A question of protocol...

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A question of protocol...

Post by Left handed troglodyte on 1/7/2018, 12:29 pm

Question:

When the Bullseye Match Rangemaster calls the shooters to the line for the first target...

1) Do I have to load live rounds when told to? 

My thoughts... would rather load a few dummy rounds on command for a few dry fire during the allotted 10 minutes THEN reload with live loads when ready.

Not every shooter loads 10 rounds at one time... hence there is a reload under the course of fire. 

Is there a specific ruling prohibiting dry fire allowed after the first slow-fire target turns?

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Mike38 on 1/7/2018, 1:13 pm

I hope there's no rules prohibiting dry fire while the range is hot, because I do it.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by joy2shoot on 1/7/2018, 1:16 pm

I am not sure I am answering your question, but when I set up on the bench I 'load' the desired number of rounds into the magazine BUT the magazine cannot be inserted into the gun until the command Load has been given. 
 
I have been told by a Match Director that one can dry fire as soon as the command You May Handle Your Gun is given.  So when you are finished dry firing AND the command Load has been given, then you can insert a magazine into your gun.  Note: My guns do not require a magazine in order to dry fire.
 
Caution: If you get things mixed up and your discharge your gun before the command Load is given, that is an automatic DQ from the tournament.

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Left handed troglodyte on 1/7/2018, 1:42 pm

joy2shoot wrote:I am not sure I am answering your question, but when I set up on the bench I 'load' the desired number of rounds into the magazine BUT the magazine cannot be inserted into the gun until the command Load has been given. 
 
I have been told by a Match Director that one can dry fire as soon as the command You May Handle Your Gun is given.  So when you are finished dry firing AND the command Load has been given, then you can insert a magazine into your gun.  Note: My guns do not require a magazine in order to dry fire.
 
Caution: If you get things mixed up and your discharge your gun before the command Load is given, that is an automatic DQ from the tournament.

The idea came from the SW22 handgun design;  since it has a mag disconnect and not intended for dry firing on an empty chamber. Therefore I carry a handful of the yellow #6 wall anchors in my case just so I can add to an empty mag, insert, then dry-fire as needed. Previously been placing a dummy round after a match just so I can dry fire and engage the internal hammer just to reduce the spring tension within the gun.

The reasoning logic - only AFTER the call to load for slow fire; in this case...  a few dummy rounds. 
Once I am satisfied - game on!

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by james r chapman on 1/7/2018, 2:06 pm

Sounds cumbersome, but, after the command load you can pretty much do what you want. Just not more than the rounds specified.

At no time after a match should a round, dummy or otherwise, be placed in the chamber.
Maybe I'm misunderstanding.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Slartybartfast on 1/7/2018, 4:52 pm

Left handed troglodyte wrote:The idea came from the SW22 handgun design;  since it has a mag disconnect and not intended for dry firing on an empty chamber.
Just a side note:
That magazine disconnect isveryeasyto remove and the pistol works fine without it.
If you want to regain the extra oomph in the magazine ejection, Tandomkross sells a replacement that only provides the force on the magazine if you want to keep youroriginal part intact.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Chris Miceli on 1/7/2018, 5:52 pm

You can remove the mag safety. It is not considered illegal in bullseye
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by davekp on 1/8/2018, 7:35 am

You may dry fire any time after it is safe to handle your gun. During the 3 minute prep period is OK, as well as any time during the 10 minute firing period in slow fire- in fact the AMU recommends dry firing, if beneficial, during the 10 shot string.

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Bullseye_Stan on 1/8/2018, 8:29 am

Based on my reading of other posts, my opinion is probably not popular.  But, once the command to load is given then five live rounds are loaded.  The line is hot and it is time to shoot live rounds.  All the training and preparation have been for that moment in time. 

Part of my opinion is based on safety.  If every match were shot the same way, and dry firing was part of the preparation - then fine.  But changing the routine is an invitation for a ND, IMO. 

For slow fire, I can see 'getting away' with this more than timed or rapid.  Personally, I've never seen anyone try to dry fire during the live fire portion of a NRA Bullseye competition.  That's not to say it can't be done, but for reasons stated above it's an invitation for problems. 

Back in the day, when I shot smallbore, shooters would dry fire during the sighting period and even during the match.  So, obviously this practice is done.  Part of my concern, and this is equipment specific, is that many Bullseye pistols are not configured for dry firing and often require some sort of dummy rounds.  Mixing live and dummy rounds is great during practice and training, but not during competition. 

Although, it would be interesting to hear how persons make dry firing a part of their regiment during timed and rapid fire?

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Slartybartfast on 1/8/2018, 9:27 am

Bullseye_Stan wrote:Part of my opinion is based on safety.  If every match were shot the same way, and dry firing was part of the preparation - then fine.  But changing the routine is an invitation for a ND, IMO.

