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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I count my shots. Having lived with a 15 round 9mm for 10 years, I've gotten accustomed to being able to double tap something each day of the week, or really let go on a target.

I'm learning to shoot this new 1911 in a quick manner. I believe I can even shoot it faster than my 9mm - it just has a lower bore axis.

The problem is that I count to eight and then have to reload. I'm just not used to that.

Should I modify practice in any way to deal with the lesser round count? What do you .45 guys recommend?

Thanks,

Josh <><
 

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Howdy folks,

To me it is simply an acquired skill I reckon. I know the mag capacity of every pistol I own. I also know if I am carrying it, it has a round chambered and a full mag - so mag +1. I count my rounds without much conscious thought really, but know when I am getting near the empty mag.

That is a handy skill to develop, especially in a real world tactical situation. If I have known I was getting near empty and was not already moving towards a position of cover (why I had not already found cover would be a mystery to me, unless none simply existed), I know it is time to make a very quick move. Even if there is no cover available, I want to be doing something, moving right-left-forward-back, doing anything to not be a stationary target when my slide has locked to the rear.

As I near the last few rounds my weak hand is already holding a full magazine, waiting for the slide to lock for a quick reload. Again, if I have no cover, I may even kneel or go prone to do the reload. Anything you can do to upset the bad guy's sight picture and mind set to me is a plus.

So my suggestion is three-fold I reckon. (1) Learn to automatically count your rounds. Know your weapons, and you will also know how many rounds you are starting with. Be consistent with how you carry various pistols - always have a round chambered, or never have one. Personally I want as many rounds as possible, so I choose the always chambered.

(2) Work to develop a very smooth magazine reload. Remember smooth is slow, and once developed, slow becomes fast. Once you consistently make a smooth reload, while still staying smooth increase the reload pace. With practice you will be amazed at how quickly you can be back up and running with a full mag. Once I have slammed/inserted the full mag with the palm of my weak hand, I basically already have the start of my shooting grip. I simply use my left thumb to work the slide release, as I continue to reacquire my shooting grip.

(3) Once you have developed good skills with one and two, working on shooting while moving - if you have a range setup that will allow you to do so safely. Work on not being a stationary target while doing the reload. Vary what you do, so you have practiced more than one new skill to pull from your tactical bag of tricks if they should ever be needed.

Just some suggestions that may be helpful to some of our members. Others may see things differently, and that is fine. But these have proven very useful skills to me over the years.

twoguns
 

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I don't practice counting rounds.
I've never heard any instructor teach that you do, or even suggest that you could.
I guess I don't get it. I don't see why I would want to add something else to occupy my mind when I want to be fully concentrating on putting bullets where I want them.

I'll shoot until there is no longer a problem or the gun is empty.

If the gun is empty, I'll know it. If I'm still having trouble at that time, I'll reload (or more probable- switch guns).

If I've shot what seems like "a lot", and if I have the chance, then maybe I'll think about changing mags. But I won't do that unless I absolutely know there is no danger. I'm not taking a magazine out, even if it has only one round in it, unless I have to.

When I shot Highpower matches (rifle), I counted my rounds. But then, all I am thinking about is sight alignment and trigger control.
In defensive shooting, I'm thinking about those things, plus-
Which way is he moving?
Should I move this way or that way to get to cover faster?
Can I shoot through his cover?
Where are my kids?
Is there another shooter?
How is the area behind the target?
Great, he changed angles- now I have to aim at a different entry point.

I place all of these things a lot higher than knowing exactly how many shots I've fired.
If there are bullets in the gun, I'll use 'em. If not- I'll reload or go to another gun.
In between- I'm worried about the fight.
 

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IPSC competition case:

When I compete, I count the shoots to be done, and look to the best place to reload while moving, to avoid a slide lock, and reload while I am in front of a target. This might cost 1 to 3 seconds that are just too much time.

Somehow, the inverse procedure you are making. I count the targets, number of shoots, load the magazines (if possible one bullet less than the capacity to be sure the next magazine will be placed properly) and then I start to move, run and fire. I have to be very careful to reload exactly in the places I have chosen to change magazines, which are the ones where I have to be moving.

I find this topic extremely important, because there is a competitive way to count, and a defensive way, where you even might need to look for cover, and you do not know the number of shoots you will need to make.

