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Compete Defend Protect

Friday, April 15th, 2022

Most people buy a gun for a reason. Aside from hunting, where it is used to put food on the table, a firearm can be used in shooting sports and as a lifesaving tool for self-defense and protecting others. Such uses can be further partitioned into three categories; to compete, defend or protect.

by Steve Tarani

Although sharing common ground, for example, hitting what you’re aiming at, what are the specifics that delineate each of these uses?

Competition Shooting

Compete

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) states that 19 million-plus Americans safely invest their time in shooting practice. According to NSSF, some of this is for fun, and much of it is for competitive shooting. Some common and familiar examples of competitive shooting are:

Cowboy Action Shooting: The primary requirement for these types of shooting events is that the guns used are from the era of the American cowboy. That typically means from the 1800s. These are perfect events to get a look at antique guns and their usage.

Bullseye Shooting: While this can occur with the use of rifles, it is mostly a long-distance event for pistol shooters. By long-distance, NSSF defines this as upwards of 50 yards. Competitions are usually a mix of slow-firing and rapid-firing contests. A timer might be used to increase the difficulty level, and participants might also be required to fire using a single-hand rather than a double-hand grip.

International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) shooting events: This action shooting event focuses on international rules and guns. This shooting competition focuses on self-defense-type shooting situations, and the events mimic real life as much as possible. Its sister competition is the United States Practical Shooting Organization (USPSA), which is the U.S. version. 

Competition Shooting

The International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) is one of the world’s largest shooting sports associations and the oldest within practical shooting. Founded in 1976, the IPSC nowadays affiliates over 100 regions from Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe. 

Regardless of governing body, the firearm, as applied to competition shooting, is used in organized shooting events where competitors shoot in a controlled target shooting environment called ‘stages’ based on rules and regulations of the hosting organization. A stage consists of a designated array of targets set up in such a manner as to challenge the shooters’ skills and understanding of the sport.

As with all shooting sports, safety is the highest priority, and as such, competitors are confined to a180 degree range of fire resulting in disqualification if you break that 180-degree shooting plane. Additionally, competitions run a ‘cold range’ which means you must unload your handgun prior to leaving the firing line.

Competition shooting is a ‘one-way range’ (bullets only go one way – down range) where the shooters square off against targets, control the gun and their movement while being aware of their environment, which is predetermined by target placement. As it is a gaming environment with specific rules, targets, and shooting standards, strategy can be developed ahead of time, such as ‘walking the stage(s),’ knowing the round count, and other gaming considerations. Round placement on targets is scored according to regulations set by a governing entity and results in points either earned or deducted based on the shooter’s performance. 

Top-level professional shooters are sponsored by various firearms and/ or ammunition manufacturers and are often referred to as ‘brand ambassadors’ by their sponsors. Competitions are scheduled at the local shooting club level, regionally, nationally, and internationally. 

Defend

People who purchase firearms for self-defense are commonly referred to as ‘defensive’ or ‘tactical’ shooters. Military, police, and responsible citizens of a free republic are trained to utilize a handgun in defense against other human beings who may also be armed with a firearm, other ballistic or non-ballistic weapons intent on inflicting great bodily harm or death to the shooter.

Unlike competition shooting, defensive shooting is applied to a 360-degree range of fire referred to as a ‘two-way range’ (bullets flying in both directions – up range and downrange). Defensive shooters are trained to win a gunfight where an active threat is trying to hurt or kill them in a life-or-death situation. Governed by federal and state laws, as opposed to gaming commission rules, it is incumbent upon the defensive shooter to train in the appropriate use of deadly force.

Training levels vary in the defensive shooting world from a novice shooter attending a reputable shooting school on one end of the skills-development spectrum to highly trained tier-1 government (T1G) assets such as military combat specialty unit operations personnel at the opposite end.

Defensive shooters are trained to stop an active threat if they find themselves in a situation where there may be no alternative other than the use of deadly force to solve the tactical problem. 

Defensive shooting drills prepare you for a fight for your life. You are trained to control your movement with such tactics as the use of cover, tactical movement, and other defensive options as determined by your environment. There are no stages and no preplanned movement. Defensive shooters often carry concealed and run a ‘hot range’ where their firearm is always loaded.

