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Old 12-25-2017, 09:48 PM   #1
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Belated Range Report

So, Arland (2sharp2) and Florence (Starnovi) and I had some fun a few weeks ago...

First the kind and lovely Arland sold me his SAPPHIRE!!!!! Pro II 9mm. (WHOO HOO!!!!) AND he "included" delivery , which finally got us scheduled for a shoot! (Pic 1 is a Kimber pic, haven’t taken pix of the beauty myself yet!)

Sandy Springs Gun Club is still shut down, after a fire LAST December... so Sharpshooters in Roswell (GA) it was! It’s a lovely bright clear range with great ventilation.

Since Arland was pretty sure we girls would be bringing an ample sufficiency of 9mm (and .380s) he brought all .45s (and some AMAZING gorgeous .45s there were!) Big, heavy, and fun to shoot! (The guns, not Arland: sheesh, guys! Keep up!) I’ll have to let him tell us – and mebbe post pix of one or two? – cause I don’t remember all of them. (Don’t get old folks, your brain goes to hell!) (HA: brain, memory, eyeballs, body, house, aim, focus, ... you name it, it’s going!) (My pretty blue KIA NIRO is still great though – Arland liked it!)

Okay-so, we got two lanes (not terribly crowded, ‘bout half the lanes were used).

Second pic is my first target with the Pro II – I was trying to shoot the guy’s throat out!

Third pic is me with the pretty Sapphire!

Fourth is Arland and Florence.

Fifth is Arland.
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File Type: jpg Arland-Flo-1.jpg (1.03 MB, 19 views)
File Type: jpg Arland1.jpg (443.1 KB, 15 views)

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Old 12-25-2017, 09:56 PM   #2
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So, next pic is my Micro .380 target.

Then I got to shoot Arland's nice .45 -- but he had one even PRETTIER! (My neighbor/friend who got a Shield M&P (for Christmas this afternoon I gave him two boxes of 9mm Freedom Munitions... ) always laughs at me for insisting I will NOT shoot a guy with a gun that's not PRETTY!)

Starnovi brought a cute little .380, with (was it an eagle or a wolf?) on the grips. (Was that the Ruger? Can't remember! SO MUCH SHOOTING! )

Then, I had a ball with the Pro II -- think that bad guy ain't going nowhere! I tend to pick a spot on the target for each mag (or two) so -- throat shots, head shots, "appendix" shots -- so I can tell where I'm shooting... You can kinda tell I was ... migrating up and rightwards (I'm a leftie) -- but by then we'd been shooting for an hour+ -- first time for me in about a YEAR! Yeah, wrist was sore the next day...)

Finally, you can tell from the floor: we were burning through the ammo!

When we finally ran out of steam (but not actually ammo) we decided to go eat pizza! Turned out Star knew of a REALLY good pizza place on the way back to the highway from the range. So we had great fun and great food!
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File Type: jpg El-Micro380-1.jpg (543.7 KB, 7 views)
File Type: jpg El-Arl45-1.jpg (804.5 KB, 6 views)
File Type: jpg El-Ruger-1.jpg (2.96 MB, 7 views)
File Type: jpg El-multProA.jpg (4.95 MB, 6 views)
File Type: jpg Arland-Flo-2.jpg (780.4 KB, 13 views)
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Old 12-25-2017, 10:03 PM   #3
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My summary -- hope Arland and Star will post THEIR reports -- and pix! -- soon. (If they haven't already and I just missed them...) (Did I mention everything going to hell as you get old? Humph, yeah.)

The Pro II is brilliant (AND beautiful -- thanks and thanks again, Arland!) Star and I swapped around various 9mm and .380s, and it was fun getting the different FEEL of the different guns, even in the same caliber...

Don't remember (same caveat...) any -- or many -- FTE or FTLs... Still prefer my Micro .380. The 9mm Micro is great, but the .380 is more comfortable for me. Now comes the agony over: do I SELL the Micro 9 or not? You can NEVER have too many guns... and it's a great gun... but I'm up to three 9mm -- oh heck, that's not many: never mind!!

