5 NOV 2018


Last call to attend the defensive handgun class this weekend.  Details here:  DH1

If you’re already signed up, or thinking about it, contact me at so I can give you some last minute updates.

If you’ve taken DH1 already, the curriculum has had some significant revisions with more emphasis on one handed (both primary and support hand) shooting,  close quarters work, and ground [gun] fighting.

Serious First Aid

If you carry a gun, I’m guessing it’s because you recognize that there are people you share the world with that might hurt you, or try to, if given half a chance.  You admit some possibility of serious injury is just part of life.  Q:  Do you carry any first aid equipment and, just as importantly, are you trained in its use?

Individual first aid kits come in two flavors:  Those designed for minor / non-life threatening injuries like simple cuts and scrapes (an ‘owee’ kit), and those designed for serious / life-threatening injuries like stabs, deep slashes or gunshot wounds, etc. (a ‘blow-out’ kit).

There are two items every BOK should have at a minimum:  a tourniquet and a compress dressing.  There are several brands and types of tourniquets, but the one I like best and am most familiar with, is the ‘CAT’ (combat application tourniquet) by North American Rescue.  NAR is a South Carolina company.  I generally buy CATs at Amazon.  At this writing, you can get a two pack for $54.   Video here:  CAT

Check this out:  Beware of FAKES!

The compress dressing I like is an Israeli Battle Dressing or IBD.  You can also buy them at Amazon and here, too, you have to pay attention:  Some versions don’t have the compression bar.  Look for the dressings sold by PerSys Medical out of Houston.  Video here:  IBD

A note about using Amazon:  Be sure to use and select Paladin Training as the charity you’re supporting with your purchase.  Doing so adds nothing to your cost.

And, if you need more encouragement, check out this article:  Trauma System News.

Listen, I am NOT an expert in this field.  Over the years I’ve taken many classes, some offered by ‘names’ in the training community, but none were as helpful as the class given by Dr. Robert Moore from Florence.  He can be reached at 843-260-8902 or


7 – 9 DEC.  The course description on the website is in the process of being updated.  More details in a separate newsletter later this week.


The CWP class scheduled for 15 & 17 NOV has been cancelled.  The next CWP class is scheduled for 13 & 15 DEC.


The Gift of Life?

A gift certificate for a Paladin class makes a great Christmas present.  Contact me at for details.


And finally…

SERPA.  Again!

Because we still see students bringing these things to class.  The point is at the 2:29 mark:

Guns & Ammo Editor Nearly Shoots Himself Proving That Serpa Holsters Suck

27 AUG 2018

Back to work!

Looks like we might survive the summer after all.  Being (probably overly) optimistic about that, here’s the schedule for the remainder of 2018:

Defensive Carbine 2 (DC2)  8 & 9 SEP  (We still have openings!)

The September CWP class is full.

Ladies AR15 (LAR)  6 OCT

SC CWP  11 & 13 OCT  Details at

Defensive Handgun 1 (DH1)  10 & 11 NOV

SC CWP 15 & 17 NOV

Urban Break Contact (UBC)  7 – 9 DEC

SC CWP  13 & 15 DEC

For full details on each class, see the course descriptions on the website or follow the links below.

Defensive Carbine 2

DC2 is our introductory two-person team class.  It builds on the foundation laid in DC1 and adds use of cover, individual movement techniques, team communication and fire and maneuver.  Having a team-mate can help or hinder.  We cover both.

Details at

Covering your partner!


Ladies AR15

This is a beginner’s class, but even long time AR owners will benefit from the focus on the basics.  Wherever you fit, you’ll learn a lot and have a lot of fun doing it.

Details at:


Defensive Handgun 1

DH1 has gone thru a major revision and contains elements previously introduced in DH2.  We’ll work on one handed shooting and manipulation (both strong and support hand only), unconventional positions, and fighting from and around a car.

Details at

Urban Break Contact

We’ll be posting the details on UBC in a separate newsletter.

What’s New?

After almost two decades of carrying the same 1911 style pistol in .45 ACP, I’ve decided to try something a little slimmer and lighter:  A Kahr ST9 in 9mm.  I’ve owned and shot Kahrs for a long time, love the double action trigger, and shoot them pretty well.  I put not quite 300 rounds of 124 grain and 147 grain ammo thru this gun with zero issues before having Todd Smallwood (843-337-7810) make me an AIWB holster and mag carrier for my EDC rig (below).

