How to Get to Carnegie Hall or Save Innocent Lives – Practice, Practice, Practice

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Eli Dicken training practice shooting

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  1. For real though, most law enforcement doesn’t even train to hit that far. Normal distance is 25 meters for the “far” end of the course of fire. Pretty darn impressive shooting by that hero.

  2. It’s a conditioned programmed response.

    The right deals with this nonsense just like the left does.

  3. Fourty yards with iron sites…not yet. Need a little more practice and a little more training.

    Fifteen yards with my G17 or M&P 9, iron sights, and while drawing from my Sneaky Pete, THAT, I can do.


    Longer distances? Uh uh. Working on it.

    • Lifesaver, be careful what you say. Not long after that young man solved that problem in the food court there was a comment about being able to make handgun shots at extended ranges. I replied with what I thought was a supporting comment about knocking over pepper poppers at 40 yards. I didn’t know the mall shooting was 40 yards at the time of my comment. Besides that man was shooting standing supported. I was roll over prone. Bravo for him. I’m sure he had obstacles to shoot over and moving innocents to shoot around. I got blasted for saying I could make those shots. It’s not that hard, but I’ll come back to that. I’ll hazard a guess as how that man did what he did that is as least as important as his marksmanship. He kept his head. He saw what needed to be done and did it. Attack, attack attack! They don’t expect it. Long range handgun accuracy. It’s not that hard. I learned when I was in the army. I didn’t say the army taught me. I bought a Ruger Mini-14 and a MK I bull barrel .22 LR from a local gun store in Savannah. (The first of a few.) I started carrying that pistol when I was deer hunting. If it was a slow day I’d start squirrel hunting. You’ll learn to shoot a pistol, or eat boiled potatoes. After that it was just a matter of extending the range with centerfire handguns. Never did any real handgun shooting past 100 yards though.

      • Beats the hell out of the paltry 50m I was able to hit something vaguely head to hips shaped with anything approaching repeatable reliability prone and more than 2/3 of the time standing (supported didn’t seem to help so I was doing something wrong). Besides trigger and breath control anything to focus on or just a lot of correct repetition (as with most things) for 100 yds?

      • Gadsden,

        I think you are spot on. In the moment, adrenaline pumping, focused, in attack mode, our Zen kicks in, and we do the job. We don’t try. We do.

        Won a couple of fist-fights that way (when I was young and less thoughtful). When it was over: “I did that?”

  4. Sometimes I go to the range and see people who cannot hit the target at 3 yards. I don’t mean the X ring, or the tiny 1″ square, or the letter in the yellow triangle. I mean the entire paper. Kinda scared of those people.

    • Had an older couple at the range with this issue and they did a lot better when loaned a 22 to get used to pointing and shooting without the savage recoil of a 9mm……………..yeah little scared as well but they did eventually figure out hold on to the pistol and trigger control.

      • “…without the savage recoil of a 9mm…”

        Savage recoil? I’m a proponent of learning with a .22, like a K-22 revolver or High Standard auto, but primarily for introducing trigger press and holding on target at the same time with inexpensive ammo without the distraction of noise and recoil, which most humans, even kids, can easily learn to manage. Lots of repeating and muscle memory. This is important for shooters new to handgunning. Initial lessons at a close distance is also important, to show hits as they happen and to learn to “call” individual shots, remembering the “picture” when the bullet was released.

        “Savage” recoil?

        • Well ……..yes it will blow your lungs out after all. Do I need to edit a sarc tag on the previous post? Seriously though some people are extremely (psychologically) recoil adverse even when they can easily physically handle more and that couple somehow drew the short straw twice. Very nice and willing/able to learn but they may have to do the 22 to 32 to 380 to 9mm upgrades when they start buying but at least they got their permits before our rules get more retarded.

