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Yury's shooting log


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#1 yury

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Posted 11 November 2017 - 02:17 PM

A midlife crisis is coming … Alright, alright, alright. The doctor said that somebody needs some type of sport activity, especially for a guy who sits behind a computer screen most of his life. So I decided to try shooting, with absolutely no prior experience, as a sport in the summer of 2016. There was nobody who can introduce me to the shooting, so I gave myself time to find more about it and whether it is for me. The choices were: USPSA, Steel Challenge, Skeets/Sporting Clays, 3gun, Bullseye. After one year of some researches and trials the choices was made, the baseline was set and the goals were defined.


USPSA and Steel Challenge are fun and easy to enter (in terms of required equipment). I decided to start at the Production Division: there are less thinking in what tuning needs to be done to the gun or equipment, and at the same moment, more basic skills (such as recoil control, reloading, planning) are required. My thinking is: whatever I’ll improve in my training towards USPSA competitions will assist with other shooting discipline choices above.


I prefer to improve myself hence this shooting log to track my progress. I hope somebody will find notes here useful to reach their goals faster.



#2 yury

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Posted 11 November 2017 - 02:19 PM

Here is my baseline and what made the local USPSA and Steel Challenge competitions more enjoyable for me.

 

To this moment, I fully adopted the thumbs forward grip, isosceles stance, and symmetrical draw stroke. I removed or trying to remove all unneeded movement/actions from any routine and/or replacing them with familiar movements on a line of fire: made “make ready” command look similar to draw and magazine reloading procedure, replaced slide stop lever push with regular racking, etc. A dry-fire practice needs to be free from unneeded movements as well: at the moment trying to avoid pressing a par-timer start button (I have caught myself subconsciously reaching for it :).


I need to allocate about 140 min per week for dry-fire session to notice any improvement. It’s about 20-30 min per day. I'm trying to mix two of the following exercises per session: white wall, draw, trigger slap, reload during movement, Hopkins drills; and on occasions: to replace snap caps with laser cartridge to observe light movements during striker hit; to remove par timer to better concentrate on movements; to use of one hand; to add malfunction clearing. I think the above helped me with indexing (point shooting) and, because of that, shooting with both eyes opened.


During live-fire practice, I’m trying to use the same equipment, to load the same amount of rounds per magazine and the same exact ammunition as during competitions. To not forget how to keep a grip during recoil, I have to use about 150 rounds per week at shooting range, and it requires way more than that to make some improvements. Yes, the hardest thing is a grip -- it is impossible to simulate recoil during dry-fire. But it is getting better with time, and few adjustments (after some advice).


Measurable goals? With my 2s draw, 0.8s splits, and 6” groups (at 10 yards), it is hard to expect good results on classifiers yet. However I really hope to reach 1.80s draw, 0.45s splits and 3.5” group somehow by the end of next year.



#3 yury

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Posted 12 November 2017 - 09:06 PM

Started using http://async5.org/beep/ as a par timer -- there is no need to press a button to start cycle again.



#4 yury

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 10:37 AM

Date 528. Looked at the past three months, when I started log my training sessions. 1745 minutes spent on dry-fire training (draw, reload, Hopkins drill, simple movements), and about 2700 rounds used for various activities (indoor range, competitions). That's about 135 minutes per week on dry-fire training. It's really hard to measure the progress: I tried to measure using (Match %), but those PCC guys keep improving too. I probably need to pick some set of M and A shooters in the Production division and compare against them instead.

 

The movements training with Kita has been a blast. The best thing was to try things you see people do, but too afraid to try it yourself, e.g. running full speed back or sideways, or engaging targets on the move. In some case speed gains can be achieved by not doing some thing, e.g. standing reloads or speed up on steel/hard targets. I saw some time improvements in recent matches too, yay!

 

Next several month, I decided to follow a suggestion to further simplify dry-fire training: remove par timer (just beep) and limit training to three basic drills (reload, draw, transition). A live-fire is now strictly limited to Bill drill too -- I want to see splits time changing (which is not).



#5 yury

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Posted 22 January 2018 - 08:34 AM

Day 573. I counted myself as a person who shoots fast but inaccurate. After reviewing a few of my last USPSA matches, I found out that it is not all true. Amount of the points (not stage points) more or on the par with shooters who beats me in the same division -- it's a stage time that bites me. 50%-100% slower in comparison with most of the shooters in the division. So I'm trying to find where/when the time is lost.

 

 

The first idea is poppers and swingers. I pretty much know how fix repeated shots at poppers: more time with sights (a popper is a hard target) and better grip. At the last SCSA I was accurate from first time in 79% of the shots (counted via extra rounds used). Improving that number might reduce time spent on follow up shoots and improves transition-from-popper time due to the confidence of hitting it from the first time. I'm not sure yet what to do about waiting on swingers.



#6 yury

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Posted 19 February 2018 - 07:39 PM

Finally… I barely snatched C from the jaws of the USPSA (and SCSA) classifiers. This took way longer and harder than I anticipated (mostly due to my laziness). The recipe was simple, during frequent dry fire sessions:
- stop chasing quick par times for draw;
- practice standing reload — reload during move is not yet important;
- and work on transitions on the El Prez target array -- eyes first, then sights.

The next stop is B. It’s where I need to fix disconnect between live fire and dry fire. Also, one handed shooting sucks -- it takes forever to put sights back on the target after the shot.



#7 Wall

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 11:31 AM

Finally… I barely snatched C from the jaws of the USPSA (and SCSA) classifiers. This took way longer and harder than I anticipated (mostly due to my laziness). The recipe was simple, during frequent dry fire sessions:
- stop chasing quick par times for draw;
- practice standing reload — reload during move is not yet important;
- and work on transitions on the El Prez target array -- eyes first, then sights.

