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Old 07-25-2010, 07:07 PM   #1
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

Gentlemen,



I apologize if this topic has already been beaten to death.



But I wonder if in the midst of an Awful Event where a citizen must shoot to save his life, if he is better picking precise shots (assuming one can do so under the exreme stress of the situation) or "spraying 'n' praying," as the saying goes?



Put another way, what is more likely to end the event in favor of the typically not-too-trained citizen-victim in a typical criminal assault: precise shots, or simply sending as much lead towards one's attacker as possible?



This question will partially inform my choice between a high(er) capaciaty semi-auto pistol for home defense or a lower capacity revolver.



Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-25-2010, 07:22 PM   #2
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

Hello. In my opinion, fire quickly but no faster than you can hit the target. In my opinion, the old saying that we "cannot miss fast enough to win" remains true as is our being responsible for every shot we fire...even in a completely justifiable situation where no other reasonable alternative exists. While I have not agreed with him on every single point, I do think that the late Jeff Cooper was correct when he included both speed and accuracy (along with power) in his recipe for effective defensive shooting.



Having said that I am aware of one instance decades ago when a neighbor emptied her snub revolver at an intruder and never hit anything but her bedroom wall, dresser, ceiling and door. He still ran and may still be doing so for all I know!



My own response would (hopefully) be to fire no quicker than I could get the desired hits from point blank on out.



One of my most favored handguns remains the 9mm Browning Hi Power and I certainly do not consider its typical 14-round capacity a hindrance, but neither do I see it as a major advantage. Speaking only for myself, I find the pistol to just be one that I manage to shoot pretty well both in slow and rapid-fire; that's its main "draw" to me. That it holds quite a few shots is just "icing on the cake." At the same time, both my "carry guns" and "house guns" are currently revolvers and I personally believe that they're up to the task.



I would go with the handgun-type I use best and am just more comfortable with. I believe that in most instances we will still run out of time before ammunition if we cannot quickly "solve our problem". Even so, if YOU personally feel something's lacking with the revolver's lesser ammunition-capacity and simply want more shots before running empty, go with the autoloader. (This assumes that you can shoot both sufficiently well to hit your target at speed.)



Best.



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Old 07-25-2010, 11:52 PM   #3
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

NRA rule 1: ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.

Jeff Cooper rule 4: Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.



These two rules may seem very different from each other, but I think the address the same issue. It is up to you where the bullet will go. The last thing you want to do is hit the wrong person. What the drills are for is to be able to bring the gun into action and on the right target in a minimum of time. If you are off target something is wrong.



What Mr. Camp said is no doubt true, there is an intimidation factor in having a gun firing your way. But there are usually consequences involved for wherever the bullet lands.



My two cents,

Vern
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Old 07-26-2010, 06:50 AM   #4
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

Unless you find yourself in a general war situation, you will pay full retail for every round you fire. You are going to be held responsible for every single shot and it behooves you to hit a threat and only the threat with each round fired. I think quality much more important than quantity.



For home defense, I am always of the mind that the shotgun is superior to the handgun. The handgun is a defensive instrument worn for protection outside the home and is generally only used to fight your way to your long gun (rifle or shotty). Plus, the shotgun has tremendous power and limited range.



Finally, a well trained person with a revolver is more than the equal of a poorly trained shooter with all the high cap pistol in the world. Only hits count and the revolver has a few advantages for the non-enthusiast. The manual of arms is very simple even if the double action trigger is more difficult to handle at distances over 7 yards. Plus, at rest, the revolver has no springs under great tension. They are reliable, easy to shoot and powerful enough yet controllable.



The speed accuracy balance is an individual training issue. I am always reminded of my police firearms instructor who remarked that no felon was ever subdued with a sudden loud noise. While no one every died as a result of having too many shots available, high capacity not an excuse for poor marksmanship.
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Old 07-26-2010, 04:51 PM   #5
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

Hello earlybird,



Thank you for the very thought provocating thread



I agree with every word that both Oberstlt and Steve have offered in the form of advice.





Quote:
Originally Posted by [color=#000080
oberstlt[/color]]Unless you find yourself in a general war situation, you will pay full retail for every round you fire. You are going to be held responsible for every single shot and it behooves you to hit a threat and only the threat with each round fired. I think quality much more important than quantity.



For home defense, I am always of the mind that the shotgun is superior to the handgun. The handgun is a defensive instrument worn for protection outside the home and is generally only used to fight your way to your long gun (rifle or shotty). Plus, the shotgun has tremendous power and limited range.



Finally, a well trained person with a revolver is more than the equal of a poorly trained shooter with all the high cap pistol in the world. Only hits count and the revolver has a few advantages for the non-enthusiast. The manual of arms is very simple even if the double action trigger is more difficult to handle at distances over 7 yards. Plus, at rest, the revolver has no springs under great tension. They are reliable, easy to shoot and powerful enough yet controllable.



The speed accuracy balance is an individual training issue. I am always reminded of my police firearms instructor who remarked that no felon was ever subdued with a sudden loud noise. While no one every died as a result of having too many shots available, high capacity not an excuse for poor marksmanship.


