While dry fire practice is very beneficial, it’s always boring. Well, it can be. Ten reps often feel like 50. Just plain dry firing gets boring and doesn’t always offer the best practice. Yet, dry fire remains important. The world and firearm industry recognized this, and they’ve responded with numerous laser systems and targets to add some active feedback to your dry-fire. One system that grabbed my attention was the iDryFire Clip-N-Shoot target system.
Like a lot of these systems, it uses your smartphone to aid in feedback. However, in the last article I wrote that mentioned smartphones, the comment section singing was enough to raise the stock price on aluminum foil. One of the big draws to me about Clip-N-Shoot was the fact it offers a no-phone option as well.
iDryfire produces the Clip-N-Shoot as well as reactive laser targets. Those reactive targets aren’t connected to your smartphone. These systems require a laser emitting device, like a SIRT, Mantis Blackbeard, or laser cartridge.
The Clip-N-Shoot system uses your smartphone much like many other systems. Most other systems use the phone to ‘read’ your target. You shoot your target and the camera records where the shots hit. With the Clip-N-Shoot, however, your phone is the target. It still uses the camera, but in a much different way.
The Clip part comes from the multitude of attachments that clip onto the front-facing camera of your smartphone. You clip a small circular device over the camera and the various clip-on attachments feature varying size ‘windows.’ The two included with mine are a very small orange circle and a much larger green square. These mount over the camera and act as your targets.
The front-facing camera picks up the laser as it hits the window. The clip attaches to the rear of the device, and it clips on your phone the way your grandmother used to clip laundry to a line.
The Reactive Laser Target
The Clip-N-Shoot Reactive Laser Target is vaguely shaped like a USPSA target, and there seems to be a simple round target option as well. The target comes with a stand and is powered by three triple-A batteries. Sitting right in the middle of the target is the actual target for the laser, which is small and circular.
When struck, it sounds off, replicating the sound of steel. A score counter sits up top and records your hits. If you get to 99 and shoot that one-hundredth shot, it sings you a little song, and the lights do a little dance and reset the target to zero. The Reactive Laser Target offers a simple, phone-free alternative for $39.99 ($29.99 at Amazon).
Dry Firing Away
The Clip-N-Shoot device is super easy to set up and very simple. You download an app that gives you various controls over your training session. You can set up the par time, the shots per session, and how many sessions you want to fire. This kind of control allowed me to practice doing simple things like drawing against a par timer and landing an accurate shot on target.
You can ready up drills, and if you have tools like the Mantis Blackbeard, the Cool Fire trainer, or other similar systems, you can practice rapid-fire drills under varying time constraints.
You can combine multiple Clip-N-Shoot devices together to train with multiple targets. It’s easy to get a randomized ‘go’ timer to make it a little less expected go signal. You can even change the reactive sound to replicate steel or a gunshot.
The Clip-N-Shot works really well. Each shot registers without a problem, and I never got any spare or extra shots. The system doesn’t seem sensitive at all to most normal lighting conditions. Most laser systems are highly sensitive, but that wasn’t a problem here. Each shot is followed by a nice loud confirmation, and the time is recorded for each shot you make.
With a little creativity, it’s easy to practice drawing to the first shot, reloads, and malfunction fixes all under a timer with tight accuracy standards. The big green dot makes it easy to train quickly and at various ranges. The smaller orange target is much harder to hit, even as close as three yards from the phone setup.
Throwing Up the Target
The Reactive Laser Target is just as reactive…you just don’t have to pair it with a phone. It’s actually fairly obnoxious with its light and noise, but you’ll know when you hit it.
If you leave it on too long, it makes an annoying noise to remind you. There’s no way to adjust the volume, so you’ll just have to deal with it. I’m exaggerating a bit here. It’s really not bad. It just seems very…extra.
The sensor that picks up your laser shot is roughly the same size as the larger green camera filter on the Clip-N-Shoot. It’s small enough to be a challenge, but big enough to be easy to shoot at close ranges. The reactive target keeps count, and it’s made it easy to get in 100 reps a night. For you OPSEC fanatics, you’ll have no mobile connection involved.
The Clip-N-Shoot and Reactive Laser Target are great additions to your home training regimen. Dry fire is cheap, and both of these systems are very fairly priced. Especially when you compare them to other dry-fire laser systems.
The positive feedback is nice to have, and the setting with the Clip-N-Shoot allows you to train with both a timer and accuracy standard. It’s a bit more exciting than constantly “shooting” at that stupid light switch on the wall over and over again.
The system’s feedback has even gotten my kids more involved in dry fire training. Who doesn’t like audible and visual feedback? The Reactive Laser Target’s score has made it into a contest, and my kids are quite competitive.
Making dry fire a little less boring means you’ll do it more often and that’s a very good thing.