|22,046 rounds||10 stoppages||0 malfunctions||1 parts breakages|
As hoped, last week allowed for three separate practice sessions and more than 1,800 rounds through the SACS/Warren gun.
Happily, there is nothing to report in terms of function. The gun went bang over and over. It’s been more than 2,000 rounds since the gun has been cleaned, but it gets lubrication every time I’m at the range. The gun is really pretty filthy due to the residue created by the leadless primers in the M882CF (Clean Fire) ammunition but it hasn’t missed a beat.
In terms of shooting, most of my time has been spent working on consistency, particularly in terms of engaging low% targets at speed. This endeavor has given me an opportunity to re-examine a lot of my fundamentals, particularly my grip. I’m playing with different tweaks to my support hand position looking for the best combination of recoil management and reliable function (including slidelock on empty mags). The major conclusion is that I’ve become lazy with my support hand grip. This is just speculation on my part, but my guess is that because the felt recoil of the gun is so ridiculously light, I’m not gripping it as hard as I need to even though the actual muzzle lift has been pretty substantial. That’s just a conscious/discipline issue on the shooter end of the system and something I’m paying a lot more attention to now every time I grab the gun.
Of nine F.A.S.T. runs over three sessions I averaged 5.63, missing one head shot each day. My average would have been 4.96 if not for the misses. And if frogs had wings… The head misses were usually on the cold runs shot first thing when getting to the range, and every time it was the followup shot that missed. That’s easy to tell because the first round out of the gun is a Federal 124gr +p HST (the round in the chamber when I got to the range) and the subsequent rounds are all M882CF, a round nose bullet that leaves a distinctly different mark on the paper. My reloads have also suffered because I haven’t been putting any focus on them, averaging 2.31 for the F.A.S.T. runs.
Cold misses during the F.A.S.T. notwithstanding, overall my speed and accuracy on low% targets is definitely improving. Perhaps the best evidence of that was my attempt at JodyH’s 99 Drill. I scored a 96 on the 3×5:
- 3 to 3×5 at 7yd in 2.5s from concealment in 2.5s: 30/30
- 1 to 3×5 at 7yd from concealment, slidelock reload, two more to 3×5 in 5.0s: 30/30
- 3 to 3×5 at 10yd from concealment in 3.5s: 29/30
- 3 to 3×5 at 15yd from concealment in 5.0s: 7/9
The misses at distance caused me to put some extra effort into slowfire marksmanship practice. One of the conclusions I drew, unfortunately, is that some combination of the lighting at the indoor range, contrast between the dark and light areas of the Q-PT, my vision, and my sights have definitely reduced my ability to get a fast and precise sight picture. I may try running the drill again using bright white 3×5 cards alone on the cardboard backer. (by the way, the second generation Q-PT target will have all the grey areas darkened by about 30%)
This week I won’t get an opportunity for any live fire, so the next update will probably be delayed a bit. However, I’ve made a commitment to dry fire my reloads 100 times a day so it will be interesting to see how that affects my reloads next week when I get back on the range. I’ll also be doing quite a bit of driving and hiking this week, putting the heavy SACS/Warren 1911 and the 5 Shot S.M.E. holster through their paces in terms of comfort under more cramped and strenuous circumstances.
Train hard & stay safe! ToddG
You can also follow and discuss via the pistol-forum.com 2012-2013 Endurance Test thread.
Previous Springfield/Warren 9mm 1911 Endurance Test posts at pistol-training.com: