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Having fun learning

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Oleg Volk, Apr 29, 2007.

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  1. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

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    Steve Fisher and friends (Barbara, Jim) came to town last weekend. Amish Bill came up from GA. Steve taught a carbine course for me and my friends. I learned quite a few things:

    Equipment breaks, carry a backup.
    Operator errors multiply with complex gear.
    Good ammo and magazines are essential.
    Durable and simple works
    Complex reticles are too much under stress
    Forward grips help to keep heat away from the support hand
    Rear pistol grips are essential for rifles
    Slowing down to make hits is better than hurrying to miss

    Gear opinions:

    Suppressors ++
    Tango down forward grip +
    (New) EOTech +
    Aimpoint ++
    SLR15 "Commander" +++
    Glock +
    M&P handgun ++
    Magpuls +

    Three-point sling -
    Same, used as two-point +

    Sig 225 - DA/SA transition a problem
    SU16CA as a fighting gun - Railed forend MUCH too flimsy, LOP about 3" too much for 6'1" me, charging handle next to hot stovepiped brass when the forend binds the piston, sights too low for co-witnessing, no pistol grip. Suprisingly, no overheating problems and no blowback with suppressors. AR15s have a problem with blowback.

    Steve is hilarious -- I've never laughed as much as I did that weekend. He is also a very organized, helpful teacher. He had backup gear, coordinated everything nicely. I learned a lot and so did the others. I took few photos because I was too busy learning. I very much look forward to his pistol course. The class was low-stress but fast-paced. I recommend Steve most highly as an instructor.
     

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  2. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

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    Other participants.

    This course reinforces the concept of training and testing gear ahead of time. It is possible to miss with a rifle at almost contact distance and even the most reliable gun can fail or break outright. Fast response is needed, especially at close range. usually, that reponse is with pistol, but would be with a muzzle or bayonet strike. One of the students had an SKS and, with its ten-round blind magazine, it made bayonet drills a reasonable idea.
     

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  3. Hoppy590

    Hoppy590 Member

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    wow. no offense to the guy in the under armor. but ya... id advise a t shirt next time

    sounds like a good course. i hope to take a carbine course with my EBC/UBC ( evil black carbine/ Ugly black carbine) that said you all can guesse what kind of carbine it is
     
  4. bill larry

    bill larry Member

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    Thanks for sharing Oleg. What were your thoughts on the guy that brought the SKS? Any trouble keeping up with the EBR's? I'm always interested since thats my carbine platform.
     
  5. Avenger29

    Avenger29 Member

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    Sounds like a lot of fun, Oleg. I am going to try to run a .30-30 leveraction through a course to see how it does when I get a chance.

    One of the main problems I have with the AR-15 platform is the control complexity/arrangment. Forward assist, charging handle in wierd place, bolt release, etc. I like the AK's arrangment of the safety/selector, the bolt on the right side of the reciever, and the mag release. Three controls in all. The last time I tried shooting an AR-15, I kept fumbling for the controls, or using the wrong ones. An AK just feels natural to me.

    Yep, every gun can fail. Even the simpleist break-open shotgun.

    I've always wondered how shooters dealt with optics that showed a lot of stuff like Bullet drop points, etc. I just want a simple red dot that is usable even if the batteries fail.

    Keep It Simple, Stupid is one of my mottos
     
  6. Amish_Bill

    Amish_Bill Member

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    Hoppy - are you referring to the guy in blue with the molle vest? If so, that blue shirt is superior to a regular t-shirt. (It's an Under-Armour clone) Not only did it provide better protection from the sun, but it wicked away perspiration most efficiently. Sure - it looks a little funny... but its comfy.
     
  7. Barbara

    Barbara Member

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    The guy with the SKS did a great job..he had some challenges, but used more common sense than most people. He came with the gun he owns and will use for some defense, and without plans to become a ninja, and adapted all the lessons to his own personal situation.
     
  8. BOONER

    BOONER Member

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    Remember this,

    who cares about what the person is wearing....... or what they look like in it.

    its how they did in class and how they ran there gear, what they learned, and what they remember.......

    The SKS shooter did well. very well he keep pace just fine. and made due with his real world gear..

    avenger i have used a lever guns in class..... it is learning and slow reloading put it can be done... and trust me you will be faster by the time is over.....

    as for red dot going down yes it happens........ thats why a lower 1/3 co witness for my irons in the window of the dot is my choice....
     
  9. Gustav

    Gustav Member

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    Booners post reminds me of something one of my instructors once told me.
    Its more important what you take from a class afterwards than what you bring to it.
     
