Search This Blog

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


So after figuring out that no, that is not a Caterpillar generator outside the window at night it is in fact my roomie, we head out for the next day. Again a safety briefing with nearest medical centers distance and average response times, we go at it again.

Speed vs accuracy drills, presentation from holster, first shot was timed for 1.5 seconds from holster. One second shot drills, .5 second and .25 drills followed. The instructor always demonstrated the course of fire first. He was simply put impressive. 

If you had a slide bite or other appendage bleeding the instructors had band aids. Both whipped out the most garish "Hello Kitty" bandages for you to wear as your badge of shame for the day. I did not ask for one but my left forefinger got split at the cuticle from reaching around and digging in the left rear pocket for magazines. I had plenty of less demeaning Band-Aids in the range bag.  

We play the ballistic version of basketball horse, where your partner calls the first shot and then you have two attempts to put a bullet in the same hole. NOW everyone is my friend after I was named "single stack". They all say I have the biggest target for them to aim for. I stick with my partner and we go at it. That was fun! 

Then the malfunction drills come. Double feed, click, no bang, etc. After a progression of administrative, tactical, and emergency reload drills we get to the drill I hated "the everything gone wrong" scenario. A double feed followed with a magazine with one round then another with a full load. 

We get to the "scan and assess" drills. You really need to do a full 360 assessment from the high ready and if you do not you will miss an instructor behind you with a forefinger to his head or two fingers to his chest signifying additional head or center mass shots are required on your target. 

Near the end of the day I have a malfunction. Pistol is not going to slidestop. Of course this is during the final string of reload drills. Instructor asks me why I am not going to slidestop. I tell him I do not know but it must be the slidestop lever or magazines. He asked what type of mags I have and I tell him Wolff.

I also spot a fellow classmate with a jug of disposable foam ear plugs and ask If I can get some for the coming night of wall rattling snoring. They graciously give me several. 

After going to dinner with the guys from the aforementioned Suburban in town I get to take a look.

Slidestop lever (on left) sheared off. At least the broken parts did not get up into the slide and grind around up there!  I had a complete spring kit and firing pin for the old girl on hand. I was not expecting a slidestop lever problem!

So, knowing the Proshop is closed on Sunday and I cannot get a replacement or rent a gun for the final day I wander down to the front desk and explain my problem to the young lady at the front desk. She gets on the radio and calls range control. They give her a phone number and in 5 minutes I am talking to a Blackwater USTC Armorer. He asks what range I am at in the morning and at what time. 

Tomorrow awaits, but really frustrated on the failure.    


  1. Of all of the spare parts I would imagine needing for a class, that would have been far down on my list. I don't know that I have ever seen or heard of that happening. Interesting. I usually just bring a spare gun in case of colossal failure.

  2. I've had that exact problem happen twice. I kept using the gun without any issues, just had to know it wasn't going to hold open.

  3. Had to laugh at the ear plug part.

  4. @ 45er- I know! Spare gun is advised for sure, but I thought I would be OK with my Commander!

    @ ASM- Glad to hear it has happened to others. No big deal but a PIA for emergency reloads under the timer!

    @ stop- I was not laughing! I needed them and they still did not work!

  5. I so needed a laugh~ Thank you

  6. Man, that sounds like a great time... don't laugh, but I use Vaseline Intensive Care lotion on my hands, especially after working outside or in the barn... to keep the cuticles soft... otherwise my fingers and skin just dry out and crack...

    Dann in Ohio