Maryland Shooters’ senior member with the screen-name “Pinecone“recently attended our 3-day Carbine class here at BSR under the instruction of Larry Connolly. This course begins with a solid base of the fundamentals from the basic pistol course and evolves into more advanced skills to enable the student to effectively engage threats under a variety of conditions and employ a pistol in a tactical environment.
In his blog, Pinecone describes his experiences during the one-on-one training class. We loved reading about the course from the shooter’s perspective and thought the information without would be helpful to those interested in taking one of our Firearms Training Courses in the future.
Pinecone hit the nail on the head when he stated, “The basic assumption is, you have no knowledge when you start. If you do, so much the better. Be advised, you may be shooting with some people who do this for a living, as in military or certain agencies. As well as other civilians.” Here at BSR, all actions are conducted with intent and ergonomics–no wasted effort, energy or action. We make sure to emphasize the application of basic principles executed perfectly using step-by-step progression focusing on an individual’s knowledge, skill and ability.
Day 1 Thoughts
Day 1 focuses on marksmanship, safety and basic weapons manipulation such as draw stroke, loading/unloading and malfunction drills. The Day 1 shooting drills usually focus on basic principles and proper mindset.
“Everything is taught from a tactical point of view. So after firing the drill, you would move, and scan the area,” says Pinecone. He liked that there was “very good feedback from the instructor, many times more coaching than teaching.”
“(BSR) does not teach ‘this way is the way to do it‘–Most everything is presented as this is “A” way to do it, or these are ways to do it, and you are free to use the method that works best for you.” Pinecone then goes on to explain how we had presented to him the beer can style orientation (reverse mags in holder and grab them like a beer can) and how he ultimately decided that he preferred this method for the longer rifle mags.
Day 2 Thoughts
Day 2 is when advanced skills are taught using challenging but practical drills focusing on skills that can be applied in real-life situations.
Pinecone describes his experience with our day 2 drills, such as wounded shooter, basic 2 round drills, multiple target, failure drills, turning (90 and 180 degrees), half drill, VTAC Double Sided Tactical Target, and Chaos. Total rounds count (instructor and shooter) was about 300 rounds carbine and 75 rounds pistol (shooter only).
Ultimately, the most interesting thing for Pinecone was being able to shoot from a car. “No, not hanging out the window and shooting, but shooting THROUGH the windshield,” Pinecone says. Keep in mind that this drill is only included if a car from another class is already headed to scrap and can be shot more.
Pinecone recalls, “The car shoot is about why you do NOT stay in the car. And why Hollywood is WRONG with people hiding behind a car door. Did you realize that a 9mm will shoot right through BOTH doors and the passenger compartment?” We then discussed the issues with shooting through the windshield (deflection) and what techniques to use, as well as practiced close and distanced target shooting with a pistol and carbine.
Day 3 Thoughts
Day 3 evolves into more advanced skills to enable the student to effectively engage threats under a variety of conditions and employ a pistol in a tactical environment.
“We moved back to 100 yards and shot some basic drills. Emphasizing slowing down and making the hits,” Pinecone recounts. Other drills included standing cover, kneeling cover and car cover, as well as moving from cover to cover.
Just for fun, we ran some pistol work at 100 yards. As Pinecone states, “Yes, you CAN hit things with a pistol at 100 yards. Not every shot. But it was an interesting break.”
The rest of the evening was spent working on vehicle egress (getting out of a car while under threat or under fire), support hand shooting, and port drill practice. Pinecone’s favorite part? Vehicle egress with a carbine. As he recalls, ” You do not realize how long a carbine is, until you start messing with it inside a car.”
Total rounds count: 250 rounds 5.56, and 120 7.62×39, and about 100 rounds of pistol. The pistol was mixed .45 and 9mm due to some of the drill requirements.
“Overall, if you are looking for some good firearms training, BSR is a good choice,” says Pinecone. “If you have good pistol skills and want to work primarily on carbine, this is a great course. If your pistols skills are not that great, they have a combined Pistol/Carbine class. 1.5 days on each. A lot of the things are better learned with a pistol, then transition the skill to carbine.”
Pinecone’s impression of the setup was that we had some GREAT ranges. Pinecone says, “The 50 yard range we worked on for the first two days has a fantastic rock dust base. It looks paved, but it is somewhat soft. The 100 yard range is more typical larger rocks, but they are working at converting the ranges. They have very nice classrooms for that portion and the drill with dummy rounds. They supply water and pretty much have coffee available all day. And clean restrooms. Pretty much a class act.”
“The instructors have varied backgrounds, but include some people who have seriously been there and done that. But, as I mentioned before, nothing is presented as the ONLY way to do things (except safety), everything else is presented as ONE way or the particular instructor’s way, but you are free to come up with a different way, if it works better for you. And if it works that well, the instructor’s may borrow it from you,” says Pinecone.
“Pinecone” is a serious shooter and it was such a pleasure working with him.
Interested in attending a 1-, 2-, or 3-day Firearms Training course? Check out our upcoming courses below.
Upcoming Firearms Training Courses
- Dec 11, 2015
- Jan 22, 2016
- Feb 12, 2016
- Mar 18, 2016
- Apr 15, 2016
- May 27, 2016
- Jun 17, 2016
- Jul 15, 2016
- Aug 26, 2016
- Sep 16, 2016