|On Monday, June 22nd, Senate Bill 67 and House Bill 91 went into effect.
As previously reported, SB 67, introduced by Senator C.B. Embry (R-6), allows the citizens of Kentucky more options for meeting the training requirement when applying for a Concealed Deadly Weapons License. Courses offered by the NRA and other national organizations may now be used, streamlining the time and expense required in obtaining a CDWL.
House Bill 91, introduced by Representative James Kay (D-56), clarifies Kentucky’s charitable gaming statutes, allowing nonprofits such as the Friends of the NRA to host more events.
Thank you to everyone who contacted your elected officials in support of these measures.
This post was originally written by Hognose, from Weaponsman.com . He kindly gave me permission to re-post it here as a guest post and we are always thrilled to share his work. You can read more of the websites always excellent and always entertaining and informative posts by going to this link.
Indeed it is the best website not out own.
Larry Vickers is thinking about safety:
Hat tip Miguel at Gun Free Zone, who wonders if one of the mishaps Larry’s writing about is this one. You can click the link if you like (and it’s a good tale of real-world first aid), but for most of you, the illustration will remind you what can go wrong with appendix carry.
That cat was danger close to living to collect the usually posthumous Darwin Award, but apparently the projectile did not connect with anything vital in his junk. Good luck, though, explaining that scar to dates. (“Go ahead and kiss it. It’s just a chancre!” probably won’t fly).
Instructor (and aidman) Stan Lee’s conclusions:
Briefing of the four firearms safety rules is of course a given, after that the first aid/gun shot wound treatment and medical evacuation plan should be thoroughly briefed as if an emergency incident had already happened to you.
He then runs through an emergency kit and emergency plan. It’s a good idea, for reasons we’ll cover in half a moment.
Someone should be able to brief all of the above in detail. That someone should be with the party from the beginning to the end. I think it’s acceptable to have the GSW kit centralized but extra credit points for wearing it.
Stan learned his first aid in the Navy. All the services teach much better and more effective first aid than they did when old dinosaurs like Tom Kratman and I went in, and even better than my old unit had on our first Afghan tour. Didn’t happen to our battalion, but in and around our time, other SF units lost guys because they exsanguinated, or developed tension pneumothorax, and the non-medics on site weren’t skilled enough to treat them. (Well, that, and medevac was weak until 2004 or so — too few frames and crews, and it’s a big country). That would never happen now; even support units get pretty decent combat life saver training.
Still, it’s a lot better to use your superior weapons handling skills so as not to have to demonstrate your superior first aid skills.
Stan makes another point (and another reason to Read The Whole Thing™ on Miguel’s site) in that simply briefing safety rules and plans at the start of a class is a Real Good Thing. In aviation, we found that when aircrews began briefing an instrument approach procedure-by-procedure, the number of errors (and mishaps) declined. In airborne operations, we found that when airborne units started doing a formal, stylized prejump briefing that everybody (especially devil-may-care skydivers) laughs at, the number of errors (and jump injuries) declined. It’s great that an American paratroop officer can command his battalion, regiment or division from a wheelbarrow pushed by one of his privates, but he’d probably rather not go down in history for that.
IWB and particularly Appendix Carry holsters introduce risk factors that are not present in an old-fashioned outside-the-waistband holster. (We also think that schools’ focus on quick-draw engagements is usually misplaced). You can have an accident with any holster, but unless you’ve got a lot of experience, choose one that adds minimal risks.
As Larry notes, if you use a safetyless (“trigger safety”, “safe action”, anything that would have scared the horse out from under a 1909 cavalryman who had the grip safety added to the 1911) firearm you need to be extra careful about holstering and reholstering. Or, well, look at the picture.
Now, you can choose any firearm, and every one has its own risk factors. You can operate any handgun safely (we do not believe Larry has ever had an ND in God-knows how many Glock rounds), but you have to know it and its properties and operate it either with your mind on it 100%, or with skills drilled and drilled until you’re always, instinctively safe with it.