The twist is that I wanted to be able to carry AIWB with the new compact Streamlight TLR-8 light / laser combo attached.  If you’ve taken a defensive firearm class with us, you know we put a lot of emphasis on night fighting.  Having the light already on the gun is an advantage.  That doesn’t mean you needn’t also carry a handheld light, but once good hits become the solution to your problem, it sure is nice to have both hands on the gun.

I’m very satisfied with the results and have been wearing this rig all day for several weeks now w/o issue.

I’m also very satisfied with the TLR-8.  The little thing puts out 500 lumens of light and, while I haven’t torture tested it or anything, the laser seems to be keeping its zero well enough.  There has been a little shift, not enough to affect outcomes I don’t believe, but that might just be the mechanism settling in.  Whatever, the main thing I wanted was a good light, and I got that.  The laser is a ‘nice to have maybe’ feature in my consideration and adds no appreciable weight, bulk or complications.

A note on ammunition:  I just shot the last of 3000 rds of Georgia Arms 9mm 124 grain TMJ ammunition.  This was the worst ammunition I’ve ever shot.  A group would be forming, everything looking good and then there would be an uncalled flyer 5 or 6 inches out of the group (at only 10 yards!).  It took me awhile to figure out that the problem wasn’t me.  Only after getting a friend who is an excellent shot fire a quantity of it with the same results did I finally conclude the ammunition was just inconsistent.  I finished the break-in & accuracy testing of the ST9 with Speer 147 grain TMJ which has performed just fine.


MTM Case-Gard

…has made a neat thing that has greatly simplified my life:

It’s nice to have the four calibers I work with the most in one place in the back of the Sub or War Wagon.  The only downside, if it is one, is that standard military .30 caliber cans will not fit in the organizer.

Details at

I found mine on Amazon, of course.  Less than $25, if I remember correctly.  Please consider using Smile.Amazon and select Paladin Training as your charity of choice!

Last item

Because Paladin was donating a two day class and 500 rounds of ammunition to the Fraternal Order of Police, I attended the meeting of the Pee Dee chapter of the FOP last week.  J R Joyner of Joyner Law Firm in Cheraw was the guest speaker, which was a treat.  I’ve known J R and his dad, Frankie, for a long time and count both as friends.  Professionally, J R has three attributes that, in my opinion, make him an excellent choice for my attorney if I’m involved in a shooting:  He’s a student of the gun, he’s a graduate of The Force Science Institute, and he’s a proponent of the 2A.  Each of those attributes could be a tremendous advantage for me as a client and none of them are, in my experience, typically found in an attorney.  It could be a huge mistake to assume someone knows about self-defense law just because they’re an attorney.  Andrew Branca ( often points out that his education as a lawyer included about 30 minutes on self-defense.

In addition to talking about the potential cost in dollars for a criminal defense, J R spoke a little about the subject of being ‘fit to fight’, ‘fitness’ in this case being ‘the quality of being suitable to fulfill a particular role or task’.  The four factors J R includes are:

(1) Having suitable fighting SKILLS

(2) Being able to meet the PHYSICAL needs of a fight

(3) MENTAL, or being able to make decisions under stress

(4) Having a firm SPIRITUAL foundation

That’s the greatly abbreviated version of his presentation.  As the old Samurai would say, ‘think on these things’.

If you don’t yet have an attorney on speed dial, give J R a call at 843-253-5316 and you guys get to know each other.


That’s all for now.  Hope to see you in a class soon.

Stay sharp!


Utrinque Paratus

30 APR 2018

I. DC1

Last call for the Defensive Carbine 1 class this weekend.  Details on what, where, etc. can be found at  If you’ve been holding out for a BCO, it’s looking more and more like we will NOT schedule one this year.  My advice is to jump on the DC1.

Cost is $300, but you can sign up for Day 1 only at $180.

