Edition 40

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I hope this finds you and your team well.

The schedule for the second quarter of 2013 is now up.  If there’s anything you’d like to see, please contact me and let me know.  Lesson plans for several new classes are in the works.


Note that we WILL be conducting a Basic Carbine Operator (BCO) class this weekend.  Some students have elected to attend Day 1 only and that’s fine.  That’s certainly preferable to not training at all.  Day 1 is where most of the heavy lifting occurs, where the basics are covered and – very important – where we’ll conduct low light training.


Low light training is critical.  We’ll conduct decision making drills, movement drills, flashlight drills and malfunction reduction drills in low visibility… read, ‘in the dark’.  Great fun and very useful.  Odds are pretty good that, should you ever need your defensive firearm, it’s going to be at night or in a dark place.


All our defensive firearm classes include a low light training block.


BCO focuses on learning to operate the AR and get hits with it out to 100 yards from standing, kneeling and prone positions.  It is now our entry level carbine class and a prerequisite for anyone wishing to attend upper level carbine classes like BDC, ADC or UBC.


We do have room this weekend if you can make it.


Please forward this to anyone that might be interested.


Almost forgot:  Note the 1 Day BDS in May!  Woohoo!!


Train hard, put God first!

Ammunition Shortages

What can I say… seems this is the way it’s going to be for the foreseeable future.  We’ve modified the curriculum of every class except the CWP to deal with the new reality.  Expect lower round counts and more dry practice drills in all the defensive firearm classes.  A two day class that formerly suggested 500 rounds can now be completed with 300.


The lower round count is not necessarily a Bad Thing.  When it comes to round counts, every good firearms trainer tries to strike a balance between what the student wants (a lot of shooting) and what the student actually needs to begin to learn (a lot of quality dry practice).


This is an extremely competitive business and some compromise between what the student wants and what is good for the student is to be expected in order to survive.  Listen:  Just because you’re shooting a lot doesn’t mean you’re improving a lot.


Every time you perform a technique some type of motor skill learning is taking place.  The question is, are you learning to perform the technique correctly or incorrectly?


If you’re mentally or physically exhausted and not performing quality reps, one of two things is happening to your skill set, neither good:

1.  It’s remaining constant (no learning is taking place) because you’ve reverted to your level of comfort. You’re simply practicing what you already know.


2.  It’s degrading (faulty learning is taking place) because you’re performing the new technique incorrectly.  You’re going backwards.


Either way, you’re wasting your time, money and hard-to-replace ammunition.


The current situation actually provides us the opportunity to give you higher quality training.


Can I Attend Just One Day?

Another result of the current ammunition shortage is that we’re getting more questions about the feasibility of attending just the first day of a two day defensive firearm class.   As stated above in the introduction, this is perfectly acceptable.


Class tuition will be 60% of the normal fee.


Any two day class to a new student:  $250

Day 1 only:  $150 ($250 x 60%)


Any two day class to a Paladin alum:  $200

Day 1 only:  $120 ($200 x 60%)


Any two day class to a full time LEO:  $125

Day 1 only:  $75


CWP classes are not affected.

Personal Stuff for Sale

Aimpoint Comp M4 for sale:  $450.  This comes with the box, mount and kill-flash.  It works fine and looks new.  Send an e-mail to steve@paladintraining.com if you’re interested.

Home Security: The Door Club

I recently bought a Door Club (www.theclub.com) to study.  After seeing it and checking with Ronnie Summersett of Fludds-Summersett Security (843-206-5253) for his input, I’ve decided to install them at our front and back doors here at home.


The Door Club gives you the option of securing the door where it can’t be opened at all or, with a simple turn of the club, to where it can be opened a couple of inches to receive a package, etc.   Simple and sturdy.


The Door Club should be considered as a supplement to a heavy duty lock and strike plate, not a replacement.  Think layers.


No mechanical device is 100%.  The purpose in locking doors and windows is NOT to keep people (good or bad) out.  The purpose behind locking your doors and windows is to slow Bad People down to give you time to get ready to greet them properly.


The lock is not the solution.  YOU are the solution.

Stopping Mechanisms and Standard Capacity Magazines

There are three ways that bullets influence behavior.  We call them ‘stopping mechanisms’.  They are:

1.  Psychological stop

2.  Central nervous system (CNS) stop

3.  Hypovolemic shock  (HVS) stop


A psychological stop occurs when you get the BG to  change his mind about attacking you.  Maybe you shot him; maybe you just convinced him you would shoot him if he persisted.


