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Author Topic: Shaved Sights  (Read 7816 times)

Hock

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Shaved Sights
« on: September 28, 2005, 07:31:33 AM »

The other day at a seminar, a martial artist who is now dabbling with and reading into pistols asked me,

"So, I guess you are one of those guys that suggest shaving the sights off the barrel for instinct shooting?"

"Oh no,' I said, "anyone with a pistol may have to make a Hail Mary shot at any time, and everyone's Hail Mary distance is different. I would never dream of shaving the sights off of anything."

I have not heard of this idea in years. Are people still doing it? Suggesting it?

Hock

Professor

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2005, 12:05:55 PM »

The other day at a seminar, a martial artist who is now dabbling with and reading into pistols asked me,

"So, I guess you are one of those guys that suggest shaving the sights off the barrel for instinct shooting?"

"Oh no,' I said, "anyone with a pistol may have to make a Hail Mary shot at any time, and everyone's Hail Mary distance is different. I would never dream of shaving the sights off of anything."

I have not heard of this idea in years. Are people still doing it? Suggesting it?

Hock



NO>>>>>  ::)  NO>>>>>   ::)  NO!!!!!!   ::)

Ninor and I got into this "discussion" a long time ago and settled it.  I'm right.

(here's a link to the thread: http://hockscombatforum.com/index.php?topic=76.0.  The subject started with shotguns and opened a little from there...


BTW, I haven't seen anything lately to suggest it.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2005, 12:10:56 PM by Professor »
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  'Advanced' is being able to do the basics, despite what else is happening. 

Our Country won't go on forever, if we stay soft as we are now. There won't be any AMERICA because some foreign soldiery will invade us and take our women and breed a hardier race!"  --- Chesty Puller, USMC

Trembula

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2005, 12:38:26 PM »

Prof... thanks for bringing up that old thread while I was misposting this reply  :)

Every now and then one of the gun rags gets desperate for an article and has somebody write an article advocating removing the sight(s) from a pistol (sometimes a rifle too) and how they increased qualification rates (or still managed to qualify) with the sights knocked off, taped over, fallen off (and they didn't notice... I'll believe that one for a string maybe on a "run and gun" kind of stage but not for an entire qual or match), radical canting of the gun, shooting with the middle finger and the index "pointing" along the barrel, etc. It doesn't take an expert shot to realize this is pure hogwash. Then you have the WW2 FAS accolytes who still want that "pump handle, convlulsive grip, combat crouch, half/quarter/full hip hold, etc." as the epitomy of combat shooting with a handgun. They proudly point out how FEW rounds are fired in training and how revolutionary this is that it is still better than anything we have 60 years later.

Enter reality. If you can use your sights use them. Even if you have "no time" to aim, you really do, either through a body index (the closest to actual "point" shooting since the gun (which is outside of your field of view) is referenced to the target by the allignment of the rest of your body; or some form of aimed fire, which spans a continuum from referencing the gun in general to the target to picking up the front sight, ultimately to that carefully sighted "bullseye" shot. Anyone who thinks aiming is "slow" just needs to watch one of the top IPSC grandmasters do their thing. Wait you say, they are using tricked out space-guns with zillion round magazines and nothing practical for real life. Okay then check out that video which I think Hock has posted of Jerry Miculek with a wheelgun. These folks are shooting AIMED shots too. Sights wouldn't be a standard feature on every handgun sold if they didn't work and weren't needed.

Dan
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Virgil

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2005, 12:47:58 PM »


Makes me think of all the 'stuff' I've seen or heard about with respect to modifying guns.  Cutting down revolver barrels (was it John Wesley Hardin who took his barrel off entirely?), pinning the grip safety on a 1911, making a "Fitz special" by bobbing the hammer and cutting off half the trigger guard.  My favorite is the "slip gun." I read about this in Elmer Keith's book Sixguns.  The old gunfighters ('shootists') would wire the trigger of the SAA back (usually in combination w/a cut down barrel) so that they just thumbed it as they pulled it from their coat or pocket. Pretty fast overall, as long as your thumb didn't 'slip' too soon.
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Stephen A. Camp

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2005, 02:29:43 PM »

Hello.  No, I not only prefer sights, but sights visible at speed.

