View Full Version : Name one thing you learned at your last match...

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October 12, 2002, 12:27 PM
I went to a steel plate match today. (My second.)
I learned a few things...
1. Don't plan ahead, at least not before you know what's going on. I was surprised on how well I shot the course the first time (Last month.) I saw the guys with really good times were shooting with red dots. I got another gun (A carbon copy of my first gun, but with a firepoint dot sight already installed.) I assumed it would automatically cut a second or two from my time.
How wrong I was. It ADDED 5 seconds!!!!
2. If you don't think you have to aim, don't aim, just shoot.
3. Smooth counts for more than style points.

What kinds of things did you learn when you first started shooting sports?
And what did you learn at your last match?

October 12, 2002, 12:33 PM
If the time says 2 minutes or 20 seconds, use it all. The high master shooters in my league use all available time. Another thing was not to push on the barricade, since that leads to poor shot placement on the target.
Don't think too much or make last minute equipment checks, and be alone when you load magazines or need some prep time. To some folks that may seem like you are rude or unsociable, but there is plenty of time for that after the match.
Probably the most important, concentrate, front sight, front sight, etc.

Navy joe
October 12, 2002, 01:56 PM

1. Having a plan before you start shooting cuts your time dramatically. Especially when you have to reload every time you move. ( L10 w/ 8rd mags)

2. You cannot miss a mini-popper fast enough, but it sure does piss you off.

3. Don't shoot a match Sunday if you're dog tired from shooting one Saturday.

4. It's legal under U.S. rules to clear a jam by beating the crap out of your gun on a prop, as long as it's done safely.

5. Having a safe handling area in the shot fall zone of a skeet range sucks.

6. That was so fun I have to do it every weekend.

October 12, 2002, 03:30 PM
From 3 gun:

1. Practice shooting long range targets from field expediant positions more. Prone. Kneeling. Using unstable barricades.

October 12, 2002, 05:30 PM
1)Slow is Smooth
2)Smooth is Fast
3)Fast is Deadly

4)Frontsight, Press

5)Always bring extra ammo

6)Every plan is a good plan untill the timer goes off

October 12, 2002, 09:02 PM
My Witness in 41AE, crappy trigger and all, can run splits under .3.

"A" (or whatever they call that round circle in the center of the IDPA target)-hits.
Six shots.
Under four seconds.
Shooting backwards.

For real.

Wonder what I'll learn tomorrow (gonna shoot the same gun)?

October 13, 2002, 08:32 AM
Tendonitis and strong hand standards at the same time sucks.

October 13, 2002, 01:01 PM
1. slow down and aim- you can't miss fast enough.

2. take more time on my walk through and plan.

XD skills challenge
1. The Springfield XD trigger cuts my trigger finger when it recoils.

2. .357 sig is a powerful round.

I'm sure I learned more, but I already forgot it.:p

October 13, 2002, 07:09 PM
That I shoot like crap when I am the RO and have a lot of new shooters in the squad and I shoot last.

October 13, 2002, 08:10 PM
1. Cheap mags suck (not my personal exp, but it happened today)


3. Its legal to shoot through the barricads with a .223 :p

4. A Beretta is a fine firearm, esp the 92G Elite II

5. Stripper clips rule!

A guy shot through the baricade with a .223 by mistake, and the 1 by 1 target stand arm never had a chance, and he hit the targets! I won' t tell names, but he might.
I think he was looking through the scope at the targets....

Never underestimate stripper clips! I had to use them because the SKS I have is still stock, with the built in 10rd mag. Everyone else had 30rd mags, and the stage was 18 rds, no reloads for anyone but me... 3rd place finish! :p That was using 2 pistols and the sks, but still....

Stay safe.

October 14, 2002, 11:23 AM
Timer buzzer amnesia. I have learned that a shooter can have a great perception of what to do and how on a stage. When the timer goes off, the plan and sometimes everything ever learned about shooting a pistol can vanish. Takes quite a few exposures before affect is lessened.

October 14, 2002, 12:33 PM
There is absolutely nothing even remotely like "100% reliability" in firearms. Anyone who thinks there is, is kidding themself.
I overheard a guy, who shoots a box-stock Glock 17 in USPSA competition, that he got rid of his 1911's because he didn't like putting-up with their finicky behavior and cost. He said he had put 10,000 rounds through his Glock, without a malfunction. This guy is deluded; he shoots in my squad almost every weekend, and his gun pukes on him almost every weekend. I'll call that "100% reliability of the mind" - even if it ain't true, keep telling yourself that.
I'm working on one of those costly/finicky 1911's, and was feeling pretty good about my project, having had one failure to feed in 500 rounds of range-brass reloads (this gun will replace a gun that has had one FTF in maybe 3000 rounds). Then, on the last stage of the day, my gun turned into a single shot. I had to "tap" the butt (SLAM is more like it) to urge each and every round up the feedramp, on a 28-round stage. Took the gun home, and it flawlessly cycled five different rounds through five different mags. That's reality. Any mechanical device, regardless of how it worked yesterday, or five minutes ago, can fail; be prepared for it.

October 14, 2002, 07:50 PM
I can't run as fast as I used to.....

October 15, 2002, 04:42 AM
My 41AE will shoot through 3" of hardwood and still knock over steel.


40 S&W, HA!

Steve Smith
October 15, 2002, 09:34 AM
Shoot as fast as you can accurately do so in the slow prone event. 20 minutes for 20 shots. I finished with 10:?? left, and had 11 x's. Don't give your eyes time to get tired.

October 18, 2002, 11:18 AM
here is something i learned at my first ipsc-match:

keep your magazines strong fixed ... it´s a bad feeling, when you reach for your mag to reload and it isn´t where it should be ...
(i ´ve lost them while starting my run to the first box)

and there is still another thing, that i learned:
"sanded" magazines don´t work pretty well !!!


October 18, 2002, 05:30 PM
2. Pratice shooting one handed!
3. Have fun!
4. Make friends!
5. Maybe it is time to bevel the mag well on my Hi-Power clone.

October 18, 2002, 07:28 PM

October 18, 2002, 08:08 PM
Yup, relax is the BIG one for me.

October 19, 2002, 02:03 AM
I've got a lot to work on, but will do so one step at a time.

October 19, 2002, 11:26 AM
Well I just learned I better bring a Second gun to out of town matches. The first shot of the second stage I broke the barrel bushing on my Kimber custom. No second gun, no spare bushing, no more shooting. I thought I had a fairly solid parts kit. I've never seen a bushing snap off before.

October 19, 2002, 03:52 PM
1. Understand how the scoring works for the Match you are at.

2. Don't count a fellow out cause he is using Stripper Clip's

3 :D Just because you can see the sights and the Target does not mean your muzzle is clear of the Barricade :D ZTN - Depends where you shoot if this is OK - 99.9% this is a big NO-NO lucky it was cardboard - (Straight Sights no Scope)

4 If you are not having Fun you are doing something wrong.

5. Bring a Chair to the match and naps

October 20, 2002, 12:41 AM
1. Having the gun "sighted in" is good!.

2. Having ammo that works every time is good!

3. Practise the basics, more than just "sighting in" gun is really good!

4. Paying attention to what you do, even if you aren't having a great day will help a lot.

5. If you quit, you die.

October 20, 2002, 08:14 AM
In our league in NC, the second most important thing is BBQ for lunch following the match.

Christopher II
October 20, 2002, 07:54 PM
At the yearly night IDPA match last night:

- Have a sturdy flashlight. Get a good one, a Surefire or Scorpion is probably best. Sturdiness, reliability, and focused brightness are paramount. Work flashlight manipulation into your dryfire routine.

- Luminescent night sights are an absolute 100% requirement on a defensive pistol. A flashlight alone won't cut it, because that flashlight won't illuminate your sights. There are many occasions where there will be enough ambient light to identify a target as a threat, but not enough to see your sights. Which leads into the next thing...

- If you can't (or won't) use your sights, don't expect to hit anything. Point shooting at anything past twice arms length is gun-rag BS.

Most important...

- Take a notebook to your next match. During breaks or between stages, think about your performance. Write down your thoughts. Take notes, and study them afterwards.

- Chris

October 20, 2002, 08:01 PM
I was recently at the same match ChrisII spoke of. The things I learned were:

-Practice dryfiring with your flashlight at nighttime

-Trying to keep your flashlight away from your body (to misdirect the opponent's shots) while shooting is like trying to run, chew gum, pat your head, and say your hail Brownings all at the same time. This might be cleared up with some practice.

-Blazer .45 isn't all that bad

-Don't get fat...don't ever get fat...starve before you get fat

-For planned night fighting, get PVS-7s and fight from 100 yards away using an IR designator equipped AR

October 21, 2002, 01:52 PM
From my match on Saturday:

1. Free pistol is the devil

2. Throwing the $2000 gun down the range, while possibly more effective, is not a good idea.

3. Free Pistol always has and always will, suck terribly

4. Shoot the first good sight picture you have, the longer you hold the gun the more tired you get and then you will shoot a bad shot (4 tens in a row, almost a perfect target, last shot was an 8)

5. Did I mention how much I hate Free Pistol

October 25, 2002, 04:58 PM
... hehehe hard cover is always hard cover even if its a steel drum which the bullets go straight through :-) lost 15 points for not putting additional bullets in the target :-/

October 29, 2002, 11:31 AM
Last highpower match: Sighters are useless on reduced course (wind not an issue). If it ain't shootin straight beforehand, it won't on match day. When shooting offhand, take your time, get plenty of rest and breathing spaces between shots. Don't hurry into position so quickly that you ignore your body alignment, even in rapid fire.
Last IDPA: Test your reloads BEFORE the qualifier, not DURING GRRRRR :mad: I'm switching to FMJ for the next match. That leading adds up during a 90rd qualifier.

October 29, 2002, 11:56 AM
At last week's match, learned that I don't totally suck. :) Finished second in SS CDP. 1st place is really good, and will probably shoot expert next time he classifies. Overall finish was 8th out of all classifications and divisions. :) My best showing in a pure IDPA match yet. Felt good.

October 29, 2002, 03:59 PM
last few highpower matches.

#1 take your time
#2 relax
#3 tell that monkey in my head not to pull the trigger just because its close enough
#4 never give up just because I shoot a lousy 90 or 91 in off hand does not mean I have to lose any more points, never ever give up.
#5 and the most important stop making silly mistakes!

but still learning and trying to learn what happens in trying new things. been trying canting my rifle in off hand and been losing 3 or 4 shots out at 9 o'clock becuse of the cant but trying a few things and changing my position trying to improve. its getting better. oh and keep losing 1 to 3 points in my rapid sitting because of trying new positions but also think I found what I was looking for. wanting to change my prone sling position but do not want to mess with to much all at one time so will just have to play with the first two a little more.

Steve Smith
October 29, 2002, 04:56 PM
When you're on the 600 yard line and its hot, and you're tired, and you're sweating like mad in your coat, and the sweatband is the only thing that's keeping the sweat from filling your rear sight, and you start thinking about taking a shot when its not perfect just to get it over with, DON'T. NEVER, EVER, EVER give up...never accept less than perfection. There's so much time, take a break if you have to. WATCH THE WIND. Don't ALLOW your fatigue to keep you from watching the conditions and adjusting. There's an Eminem song that's kinda given me some support (I know!) called "Till I Collapse." That's the way I go into it now. I am going to give 100% until I absolutely collapse. Yes, that level of intensity IS required...at least for me.

Poodleshooter, I'm glad to see you're doing well enough to feel that way about your sighters. That confidence in hold and zero is required when you start shooting leg matches (obviously you'll have some sight changes at distance, but the confidence should still be there once you prove it to yourself.) Use those reduced course sighters for squaring up your X hold.

November 3, 2002, 03:33 PM
New competitor, 'old' shooter. Have participated in two assault rifle matches(with FAL) and one practical pistol match(1911), all within the last six months.

Pistol match lessons:
Have extra mags pre-loaded.
Have at least a half-dozen mags.
Get an extended beavertail for the 1911. Halfway through, the web of my strong hand got chewed up and started bleeding. Pressed on, but feeling small drops of blood hit me in the face was kind of distracting.
Focus on reloads. Am used to shooting weapons dry. Fumbled a couple reloads, and stacked on time, due to forgetting a round was still in the chamber. Stopped to wonder why a round came flying out after Tap-Rack. Should've only inserted mag and Tap.
Give targets multiple shots, especialy when T-shirt covered.
Inspect weapon before use. During range time a couple weeks after match, the plunger tube came off while firing. Noticed when reloaded and trigger couldn't be pressed due to safety lever jerked up during Rack.

