Reliability threshold for carry?

serevince

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I'd say 100%, but the reality of mechanical devices, and the whims of gods and all that.

Fun poly 80 project, factory Glock guts and slide that I played with to make it look fancy. Thing is, it's actually a shooter. I've put just over 2k rounds through it with 2 minor malfunctions. After I assembled it I shot it sans lube, until the 1st malfunction. Mainly just to see what would happen. about round 1500 the slide failed to return to battery for a split second. I might not have noticed, but I was working on follow through. I pulled the slide and put a few drops of lube on the slide rails and went back to shooting. About round 1900, I had a light primer strike. I was rapid fire a mix of Sig 115 JHP and Sig 124+P working on recoil control. Not sure which one failed. I ran it back through and it fired. Range sessions have been 200-300 rounds @ a time. I've used a mix of defensive, JHP, subs, etc. @ least 6-7 different loads.

I feel pretty confident carrying it. It's been a while since I've taken a pistol class, looking for one this summer and plan on using this pistol.

What's your threshold?


 

ShtrRdy

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I would feel comfortable with 1000 rounds. But then I don't like the thought of how much that would cost for the ammunition I want to carry with. So I put 50 - 100 rounds of the Speer Gold Dot +P too.
 
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hermosabeach

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When I read this in your post- I feel pretty confident carrying it. - I was reminded of a Clint Smith/ Thunder ranch comment...

Maybe I can find the video...

It's along the lines of clearing Type 1-3 stoppages /malfunctions:
While on a range
While walking forward
While Running sideways
While seeking Cover
On your right side
on your left side
on your belly
in the rain
Upside down in the dark....

Many people don't practice these drills, many have never been taught how to clear a stoppage.

My first time dealing with someone breaking into my bedroom window when I was around 20 taught me alot about the difference between shooting and self defense. My trivia question was answered- when you take slack out of the trigger on your 1911 at midnight thirty while pointing at a guy and you don't shoot him could have been caused by my massive skill or that I had FORGOTTEN to disengage/ ride the safety.

It was years later on a FATS Simulator that I repeated this blunder when switching from a Glock to a 1911.... squeeze the trigger- no bang
Tap the magazine, rack flip - nothing- slide did not move.... OODA loop reset, eyes off of the threat... oh poop- the safety was on.
After that session I realized why I did not shoot the guys years earlier was not my skill, it was that I had forgotten the safety....

To answer the question, I want the gun to 1) have a proven reputation for reliability industry wide 2) Fire 200 rounds ball and another 50 rounds of JHP defensive loads lastly 3) take a 4 or 5 day class so I know that the controls and malfunction clearance drills are in my brain.
 

308pirate

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These excessive round count reliability "tests" are a joke. 1000 rounds? 2000 rounds? LOL, get real. That's arfcom/m4c.net/pistol-forum level of retardation.

Your self defense "critical incident" will last less than a full 15 round magazine. Make sure your pistol will cycle one mag full of your carry ammo through all the magazines that you have available for the pistol and then forget about it.
 

serevince

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These excessive round count reliability "tests" are a joke. 1000 rounds? 2000 rounds? LOL, get real. That's arfcom/m4c.net/pistol-forum level of retardation.

Your self defense "critical incident" will last less than a full 15 round magazine. Make sure your pistol will cycle one mag full of your carry ammo through all the magazines that you have available for the pistol and then forget about it.
No "torture test", round count is over a few months of practice sessions. (Also explains why I couldn't find any 9mm practice ammo when I packed for the range yesterday! I never take just 1 gun to the range!)

I agree with your second statement.
 

Unknown

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Between the old "Cooper's Commentaries", and Clint Smith's videos, there is an immense amount of wisdom available to people. If someone were to read all of Cooper's commentaries and watch all of Clint Smith's videos, they would get a pretty decent understanding of fighting with firearms (and plenty of other tidbits of wisdom).
 
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308pirate

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Between the old "Cooper's Commentaries", and Clint Smith's videos, there is an immense amount of wisdom available to people. If someone were to read all of Cooper's commentaries and watch all of Clint Smith's videos, they would get a pretty decent understanding of fighting with firearms (and plenty of other tidbits of wisdom).
I watched that whole Clint Smith video, 50% of what he said is fucking obvious the other 50% is irrelevant to the way normal people live their lives.

