Pic of the Day: Choke Tubes All Choked Up

SCTP Florida Shoot Beretta-4

When you shoot competition shotguns, like this Beretta 682 Gold Trap, gunk accumulates quickly. While one might shoot a half-dozen rounds while hunting, a moderate day on the competition clay fields easily numbers in the hundreds. These are a pair of Pure Gold choke tubes, both Light Modified, used a the recent SCTP Collegiate Florida shoot. Nine colleges, 133 student competitors and some very experienced choke tubes.

Try Competitions To Become A More Effective Shooter

Competition shootingThere’s a big difference between good and effective.

If you are involved in shooting purely for recreation and the joy of punching holes in paper or tin cans, then being a good shooter is, well, good enough.

If you intend to use your gun for self or home defense, then you need to think about how to become a more effective shooter.

What’s the difference?

When you’re enjoying a range outing with family and friends, you can be really, really good. Your shots impact where you want and they’re all impressively close together. When it comes time to reload or change magazines, no worries, you can chit chat about that new gun you want while leisurely preparing for the next round of shots. Hurrying or running around while trying to shoot would put a real damper on your ability to make pretty target patterns. You’ve got all day, and when time isn’t a factor, you are one impressive shooter!

That’s good, as long as you aren’t planning to use these “impressive shooter”qualifications for self-defense needs. If you intend to have a gun for personal protection or home defense, then you need to be effective, not just good. You need to safely operate your gun and get shots on target when the conditions are the worst imaginable—exactly the opposite of those fun days at the range.

One way to become a more effective shooter is to introduce a little bit of pressure and stress into your shooting routine. In this issue of First Shots News, Barbara Baird talks about various types of competitive shooting, so I’ll focus on what those competitions can do to make you more effective.

Even though some shooting competitions, like International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) mimic self- or home-defense situations, they won’t help you much with specific defensive tactics. They will, however, help you master core skills that can contribute to your ability to use a gun in a defensive situation. Let’s consider some skills you can improve by shooting competitively.

Read the rest in the National Shooting Sports Foundations First Shots Newsletter!

The Rookie's Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

The Rookie’s Introduction to Shotgun Sports

Trap Shooting: Competitors fire at targets moving away from the shooting line.

Trap Shooting: Competitors fire at targets moving away from the shooting line.

When I first expressed interest in the shotgun shooting sports, I was completely confused.

In their enthusiasm to share the sport, all my shotgun friends started right into detailed knowledge and tips and tricks. For example, they talked to me about how to aim a shotgun, how to get ‘classified’ and how to lead clay targets. All good intentions aside, no one stopped talking long enough to appreciate how little I knew. Without a basic understanding of the games, how was I to know what these things meant?

Imagine a lifelong resident of, oh say, Gardone Val Trompia, Italy, asking about American Football. If you started talking about safeties, chop blocks and intentional grounding rules, they’d likely be confused. It’s the same situation for someone new to competitive shotgun sports. What are shotgun sports? Is trap shooting the same as skeet or sporting clays? What are the differences? Which one might I like? What are clay pigeons? Are they remote-controlled? Do you have to feed them?

If you’re new to shotgun sports, or clays shooting, you might enjoy this quick and practical guide.

All shotgun sports have one thing in common. You blast hunks of clay out of the sky.

To expand on that just a bit, all use targets called clay pigeons. No, they do not look like pigeons – they look like little Frisbees about four inches in diameter. Instead of plastic, they’re made of clay. Launching machines, called “traps” fling them off into space in different directions depending on which clay shooting discipline we’re talking about. With all clay shotgun sports, the idea is for you to hit this rapidly flying clay target and shatter it to bits. It’s ridiculously fun and addictive in a healthy way. The first time you break a target, you’ll be hooked. I guarantee it.

Now let’s take a quick look at the three major shotgun sports. Each has variants within that we’ll cover in upcoming articles.

Read the rest at Beretta USA!

 

Grab a copy of Tom’s free eBook, A Fistful of Shooting Tips. It will help make you a better shooter and the envy of your range in no time.

Students with Guns!

Some of the Team Clemson shooters just finishing a round.

Some of the Team Clemson shooters just finishing a round.

