PDA

View Full Version : Sin-ster's Range Diary, Plus Musings



Sin-ster
March 10th, 2011, 04:58 AM
March 10, 2011
Range

Toying with format ideas...

Focus

Accuracy. Tight, consistent groups before fatigue sets in.

Issues

Shots pulled to 9 o'clock. (Lazy support hand.)
Recoil Management. (Sights won't realign! Keep working on hand and wrist strength and tension.)

Session

200 rounds, all 7 yards. Until the center bullseye starts disappearing, we're staying at this range most of the time.

25 strong hand, 50 weak hand. 125 "slow fire", with some controlled pairs and 5 shot dumps for reference and to break the monotony.

Approximately 1 hour total, with 15 minute break after 75 rounds.

Observations

ProHands and wrist curls has helped, but hands and wrists are still fatigued from so much focused work. Suggested that you taper this back before any kind of competition unless significant endurance gains reveal themselves. Fatigue noticed ~50 rounds earlier than normal.

With focus on a firm grip and wrist tension, the groups become tighter but fliers get worse. Possible anomaly, but NOT perception-- even had a couple of hits at the outer edge of the 9. All shots called and felt. Theory-- "bear grip" will take more strengthening and getting used to, and all twitches result in dramatic misses.

Coupled with past weeks sessions, the sights are finally starting to align again on their own. Still not sure WTF caused this, but focus on crystal clear front post and firming up the grip has apparently solved it. Fired some AMAZING pairs and short strings today, without a single unacceptable one either. VERY happy with this progress.

Developing a strange... habit, obsession? Form of anticipation, difficult to line up POA/POI shot. Literally have to force myself to raise the pistol and not use a 6 o'clock hold. Even MORE aggravating than the previous issue. NOTE-- not an issue with pairs/follow ups, but slow fire and the 1st shot only. Mental failure-- how are we going to fix it? Dry fire should help; loading one round per magazine seemed to help. Perhaps try shooting flat colored targets, instead of bright red centers? Don't know, that sounds like avoiding a problem instead of addressing it; distant steel plates won't be any different...

"Shooting the reset" seems to have settled in quite nicely. No longer waiting for the "click", but naturally reaching that point without conscious effort. Continue to feel it out during dry fire, but turn majority of your focus elsewhere.

Strong hand was oddly erratic today for the first 5 shots. Group tightened up very well with focus on trigger press and (more importantly) a firm grip. Weak hand was alright, but whatever tendon is a bit inflamed in that hand is definitely playing a factor in this regard.

Suggestions

Continue to feel out "failure point" of hand/wrist exercises. Be sure to formulate a more formal regiment, instead of the "pick it up when idle" method you've been using. For now, ease up on thumb-to-palm squeeze and Trigger Pull exercise on the left hand, as they seem to be aggravating that tendon.

Clean that "range mag", and rotate it with one of the others. The idea of pushing it to the failure point can still work while spread across the other 2 mags purchased for this purpose.

Work some presentation, drawstroke and reload drills during dry fire. It's been a while. Consider video again after a couple of focused sessions.

Continue to focus on proper grip while dry firing, and don't get lazy with stance either. It's likely that your lack of dry fire in the past few months, coupled with subpar practice has caused all of these glitches to suddenly appear.

Try to stockpile some 9mm for the range-- starting to get sparse. Don't use its presence as an excuse to go shoot it up!!! 200 rounds seems to be your optimal point right now-- perhaps 250 if you're bored or it's been a while.

Pull out the USPSA targets for some dry fire when time permits. Sight picture on these needs to be reestablished if you plan to shoot some matches in the future.

Sin-ster
March 20th, 2011, 04:02 PM
March 17, 2011
Range

M&P .45, 200 rounds; half WWB, half UMC JHP

Focus

Stay proficient with EDC-- in all aspects.

Issues

Rushing shots. (Failure to reacquire proper sight alignment.)
Recoil Management. (Sights aren't realigning well-- and NOW we know why!)

Session

200 rounds, varying distances.

50 rounds @ 7 yards slowfire, for warm up. (Forgot how sweet this trigger is...)
50 rounds @ 7-10 controlled pairs. Called every flier, and amazingly consistent pairs.
25 rounds @ 7 yards, strong hand. Just a touch high right, with a couple lazy throws.
25 rounds @ 7 yards, weak hand. Coming right along, but inconsistent. Work on grip and trigger press in dry fire.
50 rounds @ 3-10 yards, assorted. From retention, failure to stops, simulated malf's.

Observations

First and foremost, when not firing "at speed", you are relaxing in all of the wrong ways-- not appropriately at the wrist, but dropping the hands/arms. That accounts 100% for the sight picture issue while slow firing, and is solved by "pretending" a follow up shot is pending, but not actually breaking it.

Anticipation is a problem-- but not in the common sense. No jerks or flinches, but the utter inability to control your cadence. The sense that we need to "get this mag empty", or else too much focus to prep for the next shot. Helpful drills in following section.

Mistakes are more pronounced with the .45 than the 9mm. It's actually easier to see what you're doing wrong. This gun just shoots better than the Glock, and I have some theories as to why. A custom trigger job is obviously the key factor, but the elimination of many left-to-right fliers makes no sense. MUST be a trigger press issue-- focus more during dry fire.

Suggestions

Dry fire this thing more. Apprehension over the striker is moot with Snap Caps and the revision. The system of "setback prevention" works, and all that ammo you just got makes it more viable. Note that the reset is amazingly short, and the recoil of the pistol does all of the work for you. Not something to be overly concerned with.

Drills for the relaxation issue:
Load 1 round and 1 snap cap. Break shot, immediately align sights, dryfire. (Works well for problem 2 as well.)
Controlled pairs, focusing on follow through.

Drills for the "anticipation":
Load 1 round. Vary "hang time" between indexing the frame and pressing the trigger.
Normal load. Break a shot, align sights, index the frame. Vary time. Rinse and repeat.
Alternating snap caps. Break shot, reset trigger/align sights, hold! (Repeat with live rounds.)

Write these reports up faster so you don't forget. This one feels incomplete and inconsistent.

Sin-ster
March 20th, 2011, 04:24 PM
March 20, 2011
Failville, MS-- AKA Pearlington Classifier Match

G17, ~75 rounds Federal Champion

General Comments

Ugh. I suck.

What Worked

The red FO front is better than the green on these sunny days-- maybe all around. Seems to give a cleaner picture, possibly because the lower brightness. Question-- does it make for better alignment???

Drawstroke was consistent and reasonably fast. Your focus on getting a good grip doesn't slow you down much at all, and your splits were comparable to better and faster shooters. First shots were ALL on target today!

Reloads. When you remember to do them without hesitation, they are smooth and quick.

Shooting the reset. Got it down pat. The only stage you did well on was 5 round speed dumps, and you put up some awesome groups-- albeit at very close range.

Speed in general. On par with B class, and don't feel like you're rushing at all. Almost certainly need to slooooooow down-- especially on shots past 7 yards.

What Didn't Work

Everything else? Specifically...

Transitioning between targets sloppily and too quickly, leading to some VERY wide shots. Couldn't call them as fliers, so they must have hit where you were aiming!

Holding low on "distant" targets. REALLY bad habit from shooting static all of the time, and should become a major focus in the future.

Focus!!! Wasted at least 1.5 seconds PER STRING by hesitating on one stage, and then turned around and did it again! Stop deviating from the plan! Which leads to...

Game the Classifiers. They are mostly straightforward, but rehearsal is vital. This should help in making mandatory reloads more natural, as well as not suddenly shooting targets out of your planned order.

Accuracy. Cripes, it was awful today-- so bad that you're probably doing everything wrong. Culprits include: moving on to the next target (mentally and physically) before the current one is finished. Using 7 yard sight pictures on 15 yards targets-- rushing. Shoddy trigger work. Weak grip, and inconsistent. Crummy aim-- holding too low!!!

Multi-string, multi-reload. You bumped a mag to the front, but reached all the way to the back as if it had never been moved. Not sure WTF that was about honestly-- probably a fluke, but gets back to focus on some level.

Notes

Chrono'd for the first time today. Thought it'd be interesting to see what the factory stuff looked like compared to hand loads. It's WAY too hot, even when compared to the 124 grain stuff that feels softer anyway. Certainly not the cause of your crappiness, but a factor to be sure-- and something that needs to be corrected if/when this gets more serious.