Best.
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Contractor

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2005, 10:54:55 AM »

I have to step into this one!   And call complete BS to the similar post under one of the shotgun sections.


At no time do any soldiers, operators, LEOs, or any other armed professionals remove the sights from their duty weapons.  YES, your higher end "operators" have been know to remove the sights of their pistols FOR TRAINING PURPOSES ONLY!!!!!!!     M. Ayoob also conducted tests on this.  That is to help them learn "instinctive shooting".    But for actual missions the sights are on the weapon.

There were other BS comments about slings ect.  I won't get into that one though.

Contractor
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Professor

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2005, 11:21:08 AM »

I have to step into this one!   And call complete BS to the similar post under one of the shotgun sections.


At no time do any soldiers, operators, LEOs, or any other armed professionals remove the sights from their duty weapons.  YES, your higher end "operators" have been know to remove the sights of their pistols FOR TRAINING PURPOSES ONLY!!!!!!!     M. Ayoob also conducted tests on this.  That is to help them learn "instinctive shooting".    But for actual missions the sights are on the weapon.

There were other BS comments about slings ect.  I won't get into that one though.

Contractor

Step into more.....good to hear from you.

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Our Country won't go on forever, if we stay soft as we are now. There won't be any AMERICA because some foreign soldiery will invade us and take our women and breed a hardier race!"  --- Chesty Puller, USMC

Nick Hughes

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2005, 09:21:25 PM »

Please do get into the BS about slings...share your wisdom with us oh all knowing one...

Here's an email from an ex-Legion buddy of mine who's now in the Aussie Army...

How long did it take you to do that 50 miler?
I went in this course thinking no probs. Done it all before. I still do 3400 on the Coopers Test. Still does'nt set you for pack marches though. The Aussie bergen is worse than the French sac a dos was and in hindsite I reckon they carry too much on their webbing  (4-5 pouches, 2 water bottles, bum pack) which make movement cumbersome. Aussies also frown on slings, even for pack marches, so you are constantly moving your weapon around where as in the Legion it just hung to one side off the sling and you forgot it was there. Legion marches greater distances at a steady pace allowing you to get into a rythm where as Aussies seem to race for 12-15km which completely knackers everyone out by the end. Worse, they put the lanky f*cks at the front which leaves us short f*ckers having to constantly break into a shuffle to catch up.
I'll send a couple of pics from the course once I get them done.

And here's a photo of a Royal Marine Commando in training...you will notice there is no sling

I also have a mate in the UK SAS...guess what wizard..on patrol in Northern Ireland... NO slings...ever

Guess what...in the Falklands NO slings....

They are, as I mentioned before, on the weapon...they are not allowed to be worn or used on patrol.

Re sights on weapons...please, give me a PM and I'll put you in touch with my mate on the local SWAT team who tape their sights over and, while you're at it read Haney's book on DELTA about how they didn't have sights on their weapons.

N

« Last Edit: October 11, 2005, 09:23:14 PM by Ninor »
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Hard pressed on my right. My center is yielding. Impossible to maneuver. Situation excellent. I am attacking.
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Nick Hughes

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2005, 09:27:57 PM »

Ooops,  I guess that'll be another one of those operational fookers with a sling eh?...wait a minute...there is no sling...damn...don't that beat all...

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Hard pressed on my right. My center is yielding. Impossible to maneuver. Situation excellent. I am attacking.
--Ferdinand Foch-- at the Battle of the Marne

Nick Hughes

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2005, 10:00:45 PM »

This is so much fun...I just go googling for pictures of Brit and Aussie soldiers on patrol and almost none of them are wearing slings...

