Thoughts on Gun Safety

I saw an interesting post over on GunPros.com on the Rules of Gun Safety, which I thought I would share. Take a look here.

Honestly, most of them seem to be expansions of Rule 1, except their Rule 9 is my Rule Zero. But it’s worth a read.

I really like them pointing out that everyone is a Range Safety Officer. If you see anything unsafe, point it out and take action. Your life and that of others depends on it.

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How I Shoot GSSF

In my post yesterday about my return to GSSF, I talked about how I felt my extra time on Glock the Plates was probably because that was my first shots of the day, with no warm up. Butch Barton commented that I shouldn’t shoot the plates first, but rather 5 to Glock, them Glock M, then the plates at the end. I have to admit, I agree with Butch, and, in fact, that’s normally the way I shoot it. However, when I showed up at the GSSF match, I let convenience get the best of me, and when I saw I could shoot second at the Plates, I took it. Bad call.

This led me to think about my strategy for shooting the GSSF stages, and how I have tweaked them over the years. So, here are my strategies for shooting the GSSF stages.

5 to Glock

Strategy: Shoot the farthest targets first, then work my way to the nearest.

Why: I have found I can shoot 25 yard targets well, if I take my time and line up the sights correctly. Closer in, I can almost double-tap them and do well. But if I start close in and work my way out, I don’t take the discipline to line up the sights on the farthest targets, and this leads to the Dreaded Mike.

Glock M

Strategy: From right to left, shoot the paper targets in order, then shoot the steel target(s).

Why: Consider – I have 11 rounds loaded, and it takes 8 rounds to engage the paper targets. This leaves 3 for the steel. I have found that, on a bad day, I can miss the plates with the first few shots. So, worst case scenario, if I go left to right, and take 4 shots on the steel, that means I am out of ammo by the time I get to the last paper target. So I make sure I have shot all the paper, then I have 3 rounds for the steel. If I miss with the first one, I take a concerted moment to line up my sights and hit it on the second shot.

I will admit, I am much better shooting steel at the Glock M distance of 11 yards than I used to be, and I haven’t missed the steel in quite a while. But this strategy still works best for me.

Glock the Plates

Strategy: Treat each plate as a separate target, and use the recoil energy to move me to the next target. If I miss, I come back to the standing targets once I am done with all 6.

Why: What can I say? There are maybe a hundred YouTube videos on how to shoot plates. My favorite is by Rob Leatham. The last half is a commercial for his plate rack, but the strategy is good:

So, in summary, be strategic, be committed, and be safe.

Happy New Year, a Month Later

So, every year I pledge that I am going to blog more. And it seems like every year I lie. To you, Dear Reader, and to myself.

It’s not that I don’t like sharing. It’s just that, like a lot of people, I get swept up in other things, like work, family, health.

So, don’t take offense if I don’t promise more posts in 2018.

Having said that, here I am!

Concealed Carry Evolution – Making it My Life

I have been carrying a concealed pistol over 20 years now, and I was recently thinking about how different my technique and attitude is today, versus when I first started carrying. It occurred to me that those changes did not happen all at once, but have evolved over time.

I first got a carry permit in Alabama in 1993. In those days, to me, not only was concealed carry a novelty to me, so were guns in general. In those days, I admit I carried when I thought I needed to – to “bad areas,” late at night, or when I felt threatened. I was always aware that I was carrying, and I’m sure it showed. I was always apprehensive.

I also had not done much practice drawing from concealment, and a lot of times I carried in the small of my back. Now I know, for sure, that this is about the worst place I could carry, as I’m not able to draw smoothly there. In retrospect, it’s possible I carried there so I wouldn’t be always fondling the grip or holding my arm out.

Slowly, though, I started to change. I bought some new holsters, and I started practicing. By the time I moved to Arkansas, I was carrying more often, now at 4 o’clock usually. But I know I was still apprehensive when I carried, and I certainly didn’t carry all the time.

At this time, what I wore was dictated by whether I was carrying or not. Generally I would wear some kind of jacket and my shirts may or may not be tucked in, depending on my mood.

But now, I can tell things have changed. Because I’ve made it my life.

Now, just about all my wardrobe has shirts that don’t get tucked in. I also have a lot of vests that I wear when the weather allows, whether I am carrying or not.

The biggest difference is that I almost always carry, unless there will be enforced prohibition against it. That means I don’t carry into an area that prohibits it, where they are checking me for it, like sports events, government buildings, and the like. Other than that, I’m carrying, even at home, or at friends houses. I’m carrying now.

But what about other locations that prohibit carry? Well, since Georgia law means that if I do carry there, all they can do is ask me to leave, let’s just say, I may or may not be carrying – you guess.

And why do you have to guess? Because, over these 20 plus years, I have gotten to where I can carry without you being able to tell.

I now carry almost always at 3 o’clock, and I use a belt holster with cover, unless that’s too obvious, and then I use an IWB holster.

Sometimes I carry openly, but, as my readers know, I reserve that for certain times, such as gun rights group meetings, or when I’m working in the yard.

And I’ve also gotten a lot more comfortable with carrying, to the point that I don’t touch it, or play with it, at all. A lot of this is because of my holster, and because my belt fits.

++++

So, how did I get to where I am? The best way I can describe it is that I learned to live with carry. I stopped thinking it was Something Special, that it was Something Different.

My advice – learn to live with concealed carry. Get a gun that fits you, and a holster that fits you, and carry. Make it your life, because it could save your life.

 

Coming – Magpul GLOCK Mag Review

Magpul win ed

Well, it could happen. I won a contest on the Book of Faces, sponsored by our friends at Dogleg Arms. By coincidence, this is where I bought the lower receiver for Ol’ Painless.

So, look for an upcoming review of the Magpul magazine, as soon as I can get to the range. First things first, though, gotta shake this stoopid leukemia.