I assume that you're worried about a ND before the command to load then? If live and dummy rounds were mixed and someone accidentally shot during the preparation stage. If everything else is being done correctly, that means a round goes downrange before it's allowed. DQ of competitor.
But I'd be concerned if a competitor is allowed to put anything into a magazine and install the magazine in the pistol before loading is permitted.
If a dummy round is mixed in during live fire, hurts the performance of the competitor.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Slartybartfast on 1/8/2018, 9:31 am

james r chapman wrote:At no time after a match should a round,  dummy or otherwise, be placed in the chamber.
Can't speak for matches, but when using my SW22 after a relay I always put away the magazines, inserted a wall plug in the chamber, closed the bolt, pulled the trigger, put the pistol in the box.
Seems to me ECI are expected to be in the pistol prior to and after matches. So it seems if a user wants to release the hammer spring pressure it means doing it at home after the match.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Jon Eulette on 1/8/2018, 9:44 am

I dry fire before SF 100% of the time every string. During SF when I need to reinforce squeezing trigger and after SF when needing add'l reinforcement. I also dry fire 99% of the time before TF & RF. Majority of non-Master shooters just go through the motions. Shooting good is a process that requires constant work/effort. Dry firing gives you feedback that it is being done right or wrong. Last year I built a 45 for a Nat'l Champion and he likes crisp triggers. I personally do not. I decided to shoot his pistol in a match before shipping it. I had to dry fire before, during and after strings to make friends with the pistol during the match. I shot well but without the add'l dry firing I would've choked. So I highly recommend dry firing as a tool on and off the range whether training or in a match. It is a safe process! Just keep the pistol pointed down range as we always do ;l)
Jon
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by dronning on 1/8/2018, 9:58 am

Bullseye_Stan wrote:Although, it would be interesting to hear how persons make dry firing a part of their regiment during timed and rapid fire?
As soon as your are called to the line there is plenty of time to dry fire before the targets turn and in slow fire you could dry fire right up to 8 or 9+ minutes if you like.  

During slow fire string when something was off I have dropped my mag ejected the chambered round, reset my stance and grip, then dry fired several times, reloaded and carried on.

I've also seen many many people dry fire after their string was over before the cease fire was called.
- Dave
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by weber1b on 1/8/2018, 10:26 am

I call lines locally and we have a number of the better shooters who often use the remainder of their 10 minutes in slow fire to dry fire. The same shooters commonly are dry firing during the commands during slow fire and get around to loading live rounds when they are ready.

I do agree that mixing dummy rounds with live rounds could get tricky. Most of the guys I see dry firing are doing it without magazines in their guns.

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by carykiteboarder on 1/8/2018, 3:38 pm

As others have stated, dry firing is allowed at any time it is allowable to handle the gun.  The best shooter I know said he dry-fires after every time he re-grips the gun to be sure all is well.  However I do not believe inserting a magazine into the gun is allowed until the load command has been given. Actually, I think the match directors would get pretty "excited" if someone starts feeding a magazine into their pistol prior to the load command even if it contains nothing but "dummy rounds".  If your pistol requires a magazine for dry-fire, this would not be permitted prior to the load command.  

With center fire pistols, folks may use "snap-caps"/dummy rounds for high volume dry-firing done outside of matches.  At matches, I have only seen dry-fire on empty chambers practiced.  Obviously dry-firing a .22 is tricky since doing so can damage the gun.  My .22 uses a "dry-fire plug" which is a legal empty chamber indicator.  I use this plug before the load command and at any time during slow-fire that I need a mental reset.

If I'm off base, I'd like to hear from Master/High Master/Match Directors.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Aprilian on 1/8/2018, 4:03 pm

carykiteboarder wrote:I do not believe inserting a magazine into the gun is allowed until the load command has been given. Actually, I think the match directors would get pretty "excited" if someone starts feeding a magazine into their pistol prior to the load command even if it contains nothing but "dummy rounds".  
If I'm off base, I'd like to hear from Master/High Master/Match Directors.
This raises a question for me about something I may well be doing wrong.   As the commands progress towards "With 5 rounds, load" I sometimes start the magazine into the well but never push it to the magazine stop until the command is completed.  As such, the pistol is incapable of chambering or firing a round because the magazine is only partially into the well.  If I were to let go of the magazine it would fall out of the pistol.

I'm sure I started this by watching other shooters around me, but am not sure of the origin of my habit.   Is this unsafe, or something to which other competitors would take offence?
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Jack H on 1/8/2018, 4:15 pm

Aprilian wrote:
carykiteboarder wrote:I do not believe inserting a magazine into the gun is allowed until the load command has been given. Actually, I think the match directors would get pretty "excited" if someone starts feeding a magazine into their pistol prior to the load command even if it contains nothing but "dummy rounds".  
If I'm off base, I'd like to hear from Master/High Master/Match Directors.
This raises a question for me about something I may well be doing wrong.   As the commands progress towards "With 5 rounds, load" I sometimes start the magazine into the well but never push it to the magazine stop until the command is completed.  As such, the pistol is incapable of chambering or firing a round because the magazine is only partially into the well.  If I were to let go of the magazine it would fall out of the pistol.

I'm sure I started this by watching other shooters around me, but am not sure of the origin of my habit.   Is this unsafe, or something to which other competitors would take offence?

I would call a partial insertion a violation.

