Author Topic: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR  (Read 2627 times)

Offline jfruser

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Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« on: November 12, 2007, 06:27:40 PM »
Howdy:

Thanks to all the folks who ran the shindig. Considering the effort involved to pull it off and the cost charged to participants, it is clear that it is a labor of love for those that made it happen.

INTRO

I talked a buddy of mine into taking an Appleseed rifle marksmanship course that ended up being held near Davilla, TX (east of Temple) on 10-11NOV of this year.  He has shot pistols for a few years, but was relatively new to rifles.


TRAINING

(Performance)
The goal of the physical/performance training was to be able to shoot an old-school Army Qual Test (AQT) at the Expert level (210/250 possible points).  The targets used were similar to the D-Prone targets with the "2" scoring area removed.  All shooting was done at 25m, so the targets were all reduced to simulate their ranges.  (http://www.letargets.com/html/general_targets/rt-d.jpg)

The Quick & Dirty AQT consisted of:
1. Standing; 10 shots; 100m target
2. Begin standing, go to sitting to fire; 10 shots on two different 200m targets
3. Begin standing, go to prone to fire; 10 shots on three different 300m targets
4. Prone; 10 shots on four different 400m targets
Time limits, mag changes, and position changes were tossed in to spice it up.  There was a little more to it, procedure-wise, but that is the gist.

The means used were repetition and demonstration of the elements of a rifle shot, shooting positions, breath control, trigger squeeze, sight picture etc.  Essentially, the basics.

What this was not was a MOUT/CQB/tactical carbine sort of class.  The instructors drilled proper technique to place shots on target.

(Indoctrination)
The goal of the indoctrination was to get the attendees to take up the whole "Nation of Riflemen" creed.  More on that later.


EQUIPMENT

(Rifle-Mine)
I was the only oddball with the boltie that I could tell.  My rifle was a Swedish Mauser in 6.5x55 that began its life in 1908 at the Gustav factory as a 96 and was re-arsenalled into a 38 at some later time.  The only mods I made were a standard issue (US Army) black web sling, a Mojo rear aperture sight to replace the rear leaf, and an extra tall front sight that I filed down so that I would zero at 100 yards with the rear Mojo in the middle of its elevation adjustment.  Ammo was commercial Privi Partisan 6.5x55 139gr soft point.  I had a potful of 5-round stripper clips.

(Rifle-Others)
I would estimate that he commonest rifle was the M14/M1A in .308.  The next most popular was the AR15 in 5.56mm.  The remainder consisted of M1 Garands, Comblock (SKS/AK/7.62x54R semis), & Ruger 10/22s.  My buddy had a borrowed RRA AR15 with backup iron sights installed on the picatinny rails on the receiver and gas block.  His rifle was reliable unitl the second day, when it required the forward assist to properly chamber on a mag change.  FWIW, that sucker was TIGHT.  It had not seen much use.

(Clothing/Accessories-Mine)
I wore the same 5.11 pants I wear to mow the lawn & work around the house.  (No, I am not making like a tacti-handyman.  I bought them for ~$10 on sale and they are comfy & tough.)  I wore an undershirt and on overshirt made by Jerkies, the 549 Heavyweight Cotton Shirt (http://www.Jerkies.com/catalog/images/products/549KH_LG.JPG).  Footgear was the older issue jungle boots.  I also had knee & elbow pads from Home Depot.

(Clothing/Accessories-Others)
Everything from t-shirt & jeans to utility trousers and the popular shooting jacket.

RANGE

The range was on private property and was improved by the owner--at his expense, I believe--to be useful for the Appleseed.  It was enirely satisfactory to the demands.  Through some sort of black (water) magic, the pota-potties did not stink, even when inside them. 


POLITICS

Let's face it: engaging in the shooting sports is a political act, nowadays.  It is one that can get you time in prison in some states in the Union for various reasons.  The questions with regard to the Appleseed and any course are "How much political content?" and "What is the political content?"

