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  1. #1
    Grandmaster Indy_Guy_77's Avatar

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    Paul E Palooza II - a long training weekend...lots of pics!

    Posting this here because I don't think I'll have enough of an AAR to place in the Training & Tactics subforum + I have several pics of non-training stuff, too.

    What did I do last weekend? I did this: - along with several other INGOers.

    Stayed at the Holiday Inn Express in Newton Falls, OH. Or Meth Falls, as I affectionately named it after driving through town a few times.

    Few shots of the "falls" area in town:

    Kind of a neat little spot. Large elevation change but not much water flowing.

    Next day at the range property (A multi-use facility that still incorporates an active gravel/sand pit operation, property available for ATV'ing, and lots of property for rock-crawling/off roading. Place is between Garrettsville and Newton Falls. There is a small campground on-site - with electric hook up at some of the sites. There's also a bathroom/shower house near the campground. A large open-sided pavilion held lecture sessions. Another building towards the entrance housed a mini-commercial kitchen where lunches were prepared for us (for purchase), snacks /drinks available. It appeared that there were offices of some type on the second floor of this building. A large covered porch served as the other lecture venue.

    The owner of the facility, a man named Dayle, drove this to "work" on Saturday.

    That's right. A mule. With an honest-to-God M2 mounted. I think the Crown Royal bag was a nice touch.

    I overheard Dayle tell someone he'd ordered a pallet of this stuff...

    Guess what Dayle drove to "work" on Sunday?

    Yep. An armored personnel carrier. I don't any idea of the make, model, nor vintage. But there is an M-60 mounted on top. No idea if this one's the real deal or not.

    Cramped quarters indeed. I'm not too sure how Dayle managed to huck himself in and out of here. He's not a young man and he has obvious trouble standing and walking (just from observing him)

  2. #2
    Grandmaster Clay's Avatar

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    Looks awesome!!
    Last edited by Clay; 08-22-2014 at 10:26.

    I love 'lovemywoods'' woods!

  3. #3
    Grandmaster Indy_Guy_77's Avatar

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    The format for training was somewhat complicated.

    The days were broken into 4 2-hour sessions. Two sessions before lunch break, two sessions afterwards.

    Some of the instruction blocks took two sessions for a total of four hours...while some of them only took 2 hours.

    It was easy enough for me to fill my time.

    I started off my Saturday morning by getting myself signed up for the Critical Handgun Skills 4-hour live-fire training block with Spencer Keepers. I didn't know much about Mr. Keepers going into this class as he doesn't seem to have a very large "internet presence" - other than I gather that he makes holsters. I found out later in the weekend that his AIWB holster his HIGHLY desirable and QUITE expensive. But right as I was leaving morning sign-in to go gather my gear to head to the range, I realized that I'd locked my keys in my car. Right on top of the driver's seat. *sigh*. DANG IT! Walked the half mile to the range to tell Mr. Keepers that if he called roll from the sign-in sheet that I wouldn't be there due to my bone-head move. Walked back to my car, and worked on getting lock-out service called.

    So - now what?

    I sat in on William Aprill's (Aprill Risk Consulting) The 5 W's of Risk lecture. Who, What, When, Where, & Why. (If you EVER have an opportunity to hear a lecture, of any type, from Mr. Aprill, please do so. He is an extremely intelligent, well-spoken, and funny guy. He knows his stuff. ) I missed some of this lecture due to dealing with my car, unfortunately. One of the other lecturers in the class, "Tactical Professor" Claude Werner was in the class. His blog post is an excellent write-up. Understanding the risk of violent aggression | tacticalprofessor Here is another link from the Personal Defense Network with a preview video about this lecture. Why Are People Violent? Triggers to Violence

    After this lecture, I decided I'd go ahead and stay in the same venue to listen to Claude Werner's lecture "Tactical Decision Exercises for the Private Citizen. Learn about Mr. Werner here: About | tacticalprofessor He doesn't look like much (neither does Mr. Aprill), but he's the real deal. Quiet mousy looking guy who can (and will) shoot you in the face 4 times within a few seconds if it's warranted. Anyhow: Tactical Decision Exercises. Basically - he began talking about his military career and the process of "wargaming" that they'd have within the Army. Essentially brainstorming situations and scenarios - and the multiple responses stemming from them. Main point being that this brainstorming can teach you/allow you that it's OK to change your mind if/when you need to in order to achieve your objective.