Based on that sample I'm not inclined to waste any more time listening to anything else he has to say.

And Jeff Cooper's shit is rapidly becoming obsolete. Bill Jordan was probably twice the badass Cooper was and he knew how to win gunfights but go count how many cops emulate his TTPs
 
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Rebels010

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In order to simply my life I only carry a Glock of some kind. Mainly a G19 and sometimes a G43. After one range session (probably 150 rounds) it was getting carried immediately. Because of my personal experiences with Glocks, I don’t need 1000 rounds or an extensive torture test to have confidence in them before I carry them.
 

sandwarrior

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Start with a reliable weapon, i.e. a known 1911 maker or Glock, or Sig. Shoot that weapon on a regular basis. Make it a point to "dry" practice drills every day you go out carrying. If YOU fail at any of these it ain't gonna matter what gun you carry. Proficiency with your sidearm is going to make a huge difference. If you want 100% reliability, then get a revolver. I like my CZ and my 1911. Practice with both SA and DA if you have a firearm that is either/both.

You can't talk about weapon reliability without talking about shooter reliability. Comfort in handling the weapon. I've watched new shooters go out and stovepipe a Glock 19. Limpwristing seems to be a thing nowadays. :rolleyes: Learn the basics, expand on the basics. And, FWIW, I think Clint Smiths video was informative. It's a good idea to have a mental picture of how to make your firearm run better. Just don't think your going to get clairvoyance in a gunfight.
 

Mute

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Generally, I want to see at least 200 rounds of my chosen self defense ammo without any hiccups whatsoever before I consider the gun reliable enough to trust my life on. That's any gun regardless of make or model.
 

CuTm

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Idk who said it or when. People that had a house fire , end up with the best fire extinguishers. The large round count for a test of reliability is for people who use there guns, and practice with them. So yeah you would want a gun to last thousands of rounds reliably. You’re going to be dry firing it hundreds of thousands of times and shooting it thousands of times right ? You want whatever it is to work.
 

Rust

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I've noted that my Python hasn't had a fail to feed or fail to fire in the last forty years. Or an even older Smith snubbie for that matter.
 
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Unknown

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I think that 308pirate's comments about Cooper's commentaries being obsolete have some truth to them. Like most stuff, as time passes, new techniques come to the forefront, and older techniques fade away.

I still think there is lots of knowledge that while surpassed by newer techniques, can teach us how we got to where we are, and where our current knowledge came from. While Carlos Hathcock was quite the shooter in his day, I'm certain that some of his techniques have also been superseded.

I guess the only constant is change.
 

Unknown

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I'm glad that OP is asking about a reliability threshold, rather than an accuracy threshold. Reliability far supersedes accuracy (within reason) for a fighting pistol. I would much rather have a 99.999% reliable pistol that only shoots 4"-5" at 25 yards, than a pistol that that shoots 1.5"-2.5" at 25 yards and is 90% reliable.
 

FatBoy

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I have been kicking this around lately. I carry a P938, and it is a very very good pistol. My only hang up is every once in awhile it will not go into battery. The round hangs up on the feed ramp and a quick bump of the slide and we're back in bbn business. Under pressure I may not notice and I find this uncceptable. This has only happened with 115gr ball, all my defense ammo runs fine but I only have a couple hundred hollow points through it, I practice 95% with ball and finish up with a mag or two of carry ammo. My wife's 238 does the same shit, but my daughters 238 runs like a sewing machine.

I think maybe I'm putting too many rounds through it between cleaning. It's not mag specific. Maybe I need to use something besides CLP for slide lube? Not sure, but I am 100% sure that carrying my 938 is safer than leaving my G27 (no malfunctions in thousands of rounds) at home because it's a pain in the ass to carry concealed.
 

Ledzep

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I'm with 308 here. If it consistently runs through full magazines without issue, run it. If it malfunctions with any regularity and you can't nail down the reason why and fix it, don't carry it.
 
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Cheyenne Bodie

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In order to simply my life I only carry a Glock of some kind. Mainly a G19 and sometimes a G43. After one range session (probably 150 rounds) it was getting carried immediately. Because of my personal experiences with Glocks, I don’t need 1000 rounds or an extensive torture test to have confidence in them before I carry them.
That's exactly what I did when I broke down and got a G19 for dedicated CC. Made sure the gun and mags were in order, tested different types of hollow points, then carried it as soon as I got a holster.
 