So, a history major, a veterinarian and a sorority girl walk into a gun range…

If there was a politician in the mix, this might sound like the beginning of a corny joke. Well, it’s not. And it’s actually been going on for 45 years now.

What is it? Welcome to the Collegiate Scholastic Clay Target Program. That’s right. Students with guns!

The Scholastic Clay Target Program (SCTP), is part of the Scholastic Shooting Sports Foundation (SSSF). And all of those are under the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) umbrella. Yes, there are a lot of acronyms at play, but if something has an acronym, it must be really important, right?

The Scholastic Shooting Sports Foundation exists to encourage youth development through safe and responsible shooting sports. You may not know it, but students from elementary, junior high, high school and colleges all over the country join local teams, practice and compete on a regular basis. Right now, there are two primary shooting disciplines – shotgun and pistol. The Scholastic Clay Target Program is focused on a blend of clay target shooting sports including trap, skeet andsporting clays. The Scholastic Pistol Program gets students into speed shooting at steel plate targets. Sound familiar? Think Steel Challenge.

College students from across the country have recently completed practiced, traveled and competed in the highlight of the year – the Collegiate National Clay Target Championship. Run by the Association of College Unions International (ACUI), this year’s event took place in San Antonio, TX March 26 through March 30. In case you’re wondering, Overall Team winners for Divisions 1, 2 and 3 were Lindenwood University, Fort Hays State University and Hillsdale College respectively.

Read the rest at Beretta USA!

Shooting Myth: Competitive Shooting Will Get You Killed On the Street

Competitive Shooting is not only fun, it can help you build basic skills.

Competitive Shooting is not only fun, it can help you build basic skills.

Why is it that Internet opinions are so binary? Black or white, right or wrong, my way or the highway – it’s kind of like politics in the real world.

  • 45 is the only caliber! Because you only need to shoot once!
  • 9mm is fantastic – if you want to shoot balloons.
  • Competitive shooting skills will get you killed on the street!

As with anything in life, there is rarely all right or all wrong. I tend to think in terms of better, better still, and even more better. Or on the flip side, I like to consider worse, way worse, and worse than Piers Morgan’s ratings.

Listening to Internet arguments about the merits of competitive shooting, one might think that if you practice competition skills, you’ll instantly burst into flames and self-immolate should you find yourself in a self-defense situation.

A few weeks ago, I was watching an episode of Shooting USA with my college-age son and his roommates. We were having a great time – me feeling young, hip and cool, and them looking at their watches every few minutes.

Anyway, this particular Shooting USA episode included coverage of the IDPA Indoor Championships. If you don’t know, IDPA stands for International Defensive Pistol Association. In their words,

IDPA is the use of practical equipment including full charge service ammunition to solve simulated “real world” self-defense scenarios using practical handguns and holsters that are suitable for self-defense use. The main goal is to test the skill and ability of an individual.

In other words, it’s a competition structured to partially mimic potential real-life defensive encounters. In the interest of making competitions fun and stimulating, the “real-life” part tends to get a little stretched now and then.

For example, at the IDPA Indoor National Championships, one stage in particular appeared immensely fun, but just a tad outside the bounds of reality. It was an example of duck hunting gone horribly wrong. The shooter is placed in a duck blind, when suddenly a band of terrorists (or maybe hunting thugs intent on duck-jacking) makes their way across the front of your blind in a tactical rowboat. You have a short window of opportunity to deal with them as the entrance and exit of the “battle boat” are obscured with weeds or some form of aquatic plant life. Oh, there’s a hostage in the boat-jacking scenario that you can’t shoot. No word if that’s supposed to represent Uncle Si from Duck Dynasty.

Your mission, and you WILL accept it as you’re competing in the IDPA Indoor National Championships, is to take out the Duck Commandos as quickly as you can, without shooting Uncle Si, and before the boatload of doom escapes into the weeds.

Lest you think this sounds easy, the Duck Commandos planned in advance and had sniper over watch. When you start perforating the rowboat, the accomplices pop up all over the place from their hides, and you have to take them out too. You have to reload at least once in the process of filling the room with smoke and that delicious powder smell. Yum! I love the smell of what bad and uninformed novelists call cordite in the morning!