Be aware of 'Tactical' reload. Know that round is still in chamber. During planned mag change, pulled charging knob back. When bolt was partialy opened, brass case caught my eye. Let it go back forward. Spent a second in disbelief that I did it.
Don't leave excessive oil on barrel. Halfway through shoot, smoke started coming out from the handguard slots. Missed two plates due to front sight view partially obscured.

For pistol and rifle:
Compete against yourself. Forget about super shooter with tricked out scoped AR, or rapid firing handgunner with expensive pistol.
Front site, press, next target.
Sign up, show up, have fun!

November 8, 2002, 02:52 AM
Never assume that because you extended your baseplate on your hi cap, you are saving money by not opting for the slightly stronger tension spring. It worked fine in the backyard where I usually do slower fire targeting. In competition during the speed courses I had to clear two jams. These almost cost me the match.

November 8, 2002, 04:58 AM
People can care less about the popper you missed but not the one where you stupidly used up 3 of your 8-rounders in a 29-round course. :)

Navy joe
November 8, 2002, 05:07 AM
Done this twice now. Never ever never put a half loaded mag back in a mag carrier as you unload and show clear when completing a course of fire. This recent time had no ill effects, Shooting a classifier that was shoot 6, reload, shoot 6, reload, shoot 6 weakhand, I did. And on the last weakhand round the slide locked open with a 10 rd mag installed. Imagine my surprise. Least I didn't lose any hits.

The other time was in a 40 some round field course, mag felt light, musta tossed it 20 yards as I grabbed another one.

November 13, 2002, 10:13 PM
I'm with you on that Joe, from the IDPA regional match in Augusta, GA this past weekend:

1) Make sure your mags are full
2) It ain't hard cover if the bullet will go through it
3) Make sure your mags are full
4) Take a chair
5) Did I mention make sure your mags are full?
6) Brain farts will keep you from checking your mags to see if they are full

November 15, 2002, 05:02 AM
1) AFTER shooting immediately reload your mags -- without exception.

2) 'Hard-cover' is only 'hard-cover' in games; if bullet goes through (real-life) it's not really 'hard-cover' :D .

December 1, 2002, 10:44 AM
My big lesson, particularly if starting new..

NO matter what, there is almost always someone shooting worse than you, so relax and have fun.

My first Highpower match freaked me out, and was convinced I'd come in dead last, shot a 375 - 4x, good enough for the middle of the pack.

The guy having the best time on the range was a fellow about 80 yrs old, shooting the Garand he hid away before leaving Italy after WWII (said he was one of the last out and they weren't hardly checking anything at that point). Out of 50 rds he hit the target 8 times (42 misses). Had a smile on his face the whole time. Told everybody war stories after the match. What a great guy. Learned from that too..you're there to HAVE FUN.

December 1, 2002, 12:22 PM
3 gun match yesterday.

Learned that 75 yard shots with a handgun are not nearly as hard as most people would think.

On run and gun CQB style stages (vickers scoring) just because you have plenty of rounds on tap, you don't need to use them all, just to "make sure". 15 rounds required for the string, I shot 28. I think that I actually got a little trigger happy.

Learned not to get to cocky. 9 stages. I did really good to pretty decent on the first 8. The last one looked like a piece of cake, basic rifle stage. Shoot targets, run, shoot targets, run, etc. Made all of the difficult shots. Scored the close and easy ones and dropped a BUNCH of points. Got lazy, got sloppy.

Going to buy some knee pads. Running and sliding behind cover may be a bit faster, but it sure sucks on gravel.

Smooth is fast. Fast is smooth. On one stage that started with big easy targets but ended with a bunch of very small steel, most of my squad was really struggling. You know the old, bang bang bang bang CLANG syndrome. Guys going way too fast and missing. One of our newest shooters stepped up, was very slow, methodical, and focused, did not miss at all and cleaned all of our clocks. :p

Big Arm Hannigan
December 1, 2002, 05:02 PM
At my last tactical match, which was also the first, is that is a heck of a lot of fun and won't be my last!!!

December 4, 2002, 05:11 PM
From my last match in N. Wilkesboro, NC:

1. Figure out what you're going to do, clear your mind, and step up to the line.

2. If you want to win the match, you can have NO errors. This is the thing that seems to seperate the top shooters where I'm at. Fewest mistakes wins. The margin between 1st and 2nd was 0.17. This with a total time of over 70 seconds!

3. Encourage others and have a good time. We've all had meltdowns before and will in the future. Support others.

Larry Pomykalski
December 5, 2002, 01:30 AM
I learned that while your gear can't win the match for you, having your stuff well-sorted can give you the confidence to concentrate on your shooting, instead of whether you'll have enough mags or if your holster will work.



December 5, 2002, 10:25 PM
You are so right.

December 6, 2002, 10:51 AM
Welcome to TFL Larry.

December 6, 2002, 06:11 PM
I have no consistency shooting while transitioning from cover to cover... especially after 4 cups of coffee on an empty stomach!


Am planning on shooting my next match in heels and a business suit with a knee-length skirt iof there isn't too much snow.

Larry Pomykalski
December 6, 2002, 10:50 PM
Been lurking for years-TFL's a favorite stop for me.


Navy joe
December 8, 2002, 03:39 AM
Just because the ground is frozen when you set the steel up don't mean it will be later. 3 inches of mud is your friend, especially in run and gun.

Just because you dreamed up a stage doesn't mean you'll do any better when you shoot it. I managed to out-smart myself on that one, lots of white pasters needed.

December 9, 2002, 05:41 AM
Handwarmers are good.
More is better.
Snow is blinding, when blown hard enough.


June 13, 2004, 12:17 AM
I shot my first Highpower match in months last saturday. Humbling is the word I'm looking for.
What did I learn:
1) Just because your first 8 offhand shots are 10's and 9's , doesn't mean you aren't going to get fatigued, miss, then spend the last 11 shots getting 6's,7's,and 8's.
2) If your ankle is injured, verify that you can adopt your sitting position before the match, rather than scrambling to adopt a different less familiar position. (oh and after your only sighter due to time contraints, a 4 o'clock 8, make sight corrections, or else you will shoot a great group...centered around 4 o' clock in the 8 ring.
3) In slow prone, even if you totally blew the first 3 stages, if you pull it together, and only shoot when your sight picture is perfect, you can shoot your highest score ever (98-2x's) Woo Hoo.

Don't use Miwall reloads when it counts. Or else Mr. Fat Round will get stuck in your chamber :(


June 13, 2004, 10:52 AM
I learned that you really must shoot your own game and not try to shoot at another level.

W Turner
July 1, 2004, 01:55 PM
Slow down

Practice more

Don't mix 10mm with .45acp in your range bag (NOTE- a round of 10mm Blazer WILL feed and fire in a RIA 1911), this was embarassing and a cardinal safet violation, RO could/should have DQ'd me

Practice more

Buy a timer and practice with it

Practice more

Have a beavertail installed on my 1911, bloody hands don't help an already bad day

The safest place to stand when I am shooting is right in front of me

Practice more

Oh, yeah almost forgot...........PRACTICE MORE!


July 1, 2004, 05:40 PM
Disengage the safety.

July 6, 2004, 02:28 PM
Letting all 23 rounds from a super-hi-cap 9mm fly at steel in under 6 seconds during a Comstock course is legal, but gets some odd looks from your fellow competitors. (It was a new mag -- it couldn't be helped)

Revolver shooters have severe brain damage, but are damn fast.

Glocks only stovepipe during Classifier courses.

Misfires only occur just after you say to yourself, "I have enough rounds in my current mag to get through the second string."

Those who can shoot, shoot Limited.
Those who can't, shoot Open.
Those who can't shoot Open, shoot Cowboy.

July 11, 2004, 05:50 PM
No matter how slow you think you are going it is all happening much faster than it appears.

October 9, 2004, 10:04 PM
When a mag has been on the ground, Empty it and clean it!

October 17, 2004, 09:35 PM
I shoot better with my Colt .45 Gold Cup than I do with my STI/Caspian Super.38 laser sighted, ported and compensated race gun.

Humph! :(

October 17, 2004, 11:38 PM

Preparation: Sight in on steel plates during practice. Get the sight picture you want, remember it, and use the same sight picture in the match.

Always call the second shot on paper targets before going to the next target. Avoids infuriating mikes.

See what you need to see to make the shot, let the gun go off, call the shot as it goes off.

For revolver:

1. A solid grip and index is better than a fast draw.

2. Get on the same squad with other revolver shooters; misery loves company.

3. Don't think about the trigger.

October 18, 2004, 02:12 AM
A) you're having a man v man at the end of the competition.
B) You see your buddy struggling to pull a mag out from his leather pouch.
C) You have a spare pouch, much better quality, which actually belongs to the aforementioned buddy.

Don't give it back to him, you might end up losing to him in the final by a really small margin which may well have been the other way round had you not given him the pouch... :o

November 9, 2004, 12:03 AM
Two things learned:

1. Controlling the trigger is at least as important as getting the sights on target. Just ask Rob Leatham.
2. Bring a terrycloth towel- ain't nothing like dry hands on a handgun when the competition gets hot.


November 10, 2004, 12:50 PM
A wonderful slowfire score, an even better timed fire score, and five 10's in rapid don't matter at all when shooting the final rapid string. Shoot the last five rounds just like the first five, because every time you think about your final score you can deduct a few points off it.

A Zen-ish attitude is pretty good for Bullseye shooting, but for me a lobotomy would be simpler and probably more effective...

November 14, 2004, 02:20 PM
You can never miss fast enough

November 26, 2004, 10:39 PM
I learned that I'm getting old and I don't see as well as I used to...... :mad:

November 30, 2004, 03:07 AM
I learned that I'm improving. :cool:
No misses, no penalties, only a few re-engagements, and I brought home a
Trophy! (http://www.xmastree.34sp.com/images/champion.jpg) :barf:

November 30, 2004, 10:29 AM
Slow way down when shooting a limited stage that involves leaning way around a baracade, with targets that have black hard cover painted on half of them. Hitting the target in the black does not make for a good time no matter how fast you shoot the stage.

December 8, 2004, 12:34 AM
(1.) Go slow enough to get your hits! Regardless of the format of the match or the scoring system used or if it's IPSC or IDPA, ONLY HITS COUNT!

(2.) Use factory ammo! (I learned this a long time ago) Unless you are very careful in your reloading and taper crimp all your rounds, you're probably better off to buy a couple of boxes of fairly hot factory ammo to shoot competitively and save the reloads for practice. (I always liked military-spec in .45 and 9mm. I haven't had my .40 long enough to settle on a "favorite" generic factory load)

(3.) Function test your equipment.

(4.) Clean your gun and lube it before the match.

(5.) Replace your magazine springs every three years or so.

April 18, 2005, 04:50 PM
1. I learned that I can hit the sweet spot on bowling pins at 50 feet about 95% of the time.

2. It takes me roughly twice as long to clear five pins off a table at 50 feet as it does at 25 feet (6 seconds vice 3 seconds)

3. I learned that unwarranted shooter-envy poisons a shooting match.

4. I learned that I should find out in advance before I drive 100 miles to a pin shoot if there are going to be club-sanctioned penalties for shooting well.

April 18, 2005, 09:16 PM
Regardless of the format of the match or the scoring system used or if it's IPSC or IDPA, ONLY HITS COUNT!
Well, that's true but during a recent IPSC comp, I was comparing my scores with ahother in the same class. He had faster times but more misses, and finished higher than me...

April 18, 2005, 10:14 PM
When I first started IPSC (crossing over from precision sports) I learned I needed to speed up. About the time I got deep into B class and was shooting fast as heck, but sending too many rounds South, I realized I had to slow down. Now I know thinking in terms of time is a recipie for diaster. See what you need to see to make and call the shot, nothing more, nothing less. The time will be what it will be.

April 18, 2005, 11:12 PM
1. Never accept a poor shot. Spending too long getting the shot off is a sure recipe for a poor shot
2. You have all the time in the world at 600yds. There's usually time to hold off for a bit when the wind gets flakey.
3. I can shoot a lot better than I give myself credit for. Don't set point oriented goals. Aim for 10's and X's

I had a good last match! In spite of my Expert card, I shot a 483-10X and took home 10 Leg points with a silver place medal!


Old Shooter
May 25, 2005, 10:34 AM
I finally learned that I need a bigger front sight and new shooting glasses. It's tough growing old.

I just bough an XS systems with the "big dot" front sight for my S&W 1911 - OH ... and a mag well.

