“Front Sight or No Front Sight that is the question”

This is a discussion on “Front Sight or No Front Sight that is the question” within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; “Front Sight or No Front Sight that is the question” By Tom Perroni I have worked as a Firearms Instructor since 1986. I think the ...

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    “Front Sight or No Front Sight that is the question”

    “Front Sight or No Front Sight that is the question”

    By Tom Perroni


    I have worked as a Firearms Instructor since 1986. I think the most debated topic in the “Firearms Industry” is the use of the front sight or not using the front sight. No matter whom you take training from, or what book you read or what internet forum or chat room you’re in everyone has their own opinion as to weather or not they use the front sight when shooting.

    The arguments on both sides are very compelling and they all have good points as to why one choice may be better than the other.

    However this article is not going to try and sway you one way or the other, instead I will tell you that I think that both methods are important and have their place in training and real world application. The trick is to have a proper understanding of both training philosophy’s and use what is needed from both in a given situation.

    So let’s define Front Sight Shooting as Sighted Firing or using the front sight to line up the firearm with the target to get the bullet to go where you want it to. The let’s define Non Front Sight Shooting as Point Shooting or Not using the sights to get the bullet to go where you want it to.(Pointing the firearm in the general direction of the target).

    No matter what method you use Front Sight or No Front Sight continued training and practice is the key. I will also say that Combat Mindset is also critical I once had the opportunity to hear a very good firearms instructor say “If you had a person armed with a loaded handgun and No Combat Mindset and a person armed with a hammer and Combat Mindset, The person with the proper Combat would win the fight every time”.

    I have also said at the moment of truth when your life is in danger you will not rise to the occasion you will default to the level of training you have mastered.

    So how do we train with both methods? What I teach my students is not “Point Shooting” but more of indexed fire. At close distances 3-10 feet I teach my students the elbow up, elbow down, handgun canted method. Let’s take this step by step:

    No matter what stance you use make sure you have a good shooting platform or base to shoot from we begin with the handgun in the holster. Then you hear the command “THREAT”……and then….

    1. Non shooting hand comes to the abdomen shooting hand acquires a firm grip on the handgun we release any retention device.
    2. The elbow is pulled straight up.
    3. The elbow is pushed down and then indexed next to the rib cage the handgun is canted out about 5-10 degrees so the slide is not impeded. The front sight is indexed in the center of the chest of the target. We then begin firing. (One handed)
    4. The handgun is moved to the center of the chest (Retention Position) where we acquire a two hand grip. We are still firing at the target.
    5. Then we begin to press the gun forward towards the target while we are still firing at the target. Are elbows are partially bent.
    6. Then we press the gun completely forward bringing the handgun to our dominant eye or using both eyes we focus on the front sight for the precision shot to the head (Cranial Ocular Cavity) hopefully this stops the threat and ends the fight.
    7. We then compress back to the retention position finger off the trigger scanning left and right looking for threats and breaking tunnel vision.
    8. Then we compress to Position SUL and scan 360 degrees.
    9. Then we reload and holster a fully loaded firearm.

    * Note* Once I am comfortable with the skill level of my students I teach them to move off the X. (In all directions) the above method has been called the “Zipper Method”

    In this method we have used both non sighted fire and sighted fire and employed sound tactics to mitigate a threat. I am a BIG proponent of getting as much training as you can from as many instructors as you can so that you have many tools to put in your tactical tool box. So that when you need them you can pull them out and use them as the situation dictates.

    Be very Leary of instructors who say never do this or don’t do that unless they can explain why! A good instructor should be willing to demonstrate any technique they are teaching and explain how any why the technique works.And if they tell you not to do something they should offer an alternative. I have a saying in my training school. What I teach is A way to do it not THE way to do it.

    Stay Safe & Shoot Straight!

    Remember that conflict is inevitable….but combat is an option!

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  3. #2
    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    Good post! I think everyone appreciates it...I know I do. You describe things well enough, I can picture them. Matter of fact, I just used the instructions with my carry pistol right now in front of the computer. I never really focused on how my strong arm elbow indexed throughout the draw, and your post helped me follow through how I normally do but with making a conscious effort. The cant of the pistol in hand when the elbow is indexed at the rib cage could be natural, just like throwing a punch from a karate stance when your arm gets to that point IMO. I never really thought about this in detail until now. Thanks for the post.

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    VIP Member Array AZ Husker's Avatar
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    Just went through a weekend training session where that was the first technique taught. Very fast and devastating!
    Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.

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    Thanks for the post...steps clearly labled...just as my low-light shooting course instructor pointed out.
    Last edited by RETSUPT99; October 18th, 2008 at 04:49 PM.
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