Saturday, October 25, 2014

MVT Oct. 17-19 CTT AAR





I attended an original CRCD almost a year ago exactly from the 2014 class covered here, and it was an eye opening experience- I immediately made plans to return, but was delayed, hence the year wait. For brevity’s sake, I could simply direct all interested parties to my previous review posted here on the MVT blog (Oct. 2013, AAR #2) because everything I said there still applies.
However, in the year it took for me to get back up to WV, a lot has changed with the CRCD class, (now CTT) and it would be a disservice not to cover the impact these changes have had on the course, as well as additional other takeaways.


So there I was a year later, standing there in the early morning dark with 8 other attendees…

The new CTT has had a third initial square-range day added to it that in itself was a great idea, aside from how it impacted the rest of the class. For day 1 we spent the morning either zeroing or confirming zero on our rifles, then moving on to loading/unloading, reloads, and malfunction clearance drills, ending the day with some basic static movement drills that would lead into the RTR drills on day 2.
So in essence aside from a team tactics class, you get a basic carbine class in as well. Frankly this is a much needed essential that was good to see added, considering last year there were some minor hiccups with folk that had less experience running their weapons and “Barbequing on the X”.
The new square range day did a great job of mitigating this, and therefore freeing up time to work through the more involved portions of the class during the next two days. 


Day two we moved into the basic Contact/ RTR drills. The original “short” range has been expanded, which means that not only are there more options to run the drills, but more space to run them in. For example, the “peel right” now ends up feeling little more “full” if you will,  since you can get a couple more movements in before running out of range space.
And did I mention the expanded area is all uphill? Not only does this add an extra level of physical exertion on the Day 1 portion, but working with the terrain can come into play as well. I’ll leave it at that, but it was a great way to up the intensity of the first day.

Also, another thing that was great was the ability to run an actual walkthrough of some of the more complex drills (like the team “peel right”)- remember all that time freed up for day 2 by working out all the weapon related issues on day 1? That pays off here, where the fifteen extra minutes that would have been spent having a Tactical BBQ can now be spent in developing a better understanding of how the drill works, or discussion of related issues. 


Day 3 we moved onto the fullsize range which has also been expanded (and yes, it’s all uphill too).
We warmed up with the classic jungle walk, and then moved into buddy pair assault/break contact drills, then on to 4-man break contact and peels.
The new expansions really came into play on the large range, and especially on the final “bunker assault” drill of the day. Without giving any of the new fun stuff away, you get a much better feel for how a 2-squad attack would work- engaging depth targets, the “assault cycle” and shifting of fires were all demonstrated in fuller detail than last year, and overall the final exercise was just that much more awesome.
Freedom boner activate! 


As far as secondary takeaways;
-Situational awareness. It’s easier to get sucked into your sight, and shooting the target popping up and down than you would think. It’s also easy to default back to what you did at a previous class, which could lead to a situation where you jump in a ditch like you did before, and completely miss the new target that has popped up on the extension range…
On another drill, I missed the “contact front”, but it was called by my buddy, and the target was then engaged and we rolled into the rest of the drill. Fail on my part, *but* a great example of the oft repeated “every man is a link”.


-Shameless product plug of the day- the BCM Gunfighter Mod 4 charging handle is some of the best spent money you will spend on upgrading your rifle. My personal rifle has one of these on it, but I spent this class T&E’ing a budget built rifle for a family member. Since you perform reloads and malfunction drills with your left hand (unless otherwise applicable), while keeping the shooting hand on the grip, this means you need to work the charging handle with one hand. To put it simply, a charging handle with an extended latch and textured surface provides so much more positive control over your actions when running the charging handle one-handed, you don’t realize how much less effective the standard USGI charging handles are until you go back to one. Especially if you wear gloves.  Not that there’s anything wrong with the USGI CH, but after a decent optic this should be the next thing you upgrade your rifle with. End plug.  


-Don’t attempt to communicate into your stock. There’s no microphone there, and at times it can impede your buddies ability to hear you- especially if you’re a fellow who doesn’t do much yelling at full volume on a regular basis…


-Earpro- I switched to some basic active earpro since last class (the Howard Leights almost everyone in the picture is wearing). This is definitely an improvement over the foam plugs, or just basic earmuff hearing protection, and as far as I can recall I did not have any issues in this class hearing communications from other team members. 