Getting the idea yet?
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Professor

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2005, 10:26:09 PM »

This is so much fun...I just go googling for pictures of Brit and Aussie soldiers on patrol and almost none of them are wearing slings...

Getting the idea yet?

Your google-fu is weak young master  8):




How is that French Legionaire holding that rifle?   velcro?

    Aussies, 5th Division:  December 1916



In Iraq



Slings....don't need slings if your an Aussie.  :o


and some Brits:






 ::) 

Next time, I'll spend a little more time looking -- It took me longer to paste the links than to find the pictures . . .     

The(bored)Prof


p.s.  .....velcro....I kill me..... 
« Last Edit: October 11, 2005, 10:57:28 PM by Professor »
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Our Country won't go on forever, if we stay soft as we are now. There won't be any AMERICA because some foreign soldiery will invade us and take our women and breed a hardier race!"  --- Chesty Puller, USMC

Nick Hughes

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2005, 11:17:07 PM »

Never did I say the French didn't use them...I said when I was in the Aussie cadets we weren't allowed...nor is my mate in his unit...

I also said the rifles often have slings they're just not allowed to sling them...read carefully Prof.

From an Aussie SAS troopers account of his favourite rifle..

Officially, sixty LIAI rifles were modified for selective fire capability, specifically for use by the SAS. In addition to the ability to fire bursts of fully automatic fire, the modified SAS rifles had both sling swivels and the flash eliminator removed, and the back sight permanently raised. In contrast to the relieving infantry units who carried their individual weapons into South Vietnam at the time of their deployment, the modified rifles remained in South Vietnam and were handed on to the relieving SAS squadron at each deployment.

and here, from an SAS troopers account of working with the Afghanis

"Another priority was banning the slings that they used to strap their weapons to their backs. They pinned religious tokens on them, which jingled as they trudged up the narrow mountain paths or waist deep in snow. I explained that there is only one place for a guerrilla's gun: in his hands. Poised. Ready for use.


The point I was making was that on patrol..the Brits, Aussies and NZ etc do not favour slings

The contractor was stating that they are always used and to suggest otherwise was BS...

I think I've proved my point ;)

PS:  Even though it's 1916 you'll notice none of the Aussies have slung their rifles...
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Hard pressed on my right. My center is yielding. Impossible to maneuver. Situation excellent. I am attacking.
--Ferdinand Foch-- at the Battle of the Marne

Professor

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2005, 11:34:37 PM »

Never did I say the French didn't use them...I said when I was in the Aussie cadets we weren't allowed...nor is my mate in his unit...

I also said the rifles often have slings they're just not allowed to sling them...read carefully Prof.

From an Aussie SAS troopers account of his favourite rifle..

Officially, sixty LIAI rifles were modified for selective fire capability, specifically for use by the SAS. In addition to the ability to fire bursts of fully automatic fire, the modified SAS rifles had both sling swivels and the flash eliminator removed, and the back sight permanently raised. In contrast to the relieving infantry units who carried their individual weapons into South Vietnam at the time of their deployment, the modified rifles remained in South Vietnam and were handed on to the relieving SAS squadron at each deployment.

and here, from an SAS troopers account of working with the Afghanis

"Another priority was banning the slings that they used to strap their weapons to their backs. They pinned religious tokens on them, which jingled as they trudged up the narrow mountain paths or waist deep in snow. I explained that there is only one place for a guerrilla's gun: in his hands. Poised. Ready for use.


The point I was making was that on patrol..the Brits, Aussies and NZ etc do not favour slings

The contractor was stating that they are always used and to suggest otherwise was BS...

I think I've proved my point ;)

PS:  Even though it's 1916 you'll notice none of the Aussies have slung their rifles...



Slings are sometimes needed.   Just because they are misused is no reason to not have the option.

When we were pig hunting the other night, the sling was used part of the night and unused the other part of the night.   You need options....a soldier should be able to figure that out.