Proven: Federal Champion says 1125 on the box, but reaches 1250+ out of your G17. Second shot was too fast for the chonro's second sensor!!! Bob's loads were 135's at ~925 from a longer barrel; Swamp's 124 PMC was ~1k out of an identical pistol.

Pick a problem, fix it. Pick another, fix it. Just too much going on right now in your practice and everything is suffering. I THINK the order should go: 1) point of aim, 2) sight picture, 3) grip, 4) recoil control. ((Note-- grip can be worked into all of these, without taking too much focus away.))

Might not be a good idea to shoot the slick 45 right before a match-- for a number of reasons. :rofl:

Sin-ster
March 29th, 2011, 05:46 PM
March 24, 2011
Range

G17, ~230 rounds Federal Champion.

Focus
Sort out accuracy.
Adjust POA on USPSA brown target.
Improve sight picture on said target at ranges past 10 yards.

Issues
Limited!
Fatigue setting in a bit early; keep working on the hands and wrists!
A bit too fast to break the 2nd shot of a pair from time to time, without proper sight alignment.
The occasional trigger slap.

Session

30 rounds @ 7 yards, slow fire warm up.
50 rounds @ 10 yards, bulls eye, slow fire for groups.
25 rounds @ 15 yards, green, slow fire for groups.
25 rounds @ 25 yards, green, slow fire for groups.
25 rounds @ 10 yards, bulls eye, strong hand.
25 rounds @ 10 yards, bulls eye, support hand.
50 rounds @ 10 yards, USPSA target, pairs.

Observations

Working the green POST targets really helps in developing the proper hold. No more six o'clock! That red circle is a real problem! :mad:

Support hand thumb!!! Figured out why all of the misses were left, regardless of trigger finger position and action. Well, maybe I didn't figure out why, but I did figure out how to prevent it. Press that thumb firmly against the frame and keep it there. Doesn't have to be super strong-- "firm" is a really good descriptor. PERFECT dry fire practice is going to be necessary; that grip has to be the same every time you even think about picking up a firearm.

The A Zone is a lot bigger than it seems. All of the pasties on your old target made it impossible to see that line, and you were surprised at just how many were worth full points that at a distance seemed to be C's. Furthermore, it's TALL. Wasting a TON of "good hit area" by holding right in the middle.

Finally found the feel of proper recoil management again! You can literally feel the spring working when it's done right, and performance improvement really shows!

Suggestions

Hold higher still, even on ring targets where the center is lower than optimal. Dry fire work in tandem with a USPSA target will really help with this, and also to help you get used to just how big the A zone really is.

Confidence is a darn fine thing. Good days like this, especially on competition targets, will pay dividends in the long run. Remember-- who the eff cares anyway?!??!

Don't forget to practice "all of the little things", even if it's only 5-10 dry fire shots per week. Focus in, make sure it's perfect, and move on.

Sin-ster
March 29th, 2011, 06:05 PM
March 29, 2011
Mars!!!

Training AR, ~150 rounds mixed M193 and unknown (probably Wally World or PMC)
G17, ~110 rounds Federal Champion

Focus
A taste of the real deal!
Real-world quals, at speed.
CQB drawstroke.
The right way to clear a room.
In/out of a vehicle.
Working in tandem.
Shooting on the move.
Shooting with the left hand (x1000).

Session

What DIDN'T we do is probably a better question.

Observations

Did you shoot a better group prone @100 left handed? I think so! Left handed in general is natural, the transitions are very smooth and it's really not as difficult as it would seem. Eye dominance means cock the head a bit with the pistol, but needs some work with the RDS-- had to close strong eye several times.

Truck + pistol = reasonably easy. Truck + rifle = tight fit.

You are in TERRIBLE physical shape. 300 yards + 10 shots in 2 minutes = WTF is wrong with me!

PMAGs are not a magic talisman.

The training rifle is way too heavy for long term carry. ("Damn, this thing is heavy!")

Shooting from retention is... interesting.

Suggestions

Practice all you've learned. A lot.

When you can't get the rounds to sink in a mag with finger pressure, download until you can. These things simply will not seat-- at least in the AR you used today. (Note-- good improv on the tandem drill, without any coaching or training. DVD's pay off I suppose...)

Lube this rifle up a lot. May need some tweaking, or doesn't like certain mags-- it wouldn't lock the bolt back on an empty chamber from time to time. Cleaned and got really wet-- keep an eye on it.

Work on accuracy. Met the vast majority of qual times, but past 15 yards, struggled with some hits. The same for the AR. Prone at 200 and 100 was on, but 50 yards off hand was oooooogly. (Didn't help that you were breathing a mile a minute.)

Get in better cardiovascular condition. Right. Now.

Sin-ster
April 4th, 2011, 07:59 PM
Multi-Session
Supplemental Post

Lazy, lazy! Shot a bunch and didn't take any notes!

G17, 200 rounds.
"Beater" AR, ~300 rounds.

Session
Standard G17; mixed "plinking" with the AR. 3 separate days, across 2 weeks.

Observations

Grr. Stuck case + no brass hammer = trip to the shop and the end of a range session. Wolf case rim sheered right off, extractor slipped right over. Case came free with a couple gentle taps to the cleaning rod. Sucks.

The primer sealant on the steel cased stuff is hard to flush out of the barrel extension. Scrubs free easy enough, but doesn't wanna get out of there! Check for large chunks in the bore BEFORE brushing, and catch with a clean patch.

G17 felt a bit better with the tungsten rod, but no real improvement in splits. Look into a lighter spring and a stainless steel boy of good quality. This stupid thing won't stay together even with Locktite. Basically a paper weight. G22 and G17 both returned to factory config.

Keep an eye on the grip tape. Starting to rub smooth near the right palm contact point. Seems to be some life left, but will need replacing sooner than later.

Suggestions

Clean faster, type these reports!

Sin-ster
April 4th, 2011, 08:22 PM
April 1, 2011
Range

P226, 200 rounds.

Focus
Shoot this thing again-- it's been a while. (Note-- this gun only has 1200 rounds on it!)
Comparison of accuracy and speed between two very different guns.
The usual.

Session
25 rounds @ 7 yards, warm up.
50 rounds @ 10 yards, slow fire.
50 rounds @ 15 yards, slow fire.
50 rounds @ 25 yards, slow fire.
25 rounds @ 10 yards, pairs (+1) on camera and under time.

Observations

The gun (in SA) is just easier to shoot well, when compared to the G17. The grip, the weight or maybe even the trigger-- something makes it more accurate in your hands. That's a simple fact.

A bit slower than the G17, but that's to be expected with the non-race 3 dots on it-- and the utter lack of practice with that sight picture. Frankly, for as little as you've shot it (including almost NO dry fire), it's amazing how fast and accurate it was.

Still having some issues with recoil management, although I think we've had a breakthrough in diagnosing the problem AND solving it! Three cheers!

Suggestions

Grip the pistol tighter, and "better".

Specifically, the strong hand is doing almost no work at all front-to-back, and likely going through relax-grip-relax-grip process during fire. Lock that sucker down, especially with the lower 2 digits. Should show improvement in recoil management.

The support hand, while positioned pretty well, is causing a lot of problems that it's meant to solve. While the strength of the grip isn't the problem, the way in which it's being applied is causing the gun to "stick" in the recoil position. Specifically, you're jacking the trigger guard UPWARD with your natural grip! Active "cock" of the support hand after initial contact gets rid of this problem, AND applies pressure in an anti-recoil position to the bottom of the grip. It actually seems to improve your grip strength side-to-side as well. Again, lower most fingers need the most attention.

Keep working the ProHands, they are definitely still improving things.

EVERY TIME you pick up a pistol, squeeze that sucker like you're trying to snap it in half! Honestly, gripping too hard during live fire might be necessary-- and easier to work with than not gripping hard enough. The "feel" of the proper grip seems to be with you, but might fall apart at the range. Only time will tell-- so go shoot soon.

Sin-ster
April 5th, 2011, 07:55 PM
April 5, 2011
Range

G17, 200 rounds.

Session

50 rounds @ 7 yards, warm up
25 rounds @ 10 yards, slow fire
25 rounds @ 15 yards, slow fire
25 rounds @ 10 yards, strong hand
25 rounds @ 10 yards, weak hand
50 rounds @ 10 yards, Zombie pairs

Observations

Found the "damage" point of that middle right knuckle again. The same tendon is acting up. I guess that crooked finger isn't just ugly, but a PITA t'boot. Isolate (after this post) and dose with Aleve.

