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Posts Tagged ‘Gunfighter Moment’

Gunfighter Moment – Kyle Defoor

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017

The Long Run

“A lot of people run a race to see who is fastest. I run to see who has the most guts, who can punish himself into exhausting pace, and then at the end, punish himself even more.”
– Steve Prefontaine

Long is of course up to everyone’s interpretation, but for the most part here’s a good way to train for any running event longer than 800 m. I use this formula when I am preparing for ultramarathon of 50 miles, a unit’s PRT test of 1.5 or 3 miles, or a local 5K.

Some terms to familiarize yourself with;

Casual pace- typically two to three minutes per mile slower than your race pace. For example if the fastest mile you can run is a six minute mile your casual pace is around an eight minute 30 sec or nine minute per mile pace.

Race pace- just what it sounds like. As fast as your two little legs can pump for the distance that you going. That last part is important. My race pace for a 1 mile PRT is not the same for three-mile PRT.

Threshold pace- typically a pace that is one minute to two minutes per mile slower than your race pace.

The Long Run

Saturday and Sunday- this is perhaps one of the more important combo training days when running. For the ultra marathoners, this is the key to the kingdom. Saturday and Sunday are back-to-back long days. For the 5K and PRT people these are still back-to-back long days with less mileage. Ultra marathoners should be running for a minimum of two hours each day initially, toward a closer time to race date ultra marathoners should be running somewhere around four hours each day not to exceed 18 miles each day. I’ve never seen any benefit to doing a run longer than 18 miles when preparing for an ultra. The only exception is if you’ve never done an ultra before you need to get a 25 or 30 miler in four months or so before the race. For 5K and PRT folks, Saturdays and Sundays should be a minimum of a one hour run initially each day, and runs no longer than two hours each day not to exceed twice the race distance ( i’m putting this in here for some of the units and organizations to do a 10 mile time to run for their PRT. ) The pace for PRT and 5K folks is a casual pace. The pace for ultramarathon at the fastest is a casual pace, but realistically is somewhere around a 9:30 to 10:30 min pace.

Monday- off (remember that somewhere around 50% of all physical activities gains are from recovery. This is true for lifting weights, running, cycling, anything. This is difficult for runners to adhere to who are training especially after they begin to get runners high.)

Tues- 5K and PRT guys threshold pace for one hour. Ultra marathoners, casual pace for two hours.

Wed- 5K and PRT guys 1 mile repeat sprints at race pace. It will depend on how many of these you can do as to the total work out. For a 5K I will typically work up to doing four or five 1 mile repeats with the amount of rest in between the runs the time that I ran that 1 mile in. I have found way more success in PRT and 5K races using this formula for my “sprint” day as opposed to the typical 800 m, 400 m, 200 m, ethos of old. Ultra marathoners- two hour run at a casual pace preferably doing hill work if possible. I have never found hill work to be a necessary part of of an ultramarathon even when I ran ultra’s in the mountains like the iron Mountain 50. However, with that being said keep in mind that without hell work you will never keep up with the guys from out West.

Thu- 5K and PRT guys one hour casual pace then one hour at threshold pace. Depending on the distance you’re running, this could be 30 minutes and 30 minutes or 45 minutes and 45 minutes, etc. Ultra marathoners three hours at a casual pace.

Fri- off

Throughout the schedule ultramarathoner’s need to constantly be running with full kit (full water bottles, all gus, and salt tablets), and also experiment with wet socks, different carry methods, different clothing, body glide, sunglasses, hats, etc. Shoe choice can also be fine tuned during this. PRT and 5K guys should be occasionally training in a racing flat that they will run in on the day.

Kyle Defoor is one of the world’s most committed and passionate shooting instructors. Literally growing up with a gun in hand he took his talents into the military where he was combat decorated as a SEAL assaulter and sniper. Kyle helped to create and define modern training while along the way personally teaching thousands of military personal and civilians from around the globe. His shooting prowess led to appearances on multiple TV shows including Shooting Gallery, Tactical Arms, and Tactical Impact, and guest appearances on History Channel. Kyle’s outdoor athletic lifestyle includes shooting, ultra running, stand-up paddle surfing and climbing. He  is a sponsored athlete of MultiCam and runs his own company, Defoor Proformance Shooting, which offers tactical training, wilderness navigation, TV and film consulting, and motivational speaking.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Pat McNamara

Saturday, April 15th, 2017

Because I’ve heard it said that ‘Holstering’ a pistol is an ‘Administrative’ move, I would argue that there is true merit in holstering a pistol the same way we draw a pistol on two different fronts.