To be fair....here's one without a sling [on their rifle]:


(if anyone is offended, IM me and I'll take it off)
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  'Advanced' is being able to do the basics, despite what else is happening. 

Our Country won't go on forever, if we stay soft as we are now. There won't be any AMERICA because some foreign soldiery will invade us and take our women and breed a hardier race!"  --- Chesty Puller, USMC

Contractor

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #13 on: October 12, 2005, 01:11:09 AM »

Googling pictures, that is how some get their info?  ::)

Slings: Take a closer look at the top pic, to the lower right of the optic.  Sure looks like a single point sling.  Pic of the Aussie sitting, notice the sling hanging from the weapon?

Yes, some units have an SOP against slings just as some have an SOP for slings.  Six of one.........

The sling has come a long way since the days of the dinosaur.  Most seem to think of the traditional over one shoulder or across the back sling method.  Single points, three points ect. are a little different.  There are many reasons not to use a sling, and there are more for it.  Some is unit policy, some is individual preference.  In my military days slings were a no, no for ruck marches.  That was for two main reasons.  One, to develop good habits as it relates to "at the ready" position.  Second was simply to toughen soldiers up.  At no time during actual missions, deployments or any of the like were slings prohibited. 

Slings were needed for evac., CQB, RTOs, rappelling and fast roping, ect.  Try moving your buddy, your weapon, and his weapon without slings.  Not unless you have octopus arms.  Weapon transitions are possible but more difficult without a sling.  This is where single points or three points (my pref) come in.  There are many situations where you need one or two hands, but do not need to transition to a pistol.  Once again a sling comes in very nicely.  The overwhelming usage of slings is some type of "patrol", "assault", "cqb", "tactical" or what have you.  weapon in front at the ready.  Not to say that you do not have your hands on the weapon, butt stock up at the firing shoulder ect.  Just that you have the option.  It has been said by many that a sling is to a long gun as a holster is to a handgun.  Use it if you want, don't use it if you don't want to, but to not have one at all is limiting your options.  Limiting your options can often set you up for failure.

Sights.  Yes, I have read Haney's book (re-read that section and tell me if he actually states or advises NO SIGHTS or if he is just talking about "instinctive" drills), and yes I too know many men still in the service, yes many are "operators" although most I know including myself do not personally use that term.  I don't want to get into an "I know this guy or that guy" argument or a "my daddy can beat up your daddy" argument.  I will say that I am currently still in the business and can give personal observations as well as personal preferences.  Let me stress that training is just that.  Yes, many men have removed sights from pistols.  This forces you to learn instinctive or point shooting (whatever is the cool term of the day).  But that is were it stays, at the range or shoot house.

You don't have to leave the sights off the weapon to be able to use instinctive shooting tech.  My personal preference it for the "flash sight picture” of the front sight only.  At close range this is extremely fast, and still very accurate.  At CQB distances you are watching the threat, not the sights.  So when the front sight post enters you vision (and you still have your focus on the threat) you pull the trigger.  Much different than bulls eye shooting but still somewhat aimed.  I also darken the rear sights with a Sharpe marker thus making the front sight more visible.

There are several problems with no sight.  Some of which are:

At increased distances your shot group will spread.  No matter how good you are on the range. 

A HUGE one is liability.  Yes even "operators" have some degree of liability no matter what Hollywood says.  Oops, just shot the hostage, POW, fellow officer, team mate ect in the face!!!   Sorry!!!!
No PD is going to allow its officer to carry weapons with no sights.  None, nada, no way.  (See Liability) If you SWAT buddy can produce an actual policy letter on letter head I will offer my sincere apology, until then it is “internet legend”.
Nobody I know (self included) will ever work with someone who has no sights on a duty weapon.  Let alone go in a room with them.       Like I said before I don't doubt that you buddies have trained with taped or removed sights.  Many of my team members have done the same.  It just doesn’t happen on actual ops.