May 26, 2005, 08:02 PM
Caz223, are you shooting at Top Gun? I learned a few important things: There is NO substitute for trigger control, 1911 45's are very tough to beat in bowling pins, and When I miss a match, I MISS it in my soul :p .
(Loving my new-to-me Commander!)

June 18, 2005, 02:27 AM
USPSA style match:

Skill and practice can count more than having high $$$ gear, example: the gun I normaly use is a SV Infinity SWAT in .40 s&w with a Safariland speed rig. I had a problem that prevented me from using it, so I had to use my Glock 22 with my duty gear, since it was the only holster I had for it. My buddies where ribbing me saying that they had me at a disadvantage. It turns out that I shot very well and ended up beating both of them. I think that if you focus on the fundamentals, that the equipment doesn't make a lot of difference as long as it functions.
I also learned that its entertaining to watch the base plate fall off a magazine
while its being seated in the gun, with the spring flying one way, the follower going another and all the rounds cascading to the ground. I also learned that this is not as entertaining for the one who is holding the paticular gun at the time.(laugh, we've all had something similar happen to all of us!)

June 20, 2005, 11:38 PM
Test fire the new gun before trying to use it in a match.


June 22, 2005, 09:52 PM
Be very careful to avoid pressing the P7 slide retainer button when racking a round into the chamber while preparing to shoot. I did this at a match two weekends ago, upon releasing the slide to chamber the round the slide flew off the pistol and hit the target about 5' in front of me.

Needless to say I got a good laugh from everyone. The SO didn't know what to do.

Tim R
June 30, 2005, 08:47 PM
Fer High Power....don't count yourself out even when better shooters are there. Even they have bad days. ;)

But I've got to tell you the WOP upper I have sure shoots!

July 2, 2005, 07:59 AM
Clean your gun :(

July 4, 2005, 08:02 AM
Shooting USPSA

There are just as many uspsa shooters that do not like the rules of their game as there are those in IDPA. USPSA does not have the Bill Wilson factor though.

USPSA is fun to shoot, but a pain to reset the stations.

July 4, 2005, 09:19 AM
At my last match? I learned that Simonich Gunner Grips will hold a busted plunger tube in place just fine for a full 6-stage USPSA match and an IPDA classifier. :D

I also learned that I need to learn how to make hits at 40 yards...

July 9, 2005, 11:43 PM
It takes my 450gr .45-70 bullet just over 2.5 seconds to connect with the steel buffalo once it leaves the muzzle. Sometimes the charcoal smoke clears in that time, sometimes it doesn't.

The bullet trajectory, when zeroed for that range, climbs over 300 inches (25 feet!) above the horizontal before it arcs back down towards the target.

And my spotter can tell me before the "clang" whether it's gonna be a hit or miss.

When he yells "hit" it still takes time for the "clang" to get back to my ears.

That's kinda neat. :D

August 11, 2005, 03:08 PM
For summer:

Bring suntan lotion and a baseball cap.

For winter / rain:

Use boots, and have an extra pair of shoes for driving home.

For all matches that run more than 1 hour:

Bring ice cold water and extra food. Nothing beats trying to shoot on an empty stomach with an ulcer coming on.

Brian Dale
October 16, 2005, 02:30 PM
Highpower—Service Rifle:

1) My first impressions at two other matches, on two other ranges, a thousand miles away, weren't a fluke--they weren't just 'cause those folks there happened to be terrific: I love this stuff!

2) Sux to have waited four years between my second (9-8-2001) and third (9-11-2005) matches.

3) I'm getting better; apparently, I'm teachable.

4) "Squared away" is good: this time I had the gear organized a little better, and it helped.

5) You really can call your shots, and a good spotter is a terrific asset.

October 20, 2005, 12:52 AM
(2.) Getting hits is more important than pure speed. Under competitive conditions, even if you are not consciously trying to go fast, you will probably go faster than you do in practice, so downshift about half a gear, control the trigger, watch the front sight, and get your hit.
(3.) When engaging multiple targets, the best method is probably to LOOK at the target you're about to engage and then move the gun and SHOOT that target. If you try to move your eyes and your gun mount all at once, you will probably over-run the target and pull a shot to the side.
(4.) DON'T CROWD YOUR COVER! If the configuration of the cover allows it, back off about arm's length. You expose less of your body to hostile fire that way, and it gives you more flexibility in engaging multiple targets from a cover position.
(5.) Practice shooting with strong hand only and weak hand only.
(6.) Consider practicing using your weak hand with support, aka shooting bilaterally or "mirror image". Depending on the configuration of cover and the position of the target in relation to that cover, this may be the best way to get hits on target without exposing too much of yourself to incoming fire.

(I'm a police officer who shoots PPC, IPSC and IDPA and so my frame of reference is defensive shooting more than pure compeition shooting)

October 20, 2005, 01:11 AM
(1.) Dress for the weather. If it's warm out, always wear a hat and use sun screen. If it's cold & windy or rainy, dress in multiple layers with a breathable water resistant outer garment (I usually use a GI Gore-Tex parka). If you will be active helping RO the match or scoring targets or resetting steel or something, don't dress as heavyily and be sure you don't overheat.
(2.) At all times HYDRATE! Don't drink too much coffee or Coke or other products that may act as a diruetic (although I think you can get away with a little bit. Need that caffeine to get your motor running . . . ) Cold water works best, but electrolyte replacement drinks like Gatorade or ERG are also a good idea as part of your hydration regimen. (I like iced green or herbal tea with a little bit of honey in it during the summer). I've seen plenty of instances at matches and during training exercises where a guy's performance will suddenly deteriorate, and it's because they're starting to overheat and get dehydrated. (I particularly saw this when I was in the MPs, because we always shot wearing BDUs and helmet and LBE and usually with armor, and it was really easy to get overheated)
(3.) Don't eat too much before the match (except maybe in cold weather). The process of digestion diverts blood flow from your brain to your guts and can make you a little foggy and unfocused.
(4.) If it's a longer event, or you have to wait around for a long time, snack on something between stages. (there is a lengthy discussion on the forum on the Brian Enos website about how to eat before and during a match). I like to take an assortment of power bars, but I've also used raw carrots, bananas, and home-made trail mix with lots of dried fruit and nuts in it. This summer I saw several IPSC shooters experimenting with the energy gel type products that runners and cyclists use. I've never used them myself, and have heard that they can create a quick and massive sugar low if you aren't involved in lots of physical exertion. I always take handi-wipes to clean up with before I snack on anything.

October 21, 2005, 12:06 AM
That I'm much faster than I think when I trust myself.

January 13, 2006, 05:55 AM
(1.) As one who usually carries and competes with an auto pistol, I find it helps me if once a month on one of my range sessions I take a revolver and shoot drills with it for an hour. I'm not sure why this is -- maybe shooting a dis-similar weapons system makes me concentrate on the basics more? My strong hand only & weak hand only shooting has improved (a little) since I started doing those drills with a Smith & Wesson revolver.
(2.) Last weekend I shot in an indoor IPSC special classifier match. I shot smoothly and got good hits, although I wasn't particularly fast. On the last string of the last stage I did get a little quick on the trigger and jerk a shot ever so slightly into a "no shoot". I don't know if my concentration faded or if I was just unconsciously trying to go too fast or what.
(3.) One of my shooting buddies just put Dawson Precision fiber-optic sights on his Glock 34. Shooting outside, even on cloudy and overcast days, he was very pleased with the bright contrast the sights provided. In the sometimes shadowy and weird lighting of the indoor range, his sights were much less visible and sometimes appeared as kind of a blob.
(4.) I saw several shooters have good runs on individual stages ruined because of ammunition related weapons malfunctions. Be sure your ammo works in your gun! (I always use W-W generic ball from Wal-Mart for matches)
(5.) Even when shooting factory ammo, inspect every round you load. Last month a friend opened a fresh box of W-W .45 ball he was issued by his PD and loaded up without paying attention. In that fresh box was one .40 cal round, which, when fired, expanded and split in the chamber. No injury and no harm done, but it was very disconcerting to him . . .

January 13, 2006, 04:16 PM
#1 never give up as the pretenders will always fold down the stretch
#2 when behind you know the competition knows you are coming and it worries them
#3 When ahead go for the throat as it will get to them in the future

January 17, 2006, 12:11 PM
Lesson one: Practice, Practice, Practice.....
If I have not handled my firearms during the week before my chintzy local club match- It shows.

Lesson two: Its better to make New Mistakes instead of the same old ones- That means you are learning:D

Lesson three:
Stock Glock 21 $500,
Fobus Plastic Holster $21,
Blazer .45 cal rounds $7.25/ box of 50,

Beating the Top Dog/ Club President' s open .38 super with optics,a compensator, buffer, and arrendondo speed holster in a 1 v. 1 steel challenge:

January 17, 2006, 06:00 PM
Shot my first IPSC acouple of weeks ago. Slow down and take time to really aim at target. Then build up to speed as you practice more. Had a blast! :D

January 18, 2006, 12:37 PM
The older you get, the better you was!:D

January 18, 2006, 09:36 PM
1. Take a chair.
2. Take a leak before your turn shooting.
3. Take your time and get consistant hits.

Mike T
January 20, 2006, 01:50 PM
Use oil and not grease on the rails of your Rock River Limited Match when the temps are below 50. While it's interesting to see your slide cycle in slow motion, it's not really too good for the gun.

February 2, 2006, 10:43 AM
itis against the rules to shoot the Saftey officer or the guy with the clip board:D

February 4, 2006, 11:11 AM
I dropped the mag to clear a FTF and left it on the floor when I moved to the next station. PROCEDURAL PENALTY!

February 13, 2006, 10:10 PM
Slam the mags home because having to do a tap & rack really kills your time.

March 6, 2006, 01:56 AM
I shot in an indoor IPSC match on the 18th of February. In fact, I was the match director and selected the courses of fire.

And I didn't shoot particularly good on either stage. I shot too fast (even though I WAS NOT consciously pushing for speed) and lost my front sight a couple of times on transition from target to target. No misses, but a bunch of hits in the C and D zone do hurt your score . . . for some reason, any time I'm engaging a target array with more than three targets, I unconsciously speed up as I progress and end up pulling some hits off to the side on the latter targets. The proper technique on multiple targets is "Look-shoot" -- lock your visual focus onto the target and THEN bring the gun over, lock on target and engage. This helps prevent over-running the target during transitions. AND I KNOW THAT. But still, almost always when faced with a target array with more than three targets, I unconsiously speed up and get a little wild. I need to practice more on multiple targets, I guess.

I shot in IPSC matches on Saturday & Sunday. First time in my nearly 30 year competitive shooting career that I ever shot matches on consecutive days. I remembered my previous problem, and so I down-shifted about half a gear or so and shot A LOT better. I'm not particularly speedy, so I'm in no danger of escaping the middle of C class in "Production" but I was A LOT smoother and didn't have any misses or hits on no-shoots or procedural penalties or anything.

March 16, 2006, 07:35 PM
I shot my first IPSC match in July of last year, then once a month since then, and I'm progressing well. At the last competition there was a stage where I averaged about 2 shots a second accurately. I doubt I would have even been able to get that many shots off that quickly at all, let alone on target, at this time last year. I've also noticed that my shooting has vastly improved with any kind of gun, from shotgun to rifle to BBs, now that I know how to control the trigger.

March 20, 2006, 05:57 AM
I've discovered that I can't work a double shift and then go shoot in a club level match . . . I'm usually slow and accurate. Saturday night I was just slow.

I've also discovered that I really need to get a 150 round practice session in the week before the match to sharpen up a little bit. When I do that, my results are much better than when I don't.

March 20, 2006, 12:11 PM
Pay close attention to the weather report...then plan for cold driving rain regardless:rolleyes: - Loading a Pump SG with cold fingers is Not Fun!

March 20, 2006, 08:26 PM
Have an extra magazine beyond what the stage requires.

I dropped a magazine while going for a mandatory reload, and I had to skip another manatory reload as a result. 80 Point PROCEDURAL PENALTY.

March 21, 2006, 01:19 PM
Double-tapping forward falling poppers will net you a mike AND a Failure to Neutralize. :eek:

March 24, 2006, 03:30 PM
Shot my first match on March 11th. Lessons learned.

1. Always load your magazines fully.

2. Understand the course and plan in advance where you will change your magazines. Never let the gun run dry.

3. Know how the scoring works. Some scoring counts just the best hits on a target and misses are not counted. In this type, if you know you missed or don't like the hit, shoot again! In other scoring everything counts, misses subtract points.