Grip changes are REALLY making a difference, all the way around. Bravo. Now, get that finger healthy and work on making it natural. Dry fire, drawstroke, reloads-- it's almost like starting over! Most importantly, handle the thing as often as possible. Presentation from retention and general sight picture practice are really, really helpful.

Shooting the reset slowly is hilarious. BANG, click-- hold, BANG, click... Someone actually asked about it today.

Not all of the zombie targets are good for pairs. "Roxie" has no real central reference point, including being asymmetrical AND having ill defined edges. Her black hair and odd head angle even make using the head a bit of a problem. Continue to mix-and-match between sessions however, as it really simulates plates, poppers and silhouettes at different ranges and angles.

Took some rough shots today with subpar sight picture, but called every last one of them. Need to work more with the new grip, and slow down the cadence in some cases until they start to match up. Tracking the front post VERY well, but unable to turn off the trigger finger when it's not aligned properly. No issue inside 10 yards, but that range and beyond will give you real trouble.

Suggestions

Replace that grip tape in the near future. Right palm contact point is wearing at an accelerated rate, and the gun can be felt slipping around after very few rounds.

Rest up the hands. I swear, those two left knuckles are broken from this weekend-- still black and blue, swollen and sore. A non-issue for shooting really, but still a PITA. The right middle finger is a problem.

Holds are getting much, much better and consistent-- even on the red X-ring targets. Several of the improvised drills must have been effective, if not all of them.

Vast improvement in recoil control with the new grip, but fatigue sets in much earlier. Dry fire is going to be the key in mastering this, but it's well worth it!

Sin-ster
April 6th, 2011, 08:46 PM
April 6, 2011
Range

G17, 200 rounds.

Session

Recent Standard

Observations

Well, finished the necessary stuff earlier than expected today, still had 200 rounds in the range bag (which was staring me in the face as I worked) and the GF was in Houston on business until late. Range is closed for repair tomorrow-- let's go shooting!

Ouch. My fingers are about 20 years older than the rest of my body-- which is probably 15 years older than normal. Really, it's just the middle strong hand tendon that's giving me problems-- but it sucks. Definitely resting up until Sunday-- on pistol, anyway.

Good shooting, all around. Had to rush a little bit, still a bit off on breaking your cadence, but that's going to come with time. Cannot speak highly enough about general accuracy today. The grip was the key the whole time, although you still make the occasional trigger or sight picture mistake.

WWB is filthy freakin' dirty, compared to the Federal. It's definitely time to start handloading anyway. GF seems moderately receptive to a bench in the garage, provided you clean and organize the mess SHE'S made out there before hand. (Hint-- Remind her that having so much personal interest in the area will mean you'll keep it clean from here on out.)

"Slippage" issues were all but imperceptible today. Stronger grip? Shorter session? Just getting used to the feeling? Accuracy didn't suffer.

Weak hand is REALLY coming along. Some issue with sight picture, but that's to be expected. More dry fire should get that problem out of the way pretty quickly.

Suggestions

Cripes, rest that finger. As it starts to get stiff, it's a real pain. (FYI-- typing doesn't help.)

Do some more filming. Third party actually commented that your grip/recoil looked much better-- so see for yourself! Probably ought to be filming quite consistently, as it's so easy with the iPhone.

Strong thumb sort of floats around and may be causing some of the fliers. Support thumb follows it from time to time, but much more rare. You noticed this because the slide actually locked back today, for the first time in... wow... thousands upon thousands of rounds.

Sin-ster
April 17th, 2011, 01:32 PM
Week of March 10th-March 16th
Poplarville and Range

Match
Threw a shot at ~20 yards that was uncalled. No clue how it happened.
Lost a shot on a 3 yard headshot, thanks to the target folding back. Pause in the pair to let the muzzle blast settle.
Strugglefest on 25+ yard steel plate.
Strugglefest on 15 yard pepper popper.
Steel struggles lead to ammo shortages, and slide lock.
Why is the gun going into slide lock? Right thumb is flailing in the wind. Addressed.

Finished 3rd in Production, but in a small field. Time spent on steel absolutely wrecked the day. Shot more points than J on two stages, but got blown away on the clock and mauled in HF.

Range

Shot 600 rounds total; 100 were testing RWS ammo @ 10 yards, pairs.
300 were at 8" steel at 25 yards.

DON'T look over the sights to see if the steel fell. Makes for terrible habits and problems.
Holding top 30% of steel plate is ideal. You don't throw rounds high.
Wind WILL push a 9mm at 25 yards. Not a huge concern, but something to think about.
Arm strength does play a factor with precision shooting. The gun wavering around even a little bit can be a big problem.
Continue to work on grip consistency, all of the time. Right thumb!
Still a minor issue with holding too far left. Adjusted stance to favor natural point of aim, but focus on it until it's second nature.

Sin-ster
April 17th, 2011, 01:43 PM
March 17, 2011
Pearlington Match

G17, ~125 rounds WWB

General Comments

1st Place Production. 17th overall.

What Worked
Shooting the steel at 25 was a great idea. Shooting it under time at 8 yards was hilariously easy in comparison. Actually had to force more speed, as the cadence developed over 300 rounds on Friday had you going too slow. 6 for 6, rack clear.

Barely had to look at the sights today, thanks to proximity. Should be able to squeeze a bit more speed off and still hold A's. Put up excellent times, near-perfect scores. Too often, the points didn't offset the time differences. Shave 2 seconds, drop 5 points on the super fast stages and improve overall.

Fast splits from holster, smooth and fast reloads.


What Didn't Work

Hey, genius-- 5 of 6 mags loaded is a problem when the one that's mostly empty comes into play. Sweeping past the second mag was good when your finger hung up; snatching a mag with 2 rounds in it was bad.

Slidelock, again. WTF? Right thumb.

If you stumble/choke/have a brain fart, GET OVER IT. Shot the last 4-5 rounds looking through the sights after the empty-mag-to-slidelock fiasco. 1 Alpha, 2-3 Charlie, 1 Delta. Disgrace.

Work on grip out of the holster. It's just inconsistent. Threw a shot today (called), couldn't make it up because of Virginia Count, JUST outside the Bravo perf on the head. Tossed high and left @ ~12 yards.

Don't be afraid to go faster on the super close courses, especially if there's no semi-distant target thrown in to break the monotony.

Stick with the plan. Seriously. Meant to shoot 2 at the steel, hit or miss, and pick them up on the way back around. Shot 3 to clear them, TOTALLY wrecking the round count. (Good improvisation, but it still probably cost you 1.5 seconds to think about and execute at a weird time.)

Work on shooting while moving backwards. Had quite a bit of it today-- most great, some wonting. Especially if there's a turn or direction change coming, don't rush the lower body movement before the last shot breaks. Chucked a Delta that way @7 yards.

Note

Pearlington is the FIRST Sunday of May this year.

Sin-ster
February 9th, 2012, 06:38 PM
Wow, have I let this slide-- for almost a year. :o I think the super-structured format I first set out turned it into more of a PITA than I felt was worth it at the time. Maybe I'll ditch it, maybe not...

With a practice day looming tomorrow, it seems fitting that I return to this range journal.

Suffice it to say, there's been a lot of 1k round weeks between the last post and today. Plus a gun change to the 9 Pro, sometime in the middle of last November. I also took a class with Max and Blake-- learned quite a bit about movements, to say the least.

First Major in the books-- 1st C Production at the LAGC; finished 23rd out of 54 (non-DQed), and was not at all happy with the way I shot. No need for details-- it'll live on in memory for a lifetime.

March is the big month, and the start of my real season. The first weekend is a class with Manny Bragg; the second is the AL Sectional; the third will be a "break", but EAPS; and the fourth will be the Matt Mink class.

I'm on the fence about Space City or Area 6 for April (weekend of the 20th). The former match will be full of people I know; the latter gives me a shot at Nationals, and based on the current entries, I feel like I've got a good chance-- if I'm still in B-class by that point in time. I can mail ammo to people in either state, and fly-- renting a car in Texas, or just bumming one from the 'rents in Florida. It'd be cool to stay with Kristen-- she's been begging me for a while, and lives less than 30 minutes from the range there. It's time to decide-- like, yesterday! I think I may end up flipping a coin...

Things I'm Doing Well

Stand-and-deliver shoots have somehow become my specialty. I think all of the stationary practice has really paid off. Even though I struggle on mag changes (more on that later), I consistently win these suckers-- sometimes across the entire match, Open shooters included. If it's draw-and-shoot, you can count on a good showing out of me-- especially when there's steel involved.