The highest priority in defensive shooting is to remove yourself from harm’s way and with the least amount of injury possible. There are no rules save appropriate use of force and tactics. The cost of missing your target is not a deduction of points but the very real potential for loss of life. 

In defensive shooting, you are legally responsible for every round that departs your muzzle. Because of this, you must be acutely aware of your gun safety, gun handling, and marksmanship in a 360-degree two-way range which may end up being your home, in or around a vehicle, or at an open public venue. Moreover, in any violent physical engagement involving other humans, you are hard-pressed to make combat-effective decisions and round placement on single or multiple active threats while under duress. 

Citizen Defense

Protect

In the world of professional protective services, shooters are often members of an assigned Protective Services Detail (PSD). However, it should be noted that there’s a distinct difference between ‘bodyguard’ and PSD personnel and that difference is the level of training. 

Much like the difference in defensive shooters, where special operations personnel are significantly better trained, PSD shooters are required to go through months of arduous skills development and physical training, whereas a ‘bodyguard’ is not. For example, PSD physical training requirements could include an ability to perform a fireman’s carry, running a timed mile, proficiency in tactical medicine, defensive driving, encrypted communications, multiple weapons systems, and a myriad of other PSD skills requirement.

Examples of the T1G tip of the spear PSD would include the United States Secret Service and the US Department of State Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS), which is the federal law enforcement and PSD security bureau of the U.S. Department of State. 

Much like defensive shooting, PSD shooters are trained to engage in a two-way 360-degree range fighting from a position of dominance (POD). PSD personnel are additionally trained in building and vehicle operations (such as approaches and departures) and to use their environment as a tool to prevail in a violent physical engagement. 

Unlike defensive shooting, which emphasizes control of the handgun, PSD demands responsibility and control of three things: your firearm, your protectee, and your environment. Tasked with either stopping or mitigating the threat, a PSD shooter’s highest priority is the safety and well-being of their protectee(s) – even at the expense of taking a bullet for them. 

In PSD, the objective is to move off the ‘X’ with the lowest scale of injury to yourself and those you are protecting. PSD personnel are trained to deliver combat-effective round placement in a timely manner to control a life-threatening altercation involving third parties immediately. The price tag for failure is exceptionally high as it could impact multiple persons.

The firearm is considered a lifesaving tool to defensive and PSD shooters. They are trained in gun safety, gun handling, and marksmanship like a competitor. However, unlike a competitor, they are additionally trained in vetted gunfighting tactics and in the specifics of managing a hot range. Defensive and PSD shooters expect to operate under duress on a two-way range and in a 360-degree dynamic high-threat environment while saving lives.

Tarani

About the Author: 

Steve Tarani is a former full-time CIA protective programs employee, small arms and defensive tactics subject matter expert who served on POTUS 45 pre-election executive protection detail. He is the lead instructor for NRA’s non-ballistic weapons training program offered nationally and a widely recognized SME on matters of personal protection and urban survival. Tarani is also a DoD and FLETC-certified federal firearms instructor who has been on staff at Gunsite Academy (AZ) as a Rangemaster for over twenty years. Formerly sworn, he is also a former federal contractor and service provider for the US Defense Intelligence Community, US Naval Special Operations Command, and other government agencies. Additionally, Tarani serves on the National Sheriffs’ Association Committee for School Safety and Security.

SIG SAUER Academy Adds Movement Skills for the Competitive Shooter to November Course Schedule

Monday, October 29th, 2018

Newington, N.H. (October 29, 2018) – SIG SAUER Academy, the leading provider of the highest quality firearms instruction and tactical training in the world, is pleased to announce the addition of Movement Skills for the Competitive Shooter, taught by Mason Lane, to the November course schedule. If you are interested in competitive shooting, or a competitive shooter looking to improve your overall match placements by moving more efficiently, this class is for you.

Course instructor Mason Lane is a nationally ranked competitive shooter in USPSA and IDPA. Recently, at the USPSA Nationals held in Frostproof, Florida, Lane placed 6th amongst 250 competitors in the Production Division.

Students enrolled in Movement Skills for the Competitive Shooter will learn the principles of leaning mechanics, footwork, position entry and exit, and personal match management. Lane’s class is scheduled for Sunday, November 18, 2018 at the SIG SAUER Academy in Epping, New Hampshire.

