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Half Day Rifle Course - I Need To Put In More Work

Water Monkey

The man, the myth, the monkey
I was very fortunate over the weekend. About a month ago my friend, and pistol instructor, invited me to an invite-only rifle class. Probably because I’ve been up his butt for over 12 months to start having a dedicated rifle class on top of his pistol classes. He has been working with a friend of his to get his own training business up and running. Well things came together and the first official class his friend was putting together was going into a beta test phase and there were individuals hand selected to take the class. I was one of the lucky ones (probably because I’ve been begging and sending memes weekly about a rifle class – helps to be a noisy wheel sometimes).

Very little was disclosed other than the fact that I can bring my newly built 9mm PCC. No equipment check list, no follow ups other than me saying…. We still on?

So I show up, belt geared up for competition style PCC and threw on my Shield 9mm just in case we had to do some pistol time. To be noted I’ve sold all my other hand guns recently due to having elbow surgery and wanting to liquidate my inventory to fund future builds or current build enhancements.

Turns out… I was invited to a 5 hour rifle class which comprised of 6 officers from the NYPD Strategic Response Group and the class was being run by a NYPD Strategic Response Instructor! Just 2 Civilians in the class. Myself (who’s been off the shooting circuit for over a year) and another USPSA pistol competitor (who ended up dusting everyone on the course when we were timed– great guy btw).

Round count was about 350 rounds for 4 hours. I stayed behind and hit the plates in the pit next to us using some of the movement drills we had worked on and saw the plates being nailed while on the move more consistently. But that was not on the training time and I used about 150 more rounds doing this.

Topics Covered:

Presentation from high ready on target and taking the shot, scanning and moving off the X.

Standing 90 degrees to the target, presenting from high ready on target and taking the shot, scanning and moving off of the X. Going both strong side and weak side presentations.

Standing 180 degrees to the target, presenting from high ready on target and taking the shot, scanning and moving off of the X. Going both strong side and weak side presentations.

Transitioning to pistol from rifle using the sling as well as performing various reloading drills and administrative reloads. Timed as well.

Shooting while moving and negotiating around cones to simulate friendly in the way so you had to high ready or low ready (to not muzzle sweep the simulated friendly) around the cone while still engaging a threat.

Quick run and gun drill – engage the target out in the open from 25 yards away, run to cover, engage 3 other targets behind cover.

Personal Notes from Class:

I did well from the presentations and I was very accurate with the 9mm set up. My speed early on was slower due to the fact I misunderstood the instructor’s message of speed and accuracy. I focused on accuracy over speed and was slower than I really was. I picked it up later on that day.

I’m severely handicapped during many of the drills due to magazine capacity being capped at 10 rounds for NY non-LEO. While the LEO guys were on the line with 30 round loaded mags, I had to pull off the line early on extended drills due to running out of ammo (belt had 5 mags loaded to 10). The serpentine pattern shooting on the move forced me to reload on the drill and transition to my handgun when pressing forward on the target at the end while the others could utilize the full magazine capacity and keep lead on the target consistently during the drill.

The stock configuration is an abomination for non LEO for NY to be in compliance with the NYS SAFE Act. The Thordsen stock tries to hold your hand at a weird angle to simulate a normal hunting stock which adds stress to the forearms during reloading with how you have to hold the rifle. The only option if you want a magazine fed rifle in the AR Platform.

In addition, the stock limits the ability to attach a sling at a proper position when you go for a pistol transition. I had to re-configure the sling on the fly to better steady the rifle on my body during pistol transitions to keep the muzzle down instead of potentially flagging the guy on my left. While it works, it’s not ideal.

My transition to pistol needs work. Will do a ton of repetitions going forward to get the motion down smooth. Flustered with my rifle with it bricking in a nasty double feed during the shooting and moving session I failed to immediately transition to my pistol which was pointed out to me by the instructor.

Rifle performed fairly ok. Had 3 nasty double feeds occur rendering the rifle into a stick. While this has never happened before I believe the problem is arising due to the fact I was trying to do administrative reloads instead of reloading while it was empty during some drills. Slamming the mag into the magwell seems to cause potential double feeds. When I stopped administrative reloads it stopped occurring. Other than that the accuracy and speed of the PCC is only limited by me the user.

The holosun elite green dot is plenty daylight visible at the highest setting and it was a bright clear day with limited cloud cover. Acquisition was fast and hits were easily determined with both eyes open.

I need a tremendous amount of work on running with a rifle as well as utilizing and shooting around cover/concealment. Issue is, I have no place to practice this skill on a consistent basis with live fire. We only got 2 runs on the course. The first run was a sloppy showing by myself and my positioning behind cover was bad enough to warrant a good discussion by the trainer. I did some dry runs while he was talking to get some of the footwork and presentation down to shoot correctly around cover. So on the second run I did a bit better and at least it was smoother. My hits were solid on a few targets but the first target at the cover position was sloppy due to frustration of me not taking the rifle off of safe upon presentation.

Actuation of the safety needs to be second nature. I don’t have much time behind the rifle and the configuration of the rifle lends itself to be real shit with a normal safety. You actually need a dual safety feature on the rifle in order to place it on safe. More times than I could count when stress was on the line I pulled the trigger and nothing happened because I forgot to flick off the safety. Cost me time, hits, and frustration. It’s a training issue I have to rectify immediately.

Magazine size of 10 round colt mags makes them basically fully seated in Ghost competition mag holders. Not a smooth transition to grab the magazine and feed the rifle. 20 rounders would probably be the sweet spot. NY blows.

If you’re running a PCC with a sidearm, I would suggest pairing with the same magazine. Having to free up a magazine holder for the shield magazine put me behind the curve for the training session on a few occasions.

The class was well paced. However, when it came to shooting and moving I would have gained more positive results if we had done several dry runs with an empty gun to get positions correct. The dry reps would have been beneficial for me due to the lack of opportunities to perform such tasks. I communicated that to the instructor in the critique section which he thanked me and will address that going forward.

You don't rise to the level of the occasion, you fall to the level of your training.

Water Monkey

Water Monkey

The man, the myth, the monkey
Your description of the course and your shooting it was really amazing.

It was fun. The PCC really performed when I wasn’t messing around with it and trying to slam a mag in it to keep up with the NYPD squad and forcing double feeds ugh wtf the clock pressure got me.

Second run on the run n gun section my bullet holes were touching each other in the Alpha zone on the uspsa targets on gas double taps on 2 of the 4 targets.

Gun really can be a fast and accurate shooter. I just need to put in the work behind her to run it more efficiently and effectively.

Crushing plates on the side including playing with a reactive tree plate target really showed me how fast this gun can run when I just trust her.

It was a good run and hopefully I’ll get an invite in the winter for cqb section.


Average Guy
I don't own a PCC. The closest thing I've got is my CZ Scorpion with a brace. It opened my eyes to what a great platform a PCC is for dynamic shooting within 50-75 yards and even greater up close. Mine wears an Aimpoint T-1 that is ON all the time for six years on one battery and also has a Streamlight TLR-1 on it. It's "ready to go" anytime 24/7/365. I now "get it" about the PCC.

Raul, thanks for the thread. I believe you are probably being a little bit modest.

And I'm truly sorry to hear your Dan Wesson 1911 is someone elses.