Monday, February 10, 2014

That stuff will get you killed on the street.

So a discussion comes up in a forum about the best way to reload a pistol while holding a flashlight in an IDPA match. Someone brings up using a "Tiger ring" a la Streamlight's Thunder Ranch lights or a lanyard like what comes with Surefire's "CombatLight" models to retain the flashlight during the reload, and someone else points out that such gadgets are not IDPA legal.

♪♫ I'm too gamer for my mom jeans, too gamer for my mom jeans...♪♫
 Ah, IDPA, the shooting sport that was ostensibly started because USPSA had become too much of a "gamer" equipment race back in the '90s and wasn't realistic or tactical anymore.

It's also the shooting game where I'd have to take off the light-and-laser-equipped pistol I actually CCW'ed to the match, and likely strap up with a longslide version of the same gun, but jammed full of Apex race trigger parts, and in an OWB holster, but only after I've taken half the bullets out of the magazines... because it's more realistic and "street".

53 comments:

Erich505 said...

I'll never get gamers.

rremington said...

Where is the "Like" button for this post!

Keads said...

Ah, IDPA. "I Don't Practice Anymore."

rremington said...

You realize you are going to upset Caleb with this....

Armed Texan said...

If they want "street", why not start the match in a parking lot a mile away? Have the contestants walk to the match site without being detected and then let them use whatever weapon and ammo they carried. Bonus points for matches in states like Texas and Florida where even printing could get you proned and hoosgowed faster than you can say "CCW".

Anonymous said...

We have a night match every year using IDPA scoring and targets but allowing you to shoot what ever you bring.

The categories were:
Hand held light
Weapons mounted light
Weapons mounted light and laser
Carbine with light and laser

Gamers got to compete, the rest of us got to practice.

Gerry

Wyfaggro said...

DAMN that's gonna leave a mark...

Alien said...

I gave up on IDPA eons ago when I got rule-wrangled over my holster; I was daily carrying my street heater in a Bianchi 19L, which was not legal because it was not "on the list." The identical holster, the 19, which differs only in not having a suede lining, was "on the list" and legal. Each match was a rules fest, ending with me eagerly agreeing to just go shoot without points.

Unfortunately, despite in following years somewhat fixing the idiocy about which holster was legal, IDPA has remained a rule maker's dream. I'm sure, had I kept shooting IDPA, at some point I would have been disqualified for the wrong color underwear, so I gave up and went back to IPSC, and got a revolver to jump into ICORE with when local matches began to be held. I'd like to try my hand at some of the IDPA stages, but among other things, the barrel on my out-of-the-box revolver is .80" too long to be legal, and there's probably still something wrong with whatever holster I'm using for my current bottom feeder.

I read with amusement the IDPA gyrations Caleb recounts on his site. To each their own, but I'll shoot where I don't have to fight the green eyeshade folks each match.

Ted N said...

I think I want to get into gun games, then I read this stuff. I think I'll pass, I don't have patience for such foolish nitpicking.

Woodman said...

I just want somewhere I can make some steel go ping and practice stuff I can't do at a regulr range.

Unless you have acreage I'm not sure where I can do any of this medium speed not too much drag stuff. Hell the closest I can shoot is 10 yards at Camp A, 25 yards at Wilbur Wright. I can hit a target pretty well at that range, with a full size 1911. But how the hell do I practice with a pocket pistol at 25 yards? Yeah, I hit the paper, in a situation totally unlike anything ill ever need to actually use the gun in.

Something like IDPA appeals to me because of the "situational" stuff, but how would I practice for it?

Rifleman762 said...

Some IDPA rules are reasonable, such as requiring everything to be reasonably concealed and carrying a reasonable amount of reloads (let's face it, most of us don't carry 5 mags in a fancy belt like we do in USPSA).

But it's pretty unrealistic to say that you need to only shoot from cover, or reload from cover, or engage targets as they appear in order. USPSA is probably more realistic in that regard, and probably more helpful for practice (shooting and reloading while moving, using your own judgement to decide which targets to hit first).