-Fred’s talk at the beginning of day three was great- it’s always good to get unfiltered factual info on the various CBRN threats from an expert on the subject.
Further, the addition of an extra instructor (Chris) helped some of the larger drills run more smoothly, and made an exercise like the new bunker assault possible. 


-If you can help it, don’t wait a year to go back. Need I bring up the old cliché of “perishable skills”? Especially if you’re largely without others to practice them with... While I was surprised at how much I remembered from a year back, I still had to re-learn a lot.

Final note- the original CRCD class that I took a year ago did more than an adequate job of explaining all the essential concepts for a base of team contact drill knowledge. The new CTT class does it that much better. Personally I would have liked to see a basic medical portion kept on (why the lack of interest in the TC3 class I don’t get….), but aside from that I would go so far as to say that the class is now as it should be.
If you’re looking to take a basic team tactics class for the first time, or re-take the CRCD course, the new CTT version won’t disappoint.




Any questions or comments, feel free to post away.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Long Overdue Update

So as some of you that have frequented this site lately have noticed, there hasn't been much going on.

In actuality, there has been a lot going on elsewhere- part of it is simply less time available to peruse articles and news stories to collate and formulate into an interesting post.

The other is  that there are a couple directions that this blog could be going  in the near future, and at this point I'm just not sure which it will be.

So with that extremely vague and uninformative bit of information, I bid you good evening.
Stay tuned. We'll be right back after these messages...

Friday, September 5, 2014

Liberty Minded Rationalists



A while back, during the discussions on the MVT forum about possible ways to take meaningful action against the ISIS situation, there was a really great post that summed it all up quite nicely.
And in that post there was a comment that I think whacked the nail straight on the head in regards to the various "Left" or "Right" political groups;

" ...I think my opinions on the radical left, who are otherwise known as libtards, are fairly clear from my writings. However, I also object to the extreme right. Whether that be the extreme religious or political or religious/political types.....

.....The main problem with the ‘right’ in America is that it is always within inches of slipping over the edge into madness. There is sensible chat about rightful liberty, threats of tyranny, problems in the country, and then there is always a website or a commenter waiting in the wings to drag it all down with some madness. It’s the insane type of conspiracy theories. It’s the belief in any rumor thrown up on the net because it makes you feel good. I have followed those links, I have explored it, and therein lies the route to madness.
It is exactly that type of brainwashing on the right that discredits what those who support rightful liberty are fighting for. We are simply Americans, standing up against the madness of the radical left, and the destruction to our country and society that they have wrought....."

I've got to say, I totally agree, because I've seen and experienced it myself.
The problem always seems to come where there is a good intention, people form a group around that good intention, and then either they derail themselves by taking it TO far, or the maniacs show up and ruin everything.
Take the oft-bashed "prepper" movement. Solid idea, makes sense, and then you get the retards that showed up and ruined the whole thing. Ok, so they had a little shove off the cliff here and there, but you've got to admit there is some full retard going on in some of those circles, especially with the Alex Jones chemtrail types... Anyways, I'm not going to try and feebly expound further when you can go read the rest of the quoted post.
The overall point being, it's time for a new way for people who actually still have a few sane brain cells to identify themselves without being immediately thrown out because their part of a certain "group".
And while I'm sure in time this will get hijacked by the loons, Max has come up with a great idea- Rationalists;

RATIONALIST

Which stands for:
R eady
A rmed
T rained
I nformed
O rganized
N on-Conformist
A nti-extremist
L ibertarian
I nclusive
S ecure
T eam







I think the argument for using/adopting this term is pretty solid as well;



"....It’s not about who is reasonable or normal or right or whatever, it’s about who controls the narrative. Remember Alinsky? Yeah, now you are on the right track. The radical left control the narrative. Stop describing yourselves as preppers or whatever. That makes you a nut job....

.....Remember also that this term RATIONALIST is not designed to be exclusive or ‘othering’ – it is designed to be inclusive. If anyone asks why you do what you do, you explain you are a rationalist. They also consider themselves rationalists, so you are now both included with each other.

Q: Why do you store food? A: It’s an uncertain world, and I’m a rationalist.

Q: Are you one of those crazy preppers? A: No, I’m just a rationalist, I like to be ready for uncertain times. Seen the news lately?

Q: Are you a gun nut? A: No, I like to be able to defend my family. Tactical training is also fun and challenging – you should try it.

Q: Are you some kind of wing nut conspiracy theorist? A: not at all, I’m a rationalist. I don’t go in for crazy theories, but have you seen the news lately?..."


