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Old January 23, 2006, 09:54 AM   #1
GeorgeF
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At range: rapid fire or evenly spaced shots?

I dont know if I am old-fashioned, but I am used to shooting evely spaced shots where I re-acquire a target in the sights before squeezing the trigger. I figure about 1.5 - 2.0 seconds between shots.

Most of the people around me at the range are blazing away like they are in a hurry ro get rid of their ammo. Funny thing is most of them are using the 3 yd range as well.

I know that if I ever tried something like that, my dad would chew me out somethign fierce. I guess his ways stuck with me.

Now do the rest of you folks practice to shoot quickly, or do you shoot 'slow'? I can understand someone going for competition, but most of these guys dont seem like they are doing that.
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Old January 23, 2006, 10:10 AM   #2
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One of the problems associated with public ranges is that they are public. I've left the range more than once when someone near me wants to see how quickly he can empty a magazine. I don't mind practicing with IPSC guys who make a lot of noise and put their rounds through the paper, but I don't especially want to get shot myself by someone who didn't know better.
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Old January 23, 2006, 10:22 AM   #3
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no rapid fire...

...is the rule, enforced, at the range I shoot at. We went and shot at a range near Austin this weekend as part of a family get together with the older kids... same thing there.

Target reacquisition in a hurry is something worth practicing, but so are lots of other real-world tactical behaviors, and the general range, full of families, kids, individuals of all stripes, just can't really accomodate them all. I know the "no rapid fire" irritates some folks, and I'd like to practice "double taps" sometimes, but that's the rules.

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Old January 23, 2006, 10:41 AM   #4
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Initially a rapid FSP cylinder of 2 or 3 shot strings at 5, 10, 20 and 40 ft -- like combat might be -- to see how I am doing when cold..
Then a cylinder of slower sighted fire at those distances to see what I am capable of that day.
Then work on increasing smoothness, speed and accuracy for most of the rest of the session.
Recently some quick kill at 5, 10 and 20 ft.
Lots of dry fire -- a box will take ab hour.
Targets are printer paper with a 4 in centered pencil circle -- often the circle is away from me during shooting. A 4x5 card is taped to the top of each -- represents a head.
Range pernits rapid fire as long as it is not like a machine gun.
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Old January 23, 2006, 11:02 AM   #5
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My local range (run by the DNR) does not allow rapid fire. So I've decided to do all my shooting in the woods. Now I travel half the distance, don't have to deal with other shooters, and can concentrate even better.

I'm still at the stage in my handgunning where rapid fire isn't what I need to be practicing - I am still focusing on fundamentals - however once in awhile it's nice to be able to empty a mag or two as if you were in a SHTF scared outta your mind situation. At 7-8yds using my P97 I can usually keep them all on an 8"x11" sheet of paper. Thats COM and that's good enough for me at my current skill level.

I'm having a friend cut me some steel plates at different diameters: 8", 6", 4", and 2". He's going to drill a hole near the edge and I'll snake wire hangers through them. Then I'll hang them in a location where I have a safe backstop. That'll replace my current system of paper targets, staplers, and cardboard backing.
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Old January 23, 2006, 11:04 AM   #6
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It's all about the type of training you want to get out of your shoot. Many ranges - as noted above - have "no rapid fire" rules.
I've also noticed that a fair percentage of those people 'practicing' rapid fire at a range are also severely lacking any formal knowledge of the techniques they're pretending to use. They're just performing "empty-the-magazine" drills.
Practice how you want, but do it right.
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Old January 23, 2006, 01:49 PM   #7
AK103K
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Quote:
Practice how you want, but do it right.
I agree 100%, but my "right" seems to be a lot of the more docile and PC shooters "wrong", even if I'm safe in what I'm doing.

Quote:
-- that's two to the chest and one in the head, right?
Practicing this got me in trouble at the range I belonged to, and the ensuing conversation (more like a one sided shouting match on his part) with the range officer convinced me that I need to find a range that is better suited to my needs.

Problem these days is, between all the yuppies moving out into our rural farmlands here, where you used to be able to pretty much shoot (and hunt) when, where, and how it pleased you, and the grumpy old "sportsmen" controlling the few remaining ranges, where they are scared to death they will be shut down and are overly "PC", there are very few places to really shoot anymore, at least to practice anything but static, bullseye type shooting. Only thing left for me to do, is carry my ass on out of here, which I'm in the process of doing, and find more agreeable shooting pastures.
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Old January 23, 2006, 03:56 PM   #8
GeorgeF
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Yeah, the blessing of this inddor range is that they allow Full Auto fire. Sunday they had a Sterling and a 1928 Thompson there. But those guys were not amateurs.

I wish there were nice open spaces around me. I detest the rules about rifles nothaving more than 5 rounds or what have you. Plenty of rifles in my kit that have magazines of much more than that.

