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Laser pistol training? A way to save ammo...

Discussion in 'Tactics and Training' started by Gauss Rifle, Apr 22, 2013.

  1. Gauss Rifle

    Gauss Rifle

    Jul 1, 2012
    With ammo scarce and over priced. I'm looking for a way to practice trigger discipline and quick shots.

    I'm comparing a few products that might come in handy for training, should that stash of range ammo need to be locked away and saved. I'm in the mood for an impulse buy but first, I'd like to hear what you guys like best and why. Here's the lineup...

    Laserlyte Laser catridges: Small laser pointer-like devices that fit into your gun's chamber; uses your gun's firing pin to trigger a targeting laser which scores against a 'receiver' target.
    - Pros: Decent reviews. Cartridges come in many calibers; including rifle calibers. Allows you to train with your real gun.
    - Cons: Expensive; $80 to start for only one cartridge. May wear out due to repeated firing pin strikes. Requires racking the slide after every shot. No recoil.

    Laserlyte Trigger Tyme: A mock pistol simulating the weight and feel of a real handgun.
    - Pros: Only $40-$50 It matches the weight and dimensions of a G23/G19. Trigger has weight to it; simulating realistic trigger put and semi auto operation. Cannot fire live ammo.
    - Cons: Will not match the exact feel of your gun. No recoil. Requires separate laser barrel insert. I haven't seen any posted reviews. Cannot fire live ammo...

    Numerous barrel-mounted laser devices:
    - Pros: Doesn't take the direct impact of the firing pin; instead uses the sound/vibration of the firing pin to trigger the laser.
    - Cons: Expensive; $110 to start for only one device. Requires racking the slide after every shot when using a real gun. No recoil. Reviews aren't all that good. May interfere with holstering/drawing

    What do you think?
  2. 4Rules


    Mar 11, 2012

  3. Gauss Rifle

    Gauss Rifle

    Jul 1, 2012
    That's an interesting concept. I'll have to take a closer look at these. I'd be curious to see what their warrant is like. Do their lasers hold zero well?
  4. WayaX

    WayaX Lifetime Member

    Feb 27, 2007
    These have some benefits, but cannot replicate real range time (just like dry firing). As you become more proficient at reading sights and calling your shots, the benefits of this system decrease greatly. For new shooters, it can cut down on ammo used while learning fundamentals like trigger control and drawing and firing.
  5. Gauss Rifle

    Gauss Rifle

    Jul 1, 2012
    I agree,

    I am relatively new to firearms so I think I would benefit from this type of training. I grabbed a decent amount of 9mm ammo before the panic buying started but I want to save it until I've mastered the basics you've just mentioned. I don't need live ammo to learn this but I do need something that simulates realistic trigger weight and if possible, recoil. One thing I've also been considering is a blowback airsoft pistol. Less than a third of the cost of the SIRT and even more affordable than the laser cartridges...

    Pros and cons time: :cool:

    - pros: Lifelike replica of a glock. Allows reloading drills.
    - cons: No recoil mechanism. Expensive.

    - pros: only $60-70 for a decent model like a Walther P99 replica. Some of them are really lifelike; including metal slides. The blowback action somewhat resembles the recoil of a 22lr pistol. Leaves a visible mark by punching through targets.
    - cons: Unrealistic magazines on most models. The Glock replicas are more expensive; $130 and up.

    Your thoughts gentlemen?
  6. threefeathers

    threefeathers Scouts Out

    Oct 23, 2008
    We are using the new SIRT system with great success. I have two sets and will get two more during the next year.
  7. Gauss Rifle

    Gauss Rifle

    Jul 1, 2012
    I'm gonna keep my eye on that SIRT; it's easily the most realistic looking/feeling replica of a glock out there. I just wish they weren't so expensive; $200+ for a simulation laser pistol? For that price, it would be nice if there was some kind of recoil feed back.

    My funding can't justify something like this just yet so while I'm considering an SIRT, I'm also looking for other options...

    What are your thoughts on something like this?

    [ame=""] Walther P99 Blowback CO2 Airsoft Pistol airsoft gun: Sports & Outdoors@@AMEPARAM@@[/ame]
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2013
  8. cmr287


    Jan 21, 2013
    Harris county GA
    There are a lot of quality trainers out there that you you do not have to use ammo however, the only thing that you're missing is the trainingthat is associated with the recoil profile for the round going off and you actually getting back on target. That is absolutely critical . Other than that those types of trainers are out standing.
    In my mind you practice that way first and then apply the techniques that you've used with your training out on live fire ..
    Sent from my ADR6350 using Tapatalk 2
  9. Gauss Rifle

    Gauss Rifle

    Jul 1, 2012
    Sounds like solid advice. I have decent aim for a novice at 10 yards but my trigger control needs work and I need a way to practice 'draw and fire' without putting a hole in my wall (or my leg). My reasoning behind the Walther replica is that the CO2 blowback is said to jump like a 22lr pistol. I think this is the closest I can get to live fire recoil at this price point. After I get the basics down, I can begin the painful process of depleting my stock of 9mm... I'm trying to hold out as long as I can; who knows how long 9mm will remain a $1 a round? :dunno:

    There is always Walmart but they always get raided before I get out of work.
  10. You really need to zero-on on your specific training needs: I think you started off this thread with that idea in-mind, but as you're getting exposed to more and more options, you've sorta let the gadgets take you away from your initial focus. :)

    The relatively high cost of the SIRT is definitely a hurdle, however, it is an investment in a training tool that very nicely approximates the weight and balance of a loaded full/mid-sized Glock, and furthermore, the trigger can be tuned to better approximate that of "service/carry" Glocks. The dual lasers allow you to confirm your POA with one, while the other can be dialed-in specifically to "a true POI" for use either with an observer/training-partner/instructor.