We had a wonderful time -- if you meet someone on KT who is near enough, consider a range trip! Get to know fun folks!


p.s., oh, and just cause I HAVE a new pic of me -- I went to Charleston last week to see friends who live on "The World at Sea" (look it up!) -- got to tour the ship. A final pic:
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Old 12-25-2017, 11:00 PM   #4
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Fun Had By All

Since the evidence has been posted, I can't deny the big, heavy part. I am really fun tho.
I would like to claim the sale of my Sapphire Pro funded the purchase of the Classic Carry Pro (Real Bone Grips) but I can't bought the CCP before so for about a week I owned "14" Kimber pistols. Now I am back down to only "13."

I still have the Sapphire Ultra, the Sapphire Pro was an impulse buy (totally out of character for me) from Sportsman Warehouse. I had not really fired it much at all and I knew El wanted one some kind of bad. It made me a little sad to let it go but made me extremely happy to see the ear to ear smile on El's face and knowing it truly made her happy.

Make no mistake these ladies can shoot, thugs would be shaking in there boots if they knew. El's first shot from her new Sapphire Pro was a one shot kill, followed by eight other kill shots.
Florence was taught what I call the old FBI stance, you can't ignore her results, she is very stable and accurate. It works great so don't fix it.

I was happy and thrilled to share with the ladies some Kimber pistols a lot of people have never seen much less touched and fired as many rounds as they wanted thru free of charge. The ladies handled and fired the .45acp's like pros.
That days EDC was a RCP Ultra with Green Crimson Trace grips. I had three or four failures to feed and I traced the problem to some really old no name magazines from my Colt competition days.
Next up was a pretty rare SIS Ultra which performed perfectly.
Followed by a new TLE PRO (TFS) again 100% malfunction free.
The Stainless Raptor (full size) hit the firing line next and Flo has the same pistol in the 9mm version.
Last but certainly not least was the top of my Kimber lineup the Gold Combat Limited Edition.
I took a few pics of the gun shop and range.
We don't live all that far from each other but due to traffic and stuff it was a all day trip for me. It was totally worth it, heck it was worth the drive just for the pizza and the good company.
Anytime ladies, up for shooting anytime just say the word.
Before we left I had the ladies promise to not let me look into the pistol cases! lol
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File Type: jpg 1204171402a.jpg (4.33 MB, 10 views)
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Old 12-26-2017, 03:42 AM   #5
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Congratulations SnowTao, you got yourself a beautiful gun. Nice shooting everyone, looks like you all had a great time.
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Old 12-26-2017, 04:54 AM   #6
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Wow, remind me never to stand in front of you folks when you're armed. Great shooting, and that looks like a really nice range.

That Sapphire Pro is a real beauty.
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Old 12-26-2017, 05:25 AM   #7
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Thanks for that post. Looks like you had a terrific time, wish I was there.
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Old 12-26-2017, 06:56 AM   #8
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Now that's a range report fit for the Holidays...looks like a great time at the range with great friends.
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Old 12-26-2017, 07:01 AM   #9
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oh geez, a whole lecture...

Originally Posted by Wingnut View Post
Thanks for that post. Looks like you had a terrific time, wish I was there.
What part o' the country you in? We'll let yah know fer next time!

Although probably next time Star and I will take a drive up to TN, to keep Arland from spending a whole day, no matter how worth it the drive was. EXCELLENT pizza though, gotta say! Hard to find -- damn near impossible to find! -- GOOD New York pizza down here in the South! (Even WITH all the refugees from up North who have flooded down here... )

Originally Posted by Arland
Since the evidence has been posted, I can't deny the big, heavy part. I am really fun tho.
I resemble that remark! Only little bitty Star didn't! (Oh well, she was great fun too --- but not the big heavy part that Arland and I brought to the party!)

By way of encouraging y'all to get out from behind your computers...
Originally Posted by Arland
I still have the Sapphire Ultra, the Sapphire Pro was an impulse buy (totally out of character for me) from Sportsman Warehouse.
I met Arland (oh, 4-5 years ago?! whenever the Sapphires first came out) when I first joined the KimberTalk forum... I had just bought a Micro .380 (stainless) -- and was drooling over the Sapphires... EVERYone here was wanting to put fingerprints on the new Micro -- but no LGS had ONE EVER! So, Arland invited me up to see a Sapphire, so long as I brought my Micro so he could fondle it. Total deal!!