Note to department trainers:  DC1 is an expanded version of our SCCJA approved Patrol Rifle Class.  Completing Day 1 of DC1 earns 8 CLEE hours; both days earns 16 CLEE hours.  We offer a 50% discount off the $300 tuition to full-time LEO’s.  Also, at the moment, we can furnish 5.56 ammo for four officers taking the 16 hour class; six officers taking the one day 8 hour class.  First come, first served.  Contact me at 843-618-1381.

The class is free to active duty mil and SCNG.

II.  Preparing for a class

When someone asks me what they should do to ‘get ready’ for a class, my standard advice is this (short version):

First, whatever you do, DON’T go to the range and practice.  What are you practicing?  Bad Technique, usually.  Every iteration spent ironing in Bad Technique takes multiple iterations of remedial work to undo.

It gets worse: It seems that the first way we learn to do a task is hardwired in a way that makes it difficult to erase.  Overwrite might be a better term than erase, because I don’t think you ever totally erase it.

So, whatever you do, please don’t go to the range and work on your Bad Technique.

What should you do?

Easy.  No argument, the one thing you can do that will make you a better shooter and have a more successful class is to exercise, especially targeting stamina and grip strength.  At a recent tactical conference, one of the presenters reported (this is second hand as I wasn’t there) that one commonality among the top IDPA and IPSC shooters is that they ALL work on grip strength.  The Captain’s of Crush gripper ( seem to be the preferred brand.  One of the best shooters uses the 300 lb. model!  Get to it.


Our next SC CWP class is 17 & 19 MAY.  Details can be found at

IV.  Final thought

“At the moment of victory, tighten the straps on your helmet.”   Tokugawa Ieyasu

Just think on it.



17 APR 2018

Hope you and your team are doing well and continuing to train and get ready.

I. DC1

The Defensive Carbine 1 class scheduled for 5 & 6 MAY is filling out nicely.  Ladies, looks like the class will be about half female.

If you need the prerequisite DC1 to attend DC2 and UBC later in the year, try to make it happen because this will likely be our last DC1 for 2018.

Equipment list, etc. at  Let me know if you have questions.


If you’ve taken a class with Paladin, please go to Paladin’s Facebook page and leave a review of your experience.  A page ‘like’ would be appreciated as well.

I don’t know why I never thought to ask this before.


Getting more requests for our church safety training.  We’ve added an interesting training block on spotting attempts at deception by people you’re greeting.

If you’d like me to come to your church and discuss crime prevention or do some training for your Safety Team, or just want to talk about what we can do for you, contact me at

Stay sharp!




  Comments: 2

The Devil is in the details.

Hopefully, you got your CWP training with us, but if you didn’t, I hope your instructor did more than just ‘teach the test’.  First, all instructors have been explicitly instructed by SLED not to do that, and second, it’s a disservice to students to let them get certified thinking their knowledge of the law is adequate.  If all you know about state law regarding the use of deadly force can be covered by the test, you might be in for a rude — and costly — surprise one day.  Much of the law is common sense, but there are often traps found in the language.

This example just in from Andrew Branca:

[begin] Most of us are familiar with the phrase “Stand-Your-Ground,” but sadly it’s an often misunderstood and misapplied phrase. Correctly understood, all SYG does is relieve a defender of the element of “avoidance”in a self-defense claim, relieving that defender of an otherwise existing duty to retreat (and that’s ALL it does). Even then, however, SYG can be trickier than it looks, because it comes in several different flavors.

For example, about half the SYG states simply have no legal duty to retreat, period. Most of the other half allow for SYG, but only if certain conditions are met (e.g., not engaged in unlawful activity).

And then there’s North Carolina, where the statutory language explicitly provides that an otherwise lawful defender can stand their ground “anywhere they have a right to be”–but then defines “anywhere” as meaning ONLY particular special locations: your home, workplace, or motor vehicle. Attacked while crossing the street? No SYG for you, as Mr. Gyrell Lee was shocked to discover when he was denied a SYG jury instruction at trial, was convicted of second-degree murder, and had that conviction affirmed on appeal. See: State v. Lee, 789 S.E.2d 679 (NC Ct. App. 2016). (NOTE: This case has been accepted for review by the NC Supreme Court, so we’ll see what happens there.)  [end]

There’s a link at the bottom of our homepage for Branca’s website.  I recommend you get his e-mails.