    • “Kinda scared of those people“

      There is good reason to be scared of those people. Not every defensive gun use turns out so well:

      “No Indictment in Shooting Death of Girl During ATM Robbery
      The family of a 9-year-old Houston girl who died after she was shot by a man who had opened fire when he was robbed at an ATM say they remain angered by a grand jury’s decision to not indict the man.
      By Associated Press Wire Service Content • July 20, 2022, at 7:17 p.m.

      By JUAN A. LOZANO, Associated Press

      HOUSTON (AP) — The family of a 9-year-old Houston girl who died after she was shot by a man who had opened fire when he was robbed at an ATM said Wednesday they remain angered by a grand jury’s decision to not indict the man.

      “That was not an accident. That was not self-defense,” April Aguirre, the aunt of Arlene Alvarez said during a news conference as a photograph of the girl as she lay in a hospital bed bloodied and bandaged shortly before her death was shown.

      Tony Earls, 41, had been charged with aggravated assault, serious bodily injury, in Alvarez’s Feb. 14 death. A Harris County grand jury in Houston on Tuesday could have indicted him on this charge or several others, including manslaughter and murder, but declined to do so.“

      Apparently, spray and pray is A-OK in Texas.

        • Really! It is hard to make a call. Perhaps it was a legitimate accident. Having no more info than this, who knows. You are, however, responsible for every projectile you choose to launch.

      • If a leftist prosecutor in Democrat-controlled Harris County cannot get an indictment from a grand jury, maybe there is more to it than your terrible explanation.

    • That reminds me that there’s a somewhat infamous review on this site where the reviewer tried to blame the gun (a Hi-Point) for missing the paper at only a few feet.

      • Seems like all these videos are having their own take on these “Dicken drills”, haven’t seen one that was the same.

        From the reports they say he engaged at 40 yards and advanced till the shooter dropped. I wasn’t there nor have read the police report but seems like a better “Dicken drill” would be to start at 40 yards, fire say five rounds, move to 30 yards and fire five more within 15 seconds.

        • It was ‘moving’ B-8 drill at distance. Just set up for a B-8 drill at 40 yards (instead of the standard 20 yards) and use 2 seconds maximum per shot instead of the standard B-8 drill 3.5 seconds. Then after the first couple of shots with the B-8 drill firing pattern at 40 yards advance-fire (in the actual basic B-8 drill you don’t advance on the target), in a B-8 drill firing pattern then you have what Dicken did for his ‘Dicken drill’.

        • I’ve been to that Glock store in Nashville to pick up a slide I had milled. I’ve shot on their ranges.

          Where he stops and says that’s 40 yards is really about 38 yards.

      • I would be very surprised if Mr. Dicken had a red on his handgun. Most of the so-called experts duplicating what he did on video, all have red dots on their handguns. If they were honest they’d attempt this 40-yard shot just with iron sights only.

        I think less than 1% of all new gun owners in the United States even have a red dot on their handgun.

        And the vast majority of those new gun owners are going to have a handgun with a very short sight radius. Making it even harder to hit something reliably and repeatedly that far away.

    • Wasn’t even 12 hours later when the first drills popped up on the web.

      I wouldn’t have tried that either, and I train pistol also at 50 & 100yd. Rather, I would’ve reached into my pack and pulled out the foldy boi instead, because that’s precisely why I carry it.

      No critique on my part, Eli pulled of an astounding feat. Only pointing out were there better tools available, they would be the go to in that situ.

    • Especially cops and feds. Many never shoot for recreation and only practice when the agency provides the ammo, which is a low priority municipal expense and therefore scarce.

      • Take a cop to Appleseed sometime. Not only do they get in cheaper they can get their ego’s cut down when they do not get a patch.
        Was worth it , he of course blamed the 10-22 collectors edition I had lent him. Same gun I used twice to qualify in the past with Tech sights. Said it needs a scope.
        I did not qualify this time either but was way closer than him. Should have let him use the one I was using, Takedown with standard sights.

        Was tempted to bring one of the AR15’s but did’nt. I would have been the only asshole with a loud gun.

