Archive for the ‘target’ Category

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Gun ammunition is not cheap, but the non-practice of self-defense encourages terrible consequences within the foreseeable future.

If we own guns, we all must do some live firing gun practice. At home snap cap use, or dummy round practice, is important too. Yet, live fire does not hide our flaws when shooting, and we all have them.

Live fire also exposes our deficiencies in gun safety, the handling of firearms and the proper cleaning of weapons. Even when our weapons jam, live fire will put our knowledge of tap, rack, reload, and if that doesn’t work: safety, lock, release, into action. The only way we can zero in our rifle sights for better shooting accuracy is with live firing.

An important truth to live firing is that it is better to go alone, then join a group of unknown shooters, even if the live fire outing was the idea of a friend of a friend. Doing live fire with annoying ‘gun dudes,’ and a lot of them are out there, can make a fun day of shooting into an experience of pure suffering.

You are still shooting live rounds – which can destroy human life within seconds. Do not risk your personal safety, nor your personal freedom, by visiting a live fire range with other unknown shooters. Even good friendships can strain when going out for a day of live fire shooting.

One time in the distant past, I remember going out live fire shooting in the desert with a bunch of guys who I did not know beforehand. While it was my turn to fire, a good shooter commented to me on my lack of hitting the target, and he showed me some good gun handling pointers, which made my accuracy a lot better.

Live fire shooting at the range is necessary for becoming a better marksman. It is expensive, loud and messy, but all shooters must practice at the range. The well-practiced range shooter will also know how to deal with gun jams, misfires, using good ammunition versus the cheap crap loads, and how to parlay cover tactics when firing shots at the enemy. Live firing is also the ideal spot to test out newly purchased rifles and pistols.

Live firing is basically a solo practice in order to improve accuracy and gun handling. The range should not become a social event however, nor should any alcohol or drug use enter into the activities.

Live fire shooting must adhere to the strictest practices within gun safety protocols.

Before driving to the range, the shooter needs to purchase lots of ammunition for the weapons. Regular ammunition loads are sufficient. Shooters should avoid unknown ammunition or bullets recently reloaded from untrusted shooters. Reloaded rounds work well when offered from proven experts who use reloading procedures, or when purchased from experienced gunsmiths.

The shooter must possess both ear plugs and ear headphones. Another time I went shooting, I remember having to cover my ears every time this guy shot his 308. I was only wearing cheap ear plugs.

The other required safety equipment includes safety glasses, and if it is a very sunny day, sun glasses. All shooters must wear hats, (baseball caps are good), for when the bullet brass or steel kicks back to the head – which it always does.

When at the shooting bays, shooters always point their weapons’ barrels down range, or when not shooting, the weapon barrels lie either facing up or down on the rifle racks. Remember, all guns are loaded.

The most important safety procedure at the range is never firing until every person at the bay says it is OK. Before live firing, each shooter has to make sure that the others are also shooting their weapons. Once a shooter signals to the other range people that he needs to post, check or remove a target, then all the other shooters must stop shooting and remove their weapons facing down range.

Shooters should also remember that firing hundreds of rounds of ammunition can lead to overheating of the barrel and the chamber bore. It is important to rest one rifle or pistol after shooting many rounds, and then practice with other weapons. Most shooters bring at least the majority of their weapons to the range in order to practice as much as possible.

Marksmen can also practice ducking for cover and then shooting, moving and shooting, and shooting from the hip, kneeling, or standing, or even lying in the prone shooter position. All of these tactics make for better gun handling. Regular practice and good effort work. The most important part is actually getting to the place for gun shooting. Whether it is target practice, the indoor pistol range, or just plinking in the desert destroying old televisions, practicing increases gun skill.

After live fire shooting, the gun practitioners need to take a shower, wash their clothes and clean their firearms. One of the negatives of live firing is the amount of lead residues on the clothes, body and hair, after all of the gunpowder found inside the rounds.

Some shooters like to clean their weapons while on the range right after shooting. I do not like this method because disassembly and reassembly of weapons can turn into a messy assignment. What if that small pin of my rifle falls into the sand or dust? What if I try to remove a gun piece and there is still a round in the chamber, or I had forgotten to remove the magazine? I do not want to risk any negligent discharges at the gun range.

Live fire range shooting represents the finality of practice transformed into the role of action. Every time we live fire our weapons, they become more familiar and more personal to our hands, bodies and minds. Eventually, our weapons will become extensions of our arms, hand, eyes – and our minds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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snap-capssnapcapshotgun snap capDry-Fire-Snap-Capsdry fire practieproper handling of weapon at home

Reaching goals and finishing the work that we had originally organized for ourselves are all marvelous accomplishments. But regular practice matters too, and even when it seems to fall into redundancy and repetitive boredom. The art of regular practice also brings its future rewards and adds a nice structure to our lives.

