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642 Club Part Three

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by fiVe, Nov 3, 2007.

  1. DAdams

    DAdams Member

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    Since we no longer live in FL, I am not as compulsive about light weight handguns as I used to be, when everything had to be something I could pocket carry, which meant below 15 ounces.

    In TN we have the option to open carry and also the weather is a bit more conducive to IWB/OWB, which opens up a whole new world of carry, since weight for the most part becomes almost a non- issue.

    For my 642 and 340 in pocket mode its the Mika Round cut and I also have the leather Speed Classic if I want to OWB.

    I have for some time wanted to try out a Blackhawk Serpa Concealment holster. Rebates work on me and oft times push me over the edge; in this case $10 back from Blackhawk and I purchased this one through Optics Planet. Free shipping. 25% off for their anniversary sale and $10 rebate, heck they almost had to pay me to take it!

    These holsters are very handgun design specific as they are molded reinforced plastic composites and the locking and release mechanism is designed for each type of specific model. This model says J Frame, right hand, not .357.

    Well I bought this for my M&P 340 (.357) but didn't read the fine print. Thought I would try it in something I knew it was designed for a 642.

    It comes with two OWB wear methods. Belt mount and alternately, remove the belt mount and put on the cant adjustable paddle. I tried the belt wear first. Nylon one inch and that didn't get it. Sticks out a ways and not enough stiffness to the belt. With a real belt, I'm sure it will be fine.

    I really wanted it to try the paddle concept anyway so a few minutes latter I had the paddle mounted, adjusted in a forward cant and put it on. Much tighter fit to the body and very comfortable. I have a bit of body padding which helps in the comfort zone. :rolleyes:

    I put a close fitting Columbia jacket on. At two o'clock you couldn't tell I had it on while zipped even with a full sized CT 305 grips. At three I could even leave the jacket open and it couldn't be seen. In TN who cares anyway. :uhoh: No brandishing here.
    I wore it the better part of the day and must say its is darn comfortable and of course with the 642 I could barely detect the weight. An upside.
    I have alot more room in my strong side pocket now as-well.
    If you search Serpa Holster on Youtube, there are number of features. Mostly semiautos, but you will get the drift.

    P1010001-3.jpg

    P1010003-3.jpg

    P1010006.jpg

    So far I would give this a 4.5 out of 5. I need to try wearing it while driving, but that's another reason I wanted to try a paddle. Easy on, and kind of easy off. YMMV.
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2012
  2. DAdams

    DAdams Member

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    Serpa Follow-Up

    Part of the commissioning of the holster is spraying the inside of the unit and particularly the latching system with Silicone and then wiping off any excess.

    I also noted in one of the Youtube demonstrations that when said demonstrator was unpacking his holster there was a bag with two clips. Hmmm.
    I don't recall seeing that. I looked at the holster and saw that apparently to save a penny on a bag, Blackhawk put the "tabs" in the slot on the front of the paddle not on the back, where they should start and adjusted accordingly.

    These tabs should be adjusted up and down (very important) to fit under the edge of your belt. There might be just a little space. These clips are extremely important as they are what holds the holster in place and keeps it from riding up during the draw process.

    One of the things I was doing wrong that the video pointed out is during the release process the pad of the index finger does not provide the release action, which slows you down, but roughly the inside joint of the index finger. This is another important aspect to speed up the withdraw process. When you clear the holster your finger is right along the side of the revolver, ready for the final step, on to the trigger and firing.

    I also adjusted some of the forward cant out of it for faster access, and draw.

    So I now have everything as it should be. I'm going to change my rating to a full five stars in paddle mode. It is now much more secure, and since I have been practicing, pretty darn fast.

    I sat at my desk with it on for a couple hours with no discomfort at the 3 o'clock position.

    S&W 642, Crimson Trace 305 (full size) grips and Blackhawk Serpa Concealment Holster. A very nice OWB carry combination.

    Here are a couple of additional shots with the M&P 340 with Crimson Trace 405 Grips (340 functions fine) in the Blackhawk Serpa.

    P1010004-2.jpg

    P1010006-1.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2012
  3. Lightsped

    Lightsped Member

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    Do these plastic holsters damage the finish on the 442/642 snubs?
     
  4. DAdams

    DAdams Member

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    I saw no evidence on my 642 and I ran it in and out about 50 times doing point and shoot dry fire drills working on some muscle memory for the holster release button.

    Actually there is little contact with the revolver frame it is more for trigger coverage and the support/suspension is at the mechanism point which is based primarily on the trigger guard.

    I looked down the barrel end of the holster (unloaded), and the barrel isn't in contact with the holster in the locked in position.

    I also ran my M&P 340 through the holster 50 times drilling, it has a black DLC coating saw no evidence of wear or finish damage.