        Passed out 2 tube reloaders for model 60’s and left the other 8 I printed with one of the instructors to pass out.

        Here is the model I printed.

        Was printed in shore 95A filament so it can handle rough handling.

        • Does it automatically orient the rounds bullet-side-up?

        • Aims them the same way you place them. Someone used large straws at one event to do the same thing.

        • I made a bunch from old aluminum arrows. Glued black caps on one end and use different colors on other end. Need to be careful because m60 go one way nylon 66 the other.

  5. I do my best but I ain’t yer sheepdog. My eyesight is way better after cataract surgery a year ago but not superhuman. Yeah practice…

  6. Not sure I’ve heard everyone say that armed encounters are always close. I think that we can be safe to say that based on the available statistics, the likelihood of the encounter being close is much higher than at the food court incidents distance.

    People tend to practice for what makes more sense for their situations. Not saying to abandon the longer shooting distances…but just keep everything into perspective and look at it in a holistic manner.

  7. Most people’s views of handgun shooting are ‘someone said’. NATO is how much force the bullet has and the probability of a hit(AKA 50%), so they have is at 50m. Handguns, just like rifles have the range that they can keep the rounds inside of a defined area. If you looking at 4 MOA gun, a man is still an acceptable target at 400 yards, AKA 12″ across. Ed McGivern taught that the service pistol was effective to 600 yards, and that was 38. Jerry has hit a USPSA full size target at 1k, with his M&P core. Instationaly trained, speed shooters, Bullseye, and PPC all shoot out to 25 yards; they all have a common denominator. That young man out tending his family’s cows, does not have that limitation. The guys who grew up killing Jackrabbits out west, using whatever they had at hand, do not, either. The difference between being schooled to shoot to pass a standard and being taught/practicing to use your arm to its limits. I have seen lots of people start at the start of the shooting season(northern tier) with no real instruction prior, and in a few nights of practice, be able to make headshots(6×6″ squares or 8″ plates) on demand at 50m, most quality duty weapons can do this easily, and by the end of the season, make them with aggressive par times. All one has to do is try to shoot their pistol out to 300m; if you have the basics down, it is not hard. But on my young life, I had things like the Fairchild AFB active shooter elimination to practice up to. 70 yards after a nice sprint, with a 50% hit rate(SrA Brown’s shooting, with a 50% hit probability pistol). So far, I have seen in skilled hands, a handgun beats a rifle under 100 yards when speed counts and the target is at or larger than a one-gal milk jug. If you need fires placed on something, a handgun gets rounds in the area out to 350m, much faster. A rifle will let you hit a much smaller item, hit will a ton more force, and will make it look easy, but that assumes you have one in arms reach.

  8. One thing that gets overlooked in this instance is that even if Mr. Dicken had only had a hit rate of 20% he still would have dramatically changed the outcome for the better. These shooters are not soldiers who are trained to react to fire, they are nuts and losers who’s plan has just been interrupted. They have no Plan B, and as such they freeze up, surrender, or eat their own gun.

    If the shooter had managed to retreat back to the bathroom to barricade/wait to bleed out that would have been just fine. The cavalry was rolling in and could have waited out or finished off the perp.

    I say this not to take anything away from Mr. Dicken’s heroism and accuracy or to discourage the pursuit of excellence with arms. But these scumbags are human and easy to outclass once they lose the element of surprise. Life being imperfect we should take comfort in being able to improve a bad situation even if an optimal outcome eludes us.

    • “The Calvary role in.” All 375 of them.
      Hand sanitizer, bottled water, lunchables, bullets proof shields, and a master key.

      • you forgot the ‘janitor’ they would need to find to get the master key.

        As a side note on Uvalde: The Uvalde schools police chief said he tried over 26 keys to access the room where the gunman was and could not open the door. That was a lie. Had he done that at some point during 26 key turns he would have found that the door was not locked. No one ever checked to see that the door was not locked, the door can’t be locked from the inside so the gunman could not have locked the door as it was claimed. This all came out during the investigation.

