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  • On training in adverse weather...

    So I put this in the Combat Mindset in hopes of provoking some thought and discussion. So for those that were there, at Rendezvous for the carbine class we didn't have the best weather in the world. In fact the weather that day was down right crappy. It was about 40-45 degrees though the day, 3-8 mile an hour wind, and either actually raining, or just dropping that fine spray of water the entire day.

    That morning only a few were complaining, but in regular style, I made some jokes about what we had here was a perfect training opertunity to work in a wet environment... Well in retrospect my spouting off and joking in my 'gunny' voice actually held true it was a good training opportunity.

    So we were all dressed for it, Gortex, longjohns, etc etc... however as Bullitt is teaching I found some intreating gear failures that day. So here are some interesting things I learned that day.... and would be intrested to hear others from that day or training in general.

    1. Your pistol rig that Draws great in your shorts and tshirt at the range, will still draw just fine, don't plan on getting it back into that kydex holster with your LBV, IIIa Vest, and three layers of clothing in the way.

    2. Your LBV or Load Bearing Vest... is just that, something that huals gear. Getting mags out of it is kinda quick, but not fast, and putting them back in is a two handed operation.

    3. An over the shoulder rig carries two less AR mags, is 10 times more concealable, and 100 times more accessable to all items in it.

    4. This one was kind of thought provoking... If it makes you look like a badass, if the zombies are out it also makes you look like a target. We got to talking about LBV's and other bulky items, that you can see from a ways off... "Hey the 30 of us want that dudes guns and ammo.... you just became a target.

    5. In the rain, your hands will be slippery, your leather gloves even more so, and that tango down foregrip will be so slippery there are lots of other uses for it, but a grip isn't the best one at this time.

    6. When covered in fine droplets of water, seeing though your eotech/magnifer or just about any optic is like looking though the bottom of a coke bottle.

    7. If you have any unsecured strings on your gear they will get in your way. Not only will they get in your way they will prevent you from doing something, like reholstering your pistol... or unholstering your pistol.... or pulling your carbine back around from a slung position.

    Hmmm there are others but I thought these would be a good start.
    CelticRaven

    -- Poor is the country with no heroes and worse yet, is the country that forgets its heroes.

    Plan for what CAN happen, not what HAS happened.
    --CelticRaven

    The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
    --Thomas Jefferson

  • #2
    This is a good topic and a good point.

    If you have gear and plan to use it, train with it. I have bought and shitcanned tons of stuff because it looked good, thought it would work and it wouldn't.

    Something else. If you have a 1911A1 with different sights, make sure they'll all work with your holster(s). I slapped my kimber top on my 1911 and the sight hangs up on the draw from my Kydex holster. The front blade is a hair too tall for the holster.

    Knowing your gear and how it interfaces is a great practice.

    "Do the right thing even if it means dying like a dog when no one's there to see you do it." Vice Admiral James Stockdale, NAVY PILOT

    "Honor, Integrity, Commitment to core values. When they become abstract concepts or "ideals", all is lost." Me.

    "Character is doing the right thing, even when no one is looking." J.C. Watts

    "I have never seen a projectile turn in flight and come back at the ship that fired it, I cannot however make that same statement regarding missiles." Me.

    Deus lo vult! = "God wills it!"

    Comment


    • #3
      Hey Jason,
      You raised some nice points. here's a little food for thought...Hopefully some of it might help a bit...

      When it comes to pistols, there is a lot to be said for mounting it to your vest. Tactical thigh drops might look sexy in a tactical cowboy kinda way, but they are less then ideal for several reasons, some of which you've found. Add to that, unless tourniquet tight, they will shift around on your leg, meaning the pistol isn't always in the same location. I've tried everything, up to and including adding silicone nubs to the backside of the platform for a better bite, and they still shift around...The more you move around, the more they do. Add in draw issues with gear on your vest, or just the vest design itself and you are starting to see a trend. We'll ignore that they seem to catch on everything, and everything catches on them, or bangs into them, screwing with your stealth. The British also did a study years ago, and the short of it is they found their troops were much more efficient with nothing mounted on their legs. Mounting anything to the legs or hips resulted in significantly increased fatigue over the long hall...

      I'm an old Marine now and know all about first second and third lines, but courtesy of the modern age, it's a relatively small move to remove the holstered pistol from the vest and shift it to the belt line. Safariland has a quick detach set up and so does Blackhawk with their defective holster line. I believe there are a few other makers, as well. Pop or twist and relocate the holster to a premounted bracket. It's that complicated. Prior to their invention wearing a fairly flat pancake style holster on your belt gave you someplace to insert the pistol when you dumped your vest...

      As it comes to the foregrip, I've moved away from using it like a standard pistol grip and started using mine more like a hand stop, where my hand is along the rail/ handguard and pushed up against the forward pistol grip. I find that it feels better, and seems to give me a solid lock up, regardless of wet or dry. A little skateboard tape goes a long way toward holding on tight in crappy weather, too, including sweating your man jewels off in full turn out gear in hundred degree weather with ninety percent humidity. It might not look quite as tacticool, but I'm all about function over form ...

      Grab bags are nice, but they have their own drama, particularly as you start moving hard and fast. Your weight will get thrown off as the loaded bag swings all over, catching and banging on everything. Even if you have it hooked to a belt, or reigned in on a fairly tight shoulder strap, or both, you still have the poor balance thing as it's lotsa weight in one spot. It's one more tool, but not the tool . There is a reason Army Medics have for the most part moved away from Aid Bags and to Backpack/Daypack/Ruck style set ups, and it's not just capacity. In a hurry with almost nothing and a need to gear up with something right now? Sure. Added gear for a Patrol Officer and an Active Shooter? Maybe...Otherwise grab a vest, don't get carried away with pouches and doodads, and if you need to go more low profile, throw a big loose button down shirt or jacket over it. Yes it will print to one degree or another, but to the casual observer, you might just look a little fat...I can live with that

      Rain X on Butler Creek Blizzard Scope Caps. Yes the sight picture kinda sucks. Still, it's much better then a Coke bottle bottom though. Rain X works, but I wouldn't put it on any of the expensive scope lenses and risk what it might do to their treatments.