I know this last part is going to chap some asses, but I have to believe that a lot of individuals on internet forums are either armchair warriors, poorly trained, or simply so far removed form the “been and the bullets” that they are out of touch.  IMO

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Nick Hughes

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #14 on: October 12, 2005, 04:26:32 PM »

Contractor,

And this is why...back on November the 9th my post said....

I think there's some miscommunication here which I will accept the blame for.  No sling doesn't mean there isn't one on the weapon...it means you're not allowed to use it during combat patrols because people get lazy and sling the weapon.  Then, when it's needed instantly, it's not available. 

This is why the Aussies and the Brits are seen on their patrols in the jungle and in Northern Ireland with the weapon carried stock in the shoulder, left hand in position on the front of the weapon.  I.e. if you put the weapon to your shoulder as if going to shoot, then lowered the barrel to a low 45 degree position like a skeet shooter waiting for the clay that's the position they carry in...all day if necessary.

There are tactical three point slings available now that weren't around when this doctrine was devised which make it more practical to use a sling but, I received an email from a mate in the Aussie army (who's an ex Legionnaire) and he commented on having to carry his weapon without a sling during a 25 kilometre route march wishing he was back in the Legion with his FAMAS.  (because in the Legion we had slings.)


As for me googling...what's the other option.  I was in the Aussie cadets in 1975/76 and the Legion between 84 and 89.  I already told you we had policies of no slings in the ADF and mates of mine in the Legion who'd been members of the British military told me they had the same policy (hardly surprising given the Commonwealth connection).  You popped up and called BS on me.  I can write here all day and state they don't use the slings when on patrol (changing now due to tactical slings available hence the pic the Prof found of the Brit squaddie in Iraq) but figured a picture provides evidence.

So, I went to find some pictures to prove my point.

Just to clarify, yes, I also have used and like the 3 point sling (the Legion uses them) but they weren't an option when I went through training in 75/76 and they weren't round when the Brits came up with their CQB stuff based on their experiences in Northern Ireland.

N

PS:  As for your loosely veiled insult about arm chair warriors and/or poorly trained etc..PM me and I'll give you the name and contact info of members of the SAS, Legion, US SF, USSS et al who can vouch for my Bona Fides.
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Hard pressed on my right. My center is yielding. Impossible to maneuver. Situation excellent. I am attacking.
--Ferdinand Foch-- at the Battle of the Marne

Contractor

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2005, 08:24:57 PM »

So, what about sightless weapons mate?

I am sorry, but anyone who advocates removing the sights from their defensive/duty/combat weapons I just can't take anything else they say seriously.

You often mention (including your web site) you Legion experience.  That ended 16 years ago.  A lot changes in that time.  There are a lot of lessons learned that have been applied.

You know people, I know people.  It really dosen't mean squat.  I am not interested in who a person knows or what a person has done.  I am interested in what they can do now.  And it just appears that you have been out of the mix for some time now (as far as military or combat shooting).


EDITED for content
« Last Edit: October 12, 2005, 09:26:36 PM by Contractor »
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spanky

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2005, 09:20:39 PM »

Contractor be serious just because Ninor has been outside military circles for a while doesn't mean his experience and training is now useless just because there may have been some "advances" in training. I myself left my beloved Corps 18 years ago and have been employed as a police officer ever since.

I don't think you can discount anyone's training and experiences just because they happened way back when. Combat is Combat whereever and whenever it happens and only results count not the technique used. History only remembers the winners not the techniques used to win.  :P
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Contractor

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2005, 12:04:24 AM »

Your right, removed the sights from all my weapons the other day and wow, what a difference  ::)
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Hock

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #18 on: October 17, 2005, 05:59:06 AM »

History only remembers the winners not the techniques used to win.

Big, overview, civilian history books, maybe.
But military history?