To register and review the course outline for Movement Skills for the Competitive Shooter, or learn more about the SIG SAUER Academy and its comprehensive course offering visit sigsaueracademy.com.

Redback One – Active Shooter Awareness Seminar

Sunday, April 22nd, 2018

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Click to view .pdf

Redback One Active Shooter Awareness Seminar
Presented by Jason Falla
When: April 28, 2018
Time: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Where: Colonial Shooting Academy, VA Beach, VA
Cost: $49.99

Registration: www.redbackone.com or email [email protected]

Panteao Productions Expands Video Library

Thursday, December 28th, 2017

Columbia, SC, December 28, 2017Panteao Productions is happy to announce the upcoming release of instructional videos that were originally produced and offered by Paladin Press. With the recent and unfortunate demise of Paladin, many videos titles faced going into limbo and no longer being available to viewers. Starting in January, Panteao will begin re-introducing video titles from instructors like Jeff Cooper, Louis Awerbuck, Jim Cirillo, and more. The videos will be initially available as digital downloads as well as digital streaming from the Panteao website, Make Ready mobile apps, and Make Ready channel on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Apple TV.

Panteao will also be relaunching three previously published books from Louis Awerbuck and Jim Cirillo’s “Guns, Bullets, and Gunfights” in both paperback and Kindle edition.

RE Factor Tactical – Dartboard Target

Tuesday, September 26th, 2017

RE Factor Tactical’s Dartboard Target combines shooting practice with the classic game of darts. Along with the dartboard target itself, RE Factor’s Dartboard target also features three included games, a scorecard, and comes in at 18″ x 35″. Printed in the USA.

www.refactortactical.com/collections/shooting/products/dartboard-target

A Girl & A Gun – 90 Days to a Bad-Ass Life

Sunday, July 2nd, 2017

AUSTIN TX — A Girl & A Gun (AG & AG) is announcing a revolutionary program for women shooters that will change their lives. The Tactical Foo-Foo MasterMind Program complements the AG & AG Shooting Journal with recurring webinars and activities to help women achieve their personal and shooting goals. Performance Coach Kelley Moore will give participants the tactics to mastering disruptions, hecklers, and hijackers in their lives.

“We often see a woman’s empowerment on the shooting range affect so many areas of her life,” says Julianna Crowder, Founder of AG & AG. “Now women can not only use our Shooting Journal for logging live-fire and dry-fire drills, but Kelley will take them to a new level in goal setting, overcoming obstacles, and living the lives they want.”

One 2-hour interactive webinar every 10 days will keep participants motivated with professional support, and peers in the program will give feedback, help brainstorm new possibilities, and set up accountability structures that keep participants focused and on track. Each MasterMind group lasts three months, with participants having the option to renew and continue into the next group. The first webinar will take place on July 11, 2017, at 7pm Central Time.

For more information on the MasterMind Program: AGirlandAGun.org/mastermind

About Kelley Moore

The University of Illinois calls Kelley Moore a “powerful relationship strategist;” she calls herself a “Marine in Mom’s clothes.” A United States Marine Corps veteran, Kelly is a professional Courage and Performance Coach. Jack Canfield (one of the creators of Chicken Soup for the Soul) deemed her “America’s Courage Coach.” She provides people with the intel needed to recognize, understand, and appreciate human behaviors, communication styles, and emotions. Her specialty is supporting emerging leaders as they acquire the knowledge, skills, and wisdom that enables them to be more productive, self-directed, and passionate in their personal and professional lives.

About A Girl & A Gun

A Girl & A Gun (AG & AG) is a membership organization whose events have been successful stepping stones for thousands of women into the shooting community and fostered their love of shooting with caring and qualified instructors to coach them. AG & AG breaks barriers for women and girls in the area of self-defense and in pistol, rifle, and shotgun shooting sports by welcoming beginners to learn the basics of safe and accurate shooting and providing experienced shooters with advanced-level training. Learn more at AGirlandAGun.org.

