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Tuesdays! - Tina Marie's Ramblings
Red hair and black leather, my favorite colour scheme...
I know, I'm late - been promising a post about this for a while.

I finally got a new handgun about 3 months ago - a Springfield XDM in 9mm. I shot all the interesting 9mm rentals at the local range, which has quite a collection. I loved the grip angle on the 1911, but it was out of my price range, and in retrospect I'm glad I didn't buy something with an external safety. The Glocks just didn't appeal to me - I have no problems with "plastic", no problems with the internal safety, I just didn't like shooting them. The XDM got good reviews and seemed like a nice compromise.

I really like it. I'm having one problem - the magazine doesn't like to come out if the slide isn't back - but it's under warranty, the factory seems to know about it (the phone call this morning: "Hi! I'm having trouble with the magazine release." "It's stiff, particularly when the slide is forward?" "Yep."), and will fix it. I've put close to 1000 rounds through it in the last few months, so I can live with one problem. The downside is that means a 30-day turnaround, according to them.

Somewhere in there, we managed to take a weekend and get our Texas CHLs. 10 hours of class, mostly spent filling out paperwork and making sure we could hit the broad side of a barn, mixed with a few hours of "this is where you may not carry". It seemed remarkably minimalist - they assumed you already knew everything you needed to know about the actual carrying and shooting part and just need to know the legal stuff. It'll be a while before we get the paperwork - some people are waiting 6-9 months to actually get the card.

So we've been doing a tactical class on Tuesday nights - lots of movement, reloading, "stoppage reductions", and so on. They take 5 lanes of an indoor range and use them for the class. It's a hot range - you're not allowed to be on the range with an unloaded weapon. The theory is that most accidental discharges happen with guns that people believe are empty - so by forcing them to be loaded, you're increasing safety. I'll just say that after years of shooting at ranges, it took quite a few Tuesdays to get used to moving around with a loaded gun in the holster.

Last night, they took everyone's gun, and put them on the table in various stages of functionality. You had to run down and back the length of the range, pick up a gun, do what needed to be done to fire 2 shots from it, and if you missed either time, you got to do another lap. Once you hit the target twice in a row, the next person started. It reminded me of the relay races we always played in gym class - and what gym class wouldn't have been improved by the addition of a table full of loaded firearms?

This weekend: The gun show. I'm hoping to stock up on enough ammo to start doing the Thursday night IDPA matches. And get a holster for my old .22 so I have something to shoot while the XDM is in the shop. Whatever made me think this was going to be a cheap new hobby?


9 comments or Leave a comment
arthur_sc_king From: arthur_sc_king Date: May 14th, 2009 01:29 am (UTC) (Link)
Dammit, I want to join you in this! Still waiting for big IRS tax refunds, and wondering how to convince the missus that a gun in the home will be A Good Thing. Grrrrrrr.

There's a range less than an hour from here which has matches every Saturday; 1st Saturday Steel Challenge, 2nd Sat. Tactical (dunno what that is, maybe LEO only?), 3rd Sat. USPSA, 4th Sat. IDPA. WANT!

Haven't tried the Springfield, but I liked the Glock 22 I shot with greeneyedsadie that one time we went to the range. How much did it set you back?
skywhisperer From: skywhisperer Date: May 14th, 2009 02:36 am (UTC) (Link)
They call the class I'm in tactical. It's mostly just defensive pistol work.

I paid $650 at a gun show for it, but I don't believe you can buy them in CA. It's a 19+1, and it's plastered with "not legal in CA" stickers.
skywhisperer From: skywhisperer Date: May 14th, 2009 03:03 am (UTC) (Link)
While I'm making you envious, my nearest range? 5 blocks. And there are 3 others within half an hour.
arthur_sc_king From: arthur_sc_king Date: May 14th, 2009 06:38 am (UTC) (Link)
Damn, that's sweet. There's an indoor range that's about 10-15 minutes away, which ain't too bad.

I joined Glock's Sport Shooting Federation; for $35 dues I got a certificate that'll let me buy one Glock at LEO prices, e.g. something like $398 for a Glock 22 (about $150 off retail). Yes, I'd have to have 10-round mags, but that's OK; that's the limit in Canada, too.

Sigh. Someday....
skywhisperer From: skywhisperer Date: May 14th, 2009 02:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, this is an indoor range. That means expensive ammo, since you can't shoot anything that's not FMJ, and even some of that they don't like. The upside is that shooting after work is perfectly feasible.

We're doing an all-day class the end of this month at the outdoor range. It'll be nice to have a lot more room to move around.

all_seaming_eye From: all_seaming_eye Date: May 14th, 2009 02:07 am (UTC) (Link)
XD is a nice pistol. I have it in .45 ACP. Never had a problem with the mags though. My only problem is it's kinda thick.

Can't stand Glocks. I've only ever had bad experiences with them.
skywhisperer From: skywhisperer Date: May 14th, 2009 02:53 am (UTC) (Link)
The M comes with replaceable grips, and I have the smallest set. I initially thought that was the problem with the magazine release - I wasn't getting enough leverage on it - but the instructor has huge hands and couldn't get it out without a hassle, and said I should get it fixed.

I have a lot of friends who love their Glocks, but they just don't seem worth the cult status they have. I will admit they have cool t-shirts, though.
(Deleted comment)
skywhisperer From: skywhisperer Date: May 14th, 2009 03:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
The instructor who did our CHL suggested that you should stay current. Their idea of "best practices" was one 50-round box of ammo a month, but once a quarter was considered "okay". I don't know how you could possibly shoot that rarely and not have your skills atrophy.
arthur_sc_king From: arthur_sc_king Date: May 15th, 2009 12:16 am (UTC) (Link)
Well, it all depends on what "skills" you do or don't have.

I think I tried centre-fire once as a youth. (From an adult in the YellowSnow shooting club; I shot .22 sporting rifle almost exclusively at that age.) Aside from that, my only pistol experience was with CO2 pellet pistols.

Yet when palsgraf and I hit the indoor range, my last 10-round mag out of a box of 50 made a nice little 4"x1.5" group at 10 yards, IIRC.

OTOH, I can believe there are people who could take all the training in the world and still not keep 8/10 shots inside an 8.5"x11" sheet of paper at 5 yards....
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