One is that in the tactical world, we must sometimes have to deescalate and go ‘Hands On’. We must do this without taking our eyes off of the threat.

Two, when practicing a draw stroke, the best draw stroke is nothing more than holstering in reverse. This was said to me by Rob Leatham some decades ago. So, when practicing a draw stroke, why not double the amount of meaningful repetitions by holstering the same way we drew?

…Only one is in reverse.

Patrick McNamara
SGM, US Army (Ret)

Pat McNamara

Patrick McNamara spent twenty-two years in the United States Army in a myriad of special operations units. When he worked in the premier Special Missions Unit, he became an impeccable marksman, shooting with accurate, lethal results and tactical effectiveness. McNamara has trained tactical applications of shooting to people of all levels of marksmanship, from varsity level soldiers, and police officers who work the streets to civilians with little to no time behind the trigger.

His military experience quickly taught him that there is more to tactical marksmanship than merely squeezing the trigger. Utilizing his years of experience, McNamara developed a training methodology that is safe, effective and combat relevant and encourages a continuous thought process. This methodology teaches how to maintain safety at all times and choose targets that force accountability, as well as provides courses covering several categories, including individual, collective, on line and standards.

While serving as his Unit’s Marksmanship NCO, he developed his own marksmanship club with NRA, CMP, and USPSA affiliations. Mac ran monthly IPSC matches and ran semi annual military marksmanship championships to encourage marksmanship fundamentals and competitiveness throughout the Army.He retired from the Army’s premier hostage rescue unit as a Sergeant Major and is the author of T.A.P.S. (Tactical Application of Practical Shooting). He also served as the Principle of TMACS Inc.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Ken Hackathorn

Saturday, April 1st, 2017

While the topic of firearms selection and their use/training gets lots of press, often times the little items that make life easier just get passed over and never mentioned. Over the past year or so, I have been using a number of accessories that are exceptional in their utility. In this segment of ‘Gunfighter Moment’ I want to briefly cover some of the wonderful odds and ends that I have discovered to be of extreme in the ‘handy & helpful’ category.

First up is a product from Blue Force Gear. While the Vickers (VCAS) sling has been my go to sling for years, Blue Force Gear in the last year sent me a few of their ‘Uloops’, these are simple little cable fast attach sling swivels. Simply insert one end through the attachment point on the weapon of your choice or in whatever is provided, run the free end into the Uloop swivel, once the sling is secured into the slot, the cable lock is retained. It is so simple and secure, works like a champ, and allows the user to place the sling in a variety of locations; it has become one of my favorites.

White lights attached to small arms has become a common practice in much of the USA. Whether it is for law enforcement or home protection, the logic of being able to identify your target in the dark is a necessity. I have used a variety of weapon mounted lights in the past, but my go to now is the Inforce product line of Weapon Mounted Light (WML) for use on long guns, and their Auto Pistol Light (APL) for use on rail frame handguns. The WML graces all of the ARs that I have for home defense or training, and nearly all my pistols that can take lights are fitted with the APL. Taking only one 123 series battery, made of strong reinforced polymer, they are light weight, switching is simple and reliable, and most important these things are simple to activate. My favorite position for a WML is twelve o’clock forward of my front sight. Price is right, and most important the brightness is just right for my use. To quote my old buddy ‘Super Dave’ Harrington, “I don’t want to give them a sun tan, I just want to see who they are.”

I have been a fan of Aimpoint red dots for decades. The current family of Micros are my favorite. Unless my carbine wears a 1X4 or 1×5 variable optic, they will have a Aimpoint Micro mounted. Tried any number of micro mounts, and while nearly all will work, my new favorite is the Scarlaworks Low Drag Mount. This baby is the heat: light weight, rugged, and most important a quick on and off that returns to zero beautifully. Worth every penny of the most reasonable price.

