The Enemy ( Why We CCW )

Originally Posted By BurnedOutLEO:



The Enemy


Some may object to me calling hold up men “the enemy”. You can call them whatever you like. I can assure you however they are as deadly an enemy as you will find anywhere but the battlefield. Even many soldiers probably lack the viciousness and utter disregard for life most hold up men possess.


No one wakes up in the morning one day and decides to become an armed robber. It is a gradual process that requires some experience and desensitizing. Before a man will pick up a gun and threaten to kill people who have done him no harm in order to get their usually meager possessions he has to get comfortable with some things.


He has to get used to seeing others as objects for him to exploit. He has to accept he may be killed while robbing. He has to accept the felony conviction for Robbery will haunt him all his life. He has to accept he may need to kill a completely innocent person to get away with his crime.


This is a process that starts with stealing candy at the corner store as a child. It progresses through bigger property crimes that may also involve violence. But one day G gets tired of selling his stolen property for nothing and decides it would be better to steal cash. Cut out all that tiresome sales stuff.



Keep in mind many petty thieves, auto burglars, residential and commercial burglars, paper thieves, and hustlers will get to that point and decide not to become armed robbers. Most will. It is a special group of outliers who decide threatening to kill people for a few dollars is the way to go.


Once a man starts armed robbing he has crossed a line most won’t. Don’t forget that when you are looking these bastards in the eye. Their decision to kill you is already made. Your life means nothing to him. Only his does. His sole motivation for not killing you is he doesn’t want a murder case. He has already accepted he may pick one up though.


We hunt hold up men around the clock once they are identified. We send teams of fire breathing fence jumper/door kickers to find them. We will bring their mother to the office and convince her she is going to jail if we don’t have Junior in our office in an hour. We have her call her son crying hysterically for him to turn himself in before she is arrested and held without bond as a material witness and her home seized for harboring him. Most of the time they won’t. Fuck their own momma.


We will hit all Juniors friends and family’s houses. We make it so no one will harbor him. He is so hot no one will let him in their house or even talk on the phone with him. We put money on him so he knows he is right to be betrayed and set up. We do this because of one thing.


That thing is they WILL kill someone if they keep robbing. That is why the city is willing to pay all the overtime. They don’t want the murders. Think about that when you see Junior coming. The more robberies he does the closer he is to killing someone. Maybe you.


The guys who hit you on the street are gang members. They are Gangster Disciples, Vice Lords, Crips, Sureonos, many others. They do not see themselves as part of society. The street is all they know. They don’t expect to live long or stay out of prison. They take a delight in your fear and suffering. They are warped individuals for the most part. They can be extremely dangerous.


One time we were locking up a hold up man and having a conversation about how they target their victims. I was saying they pick easy ones, another guy was saying they preferred easy ones but would take anybody.


I pointed out a uniform Officer there was an NFL size guy to that hold up man. Frankly the dude was a monster. I asked hold up man if he would rob him. He said “If I needed the money”.

What will the M4 Do At 1,000 Yards?

A few weeks ago I took a standard Colt A2 rifle with government  20 inch profile barrel with iron sights and  a mix of issue and match ammo out to 1,000 yards to see show what it would do.   This time, I  did the same thing again with a M4. Technically , it s a M4A1 upper made by Colt with the heavier SOCOM profile barrel 14.5 inches long.   Everything about the carbine other then the  semi auto  only FCG is issue.  I used iron sights again in keeping with my theme of  marksmanship skill with a rifle and basic knowledge everyone should have.  I did however, also take a carbine with a Aimpoint T-1 on it for long range use. More on that later.


Because the weeds and grass has grown so high I was not able to lie prone with the carbine. Add to that I had no real way to mount a sling in the proper position for traditional shooting with a sling though I doubt anyone would care enough to hold it against me.  Since the carbine sight radius is shorter then the rifle and not being able to use a sling to steady the carbine, I used sand bags and shot from the bed and over the roof of my Dad’s truck.  This got me up high enough to see over the grass and better spot my shots while confirming zero and getting ready for my  shots “on the record”.


