Saturday, February 28, 2015

Try some drive-by dryfire practice...

A recent video posted online of the woman being kidnapped and robbed has generated a lot of discussion on the internet. Kathy Jackson over at the Cornered Cat has a great write up about that particular situation, but one question I have for those of us that carry a concealed firearm... are you ready to defend yourself while you're in your car?

Now realize a gun may not always be the only answer when you are threatened while seated in your vehicle. You may just want to drive away, make an evasive maneuver, or use your vehicle as a defensive weapon... but sometimes you need to draw your gun from concealment and stop the attacker or threat.

The gals and I happened to be blessed with our own shooting range here at home where we can actually practice drawing and shooting from concealment while we are in our vehicles.  Many of you may not have facilities that provide access for you and your vehicle to practice drawing and firing from concealment... so might I suggest you try some dry-fire practice while drawing from concealment while seated in your vehicle.

Have you ever tried drawing your gun from concealment while seated in your vehicle?  Have you tried drawing your gun from concealment while seated in your vehicle while wearing the typical heavier jackets and clothing many of us wear at this time of year? Appendix carry may be a lot easier to access and use with heavier clothing and jackets. The holster in the three-to-four-o'clock position might work fine or it might be pinned under your seatbelt or wedged between you and the center console or door - depending on whether you're right-handed or left-handed - in the popular "cockpit-style" design used in many cars, cross-overs, trucks, and SUVs these days.

Before trying some dryfire practice from your vehicle... ALWAYS make sure your gun and magazine are both unloaded... I always check and cycle the action at least three times to make sure... in fact, I don't even have any ammunition present in the area.  When you begin, think about the basics again.

Can you access and get a good grip on the gun with your carry rig, clothing, seat-belt, and obstacles in your vehicle while in the seated position? Can you readily reach your spare magazine or speedloader for a reload? Have you thought about unzipping your jacket or pre-positioning your clothing to draw your gun while seated in your vehicle? You may find your elbow hitting the seat-back when you try to reach back and draw your gun. Can you then draw the gun from the holster without getting caught on the seat-belt, seat, console, controls, or steering wheel?

Once you've drawn your gun from your holster, how do you get it into the firing position in the safest manner possible? I carry on my right side, so I draw and then bring the gun up and over the steering wheel to keep from muzzling my two femoral arteries which is what would happen if I crossed my lap with my muzzle pointed downward while getting into a firing position while seated in my vehicle.

As you begin to rotate your body and press out with a two-handed shooting stance while coming up on target, make sure you understand the constraints of your particular vehicle and how it may throw you off a bit in your shooting.  How much range and rotation of motion do you have while aiming and dryfiring from your seated position?

Practice drawing and dryfiring through the closed window simulating an attacker right up at your driver's door.  Practice drawing and dryfiring at an attacker with just your left-hand so you can still operate your vehicle with your right-hand.  Make sure if you are right-handed shooting out the left driver's door you don't muzzle your left hand or arm.  Practice drawing and dryfiring at an attacker approaching on your right, passenger side.  Practice drawing and dryfiring through your windshield at an attacker directly in front of you too.

Now don't forget to use a little common sense too... because doing dryfire practice while seated in your vehicle in the apartment parking lot or in the driveway in your neighborhood... might cause a bit of alarm. So, if you carry in your vehicle and haven't tried drawing from concealment while you're in your vehicle... maybe you should... Try some drive-by dryfire practice...

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Two are one and one is none...

I have often joked that the secret to a good marriage is to marry a woman who loves guns and motorcycles as much as you do.  My gal is a fiery, sassy redhead with a mind of her own... and the Good Lord knows we've seen a lot of guns and motorcycles come and go... and accumulate over the more than a quarter of a century we've been together.

We've had some ups and downs as any marriage or friendship does, but we've worked hard and stuck through it all... sharpened each other's iron... raised a daughter... shot and rode together... made a home out in the country together... even built a shooting range  and a couple of barns together...
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
~Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
It's great to know we have each other's back... literally.  Facing off with a home invader is not something I look forward to, but it's also not too much of a worry for me... because I know that if you're coming after me... good... my gal is going to put a round in your ear.

Now it may seem a bit strange to be posting this the day AFTER Valentine's Day... but that is exactly why I am posting it today. We all remember the important days, and the important things... but it's the little things that slowly tear us down. Most of the time, there are very few things that change in a day, but our lives gradually slide away from us over time.  We don't get fat and out of shape over night... and we don't lose our shooting and self-defense skills overnight... and we don't lose our marriages and relationships overnight.

Just like shooting, self-defense, physical fitness, and other perishable skills, our marriages and relationships slowly fade away if we don't remain dedicated to regularly work at them, strengthen them, and vary our routines from time to time. Also, if your marriage or relationship is headed south... maybe your Situational Awareness isn't what you thought it was.

So again, it's not a special day today... it's just another day... and I'm reminding myself... and maybe you... that... Two are one and one is none...