFIRE. Be extremely careful not to have live ammunition even in the same room after you have checked the gun and magazine three times.

That is some stuff that I never even thought of! Thank you for the tips! I'm going to have to find some dummy rounds. I have seen "Snap" caps, are those the same? I will do a search for "dummy" rounds but if anyone has a link to some that are reliable and reasonable in price that would be great. I love it when a plan comes together! Thanks! BC

Bigchessie
February 6, 2011, 08:53 AM
http://www.copquest.com/38-5020.htm

CZ223
February 6, 2011, 09:50 AM
I am surprised that it took 15 posts to say what Jim Watson said. All good advise there. Really work on the reloads, both from slide lock and a Tactical reloads with retention. There are several good videos of people doing these on you-tube. Lots of people work on their draw and not on their reloads. Reloading is where you will save the most time when it is done right. I will bet that before I shot my second match, I did at least 1000 reloads both tactical and from slide lock over my bed. Practicing over the bed saves wear and tear on the mags when you let them drop free. Don't try to be fancy with your tactical reloads at first. Remove the mag and put it in pocket then grab you new mag and insert it into the gun. Some of the faster guys will have the spare mag in their hand, pull the old one, and insert the new one. This is not a begginer move. As for the draw remember, and I really hate to quote Marky Mark Wahlberg here, "slow is smooth and smooth is fast". Work on doing everything the same every time. Speed will come.

As for your equipment, I started with a 1911 and I haven't seen the need to change yet. I carry a 1911 every day so that is what I shoot. I use all the same equipment. If you carry, or are thinking about starting, I would suggest you do the same. They say that familiarity breeds contempt but it can also be said that it builds proficiency when it comes guns and gear. If you decide to use a IWB make sure that it stays open by itself. Get something like a Milt Sparks VM2. If you don't have a double mag pouch, most any will do, but I pefer one that holds both the mags at a forward cant. As I said, I carry what I use and this helps conceal when seated. It also helps when pulling the from the mag pouch. Get some cargo pants and shorts with large pockets. This will aid in tactical reloads when you have to retain the partial mag. A 511 style vest seems to be all the rage but, again, wear what you are comfortable with. Remember, unless you are out to be the fastest kid on the block, you can make this game your own and shoot it whichever way works best for you. I use it as training tool to keep in practice with what I carry. I usually end up in the upper third of the pack despite not using a high capacity 9 with the slickest, fastest holster around.;)

bluesteel63
February 6, 2011, 10:07 AM
This may be a dumb question but during the USPSA/IDPA shoots, after your round is complete do you have time to retrieve your brass before the next shooter is up for their turn?

ny32182
February 6, 2011, 11:58 AM
Depends on how fast the stage is getting reset and what kind of match it is.

At a club match I usually just grab a few cases while taping between each shooter. Most sanctioned matches are "lost brass", since keeping everyone moving is critical to finishing on time.

OWB holsters are faster. IWB are more "carry realistic" of course... you can pick your gear based on your shooting goals. I shot casually for a few years with an IWB, and then moved to an OWB and several other optimizations when my goal shifted to winning.

If you live in a hot part of the country, leather may not be the best. If you are going to sweat on it it is just a matter of time. I went to 100% synthetic materials partly for this reason.

Chances are if you stick with it your gear will evolve a little over time to suit your own needs and taste though.

If you are going to buy dedicated gear right now, make sure it is legal... regarding forward cant mag holders, I can't cite a rule off the top of my head, but I've never seen ANY top IDPA shooters using these. That tells me they are either no advantage, or not legal... more likely the latter.

If you plan to shoot regularly the best thing to do is just go shoot with what you have and let your gear evolve on its own.

Jim Watson
February 6, 2011, 11:51 PM
Mag carriers are limited to a 10 degree slant.
Read the rules before you buy anything but rather plain vanilla equipment.

Pick up your brass when done practicing.
Some matches allow it, some don't; especially those that have been held up by brass rats.

bluesteel63
February 7, 2011, 07:56 AM
haha what is a brass rat?

