Category Archives: Training

Slaughtering Sacred Linguistic Marksmanship Cows: Following up “Clickbait”

Author’s note: Context is important. The previous post here was intended for the military audience. Judging by things I’ve seen from others it may be applicable to law enforcement entities as well. Without experience based frame of reference it may be tough to get the reasoning in these posts. Nothing personal, just putting it up front. The intent was spur conversation. In that vein, the post seems to have been successful. Was the initial statement and title misleading? Maybe. Was it clickbait? Maybe. Did it get people to read, use critical thinking skills, and discuss? One comment answered that for me: “I shared this article on my personal blog FB page, which is populated by soldiers I served with who wouldn't normally read an article about the profession. Within an hour, it was read by multiple people who would otherwise not give a professional circular this sort of attention. Now they are thinking, and they've been exposed to a higher concept.  The "clickbait" worked. I'll take it.” Note to self- don’t make a habit of doing things that can be considered clickbait. There were a few comments saying it’s semantics. So let’s look at the definition of semantics. Source is

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Thermal Boresighting

We are continuing our discussion on the Boresight. Specifically, we will be boresighting thermals. The reference for this is TM 9-5860-226-13&P dated August 2007. The boresight needs to be zeroed to the weapon prior to zeroing anything else. To learn how to zero the Laser Boresight, and why it is important to do this, reference the TTP article post prior. Thermals are handled slightly differently than the primary optic for the weapon. To set up the weapon for thermals, you will get in as stable a platform as possible. Once that has been accomplished, you will then have to give the Paratrooper on the weapon a refined point of aim to see the aim point with. If I were to just use a sheet of paper, there would be nothing there to indicate to the paratrooper where the point of aim is. To give them a refined point of aim, the Paratrooper at the Target holds their fingers on the two ovals flanking the aim point on the offset target.  Two people are required for this: the Paratrooper on the weapon, the Paratrooper Making adjustments on the thermal, and the Paratrooper at the target. The process starts by the Paratrooper on

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Stop Marksmanship Training

Since this organization is very gun friendly and dedicated to knowledge I should now have your attention. I just said it and will reiterate. STOP MARKSMANSHIP TRAINING IN THE ARMY. Weapons proficiency training is just that. If you call it marksmanship training and that’s your focus you’re doing it wrong. I’ve used the terms weapons proficiency training and weapons employment in my circle for a while and gotten on my soapbox when friends and colleagues say marksmanship training. I’ve verbally bludgeoned young NCOs and company grade officers to change their vernacular and some came along, some didn’t. Why? It’s simple. My personal definition of marksmanship is the ability or act of using a ballistic tool to put a hole in something at distance. It’s that simple. You’re a great shot? Awesome. Can you reduce a complex stoppage, in the dark, with rain or mud slickened hands? It doesn’t matter how well you shoot if you can’t keep your gun running. Do you have the mindset to continue shooting until the threat is down and obviously out of the fight rather than firing that shot or pair and looking to see where your bullets went? Good job champ- you just got

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Standard Qualification for the M4

We are going to start a discussion on qualification standards. Specifically, we are going to address what the standard is for qualification with the M4. The references for this is TC 3-22.9, change 1 dated January 2017. Appendix F of TC 3-22.9 Change 1 states that “The 25-meter scaled target alternate course is used when a standard record fire or KD range is unavailable for weapon qualification.” What is the definition of ‘unavailable?’ For the purposes of this discussion and in general, ‘unavailable' means no pop-up qualification range exists at the duty station. So if we have a place like Fort Bragg, where there are multiple pop-up ranges, but you are unable to schedule it due to a lack of previous planning, does that still count as ‘unavailable?’ The answer is no. Paratroopers need to qualify on the standard qualification range. This will build confidence in their ability to engage targets past 25 meters, which is all they are getting with the ALT-C target. Units need to incorporate the Integrated Weapons Training Strategy into their unit training plan in order to be able to plan successfully and utilize the six qualification ranges on Fort Bragg efficiently. Moreover, it is important

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Rates of Fire for the M4 and M4A1

We are continuing our discussion on control. Specifically we will be addressing the rates of fire for the M4 and M4A1 platforms. The Reference for this discussion is TC 3-22.9 Change 1 dated January 2017. The Paratrooper needs to determine what rate of fire meets the needs of their specific engagement. Just as each threat is different, each shooting technique is slightly different in their applications. There are three rates of fire that we will discuss: Slow Semiautomatic fire, Rapid Semiautomatic fire, and automatic or burst fire. We will discuss each one of these in sequence. Slow semiautomatic fire is fires typically used in a training environment or when the Paratrooper has time to take a well-aimed shot. Examples of this are when the squad is engaging targets in the defense past 300 meters. The rate of fire for this is 12 to 15 rounds per minute, approximately one round every 4-5 seconds. This rate of fire is also used in a training environment to allow the Paratrooper to focus on their shot process. Rapid Semiautomatic fire is approximately 45 rounds per minute. It is typically used for multiple targets or when the soldier is within 300 meters of the