On request, I brought with me the 55 grain ball  M193 ammo to test. Facebook readers posted that they wanted to know what it would do being they considered it the most common round in use with the majority of AR15 users.  The ammo used was M193 lake city.  I also brought Lake city M855 62 grain ammo from the same lot as the test done with the 20 inch rifle and of course the MK 262  77 grain OTM ammo I handload to mimic the Black Hills load.

The day was just about perfect. The tempo was just over 80 degree with little humidity. The wind did blow from right to left as it always does on top of the mountain , but was only about 3-5 MPH.  The problem was the clouds.  Few people know that at long range the position of the sun and how much shade is over the target has a huge impact on your zero and POI.  The light on target from clouds and the sun as it moves through the sky is a real PITA.  Not only do the clouds move fast, but while stopping to let the barrel cool or taking a drink will be enough time for the light to change on you after you had just got everything set up.   I had to a hard time getting settles do to rapid cloud movement casting shade on target.


In the picture above you can see the shadow of passing clouds moving down range.  No, I did not attend the University of South Vietnam School of Warfare, that would be Dad.

I set the steel gong up to conform zero and shot on it to fine tune my zero, then moved onto the paper.  This time I used the cardboard competition targets instead of the black military target.


I shot the 55 grain M193 first because I know a lot of people wanted to know what it would do.  To give it all the chance I could, I started it off with a cleaner cool barrel and while my eye sight was still fresh and not strained.  I got on the steel after a hit.  I fired 30 rounds at the target and was able to make to hits on paper.


Both holes where slightly out of round showing the lack of stability due to lack of velocity among other things. They did not keyhole exactly and I was surprised they cut a clean hole. I did not expect to get on target at all with a 14.5 inch carbine barrel. It did take a lot of adjustment on the front sight and rear to get them that far. Its not even practical so I am not going to bother with the fine details on it.   I feel shooting the 55 grain this far really is a waste of time.  I was very lucky to get these two hits on paper and while I would not want hit by the round at that distance, its pointless.  Unlike the M855.

The M855 and its ability surprised me once again.  For a much maligned round, it continues to surprises me.  Despite what it did in the rifle, I did not even guess I would get out of it what I got this time.   After my zeroing procedure on the steel gong, I lined up on the paper and fired off 20 rounds.


The wind and lack of velocity of a full length rifle carried the shots to the left side of the target.  But man did it group well!!  If I had been able to call the wind better, I think I could have gotten almost 90 percent into the center of the target!  I have said before the M4 is the more accurate of the M16 series and this a good example.  The heavier SOCOM barrel helps as well. I chose it because of the shorter stiffer and heavier barrel. this keep the barrel from shifting POI from heat and helped with vibration. The SOCOM barrel is a choice for a lot of people using suppressors to keep their zero from shifting from having the can on and taking it off.  It benefited me for the same reasons.   The bullets again did not cut a perfect hole, but it was very slight. The  slightly better profile of the bullet helped the SS109 projectile over the older M193.    To say I was shocked to not only have gotten on target at 1,000 yards with the carbine, but to out perform the rifle was surreal.  But, It is important to remember this time I had multiple sandbags and the trigger was a SSA trigger of 3 pounds.  It is not issue like the rifle, but the carbine is such a challenge I wanted to give my self all the help I could to keep from firing 500 rounds and not having anything to show for it.


As expected the MK 262 was the best performer. Not only did the rounds end up better centered, thanks to my getting a better handle on it and the obvious advantage of the match round , but they hit higher up into the targets “chest.”  At this point the clouds had stopped giving shade/sun shade/sun but the wind had almost died down.  I fired 25 rounds at the target after my zero confirmation on the steel.  As good as it did I can not decided if it really did much better then the M855 as crazy as that seems. but I fired more rounds at the target then I did the M855. They seem more centered, but the conditions became almost perfect and I had taken a long break before shooting. It still turned out great and the holes cut a prefect round circle. The 77 grain sierra bullet was made for this kind of thing so its not a huge surprise. It ability to retain velocity and energy while staving off the wind better showed on paper.  The load I used this time was significantly hotter then last time.  I used  Lake City primed cases with military crimped primers as the brass. I pulled the bullets and tossed it in the garbage with the powder and swapped it for the 77 and a load of Varget. My own version of “mexican match.”  The crimped primer and mil brass gave me a little more wiggle room to really crank it up.  Use caution if you try the same method. The ammo was made for another project I was doing years ago and it was made for longer range shooting but to be safe in a semi auto.  Using fresh commercial brass resulted in popped primers but it was do able in military primed brass and the bullets seated out slightly longer but still deep enough to feed through a USGI Colt 20 round magazine.  That helped the better grouping this time but the quality of the Colt SOCOM barrel is superb.  I have never seen a bad Colt barrel but this one stands head and shoulders above a lot of the others I have used. I would love to know what it would do while free floated.  And of course the SSA trigger was a huge help.

