Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Magazine Changes- The Tactical Diaper Change Blog

Boss Chick, Tech Dude,Tactical Corporal and I were chilling at the store during a lull in the action. In walked Mrs. Tactical Corporal with Tactical Baby.  Damn cute kid, too. Blessedly for Tactical Baby, he takes on after his mum...

Once Tactical Corporal was able to wrestle the little guy away from Boss Chick, he carried him around for a bit. Then Tac Baby got that look on his face. You know the one. The sublime, blissful look that clearly tells everyone, “hey, I’m taking a dump!”

Now, I know that Tac Corporal is highly trained and more than capable of handling emergencies, but even I was amazed at his application of an immediate action drill. He performed, (using the armorer bench, I’m afraid) a tactical diaper change in record time, collecting the old and replacing with the new. And no, he didn't use any Frog Lube.

This reminded me of a question recently from a student while doing tactical magazine change drills. The student was being drilled on magazine changes and I was reminding her to just drop the old magazines, not to catch them or, worse, pull them from the gun. She asked if there was ever any time when it was OK, even recommended, to catch the old magazine.

Sure, there is. For instance, during a lull in the action if you want to top up and collect the old magazine with the few rounds left in it, do so. Maybe you want to consolidate a few partially full magazines. Fine, catch the old and do what you want, IF you can do it safely without letting guard down.

But I train to dump the magazine as the preferred method. Why? Well, in the heat of a shooting you will revert to your training. If you are trained to manually pull out the old magazine, put it into your pocket, then get out the new magazine and seat it, you will do just that. You’ll waste a bunch of time and perhaps get shot when you should have been back in the game. This has been well documented in police and military training. California saw a couple of cops get into a gunfight years ago. They were found dead with the spent casings from their revolvers neatly collected in their pockets just as they had been programmed to do when on the shooting range.

But, if the action is at a lull and you have time to collect your thoughts you can adjust and do a controlled top up. The combat reload is the default method, but can be consciously overridden for more of an administrative load if the situation allows or dictates.

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