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Posted: 8/29/2004 2:59:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/29/2004 4:03:44 PM EDT by Corporal_Chaos]
Well, I went to the match and had a blast! There weren't many people there, but thats probably a good thing considering it was pretty hot. The only other ARFCOMMER that made it as far as I know was Russell. It was nice to finally meet him. A great guy and a great shooter. Thanks again for informing me about the match Russ!

Now, a little bit (a lot actually) about the match. It featured five stages. Stage One was a rifle stage. It consisted of three sets of steel targets, each with three plates and a reset plate. There were also nine paper targets. Each target could be shot either off-hand, sitting, or prone. The idea was to shoot the three plates on the far left set, move up and engage the three far right paper targets with one A hit or two B hits each, move up again and engage the three plates on the center steel set, move forward and engage the center three paper targets, then move up and engage the far right three plates, and move forward again to engage three papers. Finally the shooter had to move forward once more to engage the three resets on the steel target sets. I hit two or three of the steels on this stage, and all of the papers (some as many as four times). I enjoyed this stage because it kind of simulated fire and maneuver, albeit on a reduced scale. Russell did really well on this stage with the steels in the back. I believe he hit all the papers with two shots each. Max range on this stage was about 80-100 yards.

Stage Two was pretty simple. There were two boxes and a total of ten plates. The shooter had to start in Box A, engage the start plate, knock down four additional plates to the left of the start plate, move right to Box B, engage four steels from right to left, and then shoot the stop plate. This is the one stage where I feel I actually did decently, and it was really fun!.

Stage Three was identical to Stage Two except the shooter had to use a shotgun instead of his pistol. Oddly enough I think I did worse on this stage with the shotgun than I did with my pistol on stage two. I'm going to attribute that to a lack of familiarity with the weapon though.

Stage Four was a fun stage, even though I stunk it up in a big way. This stage consisted of three boxes, two tables, two steel sets (as described in Stage One), three papers, two no shoots, a popper and five steel plates in the back. The idea was to start in Box A with a pistol, engage three steels on set one from inside the box, step outside the box and shoot the reset plate, then engage the three papers with two shots apiece to neutralize, without hitting the no shoots, then run left to Box B, engage three steels in the second set, step outside the box and shoot the reset, then drop the mag and clear the pistol, laying it on a small piece of carpet on the table next to Box B. Then the shooter had to grab his preloaded shotgun (7-rounds preloaded and sitting next to the pistol), engage three steels from inside Box B, step out and shoot the reset, run right to Box C (ignoring the three papers) and shoot three steels, step out and shoot the reset, shoot the popper and the clay it throws in the air, then reload with five slugs on the table next to Box C, and engage the five steel plates in the back. All slug reloads had to originate from the table next to Box C. This stage featured the most movement and was, in my opinion, the funnest. I wish I could have ran it a few times. Unfortunately, no matter what we tried, we could not keep the clay pigeon from disintegrating in mid air upon launch. Overall though, this stage was still the best. I did experience one failure to feed in my Beretta on the last round in one of my mags while engaging the papers between Box A and Box B. It was easily cleared though. One failure in some 1500 rounds since it's last cleaning ain't too shabby if ya ask me. Of course, Russell did well on this stage. The main problem I experienced with this stage was getting the steels to stay down. The little buggers kept springing back up on me! I also forgot to engage the reset plate from outside of the box on one of the sets. Again, a lack of familarity with the shotgun I used (It was Shawn's 870 I believe, so thanks for letting me use it Shawn!) really hurt my performance on this stage. When I picked it up at Box B, I forgot to turn the OKO on; it took me a few seconds fumbling with it to get it to where I could see the dot. I also kept wanting to close my right eye as if sighting through a pair of irons. Later when engaging the steels at the back with slugs, the stock (collapsible) kept tearing into my shoulder because I had it set at an impropper length. This has convinced me to either use a Cav Arms C1 stock like Russell, or an LMT/Crane collapsible stock when I finally get an 870 and begin building it into my ideal defensive shotgun (maybe I'll use a Magpul M93A because it has the presets, but I'll need to try one out before I make my final decision). In any event, I am convinced that an 870 and one of Russell's adapters is a match made in heaven.

Stage Five was the final stage, but it was the first one Russell and I shot. This stage was for rifle and featured 6 steel plates. Three of the plates were set at approximately 120-150 yards, and three more were placed at 200 yards. The shooter had to engage each plate from the off-hand, sitting, and prone positions. Prone had to be done while looking over a carpet padded spool (the type used for wiring and what not). I burned about 40 rounds on this stage and didn't hit a damned thing! My shots were consistently landing about two feet high but I couldn't see them so I couldn't adjust adequately. [broken record]Russell did well though[/broken record]. The good thing about this stage is that it taught me A) My 25 meter zero sucks, and B) I am not nearly as familar with my AR as I need to be (but that's not a big surprise to me, as I only have about 600-700 rounds through it so far). As soon as I get the LMT rear sight for my AR, I'm going to put a 50 yard Santose IBZ on it and practice, practice, practice!

All and all, the match was great. Being my first match, it was an excellent learning experience. Russell finished first in our class (open) and I think I pulled down dead last overall, but I couldn't have had more fun. I'm not sure what Russell's overall placement was, but I'd guess it was pretty high. Maybe he'll chime in here with a word or two and let us know. I'm really looking forward to more matches in the future, and hopefully I will get the chance to meet more ARFCOMMERs in the process. I just hope that when I get to Phoenix and take on a new job, I won't have to work Saturdays so I can attend the Rio Salada matches.

Now for the Pics!

This one shows Russell running from Box A to Box B on Stage Two after neutralizing all the targets left of the start plate. Nice action shot here.


This is me on Stage Four. It's not much of an action shot, but it should give you somewhat of an idea on what Stage Four consisted of. Here, I am standing in Box A. You can see I have "neutralized" one of the steel plates.

Here I am on Stage Four again. I had just finished fumbling with the OKO and was taking aim at those pain in the ass steels that refused to stay down for me! Note the bird bag I'm wearing. This is where I kept my extra birdshot, proof that you don't have to have the latest gear to compete. In fact I was wearing more nylon than most of the people there!

Here is our "squad" watching Russell tear it up on Stage Five. [drool]Mmmmm ACOG[/drool]

And that's all!!! I really wish I could have gotten more post worthy pictures, but I only had a 16MB memory card for my camera, and my mom was assigned photographer duty, something she needs more practice at. But I can't really complain considering there are many other things she would rather be doing on her Sunday than watching me shoot (and suck) in 100+ degree heat, but she was there anyway. Next time I'll be sure to grab a full shot of each stage so everyone can get a better idea of what each consists of.

Link Posted: 8/29/2004 7:28:31 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 9:19:27 PM EDT
What does a three-gun match require in the way of equipment?
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 9:31:22 PM EDT

Originally Posted By KBaker:
What does a three-gun match require in the way of equipment?

Three guns and some mags. Honestly, I felt a little over dressed compared to some. Most people just shoved their spare rifle mags in their back pockets. The shotgun stages could easily be handled with the rounds in one's gun and the rounds that could be carried on a side saddle.
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 9:55:00 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/29/2004 10:40:44 PM EDT
The stuff from www.3gungear.com is the best way to go, it may seem pricey but the quality is far above and beyond anything else out there. Aside from carrying a bunch of shotshells for your scattergun all you really need is something to carry two spare AR mags and a double pistol mag holder.

If your talking yourself out of going due to lack of gear, you really can just shove an extra mag in your back pocket or use a BDU pocket for a dump pouch. 3 gun is alot of fun and is always different get out there and try it you wont be dissapointed.
Link Posted: 8/30/2004 3:44:44 AM EDT
Wow, that looks like a great time! Could I get away with a Beretta 92 and a Bennelli M3 for the other two guns?
Link Posted: 8/30/2004 9:26:52 AM EDT
I just checked it out on the net. Seems that 9mm is the smallest round and 12 gauge is good to go. Looks like a blast!
Link Posted: 8/30/2004 9:48:05 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/30/2004 10:52:12 AM EDT
I've got a 1911, a Mossberg 590 and an AR-15 set up for long-range (3.5-10x Leupold scope). Is this sufficient?
Link Posted: 8/30/2004 11:37:14 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/30/2004 5:39:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By KBaker:
I've got a 1911, a Mossberg 590 and an AR-15 set up for long-range (3.5-10x Leupold scope). Is this sufficient?

Do it; you won't regret it. I went there knowing I would get my ass stomped. I finished dead last and couldn't care less about that, because I had a great time! Well worth the $20 match fee. One thing I would recommend would be a head band due to the heat. My floppy wasn't catching enough sweat on Stage Four (most movement) and it was a pain to shoot with sweat pouring into my eyes, even though the stages were pretty short. About gear: you really don't need much. I had more with just a pistol belt, drop-leg rig, double pistol mag pouch, triple M-16 mag pouch, and my trusty bird bag than most of the shooters there. Russell had a really nifty looking chest rig, that at least appeared to be quite practical (and I'm sure is) because it could carry plenty of mags for both rifle and pistol and shotshells for his scattergun. Also, it was more "open" than a vest, so that's probably good for the heat. Russ, I forgot to ask you: were those Tactical Tailor triple mag pouches you had? If so, how good is the retention with the flap open?
Link Posted: 8/30/2004 6:14:49 PM EDT
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