        Chief Pete Arredondo told the Texas Tribune in interview that he called for the keys and a tool to break down the door, which he couldn’t kick down because it was reinforced.

        He claims in the Texas Tribune interview the breaching tool never came but the keys did. He claims, in the Texas Tribune interview, he was given a set of six keys by a janitor and tried each one hoping one of them would open the door.

        He further claimed in the Texas Tribune interview another key ring with about 20 to 30 keys was later brought to him, and he tried all of them one by one giving a total of at least 26 attempts. He further claimed in the Texas Tribune interview that eventually another officer had found the key to the room.

        And thus that’s the reason for the ‘over an hour’ before they could enter the room, according to Arredondo’s claims

        All of that he said in interview is a lie. The guys at the door already had a door breaching tool (a ‘Halligan bar’), and the door was never locked.

  9. Biggest issue as a citizen in this situation is not the shot, but worrying about your backstop. Cops have the law covering their behinds for errant rounds. John Q public not so much.

    • Ten years ago there was a shooting incident at Clackamas Town Center in Oregon. The shooter had a rifle. Nick Meli, a permit holder, aimed his Glock at the murderer, but did not fire since there was a bystander too near the murderer. However, the murderour punk saw Meli and proceeded to off himself.

      Sometimes it’s better not to shoot, like Meli. Sometimes it’s better to shoot, like Dicken. Both defenders showed good judgment, and one showed good marksmanship as well.

    • “John Q public not so much“

      Not so much in Texas, where it is apparently A-OK to spray and pray:

      “No Indictment in Shooting Death of Girl During ATM Robbery
      The family of a 9-year-old Houston girl who died after she was shot by a man who had opened fire when he was robbed at an ATM say they remain angered by a grand jury’s decision to not indict the man.
      By Associated Press Wire Service Content • July 20, 2022, at 7:17 p.m.“

      Of course, these incidents don’t show up in the NRA’s ‘Armed Citizen’.

  10. I won’t carry a pistol that I can’t drill 10/10 on the 50-yard steel silhouette.
    Dots make this test a lot easier.

    (that’s just one test; it also has to survive an IDPA or USPSA match with no hiccups and feed 50 rounds of hollow point without a problem).

  11. Most days, I carry a full size handgun. I work on facilities that would best be described as campuses. My greatest desire is to never point a weapon at a fellow human being again. However, there is a good chance that an engagement may be over distance. Down a hallway or across a parking lot. In personal defense, distances may be traditionally shorter. However, malls, churches, and workplaces are large environments that allow greater distances in gunfights.

  12. Paul H uses a Smith & Wesson Bodyguard in 380 and a Beretta 21A in 25 ACP. I especially like this video because I have a Beretta 21A. But mine’s in 22 LR. And I have been practicing shooting at targets at 25 yards, which is the maximum distance at most gun ranges. And I have been doing this for well over a year now.

    So I know just how difficult it is to hit something at an extreme range.

    Most people are not going to carry a full size gun. They’re going to carry a much smaller gun. Most will be a pocket-size semi-auto. Or a snubby revolver. Their gun will not have a site radius long enough to make a very difficult long-range shot.
    Most people are not going to carry any firearm, with a barrel that’s 4 inches or longer.

    Forcing a shooter to break off his attack is probably going to be the best outcome, in most future engagements. A perfect example of this are home invasions. When the homeowner displays a gun the Invaders leave immediately.

    “Mass Shootings Part 4: Greenwood Park Mall Analysis. video 30 min long”

  13. You all seem to forget Handgun Metallic Silouette matches. Back in the day when I could see well, I was competitive with a stock .357 Ruger revolver with open sight STANDING hitting those rams at 200 meters.
    Chickens at 50 meters? No problem at all!

    Practice, practice, practice…. And write down your rear sight elevation settings!

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