4. Help the RO with scoring. It will help you understand what is going on.

5. Ask questions. Especially of those people in the upper classes. Most are more than happy to assist.

By the way, can anyone help with the names of scoring types? One was Virginia, I can't remember the other ones.

March 24, 2006, 05:29 PM
The other type of scoring would be "Comstock".

March 26, 2006, 12:12 AM
(1.) Gotta' SLOW DOWN sometimes. To begin the first stage of the match, it took me 5 shots to knock down 2 pepper poppers at 10 yards (that in turn deployed some bobbing targets, upon which I got decent hits). I don't usually get nervous before a match, but I often shoot too fast on the very first string of fire on the very first stage before I settle down.
(2.) On the very last stage (of 7) I did a speed in-battery reload and somehow induced a malfunction. I had to strip the mag out of the gun and start all over. I had 12 "a zone" hits out of 12 rounds fired, but a stage that should've taken me about 12 seconds took me 20+.

March 26, 2006, 10:53 PM
Lots of fun but learnt a few things:

1.- Never, or rather NEVER use brand new magazines in a match....At one point of stage had to switch mags and had a brand new, never used, 13 round factory mag.... Made the change, fired, nothing ! :mad: Pulled the slide, empty chamber :eek: Raked again (I know ... my mistake .did not verify chambered round indicator) and fired..nothing ! This time I pulled out the mag, reinserted it hard and raked again and this time it finally worked... All in all lost about 4 secs ... :o

2.- In the last part of the final stage there was a popper at about 15 ft and I still had about 6 rounds in the mag so I figured 1 or 2 shots and I would be out.... Wrong ! It proved to be a really stubborn popper ! Took all the 6 rounds (I could hear the hits on the metal) and it would not fall ! I run out off ammo and had no more mags on me when I saw a discarded mag on the floor with some rounds still in it (had done a forced reload a few seconds before) so I picked it up and fortunately it had 1 shot and luckily that last shot did it ! Lesson learned...Allways carry one more mag than you think will need !

As allways, it was great fun !:D

Stay safe,

Juan Carlos

March 28, 2006, 08:26 AM

pace yourself, speed will come. no point in rushing through if you're going to score all C's, D's, and M's.

Dennis Rogers
March 31, 2006, 10:11 PM
It sucks to R.O./Shoot a match in cold rain and wind !!:barf:

HiPowering Along
April 6, 2006, 09:23 PM
Make sure you slam the (insert expletive of choice here) magazine home so a "bang" doesn't turn into a "click" followed by a "thud" and a finger being held up by the RO denoting additional time on your clock...'cuz the loaded magazine is on the ground looking up at you...:rolleyes:

Slam pads are named that for a reason...


April 9, 2006, 08:09 PM
Waterproof score cards would be a great plan in the Seattle area.

April 20, 2006, 10:00 PM
No matter how much I spend on a gun, I still shoot better with my CZ-75.

Glockopop, you are goin down!

April 20, 2006, 10:25 PM
1. A 2lb tigger DOES help.

2. Speed really comes from movement and transitions and splits between shots isn't as important.

April 22, 2006, 02:31 AM
RH: I will cruuuuuush you!

PS...can I borrow your CZ next month?

April 22, 2006, 07:25 PM
How come gop? Did Sig's legendary reliability turn out to be more of a myth? Just kidding. Mi blaster es su blaster. (<---A little Spanish to remind you of your recent vacation:D )

April 23, 2006, 03:25 AM
#1 It's harder than it looks.
#2 I shoot low under stress :confused:
#3 The way you're used to doing it is faster than the fastest way you could do it.
#4 I have a bad holstering habit I wasn't even aware of.
#5 It's fun watching someone shoot IDPA with a revolver.
#6 It's fun watching someone qualify Master.
#7 This stuff is dangerously addictive.
#8 I've got alot of work to do before the next shoot :)

April 23, 2006, 11:26 PM
You didn't perhaps go to the Linn County IDPA shoot did you? I couldn't make it, had to work. Hopefully I'll make the next one. I'm thinking about going to "Hell's Half Acre" next month. We should get a carpool going. I might know 1 or 2 others who'd like to tag along. PM me.

April 24, 2006, 05:26 AM
Yeah I did. The next shoot will be the first weekend of May.

April 25, 2006, 09:59 PM
Did I hear carpool for shooting? I'm in.

Good time yesterday Glockopop. Will have to do it again.

April 26, 2006, 03:37 AM
Where is Hell's half acre?

April 26, 2006, 09:59 PM
my knees are shot

June 6, 2006, 11:45 AM
I was too tired the night before to do an equipment check. So I decided to forgo. Woke up late and ran out the door with range bag and picked up my bro in law to go to match - 1.3 hours away by car.

When we got there and I opened up my range bag - NO HOLSTER. Luckily my cc holster fit my match gun, so we were able to shoot that day. But that is the last time I do not triple check my equipment before going out.

June 19, 2006, 06:30 PM
If anybody needs rescued from terrorists....I'm probably not the guy you want. :D

July 16, 2006, 11:29 PM
Shot in my first IPSC match since March on Sunday morning.

(1.) The temperature was over 90 degrees with high humidity by 10:30am. The heat index was around 100. Remember to HYDRATE in hot weather. (The club had jugs of water on 3 of the 5 stages and everybody was taking great care to drink enough -- I didn't see anybody who appeared to be suffering from the heat enough to affect their performance or create safety issues.)

(2.) I've got to slow down a little when engaging targets partially screened by hard cover. In a couple of cases we engaged targets that had only a hit zone the width of the B zone running down the body of the target, with the rest of the target protected by hard cover. In three cases, I got a center A zone hit with my first shot on the target and pulled one just over the line into cover on the second shot. I think it was a trigger control issue rather than being sloppy on the sights.

(3.) I got ahead of myself on transitioning between multiple targets on the last stage and pulled a couple shots into the D zone.

(4.) One of the other competitors noticed that when I was trying to go fast, sometimes my finger broke contact with the trigger as I was resetting the sear for the next shot. I wasn't aware of that at all. I was shooting my duty gun, a DAK Sig, with a L-O-N-G trigger stroke, so that might've had something to do with it.

(5.) Practicing strong hand only and weak hand only shooting is a good idea before any match. The classifier we shot had 12 rounds out of 24 fired with only one hand.

(6.) I did see an experienced master-class shooter using an optically sighted comp gun in one of those funny skeleton comp rigs loose his gun on the draw on the classifier and get a match DQ for a safety violation. He handled it very well and stayed to help RO the other stages. He said he'd never had that happen before, and that it was probably caused by a lapse in concentration while he was trying to go too fast.

July 18, 2006, 05:59 PM
What I learned Sunday:
1) Hold-off changes with time of day.
2)Nobody eats donuts when it's a hundred degrees out.
3) The timer is an evil contraption that renders me brainless instantly.
4) If I'm ever holding hostages and the officer holds his hands up in a surrender position that looks like he's listening to headphones....I'm gonna pee myself.

July 23, 2006, 08:38 AM
Geez...I feel like I'm blogging here....

What I learned yesterday:
I've got to spend more time on threat recognition and less time on trigger pulling.
I was exposed to my first IDPA no-shoot target (buff-colored with hands painted on it) after having gotten used to IPSC no-shoot targets (painted white).

I did not do well.

I drew and retreated to cover, dispatching baddies on the way with doubletaps and CRAP!....I killed an innocent bystander because I didn't check for hands. This really bothered me.

I also had a malfunction during my carjacking. Buzzer goes off, I pick up my sidearm from the floor....and the mag falls out! :eek:
They let me start over, but I would've been screwed IRL.

HiPowering Along
August 1, 2006, 08:13 PM
:) :) Murphy is at every match


1)Slow is Smooth
2)Smooth is Fast
3)Fast is Deadly

4)Frontsight, Press

5)Always bring extra ammo

6)Every plan is a good plan untill the timer goes off

Ain't number 6 the beautiful truth? :D

Well, for only the second match I've shot, the State Match that I just participated in went fairly well. Placed fifth in my division (14 in it), and if I'd just kept my head about me, I'd have placed a tad higher.

When hitting the reactor targets, make dang sure the hits are as high as you can make them to take advantage of the leverage principle
And if the bloody reactor target is just standing there smiling at you, don't be ashamed to reload so you can have two shots left in the gun to take out the other swinger that only shows it's face ONCE for two hits!
Have a simple, large grin on your face when you tell the RO that "that's not a miss - it's a perfect double on the head shot, isn't it???" :D
Emergency reloads are OK to drop the empty mag on - if you've kept your head about you and drop the mag when you've shot the 10 in it, you'd better keep retention of the mag if the pipe is still full! If not, the nice RO holds up his left arm and index finger indicating "you bad...., have three seconds..." :D
Slow down just a tad - missing targets isn't good for the score, nor is shooting the bloody things out of order.

Enjoy the time shooting with others - they'll probably wind up being a friend later on!
Practice, shoot some more matches, practice, shoot some more matches...and just HAVE FUN!!!

August 5, 2006, 03:50 PM
To do good at shooting multiple targets, you need to practice shooting multiple targets. And you need to practice it more frequently than I have this summer . . .

I shot a USPSA Special Classifer match this morning and blew two stages because I went too fast. Trigger jerk and poor follow-through were probably the cause of my problems. I hadn't done much practice on multiple targets the last few months, and I noticed that I just didn't feel smooth at the beginning of the match today.

August 13, 2006, 02:33 PM
was about barrel mirage. I was shooting a CZ 452 17HMR in 96* heat. There was only one relay so my barrel never got cooled down. The last course of fire was a 20 shot slowfire prone. After 10 shots I had 9 shots in the ten ring and one shot in the nine ring. Then my next 10 shots all grouped very nicely to the left about 2 inches. Instead of shooting a 198 or thereabouts I wound up with a very disappointing 186.

August 14, 2006, 01:02 AM
I shot another USPSA special classifier match on Sunday.

(I'm still firmly in the middle of C class in Production)

I had some guys watch me as I shot, and almost all of the misses or "no-shoot" hits I had on any of the stages were on the second round fired when engaging paper targets. I'd usually get an "A" zone hit with my first shot, and then if the subsequent shot wasn't wild it was a "C" and if it was wild, it went into hard cover, or (once) into a "no shoot" or (once) was a clean miss.

Actually, for the most part I shot pretty good (for me). My game is being smooth and accurate because I'm not particularly fast. I did blow one very easy stage just by trying to go too fast. (and I wasn't consciously trying to press for speed -- it just happened).

For the most part I concentrated on smooth trigger manipulation and good follow through. I have to practice more on multiple targets, to work on follow through on multiple shots, and to smooth my target-to-target transitions a little bit. Today flowed fairly well, for the most part, but there is room for improvement.

I REALLY like shooting classifiers . . . .:cool:

August 16, 2006, 12:48 AM
Don't even think about smirking at the 5'-nothing middle aged lady who brings a 1911-style 10mm to the IDPA shoot.

Sure enough, she knew what she was up to. Thank God her gun's in a different class than my 226.

August 17, 2006, 05:12 AM
As an RO you can never take your eyes off anyone on the range at any time.

(Had a newer shooter behind me, preparing to come to line by drawing and inserting a magazine, I happened to turn around and caught him before he racked the pistol)
(short day's shooting for that GUY!)

August 20, 2006, 08:59 PM
1. I need to make sure to count my shots. I was shooting L-10 for the first time today, and I hit a popper that triggered 2 disappearing targets with the last round in my mag. I transitioned to the DTs and...click!

2. The scrimping and saving that I did for 4 months of layaway to get my new Wilson pistol was worth every penny. I've only had it for a week and I was only able to get out to the range once with it before the match and shoot 100 rounds. Even with that little experience I still did very well. That gun's got me looking good, and I'm only gonna get better as I use it.

3. There's never one right way to shoot a stage. We had a very complex stage today with a fence with the portholes and targets on both ends. For the brave souls among us, all targets could just barely be hit through one of the three available ports. I chose discretion over valor.

4. Most important thing I learned today, don't wear a brand new , unbroken-in pair of undies. They were riding up on my junk all day!

August 23, 2006, 06:53 PM
Valor all the way baby! The better part of discretion is valor. The better part of valor is cleaning and lubing you gun before the match so you don't have FTE!:mad: That's right, I did not clean my CZ for two months; it in not the round count but how long the gunk sits that effects performance.

August 23, 2006, 08:10 PM
Don't take ANY shots from outside of the box until that foot gets in there, unless you wanna blow the stage. Shooting boxes will now be glowing in my brain when I plan!