Read the rest at OutdoorHub!

Crimson Trace’s Midnight 3 Gun Invitational: Enlightened in the Dark

How does a company prove that they have absolute faith in their products?

Unloading an AR-15, in the middle of the night, as fast as you can acquire targets, looks kind of like this. Crimson Trace Midnight 3 Gun Event

Unloading an AR-15, in the middle of the night, as fast as you can acquire targets, looks kind of like this. Crimson Trace Midnight 3 Gun Event

If you’re Crimson Trace, and your products were designed to help our warfighters, peace officers, and armed citizens protect themselves more effectively, you might…

  • Invite a bunch of folks to the middle of the desert.
  • Tell them to be sure to arrive in the middle of the night.
  • Encourage them to bring not one gun, but three. And plenty of ammunition.
  • Ask them to use your light and laser products.
  • Then, after all that, have them run around and shoot stuff as fast as they possibly can.

In today’s risk-averse society, that sounds kind of crazy doesn’t it? Somehow I can’t see the gutless leadership teams of Fortune 500 companies having that much faith in the capabilities of their products–and their customers. But that’s what I love about the shooting industry. Not just the sense of absolute faith and pride in the products, but the inherent trust that individuals involved will assume personal responsibility for safety and fun–in that order. Hats off to Crimson Trace for putting their money where their mouth is!

For the second year in a row, Crimson Trace invited members of the media and some of the best 3-gun shooters to participate in the Crimson Trace Midnight 3 Gun Invitational. Set at the Central Oregon Shooting Sports Association in the high desert about 30 miles outside of Bend, Oregon, this match is a back to the basics affair. Electricity? Nope. Running water? Nope. Absolute darkness? Yep.

Read the rest at OutdoorHub.com!

What Do You Need To Shoot 3 Guns At Night? Loadout for the Crimson Trace Midnight 3 Gun Invitational

Later this week, I’m going to run around shooting guns in the pitch dark. Just for fun.

The Crimson Trace midnight 3 Gun Invitational event takes place far from city lights outside of Bend, Oregon. The matches begin at 9 or 10pm each night and continue until 3am or so. So it will be dark. Really dark. All three guns – shotgun, rifle and pistol – will need a 100 lumen light at minimum. Lasers will help  make target designation faster. Night vision gear is allowed, but I’ll take that plunge next year if I’m able to attend.

Since Crimson Trace is sponsoring the event, I’m choosing to equip with everything possible from Crimson Trace products. Just to see what’s possible with the current product line. Here’s a breakdown of the gear I’m bringing:

Glock 17 Crimson Trace lightguard lasergrips 9mm

Glock 17 Gen 4 – It’s hard to beat a double-stack polymer wonder gun for this type of event. High round count, low-recoiling 9mm ammo, easy availability of Crimson Trace Lasergrips and a rail to attach a Crimson Trace Lightguard makes this a strong contender or the ideal M3GI pistol.

Crimson Trace M3GI Gear Glock Lasergrips

Crimson Trace Lasergrips for Glock Gen 4 full size and compact – I like this specific version as it’s compatible with a Crimson Trace Lightguard. The laser features a rear-activated pressure switch while the Lightguard has a front-activation switch. There’s also a positive on/off button to save battery life when you’re shooting in daylight conditions.

Crimson Trace M3GI Gear lightguard Glock 17

Crimson Trace Lightguard for Glock – Blasting out 100 lumens of light with 2 hours of continuous operation, this light will make target identification easy for anything within pistol distance.

Smith  Wesson M P 15 VTAC 8  1

Smith & Wesson M&P 15 VTAC – With a 1:7 twist barrel, this rifle shines with heavier projectiles at longer range. While this match, given the dark conditions, will have all targets inside of 200 yards, how can I not bring this honey? The Viking Tactics JP hand guard allows you to mount sling attachments and rail segments just about anywhere you want.

Bushnell Elite Tactical 1 6 5x24 12  2

Bushnell Tactical Elite 1-6.5×24 with BTR-2 reticleI reviewed this a while back and loved the flexibility. With a first focal plane reticle, it acts like a red dot at true 1x power and a moderate range scope when zoomed in. It should be perfect for nighttime targets from 25 to 100 yards away.

