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CHA-LEE

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About CHA-LEE

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    Big Panda Performance
  • Birthday 02/06/1976

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    rezman@hotmail.com
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    http://www.bigpandaperformance.com

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    Parker, CO
  • Real Name
    Charlie Perez

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  1. Yesterday after work I was able to do some Live Fire practice in poor lighting conditions. I purposefully went to the range later in the evening when it was almost sunset so I could test out my new Decot Revel +1.0 Diopter shooting glasses. Having these +1.0 shooting glasses made with my pupal distance prescription eliminated all of the “Vertigo” feeling I was getting with the cheap +1.0 safety glasses. When I got to the range and started shooting the lighting was still good so that gave me a chance to warm up on some drills with my old +0.75 shooting glasses. I kept shooting the drills with the old glasses until the lighting got dark enough to make it difficult to see the sights. Then I switched to the new +1.0 shooting glasses and kept on shooting as the lighting got darker and darker. I kept shooting until the lighting got to a point of being unreasonably dark compared to what would happen at an outdoor match. When the lighting is just dark enough to make the +0.75 glasses start to be ineffective the +1.0 glasses are a little too focused on the rear blade. This puts the front sight in a slightly blurry condition and it caused me to subconsciously point the muzzle high as I try to find and focus on the front sight. This was the same situation that I experienced when I used the cheap +1.0 glasses at the Weld match on Sunday when the lighting was only marginally poor. But as the lighting got darker the +1.0 glasses started working better and better. They allow me to see a pretty crisp rear notch with a fairly clear fiber dot in the front sight which is very close to what I replicated in dry fire at my house. The only bummer with the +1.0 shooting glasses is how blurry the targets are at distance. As part of my practice stage I had three mini poppers at about 20 yards and those things were mega blurry in those lighting conditions. It makes aiming at a specific spot on the target really difficult. All I can do is aim at the center of the blur and hope that is centered enough. The good news is that even though the target is blurry I could still see a valid sight alignment using the rear notch and fiber dot so I could call shots properly based on sight alignment. Much more testing in poor lighting conditions is needed with these new +1.0 shooting glasses. But I like how it’s going so far as it does seem to be a viable solution. I will be attending an indoor match this coming Sunday and that will give me another chance to use these shooting glasses in poor lighting conditions. I think the hardest part with this testing is really going to be figuring out when to transition from my +0.75 glasses to the +1.0 ones. I need to do some dry fire testing in the marginal lighting conditions to see what I can reasonably replicate at the range to “Test” the sight seeing effectiveness given the lighting conditions. This may be as simple as quickly raising & lowering the gun for a flash sight picture and assessing what I could actually see then deciding on a particular lens that enables me to see the flash sight picture the best. This could easily be performed in the safe area at a match or even during the make ready process.
  2. A memory stage is a scenario where you can see the same targets from multiple shooting positions. Usually a bunch of visual barriers (Walls, barrels, no shoots, etc) are used to make the target presentation confusing. This can end up in a situation where you double or triple engage the same targets accidentally from multiple different positions. Or you don't engage a target at all because you didn't see it from the only position it was available from. These types of stages are usually called "Memory Stages" because the best way to tackle them is to memorize a very specific target engagement order while also getting into very specific shooting positions. Memory stages are not the normal situation where you run to a shooting position and shoot everything you can see from that position, then run to the next position and repeat.