      As to the rest, it goes without saying and Vince is as usual right on the mark. Know your gear. The first time you use it shouldn't be the first time you need it. Train as you fight, so you'll fight as you train. Little things matter...I hope this helps...As in all things YMMV...

      Respectfully,
      Harry
      "It's better to live one day as a lion, than one hundred years as a sheep", Old Roman Proverb.
      "For those who have fought for it, freedom has a flavor the protected will never know", Author Unknown.
      "Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war!", Shakespeare, Julius Ceaser, Act III, Scene I.

      Comment


      • #4
        [quote]
        Tactical thigh drops might look sexy in a tactical cowboy kinda way, but they are less then ideal for several reasons[/b]
        I will never use a drop leg rig ever again.... At one point, I had an HK USPc that was an airsoft gun. Well it worked great for shooting at moving ppl who were shooting back at you. Well one day I thought I would try one of those sexy drop leg holsters, I was in the "office" and was going to try and make a break for it... pistol holstered, I jumped up from behind the first desk in a full run that holster slams into the desk catching basically, and removing my entire leg from under me where I really needed it in a full sprint and I go sailing unceromoniusly though the air, crashing into the far wall (breaking the drywall... with my face and left elbow) and rendering myself just barely on this side of consciousness.

        All of this was as you mentioned, it bang, smacked and bounced off everything that day. I was really glad to have tested that POS, in a situtation where it wouldn't have gotten me killed should I ever have to use it. Ever since then I have been strictly a strong side belt mount person and the holster has to use either dual belt loops similar to the Galco cop series, or a paddle mount like on the Uncle Mikes kydex holsters.
        CelticRaven

        -- Poor is the country with no heroes and worse yet, is the country that forgets its heroes.

        Plan for what CAN happen, not what HAS happened.
        --CelticRaven

        The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
        --Thomas Jefferson

        Comment


        • #5
          I don't know. You guys all looked pretty impressive from the dry warm car. I never knew you were having equipment troubles. You could have fooled anyone!

          Comment


          • #6
            You make a good point on a vital pc of equipment for adverse weather......a car
            " May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't" General George S.Patton

            " Peace is that brief glorious moment in history when everybody stands around reloading"

            " The will to survive is not as important as the will to prevail...the answer to criminal aggression is retaliation" Lt. Col. Jeff Cooper

            Comment


            • #7
              OK, here is another case in point.

              As some of you know, I've been building a 1911 for my father. Shep has helped immensely and I am in his debt. I'm finishing the detail stuff up in preparation for coating it. I have to do some removal of the front sight at the range tomorrow to bring the point of impact up to point of aim at 25 yards and it's good to go. The thing runs like a raped ape, I put a couple of hundred rounds through it last weekend with my hodge podge of magazines from my ipsc days and it cycled flawlessly.

              Anyway, some may also remember I got a smoking deal on some McCormick shooting star magazines last winter. Well, I finally got around to ordering base pads and putting them on, and started working them through the gun tonight to test function.

              Here's the gist of the post.

              Out of 10 magazines, only 2 would lock the slide open when cycled on an empty mag. And if the slide stop was manually engaged with the magazines in place, you could not depress the slide stop lever without removing the mag first.

              After taking off the slide, putting the slide catch back in and trying it, I found the notch in the port side of the mag where the slide catch is actuated was a bit too long. (See picture) It was catching the rear of the slide stop and binding it up.

              [attachment=11345:McCormick_edit.JPG][attachment=11346:McCormick_edit_1.JPG]

              It was a simple fix, a couple of strokes with a file on that vertical edge and I was good.

              However, it was much better to learn that in my basement shop than to find that out in a shooting situtation.

              New gear is dirty gear. Always try out what ever combination of components your planning on using. Never assume that just because it's new, it will be fine.
              Attached Files
              "Do the right thing even if it means dying like a dog when no one's there to see you do it." Vice Admiral James Stockdale, NAVY PILOT

              "Honor, Integrity, Commitment to core values. When they become abstract concepts or "ideals", all is lost." Me.

              "Character is doing the right thing, even when no one is looking." J.C. Watts

              "I have never seen a projectile turn in flight and come back at the ship that fired it, I cannot however make that same statement regarding missiles." Me.

              Deus lo vult! = "God wills it!"

              Comment


              • #8
                Vince I agree 100% on trying out every pc of equipment before use. As a side note I know several guys who had the same problem with the Shooting Star mags. I have used the CM Power mags and have had no problems. Does not change the message...just a side note.
                " May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't" General George S.Patton

                " Peace is that brief glorious moment in history when everybody stands around reloading"

                " The will to survive is not as important as the will to prevail...the answer to criminal aggression is retaliation" Lt. Col. Jeff Cooper

                Comment


                • #9
                  You hit the nail on the head about having a training opportunity. The best way for a new guy in my sniper section to test a new whiz-bang ghillie suit is to throw it on and do a 3 hour stalk in August heat or February cold. Is there room under it for a Camel-Bak or thermal undies? Is the burlap or netting so long that it hangs on everything? There are so many things that you just don't plan for that show themselves at the most inopportune times.
                  War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things; the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feelings, which thinks that nothing is worth war, is much worse. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight; nothing he cares about more than his own personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.- John Stewart Mill

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