September 18, 2006, 05:42 AM
RH & Glock,
You guys should have seen my re-shoot on "shoot for lunch". Dick gave me a few tips and I was able to make round count in 46 while clearing a misfeed! :eek:

Very valuable tip (at least for me): The strong hand creates the sight picture, but the weak does the aiming.

September 19, 2006, 07:19 AM
To my surprise, Glocks actually do jam. I don't shoot a Glock, but I saw a Glock 17 jam time after time during different stages. In fact, a top speed shooter's Glock (don't know what model) jammed as well. But, for me the thing I learned was...SLOW DOWN. Easier said than done.

September 26, 2006, 06:52 AM
I discovered that if I am at a match, and I'm in a squad with a bunch of shooters who are significantly faster than I am (which is nearly everybody . . ) after watching them shoot, I UNCONSCIOUSLY shoot faster, without making an attempt to do so. In fact, I shoot faster even after telling myself to "slow down".

Unfortunately, "shooting faster" is not the same as "hitting better" . . . . :(

October 2, 2006, 05:29 PM
You can't miss fast enough.

Practice strong and weak hand only. You can really tell the guys that do and the ones that don't.

Practice reloads endlessly. That's one of my biggest advantages. The fresh one is the gun before the empty is on the ground.

Practice clearing a malfunction. Something about lying down on your back while reaching around a barricade with your weak hand only makes malfunctions due to limp wristing a possiblity. Learn to clear it.

When the stage says one hand only, even for reloading, never, ever let the slide forward. I had to use the rear sight and a barricade to rack the slide (cringe).

October 3, 2006, 03:03 AM
If you're going to shoot at a club you've never been to before, try to get the info sooner than the day before the match. Otherwise you may find a deserted shooting range and find out the next day that the match was cancelled. It's ok, though, because I was going to shoot my first 100 reloads, and I shot them at the range instead and discovered I'm doing something wrong because about 20% of them didn't feed. I'd have embarassed myself terribly judo-chopping the mag floorplate every other round throughout five stages in front of a bunch of guys I don't know.

October 3, 2006, 03:30 PM
Fired my first IDPA classifier last month. I suxed.

Lessons learned:

Aiming is good - aiming is our friend.

And, the old standard, you can't miss fast enough.....

Glenn E. Meyer
October 4, 2006, 03:19 PM
Usually shoot IDPA but one of our local venues shut down. Thus, I shot my first IPSC type match.

It was loads of fun.

1. Don't try to shoot faster as the guys with ray guns can do it so much faster.
2. If there are 18 targets in one stage, be sure not to forget one. Duh - did that twice and saw others do it.
3. Old knees don't run fast, so don't bother to kill yourself
4. Have fun and don't get tied up in millisecond planning if you aren't into that.

Differences in the two.

1. IDPA - kind of realistic but obviously not the real world - good hits, reasonable cover are fun to do.

2. IPSC, no cover, a nice emphasis on practicing fast hits - so it is good practice for that skill. Airgunning the stages weakens the validity of a tactical training scenario. It is more about hits, sights and trigger.

I use one of my carry guns - a Glock 19 as my goal is to shoot well with it.

Since I have done a lot of FOF for a plain old dude - I don't think I will learn bad habits that will get me killed - a claim in some gun publications.

I regard the matches as great fun and trigger time practice for component skills.

I feel good the rest of the day after a match - even if tired. Very cathartic and I always have met the nicest folks. One thing about South Texas is that the group is very diversive in all dimensions and that is a great thing. To sound hokey, it makes me feel good about humanity in general, esp. when I read some of the raving we see on gun lists with hidden ethnic agendas. Sigh.

October 5, 2006, 05:39 AM
speakin' of which....Hell's half acre this weekend and I've got a friend who wants to join us. PM me.

October 5, 2006, 10:58 AM
Shot my first semi-IDPA match last weekend. I was using my S&W 686 snub with thumb-break holster and HKS speedloaders. Everything was going great until I got to the line for the first stage, when I discovered that I had an ammo problem and shells had to be pushed into the cylinder. Put enough crimp on your reloads!

Fortunately I had brought a backup gun and ammo. From that I learned that while you may get hazed about your Ruger P97, it will perform flawlessly and will feed ammo that a certain 1911 choked on.

Had a great time, though.

October 12, 2006, 01:13 AM
I shot Bullseye for many years - my last match was last season and I learned I didn't want to do it anymore. Sold my guns, GunHo box and scope. I just got tired of it.

October 12, 2006, 06:05 AM
I just got the results from last month's CRAPS shoot and found out that I performed better on the classifier than I thought I did.
The key was to not get any penalties. Most of the field sent more lead downrange than I did within the time limit, but they also picked up penalties that negated that advantage.

RH & Glock,
You guys gonna be at the CRAPS shoot Sunday? I'm going to try to bring Katie (revolver girl) along.

October 16, 2006, 06:06 AM
If you're cold, your hands will shake. If your hands are shaking, you may pull a shot and hit a no-shoot even though you are aiming very deliberately to miss said no-shoot.
The moral of the story: It is better to keep a cover garment that interferes with your draw than to ditch it in cold weather.
If you do ditch it, take the precision shots first so you can get them out of the way before you start shivering.

October 16, 2006, 12:49 PM
When you're shooting 2 guns make sure you keep the .45 and the 10mm ammo seperate. The 45's won't feed very well in the 10. Since I wasn't the shooter it was pretty humorous to watch though, especially after he figured out the problem.

October 17, 2006, 10:43 PM
I learned that it's very important to practice movement and transitions when shooting IPSC revolver on field courses. I shoot standing stages reasonably well (3.5 to 4.0 hit factor), but having to stop to acquire targets and reload cost alot of time on the field courses.

October 18, 2006, 07:21 PM
The sights are for aiming.:o I decided to try out that particular peice of advice and got about 95% A's.:D Also, I have learned that after about the first couple of shoots on close targets in a row I can speed myself up.

I also called my shot for the first time. It was one of those Charlies, the only one on the classifier!

November 19, 2006, 12:40 PM
The Texas Star should be banned as a particularly inhumane torture device.

November 19, 2006, 01:52 PM
The Texas Star should be banned as a particularly inhumane torture device.

Only when you try to shoot it from the bottom and working up.......everyone's done that at least once.

November 19, 2006, 03:37 PM
but what's a Texas Star?

November 19, 2006, 04:38 PM
It's a five spoke wheel with steel plates on the end of the arms and it rides on a bearing in the middle. Whenever you knock a plate off, it rotates/ swings because the remaining plates are out of balance.

Yeah...but what if your course designer covers the top half with no-shoots? :barf:

November 19, 2006, 04:52 PM
Yeah...but what if your course designer covers the top half with no-shoots?

Devil Spawn!

November 19, 2006, 05:17 PM

Seriously...isn't there something in the Geneva conventions about this?

Dave P
November 19, 2006, 06:35 PM
One lesson I learned this weekend: after packing the truck carefully for your big match, don't accidentally unload it without thinking twice.

I unloaded the boxes of match loads that I needed - Didn't get to shoot at all.:mad:

November 19, 2006, 11:30 PM
Yes, the designer of our course was an evil, evil, man. That was also my first experience with a Texas star. I actually did better against it than I expected to, but I left one plate standing because I shoot L-10 and only have 4 mags. In addition to the star, there were 2 other steel and 8 paper, so I ran out of ammo with that one damn plate still twirling in front of me.:mad:

November 19, 2006, 11:40 PM
L10 has the reputation of being entry level.....but in reality.....it's where "A Class+" goes to practice.

November 19, 2006, 11:47 PM
Or, in my case, D-class Limited Glock shooter who lucked into a sweet deal on a Wilson KZ45.;)

I also learned today that I need to follow my own advice from a couple pages back in the thread and dryfire. I found today that I didn't miss when I made a conscious effort to place my trigger finger correctly. I keep putting it in the spot that's right on for my G35 but all wrong for my Wilson. Your subconscious will always revert back to what you've trained yourself to do.

Big Don
November 20, 2006, 02:18 AM
I've been shooting combat matches for years. Iron sights for all three guns, can't think of too many things I'd rather do on the first Saturday of each month!
1. Always carry extra ammo in your pockets. Last match, I finally loaded a short mag. It was short because I allowed myself to be distracted and failed to upload it and let it go back into my mag holder. Yes, I was astounded at myself and that cost me time. I WILL NOT do that again!:mad:
2. Unless you are super-competitive, don't try to beat the other guys, especially those who are always in the top three places. Shoot against yourself and how you did last time. You will improve and will likely catch those other guys.
3. Remember, you're out there to have fun and become a better shooter. If you shoot combat matches on a regular basis, you're probably better than most of the other shooters out there, even if you're not in the top half of the monthly crowd. At least you're out there and they're not!:D
4. Practice, practice, practice. If you can put some rounds down range the day before the match then do so!
5. Volunteer to design scenarios. Then, design them so you have to work on those things your really suck at. You can only blame yourself for how hard it is and you make yourself work hard at making yourself better. Many of the other shooters will "complain" about "Who designed this nightmare?" but will really be glad you did because they also suck at the same things you do! Weak hand, prone pistol, weak side shotgun, etc.
6. Have fun!
7. Take your time. A 10-second round with 5 "mikes" is worse than a 20-second round with no "mikes."

November 20, 2006, 06:12 AM
There are some pretty good L-10 guys in our group....but I'm not one of 'em. :D
I got all the plates, but I carry twice as many loaded mags as glockopop.
/needed 'em, too... :o

HiPowering Along
December 24, 2006, 10:51 AM
Got curious to see a "Texas Wheel" after the comments about one...found a pic on another site:


If you're prone to seizures watching something spin, that might do it....:D Looks like fun, unless you're trying to make up time for a blown stage!

December 24, 2006, 11:59 AM
Last Saturday's steel match . . .

It's something I already knew, but I "learned" it again. You can't miss fast enough to win. Pushing too hard and missing costs more time than holding back 5-10% and getting the hit on the first shot, especially if you are already transitioning to the next plate before you realize you didn't hit the prior plate.

I was also reminded that confidence is a good thing. Trusting the sights and follow through is good; waiting until you hear a "Ting!" is too slow.

January 7, 2007, 07:38 PM
I shot a USPSA special classifier match on Sunday.

All four stages were done entirely on steel. The match cycled very quickly -- If I would've known how quick the match was going to go, I would've brought a revolver and got classified in the "revolver" class as well.

Follow through and a proper rhythm are important in shooting reactive targets.

I was shooting a borrowed .45 on a para-ordnance frame with a recoil compensator (I usually shoot in "production") because I wanted to get classified in "open".

A 4-1/4 lb trigger may/may not be practical for carry on the street, but it's certainly a joy to shoot.

I saw lots of people who were trying to improve their classification go too fast and "crash and burn" on multiple stages. But, you can't find "the edge" until you go over it a few times.

Each stage had 6 pepper poppers of various configuration (full size and 2/3rds scale) at different distances. I usually was able to clean the plates in about 7 seconds. Some guys were doing it in right around 3 seconds, depending upon the stage.

I couldn't be that fast on the best day I ever had . . .

January 14, 2007, 12:03 AM
The Texas star is realy not that difficult once you start thinking in the 4th dimension. It is not a moving target, but a target that is in one spot at one moment in time and at another spot another time.

I know that is deep, but bear with me. You know the exact route that the plate will be following. Pick a spot on that route and aim for it. Don't move the gun to the plate, I promise the plate will come to you. Just before the forward edge of the plate touches the edge of your sight, squeeze off your shoot. Don't get distracted by the spinning, that is what it is designed to do, don't let it win. The tricky part is learning the timing.

I do fine on the steele versions, but GoSlash's clever pratcice rig can give me fits. Who knew that slow-moving clay pigeons would be tougher than whirling steele plates?:D

The thing that I learned was not at a match, but at our end of the year banquet were I was awarded the dubious honor of "most no-shoots". It is only the most among active club members, and most of them were mearly grazed, but still no-shoots. Yet somehow I managed to move up a class, and take 2nd in my class for the year. It didn't take much thought over a cold beer to realize that if I hadn't hit all those hostages I would likely have taken 1st in class and possibly moved up a little more. So my goal for the year is to put every shot on the target I want, where I want it.

January 22, 2007, 02:51 PM
On the Texas Star you can actually estimate were the plates will come to a momentary stop... and you can figure out which plates will cause it to spin faster. You have to keep it balanced, don't shoot two next to each other right off if you can help it.