HCICVOGT

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I have been kicking this around lately. I carry a P938, and it is a very very good pistol. My only hang up is every once in awhile it will not go into battery. The round hangs up on the feed ramp and a quick bump of the slide and we're back in bbn business. Under pressure I may not notice and I find this uncceptable. This has only happened with 115gr ball, all my defense ammo runs fine but I only have a couple hundred hollow points through it, I practice 95% with ball and finish up with a mag or two of carry ammo. My wife's 238 does the same shit, but my daughters 238 runs like a sewing machine.

I think maybe I'm putting too many rounds through it between cleaning. It's not mag specific. Maybe I need to use something besides CLP for slide lube? Not sure, but I am 100% sure that carrying my 938 is safer than leaving my G27 (no malfunctions in thousands of rounds) at home because it's a pain in the ass to carry concealed.

I just gotten my P938 yesterday and can't shoot it yet because of the weather. I have tried loading the gun with ball ammo and with Federfal HSTs, with both they get caught on the feed ramp when letting the side go home using the slide release. I looked at the feed ramp but it looks good and polished. I'm starting to think the mags are at fault because the round is dipping down when being stripped from the mag. Hopfully I'll be able to shoot it tomorrow if the rain holds off long enough. Have you figured out why your gun is hanging up? Maybe after i shoot mine a bit it'll work itself out.
 

FatBoy

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I just gotten my P938 yesterday and can't shoot it yet because of the weather. I have tried loading the gun with ball ammo and with Federfal HSTs, with both they get caught on the feed ramp when letting the side go home using the slide release. I looked at the feed ramp but it looks good and polished. I'm starting to think the mags are at fault because the round is dipping down when being stripped from the mag. Hopfully I'll be able to shoot it tomorrow if the rain holds off long enough. Have you figured out why your gun is hanging up? Maybe after i shoot mine a bit it'll work itself out.

I haven't had exact issue on my 938. (Though my STI does on occasion). It either stops going into battery 1/16" from locking up (seems to be a result of being dirty), which has happened maybe a half dozen times. My comment about hanging up on the feed ramp is similar but maybe not the same. If it did hang half way I don't recall anymore but I have shot a shit load of pistol rounds through a dozen pistols over the last few months Or, twice the hammer hasn't locked back. Both times with Blazer 124gr and both within 7 days. I'm wondering if I run too much through it? Though I have maybe only out 1200 rounds through this pistol.

I still carry it but have 500-550 rounds through a Sig365 that may replace it. Not in love with that pistol either.

Honestly, I wish Glock made a 9mm for pocket carry. The G43 is too big.
 
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SuckitTrebek

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When I read this in your post- I feel pretty confident carrying it. - I was reminded of a Clint Smith/ Thunder ranch comment...

Maybe I can find the video...

It's along the lines of clearing Type 1-3 stoppages /malfunctions:
While on a range
While walking forward
While Running sideways
While seeking Cover
On your right side
on your left side
on your belly
in the rain
Upside down in the dark....

Many people don't practice these drills, many have never been taught how to clear a stoppage.

My first time dealing with someone breaking into my bedroom window when I was around 20 taught me alot about the difference between shooting and self defense. My trivia question was answered- when you take slack out of the trigger on your 1911 at midnight thirty while pointing at a guy and you don't shoot him could have been caused by my massive skill or that I had FORGOTTEN to disengage/ ride the safety.

It was years later on a FATS Simulator that I repeated this blunder when switching from a Glock to a 1911.... squeeze the trigger- no bang
Tap the magazine, rack flip - nothing- slide did not move.... OODA loop reset, eyes off of the threat... oh poop- the safety was on.
After that session I realized why I did not shoot the guys years earlier was not my skill, it was that I had forgotten the safety....

To answer the question, I want the gun to 1) have a proven reputation for reliability industry wide 2) Fire 200 rounds ball and another 50 rounds of JHP defensive loads lastly 3) take a 4 or 5 day class so I know that the controls and malfunction clearance drills are in my brain.

It was your skill. A lack of it.
 

bourbonbent

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I’m pretty cut and dry with mine, if I can run a Bill Drill through every mag, until they’re all dry, and it keeps doing that, I carry it. I don’t mean training firing cadence or any of that, I mean a Bill Drill as hard and fast as I can run the gun.

