Category Archives: practice

DRY PRACTICE WITH REVOLVERS

#Fridayfundamentals

I am really enjoying getting back into the habit of structured dry practice. Revolvers are great tools for dry practice, in some ways better than autoloading pistols.

This month, I am serving as the Match Director for the I’m With Roscoe http://imwithroscoe.com 2019 Internet Match. It’s based on the Pocket Revolver Championship of the US Revolver Association. The Championship, along with the other USRA Championships, is described in A.L.A. Himmelwright’s 1915 book Pistol and Revolver Shooting. https://www.amazon.com/Pistol-Revolver-Shooting-L-Himmelwright-ebook/dp/B00AQM9SK0

The course of fire is quite demanding. Originally, it consisted of five strings of five shots in 30 seconds at 50 yards on the original NRA B-6 bullseye target. It is shot one-handed. Since not many people have access to a 50 yard range, I changed it to using an NRA B-2 target at 50 feet. The B-2 is the 50 foot reduction of the B-6 so this was an easy change. Official Rules are available on the IWR Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/groups/370742620287566/

Since it is a demanding course of fire, I’ve been doing dry practice for when I have the opportunity to shoot it live. My preparation is to work on the fundamentals. I practice with two revolvers each day, my pencil barrel Model 10 and my Model 38-2 J frame.

IWR Match guns

I created a reduced size target for dry practice, scaled for use at 10 feet. It is printed on a 5×8 index card. The target is stored behind a plaque for safety reasons. I take it out and position it when I start the session. Immediately after finishing the session, I conceal the target back behind the plaque prior to reloading my gun.

 

IWR dry practice target

Since they’re both older guns, I protect their firing pins (hammer noses). For the K frame, I’m using a piece of plastic that fills in the rear of the cylinder. It was manufactured years ago by a gunsmith in New Jersey, long since out of business. The plastic has proven remarkably durable though. For the 38-2, I’m using ST Action Pro Dummy Rounds that I filled the primer pocket in with hot melt glue.

For a timer, I use the Dry Fire Practice Par Timer, from the Google App store, on my phone. It’s set to give me five strings of 30 seconds each with a six second delay between strings. At the beep, I snap five times single action. My actual times are working out to about 25-26 seconds per string. This allows some leeway to accommodate recoil management when I live fire. I rest briefly between the strings.

What I am concentrating on when snapping is minimizing my wobble zone, pressing the trigger smoothly, and following through. These are especially important when shooting one handed. The follow-through is the aspect I have to personally work hardest on. Of those three fundamentals, follow-through is the hardest to learn in live fire so the dry practice is doing me a great deal of good.

It’s been good getting back into daily dry practice. I include dry practice in my shooting workbooks for a reason; it works. If you would like to try your hand at it, this is the reduced scale target. IWR Internet Match dry practice target 5×8 10 feet

Tactical Professor books

Indoor Range Practice Sessions http://indoorrangepracticesessions.com

Concealed Carry Skills and Drills http://concealedcarryskillsanddrills.com

Advanced Pistol Practice http://bit.ly/advancedpistolpractice

Shooting Your Black Rifle http://shootingyourblackrifle.com/

Serious Mistakes Gunowners Make http://seriousgunownermistakes.com

Avoiding Mistaken Identity Shootings

Another Mistaken Identity shooting occurred last week. A teenage girl came home from college to surprise her mother with a visit and got shot instead.

https://www.wkbn.com/news/local-news/police-report-mom-mistakenly-shoots-daughter-in-girard/

The teen’s mother told police that she was in her bedroom when she heard a commotion inside the house. She said the noise scared her and that she was not expecting anyone.

The mother said someone came running into her bedroom and that’s when she fired one round from her handgun. She then realized that she had shot her daughter, the report stated.

Obviously, in between hearing the commotion and firing the shot, the woman armed herself. It’s unlikely that she said anything in the process or her daughter probably would have said something back. The ‘surprise visit’ was most likely a bout of homesickness.

decision inputs dont understand

As I mention in my book Serious Mistakes Gunowners Make, any ‘bump in the night,’ or in this case “commotion inside the house,” carries with it a set of competing probabilities. It could be an intruder, which is the assumption most people make when they hear it, or it could be a member of their household. The member of the household is the most likely scenario. Why is this true? Simply because they live in the same house as you do and they are not constantly updating you on their location. Where teenagers, such as the unfortunate shootee in this incident, are present, the chances of them leaving the house and returning without informing their parents is extremely high. This fact has to be figured into the home defense plan of any parent or adult in the household.