    If you practiced 1000 times per year over 5 years???? I don't know what it might do.
     
  5. jake_yer_booty

    jake_yer_booty Member

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    J frame training: how do you do it?

    My first post here on THR, as you can see. I was drawn to the site primarily because of this HUGE J frame interest; I am posting today to discuss training methods.

    Over the last year or so I’ve made a mission of honing my skills with the 442. The first thing I did was go out and buy a second one. After a trip to a nearby S&W doc to smooth the action to match its older brother, it received a brief range checkout/ break-in and is now the primary carry gun. I carry Rem 158gr LSWCHP +P. (We could probably go on about why not something else, but it is a proven round and I have a ton of it). This gun gets carried almost all the time (Nemesis) and shot very rarely.

    The old one already had a number of rounds through it, and gets used more than most -- draw/presentation drills 2 or 3 times a week with some dry fire, 5 or 6 cylinders of rubber bullets every week and another 6-8 cylinders of 148 gr WC, plus 1-2 cylinders of carry load every two weeks.

    Why the rubber rounds? If you haven't actually practiced it, you'll be shocked at how slow you are to get the weapon out of pocket, on target with a suitable grip, and press off an EFFECTIVE first shot, particularly from a variety of physical circumstances (e.g, sitting). There are probably not many ranges that permit us to practice this with live rounds (I haven’t asked, so forgive me if I’ve got it wrong). With a combination of dry fire and rubber bullets I have managed to significantly improve the smoothness and speed of draw as well as the placement of the first shot.

    It's clear (to me) that far and away the most important variables are speed and accuracy of that FIRST shot. My cursory understanding of GSW effectiveness shows these factors to be perhaps more important than caliber and projectile metrics.

    As a CASA volunteer, I’ve become close to the Prosecuting team in my county and have had a chance to discuss a number of gunfight histories with them and the local gendarmerie. The recurrence of “complainants” dropped almost instantly by a heart/CNS hit from a Hi Point .380 or a Jennings .25 is common enough to at least anecdotally prove the point. The contrary case -- multiple .40 S&W rounds impacting solidly but in the wrong location, with the perp returning fire and ambulatory at his arraignment just three days later -- if anything further supports the perspective. Action beats reaction. Accuracy insures effectiveness. Speed is life.

    Obviously my “rehearsals” are happening up close (15 feet or less) on my homemade butcher paper targets; I use actual live rounds to address marksmanship skill at the range. I don’t treat the rubber rounds casually, but I am able to do things like draw and fire from supine with manageable hazard. (Full disclosure: early on I shot myself in the foot with one of the Meister projectiles. I wear boots and long trousers while training, so no worries, but it stung.) With rubber rounds you can also set up a “mook jong” of sorts, and get a feel for really up close punch-and-shoot circumstances, including contact shots. This is also educational: you will probably catch some cylinder gap stings, even from primer-only.

    [Right now, I’m down to my last 600 or so Fiocchi lead-free primers. If somebody knows a good source for the NT stuff, I’d appreciate a tip.]

    At the range I frequent, rapid fire is permitted, so I shoot from a low ready and engage multiple bull’s-eyes on a large target, everything as fast as I can and still call my shots. The exceptions are one or two “bill drills” (one with duty loads) with a minimal flash sight picture, and indulging in one slow-fire cylinder. I like to show off how well a snub can actually shoot. It’s a dream either with duty or wadcutters. All reloads are from speed strips, and done expeditiously. ALWAYS. Get used to the feel.

    That’s it. Hope I didn’t bore anyone. I’d sure like to hear how you train, as well as get some critiques from you.
     
  6. AStone

    AStone Member

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    ^ Well, I just gotta say, wow.

    Jake, welcome in. I, for one, am glad you checked in, and we're always glad when new THR'ers join via the 642 Club.

    I enjoyed reading your post. I think you make some excellent points, and offer some great suggestions. Confession: I've never even heard of anyone using rubber bullets for practice before. Those drills sound exceptionally reasonable (even if I don't know what they all are).

    I think this'll add a great new dimension to our club. We've talked about training before, but IIRC, nothing on this scale and complexity. I look forward to learning more.

    I want to reread your post, but I'll do that next time I visit --- busy night ahead for me, and it'll be an early one.

    Again, welcome to the club, and to THR, still the finest gun forum on the i'net.

    Nem
     
  7. 308win

    308win Member

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    Welcome jake_yer_booty. I am glad you found our 'little' group. Too many of the posts are of the 'what (bullet weight, ammunition manufacturer, holster, cleaning products, etc.) should I buy'. It is refreshing to see a training focused post and I hope it will elicit an informative discussion that we can all apply to become more proficient.