I believe if you’re gonna do a thing, do it right, and 6 rounds center thoracic will stop most things, or at least make them reconsider what they’re doing that caused them to be on the receiving end of hate and discontent. That’s all I care about, reliable mags, reliable ammo, reliable ignition, and a gun I shoot well. If it don’t work, fix the problem.

In the interest of full disclosure, I’ll also shoot them upside down with my pinky finger, but that’s just plain old fashioned fuckin around and having a good time, so that don’t count.
 
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Unknown

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Every gun, and it's idiosyncrasies are unique. Usually Glock pistols are extraordinarily reliable. However my friend had a Glock 21 that simply wouldn't feed Fiochi JHP ammo. It would feed and other ammo, and the Fiochi ammo would work fine in every other Glock 21. It was just one gun that hated that one kind of ammo. We couldn't get the pistol to fire more than 2 times in a row without having to clear the stoppage.

My point is that it isn't necessarily the gun, or the ammo that is unreliable...it can be the combination of the two. With any other kind of ammo, that Glock 21 was just as reliable as one could hope for. So just because a pistol is unreliable with one ammunition type doesn't make it an unreliable gun..just an unreliable combination.

When I was the chief firearms instructor at my agency, we eliminated any warm ups before qualification attempts, and eliminated all alibi shots. We allowed a very wide latitude for the officers to select their firearm, so if it didn't work, it sure as hell wasn't my fault...I didn't pick the damned thing.

Fix it, or don't carry it. If they couldn't walk to the line and shoot a qualifying score cold, they simply had to practice, then try again at the next qualification date. Only one attempt to qualify on any range day. You sure won't get warm ups, or alibi shots on the street.
 
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FatBoy

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My P938 went back to Sig to be looked at today. The hammer following the slide down twice in 100 rounds was the straw that broke the camel's back.

I have a Sig365 (2019 build) and picked up a G43 today. I'll carry one of these until the 938 is back and I trust it. I wish Glock would cut the barrel down .5" - .75" and leave it 9mm. 6+1 sucks but it's better than 0+0.
 

rth1800

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I think shooting thousands of rounds would make many guns less reliable. If it shoots all your carry mags dry carry it. If not fix or discard it.

If you load some out of spec ammo it’s good practice for clearing jams.
 
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little_scrapper

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What a contradiction of statements

These excessive round count reliability "tests" are a joke. 1000 rounds? 2000 rounds? LOL, get real. That's arfcom/m4c.net/pistol-forum level of retardation.

Your self defense "critical incident" will last less than a full 15 round magazine. Make sure your pistol will cycle one mag full of your carry ammo through all the magazines that you have available for the pistol and then forget about it.
First you say round count reliability test are a joke. Then in the next sentence you say "Make sure your pistol will cycle..."

Just how many rounds does it take to "make sure" the pistol is proven reliable? In my book reliability is measured on an ongoing basis. I would consider many range sessions firing several hundred rounds through a new pistol at each session as a minimum baseline in determining reliability.

If a pistol has even rare periodic FTF, for whatever reason, its not reliable. You may only need 1 round to end a "critical incident"; but if that round fails to go bang you may end up dead. Murpheys law is a real b|tch. It is through many range sessions, shooting hundreds if not thousands of rounds without incident that reliability is established. Because reliability is NEVER ensured. It is only believed to exist.

My best advise from a R&D guys perspective. Fire several thousand rounds through it without cleaning it. If it doesn't ever FTF that's a good sign. Now go clean it after ever outing and if you have the same results then you are nearly asured its GTG. Just keep it clean.
 
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svthuh

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When I was the chief firearms instructor at my agency, we eliminated any warm ups before qualification attempts, and eliminated all alibi shots. We allowed a very wide latitude for the officers to select their firearm, so if it didn't work, it sure as hell wasn't my fault...I didn't pick the damned thing.

Fix it, or don't carry it. If they couldn't walk to the line and shoot a qualifying score cold, they simply had to practice, then try again at the next qualification date. Only one attempt to qualify on any range day. You sure won't get warm ups, or alibi shots on the street.
I wish more agencies were run like this. I can't even count the number of officers Ive seen have to be run through a qual course just to get a pass. It was shameful. Most of them never even so much as thought about their firearms, not to mention the maintenance of said life saving tools, until they had to use them.

