The Redback One Basic Pistol Course Comes to AlaskaDay two of the basic pistol course found us in the low 20’s for temperature so we warmed up our trigger fingers by performing the same string of fire at 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25 yards but with a bit of time added. It was obvious that under even simple stress (like a blue box that makes buzzing sounds), your fundamentals suffer and you begin to rush things. During a basic pistol course, a typical instructor would never tell you that you can let a fundamental like sight picture suffer, but Jason covered this as his “CQB sight picture”. The premise is that if you are close enough where the hit probability is very high, you may not have ‘equal height, equal light’ in your sight picture, but it might be ‘good enough’ for effective shots on target. This was practiced by shooting a ‘compass’ on paper by manipulating your front sight in your rear notch high, low, left, and right. This gave a feel for ‘how off’ your sights could be and still get effective hits. Needless to say, this wasn’t something I was practicing before the class and it definitely is one of the things I need to work on. Rip away concealment/Draw/Present/Scan & Assess/Re-holster We moved on to accuracy drills with shooting in a cadence. We were shooting six round drills at a cadence of 1 second, ½ second, and ¼ second. Before every string of fire, Jason would demonstrate what was expected and it was very humbling to see the shooting prowess that he possesses. He is truly an amazing shooter and is very good at what he does. I don’t believe any of the students were truly effective at ¼ second cadence drills and I was even struggling to put the fundamentals together during ½ second drills. After lunch Jason had us running malfunction/stoppage drills which included empty magazine drills, clearing stovepipes, clearing double feeds (failures to extract), and showed us the most efficient way to get your pistol back in fighting shape. He also demonstrated how his particular Glock 17 can replicate malfunctions by manipulating a magazine a certain way. During this demonstration, he experienced a new malfunction that, even with the mis-feed, let the slide move forward/rearward about 1/8th of an inch when pulling the trigger. It was dubbed the “Alaskan Stoppage”. I was able to capture his facial expression perfectly. The Alaskan Stoppage We also covered shooting effectively from the kneeling, prone, and supine positions as well as shooting from retention, all of which surprised many as being part of a ‘basic’ course. At the end of day two, Jason had us shoot the Redback One Pistol Standards which is what Jason feels you need to pass before taking his advanced classes. As I said before, adding a shot timer during a group shooting situation added stress, but he had everyone shooting individually. Compound shorter times and having everyone else looking at you and what you are hitting (or not hitting) really hiked the stress level, which really showed you what needed to be worked on. Shooting from the Kneeling Position Shooting Prone I feel this class was far beyond what most would expect from a basic pistol course. Jason basically has two days to drill into you what he has been learning in nearly 20 years working in this field. This class will definitely show you your weaknesses as a newer shooter and give you plenty to work on for future range sessions. Shooting Supine Shooting from Retention A couple notes and observations: -All the guns in the class seemed to run well except one Glock 35 that was brand new and hadn’t been cleaned or lubed. Jason was sure to pour the sarcasm on heavily and gave the shooter a good a little ‘lesson’ on firearms lubrication. -When doing speed drills, I found myself sacrificing a sight alignment to achieve a good trigger pull. When accuracy suffered, I focused on sight alignment, but began slapping the trigger. This is a huge gap in my shooting that needs to be corrected. -The UpLula pistol mag loader is worth every penny of the $30 they charge for it. -I feel the Blackhawk Serpa holster is an OK range holster but after this class I no longer prefer it. -Being a left-handed Glock shooter with small hands, a rounded mag catch along with an extended slide release are on my short list of upgrades. - Stock plastic Glock sights leave something to be desired and I look forward to upgrading. They also prevent you from doing something like this picture shows: Using Front Sight Post to Action Slide Against Target Stand In conclusion, I feel that this class not only helped to improve my shooting but it definitely gave me the tools to improve my shooting dramatically instead of just burning ammo at the range. I also saw the shooting of my classmates significantly improve as well. Jason is a national level instructor and we were lucky to get him to come toAlaska. I look forward to more training with Jason as his training and his company is top notch.
Find Jason and his crew at www.redbackone.com
@Kyle Moffat You’re just looking forward to seeing me again because I owe you money ;)
@robkroupa Thanks a bundle, Rob! I think I’ve got a ‘real’ photographer to possibly show up this time, so hopefully I can double up on notes with you! Looking forward to seeing you in a few days.
Yeah, this is a really good review Kyle.
Great review and great class. I also really enjoyed your “time phased” pictures of some of the drills. I’m really looking forward to the next course.