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Zoomie517

Zoomie’s USPSA Beginner Diary

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Saturday I finally shot my very first local USPSA match. My goals were.......

 

A - Don’t shoot myself or anyone else. SAFETY!

 

B - Dont get disqualified.

 

C - Have fun!

 

D - Try not to be last.

 

Happy to say that I accomplished all 4. I also had an absolute blast. 

 

Starting and likely staying in CO.  I’m running a Glock 34 Gen 5 series 1 with a Delta Point Pro. Double Diamond tungsten guide rod and a 13 pound ismi spring. Swapped from a Johnny Glocks trigger to a DK Customs Comp Elite trigger. Trigger tuned to gun, breaking at an average of 2.85 pounds. The DK trigger and work is pricey but worth every single penny. 

 

I am am going to test one more gun. Waiting on the new Sig Sauer P320 X5 Legion to arrive. Frame module is made of planet infused with Tungsten powder. Weight is equivalent to a steel gun. If it doesn’t work for me, I’m sticking with the Glock. 

 

Now that I have shaken the first match stank off, it’s time to get to work. 

 

Performance was crappy as

expected. 46th out of 51 overall. Shot at 43 percent and change. 

 

I got so hung up on sight picture and accuracy. Happy with accuracy but even in planning to all but walk transitions, I was so incredibly slow that you can fall asleep watch a stage vid. 

 

My stage planning felt great for first event. I’m a lefty so I planned target order and reload points in a way that made sense to me.  While I drifted mentally at times, I experienced no target order confusion. 

 

Scoring paper only I was on par with shooters in top 10. But they are shooting my times divided by 2!

 

i have been been dry firing regularly but am formalizing the process today. Working out of Stoeger’s Dryfire Reloaded. 

 

While Im in the gym six days a week and in pretty good shape for being 56, my agility /foot mobility is absolute crap. My trainer is going to help me adjust my lift schedule to add agility fast twitch muscle fiber work. I’ll never be fast but I know I’m capable of dramatic improvement. 

 

I finally got approved to shoot at my home range so I can work on live fire drills. 

 

I’ll make a second post with goals and plan of attack. 

 

Here’s a vid link of a stage. It’s my starting point. 

 

 

 

 

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welcome to uspsa.. imo find a group or coach that can help guide you and squad with them... and you'll have more fun. 

get to match an hour early with your group and walk stages together and learn how they stage plan.
then ask the better shooters about how they visualize the stage during pasting, and once in the hole.

i'de also suggest iron sights for a bit.. work on splits and acceptable sight picture. lots of bill drills .. lots


 

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On 7/8/2019 at 8:47 PM, scroadkill said:

welcome to uspsa.. imo find a group or coach that can help guide you and squad with them... and you'll have more fun. 

get to match an hour early with your group and walk stages together and learn how they stage plan.
then ask the better shooters about how they visualize the stage during pasting, and once in the hole.

i'de also suggest iron sights for a bit.. work on splits and acceptable sight picture. lots of bill drills .. lots

My sincerest apologies for taking so long to respond. I am doing all of these things, with the exception of running iron sights. My eyesight is not what it used to be. Hence, embracing CO.

I also have a national caliber shooter thats been kind enough to review my vids and one or two felonies of the many to work on. 

 

On 7/8/2019 at 8:47 PM, scroadkill said:


 

 

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OK, catching up here. 

Shot my second match. Local match at Kettlefoot. Had a great time but did poorly even by new guy standards. Accuracy is acceptable but Im still shooting hauntingly slow. I'll address separately. 

In an unforeseen event, I ended up changing platforms. Was running a 34/5 with DPP. In spite of shooting Glocks casually for decades, I have never been in love with how they fit my hand. I did grab one of the new x5 Legions as I was intrigued with the tungsten infused frames. At somewhere around a 1000 rounds through the gun, I retired the 34 and will shoot x5 Legions go-forward. I put a second one on order so I have a primary and a back up. The grip is so much better in my hand. It settles very quickly. Just feels so much more comfortable and intuitive. 

Had a 1000 round practice day with 800 rounds running this single drill in the vid. I just wanted to work on general movement and fundamentals. Beginning time 16.94 seconds. I whittled it down to 10.53 with consistent times in the 11's.

Of all the things wrong with my technique, the two hurting me the worst right now are length of time from draw to target acquisition, and doing one thing at a time. 

It takes forever and I mean forever for me to acquire sight picture. Clearly, my draw and presentation to target are the problem. I am working on grip and punch out via daily dry fire drills. its not easily fixable and I believe that only time and massive repetition is going to improve it. Sweat equity. 

The other issue is movement. My brain seems to be wired to do one thing at a time. Dump clip. Transition. Reload. Bring gun to target. A friend who is terrifyingly fast explained that my gun should be up and on target by the time I hit second box. 

Course of action this week:

Massive daily dry fire. Draw and 2 shot drill averaging 1.80 seconds. Hoping dry fire will help here. 

Will shoot the same drill again Wednesday to see if I've made any headway on time to target acquisition. WIll also focus on fluidity and gun on very close to being on target when entering box. 

Shooting my third match on August 3rd. Again, hoping to see some improvement. 

Vid as average of my craptactular lack of speed. 
 


 

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Was supposed to shoot my third match on Saturday but then a Level II practical pistol class popped up at Patriot Shooting Academy. It was taught by Gilbert Perez and Paul Kerr. 

We spent a ton of time working with a lot of my major weaknesses. 

Endless shooting repetitions to learn my own (And the X5 Legion) personal cadance. 

Lots of time also spent learn how to drive the gun and throttle the gun with adjustments to cadance. 

I learned that if I stopped overdriving the gun and relaxed, cadance and time improved dramatically. Less thinking definitely helped. 

Both instructors pushed and cajoled me to go faster and faster until the wheels came off, then told me to dial it a tenth or a twentieth to tighten accuracy.

The highlight of my day was that between Gilbert and Paul working with me, they took my standing draw/fire from 1.45 to a step in to the box draw/fire of .99! Yes I know, that's not Big Boy fast. But for a 56 year old with only 2 matches under his belt, I'm downright giddy. 

Biggest weaknesses:

My support hand grip caused the majority of my problems whenever I wet the bed. I need less strong hand and more weak hand. Need lots of dry fire to correct and improve this. 

Other big issue is that tend to relax my grip for the last shot of a string/stage. This either ends with me forcing cadance and losing accuracy or interrupting cadance because gun bounce was excessive due to letting up on grip. This too can be dealt with in dry fire to teach myself to stay focused. 

Just an awesome day with priceless instruction !

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