The political headspace of the Appleseed organizers can be found below in Fred's Plan to Save America.

This was demonstrated in thrice-daily oratories detailing the history of Lexington, Concord, & Meriam's Corner that stressed the concepts of marksmanship and the willingness of ordinary men to do extraordinary acts.


EVALUATION

(Training)
The content was the basics and, therefore, no quibbles can be made.  If you wanna hit the target at range, here is where it starts. 

The week prior to the Appleseed, the RWVA had what they call a Boot Camp, where they trained the Appleseed trainers.  You could tell that some of the trainers were green, but many were seasoned shooters.  All were as helpful as their ability allowed and exhibited good attitudes.

It was the usual firehose, content-wise.  You suck up as much as you can, take a breath, and come back for more.  The instructors were very willing to help, but there were not enough of them to go around to address all the shooters' needs.  I suspect this is the nature of the game, given some instructors' limited experience, the varying levels of the students' experience, and the number of students to instructors.

Towards the end of Saturday, I was all shot out.  Sucking up recoil from a centerfire, non-gas-operated rifle as well as eating muzzle blast from AR15 rifles with muzzle breaks three feet away finally overwhelmed my ability or desire to learn and I was sending rounds downrange to no purpose.  Something similar occurred on Sunday around noontime.  My buddy and I decided to pack it in during lunch break, as sending commercial 6.5x55 and Black Hills 5.556mm downrange could no longer be justified.  We were no longer learing, just doing.

(Equipment)
I was at a bit of a disadvantage, equipment-wise, relative to the semi-auto shooters.  First, I shot a bolt gun.  Second, my sight radius was shorter.  Third, my mag/stripper clip capacity was 5.  Fourth, some of hte training was inapplicable to bolt guns.  Despite this, a bolt gun is a valid tool when learing basic rifle marksmanship.  Ultimately, what I didn't accomplish was attributable to ME and not my equipment.

(Organization)
It was a pretty well-run affair.  They made it work.  What some of the instructors lacked in expertise, they made up for in good attitude and willingness to make stuff happen.

(Fellow Shooters)
A fine group of folks to spend a weekend with.

(Politics)
I was interested to see just how "revolutionary" the RWVA was, if you know what I mean.  I was re-assured that the general political feel was not internet-forum bluster and/or "shoot the JBTs."  There may have been a subtext, but keeping the context in the Revolutionary War, support for the COTUS, and the "Nation of Riflemen" can easily be taken at face value by all but the most schemeing of minds.

I declined to participate in one bit of fantasy, the "Jump into a time machine, go back to Concord with your centerfire rifle, and shoot the hell outa the Brit officers and the approaching grenadiers."  Such might be a fine concept for  anovel, but I like to keep my firearms training on the ground and not in a flight of fancy.



CONCLUSIONS & LESSONS LEARNED

1. An Appleseed is not appropriate for a new shooter who is ignorant of the effort required to get into the proper shooting positions and such.  This sort of approach works fine for volunteers to military service, but the usual civilian will likely balk at such a steep cost in comfort & tension if they have not yet developed a love of shooting.  Take that new shooter to the range, teach them safety, and let them have some fun before subjecting them to this sort of experience.

2. Do the pre-Appleseed training if you have the time.  I could have saved time and more profitably spent my range time if I knew beforehand my seated position was ate up like a soup sandwich.  This is subject to reality.  In my case, I had spend three of the previous six weeks on business travel and the other three working late.  My livelihood and mariage came before Appleseed prep, so I spent my few free hours with family.

3. Well-worth the $70 fee. 

4. Do your research.  The Appleseed forums will help to steer you in the right direction.

5. Figure out if the Appleseed you plan to attend will be strcitly a 25m affair or will have longer range work.  If it will all be done at 25m, think seriously about leaving the centerfire rifle at home and buying & fitting out a "Liberty Training Rifle" Ruger 10/22 as described here: http://appleseedinfo.org/smf/index.php?topic=32.0

It is essntially a 10/22 with quality aperture sights, a usable sling, and a few other little mods to make it more easy to manipulate.