Thanks all for the info. The one thing that sprang to mind was the shootout scene at the end of Unforgiven. Where Clint is calmly thumbing back the hammer, aiming, and dispatching his foes -- while they are hitting furniture, walls and everything else around him. I guess I'll stick to aimed shots.
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Old January 23, 2006, 04:02 PM   #9
Sir William
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I do both. A friend and I were shooting recently and he was aiming, firing, aiming firing and doing well enough. I simply pulled the trigger as rapidly as I could. We burned through ammunition and targets. I was through and out of ammunition while he had 25 rounds left. We both were accurate, my firearms all functioned well but for one bad primer. He experienced several stoppages with his weapons. I purchased some ammunition and shot them in rapid fire strings, no stoppages. I believe in rapid fire. A sandbag and a spotting scope are nice for accuracy drills. IOWs, there are two different shooting disciplines and they both have their equipmen and place. I am a defensive CCW practical shooter most of the time.
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Old January 23, 2006, 04:37 PM   #10
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+1 for Sir William.

Im also a fan of both practices. Aim and fire, reaquire my target and repeat. I also like to know im capable of unleashing 2 or 3 rapid shots and hitting CoM of my targets.

2 decent ranges in my area, one is rather strict about no rapid fire. The other has a "3 shot burst" rule.
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Old January 23, 2006, 04:59 PM   #11
pickpocket
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Find the thread about Front Sight Press & Quick Kill.
Robin posted that he once hit 6 plates in 4 flat from the draw.... there's definitely something to be said for rapid fire drills when done correctly...HOWEVER, on the other side of that, there's also something to be said of people who don't practice target acquisition or proper sight alignment between shots.

I think my point is that rapid fire drills to the professional (or experienced) shooter doesn't mean spray and pray. It takes a good amount of training to use techniques like the double-tap effectively.

and..

Quote:
Originally Posted by AK103K
Practicing this got me in trouble at the range I belonged to, and the ensuing conversation (more like a one sided shouting match on his part) with the range officer convinced me that I need to find a range that is better suited to my needs.
The part in my signature line is a reference to Gen. Mattis' mantra "No better friend, no worse enemy" and the insurgency in Iraq, not my suggestions for range technique.
The story is that - during an operational order - our Task Force Commander finished up with "Remember gents, the only way to win this kind of conflict is to win over their hearts and minds."
This was promptly followed up by one of my NCO's with "Hearts and minds? That's two to the chest and one in the head, right sir?"

I love Marines.
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Old January 23, 2006, 05:56 PM   #12
AK103K
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Quote:
I think my point is that rapid fire drills to the professional (or experienced) shooter doesn't mean spray and pray. It takes a good amount of training to use techniques like the double-tap effectively.
This has always been an argument of mine when the rapid fire thing comes up. Controlled rapid fire is by no means "spray and pray", and fast does not mean unsafe or out of control. Speed really has little to do with shooting well quickly, being smooth and practiced does. Therein lies the problem, and it becomes Catch 22 at a lot of ranges. If you cant practice, how can you become proficient, or if you are, hope to maintain it?

Quote:
This was promptly followed up by one of my NCO's with "Hearts and minds? That's two to the chest and one in the head, right sir?"
its an old drill known as the "Mozambique", but I'm sure the Marines developed and perfected it and it was stolen from them.
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Old January 23, 2006, 05:59 PM   #13
pickpocket
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AK103K
Speed really has little to do with shooting well quickly, being smooth and practiced does.
Hence a little ditty that goes like this:

Slow is smooth, smooth is fast.
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Old January 23, 2006, 07:06 PM   #14
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couple of things

for one, we older guys fired Conventional NRA pistol at the range. We shot for group, and accuracy. Many of us loaded our own, and strived for prefection.
Now days, it seems like most are just blasting away. Target shooting is passee, and many of the shooters think 'minute of bad guy' is accurate.
The emphasis is on CCW and Defensive shooting. Sad, that so many new 'gunners' are into it just for that. Those years of practice are looked down at now. The ability to estimate range, dope wind, and call your shots are gone. Bang, bang, bang, and mostly at the 10 yard distance.
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Old January 23, 2006, 07:21 PM   #15
dawg23
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Originally Posted By george F: "I don't know if I am old-fashioned, but I am used to shooting evenly spaced shots where I re-acquire a target in the sights before squeezing the trigger. I figure about 1.5 - 2.0 seconds between shots. i]

Most of the people around me at the range are blazing away like they are in a hurry ro get rid of their ammo."




You act like "evenly spaced" and "fast" are mutually exclusive.

I'm not fast at all compared to some of the guys I shoot with at the local IDPA club. But I can shoot 4-5 rounds per second at 7 yards and keep all the shots in the IDPA "A" zone (-0 zone).

After a few Tactical Pistol classes you may come to the conclusion that a handgun is a relatively weak weapon (compared to a deer rifle or a 12 gauge loaded with 00 buckshot), and that rapid, accurate follow-up shots have a very real purpose in the real world.

For me this is much more valuable practice than slowly punching holes in a bulls-eye target. Maybe I'm just weird.

Just my $.02 worth. YMMV

Edited to correct spelling 1-23-06
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Old January 23, 2006, 08:23 PM   #16
pickpocket
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On the contrary...

