Monocular Tactics / PVS-14 Operating

#1
I am looking for suggestions for monocular (or overall PVS-14) operating/training. I am currently operating with an ITT Gen 3 PVS-14 and a DBAL A3 (newly purchased). The DBAL is mounted to a 16" BCM with a 15" Keymod rail at the 12 o'clock position. Being new to the NVG/IR Laser community I am looking for training suggestions. So far, I have zeroed the VIS/IR LASER and done one training session where I have (1.) verified zero (2.) adjusted IR illuminator to IR LASER (3.) ran basic target transition drills with B8's, roughly 15 yards apart with controlled pairs on each and longer strings on fire.
My main concern is basically I have a limited experience with NVG/IR LASER training and I want to focus my training in the right direction. I've focused tasks at the basic level by only conducting menial tasks (loading mags, adjusting win/elev, prepping equipment under NVG's and anything else I can think of) under NVG's. I have done target zero, target transition, and limited distance shooting under NVG's. I am open to any nuances, or solid practices the community can provide. Thanks in advance.
 
#2
I am currently operating with a Protech bump helmet with USGI Rhino with a counterweight and am looking to upgrade to a Wilcox G-11 mount. I find myself more often than not running with one eye open in order to get the best clarity. Should I acclimate to this or try to get use the both eyes open technique? Thanks again.
 
#3
There’s a couple companies that offer training on NVGs Telluric and TNVC come to mind. Biggest thing with NODs is OJT. Just doing small simple tasks goes a long way. Climbing a ladder, walking around your house, IMT, and basic weapons manipulation, dry fire practice. Just got to put in time under green screen. The biggest issue with 14s for me is lack of depth perception. You can get around it to an extent with practice but will never be as good as dual tubes. The question on both eyes open is yes, and I keep my 14 on my non dominant eye

As far as gear. I hate the Rhino and the bayonet mount in general. Wilcox all the way for mount and J arm. Helmets look at Ops-Core, Team Wendy, Crye, and MTEK. Laser with a good Illuminator is by far the most important part of the system, and if you are using it for work make sure the controls are set to be able to easily transition between white light and IR.
 

TNVC_Augee

Newbie
Vendor
#4
Some good training with a knowledgable and experienced user will go a long way if you don’t have much previous experience, ultimately, I could sit here and type all sorts of stuff, and you could read it and understand it pretty well, but it’s still a poor substitue for real-life, hands-on experience and real-time feedback from someone who knows what right and wrong look like.

At the same time, you’ll definitely want to do some basic skill building before spending the time/money on a class—you’ll waste a lot of your own, the instructors, and depending on the context, your classmates’ time if you can do basic stuff while wearing NVDs. These would be your basic manipulation tasks, things you may or may not be unconsciously relying on your vision for during daylight, but you will have to do mostly by feel in the dark, things like magazine changes, reloading, basic immediate action, removing and inserting items into and out of pouches, etc.

Beyond that, you should also just build you basic skills working with your NVD as has already been mentioned, things like tying your shoes, walking around in various different environments, preparing and eating food items, opening a can of beer, etc. Another good thing to do can be just to toss a tennis ball against a wall, so you can practice tracking and interacting with a moving object/judging distance, understanding how the NVD effects your depth perception, etc.

This will also help you getting accustomed to keeping both eyes open and receiving different kinds of inputs under variable lighting conditions—I would try both dominant and non-dominant eye use, the paradigm used to be all about non-dominant eye, but this has begun to shift a bit.

~Augee
 
#5
I agree, a huge part of using NVG is getting used to your depth of field, I would suggest going for small walks or hikes, moving outdoors or indoors walking up stairs. When I went through initial NVG training we were required to go through an obstacle course. It may seem comical but things such as curbs and steps were hard to navigate when I first started. I think the key here is just to use them in an organic way, then step up to learning to be tactically proficient with them.
 
#6
Some good training with a knowledgable and experienced user will go a long way if you don’t have much previous experience, ultimately, I could sit here and type all sorts of stuff, and you could read it and understand it pretty well, but it’s still a poor substitue for real-life, hands-on experience and real-time feedback from someone who knows what right and wrong look like.

At the same time, you’ll definitely want to do some basic skill building before spending the time/money on a class—you’ll waste a lot of your own, the instructors, and depending on the context, your classmates’ time if you can do basic stuff while wearing NVDs. These would be your basic manipulation tasks, things you may or may not be unconsciously relying on your vision for during daylight, but you will have to do mostly by feel in the dark, things like magazine changes, reloading, basic immediate action, removing and inserting items into and out of pouches, etc.

