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Old June 27, 2013, 07:02 PM   #1
Shane Tuttle
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Administrative Reload

Came across Rob Pincus' post on Facebook today titled, "Why I only teach ONE Reload technique as a fundamental defensive skill... and why I don't "press check":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESEkR...*******=Buffer

In the training I've received, the schools of thought were you never fired to slide lock if possible and there's a place for press checking, generally speaking. I don't think there's a place for press checking while in the middle of a defensive situation, if that's his point. I'm intrigued to take a course of his to see the "other side of the coin". He does extoll some common sense in knowing if you have a round in the chamber or not.

Anyone have thoughts on the matter?
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Old June 27, 2013, 08:04 PM   #2
MTSCMike
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Rob is a good ol' boy but I don't understand his aversion to a press check. It's faster and requires less manipulation than dropping the mag and counting rounds! And if he only does this one reload technique, without modification for every reload, then he ejects a live round every time he tac-loads.

When I load to prepare for a day of carry I insert the mag, rack the slide, immediately press check, top off if I so desire and holster for the day. I do exactly the same thing at each stage in competition. I don't think I could stop myself if I wanted to. It's automatic.

When shooting I either load at slide lock or tac-load as the situation warrants and I don't press check during the action because the next trigger press will immediately tell me if I'm loaded. If no bang then tap-rack.

If the action is done, like at a hot range practice session, I tac-load, press check and holster. I don't see the big deal.

And if you're reading this Rob...no offense old buddy, this is Mike from Middle Tennessee Shooters Club. We miss you around here. You ought to come shoot with us again.
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Old June 27, 2013, 08:41 PM   #3
James K
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I always thought the compulsive need to press check (or flip open the revolver cylinder) was silly. Any gun I was carrying was loaded because I was carrying it; I didn't need to check anything. No checks, double checks, nervous checks, or OCD checks.

And it would work. Any gun that didn't work wasn't going to be carried. It might be a safe queen, or a collector piece, but it was not carried.

Further, I carried one type of gun - in my case, a Model 19 or a Model 36, both S&W DA revolvers. No exotic guns, no autoloaders, no guns with seventeen way safeties. Just point and pull.

Not that I didn't (don't) own some oddball guns. But not to carry. I wasn't about to die trying to operate a safety catch because I forgot I had a Glock.

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Old June 27, 2013, 08:46 PM   #4
monoxide
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Administrative Reload

Sorry for the noob question but what is a press check. Sorry if it is a stupid question.
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Old June 27, 2013, 08:51 PM   #5
Bluestarlizzard
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^ pull back just a smidge on the slide to see if there is a round in the chamber.
For the record Glocks and XDs have features that negate the need for this (and maybe some other pistols I'm not familar with)

I've also never seen the need to press check and figure, in a defensive situation, if I have time to press check, I have time to drop the mag (which would be easier under stress)
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Old June 27, 2013, 08:56 PM   #6
Dwight55
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A press check is moving the slide on a semi-auto to the rear enough to ascertain if there is indeed a round in the chamber.

I've often heard it used as the justifcation for those ding dong front slide serrations (IMHO).

I don't press check, . . . because I know if there is a round in my weapon. Why? Cause if there is, . . . I put it there, . . . and if there ain't, . . . I wanted it that way, . . . and I can remember which is which.

My 1911's don't lock back till the mag is dry, . . . which is my cue to drop and insert, . . .

My personal opinion of a tac or admin reload is it is nothing more than a step that is more designed to sell seats in an expensive classroom than anything else, . . . but then again, . . . that is MY opinion and others may vary.

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Old June 27, 2013, 09:28 PM   #7
allaroundhunter
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Re: Administrative Reload

I do press check. Just the way my mind works and my OCD I guess you could say. The counting rounds in a mag doesn't work for me (except in the AR). Don't k ow why it is, but that is how it is.
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Old June 27, 2013, 09:57 PM   #8
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I never unload my carry pistol so don't worry about it not being loaded. I also don't like the "press check" so I just rack the slide and pick up what flies out.
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Old June 27, 2013, 11:27 PM   #9
Frank Ettin
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I do a press check when I first put my gun on because (1) better safe; and (2) why not.