  3. You don't have to be a "Certified RO" to read and know the rules of the game. Anyone can read and understand the rules whenever they want. Its not like USPSA is restricting the rules to only "Certified RO's". When I run into shooters who don't know the rules and are ROing incorrectly I attempt to guide them down the correct path in a graceful manner. If they push back on my guidance I tell them to stop officiating if they are too lazy to put in the effort to understand and deploy the rules of the game properly. As an MD and CRO I frequently get asked rule questions at matches. This is fine as some rules are a little confusing at times. But I won't endlessly spoon feed people rule information. If someone keeps asking about rule clarifications but isn't even attempting to help themselves by looking at the rules I will call them out on it. I will ask them "Did you try to find the rule(s) in the Rule Book yourself?". When the answer comes back as "No.....", then I tell them to quit being lazy and at least try to help themselves before wasting other peoples time. The thing that blows my mind about these shooters who are super resistant to reading and understanding the rules is that they refuse to accept the fact that actually knowing the rules will make them a better competitor. Knowing and understanding the rules WILL make you a better competitor.
  4. As the MD, why on earth would you allow a squad to happen with nobody on it willing or able to RO? When that happens at my matches, I liquidate that squad of deadbeats and put them on other squads that have a enough RO's to run the squad effectively. When they bitch about being moved, I tell them they have two options. Option 1 - Start ROing so you can help make the match happen, or Option 2 - Consumer Shooters don't get a choice in their squading if they are not willing to work.
  5. There are a lot of factors to consider before an accurate suggestion can be made. Is this a matter of there not being any certified RO's? Or are there certified RO's on the squad but they simply don't want to RO? As an MD do you mandate that X amount of RO's must be on a squad for it to be a valid squad? As an MD the success and failure of your match is 100% in your control. You need to deploy requirements that facilitate a smooth running match that will minimize issues. Balancing the squads with a sufficient amount of RO's is just one part of the match management effort. Online self squading is a nice option for customers so they can squad with their buddies. But NONE of those people are actually making squading decisions to ensure that the squads have enough RO's. Its up to the MD to ensure that happens. There are very few club matches that can afford to have dedicated RO's that do nothing but officiate. Club matches require volunteer effort from the competitors to help make it all happen. If you have a group of local shooters that think your club match is a 100% consumer product where everything is provided for them, including ROing, then that is the first issue to fix. I make it simple to understand for my local club match customers. A club match is a volunteer driven event. If you are too lazy to get onboard with that requirement and won't help make it happen, then don't come to my match.
  6. On Sunday I attended the Weld County USPSA match. With some much needed rest the night before I was feeling back to normal and looked forward to shooting this match. I decided to use my new Atlas Titan Operator Backup gun for this match so I could get some more rounds through it. The backup gun ran like a champ with zero issues. When the buzzer goes off I can’t even tell it’s not my primary as it feels the same and the sights track exactly the same as my primary. The higher angled thumb safety paddle is the only thing I can “Feel” being different during the draw and even that isn’t a huge difference. It’s cool to have a backup gun that is truly identical to my primary. Not to mention it running 100% reliable with zero drama. The morning of this match turned out to be overcast with a little bit of misty rain. This was abnormal given the forecast called for clear skies and hot temps. But it was a great opportunity to give the +1.00 shooting glasses a try. The lighting wasn’t horrible due to the overcast but it was dark enough to start causing problems. My squad started on a large field course that had lateral movement between positions. It was setup in a somewhat memory stage configuration as you could see the same targets from multiple positions. I was able to shoot this stage twice to make a comparison between shooting glasses. For my “Match” stage run I used the +1.00 glasses and for the practice run after that I used my normal +0.75 glasses. On the first run with the +1.00 glasses I