Beyond that, you should also just build you basic skills working with your NVD as has already been mentioned, things like tying your shoes, walking around in various different environments, preparing and eating food items, opening a can of beer, etc. Another good thing to do can be just to toss a tennis ball against a wall, so you can practice tracking and interacting with a moving object/judging distance, understanding how the NVD effects your depth perception, etc.

This will also help you getting accustomed to keeping both eyes open and receiving different kinds of inputs under variable lighting conditions—I would try both dominant and non-dominant eye use, the paradigm used to be all about non-dominant eye, but this has begun to shift a bit.

~Augee
Thanks for the input! I really appreciate the thoughts on getting a baseline competency prior to going to a class and the tennis ball idea sounds pretty cool. I've been doing a lot of stuff around the house and navigating indoors, outdoors, and in and around vehicles, and I can honestly say those have helped me more than the few trips to the range. I'll take your advice with switching between dominant and non dominant eye as I have pretty much been doing everything with the non dominant eye thus far. Now if you'll excuse me.......I've got some beer drinking to do now that it's dark. LOL. Thanks again.
 
#7
I agree, a huge part of using NVG is getting used to your depth of field, I would suggest going for small walks or hikes, moving outdoors or indoors walking up stairs. When I went through initial NVG training we were required to go through an obstacle course. It may seem comical but things such as curbs and steps were hard to navigate when I first started. I think the key here is just to use them in an organic way, then step up to learning to be tactically proficient with them.

Thanks man. It was probably a little comical to see me in the back yard playing (training) on my kid's playhouse in the middle of the night. Thanks again for the input.
 
#8
@TNVC_Augee, what is the primary driving force behind the shift to using your dominant eye when employing a monocular? It’s been some time since I’ve been in. When I was active our reasons for non dominant eye usage was the ability to go white light and still use a red dot without flipping up the NVG’s or having to shift the gun to weak side.

The only real advantage I can think of when using a monocular like that is easily using a red dot under NOD’s if you don’t have a LAD or it shits the bed, or when using a red dot mounted on a pistol. What am I missing? Thanks.
 

TNVC_Augee

Newbie
Vendor
#9
@Mike C passive aiming through the optic and pistol RDS are certainly part of the picture here, but perhaps the biggest factor is that your brain is simply better at using your dominant eye, hence why it's your dominant eye.

While this may seem like an overtly simplistic statement, the conventional wisdom has always been in the past to use your non-dominant eye, some because of some unfounded "theory," and some for the reasons you've already mentioned.

That being said, since that habit became somewhat "ingrained," more and more professional users have been using dual tube goggles rather than monoculars, which has led to the "discovery" of two things:

Going white light with NODs down as big an issue as some of considered it to be in the past, especially with modern auto-gated devices. You can see red dots and/or IR lasers even while using white light through your NOD--a lot of folks frankly run their NODs too close to their faces, you should be able to see under and around them if need be in a white light situation.

Turns out, most people's brains just really like being able to use their dominant eye. Sure, our brains are absolutely amazing instruments that can adapt on the fly when they need to in a way that seems almost seamless, at least consciously, that doesn't change the fact that for most people, there's a very strong preference for using the dominant eye which means your brain has to do less work to understand the information it's receiving, as it already has a strong "road map" for processing inputs from the dominant eye, ultimately meaning less eye strain/headaches, and general long term comfort since your brain is not straining to process information in a way it's not used to ("overthinking it," as it were), which can lead to a more generalized fatigue.

~Augee
 
#11
Already hit on a bit but keep working the common tasks. After that we usually start driving at work with new operators. After that comes firearms. Did you choose parallel or convergent zero? Start with manipulations if the DBAL under nods. Learn by feel where you are on the switches. The Illuminati will need to be adjusted for individual situations. Distance, photonic barrier, etc. practice going from wide focus up close to tight for distance. Be able to do this one handed in the dark. Be able to switch to any setting with your off hand and one handed in the dark. Work dry fire next. Reloads, yes there is a technique. Transitions to handgun. Transitions to handgun using white light. Transition to white light with carbine. So much you can do without even shooting live fire. Once ready repeat the above with live fire. Shoot from 3 to as far back as you have range and learn about your offsets. We shot a parallel zero. We ran a drill with various targets and small 3-5” circles placed randomly around a B/C target. You had to engage only in the circle at ranges from point blank to 30 yards. This assisted in perfecting your offset understanding. So so much that can be done.
 
#12
1- Moving around with a NOD. Get used to seeing with one eye from a narrower field of view. This can be in the back yard or wherever.

2- Shooting past CQB ranges. Can you engage targets at 40, 50, 100 meters?