My "beside" guns are a Remington 870 and my "always" S&W 642. I was trained by my CWP instructor that you are only allowed to shoot until the "threat is no longer a threat" and will be responsible for every bullet until "A No True Bill" is delivered by a Grand Jury.



earlybird, your thread is reminder that we need to practice, practice and practice until our skills are kept "sharp".



Best,



Chris
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Old 01-24-2011, 02:42 AM   #6
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

For the record, I think spray and pray is horrible. That said: not all shots must be sight aimed to hit the target. I would encourage you to get a laser "dry fire" training tool that goes in the bore of the gun. Train with a body silouette target at seven yards. If you have even minimal ability, you will rapidly be able to hit the target every time without aiming.



It is controversial as to what to do in life threat: my father was LE and the general consensus was the number one rule to winning a gunfight is shoot first.... and none of the other rules really matter compared to that one. Here's why: there is no training to simulate the terror of being shot at. Any person who sees a muzzle flash intent on taking his life will likely freeze momentarily and his shooting skills will drop to absolute minimum. Of course, if you shoot wild and cause damage or injury, you are responsible for it. I recommend training enough that you have a very high probability of hitting a center mass at a range of six or seven yards. If that is burned into muscle memory, you can fire as soon as the gun clears leather and the barrel is level with high certainty of a hit.



When I first started training with a laser and found it was almost impossible to MISS a man target at seven yards shooting from the hip, it made me feel good until I realized it also means a poorly skilled adversary has a good chance of hitting you if he fires. Rule #1: shoot first. Rule #2: see rule #1.
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Old 01-24-2011, 02:47 AM   #7
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?



Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Stephens
I was trained by my CWP instructor that you are only allowed to shoot until the "threat is no longer a threat" and will be responsible for every bullet until "A No True Bill" is delivered by a Grand Jury.
A wise man once told me that if you ever have to use deadly force, make sure the grand jury will only be reading your version of the events.....
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:28 PM   #8
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

The whole issue was wrapped up in a nutshell by Mr. Camp in his reply above in which he said: ".....fire quickly but no faster than you can hit the target."



Someone a lot smarter than me once said that you can't miss fast enough to win a gunfight. Another said that nobody ever won a gunfight with a rapid series of loud bangs. To me, "spray and pray" is nothing more than high speed missing and is irresponsible as hell.



In the State of Tennessee, state law makes the shooter solely responsible for the actions of every shot fired, no matter how many times it ricochets, and I doubt that Tennessee has a monoply on such a law. Sortof puts a damper on "spray and pray", doesn't it?



JayPee



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Old 01-24-2011, 01:20 PM   #9
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

I'm also a member of Florida Concealed Carry . Com and we've got a similar thread going that may be instructive. Here is a link. http://floridaconcealedcarry.com/For...arget-practice



For those who don't want to bother reading the thread here is a copy of a post I made within that may be instructive or maybe I'll get some feedback on my current thinking.



Strange that you brought this up today. I am a professional tattooer in a street shop. Last night a fellow came in with his wife for tattoos. He is an FL state policeman and a trainer of combat shooting.



As soon as I find out a customer is an LEO I always bring firearms into the discussion. I happened to have a target I had shot with my new Hi Power and showed it to him. I am somewhat proud of the tight groups as being an old bullseye shooter I understand trigger control and sight alignment.



To cut to the chase, he said that in most SD situations you will be no more than 7 yds from your adversary if that. He said that if you concentrate on sight alignment, squeezing the trigger and breath control you will be dead.



My coworker asked him about the laser he is so fond of and the LEO said it is a good cat toy. He said that you have to get the gun out point at center mass with no laser or sights and shoot.



He recommended to me that rather than my usual routine of stance, sight alignment etcetera I lay the pistol on the bench (the ranges I go to do not allow drawing and firing) and pick it up and point shoot for center mass.



Obviously I've not had the chance to go to the range and begin this drill. Forty + years ago I began shooting bullseye with 22 and 45. The usual timed, rapid and slow fire at 25 and 50 yards. Punched paper all the years since and only in the last few years used a two handed hold at SD distances. I was basically using the same methods I had learned shooting bullseye and have been very pleased with myself when friends who have been with me have been amazed at my ability to get tight groups at POA.



Now I'm rethinking my whole "training" regimen realizing that I've been setting myself up for possible failure if the omelet hits the fan. On Wednesday when I have my next day off I'll be going down to the range to see how I do with this new, for me, procedure and I'll be reading up on SD training to learn more of what I need to know and practice. Thanks for bringing the topic up.
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Old 01-24-2011, 02:37 PM   #10
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Pick your shots or "Spray "n' Pray"?

I think you'll find your LEO friend has put you on to some good techniques. I was an LEO for 28 years and we were not allowed to even use our sights at the 7 yard line. Yet controlling accuracy without sights at that range is entirely practical and reliable, even in rapid fire situations, given training and practice. So I think you're about to discover the real fun part of pistol shooting, IMHO. I would advise you, since these techniques are new to you, to start slow and work up your proficiency carefully. And remember that eliminating the use of sights was never intended to excuse or facilitate "spray and pray" firing. Don't fire any faster than you can hit the target where you need to hit it. Best wishes.



JayPee





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