MOA Targets – Mini Wolfman Silhouette AR400 Steel Target

Tuesday, November 10th, 2015

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MOA Targets is offering a run of mini Deathcl… er, Wolfman silhouette targets (product code STRIPE). The targets are made of .25″ thick AR400 steel, which makes them perfect for rimfire and service pistol calibers. Customers can also upgrade to .375″ AR500 steel, for use with all pistol calibers and non-magnum rifle rounds.

www.moatargets.com/static-steel-targets/moa-targets-ar500-steel-fantasy-monster-targets/moa-targets-ar400-steel-mini-wolfman-target

Friendly Fire Rocket On Kickstarter

Sunday, May 31st, 2015

Friendy Fire Rocket

Friendly Fire Rockets are a project on Kickstarter, which consists of foam projectiles, designed in two common sizes, for use in pressurized launchers. There’s a 40mm version for gas powered under-barrel grenade launchers and 1.5″ PVC barrels, and a 50mm version for 2″ barrels.

The intent of Friendly Fire Rockets is to provide Military, Law Enforcement, MilSim, Airsoft, and Paintball with a safe and effective method of “disabling” Op-For vehicles and/or buildings.

www.kickstarter.com/projects/509017065/friendly-fire-rocket

LaserLyte Triple Tyme Kit

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

LaserLyte

Cottonwood, Ariz. – LaserLyte®, innovators in firearms laser technologies, proudly introduce the seriously fun laser Triple Tyme Kit consisting of the LaserLyte® Reaction Tyme Targets (3), a Trigger Tyme® Compact Training Pistol and a LT-PRO Pistol Laser Trainer. Everything anyone needs to train, teach or just have fun anywhere, anytime.

The Trigger Tyme® pistol cannot accept or fire ammunition, making it a safe training tool for all ages and skill sets. The compact size of the pistol is ideal for training young shooters and individuals with small hands.

The Reaction Tyme Targets work independently of other allowing for a variety of shooting scenarios. interactive target system works in two modes; reaction and training. The reaction mode features random LED signals in intervals of 3 to 7 seconds that can be shot by the Trigger Tyme® compact pistol or any other LaserLyte® Trainer. The training mode allows the user to practice trigger control and accuracy with an always on and ready-to-be-shot mode. When a hit is made the target sounds 2 beeps and a LED flash.

The LT-PRO is easily inserted into the muzzle end of the Trigger Tyme® pistol for hours of training and fun. It can also be used in a real firearm for realistic training with the user’s actual carry firearm. MSRP for the LaserLyte®

TLB-TTK is $279.95.

LaserLyte® continues to get sport shooters and professionals on the target faster, increasing accuracy
and overall hits with affordable and fun laser training tools.

For more information, visit www.laserlyte.com.

The LaserLyte TGL Kit For The Diamondback Pistols

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

COTTONWOOD, AZ (March 2014) – LaserLyte®, innovators in firearms laser technologies, introduces the latest in the TGL series for the Diamondback™ pistols featuring the LaserLyte® Master Module system. The versatile Master Module fits into the gun’s housing seamlessly; matching the gun’s dust cover and trigger guard with perfect fit. The LaserLyte® TGL UTA-DB Kit fits the Diamondback™ .380 and 9mm models.

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Each TGL package comes with two housings per model and will fit two guns for the price of just one laser. Simply use a Philips head screw driver to remove the single screw to swap out laser housings. A laser swap can easily be made in under a minute. Initial installation onto the gun will take less than five minutes and the laser does not require removal in order to change out batteries.

LaserLyte® UTA-DB Specifications:

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Compatible Firearms:

Diamondback DB380, Diamondback DB9 models
Power Output: 650NM, 5MW, Class IIIA
Programmable: Dual mode constant on and pulse, auto-off in 6 minutes
Batteries: 3 x 392
Battery Life: Actual usage 5 hours constant on, 10 hours pulse mode
Weight: .75 ounces/0.0213 kg
Material: 55% Glass Filled Nylon and Aircraft Grade 6061 aluminum
Length: 1.52 inches/3.86 cm
Width: .76 inches/ 1.93 cm
Height: 1.70 inches/4.32 cm

The LaserLyte® TGL Diamondback Kit Laser gets sport shooters and professionals on the target faster, increasing accuracy and overall hits. For more information, visit www.laserlyte.com.

