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Old 10-30-2014, 12:11 AM   #1
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I'm looking at getting into idpa but can't find much information about the required equipment and also if you have to be a member of an idpa club or not? I have alot of questions so any information is appreciated! Thank you
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Old 10-30-2014, 12:21 AM   #2
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Go to IDPA.com to find a club near you. Normally clubs will let you shoot a few times to try it out. We will let non members shoot in non sanctioned matches. I am a Safety Officer. For equipment, what type of gun are you planning on shooting?
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Old 10-30-2014, 12:58 AM   #3
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I found two places near me in ohio. So if I like shooting matches, I'll have to join a club to be able to keep shooting matches? Does the gun have to be a certain size limit for barrel length? Can you have a ported barrel? Does it have to be 9mm? Do you have to have a holster that has no sort of release button, just retention? Can you use any ammo?
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Old 10-30-2014, 01:30 AM   #4
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Rick is correct about trying it without joining. Most clubs are pretty relaxed about it for club matches.

For equipment, you need a gun, a holster, a cover garment and a few reloading devices.

For a semi-auto pistol, you would need at least 3 magazines. If you shoot 1911 with 7 round magazines you need 4 of them. For a revolver, you need at least 4 speed loaders or, if you shoot high powered stuff (357mag, 44mag) you are allowed to use moon clips.

The holster can be any IWB holster, though most shooters use OWB holsters. If you want to be competitive, come and see what the better shooters are using and work towards that set of gear. But some of us use IDPA as practice more than competition. If you look at the sport as an opportunity to practice with what you actually carry, then gear up the way you would normally carry. The OWB holsters do have some limitations on how far the gun can be from the body. There are also specific positioning details (behind the hipbone) that they can explain for you. Or, for details see the IDPA website.

Cover garment must cover both the gun and the spare magazines. There are some stages that do not require cover garments, but most do. You will see a lot of folks (guys and gals) using a shooting vest (511 is a common brand). But some people simply use an unbuttoned shirt which is good enough for trying out IDPA.

Typical club matches run around 100 rounds. There is also a Classifier (90 round match) that they may offer after the match. Bring 4 boxes of ammo just in case.

If you decide you like it (and you probably will!) then you can start investing in various bits of gear.

I went to an IDPA match and just watched the first time. Helped tape targets, helped set up stages, spent most of a day with the guys and got to know some of them. I met exactly zero elitist snobs, in fact everyone there was all the way at the other end of that spectrum. Normal guys willing to help, willing to answer questions, good folk. That's what decided it for me. Come on out and try it, you'll like it!
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Old 10-30-2014, 01:41 AM   #5
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i would suggest going to their webite and downloading their rule book and see what different classes are available to shoot in and what type of pistol they call for in each class.

like Mr. Balota suggested, maybe attend a couple just as spectator to get an idea of what goes on. talk to some of the participants and get some insight from them.
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Old 10-30-2014, 02:04 AM   #6
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Ported barrels are not allowed. Revolvers need to be 4 inch or less. Autos can be 5 inch. The gun must be able to fit in the IDPA gun box. What type of gun do you shoot?
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Old 10-30-2014, 02:18 AM   #7
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I wasn't able to find any handbook and I scoured their website , but I'll look again. I am propably going to shoot a m&p pro series C.O.R.E 5 inch barrel.
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Old 10-30-2014, 02:23 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by austin125 View Post
I found two places near me in ohio. So if I like shooting matches, I'll have to join a club to be able to keep shooting matches? Does the gun have to be a certain size limit for barrel length? Can you have a ported barrel? Does it have to be 9mm? Do you have to have a holster that has no sort of release button, just retention? Can you use any ammo?
If you like shooting matches, you only have to join IDPA. Most clubs welcome any IDPA member and you don't have to join the club itself. Some clubs charge a little more for non-members to shoot the matches. There would be match fees (typically $10-15) for club matches. Sanctioned matches cost more and involve more rounds, more stages, etc.

There are size limits for barrel length. Semi-auto pistols must fit inside a standard IDPA box (8.75 x 6 x 1.625). My XDm 5.25" Competition Series 45ACP just barely fits! Revolvers do not need to fit in the box, but maximum barrel length is 4".

Ported barrels are not allowed.