    So, what is a bill drill?
     
  8. AStone

    AStone Member

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    308, glad you asked that. I wondered too. :)
     
  9. jake_yer_booty

    jake_yer_booty Member

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    Re: Bill Drill

    Thanks for the kind welcome.

    To be truthful, we are not doing an actual Bill Drill at my range because that would require a start from surrender (hands above shoulders) and draw on the start signal. We start from low ready (my normal range doesn't permit drawing the weapon). But anyhow, legend has it that this test was invented by Bill Jordan. I can't vouch for that, but it would make sense.

    The target is a standard IPSC target at 21 feet. (Personally, I just use what's handy. The "9" ellipse on a B27C is about the same area.) The requirement is to keep all shots in the "A" zone, which is meant to be a simplified area representing the "vitals", more or less. It's roughly a 6" x 13" coffin-shaped polygon.

    On the signal, draw the weapon (or, in our case, raise it from low ready) and fire 6 shots as fast as possible; you MUST get them all in the A Zone. Obviously, in the case of the J frame, it's 5 shots. A really solid revolver shooter can do this from leather (6 shots) in under 3 seconds. There are guys on YouTube doing it under 1.5 seconds. Sounds like a Glock 18 with the happy switch on...

    I regularly get 5 hits from low ready in 3 seconds with carry loads -- again, there is no draw. I can (sort of) simulate it at home using a 5" circle at 10 feet. Rubber bullets aren't too accurate at 21 feet. In this case, I do the draw from pocket, and still manage 5 hits in a bit over 3 seconds. Of course, there's no recovery from recoil, so it's not entirely representative.

    The Bill Drill is an all-out, "this guy is coming at me with worst possible intent, I have to stop him NOW" kind of practice. Obviously, it's not a successful multiple attacker tactic. But it is a great weapon control test. And it's fun.
     
  10. AStone

    AStone Member

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    And then there's Jerry M who can do 12 from low ready in the same time ... with reload.

    Of course, we with the x42's could only do 10. But it's still a worthy goal.
     
  11. DAdams

    DAdams Member

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    Welcome aboard Jake. I remember the fiVe drill (Old Fuff I think brought it to our attention). Five shots, five yards, five seconds. Of course hitting the target always helps so I guess another five could be added.
    I was doing something similar dry firing my J Frames from a couple holsters, last week. I used the laser to hold to the designated zone.
    Muscle memory and point shooting, drill, drill, drill.

    Well it's that time of year.

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  12. AStone

    AStone Member

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    ^ Hey, didn't I just see you posting somewhere about camp lanterns?

    Naw, must be confusing you with somebody else. ;)

    Speaking of fiVe, where is that boy? :scrutiny:
     
  13. DAdams

    DAdams Member

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    Spreading joy across the Interweb.
     
  14. Old Bull Lee

    Old Bull Lee Member

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    Hi Jake - How do you grip the weapon in your pocket when you draw?

    I've tried the Ayoob method with the hand knifing in and the thumb behind the hammer, but found I can actually get a full combat grip sans trigger finger and draw a lot faster.
     
  15. jake_yer_booty

    jake_yer_booty Member

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    Re: Drawing grip

    Lee --
    First of all, the trusty old disclaimer: I’m no expert, although I pretend to be on one the internet. Masaad Ayoob knows way more about this stuff than I do, so I don’t claim a superior perspective to his. OK, that’s out of the way.

    I only feel comfortable getting a firm shooting grip on the revolver before initiating the pull. Even just running against a timer, which is infinitesimally less harrowing than a grave existential threat, I just can’t manage anything more complex in the drawing motion. That includes simply repositioning my thumb before the shot. (Maybe my fine motor control isn’t as good as the next guy’s. So be it.)

    But some of this is probably related to my old competitive shooting habit. Back during the Punic Wars when GMCS Holder taught us how to consistently grip the High Standard .22, you would grasp the pistol by the barrel and frame (pointed safely downrange, of course) with the weak hand, and push it firmly against the palm and web of the open shooting hand, in exactly the same place every time. Then, allow the shooting hand fingers to embrace the pistol grip in a firm handshake.

    Even in a rapid draw, pushing the grip firmly into the shooting hand before I pull it up feels right to me. I basically do the same thing when drawing. I don’t reach in and “grab” it. In effect I jam the weapon INTO my shooting hand. I have been doing this forever. I do it quickly, although it isn’t as quick as some other methods, and my timer proves it. But I can’t unlearn it. [ETA: Index finger POINTING and not engaging go button, of course]

    There is an upside, IMO. I believe weapon retention is FAR better if you are tangled up with someone very close-up, a very probable situation if you are forced to produce your weapon. I took a half day course on this (using my dehammered Ring’s Blue Gun as a simulator). If you don’t have a strong grip FROM THE START, you are likely to lose your piece.

