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Do you count rounds as you shoot?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by berettaprofessor, Feb 3, 2013.

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  1. Teachu2

    Teachu2 Member

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    I do for myself and anyone I'm supervising. I never depend on the accuracy of my count (the four rules LWAYS apply) but it's so automatic at this point that I'm not even consciously doing it much of the time.
     
  2. chrisb507

    chrisb507 Member

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    Only in two cases: 1) Shooting a rimfire or 2) As part of a class. I've taken two classes with multiple students that have guns with varying capacities. So between drills, someone may be at 15+ rounds, and someone might be out. If the drill is to shoot 3, and I only have 1 left, I need to know that ahead of the "exercise."

    This thread got me thinking of this quote: "I know what you’re thinking: 'Did he fire six shots, or only five?' Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I’ve kinda lost track myself."
     
  3. Grunt

    Grunt Member

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    On a firing range, counting rounds may work but it doesn't work so well when somebody is shooting back at you. Somehow the 6-9 round burst you thought you fired was in reality half the belt. Been there, done that so no, I don't bother counting rounds.
     
  4. David E

    David E Member

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    What is your classification?

    Not necessarily, but slide forward is preferred.

    Not true. You're cluttering your mind with superfluous information.

    Negative.

    You are assuming that Rob counts each shot because he teaches to reload with the slide forward. Slide forward on loaded chamber is preferable to slide locked back, as I acknowledged.

    The typical USPSA stage requires 8 rds or less per position. If there are 4 paper targets, you engage each one with two shots. Where is the need to count anything on that first array? If you're running a single stack 1911, you move, you load. Ok, so the next position has a Texas Star, requiring 5 hits, one for each steel plate. But once you hit one, the star spins, making subsequent shots more difficult. Your gun holds 9, minus hits required, 5, = 4 spare shots. You don't count your shots as you go, you count misses if and when they happen. If I miss 4 times but still have two plates, I'm reloading NOW, when I want to, not when I have to. If I missed 4 and have one plate left, I'm going to apply the concentration that had been lacking previously, usually resulting in a hit. If 8 rds are needed at the next position, I know I have zero makeup shots on board, unless I do a double reload to give me one extra shot.

    My way is faster and more accurate, as it frees up your mind to pay attention to the more important things, like hitting the target(s) with each shot.
     
  5. Ankeny

    Ankeny Member

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    David E. beat me to it. No need to count rounds. I shot Limited 10 and Production for years. In that game, it is best to program where the reloads take place. If you need to make up shots, do an extra reload when your feet are moving and get back on track.
     
  6. Drail

    Drail Member

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    Thank you so much for that explanation. I will stay off of your forum from now on.
     
  7. mgmorden

    mgmorden Member

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    Gotta agree with Ankeny and David E. I shoot Production in USPSA, and I see absolutely no benefit in counting shots - and a lot of hindrance. Your brain can only do so many things at once. Time spent counting shots is time diverted from transitions and aiming.

    I break down arrays into groups. Some groups might only be 4 shots. As indicated they usually break down nicely into 8 shots, and if I have a particularly good reason to I might group 10 shots together. When shooting a stage I've got those pre-programmed groups in my head and I know after which targets I must reload.

    For steel if its a large group (plate rack or star) then that becomes its own array, and no matter what after I leave that I'm reloading. For poppers or something thats mixed in with targets I'll have a basic "bail out" strategy. IE, if I miss more than twice on this group of poppers I need to reload before moving on to the rest of the targets in that group.

    Sounds a bit complicated, but its far, far faster in one's head than counting shots.
     
  8. David E

    David E Member

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    What, I disagree with you, explain why, offer a better way, am backed up by Ankeny (a Grandmaster, btw) and mgmorden and you're all bent out of shape?

    Um.....ok.
     
  9. Backpacker33

    Backpacker33 Member

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    I s'pose it doesn't matter at all when plinking or practicing.
    In competition, going to a surprise slide lock cost only time. Or prize money.
    The department I worked for in the '80s had a fiend for a firearms trainer, and he grilled mercilessly knowing the round count. to be fair, I learned a lot from him.
    I got into one bullet throwing match. During a brief pause in the festivities I realized I had absolutely NO idea how many rounds I'd fired, even though I had thought I was keeping count. Sooo, did a mag change to be sure I'd have a full mag to continue the fun. After action, I discovered I had 4 rounds left in a 15-rd mag.
    If you are carrying for defense, I think it would be foolish to shoot to slide lock. It would happen while face to face with someone shooting at you. I doubt s/he would pause to let you reload. I wouldn't.
     