Competing probabilities

Continue reading →

Straight talk about Incident Research

Mickey Schuch, of Carry Trainer, was kind enough to do an interview with me. We talked quite a bit about incident research, among other things.

We also talked a little about my My eBooks.

Indoor Range Practice Sessions http://indoorrangepracticesessions.com

Concealed Carry Skills and Drills http://concealedcarryskillsanddrills.com

Advanced Pistol Practice

Shooting Your Black Rifle http://shootingyourblackrifle.com

Evaluating handguns for YOU

Before you buy a gun, you should go to a range that rents guns and try different ones out to see which one is best for you.

What does “try them out” mean? How do we measure “which one is best for you?” Here is a list of worthwhile items to evaluate for you to make an informed decision about an autoloading pistol. For those who are helping a prospective purchaser, demonstrate the technique but then place the pistol in a sterile (unloaded with slide forward) condition and let them do their own evaluation without comment or coaching. You won’t be there to coach them if they need to use the pistol for real; that’s part of the evaluation.

  1. Load the pistol. This has two components.
    1. Load a magazine to full capacity.
    2. Load the fully charged magazine into the pistol and chamber a round.
  2. Manipulate the controls of the pistol.
    1. If the pistol has a decocker, decock the pistol after loading it.
    2. If the pistol has a safety, engage it, and then disengage it.
    3. Remove the loaded magazine from the pistol.
    4. Engage the slide stop while safely ejecting the round from the chamber. The muzzle must remain pointed downrange during the unload sequence.
    5. Inspect the chamber visually and physically (with a finger) to be sure it is unloaded.
    6. Let the slide go forward.
  3. Shoot the pistol.
    1. For new shooters or prospective purchasers, use a standard silhouette target.
    2. Experienced shooters should use a more meaningful target.
      1. An 8 inch circle at 3 yards.
      2. A sheet of paper in landscape orientation at 5 yards.
      3. Two sheets of paper stacked one above the other in landscape orientation at 7 yards and 10 yards.
      4. A suitable target can be downloaded here. Printable Silhouette drawn face
  1. Fire six shots at each of four distances (Stages); 3 yards, 5 yards, 7 yards, and 10 yards. This will replicate the difficulty level of most States’ Carry License Qualification Courses of Fire. A Carry License Qualification is the most likely shooting task the average purchaser will use their handgun for so you may as well evaluate the ability to pass it. This shooting evaluation consists of 24 rounds so two different pistols could be evaluated with one fifty round box of ammo.
    1. The six shots for each Stage should be fired in three Strings of Fire. The magazine should be loaded with six rounds only except when evaluating stoppage clearance.
      1. Fire One shot
      2. Fire Two shots
      3. Fire Three shots
      4. If the pistol has a decocker, decock the pistol after each string and then disengage the decocker.
      5. If the pistol has a safety, start each string with the safety engaged.
      6. After shooting at each distance, czech to make sure the pistol is unloaded, let the slide go forward, and decock, if the pistol has a decocker.
      7. Record how many hits were made on the target and then cover them with masking tape. You should bring a roll of masking tape with you to the range.
      8. Start the next distance’s shooting by loading the pistol from a sterile condition.
    2. The 3 yard string should be fired with the Primary Hand Only, i.e., One Handed.
  2. Evaluate your ability to reduce stoppages of the pistol.
    1. When shooting the 5 yard Stage, start with the chamber empty and a six round magazine inserted. Attempt to fire the first shot on an empty chamber. After the click, tap the base of the magazine, cycle the slide, and then fire one shot (Tap-Rack-Bang). This is a simulation of clearing a bad round or a partially unseated magazine.
    2. When shooting the 7 yard Stage, start with the slide locked open and a six round magazine in the pistol. Eject the magazine onto the table, pick it up, insert it into the pistol, release the slide, and then fire three shots. This is a simulation of an Emergency Reload because most rental pistols will only come with one magazine. After the three shot sequence, fire the two shot String and then the one shot String.
    3. When shooting the 10 yard Stage, start with the chamber empty and a six round magazine inserted. Attempt to fire the first shot on an empty chamber. After the click, remove the magazine, cycle the slide three times, re-insert the magazine, and then fire three shots. This simulates clearing a double feed. After the three shot sequence, fire the two shot String and then the one shot String.

