Close Quarters Rifle at SIG Academy 18 Dec 2019

MaverickNH

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Nine men, including me, attended the 830am-430pm Close Quarters Rifle class at SIG Academy 18 Dec 2019. Five were armed professionals (4 LEO and 1 Military) and 4 others (3 SIG employees and me). I was the lone Tavor X95 among 7 ARs in 556 and 1 SIG MCX Rattler in 300AAC. Two from NY, one MA, one PA and the rest NH. With a LEO-rich student ratio, the instructor, Dan Hunt, ramped it up quickly with an hour intro, hour lunch and 30 min close-out for 5-1/2hr of trigger time (~300rd rifle & ~50 pistol). For instance, non-LEOs did room-entry drills as a homeowner moving from room to room while LEOs drilled entry behind the Instructor in a pair-stacked entry formation.

About 90min was spent on rifle retention, first using blue rifles & blue pistols and then with our own rifles with bolt-carrier groups removed and blue pistols. Blood was shed and boo-boos covered with Bandaids. Grabbing and retaining sharp rifles requires gloves - glad I brought mine! After a few "warm-up" drills that also serve to weed out anyone who definitely should not be there (it was an "advanced" class) we mostly shot 3-10yd. No sighting in, no hold-over assessment - that was an assumed known. Everyone knew how to manipulate their rifles.

Skills to make a first stopping hit(s) were the focus of the drills and instruction. The goal was to hit 8 inch COM or 4 inch FACE targets as fast as possible without the extra 1/10s of seconds to get 1 inch groups. Rifle to pistol transitions on rifle FTF was expected. Dan insisted we not train range drills but simulate reality - transition to pistol is faster than reloading or diagnosing and fixing a malfunction with the rifle. We all proved that in a our drills - everyone could get a pistol shot off faster than tap/rack or reload after a "click" and no bang. Transition to pistol to stop the threat, diagnose and fix the rifle after.

I think that the missing element was contact shooting. One contact shot will destroy a target and backer so that's a range limitation. We didn't do "fall on your *ss and shoot your way back to standing" drills I've done elsewhere - probably a corporate liability thing. I'm sure they do that in their LEO/Military-only courses - or should.

SIG has a 1-day Rifle 101 class for basics, a 2-day Defensive Rifle and 2-day Advanced Defensive Rifle as well as this CQ Rifle, Low Light and Cold Weather Rifle classes. Next year they are going to add a Rifle Operator class that bridges the Defensive Rifle (Now called Rifle Mechanics) and Advance Defensive Rifle, and make ADR even more advanced - fat and slow need not apply. That counts me out ;-)
 

Shawnyc

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After dabbling in IDPA I am very interested in taking some rifle/pistol classes. I live in southeast Mass but don’t mind driving. Would you recommend training with SIG or did others give you a better experience?
 

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Nine men, including me, attended the 830am-430pm Close Quarters Rifle class at SIG Academy 18 Dec 2019. Five were armed professionals (4 LEO and 1 Military) and 4 others (3 SIG employees and me). I was the lone Tavor X95 among 7 ARs in 556 and 1 SIG MCX Rattler in 300AAC. Two from NY, one MA, one PA and the rest NH. With a LEO-rich student ratio, the instructor, Dan Hunt, ramped it up quickly with an hour intro, hour lunch and 30 min close-out for 5-1/2hr of trigger time (~300rd rifle & ~50 pistol). For instance, non-LEOs did room-entry drills as a homeowner moving from room to room while LEOs drilled entry behind the Instructor in a pair-stacked entry formation.

About 90min was spent on rifle retention, first using blue rifles & blue pistols and then with our own rifles with bolt-carrier groups removed and blue pistols. Blood was shed and boo-boos covered with Bandaids. Grabbing and retaining sharp rifles requires gloves - glad I brought mine! After a few "warm-up" drills that also serve to weed out anyone who definitely should not be there (it was an "advanced" class) we mostly shot 3-10yd. No sighting in, no hold-over assessment - that was an assumed known. Everyone knew how to manipulate their rifles.

Skills to make a first stopping hit(s) were the focus of the drills and instruction. The goal was to hit 8 inch COM or 4 inch FACE targets as fast as possible without the extra 1/10s of seconds to get 1 inch groups. Rifle to pistol transitions on rifle FTF was expected. Dan insisted we not train range drills but simulate reality - transition to pistol is faster than reloading or diagnosing and fixing a malfunction with the rifle. We all proved that in a our drills - everyone could get a pistol shot off faster than tap/rack or reload after a "click" and no bang. Transition to pistol to stop the threat, diagnose and fix the rifle after.