And, as he says at the bottom of his e-mail:  You carry a gun so you’re hard to kill. Know the law so you’re hard to convict.

I hope I’m not interfering with Darwin’s Law here, but I’m going to make this offer:  If you know anyone that took their SC CWP class with someone else and they’re not satisfied, or just want to experience ours, let them know that they’re welcome to sit in on our legal / safety class for just the cost of materials:  $5.00.

Neither the block of instruction on marksmanship fundamentals nor the range portion of the class are covered by this offer; just the classroom part on safety and legals and they’ll get nothing with my signature on it for attending.  Just knowledge.

Please pass this on to anyone that might be interested.  Our training calendar is here:  Calendar

That is all.



I occasionally get the following questions:

  1. Why is your CWP class longer than others’?  (12 hours v. 8 hrs or less)*
  2. Why is your CWP class more expensive?  ($100 v. ?)
  3. Why do we have to shoot so much?  (100 rds v. 50)

These are fair questions and appreciated because they give me an opportunity to distinguish a Paladin CWP Plus class from others.

The short answer:  Because we go far beyond the minimum requirements in what we teach and how we train.

These are the subjects that the state CWP regulations say an instructor must cover:

  1. Statutory and case law regarding deadly force
  2. SC laws governing firearms and concealed weapon permits
  3. Proper firearm storage practices that deny access to children
  4. Prohibited carry locations
  5. Liability and responsibility issues relating to firearms
  6. Proper interaction with Law Enforcement Officers
  7. The four cardinal firearm safety rules
  8. Handgun safety, manipulation and operation
  9. Basic handgun marksmanship
  10. Proper concealment techniques and drawing from concealment
  11. Qualification on the range with the Instructor

A few years back an 8-hour requirement was rescinded and there is currently NO minimum time specified by the state for a CWP class.

These are the subjects we cover in addition to the above requirements:

  1. Situational awareness and mind-setting toward a tactical lifestyle
  2. Physiological issues — how stress affects our bodies during a critical incident
  3. What to say when Law Enforcement arrives

These are the required subjects we go beyond the minimum in teaching:

  1. The kinesiology of an efficient drawstroke followed by dry and live fire reps working on safety and speed
  2. Supervised dry and live fire practice reps working on the marksmanship fundamentals and training for the qualification course

These two are where your 50 extra rounds are spent and add over an hour to the class.

A few words on quality of instruction:

On the range we have a self-imposed maximum student to instructor ratio of 4 : 1.  Most of our assisting instructors are certified firearm instructors in their own right. All of them are serious students of defensive pistol-craft who have trained under other nationally known trainers.

Our assisting instructor knowledge / experience base includes current and former LEO, current and former Private Security, and former military.

Finally, our instructors bring certifications from nationally recognized schools such as Force Science Institute ( in Illinois, Paul Howe’s Combat Shooting and Tactics ( in Nacogdoches, TX, John Farnam’s Defense Training, Intl ( in Fort Collins, CO, and Tom Givens’ Rangemaster ( in Plant City, FL.

We’re not just CWP instructors, we’re defensive firearm instructors who also teach a CWP class.

Haley Leach has a valid CWP issued by CO, her home state.  In January of this year she was arrested in Albany, NY when she tried to declare and check her handgun at the airport.  Leach claimed she thought her CO CWP was valid in all states.  CO’s CWP statute simply requires completion of a ‘handgun training course’ within the previous 10 years, and the curriculum for that course is not specified, so far as I can tell.  A ‘handgun training course’ could mean something as basic (and generic) as an NRA Basic Pistol course.  Now she faces a felony charge in NY.  Think all training is the same?

Our next SC CWP Plus class is 17 & 19 MAY.

If you’d like to know more, or if you’d like to sign up for one of our classes, contact me at either or 843-618-1381.


*12 hours is too long for one day.  Consequently the class is conducted over two days — usually Thursday evening from 6 pm to 10 pm and Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm.

A Tale of Two Cartridges

Or, when is too many?

Never re-chamber a cartridge.  Once a cartridge has been ejected from the chamber, relegate it to training or practice use.

