Tag Archives: firearm training

A Little Informal Training

This past weekend I hosted an informal carbine training course. It was just a few friends and of course the Crusader training team there. The spot we picked in imagethe being a great place to hold such course. While the shooting bays that we wanted were packed full by the time we got there that morning we ended up heading on the back side of the hill to spot the mentor needs a whole lot better. Now we know other people know about this spot because of old campfire rings and such but as far as shooting, it’s really a fairly vacant spot. Because of this we have dubbed it Crusader’s semi super secret training location.

A couple of them in attendance, a husband and wife IDPA team, were both new

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to AR-15 shooting as well as both having new Crusader AR-15′s. It was great to see fairly new shooters coming to a class so open to learning. They truly came as the empty vessels. Because of this we the course very basic and built on the skills they already had from IDPA. If there’s anything in instructor enjoys more at a course it’s having students that have a foundation to build from more also willing to take all the instruction they can get. It’s from students like these that you will always see the most improvement from. And that was absolutely the case here.

You know his voice from Politics and Guns Podcast

You know his voice from Politics and Guns Podcast

It’s also enjoyable to watch the students to come to the course already knowing a lot about their carbine and simply need some fine-tuning. We had a shooter that

worked the reset on the trigger very well and very quick but is grouping was more like a shotgun pattern to begin with. After covering a little about speed versus accuracy he really settled down into some nice groups. On a defensive rifle being fast is absolutely important, but if you’re so fast that

your hits are scattered than your running past your abilities. Fortunately, 15 minutes of instruction and you can solve that problem in most shooters.

One of our local IDPA greats.

One of our local IDPA greats.

This being an informal course

we took a lot more time than you would normally. We just took it easy and had fun with it. Even though this was in a hard-core class they really made some great improvements. We saw the perfectionist bull’s-eye shooter speed up and get some actual defensive speed. We also saw the one leaning towards “spray and pray” slow down and get some

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Carefully loading mags is our other IDPA shooter.

great defensive groups.

The real challenge came with our left-handed shooter. She did very well but had some obvious hardships to overcome shooting a right-handed weapon for the first time. That’s right she was there the course with her brand-new Crusader rifle. Naturally it ran as well-known as fast as she wanted to. The only malfunctions came from babying the bolt forward instead of letting the buffer spring do its job. Naturally about problems quickly solved.

It's time to rock...

It’s time to rock…

All in all I have to say this was a great day at the range. But then what day busting caps isn’t great? We got to watch good shooters become even better and we all had fun doing it. I even got to watch my daughter call out some stages. What better day could it have been?

A little instruction from the firing line.

A little instruction from the firing line.

Taken by my 9yr old. Not quite sure what she was going for in this shot but the kid has talent.

Taken by my 9yr old. Not quite sure what she was going for in this shot but the kid has talent.

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Filed under Because Gundoc Says so, Firearms, Training

Dry Fire Practice

Dry fire is an essential part of any practice routine. Now I say that with a disclaimer. Dry fire must be used in the correct context. This is not a training technique for adding accuracy, although accuracy will follow. Using this for anything other than what it’s meant for will result in not getting everything possible out of it.

Dry Fire is a confidence builder. Every time you dry fire you get a controlled test field where you can see how you handle the basics without the distraction of recoil. Sight picture, trigger control, grip, and even stance can all be practiced anywhere. Doing so will build confidence in the form of realizing that you had all the basics under control and therefore would have hit your target.

Snap caps are great for dry fire practice and other dry drills. Everyone should have a package of them for any pistol you intend to carry.

Snap caps are great for dry fire practice and other dry drills. Everyone should have a package of them for any pistol you intend to carry.

You will also notice what went wrong. You will see even a small jerk. You will notice if your finger is pushing or pulling on the trigger so you can know what position to keep your finger at. You will see everything you need to correct.

As an example, I used dry fire at this past years MAG-40. The range staff always runs through the shooting qualification before the students. I wanted to make sure I could perform adequately. Gaining the confidence I needed I actually improved my score from the year before.

Here’s a decent resource to help you with dry fire practice.

(SAFETY NOTE) Dry fire practice must happen in a controlled environment. For proper safety always keep your ammunition in a separate room.  Snap caps are always useful. As important as dry fire practice is…doing so safely is even more important. Safety first.