For the cost of the 400 rounds of the centerfire ammo I bought, I could have bought and put together such a rifle.  If I ever convince my wife to do an Appleseed, this is what I will do for her.  If I do another "25m only" Appleseed, it is what I will do.

If you will have shots at range, an AR15 would be preferred.  They are not my favorite rifle type, but they are generally lighter, handier, and have less recoil than a M14 or M1 Garand...or my Swede.  It will get the job done under the conditions and will be less taxing on the shooter.

6. Buy the "Freds Rifleman Package" which includes a shooting jacket, Fred's Guide to Becoming a Rifleman, and targets.  I did not do so because I am a big boy and it is likely the largest (2XL) would not fit.

The jacket has integral padding in all the right places.  This helps prevent scraped up elbows, pain, and such.  The first time you try to transition and get your sling caught up in your elbow pad, you will wish you did.


LAST NOTE
I plan to hunt this winter and really needed a rifle marksmanship refresher.  It has been eight years since I left Uncle Sam's service and I have not done enough training with my rifles since then, IMO.  The Appleseed knocked some of the rust off my skills and was a good time.  I much improved my standing/offhand and realized that my sitting needs a lot of work, due to injuries I received that put me out of Uncle Sam's service.  I have quite a lot of dry-fire in my future.

**UPDATE: Rx GLASSES**
I forgot to mention glasses, for those of us with less-than-perfect vision.  If you wear Rx glasses, I would advise LARGE lenses not just for safety concerns, but to allow you more freedom when adjusting cheek weld.  I found that many times my glasses would end before I got a good enough weld.  This resulted in triple vision, if my off-eye was also open:
1. Off eye
2. Sighting eye (with glasses lens)
3. Sighting eye (uncorrected).

Also, when really scrunched down in prone, slung up tighter than a drum and steady, my bolt would come V-E-R-Y close to my lens.  Matter of fact, I gouged the heck out of my right lens when I wanted a bit more sunlight through my aperture & scrunched forward a bit too close.  This is a function of:
1. Aperture size & location
2. My size-larger than standard
3. Stock length-milsurp stock are notoriously shorter than your typical modern sporter


LINKS

RWVA (Revolutionary War Veterans Association)
http://www.rwva.org/

Appleseed Forum
http://www.appleseedinfo.org/smf/

Fred's Plan to Save America
http://www.appleseedinfo.org/as_freds_plan.htm

Less Positive View of an Appleseed Shoot
http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=8&f=34&t=279910&page=1

Mojo Sights
http://www.mojosights.com/
http://www.mojosights.com/swedish_mausers.html

Jerkies
http://www.Jerkies.com/wc2/product.asp?cat=101&type=B&styd=549CH&pdscr=549+HEAVYWEIGHT+COTTON+SHIRT






« Last Edit: November 13, 2007, 11:26:55 AM by jfruser »
Regards,

jfruser

"We have now sunk to a depth at which re-statement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men."
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Offline Scout

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2007, 07:22:38 PM »
Thanks for the great AAR jfruser!!

- I am assuming that your AAR was intended as your application and resume for the position of Public Relations Assistant for the RWVA, and guess what? You are hired. Thanks!! ;) :D ;D ;D ;D

You can start work tomorrow. ;) I need some more folks to join with me in getting the word out and doing media liason, magazine and newspapers and television etc. I am only half kidding, actually I am not kidding at all. I need some help. And your writing skills and very consise and frank observation skills would be a great asset.

I am glad you had a good time, and yes, it is going to be a bit harder if you are just starting out shooting, let alone if you have some rust on your rifle and hide. But you did it and now you know what it is about. Getting folks out and getting the rust off of their rifles and hides and their minds. Getting them to get back into their shooting heritage and become active in their lives. Active with their rifles, bodies and with their pens and phones and emails. Writing their reps and watching out for their country.

