Dean Caputo conducted his M-16/AR-15 Operators Diagnostics Course September 27-28, 2008 in Smithfield, North Carolina at the Howell Woods Environmental Learning Center. This class was not an armorers course, but a course designed to give the end user the knowledge on how this weapon system works, what causes it to choke and how to properly diagnose the problem. Dean is a veteran law enforcement officer and firearms instructor. This experience shows in his teaching style and his knowledge of the topic being taught.
There were 27 students present which included two federal LE agents, a US Govít employee, several state and local law enforcement officers from different states, an engineer (who is also an NFA dealer), computer experts, lawyers (one who is a reserve police officer), and other liked minded people. Steve Lowitz the S&W LE sales rep for NC and Matt Swenson the Director of Public Safety Sales for Aimpoint also attended. Also in this class were a father and his thirteen year old son, who I might add was very well mannered and eager to learn from Dean. It is nice to see industry reps in the class learning about the products they sell.
For starters Dean is one of the best instructors I have ever had the pleasure to learn from in my twenty years of law enforcement. Dean carries his lesson plan in his head and he knows how to deliver it. He just uses his Power Point Program as a training aid to reinforce his lesson plan. Today I think to many instructors use the Power Point as the lesson plan and not the training aid it is suppose to be.
Dean started the class with the history of the AR platform. A lot of people found this very interesting as Dean was able to put some myths to rest. This was very interesting to me because after this part of the class I could see how we are coming full circle again with the piston guns.
Dean spent a lot of time covering the operation of the AR. Dean got very in depth here because there are a lot of people who think they know it and actually do not. I picked up on a tremendous amount of information here. Even though I have seen the animated cycle of operation program before, Dean really puts it into perspective by explaining every little part that has a place in the cycle of operation. This really comes into play when trying to diagnose problems.
Also during the class Dean covered preventative maintenance, proper lubrication and cleaning. He really gets deep into this part of the lesson plan which is very good. Dean really explains and hammers into your head that this weapon can run dirty, with proper lube, ammo, mags and having good quality parts in your rifle.
I would have to say the best part of the class was how to properly diagnose malfunctions and identify the parts or the source of the malfunction. This was worth its wait in gold and really opened my eyes.
We also reamed quite a few chambers with Ned Christiansenís Chamber Reamer and we staked some gas keys with his Pocket MOACKS. I lost count on the number of chambers I reamed but I took a wheel barrow load of metal out of several. However there was a few that needed only a touch up. I added both of these tools to my armory range kit last year. Thanks Ned for making designing and making these tools.
Overall this is one of the best classes I have ever attended involving the AR platform.
I would like to say thanks to Bravo Company and LaRue for providing schwag to give the students. They really went out of their way for this class and I really appreciate their generosity.
My biggest thanks go out to Dean for coming all the way over to the right coast to deliver this information. Also thank you to all the students that attended. You all were very good company to spend two days with during this class.
Finally, thanks go out to Johnston Community College and the Howell Woods Environmental Learning Center for allowing us to have this class at their wonderful facilities. Some of the students stayed in the cabins that are on the property which allowed them to socialize after class.
I can tell my the last picture, somebody divided by zero.
Damn micro wormholes
Dean is a great instructor. Gunfight survivor and Arcadia PD veteren.
Originally Posted By StevenH:
Dean is a great instructor. Gunfight survivor winner and Arcadia PD veteran.
Best money I ever spent on a class.