could see the rear notch with perfect clarity and the front sight was slightly blurry. The targets were much more blurry than normal. All of this was expected as it matched what I was seeing in dry fire at home. While shooting the stage I found myself pointing the muzzle high a few times while “Looking for” and trying to focus on the front sight since it wasn’t in focus. Some of my hits on target were displaced abnormally high due to pointing the gun high while trying to see the front sight and shooting at the same time. On my second run with the +0.75 glasses I could see the front sight pretty good and my sight picture was normal which resulted in much better on target hits with about the same stage time. These results confirmed that the lighting wasn’t really bad enough to justify using the +1.00 shooting glasses. But it was a good opportunity to give them a try. For the rest of the match I stuck with my +0.75 shooting glasses and it worked well even though the lighting wasn’t optimal until our third stage. By then the sun was out and I could see my sights well. Performance wise, I shot the match ok. I had a few minor mistakes on a couple of the field course stages. This match had about 30 pieces of steel and I had way too many make up shots on some of those. Same old issue of blasting at white instead of picking a specific spot to aim at within the steel. The classifier stage was brutal for me though. It was called Short Sprint standards where you had one shot on each target freestyle from the back shooting box, then one shot each strong hand from the middle box. Then one shot each freestyle from the middle box then one shot each weak hand from the front box. The targets were at distances and angles that made the one handed shooting pretty difficult. I ended up pulling one of the strong hand shots low into a no shoot, then pulled another weak hand shot just low touching the no shoot perforation. Eating a miss and two no shoots on that classifier hurt and kept me out of contention for winning the match overall. These kind of stages are also super easy for the PCC shooters which made shooting against them in the overall even more difficult. It was a fun match and I was glad to get some more run time on the Backup Atlas gun as well as testing out the +1.00 shooting glasses. I am planning on going out to the BLGC range one day this week after work for some live fire practice and stay until sunset to see if I can replicate the crappy lighting conditions so I can test out the +1.00 glasses some more. We will see how it goes.
  7. On Saturday I ran the HPPS match which as always is a lot of work getting everything ready to rumble the morning of the match. This was our section qualifier match that is used in a series of matches to determine Nationals Slot allocation for the 2020 shooting season. Since this was our section qualifier we setup 7 stages plus a full Chrono stage. The night before I only got about 3 hours of sleep because I had to drop my wife off at the airport the morning of the match. Getting up super early to drop her off then driving straight to the range to setup and run the HPPS match ultimately ended up being my undoing. By the time the match started I was struggling to stay focused due to being physically worn out and mentally tired. Since I was there I was also shooting the match and made a complete bone head mistake that caused me to DQ. My squad was on our third stage of the match and I was ROing all the way up until my turn. It was my turn so I handed off the clock and proceeded to walk the stage one time before shooting it. I get into the start position for my dry fire run of the stage, set my body and feet to exit the starting position and I am really focused on exiting aggressively, then as I exit I subconsciously gripped the gun and drew it out of the holster…….DOH!!!! I immediately realized that I screwed up bigtime and declared that I had DQed myself. The whole squad was surprised that I had done it including myself. This is what I get for trying to shoot a match when I am running on fumes. Since I had DQed and couldn’t shoot anymore I became the full time RO for the squad for the rest of the match. It sucked to DQ myself over doing something so dumb like that. But if I was so mentally out to lunch to allow something like that to happen I shouldn’t have been shooting in the first place. This is something that I need to pay much more attention to in the future. If I am feeling as worn out and mentally foggy as I was before the start of the match then I need to respect that I shouldn’t be shooting. Hard lessons area always learned the hard way.
  8. I may switch to Open full time in 2020. But I still need to at least try to find a sight seeing solution with iron sights for the rest of 2019.
