Pistol Competition Equipment and Training

Discussion in 'Competition Shooting' started by FCross7, Sep 20, 2010.

  1. FCross7

    FCross7 New Member

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    I have been getting the bug the past few months to try out some pistol competitions, so about a month ago I went and bought a CZ SP-01 for this purpose. I love the pistol and think it should work out great for what I need, but I have a few questions. I've got 550 rounds through it so far, and wouldn't change or polish any parts till I hit at least 1000 rounds, but my question is this. I noticed that some competition organizations had different divisions classified by the pistol used, whether it was productions, open, limited, etc. I would assume that the higher classification you get into, the shooters get better as well. So if this is true, would I be better to leave the pistol as is and compete in the production division?

    Also, for those of you who have competed, what type of holster do you prefer? I know everyone's preferences will be different, but I would just like to get a better idea of some that people like.

    Other than just regular range shooting, which I try to do at least once a week, what else can I start doing to up my game? One thing I've been doing is practicing my mag changes, but that's it. Should I be practicing shooting while moving, shooting around objects, that sort of thing? Also, what are some other things I can start working on?

    Once again, thanks in advance for any and all info.

    -Fred
     
  2. Jpyle

    Jpyle New Member

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    IDPA has different classes of pistol, then each shooter qualifies at a level within their class. There is no real correlation to qualifying level and type of gun used, except that some gun are better suited for competitive shooting out of the box.

    IDPA shooting involves shooting from stance, while moving, from cover and one-handed weak and strong side shooting, so yes practice all of it to get your times down.

    International Defensive Pistol Association - Classifier Course of Fire Information
     

  3. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    In USPSA there will be great shooters in all divisions.
    Its all in what you want to shoot, some of the best shooters shoot production, but a lot of new guys shoot there as well because its the gun they already own, ammo is cheap, and it is very competitive(as are all the other divisions).
    You will earn a classification based on your shooting of some standardized classifier stages in your first few matches.
    While you will be ultimately competing against all the shooters for the high overall score in your division, you will also be competing against shooters in the same class as yourself.
    For example you are a "C" class shooter in production division, and you get beat in the production overall by a Grand Master, 2 Masters, 5 "A's" and 6 "B's".
    That would put you in 15th overall, but you win your class as the High C shooter, and try not to smile too hard the first time you best an "A" shooter because it feels great! :D
    There are also other sub-catagories such as Lady, Senior, & Super Senior.
    Confused yet? :p

    I was too a few months ago, don't be concerned. Just go shoot, be safe, have a great time and then see where you place. Pay attention to the guys that are beating you and by how much and use that as a way to track your improvement from match to match. And YOU WILL IMPROVE!

    Your CZ is a great gun for production! That's probably where it'll be most at home. I am thinking hard about buying one myself. Production does allow you to do some internal improvements (such as trigger jobs) just make sure you leave all the safeties intact such as the firing pin block. It also limits you to 10 rounds per magazine, so practice those reloads!

    You also could load your mags all the way up and shoot in Limited Division if you choose, but you will be shooting against a lot of guys shooting Major power factor in custom built pistols, so your 9mm will be at a slight scoring disadvantage.
    If you've been thinking about trying it, just do it! I wish I'd had started a long time ago

    United States Practical Shooting Association
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2010
  4. zhuk

    zhuk New Member

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    Yeah, just because Production division contains the least 'tricked out' guns does not mean that highly experienced and skilled shooters do not compete in it. In Aust there is such a miniscule pool of available pistol shooters anyway that the majority shoot Production.

    IPSC however, does not allow hardly anything in the way of modifications - pretty much restricted to changing your open sights (ie iron to F/O or visa versa) and grip taping. Certainly not trigger jobs with the 5lb minimum rule, alas. We are also limited to 10 rnd mags for all civillian use, no matter the division...so I suggest obtaining 5-6 mags. Not suggesting you would get as many misses as I do lol but it helps on more complex stages and you have that comfort of knowing if you do crash n burn there's some in reserve.


    +1 on the CZ. I would have strongly considered a Shadow, were it not for the necessity for polymer due to my dodgy wrist.


    As for holsters - coincidently, I received mine in the post yesterday. Bladetech LH...can't believe it cost $120 :eek:

    That's aussie pricing for you lol


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  5. jtischauser

    jtischauser New Member

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    You gotta get out and try some USPSA or IDPA ASAP. It will change your life. You will wonder why you shot standing still for so long.
     