I have to agree with you on the people who show up at an appleseed, they are the best people in the world. The smartest, the kindest, most polite and most generous. I was watching you hang into the recoil of that Swede you were firing. I saw a lot of smiles from you, despite the beating I saw you taking. You are welcome back anytime. We are having an Appleseed Jan. 5th and 6th here in Davilla (and maybe one before then, if only a mini).

Thanks for taking the time and making the effort to come out and see what the Appleseed Program is all about and for relaying that info to others.
Scout
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Offline didactic

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2007, 01:47:25 AM »
Jfruser, thanks for your thoughtful and balanced report.  I was one of those Instructors-in-Training.

As a matter of fact, we didn't have enough instructors, with enough shooting and teaching experience, on the line to give OPTIMUM instruction to every shooter.

Aside from just needing more bodies, it's a real problem deciding how to schedule and pace things.
 
Good shooters, on the cusp of qualifying as "Riflemen," roughly equivalent to Army "expert," need one kind of instruction. They're on the edge of achieving excellence, and we really want to encourage that.

Those who basically know how to shoot a rifle but have less-developed skills would benefit more from a different pacing and instructional style.  Most of the people on the line fall into that broad range, so we need to serve their needs.

Raw newbies, especially teenagers, need another.  As an example, on Saturday, I told one of those teenage girls, "OK, now go ahead and chamber a round."  She said, "Huh?"  She didn't have a clue what I was talking about.  Not her fault, nobody is born knowin' that stuff.  Even if they're not going to approach "Rifleman" standards THIS WEEK, the future of the shooting sports and maybe of our country might depend on them and thousands like them having a positive experience, their first time on a shooting range. 


But, we have a limited number of daylight hours, and we ABSOLUTELY MUST KEEP EVERYTHING SAFE.

So, this is an issue we're very aware of, and don't yet have an entirely satisfactory solution.  Any positive suggestions or constructive criticism, from you or anybody else, is 100% welcome.

And thanks again for taking the trouble to come, and the trouble to post your thoughts.  Hope to see you again.   
"If not us, who?  If not now, when?"  Ronald W. Reagan

Offline jfruser

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2007, 11:05:18 AM »
didactic:

My AAR's purpose was to inform those who have yet to take an Appleseed and provide feedback to the instructors.

I understand the constraints and circumstances.  I have been in similar situations as a shake & bake instructor, so you have my sympathies and I didn't get all bent out of shape either in text or at the range.  I did mention it, however, because it was the reality on the ground.

Also, I am in full agreement that we want everyone to leave with the same number of holes in their bodies that they arrived with.  (As a side note, I appreciated the safety expectations briefing.  I have operated under everything from "Big Boy Rules" to "Do Nothing Unless Expressly Ordered to Do So."  Making the expectations explicit lessens not only the likelihood of injury, but of tension and elevated blood pressure as differing expectations/understandings clash.)

Not being Solomon, I have no great wisdom to impart. 

If you twisted my arm for a suggestion, perhaps a questionnaire at (online and walk-on) signup might be able to roughly classify shooters? Something like:
1. Have you shot an Appleseed before?  If "Yes," what was your AQT score?
2. Have you had any formal rifle marksmanship training?  If "Yes," what sort?
    a. Civilian, non-competitive
    b. Civilian, competitive
    c. Military-non-infantry
    d. Military-infantry
    e. Military-specialized (sniper, competition, etc.)
    f. Police carbine
    g. Police sniper
    h. Personal coach who helped you win the Gold in 10m Air Rifle at the 1996 Olympics
    i. Only safe handling, manual of arms and introductory familiarization
    j. <something else & so on>
3. Have you engaged in formal rifle marksmanship competition?  If "Yes," what sort?
    a. NRA High Power
    b. Benchrest
    c. <something else & so on>

A SWAG could be made against the shooter's likely skill level (perhaps an estimated AQT score) and grouped with others of similar experience.
Regards,

jfruser

"We have now sunk to a depth at which re-statement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men."
----George Orwell

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Offline LabRat

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2007, 12:34:54 PM »
I agree with jrfuser's questionnaire suggestion. It might help to group people who need more instruction a little closer together, not to make them feel like they're on the Appleseed short bus or anything, but just because it makes the groups with the same needs for coaching more likely to be able to hear it all at once rather than having the coaches go up and down the line having to show the same thing over again.
Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.