I think that the missing element was contact shooting. One contact shot will destroy a target and backer so that's a range limitation. We didn't do "fall on your *ss and shoot your way back to standing" drills I've done elsewhere - probably a corporate liability thing. I'm sure they do that in their LEO/Military-only courses - or should.

SIG has a 1-day Rifle 101 class for basics, a 2-day Defensive Rifle and 2-day Advanced Defensive Rifle as well as this CQ Rifle, Low Light and Cold Weather Rifle classes. Next year they are going to add a Rifle Operator class that bridges the Defensive Rifle (Now called Rifle Mechanics) and Advance Defensive Rifle, and make ADR even more advanced - fat and slow need not apply. That counts me out ;-)
cold weather rifle sound like fun....no pain, no pain......
 

Dan-o

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Nine men, including me, attended the 830am-430pm Close Quarters Rifle class at SIG Academy 18 Dec 2019. Five were armed professionals (4 LEO and 1 Military) and 4 others (3 SIG employees and me). I was the lone Tavor X95 among 7 ARs in 556 and 1 SIG MCX Rattler in 300AAC. Two from NY, one MA, one PA and the rest NH. With a LEO-rich student ratio, the instructor, Dan Hunt, ramped it up quickly with an hour intro, hour lunch and 30 min close-out for 5-1/2hr of trigger time (~300rd rifle & ~50 pistol). For instance, non-LEOs did room-entry drills as a homeowner moving from room to room while LEOs drilled entry behind the Instructor in a pair-stacked entry formation.

About 90min was spent on rifle retention, first using blue rifles & blue pistols and then with our own rifles with bolt-carrier groups removed and blue pistols. Blood was shed and boo-boos covered with Bandaids. Grabbing and retaining sharp rifles requires gloves - glad I brought mine! After a few "warm-up" drills that also serve to weed out anyone who definitely should not be there (it was an "advanced" class) we mostly shot 3-10yd. No sighting in, no hold-over assessment - that was an assumed known. Everyone knew how to manipulate their rifles.

Skills to make a first stopping hit(s) were the focus of the drills and instruction. The goal was to hit 8 inch COM or 4 inch FACE targets as fast as possible without the extra 1/10s of seconds to get 1 inch groups. Rifle to pistol transitions on rifle FTF was expected. Dan insisted we not train range drills but simulate reality - transition to pistol is faster than reloading or diagnosing and fixing a malfunction with the rifle. We all proved that in a our drills - everyone could get a pistol shot off faster than tap/rack or reload after a "click" and no bang. Transition to pistol to stop the threat, diagnose and fix the rifle after.

I think that the missing element was contact shooting. One contact shot will destroy a target and backer so that's a range limitation. We didn't do "fall on your *ss and shoot your way back to standing" drills I've done elsewhere - probably a corporate liability thing. I'm sure they do that in their LEO/Military-only courses - or should.

SIG has a 1-day Rifle 101 class for basics, a 2-day Defensive Rifle and 2-day Advanced Defensive Rifle as well as this CQ Rifle, Low Light and Cold Weather Rifle classes. Next year they are going to add a Rifle Operator class that bridges the Defensive Rifle (Now called Rifle Mechanics) and Advance Defensive Rifle, and make ADR even more advanced - fat and slow need not apply. That counts me out ;-)

Love my x95, how did you do compared to the guys with the ars etc?
Any advantage/disadvantage?
 
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MaverickNH

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PS I was the guy to to your left in the morning that had trouble manipulating your Tavor setting up those drills.
I was going to ask if you were that guy who shot better than me, but there were eight of those guys ;-)

Great shooting with you! I'll probably get back for some more carbine next year when it warms up. See you on the range.
 

MaverickNH

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After dabbling in IDPA I am very interested in taking some rifle/pistol classes. I live in southeast Mass but don’t mind driving. Would you recommend training with SIG or did others give you a better experience?
SIG is a great place to do Handgun 101-104, Rifle 101 & 102. The instructors are top-notch, they have a defined syllabus and good facilities. The best part is they control the class very well - if shooters are safe and competent they amp it up a bit. If there are a few stragglers the 2nd instructor gives them some focus so as to not hold back the class. They can usually call in a 3rd if a 101/102 class needs extra eyes on slower students. I've seen several students gently exited if they couldn't stay safe or keep up - they always give them a free re-do on the lower-level course.

Once you've got basics, there's several other instructors in this forum to consider. I've done two classes with OFT https://oftllc.us/ and will go back this next year. Top-notch guys with an vigorous training agenda. I'm sure I can learn a lot from them.
 

MaverickNH

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Love my x95, how did you do compared to the guys with the ars etc?
Any advantage/disadvantage?
No disadvantage with a Tavor I've found other than a bit more weight, but that's offset by the weight distribution. I can shoulder the rifle and shoot 1-handed with ease as the balance-point is at the pistol grip on the Tavor and usually forward with an AR. The Tavor field-strips easily. I've had no problems in ~5000rd.

