AAR: Sentinel Concepts Carbine Essentials with Steve Fisher, Mar 30-31, 2019, Meadhall Range, Mcloud

[SIZE=14pt]AAR Sentinel Concepts Carbine Essentials[/SIZE]
[SIZE=14pt]Meadhall Range, Mcloud, OK[/SIZE]​
[SIZE=14pt]March 30-31, 2019[/SIZE]​


  • Personally-owned duty rifle, started life as a Colt AR15A3 (6721) – currently mainly BCM (converted to midlength gas system)
  • Secondary rifle (BCM)
  • Federal AE 55gr
  • Magpul Gen 3 magazines
  • Dark LITE IFAK
  • SOFTT-W TQ in 1110 holder

Prior Experience:
24-years LE, 20 with a large Metropolitan agency. Four years USMC Infantry. Multiple classes with Patrick Rogers/EAG Tactical, Patrick Mcnamara TAPS Pistol and Rifle, Patrick Mcnamara TAPS Instructor, Frank Proctor Performance Pistol and Rifle, FLETC Firearms Instructor Training Program, FLETC Advanced Pistol Training Program, NRA LE Division Handgun/Shotgun Instructor, Tom Givens Instructor Development, Tom Givens Advanced Instructor, Rogers Shooting School, William Petty VCQB Instructor, Glock Operator Course, Alexander Global Strategies Executive Protection Course, FLETC Basic Tactical Medical Instructor Training Program, FLETC Active Shooter Threat Instructor Training Program, ITTS (Keary Miller) Law Enforcement Tactical Trauma Course, Presscheck Consulting No-Fail Pistol, Sentinel Concepts Practical Shotgun, several hundred hours of department firearms training, several regional firearms courses.


Meadhall Range, Mcloud, OK (approximately 20 mins East of OKC). Outdoor range with 10 lanes, goes back to 300+ yards, however we used from the 200 in. Range has steels (including multiple crit-hit hostage targets, and plate racks), turning targets and moving targets, indoor (clean) restrooms (for both males and females), and a shade structure. Current owner is in the process of upgrading the facility, with a large classroom/training building, moving (and turning) steels, and floods and strobes on the range coming soon. All targetry and lighting is controlled via app on a tablet or cellphone.

Full disclosure: The range owner is one of my oldest friends, so I may be biased, but the facility is very nice, and will offer some capabilities that are far from common in most civilian ranges.

Class Demographics:

Mix of LE, military, and regular guys. Started class with 17, ended with 15. The two that left were older, and had zero experience with the platform, so they felt over their heads. Most of the shooters were solid, with a couple of the more-novice guys provoking a visit from “Angry Steve,” due to an inability to focus/follow directions. Once the visit was over, the shooters in question tightened things up.

Course Overview:

This is Steve’s “basic” carbine class, consisting of lots of work on the fundamentals. I had previously taken an EAG Tactical class that Steve covered for Pat Rogers, but this was my first exposure to Steve’s rifle curriculum. This class started immediately after one of Steve’s Practical Shotgun classes, which I also attended. The course, like Practical Shotgun, was extremely polished. Steve not only has great material, but he is very accomplished at presenting it.
Class began with a safety brief, an extremely thorough medical brief, and a discussion of guns and support gear. Steve has been doing this for a very long time, and other than Pat Rogers, I have never heard a more knowledgeable presentation on the topic. It was obvious that Steve had seen, and had experience with the vast majority of stuff out there.
We then moved straight into establishing zeroes – both at the 50 and the 100. We were encouraged to note any shifts in POI resulting in the two ranges (we were told to choose our own zero range, depending on our own personal circumstances, after having various advantages/disadvantages to each explained).
Height over bore, cadences, malfunctions, ready positions, alternate positions, and reloads (speed and emergency) were covered during the class. On Day Two we added 200 yds to the 50 and 100 for zeroes. Class culminated in shooting Steve’s qual – with no one passing. Needless to say, his standards are pretty stringent…although Steve does owe me a reshoot. We were able to move through the qual quickly, because of the timed turners.

Final Thoughts:

As I stated in my Practical Shotgun AAR, Steve is refreshingly blunt. He will tell you exactly when you are screwing up, without the kid gloves. For me, this is a major positive. Steve definitely made the class enjoyable, with a solid sense of humor. He stopped us after every block of instruction/practice to do a quick debrief on takeaways from what we had just covered.

I am at a point in my training where I am not seeing a lot of “new” stuff. I seek out new instructors for several reasons, but chief among them is in the hope of having something I have heard/been exposed to previously explained in a different way – a way that may make something I either struggle with, or something I thought I understood, clearer. Steve delivered a few times on this.

As I said in my Practical Shotgun AAR, I would unequivocally recommend Steve as an instructor, and fully anticipate going back to him for future classes. Carbine Essentials makes either an excellent introductory class to running an AR, or a very solid tune-up for an experienced user.

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