Diamondhead – Safe-T-Gun

Saturday, March 15th, 2014

(Click to view .pdf)
Diamondhead Safe-T-Gun

Diamondhead’s Safe-T-Gun is a polymer/composite AR-15 replica with the exact same dimensions as an actual rifle. Its design allows for the installation of actual rifle accessories. This makes it excellent for situations where a real weapon isn’t necessarily required, such as trade shows, product demonstrations, or safety instruction. Components include an upper receiver, lower receiver with buttstock, grip, and magazine, and the Safe-T-Bolt.

Made in the USA. Available in Black or Red finish.

www.diamondhead-usa.com

This post was originally featured on Soldier Systems Daily.

LaserLyte Partners with NSSF’s First Shots Program

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

LaserLyte’s unique Bullseye laser training systems offer new shooters the chance to build confidence and control in total safety.

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COTTONWOOD, AZ (March 2014) – LaserLyte®, innovators in firearms laser technologies, has donated more than $20,000 of retail product to the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s First Shots® program, including the company’s Trigger Tyme™ Pistols, Laser Training Targets and Training Lasers.

LaserLyte® is operated by the father-and-son team of Larry and Aaron Moore, both avid target shooters and hunters. The company is known for many firearm laser products, including its Trigger Tyme™ Training Pistol, Laser Trainers and Interactive Targets. The new Bullseye Training Kit includes all the products mentioned above in theTLB-BEK. This kit will provide important and fun training equipment for both newcomers and experienced target shooters. This new system is in honor of the NSSF’s First Shots® program and a logical next step in the evolution of LaserLyte® training systems.

“It is our honor and privilege to participate in such a vital program for new shooters,” Aaron Moore, VP of Sales and Marketing for LaserLyte® commented. “Our products, with the support of the First Shots program, will introduce thousands of new shooters to our industry.”

Operated by NSSF member host ranges, First Shots® provides an introduction to target shooting for newcomers and also offers a Second Round component to provide novices with the next step in their introduction to the shooting sports and firearms safety.

“This generous donation of laser training equipment from LaserLyte® is a perfect fit for First Shots® and will help participants learn about safe gun handling, trigger pull, target acquisition and other shooting skills,” said Tisma Juett, manager of the First Shots® program.

LaserLyte® product packages will be made available to ranges that host First Shots® Second Round events, specifically to help participants learn how to safely draw from a holster and use proper trigger control to put shots on target prior to supervised live-fire exercises.

Learn more about LaserLyte® at its website and about First Shots® at www.firstshots.org.

Cold Steel – Rubber Training Pistols

Monday, February 24th, 2014

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New for 2014, Cold Steel has added a series of training firearms to their product offerings. Made from Polypropylene, these training guns are stiff enough to use with drawing and disarming techniques, yet soft enough for hand-to-hand striking situations. Based on some of the most popular pistols in America, the bright green coloration makes it unlikely these training aids would be mistaken for real firearms.

www.coldsteel.com

Osprey Range Day – Introduction And Overview

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

We were recently lucky enough to be invited to a range day sponsored by Osprey Armament – in association with Defense Logistics Support and PWT3 Development. This “Overmatch Concepts” Range Day was held at the Osprey Range located in Council, North Carolina. Our host for the day’s events was Retired US Army Major General David Grange, head of Osprey Global Solutions and a legend in the Ranger community.

The event kicked off with the usual admin brief for range safety and MEDEVAC plans along with the facility layout. Then, General Grange jumped right into a brief overview of the day’s events, which included an operational vignette, weapons demonstrations, and round robin group visits of products and services from partners of Osprey Global Solutions.

As it turns out, the day was set to be filled with a wide variety of technologies ranging from low to high tech. In addition to weapons there were ISR capabilities including trackers and forensic evidence collection as well as medical, and training demos. While some of it might seem old-hat, the attendees included military, LE, first responders and industry. Everyone saw something new.

The Operational Vignette was a scenario involving a raid on a terrorist bomb making element that has infiltrated the area of the Cape Fear river, represented by the buildings down range. A tracking team confirmed the location of the bomb making element, and passed the information along to an assault team who took down the building. Afterwards, an EOD team disarmed the explosives while a rescue team stood by to provide rescue and medical services as needed. It was constrained by both time and the limits of the facility but included examples of a wide variety of the “Overmatch Concepts” that were the point of the entire day.