Switchview 679

MGM Switchview – You know MGM Targets right? The folks that make all those fun steel plates and critters to shoot at? Well, they also have a nifty little accessory for rifle optics with a zoom ring. The Switchview lever clamps over the zoom ring and features a “throw bar” lever to make adjusting power level fast and easy. It also offers a great visual indicator as to how the scope is currently set. If you’re shooting in the pitch dark, like at the Crimson Trace Midnight 3 Gun event, you can feel the current zoom setting on your optic!

Crimson Trace MVF 515 673

Crimson Trace MVF-515 Modular Vertical Foregrip – I’ve used this in daylight and dusk conditions but can’t wait to shoot it in the dark. Dual touch controls on both sides operate either a green laser and/or a 150 to 200 lumen tactical light. Couldn’t be more intuitive.

Vtac ug main

Viking Tactics Padded Sling – Love, love, love this sling. Here’s why. It’s two point attachment allows you to brace the rifle for steadier shooting and of course tote your rifle around. It’s got quick-adjust tabs that allow you to instantly tighten the sling, or loosen it for shooting. You can even flip the rifle to your offside shoulder without removing the sling. The rifle carries well muzzle down in the front or muzzle up in the back without adjusting the sling straps. Oh, and it’s padded for comfort. Highly recommended!

Crimson Trace M3GI Gear Magpul PMAG Window

Magpul PMAG 30 Gen 3 Window Magazines – PMAGs. Need I say more? With windows to see how many rounds you have left.

Mossberg JM Pro Tactical Class  1

Mossberg JM Pro Semi-Automatic Shotgun – Look for a full review on this one soon. In short, it’s part of the Mossberg 930 Signature Series and this one has Jerry Miculek behind the design. If you need more than the 9+1 capacity to deal with your targets, you might want to bring some friends with guns.

Crimson Trace M3GI Gear RailMaster Light

Crimson Trace RailMaster Universal Tactical Light – I’m actually bringing this along with no intention of using it. Currently, I have it mounted on a rail segment on the Mossberg JM Pro. With 100 lumens of light and a constant on switch, it will work great for shotgun distance targets. Hopefully it will get left in my shooting back for the event. Read the next segment to see why.
? Crimson Trace CMR-204 Combination Light / Laser – Word has it that these soon-to-be-released units will be available to test at the match. So, if my assumptions are correct about this being a rail mounted unit with integrated light and laser, it will be taking the place of the RailMaster light currently strapped on to the Mossberg JM Pro!
Mesa Tactical SureShell Shotshell Side Saddle Carrier  4 Mesa Tactical SureShell ShotShell Side Saddle Shell Carrier – Say that 10 times fast. Now again, but in Cantonese. When 10 rounds of 12 gauge isn’t enough, reach for some reloads on the side of your receiver. The match format calls for low-volume shot gun reloads so this should provide perfect insurance against the occasional miss.

Crimson Trace M3GI Gear Cyclops LED visor light

Cyclops Solutions LED Hat Clip Light – The whole place will be pitch dark! So I’m bringing this nifty little device I found on a recent trip out west. It’s a 3 LED light that clips on to the brim of most any hat. Turn it on and illuminate whatever is in front of your face. Unfortunately I’ll probably be sulking over my scorecard with this piece of gear.

Crimson Trace M3GI Gear Safariland ELS competition belt

Safariland ELS Competition Belt and Magazine Carriers – Another review in progress, the Safariland ELS system is impressive. An inner belt goes through your pants belt loops. The outside of the inner belt is velcro. The outer belt is pretty rigid stuff with a velcro lining. This sticks on to the inner belt and is surprisingly secure. The outer belt features 118,839 holes (my estimate) that are used to attach ELS plate “sockets.” Accessories like magazine carriers, holsters, shotshell carriers, rifle magazine carriers, light pouches and duty gear are attached by mounting the male portion of the “plate sockets” to the individual accessory. You can easily add and remove components depending on your match or duty requirements. It’s really, really flexible. I’m configuring the belt with two Glock magazine pouches, two shotshell carriers, two AR magazine punches and a holster. I might add a Bat grappling hook system if I have time.

