My first training course with the Brushbeater crew was entertaining and educational.
I’ll give a quick review on the Pro’s and Con’s of the course and then follow up with a short conclusion. Needless to say, I enjoyed the after-hours event hosted by “NC Scout” and Company the most. There was no shortage of beers and whiskey and the conversations were priceless. I haven’t left the house much, except for work, since COVID-19. I really enjoyed the laughs and lessons. During the Brushbeater afterhours entertainment, I learned as much as I did during the day. We discussed all things America, Current Events, and 2A.
- You get to perform movements that are banned at most shooting ranges and training courses.
- You can run the training lessons again, time permitting. Just hop back in line.
- Observing, using, and handling the equipment of other shooters.
- Conversing with other patriots on tactics, gear, and current events. Meatspace Matters.
- The instruction is practical and useful. No fancy egos or ridiculous training philosophies.
- What kit works and what kit doesn’t. Not all kit is created equal.
- No Long-Range confirmation on zero. But I can, and will, do that at my local range.
- The class may have been a little too large, but the more the merrier in my opinion.
- No handouts on AK zero theory, trajectory, or terminal performance. However, I can test this on my own, make a technical packet, and make a supplementary DOPE book.
- Raise hands before speaking. Classroom environments require classroom rules.
- Every AK should be zeroed first thing on day 1, and before the day 2 AAR/EOB marker. No one should leave with an un-zeroed weapon.
- The shooting range needs some TLC.
I had a great time at the course. I have been considering which Brushbeater class I would attend for nearly a year, and I decided the AK course would be the best. My reasoning was two-fold; I have essentially zero practical experience with the AK, and I don’t even own an AK. I learned the AK is functional, handy, and the rare malfunction clears itself with a solid rack of the charging handle and a healthy dose of gravity. During the first block of instruction on Saturday morning NC Scout asked a simple question “Whose AK is zeroed?” about half the class, including myself, raised their hands. Immediately after this question, we dropped to the ground and zeroed our weapons. Needless to say, my AK was off by nearly 2 inches down and left. I was not zeroed. At 200 yards, I would have missed any threats by nearly 6 inches off their right hip.
The AK training was a crash course in military style AK training without the headaches of endless safety briefs. There was no shortage of magazine changes, observing other shooters perform drills, clear malfunctions, testing kit, mounts, magazines, and weapons. I will take these lessons, bring them home to my crew, and begin to train my guys to the same standard. The AK platform is a very capable platform, and I was glad to see nearly everyone had flash hiders and optics. It’s important to shoot you weapons to stop check your gear and get everything on the weapon settled in.
- Properly mount your optic. Mount and remount your optic 3-4 times. Torque to spec each time. Clean your threads and then use blue “Loctite” and let it cure properly. This is the correct way. Re-zero your weapon ASAP.
- It’s important to continuously practice magazine reloads. Some mags fit better than others and breaking them in is important. You should also load your mags and test fire every single one to confirm the feed angle, and magazine, is within specs.
- Stretch. Shooting environments can require awkward angles of engagement. I was very stiff in some positions. I need to work on my flexibility and physical fitness. The use of a 9-hole barricade exposed several of my weaknesses. It was a humbling experience.
- Fighting from the ground, to your feet, is harder than it looks. Practice, Practice, Practice. I looked and felt sloppy. My groups were not good.
- Quality gloves are required when using a fighting weapon. Especially a stamped steel weapon. I recommend a pair of black motocross gloves one size larger than fitted.
- Rifle Slings, in my experience, exist in a perpetual state of love and hate. I like slings and I have them on all my weapons, but rarely use them with few exceptions. I have a ring of 550 paracord on the end of my sling and a quality durable, well-made screw locking carabiner on the right shoulder of my LBE. I prefer this method in combination with a two-point sling.
If you own thousands of dollars in guns, ammo, and optics, but don’t have any training; You need to fix that ASAP.
My camping gear was an unorganized, backwards mess. It has been remedied since.