I was shooting a plate match on Friday for a while, and then it started alternating weeks of when it was being held. There had been some cancellations and such, and the drive was pretty far in the grand scheme of things. I just started putting that 200 rounds or so towards the practice session on Friday instead; it is what it is, but I miss it. I always did well; something about that type of target definitely favors my shooting. I absolutely MAULED the bowling pin stage at the Thibodaux Charity Match. I guarantee my splits were scary close to Blake's-- and that's saying something. I had a total of 2 make ups on the first 3 arrays of 12 pins; I got tired and sloppy on the last one, or I'd have finished even better. Plus... the mag changes.

Gaming the stages has improved, although I sometimes don't see the forest for the trees. I set up a stage a few weeks ago to practice on, mixing and matching all sorts of target types and situations to really cover a borad spectrum. The timer taught me a TON; all of those risks I took to save reloads while moving, even though my mag changes were crappy, were pretty well wasted. I consistently ran that stage, with the mag change, only .2-.5 seconds slower than I did without one. The hits on the pertinent targets, before and after the load, were always just as good. Go figure.

My trigger control and accuracy has gotten a lot better. I have much more confidence in my ability to shoot narrow targets, things at distance, etc. Just repetition I think-- and the upgrade to the Burwell 9 Pro!

I'm seeing the piss out of the sights, when I remember to look at them. I'm still not calling a lot of the Charlies I shoot, but the Deltas, Mikes and NS are pretty much 100%. Damnedest thing-- I still don't make them up until after moving on to another target, unless they happen on the first shot (which they don't seem to very often at all). Pretty sure I'm not seeing the sights "in the moment". If it doesn't come around soon, we'll pay more attention to it in practice.

I was "shooting brown" for a while there-- or at least not being aware of actual scoring surface. Whatever the cause, a week of dedicated dry fire and a live practice session seemed to have straightened that out quite a bit. I shot the points extremely well at the last match, and there were some tough targets. I'm still not reading the sights 100%-- I know they shifted, but I can't tell if it was enough to chuck the shot or not; I typically make them up anyway, but find myself with a lot of extra hits as a result. Experimentation is in order.

The slanted Hard Covers, Classic Targets and covering No Shoots are no longer a weakness; if anything, they're a strength. I finally wrapped my head around the fact that the things obscuring the target "don't exist", but instead, I just have a smaller scoring area. Makes a big difference, and it seems to have translated to distant plates/poppers as well. The confidence boost has been stellar.

What I'm Improving

God, mag changes. Standing, on the clock, I was at 2.2 seconds shot-to-shot @ 7 yards. That's just terrible. Moving short distances, it's costing me BIG TIME; I'm not shooting the minute I hit a position, I'm not able to get my foot work down, I'm not moving very quickly, and I'm missing spots because I'm still staring at the mag well when I should be landing my feet. I ran about 100 reps dry before my last practice session, and started getting down to 1.8-1.9 consistently-- but I still had to focus on them! I've literally done nearly 1k reps this week dry; they look absolutely SICK on video, and are starting to feel like "second nature". We'll see what the clock says tomorrow...

I first thought the problem was with the drop. I practiced that over and over again, sitting on the couch, standing around, whatever-- flip, drop, revert, see the mag well. It helped, but not as much as I would have liked. It hit me when I started filming-- I literally hesitate during my pull from the mag pouch, in fear of not getting the flip right or to compensate for it when I don't. I started actively trying to outrun the mag coming out of the gun-- I think I've only managed to do it maybe 10 times, out of 1k. Even when I fumble the drop a bit, the mag goes in smooth anyway (and on time) 95% of the cases. When I fumble the drop AND the insertion, it's probably still faster than I was doing it before. We'll see if that's not why I was getting creamed by several folks in time; that crap adds up fast when you're shooting Production. It was also compounding my speed in field courses because of the foot work issues and slow on the trigger at a new position. My hope is that it'll make all the difference. Again-- stand and delivers, I'm destroying; clearly, my shooting/transitioning is NOT the problem...

I've tanked the first stage (or two) way too many times for it to be random. I think it's a combination of pressing, and being too lax-- if that makes any sense. I need to build up a sense of urgency PRIOR to shooting the stage, and get the blood pumping; then in the box, I need to settle in and just let it happen. We'll see how this works out on Sunday, and maybe in practice tomorrow-- I might set up a mini-stage again.

My draws are pretty damned good; consistently 1.5 or less out to 10 yards, and it feels super natural. I bork them sometimes in practice when I'm not using the timer, or when running dry around the house. Not sure what that means really-- probably something to do with tension/too much anticipation. Improving on that is a slow road; I'm just gonna let it go naturally.

Things I'd Like to Improve in the Future

I'm fighting the gun on Bill Drills. The muzzle starts to dip something fierce, and the shots start to string out low as I rush to "catch the post in the notch" with each shot break. It doesn't translate to pairs, and doesn't SEEM to translate to a match-- but I'm guessing as an array progresses, I'm probably bearing down. I talked at length about it with Brian, and he agrees-- it's just a matter of tension. I can feel quite a bit of it in my arms and shoulders when I shoot normally anyway, and when I've paid attention, it clearly builds up during the Bill Drills. I need to focus more on just floating the gun, and staying relaxed; there's a few "into the berm" drills that I know of to work on that; I think I may even mix a couple in tomorrow. It can feel like a waste of ammo at times, but whatever-- it needs attention.

Footwork. I decided that the mag changes needed to be straightened out first, but I'm missing the crap out of some positions. In practice, without the reloads, it seems to be pretty speedy. Now that I've started filming matches, we'll see about all of that. With Majors coming up, there's bound to be stomp boxes-- I did a tapdance around the one at the Gator, and it was UGLY.

Explosiveness on short movements. Watch Sevigny-- he's the best at it. I'm capable of it, I just need to make it happen without conscious effort-- both through practice, and during walkthroughs at a match. Sometimes, the shuffle step is the way to go-- I've executed several of those quite well recently. It's the short sprints to the side or even a bit forward that seem to be killing me. Remember how much work it took to be explosive from 1st to 2nd base? Yeah-- my feet never were all of that fast on their own.

The effing Texas Star. I demolish the PPR; it's basically two plate racks, and has NEVER given me a problem. I think I've only shot the star well one time, and decent only once or twice more. It's eaten my lunch too often. It's simply not something that I can practice on, but my feeling is that I'm just not approaching it the right way. I've got theories... but they're not going anywhere, and it's not worth writing out until I'm actually dedicated to sorting them out. I think I've got one in the match on Sunday-- let's hope so.

Stray Stuff

There's a Classifier Match at EAPS on Bacchus Sunday. 95% sure I'm going. 80% sure I could easily wind up in A-class as a result, based on the chosen stages and the high HFs for each. I've shot low-to-mid 70's on the last few "good" ones, even borking reloads and taking a make up or two on poppers/plates. Stand and delivers, after all... but am I really ready to move up to A, in terms of field courses? Maybe, after the mag change issue is resolved-- which I feel like is just around the corner.

I've got a metric crap ton of ammo to load for March. IIRC, it'll be 2k for the Manny class, and 2k more for Mink alone. Add 600 for AL, 200 for EAPS that month, plus at least one Friday of 1k-- that's gonna add up. I think I'm going to try to "burn through" the WIN brass for the classes, although apparently, we'll get the vast majority of it back from Manny's class. Whatever-- no loss either way, and it's better than risking my Federal.

Replacement strikers for the 9 Pro. Good news: I've got a couple. Bad news: they need tweaking to be on par with Dan's. Loves2shoot from Enos is helping me out on this one; I'm kinda excited to tinker some. They will just be replacements, they're relatively cheap in the grand scheme of things, and I have the current one to base my cuts off of-- and worst case scenario, I get some doubling or run aways when I'm testing them. Could actually be kinda fun-- unless one happens out of battery, of course. (Note-- do that at FITS, with people around; not Poplarville, all alone in the cut!) Chances are, since it's the new revision and I've quit dropping the hammer so much in dry fire, it won't be an issue at all. But yeah-- could be fun, and certainly nice to have on hand!