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Offline wcmartin1

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2007, 05:22:56 PM »
Copied from another post:

Thanks to Scout and everyone else (instructors, staff, etc.) that was there and is committed to the cause my son (Billy) , buddy (Rick), and myself had a great time improving our shooting skills, learning some more RW history, and redeeming Texas' honor this weekend.  (Even if we are still in second place, Fred.)
"Unhappy it is, though, to reflect that a brother's sword has been sheathed in a brother's breast and that the once-happy and peaceful plains of America are either to be drenched with blood or inhabited by a race of slaves.  Sad alternative!  But can a virtuous man hesitate in his choice?" - George Washington - from a letter to a close friend after the events of April 19, 1775

"There is no nation on earth powerful enough to accomplish our (the United States) overthrow.  Our destruction, should it come at all, will be from another quarter.  From the inattention of the people to the concerns of their government, from their carelessness and negligence, I must confess that I do apprehend some danger.  I fear that they may place too implicit a confidence in their public servants, and fail properly to scrutinize their conduct; that in this way they may be made the dupes of designing men, and become the instruments of their own undoing." - Daniel Webster, June 1, 1837

Offline shunt

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2007, 06:47:32 AM »
Davilla AAR

This was my first Appleseed event. Actually, it was my first time to attend any type of structured rifle training. I loved it, every single minute of it.

The primary reason(s) I chose to attend the Davilla, TX Appleseed was to benchmark my skill level and simply demonstrate my support for this type of grassroots volunteer-driven organization.

The reason I decided to post this AAR (if you can call it that) can be found near the bottom of jfruserís fine post: Less Positive View of an Appleseed Shoot (http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=8&f=34&t=279910&page=1). After reading that thread I was moved to post this, my first forum message in over ten years. I am writing this for the folks like me, who read the AARs of previous shoots when determining whether or not to attend themselves.



Friday night my best friend drove to Austin from D/FW to join me on pretty short notice. We were looking forward to camping out, testing our skills, and learning more about the finer points of shooting a rifle. We were also excited to be doing so in the company of those who might be drawn to the mission as much as the shooting.

We both grew up with fathers that shot and taught us to shoot but it was a much more organic and informal process. We wanted to learn more about shooting prone and sitting, the formal techniques, so to speak. We were also hopeful to find a few hard-nosed old-school shooters Ė we wanted to see what a capable rifle could do in capable hands Ė and measure ourselves against it.

We had reviewed the info on what to bring and Fredís tips on preparing, for the most part. I had done some prone dry fire practice and had a decent zero but no time or cash to replace my tactical sling setup. My buddy had no elbow or knee pads, didnít practice anything and was unsure of his zero. We didnít have shooting mats, just a couple foam sleeping bag pads and a soft-side gun case. I clearly remember seeing something on the web site about this not being a gear race and that the most important thing was a teachable attitude. I figured we were set.

We were excited to find the large pieces of carpet folded over a rack down by the firing line. I tossed my mat down on top of a nice hump in the dirt. I was fortunate that the guy to my right had left a little extra room between our mats. This made a natural pathway of sorts for people to walk between when returning to the line. The best part was that it was nice and sandy so that each time someone walked past, a pretty little puff of dust would drift over and settle on my rifle. After a good contrast of color had built up around the magazine eject button I turned to my friend on my left. He was already grinning. Good gear testing, he said, then turned to prep his next magazine. We talked about the value of knowing and testing stuff like that while cleaning our rifles the next morning.