Here's how I do a press check without looking:
  1. Follow rule THREE and keep your finger off the trigger and outside the trigger guard. 



  2. With the weak hand, grasps the slide with the thumb and middle finger on the REAR serrations and the index finger resting on the barrel hood.



  3. Pull the slide back slightly. Something between a quarter and a half and inch should do it.



  4. Allow the index finger to drop down into the space between the end of the barrel hood and the breech face. If there was a round in the chamber, you will feel it.


Most of my training has been to shoot as long as you need to, until slide lock if necessary, and then do a speed reload. Louis Awerbuck specifically teaches that. A tactical or administrative reload is a luxury reserved for when things have quieted down.
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Old June 28, 2013, 08:05 AM   #10
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I've been running IDPA matches and the training at the local sheriff's range since the late 1990's. I always get the giggles when the guys that don't believe in press checks step up to the line, rack their slide, then get that "click" when they pull the trigger because the slide didn't pick up a round out of the mag, usually because the mag wasn't perfectly seated. Usually happens at least once a month.

First thing they always say is "That never happened before!". They all believed that it couldn't happen to them.

Some people just learn slower than others (or never). There's a reason that there's old sayings like "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink".

But don't worry about it, I'm SURE that it will never happen to you!

Last edited by 45_auto; June 28, 2013 at 08:18 AM.
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Old June 28, 2013, 09:11 AM   #11
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I didn't start out press checking....until one USPSA match started with a click and not a bang.

Look, if that gun is meant for serious work, shouldn't we be pretty sure it's loaded? I'm not a fan of the Cooper-style press check, but there's no reason you can't retract the slide about 1/2" to see brass.
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Old June 28, 2013, 11:54 AM   #12
DasGuy
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I press check every morning out of habit, even though I do not unload my firearm at night. It doesn't hurt anything so I figure why not.

I was taught to administrative reload once there is no longer an immediate threat.
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Old June 28, 2013, 01:44 PM   #13
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Every pistol I have has a feature that does not require a press check. There is nothing wrong with it though.
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Old July 8, 2013, 09:06 AM   #14
Archie
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Administrative Reload

Is the basic loading of a firearm; not under stress, time or pressure. One performs an 'administrative' reload in two circumstances; either when preparing for the daily carry (if one does an 'administrative unload when ceasing daily activity) OR when ordered to load on a cold range. The technique of loading from a magazine with only one loaded round comes from IPSC, IDPA or other 'action' matches. In defensive carry, I can see no reason for any magazine intentionally loaded with one round (other than possibly when loading up for the day, prior to need.)

The administrative reload is a valid exercise, albeit limited in scope. Done correctly, the process prepares one for action and limits the hazards of manipulating the firearm. (Like putting a round through the bedroom wall, for instance.)

The video maker has a point: if the pistol and magazine work properly, the first round in the magazine should indeed chamber when the slide is racked. However, in an administrative reload, a press check should not be considered improper. I find it somewhat comforting, if nothing else. However, once loaded, there is no need to check the sidearm again (and again and again and again).

Once involved in a lethal confrontation, a press check is immaterial. Once rounds are fired AND one comes to a lull in the immediate activity, one RELOADS fully, either by a fast magazine change or full revolver reload. There is no point in 'checking' to see how many rounds are left in the sidearm to be fired. (I will abstain from the discussion of 'retention' at this point. One does what the circumstances require.)

I further find the practice of shooting a semi-automatic pistol completely empty - slide lock - prior to reloading to be counter productive. A commonly reported phenomenon is shooters in a defensive encounter typically fire more rounds than thought. So if the immediate threat is handled, RELOAD, don't count.

(Old bullseye shooters can typically count to five without conscious effort; old revolver shooters can typically count to six. It is an acquired skill and in my case, done without intention to 'learn' the skill.)