Now, between when we made the date, and when the date actually arrived, Arland -- yup, totally out of character -- bought his-self a SECOND Sapphire! (Might even have BEEN the Pro I am now fondling...)

We had a great time at his local range (well, not-great ventilation, so my lungs hurt after we spent a looooong time there! But it was a GREAT time!) (Got to fire my first-ever rifle...)

Then we kept promising we'd TRY to schedule a second one down here! Did, finally, schedule a visit to Sharpshooters down here and added Gary -- Insta-Gator -- (I only recently realized that his avatar name is not (just?) that he's a Gator fan... it's also an accurate description of Gary as an INSTIGATOR!!! Missed that for a couple years!); but then right before the day, Arland couldn't make it -- so Gary and I got together and shot the heck out of the place...

Originally Posted by Arland
I had not really fired it much at all and I knew El wanted one some kind of bad. It made me a little sad to let it go but made me extremely happy to see the ear to ear smile on El's face and knowing it truly made her happy.
Yeah, still got it, can't seem tah get that smile to go away! (Don't really want to!)

Originally Posted by Arland
Florence was taught what I call the old FBI stance, you can't ignore her results, she is very stable and accurate. It works great so don't fix it.
That came up (from me) because I keep seeing guys teaching that stance -- I call it the turtle: raise your shoulders high-and-tight, pull your head down inside your shoulders (just SEEIN' it makes me want a chiropractor!). I asked WHY people keep teachin' that stance, cause it seems ... counterproductive ... to me! Star said, it's the way she was taught (okay -- and god knows it works great for her! But it makes my neck hurt just to see it!!)

So, I saw a vid a few days ago, where a (good) teacher was teaching a guy to do that... He started with 'stand square to the target and set your aim.' Then he pushed on the guy's gun hands, and the guy had to take a step backwards to keep from falling over backwards...

Okay-so, *I* would NEVER suggest a square stance... I would suggest a fore-and-aft stance... (no matter the opponent -- gun, knife, fist!). Old tai chi rule: "if you try to meet force with force, the stronger one always wins!" That is SO not a good bet to make!

Now, it may be my views on stance are completely affected by my years teaching and playing tai chi... In tai chi -- you NEVER lock a joint -- chi cannot flow through a locked joint. (I always think of a shock absorber: if you are rigid, then ANY 'bump' affects the entire vehicle. If you have unlocked joints, then the chi strengthens the body's form, and allows a local response to a 'bump.'

A lot of time and exercise is directed towards establishing and learning to (effortlessly) hold your center of gravity... Much of tai chi is about learning to "use a single muscle in isolation" -- that's a huge exaggeration, but think of your eyeballs -- if you have to move your entire HEAD to see to the side -- it's slow and 'blinds' you to the other direction. Wastes your peripheral vision entirely! Or, to reach for or avoid an opponent, you have to move your entire upper body, rather than simply an arm -- and ONLY move as far as necessary to avoid the force being directed at you.

Even with a square stance, you spend hours and hours (if you're serious) IN a square stance doing an exercise called cotton body: you square up, 'ground' yourself (i.e., unlock and expand your joints), and close your eyes. Your partner then randomly pushed on shoulder, waist/ribcage, or hip. YOU must stay "relaxed" (unlocked) and allow your body to maintain its grounding/balance by yielding to the push (and redirecting the energy/force PAST your body). So, he pushes your left shoulder, you DON'T resist and try to hold against the force (which unbalance your entire body and knocks you on your ass! It's not HIS incoming force, it's YOUR resistance against it that tips you over!), your entire body stays grounded but, like the wind twisting a flag, your body twists and allows his 'force' to slide on by, while maintaining your stance and grounding. (Hard to describe -- but makes a huge difference in your balance... OH! Here is an excellent article (I just found!) that describes it! As the Taiji classics say, “essential hardness comes from essential softness.” )

Originally Posted by Arland
Last but certainly not least was the top of my Kimber lineup the Gold Combat Limited Edition.
Yeah THIS was the beauty contest winner fer shure! AND shot like a dream!!

