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Old September 23, 2002, 09:10 PM   #1
KSFreeman
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Join Date: June 9, 2001
Location: Lafayette, Indiana--American-occupied America
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Advancing via the basics with Uncle Chuckie

Advanced Tactical Pistol with Chuck Taylor

Standard Disclaimer: the following is a review of a shooting class for the benefit of TFLers interested in furthering their education. Those that know everything already can stop reading now and forego the nasty PMs regarding training being a waste of time and money and how ugly I am. I know I am ugly and training is the responsibility of the individual. This is written from the perspective of the civilian gun owner shooter. At no time in the militree or LE did I jump out of black helicopter and dispatch tangos with swift karate chops. However, I did fill out those forms, type and talk on the phone like there was no tomorrow.

Over the weekend, September 21st to 22nd, I, along with the affable, yet highly tactical (he did jump out of helicopters), TFLer Lone Ranger, had the opportunity to attend "Advanced Tactical Pistol" with Chuck Taylor in Marysville, Ohio which is one county east of Columbus, Ohio. I finally rolled into town after a nightmarish Friday afternoon (office quicksand). Lone and I had dinner and caught up. For those who follow the Errornet boards, the order requiring Detroit Rock City coppers to salute has been rescinded. Even too silly for Detroit.

We arrived at the scenic Union County Sheriff's Department range and K-9 Confidence Course located behind the Union County Recycling Center. After a once over by the bulldozer because of a torrential rainstorm, the road/path to the range was cleared.

Uncle Chuck was looking well. He has recovered very well from his parachuting incident. The gun shoppe rumors of his ill health are incorrect. I was delighted to see a small class, only 10 of us. I was also delighted to see very experienced students, including an instructor from another gun skul (somehow I managed to shoot next to him--hmmm, wonder how that happened). How do I know they were experienced? They brought water and food, instead of extra ammo.

We began with Chuck checking our stances and grips. While Taylor is cited by the gun rags as being dogmatic in his preference of stance, a shrug of the shoulders greeted the question of "The One True Way." Everything has pros and cons. Learn them all because you may use them all was the response.

After dry practice, we started standard shooting drills. KSFreeman fighting "targetpracticeitis" by looking over the gun to see his pretty holes and Lone fighting "puttheheadshotintothe throatitis." Taylor then used the Socratic method to explain our shots. Since I know I have this stupid, dangerous habit, mine was easy to answer. Of course, the correction: look at the front sight! As Taylor said, we should begin to self-analyze our errors.

The review of the basics, sight picture, trigger, grip was critical as you can do "the fun stuff" as Taylor called it (terrifying to me) if you cannot hit the target from unstable positions and while moving and grooving. Further, Taylor explained, the pistol is the equivalent of the Roman gladis or the Greek xiphos. Used up close in a simple, strong manner as the ability to make a multitude of decisions will be limited.

We continued the review of basic drills against the clock as our shooting continued to improve and our drawstrokes became smoother. Taylor emphasized the elimination of error, not speed, in our strokes.

Taylor also demonstrated a "new" to me tac reload. Instead of rotating the hand to insert the fresh mag, one takes the old mag out and places it in the shooting hand and then inserts the new mag. This helps to ensure proper installation despite sweat, blood and shaking during a fight as it reduces the time 2 mags are in one hand. The trick, I learned somewhat belatedly, is to grip the old mag at the very base of the mag so as not to block the mag well. As I practiced it, I had no trouble even in the dark.

We continued until evening and then came back near dusk for the night shoot with a great full moon. At dusk, Taylor lectured on the range as to the use of sights in reduced lighting and the use of the flashlight. He emphasized that the light will be used only to seek the target and will not be used in defensive/reactive situations. While Taylor stressed the Harries technique and pointed out its pros, he did not get excited if we used other techniques as certain circumstances will warrant certain techniques.

I brought S&B ammo as I knew it's flash was minimal (at least for the lot I had). However, a couple of students (granted using their non-carry loads) received wake up calls to check their ammo before carrying it. Gun rag fireballs, despite selling magazines, are not a good thing in a fight.