This evaluation procedure will give you a good idea of two different aspects of how well the gun works for you or a prospective purchaser. The ability to shoot the gun to pass a possible standard for obtaining a Carry License and also manipulation tasks that are frequently overlooked.

Here is a downloadable checklist you can take to the range with you. Autoloading Pistol Suitability Checklist

Practicing for your real world

What is YOUR real world like? It’s different from everyone else’s real world, for sure.

My eBooks
Indoor Range Practice Sessions http://indoorrangepracticesessions.com
Concealed Carry Skills and Drills http://concealedcarryskillsanddrills.com
Advanced Pistol Practice http://store.payloadz.com/go?id=2613612
Shooting Your Black Rifle http://shootingyourblackrifle.com

tacticalprofessor

This morning, I had an opportunity to do some work on putting my money where my mouth is. I’ve been haranguing about Negative Outcomes and wanted to come up with some actionable practice. If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem, as the saying goes.

Around 5 a.m., someone was loading a pickup in the parking lot outside my apartment. There was quite a bit of ‘bumping,’ which woke me up. Everything was still dark and otherwise quiet. I was satisfied that it was indeed a truck being loaded and what was being loaded wasn’t mine. While lying  in bed, I realized I had been awakened by a ‘bump in the night.’ So, I decided to clear my apartment as a dry run.

First, I cleared my pistol and put an orange dummy round in the chamber. I then dryfired it once. If I hadn’t…

View original post 604 more words

Let’s Get Real About Active Shooters

It’s all hype by the media to boost their ratings. The active shooter possibility is so small it wouldn’t even be worth talking about if the media didn’t stir up such a (you-know-what) storm about it. Look at the breakout for 2017, the latest year exact numbers are available. Note that the mass shootings number for 2017 includes the Las Vegas concert incident so it’s higher than other years.

2017 homicides

Source: CDC and Time

In comparison, how often do you hear about multiple fatality car crashes on the news? They rate one minute, once. Then they’re out of sight and out of mind. In 2017, the CDC figure for car fatalities is 40,231. Dead is dead, period. Run an internet search for “multiple fatality car crash” and limit the search period to the past month. The number you’ll find is shocking.

Continue reading →

A Well Regulated Militia

The Bill of Rights

Amendment II

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

There continues to be controversy about the meaning of the Second Amendment. Advocates of Gun Control maintain that it only refers to the National Guard. On occasion, even firearms owners will say that regulated means ‘trained.’

The_Federalist_(1st_ed,_1788,_vol_I,_title_page)

The Federalist Papers (#29 by Alexander Hamilton) gives this interpretation of a ‘well regulated militia.’

“Little more can reasonably be aimed at, with respect to the people at large, than to have them properly armed and equipped; [emphasis mine] and in order to see that this be not neglected, it will be necessary to assemble them once or twice in the course of a year.”

I.e., everyone should own an assault rifle, a basic load of ammunition and be required to show up for an inspection thereof at least annually.

Hamilton alludes to the difficulty of having the entire citizenry participate in military maneuvers sufficient to develop proficiency at a unit level. Any soldier who has been on a Field Training Exercise (FTX) can understand this. But having military weapons in the hands of the People seems to be a viable solution to him. Maintaining individual proficiency with those weapons isn’t something he speaks about.

James Madison wrote in Federalist No. 46:

“Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation … Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.”

Yet another reference to the value of citizens owning arms.

Madison also makes reference to “that the traitors [emphasis mine] should, throughout this period, uniformly and systematically pursue some fixed plan for the extension of the military establishment.” In a time when a member of Congress talks about using nuclear weapons against the American people, it’s even more important that the people at large possess military weapons.

Professor Eugene Volokh of the UCLA Law School provides some References to the Militia in The Federalist.

The Second Amendment has never been about hunting. That has always been a fiction. The intent of the Founding Fathers was for the people to able to resist a tyrannical central government.

Shooting Your Black Rifle book

http://shootingyourblackrifle.com

Cover shot

 

Shooting Your Black Rifle – The Book

I’m pleased to announce that I’ve finished my latest book – Shooting Your Black Rifle.

Cover shot

There are many books about how to shoot rifles in general, and Black Rifles in particular. This book focuses on applying the principles and techniques of those books to live fire and dry practice. The book contains numerous Courses of Fire applicable to training and practicing for Personal Protection, along with other useful information for Black Rifle owners. These Courses are drawn from POlice Patrol Rifle courses that involve shooting at 50 yards or less, so they are highly applicable to the needs of the Armed Private Citizen.