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One thing I noticed was a lot of work on battlefield obscurants. Long a bailiwick of the military engineer community, it was refreshing to see a renewed effort on their application for some more non traditional roles. MSI Delivery Systems was on hand, supplying obscurants via their AB2K Multi-Mission Aerosol Delivery System. The standalone version of the AB2K-MMADS is capable of dispensing up to 50,000 cubic feet of smoke coverage per load. A dependent version with a high capacity backpack can dispense over 320,000 cubic feet of smoke coverage. Additionally, the AB2K-MMADS can easily be configured to dispense smoke mixed with irritants for crowd control, or specialized chemicals for uses such as decontamination and infestation control.

There was also a team on hand using a remote control plane as a UAS surrogate investigating the aerial delivery of battlefield obscurants. Although it took a few runs for the effect of the test obscurant to become noticeable, testing is ongoing, and from what we’ve seen so far the system does have promise.

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Additionally, the obscurant used at the range was water based; an oil-based obscurant is also being tested.

Look for several more stories today which provide details of some of the weapons we encountered. We’d like to once again thank MG Grange and his team for their hospitality and for setting up a great program.

ospreyarmament.com

This story was originally featured on Soldier Systems Daily. Visit SSD to see the rest of the coverage from the Osprey Range Day.

Combat Conditioning 2

Monday, January 27th, 2014

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The sequel to Nathaniel Morrison’s ‘Combat Conditioning’ is now available. Building upon the foundations of the first ‘Combat Conditioning’, Volume 2 further details methods to obtain peak fitness and nutrition, including: strength training loads, in-depth exercise descriptions, optimal eating, supplements, and much, much more. Additionally, included with the price of the e-book is access to worksheets, videos, and the Combat Conditioning membership site.

combatconditioning.kajabi.com/sp/26462-combat-conditioning-vol-2

LaserLyte Takes Plinking To A Whole New Level Of Fun With The Laser-Plinking-Can

Monday, November 25th, 2013

The LaserLyte Laser Plinking Can Set provides hours of entertainment while instilling valuable training skills.

COTTONWOOD, AZ (November 2013) – LaserLyte, innovators in firearms laser technologies, is proud to introduce the innovative and entertaining Laser-Plinking-Can. When hit with a laser from any of the LaserLyte training cartridges or other laser trainer tools, the cans react by jumping up and falling over just as a real can would. This reaction is all powered by a 9V battery (included) and a spring loaded plunger released by a solenoid. To reset the cans, simply stand them up and depress the plunger.

The LaserLyte laser reactive Laser Plinking Can Set provides hours of training and entertainment indoors or outdoors without the cost of ammunition or the clean-up of cans after the fact! Laser Plinking Can Set is sold in a three-pack with three 9V batteries included. One battery will tip the can over about 8,000 times.

Tip Over Can

LaserLyte Tip Over Can (TLB-BWC) Specifications:

Weight: 4.25 ounces/.12kg
Length: 3.82 inch/9.7 cm
Diameter: 2.00 inch/5.1cm
Battery: 9V
Battery Life: 8,000 Tip Overs
MSRP: $104.95

The LaserLyte Laser Plinker Can gets sport shooters and professionals on the target faster, increasing accuracy and overall hits. For more information visit www.laserlyte.com.

Combat Conditioning

Thursday, August 15th, 2013

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Combat Conditioning, Nathaniel Morrison’s latest fitness training e-book has just been released. Combining the secret of the Spartan’s success with Soviet sport science, Combat Conditioning offers a truly universal training program that works you hard, but is surprisingly simple, and offers amazing results. If you’re looking to improve physical performance and health, boost testosterone, and have your vitality and well being skyrocket, then Combat Conditioning is a program to look into.


morrison-industries.com/products/combat-conditioning-e-book

HYLETE – Cross-Training Convertable Backpack

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

www.hylete.com/cross-training-convertible-backpack-black-neon-green.html

Rockwell Tactical On Magazines

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

Jared of Rockwell Tactical Group wrote an article on proper magazine care and maintenance. You can check out the full article at Black Sheep Warrior’s website.

www.blacksheepwarrior.com/magazines-by-rockewell-tactical-group/

InteliScope App And Mount – Hands-On

Monday, July 15th, 2013

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The folks at InteliScope, LLC were kind enough to send us a prototype tactical mount and access to their beta app. The tactical mount secures snugly to a standard picatinny rail. Although it wasn’t included, an additional component would allow the mount to be attached to a Nerf N-Strike rail. The mount comes with three cases, sized for an iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and iPod touch. The cases are made from a hard, lightweight plastic and feature 32 square holes on the back that allow the device to attach to the mount.