It will be the RARE skill that simply does not have a place in your training, or is utterly useless in terms of practical application.
To say that slow, aimed fire is useless is just as absurd as saying that rapid fire is useless. Both have the potential to be valuable skills...if they're practiced correctly.

People should refrain from denouncing one training technique in favor of another, because at the end of the day, you're going to need as many tricks in the bag as you can possibly fit.
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Old January 23, 2006, 09:35 PM   #17
Recon7
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the pistol I am practicing with right now is only a .380 and as i hope the first shot will do the trick, I will not rely on it. For me rapid fire drills are important. that dosen't mean slow fire is useless, it builds the skills you use in rapid fire. I usually do a LOT of slow fire, an blast off 1 mag of rapid fire. IMO the more different drills you do the better.
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Old January 23, 2006, 11:15 PM   #18
GeorgeF
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Interesting point raised. My primary carry pistol is a Mustang .380. When the Sigtac coat comes in, I will carry an extra magazine. But I am concious of the fact that I only have 6 (+1) to work with.

I also occassionaly fire 'quickly' (about .5 seconds in between shots), but more the exception than the rule. As my proficiency grows, perhaps I will utilize it more. Interesting to see all the different opinions here.

I also in no way see a pistol as a primary weapon - if it truly hit the fan, I would much rather have a rifle or shotgun in my hands. But the pistol serves me well in their stead. Most of them are for collecting anyway - I'm not trusting my life to one of my Nambu's any day soon.

Thanks again for the comments - I will examine the other thread mentioned.
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Old January 30, 2006, 04:08 AM   #19
Jeff22
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cadence of fire

Work on accuracy at a timed fire pace.

If you do too much rapid fire practice at close range, you risk training yourself right into jerking the trigger and forgetting to look at the sights.
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Old January 30, 2006, 01:24 PM   #20
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Shot at a range that didn't allow rapid fire. Nice range, and when the guy mentions "insurance", I can guess why...I think it is because of the possibility of a mis-fire. Rapid fire would almost ensure a follow-up shot on top of a squib round, which would most likely mean kBOOM!. I read too many events on these forums about guys who have problems with ammo. Started me worrying actually, even though I always use factory ammo and never had a problem.
Now I am back in my gun club so it is not an issue anymore.

I like to practice rapid fire. Slow steady fire is fine - practice practice and pratice and then the speed comes. Practice a draw slow until it becomes oily smooth and conditioned in -then the speed will come. If you are carrying for SD, fast draw, fast target aquisition, and rapd CONTROLLED fire are a must. Accurate Double and triple taps should be a goal. Also good to KNOW what you are capable of. The target revolver guys may not like it - but I ain't practicing for a target match.

And besides, it IS always cool to blow off some stress by sending 9 or 15 rnds downrange ASAP!
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Old January 30, 2006, 11:22 PM   #21
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The slow fire sessions are excellent training for trigger control and follow through. It is fun, plus it is a good foundation for learning rapid and accurate fire for self-defense. It's that balance of rapid and accurate that is important. Fast shots that miss or hit non-vital areas simply burn up ammo for no good purpose. Too often, I see people--including myself--concentrating on one area and neglecting the other.

I am an accurate shot, but I am not especially fast. I have spent probably 75% of my range time doing slow, precision fire. The one-second rule is something I actually need to work up to. Once I can get consistent, good hits every second, I'll start complaining about the rule.
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Old January 30, 2006, 11:27 PM   #22
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most of the time I'll take my time with a shot, but sometimes (maybe every 2-3 mags) I'll unload one...I've got a semi auto...might as well treat it like one!
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Old January 30, 2006, 11:46 PM   #23
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Its important to be able to shoot quickly and accurately, and place your shots as effectively as you can quickly for pistol self defense. Blasting away rapid fire can be an eye opener. Sometimes I think it sobers a guy up who thinks he's Rambo only to find he's so all over the place shooting rapid fire that he'd run out of ammo and get himself killed. I do have to say, though, who hasn't thought it a little fun to unload a mag or two into a pumpkin or watermelon?
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Old January 31, 2006, 12:24 AM   #24
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It is all good

We all have likes and dislikes. I like to show off sometimes and hit the steel plates at 25yds 6 rds in 6 seconds with the GP100 using 38 special loads. I did it this weekend while everyone else was using the 7yd line. Everyone stops and looks almost always one who wants to make a bet that I cant do it again. I can always use a few extra bucks for ammo. The only way that you can pratice for an armed encounter is to first become a good shot at distance. This gives better control over the weapon. Then once the muscle memory is there start the aimed rapid fire transition on multiple targets and if possiable moving targets. I know that most ranges prohibit this type of shooting. I am happy that they don't allow it as most of the people that are at public ranges have no clue as to what they are doing. Just my 2Cents.
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Old January 31, 2006, 02:23 AM   #25
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Good thread. Its funny how some ranges don't care and some will throw you out for it. One of the local ranges I go to does say "no rapid fire" but they do allow double tap practicing. Makes sense...

If they watch you just empty your 17 round magazine down range, yes..they'll say something. But if they see you do two centermass and one to the head, no biggy.
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