One of my dictums for defensive use is the best place for ammunition is IN the sidearm (or long gun, for that matter.) Keep the gun full.
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Old July 8, 2013, 02:53 PM   #15
raimius
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I press check with some firearms. On my 1911, I know the feel and sound when it loads correctly. Still, all this is NOT something you do in the middle of a violent encounter.

I'm actually not a fan of the "tac reload" either. I hate trying to monkey with two magazines in one hand, and it doesn't even take a full second longer to do an emergency reload and pick-up or reload with retention.
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Old July 9, 2013, 09:56 AM   #16
Don P
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Quote:
Most of my training has been to shoot as long as you need to, until slide lock if necessary, and then do a speed reload. Louis Awerbuck specifically teaches that. A tactical or administrative reload is a luxury reserved for when things have quieted down.
My thoughts exactly, never understood why IDPA was hot-to-trot about tac reloads or reload with retention. Reason for my thoughts on this is, how many SD shootouts have a lull in the action that a tac/retention reload was needed/possible???
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Old July 9, 2013, 12:46 PM   #17
Gaerek
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Quote:
I don't press check, . . . because I know if there is a round in my weapon. Why? Cause if there is, . . . I put it there, . . . and if there ain't, . . . I wanted it that way, . . . and I can remember which is which.
So, you've never, in your life not fully seated a mag?

And in the process of racking, or releasing the slide, failed to chamber a round?

I'm not saying it's a common thing, but it has happened to me. Failing to know whether your gun chambered a round or not could be a fatal mistake.

If you drop the mag and check witness holes, you might be ok (if you're absolutely sure you loaded to capacity, that is...).

I don't know, a press check seems like a simple thing to do to ensure you're in condition 1. And it's safe as long as you do it correctly.

Having said that, I actually agree with Rob here when it comes to speed reload vs administrative reload. I understand his point. From a simplicity in training standpoint, you only have to know one type of reload. You develop muscle memory of that type. This was how I was taught when I took my first handgun courses.

Some will say, but he just dropped a round on the ground! Yeah, that might be true. But the chances that one round will change the outcome of the fight are miniscule. The chances that you botch a reload because you're over-thinking which one you should do, or because you've split your time practicing multiple reload techniques are MUCH higher. And please, spare me the "There was that one time when that one guy emptied 18 rounds from his G17 into a perp, reloaded with another mag and put another 17 rounds into him before he stopped!!!" Anecdote isn't the singular of data.

My instructor also mentioned that if you think you're getting to the end of your magazine, and there's a lull in the fight, perform a speed reload. You'll be out of the fight for a shorter amount of time than with the other types of reloads, and if you have time, you can pick your dropped mag off the ground. Not always ideal, but then again, this is about training one type of reload to the point of perfection rather than splitting your training between 3 types.

Now, in the end, do what works for you. I'm convinced that unless I'm shooting IDPA, there's very little reason to train more than one type of reload.

Last edited by Gaerek; July 9, 2013 at 12:57 PM.
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Old July 9, 2013, 01:18 PM   #18
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My instructor also mentioned that if you think you're getting to the end of your magazine, and there's a lull in the fight, perform a speed reload. You'll be out of the fight for a shorter amount of time than with the other types of reloads, and if you have time, you can pick your dropped mag off the ground.
That's what I was taught. And what I teach today. One style of reload. One muscle memory. One less higher brain thinking. Brain stem operations.

Use the lull to pick up your partial magazine.


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Old July 9, 2013, 01:22 PM   #19
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That's what I was taught. And what I teach today. One style of reload. One muscle memory. One less higher brain thinking. Brain stem operations.

Use the lull to pick up your partial magazine.
Yep. Every time the opportunity presents itself after you've fired, reload. No need to worry about mucking about with the slide.
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Old July 9, 2013, 04:21 PM   #20
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Well... I generally top off any auto for SD, so, yeah, I know I seated the mag and there's a round in the chamber for that.

I, personally, wouldn't be banking on being able to do a press check under a critical situation, so I think I'd rather spend a little extra time ensuring that I can seat a mag under pressure.

Sorry, but I just don't see the merits of press checks.
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Old July 9, 2013, 04:30 PM   #21
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You'll probably go to slide lock.