The InteliScope app allows the device to function like a red dot sight, with an enhanced HUD. Given that the app’s purpose is largely as a training aid, virtually all aspects of the HUD can be changed: the zero, the reticle style and color, ballistics and firearm data, and whether certain elements are even visible on the screen. The app uses the iPhone/iPod’s on board light as a flashlight which can be used with a strobe function. Additional features include a shot timer, the ability to record range sessions to video, up to 5X digital zoom, and even local GPS coordinates and local wind direction and speed.

The InteliScope is currently available for iPhone 4S and 5; the Android version will be available in September.

inteliscopes.com/

Security Contractor Job Coaching

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

For the low, low price of 100 USD (or roughly 10 cents a day), you can receive three (3) years of security contractor job coaching. No prior military experience required, just be: a US citizen, over 18 years old, not female, and criminal record and bankruptcy free. The coaching starts June 1st, so you still have a few days to decide if you’re interested.

http://www.deathvalleymag.com/securitycontractorjob/plans/scjc/

HSP Winter Problem Solver AAR – TD1

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

I attended the Haley Strategic Partners Winter Problem Solver course in Telluride, Colorado from March 31st through April 4th. This was my first time attending a mountaineering/survival course.

It was a bright, sunny, early morning when we all met up at the Haley Strategic Partners headquarters for Training Day 1. The day started with an opportunity for introductions, as we all stood in a circle and one-by-one we gave our name, occupation, goals for the class, and one thing we were good at. Students came mostly from all over the States, with one student hailing from Canada. It was great to hear all the various occupations people held (doctor, arborist, software programmer, writer…) and that a few of the students were taking a class like this for the first time, myself included. This also gave us an opportunity to meet our instructors, two Search and Rescue personnel/Sheriff’s Deputies in addition to our host, Travis Haley.

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We then stripped our rucks and went over every item to insure we were properly equipped for the class. We were also issued a logo’d Klean Kanteen and Moira fixed blade knife (more on these later) as well as additional class items and equipment as needed. After this, we repacked our rucks and stored them for the next day. The calass was also introduced to our beacons and completed a simple exercise to make sure they were functioning properly; this involved us sweeping for a signal at the far end of Travis’ yard that one of the SAR personnel had with them.

We stepped out for lunch, and upon our return convened to Travis’ office which was filled with, among other things, memorabilia from his military service. It’s here that we viewed a video presentation on avalanches. This was followed by a PowerPoint on weather identification and a PowerPoint on avalanches, headed by Travis and one of the SAR personnel respectively.

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As a final exercise for the day we drove out to the hill above the classroom which we climbed as a group. Once at the top, we did a lap around the perimeter of the summit; both exercises served as a test of our general endurance for the trip ahead. Despite being acclimated to the environment, I didn’t find myself ahead of the rest of the group when it came to ascending or running. When we descended, Travis, instead of marching down with the rest of us, decided to paraglide down; the below picture doesn’t do the act justice.

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With the exercise done, we returned to HSP for our final briefing of the day, followed by returning to our respective hotels in wait for TD2.

Stay tuned for a continuation of the HSP Winter Problem Solver AAR.

HSP Winter Problem Solver AAR – The Equipment

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

I attended the HSP Winter Problem Solver course in Telluride, Colorado from March 31st through April 4th. This was my first time attending a mountaineering/survival course.