Desantis Speed Scabbard Glock Lightguard

DeSantis Speed Scabbard Holster for Glock 17,19,22,23 with Crimson Trace Lightguard or Laserguard – This is really more of a concealed carry holster for Glocks equipped with Lightguard tactical lights. It’s made of leather, not Kydex and does not feature a reinforced mouth for quick reholstering. As the match stages all end with pistol, the way I’m shooting them anyway, this will be fine. I’m really excited to use this as a CCW holster after the match.

Crimson Trace M3GI Gear SportEar hearing protection

SportEar XT4 Electronic Earmuffs – I picked up a set of these at the Shooting Industry Masters event and have used them ever since. Not only do the electronics block out dangerous sound levels over 85dB, they amplify nearby sounds up to eight times. Separate frequency adjustment knobs allow you to tune the system to hear things like range commands and quiet noises like a twig snapping in the woods.

Crimson Trace M3GI Gear 685

Cabelas Armor Xtreme Double Long-Gun Hard Case – This case is a tank. Made of sturdy, high-impact resin, it has four crank-down locks and accepts two padlocks for travel. You can cut the center foam layer to fit your specific toting needs. It’s got a gasket seal and is water and airtight. A pressure release valve makes it cool for air travel. Most important feature? Lifetime warranty!
blackhawk padded weapons case Blackhawk Padded Weapons Case – This two rifle soft case is what I’ll use while at the range. The Cabelas Armor Xtreme is for travel while this one is for range use. A padded interior with divider allows you to easily carry to long guns. Extra pockets accommodate magazines and range gear. You can even unzip this case all the way to configure it as a shooting mat.

Danner Rivot TFX Hot Military Boots

Danner Rivot GTX Hot Military Boots – Danner has graciously provided these for the match. I’ve been wearing them the past few weeks to break them in and already it’s clear these are not only comfortable, but durable.

ESS Crossbow Eyeshields

ESS Crossbow Eyeshields – We reviewed these a while back and found them to be some of the best eye protection that money can buy, short of full combat goggles.

Think that’s enough? Let’s see how I fare with the TSA gauntlet of molestation…

New Book: The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition

If you’re thinking about buying a gun, are new to shooting, or have had a gun forever but just want a refresher, this book is for you. Heck, even if you know a lot about guns, it’s still entertaining – to read yourself or give to a friend.

The Rookie's Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition from Insanely Practical Guides

The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition from Insanely Practical Guides

In light-hearted style, it will give you easy-to-understand and insanely practical tips about topics including:

  • Types of guns
  • Gun safety tips
  • Things to consider when choosing a gun
  • How to buy a gun
  • How to handle a gun
  • Getting started: A fistful of shooting tips
  • What to expect at the shooting range and what to bring
  • What you need to know about ammunition
  • How to clean your gun
  • Cheat sheet resources to help you find training, ranges and local gun stores

We’ll help you make sense out of all that complicated gun stuff while having a laugh or two. From the chapter “Gun Holsters – Do It Right!”

“Far too many new gun owners purchase a really nice gun, but then skimp on the quality of their holster. Seriously? You wouldn’t drink a Louis Roederer, 1990 Cristal Brut from a red Solo cup. Unless of course you’re attending a Real Housewives of Yulee, FL baby shower. If you’ve been invited to carry the Dubai First Royale MasterCard, you certainly wouldn’t whip it out at the Monte Carlo Van Cleef & Arpels from a velcro wallet. Unless you’re total nouveau riche like Justin Bieber. So why do people think it’s no big deal to buy a $9.95 holster from K-Mart for their brand new gun? It’s not like it’s a life and death investment. Or is it?”

Why do you need “The Rookie’s Guide To Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition?” Go to any shooting range and observe what happens when folks show up without knowing the first thing about their new gun. Not only will you be safe by comparison, you’ll look like a seasoned pro.

The editors at MyGunCulture.com have painstakingly documented all the experiences, mistakes and learnings we’ve seen over the years. In other words, we’ve tried just about everything. We’ve had great successes. We’ve experienced colossal failures. We’ve listened to so many gun show huckster sales pitches that the late Billy Mays would be impressed. And the result? “The Rookie’s Guide to Guns and Shooting, Handgun Edition.”