A topic that gets lots of attention is AR-15/M4 triggers; everyone has a favorite. While Bill Geissle has created the gold standard in great triggers, they tend to be ideal for competition/sniping applications. Meaning, they are light weight in sear release. Typically a two stage trigger, but a light crisp sear release is often the key to best precision in most fast action or long range requirements. The down side of course, is that under stress, or when wearing gloves in cold weather, they can be too light. For over a year I have been testing the HiperTouch EDT2 triggers from HyperFire. These are single stage triggers much more reflective of the original GI M16 trigger of past that had single stage sear releases that tended to ‘roll off’ in the trigger press. The EDT (Enhanced Duty Trigger-2) comes with two hammer springs, the green one is for 4.5 pounds and the red one is for 5.5 pounds. For serious use, the 5.5 pound release is my choice. When your hands are cold, wearing gloves, or you are under max stress your finger on the trigger can sometimes make for a loud noise when you weren’t really ready for it. HiperTouch EDT2 has become my favorite for these requirements.

My wife has trouble cycling the slide on her Glock 19, and like many folks with strength or other types of grip disabilities, the simple task of working a pistol slide can be an issue. Tango Down offers a ‘Glock Racker’ for G42, 43, and the whole G17/19/26 or related size Glock pistols. It is a replacement for the cover plate on the rear of a Glock pistol slide. With extended ears or tangs that extend on each side of the rear of the slide (much like the H&K VP9), the placement of the hand to the tangs make cycling the slide much simpler. My wife now runs the slide on her G19 like a pro. From the time that Magpul first introduced their Glock replacement magazines I was a bit skeptical. I have watched them being used in my classes, and after getting some to use in my own G17 and 19 models, I have become a fanboy of these Magpul Glock magazines. They are perfect for range use where abuse and less than perfect maintenance is the order of the day. I have neither witnessed or had any issues with my own. I would not fear using them for serious purposes. While I still feel more at home with OEM Clock mags for social use, I have now used the Magpul’s enough to feel totally confident in them as well.

Another product that I have been using recently is a pair of ear plugs marketed as ‘Decibullz Percussive Filters. For me, ear plugs have never really worked well. The shape of my ear canal is not conducive to them staying in place for a good seal. The designers of the Decibullz Percussive Filters started out to produce ear buds that did not fall out of their ears constantly; applying this approach to ear plugs was a natural. Most important, they are reasonably priced, and you mould them to fit your own ears with nothing more than a pan of really warm water. These things are great, I love mine.

I have been a fan of H&K pistols for ages. Be it the P7, USP, P2000, H&K 45, P30, and most recently the VP9, all these pistols have been favorites. While their sights are more than serviceable, I have been looking for something that would be an improvement for my most recent VP9. Tried Trijicon HDs, but they are just too big, and the rear sight, while maybe okay for a target pistol, the rear blade is supper sharp and tears clothes apart in short order. They thus suck for my use. Recently Wilson Combat has offered a set of Vickers Tactical H&K sights that are ideal for the H&K45, P30, and VP9. For my use the rear sight is all that is needed, but I got a set with the green fiber optic front as well. They work great, and on my P30 they correct the typical drive the dot point of impact, they now print to point of aim with point of impact on top of the front sight at 20 yards. Way cool.

Check these goodies out; Google is your friend.

Stay alert. Don’t be an easy target.

– Ken Hackathorn

Old Guy With A Blaster

Ken Hackathorn has served as a US Army Special Forces Small Arms Instructor, Gunsite Instructor, and NRA Police Firearms Instructor. He is currently an FBI Certified Firearms Instructor, Certified Deputy Sheriff with Washington County SO, Ohio, and a SRT member and Special Response Team trainer. Ken has trained US Military Special Operations forces, Marine FAST and SOTG units and is a contract small arms trainer to FBI SWAT and HRT.

Ken has provided training to Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies and been active in small arms training for the past 25 years. He has written firearms related material for Guns & Ammo, Combat Handguns, Soldier Of Fortune, and currently American Handgunner and contributed to at least six other gun/shooting journals. Ken was also a founding member of IPSC and IDPA.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Frank Proctor

Saturday, March 18th, 2017

In this video from Trigger Time TV, Frank Proctor talks about what he calls the “Journey”.

