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Handgun 104 at Sig Sauer Academy

Discussion in 'Training' started by bostonjd, Jul 12, 2017.

  1. bostonjd


    May 8, 2017
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    This course was 8:30 am to 4:30 pm this past Saturday in Epping, NH. Although round count was expected to be 500, we ended up shooting only 300 due to torrential rain.

    10 people in the class, all of whom were very safe with their weapons. The class took place at one of the 50 yard outdoor ranges with both steel and paper targets. The whole class is taught from the holster and all equipment is provided if you don't have any (including pretty much any common SIG handgun). Most were shooting the P320 and I was shooting Sig P226 enhanced elite. They will let you borrow 15-round mags if you only have 10.

    After a 30 minute safety breifing in a clasroom next to the range, we went to the paper targets and practiced drawing, firing 1-3 rounds on command, scanning behind us before reholstering. 104 revolves around surviving a defensive shooting situation, so situational awareness is highlighted at all times. For the entire morning we had dummy rounds randomly mixed in with our regular rounds, drilling in the "tap-rack" method of clearing simple FTF, FTE malfunctions. We also went over double-feed recovery.

    In the afternoon we spent a lot of time on clearing pistol malfunctions using only our strong or weak hand. They taught methods of getting the gun out of a strong side holster with only your weak hand and using your leg or a holster to rack the pistol with one hand to clear a malfunction. They spent a lot of time on this, which was not enjoyable but obviously valuable training.

    We also learned the many options for shooting from a seated position, and from various prone positions, including the benefits and risks of each position. In the afternoon we did a lot of shooting multiple targets while moving in each direction. I missed all 10 targets while walking to my right, and hit all 10 while walking to my left. Obviously I was shocked by this and am glad I got to practice shooting while moving. This was from 20 yards on reasonably large steel targets. I would typically have an 8 inch spread at most from 20 yards. After a few adjusments, I was hitting center mass pretty easily while moving to my right.

    Then we practiced use of cover and concealment, and got to see how much less of you is exposed when you stand a few feet away from the cover barrier. We did a lot of drills where we approached the cover and were told we had to engage the target on the left or right and then immediately fire 3 rounds from that side, utilize the cover again, and perform tactical reloads.

    During the torrential rain we went to a classroom, removed all ammunition, and again practiced various malfunction clears.

    The instructors, as always at SIG, were phenomenal and made the class much more fun. I also liked my classmates who were mostly from MA and NH, but a few had come from Minnesota. There were 2 women in the class and both were excellent shots. After taking 104, I can now take Skill Builder Pistol II. The Skill builder courses are also 8 hours and focus a lot more on accuracy and speed. Skill Builder Pistol I was my favorite class I've taken at SIG and requires that you have taken handgun 103. When you take a class, you can register for any other class for 15% off I believe. I highly recommend the academy and have been waiting for months for them to offer the weekend IDPA course, as I plan to sign up as soon as one comes available.

  2. ItsNotJon


    Mar 18, 2013
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    Nice write up, I'm taking 104 next month.
  3. chris_1001

    chris_1001 NES Member

    Dec 3, 2008
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    I took it (104) several months ago, well worth it!
  4. Tooth

    Tooth NES Member

    Nov 18, 2008
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    North Shore
    I took 102, 103, and 104 over the winter. A+ I'm looking forward to taking more courses this winter. That pro shop is pretty depressing for us m*******s though.
  5. SigGuy


    Sep 2, 2013
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    A lot of times I find that the drills that are less fun are the ones we need the most work in.
    ADC likes this.
  6. MaverickNH

    MaverickNH NES Member

    Nov 24, 2005
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    Heading to HG104 this next week 15-16 November, having just enjoyed HG103 on the 8th. So far, HG 101-103 and Rifle 101 have been tops - SIG has really upped their instruction with many different instructors, all very good if not excellent.

    [EDIT] Back from Handgun 104

    We had 9 people at the 2-day course - 2 women and 7 men. All were capable, safe shooters. Day 1 started with an abbreviated safety section as we had all been in 101-103 in recent days, weeks, months. A longer discussion on defensive use of firearms - tactical, legal and ethical concepts. Not about concealed carry per se, but when, why you might keep and use gun in the home or carried for defense. The upshot was, if you want to seek to use a gun for good, maybe be a LEO or military. Otherwise, avoid, deescalate and depart if you can, fight if you must.

    On to the range for progressive review of 103 skills compressed into a few hours, then adding more movement (pivots, stepping L/R/F/B) and shooting from kneeling, sitting, etc. No malfunction drills - had a few and if tap/rack didn’t work then rip/reload did). Distance out to 25yd but mostly 5-15yd.

    Day 2 was discussion on equipment - pistols, lights, lasers. Preference towards 9mm pistols holding >10rd, with a red dot and handheld light. Back to the range for low light work. Afternoon work was outside with UTM Simunition guns - in the snow! They set up an armed mugging in the mini-neighborhood built from cargo containers. All but one of us gave up our wallets, with one who decided to shoot it out. The muggers buddy came out of hiding and the victim took multiple rounds from both thugs. The victim even sot me in the head - I was observing on a 2nd story platform 30ft away. We all wore the UTM headgear so it was just a paint pellet on my face mask. Lessons not lost on us - he was dead and shot me, missing both muggers.

    The 2nd scenario was a guy running around a corner shouting someone was getting stabbed to death. Me and four others had the runner call 911 while we waited out of sight from the stabbing to flag the police in. Four drew their UTM pistol and went to see a victim already stabbed dead and a lunatic with a knife. Three shot him down after he ignored shouts to drop the knife and charged them. One got stabbed by the lunatic as they didn’t shoot - it took 10sec from the stabbed to lope over and stab him with the rubber knife. Even in a game, some cannot use a gun to shoot another bent on killing them.

    I’ve seen that before in SIG UTM drills - one woman (my partner) would not fire on a bad guy she had in her sights at 3yd when I shouted shoot him (I was further back moving to assist). He had a knife poised ona baby doll in his arms, stabbed the baby (rubber knife), dropped the baby drew his visible open-carry gun and shot my partner just as I shot him. Good to learn your limitations so you can decide to live within them or change them. She was rather shaken by the experience.

    About 500rd spent. My next courses in December are a 1-day Low Light and a Red Dot Pistol course. Rifle 102 as well, with 2-day Defensive Rifle in May and CQB Pistol planned too. I’ll probably do the 3-day Precision Scoped Rifle again (100-300yd) with my Rem 700 (308win, now converted to magazine-fed, Timney Trigger and Suppressor) and the follow-on 2-day that goes to 1000yd.
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2018

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