(And, yup, I'm all caffeinated up again!
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Old 12-26-2017, 09:29 AM   #10
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So, the tai chi posture -- as I used to describe to my students -- is:

First envision a 'skyhook' -- there is an eyebolt screwed into the top of your skull -- NOT the center top but above the top of your spine. And that eyebolt depends from a chain running up into the sky (thus: SKY hook!) -- it's over your spine, so you're like a marionette hanging -- from above your spine -- NOT the center-top of your head, which tilts your head back and raises your chin!)

That makes all your bones and body parts 'dangle' from the point at the top(-back) of your head over your spine. (Have I written that enough ways? Sorry... caffeine!) (Well, and I ALSO used to tell my students: "yes-of-COURSE I say 'shoulders down' 100,000 times! You can't even HEAR it until the 21st time -- and if I have not said it 20 times before then, when you couldn't even 'hear' it, I will never reach 21 times; when you "suddenly" go: "O.M.G.! Shoulders DOWN!?!?!? Who knew? Why didn't you ever TELL us?!" )

So, the marionette stretches up from above the spine... makes your head weightless, your collarbones stretch out and provide a stable 'bar' from which hang your arms -- don't need to HOLD them in any position, they just dangle there... RIGHT where they should be! Then your spine also stretches out (yah get a smidge or more taller!), and the spaces between the disks gets bigger and less crushed... Your hips -- like your collarbone just hang effortlessly from your spine and so on down to your feet!

NOW your entire structure is in its most natural posture -- FREEING UP the muscles, ligaments, and tendons to DO their designed jobs! So, instead of having a fight amongst your body parts, each is free to move as you direct it! Here's my article from long ago in Tai Chi Magazine: Elenor Snow: A Fresh Look at the Value of Relaxation from which:
Master George Xu, a Chen stylist and Lan Shou practitioner, says that practicing slow tai chi moves alone is not enough. He stresses the need to become totally relaxed so that natural reaction (reflex action) can do the work. If someone sticks you with a sharp needle, your reflexes draw your arm back very fast, faster than you can move by conscious intent. You never lose your reflexes.
Xu demonstrated one of the difficulties in learning to be relaxed. Holding his arms out in front at about waist height, Xu had a seminar participant lay his wrists on Xu’s arms. “Relax your arms. Let them relax so your muscles are totally relaxed. Don’t hold up your arms, let them relax onto my arms. Are your arm muscles all relaxed?”


Xu dropped his arms out from under the student’s, and the student’s arms hung in the air. “You’re not relaxed! Many students think they are relaxed – they think they are not holding tension in their muscles, but they haven’t achieved the looseness, the relaxation needed for good tai chi.”

Tai chi teaches the relaxation, flexibility and looseness you need to allow your muscles to work in harmony, to allow your whole body to work together, instead of fighting against tension you may not even be aware of in your muscles. Until you achieve that relaxation, your muscles must fight not only your opponent but also your other muscles. Recognize, however, that this relaxation does not mean limp. Relaxed means having no tension in muscles that are ready to work instantly. The muscles are filled with chi and so are not dangling there bored, but are poised and ready to move.
So, raising your shoulders up as high and tight as you can, and tightening and 'scrunching' down your neck (what I call: turtling) means ANY movement you wish to make requires you to RELEASE the muscles you've tightened and return to 'natural' positioning; only THEN can you move as you need to to defend yourself. (Even discounting the call for a chiropractor, the time needed to make these extra motions and the lack of 'reflex action' to move as fast as you can, slows you down.)

(Take a sec, let that skyhook straighten you up, right at your computer... opposite of slouching, ain't it? Your shoulders relax, your neck relaxes, your whole BODY relaxes because your (what that article I linked in a comment above) called stabilizing muscles get to do their jobs!)

Now, it may be that NOT having done tai chi -- the 'relaxed' unlocked joints may make you feel a bit loosey-goosey and not in a strong position to fire a gun. Back to shock absorbers again: I always wince when I see bikers (good morning Chico!!) sitting on their butts on the seat... NO shock absorbers there except the disks between the vertebrae!! (Owee!)