    What's your objective? He asked us to write one down. For me in my daily life, my objective is to get home to my wife and children. Therefore, as I go about my daily life, I should be thinking about the ways I can achieve this - no matter the situation. Can apply to a traffic jam on the interstate or an encounter (or avoidance) with a mope.

    This wargaming / brainstorming, at least in regard to coming into contact with "the enemy" was also described as only being the first three innings of the ballgame. There IS an aftermath. Lots of ball left to be played.

    He spoke about tactics vs strategy.
    Tactics = about doing things right
    Strategy = doing the right things (and contact with an adversary is the dividing line between the two)

    From there he talked about the process of evaluating options in light of the situation and circumstances
    Iterative process of: Action, counter-action, and reaction. Talking yourself through some what-ifs.
    Questions to ask yourself: What is your situation? What are your capabilities? What equipment do you have (or can get)? What's your fitness? Who is with you and what are THEIR capabilities?

    These questions really are open-ended and meant for discussion. We talk about things like this all the time here on INGO. All kinds of "what would you do" posts come up all the time. They're great brainstorming exercises. What would you do it....some mope holds up a convenience store you're in? The response for each and every one of us will (And should) be different. And depending on "who is with me" will also dictate what I do - if anything.

    Also spoke about some of the myriad options that we'd have in certain situations.

    Do we fight?
    Use lethal force?
    Use non-lethal force?
    Unarmed combat?
    Do we engage immediately or do we maneuver for a better advantage?
    Do we withdraw?
    Do we confront at all?
    Do we negotiate? (as in a mugging situation where you've been gotten the best of)
    Do you freeze up? (may be advantageous in certain circumstances...)
    Do you pursue the perpetrator or not?

    All in all - it was a lot of information packed in a 2-hour lecture. Again, if anyone has an opportunity to hear Mr. Werner speak, please do so! You'll not regret it.

    EDIT: here is Mr. Werner's blog post about his lecture. http://tacticalprofessor.wordpress.c...making-part-i/
    Last edited by Indy_Guy_77; 08-22-2014 at 11:48.

  4. #4
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    Saturday afternoon I was fortunate enough to take a 4-hour live-fire class with Chris Fry (- MDTS) - Practical Shotgun Skills.

    This was my very first ever shotgun class. Class started off with just a bit of discussion about some of the pros & cons of the shotgun platform, how you can (and maybe should) outfit a shotgun meant for defense, ammo choices and the importance of patterning and choosing the best ammo for your gun. No, folks 00-Buck isn't the do all-be all of defensive shotgun loads. It just isn't. A) your shotgun may not like it and throw horrible patterns. B) your living situation may preclude the use of it. And, *GASP* inside of typical room-width distances, "birdshot" will still really really really mess someone up.

    On to live fire! Chris teaches a "push/pull" technique for mitigating recoil. It's great. It's also not groundbreaking stuff and definitely worth trying on your own. Basically he told us to imagine that we were trying to stretch the shotgun between our hands. The forward hand was pushing the grip out while the rear hand was pulling the gun back. This is a whole heck of a lot more comfortable on the shoulder than pulling that thing in as tight as you can so your body takes up 100% of the recoil. Using this technique you can have the shotgun just barely touching you (or not at all), pull the trigger, and the buttstock won't just slam into you. Try it.

    The shotgun I used for the class:

    Remington 870 with lots of Magpul goodies. Of note: This was the first time I'd ever shot this shotgun. Also of note: It functioned perfectly as long as I didn't short-stroke it...which I did once at the beginning of class. And, when I went to pull the spent shell out, I pushed it further into the action...and backwards. Took a bit to clear it since my fingers are so big - but I got 'er did.

    One of the main emphasis of the class was about keeping the shotgun fed. They're typically low-capacity instruments - even with extended magazine tubes. Even your small "pocket pistols" can, will, and do hold more ammo. So - we learned reloading techniques. Learned how to keep your vision on your target while you fed shells into the magazine. That was difficult for me as I definitely kept looking at my fingers/gun rather than looking at the target. I wasn't called out on it on the line - but I'll call myself out on it. I sucked at this.