My freakin' right elbow may be crapping out again. Not from shooting this time, but shooting-related activity. I think all of those mag change reps coupled with the roller handle on the 650 getting tight has caused the issue. Popped a couple of Aleve earlier today, will take another later tonight, and I'll probably use the topical gel just as a safeguard. NOT something I need to be dealing with in March; if it persists, I'll take some time off during Mardi Gras (gonna skip that Friday practice session anyway I think) and let it recover, through the use of booze. Fortunately it's the right elbow this time-- really not that important in the grand scheme of things, and it doesn't take as much stress as the left during live fire. My bet is that I just tweaked it a little bit and it'll heal up just fine. (Please, please, please?!?!?)

Closing Thoughts

We're getting there, and relatively quickly at that. I'm hoping the Manny and Mink classes will shorten the learning curve even further. My dedication to dry fire reps oughta be huge as well-- I'm getting more and more focused on it as time goes on. The targets strewn about the house aren't very attractive, but... they encourage me to pick up the pistol and run through some stuff throughout my free time. Like I said-- I may be A-class sooner than I'm even ready for it; the goal of M by the end of this year is certainly well within reach. I'd rather shoot at least 1 Major as B still, though!

I think in the future I will use this Journal for breakthroughs, idle ramblings, "essays" and video storage. It will be handy to have the match videos and perhaps even practice stuff situated in chronological order, instead of having to fish around for them on the computer or via YouTube (especially since a lot of them won't even be posted to the latter). The week-to-week updates were admirable, but not very useful in the grand scheme of things; obsessed as I am, that stuff never left my thoughts for more than an hour or two anyway.

Lastly-- try not to burn out. Thus far, only one Friday did I find myself a little antsy about getting out to practice-- and there's been a LOT of Fridays since my last journal update. Nonetheless, it's something of which I'm now keenly aware, and taking some time off may be called for down the road. Perhaps shooting a different gun in a different Division for a week or so might do the trick-- ever since the last (and only) IDPA match I shot, I've wanted to run the .45 in L10. And the G22 could always go in the old G17 rig for Limited.

Stick with it. Every morning Dad told you, "Be the best that you can be." You're still a long, long way from that point just yet.

Sin-ster
February 12th, 2012, 07:45 PM
Some notes from the past week/match...

My sights started to track funky from time to time. I didn't investigate; I think bad draws and grip after a reload were the main culprit. If it persists, it shouldn't be too hard to sort out.

Don't just look at the "chance of rain" factor before driving to practice. 15 MPH winds and up to 40 MPH gusts are a TOTAL clusterf*&%.

It's time to REALLY start calling shots, especially on steel. There's no telling how much time you're wasting sitting there staring. Strangely, you don't even seem (on video) to be going off of the audible cue, but actually waiting for it to move? Whatever the case may be-- it's freakin' ugly.

The first reload of the match was AWFUL. It progressed a bit from there; you started hitting decent ones about half way through. Marked improvement, for sure-- but no where NEAR what it needs to be.

You almost look like you're loping between positions at times, even with the gun gassed up and no reason to do anything but haul ass. It could have been the RETARDED level of hungover you had going on today, especially in light of the freezing cold temperatures. But I'll bet some of it is consistent regardless of circumstances. You're in and out of the position quickly, but you're lolligagging between them; sprint, don't jog! (Note that over very long distances, it's not a problem. Non-shooting drills are in order perhaps?)

Work on shooting around barriers without optimal foot placement. The gun tracks wonky, and I'm guessing the discomfort/awkward feeling has your POA drifting/being screwed up. It may take REALLY focusing on the upper A zone. Keep working on snapping the eyes there for all transitions.

Good shooting on the move today, at a vicious angle! 2 mini poppers, 2 Alphas, and an Alpha-close-Charlie. Get lower, though-- and remember to explode when you stop shooting and are headed for a new position.

Star = mostly owned today. It took a couple of shots to get on to it, but once there, the "ambush" worked wonders. Given, it was the 3rd through 7th shot of the match-- but still, don't waste time with make ups.

Wow, transitions on paper are fast. It's hard to tell sometimes when the shot-to-shot splits end and the transitions begin when you're just listening to the audio. And pretty good hits t'boot-- so nice work.

I cannot for the life of me tell or remember if the make up on the Hilltop stage (see 2/12/12 video) was on the same target, or if you snapped back to the first one after completing the second. It was RETARDED fast, though and the hits were all there.

Missing draws all of a sudden. Outside in practice, they were all perfect; inside for the last few hundred rounds, they were mostly terrible. You whiffed a couple pretty bad in the match; odd starting positions are not working in your favor, so practice some of them-- hands on Xs, hands flat on waist-level object, etc. Most of all, it's time to pick a holster position, lock that thing into place, and keep it consistent. I think even 1/4" is making a difference.

Good lord, if you're ever shooting through the woods again (and you will be), work out the positions VERY CAREFULLY before hand. Not only were you having trouble seeing the plates through the foliage, you were getting deflection like crazy. On the second array of the Hilltop stage, 3-4 of your "misses" were spot on the plate, but ended up in a pine sapling instead; you nearly cut it in half, so nice group... The same for the first array; you obviously call a miss on the first shot and pick it up quickly, but then continue to take shots that were ALL called good. Almost certainly was deflection, coupled with a strange hold on the plate because it was hard to see. Remember-- what seems obvious during your walk through with target focus may NOT be so when you're staring at the front post. Possible that you need to really emphasize snapping the eyes to the target for those types of transitions? It may be carrying over to wide open plates as well...

Take a lot of the match video with a grain of salt. You were not in peak form today, to say the least... Eat BEFORE going out next time, 'tard face. Especially with a post-Endymion, pre-Bacchus Classifier Match next week...

Sin-ster
February 13th, 2012, 01:38 AM
More notes:

You're actually conducting your mag changes too high, oddly enough. It makes for awkward manipulations all the way around-- dropping, insertion, and especially moving to the left. The sights/muzzle should be in line with the tip of your nose, not the mag well as before. It's also much faster back on target this way-- you see the front post so much quicker on press out.

The muscles/tendons/whatever used for mag changes are seriously weak right now. You'd think that blazing through 800-1k round practice sessions would solve that, but apparently it's a very strange set of muscles you're using. Makes dry fire practice a PITA, as eventually you're just forming bad habits-- but work through a few when you start to get sloppy, and hopefully it build that strength up. The stupid ProHands exerciser doesn't seem to have anything that works on those muscles specifically, but they should be sore enough in the morning to figure out some modified technique that will.

It's time to take the mag change practice somewhere that allows for some real movement at speed. The place is just too small/cluttered, and the damned wood floors are still slippery as all get out. The back parking pad seems like the ideal spot, when the weather allows-- just be sure to put something down to keep the mags from slamming the concrete. Shuffle left, shuffle right, forward, back, etc.

You're slow because you're not used to being fast, if that makes any sense. It'll either take a crap ton of practice runs, and/or focusing on it during a few matches. A big no-no, but it is what it is-- this is starting to piss me off. :D This includes movements between positions and mag changes specifically; you are also a tad slow on the first shot coming into some positions. Although it doesn't make much sense, I think coming into those spots harder will actually make you faster on the trigger-- it'll require you to lower your weight more just to stop, and should translate into faster stability. REALLY stress getting the gun up quickly, even if the shot doesn't break as fast as you'd like; it'll come eventually.

Sin-ster
May 15th, 2012, 06:41 PM
It's coming together...

The Speed Focus that was required to get your butt in gear is no longer necessary, at now it's coming naturally. Time to go back to getting the good hits; last match at Poplarville, there were a couple stages and arrays where that was the focus and it really showed. One thing-- don't get greedy on hard targets and No Shoots, even when you're taking your time. Penalties due to 1/16" are a serious PITA when you could have held the center of the available scoring space and shot a Charlie, or even an Alpha.

Broke .8 on a draw today @ about 5 yards, and for whatever reason, the stroke was SLOW all day. Except on 12+ yard targets-- they're a lot faster than before. Is that a sign of consistency, or that you're actually seeing MORE than you need to see in some cases? Think on it.

Cracked a 1.06 shot-to-shot reload when you missed your grip so bad on the previous one that you just shot strong hand and snatched the mag in the process. The second grip was awesome. That means the drop itself is not necessarily the slow part, although you're still losing time there.

Proceded to smoke a "real" mag change in 1.16 shortly there after, followed by a 1.18 and 1.19. There's easily 1 or 2 tenths left in the drop itself-- everything is smooth and consistent enough to start working on economy of motion, finally.

Surrender draws have gotten sloppy in lieu of the Friday plate match. It seems like you're facing more and more of them in matches, especially local, so roll a few into every drill until it sorts itself out. Current goal should be about 1.10 out to 10 yards; it's lingering around 1.2 right now, which is ghastly.