As the graphic we usually use with safety posts says, if you shoot yourself in a training class, “Your [sic] Doing It Wrong.” Like this fellow in the ‘burbs of Orlando, Florida:
23-year-old man accidentally shot himself during a gun safety class at a pawn shop, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
It happened at Instant Replay Pawn Shop and Shooting Range on Colonial Drive between Dean and Rouse roads, said Lt. Paul Hopkins.
The gun went off accidentally and the bullet grazed his leg, Hopkins said.
Amazing how this guns just “went off.” No wonder newspaper guys all want to ban guns, they think of them as malevolent presences, stalking training classes and firing ranges, bent on bringing their primordial evil to bear on their hapless bearers.
Of course, that’s all bosh and nonsense. They’re simply machines, slavishly obeying the laws of physics and the input human operators apply to their user interfaces. In all history, the gun that “went off accidentally” is rarer that a comet sighting. He should admit he “set it off accidentally.” He, too, is going to live.
He’ll probably never make that mistake again. But you know, we’re supposed to be able to learn from his mistake, rather than only learn from our own.
Last year with the release of Glock 42, Loose Rounds was one of the first to get out a completely stripped down look at it. We have had to wait a little while to get the new single stack 9mm G43, as it is probably the most awaited single stack 9mm in history. Now that we have it, let’s strip it all the way down and compare the parts.
The new G43 has several unique, redesigned, internal components that are very different from all other Glock’s. You can see it is a 2 pin design, like the old Gen2 Glock’s, with a Gen4 magazine release and stippling identical to the G42. I have completely stripped this G43 to give you an idea of what the new internal parts are. The Slide and Frame are obviously different between the two fireams ,but when completely stripping the G43, you will notice some of the parts are similar to the G42. In-fact some of the internal parts are the same as the G42, but not all. While I will not go into a complete tutorial on how to strip your Glock down, it is not extremely difficult and you can learn how to properly do it with some quality research.
When stripping the G43 completely down, pay close attention to the parts that are significantly different in their design and placement in the G43, compared to the traditional larger Glock Models. Also if you have a G42 make sure you are very familiar with what parts are compatible with the G43 and which ones are not. Below are several pictures of a completely stripped G43, the new internal parts and parts that are shared with the G42.
LOWER RECEIVER PARTS
The front Trigger Pin is slightly larger, as the frame is wider, and is marked differently in the G43. The G42 pin has two circle cuts where the Slide Stop Lever engages the pin. The rear Trigger Housing Pin, interestingly, appears to be the same as the G42 pin.
The Locking Block appears to be the same as in the G42. They fit in both of the firearms.
Slide Stop Lever:
The Slide Stop Lever looks almost identical as in the G42, but you can see the spring tabs on the G43 Slide Stop are different. Also, The shape of the them is slightly different on the angle bars above the spring and they do have different part numbers. I found they worked in both firearms even though they have differences. I also have a G42 Vickers Slide Stop Lever and it works in both firearms but the Vickers is very loose in the G43. Im not sure I would bet my life on it working, so I would wait for the Vickers to come out in a G43 specific configuration.
Trigger Mechanism Housing w/ Ejector & Connector:
The Trigger Mechanism Housing (TMH) with Ejector and Connector, are identical to that of the G42. All the part numbers on the TMH and the Ejector are the same.
The Trigger Spring parts, from what I can tell they appear to be the same part as in the G42.
The Magazine Release is slightly larger in the G43. The frame is just a little wider and the Magazine Release has a different part number. These parts are not compatible between the two firearms.
The Tigger Bar is longer in the G43 and the part numbers are different. Unfortunately it is not compatible with the G42. I was hoping they would be the same as I absolutely hate Glock serrated triggers and I was hoping to swap it out to the G42 smooth trigger.
The Slide Lock is slightly larger in the G43. The frame is just a little wider and the Slide Lock has a different part number. The Slide Lock Spring appears to be the same part.
SLIDE UPPER PARTS
Barrel & Recoil Spring Assembly:
Obviously the Barrel and Recoil Spring are larger on the G43.
Slide Cover Plate:
The Slide Cover Plate is slightly larger on the G43. The plates will fit in each slide, but the G43 Plate is taller and does not match up with the inside of the slide on the G42, making reassembly of the slide and frame impossible.