  6. zhuk

    zhuk New Member

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    Hell yeah. There are few things more fun than shooting & moving...


    Makes a nice contrast with the purely static nature of rifle competition. I wish I'd been shooting back in the days when IPSC rifle was legal...that would have been the pinnacle of awesome :D
     
  7. jtischauser

    jtischauser New Member

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    Back in the day. You mean today...

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=57ui96zL_P0"]OKC Gun Club rifle match[/ame]

    We shoot them all the time. Next year we are going to have a "major" match hopefully.
     
  8. zhuk

    zhuk New Member

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    Not in my country :rolleyes: Don't think bolt actions would cut it really, lol


    Nice bit of envy-provoking video there, thanks.
     
  9. jtischauser

    jtischauser New Member

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    Oh man thats a bummer! I didn't realize where u were at or I wouldn't have teased you with that video. It makes sense now that you said IPSC instead of USPSA.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2010
  10. zhuk

    zhuk New Member

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    Hey no worries, I don't hold it against ya :D Was a very cool vid with the gun-cam-view, I enjoyed it.


    Actually I'm lucky in one way - was talking to our club's pistol RO the other week, and he mentioned the very nice semi-auto rifles he had all tricked-up and modified just how he wanted them. And then to think they went into a furnace/crusher for NO REASON :(

    Think that would be worse than my position of never having any to begin with.
     
  11. FCross7

    FCross7 New Member

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    Thanks for all the info guys. I'm definitely gonna get started in it, hopefully around the beginning of next year or so. I was looking on the CZ Custom website and they have the Blade Tech Holsters and Mag Pouches, so Ill probably see about getting those for Christmas. I do have a couple questions though, do you guys prefer the regular holster or the DOH? As I've never used a holster much I don't see where one would have advantages over the other. Also, I see they have Tek-Lock, Loop, etc. I assume that loop is just regular belt loops, and from what I can tell, Tek-Lock is just a quick detachable system to allow you to take the holster on and off quickly, only leaving that small clip on the belt. Is this correct?

    Zhuk, that's a big bummer about all the restrictions placed on you guys over there. I can't imagine how frustrating that must be. I can totally see what you mean about multiple mags, I can see myself missing a lot at first as I'm not that great at pistol shooting yet.

    One question I have for everybody though, is whats the best way to get rid of a flinch while shooting? When I take my time at the range, I can slowly apply more and more pressure to the trigger and almost surprise myself with it, therefore eliminating the flinch, but once I start doing competitions this of course won't be an option. Other than just shooting and dry-firing, is there anything anyone recommends to help with the flinch?

    -Fred
     
  12. zhuk

    zhuk New Member

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    Fred,


    Think you'll like competition shooting - both exciting and slightly nervewracking at the same time. I have an abnormally large amount of endogenous adrenalin which probably doesn't help lol...but its a lot of fun nonetheless.



    My holster can be adjusted to drop down from its default position, also allows for adjustment re particular belt-width. Says Tek-lock on the back; pinch in the sides and unhinge to lift it right off:


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    Paddle holsters are available, however no one I know uses them - would think its gotta be more firmly anchored on a belt. Strongly advise you get a 'double' velcro belt: ie inner one threads thru pants loops, outer rigid one attaches to it onto which you thread the holster/mag pouches.

    Far more immovable than a normal belt which you'll see helps immensely - as you draw and NOTHING MOVES. The outer belt I have is leather therefore extra rigid. This is a good thing.


    As for mag pouches...I got Uncle Mikes double stacks. Might be a bit cheaper than Bladetech (if local prices are anything to go by)

    [​IMG]



    On flinching: surprisingly, I haven't got that particular problem far as I know (my speciality appears to be jerking or slapping the trigger - evidence of my woeful trigger control). Have heared that putting a few snap caps alternating in your mags might help - may be recoil/noise that causes the flinch so having a 'surprise' dummy round ought to help you see if you're anticipating & therefore flinching when the trigger is pulled.

    However in competition you're having to concentrate on a million things at once so maybe there won't be time to anticipate anything. Or, maybe that's just me. ha

    Great forum for competitive resources here, if you're interested in reading up on some stuff prior Brian Enos's Forums... Maku mozo!



    If you're fortunate enough to get practice (hey wish we could) you should be able to get it sorted. The only time I can shoot is in competition...and with adrenal-overload...well, its never pretty lol
     
  13. utf59

    utf59 New Member

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    Fred,

    I see you're in central Florida. I don't know too many places outside of northeast Florida, but I do know there's a lot of competition in the Melbourne area. So if you're toward the eastern side of the state, that might be at least somewhat convenient for you.

