Pleasant surprises at the range.

When I go to a range, I usually fire off the magazine in my carry pistol to replace the old ammunition with fresh. With the 1911, I am always surprised when my target gets illuminated with a red dot. I never remember about the laser until it comes on by itself. Should be handy if I ever have to use this gun for real.

Yesterday, I carried a lighter Kahr P9 out of sheer laziness. No light or laser, just a very accurate compact pistol. I tried shooting it against a large sheet of cardboard at 50 yards and was surprised to find a centered 6″ group. I was even more surprised that I concentrated on my aiming and lost count of the shots fired. Imagine my surprise when one of the shots streaked red towards the target. Tracer! The slide was still forward, so this was the time to reload. I fired one more time and the slide locked open. I completely forgot that I got into the habit of loading tracers for the last two rounds of carry magazines just to let me know when it’s time to reload.

If my mind got so single-tracked from just concentrating on aiming, I am pretty sure that round count won’t enter my mind in case of a real emergency. Having a visual reminder helps, and also provides verification of my aim.

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11 Responses to Pleasant surprises at the range.

  1. Scott J says:

    I used to cycle out my carry ammo the same way but now I shoot so much cast lead I do the jacketed carry stuff last.

    Otherwise a layer of copper fouling gets laid down by the jacketed and then the lead wants to stick to that.

    Of course, with factory ammo getting so pricey these days I don’t cycle out as often as I should. These days I tend to wait until the jackets dull before shooting it up.

    • Oleg Volk says:

      For me, it’s more to verify functioning and to remind myself how the gun operates and feels.

  2. Dandapani says:

    Carry pistol at 50 yards? WTF?

    • Oleg Volk says:

      I don’t normally carry a rifle, so no matter at what distance a conflict happens, I’d be stuck with the same weapon. Personal defense at 50 is unlikely, but dealing with an active shooter or a mob might call for such a shot. In any case, I didn’t expect to hit anywhere near the target and was pleasantly surprised.

  3. Rob Huyck says:

    Love the holster on the green 1911…that is gorgeous. By the way, the tracer idea is brilliant. First I’ve heard of it. Guess I need to get out more… 🙂

  4. Jason says:

    I learned something today. I never knew you could get tracers for pistols.

    Hi-ho, hi-ho, it’s googling I go…

  5. DJ says:

    Beware loading with tracers and then traveling to other states. In some states (and I don’t know offhand which ones), tracers are illegal (outside of the military, of course).

  6. Will says:

    Mas Ayoob worked on a case where a guy with a rifle shot an attacker armed with a Colt snubbie at about 40 yds. He got charged with murder because the DA didn’t consider a snubbie to be a viable threat at that range, since they are “belly” guns, or some such crap. Ayoob took an identical snubbie to the range and recorded himself shooting a silhouette target six for six at 100 yds. The video shown to the jury killed the DA’s case.

    Back 100+years ago, British police, among others, held long range snubbie shooting competitions.

  7. PaulP says:

    As the owner of a Kahr P9 I find it to be ‘about perfect’ — at least for me. However in looking at the photo it appears to me that you are showing a PM9 — the shorter handled variant. Am I wrong about that? Just wondering.

    As to the tracer at the end of the mag; wasn’t that a common scenario in the military?
    I am fairly certain that I had read about that as being used in Viet Nam. Again, just wondering.

    Love the photos. Thanks.

    • Oleg Volk says:

      Correct — I wrote about a P9 but showed PM9 as I had photos of it with tracer ammo. I use both.

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