There are 5 divisions: 3 are for semi-auto and 2 are for revolver. Calibers from 9mm to 45ACP can work for semi-autos, though 380 auto may be below the minimum power factor (product of bullet weight in grains and muzzle velocity in ft/s). 38spl to 44mag or 45ACP/45LongColt can work for revolvers. Each division has different power factor limitations. SSP and ESP require 125000, CDP requires 165000, SSR requires 105000 and ESR requires 165000. They'll help you figure out which division your gun is in.

Most retail ammo will meet the power factor (though some just barely make it). Club matches often skip the chronographing and weighing to prove power factor, but at sanctioned matches they will check.

Holsters do not need to have a retention mechanism, but if your holster does have a retention system, it must be used. I use a Safariland ALS holster that has retention because I carry that way and use IDPA to practice. There are lots of faster options than my holster.

There are some pretty subtle rules in IDPA. Procedural errors (like incorrect use of cover or shooting targets out of order) are likely when you first start. Download the rulebook from IDPA.com and read it. But even if you study well, you're still likely to get some procedural penalties. They'll explain what you did wrong so you can learn. Don't take it personally. Have fun.

IDPA is about balancing speed and accuracy. "You can't miss fast enough to win." But taking forever to line up each shot is also pointless. Finding the balance in between is what IDPA is about.

Scoring is done by times. The raw time for you to finish a course of fire is measured and recorded. Your hits are scored in terms of how far below perfect they are. A-zone hits (5" square head shots or 8" circle in center of target) are called "down zero" meaning no penalty. Just outside the A-zone in the body is a region labelled -1. Hits in this area are "down one". Further out is -3 or "down three" and completely missing the target is "down five". All targets are scored on this basis and total points down for that stage are recorded (actually they record points down on each target and add up). Each point down adds 0.5 seconds to your raw time. Then any procedural errors, hits on non-threats, or failures to neutralize (no hits in down zero or down one zones) are evaluated. There are time penalties associated with these mistakes. Raw time plus all penalties is the score for that stage.

A lot of stages are called Vickers Count, which means you can shoot extra rounds to make up for bad shots. Such stages may be "best 2 hits scored" or "best 3 hits scored". That would be defined in the stage description that you would hear about before you have to shoot the stage.

Some stages (generally "Standards" stages) are called Limited Vickers Count. Limited Vickers means you may NOT shoot extra rounds. So, if the description says 2 shots per target, then only shoot 2 per target. If you shoot 3 times at such a target you get a procedural (3 seconds penalty) AND they tape over your best shot! So, you can't improve your score on Limited Vickers stages.

By far the most useful skill when starting IDPA (IMHO) is the ability to laugh at yourself. You will make some truly entertaining blunders. You will wonder why that non-threat couldn't duck just once! You will become sure the targets previously starred in the movie Matrix "How did I miss that?"

Have fun! And let us know how you do!
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Old 10-30-2014, 02:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by austin125 View Post
I wasn't able to find any handbook and I scoured their website , but I'll look again. I am probably going to shoot a m&p pro series C.O.R.E 5 inch barrel.
http://www.idpa.com/compete/rules

Then click on Rule Book on right side of screen. You should get a downloadable PDF of the latest Rule Book.

Competition Optics Ready Equipment (CORE) come with an optic on the top of the slide. This would not be allowed in IDPA and would not fit in the IDPA box. Such equipment is allowed (I think) in USPSA. If the optics are easily removed and restored, you could shoot the gun without the optics on it. Otherwise, you would need a different gun for IDPA.

There are a lot of 1911 and Glock shooters in IDPA. Lots of other makes of guns, SA, S&W, Ruger, H&K,... Hopefully "probably" means you have other guns to choose from.
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Old 10-30-2014, 03:03 AM   #10
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Just show up with three mags and a holster. You are not even required to have a mag holder. You can carry them in your pockets if you want. Try it a couple times. Talk to some of the other competitors. Most people use outside the waistband holsters. If you already have a holster use it. The club will let you know if it is compliant of not. They will probably let you shoot with it the first time anyway. Just don't bring one of those cheap Unkle Mikes holsters. The main thing is it has to cover the trigger completely.

M&Ps are real popular. There are a bunch of good holsters. If you want you can post a pic on here. I can tell you if it looks compliant or not.
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