  10. David E

    David E Member

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    Explain, please, how counting your shots (even if you could do so accurately) when someone is actively trying to kill you, what you'd do when you knew you had your last round in the chamber and the deadly threat is not totally neutralized. Would you not fire that last, maybe fight-ending shot, or would you pause to do a slide forward reload? Just how fast is your reload from concealment? How much slower do you think a slidelock reload is?

    But we are both reloading. You're just doing yours sooner than me. Again, I don't see how your way (counting shots until the last round is chambered then reloading) is somehow better than shooting that last, possibly decisive shot, then doing a slidelock reload.

    Let's say we are both equally skilled and both carry 1911's holding 8+1. You reload SOONER after firing 8, while I'll reload 18/100ths of a second later, after firing 9

    Your 9th shot would be 1.5 seconds after my 9th shot, while my 10th shot is 1.68 seconds after your 9th. I put more rounds into the badguy faster than you.

    But while you're counting each shot, I'm focusing on making good hits without needless distraction.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2013
  11. Teachu2

    Teachu2 Member

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    David E,
    If you train to keep count, it becomes automatic - just like training for anything else. Keeping count isn't hard or mentally taxing, but it gives you valuable information that allows you to plan better. Reloads are faster if anticipated, especially from concealment. Reloading with cover beats doing it while running.

    Of course, if you find it distracting and can't train that away, don't do it. Some folks do it naturally, some have to learn it, some never will.

    I will say that if it's not second nature, you probably won't even be close to doing it under fire.
     
  12. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

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    Someone long ago advised me NOT to count my shots when I started IDPA. HOWEVER, some stages in the shooting sports require you to keep count. Usually those stages are not stressed by running and distractions (think 'classifiers').

    So no I don't, but yes I do.
     
  13. David E

    David E Member

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    I disagree i want my full attention on things that matter. What prominent trainer teaches his students to count every shot they fire, as they fire it, in a deadly confrontation?

    Ok, you're out in the open, no cover nearby and you're counting your shots. Your last shot is in the chamber, your threat is not yet out of the fight and is still actively trying to kill you. What is your "plan" at that point that counting your shots allowed you to incorporate?

    If I've shot one round or all my rounds I'm doing a reload.

    Do you wheel a section of a brick wall around with you so you always have cover close by? You can't always get to cover, nor is it always a good idea. Cover is great when you can get it, but it shouldn't be your number one priority.
     
  14. David E

    David E Member

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    These do exist, but the ratio is about 1000 to 1.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2013
  15. Airbrush Artist

    Airbrush Artist member

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    Im use to counting school kids getting off my Bus to cross ,so I count rounds and Kids auto-matically..
     
  16. xXxplosive

    xXxplosive Member

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    Try to....most of the time.
     
  17. Ankeny

    Ankeny Member

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    I know the answer to that question. But then again so do you. ;)
     
  18. GLI45

    GLI45 Member

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    Almost never count, though if I'm in a match I do plan my mag changes which are based on round count. But I do that before I start.
     
  19. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Member

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    I doubt, in a self defense shooting, as opposed to standing there banging rounds off at the range, anyone can keep track of how many shots they fired. And to offer a bit of perhaps farfetched, "what-if" speculation, suppose the investigating LEOs ask you how many shots you fired but the actual number shown by the evidence is different. Everything you tell them from then on is going to be suspect. (This would be a good reason to make like a clam until you can get a lawyer there.)
     
  20. otasan56

    otasan56 Member

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    I always count. ;)
     
  21. Bovice

    Bovice Member

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    Not unless it's IDPA and I know I'll need to do a tactical reload to make sure I can hit a disappearing target or if required rounds is close to the total number of rounds I'm carrying. CDP division requires counting rounds most of the time. SSR requires it all the time.

    Other than that, I don't count rounds.
     
  22. David E

    David E Member

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    That makes no sense whatsoever.
     
  23. capcyclone

    capcyclone Member

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    I'm purely a recreational shooter (not competitive) - so I do tend to count my shots, but not really sure why other than it's my OCD rearing its ugly head. Though I NEVER rely on my count either.

    Given I'm not in a rush (competition) - I tend to be taking my time with most shots, etc.

    When I'm at a range and practicing for CCW or HD, then no, I don't count shots.
     
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