Loaded with pictures and the comedic illustrations, this book will tell you just about everything you need to know to get started with the shooting sports.

Enjoy!

 

Team Smith & Wesson’s Trevor Baucom: Go Big or Go Home!

If you’re thinking about getting into competitive shooting, you could always start small, maybe with a local club match. Of you could just go and enter the most challenging competition there is – the Bianchi Cup. That’s what Team Smith & Wesson’s Trevor Baucom did. Oh, and he did it from a wheelchair. You see, Trevor is a medically retired Chief Warrant Officer and Blackhawk Pilot who was paralyzed in a crash during a night assault mission in Afghanistan. Now, as a sponsored competitive shooter, he’s opening doors to the shooting sports for lots of folks.

Trevor Baucom, Team Smith & Wesson

We caught up with Team Smith & Wesson’s Trevor Baucom at SHOT Show 2013.

We had a lot of fun talking with Trevor Baucom. Here’s what we learned…

My Gun Culture: So Trevor, if we have our facts straight, you’re a relatively new addition to Team Smith & Wesson. Didn’t you join the team sometime in mid-2011?

Trevor Baucom: That’s right, I was formally introduced as a team member at the NRA Annual Meeting in 2011 in Pittsburgh.

MGC: Now for the interesting part – was your first major competition really the The 2011 Bianchi Cup National Championship?

Trevor: Well no, not really. Bianchi was my FIRST shooting competition PERIOD! I had shot plenty just playing around, but never anything in terms of serious competition. After a couple of months of training, Bianchi was the first match I ever shot!

MGC: Ummm, that’s kind of like learning how to read by picking up a copy of War and Peace isn’t it? For those who aren’t familiar, the Bianchi Cup is the most brutal test of handgun shooting skill.

Trevor: It’s all about accuracy. Meaning out to 50 yards with a handgun kind of accuracy.

MGC: So were you completely high on drugs to venture into competitive shooting this way?

Trevor: Nah… That was the first one and I kind of think “Go big or go home!” I had a blast and it was really fun.

MGC: So how did you do?

Trevor: Well, I didn’t come close to winning. Doug Koenig has nothing to fear from me! I’ll improve on it as I go. My goal is always to outdo myself every year. Hey I didn’t come in last place either…

MGC: How did the whole Smith & Wesson thing come about? Tell us about the chain of events that got you here.

Trevor: I had just gotten out of the hospital and was going to outpatient rehab. I was in and out of the rehab facility and I saw this car with GUNS-TV on the license plate and I thought “That’s pretty cool.” Then I saw a 2nd Ranger Battalion license plate on the front of the car. And I did my first five years in the Army in the 1st Ranger Battalion so I go out there one day and see a bunch of guys talking by that car. So I went over and asked who the Ranger was. The guy answered that it was actually his son, and it turned out the guy was Jim Scoutten, host of Shooting USA. Anyway, over the next week or so, we talked more and one thing led to another. He introduced me to the folks at Smith & Wesson and here we are.

MGC: Now you also shoot Steel Challenge right?

Trevor: Yes sir!

MGC: How’s that going for you?

Trevor: It’s a blast, I love Steel Challenge. I did the World Shoot the past couple of years. I’ve been improving my times year over year and did the Nationals this year.

MGC: We also heard that you’re starting into 3 Gun competition as well?

Trevor: I am. I am shooting the AR15.com match in July at Rock Castle. That’s going to be my first major 3 Gun match. Ithaca Gun Company has sponsored me. They don’t offer a semi-auto shotgun, so I have to shoot the Heavy Metal class. So I’m going hard core!

MGC: Let’s talk about your competition guns. For Bianchi and Steel Challenge what are you using?

Trevor: I’m shooting the Smith & Wesson M&P Pro Series with a 5 inch barrel. I’ve got a production version and an Open Class M&P that Apex Tactical has fixed up for me. For Steel Nationals, I’m going to shoot the new Smith & Wesson M&P Core. For 3 Gun I’ll be shooting a Smith & Wesson M&P AR, probably the 300 Whisper. So I’ll still be shooting the .30 caliber for Heavy Metal, but with a little less pop. Then I’ll use one of the Smith & Wesson M&P Core’s in .45 ACP for the pistol and of course an Ithaca Model 37 pump shotgun.

