Range Offers Force on Force Training With Real Guns And UTM MMR

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Combat City USA, a gun range in Florida, is offering you the chance to shoot your friends with real guns. They allow you to bring your owns guns to use in their airsoft arena. They swap out a number of parts to convert them to the Ultimate Training Munitions (UTM) Man-Marker Round (MMR) system or the Simunition system. In the video below the rifle is being used with UTM rounds and the revolver with Simunition rounds.

Between the two systems they can only accommodate the AR-15, Glock 17/22/31, H&K USP, SIG P226 and .38/.357 caliber revolvers, not any gun as reported by CNN.

THe UTM MMR round design is very clever. Each round contains two primers. The first primer is used only to detonate the second primer and to cycle the action (using pressure inside the cartridge to push the sliding base backwards) and does not add any energy to the bullet. The smaller second primer is used to propel the bullet and does little or nothing to cycle the gun. A conventional blank round capable of cycling the action would propel a plastic bullet at potentially lethal speeds.

Unlike a paintball the bullet does not need to break apart to mark the target. When the bullet hits its target, the “inertia applicator ball” pushes the marking wax through the plastic shell onto the target. The wax can easily be washed off clothing.

The UTM round has about 4 joules of muzzle energy compared to a paintball which has 10 – 14 joules (depending on the gun) but the joules per square inch is much greater for a 5.56mm UTM round which has a cross section about 1/10 the size of a 0.68 caliber paintball. In other words: at close range it will hurt a lot more than a paintball.

[ Many thanks to gunslinger for the tip. ]

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Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


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  • surplus-addict

    I want this in my neighborhood!

  • Alex

    Ouch

  • mechamaster

    This cartridge look like a piston.

    • http://the-zombie-hunter.blogspot.com TZH

      at a glance I thought The Firearm Blog was reviewing ICBMs or multi-stage rockets…

  • GreenPlease

    I’ve trained using sim rounds… they really hurt! Good stuff though. I’m glad that this is available outside of military/LE now though it will probably be quite pricey.

  • gunslinger

    Steve
    Thanks again for looking into this. I am impressed to find more info about the rounds/modifications used at this facility. I don’t doubt it would hurt to get hit with one of these, but i’m also curious as to how “realistic” the recoil is compared to a “real” round.

    • GreenPlease

      My own experience is with simunition on a G17 and an M4 clone. The G17 had about 2/3 to 1/2 the felt recoil in my opinion. The M4 had hardly any recoil (doesn’t have much to begin with)

      FWIW, the weapons we were running had reliability issues. The glocks experienced numerous double feeds and stove-pipes. I don’t have a good explanation as to why. The M4 fed and ejected more reliably but almost never locked the bolt back. IMO, a semi-auto carrier and a light buffer would help when running simunition.

      This may have changed as its been ~4 years since I last used simunition. I know it’s a product that’s still evolving.

      • Ryan

        I’ve used these training with the local sheriff’s office this past year and we also had issues with malfunctions. After a few sessions we would be getting a lot of stove pipes and double feeds. Eventually we found that if you made sure to field strip and lube in between sessions, they would run fine all the time.

        Other than that, they were a great training aid. You can train to punch paper all you want, but until someone actually starts shooting back at you and aggressively trying to “kill” you, you don’t have a real idea of how you’ll react.

  • Schizoid

    Nope, can’t see anything going wrong here. Especially not in Florida. Carry on.

    • Chase

      I don’t get it. What would go wrong in Florida?

  • Nevyan

    I have plenty of experience using these in the Army during training (as an Infantryman… especially during MOUT).

    I still have the scars on my hand and face where another Soldier shot me with 9 rounds out of an M249 while my face shield was up from a distance of about 5 meters. Not pleasant.

    However, from greater than 10 meters wearing ACU’s and being hit you “know” your hit but it is nothing. At first I thought it would hurt like a paintball but it doesn’t.

    Fun rounds.

  • Alan

    How on Earth did an insurance company give the green light to this project?

    • ACScrimshaw

      Probably Lloyd’s of London. No American insurance program that I know of would touch this, and I once tried to set up a paintball field program. Paintball has a known safety record, and these are a much greater risk to an insurance company. Unless they have an agent that’s got a really good rep with the companies, in which case he MIGHT be able to strong arm an underwriter into doing it.

  • sdog

    i’ll take this over airsoft ANY day of the week, looks pretty crazy.

  • dave calhoun

    I’m missing something here.

    1) If the rear primer is a .22 rimfire blank, how does a centerfire weapon fire it? Do they use a special bolt/bolt carrier?

    2) How does the gas from the primer get past the forward primer to operate the gas system?

    • Tahoe

      Yeah, the MMR system looks confusing…and expensive. Those rounds must be pretty spendy per round for something that complex.