Cardiovascular Structures


Lastly I decided to take a 6940 with a T-1 Aimpoint and shoot it with M855. A lot of people are always asking us how far can they shoot with just a red dot.  And of course, a lot of the internet will tell you a M4 or carbine in general is a 50 yard gun, or a 200 meter gun and all the crap we all hear over and over and over.   It’s not.  Of course a lot of  people get too tied up in the idea of fragmentation range and base the guns effectiveness on that.  I often wonder why no one tells them we are not in the military and are therefore not restricted to using ball ammo.


I shot the T-1 to 800 yards.  I did this at 800 instead of 1,000 for a few different reasons.  The big one is  I have no idea what the holdover would be at that range. I was not going to change the zero on my social gun just to find out.  I am used to working with irons sights and changing them around for long ranges but I am not going to fool around with a red dot at that range.  the idea with the RDS is you use a specific type of zero you feel is most effective then know your hold over and under for the rest.  Shooting the T1 that far is just not practical because I can not see anyone wanting to zero their red dot for 800 or even 700. And no one is likely to use it like a sniper optic, zeroing it in for a long range shot.  This was another demonstration just to show what can be done with tools many say are way more limited then they really are.    After conforming my hold over on a steel gong, I moved over and shot the paper.  Performance was better as expected since this was 800 yards instead of 1K and I was using a 16 inch barrel. This gave a hair more velocity ( and I do mean a hair. In fact I almost didn’t mention it since so many people think it makes that much difference) and the barrel is  free floated. The lower also has a SSA trigger. This was also shot form sand bags in the elevated position.


Shooting to 500 to 600 yards is not a difficult task wit ha RDS. The magnifier is not a must have to do this either.  You are not sniping, you are just trying to hit a man sized target or close enough to the target to scare it or whatever  you need to do.  That is pretty good for a 1x red dot.  What zero you choose for your red dot makes a huge difference with what you can achieve with it.  Below is a link to Travis Haley who made and  excellent video on the different zeros and their trajectories and ranges.  I highly suggest everyone watch it if you are not familiar with the different zeros. It may make you re think the zero  you have been using for years.

Like the article o shooting the standard A2 at 1,000 yards, I hope this will be as informative and help people understand what the basic carbine will do and what a person can achieve when they have a good handle on proper marksmanship fundamentals.  The M4 is not a 50 yard or 200 yard guns as is often said.  the M4 is a very accurate weapon and can be used to good effect even at ranges that truly are beyond the practical range of most of its users. I don’t know if practicing these skills are use full or if practicable for everyone, But I think it is a confidence builder if nothing else. See what your carbine can do, even if you can’t exactly do it, still give people confidence in their weapon.   I can not advise everyone to go  out and practice this stuff because it is infinitely better to use ammo and training time for training set more in reality. But, if you do have the time and ammo and range to give it a try, it will help you refine your pure marksmanship skills and it is a heck of a confidence builder. If you can master longer range shooting, you should feel a lot better about your skill at shorter ranges if you ever need to take a precise shot.

If you decide to try it, don’t get too frustrated if it  takes a while. I had near perfect conditions for this test and trying to repeat some of it the next day for another friend led to me not making  even 5 percent of the hits I made the day before.  Though  you can not be lucky unless you do everything right, luck does help and conditions need to be just right if you really want to see the kind of performance seen above.  Years of shooting long range and great gear sometimes  can not make up for nature and your own body if it all does not come together to cooperate.

Corroded Ammo

corroded ammo


It is not a good idea to shoot corroded ammo.  When brass or steel cased ammo starts to corrode, it weakens the case.  A couple of the rounds from this batch that were fired formed major cracks and splits.  Continued firing of cases that are splitting can damage your firearms chamber.