MGC: So with all that, you’ll leave Rock Castle with a nice, sore, shoulder…

Trevor: Nah, it’s alright. They hooked me up with a really nice recoil reducer. It has a strut inside that soaks up a lot of the recoil. I did a charity trap shoot with it a couple weeks ago and it was fine.

MGC: Let’s talk about hunting. You live in Tennessee right? Lot’s of hunting opportunities there, so what do you enjoy?

Trevor: There’s lot’s of hunting and fishing. I hunt deer, turkey, and HAVA (Honored American Veterans Afield) is working on getting me out for an elk hunt too.

MGC: So how was your deer season this year?

Trevor: I didn’t get out very much at all. But, my oldest son got his first deer. It ended up being a management buck, but it was bigger than the 10 pointer it was hanging next to in the freezer. So while it was a management buck, it was a big one. So that was the only one we got this year as we just didn’t get out enough. Turkey season is great because I don’t have to go anywhere. The farmer behind us has given us free rein to hunt 300 acres for Turkey. So as long as I don’t shoot his cows, I’m OK!

MGC: No worries, I’m sure the Bianchi Cup stuff has got your accuracy all set. So, since you’re an Army Ranger veteran and probably expert on this topic, you can settle a long-standing debate. My wife and I have been arguing over the best home-defense gun. I think it’s an MK19 Automatic Grenade Launcher, but she’s worried about the blast radius and collateral damage. What say you? Settle this for us, please.

Trevor: I got this. I coach soccer, and one of the soccer parents asked me about home-defense a couple of weeks ago. Her husband is deployed and there is a lot of construction where she lives, so there are lots of strangers coming and going at weird times. She went shopping for pistols and couldn’t figure out what she needed. I told her, look, we’ll get you a pump shotgun. First of all, the noise is going to scare the hell out of anybody. If someone tries to break in, take your boys into the bedroom, and if someone tries to come in, shoot them right in the junk! He’s not gonna mess with you any more! So that’s where I’m at. Load it with light bird shot – you don’t have to have anything heavy. It’s not gonna go through walls. If you hit him below the belt, he’s going to stop. And a pump shotgun has follow-up rounds if you need them. A shotgun is harder to miss with than a pistol and it’s not going to go through walls and such.

MGC: Remind me never to break into your house… So what’s your schedule for the year looking like?

Trevor: I’m competing about once a month on average. What I really love is doing HAVA shoots. I love going HAVA because you’ll get guys out there and see a 180 degree attitude change. We had a quadriplegic who hadn’t been able to get out. We set him up with a friend operating the stick because he can’t move anything. They had the sip and puff trigger where you blow into it and it shoots the gun. That guy went from not saying a word to anyone and moping to having a huge smile after the second round. He was happy, having fun, and talking to everybody. That’s why I love HAVA. You get the wives and kids out there. They teach everyone gun safety first and get them shooting. It’s a great organization.

 

We’d like to thank Trevor Baucom and Team Smith & Wesson for helping us get Trevor’s story out there. If you haven’t tried competitive shooting, you now have no excuse! No need to start with the Bianchi Cup though. You can leave that to Trevor.

Michelle Viscusi: Team Glock’s Military Police Enforcer & Former Gymnast

Michelle Viscusi Team Glock

Team Glock’s Michelle Viscusi

Today we’re talking with Team Glock Shooter, Top Shot contestant, Border Patrol scout and former Army Military Police veteran Michelle Viscusi. We expect to hear scandalous stories about the many times she had to arrest Glock teammate KC Eusebio, also retired Army, at some hole-in-the-wall border cantina. Let’s get to the bottom of the rumors…

My Gun Culture: So Michelle, from a look at your background, I see that you’ve served in the Army Military Police and Border Patrol. Can you give us a bit more background on that?

Michelle Viscusi: I’ve actually served in the Army National Guard. My time with Border Patrol was during my active duty with the Army. I was assigned to border patrol duties for about a year and a half. So I was still Army, just working with my counterparts at Border Patrol.

