Going Downrange

Going Downrange

This is a discussion on Going Downrange within the Basic Gun Handling & Safety forums, part of the General Firearm Discussion category; When I shoot with other people we always put all firearms on the table, remove the magazines, unload the chamber, and leave actions open before ...

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Thread: Going Downrange

  1. #1
    Member Array Tenncvol's Avatar
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    Going Downrange

    When I shoot with other people we always put all firearms on the table, remove the magazines, unload the chamber, and leave actions open before anyone goes downrange to check or tend to targets.

    I am often by myself at the club range and think a different method may be safe under these circumstances. I often want to check or mark targets before the magazine is empty so I want to go downrange with the pistol. I think putting the pistol in a proper holster that fits it is sufficient to allow me to do whatever I need to do with the targets.

    My buddy disagrees and says opening the action and leaving the pistol on the table is still the right way. I think he is being overly cautious as I carry a loaded gun in a holster all the time. While I am not a new shooter I am a learning shooter and value the input of the D.C. forum friends.


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    Member Array strider43's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tenncvol View Post
    When I shoot with other people we always put all firearms on the table, remove the magazines, unload the chamber, and leave actions open before anyone goes downrange to check or tend to targets.

    I am often by myself at the club range and think a different method may be safe under these circumstances. I often want to check or mark targets before the magazine is empty so I want to go downrange with the pistol. I think putting the pistol in a proper holster that fits it is sufficient to allow me to do whatever I need to do with the targets.

    My buddy disagrees and says opening the action and leaving the pistol on the table is still the right way. I think he is being overly cautious as I carry a loaded gun in a holster all the time. While I am not a new shooter I am a learning shooter and value the input of the D.C. forum friends.



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    I put my loaded pistol in my holster and go down range all the time to adjust/mark targets.........

  3. #3
    Member Array nmbr5's Avatar
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    I've seen some people's idea of magazine removed, action open. I personally would have called it 'loaded magazine inserted, round in chamber, thumb safety off, hammer cocked,' but yeah... There SHOULD be no way for that unloaded firearm on the bench to shoot you in the back. There IS no way for the one in your holster to shoot you in the back. Which one is safer seems like common sense.

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    Open the action. Only load a shot or two in a magazine if you want to check between shots, or just drop the magazine and clear the chamber. Never go downrange with a loaded weapon on the bench. It's lazy and dangerous.
    I'm not saying we should kill all the stupid people. I'm saying remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.

  5. #5
    Distinguished Member Array Chuck R.'s Avatar
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    When I have guys out to shoot (personal range), it's very similar to your scenario and I run a "hot" range.

    Weapons are loaded and holstered, unless you're shooting a drill or running a CoF. Non-active guns, are either cased or laid on a table action open, magazine removed. I use 2 little orange cones to designate a loading and unloading zone, that's off to the side of my range and has a solid backstop.

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    VIP Member Array sammeow's Avatar
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    We'll, I would suggest sticking with one way. No matter if shooting as a group or all by yourself.
    Always err on the side of safety. Doesn't matter if it's firearms, power tools or heavy equipment.
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    Member Array JoeLiberty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ianthin View Post
    Open the action. Only load a shot or two in a magazine if you want to check between shots, or just drop the magazine and clear the chamber. Never go downrange with a loaded weapon on the bench. It's lazy and dangerous.
    I could be wrong but I read the OP as advocating leaving the weapon loaded in a holster on the shooter, not on the table. IMHO loaded in the holster (on your person) is arguably safer than on the table as you'd be the only one to control the weapon. If it's unloaded on the table, someone 'could' walk up and load it. Or in other words, adhering to the belief that "all guns are loaded"... is a loaded weapon safer in your holster or on the table 10yds away?
    When I'm on the range, if I'm not actually shooting my concealed weapon, it's probably loaded and in the holster... whether the range is hot, cold, or any other temperature.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeLiberty View Post
    I could be wrong but I read the OP as advocating leaving the weapon loaded in a holster on the shooter, not on the table. IMHO loaded in the holster (on your person) is arguably safer than on the table as you'd be the only one to control the weapon. If it's unloaded on the table, someone 'could' walk up and load it. Or in other words, adhering to the belief that "all guns are loaded"... is a loaded weapon safer in your holster or on the table 10yds away?
    When I'm on the range, if I'm not actually shooting my concealed weapon, it's probably loaded and in the holster... whether the range is hot, cold, or any other temperature.
    If he is actually wearing the holster, which he didn't clarify, That would be fine IMO. But another angle to consider is having to remember two different procedures. If holstering a weapon isn't allowed in this context with others around, why deviate from normal procedure?