Most civilans simply empty the gun in the direction of the bad guy. From most of the reports I've read about it (and I don't wanna come off like the toothless sooth on this- but do your own research) most gunfights don't go to a reload.

The things I've gleaned from my years shooting-

Use a charging mag, and "dirty it under" - i.e.- put it at the end of the line of your magazines.

Don't handle loose rounds under pressure unless it's absolutely necessary- use a magazine, stripper clip, speedloader, etc. If you *have to*- (winchester '94, 870, etc- then grab two rounds at a time and use the 2nd round to force the first one in. I liked to leave a gap between each two rounds on a belt slide with cartridge loops for that reason.

Magazines that have been used- even if you just used it as a charging mag- go into the pouch with the "toe" facing to the rear. Full, ready mags go to the front of the line, toe forward.

A defensive pistol is either fully charged and ready in condition 1, or it's empty with hammer down. No half measures. See Archie's post...

My experience with "Tac" reloads is that some guy who designed the course of fire thought it looked cool, not that it's a good idea. My only exception might be the "won't-drop-free-drill": You hit the mag release and the mag (spread lips, Glocks, slide release trapped the mag, etc) won't drop free. Using your fresh mag, strike down at the toe of the spent mag with the heel of the fresh mag, then insert the fresh mag. *My suspicion* is that the guys who came up with IDPA and those goofy reloads just wanted a competitive head start on all the other guys coming over from USPSA who couldn't win either ( ducks behind monitor...)

Press check? I like all of my fingers, especially the index ones. There's lots of alternatives.

Oh, and the watch pocket on jeans? That's for .30-30 ammo....
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Old July 9, 2013, 04:37 PM   #22
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Re: Administrative Reload

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluestarlizzard View Post
Well... I generally top off any auto for SD, so, yeah, I know I seated the mag and there's a round in the chamber for that.

I, personally, wouldn't be banking on being able to do a press check under a critical situation, so I think I'd rather spend a little extra time ensuring that I can seat a mag under pressure.

Sorry, but I just don't see the merits of press checks.
No one is saying to press check in a gunfight.... That would be stupid. But it doesn't hurt to do it when you load your gun just to make sure. I'm a visual OCD person. If I don't see the round in there, then I may question it. No, it doesn't make sense when I top off my magazines anyways, but it is how I am.
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Old July 9, 2013, 06:48 PM   #23
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simple fundamental shooting just isn't "kool" enough to some people. They simply must add a dozen ninja maneuvers so that they feel like they are doing something. in addition to that, there are trainers who have the idea that every student must walk away with the feeling that they have learned something more than they knew before - so they incorporate their own specific kabooki dance or maneuver so that you don't feel like your money is wasted. There are only so many ways to perform in a gunfight and all this over manipulations can be a bad thing.
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Old July 9, 2013, 07:01 PM   #24
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I agree with you FireForged.

"What did you learn in self defense school?"

""I learned the 12 point tactical move and stop maneuver. The tap-rack-bang maneuver. The more advanced tap-rack-tilt-bang maneuver. The walking command-fire-admin reload while command maneuver...[blah blah]""

The descriptions I read of the class outline in most SD schools are more complex than the stuff I studied at two copper schools.

I've seen condition 1-2 and 3 referring to 1911 status. I've also seen it referred to holstered-unholstered but not on target-unholstered and on target.

I've seen jam clearing an auto called
slap-rack-tap
tap-rack-bang
tap-rack-tilt-bang
tap-rack-slide-bang
I imagine there's more.

I think we tend to want that. Since you can't really teach judgement. Schools, instead, teach "things with acronyms" or "Things with sayings" (like tap-rack bang or admin reload).

"I guess I got my money's worth. I learned a lot of 'sayings'". I'm quite sure the overwhelming majority of people that take those classes don't go practice them at all.


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Old July 9, 2013, 10:04 PM   #25
Mezzanine
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If you treat every firearm like it is loaded, then you dont need a press check, ever. Most slides lock back when empty, a press check verifies that there is one in the chamber, how many after that who knows?
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