MGC: So you were busting people coming across the border and engaging in big firefights with drug cartels?

Michelle: Actually, our duty was more of an observe and report role…

MGC: So you were piloting attack drones then?

Michelle: No, unfortunately we didn’t get to do any cool things like that. I wish!

MGC: We just talked with KC Eusebio, who is also retired Army. Since you were part of the Army Military Police, I suspect you had some run ins with him. How many times did you have to arrest KC at some Tijuana bar for conduct unbecoming of an Army soldier? We expect the truth, so no trying to cover for your teammate!

Michelle: I wish I could give you a huge story…

MGC: Well, just make one up!

Michelle: He doesn’t even drink, so there’s no way I could have arrested him at a Mexican bar.

MGC: Maybe he just likes to fight in bars?

Michelle: Well, maybe we brought him in about 5 times then…

MGC: So, Military police huh? I’m standing here next to you and I’m about twice as fat as you. I’m trying to picture you wrestling and cuffing drunk angry  dudes…

Michelle: Are you calling me fat?

MGC: No, I’m calling ME fat. What do you do as an MP? Are you out arresting people and throwing them in the brig?

Michelle: Well, actually I’m not LEO (law enforcement officer), I’m more general purpose duty.

MGC: Let’s talk about Top Shot! We’re big fans and loved your season. What changed in your life the day after the first episode aired?

Michelle: My life has completely changed! The show helped me to get here! It’s interesting because my time in the military helped me get on Top Shot, and Top Shot helped get me into competition shooting representing Glock. Obviously I wasn’t on there a really long time, but I’m thankful to have a good following!

MGC: How did you decide to apply for the show?

Michelle: I was watching Season 2 and loved it. I sent in an email and photo and I heard back about 3 weeks later. From that point, it was just following the application process.

MGC: So did you shoot Glocks before joining Team Glock?

Michelle: Well, actually, the first gun I ever owned was a Glock 19, so I’ve always been crazy about Glocks.

MGC: How old were you when you got your first Glock?

Michelle: Ummm….. 21? Yeah, it must have been 21… But seriously I started shooting my own Glock 19 when I was 19. But I started shooting when I was 15. When I started shooting competition, I started shooting a Glock 34.

MGC: Tell us about the first time you ever shot a gun.

Michelle: Well I was 15 and my dad took me to the range, just for fun! I was nervous but loved it. My dad was a cop, so he had a gun and shot quite a bit.

MGC: Were you instantly hooked or was shooting just something you did now and then?

Michelle: Well actually at the time, I was really big into gymnastics – that was what I was going to do. But when I joined the Army, I really grew to love shooting – so that’s when I got really serious about it.

MGC: Tell us how many Glocks you own. You can round off to the nearest dozen.

Michelle: We’ll right now, I only own two. But I expect that to be changing this year when I start competing more.

MGC: How much time do you expect to be on the road competing this year?

Michelle: It’s averaging 1-2 weeks per month. My schedule seems to be about 2 competitions per month, but I am shooting and preparing for a week around each one.

MGC: Tell us about the equipment you’ll be using this year.

Michelle: I’ll mostly be shooting a Glock 34, but will use a Glock 17 for some divisions. I’m doing both IPSC and IDPA. I use a JR Holster.

MGC: So what’s it like jetting around the world in the Glock corporate jet?

Michelle: It’s awesome! There’s usually a pile of cash waiting on my seat along with champagne :-)

MGC: We ask everybody to weigh in and solve a long standing debate question. Do you think that an MK19 Automatic Grenade Launcher is appropriate for home defense?

Michelle: We’ll only if it had a Glock Gen 5 logo on the side. And I would put one in each window, facing out, to minimize blast damage in the house.

MGC: Let’s finish up with a hypothetical question. The Gunny, R. Lee Ermey, also represents Glock. If you had to bust him for disorderly conduct, could you take him down alone, or would you have to call for backup?

Michelle: You know, I’d probably have to call for backup, but I’d give him a good fight!

Thanks to Michelle Viscusi and the nice folks from Glock for helping us catch up and learn a little more about Glock’s newest competitive shooter!

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