The second day brought a review of the first day at decreased times. We then moved on to multiple opponents, turns and angled targets. My shooting was much better as I kept my focus on the front sight--go figure.

After lunch we started the "dynamic shooting", i.e. shooting while moving, at steel. After reviewing the proper way to move while shooting we lined up into two lines and went up and back at the steel target. Uncle Chuck clarified that "going dynamic" is not generally a good thing for us, unless it is in reverse gear. Besides I shudder at the thought of running to the fight.

Lone, gigging my highly tactical office geekiness, said I should practice moving by keeping a cup of coffee level down the hallway. As long as I can talk on the cell phone, Lone.

Always, always wear your eyes. Lone took a piece of a .357 SIG to his chest (bounced off) and found a nice kiss near me from a .45.

We next took up shooting behind cover and improvised positions. Staying away from cover and clearing the cover with the bore (ala North Hollywood shootout or Steve R.'s bank robber in Albaquirky) was stressed.

Shooting around vehicles was the last segment of the class. Taylor used his own extensive experiences in fighting in and around vehicles to point out features of the vehicle. Where is cover and where is bullet magnet.

And then it was time to get in the car. I let Lone "drive" (as long as he bought me dinner and had me home by 11) as we repelled cardboard boarders and then switched sides. When I was the driver I did as my gunskul master told me not to. Everyone is useful, even as a bad example.

Yes, I somehow put my pistol on the door frame on the driver's side. What could have been a well-centered chest shot (yeah, right) went wide left. The maddening thing is that I knew exactly what I did and remembered that I shouldn't do it. Lesson learned: do not put your weapon on the car. The car knows you are trying to cheat and will jeer at you, sending your shot wild.

The class members: usual suspects/rogue's gallery from all walks of life. Three LEOs, 2 Ohio, 1 Michigun, a postal clerk/knife dealer, a construction contractor/gun dealer, etc. et al. From a buff, young cop who apparently ate rocks to a long lanky office geek who looks like he rarely sees the sun or the weight pile.

The guns: Half the class brought Glocks (M21, 17s, a 32, 22s) and half the class brought 1911s. Lone brought his duty Glock 22 and I brought a pair of Les Baer 1911s. A gun dealer from Columbus used a stainless Ber M92.

I learned a lot. The class may not be for all with certain 'Type A" personalities. Uncle Chuck, despite his background, is more Athenian than Spartan in his manner. It is a salon, not a barracks. Tangents are taken and seeminly encourage to solicit questions from the class and to allow our minds to clear for the next exercise. Some may have patience for this; others not. Be forewarned.

My thanks to Shawn Herman, the gunsmith who is good with a gun, for his hard work. And my thanks to Lone for putting up with me.
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Old September 29, 2002, 11:21 PM   #2
Preacherman
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Join Date: July 9, 2002
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Thanks for the post. I might just have to get into some of his training one day... I'm a great believer in getting the best training available, and I hear great things about CT from Mas Ayoob, Thunder Ranch and other good schools, all of whom praise him highly. Your report shows why!
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Old September 30, 2002, 09:26 AM   #3
BigG
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Join Date: May 19, 1999
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Thanks for a superior write-up. Chuck sounds better in person than reading his articles in Handguns would make me expect.
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o "In the beginning of a change, the patriot is a scarce man brave, hated, and scorned. When his cause succeeds, however, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." Mark Twain

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Old October 1, 2002, 10:55 PM   #4
C.R.Sam
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Join Date: October 29, 1999
Location: Dewey, AZ
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Thanks for the good debrief KSF.
Quote:
We began with Chuck checking our stances and grips. While Taylor is cited by the gun rags as being dogmatic in his preference of stance, a shrug of the shoulders greeted the question of "The One True Way." Everything has pros and cons. Learn them all because you may use them all was the response.
AMEN

We can neither schedule nor script our real life encounters.

Sam
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Old October 2, 2002, 06:43 PM   #5
KSFreeman
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Join Date: June 9, 2001
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Gentlemen, you're welcome.

Sam I Am, while true sez you, we can do our level best to avoid them thar "encounters." Training is the best way thar be. "No joy" in fighting!
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