Shooting possibilities

Sebastian has a post up about Tall Tales of High-Power Shooting which I started to comment on but got a little carried away and decided to make a post out of it.

I remember showing a 100 yard target to some co-workers. I put four groups on it. Each group was a little under one inch in size with most of the holes touching. The groups were arranged in a square about 10 inches on a side. One guy held it up to his chest, smiled, and said, “Pretty good. If we were on opposite ends of a football field I would be in trouble if you were shooting at me.” I raised an eyebrow and another co-worker laughed at him and explained, “At 100 yards he can put every shot into your eyeball.” The first guy went white and was skeptical and it took a minute or so of convincing that it was even possible.

After I had shot a little bit of pistol I heard about IPSC.

Within a year I was shooting better than what I would have thought was humanly possible when I first started. Really, now. Who could possibly be facing away from three humanoid targets ten yards away, hands in surrender position, then turn, draw, fire two rounds of each target, reload, then fire two more rounds on each target–all in under nine seconds? A turn, a draw, 12 shots, and a reload all in under nine seconds? It’s got to take at least one second for each shot making the total much more than that, right? Wrong. The stage is called El Presidente. The last time I did it in competition it took me 6.94 seconds (with one miss).

What is even more interesting to me is that I was shooting better than the best shooters in the world of 30 years prior. Equipment has improved some but mostly it’s the technique that has improved.

Even though I know, probably much better than most, all the math, physics, etc. involved and I’ve done it multiple times under different conditions I’m still amazed at putting the first round on target from 1000 yards away. When I point out objects that are 800 or 1000 yards away to people to aid explaining this they get this look on their face like I was talking about being abducted by aliens.

I am of the opinion all politicians should observe a 1000 yard match prior to taking office with a short refresher course on the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and a reminder that they are servants of the people. I’m mostly joking when I suggest that prior to running for a second term they have to have an apple shot off of their head by a random pick of volunteer constituents from 100 yards away. Third term it’s a plum. Fourth term it’s a grape. Fifth term, well… we just shoot the politician. I think it would remind them to not let their power go to their heads lest someone else let something go to their head.

4 thoughts on “Shooting possibilities

  1. Yeah, I occaisonally take co-workers, contractors, even sales guys (or gals) I work with frequently, out shooting.

    The first thing I show them is that I’ve been carrying two, or sometimes three guns the entire time we’ve been together, and they’d never noticed. That either makes them very nervous, or very interested, or both.

    Then we go through the safety thing very hard. I go through the basic manual of arms for each weapon we’re going to fire that day. Then we REPEAT the safety stuff again.

    The first thing I do actually at the line is some demonstration. Just some basic stuff about trigger control, sight picture etc… and I have them dryfire.

    We go through the normal .22 shooting, some slow fire revolver work etc… All the normal fun stuff for beginners, plus some time with my suppressed .22 pistol and rifle. They LOVE that.

    I also let them shoot whatever of the guns I’ve brought they want to; though I usually make them wait until they’ve shot a few of the smaller guns first, to get used to the recoil and muzzle flash. They always want to shoot the .357 and 10mm first, and I find if they do, they don’t want to shoot anymore… I wonder why that is…

    When they’ve shot themselves out, I like to do a little action shooting demo, just so they see what you can do with a little practice. I show them speed drills. Draw, mozambique at 7 yards, and back to the holster. Presidentes. Surrender drills. Double taps. A couple other things, depending on what we’ve brought out that day, where we are (desert, or organized range, rules of the range, how crowded it is) etc….

    I don’t get to practice it enough, and I’m by no means the fastest action shooter on the planet; but it still either tickles the crap out of, or scares the crap out of someone who doesn’t know what’s possible.

    I also like to show them some empty out drills with my backup gun. They’re always surprised you can fire such small guns so quickly, and accurately.

    Then I’ll pull out the hi-power and do my little featherfire SMG simulation. They always ask me how I got an automatic weapon. It’s just a little trigger trick, and anyone can do it with the right gun and a little practice. At least with an auto.

    I like to finish up with what I call the Miculek. I empty the 625 as fast as possible, speed reload and do it again. They LOVE that. A revolver popping like a machine gun always pleases.

    I tend not to talk about long range shooting until I’ve gone out with someone a few times, or I know they are a shooter outside of shooting with me.

    Unless they’re a shooter, when I show them 100, 300, and 600 yard groups, they tend to get nervous. I certainly don’t tell my co-workers I’m working on 1000 yard shooting until I know them very well.

    Even then though, within a year or so, everyone knew that I was a major league gun nut, crack shot etc… Me and three or four other guys that we all work with are well known around the group for it.

    Thing is, I know I’m a good shot; better than average, but I don’t practice enough… but the real hardcore guys are twice as fast, and twice as accurate as I am. After showing the folks what I can do, and explaining that… well then they get REALLY nervous.

  2. I agree, Joe, after doing some local IDPA competitions, I was surprised at what I could do.

    I started working on a drill, I don’t remember what to call it, but it was one Kim DuToit posted about way back when… basically, draw, fire five shots at a paper plate in five seconds, from concealed “go” to fifth shot. As you keep them all on the plate, start backing up… I’m out to about 15 yards now; still practicing.

    And I’m still in a mild state of amazement that I was able to hit little bitty boomers at about 625 yards, from prone, back in April… oh, and besides amazement, I’m pretty damn proud of that, too. And a lot more confident. Thanks for the opportunity!

  3. I’m not surprised people are surprised at your shooting prowess Joe (or Chris, especially with handguns). I found it very disconcerting that many of my co-workers flat out did not believe I shot some targets the way I said I did (and I am only and average shooter).

    Maybe they are just so gun hostile their ideology had to deny what they could see.

    On the other hand a few asked if I could teach them to shoot like that!

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