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Changes at Crusader

There is going to be some big unexpected changes around here. They aren’t changes I wanted to make but the time has come to face them.

With the loss of our Senior Trainor just over a month away we’ve had a lot of things to consider. What happens to the training program that he spearheaded? Does it die, here on the Wasatch front, or do we continue to carry the torch.

My decision came after a lot of thought. We still have our Concealed Carry instructor. We can build on that and work our way back into the other courses. In doing so we have the opprotunity to make a lot of improvements.

For starters we will expand on the Concealed Carry concepts. We will be adding three courses to do just that. By summer we will be able to move new and more experienced shooters through CCW courses into our new Defensive Mindset course. From there we’ll get them on the range for Basic CCW Concepts and into Advanced Concealed Carry. These are courses I’ve had on the back burner for a while now. It’s time to roll them out.

We’ll be re-adding our other courses as well. Though George is never truly leaving us (he will still have his promotional duties) I think we would do his memory a disservice to let the courses he spearheaded die out. He trained us, his staff, well. It’s time for us to get some practice in teaching and then bring it back to the public. We’ll be taking a close look at everything while we do. If there’s room for imporvement it will be made before it goes public.

So, while we’re all sadened at the loss of our Senior Trainer, his work will go on.

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Filed under Concealed Carry, Training

Test Fire

I’m heading out to test fire another batch of Sealed Mindset Signature Pistols today. I have to say that it’s a privilege to be building weapons for such a great training group. We’re honored to be working with their owner, a retired Navy SEAL, who we consider one of Americas Champions. If you haven’t checked out Sealed Mindset and you’re looking for world class training, these are the folks you want to get acquainted with.

Thanks for including us in your legend, Larry.

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Filed under Concealed Carry, Protection

Crusader Firearms Training

I know I’ve already posted about our upcoming course but it’s time for a double tap. Defensive Pistol, This Saturday 0900 hrs Buckskin Hills Range, Vernal Utah. This is shaping up to be a great course. Full but great. There are still a couple slots open so it’s first come first serve. This is our basic course for defending your self with a handgun. It is also the basis for all our pistol courses.

As always we’ll have our Senior Trainer George Hill at the helm. The man has more experience than I can keep track of. He’s always surprising me with, “oh yeah, I use to do that too…” and other such comments. He’s a fantastic trainer and at the range he is the boss no if’s and’s our butt’s. We are also joined by my good friend Zac Hill, another American hero in my book. He comes to us after a couple tours of duty in Iraq. He’s the quiet one of the group…you know what they say about the quiet one…the man can get the job done. Then as always there is myself.

Don’t forget it’s this Saturday (05/08/2010) (for you military types that’s 100508) 0900 hrs. The cost is $200. You’ll need 300 rounds of FMJ, holster, range gear, any food or hydration, and be prepared for anything mother nature throws at us. We train rain or shine, sun or cold. No really bring something for the cold this is eastern Utah we’re talking about here.

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Filed under Gear, Preparedness, Protection, Training

Gun Fighter Cast

Daniel Shaw  of the Gun Fighter Cast podcast show invited me to do my first interview for Crusader a few weeks back. Well today was the day. It was a good time with good company. We talked about all things Crusader and answered some listener email questions. I have to admit the Q&A was a blast. Check out the show and k…eep listening. Daniel also asked me back for more so I’ll be on as much as he can stand me talking guns, training, and everything else up his sleeve.

Listen to Gun Fighter Cast, it will be great so don’t miss out.

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Defensive Handgun

We are getting really excited about our handgun course on 9/26/09. It’s really going to be a fantastic class. If you’ve been thinking about taking a handgun class this is the one to take.

We have a theory about our training that most sneer at. You see, we want to bring you world class training that you can afford. There are a lot of classes out there that will get you a week of training, which is great, where you’ll expend about 1000 rounds, you’ll need hotel and meal considerations and they want you to spend another $1000 or so on the class.

