Welcome back to another edition of Concealed Carry Corner. Last week, we talked about the various dangers that come with carrying a concealed firearm. If you missed that article, don’t be afraid to click the link here. With ammo costs being elevated in the last few years, more people have been turning to alternative practices with their handguns. Dry firing can allow you to practice 75-80% of your fundamentals without firing a single round. With new methods coming out constantly, it’s good to take a look at some great tools for new dry fire methods.
Snap Caps and Paper Targets
As many of you know, dry firing can be as simple or complex as you make it. To get started, all you need is a firearm, different colored snap cap rounds and a paper target on the wall. That’s all you need in the beginning to at least start dry firing. If you don’t want to spend the money on snap caps, you can always just dry fire with an empty handgun. To start dry firing it just takes a target and your handgun, adding in snap caps allows you to do reloads with a visible confirmation a round went into the chamber from the new magazine. This lets you see when you are releasing the slide too quickly and really does offer some valuable information.
I can’t tell you how many people overthink dry firing and buy all types of laser systems when an empty handgun and a target to start is a great way to practice your fundamentals without spending anything. There are a number of free targets online you can print out on a standard piece of paper to keep costs almost to nothing. It doesn’t take much to start dry firing and just 10 minutes a few times a week helps build your fundamental skills and allows you to stay sharp.
Moving Into The 21st Century
If you start putting more and more time into dry firing, there are plenty of options out there to invest in. Laser devices like the Mantis system I have talked about before. They are fantastic options to give you more data about small things you may be doing. Slight things like yanking the trigger or having your sights off line will show up with these systems where dry firing with snap caps wouldn’t tell you near as much. The new Mantis systems do cost a decent amount but are well worth the investment if you want to step your dry-firing game up.
The Mantis system as well as other interactive laser systems are great training tools to see your small imperfections with various fundamentals. The problem is it doesn’t necessarily help you speed up and become more proficient with time. For this progress, often times you need something that will force you to push yourself in a controlled environment. Some of you will argue you can’t do this while dry firing but a new virtual system has been proving otherwise. Let’s take a look at a rather new solution from Dry Fire Kings.
Virtual Dry Firing
A new company called Dry Fire King has come out with a series of virtual training stages. In the past, companies have developed an interactive system to virtually train but nothing has ever come out that’s easy to access and simple to use. Previously, if you wanted to do virtual training, you would need to go to a specialized training center or range. With Dry Fire King though, you can pay a monthly service charge and have access to a wide variety of range courses designed to push your limits from the comfort of your living room.
I first found out about them a few weeks ago and decided to sign up. After about a month of trying their different programs, I can honestly say this training system is one of the best dry fire systems I have run into yet. What is most interesting to me about this virtual system from them is the fact there are stages for IDPA, 3 Gun Competitions and IPSC along with USPSA. More stages for tactical and concealed carry are also coming up on the website soon making it an all-encompassing program for people to dry fire with.
This allows you to try different stages which keeps practice fun. There’s nothing worse than doing the same drill over and over again with no options. I ended up going with the Alpha Package but Dry Fire Kings has other packages for people who don’t need everything to dry fire practice. There are options from $3.50-$30.00 with various options on stages and virtual training. The $3.50 or $7.50 options offer a good selection of virtual stages while getting new stages fairly regularly.
Advantages Over Live Fire
It’s worth the extra money with these options because I love to practice but don’t always have time or the ammo to hit the range as much as I would like. Having these alternatives are a great way to train without dropping an entire afternoon and a decent amount of money on ammo. Sometimes it’s not always possible to take 500-1,000 rounds of ammo out for an afternoon of training.
It’s still important to train with your handgun, but devoting an entire afternoon at the range just isn’t possible for some people with busy lives. Having the ability to dry fire as a substitute for live fire can keep your skills polished while saving time and money on ammo. Live fire is still important to practice recoil management as well as follow-up shots and putting rounds on target. Although live fire is extremely important, there are certainly ways to develop
Although live fire is extremely important to practice on a regular basis, the truth is some people can’t make it to the range every two weeks or month but still want to train. The ability to dry fire and get virtual training in your living room allows you to put in reps with your handgun without the added cost of ammo and time heading to the range. Dry fire will never replace putting rounds through your gun at the range but it will allow you to work your fundamentals without firing a real shot. Programs like Dry Fire Kings are another example of how technology is helping the gun community train easier with less equipment.
Let me know what your thoughts are on dry firing down below. I know some of you are against the idea of dry firing your carry gun but if you can’t make it to the range, it offers a number of benefits. Let me know your personal thoughts in the comments but keep it respectful. If you have questions on dry firing or firearms in general, don’t hesitate to shoot me a message on Instagram @fridgeoperator. Stay safe out there and we will see you next week.