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Dillinger 09-20-2008 08:47 PM

Self Defense Shot Placement
Okay, in the THIS thread, we will be discussing what does and what does not work for shot placement in a defensive, real world situation.

Our other thread was visited by an expert trainer, Rob Pincus, and a discussion outside of the thread subject bled over. Let's not let that happen again.

While you may or may not think that the involvement of one person is important, having a professional trainer of armed combatants stop by our forum and contribute his years of knowledge is valuable and relevant to a large cross section of the membership board.

If you can't keep your personal feelings about another member out of your posts, take it to a personal PM, take it to The Bunker, or log off and chill the F**K out.

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but because you don't agree with their opinion doesn't give you license to run roughshod over the thread in pursuit of your personal vendetta.

Please keep it civil -


Dillinger 09-20-2008 08:58 PM

Honor the Men, Challenge the Material

A very good article by Rob Pincus on Questioning The World of Wisdom in Firearm's Training. Worth the time to read, I assure you...


matt g 09-20-2008 09:48 PM

Center mass allows for easiest shot placement under duress and as such, increases the chances of a fatal shot.

Only movie stars take head shots.

Dillinger 09-20-2008 10:42 PM

I concur with you Matt - I still advocate centering the weapon and unleashing as many rounds as it takes to end the threat at hand.

Science has proven that each person addresses threats differently, and most people will only be able to process and respond to a single threat at a time.

While it's nice and fine to think you will be Tom Cruise in Collateral, while in the alleyway, snap drawing your holsted weapon and putting down two bad guys in the blink of an eye - Your average person isn't going to be able that without a lot of training.

Shoot to end the threat at hand, reassess/reload and proceed. It's all that I practice...


Mark F 09-20-2008 11:32 PM

In conjunction with the above, I regurarly practice Intuitive Shooting from various positions such as sitting and crouching. You also need to get proficient in one hand shooting, both left & right.

SGT-MILLER 09-21-2008 12:04 AM

Practice as many different scenarios as you can. One handed shooting, shooting while lying down, shooting while moving forwards/backwards/side to side, shooting while wounded, etc............

Think of as many scenarios as you can and practice them. This will help open your mind to the different things that can happen out there.

I do this with my security defense team at my squadron. We will spend hours just going over different scenarios, and practicing everything from simple engagements to worst-case scenarios with multiple casualties, weapons problems, bad envoirnments, communications failures, etc........

Another good mental note I learned from my weapons instructor early in my military career.

"Accuracy over speed, regardless."

Rob Pincus 09-21-2008 03:58 AM

Dillinger, Thanks Much.

Guys, in accordance with the thoughts in my article (linked above), the last thing I want is for my opinion to be put up on a magic pedestal. It should be taken from the perspective that it comes..... which includes over a decade of familiarity with the source information that RL357 was resting his position on.

I received a very cool note via PM from RL where he was making sure that I knew that he wasn't trying to offend me in his post. No problem there.

Back on topic, for those who were following the other thread, this is what I sent to him:


The only other thing I was going to share with you was that my point was specifically about the .380 Glaser load.... I am absolutely sure that they did not find 500 actual shootings with that load. You have to understand the source... they compared the results of the .380 Glaser to the results in GELATIN of another round that they did have 500 actual shootings with. Most of the rounds that they had that many cases for were the rounds that are most popular in LE and Mil over the last 50 years.
At first, I too thought this was a great idea..... over the intervening years, I've come to change my mind about it.

I've come to the conclusion that it is more important to choose a gun/caliber combo based on your ability to shoot it first, carry it second and enjoy it third. After that, shoot until they are down as best you can!

In fact, the above paragraph is a summation of 50% (or more) of my book!... so you just saved some money and time, if you were considering reading it ;).


BigO01 09-21-2008 09:18 AM

Mr. Pincus going on the assumption that you've at some point in your career you've done at least some study on the effectiveness of various rounds and the wounds they have inflicted and or discussed the issue with those that may have studied it .

Do you have any data/knowledge of which type of wound was the most effectively produced by what ammo/caliber and which is the most consistently effective in ending a persons actions ?

To put it another way

Is there any data to find out if more assailants are being stopped by wounds that have caused

A) Blood loss
B) Paralysis being inflicted or
C) some other factor such as shock from being shot or perhaps cowardice in the face of a fight "include immediately killed with the first round/s fired here"

What style of rounds if any have penetrated deep enough to cause trauma if not a break in the spine and have done so consistently through various clothing including heavy leather jackets ?

Are hollow points more effective than say a sharp shouldered semiwadcutter at causing blood loss assuming placement is the same .

Putting concern for unintended secondary targets aside for a moment . Do "pass troughs" seem to stop a person quicker than a round that stops in the body assuming placement is good and the same say a lung hit ?

Also have there been any studies that might help to determine what types of criminals have proven to be the most motivated and dangerous to the public and willing to engage in a armed fight ?

For instance would a group or single home invader "one who knows a home is occupied at the time of entry" be more likely to engage in a gunfight rather than run than say a armed street mugger ?

Thank you for your input

Mark F 09-21-2008 11:34 AM

Shot placement would be nice... but in the heat of battle raw firepower will be your friend.

Rob Pincus 09-21-2008 01:05 PM


Lots of BIG questions there.... not all on topic here, but I can answer:

I don't think that there is much point is trying to predict behavior (such as propensity for attack or "shock factor" after being shot). None of it can be counted on and so it shouldn't make any difference in your preparation or actual defense. Deviants that commit crimes are deviant. There is no doubt that more people use firearms for defense in their homes, but that is probably more a matter of convenience and access not a demonstration of criminal intent in that environment.

Because human physiology is pretty fragile and I haven't seen a big difference in the calibers/bullets most people carry (38-357,9-40-45), I don't really distinguish between them much. We did a DVD last year with a penetration demonstration section that showed what bullets would be likely to do if you shot them in your typically constructed home and they missed, as far as penetration through walls/rooms. Lots of people didn't like the findings because they misinterpreted what my point was. Just because we showed that Glasers and birdshot penetrated dramaticallly less through a home, didn't necessarily mean that we were advocating their use.

People want easy answers..... but there aren't any. Defensive firearms are going to be a compromise between ease of use, reliability, convenience of carry, recoil management, capacity, downrange power, price and a host of other factors. That is okay..... get a good gun and practice, don't expect to hedge your bets much with a special gun or bullet.


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