Grip strength training with the CoC seems to be paying off, but... your support hand still isn't doing enough work. When you pay attention to it, the sights track notably better-- or at least "quicker" than when you're just going about things naturally. Odd that this core mechanic is an issue, but it's coupled with others...

NPA has somehow broken down from the draw. New holster, new gun-- you just didn't put the time in like you did the Glock and assumed it would work out. Dryfire-- do it now.

The support hand misses the re-grip too often following a mag change, and seems to be laggy in the draw as well. All of the above instances provide a great opportunity/suggestion to really adjust the mechanics in slow motion and rebuild those fundamentals from the ground up. It may take some time, but it'll be worth it-- you're chasing tenths and hundredths at this point, and there's a lot to be had there.

Finally "pushing the 180" has come naturally during reloads while on the move, but it could still use some work. 2 matches in a row and not a single "muzzle up" mag change caught on film-- it's about bloody time. That'll be the bulk of the practice tomorrow, your last session before the Mississippi Classic. Seeklander's barrel drill, sans barrels, will be the order of the day.

Keep an eye on those 13# recoil springs; you wore the first one out today. There should still be 2 extras in the stash after this replacement, so be aware. Run the "test" with a snap cap-- the new KKM barrel is definitely tighter in the chamber, and an empty gun will still pass where a loaded one will not.

Consider going back to green fiber up front-- you're just not picking up that dull blue as quickly or holding the focus as well. Maybe down the road we'll go with flat black, with the blue as a transition, but now doesn't seem to be the time. It really didn't seem to make a ton of difference in regards to aligning the sights too high, but it has probably trained your eyes better to look for that. A bright green dot might make a world of difference-- change it tonight and run it in practice before the match? Or just leave it until afterwards? Flip a coin...

For cripes sake, start looking up the HHF of Classifiers before you shoot them. Given, it doesn't make sense in the long term or in regards to how you SHOULD be shooting, but if you're trying to move up, it's a must-have piece of information. And it's definitely time to move up.

Sin-ster
May 28th, 2012, 11:42 AM
You were somewhat wrong about the NPA issue-- shooting the G17 in a class this Sunday proved that. Vertically, the M&P sights are aligning pretty well (and the Glock's no longer are); it's horizontally that there's something left to be desired.

A week of accuracy focus seems to have paid off, to some degree. The 25 yard plates at Honey Island were going down well and quickly enough to illustrate that-- although for cripes sake, that anticipation "catch the sights... NOW" is still rampant. WTF? It's boring as Hell, but you probably need to fix that-- after Double Tap, I think. (Note-- the Open Gun will almost assuredly help.)

I am now 100% certain that on lollipops and some other rough shots on plates that you're seeing... nothing, really. The plates are blurry, the front post is mostly clear... but your focus is in between them to some degree. That's dry-fire repairs-- do them on some paper plates at distance, it should help you out.

White plates on a very pale backstop wash out at 25 yards; it was odd shooting them with Type 3 focus, as typically it's 100% on the front post and use the blurred outlines in the periphery for aiming. Side note-- cleared a rack of 6 with the G17, in that crummy BT and with a non-comp trigger, in 3.2 yesterday, 6-for-6. The draw was the slow part-- the shooting was pretty good. (Also went 2 for 3 @60+ yards on a slightly smaller IPSC Classic piece of steel, and stacked 4 shots in one hole twice on a dot drill. Yay-- you can pull a trigger!)

Stick to trigger control as the main focus for the coming week-- only now, start to speed up some and add a few pairs on A-zones. You shot 5 rounds into a 5" circle @ 15 the other day in about 3 seconds, but pairs on an IPSC at the same distance showed some Charlies. WTF is that? (Note-- the group was also lower in the box than intended, so it could be a timing issue complicating things as well. You had to swap out recoil springs, so that might help... or make it worse.)

Next will be really honing in on and refining what you're seeing with all sorts of targets and transitions. Too long you've taken it all for granted-- it's time to straighten that up. This can be done in conjunction with the trigger control focus, especially as the latter becomes more natural and consistent without conscious effort. Remember-- not all errant shots are trigger control, so be open to the inputs that would indicate something else.

Sin-ster
October 6th, 2012, 03:29 PM
Leaving for Nationals in a week, so... time for things to go wrong.

I snapped my trigger bar yesterday, right at the loop. Dan cut/polished/bent it some and I guess it may have weakened it a little. Nonetheless, 55k rounds almost on the nose before it failed-- I'm guessing going 2k on average without cleaning may have exacerbated that... :o

So no biggie, right? Wrong. The bending was only half of the equation-- that part had a pre-travel weld, so it's not a simple replacement. Fortunately... I had good ol' Jake Welch put one together for me for the backup gun. Easy cannibalization, right? WRONG.

Because my sear wasn't cut like Dan's, I had worked the loop on the replacement bar to suit it. And it took a LOT of bending before-- I'm wondering how long it'll take to snap. So I left it alone...

Knowing the right people certainly helps, and I've got 3 fresh trigger bars in reserve. They appear to be a new revision as well-- the loop is beefier and pre-rolled in a much better profile. Dropped one in and went to town (after some polishing); 150 rounds without an issue, and the extra pre-travel isn't too big of a deal.

So all good, right? WRONG. On round 125 of 125, I snapped my STRIKER spring. Seriously-- WTF. Are these things like car warranties-- at a certain point, the whole thing falls apart?

THAT was an easy fix, thank God. So now, short of the (clipped) sear spring and the FSB spring, the gun has all virgin coils and a new trigger bar t'boot. Whatever craps out next had better be AFTER Nationals-- but I'm taking the back up, all spare parts AND my tools to Vegas just in case. There won't be any fixing it on the range, but... Later that night, for sure.

During that last practice session, before the disastrous SNAP, I was coming to grips with a few other shortcomings in my gear. First and foremost, I'm sick of these mag pouches. I'm going Double Alpha next year, with two forward-facing and 3 outward facing stacked behind. That should actually give me a little bit more room on the belt, despite the extra size of the DA vs the CR Speed. The pouches are nicer, I'm hoping there won't be any stick when I don't pull straight up (and thereby get a taste of my nads as my shorts try to find their way to my chin), and the outward orientation of the rear pouches should be HUGE for making the reloads easier. I never noticed it until I decided to change, but... a lot of the big dogs are running that exact set up-- two forward, three to the side.

The stupid belt clip on my CED timer is useless. It wants to come off when I bend over for mags, and/or interferes with draws and mag changes t'boot. The timer itself is pretty swift-- but that clip is a pain. What's worse, it's made for the CR Speed outer belts, so it won't clip to just a pocket. Grr.

I may or may not switch guns (again) next year. And not because of this breakage-- more because of the PITA it's been to try to correct. And I'm going to Nationals with a gun that I will have shot 1500 rounds through, effectively-- compared to 55k. Fortunately, it's the Indian and not the Arrow-- or so my mantra goes. I'm also getting a little miffed at the mags rusting, and I STILL can't seem to get a consistently solid grip after mag changes. Sure, the gun points well... if you stage your hands properly on the grip before pressing out. At speed... meh.

It will seriously depend on what happens during the off season. Long story short, no matter what else goes down... If I can't get Dan to put together TWO IDENTICAL guns for me (current back up and the one waiting in reserve), the love affair is over. Besides, if I plan on shooting IPSC at all, that'll mean swapping out for MA Compliant trigger springs (or otherwise upping the weight over 5 lbs), and that's a PITA and a disadvantage. I hear CZ calling, in other words... Or maybe Open...

I'm shooting well, though-- and that's what matters. I found a deficiency in my grip and tried to get it sorted out in time, but it's a slow road. I am seeing a big difference already, but in TN last weekend, I am 99% sure that I used the "old" grip half of the time and the "new one" the rest-- sometimes both in the same stage, or perhaps the same string.

The same goes for mag changes. Watching the TN video, I got to see some thing that are hard to spot at hyper speed or certain angles. I have a weird hitch during the press out, and again wonder if I can correct (or just improve) it in the next 10 days. (Did I mention the M&P is the hardest effing pistol to reload on the planet? Yeash.)

I think follow through is my biggest issue right now, as it's certainly costing me the most. I wanna quit on certain targets, or rush the transition on others and it's leaving me with bad hits, No Shoots, or no hits at all... I also called two A's in TN that turned out to be off the target (20 yard Metrics anyway), which was... disconcerting to say the least.