– Frank Proctor

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Frank Proctor has served over 18 years in the military, the last 11 of those in US Army Special Forces. During his multiple combat tours in Afghanistan & Iraq he had the privilege to serve with and learn from many seasoned veteran Special Forces Operators so their combined years of knowledge and experience has helped him to become a better operator & instructor. While serving as an instructor at the Special Forces Advanced Urban Combat Course he was drawn to competitive shooting. He has since earned the USPSA Grand Master ranking in the Limited Division and Master ranking in the IDPA Stock Service Pistol division. He learned a great deal from shooting in competition and this has helped him to become to become a better tactical shooter. Frank is one of the few individuals able to bring the experiences of U.S. Army Special Forces, Competitive Shooting, and Veteran Instructor to every class.

All this experience combines to make Frank Proctor a well-rounded shooter and instructor capable of helping you to achieve your goal of becoming a better shooter.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Larry Vickers

Saturday, March 11th, 2017

Based on what I am seeing in my classes the 9mm vs .45 ACP debate is over and 9mm won. 40 S&W is history – ask any gunshop and they will tell you they can’t hardly give pistols away in this caliber. Quality 9mm pistols are plentiful, they hold a lot of bullets, are relatively easy to shoot, self defense loadings are very effective and practice ammo is plentiful and relatively inexpensive. Tell me the downside to this?

Larry Vickers
Vickers Tactical Inc.
Host of TacTV

Larry Vickers of Vickers Tactical is a retired US Army 1st SFOD-Delta combat veteran with years of experience in the firearms industry as a combat marksmanship instructor and industry consultant. In recent years he has hosted tactical firearms related TV shows on the Sportsman Channel with the latest being TacTV of which Bravo Company is a presenting sponsor. Larry Vickers special operations background is one of the most unique in the industry today; he has been directly or indirectly involved in the some of the most significant special operations missions of the last quarter century. During Operation Just Cause he participated in Operation Acid Gambit – the rescue of Kurt Muse from Modelo Prison in Panama City, Panama. As a tactics and marksmanship instructor on active duty he helped train special operations personnel that later captured Saddam Hussein and eliminated his sons Uday and Qusay Hussein. In addition he was directly involved in the design and development of the HK416 for Tier One SOF use which was used by Naval Special Warfare personnel to kill Osama Bin Laden. Larry Vickers has developed various small arms accessories with the most notable being his signature sling manufactured by Blue Force Gear and Glock accessories made by Tangodown. In addition he has maintained strong relationships with premium companies within the tactical firearms industry such as BCM, Aimpoint, Black Hills Ammunition, Wilson Combat and Schmidt & Bender.

With over 300,000 subscribers, his Youtube channel features a new firearms video every Friday. 

Larry Vickers travels the country conducting combat marksmanship classes for law abiding civilians, law enforcement and military and works with Aztec Training Services to coordinate classes to best meet the needs of the students attending the class.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Ken Hackathorn

Saturday, February 25th, 2017

Everyone from individuals to unit commanders want to establish ‘standards’ of skill. When we apply the ‘standards’ test to combat marksmanship, we generally like to use courses of fire or skill drills to measure performance levels.

In my travels over the past few decades, when starting out with a new group, agency, or unit I often ask the leader or CO where the skill levels are with his people. The answer is almost always, “my guys are good”. Remember, good is a relative term. In some organizations, that can mean that they actually hit their targets occasionally, or that in some rare instances, they are really good solid shooters. A great many trainers of my era have developed skill drills to measure levels of proficiency. Many times, I have used those that were developed by others. The famous ‘El Presidente’ pistol drill is a great example. In most cases, after a couple of days of disciplined training and range practice, most students leave the class with enhanced levels of skill.

In short, if I have done my job they have left the range better than they arrived. The real secret to reaching acceptable standards is practice. What a really good trainer does is give you the tools to utilize in practice. If you don’t practice, you will very likely never really be ‘good’. By the way, this applies to most things in life.