Firing Pin Safety:
The Firing Pin Safety is completely different on the G43 vs G42, it is larger. Again it can only go in one way. The smaller notch on the left side of Firing Pin Safety faces the Firing Pin. The Firing Pin Safety Spring appears to be the same part.
Firing Pin Assembly:
The Firing Pin assembly is very interesting. Some parts are the same as the G42 and others are not. The Spring Cups and Firing Pin Spring appear to be identical to the G42. The Firing Pin and the Channel Liner are clearly larger.
Extractor Depressor Plunger:
The Extractor Depressor Plunger Rod is larger on the G43, but the Depressor Plunger Spring and the Spring Loaded Bearing appear to be identical as the G42s.
The Extractor is slightly larger and has a different part number on the G43. It is extremely hard to tell the size difference visually, but the G43 Extractor is wider than the G42s.
If you are not a Glock Armorer, Gunsmith or you are very unfamiliar with stripping your Glock down; I would not recommend any disassembly past regular field strip maintenance. Most people will have no need to break the firearm down to this level. A few of the G43 parts look identical or are the same parts in the G42, but several are also newly designed/beefed up for the larger 9mm G43. Hopefully this answered some of the questions out there about compatibility of parts with the G42 and G43.
For more information on how the parts fit in the single stack Glocks, see the link below.
Recently LaRue Tactical ran a sale on his 2 stage match trigger called the “Meticulously Built Trigger”. I bought one for during this sale for $125.
The MBT trigger came nicely packaged, it looks good and appears to be well made. The disconnector is riveted in place making the trigger a little easier to install than a Geissele SSA trigger.
I noticed the pins that came with the my MBT trigger were slightly longer then the average trigger/hammer pin. This caused them to stick out from the lower just slightly. In the picture below you can see the trigger pin sticking out from the receiver. The hammer pin is reversed and is sticking out similarly on the other side.
When I compared this trigger to the Geissele SSA, I found I preferred the SSA by a very small margin. I find the second stage to be just a touch stiffer than the SSA. When the MBT was new, it was noticeably stiffer and longer pull than the SSA, but after being greased and a few rounds fired it feels mostly similar to the SSA. The MBT used to be priced at $250, the SSA $220, at those prices I would always recommend the SSA over the MBT. At the sale price of $125, I don’t think the MBT can be beat. Now I see the MBT is priced at $200, which makes it better competition for the Geissele SSA.
The MBT appears to be a good trigger, but honestly I currently prefer the SSA a bit over it. The MBT is a very nice trigger and if you want one, get it. I am looking forward to seeing how it feels after it has more rounds on it and is better broken in.
A test and review of the SCAR-L by us has been long in coming. Over the past few days, we did finally got a chance to test and evaluate a SCAR. I shot it in some drills and did accuracy testing of it in my normal manner or off of a bench using sand bags.
The SCAR probably needs not introduction at this point in time. It was developed by FN to be what they hoped would be the replacement for the M4 carbine. Well. That did not happen, turns out it was not all that much better as claimed and the 5.56 guns issued out to certain elite units, were turned back in for M4s. That does not mean it is a bad gun or unreliable, just that it was not considered to really be much of an improvement over the excellent M4 family of weapons. Thought the 7.62 model has had more success.
So, to see for ourselves and those who may be thinking about getting one, lets take a look at it.
One of the bigger hyped things about the SCAR is the folding stock and the reciprocating charging handle. The gun came to me with the charging handle on the right side. I found this intolerable. If you are a lefty it would not be bad at all. But most of us are not. The charging handle was swapped to the left side where it was much better for handling. Then I found out that it was in the perfect place for me to tear the skin off my knuckles when charging the weapon if it had any optic mount on it. I had to be careful about this after a couple of times learning the slow way.
The Stock folding to the side does make it very compact, and unlike the AK type. it is also adjustable for length. I found it not to be bad at all. But not really all that great either. In the past there has been people reporting the stock to have some durability issues, but I had since heard that was over come on newer models. The stock also had a adjustable cheek rest I found marginally useful while I had it. Though I am sure it would be of benefit with some optics.