      Sims are a good option for FoF training and generally work fine; using dedicated weapons/uppers kind of sucks, but it makes me more comfortable knowing there can’t be live rounds in the other guys’ weapons, unlike those MMRs.

      • Chipsa

        1. The bolt gets replaced with a new one, that allows it to hit the rimfire blank. This also keeps centerfire rounds from being accidentally used, as you’d end up punching the center of the rimfire case instead.

        2. Because the bolt is replaced, you can use a simpler blow back system. Or rather, the casing expands, it looks like, which pushes back on the bolt, and actuates the entire action. No gas system required.

  • 11B

    Like Nevyan, Ive used these in the Army. If you get shot on bare skin it HURTS… not at all like paintball! I too have a couple scars on my hands and face where I was shot. With clothes on you definitely feel the impact but its not painful. Very, very good training aid. The MILES system we used before SUCKED (inaccurate, false triggers, ect) if you can use these, go for it!

  • Mike Knox

    Just like the recent magpul article: why complicate simple things while they were better? Isn’t this what simunitions were for? They’re a lot more simple than this unnecessaruly conctrused thingymajiggybop..

  • Tony

    These rounds look pricey

  • Lance

    Simu-tech ammo been around for military and LE for a long time glad to see it open to some civilian ranges. But many forget more protective gear is needed and it still hurts when shot by one. Many dont know you have to modify your weapon to shoot them otherwise you can damage your pistol with these rounds. But still cool Steve should give us free tickets for this.

  • JM

    I was once invited to play the deranged “active shooter” in a local SWAT exercise at a vacant office building. To get the full effect, I was told, I needed to wear a T-shirt and some gym shorts (and a paintball mask).

    So of course I wore a huge and hideously hot Carhart knock-off coat. With the hood up. Cinched down around my face like Kenny from South Park. I got popped right under the armpit by an AR-15 Simunition round and felt a pretty good thump even through the giant coat. It’s a good training tool, for sure.

  • Chase

    Why, oh why did the video have to use the words “assault weapon”?!

  • mosinman

    i rolled my eyes when i heard the word “assault weapons”
    cant they see that the the AR/AK rifles are just rifles?
    that being said, i bet this would be a fun thing to try out

    • damien

      The term “assault weapon” originated in WW1, and referred to weapons with a particularly high rate of fire, suitable for assaulting concentrations of enemy troops, e.g. troops in trenches, bunkers, etc.

      Some of these weapons were fully automatic, some of them were semi automatic, some were in the form of early submachine guns, some were pistols with high capacity magazines, and some were what we might call light machine guns or automatic rifles today.

      The main thing that differentiated these “assault weapons” from e.g “ordinary rifles”, was high magazine capacity and high rates of fire.

      • Scott P

        Completely wrong.

        “Assault weapon” is a term coined up by Josh Sugarmann of the Violence Policy Center to demonize semi-automatic firearms that look like their military counterparts. A rallying cry of anti-gunners and the ignorant.

        “Assault rifle” was a term coined by Adolf Hitler to describe the new StG-44 which came to describe all rifles afterwards that fire an intermediate rifle cartridge with select-fire capability.

  • tommy2rs

    I look at the diagram and all I hear in my head is Santa saying “you’ll shoot your eye out kid”….lol.

    Other than that it looks like it would be a good way to train.

  • John

    This is better than gas powered airsoft how?? Airsoft has more felt recoil (Try an Ino) and does full auto, safer and each round is less than a penny.

    • Nicks87

      I agree airsoft is a great way to train but sim-munitions allow you to use your duty weapons during F-on-F training instead of having to buy airsoft guns to train with and many duty weapons do not have an airsoft equivalent. Also, sims leave paint marks on body armor and other hard gear items when you are struck in places that you would not notice with airsoft so you know someone got tagged.

  • John Doe

    I’ve used these several times playing opfor for a training facility called Direct Action Resource Center. They train some swat but mostly SF guys. I have several scars on my arms from the 5.56 rounds at a distance of 10 yards. I was only wearing a long sleeved tshirt. Those SFODA guys wore me out. You definitely remember the sting and think twice before jumping out into a halway to lay down fire. As the nights go on you get to we weary of those little red dots bouncing around the shoot house. If you get hit bare skin it hurts like hell. But IMO they are prefect for force on force training. The rounds add some consequence to your actions if you try to play rambo alone in the shoot house. and if you haven’t heard of DARC check them out. they’re legit.

  • BlackMesa

    That lady needs to learn how to get off the X in the last scene. Especially since it looked like a 21′ drill.

    • Nicks87

      I hate that phrase “get off the X”.

      It reminds me of that douche bag James Yeager.