10.1.3 Loaded Pistols - A pistol or revolver that has a cartridge
in the cylinder or in a magazine which has been inserted shall be
considered as being loaded. No pistol will be loaded until competitor
has taken the assigned place at the firing point and the command
“LOAD” has been given by the range officer. Loaded pistols
shall be pointed in the direction of the targets at all times.

During the same rule review, I do not see how an empty magazine inserted during the preparation period is a violation.  Gonna study it more.


Last edited by Jack H on 1/8/2018, 4:31 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Olde Pilot on 1/8/2018, 4:28 pm

As soon as the magazine touches the magazine well the pistol is considered loaded. Properly trained and observant range officers will call you on it if the mag touches the gun before the "load" command. Need to break your habit.

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by dronning on 1/8/2018, 5:28 pm

Olde Pilot wrote:As soon as the magazine touches the magazine well the pistol is considered loaded. Properly trained and observant range officers will call you on it if the mag touches the gun before the "load" command. Need to break your habit.
Not according to the rules, the mag must be inserted, no where does it say touching.  I'd still break the habit, this is not a discussion you want to have on the line during a match.

- Dave

I'd argue that inserted means locked in place and ready.  If I were to raise my gun to the firing position and the mag fell out, the mag wasn't inserted.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Aprilian on 1/8/2018, 5:29 pm

Olde Pilot wrote:As soon as the magazine touches the magazine well the pistol is considered loaded. Properly trained and observant range officers will call you on it if the mag touches the gun before the "load" command. Need to break your habit.

Will do.  Thanks.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Olde Pilot on 1/8/2018, 6:09 pm

I admit now I can't find the touching the mag to the gun thing in the rules. I was sure it was in the International Rules but no. I was also reflecting advice from a mentor who advised me that this was a protocol at Perry at some time and shooters had been called on it.

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Caster3845 on 1/8/2018, 9:30 pm

Years ago I got in the habit of partially inserting the mag in the gun. This carried on to Perry. About the second string of timed fire the head linesman came up to me and called me on it.  To this day, I hold the magazine behind my back until the command to load is given. That way the line officer can see the magazine is no where near the gun. A couple of years ago, that same line officer and I were talking and he really liked the way that I did that.
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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Olde Pilot on 1/8/2018, 9:41 pm

Caster3845: Thanks. I feel at least partially vindicated after your confirmation of Perry "loading" enforcement. Like your method a lot. I'm doing something similar.

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by CR10X on 1/9/2018, 6:01 am

OK, I knew this was coming up so here's my take on this as a Match Director / RO.  And careful reading of the rules seems to indicate the that the concept of magazine safeties and dryfiring was contemplated, or at least appears not to be in conflict with NRA rules. (Local rules may over ride, etc.)  

First, you cannot insert, touch or otherwise put a magazine with a cartridge in it into an semi-automatic pistol or put rounds in the cylinder of a revolver until the command to load is given.  That is the rule stated above.

After the range is called CLEAR and the YOU MAY HANDLE YOUR GUNS command is given, a competitor may handle their guns, which on most ranges includes dryfiring.  This is because dryfiring is included in the PREPARATION PERIOD (which occurs after the RANGE IS CLEAR and YOU MAY HANDLE YOUR GUNS command and before the command to LOAD has been given).  

Therefore, it also follows that dryfiring can be done after the command to LOAD since the same range conditions exist (RANGE IS CLEAR) and can take place until the CEASE FIRE, etc. command is given (which includes, unload, slides back, magazines out, cylinders open, insert ECI, etc. including GUNS ON THE BENCH).  At that point competitors can no longer handle the guns until the next THE RANGE IS CLEAR, YOU MAY HANDLE YOUR GUN command)  

At the time the competitor is allowed to handled the guns, the range has been called CLEAR.  This sets up the first level of safety for the upcoming issue. 

The issue comes up when certain pistols need the magazine inserted in order to dryfire.  Depending on the local range rules, this may be an option or it may not.  Local rules can expand what is covered under the NRA rules. 

Since we have no additional local rules for loading, dryfiring, etc., we operate on the following format. 

If a pistol requires a magazine to dryfire, then the competitor may do so. HOWEVER, it is the competitors responsibility not to screw it up.  Just like its the competitors responsibility not to LOAD (screw it up) during the PREPARATION PERIOD (10.3.1 which includes the option of dryfiring).  (And don't be surprised if a match official or RO jumps on your case at the match, its their responsibility to manage and run the match safely.)   

BUT, this required vigilance on the part of the competitor and the match officials. And you will find that at Perry and other large matches with volunteer RO's etc., there will be much discussion with you if you insert even an unloaded magazine into the gun. (And the referee will have to when he weighs the gun.)   

The rules are not perfect, people are not perfect, continual vigilance and commitment to safety is required to make up for it.

Just my opinion.  You all carry on. 

CR

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Re: A question of protocol...

Post by Wobbley on 1/9/2018, 9:42 am

For those pistols requiring a magazine, you could use an old un reliable magazine, modified to not accept ammo and painted yellow, or a purpose made 3D printed plastic magazine?
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Re: A question of protocol...

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