Luckily, the shit magnets that I know, practice as much as possible, to stay as proficient as possible, and it's saved their lives multiple times. When you can practice on the department range, on the departments dime for ammo and time, its a no-brainer.
 

svthuh

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I think shooting thousands of rounds would make many guns less reliable. If it shoots all your carry mags dry carry it. If not fix or discard it.

If you load some out of spec ammo it’s good practice for clearing jams.
This is why maintenance schedules for spring and parts replacement is a thing.

Here it is with approximate suggested round counts for when to replace these parts:

1. Recoil Spring Assembly: 3,000-4,000 rounds (Gen 1-3). 5,000-7,500 rounds (Glock Gen 4)

2. Firing Pin Spring (striker): 15,000 rounds

3. Firing Pin Safety Spring: 15,000 rounds

4. Extractor Depressor Plunger Spring: 15,000 rounds

5. Magazine Catch Spring: 15,000 rounds

6. Standard Trigger Spring: 15,000 rounds

7. Slide Lock Spring: 15,000 rounds

8. Slide Stop Lever Spring (attached to slide stop lever): 15,000 rounds

All these parts are fairly inexpensive to boot, and can be ordered by any "Joe Blow" directly from Glock using forms found at https://us.glock.com/en/downloadable-materials
 

308pirate

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What a contradiction of statements



First you say round count reliability test are a joke. Then in the next sentence you say "Make sure your pistol will cycle..."

Just how many rounds does it take to "make sure" the pistol is proven reliable? In my book reliability is measured on an ongoing basis. I would consider many range sessions firing several hundred rounds through a new pistol at each session as a minimum baseline in determining reliability.

If a pistol has even rare periodic FTF, for whatever reason, its not reliable. You may only need 1 round to end a "critical incident"; but if that round fails to go bang you may end up dead. Murpheys law is a real b|tch. It is through many range sessions, shooting hundreds if not thousands of rounds without incident that reliability is established. Because reliability is NEVER ensured. It is only believed to exist.

My best advise from a R&D guys perspective. Fire several thousand rounds through it without cleaning it. If it doesn't ever FTF that's a good sign. Now go clean it after ever outing and if you have the same results then you are nearly asured its GTG. Just keep it clean.
U must work at pistol-forum
 
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Unknown

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My department used to provide range, ammo, coaching, and even paid time to go shoot. I was stunned when I learned how some of the officers almost had to be forced to go to the range. Hell, if I could shoot someone else's ammo and get paid for it, I would be all over that.

The other surprise was realizing how many officers thought they were God's own gift to shooters, but who, in reality were pretty lousy shots. I would doubt they would make it into being a C class shooter in IPSC.
 

sandwarrior

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Every gun, and it's idiosyncrasies are unique. Usually Glock pistols are extraordinarily reliable. However my friend had a Glock 21 that simply wouldn't feed Fiochi JHP ammo. It would feed and other ammo, and the Fiochi ammo would work fine in every other Glock 21. It was just one gun that hated that one kind of ammo. We couldn't get the pistol to fire more than 2 times in a row without having to clear the stoppage.

My point is that it isn't necessarily the gun, or the ammo that is unreliable...it can be the combination of the two. With any other kind of ammo, that Glock 21 was just as reliable as one could hope for. So just because a pistol is unreliable with one ammunition type doesn't make it an unreliable gun..just an unreliable combination.

When I was the chief firearms instructor at my agency, we eliminated any warm ups before qualification attempts, and eliminated all alibi shots. We allowed a very wide latitude for the officers to select their firearm, so if it didn't work, it sure as hell wasn't my fault...I didn't pick the damned thing.

Fix it, or don't carry it. If they couldn't walk to the line and shoot a qualifying score cold, they simply had to practice, then try again at the next qualification date. Only one attempt to qualify on any range day. You sure won't get warm ups, or alibi shots on the street.
A question on this approach. Obviously practice is going to help, but how much better could that officer do if he (she) were to find a weapon that better suited them?

I know it’s a different type of firearm, but with shotguns all my friends recommended I go with the 870 Wingmster (birds not tactical). I poked a lot of holes in the sky with that thing before finally saying “Fuck it”, I’m tired of missing or holding ‘just so’ so I could hit something. I went back to my dads old SxS and started knocking the crap out of birds again!