Ultimately, they are both just games. Fun games. But I prefer USPSA because I don't have to worry as much about the derpy, unreasonable penalties of IDPA.

Anonymous said...

What you all must not realize is that the ridiculous IDPA rules are actually gymnastics training for the legal aftermath of a shooting. :-)

jf

Bill Weber said...

Same here. Is GSSF any better? I know it is Glock only. I want show up and shot. Not read 100s pages of rules and maybe shoot.

Bill Weber said...

What about GSSF? Any better?

Tam said...

GSSF is fine. So's USPSA. IDPA isn't even bad for most people as long as you approach it for what it is and tune out the "ZOMG IT'S AS REAL AS IT GETS!" nuthuggers and realize it's just another game with its own specific set of rules.

Heck, for people who don't use lights or lasers on their carry gun, or don't carry AIWB, (and that's most people) you can most likely just go ahead and shoot your CCW gat.

Caleb said...

Shooters from shooting sport X complaining about shooting sport Y's rules makes about as much sense as tennis players complaining about the rules of badminton.

Tam said...

As long as the badminton players aren't saying it's because their game is realer, yo! then I absolutely agree.

Tam said...

(And Caleb, you can't tell me those guys don't exist. :p )

knice said...

I've never shot IDPA based on complaints from friends and relatives. My father call IDPA the Taliban of USPSA. One friend went to try IDPA and they wouldn't let him shoot because his belt was too wide. They seem more concerned with control that what is usable for self defense.

RevolverRob said...

I gave up in IDPA when I showed up with my IWB belt carried revolver and was told I had to move my speed loader behind my holster on my belt, despite carrying it in front of my holster.

Also, I was informed my "concealment garment" was not legal, because it was a button down shirt that had some tungsten fishing weights sewn in the corner to help it swing open. The shirt wasn't legal, but if I wanted to be a cotton-canvas vest and starch it so hard it could stand up on its own...that is legal.

Yea, no thanks.

I'll stick with my speed loader in front of my gun, my shirt that is weighted to give me an advantage but looks normal, and the Tiger rings on my flashlights.

-Rob

Scott J said...

So, I reckon I won't get the honor of bumping into you at a major sometime :)

That isn't to say I disagree with this post though.

Scott J said...

My choice of light isn't strictly IDPA legal either but we strech the rules a bit at my club's monthly low-light match.

http://www.firstlight-usa.com/products/tomahawk-gp-tactical-light

Angus McThag said...

Did we really just go from talking about guns to talking about whether playing with a cock or balls is better?

Did that happen?

Caleb said...

I know those guys exist, but they're idiots too.

I just get tired of people complaining about the rules of the game; it's a game for chrissakes.

This is one of those "activate Caleb rant" topics.

Montana said...

USPSA and bullseye are the only games in my area that are really being played. So I play USPSA, yes I carry five reloads, because that's how many fit in the mag pouch I wear to the match. I'm most interested in how I'm improving on my Qualifiers and chasing the guys that are just a bit better than I am. I know that the GM the runs our club is decades out of my league. But if I keep chasing, eventually I'll be chasing him. Game because it's fun, track because it offers a way to tell if you're becoming a better shooter. And if you can carry a long slide, full size handgun. Do it, because bigger guns are easier to shoot.

Ed Jones said...

My local club started out with IDPA, but the range nazies from Kansas showed up and most of our people wanted to shoot more rounds per stage, so we switched to USPSA and have been hapy ever after.

Tam said...

Scott J,

"So, I reckon I won't get the honor of bumping into you at a major sometime :)

That isn't to say I disagree with this post though.
"

I didn't say I hate the game; I just said some of the rules are goofy and have pretty tenuous reasons for being. I'd shoot CDP or ESP, most likely... :)


Caleb,

Let's talk about the Designated Hitter rule! XD

Caleb said...

The DH rule is a great vehicle for overweight bats to extend their playing career by 5 more years when their knees can't handle the strain of playing 1st base.