The guy hawking my hat most of the weekend had driven from northern Michigan to spend a week of his time, on his own dime, learning how to teach this course. Then he stayed for the weekend and taught me. How cool is that? He let me know he was watching me, even when I was doing it right. ďI saw you move your NPOA for each target, good jobĒ.  Rusty, Mark, and many other trainers paused at my dusty mat to eagle-eye my form, breathing, and trigger work. These guys gave up a lot to make that weekend possible for us. So did the guys who built the range and trained those trainers. I found it incredibly well run and by the most sincere and genuine men Iíve ever shot with.

Did they tell me every little thing I would have liked to have learned, just the way I wanted to hear it? No. A couple of times I had to grab one of them and ask a few questions to get to some actionable info I could apply toward my objective. Can you raise your hand? Willing to set out a round to have an instructor get into the details with you, if need be? If so, youíre set.

If you have serious physical limitations it can be a challenge. So what! We love a challenge donít we? I donít mean to be dismissive or demeaning, seriously, I donít. If you are overweight or have back trouble, it might be hard, it might hurt. Try integrating a stretching routine and cardio exercise into your training program. It may take months to get limber enough to hold a solid sitting position. So be it. Imagine how much louder we will all cheer when you score that mythical mark, all of us, knowing what you have overcome.

Did I get frustrated? You bet I did. I WANT THAT PATCH! On one Q&D AQT I nailed the first stage, 50 points. I was nailing the second stage when, with three rounds left Ė CEASE FIRE, CEASE FIRE, CEASE FIRE. That ended my chance on that AQT. On one string I let my focus slack and shot at my buddyís target, blowing both our scores.  Last day, three tries left, I reset my focus. Wow, Iím close I can feel it Ė 206. Heartbreak! Next to last AQT, I can do this Ė 206. Aaarrrrrg!

You feeling my pain yet? Last AQT of the weekend, this is it, I got this one. Tactical sling be damned. Iím going home a Rifleman. Stage 1, 48 points, back on track. Stage 2, I surprised myself. I scored a little breathing room. Stage 3, guess what I did. I shot my Stage 2 targets, AGAIN, and hammered them. I then proceeded to Stage 4 where I also scored well.

I showed Mark my target. Looks like Rifleman shooting, he said somberly, in a most empathetic tone. But it wasnít and I knew it. Rifleman ainít no gimme, even at 25 meters.

Volunteer-driven organizations encounter problems, obstacles, and challenges, just like I did trying to qualify on my first shoot. Imagine your business or family doubling in size each year. Do you think you might experience a few growing pains? Why do you think Appleseed shoots are growing at this pace? Answer: It works. Does it work perfectly for everyone, every time? Probably not. Not without your help.

Bad experience, bad blood, bad ammo, bad advise, someone moved my sights, a bee stung me Ė blah, blah, blah.  Canít you hear the regulars of this forum chanting in unison? Adapt and Overcome!

Why not get together with some of the old-timers and figure out how to address the issues that frustrated you so that nobody else has a similar experience? Imagine how much you might learn in the process. Why not get involved and contribute towards re-establishing our fine rifleman heritage?

Come to the Davilla Appleseed in January. If you find yourself frustrated beyond repair, ready to scream or pack in your mat, find me, or scream my name out loud and Iíll find you. Weíll figure out a solution and get you back on the line. 

The Appleseed Project is not a commercial enterprise, it is a visionary path. I am on that path.

I am Appleseed
  -shunt
ďWell I see the truth, yes Iíve seen the light and Iíve changed my ways, and Iíll be prepared when youíre lonely and scared at the end of our days.Ē   Ozzy Osbourne, After Forever

Offline Fred

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2007, 08:15:48 AM »

     Great post, shunt!

     Gives every instructor insight into what is happening at the student level. (PS: I would suggest that you cover your rifle to protect it from the dust raised by passersby.)

     And gives the proper perspective on the few 'negative' comments over at arfcom, I think.

     No program will ever be perfect, and to dis a program like this based on the fact that it's less than 100% is to do all of us a diservice.