    The latter is quite important, as if you set the POI laser to register where you can actually visualize it flaring beyond the sights, that actually may be very different from the actual POA/POI difference you see in your pistol. This was very well illustrated in Lenny Magill's "Way Advanced Concealed Carry" DVD series (c.2003), where he demonstrated his laser-aided practice with a subsequent live range session: and for the first few shots of the range session, he was hitting low.

    Is the fact that neither the SIRT nor the Laserlyte Trigger Tyme offers slide cyclic action a detriment to your training? Again, that depends. While a "gas-blow-back" (GBB) airsoft pistol simulates that action quite well, the actual force of the blow-back/recoil is quite minimal in comparison to that of the defensive caliber autopistol's. Therefore, at-best, what you're looking at is sub-caliber training. Additionally, with most airsoft replicas, the weight distribution will be noticeably off when compared to their real-steel counterparts (even with the use of more massive metal aftermarket upgrade components such as a ''metal slide" or even a "metal" cosmetic outer barrel sleeve), and similarly, the trigger path/action will present noticeable and oftentimes drastic differences.

    Airsoft is great for things like Force-on-Force training, but it's really of limited use when it comes to marksmanship (at least as airsoft replicas exist in the common stateside market - case-in-point, Tatsuya Sakai - a Japanese national who won the 2004 Steel Challenge here in the US: residing in Japan, his experience had been purely airsoft up until just about a month before the competition: although this would seem to prove a case against my claims of airsoft replicas not being valid tools for recoil control and trigger control training, it stands to note that the types of airsoft replicas that are used for BB-IPSC and similar competitions in Japan and the Far East are *highly* modified and are not of the same quality as the airsoft available to the mass market here in the US, while, at the same time, the trigger assembly of the 1911/2011 platform is *very* similar between the airsoft and the real-steel, additionally, look at Steel Challenge guns in terms of their recoil). Even in terms of basic manipulations, you'll want to keep in mind that even with the best GBB pistols, they do not feed/fire the BB in the same manner as a real gun does a modern cartridge: stoppage reduction drills offer very limited cross-applicability.

    Various pneumatic recoil simulators exist, but again, they're costly - and their application is again specific and limited.

    Is dry-fire the end-all and be-all, then?

    Certainly, it offers you first-hand "on the gun" trigger control training, but it does not shoot out a projectile (here, an in-chamber/muzzle laser-training device can be a remedy, but again, remember the POA/POI concern) nor will the slide cycle after you've broken the shot.

    So, really, it's all about choosing what training tool works best for you, with your intended goals. Sometimes, this may require more than one tool to accomplish.

    Hope this helps! :)
  11. threefeathers

    threefeathers Scouts Out

    Oct 23, 2008
    With all the lases systems you can learn to jump back the gun simulating recoil as you practice follow through. This technique helped me finally pass Tom Givens Instructor Development class.:whistling:
    But, I love the system to teach new shooters proper grip, sight picture, and review the basic holds.
  12. ^ That risks the danger of burning-in breaking one's wrist(s) up or another "startle" response that's not supposed to be there to begin with, though.

    I like the dry-fire exercise where the training partner racks the slide for you.

    This can incorporate several different goals.

    But alas, it requires two to tango.
  13. ken grant

    ken grant

    Apr 3, 2004
    middle ga.
    Airsoft GBB
    .22LR Conversions
    Full caliber

    And my shooting still stinks!!!!!:steamed:
  14. ^ Hey, we can all be better! :)

    I'm always working on something or another. :)
  15. Gauss Rifle

    Gauss Rifle

    Jul 1, 2012
    TSiWRX, You make a lot of good points.

    Overall, I think my primary focus right now should be trigger control. Without that, I'll always be shooting lower left rather than dead center. I have a tendency to jerk the trigger so my rounds often hit what would be the pelvic region if I'm not paying attention. I want to break that habit without using up all my ammo.

    I already sight in well, but I need to get better control of how my finger works the trigger. Either tool will help me build muscle memory for the trigger pull. I just wanted blowback to make the gun jump so I don't "cheat" when taking a follow up shot. True recoil or not; I would have to re-acquire before each shot.
  16. We're all always working on our trigger control. :)

    I know you're not a beginner, but here's a thread on XDTalk where I exchanged some info. with a fellow shooter, regarding how to get him back on the bull (from a low-left trend due to trigger control issues).

    Aside from the usual dime/spent-case balancing dry-fire exercises (since this is where you will *really* need to work your own gun), there's also some live-fire exercises to help with trigger torque in that same thread.

    Best of luck! :)
  17. This is a difficult area to deal with at home. I also have tried many non-range options. Ultimately, dry firing with a laser attached helped me with long trigger pull revolvers.

    I have several AirSoft guns too. They helped me train my teenaged son on fundamentals. Still, even with mild range ammo, after a single shot, he finds recoil of a real pistol to be too painful. Also, when he shoots real semi-automatic rifles and pistols, they function less reliably. I work on grip and stance with him and he improved a lot, but the level of my range instruction indicates that teaching fundamentals on simulations is not nearly enough.

    I thing sight picture and trigger pull are fine for simulators. If the grip is wrong, simulators will still be reliable, unlike many real firearms.
  18. Jake Starr

    Jake Starr

    Jul 30, 2005
    Louisville, KY
    I have used this one for the past few years. A great device. I sold a bunch of these to my students....
  19. Actually, more like $400+ for the red/green laser model (Pro) - the only model I would consider. Taking into account that I get new (real) G17 Glocks for $398.20, that makes the SIRT more expensive than a real gun - and worth every penny to an instructor.

    My club saw no value in them, so I bought one personally and started using it in our classes. Turned the students around completely on fundamentals. The club now has two of them.