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Fire Control for Machine Guns

We are continuing our discussion on Fire control for machine guns. Specifically, we are addressing what fire control is, and what methods are available to the Paratrooper. The reference for this discussion is ATP 3-21.8 dated April 2016. Fire control includes all the actions the Paratrooper does in planning, preparing, and applying fire on a target. Generally, it is a team or squad leader who does this, but based off the nature of the Airborne, a paratrooper needs to have an understanding of fire control so as to make it more effective. Fire control is organized by whether it is terrain-based or threat-based. The team or squad leader designates targets, identifies their midpoint, ends, or flanks, and lets the gun teams know what rates of fire and classes of fire to use. The Gunner (or team) then engages on the Squad or team leaders’ signal, adjusts rates of fire, shifts, and lifts fires, all based off fire control measures. The noise and confusion of battle can limit the effectiveness of some of these methods, therefore, the Paratrooper needs to use multiple methods to ensure the signals are sent at the appropriate times. the methods are illustrated above. For today, we

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Even More On Boresighting

We are continuing our discussion on the Boresight. Specifically, we will be boresighting lasers. The reference for this is TM 9-5860-226-13&P dated August 2007. The boresight needs to be zeroed to the weapon prior to zeroing anything else. To learn how to zero the Laser Boresight, and why it is important to do this, reference the TTP Thursday post from last week. Lasers are handled differently than the primary optic for the weapon. To set up the weapon for lasers, you will place the weapon in as stable a platform as possible with the boresight on its point on the offset. The Paratrooper does not need to hold the weapon, a gun vice or shadowbox will work. Once that has been accomplished, you will then use the adjusters on the laser to adjust to the point on the target for the IR aiming laser. Always use the IR aiming laser, not the visible aiming laser. The IR is the primary laser you will use in combat, and even though they share the same optical bench, you want to zero the primary laser to the weapon. The Paratrooper does not need to be behind the weapon at this point, as there

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Mr. John Chapman Joins B.E. Meyers & Co. Inc. As Latest MAWL™ Brand Ambassador and Certified Trainer

February, 22nd, 2017 (Redmond, WA) – B.E. Meyers & Co. Inc. is proud to announce that Mr. John Chapman, a.k.a. “Chappy”, is joining the B.E. Meyers Team as our latest Brand Ambassador for the MAWL™ Modular Advanced Weapon Laser system.  This is part of Chappy’s continued law enforcement training efforts while also CEO of Raven Concealment. “I am honored to be joining the B.E. Meyers team”, said Chappy. “The combination of proven designers and engineers working with experienced applications experts has enabled B.E. Meyers to create the MAWL-DA, the most capable multi-function small arms laser system I have used.  I am excited to educate the law enforcement tactical community on the overwhelming benefits of the MAWL™ and B.E. Meyers other signature products for the military and law enforcement community.”   “Chappy brings years of experience to the team, and acts as a conduit for the voice of the customer as we move forward into future products”, said Matt Meyers, President at B.E. Meyers & Co. Inc.  “One of our core goals is to be the most end-user centric photonics company in the industry, and Chappy will undoubtedly be a critical part of that path”.  Chappy joins the current certified MAWL™

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Q/A on IWTS

We are answering some questions that have been brought up in reference to the Integrated Weapons Training Strategy and how it is reported. As we discussed in previous posts, there are six tables for each gate, and four gates that take the unit from individual training through unit training. Specifically today, we will address what it takes for a squad or.vehicle crew to be qualified. The reference for our discussion is TC 3-20.0 dated June 2015. Above illustrates what this looks like for the squad. Table I is a Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures evaluation. Gate II is simulations: for the squad, this entails use of simulation systems to practice coordination between the teams. Gate III is the TADSS, for the squad is MILES Gears. Table IV is the squad STX lane. It is dry-fire as an organization. Paratroopers need to practice not only their shot process, but also need to be communicating with their fellow team members. Team leaders need to learn and reinforce that they are in control of what the team does or does not do. New squad leaders learn that this is where you take that step back and look at the bigger picture. Table V is

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Fire Commands

We are going to address something that is common for machine guns and AT weapons to need to know; fire commands. The reference for this is FM 3-22.68 Dated July 2006. A fire command is a command given to deliver effective fire on a target quickly and without confusion. There are six elements to a fire command: the Alert that the guns are going to fire, a cardinal direction to the target, along with an estimated range, a description of the target, the Method of fire, and the command to fire. We will discuss each of these elements separately. The alert lets the gun teams know which guns will be engaging the threat: Gun 1, Gun 2, or both. The direction can be done one of three ways: by speaking, pointing (either with a hand, or with a laser), with tracer fire, or with reference points. The description gives the gunners a visualization of what the target is, if they cannot see it clearly (or at all, in the case of defilade fires). The range is an estimation by the weapons squad leader. A technique that can be used is to take the laser range finders that are a part

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