    PS: Are you planning to post it over at arfcom?
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     What about it, do-nothings? You heard the man, jump on in...

Offline Scout

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2007, 10:08:57 AM »
Mr. Hunt did cover his rifle a few times and I uncovered it for him a few times when I was checking the line. I could tell he approved of this by the look he gave me. ;D

But he was in the middle of the line where there was no grass only fine white grit that was blowing right on to his rifle all day. I stopped at one point and saw him looking at his rifle, that looked like it had just been dug up after a year in the ground and told him he was getting extra special experience that day since he would know exactly how his rifle would function after you poured a box of comet into the action.

When he looked back at me and smiled I knew he was an Appleseeder. ;)

I watched Mr. Hunt through out the day and saw that he was doing well in his position and was very attentive during demos and instruction. I was at the left end of the line though and didn't get to watch him as much.

I did see that he had a tactical type sling that wrapped around his back and was causing his recoil to swing right and I think JB talked with him about this. Your recoil has to be up and down to keep you coming back on target for subsequent shots. Maybe you can get over this, but it is not what we teach, so it is puttng you in a kind of harder starting place.

An after Boot Camp Appleseed is always a little different than a regular one. That is where we have the new guys getting their first chance at instructing. This is not a bad thing. They have just been through six twelve hour days of instruction and have it fresh in their heads. They are always closely monitered by the regular veteran instructors.

Some are a little hesitant about instructing, but I did not see any bad info put out by our new instructors Saturday or Sunday. In fact JB alerted me to a new technique of instructing NPOA adjustment that Rusty had figured out.

We will both be using this from now on. When the shooter is in prone position and the heel is still up before it has been turned down flat, you can grasp the heel and move it back and forth and you will see the rifle muzzle go straight up and down.

This also illustrates the need to turn the foot down after the final adjustments are made.

Yes, there will always be people who come to an Appleseed thinking that they are great shots and will clean up, and when they are stomped by the 25 meter 1 inch squares, it has to be the fault of someone else.

But one inch squares are not easy. They are hard, very hard and if you don't make it the first day, you should not get upset and give in, you should batten down the hatches and rise to the challenge. That is what Riflemen do. They don't complain or give up or get in a tiff. They adapt, they overcome, they percevere. They clean their rifles that night and read their notes an practice dry firing and get on the line hungry the next morning.

That is what Mr. Hunt did, and I guarentee you that if he takes this last weeks training home and practices, when he shows up at the Jan. Appleseed, there will be a Rifleman's patch with his name on it. ;) :D ;D

If it was easy, what would be the point in wearing the patch?
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Offline DragonWood

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2007, 10:10:43 AM »
CONCLUSIONS & LESSONS LEARNED

1. An Appleseed is not appropriate for a new shooter who is ignorant of the effort required to get into the proper shooting positions and such.  This sort of approach works fine for volunteers to military service, but the usual civilian will likely balk at such a steep cost in comfort & tension if they have not yet developed a love of shooting.  Take that new shooter to the range, teach them safety, and let them have some fun before subjecting them to this sort of experience.
Quote from JFRuser
First of all, great report!
Now to address the quote: I have to disagree with you. I attended my first Appleseed in Sept 06, my very first time shooting. I did do my homework and studied Fred's guide so I knew the 6 steps inside out and upside down. I also knew the safety rules hard and fast.
Because of the all the valuable lessons learned at that Appleseed, I took them home with me and practiced and practiced and practiced. I dry fired until I couldn't dry fire any more.  Ayear later I have accomplished my goals of shooting rifleman score (more than a few times) and I am now an instructor! If I hadn't attened an Appleseed, no matter how green I was, I wonder if I would be where I am today.
I wish I could have met you over the Appleseed weekend, I was at the RBC but had to leave, work just got in the way!

