Did a little shooting today

Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted.Not much going on. I’ve done some practice shooting in the past couple of weeks, but have been focused on a side project.

I have been studying to get my technician class ham radio license. I have a background in electronics through the Navy and took a year at ECPI for computer electronics after I got out of the Navy. I seriously considered getting my license back in the 90’s, but got sidetracked with other things and never could get the morse code part figured out. Well, they’ve dropped morse code as a requirement a couple years ago. So, I figured it was time to get it knocked out.

A couple weeks of studying to get back on track with the electronics portion which was pretty much easy review and then getting the other parts understood, I took the test on October 6th down in Rock Hill at their Hamfest. I was a little nervous when I turned the test in. Didn’t get nearly as many electronics questions as I had been getting using the various online practice tests on the web. Still, can’t complain. I missed 3 out of 35. You need a minimum of 26 to pass. I received my call-sign on Thursday. I am KK4LZN. I am starting to study for the General class license now. The administrators asked me if I wanted to test for it after passing the Technician license. Glad I didn’t try it. When I got home, I took a practice test and only got 17 right. So, after a week of roughly a half-hour a night of studying, I’m up to a whopping 22-23 correct on the practice tests. Lots of formulas to remember. Looks like I’ll try this exam on December 16th back down in Rock Hill.

Now it’s time to start figuring out what kind of rig to get setup with. I figure at least a handheld for some mobile applications and there are a multitude of those available from Yaesu, Kenwood, Alinco, and Icom etc. Then there are the station class type radios to setup at home, so there will be a lot of research going on. It’s mind-boggling the possibilities. Probably as many or more possibilities of transceivers/amplifiers/antenna combinations as there are guns/holsters/ammo combinations.

Which brings me back to the point. I did do a little shooting today. It has been a while, but I did put 100 rounds down range today through my Pro and my 9c. I started out with the Pro at 7 yards. I put 15 rounds into the -0 zone in a decent pattern (although still left). Pushed the target out to 10 yards and put 35 rounds at the head zone. Of those 35, 32 were hits, 2 were low and left into the -1 zone, and 1 was a a miss left that I called. I snatched the trigger. I have a bad habit of doing that still.

Pulled the target back up to 7 yards and switched out to my 9c everyday carry firearm. Put 10 rounds into the -0 zone fully supported and 5 more strong hand only. Felt pretty good about that, but I know my weak hand is well, WEAK! I finished up putting the last 35 rounds down range weak hand. Of those 35 rounds, 27 managed to make it into the -0 zone, while 8 stayed in the -1 zone. Maybe it really is time for me to get one of those hand trainers. I am trying hard to just squeeze the trigger with my index finger while not trying to squeeze the rest of my fingers. That is a lot damn harder than it sounds, especially when using your weak hand.

Anyway, that’s it for me. Remember, shoot safe, shoot straight!


Not much to post about lately.

Been working with my new Smith and Wesson M&P Pro 9mm. I had been looking for one of these for a while and finally found one. Picked it up and have about 400 rounds through it so far. Shoots much better than I do. Lately I’ve not been¬† using the IDPA paper target but a different target that has 6 circle, triangle, and square targets. I’ve been transitioning from target to target between each shot and working on transitions. First time I did it was pretty bad. I was pulling a lot of shots low and left. I guess I was still getting used to the reset point of the trigger. Yesterday was much better. I still had several pulled low and left, but not nearly as bad as two weeks ago, so maybe it’s getting better. I’m going to continue this for another couple hundred rounds then go back to my IDPA target. Other than that, not much to report. I’m still not going out to shoot in the sun as it still gives me migraines. Wish I could figure it out, but it looks like it’s going to take a bit longer.
Well, that is it for me. Remember, shoot safe, shoot straight!

New video segments I’ve been watching

As I was browsing through the interwebz, I found a new “shooting show”. Well, it’s an internet show called Trigger Time TV. It’s hosted by the owner of Cross Breed Holsters (Highly recommend the Supertuck), Mark Craighead. He also has a bunch of other talent including Rob Pincus, Jim Gilliland, Brannon LeBouef, Jabo Long, and Jason Redding.

The goal of the show is to:

  • Showcase a variety of shooting personalities
  • Entertain audiences with dynamic techniques
  • Provide real world safety & training practices
  • Educate a gun loving population on proper handling
  • Introduce new shooters to a plethora of equipment
  • Offer advanced tips for high level marksmen

The show is basically broken down into four segments. Each segment so far has dealt with the following:

Segment A has been about carry options and home defense.

Segment B has been about preparatory planning and survival.

Segment C has been about holster selection and options.

Segment D has been about shooting and marksmanship.