Reason 1:  The nose of the cartridge hitting the feedramp in a semi-automatic can eventually drive the bullet back into the case causing unsafe pressures when the cartridge is fired.  If you have to fire a cartridge that has been chambered more than once, visually confirm the bullet hasn’t been set back by comparing the cartridge overall length (COAL) to a virgin, never chambered, cartridge.  Obviously this is not an issue with revolvers.

Reason 2: The priming compound in cartridges is relatively fragile.  This matters because the priming compound undergoes a shock when:

  1. The cartridge hits the deck after being ejected from the gun (from revolvers, too);
  2. The face of the breech smacks the base of the cartridge as it drives it into the chamber;
  3. The cartridge comes to a sudden stop in the chamber.

We could mitigate #1 by finding a soft surface on which to eject the cartridge, but since that’s not always available, we’ll label that solution as ‘impractical’. Likewise, we could lessen the effects of #2 and #3 by ‘riding the slide’ forward, slowing it’s velocity.  On some semi-autos that practice can result in a malfunction so we can’t recommend riding the slide.

I didn’t list the habit some have of catching a live round in the palm of their hand as that’s dangerous and may one day result in negative consequences like pain, embarrassment and a changed life.

Well, I’ve known all this for years… so long I can’t remember who first taught me to ‘never re-chamber a cartridge’.  Never had a problem.  Like most people, when things are going well, I tend to relax and modify the fundamentals.  Why should I continue to take Vitamin C?  I don’t have a cold.  When I was in LE, we’d occasionally have to deal with someone who had gone off the reservation and we’d usually hear this explanation for why they’d stopped medicating:  ‘I stopped taking them because I was feeling okay!’

So, over the years of everything going okay, without realizing the change taking place, I gradually began to interpret ‘never re-chamber a cartridge’ — which is hard and absolute — to don’t re-chamber a cartridge ‘too many times’ — which is soft and subjective.  I didn’t ask myself this question:  How will you know when you’ve chambered the cartridge ‘too many times’?

About a week ago I had a misfire of a Federal HST .45 ACP round.  Unusually, but thankfully as it turned out, I shot the drill with my carry ammo.  After the drill was over I picked up the unfired round and noted the primer showed adequate indentation from the firing pin.

I tried twice more to fire the cartridge w/o success.

When I got home I broke the cartridge down into components.  The first thing I noticed was that the gunpowder had a weird, greenish tint to it.  That is NOT the way gunpowder is supposed to look.  At least in my experience.

The second thing I noticed was that the primer had no priming compound in it.  That three legged thing that looks like a propeller is called the ‘anvil’ and normally it sits on top of the priming compound.  You’ll see that better in another pic.

My first impulse was to blame Federal for a QC failure by letting a primer get out of the factory w/o any priming compound in it.  Then I broke down a fresh from the box cartridge and I saw gunpowder that looked normal and a primer with the compound intact in the cup.

When I saw the green priming compound in the cup I realized why the gunpowder in the misfire was green:  Federal Cartridge Company had not dropped the ball.  The compound had disintegrated into dust and migrated through the flash hole into the gunpowder and the likely explanation for the disintegration was my habit of re-chambering a cartridge.

Thank goodness I discovered I had finally chambered a cartridge too many times on the range and not on the street.  When put that way, it’s easy to see that’s a Bad Plan.

I have to clear my carry piece for every class.  I have to clear it when I get home to clean it.  There may be other times when I have to clear it.  You can bet that every time I load that gun, it’ll have a virgin cartridge in the chamber.

‘Expensive’ is relative.

Never re-chamber a cartridge.  Once a cartridge has been ejected from the chamber, relegate it to training or practice use.




  Comments: 2

Training Calendar: 2018.0 again

Here’s the 2018 training calendar as of 11 JAN:

SC CWP  $100

Format:  Thursday, 6 pm to 10 pm @ Residence Inn, 2660 Hospitality Blvd, Florence and Saturday, 9 am to 6 pm @ Lake Darpo, Society Hill, SC

18 & 20 JAN

15 & 17 FEB

15 & 17 MAR

12 & 14 APR

17 & 19 MAY

14 & 16 JUN

No CWP classes in JUL or AUG

13 & 15 SEP

11 & 13 OCT

15 & 17 NOV

13 & 15 DEC


24 & 25 MAR @ Lake Darpo, Society Hill, SC


23 & 24 JUN @ Lake Darpo


JUL (Dates and location TBA)


8 & 9 SEP @ Lake Darpo


NOV (Date and location TBA)


7 – 9 DEC @ Lake Darpo

Contact us if:

  1. your church is considering forming a safety team, or has one that would benefit from training;
  2. you would like to host a group class;
  3. you would like a private class (weekdays are an option).

