With ammunition prices on the rise, weapons training is becoming more expensive. What if there was a way to save money, while still working on improving your shooting skills? That’s where dry firing comes in. Dry firing is a safe and helpful way to build your skills at home when you can’t make it to the range.
The Fundamentals of Dry Fire
Dry firing allows you to practice all the fundamentals while saving you money on ammunition, range fees, and gas. You can practice draws, breathing, and trigger pull, all without shooting off a single round. All this free practice will help you build muscle memory, so when the time comes for the real deal, you’ll be prepared. Here are some fundamentals you should keep in mind as you begin exploring dry firing:
- Safety: While dry firing should be a completely safe activity, the first step to take is clearing your practice firearm of choice. Also, always remember to never point your barrel at something you do not intend to kill – even if the weapon is not loaded.
- Perfect Trigger Pull: Dry firing isn’t meant for you to get hundreds of “shots” in. You should be focusing on a perfect trigger pull, making sure you are not flinching and paying attention to your sight alignment.
Dry Firing Drills
There are a number of drills you can do to help practice your dry firing skills. Here are some of them:
- Balance a quarter on your front sight and practice grip control. Any wrong move will show you it was wrong because the coin will fall.
- An important skill you need is knowing how to draw your firearm. Start with finding the best place to holster your weapon. Once you have identified where your weapon is, practice reaching for it without looking. You always want your eyes fixed down range and on your target. If you keep your eyes on the prize, your hands will follow.
- Learning how to shoot with both eyes open helps your form as well. This has helped me a lot when it came to changing targets. It is really hard to find a secondary pop-up target when one eye is closed. If you practice with both eyes open, you’ll find the non-shooting eye focuses much quicker than a previously closed eye.
Dry Firing Myths
There is a myth about dry firing that says it is bad for your firing pin. While it isn’t false, it is only partially true. Nowadays, firing pins are made much stronger than in the past, and transfer bars and hammer blocks have been added to revolvers. Older antique firearms saw this “myth” as true because when a primer wasn’t present, the pin would over-travel, causing a portion to hit the sides of the firing pin channel. Rimfire firearms also have an issue. Without a round present, the pin will strike the chamber and lead to a mushroomed and dented firing pin as well as a dented chamber.
In this case, Snap Caps will save you! They are the same size as a real bullet, contain no gunpowder, and provide a soft primer for the firing pin to strike as if the real thing was there. Snap Caps will run you no more than US $25, which is nothing when it comes to protecting your firearm. Companies have even come up with full-sized ammo blanks that have lasers in them that are triggered when you pull the trigger. There are targets as well that will read the laser and audibly let you know you hit your mark.
Overall, dry firing for just 15 to 20 minutes a day can really help you improve your shooting mechanics. It shouldn’t be used in place of live fire, but rather as a foundation builder. It may not be as exhilarating as the real thing, but the practice will go a long way.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.