If the standards are established to be challenging enough to produce true skill levels that are of benefit, our goals are fine. Sadly, what we see so often is very low standards that nearly everyone can pass. Law enforcement is a classic example of this, and most military combat marksmanship ‘standards’ are not far behind. Just look at the CCW skill requirements that one has to pass in most states (if they have them). So, we all understand that ‘standards’ must be established and realistic, then practiced until the individual can meet these requirements.

I just recently had a gentleman inform me that he passed my ‘wizard drill’ with flying colors, and in his mind it was not challenging in the least bit. After a short conversation concerning his fantastic shooting skills, he admitted in the conversation that it took him a few tries to pass… WTF! I then informed him that the first try (shot COLD) is the only thing that counts; warm ups just don’t matter. You don’t get a chance to practice your draw, getting a slight picture, press checking your weapon, or any of the other stupid sh-t that people do on the range. If you can’t deliver on the first try, you better practice more.

As important as standards are, and nearly all top shooters can quote the score or placement in a given shooting event where standards are measured, there is another factor that even the most lowly second lieutenant can quote is, after standards come the importance of ‘conditions’. This is an area that is widely ignored in the training world. Nobody likes to go to the range in terrible weather. I learned a long time ago that training classes in the Winter months just don’t go. Folks want a nice pleasant warm day with sunshine/dry conditions. Ask them to show up when it is cold, wet, or really muggy weather is a problem. Try to function with just a couple of hours of sleep over two days, and then see how well you perform on your ‘standards’.

I live in a part of the world where Winter is not for the faint of heart, or those folks that like to go around all year in flip flops. When you are dressed for cold weather, wearing gloves, and it is close to zero, any combat marksmanship standard you have is going to suffer terribly. In most cases, skill levels will drop at least twenty five percent. If you normally are just fair in nice weather, you will really suck when the cold conditions take their toll. Most folks answer is to not practice or go to the range until Spring or Summer arrives. If you live in a part of the world where weather is a factor, or you must function in low light, the only ‘standards’ that really matter are the ones that reflect the ‘conditions’ you will really have to function in.

If all you do is play games with guns, then brag all you want about how good your ‘standards’ are. If you must work or function in an environment that produces ‘conditions’ that you would not normally like for best results, maybe testing you standards in less than ideal ‘conditions’ from time to time is in order.

Stay Safe; Stay Alert.

– Ken Hackathorn

Old Guy With A Blaster

Ken Hackathorn has served as a US Army Special Forces Small Arms Instructor, Gunsite Instructor, and NRA Police Firearms Instructor. He is currently an FBI Certified Firearms Instructor, Certified Deputy Sheriff with Washington County SO, Ohio, and a SRT member and Special Response Team trainer. Ken has trained US Military Special Operations forces, Marine FAST and SOTG units and is a contract small arms trainer to FBI SWAT and HRT.

Ken has provided training to Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies and been active in small arms training for the past 25 years. He has written firearms related material for Guns & Ammo, Combat Handguns, Soldier Of Fortune, and currently American Handgunner and contributed to at least six other gun/shooting journals. Ken was also a founding member of IPSC and IDPA.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Mike Glover

Saturday, February 18th, 2017

Before the Global War On Terror, quantifying specific variables in a gunfight was like quantifying quantum physics. It’s a difficult undertaking without specific data – and any data was better than “I heard from a buddy that knew a guy.”

Now with the acceleration of the war on terror and concurrent advances in technology, we have a plethora of case studies, video, and stories from the men and women who were literally there. There is no more “theory,” but a wealth of the specific data we’ve been missing, and with that data we can begin to determine and extrapolate what works versus what doesn’t.

I remember getting into my first contact with the enemy. Looking back on it, it wasn’t what I expected – it wasn’t dynamic, it didn’t involve complex thought or replicate the things I was taught at the range. When analyzing this process I realized I didn’t even apply the basics I had been taught, it was all a reflex, all second nature and slightly reckless. I was confronted with a threat; it was him versus me and I realized afterward that I didn’t have time to prep my trigger, seat my stock, or even acquire a sight picture. The only things I had time to do were align and press, get my bore in line with the closest thing I could get to center and smash my trigger as fast as I could.

