Saturday, August 14, 2010

Ballseye's Gun Shots 82 - An Off Day At The Range...

...is something I suppose we all should expect now and then but I guess I do not usually expect to have an off day. I sort of take good days at the range for granted. Not granted because I expect to do well each and every time no matter what as if I am entitled to good day. Nope, I know there is no such thing as being entitled to a good range day. You have to work for things you want and being a good shot and shooting good scores are no exception. Yet, I do take good range days for granted but only because I work toward achieving them by practicing a fair amount and by always seeking to improve my shooting. So when I have a bad day, and to me even a mediocre day is a bad one at the range, well then I am taken by surprise and am also highly disappointed.

Such was the case this past Thursday when I went to shoot for my jobs quarterly qualifications. As usual, I have been practicing, maybe even more than usual within the past 3 months or so. I even went to shoot for practice just about a week before my qualification day and I did pretty darned good then. So, when I shot a 238 out of a possible 250, with my issued SIG 229, I was very disappointed. For some reason I was shooting slower than molasses flows downhill on really cold winter's day in Antarctica. I even missed getting off 2 shots during one of the sequences because I was just taking too long to shoot. That really bothers me not just because it really lowered my score but because if it had happened on the street when I may have been involved in a real life shootout - well, I might be dead now. I have never been all that fast on the draw nor to get off my first shot and while followup shots often come out at a good clip, on this particular day at quals I was really way too slow. I guess it is a mental thing, something also to do with the horrendously long double action pulls of the Sig, and just whatever else may have been eating at me on an off day. It is something I will have to work on and you can bet I will be shooting up the 200 rounds they gave me on the practice day and the additional 100 rounds they gave me on the qualification day during next trip or two to the range.

After I shot with the SIG, it was time to bring out the Glock 26. I shoot this one much faster, and was doing just that once I got it out of the holster. In fact, I shot it so fast that I am certain one of the reasons for me only shooting a 236 with it was that I probably jerked the trigger a few times trying to get off my shots within the allotted time of some of the shorter sequences. Now you may be wondering, if I was shooting faster than with the SIG, why on earth would I be jerking the trigger because I was trying to shoot fast enough for the allotted time; I mean that may seem to you like I was again at least getting off my first shot rather late after the draw. If that is what you thought then you would almost be right. I was actually getting off the first shot almost as soon as the pistol was up to eye level but that was still taking too long. The reason for that was because it was taking me what seemed like forever to get the pistol out of its holster and therefor I was wasting precious time in which I should have been shooting.

So why was I taking so long to draw? It was a relatively new holster and I will leave it at that for now if only because I plan to write a piece that deals specifically with problems like the one I had with the holster during this qualification period. The topic is important enough to deserve its own rant and I will give you that over the next day or two. The holster is sort of another thing I took for granted and shame on me for having done so.

Back to the main topic of this piece, I shot pretty poorly for myself. My scores were down for awhile, then back up to normal for some time now and I can say, without a doubt,that 236 and 238 out of 250 are pitifully poor scores for me. More practice required and maybe another holster too but as I said above, I will explain that in more detail soon.

All the best,
Glenn B
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