And if all else fails, "because fuck you that's why" is apparently also a perfectly acceptable answer to any particularly boneheaded questioning.

Read the rest HERE and HERE.
Apply liberally.




Thursday, August 14, 2014

Rifles, Armor, And Nonrestrictive Banning



The world is in great shape. ISIS running rampant, ebola popping up here there and everwhere, our own borders being overrun by god knows who, and meanwhile on the other side of town, we're back to the same old arguments....

"Catherine C. Blake, federal judge on the United States District Court for the District of Maryland ruled.... that Maryland's ban on AR-15s and AK-47s "does not significantly [burden]" the Second Amendment.


Dear "Folks that still want to compromise on this issue: Told you so...."

Also, Rep. Mike Honda, (D-CA), has submitted a bill to the U.S. House that would prohibit the sale, use or possession of what he terms military-grade body armor.




Of course how exactly to stop possession of any but from lawr abahdin' sitisens... I'd love to know how this will work out for them.

Oh, wait- same as guns. It won't. Bad guys don't give a damn about some stupid piece of paper!

But apparently in fantasy land we can wave said papers at them like some magic talisman, and they'll just walk away since no-one is armed. 


Banning people from owning body armor is denying them the most basic, passive form of protection you can have. You don’t need to carry a gun or a knife or even a club (which apparently kills more folks than either of the previous)  to take advantage of it- you just wear it. Like a safety blanket. Much like some schools have invested in for the kiddies, in case… you know… some crazy person who gives no damns about committing murder, much less the piece of paper you’re frantically waving in his face as you beg him to stop blowing holes in people, decides to shoot the place up.
Explain to me again how that makes this Act any sort of “responsible”? 


And then you have an absolutely ridiculous ruling in Maryland stating that restricting and banning military pattern rifles does not constitute an infringement on the second amendment.
I mean really?
You just banned something. That equals an infringement.
It’s like telling people that restricting their use of the internet to the hours of 12 and 1 AM doesn’t infringe on their use of it. We’ll even call it the Responsible Internet Usage Act. 


Question of the day- why do people constantly feel they need a court to rule on something clearly stated in a document that does not give rights, but simply states which ones we have by simply existing as citizens of this country, that cannot ever be tampered with or restricted?
Why do we rely on political appointees to tell us how much freedom we can take advantage of?


Frankly, half of it is just a game- those in high offices such as the SCOTUS and their supporters  have suckered everyone into believing they can grant and regulate rights.
The other half of an unpleasant answer is that “most people don’t want true freedom- they simply desire a kinder master….”
But I digress.


The final absurd half of the story with these two bills is that they then make statements like this:


“…Blake said the Firearm Safety Act represented "the considered judgement" of Maryland legislature and Governor Martin O'Malley (D) and was an effort "to address a serious risk of harm to law enforcement officers and the public from the great power to injure and kill presented by assault weapons and large capacity magazines….”

“…There is no reason this type of armor, which is designed for warfare, should be available in our communities except for those who need it, like law enforcement,…”


Quick- help us pass this common sense law so we can get these weapons of war off our streets!

Really?



 

Tell me more about how banning something means you need more of it, given that you’ll no longer be in any danger of facing such threats per that magical piece of paper?
Hypocrites.


Saturday, August 9, 2014

Shields Up!

Picture borrowed from MVT

The long awaited MVT Shield thermal shelter is finally available.
See the link for availability, price, order info, and specs. 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Raffle For Chris Kyle



So I haven't had time to post much which sucks, but I do plan to get back to it. Someday....
However, this was worth putting up.

Per the outcome of the Ventura Vs Kyle estate, American Snipers.org has taken it upon themselves to set up a raffle to help Kyle's family defuse some of the cost of the suit.

Needless to say, some seriously badass manufacturers have joined in and there is a pile of ridiculously awesome stuff being put up for it (details over the last week or so on A.S. Facebook page), to include guns, gear, and training classes. If anyone needs any incentive to join in....

Link here: Chris Kyle Raffle Page

Tickets are 10 bucks each.
Raffle ends January, Shot Show 2015

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Posting Update

A long overdue update on events here.
Frankly, there's a lot going on, the end result of which tends to drain the ol' "give a damn" meter.
Posting for the forseeable future is going to get sporadic (if you haven't already noticed...).

If you're still dropping by to check things out, thanks for your support!