Sights and Police Practices?

Discussion for firearms and less-lethal equipment.
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Re: Sights and Police Practices?

Postby talljoe » Wed Feb 13, 2008 1:02 am

This thread degenerated somewhat. The original question has been well answered and I have to agree. If your issue handgun doesn't shoot to POA it's probably you, not the gun. If, as it appears from the question, that you have a handgun with adjustable sights, then adjust them so the gun shoots to POA.

As a retired police firearm instructor, and current IPSC shooter, I would just like to stand up for civvy practical pistol instructors who had some 'bad press' on the preceding pages. I have been shooting handguns for over 40 years so have seen a few. I have also met more than a few police firearm instructors.(And, of course, instructors of police instructors !)

Both groups come in two flavours. 'Good', and 'Bad'. However, I have yet to come across an IPSC instructor who has tried to give tactical advice pertinent to street survival. They have limited their instruction to 'how to shoot a gun safely, quickly and accurately'. Even the targets they shoot (in Canada anyway) are specifically designed NOT to look like a human torso, to keep the focus on 'target' shooting. I would be very, very surprised if any produced a scenario with 'hostile targets and bystanders'. The scenario would have 'shoot' and 'no-shoot' (or penalty) targets. (Their image to the public is so important it is even strongly suggested that military surplus clothing NOT be worn at matches because of the connotations onlookers may put on it !!!)

I have seen many police firearm instructors 'look down' on hobby shooters which is a shame. The principles of shooting a handgun accurately are the same whether or not you are in blue all day. Some of these instructors left plenty to be desired in the knowledge, and aptitude, department too. I do agree that most instructors like to teach from scratch, me included, rather than correct or adjust previously learned techniques. "Wait 'till you get to Depot" would be fair comment.

I would also like to add a quick note on the 75 yard pistol shot discussion. Dave B quoted that distance merely as an example of bullet trajectory. I am not suggesting that you couldn't make a 75 yard shot successfully, but in the context of police work bear in mind 'when' you can use deadly force. It is more than likely that there is a better alternative than chancing a shot which is probably beyond your capability with the issue handgun.

PS. Thanks to Tackleberry for the example regarding the officer in the gunfight shouting "Front sight, squeeze". Very pertinent to my query on another thread.

Greg W
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Re: Sights and Police Practices?

Postby Greg W » Wed Feb 27, 2008 6:18 pm

You should be concentrating on your front sight so that it is perfectly in focus. (just like the illustration) You eye will automatically center the front sight in the rear sight. The top of the front sight is placed where you want the bullet to hit.
What counts is not necessarily the size of the dog in the fight - it's the size of the fight in the dog.
Dwight D. Eisenhower, speech to the Republican National Committee, January 31, 1958

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