Within the martial arts of guns, one great practice represents the use of snap caps. They are hard polymer plastic, bullet lookalikes, and they are often of burgundy red color. Gun stores usually sell them in all pistol, shotgun and rifle gauges: from .22 rounds to .45 rounds, from 10 gauge to 30 gauge, and from .17 rounds to .308 rounds.

In the Wild West Days of the States, about a hundred and forty years ago, cowboys, farmers, ranchers, soldiers, warriors, outlaws, bandidos, circus performers, cooks, miners, sheriffs, posses, and all sorts of other types, regularly practiced their dry firing techniques in order to become proficient shooters. They practiced their stances, draw, reach, deholstering, aim, sights, breath, trigger squeeze and holstering their weapons. They didn’t have snap caps in those days, so they had to dry fire without live ammo, or they used live ammo out in the desert, which could get expensive.

The problem with dry firing weapons like the Colt Six Gun Shooter and the Winchester Lever Action Repeating Rifle was that dry firing eventually dulled the firing pin and the trigger mechanism. The hard metal on metal hits, and without any live ammo to give some type of cushion, weakened the weapons’ performance. Imagine going into real combat with some real live ammo – and not having your weapon work properly. This was one of the real and terrible fears of gunslingers back in those days.

Live firing with snap caps is a safe and effective technique for acquiring the martial arts of firearm use.

Now we shooters are lucky in that snap caps allow us to practice in our homes without worrying about severe noise or destroying our weapons through dry firing without anything between the firing pin and the trigger mechanism or bolt-action area. The snap cap has the same shape of the real bullet, except it doesn’t explode and it is perfect for receiving the force of the firing mechanism.

These days, visiting the live fire gun range is expensive, unless you have access to someone’s land for shooting or live near a free use shooting range. But even the amount of ammo normally used in one day of shooting is not cheap. Many shooters go through hundreds of rounds, firing most of their weapons, such as rifles, shotguns and pistols.

The dry firing technique at home with snap caps allows the shooter the ability to practice in private and not have to spend a great deal of money during one day of live fire. Nothing beats the actual practice and skill building of live firing however. But snap caps allow that reinforcement of good skills, which can eventually help produce a good shooting day at the range.

At home, I often practice with snap caps in particular situations. For example, I will use snap caps for dealing with potential jams, malfunctions or stovepipes in my weapons, then practicing safety drills, clearing the jams, and return firing.

I use the snap caps for stance, holstering, drawing the weapons, sight alignment, aim, breathing, proper trigger squeezing and holstering my weapon once again. I will often practice shooting the weapon with one hand, and then with two hands. With my pistols, I like to switch back and forth between left and right hands. Sometimes, while I was live firing, I have heeled, anticipated or flinched when shooting my weapons. I use the dry firing of snap caps to help correct such bad shooting habits.

At home, I also practice imaginary self-defense scenarios, where I move out of cover and try shooting back at a target, or reaching for a weapon nearby when doing another task, such as Internet surfing, and then facing a serious threat, and immediately afterwards, returning quick succession of dry fire. Dry firing with snap caps is not that loud, except for the movement of bolt metal in the chamber. I still use ear plugs with my dry fire practice however.

Snap caps are very simple to use because the shooter simply loads the snap caps like normal live bullets into the chamber or magazine. The racking and ejecting of the snap caps is often the same as live firing with brass, steel and shotgun casings. Instead of a used casing flying out, the snap cap ejects completely.

Before going to your weapons for dry firing snap caps, use the safety protocols. The number one protocol is to check the weapon for any live cartridges in the chambers and in the magazines. I like to leave green zip ties in the chamber-bore area after doing a dry firing round.

The main safety concerns with snap caps refer to keeping the caps in a completely separate place from the live ammo. All live ammo should have its special place for storage in your private abode. Nothing could be worse than to have your snap caps lying around near the live ammo, and then mistakenly loading a live cartridge or cartridges with the snap caps.

The sound and damage of a live round going off in your home could ruin your life forever. These terrible negligent discharges do happen. Keep all snap caps in a particular site for regular dry firing practice. Store the live ammo in a completely different area of your house.

The other safety concern is just getting finger tired, bored or lazy. After dry firing repeatedly, the mind can start to lose its awareness. This is the time to stop the snap cap practice and return to it for another day.

With the amount of money spent driving out to the range and going through lots of ammunition, the dry firing of snap caps allows gun owners to practice the martial arts of firearms within a place of residence.