Fortunately, for civilians like me, the chance being involved in a gun fight situation with a gangsters gang is almost inexistent, but it might be a good idea to start counting the rounds. This might be very important when in an IPSC or similar competition you make more misses than expected and find yourself with an empty weapon in front of a target.....OUCH!!! In competition you might produce some smiling faces or loud laughs, but in a life situation in the case you are a LEO you might bring tears to your family faces wen you do not return home never again.

Please forgive my not perfect English, but I always try to write in a way it is possible to understand.

Please keep posting your opinions. I think this is a very important topic.

iagbarrb
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I do remember my thoughts when I was charged by doggies.

First, I looked behind them as I drew. As my hands came together, I remember wanting to see the front sight, and so stood the front sight up on the rear. It was instinctive.

Then the trigger. One smooth pull, hardly heard the shot, recoil was irritating, needed to get back on target but it was taking a looooong time. Counted "1". Second shot I knew I was going to have a short trigger, same deal with the sights as with the first shot, squeezed (or maybe yanked,) recoil recovery time was too long again, counted "2". Third shot, same as second, scored a peripheral hit (just found this out recently,) dogs did a 180, and I counted "3" and went to low ready.

Put in on safe, walked inside, laid it on the kitchen table, and called the police. End of story.

The point is that I was shooting so much at that time that I instinctively counted my shots. I found out that I'm no longer doing this but rather am concentrating solely on making the hit to the exclusion of all else. My groups are not noticeably improved if I don't count. It's just a habit I fell out of.

Josh <><
 

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Howdy folks,

Counting rounds is just instinctive to me, really. Running a range for so long, I even count what shooters have fired. I know when they will lock back before they do usually.

When I am watching a movie I realize I am even counting the rounds fired. I often will shake my head because a 15 round weapons has just fired 23 times before the slide locks to the rear. Once that skill is ingrained in me, I find I do it consistently without giving real thought to it. But I have been an awful lot of rounds going down range over the years too. So it was an easier habit for me to pick up than if I were only shooting on my own.

twoguns
 

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I fire as many or more single rounds in practice as I do double taps. With th possibility of facing more than one adversary, I think that subconciously reverting to DT's might get me killed, while I'm putting two into one guy, the other is doing me in. I also doubt that if being fired on, that I could have the awareness to keep tab on how many rounds I have before empty. JMO.
 

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Having had my life depend on a six shot wheel gun for so many years, counting my shots is just instinctive with me, and I've carried that habit over to my auto pistols. I can't imagine not doing it.

JayPee
 

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Having had my life depend on a six shot wheel gun for so many years, counting my shots is just instinctive with me, and I've carried that habit over to my auto pistols. I can't imagine not doing it.

JayPee
I too carried a wheelgun for years, and still do off duty.

Counting shots with a wheelie is easy. Where I lose it is when I'm firing a "bottomfeeder". After six rounds I lose track of how many I've fired.

Biker
 

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Well,considering I am used to carrying a Glock 19 with a factory +2(actually +3 rd. of 9mm) mag ext. giving me 18+1 rds. of GDHP and I shoot in IPSC... I usually run her dry and slam a new one in.
 

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I agree, have a chance to reload, do it, practice for the chance that your planned run to cover may not work out as you wanted and you may be exchanging fire on the move and need to do a reload before get there, not perfect, don't want to do it, but hey it happens.

Round counting when only your pistol is doing the firing is one thing, round counting when there are multiple weapons firing is another and you are dodging and ducking and praying (insert god of choice..or not) that there isn't more than the 1,2,3 that you are currently facing all the while thinking, how can I turn the tables on them and end this encounter or can I break it off and get my butt out of dodge, without picking up any extra ballast along the way, round counting comes way down the list of things I worry about.

You must streamline and prioritize the things you need to think about in training and practice, because anything that takes your concentration from the matter at hand can get you killed and the worry about, did I fire 6 or 7 or 3 is something that can split your concentration at the most inopportune time.

Just my opinion of course.
 

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I dont try to count shots (too much going on to put part of my limited mental faculties out of commission). Besides, there are 3 kinds of people; those that can count and those that can't


All I need to know is whether I have fired my gun or not. Does not matter whether it holds 5, 6, 9 or 28 (as in an M4 Carbine) - if I have fired the gun and I get a chance I need to reload. Nobody can predict how many rounds I will need the next time I fire! Therefore I want as many in the gun as I can get.

When it comes to reloading, I dont care how many rounds a gun holds, I care how many extra mags I have becuase I need a full gun everytime I get the chance.

"Reload when you can, not when you have to!"

Jim H.
 
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