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Like any course, the Winter Problem Solver had its required equipment list:

-Winter appropriate clothing
-Winter hiking boots
-Cold weather hat, shade hat with brim
-Practical knife or multitool
-Sun screen
-Sun eye pro
-Water hydrating device
-Individual first aid/trauma kit or IFAK
-Quality headlamp + batteries
-Snowshoes
-Retractable ski poles
-Quality lightweight sleeping bag rated to 0*F
-Lightweight durable air mattress
-2 aluminum climbing rated locking carabiners

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To meet these requirements, the entire time I wore the Helly Hansen Dry Fly Pant, Arc’teryx LEAF Combat Pants, and an Arc’teryx Envoy SS shirt; the socks I used were the Darn Tough Vermont Extreme Cold Weather/Mountaineering Sock. The weather, surprisingly, wasn’t that cold with some days reaching highs up to the mid 50s. The addition of an extra layer or two, mostly a Crye Precision WindLiner and/or an Arc’teryx Atom SV Hoodie in MultiCam, proved more than enough clothing wise. The boots I wore were the Salewa Pro Guide Insulated Mountaineering boot, which I supplemented with a pair of OR Crocodile gaiters. Throughout the course, I wore an OR Seattle Sombrero because of its waterproof properties in addition to the wide brim which kept the sunlight out of my eyes, although I did have several other options for head covers, including an Outdoor Research Radiant Beanie, Outdoor Research Novo Watch Cap, Under Armor ColdGear Tactical Hood, The North Face Windstopper High Point Hat, and a black neoprene half-face mask. I also carried a pair of OR PS150 gloves and a pair of Arc’teryx Alpha SV gloves.

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Each member of the class was issued an HSP-branded Mora knife and Klean Kanteen before going out in the field, so although I brought my own knife, multitool, and hydration bladder, these items were ultimately unused and only added weight to my pack. We were issued, if needed, a climbing harness, helmet, shovel*, and ice axe. Mountain meals, rope and tubular nylon, beacons*, probes*, and other class materials were also provided by HSP. I had my own cooking stove, an MSR Reactor, and helmet, a Team Wendy Exfil Tactical Bump Helmet. My snowshoes and poles were both MSR Denali. The sleeping bag was a The North Face 0 degree Dark Star which I used with an REI Minimalist bivy sack. I paired this with a Therm-a-Rest RidgeRest SOLite; being a closed-cell foam pad, it didn’t suffer from deflation or potential puncture damage like an inflatable pad would. I also brought sunscreen, two carabiners, a Tikka 2 headlamp, an ITS Tallboy trauma kit and pouch, and a pair of Smith Cascade Classic Snow Goggles in addition to my personal sunglasses; I ended up not needing the goggles.

One thing that wasn’t mentioned on the list but ended up being required was a pair of camp shoes, slippers or other lightweight shoes for moving around a cabin. I just used my socks and changed out to a new pair just before sleeping, although this isn’t suggested. Other miscellaneous items I brought that weren’t on the list included a fire starting kit, snacks, a GSI Fairshare Mug, and toilet paper.

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All together, my fully-loaded pack, an Arc’teryx Khyber 80 in MultiCam, weighed in at just under 50 lbs, quite a bit heavier than what would be suggested. Unnecessary items included the aforementioned knife, multitool, hydration bladder, and goggles, along with additional hard shell layers, heavyweight base layer, trauma kit w/ pouch, and (arguably) my sleeping pad. Ultimately, given the planned environment, it was better to have these items and not need them than suffer without.

It’s also worth mentioning that I didn’t feel at all under prepared with the equipment I brought with me. I did, however, manage to snap my Light My Fire Spork Extra-Medium in half while I was cleaning it; going in with an extra spork, or possibly one made of metal would have been a solid decision.

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*The beacons, probes, and shovels were graciously provided by Backcountry Access.

Stay tuned for more information on the HSP Winter Problem Solver, including a full report on the course proper.

On Assignment – Haley Strategic Partners Mountain Problem Solver Course

Monday, April 1st, 2013

Tactical Fanboy is currently attending the Mountain Problem Solver Course offered by Haley Strategic Partners. It teaches skills to increase individual/group survivability in winter mountain worst-case scenarios, delivering knowledge and utility for everyone ranging from outdoor enthusiasts and hunters to military and law enforcement.

HSP MPS

It’s cold out there. Let’s hope all he gets is this cool bottle. Wish him luck and we look forward to his AAR.

Final Preparations Have Been Made

Saturday, March 30th, 2013

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I’m all packed up and ready for the HSP Winter Problem Solver Course.