This book should be thought of as a guide for practicing the techniques that owners of AR-15s and other Black Rifles have learned or are interested in. Understanding a technique without repetitively practicing it will not yield particularly good results. The Courses of Fire provide a method for practicing what an owner has learned and evaluating what techniques work best for each individual.

Recognizing that many people do not have access to a readily available source of targets, Printable Targets that can be produced on any printer are included. Because many gunowners do not have access to a 50 yard range, reduced scale targets are included. These reduced scale targets can be used on ranges that are only 25 yards long to simulate longer distances.

printable target 33Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Zeroing Your Rifle
  • Patrol Rifle Qualification Courses
  • Decisional Drills, Verbalization Drills, and Dry Practice
  • Gun Safety, Serious Mistakes, and Negative Outcomes
  • Bibliography
  • Targets

This is an excellent guide for both new AR-15 owners and those who have owned one for a while but would like to practice with the rifle more effectively. For those who have taken a class about the AR-15, the book provides you with various shooting drills to help you maintain and sharpen the skills you learned. For those who have little or no training, the book gives you a structured way of learning and improving your skills.

It is available in downloadable format. The cost is only $7.99 and I think you will find it is well worth it.

https://store.payloadz.com/go/?id=2615949

Podcast list

I was the guest on another podcast last night. Knowing that many people like to listen to podcasts, I compiled a list of the podcasts and topics that the hosts have been so kind to invite me to join.

Eye On The Target – Book philosophy and Dry Practice drill, July 14, 2019

http://www.podcastgarden.com/episode/071419-one_146861

P(rimary) &S(econdary) 168 – Mouse Guns, October 14, 2018

https://www.spreaker.com/user/primaryandsecondary/p-s-168-mouse-guns

Safety Solutions Academy – Decision Making, September 20, 2018

https://safetysolutionsacademy.com/441-claude-werner-the-tactical-professor/

Ballistic Radio – The Neediest of Pre-Needs, July 8, 2018

http://ballisticradio.com/2018/07/23/the-neediest-of-pre-needs-podcast-season-6-ballistic-radio-episode-262-july-8th-2018/

Ballistic Radio – Dear Instructors, Get a Real Job, February 11, 2018

http://ballisticradio.com/2018/02/14/dear-instructors-get-a-real-job-podcast-season-5-ballistic-radio-episode-241-february-11th-2018/

Civilian Carry Radio – December 28, 2017

https://firearmsradio.tv/civilian-carry-radio/civilian-carry-radio-039-claude-werner-the-tactical-professor

Ballistic Radio – Whose Standards?, May 7, 2017)

http://ballisticradio.com/2017/05/10/whose-standards-podcast-season-5-ballistic-radio-episode-207-may-7th-2017/

Ballistic Radio – 50 Shades Of Werner, September 25, 2016

http://ballisticradio.com/2016/09/30/50-shades-of-werner-podcast-season-4-ballistic-radio-episode-180-september-25th-2016/

Ballistic Radio – The Boyd Part About The OODA Loop, February 7, 2016

http://ballisticradio.com/2016/02/14/the-boyd-part-about-the-ooda-loop-podcast-season-3-ballistic-radio-episode-149-february-7th-2016/

Handgun Radio 118 – SHOT Show 2016 Handgun Preview, January 5, 2016

https://firearmsradio.squarespace.com/handgun-radio/118

Gun Guy Radio 189 – LAPD Use of Force Reports, November 10, 2015

https://firearmsradio.tv/gun-guy-radio/189

Handgun Radio 102 – Handgun Comparison Testing Protocols, – July 14, 2015

https://firearmsradio.tv/handgun-radio/102

Ballistic Radio – Training, Practice, and Shooting Standards, May 10, 2015

http://ballisticradio.com/2015/05/12/training-practice-and-shooting-standards-podcast-season-3-ballistic-radio-episode-111-may-10th-2015/

Ballistic Radio – Negative Outcomes 101, Part 2, March 15, 2015

http://ballisticradio.com/2015/03/18/negative-outcomes-101-part-2-podcast-season-2-ballistic-radio-episode-103-march-15th-2015/

Ballistic Radio – Negative Outcomes 101, March 1, 2015

http://ballisticradio.com/2015/03/04/negative-outcomes-101-with-the-tactical-professor-podcast-season-2-ballistic-radio-episode-101-march-1st-2015/