    Now, as a result, I “choke up” on any pocket-carried weapon I carry. This is the reason I just cannot consistently produce a self-loader and not risk a jam induced by slide blockage -- thus my choice of a hammerless revolver. (I think this may be a problem for more folks than me, but if they don’t practice with time pressure in a variety of positions they won’t know.)

    Again, “choking up” has an upside as well in contact shooting. If you have an opportunity to go one-on-one with a heavy bag, load up with snap caps, get in close, and jam that J Frame into your stuffed adversary. Jam it up and in HARD, held at waist level, away from his hands. (You want the bullet to have a long journey from his viscera up through the diaphragm and northward.) The choked grip is secure and natural.

    If you have a chance to initiate a two-handed grip, then the Miculek method (wrapping the supporting hand thumb up and over to help minimize muzzle flip) is a natural follow-up. There is a “habit hazard” in this, of course, if you are also an autopistol shooter, and you revert to this grip in a moment of high pressure/low attention. Ouch.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2012
  16. Old Bull Lee

    Old Bull Lee Member

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    No pressure, I only asked you because I asked this question once before and no one had any input. It seems like we are pretty much doing the same thing.

    I don't choke up that much (with a bigger aftermarket grip it doesn't seem quite as necessary) but I do force the weapon into my hand before drawing, and big pockets give you more room to do that.
     
  17. jake_yer_booty

    jake_yer_booty Member

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    Sorry if I qualified the answer more than necessary. Some of the forum attitude out there [ETA: not here] is a bit on the righteous side, so I wanted to cover potential issues out of the box. I think Ayoob is a neat guy, and I have enjoyed his writing and his videos. I think “In the Gravest Extreme” is still a relevant read. Ayoob has a solid following (deservedly), and I worry that saying “well, I don’t do it like he does” will attract harassing fire. I appreciate your gentleness.

    In a nutshell, I find discreet and effective pocket carry and deployment to be a significant challenge. The weapon must be really small and light, with all the attendant complexities (recoil, sight radius, limited capacity…) Presentation is difficult, exceeded only by ankle carry. Honestly, with all respect to KelTecs, Kahrs, LCPs, etc., I really don’t think anything can top a lightweight hammerless J Frame in this application.

    I pocket carry when there isn’t another option. When I can assuredly conceal a belt-holstered pistol comfortably for the day, I will always, ALWAYS choose my G19. But those circumstances are the lesser fraction of my days, at least currently. Think of all the mainstay CCW/CHL courses built around belt-holstered, medium-frame carry, and how surprisingly few focus on the carry methods that most of us employ. The knowledge shared in a forum like this (i.e., without so many keyboard commandos and self-styled experts) can really be helpful.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2012
  18. Old Bull Lee

    Old Bull Lee Member

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    I'm an Ayoob fan myself. Like the best writers/instructors in self-defense, he encourages independent thinking and experimentation. IMO not doing it exactly like he does is truly in the spirit of what he does, if that makes any sense.

    And amen to the rest of your post.
     
  19. 308win

    308win Member

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    Jake - Rest assured that we have our share of keyboard commandos and self styled experts; moderators aren't exempt either.

    Your observations about training how we carry is right on. I also carry a S&W auto when at all possible and when I carry my 642 it is OWB 95% of the time these days. I know I should train more with the 642 and I know I should practice more with a pocket carried 642.
     
  20. RevDerb

    RevDerb Member

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    Picked this one up a couple of weeks ago (traded an LCR .38 spl for it) and added the DeSantis Hip Clip which makes it ultra concealable which is very desirable in my profession. ;)
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    DSCN2962.gif
     
  21. DAdams

    DAdams Member

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    May you enjoy health, home and hearth for the Thanksgiving Holiday.

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  22. Camjr

    Camjr Member

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    Well, I finally wandered back over to the club. Never let my membership lapse, but haven't been visiting much. I need to change that. The 642 still remains cozy in either a Mika round cut or a Nemesis depending on the pants of the day, and it's diet of 135gr +p Gold Dots still keeps it healthy.

    I hope each and every one of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, celebrating what you have to be thankful for. One of the things I'm thankful for is Christmas shopping with a 642 in the pocket...

    Cheers!
     
  23. DAdams

    DAdams Member

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    Thanks for stopping by camjr.
    Glad to see you are still a X42 carrying member.
    That's a substantial carry combination.
     
  24. hwmoore

    hwmoore Member

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    don't go to walmart

    apparently you need a small revolver in your pockets to go shopping at wally world on black Friday
    H
    a pistol is like a visa card, don't leave home with out it
     
  25. rayban

    rayban Member

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