I’ve watched all three episodes and have enjoyed them very much and do recommend them. You can find them at http://www.triggertimetv.com or over at their youtube channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/TriggerTimeTV.

That’s it for me. Remember, shoot safe, shoot straight!

Hello world!

This is my first blog post on WordPress. I had a small blog over on the “other” blog site, but I stopped using it when they started censoring firearms and firearms related accessories in their shopping searches, so I decided to move over here. Not sure if I’ll move the entirety of my blog over here or just start over. I guess just a bit of an introduction. My name is John and I’m an IDPA shooter. Not a very good one at the moment unfortunately. For those that don’t know, IDPA stands for International Defensive Pistol Association. It has over 20,000 members world wide and it is a sport which is growing very quickly. When I joined just a little over a year ago, we were at roughly 14,000 members. IDPA is a shooting sport that has you shooting at targets which require speed and accuracy. There is sometimes a requirement for you to move. There is sometimes targets that move. The targets can pop up and down to hide. They will turn to face you and turn away again in quick succession. They can swing from side to side. You will have to shoot targets in a certain order and there will be the “non-threat” targets which you do NOT want to shoot. Each target has multiple scoring zones. Center mass zone and head zones are down 0 or -0, radiating out from there is a down 1 or -1 zone, and then the down 3 or -3 zone. Misses count as down 5 or -5. Each point down counts as a .5 second penalty, so accuracy means a lot. This is what a stage looks like in IDPA.

There aren’t a lot of equipment requirements. A decent gun, typically 9mm or above. Can be semi-automatic or revolver. A holster for your gun is required. A cover garment and storage for extra reloads is needed for your firearms (figure enough for 30 rounds). I shoot a Smith and Wesson M&P 9mm, the standard full size version with a Bladetech holster and two extra magazines for a total of three magazines (I actually have 5 and rotate them out). I do have a cover garment which is a vest that I purchased from sportsmansguide.com which was recommended to me by another shooter. It is a good starter vest with a good weight for movement and good size pockets for storing magazines when I have to “save” them.

Now, who should shoot IDPA. That is a tough question. I’d really suggest you be fairly competent with your gun first. Know how to handle it and be comfortable with it. What worked for me was I actually went and watched an entire match. I contacted the club president and told him I wanted to watch, learn, and help the first time. That really helped me when I actually shot my first match. I wasn’t nearly as nervous and most of my questions had already been answered even before I shot. Clubs will have a new shooters orientation before the match, so always step up and let the club know that you are a new shooter. Sometimes they will match you up with an experienced shooter who will help you out throughout the day that first match.

So, if you shoot pistols and are tired of shooting at the same old tired static target everyday, I’d highly suggest IDPA. The people have been really great and helpful. I’ve made some wonderful friends and had an awesome time at the matches. Go out and give it a shot!

That’s it for me. Remember, shoot safe, shoot straight!


Last post on Blogger

Well, this will be my last post on Blogger. No, I haven’t given up my 2nd Amendment rights and my firearms, and no, I haven’t stopped shooting IDPA, although I am done for the summer until the weather cools. What I am done with is using Blogger which is a Google product. You see, Google has decided to censor guns, ammo, and accessories from it’s shopping results when you do a Google search or “Google Shopping”. This was a great help in finding some of the things I was specifically looking for in regards to IDPA shopping parts  for my competition gun. I was looking for the Apex Duty Carry kit also known as the DCAEK. Easily found with “Google Shopping” at many sites. Now I’ll have to try and dig and find it. For those who haven’t seen it, this was what one of the “vendors” received from Google in regards to their sale items:

Dear Merchant,

We’re writing to let you know about some upcoming changes to the product listings you submit to Google. As we recently announced, we are starting to transition our shopping experience to a commercial model that builds on Product Listing Ads. This new shopping experience is called Google Shopping. As part of this transition, we’ll begin to enforce a set of new policies for Google Shopping in the coming weeks. A new list of the allowed, restricted, and prohibited products on Google Shopping is available on our new policy page – http://www.google.com/appserve/mkt/ApI7UWRj6OCZpd.

Based on a review of the products you’re currently submitting, it appears that some of the content in your Merchant Center account, HamLund Tactical, will be affected by these policy changes. In particular we found that your products may violate the following policies:


When we make this change, Google will disapprove all of the products identified as being in violation of policies. We ask that you make any necessary changes to your feeds and/or site to comply, so that your products can continue to appear on

Google Shopping.

To help you through this new set of policies and how to comply with them, we would like to give you some specific suggestions regarding the changes needed to keep your offers running on Google Shopping.