    ETA: My LGR allows us to shoot the gun we carry in, and to re-holster when finished. But any time in between the gun must be placed on the bench mag out and slide locked, or cylinder open in case of a revolver. We can not holster between shots.
    Last edited by Ianthin; October 17th, 2016 at 04:43 PM.
    I'm not saying we should kill all the stupid people. I'm saying remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.

  9. #9
    Member Array Sportymonk's Avatar
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    What do the Club Range rules say? If nothing, I would think it should be addressed there.

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    Member Array Pittpa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sportymonk View Post
    What do the Club Range rules say? If nothing, I would think it should be addressed there.
    Different ranges, different rules. I belong to 3 clubs. One club, with a bar, allows no carry at all. One allows concealed carry only, and no use of holster at range, and no showing carry gun. The third specifies that weapons go on bench in safe unloaded condition with chamber open and indicated, but you can carry in any fashion you want while shooting. If holster carry of a loaded gun is not mentioned in rules, may as well go with what people around you are comfortable with, until you have guidance from a club officer.

  11. #11
    Member Array Renaldow's Avatar
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    Every range I've belonged to prohibited carry by anyone who was not a law enforcement officer, in uniform, and on the job. Anyone else weapons down, unloaded until it's time to fire. If you don't like the rules of a given range, either try to change them or quit. Breaking rules does nothing but disrespect the range and its members. OP, you make a valid point, but if it's against the rules, it's against the rules.
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    Member Array JoeLiberty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renaldow View Post
    Every range I've belonged to prohibited carry by anyone who was not a law enforcement officer, in uniform, and on the job. Anyone else weapons down, unloaded until it's time to fire. If you don't like the rules of a given range, either try to change them or quit. Breaking rules does nothing but disrespect the range and its members. OP, you make a valid point, but if it's against the rules, it's against the rules.
    Jeepers. That sounds unnecessarily strict. California?

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    First, check the Range Rules. Second, ask an RSO at the Range.

    Third, if you are alone, why would it matter?

    If I am alone, I never go downrange without a loaded firearm.

    Yes, I have written range rules for a range (with a committee of course) and I am an RSO.
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    VIP Member Array dangerranger's Avatar
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    For me it would make a big difference if I were the only one there or if there were 15 other shooters. I would hate to be down range changing targets and look back to see some yahoo loading and holstering his gun. And you know if something is said to him he is going to point back at you and say " but he has a holstered loaded gun!" That"s why most of these rules came about! The Lowest Common Yahoo!

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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tenncvol View Post
    When I shoot with other people we always put all firearms on the table, remove the magazines, unload the chamber, and leave actions open before anyone goes downrange to check or tend to targets.

    I am often by myself at the club range and think a different method may be safe under these circumstances. I often want to check or mark targets before the magazine is empty so I want to go downrange with the pistol. I think putting the pistol in a proper holster that fits it is sufficient to allow me to do whatever I need to do with the targets.

    My buddy disagrees and says opening the action and leaving the pistol on the table is still the right way. I think he is being overly cautious as I carry a loaded gun in a holster all the time. While I am not a new shooter I am a learning shooter and value the input of the D.C. forum friends.


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    I would NEVER set my pistol on a table and walk away from it, especially if I was at a range alone.
    I think you've got the right idea here.

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