One thing to remember if you buy one, is that it will not take a military standard spec AR15 grip. So if you want to use something else you have to do some fitting with the grip or gun….
The optic that came with the gun is a Elcan Specter. I am not going to review it,since this is mainly about the gun. but it had a a max power of 4x and could switch to 1x and a red dot along with a few other gem jams. It was mounted with the ARMS throw levers that excelled at skinning my knuckles when using the charging handle on the left side.
I shot the SCAR at 100 yards using my usual method. First used 77 grain match ammo. You can see the results above. I have no explanation for the left side flyer. The gun’s barrel has a 1/7 inch twist. so it can stabilize the heavy rounds.
The above target it labeled both dots as 55gr Tactical Urban Rifle ammo, but that was a mistake on my part. I was talking to a friend while doing it and made a mistake. right side is 55gr. and the left is M855.
In rapid fire drills, I was surprised by it. The guns muzzle break is very effective. It is very flat and mild in recoil. Though it has plenty of unpleasant blast like any brake. After the first magazine I remarked it felt almost like a 22LR. The gun with that brake was calmer and flatter in recoil than any surefire brake I have used on a weapon of like size and barrel length and contour. Speaking of the barrel contour, it is thin. Thinner than I would ever want. Especially on a gun meant for heavy use. It got hot very fast and stayed hot. In addition to the pleasant recoil mitigating brake, this gun has a really good trigger. I have forgotten the make of the trigger but will get the info and update this with it as soon as I can. But the smooth match trigger and the muzzle device made the gun something easy to shoot. I can see why some use it in 3 gun type events. With the grip provided on the gun though. it was impossible for me to work the safety without changing my grip with the firing hand,
A few other points and opinions that may be unique to me. The rail section of the gun as is, is not enough. If you need more than a weapon light on the the stock gun, you are going to need a VFG. It is no wonder that companies came out with rail extenders for the weapon so fast. Another thing is, I was not a fan of the way it field strips as compared to the AR15. Also the front sight was not as intuitive as I would have preferred. Of course all this is probably due to me having much more time with AR15s and the hear set up for them. A warning to the “fit and finish ” and ” I want my guns to look good!” crowd. The color of the finish does not match. You will have about 3 different shades of FDE. so if you cry yourself to sleep at night because you have brass marks on your case deflectors, then you better not buy this one.
I enjoyed shooting the SCAR-L. But in my opinion, it is certainly not better than or more easy to use over an M4. I do not feel it to be more accurate than a good Ar15 either ( at least this model). I thought the stock left a lot to be desired. Reloading it was not much different than on a M4 thought the safety has a shorter arc to travel from safe to fire. Sad to say the grip used on the gun did not allow me to see for myself if it was really an advantage, I am doubtful it really is a huge advantage even if it seems like it would be. If you want to be different or want one for whatever reason and have the money and think you will love it. then you are probably right. but it is not for me.
If I had to make a recommendation on the SCAR weapons, I would suggest following the Army Rangers example and get the SCAR-H in 7.62 instead
One last detail. I used an ATLAS bipod on the gun over the 3 days time with the gun. I thought it had some nice features, and was certainly well made, but I do not consider it as handy as a decent Harris Bipod. I would not buy one with my own money. And if given one, I would not use it for anything that needed to be able to deploy it fast.
By Catherine Lindsay
At MAGS Indoor Shooting, Moriarty, NM, I teach a 6-hour Ladies Intro to Shooting class. This is a ladies-only class, for both novices and semi-experienced, teaching the basics: safety, basic parts of semi-auto/revolver & how they work, components of a round, loading magazines, proper grip & stance, and finding your sights. After the classroom time, we go to the range, where the ladies are able to shoot a .22 pistol, a .22 rifle, a .38 large-frame revolver, and any gun they have brought with them (usually a small-frame .38 revolver, a .380 semi-auto, or 9mm).