As highlighted on our new policy page http://www.google.com/appserve/mkt/ApI7UWRj6OCZpd, in order to comply with the Google Shopping policies you need to comply first with the AdWords policies http://www.google.com/appserve/mkt/StQ08jAzM4fVtG. We do not allow the promotion or sale of weapons and any related products such as ammunitions or accessory kits on Google Shopping. In order to comply with our new policies, please remove any weapon-related products from your data feed and then re-submit your feed in the Merchant Center. For more information on this policy please visit http://www.google.com/appserve/mkt/GbBNIGHOribLzf.

We’re constantly reviewing our policies, and updating them when necessary, to ensure we’re offering the best experience possible to our users. We’ve identified a set of policy principles to govern our policy efforts on Google Shopping in the U.S. These principles are:

1) Google Shopping should provide a positive experience to users. Showing users the right products at the right time can truly enhance a user’s experience. When people trust us to deliver them to a destination that’s relevant, original, and easy to navigate this creates a positive online experience to the benefit of both users and merchants.

2 ) Google Shopping should be safe for all users. User safety is everyone’s business, and we can’t do business with those who don’t agree. Scams, phishing, viruses, and other malicious activities on the Internet damage the value of the Internet for everyone. Trying to get around policies or “game the system” is unfair to our users, and we can’t allow that.

3) Google Shopping should comply with local laws and regulations. Many products and services are regulated by law, which can vary from country to country. All advertising, as well as the products and services being advertised, must clearly comply with all applicable laws and regulations. For the most part, our policies aren’t designed to describe every law in every country. All advertisers bear their own responsibility for understanding the laws applicable to their business. Our policies are often more restrictive than the law, because we need to be sure we can offer services that are legal and safe for all users.

4) Google Shopping should be compatible with Google’s brand decisions. Google Shopping must be compatible with company brand decisions. Our company has a strong culture and values, and we’ve chosen not to allow ads that promote products and services that are incompatible with these values. In addition, like all companies, Google sometimes makes decisions based on technical limitations, resource constraints, or requirements from our business partners. Our policies reflect these realities.

We’ve given much thought to our stance on this content, as well as the potential effect our policy decision could have on our Merchants, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you.

The Google Shopping Team

© 2012 Google Inc. 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View, CA 94043 You have received this mandatory email service announcement to update you about important changes to your Google Merchant Center account.

So, there you have it. I know these posts don’t reach a whole lot of folks, so this won’t come as a great loss. I’ll update this post with my new blog site once I’m up and running wherever that may be. Until then, just remember:

Shoot safe, shoot straight!

More range therapy – June 9,2012

Went to the range today to get some more therapy in. Put 150 rounds down range. Wanted to try some more of the Blazer Blaster aluminum case ammo for use in IDPA. I bought two boxes of that from Dicks Sporting Goods and ran that through my M&P.

I started off at 10 yards with 25 rounds at the down zero zone. All 25 rounds were clean, although I did drop one that just barely broke the line for scoring. After that, I ran 25 rounds at the head down zero zone from 10 yards. Out of those 25 rounds, 22 were down zero, 2 were down one, and one was a miss to the left. Not too bad. I’m using the smaller scoring zone of the head to try to focus my head shots when I have to take them at 7 yards. I figure if I can get my head shots at 10 yards, getting them at 7 yards should be easy. Seemed to work out pretty well the last couple of times at IDPA matches with only one miss.

After that 50 rounds, I moved the target up to 7 yards and worked 25 rounds strong hand and weak hand. Strong hand was much better this week with all 25 rounds in the down zero scoring zone. I did use the slightly bent/flexed strong arm technique this week and it definitely worked. After that, I send 25 rounds weak hand and didn’t do quite as well as I hoped. Only placed 20 out of 25 in the down scoring zone with 3 close low and left, but pulled 2 real low and right almost down into the 3 zone. So still have a lot of work to do there. I can say that on those two that I pulled real low and right, I did try to pick the pace up and move a little faster. Probably a little to fast.

Well, that was my “IDPA” practice. After that, I broke out my PT-92 which I hadn’t shot in a while and put up a “Right-hand” shooting chart and sent 50 rounds at it at 10 yards. Put 40 out of 50 rounds into the orange and white center circle. The other 10 rounds were 2 high and a bit right and 7 low and left. Not terrible for not shooting this gun for probably over 6 months. I actually may try shooting this gun at the bowling pin match later this month.

Oh, if anyone has an “IDPA” range training that they can suggest, I’m all ears. The problem that I’m running into is that none of the ranges that are close to me will let me draw from a holster and shoot, so at best, I’m going from low ready. What I’ve written here today, I’ve done the last couple of weeks. As I get better with strong and weak hand, I may get a different target with multiple small targets and work shooting between the targets, but this is pretty much what I have until the weather cools back off and I can get back into the monthly matches.

Well, that’s it for me. Remember, shoot safe, shoot straight!