Hock

Trembula

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #19 on: October 17, 2005, 01:59:57 PM »

Even military history books rarely deal extensively with the "how they trained" part of the story. Until the advent of the zerox copier, making copies of things (remember mimiographs anyone?) was a real difficulty. Then as today, few copies of most manuals and training instructions were produced and unless someone (and the succeeding generations into whose hands it fell) cared enough to hang onto their copy or set one aside for future reference. Also, instructors have always deviated from the program of instruction, so even if you do find that, then you still have problems figuring out what they really learned. It's a painstaking proccess, which is one of the many reasons why my book on the Biddle Method isn't done yet.

--

It is interesting to note that there are many who have been "out of the proverbial loop" for ten, fifteen years or more who are still more capable than lots of chairborne types who are hanging on for their 20 or 30 year retirement. I am not going to say that there aren't advances in training, but if someone was "high speed low drag" a decade ago, all of their knowledge isn't useless yet. Highly technical whiz-bang gadgetry knowledge gets obselete fast. Shooting skills if not maintained degrade quickly. What does not diappear into the chasm of time is a thorough knowledge of the principles... i.e. "how to train", "tactics", etc. With principles in hand (and a body that still works) and a little time and money, much of the supposedly "lost" capapability can be regained.

Dan
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Nick Hughes

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #20 on: October 18, 2005, 05:41:11 AM »

Contractor,

More confusion undoubtedly due to the nature of internet forums.  I've said this before and I'll say it again, if half of these discussions we end up on the forum were being held at a seminar somewhere over dinner and you could explain what you were talking abou face to face, there wouldn't be any spats.

I've never advocated knocking or taking sights of weapons.  In a discussion long ago with the Prof I said I had "accidentally" knocked the sight of my shotgun.  I went shooting before getting a chance to put it back on and didn't notice much of a difference.

After reading Haney's book I then played round with the training method he talked about with ONE of my handguns and got good results with it (at close range which is the range I train for) but also went on to say I felt it would only work for someone who got to shoot upwards of 500 rounds per day.

Re sixteen years ago...Hock got out of the military a long time ago as well...is his experience irrelevant?

FYI - After leaving the Legion I worked in EP...still do...and I have a standing rule of 200 hours minimum of continuing education every year to keep up with the changes of which you speak.   Just about all the people I work with have the same 200 hour standard be it shooting, first aid, driving, languages, combatives etc.

N
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Hard pressed on my right. My center is yielding. Impossible to maneuver. Situation excellent. I am attacking.
--Ferdinand Foch-- at the Battle of the Marne

Kentbob

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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #21 on: October 18, 2005, 09:03:06 PM »

   First things first.  Taking the sights off of your weapon for the purposes of combat, whatever your weapon may be, seems to violate simple common sense.  The same for a sling.  Neither one hurts anything, as long as discipline is prevalent.  Personally and professionally, I could not imagine doing my job without my sling.  I would constantly be setting down my weapon, and then looking for it again  We are constantly called upon to conduct searches of houses, and you need both hands free for that.  In a perfect world, I would never stray farther than an arms length away from my weapon.  But, the world isn't perfect, and neither am I.  In addition, if I ever have to grapple or go hand to hand with a bad guy, it will be much easier to deal with him by simply slinging my weapon than by trying to deal with him with the half remembered bayonet training from basic.  Also, my weapon, should I be killed will in hand to hand, will be that much harder to remove from my carcass.  Another point, is that it is easier to wield one handed.  This sounds hollywood, and ramboish, but I don't have a taclight for my weapon, and I don't have a rail system for it either.  So, I am reduced to putting my personal taclight in one hand, and the weapon in the other.  I put the light hand underneath the bottom handguard, but I still mostly brace the weapon against the sling by pushing on it.  Also, if I had a sidearm, my sling would make the transition smoother, like it does for our medic.  By slinging his weapon, he is able to move smoothly from his long gun to his pistol.  I can't think of anything else.  Its easier to eat chow with my sling, which is also very important to me.  I hope this makes sense to you folks.  I look forward to your feedback.  Vaya con dios.


Kent
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Re: Shaved Sights
« Reply #22 on: December 28, 2014, 06:44:29 PM »

Shaved sights
 

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