I hit the wrong plate at the wrong time once, and the star just started spinning without stopping. It went several revolutions before slowing down. Cost me lots of time.

HiPowering Along
January 22, 2007, 07:20 PM
Final stage, last shooter of the day, and doing better than I've ever done in the division, and get the signal to "load and make ready". :D

Draw Sig, draw mag, shove mag up the well, grab slide, rack and sling. Halfway it jams. Grab and rack again. Still jams.

Aw, futz.

Eject mag. Clear malfunction. Pickup the offending round and shove in opposite pocket. Insert another cartridge into mag. Reinsert into Sig, rack; chambers fine. 3.58 seconds later, the match is in the history books. :D

My Sig doesn't screwup like that. Never has. It does, however, when you can't read the caliber on the cartridge that you picked up on the previous stage after "unload and show clear" - and the cartridge is just a hair larger than your 9mm (.40 cal).

Watch what you pickup after "unload and show clear" - make sure it's your caliber before mixing it in a jacket pocket with extra rounds to top off with! If that malfunction had happened during the stage, it would have been ugly in more ways than one!

HiPowering Along
January 31, 2007, 10:53 PM
Found this pic in another forum - just the opposite of what happened in the post above. 9mm into a .40S&W after malfunction clearance drills during a training session.

Same color (Blazer) ammo, got it mixed in a Sig P229. According to the poster, it was *click* no bang *tap-rack* BOOM! The 9mm casing made a good hit on the target at least....

And no one was hurt in the incident, save for pride :D

February 1, 2007, 04:48 PM
Wow! Old thread.

I'll tell you something I learned in my last match: I learned to keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire! I also learned not to get in so big a hurry that you forget to do things right.

One of the competitors (not me!) in my last match got in a hurry and dropped a magazine. He reached down to pick it up with his weapon in his hand, and reached through the trigger guard to grip the mag. When he did,... BOOM! Accidental Discharge! Noone was hurt, but it left a big puff of dirt right next to his hand, and a lot of competitors with arythmic heartbeats!

Says he: "D.Q. I'm going home!" And, quite disgusted with himself, stopped the clock and packed his gear. He was one of the more experienced shooters at the match that day.

Let this be a lesson: Think you're too good for it to happen to you? It can! Keep your mind on what you're doing when you shoot.

February 11, 2007, 11:18 AM
I'm way worse than I remember or even thought.

Kirk Keller
February 11, 2007, 12:02 PM
That it is indeed ME screwing up my scores... not my gun.:(

February 15, 2007, 02:42 AM
Oh well, it happened again this year at the local 3 gun match.
Near the end of stage 1, twin Glock shooter re-holstered primary handgun, drew BUG. Stoppppp. Primary pistol fell to the ground with partially expended 33 round magazine. We in the back all dived for cover. It turned out he was shooting for world records in re-holstering.:eek:
Last year, shooter with 1911 race gun drew with lightning speed, but we didn't hear any shot fired. Instead, the highly-tuned and super customized race gun sailed 6 feet through the air, but stopped short of the closest target. :rolleyes:

February 17, 2007, 01:33 AM
I shot my first IPSC match in March of 1978 with a Colt Combat Commander in .45 ACP. I later on used that pistol as a duty gun on the small town PD where I worked part-time right after getting out of the Police Academy. (The Chief carried a Browning High Power (in condition 2, hammer down on a live round. He had to thumb-cock to fire the first shot!!) and 3 of us were IPSC shooters who carried various Colt Auto Pistols cocked & locked. They had a wide open firearms policy until about 1990 or so, when they mandated that all auto pistols had to be DA/SA or DAO.

So anyway, I did lots of shooting with that gun, in training and in matches and through a couple of instructor schools, until the spring of 1988 when I replaced it as a duty gun with a Beretta 92F. After that, the gun was shot much less frequently, and until late last year, hadn't been fired in the 21st century at all. The same was true of the Browning P35 High Power that I bought in 1980 and used as a spare duty weapon.

Last fall I decided I needed to get classified in "Limited 10" division in IPSC and in the "Custom Defensive Pistol" and "Enhanced Service Pistol" classes in IDPA. So I took the Combat Commander and the P35 out of the safe and shot them a quite a bit.

In practice, I didn't have any malfunctions with either gun that weren't cured by some minor tuning of the magazines.

A few weeks ago I took the .45 to an IDPA classifier and shot so I could get classified in CDP. I had a failure to extract malfunction on each of the three stages. I cleared them right away, but that probably added 20 seconds to my total time and disrupted my concentration. (I replaced the extractor on that gun twice in the 80s)

Further examination revealed that the extractor had the edges all rounded off and was past it's useful life.

Thursday night I went to shoot in an indoor IPSC match. Two stages, one being a classifier. I took the Browning HP to shoot in the "Limited 10" classification. Same story. One failure to extract malfunction on each stage. The edges on the extractor were still in pretty good shape, but after 30 years I think maybe there's some metal fatigue there or something . . . (I never shot the HP anywhere near as much as I did the Colt)

So I have replacement extractors for both guns ordered from Brownell's.

I keep spare extractors in stock for my various Sigs and the Beretta 92FS and the Glock 19, and do have one replacement extractor for the Commander as well. I feel foolish for not inspecting the guns more carefully before putting them back into service in competition . . .

February 18, 2007, 10:49 PM
Buy an Aftec for those 1911's.....you won't be sorry.

February 19, 2007, 10:23 PM
I learned that you should reload on the move, even if you may not need to.

We had a stage that had 5 paper targets realy close in behind a ten foot long baracade and 4 pepper popers at about 25 yards. You had to engage paper from the right side and steel from the left. Well since I have 14 rounds in the gun and the round count is 14 I felt I did not need to reload. It took me two shoots each on the first two steel, which ran me to slide lock. If I had just reloaded while I moved, I could have saved a second or two.

February 21, 2007, 11:54 PM
If you want to attend the match, don't get hammered the night before. I had a great time at the strip club while my girl was out of town, but I didn't even wake up until an hour before the match was over and gunshots were the last thing I wanted to hear in my hung-over state. Sorry to disappoint you, rhgunguy, but I'm pretty sure I would've crushed you anyway.:p

March 2, 2007, 10:27 PM
Glockopop, you can go ahead and take every other shot at me with your hand loads!

But seriously, I am hurt that you did not invite me to the strip club!

March 7, 2007, 12:55 AM
Just wishing and reading and watching competition videos wont make you any better.

March 16, 2007, 02:49 PM
That I remain more impressed with accuracy than with speed.

March 28, 2007, 03:24 AM
I shot in an IPSC match on Saturday morning, an IPSC/IDPA style non-sanctioned "outlaw" match on Saturday evening, and at another IPSC match on Sunday. I have never shot in three matches in two days before. (There were a lot of years there that I only shot in three matches all year . . . )

I don't particularly like assault or field courses, where you run around from place to place blazing away at lots of targets. Movement from shooting box to shooting box, or movement from position of cover to position of cover is fine but some of the field courses in USPSA are fairly pointless.

Even so, usually they have a couple of interesting aspects about them.

I blew a classifier stage called "Cash & Carry" by rushing a shot a little too much and hitting a no shoot target. I blew another stage through a mental lapse -- the second string required you to engage each of 7 targets at from 5 to 35 yards with one round each, reload, and re-engage the targets with one round each again weak hand only. I had good hits, my reload was fast, and I double-tapped three targets before I caught myself, transfered the gun to my weak hand, and continued on. 6 procedural penalties don't help your score very much . . .

On all the other stages all weekend I was pretty smooth, didn't drop too many points, didn't make any procedural errors, and wasn't fast enough to be competitive.

I did have a very new shooter on my squad on Sunday who had a couple of failure-to-extract malfunctions. We gave him some on-the-spot training on how to clear malfunctions. His extractor was in good shape, and we think the malfunctions occured because he cleaned & lubed his gun the night before the match, and left Break-Free in the chamber, which caused the fired cases to stick. Once we ran a Bore-Snake through his barrel and got it all dried out, the gun ran fine.

If you aint CAV.....
April 1, 2007, 09:58 AM
my last match(lol) was in FEB, in Kamu afghanistan, not quite same thing but heres what I learned

1. trust your zero
2. know your range(practice estimation)
3. closer is not always easier
4. less than 15 degrees of angle doesnt change the shot much, but 30 degrees does, lol
5. practice stable positions learn where is solid
6. cross talk between squad members

Sandan Judoka
April 13, 2007, 07:14 PM
We're lucky enough at our club to have an IDPA 5-Gun Master in residence, and we're also lucky enough that he'll share what he knows with those of us less accomplished.

As a shooter, I am usually the guy who shoots fast and, when things aren't working, whose hits looks like rat crap in a dresser drawer. I usuall find that whenever I shoot poorly, its because I'm not doing one of the two things that he's told me I need to work on. The ideas are his; the phrasing is my own.

1. The weak hand is poorly named. In a two-handed firing grip, a "weak" support hand makes for a weak platform, and makes your firing hand grip harder. Because tension in the fingers is sympathetic, your trigger finger is also more tense, causing a loss of trigger control. Furthermore, with a weak platform, recoil is less mitigated, making second shots less accurate and sight reacquisition slower.

In short, make your support hand solid, tight, and strong.

2. Draw the gun the same way every time, whether you're wearing a cover garment or not, no matter the range, no matter your position or movement situation...but take your time with the shot.

Said another way, "fast on the gun, slow on the trigger"

From me, I'd tell you:

- see your sights
- slow down a little; it will cost you a lot less time than you think, and it'll reflect in the quality of your hits.
- practice doesn't make perfect; perfect practice makes perfect, so learn how to practice effectively and efficiently.


Anchorage, AK

April 13, 2007, 08:48 PM
Check your scorecard carefully against the targets.

Greg Bell
May 8, 2007, 11:09 PM
I learned that you can shoot too accurately. I shot my first match this weekend, and got penalized twice for having groups that were too tight. Don't get me wrong, I was way too slow anyway, but I was a little annoyed when every shot went into the A zone at all three targets (25 yards, 50 feet, 21 feet) except for, according to the scorer, I totally missed the closest target with one shot, even though the rest of the group was about the size of a small tangerine. Even the owner of the shop pointed out that one of the shots appeared enlarged. :rolleyes: On the third stage I actually purposely shot looser! I got a few "c" points on that one!:D

OTOH, it was nice to see the ol HK P2000 shooting nice tight groups against a bunch of competition guns with longlides and target triggers!

Anyway, I learned that I must be much faster. So I ordered a Pact Timer tonight. I will be hell on em' next time!:D

May 10, 2007, 06:52 AM
The last match I shot was all steel, mostly U.S. Poppers (a USPSA sanctioned 2/3rds scale "pepper popper" steel target) with a few full size pepper poppers thrown in. There were 25 different targets engaged from four different firing positions, about 6 of the targets partially shielded by "no shoot" targets, which were full size "pepper popper" targets painted red.

Having the whole match on steel made it very quick to score. What shooting position you employed depended upon which firing point you were at. The first required shooting from a sitting position through a port, the second required shooting from around both sides of a high barricade, the third required firing from kneeling and prone, and the fourth required shooting from around both sides of a low barricade. You had to move laterally left-to-right or right-to-left as you engaged the targets.

So anyway, what did I learn?

(1.) I really love shooting on steel.
(2.) Trigger control is critical.
(3.) Follow-through is critical.
(4.) When shooting on steel, establishing a good rhythm is critical. Just keep engaging the targets without waiting to watch for them to fall, and then clean up any remaining targets in that array before moving to the next firing position.
(5.) The hurrier you go, the behinder you get . . .

Evil Dog
May 13, 2007, 08:51 AM
Went to my first "Practical Pistol" shoot yesterday. What did I learn? Matches that are supposed to start at 8:00 AM might actually get going more around 10:30. Organization is an option. Stage instructions aren't necessarily rules, they are more like suggestions. Wheelguns are outnumbered 8 to 1... guess who the 1 was. A standard duty belt with a 6" K-38, 4 speedloaders and a double dump pouch is only "concealed" if you are wearing a trench coat.

Was a lot of fun though, looking forward to it again next month.

May 13, 2007, 10:00 PM
Don't forget your sunscreen.
Headshots are not as easy as they sound.
Guns don't always have to be able to make tiny little groups to win.

June 3, 2007, 03:19 PM
All types of competitive shooting improve your skill at all other types of competitive shooting.

There was one couple at today's IDPA match who are primarily cowboy shooters, and another older couple that are primarily bullseye shooters.
They weren't as fast as the rest of us who just shoot practical sports, but they were so much more consistently accurate that their scores were as good if not better.