Jim Watson
February 7, 2011, 09:30 AM
A brass rat is somebody picking up empties when it inconveniences the rest of the squad and/or picks up many more than he shot.

bluesteel63
February 7, 2011, 09:31 AM
lol yea I got ya I was thinking that but wasnt sure.

rduckwor
February 7, 2011, 11:31 AM
Jim Watson gave you very good advice. He's an old pro at this. The only thing I can add is that be certain you listen to the S.O. and BE SAFE. Nothing turns fellow shooters off faster than a noob that knows it all and isn't safe on the range. Pitch in and paste targets. If you want to pick up brass, don't slow up the match and pick it up for others as well. If you really want bonus points and good vibes, show up early and ask if you can help set up the courses. Good chance to look them over and get expert reads on why thing are the way they are.

Good guys get lots of help for their matches. Plenty of advice will flow your way. Be receptive and listen.

Have fun and good luck,

RMD

Hk Dan
February 7, 2011, 12:00 PM
Assuming that you have as much skill with each gun and you have the requisite 3 mags, holster and mag holder for each, I'd go with the HK or the Para and shoot in CDP (8 round limit for the mags). Kimbers do NOT impress me, and I have seen more of them in the dead cockroach position at a match than any other gun out there.

The rub is that you CAN continue a match with a second gun if the first one dies, but it has to be the same caliber and action as the first one. You're SOL there, so I'd go with the guns that look like they'd make it--the HK and the Para.

Dan

brnmuenchow
February 7, 2011, 12:22 PM
Take a look at what STI has to offer they have some great models, and I believe they have a few choices when it comes to the competition shooter in that league.

Bigchessie
February 9, 2011, 02:26 PM
Assuming that you have as much skill with each gun and you have the requisite 3 mags, holster and mag holder for each, I'd go with the HK or the Para and shoot in CDP (8 round limit for the mags). Kimbers do NOT impress me, and I have seen more of them in the dead cockroach position at a match than any other gun out there.

When I shot the HK and the Para side by side, I was a little disappointed in the para. My Buddy was shooting with me, he is active military and a small arms specialist-blah-blah-blah So I wanted him to shoot along with me to eliminate "my" shooting errors while trying to see just how accurate they would shoot. We both shot a 12 round string @7 yards with the HK that could be covered with a quarter. We both shot a slightly larger group with the Para but was down and right. We plan on shooting the Para from a bench and adjust the sights and shoot them both again. The next time we shoot we will include the Kimber. My question is this. Does accuracy really play a large part of the decision with which I should use or does it boil down to using the one I am the most comfortable with? I'm sure the Para will end up shooting on par with the HK once adjustments are made. Unknown what the Kimber will do yet. Mind you this was just plane jane take your time and shoot the best we could. When we tried to shoot at different targets and a little faster, the results were somewhat embarrassing. :banghead:

Sam1911
February 9, 2011, 02:44 PM
IDPA is going to favor whatever gun you can manipulate (draw, aim, fire, recover sight picture, reload, etc.) fastest -- assuming remotely reasonable accuracy levels.

The only real way to determine which that is is with a shot timer. When you shoot the guns in practice or in matches and you see which gun is getting you the fastest (accuracy-corrected) times, then you'll know which one you should shoot.

On the very face of your description -- one shooting quarter-sized groups and one shooting groups that are "a little larger" -- there is not enough information to go on to make any kind of informed choice. That kind of accuracy difference is irrelevant to practical matches.

Jim Watson
February 9, 2011, 03:03 PM
Certainly accuracy is a bonus but IDPA targets are (usually but not always) large and close.
PRACTICAL accuracy with the timer going is what counts.

When we tried to shoot at different targets and a little faster, the results were somewhat embarrassing.

Don't feel embarassed, everybody had to start somewhere, usually at the bottom.

Bigchessie
February 10, 2011, 09:39 AM
Got to shoot a few rounds with the Kimber. Actually felt pretty good in my hand. Also shot the Para a few more times. Didn't get a chance to shoot as much as I would have liked, it was a whopping 10 degrees and windy:what:. It is supposed to warm up into the 40's next week, so hope to get some decent shooting in. Thanks to everyone for all of the tips and advise. I just need to figure out which weapon I'm going to go with and start putting all of this advise to work. I am also going to have to start reloading again. Does anyone have a recipe that they would like to share that works well for them? I was thinking that a "lighter" load might help with getting back on target. Thanks again, BC

Sam1911
February 10, 2011, 09:43 AM
I think something like 4.0-4.2 gr. of Clays and a 200 gr. cast SWC is the load for CDP.

Just got to get that 200 gr. slug moving at a bit over 825 fps. That's not hard to do with a lot of powders, but Clays is very clean and easy to work with.

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