I use my Ruger SR1911 for classroom demonstration, mainly becuase it is large enough that the ladies can see all the moving parts from their seats and because it is my favorite! The “dummy” guns are based on full-size Glock & S & W M & P. Throughout the class, the ladies get to handle all the guns and they find that the full-size guns, both real & “dummy”, are more comfortable in their hands then the smaller guns they either own or have had suggested to them by SO’s/salepersons.
Once we get onto the range, many of the ladies want to try the 1911, as they have never shot one before. What some have told me: “Bigger/heavier=harder to shoot”, and “I was told I was too small/frail to handle a .45″.
Once the ladies are shown the proper grip/stance and how to operate the external safety, the first shot is almost always a big surprise to them, as they are used to a longer/heavier trigger. Each subsequent shot is controlled & the resultant holes can be coverd by the hand. They are also surprised by the controllable recoil, as they are used to a small revolver. I explain to them that the weight & size of a gun aids in recoil control. The ladies are so pumped by the fact that they CAN shoot a big gun!
I think the ladies leave my class more open-minded as to what they may choose to shoot/carry in the future.
We have a new Post from a new writer, Catherine Lindsay. She will be helping out with more articles from the ladies perspective.
For many ladies, the idea of shooting anything other than a small .38 revolver (the gun most likey to be pushed on them by well-meaning SO’s & counter guys) is daunting. But, after what I witnessed over the weekend, their minds can be changed.
I regularly help out with CCW qualifications. In NM, the CCW license is caliber-specific, meaning one can carry any caliber below what is qualified with. Most CCWer’s qualify with a .45 semi-auto & a .38/.357 revolver.
Many ladies come into class with the idea of qualifying ONLY with the .38 revolver, and maybe a 9mm semi-auto, thinking that anything larger is just not controllable. They mistakenly believe that they are too small/too frail to handle a larger caliber. With gently coaxing by the instructors, they are willing to try.
After teaching them some basic fundamentals of good shooting (grip, stance, sight alignment), they soon find that the weight & shorter/lighter trigger pull of the .45, particularly the 1911, is MUCH easier to manage than a revolver. They are surprised by the ease of recoil control (again with proper stance & grip), and often do better than their male counterparts, as they have come to the .45 with no bad habits to correct. Ladies also find, especially on the 1911, the thumb safety to be comforting, as they are very safety-conscience.
As to whether this experience will gear them towards carrying a .45 is unknown, but I think that getting over the “big caliber” hurdle will help them to keep a more open mind as to carry options.
Alright: here is my USPSA series on practical pistols in competition and home defense. Right now the series is just getting started with some local matches and a nearly box stock G17. As I move foreward, I will be competing with an open class gun which favors reliability over game enhancing parts and products. Keep an eye out for the G17 PDW gun as it evolves into a (hopefully) performance enhancing shooting iron with the ALG defense six second mount, custom kydex holster, and a few other accessories along the way.
Special thanks to http://www.looserounds.com for hosting the video / pistol series!
I have always liked the look of the pre series 70 commercial Colt 1911s just as much as the US military issue guns. There is no doubt that those older vintage guns have a huge amount of appeal. I have been looking for a near mint example of one for my own collection and uses for years but they are hard to come by at a price I am willing to pay.
So over the last year I got the idea to sort of create my own, at least in spirit. The idea was to take a modern plain Colt government model and slowly put it together to resemble a gun one might have walked into a store and bought before WW2.
The first thing I did was change out the main spring housing. Colt was kind enough to send me a MSH from their no discontinued line or re-issue 1918 WWI pistols. It is beautifully blued and highly polished with the lanyard loop. Looking at it shows the amount of polish and beautiful bluing that went into those early guns that went to the trenches in the Great War. Like all colt made military parts for the 1911, it dropped right in.
The next thing I wanted was the early original pattern of the safety lock. Unlike modern safeties, it has a smaller shelf for the thumb to hit. There is a reason it was made this way despite what some thing. It acts as a surface to tap against for when detail stripping some of the other pins and parts on the gun. You can read all about it at rangehot.com in the posts by John Travis on the 1911 and the genius and thought that went into it. That aside, it is correct for that time period. And I personally love the way they look. It is not a bit hard to hit to take the safety on and off. Once again Colt came to the rescue for me when I could not source one any where else. Midway sales them, but are currently out of stock, so if you want one keep checking back under their listing of colt parts.