    The other main emphasis was on keeping the gun running when the magazine is empty. Essentially dropping shells into the ejection port and shooting from there...rapidly.

    One of the last actual drills we did, he wanted us to "shoot 4, load 4". So - as we set about shooting our for and then topping off our mag tube, he'd yell "UP!" - where by you suddenly had to run your gun with (potentially) no ammo in it. And he did that a lot. Lots of practice loading the shotgun from the ejection port.

    He ran through two methods of using your weak hand to reload, and two methods of using your strong hand to reload. For me, I found it easiest/most comfortable to use my weak hand to reload while the shotgun was held (mostly in firing position) up near my armpit. Also, he said, may as well use the same hand to reload a shotgun as you do to reload a pistol.

    Though most of us had slings on our shotguns (I bought an Urban ERT from USDS), we didn't do any transitions to pistol. This was just a basic class - plus it was only 4 hours long.

    My known shortcomings from this class: kept looking at my gun during reloading, and I wasn't able to consciously "push/pull" when shooting fast. I still have a nice bruise on my shoulder....

  5. #5
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    I decided that since I liked Mr. Aprill's lecture the morning before, that I'd sit in on his second lecture of the weekend "Fatal Choices". This lecture was mostly a psychology lesson on how VCAs (Violent Criminal Actors) go about selecting their targets. Intriguing stuff - including the referencing of studies done (involving prisoners) by showing them a face/person for half a second - and then asking the guy if they were likely to target them or not.

    Lots of this involved a look into "intuition" - or that what one part of your brain knows but the rest doesn't yet know. He likened it to the body's response to steer clear of an object in the roadway even though you've only barely (maybe) have seen it and have no idea what it was/is or where it came from. Argument being that the nerves of the body's main imput devices, the eyes, run straight back into this midbrain section. This area of the brain runs/processes at blistering speeds, where as the upper brain is just a bit slower to react.

    Very intriguing and interesting discussion on the almost unnoticeable cues that VCAs look for - and that it's possible to change these about yourself and "deselect" yourself from their potential victim pool.

    He also spent some time talking about antisocial personality disorder / sociopathy - and how these folks truly are mentally ill. Not normal and rational - which is why it's often hard for "normal" people to understand what some of these people can and do. (Basically the sociopaths (formerly psychopaths) are a very small subset of folks with APD...who are again a small sub-set of people in general)

    There was plenty of bridging between this lecture and his 5 W's of Risk lecture. In fact, I think I may be getting a few points confused myself...

    Anyhow: second lecture block of Sunday morning I listened to Michael Goerlich (owner/founder of Raven Concealment Systems) talk about the history of handgun carry in the USA and it's evolution through "being somewhat common" to "almost going away completely via legislation" through today's environment where it's now legal (in some capacity) in every state. He kind of ran though the transition between leather and on into plastics/kydex. How he (and other makers) are trying to expand - but designs - new converts - etc etc. Talked about the difficulty in offering women-specific equipment due to just how diverse women's body types and fashion choices are; and that if a holster were developed to fit within a certain fashion style...the style would then go OUT of style... And then it devolved into some political discussion and I wondered over to look at the armored personnel carrier.

  6. #6
    Grandmaster Clay's Avatar

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    Sounds like good stuff!

    the shotgun class sounds VERY similar to the ACT class I took on the same day.

    I really want to run a shotty with that magpul stock on it. Im still up in the air on whether I like the pistol grip/AR stock adapter I have on mine, or a Magpul stock.

    I love 'lovemywoods'' woods!

  7. #7
    Master Wild Deuce's Avatar

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    Last edited by Wild Deuce; 08-24-2014 at 16:55.
    "From life's first cry to final breath, Jesus commands my destiny"

    "The Son of God became a man to enable men to become sons of God." ~ C.S. Lewis

  8. #8
    Grandmaster Clay's Avatar

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    I love 'lovemywoods'' woods!

  9. #9
    Grandmaster Indy_Guy_77's Avatar

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    One thought on the Magpul SGA stock:

    It's a touch thin "around". If it were just a bit thicker (or offered interchangeable panels!!) I think it'd go a long way to alleviate some strong-hand fatigue & soreness I noticed at the end of the class.

  10. #10
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    Pano shot of the firing line during the shotgun unit:

    INGO'er black label is in there somewhere...

    Freedom Pellets:

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