As I developed my skillsets in war the realization dawned that in an offensive action I only had milliseconds to react if the enemy I was hunting was ready and waiting for me, and that everything I had been taught was far more difficult to apply in reality. This is a stark contrast to other occupations – in a gunfight outside of deliberate actions and raids in the military, you react to or counter threats, which puts you behind the living curve.

For example: let’s say you’re a police officer, reacting to a domestic violence call. When you arrive the suspect is nowhere to be found. As you sweep the residence the victim of the domestic violence advises you that the suspect is armed and acting erratically so you are now expecting contact, and behind the living curve. Let’s say you clear into a corner-fed room, feeding into a bathroom that has visibility on the corner-fed room’s door, but your focus is on the blind spot of the dead space in that room. As you move your eyes and gun into position you see something, a flash of what you think is a light but instead it’s your eyes recognizing a foreign entity – in this case, the barrel of a revolver pointed right at your head. Your eyes get wide, your adrenaline tsunamis your being. Everything is in slow motion. Your eyes and brain see the threat, and the barrel of your gun is still in dead space…

Ok, let’s stop there, and consider what we know from our training. In training, we’re taught that once we step through a threshold we need to check corners and clear dead space. Right or wrong, that’s a fundamental – but every time I’ve done force on force or UTM/Sims training, if a bad guy sits one room deep he can kill every good guy who steps through that threshold, time after time.

I remember the first time I was taught to think outside of the convention in small-arm tactics – a team-mate of mine, who belonged to an elite CT unit, told me “don’t be in a rush to just clear and commit to a room. Clear a much as you possibly can prior to entry, even if you have to go prone.” That latter part of his statement really stuck with me, “even if you have to go prone.” This wasn’t advice being taught from theory, this was being taught from reality, from truly unpredictable situations experienced in warfare, and it made absolute sense. Committing to a fight in which your opponent is aware of and can take advantage of your weaknesses is committing to a losing battle, and there will be no second chance, no opportunity to learn from a fatal mistake.

Back to our earlier scenario. When someone has a gun, and they have it pointed at you, you need to be able to send rounds toward that threat and neutralize in immediately. Seeing a threat with your eyes that you’re not instantly ready to deal with puts you at the mercy of your enemy’s reaction time. Clear with your eyes with your gun in tow; and when expecting contact you must clear methodically and thoroughly prior to entering the breach point. Never race in unprepared, that leads to mistakes and sets you up for ambushes. While training is necessary, it doesn’t always reflect the situations we find ourselves up against, and can ultimately hamper our perception of reality. As long as your training institution understands this logic, and can work toward providing you with the tools necessary to get closer to reality, you’re with the right venue. Remember, experience is always better than theory.

– Mike Glover
FieldCraft LLC

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A former Special Forces disabled veteran with more than 18 years of military service, Mike has operated at the highest levels of Special Forces. Deploying 15 times to combat theaters, he has served in the following positions: SF Weapons Specialist, SF Sniper, SF Assaulter/Operator, SF Recon Specialist, SF Joint Terminal Air Controller (JTAC), SF Team Sgt, and SF Operations SGM.

Mike is a certified U.S. Government federal firearms instructor, and has also has trained mobility with Team O’Neil Rally School, BSR Racing, and BW drivers courses. He is medically trained every two years in Advanced Medical Trauma and continually maintains his re-certifications for consultation practices.

Considered a Subject Matter Expert (SME) in planning and executing Special Operations in a myriad of complex environments, Mike has taken his 18 years of experience and is giving the American citizen the applicable training tools and training necessary to better protect themselves and their families here and abroad.

Mike has a Bachelors degree in Crisis management and homeland security with American Military University and is pursuing his masters in military history.