The above story says no matter how good a piece is, you’ve got to be able to hit consistently with it, without practicing up three days before a qual.

So at what point as an instructor would you step in and say to an officer during training and say, “I don’t care how much you train with that model, you need to find something that fits you better?”

My pistol example of that is I pretty much score tens across the board with a 1911. A little tightening up, I do the same with my CZ. Glock 19 is a consistent 8-9 out of ten. I feel like I’m holding a 2x4.
 
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rth1800

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If I felt the need to pound thousands of rds downrange with a handgun, it would not be my carry rig. It might be a spare of identical configuration. Even that is not really needed.
 

FatBoy

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I think we can all agree that when it comes to firearms, any topic, there are going to be differing opinions. I can't argue with a guy who runs 50 rounds through a pistol and then trusts it. 99% chance it's going to work should he be unfortunate enough to need it.

Me, it's been drilled into me to run dozens, if not hundreds of rounds through labelled mags. Eliminate the ones that fail. Run the pistol and mag that is 1) most reliable and 2) carryable. It makes me feel comfortable.

Though I rarely carry my Glocks, I trust them over my sigs. They just don't have failures running hundreds, maybe thousands of rounds through filthy pistols. That said I front pocket carry and I can't get a glock small enough to carry or draw from the front pocket of jeans so I carry my sigs. They are easier to carry, so I actually carry them daily. It will probably stay that way until I figure out a better way to carry my Glocks.


Is it the right way? Fuck, who knows. when it really comes down to it we do what makes us confidant in out kit and carry it. One thing I do know is I can always use more ammo , more training and try to keep an open mind to move to something if it's actually better.
 

rth1800

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Sorry, I’m on my phone and can’t read back too well. What rig?
No specific rig. Basically I’m not a fan of torture testing hardware then relying on that specific item for my life.
They don’t race Indy cars after putting a million miles on them. They race new iron, tested to prove it’s up to spec.
 
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Unknown

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A question on this approach. Obviously practice is going to help, but how much better could that officer do if he (she) were to find a weapon that better suited them?

I know it’s a different type of firearm, but with shotguns all my friends recommended I go with the 870 Wingmster (birds not tactical). I poked a lot of holes in the sky with that thing before finally saying “Fuck it”, I’m tired of missing or holding ‘just so’ so I could hit something. I went back to my dads old SxS and started knocking the crap out of birds again!

The above story says no matter how good a piece is, you’ve got to be able to hit consistently with it, without practicing up three days before a qual.

So at what point as an instructor would you step in and say to an officer during training and say, “I don’t care how much you train with that model, you need to find something that fits you better?”

My pistol example of that is I pretty much score tens across the board with a 1911. A little tightening up, I do the same with my CZ. Glock 19 is a consistent 8-9 out of ten. I feel like I’m holding a 2x4.
I have done just what you are saying. As agency policy allows officers to choose their own weapons from a wide latitude, the officers can pretty much pick whatever they want. The "safety valve" for me as an instructor was that I can make all the suggestions I want, but I cannot mandate anything. However, if the officer refuses to make any changes, and continues to shoot poorly, they simply won't qualify. No qualify=no carry anything.

Much like a driving instructor who continues to tell a student to hit the brakes earlier, if the student continues to rear end people because they won't follow advice and hit the brakes earlier, they don't get a drivers license.

I was really pleased when I got the agency to stop any alibi shots, or warm up shooting before qualifications. Those two things pretty much sorted out those who were lousy shots, those who refused to take advice and those who had shitty gear.

On the other side, we had one right hand, left eye dominant officer who had difficulty qualifying. She wanted to stand with her right foot forward, using left eye, and holding the pistol in her right hand. All the other instructors kept being dogmatic and telling her to stand in the classic weaver stance, and use her right eye....she couldn't qualify.

So I asked her what felt natural, and while it looked like the proverbial monkey screwing a football, she could qualify with scores of 87-92% (80% required to qualify). So I said, hold the gun in whatever stance and hand-eye combination that feels natural. She never again had problems qualifying.

The message I got from that was just as some students can't/won't learn or listen, some instructors can't/won't learn or listen because they are so into whatever dogma they believe to be true. I'm pragmatic enough to try and figure out what works,,, why it works isn't quite as important to me, although my curiosity sure wants to know.
 
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