Ballistic Radio – The Rise of the Sentinel (Event), September 16, 2014

http://ballisticradio.com/2014/09/16/the-rise-of-the-sentinel-event/

Ballistic Radio – Threat Management For The Armed Citizen, August 24, 2014

http://ballisticradio.com/2014/08/25/threat-management-podcast-season-2-ballistic-radio-episode-76-august-24th-2014/

Ballistic Radio – Gunfight Analysis, Understanding the Threat YOU Are Most Likely To Face, April 20, 2014

http://ballisticradio.com/2014/04/21/podcast-season-2-ballistic-radio-episode-58-april-20th-2014/

Ballistic Radio – The Efficacy of Pocket Guns, Misconceptions, June 30, 2013

http://ballisticradio.com/2013/06/30/ballistic-radio-episode-17-june-30-2013/

Advanced Pistol Practice – Book and MP3s

The ebook about Advanced Skills and how to practice them is now available. Recognizing the value of dry practice, the download also includes two MP3 files to easily guide your dry practice sessions.

Advanced Pistol Practice

Introduction

A commonly heard statement in the firearms training community is “There are no such things as ‘advanced’ tasks, only ‘fundamental’ tasks done at greater speed.” While this statement is true to an extent, there is a broader perspective to be considered.

There are three components of Advanced tasks, all of which have equal importance.

  • Consistency
  • Performance Measurement
  • Context

Consistency

The ability to perform a given task in the same way and achieve the same results each time is a characteristic of advanced shooters. We have all experienced that day when we were ‘on’ and could do everything well. The difference between those days and our worst days is the measure of our consistency and what we are able to produce ‘on demand.’

Performance Measurement

Measuring our performance regularly and recording our results is the only way to know whether we are being at least consistent and hopefully improving our skill level. Performance measurement has two components: accuracy and time. Our personal perceptions of how competent we are at any given time are often flawed. The target and the timer, not our perceptions, tell us the true story of our competency. The ‘observer effect’ of performance measurement can also change a fundamental task into an advanced task.

Context

The element of ‘context’ is a key component of ‘advanced’ tasks. Any fundamental task has to be applied in a certain way to different situations. Analyzing situations provides us with the context for a task. Studying incidents in detail over time can give us a broader view of the tasks and circumstances involved in using firearms for personal protection. This book had the input of an in-depth analysis of a database of over 5,000 Defensive Gun Uses (DGU) by Armed Citizens. From that analysis, the tasks involved in DGU were broken out along with the context in which the tasks were applied to a situation. Due to significant differences in Mission and Circumstances (METT-TC for Army veterans) between Armed Citizens and Law Enforcement Officers, on-duty law enforcement incidents were not included in the analysis. A few well documented off-duty incidents that paralleled incidents involving Armed Citizens were included

Another aspect of Advanced Practice is that some very common tasks in personal protection either physically cannot be practiced at indoor ranges or outdoor gun clubs, either due to rules or feasibility. Practicing drawing from the holster is the most obvious, because this is prohibited at most indoor ranges.

A less obvious personal protection task is shooting with innocent people downrange or in the midst of innocent people. This situation occurs much more frequently in real life than most gunowners realize. Think of how many times gunowners speak of ‘protecting their family.’ This statement implies that the family may be present during a Defensive Gun Use. However, the family members are often in between the criminal and the gunowner.

While it’s currently fashionable to talk about keeping a gun on one’s person at home, this isn’t the reality for most people. Among those who have Licenses To Carry, actual on-body carry is still rare. More likely, the gun is kept in some (hopefully secure) place of storage, either at home or in a vehicle. At home, this reality creates two implied tasks for personal protection; 1) access the pistol from a place of storage and 2) move safely from place to place with a loaded firearm. Since many people are uncomfortable with having a round in the chamber of an autoloading pistol, yet another implied task is possibly, 3) chamber a round and render the pistol safe for movement.

Note that in this book, the term ‘personal protection’ is used in place of ‘self-defense.’ The reason for this term substitution is that the person being protected is often not ourselves but rather other innocent parties. As an example, Armed Citizens often refer to ‘protecting their families’. We can refer to this relationship as The Myth of the Lone Gunman, which easily distorts the apparent relevance of both tasks and standards. This fact introduces a higher level of complexity into both the psychology and the tactics of the encounter, even when the technical marksmanship problem is the same as in a self-defense (Lone Gunman) situation.