The older I get, the dumber I think it is!

Scott J said...

"I'd shoot CDP or ESP, most likely... :)"

I've shot every division except ESR (simply because I don't own one yet) but I'm starting to face the fact I'm a CDP guy and therefore dedicating more time to that platform.

Scott J said...

I'd like to hear Caleb's rant about the silly standing reload rule.

I know some folks who abandoned the game for USPSA over that.

Richard Blaine said...

What they all need is a category that's Sooting for No Credit.

Rules - the four basic ones everyone needs.

Equipment - Nothing that will damage the range or steel targets. (So no, you can't use your .50 cal on our pepper poppers.) No rifles on the pistol course. (Pistols on the rifle course are probably okay.)

Shoot the course, get your time, or not. Go have a beer. No standings, no prizes.

- Even better, you don't get to see the course until you're on it.

We can call it IFSA
Intentionally Fun Sooting Association.

David said...

Do I really want to wade into this one? OK, here goes...

I play the USPSA game because that's the game they play at my club...if my club had IDPA, I'd play that game. Both are games, with rules which do not apply outside of that particular game, thus neither is "realistic."

But both do offer some degree of stress inoculation, by putting you out in front of people, with a timer on you. I know, I know...it's not like getting shot at, but do you really want to shoot that match?

Both games allow you to work on mechanical skills such as trigger, sights, movement, multiple targets, reloads, etc., in a more dynamic setting than your typical public "square" range.

Or to summarize... whatevs.

og said...

I like the falling plate matches. If ever I am attacked by a group of people standing still with 10" steel plates on their chest, they are SO fucked.

Robin said...

What? They changed the IDPA Designated Hitter Target Forces Reload rule again?

ww said...

I only shoot NRA Smallbore. Magazines? Cheating. Vickers/Limited Vickers? Bullshit. Make a little map of the stage with your .22 LRs for each target and you don't have to count. Of course you shoot prone. If Jesus had wanted you to shoot standing up with the good Lord's sunshine on your face instead of nose down in the dirt, he would have made you an eagle or something instead of such a filthy, ridiculous, disgraceful animal.

UNHchabo said...

Richard Blaine--
The newest rulebook contains a section for "Not For Competition" (section 8.2.7). In part, it reads:
IDPA allows clubs to add a “Not for Competition” scoring division for Tier 1 matches only. This
allows calibers smaller than 9mm, carry optics, and other pistols which do not fit into the 5 competition divisions to participate in local club matches.
Clubs are not required to implement this provision.


One thing I will say: local clubs vary quite a bit. I saw that Colion Noir got strange looks at his local club for using a Glock 19 instead of a 34, but my local match sees most people using their normal street gear, rather than all using competition gear. I see quite a few IWB holsters, bone-stock short-barreled guns, and flannel button-down concealment garments.

For what it's worth, my local club does no equipment inspection for any normal matches, only for the sanctioned matches. Even before Not For Competition was implemented, I'm pretty sure they let some people use non-legal gear, as long as it was safe.

Cybrludite said...

The way I look at it is, yes, it's a game, it's not perfectly realistic, and it's less than ideal, but it's the only way I'm going to get to shoot from the draw and run-n-gun on my budget. I'd much rather take one of the serious classes where I run through more ammo in a weekend than the 1st Marines use in a year while under the tutelage of a big name trainer. That's not going to happen unless I hit the PowerBall.

Tango Juliet said...

What they all need is a category that's Sooting for No Credit.

Rules - the four basic ones everyone needs.

Equipment - Nothing that will damage the range or steel targets. (So no, you can't use your .50 cal on our pepper poppers.) No rifles on the pistol course. (Pistols on the rifle course are probably okay.)

Shoot the course, get your time, or not. Go have a beer. No standings, no prizes.

- Even better, you don't get to see the course until you're on it.

We can call it IFSA
Intentionally Fun Sooting Association.

+1

If folks were a little less wound up about "winning" and more about "improving" then we would all be better off.

But we just have to stroke those egos, don't we?