Look our classes right now are an intense 1 day affair. Our lead instructor has worked tirelessly to give you the best principles from the latest training from everyone from the US Marine Corp to Blackwater (now Xe). These are the latest training principles used in modern combat situations world wide but the thing we aren’t going to do is gouge you in order to provide it. $150 is all you’ll be paying for this class. Training equal to places like Thunder Ranch or Front sight but at a price you can afford.

Sign up for a class today. If there is a class you want but isn’t on the schedule yet just send me a message. I’ll send you information on upcoming classes still on the planning board.

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Filed under Preparedness, Protection, Training

Warrior Mind Set

Mind set is the hardest point to teach some individuals. It’s something that must be used during practice or training sessions. You can’t expect it to be there when you need it if you never make it a part of your training.

It’s something I’ve seen other places as well. Take martial arts. You can tell the ones that are there for an exercise program and the ones there to learn to really defend themselves. You’ll be practicing something with a person with a smile on their face and going through the motions. Switch to a new partner and even though you know they aren’t going to intentionally harm you in class but they are serious and focused and when they throw something for you to block you think they’re out to take your head off. That’s the spirit you want to have when practicing ‘gun-fu’ as well.

During a course you typically don’t shoot life like targets. It’s pretty plain that they are paper but you have to go at it as if they were someone trying to harm you. That being said I like the way Mr. Farnam explains this subject in the terms of winners and losers.

13 Aug 09
 
Winners and Losers:
 
I have a copy of a painting, commissioned years ago by Las Vegas tycoon Steve Wynn, called “Winners and Losers.” It depicts a smokey old gambling hall filled with poker players. Some are obviously fearful and frustrated. Others are cheerful and confident. It is a masterpiece!
 
In our line of work, we could probably teach chimpanzees how to operate a pistol, or play poker for that matter, but they still wouldn’t have a clue with regard to how either activity properly fits into their lives.
 
Among our human students, we typically have “nice” people who are personally honest and generally successful in our civilization, but many still display what we call “loser-traits” which will predictably sabotage an otherwise sincere effort to master our Art.
 
Winners are unafraid! They spend their time finding a way to win, rather than looking for an excuse to lose. Winners fear neither victory nor failure.

Losers are deathly afraid of both!
 
Yes, losers are afraid! Fear ever haunts the base of their being and prevents them from ever walking upright, confidently, proudly.
 
Losers mumble! They don’t speak clearly, nor with conviction. They can’t even seem to speak in complete sentences, because their thought processes are confused and perverse. They are afraid of truth, afraid of reality in all forms. They doubt their ability to handle life, so they hide their faces from the light of day.
 
Losers are bitter and resentful! They are angry with everyone. They can’t handle correction. They savagely defend their every mistake, every blunder, every crime like a lioness her young! Their elaborate rationalizations are sadly comical.
 
Losers are afraid of growing up! They prefer to be “taken care of.” Accepting full, personal responsibility for anything is unthinkable.
 
Losers snivel, whine, and make excuses! They take personal responsibility for nothing, always blaming others and “bad luck” for every gloomy hand they’re dealt. 

Losers surround themselves with enablers and coddlers who never challenge them! Losers associate only with other losers!
 
Losers are chronically unproductive! They run their mouths continuously, but habitually shun productive work.
 
Losers know right from wrong, but conduct their lives as if they didn’t! They’re into “situation ethics,” offering up endless excuses for lying and other misdeeds.
 
Most of all, losers are ashamed, and should be! They cheerlessly watch themselves missing out on all the best life has to offer, but personal vanity and cowardice ever prevent them from sincerely repenting, and then boldly claiming their own magnificence.
 
As Instructors, these loser traits, some of which, to some degree, are displayed by nearly everyone, are our constant adversary.
 
Again, merely teaching a set of mechanical skills is just the beginning, and indeed, almost a side-show!
 
/John

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New Instructor

Larry Correia

Larry Correia

I just added a CCW instructor to our Cadre. Many of you know Mr. Larry Correia from the Monster Hunter Nation. He is a fantastic and knowledgeable firearm instructor and we’re proud to have him aboard. Between making a living and being a great fiction writer he has limited time but has offered what he can give us. We are also working with with him to teach our pistol courses.

Any way we’re glad to have Larry aboard and welcome to the legend.

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Filed under Firearms, Gear, Patriotism, Protection, Training