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A.J. Holst

review One Day Rifle Class with Randy Harris

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May the Fourth was great, today is definitely Revenge of the Fifth, I'm a wee bit sore from all the frivolities of yesterday.

Best part - we had a first time attendee, both with Randy and the Group as well as his first class with an instructor. 

His biggest concern going in, anxiety from the fear of the unknown. He claimed at the end class, he felt welcome and very comfortable with us and is planning on attending future classes.

Being a rifle class, we were shooting at 50 - 100 yards, on 1/3 IDPA steel targets.

Changes the perspective to 150 - 300, or as Randy told me, "that may be your actual target size at 50-100 if the BG is using cover / concealment.

7 ARs represented, no two alike, and one Mini-14.

I was very please with my SW MP Sport 2. Upgrades include a Magpul grip, Burris FastFire3 with mount, and $3.99 1" Allen sling. The budget sling worked fine, but a heavier duty 1 1/2" sling would be a good investment.

Started with dry fire and manipulations from standing, kneeling, and prone.

Valuable for me being left handed and  low time with the AR. I think I want to add an ambi charging handle.

Worked totally from pockets, specifically 5.11 pants.

The cargo pocket can hold 2 mags and I can access pretty easily. They are not secured as Velcro can't be fastened. I didn't have one fall out from changing my up / kneel / prone position or moving to and fro between shooting stations.

The back slash pocket makes it easy (for me) to stow mags and re-access if partially depleted and I just shot to slide lock. 

Note to above, shooting 1 1/2  mags and needing to reload with your first mag in a civilian defensive rifle gun fight will get you on the national news and probably into the encyclopedia.

Sights and Optics

I did shoot a few rounds from my M1 carbine, the front blade was about as wide as 1/3 IDPA targets at 50. Hit it a few times, so I feel pretty good about myself.

I have a 3 moa dot and it makes a difference for my aging eyes.

If I did more rifle shooting and routinely shot to 100+, I would probably invest in a some kind of dot / magnifier setup.

As it sits now, just the FF3 and mount represents $300 - $400 on a $499 rifle.

Breathing is hard.

Many of the afternoon drills included changing position and shooting stations, as quickly as you cared to go.

I put forth some effort and got my out of shape hamster running on his wheel.

Here's what happened to me when I was "ready" to shoot after I got into stable platform - that little dot was moving in time with the hamster.

Deep breath and exhale, and again, and again and...what are you waiting for, Alice?

Very eye opening, if I must take that long shot, what's around and beyond my target?

I do need to work on my standing form and best placement of my support arm and hand.

A 30 round AR mag can hold 31, just in case you lose count when topping off. 

Great way to carry an extra bullet, but they don't function too well.

Best practice, count and load 27 or 28.

Slinging my rifle to transition to pistol.

Very comfortable flipping the sling over my head and allowing the rifle to drop down my back. Once I was confident with the action and where the rifle ended up, I was good to go.

For this class, when I was shooting, the rifle was not attached to my body via sling. Gave me the ability to switch rifle to right side and shoot one handed. Not optimal. Drop it on the ground (I did) better, two handed pistol grip, but less than optimal, do I really want to "leave" my rifle anywhere?

This was a good class for me, with the nature of the targets, there was less range valet'ing and more opportunities for me to shoot.  I learned how to run this rifle and what my current skill level is.

Edited by A.J. Holst
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Next class I will most like have knee and elbow pads.

Edited by A.J. Holst

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