The next stop is B. It’s where I need to fix disconnect between live fire and dry fire. Also, one handed shooting sucks -- it takes forever to put sights back on the target after the shot.

Congrats Yury

#8 Rick Howell

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 07:31 PM

Finally… I barely snatched C from the jaws of the USPSA (and SCSA) classifiers. This took way longer and harder than I anticipated (mostly due to my laziness). The recipe was simple, during frequent dry fire sessions:
- stop chasing quick par times for draw;
- practice standing reload — reload during move is not yet important;
- and work on transitions on the El Prez target array -- eyes first, then sights.

The next stop is B. It’s where I need to fix disconnect between live fire and dry fire. Also, one handed shooting sucks -- it takes forever to put sights back on the target after the shot.


Good job, Yury. I had noticed you making quite a bit of progress!!

#9 yury

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 05:02 PM

Day 584 - The entire past year I was trying to understand what hit factor (HF) means to me. For that period, the HF numbers did not mean anything — they were just some numbers in range from 0.0 to 4.5. I just knew higher is better. I was playing with formulas, checking discussions about it, and finally agreed on the “points per seconds” definition, but it still was not helping me. I needed another metric for purpose of making decisions for whether I want a make-up shot or not. For example, when glancing targets, during “if you finished..” command, and there was a target with Mike or Delta, shall I fix it or not? I need to answer this question without thinking too long. And having/knowing somewhat predictable HF helped: I started using “time to gain a point” and “time to fix a Mike” terms. The former is answering a question of how much time can be spent to gain a point knowing estimated HF for a stage, and it is (1 / HF). The latter is almost same thing but multiplied by 15, points gained back by fixing the Mike: (15 / HF).


Here is the recent real world example. I was estimating my HF for the stage (“Thread the Needle”) to be about 4.0. So the “time to gain a point” is 0.25 sec, and the “time to fix a Mike” is 3.75 sec. I know that I could not fix Delta in time and not make HF worse — it needs to be at most 1 second (4 * 0.25 sec) and that is not enough time to glance targets, reacquire sights, and pull the trigger for me. However 3.75 sec is enough to fix a Mike. Final result for this stage was [A:25, C:6, D:1, Time:33.67, HF: (144 / 33.67) = 4.27], but it could be worse if I did not fix two Mikes confirmed at the end of course and proceed with unloading. How worse? The HF could be (114 / 30.67) = 3.71, assuming I spent about 3.0 seconds fixing Mikes. Also I knew for sure, if I spotted Deltas instead of Mikes, the HF (136 / 30.67) = 4.43 will be better anyway without me poking more holes in targets. The moral: not fix things unless it’s a Mike, and fix it fast.


Past three month progress: 3,480 minutes spent on dry-fire and 2,255 additional rounds for live-fire and competitions. Okay, I’m at 1.8 sec draw, 0.48 sec splits, 2.4 sec reload, but 6” groups are not shrinking. More Bill/dot drills?



#10 Jeff T

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 09:59 PM

Yury,
As someone that is FAR from an expert and someone that shoots slower than you but my groups are closer to 1”, there are 2 things I know will help your groups. Handstrength/grip and slowing just a bit to let the sites “settle” in place before pulling the trigger.
If you “wait” for the sites to settle you lose time. If you get your grip more solid/strong, you don’t have to wait as long and don’t lose as much time.
The dot drill at 7 or 10 yards or playing cards at 10 or 12 yards, 6 rounds as fast as you can keep them ALL in a single playing card will help with knowing when the sites have settled.


Live Simply, Love Generously, Care Deeply, Speak Kindly, Shoot Well, Leave the Rest to God.

Live Simply, Love Generously, Care Deeply, Speak Kindly, Shoot Well, Leave the Rest to God.

Jeff Turner


#11 yury

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Posted 21 June 2018 - 06:09 AM

Day 723. Three months, 3965 minutes of dry-firing, 4355 live rounds, 1 USPSA major match, 1 master class. The Oklahoma Section Championship was an awesome experience. I wish I took live practices more seriously, like training of going into prone positions or a shooting on the move. I'm planning to fix that in next three months.

Ben's class was a few weeks before the section match. There I learned what shall I pay attention to during live practice sessions, e.g. where the gun are during movements, what are shoulders doing, etc. So there are no more excuses to get better for the area match.

I stopped using a par timer during dry-fire training (with exception of a couple of standards exercises). Mostly due to my inability to properly focus on movements and try to catch that second-beep moment. I just push speed during dry-fire until something fails. The times can be measured later during live practices.

To keep my bills down, I learned how to reload -- nothing fancy, just very basic manual progressive press. Now I do not feel guilty to spend extra hundred rounds at a live practice session.



#12 yury

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 06:47 AM

Do I really save money if I reload ammo myself? Production division does not require anything bigger than 9mm. Is it even worth to reload already cheap round? Nowadays you can find okay quality factory rounds at about 20 cents per cartridge.
 
Let's say I can harvest spent brass for my previous training sessions, but it is still not free. If I need to place a number behind, it will be about 1.5¢ per brass unit, to offset costs of polishing medium, electricity, a fraction of (once fired?) brass cost, resizing lube, etc. Then I'm adding: primer cost at 3.5¢, powder at 1.3¢, bullet at 6.4¢. That includes taxes and shipping costs for these.
 
After the case gauge stage, 5% cartridges will not pass check (sometimes it is not just my brass). That increases the cost of powder and primer: instead of 4.8¢, it jumps to 5.04¢ per bullet. The bullets are pulled and reused later.
 
This totals to about 13¢, freeing me about 7¢ per round in comparison with factory one (and $70 per 1,000 rounds). So far it is a good deal and in several months I hope to return the cost of the reloading equipment.





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