    As far as flinching, the snap cap idea works well to let you know that you're doing it. I would add that you should let someone else load the mags so it'll be a surprise when one shows up. It also lets you practice your tap-rack-shoot drill.

    I saw an interesting drill on the Outdoor Channel last week that was designed to help shooters stop blinking, which then lets them focus on the front sight throughout recoil. You put up a blank silhouette (or a big blank piece of paper, etc.) — nothing on the whole sheet to aim at. Then fire off 10 rounds, steadily, but quickly. After two or three rounds, your eyes stop blinking, and you can focus on the front sight throughout the rest of the string. I tried it myself, and it does work. If it helps with blinking, maybe it would also help with flinching.

    If you ever start looking for places to compete in the top right part of the state, give me a shout.
     
  14. jtischauser

    jtischauser New Member

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    I had a flinching problem when I first started too. You have got to fix that so that you can watch the sights through the entire recoil cycle. It's the most important thing you can do to do well in action shooting. If you aren't seeing the sights you are gonna have a lot lower scores and less fun.

    I started wearing foam plugs and a good set of electronic muffs at the same time. It dulls the sound a bunch. Another good drill I just learned in Phil Straders competition pistol class. Load up a full 15-20 round mag or whatever you have. Go over to within 2-3 yards of the berm and fire off the entire mag. You might have to go real fast or kinda fast. Your flinch mechanism will dictate the speed that it can handle. After a few shots the recoil jerk and loud noise will become normal and you will be able to keep both eyes open and in the sights. Watch the front sight move up and out of the rear sight and back into the rear sight. By the end if the mag it will look like a slow motion movie which is how it should look in a match.

    The flinch will also go away more with time as you shoot more and more.

    If you enjoy your first match and plan to shoot every month or more I would highly recommend getting a good competition training class. For $300-600 and 1000-1500 rounds you can learn so much and it will make all of your shooting so much more enjoyable.
     
  15. FCross7

    FCross7 New Member

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    Zhuk, that's actually the same holster I was looking at getting, only RH, Ill definitely give those mag holders and the double belt a look as well.

    JT and UTF, Ill give both of those a try and see if it helps. I think I do blink like that which I need to work on also, but that's not the problem I was talking about. I probably used the wrong word for it. I guess recoil anticipation is a better term. When I fire somewhat quick at all, my shots are all over the place, but mostly low. And in some cases very low, like off the paper at 7 yards low. Any suggestions for this?

    Thanks for all the help so far everyone.

    -Fred
     
  16. jtischauser

    jtischauser New Member

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    That will definitely go away with more shooting. Make sure you grip the gun as tight as you can with both hands and lock out your wrists so the pistol moves as little as possible. Once you start concentrating hard on what the sights are doing while at the same time running around a stage recoil will be negligible to all the other sensory inputs.

    Make sure you are prepping the trigger before you break the shot too. By prep I mean pull it back until it hits the wall prior to it firing. You should try to do this everytime especially on the 10+ yard stuff.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2010
  17. utf59

    utf59 New Member

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    Fred,

    I knew what you meant. That was just the best thing I could think of to help. And the one I saw was demonstrated by the same guy jtischauser mentioned. I just saw him demonstrate it indoors, so he was using a blank silhouette target instead of a berm.

    Now that you're on to the fact that you're anticipating, you'll start noticing it more while you're at the range. You'll catch yourself as soon as you do it, and sometimes just before. Then you'll be able to focus on it a little and concentrate on pressing the trigger straight back. It just takes practice.

    Have fun!
     
  18. FCross7

    FCross7 New Member

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    Thanks guys. I figured practice was the answer. I was just hoping there was something else I could do to speed it up.

    Darn! I guess that means Ill just have to spend more time at the range. ;)

    -Fred
     
  19. zhuk

    zhuk New Member

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    I'm going to try out the rapid fire idea when I get my gun and go to an indoor range for the 50-round break-in (since no chance of 'practice' at my range). My shots are often low to the right. Mainly at more than 20m, but if I'm doing fast shots - particularly strong hand only - it happens at 7m also.

    If you are getting low left hits its most likely jerking/slapping instead of a nice, even steady pull straight back. I know I can feel how bad my trigger control is lol...can see much dry firing in my future...


    +1

    Yeah with all that is going on at once, noticing recoil will be the last thing on your mind :D