A CNS stop occurs when the bullet does something to the brain or spine that prevents the BG from using his hands.  The signals aren’t getting from the brain to the muscles.  The BG may be dead or he may be paralyzed or maybe the CNS is just stunned from a near miss to the spine.


Hypovolemic Shock occurs from a severe loss of blood volume.  In our context, we reduce blood volume by putting holes in people with bullets.  This is the mechanism we spend most of our time training toward and why our usual point of aim is the upper thoracic;  that’s where the heart and arteries leading to the brain are.


It should be obvious that blood flows faster out of large holes than small holes; from deep holes more than shallow holes; from many holes better than fewer.


It takes time for an HVS stop to occur.  The average body holds about 5 quarts of blood and it must lose about 1/5 of the total for shock to set in.  We could be talking about several minutes.  Considerations:  Did we hit an artery?  Did we damage an organ that bleeds a lot?


If you’re armed with a six shot revolver and dump all six rounds into the BG in 2 seconds, what do you intend to do while waiting for enough blood loss to occur that he finally passes out and stops hurting you?


Back in the mid 1980’s I was driving home from work in Charleston, SC.  Around 2 am or so I got stopped by a red light in a small town.  There were no other cars on the road, no one nearby.  Then I noticed a man approach the intersection from a group of houses nearby.  He began to cross in front of me and suddenly swerved toward my car.  I leaned over and opened the glove box door to retrieve the handgun there.  That movement, which he immediately recognized, was enough to make him change his mind, turn on his heels and walk back into the darkness.  I achieved a Psychological Stop without firing a shot.  That I didn’t have to shoot him was entirely up to him.


Last January Paul Ali Slater decided to break into a home outside Atlanta.  It was about noon on a weekday.  He rang the doorbell and, not getting an answer, retrieved a crowbar from his car and used it to break into the home.  Inside was a mother and her two children.  She armed herself with a six shot revolver and ran into an attic crawl space with Slater in pursuit.  When he opened the door, she fired six times, emptying her revolver, getting five hits into his face and neck.  Good job!


Slater was blown backward by the bullets and landed in a heap across the room and never moved another muscle.  Wait… that’s not right.  That’s the Hollywood Version.  Actually, Slater’s response was to run from the house, climb into his Ford Explorer and drive away.  He eventually lost consciousness, wrecked and was discovered by LEO’s responding to the 911 call.   Last I heard he was in ICU.


Five hits in the face and neck, at close range and she achieved a Psychological Stop.  But, if Slater had the ability and energy to leave the house and drive away, he had the ability and energy to continue the attack.  That he didn’t was entirely up to him.  Our heroine certainly influenced him, but the decision was his.

Does caliber matter?

The numbers say ‘not much’.  But, I would suggest that’s true only because Psychological Stops are the overwhelmingly most likely stop of the three to occur.  Stats say 30:1.  And, as we’ve seen above Psychological Stops may occur with even zero rounds being fired.


So, how can we measure the success of one caliber or bullet over another when the primary stopping factor is psychological and determined solely by the BG’s mental state?  We can’t.  We can simply rely on logic and physics and play the odds.


Our thought process should be something like this:

“A Psychological Stop is likely to occur, but I can’t depend on it.  My best chance of winning comes from inducing Hypovolemic Shock as quickly as possible, and bigger bullets make bigger holes, heavier bullets go deeper and track straighter, and more bullets are better than fewer.”

Here’s the problem from the perspective of magazine capacity:  We place ourselves in a greater likelihood of getting hurt when we leave decisions about our welfare to the people that have already demonstrated an intent to hurt us.  We should arm ourselves with tools that allow us to control the action as much as possible.


Think about that mother in Atlanta.  What if Slater hadn’t changed his mind?  She was out of ammunition and Slater was again potentially in control.  What if he’d brought a partner?  Or two?  The results for that family could have been tragic.  If 15 rounds in a magazine is a GOOD IDEA for an LEO who is often not alone or who might have backup a few blocks away, then it’s a good idea for you who ARE likely alone and your backup (911) doesn’t even know you’ve got a problem.


Lastly, if there’s one overwhelming piece of evidence in favor of you owning a standard capacity semi-auto (whether Glock of AR-15), it’s that the government doesn’t want you to own one.  That alone should be enough to make every reasonable person go out and buy just as many as they can afford.   By this time, anyone still trusting the government to do the right thing is delusional and probably shouldn’t own a firearm anyway.

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