Mike currently lives in northern California, where he continues to consult for the U.S. Government in security and firearms instruction.

www.fieldcraftsurvival.com

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Larry Vickers

Saturday, February 11th, 2017

Larry Vickers
Vickers Tactical Inc.
Host of TacTV

Larry Vickers of Vickers Tactical is a retired US Army 1st SFOD-Delta combat veteran with years of experience in the firearms industry as a combat marksmanship instructor and industry consultant. In recent years he has hosted tactical firearms related TV shows on the Sportsman Channel with the latest being TacTV of which Bravo Company is a presenting sponsor. Larry Vickers special operations background is one of the most unique in the industry today; he has been directly or indirectly involved in the some of the most significant special operations missions of the last quarter century. During Operation Just Cause he participated in Operation Acid Gambit – the rescue of Kurt Muse from Modelo Prison in Panama City, Panama. As a tactics and marksmanship instructor on active duty he helped train special operations personnel that later captured Saddam Hussein and eliminated his sons Uday and Qusay Hussein. In addition he was directly involved in the design and development of the HK416 for Tier One SOF use which was used by Naval Special Warfare personnel to kill Osama Bin Laden. Larry Vickers has developed various small arms accessories with the most notable being his signature sling manufactured by Blue Force Gear and Glock accessories made by Tangodown. In addition he has maintained strong relationships with premium companies within the tactical firearms industry such as BCM, Aimpoint, Black Hills Ammunition, Wilson Combat and Schmidt & Bender.

With over 300,000 subscribers, his Youtube channel features a new firearms video every Friday. 

Larry Vickers travels the country conducting combat marksmanship classes for law abiding civilians, law enforcement and military and works with Aztec Training Services to coordinate classes to best meet the needs of the students attending the class.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Ken Hackathorn

Saturday, February 4th, 2017

I just got back from the SHOT Show 2017; have only missed three or four over the years. Always great to see old friends and see what is new in the firearms industry. Turnout was down from 2016, but this was expected. Back in the day, I wandered the isles like the rest of the nomads at SHOT, a gun writer of an earlier time (I was a pretty poor one at that). The media room at SHOT rarely saw more than 50 people seated at a time. Nowadays, thanks to social media and the blogger world, they are present in huge numbers and the role of ‘media pass’ means very little. As a gun writer, vendors were all over themselves to give me guns, ammo, and gear to test and hopefully write up in whatever firearms journal I was working for at the time. I quickly learned that nothing is ‘free’, and would not accept anything I did not see merit in or could actually deliver on.

Back in the day, there were many items that were just crap; the difference today is there is ten times more items that fit that description. It should come as no surprise that a trip through the new products display area was pretty much dominated by AR-15 style rifles/carbines/pistols, plus tons of accessories. When you hear the term ‘America’s Rifle’ applied to the AR-15 series of long guns, a trip to SHOT will really bring that point home. For the life of me, I don’t see how all these vendors of ARs and accessories can survive in the marketplace. The boutique makers of ARs, particularly the $2000 plus ones really amaze me. I have learned to take much of what I am told by the vendors with a grain of salt. Remember these salesmen will promise you anything including free delivery via alien spacecraft to make the sale. Details like “used by special operations or Navy SEALs” is a common line about the proof that their product is vetted. What they really means is that their product may be used by SF types in video games, or in the movies, but the last time I checked the arms rooms of the places I was training, I didn’t see Glocks with holes machined in the slides or M4s with exotic muzzle breaks or hand guards out to the muzzle of the weapon. It appears to me that everyone in this industry is building guns that look ‘cool’ for video games, or will give top level competition shooters a few milliseconds advantage in a major tournament.

I love the terms “it really shoots flat”, and “it doesn’t have any recoil”. I must stop and scratch my head on these dill rods. How can a recoil operated rifle or pistol not have recoil? Maybe they should adopt the term ‘lighter recoil’. An I am sick of hearing the reference to ‘flat shooting’. In the real world (the place where there is NO firing line and the targets are shooting back) flat doesn’t mean sh*t. The 1911 45 auto has never been referred to as ‘flat shooting’, but we have been shooting bad guys with it for over a century. I get it, softer recoiling guns are easier to shoot for most people. This can lead to better hits on target, but sadly for most end users it is just about launching more rounds down range quicker. Despite everything I have been exposed to in my career in this business, accurate effective hits on target is the heart and soul of Combat Marksmanship.

