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Old February 24, 2012, 08:57 AM   #1
Ben Towe
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Which form of shooting is best for me?

Here's the deal: I would like to get involved in some competitive shooting, but I don't want to sink a fortune in new equipment. I would like to be able to use my carry pistol, which is a Sig Sauer Platinum Elite 1911.

I have read about one category called 3 gun that uses a tactical rifle and shotgun in addition to the handgun. I have no tactical shotgun but I do have an M1A Scout Squad rifle and I could probably come up with a shotgun.

The only competitive shooting I've ever done is a bit of ATA trap so I'm completely unfamiliar with the whole defensive shooting competition thing. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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Old February 24, 2012, 10:36 AM   #2
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I would first look and see what is available in your local area.

You can go a long ways in USPSA and IDPA with a single gun, belt holster, some magazines and mag pouches. Two of the local clubs here run outlaw 3 gun on the side and that seems common else where from the people I have talked with.

If you do want to try 3 gun without buying a shotgun just show up for a match with a bulk pack of 12 gauge ammo and someone will let you use their gun to help make a new shooter feel welcome.
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Old February 24, 2012, 10:38 AM   #3
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You probably have the gear for IDPA right now. It is the least 'gear intensive' sport. USPSA/IPSC in single stack would be next, but you might not have enough mags or mag pouches. You should shoot with what you have for a bit before you make any major gear purchases.

3-gun is a different world, and the gear requirements are much greater. Start with IDPA or USPSA (whatever you have locally). If it lights your fire, then get into 3-gun.
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Old February 24, 2012, 04:16 PM   #4
Jim Watson
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I agree, start out in one gun with what you have on hand.
Your gun is suitable for IDPA CDP and USPSA/IPSC Single Stack.

Middle Tennessee Shooters near Manchester has an IDPA match on the First Sunday Afternoon of each month, and a "mixed match" with some aspects of both IDPA and IPSC on the Third Sunday Afternoon.

I shoot their straight IDPA matches regularly. They are good folks and will help you get started.
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Old February 24, 2012, 10:18 PM   #5
Ben Stoeger
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Personally I would start off with IDPA or USPSA as suggested. Your gun would be fine for either. If you get into it and really like the format then it would be an easy transition into 3 gun.

Most 3 gun is going to more closely resemble USPSA, so I would look there first.
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Old February 26, 2012, 10:07 PM   #6
Ben Towe
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Thanks guys. Jim, I'm going to check out Middle Tennessee Shooters this week. I'm sure I'll have lots more questions for you all. Thanks again...
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Old February 27, 2012, 08:21 AM   #7
Don P
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Being you already have the gun I would say that IDPA is going to be the most cost friendly competition to get into. All you need is 1 gun, 1 holster, 1 double magazine pouch and 3 magazines. Your cover garment can be a simple button up shirt or the shirt you wear to the match.
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Old February 27, 2012, 02:36 PM   #8
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I just shot my 3rd IDPA. My experience with them has been nothing but great, welcoming to new shooters, and very affordable. Gets me out of the house and is fun as all get out!
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Old March 2, 2012, 09:50 PM   #9
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I think that everybody here so far is pretty much on track. The only other option I can bring up is steel matches. If there is a club nearby that shoots steel matches, I'd recommend that you try that first.

Don't get me wrong, as my personal favorite is IDPA, but I believe that steel matches are the most readily accessible form of competitive handgun match around for people new to competitive shooting.

Reasoning (and yes, it's a personal opinion) has to do with the simpler format and rules in steel competitions.

Plus, there is that satisfying "spang" when you hit a steel target...

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