  9. Look for abnormal wear on the tool head or dies above that location.
  10. Given that pretty much all of the major matches I have attended this year had poor lighting at some point which resulted in crappy stage runs it’s time for me to revisit the shooting glasses situation. The +0.75 Diopter shooting glasses have worked really good in optimal lighting conditions, but are now not enough in the poor lighting conditions. I did some historical research in this diary to figure out the timeline of when I started using these + Diopter shooting glasses. I started using the +0.50 glasses in May 2016 then upgraded to the +0.75 glasses in July 2018. Given that today is almost exactly a year later from the last change and combined with being 43 years old now it’s probably time to bump up the shooting glasses to +1.00. I still have the cheap safety glasses in varying + magnifications so I did a bunch of dry fire using different magnification glasses in varied lighting conditions. I primarily switched between the +0.75 and +1.00 glasses to see how well I could see the sights in all kinds of different lighting conditions. One interesting observation that I made while looking at a normal gun presentation sight picture is that the +0.75 glasses biased my relaxed eye focus about 2 – 3 inches forward of the front sight. If I pushed the gun out 2 – 3 inches the front sight was directly in focus and I could see the serrations easily on the front surface of the sight. This means that I need to adjust my focus slightly back to see the front sight with 100% clarity using the +0.75 glasses. When I use the +1.00 glasses and a normal presentation position of the gun, the rear blade is in perfect focus and the front sight is slightly blurry. If I pulled the gun back towards my face the distance of the front to rear sight width then the front sight would be in clear focus. The +1.00 glasses bring my focus back towards my face about 10 – 12 inches compared to the +0.75. In normal good lighting when I tested both powers of lenses the +0.75 glasses are still the best. I can easily pick up the front sight when aggressively punching the gun out in the normal shooting position. When I do the same with the +1.00 glasses there is a slight focal delay as I try to see the front sight with 100% clarity. This makes sense as it correlates with what the default focus ends up being using either set of glasses. In poor lighting conditions, this is where it got interesting. Neither set of glasses allowed me to see the iron portion of the front sight with the same clarity as in good lighting conditions. That was to be expected as it has always been that way since I started shooting. The thing that I didn’t expect was the difference in rear Notch clarity vs Front Fiber crispness. In poor lighting conditions I am basically relegated to using only the front fiber dot to aim and call shots while keeping it contained within the rear notch. Using the +0.75 glasses this Rear notch and fiber dot only sight picture results in everything in the sight picture being slightly blurry. Using the +1.00 shooting glasses the Rear notch was seen as a fairly crisp square notch and the fiber in the front sight was a more crisp round circle. In poor lighting conditions since I am forced to use only the fiber in the front sight and the rear notch is the primary item used to center the fiber, the +1.00 glasses do a great job in enhancing that type of sight picture. The primary negative with using the +1.00 glasses is that small targets past 20 yards become a super blurry mess. Full size paper targets are doable, but plates, mini poppers or paper partials are really hard to aim at a specific spot on because they are a blurry mess. With this dry fire testing at home providing some improvement in poor lighting conditions with the +1.00 glasses I need to verify it in live fire. I will need to go out to the range late in the evening close to sunset and try both back to back to see if I am getting the same results in live fire. There is obviously more work to do with this shooting glasses situation, but it is at least giving me some hope for a potential solution. If I have to bring two pairs of shooting glasses to the range and use whatever one is needed for the lighting conditions, so be it. I am determined to do whatever it takes to get my vision back on track. I am tired of donating performance at these major matches simply because I can’t see my sights properly. Getting old sucks!!!
  11. Every club/match has its own optimal method of doing registration and squading. There isn't a one size fits all formula. If the MD is smart they will pick a process that minimizes administrative hassle and maximizes volunteerism to make the match happen effectively. Signing up the morning of the match at the range achieves those goals the best for my club. As a competitor attending online pre-registration local matches it sucks when you end up on a squad with 2 - 3 no shows and there are only 5 - 6 people on the squad and I end up needing to RO 99% of the time because the squad is short handed or the other people on the squad can't RO for some stupid reason. Half of this is issue is due to the dead beats that sign up but no show. The other half is the match staff being lazy and not removing the no shows then making sure that the squads are balanced and staffed properly.
  12. My match is usually 50 - 60 shooters. We restrict the squad size to no more than 12 shooters. Beyond 12 and shooters get a mindset that there is someone else that can do all of the work then nothing gets done effectively.
