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Old January 24, 2013, 03:33 PM   #35
Senior Member
Join Date: October 3, 2012
Location: Arizona
Posts: 939
Please explain tap, rack, roll, rip, and reload in the context of a malfunction.
These are just easy to remember steps for clearing malfunctions.

Tap - Tap the magazine (solves failure to feed because mag isn't seated)
Rack - Rack the slide
Roll - Roll the gun 90 degrees towards the direction of the ejection port (combined with a rack, will clear a 'stovepipe' style malfunction)
Rip - Remove the magazine (In cases of a double feed, the mag won't drop free, so you have to hit the mag release and literally rip it out of the mag well. Alternatively, you can lock the slide back before dropping the mag if you don't have the strength to rip it out.)

A failure to fire will feel the same as a stovepipe, so without investigating, sometimes (not always) you won't know which malfunction occurred. Doing a tap, rack and roll ensures that you will clear anything that makes the gun not go bang, whether it's a failure to fire (misfire), failure to feed, or stovepipe. Double feeds are another beast altogether, and require a much more involved drill. If you aren't sure what malfunction you have, many places teach that your automatic response should be a Tap, Rack (roll is usually omitted as part of the mnemonic, but should still be done). If that doesn't clear the failure, it's most likely a double feed, and the Rip, Rack, Rack, Reload should clear it. You really do need to rack twice because a lot of the time the extractor won't be engaged on the first rack. If you only rack once, you're setting yourself up for another double feed.

Keep in mind, the way I learned it, train it, and do it is just one way. Everyone does these drills a little differently. This is what I've learned and how I do it.

Regarding the comment about not trusting your life to anything that has batteries and circuits, I find that very funny. Do you use a car? About flying an airplane. Obviously you haven't thought this through. Think again...
A battery dying in a car isn't usually a life or death situation. I've driven my car without a battery in it (long story...don't ask), it did some funny things, but I was able to drive it the few miles where I needed to go. Even with an electrical failure in the car, the worst thing that happens is you're stalled on the side of a road. In most cases, hardly a life or death situation. Call AAA, get a tow, and you're back in business.

Airplanes are a different story, of course. My Dad has his A&P and was a mechanic on H-60's for over 20 years. Aircraft are incredibly regulated. If there's even an inkling of any kind of electronic malfunction, the aircraft is grounded until it can be solve. This is one of the reasons why it's so safe to fly commercial aircraft. Almost every system has a redundancy, and on critical systems, the redundancies have redundancies.

You simply can't compare a laser sight that can literally mean the difference between life and death, to cars (where a failure is almost never deadly), or to airplanes (which are so heavily regulated, and have all sorts of redundancies built in). You might come back and say that your iron sights are your redundancy. Ok, I can go with that. But if all you're doing is training with a laser (not saying you are...) those backup irons are going to be tougher to use.

It appears you're right. There is, in fact, someone who hasn't thought this through. Cars and airplanes make a terrible analogy to a laser sight.

EDIT: Saw this on your post also.

While at the range one day a guy next to me was trying to teach a woman (not his wife) how to shoot at the 5 yard target and she was having a difficult time. I offered her my LCP with the laser, after 3 shots (right on target) she quickly said "That's the gun I want." This was in daylight.
This pretty much proves the laser is a crutch. I'm assuming he was teaching someone with little or no experience. Basically, instead of using the "always on, always reliable" iron sights, she's going to buy a gun and make sure it has a laser, and rely on that, because it's easier. That's pretty much the definition of crutch...something that makes something easier to make up for a lack of skill/ability.

Having said that I can't see the red dot in the bright Houston sun further than 10 yards, but if the sun is behind the clouds I can it it at 15 yards without any problems.
Shooting at a square range, at immobile paper targets that aren't trying to kill you is one thing. Are you certain that in a dynamic gun fight, where you're moving, the bad guy is moving, your adrenaline is pumping, you're trying to assess the situation (are there innocents behind this guy, etc), you'd be able to see that dot at 10 yards? I'm not saying you won't be able to, but I don't think it would be all that easy for you, or anyone for that matter. That's one of the great things about iron sights...they're always where you left them, no searching.

Some people bad mouth lasers because they don't want to spend the money or are just set in their ways.
I spent the money. I trained on them. I tried to like them (because I wanted to justify the $300 price tag of the TLR-2 I bought). At best, they were hardly better than night sights in situations where lasers are supposed to really shine. At worst, they were far slower for me than iron sights. In any situation, they were less accurate than iron sights. This was discovered after doing IDPA style scenarios with both night sights and lasers in low light and near complete darkness. Sure, I'm set in my ways. My ways were also confirmed (for me) with testing.

Like someone else said when the time to use it comes it will be probably somewhere where light conditions make sight acquisition difficult. And those that argue with night sight are obviously night sights salesmen. A laser is the ultimate night sight, point and shoot.
Not a salesman...I just talk about what I know. In low light, night sights are still faster. In darkness, target acquisition is near impossible with either night sights or need a light, and that will immediately negate much of the benefit of the little red dot.

In the end, my mantra is to use what works for you. I tried to like lasers (see above) and still found them to be slower to get on target, and slightly less accurate, especially out past 10 yards. I ended up trading my TLR-2 to my brother for his TLR-1 and $80. It's been 4 months, and I still don't regret it. I think he just sold it a few weeks ago himself, or at least he told me he was going to sell it, for much the same reason I did. He wanted his TLR-1 back...I laughed at him.

Last edited by Gaerek; January 24, 2013 at 05:08 PM.
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