  10. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

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    SKS worked reliably, unlike some higher-$ guns. Down side was the inability to top off the magazine.
     
  11. Hoppy590

    Hoppy590 Member

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    just looks like a jump suit :p with the blue on blue
     
  12. lionking

    lionking Member

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    thanks for the report.The one thing I might disagree on is that a pistol grip in essential on a rifle.

    Barbara is very beautiful btw.:cool:
     
  13. BOONER

    BOONER Member

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    The pistol grip, on a FIGHTING GUN is very important.

    The PG allows for one handed operation and use of that specfic platform

    it allows you you still have control of the gun and use it in non standard firing postions and under and around cover....

    it allows you the ablity to contol subjects and a long gun at one time if need be(not ideal but it does happen)

    it offers more advantages over a non PG gun in a fighting capcity
     
  14. mustanger98

    mustanger98 Member

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    Regarding a levergun in a fighting role, and I say this as my own opinion from my own experience having grown up handling/shooting leverguns. I also agree that an individual gets better and faster with practice. The instructors can see what they agree or disagree with in this.

    1- If you don't have to, don't let go of the left hand's grip. If you're right-handed, your left hand stays on the forearm while you reload with your right hand. If you're left-handed, you're left hand stays gripping the grip/lever area while your right hand reloads. You'll be ready to fire a bit more quickly after you shove the last round in the loading gate.

    2- If you're left-handed, have your extra ammo on your belt on your right side. Makes it easier to get to with your right hand... right side of belt to right side of receiver. This also means you don't have to change grips and flip the gun over to reload left-handed of the left side of your belt. If you're right-handed, it don't matter whether your extra ammo's on the right side of your belt or in the butt cuff on the right side of the stock.

    3- No batteries, no problem. To that end, I'll take a wide aperture or ghost ring rear sight. For low light conditions, make it a high-vis deal.

    4- While it's best to aim, I'd say do learn to shoot instictively (focus on your attacker(s) and point your weapon where you're looking... think Chuck Connor but with a lot more realism) because up-close and personal, like in your home in a break-in, you'll have time to point shoot, but you may not always have time to aim. Every situation sets up somewhat differently depending on the thought processes of your attacker(s).

    BTW, for my leverguns, I prefer straight grips. To me, they make working the lever easier, but that's just my perception. For a semi-automatic fighting gun, I prefer a grip like the M1 Carbine, Mini-14, or M1 Garand. But if you look back over 2430 posts, you can see I'm not an AR guy.
     
  15. Avenger29

    Avenger29 Member

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    I like the pistol grip when it comes to leverguns.

    Sounds like installing some XS Ghost rings and having the action slicked up will make my 336 good to go for a class.
     
  16. only1asterisk

    only1asterisk member

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    Oleg,

    What was it about the SLR that you liked?

    David
     
  17. silverlance

    silverlance Member

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    hm. i need to go to a class. how much should i spend on one?
     
  18. Gewehr98

    Gewehr98 Member

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    That pistol grip comment is interesting...

    Especially when used in the connotation of "fighting gun". The fellow with the SKS seemed to do well, and I'd like to think my M14NM would fit into the "fighting gun" role, as would an M1 Carbine, ostensibly "The Carbine" before M4geries became prevalent. Perhaps it boils down to what one is comfortable practicing with? Or do the anti-gunners actually have a valid reason to ban pistol-grip configured autoloaders? :confused:

    Pee Ess: Barbara looks exceptionally determined. :D
     
  19. BOONER

    BOONER Member

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    the sks did well he is large guy with great strength. we really didnt run to many drills involving support hand only or the likes. the m-1 carbine and garand and m-14 all have been in my classes and have done well except in support hand only shooting (m1a and garand) unless rested on leg or cover to support it, non pg guns have there place for sure,....i was referring more to hunting type guns (if thats all you have then its a fighting gun).

    Barb, just completed another carbine class yesterday and ran very hard and well..... kept up with the swat guys in class....... tough cookie she is
     
  20. Drakejake

    Drakejake Member

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    Hey, Oleg,

    Where did you shoot?

    Drakejake
    West Meade
     
  21. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

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    We shot on friend's land.

    I think non-PG guns point more naturally...but they are not practical for me for extended fighting use.

    SLR15 -- reliable, great trigger, well-balanced. Combination of short Sully stock, 16" barrel and full-length handguards and sight radius made it a winner. I like it better than my previously standard flat top 20". I did put a Sully stock on my 20" also and it helped balance a lot.

    I will have to replace the MAD BUIS though -- the one I have folded by itself when the right was slung. Looks like Troy rear is the way to go for all of my rifles (won't fold by itself, windage knob not exposed to accidental contact.
     
