Dear Instructors, Get a Real Job

In this Ballistic Radio interview, I offer some opinions about problems and solutions with the firearms training industry.  The industry needs to do some real work if it expects to get in touch with normal people.

Dear Instructors, Get a Real Job



5 responses

  1. One thing instructors need to do is allow .380 pistols in their classes. I attended a class taught by a prominent instructor last year, and a woman was forced to rent a 9mm gun, holster, and magazines because the instructor refused to let her use her P238. 380 ammo is now able to meet the FBI requirements for penetration and expansion (Hornady Critical Defense and Spear Gold Dot, to name two).

    1. An excellent example of the difference between the student mentality and the client service mentality. Thanks for sharing.

    2. Pardon? Both of those overexpand and fail to meet the 12″ minimum in calibrated 10% ballistic gelatin, or at least I haven’t heard of a test in which they didn’t.

      The short list for .380 is very, very short, if you believe Dr. G. K. Roberts. It’s the Hornady 90gr XTP, loaded by whomever, and the old 90gr Federal Hydra-Shok, which I’m not 100% sure they still even make.

      Both of these bullets barely deform in clothed gelatin, and neither of them makes the FBI’s minimum standard of 50% increase in diameter for expanding bullets. Both of them do, on the other hand, just barely make the absolute minimum 12″ of penetration in clothed or unclothed gelatin.

      There’s nothing in .380, at all, that meets any of the FBI’s other specs, the ones pertaining to auto glass, sheet metal, and so on.

      .38 Special is another caliber where there’s not much out there that “meets the FBI specs,” if you talk about only the clothed/unclothed gelatin penetration and expansion requirements and a lot less–approximately zero, in fact–that can still do these things after going through a car door or half an inch of plywood or drywall. I know there are a lot of wheelgun fans out there who still in the 21st Century just don’t trust them newfangled otter-maticks, but really, it’s a low-pressure, low-power, obsolete blackpowder era legacy cartridge that does nothing the .380 doesn’t do better in a smaller, more easily concealable platform that most people will find much easier to shoot well under stress because they won’t be fighting a twelve-pound DA trigger on a twelve-ounce alloy-framed snubby. By the way, we’re not still telling eighty-pound octogenarian women who’ve never seen a gun before except on TV to buy an alloy-framed five-shot 2″ .38 revolver, are we? Right?

      I’m not a paid instructor, but I wouldn’t advise anything under 9mm as an everyday carry pistol either. With all the skinny little singlestack 9mm CCW pistols out there, the .380 is obsolete now too, and has been for decades, and NO, 9mm recoil from a concealable singlestack isn’t “sharp” or “uncontrollable,” it’s a 9mm, and if you have trouble with it, get off the couch and start hitting the gym. .40 isn’t terribly unpleasant to shoot from small singlestack pistols either and for the die-hard revolver fans there are .357 snubbies now and ammunition can be found in this caliber at power levels for any liking and tolerance for recoil.

      Handguns suck at killing things. Handgun cartridges suck at stopping people from harming you unless they go downrange with 300+ foot-pounds of energy per round and are delivered in high volume from a selective-fire long gun (*cough* SMG *cough*) and armies and governments knew these things before the Second World War. Why do we want to tell people to handicap themselves by planning to fight for their lives with low-pressure mousegun calibers that are known to fail in suicide attempts, again?

      1. “Why do we want to tell people to handicap themselves by planning to fight for their lives with low-pressure mousegun calibers”

        Because they work? I’ve been fighting this battle with the industry for a decade or more.

        I can document far more failures of service calibers in the hands of the POlice than detractors of mouseguns have ever been able to document to me with regard to Private Citizens. The conditions of METT-TC are completely different. Talking about suicides is non sequitur and is a straw man fallacy.

        Your argument is much akin to the ‘revolvers will get you kilt in da streetz’ line of thinking. It sounds good to those who don’t collect data but has no factual evidence to confirm it.

  2. […] environment, limiting their defensive options. Claude Werner recently wrote an article titled “Dear Instructors get a real job”.  I found great value in this article and I think it pertains to this blog. Please read […]

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