EVERY bump / shock is slammed into the bone. A horse rider, using stirrups, is actually STANDING on (over) the horse (balls of the feet on the stirrup, heels down, so the 'shock absorbers that ARE the foot, ankle, knee, and hip protect the SPINE -- as they're designed to! (Yes, Chico, I know, you need your toes free to shift and all -- STILL a bad design for the human body!!)

If your shooting posture is relaxed but ready, if your shoulders and neck as relaxed and free to instantly move in whatever direction you want, if your arms are both 'depending' naturally from your collarbone AND raised without rigid tension, your elbows (wrists, shoulders) are not 'gripped tight' so they lose their 'shock absorber' abilities -- then both firing and returning to your aim become easier (at least in my old-tai-chi-player view...).

And, rather than gripping tight, you relax and expand -- you make you arms *longer* -- I looked for a pic of Rudy in, essentially a gun-holding posture... didn't find one. But if you look at these pix, notice: he is NOT gripping tight with his shoulders or arms -- he is EXTENDED; esp. in the first three -- his shoulder joints are expanded OUT form his spine -- not tightly, but stretching... Even with his arm extended (and expanded) up above his head -- his shoulder are (relaxed!) down. In all of them -- his head, even when turned (and as in pix 2 and 3, tilted) -- you can "see" his skyhook screwed into the back-top of his head OVER his spine (and his whole body 'hanging' form it!). His chin is 'tall' above his chest, but his head is not 'tipped back'; his neck is extended, but not rigid or gripped (see how his neck muscles -- although big -- are relaxed)... (extended, longer, stretched, but relaxed, not rigid).

Take another sec and look at your arm -- now extennnnnnnd; feel your energy pushing out through your fingers, making your arm a 'hose' of energy; feel it curving around from your spine, through your should and down your arm and out your finger tips... There is huge strength in that, which does not require gripping muscles or locked joints... (Compare your arm to Rudy's arms in the pix -- even in the 4th pic -- you can see his elbows stretching out, and his forearms and hands stretching back in... And of course, shoulder down. Always shoulder down!)

So, thinking about the mechanics -- and as Arland and I said to Star -- if it WORKS for you; stick with it. But if you're learning -- or aren't entirely happy with your shooting posture, maybe try NOT gripping and tight, but relaxed and alert, extended and depending from a skyhook... (The skyhook thing is good everywhere and everything! No dowager's hump, no collapsed chest, not hunched shoulders... and we ALL need that!)

Anyway, you might try this:

1. Paying attention to your arm muscles, raise one arm out directly in front of you (normally, as if you’re preparing to shoot one-handed). Tight elbow? Tight hand muscles? Shoulders going up? (Muscles under your arm on the side of your chest tight too?) (Neck going down?)

Relax for a sec and then try this:

2. Catch your skyhook and let your body relax and depend. Then raise that arm in front of you again — slowly and smoothly, leading with the wrist, and of course, shoulders down! That is, your arm is extended and relaxed, hand dangling from the wrist, all muscles as relaxed as you can manage... ONLY use the minimum muscle power you need. Do not lock your elbow or wrist, extend them (without turning your body sideways to make them go forward, eh? Move your arm independent of your body...)

Same position, ready to shoot -- but your back is relaxed, neck, arm shoulder, everything is relaxed! If you need to suddenly turn -- you're ALREADY relaxed and alert. If a threat is suddenly at your side, your body or arm can move freely cause it's not locked up; your whole body can pivot and move because you're not 'locked' into a position..

Here's a hint too: in tai chi, as your ARM goes up — your shoulder blade goes down! It's a unit, and instead of your should blade (and everything else) going up and tight, it's a pivot on a fulcrum. Pulling your arm up by only tightening your arm muscles *disconnects* your arm from your body -- so if you need quick coordinated movement... OOPS! But, if you’ve 'swung' your arm up (partly) by pulling your shoulder blade down, then you can get in 'ready-to-fire' without locking yourself up.

Anyway — just my observations and preferences... open to discussion, disagreement and questions... (Boy, give me cawfee and I just can't shut up, eh?!) El
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