At any rambling rate, I wanted to get this documented before I forgot about it. If you're running a Shadow by the time you read this... Don't say that I didn't warn you! Ha.

Aggieddad02
October 6th, 2012, 05:00 PM
Bo, I hope everything works out for you. Good Luck and have a safe trip.

jwglock
October 6th, 2012, 06:40 PM
Just get a glock and you'll be ok.

Sin-ster
October 6th, 2012, 07:01 PM
Bo, I hope everything works out for you. Good Luck and have a safe trip.

Thanks a ton!!!


Just get a glock and you'll be ok.

I'm seriously considering it, now that the Gen 4's are out in 5" form. I really love the new grip, texture and all-- and the mag release is the best on the market for Production, as far as I'm concerned.

After the Gator, I'll be shooting Open until February or so-- plenty of time to evaluate and decide. If it's not CZ, it's Glock for sure-- but I'll be able to pin Dan down at Nats and get a definitive answer. If I can't have 2 identical guns ready by the start of the 2013 Season, it's gonna be time to swap!

This all of course assuming someone doesn't pick me up for sponsorship and make me shoot their pistol... :rofl:

bsdubois00
October 6th, 2012, 08:12 PM
I always pegged you for a Caracal guy!

Sin-ster
October 6th, 2012, 10:48 PM
I always pegged you for a Caracal guy!

You know, they have amazing stock triggers and feel really good in the hand...

The sights are crappy, and AFAIK, irreplaceable. God only knows how one can find magazines, or what they cost... And as far as I'm concerned, there's not nearly enough test data yet to determine if they actually hold up to the kind of use one would see in my hands!

I swear, though-- they are not as bad as I thought they'd be, at least at a glance!

Plus I need something to shoot IPSC with-- and all the cool kids roll CZ!

Sin-ster
October 8th, 2012, 11:10 AM
Though my birthday was on the 3rd, the celebration was yesterday/last night. I shot my last match before Nats and feel that despite a humdrum performance, I got a lot out of it. Rushed home, showered, and headed out to meet up with the crew...

It was at that point that I noticed a Private Message in my box at the Benos forums. "Gun Problems?", sent by Dan Burwell...

I don't know how, as I haven't been able to get in contact with him in months, but somehow he heard about the snapped trigger bar. "If you can get it to me by Wednesday, I can fix you up and bring it with me to Nationals." Awesome; it FedEx's (overnight) in a couple of hours.

Even without the pretravel reduction, the gun shoots essentially the same. The new loop was so close to the one that he had worked on that it barely altered the break point, and I really had no trouble being accurate with it. What I did notice was a tendency to whack the trigger a bit more when really hosing-- I believe at hyper speed, the extra travel with the stock trigger bar has me letting out a bit more past the reset and subsequently yanking further and harder.

More than anything, having the "fix" will be a confidence thing-- although I wasn't too worried about it anyway. Plus I'll have the opportunity to speak with Dan face-to-face, and hopefully get him to take the back up with him after the match to give the identical treatment.

I thought my birthday gift was a broken trigger bar, but... I think having it fixed is the real surprise!

Sin-ster
October 23rd, 2012, 12:03 AM
Am I cursed, or just really hard on things?

Let's review what I've managed to destroy this season (most of it at the worst possible time, mind you):

An M&P mag tube, and subsequently the follower.
An M&P slide stop-- but not enough to render it useless, just to negate autoforward.
An M&P trigger bar-- which freaked Dan out because he has 3x as many rounds through his pistol without that part failing.
An M&P striker spring.
7x ISMI 13# recoil springs, M&P.
2x ISMI 13# recoil springs, Glock.
1x ISMI 15# recoil spring, Glock.
1x M&P OEM 45 recoil spring.
2x Glock TRS (after market).
1x Glock TRS (OEM).
14 e-clips for the Dillon resizing die.
1 decapping pin. (That's gotta be some kind of record; it never broke or bent, but it wore down so low that the primers kept getting sucked back into the pocket.)
1 Dillon *carbide* sizing die. (That's right-- cracked the carbide, for perma-scratches in brass. Just in time for Gator-- let's hope they don't ALL split.)
1 cam arm spring for the XL650. (Note-- it may have run for up to 30k rounds with this broken spring...)
1 Powder Check system. (Don't ask...)
1 pair Revision Sawfly. (Nose piece literally rotted...)
1 set G16 Oakley lenses. (They have caught enough brass to be what I'd call worn out by now.)
1 M&P magwell/frame. (It's... gouged something nasty.)
6x M&P magazines. (They could probably do with some retirement; I've taken the rust off of them and Flitzed those spots smooth enough times that they're probably thinned out notably.)

That's just off the top of my head-- and Lord knows what else is on its last leg. Everything seems to be falling apart right at the end of the season-- but why it couldn't wait just 2-3 more weeks is beyond me. (Not really-- I've known that answer for years.)

I'm definitely switching platforms. The slide-to-frame fit of my primary is pretty laughable, and after a discussion I had with Brad at Nationals... along with every other damn thing... I'm ready to go European steel. Looks like it's 90% gonna be some Mink-tuned Shadows, although the Tanfo line keeps nagging at me. They sure are sexy to look at...

Perhaps the most troubling is that I've somehow broken my shooting. Or it's broken itself. Or broken stuff has made it broken... I dunno, something broke!

Here's what I know:

I'm quitting on "leavers", as Manny called them, of all kinds. Sometimes it's an activation popper-- other days, I go 1-for-1 on 98% of the steel, even in a Major. Sometimes, it's an activated target itself-- if I'm transitioning to another. Most of the time, it's the literal leaver-- the last static before exiting a position, or at least breaking the gun down to stuff it through another port. Swear, I see that last shot... and in the videos, it's really not an obvious early swing. But the misses tell the tale (along with some Deltas, when I'm lucky) and they're always on leaver targets. THIS is easy to fix, fortunately.

Something is wrong with my grip, unless the gun has been shot so loose that it physically can't track consistently. I doubt the latter is true, as it DOES seem to track well from time to time. I'm guessing it's me-- between the grip training, tweaking the grip itself towards the end of the season, and... whatever the Hell makes me feel like I'm not gripping the gun very hard sometimes. I noticed in practice on Friday that I could FEEL myself locking down more on the 30 yard targets I had set up at the end of my practice stage. My guess is that the static/indoor accuracy stuff has somehow screwed up my grip in "real" shooting? Who knows-- we've got 1200 rounds in the next two days to fix it.

I guess my trigger control has fallen apart? Or maybe it was just masked by the old trigger? F&%k if I know. Dan's timely fix of the trigger bar definitely changed the feel of it a little bit, and probably added a few ounces of weight. Should that make a difference? When I focus, I can still shoot the thing as accurately as ever-- but WTF, at speed. It's not sight alignment/visual patience-- the ONE thing I am doing really well is seeing the sights and calling (almost) every shot.

Which leads me to... am I shooting brown? Swear, I called 6 straight Alpha on 3 Classics yesterday... and they were all below the A-zone. Centered... spread like I had called them... but all low. I mean, at this stage, how is that even possible??? I even know that I *have* to hold a touch high at some distances thanks to the zero of this gun, but it's like I need/want more background above the sights to verify the index. I dunno-- this shouldn't be an issue, and it pisses me off. Maybe I never had the right index and it's just now becoming clear as I'm calling most of the shots?

At a glance, I'm moving well/better. I ain't sticking around in positions, I'm shooting quickly upon entering them, and most mag changes are taking place in the first 2-2.5 steps. (That last thing still needs work.) But I miss spots... God, do I miss spots. I started working on actually picking a marker out recently and it seemed to help, but... just one match thus far, so who knows. Screwed mag changes have a lot to do with this as well it would seem; the last 2-3 pouches on the belt really bring it out. What's worse... I keep standing up when I can't actually roll through an array. It's masked by the fact that I somehow acquired fast feet, but it's still costly-- mostly as I wait for the sights to settle as my whole base lifts 6-8 inches.