  13. Having Online Prepay for club matches only works in the clubs favor if the match regularly sells out. If matches are not selling out then there is no point in doing an online prepay. It saves the registration process at the match minimal time and gives the credit card processing companies their pound of flesh in fees. Is not needing to collect match fee's the morning of the match really worth giving away 2% - 3% of the total match revenue in credit card processing fees? I would say NO. But that is just me. The real problem I see happening with increasing frequency is clubs offering Club Match Online Registration via Practiscore but not requiring payment. In this scenario you get several shooters that sign up for the match and squad but don't show up. This throws off the squad sizes due to no shows and causes log jams during the match because there are unbalanced squad sizes due to inconsiderate dead beats that couldn't bother to withdraw from the match. Even if the no shows are identified and removed during the morning registration/check in then it forces the MD to manually edit the squading to keep the squads balanced. This causes more butt hurt from the shooters who did show up and wanted to shoot on a specific squad but ended up getting moved because someone couldn't bother with withdrawing when they knew they couldn't make it. I understand that emergencies or life happens which force last minute cancellations in match attendance. I am not talking about those valid match cancel scenarios. I am talking about the repeated dead beats that sign up for every single match but then only show up to 50% or less of them. I don't understand why these people find it acceptable to sign up for a match that they know fully well that they will not attend, then not even give the match staff (or their fellow shooters) any respect by withdrawing. Call me old school, but as the MD for my club I refuse to do online match registration to avoid these hassles. For the matches I run, registration opens at 8:30AM at the range and closes at 9:45AM, pay in cash, write your name on a squad, and enjoy the match. If you show up late once, we will squeeze you in. If you show up late again too bad for you, registration is closed and enjoy your lonely drive home. This process has worked wonders in weeding out time wasters and dead beats from attending my matches.
  14. CrashDodson> Here is some feedback on your questions.... Stage 1 - My logic for shooting the front section of that stage is that I didn't want to cover the same ground twice without the opportunity to shoot stuff on the move. In Limited division there was no getting around doing a reload somewhere in the front section and that would eat up any amount of shooting on the move possible. To me, going right then reloading while moving to the left to engage the lay down targets made the most sense because I could see the lay down targets before the plate rack/swinger section. I also wanted to control the timing of the swinger and engage it on the first pass then finish on the plates. If I was shooting Open or PCC with lots of pew pew's in the mags I would have run to the left first and did the lay downs first, swinger/plates second, then engaged the final four right targets on the move to the right. Stage 2 - Did you time both options? I timed both options and surprisingly it ended up being about the same time (Stand and load/engage vs Run while loading then retreat). Since both options were the same time the decision on which plan to use came down to risk mitigation. Its way less risky to load & rack while running up front vs needing to pound out a rock star load/rack while standing flat footed near the barrel. Stage 6 - Running around the right sight of the wall had two benefits. First, I didn't have to change directions in the movement through that position. Simply keep moving towards the targets. The second benefit is that it also promoted reentering the shooting area at an angle that allowed me to see the swinger first through the port. I could see the movement path of the swinger through the port well before I was in the port position which allowed me to engage it in a very predictable manner. Stage Planning in General - Being able to work as a team on stage plans can be a huge benefit for some and useless for others due to indecision. If you can't figure out the optimal stage plans on your own to squeeze every ounce of performance out of the stage, that is a problem. I think that being able to figure out optimal stage plans is far more important that doing other skills poorly. This is simply because you are artificially reducing your maximum stage performance right off the bat by using the wrong plan. When I attend matches I have no problem sharing my stage plans and explaining why I came to that conclusion. In the end the stage plan doesn't win, the execution of the plan does. But I have also lost count of how many times I have spoon fed shooters through multiple stage plans in a match which if they had not used my plan it would have dramatically reduced their performance. Sometimes I wonder how much the overall results would change if I shot the match on my own and didn't share any of my stage plans with anyone and they couldn't watch my runs to poach plans from. I know for a fact that quite a few matches would have resulted in very different overall results if that was the case.
  15. Thanks for the feedback on this. I will give Monovision another try. Maybe it will work this time as my focal speed has degraded quite a bit since the last time I tried it.
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