I did Tavor Operator 1 with IWI Academy (Tom Alibrando) this past July and learned all the "secrets" - just a few things that work better for a Tavor than an AR. Most AR skills transfer to the Tavor once you account for location and style of features.

Anyone who shoots better than me 100yd and in does so because they are better shooters rather than AR vs Tavor. Longer range and you might see ARs out-perform Tavors on group size, but the Tavor is a man-shooter, not a MOA-shooter. In a battle group you might want a rifle like everyone else has but that's not my use, so not a concern.
 

jpk

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No disadvantage with a Tavor I've found other than a bit more weight, but that's offset by the weight distribution. I can shoulder the rifle and shoot 1-handed with ease as the balance-point is at the pistol grip on the Tavor and usually forward with an AR. The Tavor field-strips easily. I've had no problems in ~5000rd.

I did Tavor Operator 1 with IWI Academy (Tom Alibrando) this past July and learned all the "secrets" - just a few things that work better for a Tavor than an AR. Most AR skills transfer to the Tavor once you account for location and style of features.

Anyone who shoots better than me 100yd and in does so because they are better shooters rather than AR vs Tavor. Longer range and you might see ARs out-perform Tavors on group size, but the Tavor is a man-shooter, not a MOA-shooter. In a battle group you might want a rifle like everyone else has but that's not my use, so not a concern.
Sig has a green/ no lead ammo requirement right?

What did you use for ammo and what was the cost/source?
 

Dan-o

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I agree, haven’t seen any disadvantages either. Maybe as you say, at greater distances the ar will perform better. Although, I have no problem ringing all the steel at 200yds at my club using the x95. I met Tom in Harrisburg, at the NRA Great American Outdoor Show, very knowledgeable guy on the Tavorx95, he showed me a few things that made a lot of sense. I will look into Sig for the close quarters rifle class.
Thanks
 

MaverickNH

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Sig has a green/ no lead ammo requirement right?

What did you use for ammo and what was the cost/source?
On their indoor pistol range you have to use frangible ammo but on their indoor rifle and outdoors you can bring your own leaded ammo.
 

MaverickNH

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Worth a mention that Dan, the instructor, had advice for LEOs and Non-LEOs.

LEOs need to train CQ rifle skills - it’s their life at stake and job to do. Pretty simple.

Most Non-LEOs won’t be about-and-about with rifles on a daily basis, but home-defense might use a pistol, shotgun or rifle, so be good with what you use. The advantage non-LEOs have in CQ training for home-defense is, you know and can practice your home turf, lights on, lights off. He also noted “guns” are one part of a multi-part home-defense strategy: 1) Secure structures - locks, dogs, cameras, landscaping, home design, safe-room, break-proof film on windows, etc., 2) Physical fitness - be fit enough for guns or hand-to-hand as needed, 3) Habits - don’t live in a sh*thole neighborhood, be situationally aware, a family plan for security, 4) Weapons - gun skills

Home Invasions? Short of a “wrong address” thing, if you don’t deal drugs, it’s very rare. A drunk neighbor’s kid or nutcase banging on your door? Armed yourself, call 911 and retreat to your safe-room. Axe through door, broken window entry, kicked-down door events are a different thing entirely - identify and stop the threat as needed. If you live where the 4 minute response time for 911 lags, adjust accordingly.

My personal philosophy is that I live in suburban/semi-rural NH, with neighbors and delivery/service coming and going, and take reasonable security precautions at home. If I lived in rural Northern NH, I’d probably be at low-ready if someone opened my driveway gate with the No Trespassing sign, without calling the phone number on the sign first, to drive up in the dark with their headlights off. But that’s just me...

Dan referred to “recreational” goals as valid too, somewhat tongue-in-cheek. Most SIG instructors are current/former LEOs (police, SWAT, etc.), former military (SF, SEAL, etc.) and may see a non-LEO’s life as 99%+ non/low-risk. Probably true, especially in NH. Training to resist tyrannical usurpations, hostile foreign invasions, SHTF/TEOTWAWKI, zombies, etc., might be “recreational” in that regard. Airsoft and laser-tag might be good training too, so recreation and training overlap to that end.

The upshot is SIG will train LEOs next to non-LEOs in their open courses - they have LEO/Mil-restricted courses as well. One instructor said you only need an Armed Security credential to take those, and it was not uncommon to see such students. In SIG’s open courses, I’ve been shoulder-to-shoulder with LEOs/Mil and they were never standoffish. They tend to partner and chat more amongst their LEO/Mil group, but that’s not unexpected - they have job/lifestyle in common.
 
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