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The struggle is real

There is a lot of buzz over some of the new micro & subcompact handguns designed for concealed carry. This a great time within our industry to see so many products marketed to the concealed carry consumer, but what is the tradeoff.

Little Blasters

I am all about encouraging as many people to take personal responsibility for their own personal safety. This comes in many different packages. An obvious start is a handgun and obtaining a license to carry. Many new to the market will see a handgun in a small, compact package and assume it is ideal for carrying concealed. It very well can and does this mission well. The problem is many of the new shooters are not privy to the challenges these little blasters bring to the table. By the same token, with quality training and the proper equipment these are great for the selected mission.

Rapid, Accurate Fire

Recently I decided to have some fun with these little guys. I put each of my sub-compacts and micros through a test designed to measure pure marksmanship. The first challenge is the reduced size equaling less grip surface. A lot of times people run out of space for their pinky. An easy fix is not to worry, just curl your pinky finger under the magazine base pad and it will greatly improve your performance. The other complication is the less gripping surface equals a greater recoil impulse. Plinking on the range can leave you with a sense of accomplishment. Trying to perform rapid, accurate fire at extended ranges will challenge the best of shooters.

Statistics Don’t Lie

A justification many will use is how most self defense shootings are close range in nature. There may be some truth in this statistic, but let me lay something pretty heavy on you. If you fired your gun in self defense you are already a statistical anomaly. Making an excuse why you’re not shooting at distance does not make for a good plan. Pushing these baby blasters at extended ranges was not only eye opening, but fun. Yes, they are plenty accurate for the task at hand, but their inherited challenges do force the shooter to have their skills fully developed.

Training Junkie & Ammo Whore

What I recommend is to improve the sight system right away. Nothing out of the box is really that good, but when you are pushing the envelope already every little bit helps. What prompted all this fun was breaking out my Glock 26 and upgrading it with some fiber optic type sights. Thin and plain allowed me to see them better and and perfect my aim. While the other blasters had different types of sights, I noticed the difference immediately. Performance was still good, but not good enough for me. I literally walked off the range and immediately ordered replacement sights for all, but one blaster. I cannot wait for these upgrades, as if I needed an other excuse to practice. They will all get more trigger time and more exposure in our classes.

I’m all for options, for being able to select what best fits your needs. Don’t forget nothing is free and you will have to know your limits as well as your equipment’s.

Author: Jeff Gonzales

Dispassionate Trigger Pulling

In the defensive shooting world we are trying to do two things. Teach responsible gun owners how to defend against a violent encounter with a handgun and improve their critical shooting skills.

Ticking Time Bomb

I have gotten more and more patient over the years, believe me it shocks me just as much. However, there are instances where I will loose it in an instant. Watching someone dispassionately pulling the trigger is one of those instances. Using a handgun in a deadly force encounter is no laughing matter, not something to be taken lightly. You have to prepare yourself mentally for the violent encounter. You make major life choices about taking another human’s life to protect life. You expends your resources at training in the hopes of never having to use your skills.

The Final Option

When I watch someone do a half ass job of unloading their handgun then almost without thinking point it down and pull the trigger it is as if they have forgotten an important point. When you pull the trigger, every time you pull the trigger, it is because you have no other option. You have either exhausted all options or you didn’t have an option from the beginning. The level of commitment towards defending your life is not easy, nor should it be taken lightly. It should not be something with a cavalier attitude. When you diminish the importance of a rule or value, you weaken its effectiveness. It is not difficult to see why carelessness sneaks into gun handling when we start to place less emphasize on safety.

What Really Happens

What could be some reasons one would blindly pull the trigger after unloading? A common retort is to relief pressure on the striker. By de-energizing the striker spring there is this belief you are increasing the longevity. If you were planning on a long term storage there could be an argument made. I would caveat long term measured in decades. If you are not storing the handgun for that length of time then it is worthless. The problem is not so much in the action, but the habit it forms. Students would unload in class to accomplish an administrative task. Maybe changing out holsters or cover garments. Or maybe, taking a break or to set up a drill with an empty chamber. My point, is the duration is in no way going to help relieve pressure. We are talking minutes before we charge them back up and start shooting again.

Safety First

In the off chance the student doesn’t recognize the carelessness of this act it is one thing. To do it knowingly is something completely different. The amount of times of occurrence in a training class can create the environment this action becomes a habit. It becomes a part of your daily handling of firearms and starts to diminish the importance of safety. Safety rules such as all guns are always loaded loose their effectiveness. The monumental challenge of preparing for a deadly force encounter means you are pulling the trigger with the express intention of defending life. Don’t diminish this act.

To take this simple act and diminish it to the point it looses its effectiveness is a mistake. There is no value, but so much more at stake

Author: Jeff Gonzales

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