Tag Archives: rifle

tactical preschool 47:the transition

North Penn Tactical Response Team of Montgomer...
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If you’re in the middle of a firefight with your carbine and it goes “click” (or nothing) when it should go “bang”, you have what is known as a malfunction. Your options then are to either clear the malfunction or transition to another weapon. Otherwise you can use the darn thing as a club.
If you are engaged in a long-range fight (say 75yd.+ or 50yd+ and he’s not maneuvering on you) and you have some cover, clearing the malfunction may make better sense, as hitting a target that is shooting back at that distance with a pistol is a crap shoot and a rifle will always trump a handgun. The generic method of doing that with a magazine fed semi-auto can be remembered as SPORTS.

S-Slap the magazine to make sure it’s seated properly. (Sometimes you may feel the bolt close on a live round when you do this and you may just decide to try shooting again.)
P-Pull back the bolt.
O-Observe the chamber as you Pull. Look to see if a round is ejected or an empty casing. Look into the chamber to see if there is a round stuck in there or a double feed.
R-Release the bolt, letting it go forward.
T-Tap the forward assist on weapons that have them (this one may be omitted if yours doesn’t have one).

Here is a video example:

If the fight is up-close and personal you wont have time to bother with this. If you are within H2H range you may just consider going bayonet style on the guy with your long gun. If you have the reactionary gap and a secondary weapon, its time to go to it.

There are various methods to do this, each with its Pros and Cons.

1. If you are on a sling system, swing the carbine down and away with the weak hand while drawing pistol with the strong one. You can start shooting with one hand if you have to and then bring up the support when you can.


  • Fast
  • Keeps the carbine on you so you can clear it and get it back into the fight when the immediate threat is taken care of.


  • Leaves the weapon attached to you and can be used as a “handle” to drag you by the BG.
  • It can tie up your legs and hamper mobility.
  • It can be harder to use the carbine as an impact weapon if needs be.

2. Drop the carbine and draw the handgun.


  • This means the carbine is unslung which makes it easier to change shoulders and fight with the carbine as an impact weapon.
  • Slings can’t be used to drag you down.


  • You may have to move away from the tossed weapon. Odds of getting it back “up” are slim then.
  • If you drop your weapon into mud, snow or sand it may just make clearing the malfunction later worse.

3. Hold the carbine to the chest with the weak hand and shoot one-handed with the strong.


  • Same as above but you add keeping the carbine with you to them.


  • Pretty obvious, you can only shoot one-handed and both hands are full.


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