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View Full Version : Looking for hints/tips re: the 4-day handgun course at Frontsight


Lives_In_Fresno
02-15-2012, 8:39 PM
I'm taking the 4-day defensive handgun training course at Frontsight soon, and would appreciate hearing from folks who have taken the course as to things I should make sure I take, and things I should leave home.

I am taking things like a decent tactical flashlight (although I saw somewhere that they don't do night stuff anymore?), a decent holster and belt, 800 rounds of ammo, my firearm (.45 ACP), sunscreen, sunglasses, and a few other items.

What comes to mind that you missed on your first course with them? Also, is there anything you would have done differently?

I'm driving in from CA.

Please advise!

(thanks!)

1911man
02-15-2012, 8:45 PM
Do not forget medical cloth tape! You will get blister and or micro cuts. Tape your loading thumb. Bring water and pack a lunch, and lube for the guns.

acegunnr
02-15-2012, 8:51 PM
I did the 4 day course two weeks ago. Mornings were very cold and I was glad I brought a warm down jacket, gloves and beanie cap. Also bring a chair pad or your own chair as the metal chairs are cold and hard.

Check out the youtube video series by the lateboyscout (http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLEBC2E5AB973D04D9&feature=plcp) as he reviews all 4 days. Do the dry practices. Enjoy the class. I had a great time!

Kodemonkey
02-15-2012, 8:56 PM
Do not forget medical cloth tape! You will get blister and or micro cuts. Tape your loading thumb. Bring water and pack a lunch, and lube for the guns.

Read my mind. I had an HK USP and the cheese grater of a grip ripped up my hand by day two. Another reason to have a backup gun. I brought my wife's M&P and used it on day 3 to give me some relief. Day 4 my buddy bought medical tape for his hands and I just grip wrapped the blackstrap and it worked great.

Bring snap caps for dry fire practice in the hotel room. I am still convinced that the 20 minutes a night of "homework" that my buddy and I did in the hotel got us the "distinguished student" seal on our certs (we were 2 of 3 total in the class)

Practice the crap out of type 3 malfunctions.

don't use a Hawaiin shirt as cover. Get a vest that has some weight and use the medical tape on any zippers that might be on it. I tore up the inside of my right arm because of zippers and Velcro. You will re holster probably 300-400 times and it puts wear on the inside of your arm when making sure your cover garment is clear of the holster.

Have fun and bring an open mind. Some of the stuff I didn't agree with but I tried anyway (like the grip).

Lives_In_Fresno
02-16-2012, 5:48 AM
Great suggestions! Thanks!

Question: What is a "type 3" malfunction?

Ratboy
02-16-2012, 7:32 AM
Type 3 is brass low: Look/Move/verify- lock slide/strip mag/rack-rack-rack/insert fresh magazine/rack- point in...

When are you going? If it's hot consider bringing a handkerchief to soak in water for your neck/head.

Are you driving from N.Cal? If so, avoid driving through Yosemite, they charge $20 just to drive through. I did that last time following google maps.

RoadKing
02-16-2012, 7:36 AM
Kodemonkey's friend here... Also since you are shooting a .45, if you are doing it from a 1911 platform you should think about also bringing:

1) a ton of extra mags
2) a couple mags you aren't in love with for the malfunction drills because they tend to get mangled ( destroyed the guide lips on two of mine while I was there)
3) at least 4 mag pouches on your belt. You will be reloading ALOT and it will help. I used 4 mag pouches and had another 4-5 loaded magazines in my back pocket to keep up along with a pocket full of loose ammo so I could reload while they were talking.

If you don't have electronic hearing protection I would recommend picking a set up, it helps a lot. As Kodemonkey said, overall it's a good class and we learned a lot but not everything works for everyone. Try what they teach and you can always change back later. For me the grip they teach doesn't work, f'd up my hand for a month, YMMV.

OH and a type 3 malfunction is basically a double feed. Picture your extractor not pulling out the just fired brass and then the slide trying to load the next round. You get an empty brass in the barrel and a bullet jammed partway out of the mag between the stuck case and the slide. Not fun.

Have a good time!

Ratboy
02-16-2012, 7:43 AM
Good call on the extra magazines!

I'm pretty sure that electronic ears are mandatory now. If you don't have them you can rent them.

rareair
02-16-2012, 1:47 PM
With the 4-day class, bring a speedloader & save your thumbs ;)

Call up the Pro Shop & order one of their Dry Practice Guides. If your a Diamond member, it's something like $22. If not, it's $39 This manual will be invaluable if you are aiming to get the Distinguished Graduate seal on your completion certificate. Scoring high on the shooting portion of the test is easy, the instructors get you on the malfunction drills. Pass or fail is how prepared you are with "their" malfunction techniques. The manual will prepare you & give you insight prior to arriving. The final test is a timed event.

Bring your own lunch & snacks. The main room is equipped with a microwave oven so don't feel the need to have to buy their overpriced $13 lunches

Most shooters wear a hip/belt mounted belt (SafariLand/Fobus). Blackhawk Serpa style tactical holsters are forbidden. Bring atleast 3 mags total. No videos are allowed, but they do allow cameras.

Chief-7700
02-16-2012, 2:15 PM
I'm taking the 4-day defensive handgun training course at Frontsight soon, and would appreciate hearing from folks who have taken the course as to things I should make sure I take, and things I should leave home.