The safety came off the line and had yet to be fitted for 1911s so I had to do about 30 seconds worth of careful filing and fitting. With that very little bit of work I got it fitted correctly and after function checking it. I shot it to make sure.
Lastly, I found a WW1 reproduction 7 round magazine to go with the gun. These original mags came with a lanyard loop as well. I have heard a variety of reasons why the mags had loops as well as the gun. One theory is that the US issue lanyards at the time meant for revolvers would not fit through the loop on the new automatic pistols so the asked for a loop on the mag in the meant time while they sorted it out. I am skeptical about that, but I have no idea. I think it is for cavalry being able to not lose the gun or the magazines during a reload while on horse back. In those days magazines would not have been looked as as nearly disposable items like they are now. So it seems reasonable to me to think that the cavalry wanted a way to retain the mag without having to use both hands while riding a horse on a full gallop.
Eventually I will replace the hammer with the original style and I may or may not go to a shorter trigger, I think it will be more of a hybrid of a 1911A1 and a 1911 than fully one or the other. Call it a 1911A0.5 for my purpose. Of course it will still have its colt SS forged barrel and bigger high profile government model sights that can actually be used just as effectively as any other modern sights. So maybe I need to think up a better name.
For now I am in love with this pistol. The new gun is a plain model as it comes, but it has a very attractive highly blued finish. Not as mirror like as a TALO model, but not flat black. It is basically the modern day government model from the past, Before it was the MK IV series 80 and before that the series 70. It is very close to the plain USGI 1911 of the past 100 years but with a bit of improvements for modern shooters. Example being a SS barrel, taller sights that are very easy to use but still can pass as GI sights for those who want that look, a slightly beveled mag well on the inside that helps with faster reloads but does not change the outward looks and a slightly enlarged ejection port. It is the last pistol in the lineage of the GI issue pistols and it is fully capable of going out of the box and right into a fight but with no frills. No ambi-s safety or forward slide serration. But thats OK. It is meant to be a throw back to an earlier gun but still be capable as if if you need it.
I carry this pistol often, for special events, I guess it is essentially a BBQ for me., though I shoot it a lot. I enjoy shooting it for pleasure and for formal target or bulls eye type marksmanship. I do train with it just to stay on top of using a 1911 without a ambi safety, but not like I do with my more modernized every day CCW 1911. My EDC is a Colt 1911XSE in stainless steel. I do love carrying this pistol that is my loving tribute to an earlier time.
Guest writer and friend to looseorunds Lila recently went to the Front site gun school and wrote an AAR detailing her time there.
I recently attended Front Sight’s 2 Day Defensive Handgun class and before I went, I searched all over the web for forum and blog posts in order to get prepared for my visit to Front Sight. The most recent detailed posts that I could find were a couple of years old, so I thought I would post my experience, with the best tips I have found. Front Sight is a place in the desert of Pahrump where you can receive training for a multitude of weapons such as handguns, rifles, machine guns, edged weapons, etc. When I realized I would be moving to Las Vegas, I bought a Diamond membership from a Calguns forum member for a really reasonable price (whereby taking one class would be worth the price of the membership). With a Diamond membership, you can take any class you want (that you qualify for), for your lifetime. You can also find discounted memberships from other gun enthusiast websites such as Nevadashooters and AR15. You might as well buy a membership rather than pay the full price of each course on the Frontsight web page.
I anticipated a grueling and hot weekend and it was – with temperatures as high as 102 in the afternoon. You will need to use strong sunscreen a couple of times at least, to make sure you don’t burn. Don’t worry if you forget to bring sunscreen – they provide several bottles of 50 rated UVA/UVB sunscreen for your use and encourage you to reapply as needed. I applied sunscreen at least 2-3 times each day and did not get sunburned.
