Sunday, February 25, 2018

Shooting Drills w/ My New SIG P320s


Last Friday my buddy Steve and I both took the day off.  Where did we go?  To the range of course! What did we do? Pistol drills!  I started working with my new SIG P320 Carry and Compact that just came back from Suarez International with RMR modification on the slide.  Suarez did a great job as usual on both slides.

I am slowly changing the family of pistols I use from the S&W M&P to the SIG P320. This is an on-going process as I have been evaluating what works for me over the past several years.  I started with the Springfield XD family and I could shoot them well.  In fact, I used the XD family over the 18 months when I trained and ultimately shot Master in 5 IDPA Divisions (the 6th being revolver).  The only issue I have with the XD is the grip safety and the inability to easily mount a carry optic due to the design.

I carried Glocks for many years officially and as a private citizen; however, had not carried one in some time.  When Suarez started providing the RMR Glock slide modification, I decided to try the Glock family once again. After struggling with Glock for a number of months, I relearned a lesson I had discovered many years ago—the Glock grip angle just does not work for me.  My natural point of aim with a Glock is always a bit high and I have to tilt my wrist slightly down to achieve a proper sight picture.  Is that something I could overcome through practice? Certainly; however, I did not wish to put in that effort when other pistol families probably would work for me.

I then tried a friend’s S&W M&P and shot it well.  When S&W introduced the M&P Pro Series® C.O.R.E.™ I thought I had finally found the right combination.  Not quite. No issue with grip angle; however, my goal is to have two as close to identical pistols as possible, with effectively indistinguishable trigger pulls. One for training, one for carry, and rotating the two pistols periodically through each task.  Although my M&Ps are close, there is a subtle, but noticeable difference in the trigger pulls.

Enter the SIG P320 with its modular fire control system.  Although I still have high hopes that Grayguns can provide me with two identical carry triggers, at the end of the day I can always just swap the modular fire control system between frames if necessary.

On to the range session.  After I sighted in the new P320 Carry pistol and RMR, we started with the IDPA 5x5 classifier as a warm up.  I fired two solid Expert runs with a 23.46 and a 23.85.  We then transitioned to one shot draws on an 8-inch steel plate at 15 yards.  My draw to hit times hovered around 1.5 seconds which is a tad bit slow for me (with the M&P my average is usually 1.35-1.45 seconds).  I was still learning the P320 presentation from the holster and wasn’t quite nailing it every time. 

I routinely read Greg Ellifritz’s Active Response blog and recently read a post where he spoke about Gila Hayes’ 5 x5 Shooting Drill from her book Personal Defense for Women.  It isn’t a drill just for women, but rather a drill that can measure your basic competence with a given pistol.  The drill is five shots, in five seconds, from five yards at a five-inch circle starting with the pistol at low ready.  Lucky Gunner has a nice PDF target with instructions that I printed and used for this session.

Steve and I did not do the standard drill described above. Instead, we started each run with a holstered pistol and did two runs at 5, 7, and 10 yards respectively to get a feel for the drill. We then did the drill five times from 5 and 7 yards.  I initially used my P320 with the RMR; however, I ran it once again at both distances using my P320 X5 with iron sights.

I was satisfied with my performance for the most part.  I really do not have a comfort zone with the P320 so I did not push myself too hard.  I have been training and shooting the M&P for almost 2 years so skill with the P320 will come with time as I adjust to the different grip, trigger pull (it still has a factory pull), and controls.  You can see the results of the practice runs below.

Come out and shoot with us on the 2nd Sunday at Cedar Ridge Range in San Antonio.

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