I am taking things like a decent tactical flashlight (although I saw somewhere that they don't do night stuff anymore?), a decent holster and belt, 800 rounds of ammo, my firearm (.45 ACP), sunscreen, sunglasses, and a few other items.

What comes to mind that you missed on your first course with them? Also, is there anything you would have done differently?

I'm driving in from CA.

Please advise!

(thanks!)

You do not need a flashlight since the night shoot has been eliminated.
Tape for your hands.
Get a Kydex holster and a good belt.
Take as many magazines as you can.
Get a UpLULA mag loader.
Cargo pants +++
Buy a good concealment vest.

Obviously a Plant
02-16-2012, 10:54 PM
Take a hat!
Any light jacket that has pockets for your hands will work for concealment, keys/rocks or a little weight in the pocket should make it easy to flip clear of your holster.
Snap-caps for after-hour practice is a great idea to practice what you learned,
Liquid band-aid is a good addition to the tape, your hands can take a beating if you shoot without gloves.

acegunnr
02-17-2012, 12:23 AM
I updated my first post in this thread "Front Sight Members Check In Here (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=518454&highlight=frontsight)" with some other helpful Front Sight threads.

jdogg2000
02-17-2012, 1:18 PM
A couple other suggestions. Make sure you have good eye protection that wraps around your head. The instructors will warn you about this... My friend didn't listen at first and on the first day a piece of hit brass got stuck behind his glasses way off to the side of his face. He has a crazy scar there now. Also, dress in layers. The weather is crazy there right now. It ranged from being hot, t shirt weather, to freezing cold and windy. Electronic hearing protection is mandatory. The beach cafe truck had fantastic food. Have fun!

Lives_In_Fresno
02-17-2012, 2:23 PM
The people in this forum rock!

I appreciate all of the hints and suggestions...I'll be sure to take action on a bunch of these ideas, to make sure I make the most of the trip.

Can't wait!

Kodemonkey
02-17-2012, 2:27 PM
Take a hat!
.


Oh yes.. forgot about that. It's mandatory. It keeps your neighbor's shell casings from getting in between your glasses and your face.

Colonel Monk
03-22-2012, 10:45 PM
Howdy Guys:

I have a few questions on the 4 day defensive handgun as well.

A friend of mine is going with his wife and another mutual friend had to drop out of it - so on short-ish noticed they offered the registration to me for 2nd week of April.

First, I'm 8 weeks out of knee surgery and though things are going pretty grand, it's still pretty sensitive to alot of activity. I called Frontsight and she told me I should be OK but the days are long.

Can anyone qualify the amount of activity? I have a stool on a length of nylon webbing that is quick to deploy, I figure if we are just receiving instruction it won't hurt to take a load off so's to avoid overdoing it. What do you think?

Now that that cat is out of the bag, is there any kneeling, squatting, crawling around on the ground? Those are things that won't be easy for me to do at this stage.

Shooting shouldn't be a problem.

Moving onto gear for a minute: I'll be bringing my Glock 19 for the class as its def the easiest to draw and fire. But of course I have the Blackhawk Serpa holster.

What paddle-style holster do you recommend for the class? What about the mag holsters?

What do you all think the temp will be beginning of April out there? Like 80?

Thanks,

CM

SteveMartin
03-24-2012, 3:55 PM
Howdy Guys:

I have a few questions on the 4 day defensive handgun as well.

A friend of mine is going with his wife and another mutual friend had to drop out of it - so on short-ish noticed they offered the registration to me for 2nd week of April.

First, I'm 8 weeks out of knee surgery and though things are going pretty grand, it's still pretty sensitive to alot of activity. I called Frontsight and she told me I should be OK but the days are long.

Can anyone qualify the amount of activity? I have a stool on a length of nylon webbing that is quick to deploy, I figure if we are just receiving instruction it won't hurt to take a load off so's to avoid overdoing it. What do you think?

Now that that cat is out of the bag, is there any kneeling, squatting, crawling around on the ground? Those are things that won't be easy for me to do at this stage.

Shooting shouldn't be a problem.

Moving onto gear for a minute: I'll be bringing my Glock 19 for the class as its def the easiest to draw and fire. But of course I have the Blackhawk Serpa holster.

What paddle-style holster do you recommend for the class? What about the mag holsters?

What do you all think the temp will be beginning of April out there? Like 80?

Thanks,

CM

There is not a lot of crouching or running around. There is a lot of standing and a lot of reloading while standing and coaching. There is additional standing while receiving instruction on the line. I suppose they might let you take the stool to the line, but I would ask first.

ETA: there is no crouching required, and no running required. I did crouch a little, but only to provide a firm location (upper thight) to push mags into the Uplula reloader thingy. Lots of standing is required

As your first class for a casual shooter, the Glock is ideal.

I had no holster gear for my Glock 22, so I bought the Bladetech IDPA kit for about $79 that includes a holster and 2 mag pouch and it worked very well for me (and is what they rent as well). Cargo or tactical pants are a must for the first 2-1/2 days until they teach you to present from concealment; jeans don't work well when you're managing 5 magazines :).

Once they teach the concealment portion, you gain the use of your jacket pockets.

As far as weather; I was just there last weekend 3/15-3/19 and it ranged from sunny and dry and 65+ to windy, rainy and 30-40 degrees. Mornings were low 30s; afternoons were 60+ with some wind. April will likely be warmer.

jlbflyboy172
03-24-2012, 8:21 PM
Here is a rather lengthy review I wrote up after going back in October. It may prove helpful.

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=493661