View Full Version : Qualifying with a Shotgun?

August 6, 2002, 02:50 PM
I was looking back through some older threads concerning LE use of shotguns.

What kind of shooting does the average officer need to complete to qualify with a shotgun?

I'm just curious. Pistol and carbine qualification seems to be a fairly straight foreward test of accuracy at a range, but competence with a shotgun seem to get complex when considering various loads and such.

August 6, 2002, 03:42 PM
According to a well placed source within the NYPD the shotgun qualification consists of firing a few rounds of birdshot and then several slugs through the Stevens SXS .

This usually results in many sore shoulders as no attempt is made to teach officers how to properly shoulder the shotgun.


August 6, 2002, 04:31 PM
the shotgun qualification consists of firing a few rounds of birdshot and then several slugs through the Stevens SXS

Shooting them at paper silhouettes?

Al Thompson
August 6, 2002, 04:40 PM
The South Carolina CJ Academy seems to have a good program. Not sure what the course of fire consists of, but a buddy of mine went through a couple of years ago and complained bitterly about his M1S90 choking on the birdshot loads. I *think* they have a pretty comprehensive course, as he did shoot buckshot and slugs.

Dave McC
August 6, 2002, 05:09 PM
The old and possibly present qualifier I helped to write for MD DOC....

Load 4 rounds into the magazine, leaving the chamber empty, keeping the safety on. On command, mount the weapon and chamber a round. On the command,"Fire", shoot 4 rounds at a tombstone target, range 15 yards. When empty, keep the slide to the rear and "Combat Load" a fifth round into the ejection port, closing thw action and firing off the fifth round.After firing, open the action and place the weapon on "Safe".

Repeat at 25 yards. I forget the time frame, maybe 25 seconds.

Scoring is by counting the holes,with a total of 90 00 Buck, one has to score 70% or 63 hits to qualify for a shotgun post, 90% or 81 hits to qualify as an instructor.

I thought the course was kinda Mickey Mouse. Most rookies thought it was H*ll. Chances are, the average TFL shotgunner could run it above 90% first time out.

Many of the instructors there, including me, shot frequent possibles on this course. Naturally, nobody could all the time with issue equipment and ammo.

August 7, 2002, 06:22 AM
I did it today:D

Four rounds of slug fired at a cardboard target with a twelve inch diameter circle drawn onto it.

Range = 15 yards.

Way too easy! But hey, most cops can't shoot that well, and some are terrible.

Remington 870 circa 5th century B.C. w/ 14 inch cut down barrel. All the abuse our 870's take is a testament to their design!

August 7, 2002, 07:55 AM
If a policeman ever draws a shotgun on somebody anywhere near my vicinity, I'm hitting the floor and seeking cover! :D

Dave McC's qualifier looks like something that's cheap and very easy to impliment. I might use something like that as a monthly exercise myself maybe setting the targets at random distances to make it a little more interesting.

Dave McC
August 7, 2002, 08:24 AM
Dave,there's other cheap and easily implemented COFs out there. Some Archiving mining will give you ideas on them.

The cheapest, easily available targets I've seen are brown paper grocery bags, set on sticks, clothes hangers or just with a handful of dirt in them and set up on the ground.

Try that qualifier in low light, too, and after running in place long enough to make you breathe hard to simulate battlefield stress. Shoot it moving, off the other shoulder, etc.

Or run an El Presidente type exercise. Have someone designate a target as friendly while your back is turned. On signal, turn and engage the other targets, leaving El Prez unshot.

August 7, 2002, 12:22 PM
Thanks for the tips Dave!

I'm going to try some sillouettes I have in PDF files to print off my PC and some paper bags this weekend.

My range has a rule about paper targets only, but heck, the bags are made of paper and I'm going to use them as targets right? ;)

Jim Watson
August 7, 2002, 01:00 PM
PPC championships will have a shotgun event. I don't know the CoF in detail but I know it calls for some number of slugs on a B27 at 25 and 50 yards, and a round of skeet! I don't recall any buckshot, but it may be there.

August 7, 2002, 02:01 PM
So why so little attention to training with the most versital, handy weapon in the world.

Yeah, yeah .... carbine ~ sharmbine...... (of course it make me wonder how much training they get with these too).... seriously.. with the engagement distances in an urban area - I'd prefer a slug.

On a related note - I watched a newbie LEO run a course of fire last night.... w/ issued G-lock (lowest amount of required training to operate) 21 rounds to hit 7 steel targets.

No attention to use of cover / exposure.

Actually shot the gun dry and stared at the slide lock as if thinking "what happened?".

They "ran" the course in about 1.5 minutes. Most of us were in the mid 20's.

The lack of training is pretty damm scary.

Dave McC
August 7, 2002, 03:36 PM
Mo, here's what instructors get to hear way too much....

We need those officers back on the line. Get them "qualified" ASAP.

There's no money in next year's budget for training ammo.

I know it takes you ten hours to do the range thing, but we can only pay you for 8, they cut overtime.

Just get her qualified, she'll be doing more typing than patrols anyway.

He's the Chief's nephew. He'd BETTER qualify.

20% of that last class failed to qualify. Why?

Get the idea?....

August 7, 2002, 10:01 PM
Here's the outline we use for our 8-hour dept class:

You do all that is one 8 hr. day? :eek:

Must be a real small class size and a lot of overview. That sounds like at least 2 or 3 days to me.

August 8, 2002, 12:30 AM
Get the idea?....


August 8, 2002, 02:48 AM
Shotgun training? I think I had some 10 years ago :confused: Here's the shotgun, now hit the target type of training.

I took a department 223 rifle class that was 24 hours long. I learned a lot. Good class.

On our range, we can't shoot from barricades or move while we shoot. Static shooting only.

Max range for pistol and shotgun recently has been 15 yards. I remember it used to be 25 yards...too many deputies must have been failing...quick...lower the bar!!!

In order to practice with department equipment, I have to drive 45 minutes one way to shoot 50 rounds of pistol and 5 rounds of shotgun. No rifles (which we do carry) allowed. All this on my own time and gas.:mad:

My AR-15 is neutered! I work nights yet my gun does not have a flash hider! I'll stop now......:cool:

August 8, 2002, 02:42 PM
Props to all the LEOs that are hip to and dig the powder accentuated tools that we all know and love.

However, Jato's account of training initially made me giggle, till I realized that is how those that are supposed to keep order are actually trained.