The positive thing is... I feel like it's all SOOO close, and the fact that so many things are just slightly off leads me to believe that it will all come together in one fell swoop. Shitty that it went downhill at the end of the season, but whatever-- keep plugging along. I'd like to say that I'll shoot the Gator/A4 with no expectation, negative or positive, but I'm not sure if that's possible. Maybe I'll have a crappy two practice days and just say screw it. I feel so off about that match anyway, it might be good to just go out and not give a crap. Working the match should be fun, despite the fact that it makes me feel odd about actually competing in it-- no Friday walk through, still don't have a room booked (or know if I will just drive every day), shooting Thursday/Friday instead of the weekend, no clue who I'm squadded with or if I can change it... Honestly, TN Sectional through Nationals has felt like a whirlwind-- guns breaking, press breaking, technique breaking, soul breaking... Cripes, I haven't been hammered since September. Maybe that's the problem!??!?

Part of me looks forward to the off season, and part of me wonders how long that'll last. Some days I feel burned out, and other days I'm roaring to go. I think the general sense of a "clean slate" will be good for me overall, and I'm stoked to get the next year mapped out and see about putting some structure to this madness. The one good thing I can pull from the last month or so is that I feel like I've learned a lot, about a lot of things. I wasted a lot of free time this season-- time I'll never be able to get back, and probably won't have again in the future. I'd say the main goal for next year will be to waste NO time-- especially as it will likely be less abundant, and subsequently more valuable.

The year in review. Well, I'm going to do it through video I believe-- I'll post it here for easy reference. To sum it up, this time last year, my entire life was changing-- for the better, I know now. I was a middling C-class shooter on paper, performing more like a B in matches. As of this morning, I'm a bare-bones Master on paper... and somehow shooting like I'm in B-class again. HA! But I'm banging on the door-- I can taste it, right around the corner. I believe in the deepest corners of my being that when I look back on these words next year, they'll bring a beaming smile to my face. And, for once, I HOPE that'll be enough for me!

Vanilla Gorilla
October 23rd, 2012, 04:55 AM
Kill yourself.

Sin-ster
October 23rd, 2012, 09:32 AM
Kill yourself.

:wtc:

But I love me!

chad
October 23rd, 2012, 09:36 AM
:wtc:

But I love me!

You type a lot..

sigfan556
October 23rd, 2012, 09:49 AM
You know, they have amazing stock triggers and feel really good in the hand...

The sights are crappy, and AFAIK, irreplaceable. God only knows how one can find magazines, or what they cost... And as far as I'm concerned, there's not nearly enough test data yet to determine if they actually hold up to the kind of use one would see in my hands!

I swear, though-- they are not as bad as I thought they'd be, at least at a glance!


Plus I need something to shoot IPSC with-- and all the cool kids roll CZ! Tell you what bo buy me one and ill test the crap out of it!!

latech15
October 23rd, 2012, 10:04 AM
Simply reading one of these posts makes me wonder what those brilliant youngsters (some people call them Internet bullies) say and do to the other kids to make them commit suicide. If I knew what they say, I would say it to you now.

Stop obsessing over every little detail. Get a better gun. Shoot faster and more accurately. That's all you have to do. Quit trying to be me. It will only lead to disappointment. Either because you will fail and never get there or because you do get there and realize it isn't all it's cracked up to be.

chad
October 23rd, 2012, 10:15 AM
Simply reading one of these posts makes me wonder what those brilliant youngsters (some people call them Internet bullies) say and do to the other kids to make them commit suicide. If I knew what they say, I would say it to you now.

Stop obsessing over every little detail. Get a better gun. Shoot faster and more accurately. That's all you have to do. Quit trying to be me. It will only lead to disappointment. Either because you will fail and never get there or because you do get there and realize it isn't all it's cracked up to be.

:mamoru:

2011Corvette
October 23rd, 2012, 10:33 AM
A lot of typing and record keeping ....... not impressed at all.
Save it for yourself!

Brian22
October 23rd, 2012, 10:53 AM
Didn't read the whole thing so dunno if you found it yet, but this thing is awesome for forearm/hand/wrist building. Lots of rock climbers use it, and I can say from experience, you get the "burn" pretty quick the first few times you use it! It's fun too.

http://www.amazon.com/Dynaflex-Pro-Gyro-Exerciser/dp/B004RYVCCA

sigfan556
October 23rd, 2012, 10:54 AM
A lot of typing and record keeping ....... not impressed at all.
Save it for yourself! hes putting the ammo down range at the speed that it requires to figure this out. He is stressing the platform and for that he is finding it's weaknesses. Putting 200-300 rounds (or more) through your gun casually like most of us do is not the same as what guys like him do or the high paced "tactical" courses you can take. This is the kind of shooting that really lets you find out what a platform is capable of. This is a learning process for everyone and he doesn't have to share what he finds.

As always, have nice day.

JR1572
October 23rd, 2012, 02:17 PM
Sin-ster, I need you to do a favor for me at the next match you compete in.

Please have someone record you going through a course of fire smoking a cigarette. I want to watch you run around like a crazed Jar-Jar Binks shooting as fast as you can trying not to knock the ashes off the end of your burning cigarette.

That would impress me if you can do that.

JR1572

Jack
October 23rd, 2012, 02:41 PM
Sin-ster, I need you to do a favor for me at the next match you compete in.

Please have someone record you going through a course of fire smoking a cigarette. I want to watch you run around like a crazed Jar-Jar Binks shooting as fast as you can trying not to knock the ashes off the end of your burning cigarette.

That would impress me if you can do that.

JR1572That made my day.

Sin-ster
October 23rd, 2012, 05:16 PM
Sin-ster, I need you to do a favor for me at the next match you compete in.

Please have someone record you going through a course of fire smoking a cigarette. I want to watch you run around like a crazed Jar-Jar Binks shooting as fast as you can trying not to knock the ashes off the end of your burning cigarette.

That would impress me if you can do that.

JR1572

Done.

FishinFool has done it before, shooting 3 gun no less. I can give it a shot.

The hard part is getting the thing burned to the right length so it doesn't melt your arm when you mount the pistol. I've ruined at least a dozen shirts screwing around that way... :mamoru:

Sin-ster
October 23rd, 2012, 05:17 PM
Didn't read the whole thing so dunno if you found it yet, but this thing is awesome for forearm/hand/wrist building. Lots of rock climbers use it, and I can say from experience, you get the "burn" pretty quick the first few times you use it! It's fun too.

http://www.amazon.com/Dynaflex-Pro-Gyro-Exerciser/dp/B004RYVCCA

As good as ordered; I'm pissed that my bouldering fanatic buddy didn't put me on to it, as I can almost guarantee he has one... Thanks!

JR1572
October 23rd, 2012, 05:19 PM
Done.

FishinFool has done it before, shooting 3 gun no less. I can give it a shot.

The hard part is getting the thing burned to the right length so it doesn't melt your arm when you mount the pistol. I've ruined at least a dozen shirts screwing around that way... :mamoru:

Get sleeveless shirts.

JR1572

Sin-ster
October 23rd, 2012, 05:23 PM
A lot of typing and record keeping ....... not impressed at all.
Save it for yourself!

:bowrofl:

Point of fact, this is entirely for myself-- as per this post that started this subforum: http://www.bayoushooter.com/forums/showthread.php?31941-New-Section

When I title a thread, "Tools Read Here: ...", then you can assume it's for the general BS.com consumption. See, when I started this whole thing, this was still a shooting forum; only in the last few months has turned to anything but.

Off course JR, Jeff, Nate and Brandon (among others) are free to rib as they see fit. Below the surface, it's all actually quite constructive.

Sin-ster
October 23rd, 2012, 05:24 PM
Get sleeveless shirts.

JR1572

I gotta hide my spindly arms and farmer's tan... Looking good is priority #1.

olivs260
October 23rd, 2012, 06:19 PM
:bowrofl:

Point of fact, this is entirely for myself-- as per this post that started this subforum: http://www.bayoushooter.com/forums/showthread.php?31941-New-Section

When I title a thread, "Tools Read Here: ...", then you can assume it's for the general BS.com consumption. See, when I started this whole thing, this was still a shooting forum; only in the last few months has turned to anything but.

Off course JR, Jeff, Nate and Brandon (among others) are free to rib as they see fit. Below the surface, it's all actually quite constructive.

Wait this was a shooting forum? Like guns and stuff? Damn... I thought it was about the election and reality TV. I guess it's time to move on :doh:

jayd
October 23rd, 2012, 06:44 PM
We are a Louisiana Based firearm discussion board for anyone who is a fan of the shooting sports. We are happy to have you here.

Here are some of our guidelines:

Our forums are for any and all subject matter that is relevant to shooting sports or their respective subject matters.
Please be respectful of people's opinions, even if they differ from your own.


Front page goodness, written long long ago ( about 13 thousand members or so) :beer: