Tiger McKee

Shootrite Firearms Academy

Gear Selection

Selecting the gear you use should involve a lot of thought, research, and testing. Each piece of gear you choose is part of the chain; the chain is only as strong as its weakest link. When it comes to picking your kit, nothing is considered “small.” In a fight, every piece of gear is critical.

Also keep in mind as you train/practice your views on equipment will change. There will probably be a box of gear left over once you have arrived at the spot where your gear will do everything you need. The more you learn the more you’ll realize how your gear must function.

For example when you attend your first class on firearms, using holster “A.” This holster works fine in the beginning, during the initial stages of training and practice. After learning how to properly draw the pistol and working from concealment you discover that holster “A” doesn’t function as well as you thought it might, and so it’s time for holster “B.”

As you learn through training and practice your thoughts on gear will evolve as well. Eventually you start working on single hand manipulations. The holster now serves as an edge to hook the sights of your pistol on to cycle the slide, and you determine that holster “B” doesn’t work very well. Holster “B” isn’t stiff enough to hold up against the force necessary to cycle the slide, and it has a lot of curved edges without a flat spot to properly hook the sight on.

After more research you purchase holster “C.” About now you’re getting close to what will actually work for you, although it may be necessary to work with three or four other holsters similar to “C” to find the one best suited for you.

Another important factor is simplicity. There is enough to think in a fight without adding complicated equipment to the list. Take flashlights for an example. I need a simple flashlight with a button you push for momentary light, and a way to turn it on for constant illumination.

Lights requiring a complicated series of pushes in the proper sequence to select what type light is activated or switches of some sort to regulate the light – low level momentary light, a bright constant output, a strobe effect, … – are too complicated for me. In theory these options may be a good idea.

Reality is that these lights are too complicated for people to operate during low-light drills on the range, much less when someone is trying to put the hurt on you. You’re working the light while moving, using cover, shooting and manipulating your weapon as necessary. Trust me, simple is good.

Discover what works for you. Your gear must function under all type conditions, not just a sunny day at the range. It has to work every time, without a lot of thought. When you discover inadequacy, correct it, regardless of cost. The alternative is much more expensive.

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May 24, 2011 - Posted by | Gear

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