  22. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    Oleg, I'm curious how you felt about the suppressor for training? What kind of round count did you have on it and how much did it contribute to heat issues? You notice any mirage issues?

    Was the new Eotech the new model or just a new unit? If it was the new model, what did you like less about it than the Aimpoint?

    Finally, what problems did you have with the 3-point sling? Getting hung up on gear? Obstructing controls/ejection port?
     
  23. armoredman

    armoredman Member

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    Completely worthless observation - the "bad guy" targets are what my Dept uses for qualification.
    Looks like fun, wish I could have taken my Yugo there, too.
     
  24. BOONER

    BOONER Member

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    The Eotechs were early models

    as for the 3 point i will let oleg tell you about that, I run and prefer the BFG LAV sling or a single point depending on your needs.

    We used several targets those are fun though......
     
  25. SpiderJohn

    SpiderJohn Member

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    I was the fellow with the SKS. I walked away with a couple of observations.

    1. 10 rounds is not enough in the scenarios we worked. I was at a huge disadvantage in some situations. I could not keep up with the stripper clips at the pace we were working. I had to focus on what I had available to me that worked, rather than thinking about the 20 extra rounds everyone else had. This proved to be important as we progressed. Focus on what you have, not on what you are missing.

    2. Topping off an sks is not a smooth operation. You lose a round each time you yank that bolt back, and you lose whatever rounds don't come off the stripper clip. Spending 6 to get 4 is not an efficent use of ammo. The stuff you drop on the ground is worse than useless when you took the time to bring it. This goes back to focusing on what you have, not on what you are missing. Use what you have to the best of your ability.

    3. The standard sling on an sks is not long enough for someone my size. I spent a considerable amount of time flailing about in my efforts to hold on to, or sling an empty gun while retrieving my sidearm.

    4. The quick transition from rifle sights to handgun sights was disorienting and cost me valuable time in these situations. As I had only 10 rounds in the sks, I pulled my side arm more than anyone else. In the transition and the confusion as to the sight picture, I tended to flip the safety back on for some reason. I have been practicing this manuver and have improved, but still have a long way to go. Again, focus on what you have available. If nothing else sunk in, this did.

    5. A pistol grip would have been advantagous in many of the situations Steve made us work. Lacking that option, I had to learn a few new techniques to maintain control of the rifle during transitions. Uh, yeah don't hold on to it in your left hand, while you are trying to bring a side arm into action. That only took me about a dozen tries to see that it doesn't work.....

    6. Mindset is the key to survival. Whatever situation you find yourself in, use the tools you have. Gun, no gun, with the right mindset your odds improve dramatically. This was discussed during mag packing and rest periods. The more we discussed it, the more I thought about it during the sessions, the clearer it became to me. Mindset is not being mad or pissed off, it is the determination to make it home again, regardless of the situation. When you think like this, you begin to see what works and what doesn't. Would I try to top off or even reload an sks in close quarters? No. would I use every tool available to me to hinder my opponents objective? Hell yes! A bayonet at 25 yards might look funny, but at 5, it gives me one more option I would not have had otherwise.

    6. Mag changes have to be made where you can still see your opponent. Dropping your eyes to focus on a mag change makes you about as dangerous as a B-27 target stapled to a frame.


    I watched several guns and a few fancy optics fail in our class, due to heat, repeated battery, and lack of lubrication. The sks never failed me, but again, I had to use my side arm much of the time to make up for the lack of rounds I could put through it. The second day, just to be funny I did slap some axle grease (no kidding) on the rails. I don't think it needed it.

    Steve focused on techniques that will improve your odds. I realize that nothing is absoulute in the scenarios we worked and discussed. Steve's repeated efforts to teach us to use whatever we had as effectively as possible took a while to sink into my fuzzy old noggin, but through his efforts, I think I see things in much more realistic light than what I began with.


    Overall the class Steve taught made me look closely at my tools, and how to use them effectively. I don't think there is any one answer for every situation, nor do I think you are screwed with an old com-block rifle, or that you have to have a EBR to survive.

    Lastly, I walked away with an appreciation for focusing on the tools you will use, not on what others are doing. As we walked through these drills, I first thought of my disadvantage in having so few rounds and the time it takes to reload. By the time we were finished, I focused solely on the tools I had. I used a rifle and ccw rig that did not match the requirements of some of the scenarios. I actually look back and think that was an advantage to me. I had to quickly find solutions to scenarios I was not properly prepared for. I think that constant struggle gave me insight some of the other participants might not have received.
     
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