Here is a list of the equipment/accessories that I brought:
H&K USP 9mm with 8 mags (bring high capacity if you can, to avoid having to reload as often)
Holster (non Blackhawk Serpa) – I used a Safariland 568 holster and it worked great
Uncle Mike’s Tactical Kydex Double Stack Double Magazine Case
Maxpedition Rollypolly folding dump pouch – medium sized – is really helpful to carry extra mags, ammo, gloves
ESS Ice eyeshield sunglasses
250 rounds of Remington UMC 9mm – I had a few left over, but if you only bring 200 you might be short
Bianchi velcro belt – got this from a law enforcement supply store. The velcro belt worked great – easy to remove and put back on and was very sturdy.
A baseball hat
Electronic ear muffs – Howard Leight R-01526 Impact Sport Earmuffs
HKS Speed Loader
Isotoner unlined driving gloves with leather palms
Hex tool to adjust my holster if necessary
Range bag to carry the gear
I read a lot about how you might need hiking boots, long pants, long sleeves, etc, but I also read that some people were fine with shorts, short sleeves and sandals. So, because of the weather, I decided to wear medium length shorts, short sleeve shirts and running shoes. This gear worked out fine for the 2 days. You do get hit by some brass, but it was not a big deal. There are lots of gravel to walk on, but I didn’t have any problems. Running shoes are lighter, have more air flow (mesh sides) and are more comfortable than hiking boots, but wear what you prefer.
I didn’t know how bad the drive would be and how exhausted I would be after each class, so I rented a cottage from Wine Ridge RV Resort at about $75/night with a Front Sight discount. The drive from the cottage to Front Sight (FS) was about 25 minutes. If you are coming from out-of-town, I would highly recommend staying here. The cottage is spacious, with a living room which had a recliner, small sofa and cable tv. There was a small dining table with 2 chairs, a kitchen with microwave, toaster, oven/stove, and good sized refrigerator. The bed was a queen size. The bathroom had a standup shower, but the water flow was not very adjustable, although adequate. I didn’t have time to sit on the attached porch but it looked nice. My friends rented an RV and were a couple doors away. They tried to book too late and they ran out of cottages. So, book early!
In regards to food and drink – I brought a rolling cooler each day with at least 4 bottles of water, a couple of juices and a soda. I brought snacks of dried nuts/fruit to keep me going throughout the day. I also brought my own lunch, which consisted of a sandwich, fruit, and chips. You can pre-order the boxed lunches for $13.95, or get food from the trailer. My friends ate the boxed lunches and thought they were good. They do provide big containers of water and cups for you to drink from, but I preferred to know where my filtered water came from.
The first day, we arrived at 6:10am and the line to the gate was not too long (see below). The gates opened at 6:30am and you need to have your gear on and i.d. ready. In the photo you can see people getting their gear out of their trunks. After the gate opens, they will point you to where you need to park – it is very organized. First thing you do is go to Sign-In; they will assign you to a range and then you go to another area and have your weapon and gear inspected. You need to be wearing your belt with holster, empty gun in the holster, your 2 mag holders, and a box of ammo. After that, you can find your seat in the classroom for the first half hour lecture.
The classroom lectures were done in a huge room that held probably 300-400 people and they get filled up, so try and get a seat early to choose your spot. The room was air conditioned so it was nice to get a break from the hot sun. For the 2 day course, you will have lectures on “Welcome, Signing of Liability Release, Dry Practice Release”, “Color Code of Mental Awareness and the Combat Mindset”, “Moral and Ethical Decisions Associated with the Use of Deadly Force”, and “Problems 2 and 3: Criminal and Civil Liability”.
After the half hour lecture, you then proceed to the range that you were assigned to. We were assigned to Range 6, which is fairly close by. Range 4 is where the bathroom facilities were, so that was convenient. On the blogs there were lots of mentions of port-a-potties but those were for the ranges that were further away. You don’t need to worry about those in the 2 day and 4 day defensive handgun classes.