Tam said...

Tango Juliet,

"If folks were a little less wound up about "winning" and more about "improving" then we would all be better off."

Um, 'winning' is the objective of the game.

That's like suggesting they not keep score at an NFL game, and as long as everyone gets a workout and has a good time, then we all had fun, right? ;)

Tam said...

David,

"Do I really want to wade into this one? OK, here goes..."

Dude, if that's in response to my post, you misread my intent.

I don't mind being told I can't use a flashlight lanyard. Tell me "we wanted a level playing field". Fine. Tell me "we've seen safety issues with them." Fine. Tell me "just because that's the rules." Fine.

Just don't tell me "because our sport is a realistic tactical simulation of real-world street CCW equipment and tactical gunfighting wharrrgarble." ;)

Scott J said...

"Just don't tell me "because our sport is a realistic tactical simulation of real-world street CCW equipment and tactical gunfighting wharrrgarble." ;)"

Exactly. As I quickly realized when I started playing the game in 2011: there are no walk throughs in real life and in a real defensive situation I'm not going charging along to a shooting point and popping out around a corner at the speed required to be competitive in the game.

But, as others have said it offers skill improvement beyond what you get standing flat footed on the square range.

Ted N said...

I'd show up for that!

Anonymous said...

Where did my clever, witty comments go?

jf

Joe in PNG said...

If USPCA is the game for minmaxing munchkins, then IDPA must be the game for the rules lawyers.

(let's see if anyone catches that one)

Geodkyt said...

Joe -- EXACTLY. (Actually played Chainmail before. Not thatold, but my first serious and regular gaming group was all older than I was.)

Gewehr98 said...

I grew weary of the IPSC/USPSA hardware race after a few years, too.

IDPA used to let me run a bone-stock 4" Model 19 or little Model 36, which was a kick in the pants. It was supposed to be a "run what you pack" type of game, but it appears to have strayed the course.

Now I run a 6" 1918 DWM Luger, 3" S&W Model 696, 6" PPC/Bianchi Cup race revolver, .357 Magnum Desert Eagle Mk1, or my .38 Special S&W Model 52 autoshucker at the local Steel Challenge matches. So long as I don't hurt the plates, I can run what I want. Just you, your choice of handgun, some steel plates, and a timer. Last weekend we even had a kerosene heater in the shoot house between plate runs! (It's the little things in life that excite me...)

David said...

Tam...I guess I wasn't being clear.

I don't mind rules that make the game fair, either. I was more talking about the ceaseless debate between others about A) whether or not USPSIDPA is "realistic" or not and then B) which of the two games is more so.

They're both games and as such are both artificial to some degree or another, but they're both good fun and good training, as long as you keep them in perspective and understand exactly what things you are training, and what things you are not.

Short version...I agree with you!

og said...

Am I the only one who found it hard to shake the thought that Tam had to take this picture in her underwear?

Scott J said...

"Am I the only one who found it hard to shake the thought that Tam had to take this picture in her underwear"

I did but wasn't going to go there. But since she already branded me a perv last year for misinterpreting the phrase "moist and runny" I probably have no hope of redeeming my character anyway :)

Tam said...

...and lemme tell ya, they were some extra sexy thermal long johns, too! :p

Scott J said...

"...and lemme tell ya, they were some extra sexy thermal long johns, too"

That reminds me of the photo oft seen in outdoor catalogs.

Lodge setting, a fireplace and some dudes and dudettes sitting around in their long johns drinking either coffee or hot chocolate.

Every time I saw it I thought "who does that?".

og said...

Cold nudists?

Matt G said...

The things that have pissed me off the most about IDPA is the insistence that you can't reload on the move, that you have to download to 10 rounds (that used to not piss me off. Huh.), and that every IDPA match that I've ever shot required a cold range, so I had to administratively unload and show clear after every stage, and then administratively load and make ready at the beginning of every stage,
"in the interests of safety."


Still, like Simon Says, it's a divided attention test, and so using the match as a practice session ain't bad.