View Full Version : First Range Report from new job...

Rob Pincus
August 15, 1999, 08:57 PM
About a week and a half ago, I was taken out to the range with several other new recruits from the PD that I will be working full-time for.

The instructor and I had talked extensively about firearms and training, and he had warned me that this was going to be a very basic session, to introduce most of the rooks to firearms. Several of the new guys had never fired a pistol and expressed apprehension.
He told me that I could skip the session, but for liability reasons (yes, I did receive the department's basic firearm/use of force instruction block...) and to evaluate him I decided to go.

When we got ready to head out to the range, it became apparent that there were not enough range guns for the entire group, nor were there enough gunbelts/hoslters. The PD is not issuing us the current weapons, as they are switching to HKs within the next month. The chief decided that we could be gunless cops for a few days while we rode on day shift with our FTOs before the academy started. (That is another reason I chose to go to the range instead of out with an FTO!)

Conveniently enough, I happened to have a couple extra pistols and a complete set of duty gear in my truck (go figure..). I chose to use my Sig, since it was the same calibre as the PD's guns.. Free Ammo!! :).

I was drafted into service as an AI, and the afternoon was pretty fun actually. Most of the other Rooks were very honest about there lack of experience and the instructor was not at all intimidated by my experience. He outlined a very basic block of instruction, which got most of the guys conmfortable witht the guns. The class fired about 50 rounds from the 7 yard line, all from low ready, with no reloads during firing.
Then he got the class used to drawing the weapon and firing.
After that, he ran the class through the Qualification course without time limits.

He cut a lot of corners in the instruction, but everything was very safe. The afternoon was really designed to cover the dept's *** in the event that a Rook ended up using his FTO's firearm during some incident before the Academy had instructed and qalified us with our firearms.

Since arriving at the academy, I have learned that VA DCJS madates that an officer must be LE certified for 2 years before he can become a General Instructor, BUT I can be certified in certain specific skill areas and work under another General Instructor. With that in mind, I will try to get Firearm's Instructor Certified and work under the aformentioned instructor ASAP.

I also talked to our regional training coordinator about attending HK's Armorer and Instructor Schools as soon as possible, since that is the direction that our department is going.
Several of the other students at the academy are carrying Glocks, and I have already had to work on one of them. (The poor guy got about 3 pounds of dusty sand and grit in his weapon in the obstacle course!).

We have a FATS simulator at the academy that I got to play around with last week. The computer can take almost a full second to respond to a lethal hit, so I tend to over-saturate my targets in the time it takes them to react to being stopped. ;).

We were going over drill & Ceremony last week, including an inspection with sidearms, and I had to convince the instructor that we needed to modify the procedure. Those of you familiar with side-arms in Drill will know that when you are putting your weapon back intothe holster, you traditionally place your thumb on a slide release lever on the command of "ready" and actuate it on the command of "Port", closing the slide.
Well, with a Glock, that is 100% wrong and bad training. So I convinced him that Rooks with Glocks should place their Left hand over the slide on the command of "Ready" and pull back slightly at the command of "Port". Luckily, the instructor was also familiar with Glock's training policy on the closing of the slide, so he agreed, even though he hated the non-uniformity it created in the platoon.

Basic Firearms starts in the middle of next month.


August 15, 1999, 09:18 PM
Hi Rob,
Good to hear from ya. Sounds like you've got the situation well under control. You'll have those guys straightened out in no time. :)
Glad to hear eveythings going OK. Keep us posted.

Futo Inu
August 16, 1999, 12:08 AM
Alphabet soup, Rob. Oh well, LEOs will understand, I guess. Rob, what do you guys do when re-holstering with respect to clearing the thumb retention strap out of the way of the trigger guard? With the retention duty holsters, isn't an ND a concern because of possible errant straps? Left hand across to pull back? Or are they naturally out of the way in a good holster?

What are the chances Rob would have extra guns in the pickup? Was this Friday the 13th or something?

[This message has been edited by Futo Inu (edited August 16, 1999).]

Rob Pincus
August 16, 1999, 04:12 PM
The preferred method, in my opinion, for putting a gun back into the holster is:

Bring the gun BEHIND the holster, then push the muzzle into the holster "under" the strap. this will use the top of the slide to push the strap out of the way, not the muzzle or trigger guard. With most guns, you can also place the index finger along the side of the trigger guard, forming a wall to keep the strap from entering the trigger area.

you do NOT want to cross the weak hand over for two reasons:

1. You will likley "paint" yourself (ie- cover your own hand with your muzzle).

2. you may not have to hands to reholster with on the street.


Rich Lucibella
August 16, 1999, 05:32 PM
Go get 'em, Rob!

August 17, 1999, 02:13 PM
Good to hear from you Rob!

The Fats machine was the BEST! The Target Saturation is common for shooters who get on the machine... I did the same thing - Too fun Not Too!

Just what till you get to Arrest Control... And the ASP REDMAN outfit! :D

"But I don't want to go among mad people," Alice remarked.
"Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat: "we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad."
"How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice.
"You must be," said the Cat, "or you wouldn't have come here."


[This message has been edited by Kodiac (edited August 17, 1999).]

Long Path
August 17, 1999, 09:57 PM
Kodiac: I'm looking at a RedMan Outfit as we speak, and am sooooo glad that I'm too big to fit in a $3000 suit that matches nothing! My limbs are too long to get adequate coverage. Here in Texas, those things are like wearing a 25 lb. Hefty bag. When I went through ASP training 5 years ago, even with the padded fake light whippy ASPs, we beat bruises up and down that poor instructor, even though he was wearing a RedMan! Guess we got a bit excited.

Rob: good to see that you're willing to go in even to the basic "Firearms 101" classes. A willingness to undergo repetitive training and reiterate safety shows commitment, something I'm a stickler on. Leaving our ego at the range gate and opening our minds, yet again, to another's instruction is useful, and healthy. You'll make a good instructor, sir.

George Hill
August 18, 1999, 12:51 PM
Rule One:
Never Rodney King Your Instructors!


I wish i could have done that to a couple of mine!

"But I don't want to go among mad people," Alice remarked.
"Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat: "we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad."
"How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice.
"You must be," said the Cat, "or you wouldn't have come here."

The Critic formerly known as Kodiac

Rob Pincus
August 18, 1999, 04:45 PM
Thanks for the kind words long path, I hadn't really considered it from that point of view. I just figured that if there was range time available, I was going to take it.. and I wanted to be sure that I had the same CYA training on record with the department as everyone else.

God Knows, I've got a lot to learn, even from the beginners...... Not least of all is better ways to teach....


Jeff Thomas
August 19, 1999, 09:35 PM
Rob, just curious - what proportion of the Rookies have either never or hardly fired a handgun?