From 8:30am – 12:30pm, you are on the range listening to lectures and practicing. Topics were the 5 steps of drawing a weapon, weaver stance, check, load, unload, fire, and using front sights. One thing I liked about the structure of the class was that you were paired up with someone for the entire 2 days. Your partner would always watch what you were doing and tell you if you were doing something wrong or if you forgot something. First, they had veterans of the class stand up on the line first. Then they had newcomers stand behind them. I was paired with a guy who has had a CCW since 1985 and I felt comfortable knowing that I was with someone who knew what they were doing.
From 12:30pm – 1:30pm was a lunch break. You did have the option of shooting some full-auto’s like the Uzi, Mini Uzi, Thompson MP-5 and M-16, where you just have to buy the ammo to participate.
From 1:30pm – 2:00pm there was a classroom lecture “Color Code of Mental Awareness and the Combat Mindset”
From 2:15pm – 5:00pm there were range activities. We covered being at the ready position, shooting, stepping to the side, clearing the area and going back to the ready position. Also reloading and shooting in controlled pairs, among other things. The people with Glocks had the easiest times because they didn’t have to worry about messing with the Safety (like on my USP). The guns got really hot in the afternoon due to the extreme heat and shooting, so I was glad I had my gloves with me. When it came time to pull the slide back with my hand to eject the round in the chamber, the slide was too hot to touch with my bare hands.
From 5:15pm – 6:00pm there was a classroom lecture “Moral and Ethical Decisions Associated with the Use of Deadly Force”
I brought my own folding chair because I like having arm rests and somewhere to put my drink. I asked and they didn’t mind if you want to bring your own chair. Otherwise, you will sit on a hard plastic armless folding chair for hours each day. There were about 40 people on each range. The second day there were less people as some decided not to come back for one reason or another. They missed out though, because we covered a lot the second day with much more shooting practice.
These two guys in the back were part of the 3 instructor team for our Range 6. The instructors were friendly but made sure everybody followed proper safety procedures.
On Day 2, the front gate opens at 7:15am. I didn’t arrive until about 7:35am but still made it on time to the range at 8:00am. (No need for sign-in or weapons check today.)
From 8:00am – 12:30pm – there will be range activities including dry practice, tactical reloads, clearing malfunctions, thoracic cavity and headshots, and shooting from a holster.
Lunch is 12:30pm – 1:30pm.
From 1:30pm – 2:15pm there is a classroom lecture “Problems 2 and 3, Criminal and Civil Liability”
From 2:25pm – 5:00pm there are more range activities with lots more shooting practice. At the end of the day, you will receive your Certificate of completion of the course.
I signed up to come back for the One Day CCW Course, which is the Tuesday following the 2 Day course held on Friday and Saturday. I decided to just drive in this time and from Las Vegas, it was only about a 45-55 min drive. The schedule was as follows:
7:15am – 7:45am Sign-In and Weapons Inspection
7:45am – 9:00am Range Activity: Shooting the Nevada CCW Qualification Course
For the CCW test, you are required to shoot 30 rounds from 3, 5 and 7 yards. I hit 3 outside of the thoracic cavity, but I did pass the CCW test.
9:00am – 10:30am Classroom Lecture on State Statutes covering Nevada, Utah and Florida
10:30am – 12:00pm Classroom Activities: Applications, fingerprint cards, and Nevada Written Test. It takes a while because they go over each of the 3 State’s application forms.
12:00pm – 1:00pm Lunch (but nobody took a lunch break, we just waited in line to get our test scored and the applications signed off)
I was out of there by 1pm but there were still about 10 people behind me. Tip – get in line while you’re finishing up your paperwork.
In summary, I was really glad that I finally made it out to Front Sight to take the classes. The only thing I regret was taking it in 100+ degree weather. I feel that I learned a lot from the classes that I would otherwise not have learned on my own or from friends. Everything they taught us was in a well structured manner, so that those with no experience at all, would feel comfortable learning each step of the way. There were many veteran shooters and law enforcement people attending, and they wouldn’t come back if they felt the instruction was not worth the trip. I personally feel that everybody who owns a handgun, should take at least the 2 day class, in order to be safe and know how to properly handle the weapon. All of the personnel at Front Sight were very friendly and helpful when you had questions. I definitely plan to go back for more classes.