Inside, the sunlight streams through high windows. The employees are friendly. The 6,000-square-foot showroom is squeaky clean and equipped with video screens. There are no stuffed bears posed in the attack position, jaws agape. Every Monday, starting at 4PM, women don’t pay a dollar for their range time. In the back, you can have lunch at one of the high-top tables or pay to shoot holes in targets on any of the 19 lanes downstairs.
On the Presidential Lane, I shot an AR-15, a .22, a 9mm. Creighton explained each firearm carefully and coached me as I shot. The guns boomed; the smell of gun powder filled my nose.
“It’s like golf, only louder,” Creighton noted.
I like the Hansen range. It is, by far, the class act of the outdoor practical shooting clubs in the Ft. Myers/ Naples area. I need to shoot there more often, especially more 3 Gun. It’s also concealment-optional in the summer months, but I chose to shoot this match with my current carry gear, a CZ P07 in a Crossbreed, concealed by a untucked t-shirt. I let my gamer flag fly in USPSA, in IDPA, I’m more concerned about learning lessons I can apply to the real world.
As to the match, well, the good news is, I know what problems I need to work on. The bad news is, I’ve known what those problems are foe a while now, and I’m still unable to get past them.
The fact of the matter is, I suck at long shots with the P07. My Classifiers go great, right up until Stage Three when the wheels come FLYING off and I get stuff in Marksman yet again.
Evidence of this fact is to be found in Stages Two and Four of this video, where I go Down Six and an FTN on at least one target per stage, but on stage Three, I went Down Three.
The remedy? More dry-fire, and some range time specifically devoted to one-handed and long-range precision work with the P07. There’s a Classifier coming up in August, and it’d be good not to suck.
My Kel-Tec is getting repaired at the shop, so I have to wait to install all the new toys onto it.
I’m waiting on an ambi mag release and bolt catch from Troy so I can upgrade my competition AR to something that is truly ambidextrous (and then write a story about it for one of the biggest gunblogs out there).
My new CZ is still at CZ Custom, getting a new hammer, trigger and sights.
I do like the Taccom shotgun rig, though. I just need the time to go out and shoot a match with it.
I have all this new stuff, but I can’t play with it! So frustrating!
You can also just get lazy and let habit shoot for you. When you’re shooting from habit, you just don’t pay atten tion to your visual inputs. A good example is Triple Threat: you push the gun onto the first target and you see the sight drive onto that target and from that point on you may not see the sight again. I was burning out on that stage in practice one day seeing how fast I could shoot it, and I shot three or four runs in a row where I missed the second tar get every time. And that was from being lazy and just sling ing a shot to that target. Shooting a stage like that becomes such a habitual routine that you don’t really see anything; you just kind of point the gun in that direction and fire a shot.
And I experienced just that last month. Take a look look at this video. At first glance, it looks like a pretty smooth run, I even handle the glitch in my round count fairly well.
Except that all throughout that run, I didn’t look at my sights or call my shots, and so I ended up with a HORRIBLE score, including three Mikes and a no-shoot.
It’s been a long time since I shot a stage that poorly. I became complacent, and it came back to bite me in the assets. I learned absolutely NOTHING from that stage, except what not to do, and unfortunately, that’s a lesson I need to keep on learning.
Gunblogging is not dead. Not while I’m still here.
Five years into things, and what have I’ve learned?
I learned I’m a little bit different than most gunbloggers, and indeed most people in the industry. Despite my unnatural affection for everything made by Česká zbrojovka Uherský Brod, I really have no attachment to the guns themselves, and rarely write about “OMG! Look at this shiny new blaster that just came out!”. Guns are a means to an end for me, and that end is a safe, secure future for my family.
Period, full stop.
If anything, I identify more with the “Gun Culture 2.0” blog than I do with über-tactical crowd. This isn’t too shocking, as marketing is nothing but applied sociology.
It might just be the quasi-dead nature of the Naples demographic or the fact that Republicans here tend to be be more mainstream oriented than Tea party sympathizers, but I am seeing a LOT more interest in home defensive firearms and CCW guns than I am in AR-15’s.
Given that there are so many new firearms owners out there that are concerned about home invasion, when was the last time you saw an NRA Personal Protection In The Home or similar class that had people a) bring along their home handgun safe of choice to class and practice opening and drawing from said safe and b) had people draw out a layout of the home and plan a safe room response based on their unique home design?
Maybe a little more time on how to make a safe room and a little less time worrying about HSLD techniques like AIWB would pay off for today’s firearms trainers.
If we want guns to become part of our lifestyle, they need to be part of OUR lifestyle, not the lifestyle of a Delta SEAL Recon operator.
Now that I’ve had a few months to get used to living in urban Florida, I’ve made a changes to my go-bag and bug-in kit.
First off, I ditched the extra hydration bladder and added a machete. Water is NOT an issue here in swamps as it is in Arizona, but dense vegetation is an issue, however.
Secondly, after talking with co-workers who have lived here since childhood, when a hurricane hits, the electric power will be unavailable for upwards of a month. As our family currently lives in an apartment, our gear and planning need to adjust to that new reality.
Cooking-wise, I don’t have access to my gas grill, so instead I purchased a pair of Sterno stoves and a boatload of extra fuel. A generator is also out of the question, so I went with an inverter instead. The little four-banger in my Honda drinks gas in small sips and we don’t have any major electrical needs beyond our phones, so we should be good for weeks.
Food wise, we have a month’s worth of Wise Food Storage products. We were able to buy one “four week” package each month by skipping one fast food meal a week, and now we’re eating healthier and are set for emergency supplies for a week.
With regards to dealing with the cleanup, I don’t have space for a chainsaw, but I do have space for an axe and a shovel. Prepping isn’t about having all the cool toys, prepping is being able to ride out events with as little disruption as possible.
Oh, the joys of working at a gun range that has .22LR in-stock and gives it’s employees free range time.
Got into work early last week and put 50 rounds through my father-in-law’s K22.
I really need to keep my trigger jerk under control, and there is nothing like the long pull of a double action revolver to help you WAIT for the sight picture throughout the entire trigger press, rather than “See sight picture, hurry up, shoot gun, get trigger jerk.”
Also, I’m shooting high because I’m used to a center-mass hold, and the K22 is set up for a 6 o’clock hold. Once I remembered that (and got those flyers at 3 o’clock under control), things settled in quite nicely.
Life got a little busy Thursday and Friday, and it’ll be busy for a few more weeks. I can’t guarantee a post a day this week, but I’ve got my new CZ in my hands, so expect something on that at the minimum.
The fact of the matter is, it’s easier for me to write than it is to NOT write, so this blog will go on, if a little intermittently for the nonce.