Also, the hardest part about shooting in prone position isn't the shooting, it's getting down there without dropping your gun or busting your a$$.:eek:

June 4, 2007, 01:34 AM
1. I can still find mud, slick spots with gravel, water, vines that reach out from edges of trails.

2. I fall "real nice".

3. They still do not award "Style Points".
If they ever do, I am going to be racking up points.

Trees will grow in a nanosecond where I need to (1) shoot a bird and /or (2) needing to swing/ follow through.


I can still walk smooth into a parked vehicle taking note of a Sidearm strapped onto a Pretty Lady.

June 4, 2007, 12:13 PM
What did I learn........

Not many other place I would rather be on a weekend..... - :D

June 4, 2007, 01:29 PM
Rules I know

1. May not shoot a rifle while wearing a pistol!
2. Must have a red flag thingy to show the rifle is 'clear'
3. .303 bolt action is difficult when shooting agains time!

June 6, 2007, 06:51 AM
I'm beginning to see mostly "A" hits, but I need to step up on speed, because that is where I'm falling behind in finish order.

June 11, 2007, 10:00 AM
Learned at my last match: Competing with a good range master on a range full of positive people is really fun. Competing with a bad range master on a range full of hostile, negative people is no fun at all!

Also learned at my last match: Don't over-think the stage. If you spend 30 minutes thinking about how you're going to run the stage, and then you change the order of your targets or the direction you're going to move at the last minute, you WILL NOT complete the stage properly, and you WILL get a procedural. Look over the stage once, 5 minutes before you shoot. Pick a plan, and then stick to the plan.

June 12, 2007, 10:43 AM
I shot my first club-level match a while ago. Minimal handgun experience, borrowed gun (a sweet CZ-75B) and equipment. We shot courses with steel plates and paper targets, and I did surprisingly well for myself. Landed a solid midfield in the final rating, although I blew two stages rather badly.

What I learned was not to underestimate myself, and to approach the whole thing with fun in mind. And that's what I had - lots of fun. So much fun that I am going to do this regularly, and maybe enter our domestic/provincial league at some stage. Pity our club only does the handgun shoot every 3 months, the other 2 are shotgun and rifle.

July 4, 2007, 09:54 PM
I shot the IDPA Classifier at my club last Saturday.

I shot a Colt Combat Commander .45 Auto in CDP division and a Browning P-35 9mm Auto in ESP division.

The last few times I had fired the classifier, I had shot way too fast on Stage III and my score suffered greatly as a result. This time I slowed down, and had MUCH better hits. I only dropped 32 points for the whole match with the Colt and only 14 points for the whole match with the Browning HP.

My times weren't anything spectacular, so I'm firmly in the upper 1/3rd of "marksman" class in both divisions.

Both guns have new extractors since the last time I shot them competitively back in March. The Colt ran with nary a bobble. The Browning still had a couple of minor failure-to-extract malfunctions. I'm going to shoot it some more and see if the problem continues. The extractor looked okay when I inspected it, but maybe it needs to be replaced anyway . . .

July 4, 2007, 10:36 PM
See where your shotgun is printing with SLUGS when you expect to have a slug-only stage... :(

July 6, 2007, 02:39 PM
Always walk with the scorers and check out your targets after shooting... _especially_ in IDPA if the scorer/RO also shoots IPSC. I have caught many instances where IPSC scoring is used in IDPA (e.g. PE for every shot, non-threat hits per round, fail to give FTN, etc.)

I hate it when targets are pasted up befre I had a chance to see it and when its not alpha-alpha or -0. Fortunately this dones't happen much, but it is annoying.

October 22, 2007, 01:25 AM
I shot a 5 stage USPSA match on Sunday morning. It's the first match I've shot since the end of June.

I borrowed a friend's Wilson Combat SA auto in 9mm and shot in the "Limited 10" division.

The trigger on that gun is NICE. Probably breaks at about 3-1/2 lbs. Maybe (?) too light for defensive use, but very pleasant to shoot.

I found the Wilson to be MUCH easier to shoot than the DAK Sig or Glock 19 that I usually compete with. My accuracy scores showed it, although I didn't shoot particularly fast. (I never do. I'm just not that speedy).

It's nice to be able to compete with a different gun once in a while.

In 2008 I hope to get classified in IPSC and IDPA in all the different revolver categories, just for something different to do.

My duty gun is still going to remain my primary competition gun for most applications, however . . .

December 9, 2007, 07:51 AM
I shot my S&W 625-3 in .45 ACP for the first time in a match last night.

I can shoot the gun really well, because that big N-frame soaks up lots of recoil. It'll take me a while to get used to all the intricacies of loading & unloading & reloading with the full moon clips.

December 9, 2007, 09:11 AM
Jeff22, you might benefit from loading up some moonclips with dummy rounds and having someone time you to see which technique(s) are best for you; there are two main ways of doing a moon-clip reload, and I found one a whole lot faster than the other, but that may just be me. The first way is the Miculek-style reload, where the shooter transfers the revolver to his off hand and dumps the empties with his off-hand thumb while he grabs the fresh clip with his gun hand, loads, and pops the cylinder back in to get back into business. This obviously works VERY well for Jerry, and I couldn't be qualified to carry his range bag for him, but I found that no matter how hard I practiced with it, I couldn't twist the revolver back over to the outside far enough to make dropping in the fresh clip fast and easy. So, I ended up going with the OTHER main way of doing a moonclip reload. In that method, I push the cylinder latch in with my off-hand thumb while pushing the cylinder out with my trigger-finger. Then, use the palm of my off hand to smack the ejector rod to dump the empty clip, and, while I'm bringing the revolver down to make the reload easier, I grab a fresh clip with my off hand. Drop it in, squeeze the cylinder back in, and you're back in business. I find this also ensures a consistent grip and hold, so I don't need to "adjust" after every reload. There are plenty of very fast shooters that also use this method, so give them both a try to see which works best for you.

Sigma 40 Blaster
December 9, 2007, 10:09 AM
A LOT. I went to my second IDPA match today, my first was actually a qualifier (ranked Marksman in SSP my first go). This one was pretty fun, quite a bit of running and gunning, never done it before.

- I need to put in some serious time practicing 10+ yards from behind cover.
- I need to put in more time practicing from 15 - 25 yards period
- I shoot better weak hand than strong hand only...weird
- Breath control really is important, especially 10+ yards away
- I need to learn to focus on the 0 ring as much as the head for headshots (if there's a no shoot in front of "BG targets" I go for headshots and rarely miss up to 15 yards BUT when I shot COM same scenario I was more likely to hit the NS).

December 18, 2007, 05:32 AM
If you drop a mag, and it touches the ground, you can not pick it up. OUCH I needed that mag and the rounds. Texas Star ate 5 extra rounds, and then fumbled and dropped a mag. Wound up running out of ammo and not even engaging the last target. carry an extra, extra mag.

Different range officers do things different. Like not saying "Virginia count" but rather saying "6 rounds only on each target" I flew one past the target (40 yards), and so I fired a 7th round. Don't let it bother you, just enjoy the shoot and it is what it is.

match shooting is fun!, Wait I already knew that one.

January 17, 2008, 02:09 AM
I shot my new S&W 625-3 in a USPSA special classifier match a couple of weeks ago.

I shot okay, but I shot SLOW. I did discover that I need to chamfer the charge holes in the cylinder in the revolver, and use factory ammo with a proper taper crimp on the case mouth if I hope to reload in a timely manner. I had problems with my commercial reloads in that the case mouths weren't taper-crimped, and they hung up on the edge of the cylinder. (And, in reference to SCD's suggestion from December, I reloaded using the "traditional" method -- transfer the revolver to the weak hand and perform the loading operation with my strong hand. I've been doing it that way for years)

So, sometime this spring I'll have the gunsmith chamfer the cylinder and maybe slick up the trigger, and I'll try it again. I hope to use that gun to qualify in the ESR division of IDPA in May or June.

(I also shot my Combat Commander to classify in the "single stack" division of USPSA. The gun ran perfectly, I didn't have any extraction problems, and that went a lot better . . . )

January 21, 2008, 06:03 PM
revolver and NSF (Norges Skytterforbund - the main organisation in Norway that all local clubs and diffrent parts of competition shooting is tied to) rapid fire pistol (half match- 2 series of 5 rounds in 10 seconds, 2 series in 8 seconds and 2 series in 6 seconds) does not mix. :cool: barely hit the bloody target and didn't get off all 5 rounds.

March 13, 2008, 03:56 AM
I shot a USPSA special classifier match on Sunday the 9th of March.

The high temperature was 27 degrees that day, and a few flakes of snow were coming down as I left the match.

We had three shooters that I know of who had weapons functioning problems. In all three cases, the shooters had used too heavy a grease on the frame rails In two of those cases the shooter was using Brian Enos' "Slide Glide" and I don't know which lube was in use in the other instance.

The thin viscosity Slide Glide is good down to 30 degrees. I don't know which visconsity the shooters who had problems were using.

Be sure to select a lube appropriate for both your weapon and the weather conditions you may encounter. (In this particular case, I was using WeaponShield lube on my Colt Combat Commander)

For what it's worth, I sometimes use the thin viscosity "Slide Glide" in the summer time before long matches or practice sessions and I've had good luck with it.


March 21, 2008, 12:51 PM
USPSA Revolver = Check your moon clips BEFORE the match {had 2 bent ones}

Bring extra ammo to the line with you

Clean and oil gun before the next match{every time} !!!

Working 2nd shift SUCKS in a 1st shift world--I get a 2nd wind after midnight

If you or your gear are going to screw up --- HOPE it is on a classifier:p


And as someone else posted; the older I get - the better I used to be:mad:

Gunfighter 123

March 21, 2008, 01:56 PM
aim small, miss small

also, make sure to pack enough ammo and that it is the ammo for the gun(s) you will be shooting (actually messed up and grabbed a bunch of cases (reloads) of 44mag and .357 sig and didn't realize it until I got to the range and went to load my 45 and 9mm. Luckily the range sold 45 and 9mm so I bit the bullet and bought from the range.

After that I always mark my reload cases in BIG letters what they are and double check before going to the range.

May 2, 2008, 09:17 AM
I can shoot well and have crappy times when I don't think well. A procedural, missed target and hit on a non threat can't be made up. All we errors in thought not in shot.


May 3, 2008, 10:49 PM
I need to pay more attention while reloading. :(

May 20, 2008, 11:33 PM
Slam in the mag!! I had 2 unseated magazines in a IPSC training exercise. I bet I lost 5 seconds before I got to thinking about tap & rack. :o

The training exercise was just an add on to a class I was taking so I have never actually shot in a match, but that will change very soon. :D


Sigma 40 Blaster
June 2, 2008, 12:12 PM
Reading your own posts from six months ago is interesting.

I shot my second classifier last month (this time I shot CDP and ESP, both with my XD .45). I shaved 45 seconds off of my previous score missing Sharpshooter by .3 points in CDP and 4 points in ESP.

I followed a lot of advice from others, notably I went with the scorers to observe my targets before taping. Had I not I would have been hit with a total of 6 misses that were actually doubles (you could plainly see two rings around one asymmetrical hole).

The things I have learned to do differently:
Keep your trigger finger away from the frame of the gun, not just off of it but AWAY.

Don't worry about where your shots hit, you can't get it back so don't waste time trying to make sure your headshots were good

Don't rush the 20 and 15 yard shots, you lose more points by missing fast that getting slow hits.

Move your sights during recoil to the next target, you don't need a marksman sight picture to hit the -0 or -1 ring.

Always take up the slack on the trigger during recoil. I'm not saying to stage the trigger, just take up the slack.

There's no such thing as a draw or reload that's fast enough. Eliminating .25 or .5 seconds from drawing and reloading for every required draw or reload makes a huge difference.

June 4, 2008, 08:51 PM
This year we are running a 1000 rounds match in central Oklahoma the third weekend in Oct. So the guys from arizona, california and Florida mark your calendars and let me know you are coming.

In the past when your gun had a hiccup you were out. This year everyone will shoot 1000 rounds.

This year we will be counting hits and malfunctions. So the attempt here is to run a match within a match. One to keep a count of your hits on the steel targets and the other match to keep record of how many malfunctions you have. The limit will be 50 malfunctions over the course of a match. don't laugh it has happened.

There will be 20 stages with 50 targets. Shooters will need to come to the line with 7 magazines and one round in the gun. You only get to bring 8 mags to the match, so pick them carefully.