We do give you allot of information over the course of two days and there is no way that one could possibly absorb it all. But we do give you the tools and if you take them home with you and study and practice you will accomplish your own personal goals. I have seen Rifleman scores with a bolt gun,.....it is not easy but it can be done! ;D

Hope to see you at another Appleseed, maybe the one in January?
Thanks for taking the time to post and for coming out last weekend, DW


Perseverance and spirit have done wonders in all ages. (George Washington)

Offline Old Dog

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2007, 11:36:18 AM »
link to a couple of positive replies on the M14 Firing Line Public Forum.  Both guys are already talking about going back again next year.

http://www.m14firinglineforum.com/upload/showthread.php?t=45764
"The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles."

óJeff Cooper, The Art of the Rifle

Offline LabRat

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2007, 12:05:15 PM »
Admittedly, I've only been to the one Davilla AS so far, but it seems to me, you get out of an AS what you put into it. I went in not knowing what to expect and found that, while I wasn't terrible, I certainly had a LOT of room for improvement (still do, of course). Simply by keeping an open mind and not worrying about how much things hurt and whether someone had adjusted my sights or flying brass or loud noises or whatever, I was able to improve a lot. I listened to advice the instructors were giving and tried it out to see what worked for me. Some of it did, some didn't. I didn't fault the instructor in the latter case, just some things I either couldn't get the hang of or just couldn't make work for me.

I don't get the carping over at arf.com. Maybe some people have trouble with the style and/or pace of teaching, but frankly, what do you want for $70 and a shoestring budget with guys volunteering their time 'cause they believe in the goals of the program? For me, I can say without a doubt, it's the best $70 I ever spent. If you want someone to hold your hand and rub your sore shoulders and tell you it'll all be okay, then pay your $1200 and go to one of the big-name schools and stay at a Hilton. Complaining about how AS isn't "practical" strikes me as ignorant. Yeah, maybe it doesn't prepare you for MOUT or CQB or whatever the acronym for the latest training fad is, but what AS does do is teach you how to hit with your rifle and if you can't do that basic step, all the fancy equipment and acronym-ed courses in the world aren't going to do you any good. You want to do that stuff, fine. AS will serve as a very nice baseline for where your skills are and will hopefully help you improve those skills which can only be for the good, whatever you decide to do later.

By the way, none of this is directed at folks here. I was referring more to the harsher comments over at the arf.com thread.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2007, 12:21:28 PM by LabRat »
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Offline Grin Reaper

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2007, 12:26:58 PM »
Quote
Bad experience, bad blood, bad ammo, bad advise, someone moved my sights, a bee stung me Ė blah, blah, blah.  Canít you hear the regulars of this forum chanting in unison? Adapt and Overcome!
I see a t-shirt idea in this post:
The sun wasn't in your eyes, there was no wind, there is nothing wrong with your ammo, nobody moved your sights, the bee was not buzzing past your face -- you missed the shot.  Deal with it.

Thanks for the post, shunt.
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Offline Guy

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2007, 08:12:44 PM »
That "Tactical sling be damned!" bit shows me he is with us heart and soul.

Adapt, Overcome, and, most importantly, PERSEVERE!

Good to have had all of you there, no mater what.  All feed back is helpful.  In the meantime, get down and do some positional dryfire practice and NPOA practice.

Then (and most likely ONLY then) there will be a Rifleman Patch in your future.

Guy

Offline wcmartin1

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2007, 08:22:06 PM »
In the meantime, get down and do some positional dryfire practice and NPOA practice.

Then (and most likely ONLY then) there will be a Rifleman Patch in your future.

Roger that.  Good idea!  I'll logoff and do some now.  See ya.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2007, 08:28:26 PM by wcmartin1 »
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Offline Grin Reaper

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Re: Appleseed 10-11NOV2007, Davilla, TX AAR
« Reply #15 on: November 15, 2007, 01:22:38 PM »
"It calls for real men, not girly-men. Hard-nosed, hard-assed, born-again hard, glittering steel-eyed hombres who can put the trigger on their mother over a five dollar gold piece. Yes, friends, this job calls for a Zombie Hunter." Fred
"There's gotta be a few umlauts laying around somewhere." JB