The extent of new products at SHOT is always exciting, but I have to wonder what will one more polymer frame striker fired pistol on the market really do better than the ones already for sale; some slight improvement, maybe, but make no mistake: GLOCK owns the market. In the USA, Smith & Wesson has second place with the M&P, while everyone else is sharing the remaining bread crumbs. The new CZ P10 C was pretty neat; I’ll probably own one. One individual at the CZ booth described the CZ P10 as the ‘Glock killer’… dream on. CZ would be successful beyond their dreams if their new pistol cost Glock just a flesh wound.

The Hudson H9 looks interesting, kudos to Cy and Lauren Hudson for thinking out of the box, and trying to do something different in self defense sidearms.

Many folks were jazzed about the announcement concerning SigSauer’s P320 winning the DOD Modular handgun selection. Is it going to end up in GIs holsters any time soon? I kind of doubt it. Just spending money on ammo and training would be far more beneficial, but the green machine has never had much interest in making soldiers skilled with handguns, for the most part they don’t really care if Pvt. Timmy or Tammy can use one effectively. They will end up being carried in condition three (empty chamber, loaded magazine in place) so overall, color me un-impressed with the whole military pistol topic.

News of anything really impressive in service/assault style rifles was limited to different flavors of ARs and AKs, however there were plenty of 9X19mm AR carbines. They are great fun, and new competition oriented pistol caliber carbine divisions may make them popular. AR and AK pistols seemed to be present in many booths at SHOT. I think they are stupid; in my opinion, zero valid reasons for owning one. Of course, if you are a gang banger you need at least three. If you want to buy a AR/AK pistol, go for it. I just don’t know anyone in my circles that will take you serious if you show up with one, and prepare to be labeled a ‘jerk-bang’.

Overall SHOT is always entertaining, full of new ideas often on old platforms, and a great place to meet new people that are part of the Gun Culture.

– Ken Hackathorn

Old Guy With A Blaster

Ken Hackathorn has served as a US Army Special Forces Small Arms Instructor, Gunsite Instructor, and NRA Police Firearms Instructor. He is currently an FBI Certified Firearms Instructor, Certified Deputy Sheriff with Washington County SO, Ohio, and a SRT member and Special Response Team trainer. Ken has trained US Military Special Operations forces, Marine FAST and SOTG units and is a contract small arms trainer to FBI SWAT and HRT.

Ken has provided training to Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies and been active in small arms training for the past 25 years. He has written firearms related material for Guns & Ammo, Combat Handguns, Soldier Of Fortune, and currently American Handgunner and contributed to at least six other gun/shooting journals. Ken was also a founding member of IPSC and IDPA.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.

Gunfighter Moment – Frank Proctor

Saturday, January 28th, 2017

Eye of the Tiger Part Deux -­ A Visual Agility Exercise

In order to put bullets on targets fast and accurate we need to see and process information fast. This is visual processing speed exercise and eye agility exercise. To perform this exercise -­ move your eyes as quickly as possible through the numbers 1-­20. To get the work that is there for you, make sure that you are seeing the numbers and not just moving your eyes around. There are many possible ways to run the exercise. 1-­20, 20-­1. You can put the numbers in this sequence on 2 separate target boards and vary the distance between the targets to force more eye movement and even head movement. With creativity there are many ways to get some great visual work with some very simple tools. The ultimate goal is get your eyes moving and processing information as fast as possible.

Exercise

– Frank Proctor

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Frank Proctor has served over 18 years in the military, the last 11 of those in US Army Special Forces. During his multiple combat tours in Afghanistan & Iraq he had the privilege to serve with and learn from many seasoned veteran Special Forces Operators so their combined years of knowledge and experience has helped him to become a better operator & instructor. While serving as an instructor at the Special Forces Advanced Urban Combat Course he was drawn to competitive shooting. He has since earned the USPSA Grand Master ranking in the Limited Division and Master ranking in the IDPA Stock Service Pistol division. He learned a great deal from shooting in competition and this has helped him to become to become a better tactical shooter. Frank is one of the few individuals able to bring the experiences of U.S. Army Special Forces, Competitive Shooting, and Veteran Instructor to every class.

All this experience combines to make Frank Proctor a well-rounded shooter and instructor capable of helping you to achieve your goal of becoming a better shooter.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Bravo Company USA. Bravo Company is home of the Gunfighters, and each week they bring us a different trainer to offer some words of wisdom.