*UBC has prerequisites.  Contact us for details.

Hope to see you in a class soon!




  Comments: 5

Training Calendar: 2018.0

Here’s the training calendar for 2018 as of 11 JAN:


18 & 20 JAN              Thursday, 6 pm to 10 pm @

Residence Inn, 2660 Hospitality Blvd., Florence, SC

Saturday, 9 am to 6 pm @ Lake Darpo, Society Hill, SC

15 & 17 FEB                                      “

15 & 17 MAR                                     “

12 & 14 APR                                      “

17 & 19 MAY                                      “

14 & 16 JUN                                      “

13 & 15 SEP                                      “

11 & 13 OCT                                      “

15 & 17 NOV                                     “

13 & 15 DEC                                      “

DEFENSIVE CARBINE 1      (DC1) 24 & 25 MAR, Lake Darpo, Society Hill, SC $300

DEFENSIVE HANDGUN 1   (DH1) 23 & 24 JUN, Lake Darpo, Society Hill, SC $300

BASIC CARBINE OPERATOR  (BCO) JULY (Date and location TBA)                         $250

DEFENSIVE CARBINE 2     (DC2) 8 & 9 SEP, Lake Darpo, Society Hill, SC      $300

LOW LIGHT HANDGUN     (LLH) NOV (Date and location TBA)                     $200

URBAN BREAK CONTACT (UBC) 7 – 9 DEC, Lake Darpo, Society Hill, SC      $500*

Contact us if you:

  1. Have a church safety team that needs training
  2. Would like to host a group class
  3. Need a private class (weekdays are an option)

*UBC has pre-requisites.  Contact us for details.

Feel free to share.

Hope to see you in a class soon!


  Comments: 1

Edition 2017-1

Paladin Training News

We’re looking for a range!

As those of you from the Pee Dee know, Darlington County has a new sheriff, and we’re still waiting to hear from him whether or not we’ll be allowed to continue to use the SO range at Lake Darpo. Until we get that permission, or find another facility, firearm training is on hold, at least for group classes. Individual training is still a possibility.

We don’t need a lot of land. The footprint can actually be quite small; less than 10 acres would do it. But, what is critical is a buffer zone around the land that’s free of people that would complain about noise. That’s especially important if we’re to continue offering low light training throughout the year.

If you can help us, or know someone who can, please contact me.

New Classes Scheduled Soon

We expect to be scheduling a few carbine and handgun classes at Sandhill Shooting Sports near Lugoff, SC. If you’re from over that way and are willing to provide a testimonial for marketing purposes, please contact me using the link above.

Best Time to Buy

If you’ve been planning to get an AR15 or AK47, etc., I can’t remember a better time to purchase one. I’m sure you know why. I look at the next four to eight years NOT as a time to relax, but as a little extra time to prepare. Not a pardon, but a reprieve. I highly recommend you consider that.

Front Sight Arms Co

If you’re in the Pee Dee, please consider my friend Jason Cox at Front Sight Arms Co in Effingham. Jason has been willing to invest the time necessary to research and meet some unusual equipment requests from me.

Ogburn Combat Development

Another good friend and Paladin student Jamie Ogburn has opened Ogburn Combat Development. Jamie specializes in building long range precision rifles, but also works on AR’s and handles transfers. And, unlike many who ‘gunsmith’ locally, Jamie is actually a trained, full time machinist by occupation. Jamie has done work for me and it’s always been to my satisfaction.

New Website Coming Soon

The new website should be up next week. That this process has been so long drawn out and painful is nobody’s fault but mine!


That’s all for now. Thank you for your continued interest in Paladin Training and your willingness to stand on the firestep with us. Please don’t forget Item 1 above, and PLEASE continue to train and develop your team!

Contact me if you have any questions.