This is by invitation, you must know someone who is attending who will vouch for you. That way we don't get any GBer's or dead heads. a note from you mother will not suffice. If you have attended in the past you are welcome to come again. You know what hospitality I offer. If you want to attend find someone attending who will vouch for you or email me for credential requirements.

More as we get closer to the match. LM

Old Gaffer
June 16, 2008, 04:40 PM
I REALLY need to pay more attention to the physiological aspects of the match. My last match was the .45 portion of a Bulls eye 2700 shot when the heat index was about 110º. By the end of the timed fire portion I was literally wrung out from the heat, and I still had four five-shot strings of rapid fire to go.

I had my worst outing with a .45 in almost a year, and no one to blame for it but me.

And it's only June...

All the best,

Danny Creasy
July 23, 2008, 11:17 PM
I shot in my first CMP Sporter National Match last Sunday (July 20th) at Camp Perry. My failure to allow for the Lake Erie winds may have cost me a victory in T-Class. A prolonged series of strong gusts during my rapid fire sitting strings resulted in a two and a half inch group just to the right of the 10 ring. I had one 10, eight 9s, and one 8 for a 90. My overall score of 581-26X was still good enough for a gold metal (577 and higher earns the shooter gold). But, I will feel that wind on my cheek and in my hair for the rest of my life. A simple Kentcky windage hold off for the second five shots of the split string might have yielded me 6 more points. 581 plus 6 equals 587 and a 587-23X won.

Oh well, just more reason to go next year. :D

August 12, 2008, 06:24 AM
BUG guns are the most fun you can have at an IDPA match. Finally got a chance to run my P-3AT and I'll be doing that every chance I get.

Don Gwinn
September 26, 2008, 09:37 AM
I don't draw, reload, or move fast enough, and I spend too much time loading.

I shot more points than anybody else, but the guy who won Production was almost 8 seconds faster.

Tomorrow I pick up the Blog Gun .45, and before the next match I'll have two 10-round magazines for it so I can reload less often (my factory SIG mags hold 7 each.) That's the quick, easy part, and as slow as my reloads are, it will save me 3-4 seconds on some stages.

The hard part is the dry fire and practice it's going to take to improve the rest. For that, I got a book of dry fire drills with record-keeping pages.

September 26, 2008, 10:42 AM
First gallery match of the Greater New York Pistol League 2008-09 season, runs until May.
Learned that a bad habit had crept in during the summer when I was shooting rifles exclusively. I wasn't paying attention to where my finger was on the trigger during the slow fire stage. The first few of shots broke away from the center. Once I got that straightened out, they started going in as 9s and 10s instead of 7/8/9.
Pay attention to basics.

October 5, 2008, 11:41 AM
I learned that it is possible to not shoot a no-shoot.

Beyond that, there's not excuse for not having a perfect grip on the gun if you start from low-ready.

October 8, 2008, 07:16 PM
Read the label on your ammo before putting it in your bag/box. For my last club bullseye match, I grabbed a rectangular plastic box that said CCI on it. When I went to load my first magazine, my first thought was "I don't remember Standard Velocity being jacketed...?". Then I realized they were Mini-Mags instead of SV. Wouldn't even feed in my S&W 41. :( Luckily the guy in the next lane was nice enough to lend me a box of SV, but it still didn't help my composure in the first string of slow fire.

October 19, 2008, 05:54 PM
Take it out and plink with it before you bring it to IPSC :o

I didn't bother to find out where my sight picture was on my new toy before the match and ended up taking out a no-shoot as a result. I had been running clean all year up to that point.

no one
October 26, 2008, 09:23 PM
It was a sniper match where the shooting positions were very awkward, but realistic. We shot over a berm from between the rocks. I deployed my harris bipod, but only one leg would touch ground without giving the rifle severe cant that I presumed would cause terrible problems with accuracy. So I figured using one leg of the bipod for front support, and my non trigger finger hand supporting the butt of the weapon would give me the best support. I learned that I was correct, it worked out very well. As Jeff Cooper said "If you can get closer, get closer. If you can get steadier, get steadier." The single bipod leg did get me steadier...that is what I learned.

Neat idea..make people write out what they learned. It will help burn it into our unconcious mind.

February 10, 2009, 12:28 AM
I shot the IDPA classifier on an indoor range on Saturday the 7th of February.

I did okay on stages I & II -- and once again, I crashed and burned on Stage 3.

For the unfamiliar, Stage III involves engaging multiple targets from behind a high barricade at 25 yards and from behind a barrel at 15 yards. You have to shoot around the side of the barrel and not over the top. Usually I do pretty well from behind the high barricade, but I have a tendancy to crowd cover when shooting around the low barricade, which results in my shooting from a contorted position. I'm right handed, and shooting at the far left target from around the right side of the barrel often-times results in lots of dropped points.

I have practiced engaging the far left target left handed from behind the low barricade, and it's worked okay in practice, but I didn't do it in the match for some reason.

February 15, 2009, 09:02 AM
I shot the IDPA classifier on an indoor range on Saturday the 7th of February.

I did okay on stages I & II -- and once again, I crashed and burned on Stage 3.

Yeah, me too. I have to learn to slow down on stage three. Blaze thru I and II and then SLOW DOWN and aim the shots. Got to get 0's or 1's on every shot in III.

I did O.K., but I could have done better and that gripes me.

Next time . . .


Willie Lowman
March 5, 2009, 07:53 PM
If a mag does not drop free, RIP that ************* out!

Anger is a weapon only to the shot timer.

You can clean the mud out of your mags after the match, that's why you bought so many.

If you can shoot a semi-auto match before the full-auto match it will help your trigger control.

Just because the guy shooting before you has a gun that cost more than your house, that doesn't mean you can't out shoot him.

Anger is a weapon only to the shot timer.

May 7, 2009, 10:34 AM
holster before you curtsy, even if a bunch of guys are clapping because you shot well on your 2nd time ever shooting and you are so happy. sitting out the rest of the match is not fun.

May 7, 2009, 09:23 PM
1) Just because your first 8 offhand shots are 10's and 9's , doesn't mean you aren't going to get fatigued, miss, then spend the last 11 shots getting 6's,7's,and 8's.

yep. my first 14 were 4 Xs, 4 10s, 6 9s followed by 8s over 7s with one more X thrown in for good measure (182-5X)

3) In slow prone, even if you totally blew the first 3 stages, if you pull it together, and only shoot when your sight picture is perfect, you can shoot your highest score ever (98-2x's) Woo Hoo.

did you only shoot 10 rounds at 600? thats what we do on our 100yd reduced course...

no one
June 2, 2009, 11:21 AM
Because of excitement, I tend to try and shoot my fastest at matches (rifle, pistol, 3-gun, and shotgun). I found that if I keep telling myself to only shoot 80% of the speed I did at the last good practice, I shoot much better. I think it is because even though I tell myself to only go 80%, with match excitement and all, I actually do end up shooting faster than I intended.

When I go "all out" I almost always screw up by going too fast to perform well. I guess for me it is that "Slower is smoother, smoother is faster."

June 7, 2009, 01:28 PM
Always keep up with WHEN you're next-standby-next position (in the gate) and during that downtime, do a mental walkthrough of the target succession and no of shots for each, and repeat several times mentally. Second, keep your thoughts on what/when and slow down for accuracy when the buzzer sounds the GO!

June 8, 2009, 01:06 PM
That shooting an IDPA match with my daughter is more fun than, well, just about anything! :D

max it
June 12, 2009, 11:45 AM
I aint as young as I think...
my back cant' take the set up and tear down of steel targets.
I feel bad that I am not going to be able to help more.
What else can I do?


Glenn E. Meyer
June 15, 2009, 01:23 PM
Well, I learned that in an IDPA stage, even if I was covered from the next set of targets, I'm supposed not to move in that covered space when I reload.

Recourse to the rule book indicated that such an action is not really banned but it is ambiguous. However, the SO said it specifically for that stage and I will admit I was a doofus for not remembering that. :o

Seems a silly rule but that's the breaks!

It was a fun match anyway. The only other booboo I made was to just part the hair and not break the perf on a mandatory head shot. Waah!

I also an

June 21, 2009, 10:14 PM
I shot my first IDPA Match in Bulverde this weekend and found out that I have been missing out on a hell of a time! I was surprised at the adrenaline flow. Some friends told me a they were going to shoot, so I went to watch how it was done. I had my pistol, but no holster, but one of the guys dug one up and talked me into shooting. That is the most fun I have had shooting in a loooong time.
I didn't do too bad either for my first time. Finished about midway down the roster out of 70 shooters. As Arnold said, "I'll be back." Hah!

June 22, 2009, 08:00 AM
I aint as young as I think...
my back cant' take the set up and tear down of steel targets.
I feel bad that I am not going to be able to help more.
What else can I do?

I'm sure they're always looking for score-keepers, etc. :)

max it
June 22, 2009, 09:30 AM
Thanks, I just hope I can count past 10 :D
actually, I am looking for a job keeping the tools sharp.

Much obliged,


July 3, 2009, 10:43 PM
Pay more attention to the senerio on how it's to be shot !!!!!
Results in added seconds to your raw time !!!!

July 6, 2009, 04:51 PM
I learned that I really like my latest 45ACP load.
I learned that I need a lot of practice before the state match!:o

July 6, 2009, 10:48 PM
dont get ****** off when you miss........it only makes the next shot even worse.

August 2, 2009, 01:34 AM
uhhh dont break the 180 rule

August 28, 2009, 09:23 PM
the 3 most popular brands of handgun ive seen at matches are glocks, XDs and 1911s

September 15, 2009, 07:22 PM
Always change the battery in your red dot sight when you have to start increasing the intensity. I had the sight go blank this weekend during rapid fire and it cost me 30 points that could have used.

Willie Lowman
September 30, 2009, 05:59 PM
When shooting a borrowed rifle and it jams, just give up. Your friend will have a heart attack when he sees you wrestling with his "precious" HK.

October 6, 2009, 05:14 PM
If you leave a steel standing and see it after you drop the mag it's probably bes to take the points hit over the time that you've lost.

October 12, 2009, 10:04 AM
ive been shooting 124g 9mm at 138 power factor or somewhere around 1150fps.

2-3 people told me my powder (HS-6) is "garbage" or "not good"

lots of people use 147g 9mm in production. i will try those bullets next.

October 27, 2009, 10:59 AM
dress warmer

Willie Lowman
December 17, 2009, 10:16 AM
When shooting plates, getting hit with bullet fragments is something that happens. Sometimes it happens frequently. Sometimes the fragments are large. Sometimes they hit you in the leg and sometimes they hit you in the collar bone.

Eyes and ears are mandatory, a hockey mask and a flack jacket might help too.:p

max it
December 17, 2009, 11:15 AM
"Always buy the first round of drinks,
The crowd never gets smaller"


December 17, 2009, 11:29 PM
Don't let one bad stage ruin the whole match. I had a mike on my first stage and let it ruin my concentration. I blew what would have probably been a personal best for me instead of just concentrating on shooting up to my potential for the rest of the match.

December 18, 2009, 10:53 AM
A 1911 needs to be reloaded a whole heck of a lot when shooting steel, and the time difference between "slingshotting" and just using the slide stop is something that adds up to make the difference between D and C class shooting.

I'd probably benefit from "counting" my shots and doing a tactical reload w/ an empty mag on shot 7 rather than a slide-locked reload. But, my shooting slows down when I try to count.:D

December 22, 2009, 02:15 PM
For most of 2009, I've used .22 conversion units on various pistols for "routine" practice, because ammo has become both expensive and scarce, depending upon the caliber.

Most of my practice has been accuracy based at 50 feet on an indoor range, shooting at 1/2 or 1/3rd scale targets. I've also practiced a lot shooting strong hand only and weak hand only.

(I've always found that shooting with .22 conversions units has been very valuable to maintaining my skills. Some people prefer to dry fire practice -- I prefer to use the .22s)

Last weekend I shot my first match since early June (using my Sig 226R-DAK duty gun) and did reasonably well. I wasn't particularly fast (I never am) but I was pretty smooth and accurate.

I still have to practice more on engaging multiple targets from behind cover (as I've noticed in previous posts in this discussion).

max it
December 22, 2009, 02:49 PM
Here I was all slicked up to gain a few seconds and maybe the match in my class. I was so psyce'd on aiming and sequence I forgot to check my rear sight when it started to go south. It was only a day later that I found my dovetailed rear sight had shifted over, oye! :D



December 23, 2009, 10:17 PM
I've discovered that the device the SO is holding is not a timer....it's a MIND ERASER!!!:eek: