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Competition, Action Shooting And Training. Competition, Three gun, IPSC, IDPA , and Training discussion here.

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  #1  
Old 07-05-2009, 2:59 PM
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Default What you need to get started shooting tactical type matches

There's always a bunch of threads going asking specifics about what equipment you should buy to shoot xxxxx match.
I'm posting this as a general guideline, not as a specific gear recommendation list.
Every person is different in what they like.
The only way to know what works the best is to GO SHOOT WITH IT.
It can be expensive to buy everything to test though.
Your best option is to go to matches and seek out people with the specific gear you are interested in.
Talk to them about their experience with it.
They will usually let you try it out.
If you don't find people shooting the gear you are interested in, there's probably a reason.
Look at what everyone else (especially the winner) is using as that's a big clue about what works best.

The shooters at any club are usually going to be pretty accomodating to beginners.
We want the sport to grow.
Only good things can come of that.
All we ask is that you are safe.
This means you need to be ultra-aware of your muzzle at all times.
Follow the basic safety rules and you are golden.

Gather up your gear and go to any local club match.
It's always easier if you go with someone that already does it as some clubs will not have shooters meetings where you can meet someone to squad up with.
I take pride in introducing lots of shooters to competition so I actually have some extra loaner gear like holsters, mag pouches, shotshell holders etc...

At the bare minimum, you will need the following for pistol matches:
Eye protection
Ear protection
Handgun
Ammo for handgun
Holster for handgun
Magazines to hold 50 rounds of ammo
Magazine holders for magazines above
Belt to hold holster and mag holders

Some matches will also have shotgun stages, so add:
Shotgun
Ammo for shotgun
Shotshell holders to hold at least 20 shells

3gun matches will add a rifle as well, so add:
Rifle
Ammo for rifle
Magazines for rifle to hold at least 50 rounds of ammo
Magazine holders for magazines above

Ideally, start shooting just the pistol.
You will learn the whole safety routine and the competetive shooting "culture".
Then you can add the shotgun and the rifle to the mix.
Handgun is much less "gear intensive".
There are lots of different options to hold shotgun ammo and rifle mags and going to a few matches will let you see how others are doing it.
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Last edited by ar15barrels; 04-12-2010 at 8:53 AM..
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  #2  
Old 07-05-2009, 3:02 PM
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Good info here; let's try a sticky for awhile and see what kind of feedback we get.
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  #3  
Old 07-05-2009, 7:32 PM
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I would definitely not go to a match with shell caddies for just 20 rounds... I carry six 4-rounds carriers + one 6-round carrier + an 8-round arm caddy (that I rarely use though).
Mags for 50 rounds isn't really enough for rifle either.

I would also add knee and elbow pads to the list. After you've gone kneeling and had a piece of brass get stuck in your knee, you wont leave home without them
Shoes with good cleats are a must as well. I've been using football shoes for 15 years and there's nothing better. The cleats will give excellent grip on grass, dirt, gravel, mud and snow but they're still soft enough to give you good grip on asphalt and concrete
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  #4  
Old 07-06-2009, 3:49 PM
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Good info. Thanks!
One topic not covered, however, is "concealment" (e.g., for IDPA). How much concealment is required? For example, is a vest that extends below the bottom of an OWB holster and mag carriers acceptable? Does it have to be closed in the front, or can it hang open as long as nothing is readily visible?
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  #5  
Old 07-06-2009, 4:45 PM
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Another requirement is food and water. Matches can last a long time and ranges might not have food or water available. Also, layer your clothing. Ranges are typically in valleys (at least in the SF Bay Area) and just because it's 80* in Dublin doesn't mean it can't be 60* at Chabot. There have been a few time I froze my ***** off because of this
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  #6  
Old 07-06-2009, 4:52 PM
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I started the thread as a general guideline.
I appreciate all of the additions for specific scenarios.
However, I also consider those small details to be worked out on a person to person basis.

If I told you all the stuff that's in MY kit, it would include things such as a full toolkit, oil, sunscreen, mag brushes, rags, schemagh, kestrel, laser rangefinder etc...

With the basics, anyone can show up at most matches and get started.
We all know that newbies don't show up to their first match and light the world afire.
Each match certainly has specific requirements that may be unique to the type of match or to the specific location.
After your first visit to such matches or locations, you should generally be able to see what those specific requirements are.

It goes without saying (or at least it SHOULD) that you need clothing for the weather conditions and food/water for the duration of your visit.

Let's not forget that this thread is about GETTING STARTED.
We don't need to overload every new shooter to be prepared for every possible situation they may not encounter.
At least not yet...
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Last edited by ar15barrels; 07-06-2009 at 4:55 PM..
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  #7  
Old 07-10-2009, 7:58 AM
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maybe the OP can break it down further to IDPA, IPSC, USPSA etc. no more than that so newbies like me wont get confused with different divisions under those tournaments.
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  #8  
Old 07-10-2009, 8:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qtrxist View Post
maybe the OP can break it down further to IDPA, IPSC, USPSA etc. no more than that so newbies like me wont get confused with different divisions under those tournaments.
There's no need to break it down.
The list applies across all disciplines.
USPSA is the US sanctioning body for IPSC so if you were to shoot an "IPSC" match in the USA, you are really shooting a USPSA match.

The only thing you need for IDPA that's not listed above is a cover garment as you have to draw from concealment.

There are multiple sets of rules for 3 gun and the equipment listed above applies to all of them.
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AR work: www.ar15barrels.com
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Glock, XD and M&P pistols, Benelli and Remington shotguns: barrel, sight, trigger and receiver work.
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  #9  
Old 07-10-2009, 6:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ar15barrels View Post
There's no need to break it down.
The list applies across all disciplines.
USPSA is the US sanctioning body for IPSC so if you were to shoot an "IPSC" match in the USA, you are really shooting a USPSA match.

The only thing you need for IDPA that's not listed above is a cover garment as you have to draw from concealment.

There are multiple sets of rules for 3 gun and the equipment listed above applies to all of them.
thanks for clarifying that, i was in the market for gears such as belt, holster and magpouches and i was overwhelmed with too many conflicting requirements as to which one is legal and illegal. i just ordered which ones 'i think' works for me.
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  #10  
Old 07-13-2009, 8:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qtrxist View Post
thanks for clarifying that, i was in the market for gears such as belt, holster and magpouches and i was overwhelmed with too many conflicting requirements as to which one is legal and illegal. i just ordered which ones 'i think' works for me.
IDPA has the strictist rules regarding holsters.
If you buy a holster that's IDPA legal, you can use it anywhere.
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AR work: www.ar15barrels.com
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Glock, XD and M&P pistols, Benelli and Remington shotguns: barrel, sight, trigger and receiver work.
Most work performed while-you-wait, evening and weekend appointments available.
Founding member of the CAPRC
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  #11  
Old 07-15-2009, 12:14 AM
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Default Gloves

Neoprene gloves for the fall and winter seasons. Freezing rain means trembling trigger fingers.
Full fingered gloves will protect you from a scorching barrel or sharp objects when going prone.

Low profile earmuffs for long gun shooting.

Optional. If you already have them, then bring two guns of the same type (two rifles, two pistols) to a major match. If one stops working, use the backup gun.
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  #12  
Old 08-28-2009, 4:14 PM
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For any interested we have monthly tactical pistol matches in Corona at Corona gun club. We are very beginner friendly and everyone will be more than happy to help anyone trying to get started. Go to www.coronasportsmensclub.com for info.
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  #13  
Old 09-05-2009, 4:33 AM
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Default Barrel lengths

Shotgun barrel lengths? Simply whats legal or is there a 3-gun rule? Or is it per match/location specific? (I guess same goes for rifle)

Thanks - 'J'
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  #14  
Old 09-05-2009, 8:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Celtica View Post
Shotgun barrel lengths? Simply whats legal or is there a 3-gun rule? Or is it per match/location specific? (I guess same goes for rifle)

Thanks - 'J'
I am not aware of any specific rule on barrel length.
18" to 21" are most popular.
The only limitations with regards to shotguns are how many rounds they hold and wether they have a compensator or an optical sight.

Over 8 rounds capacity, a compensator or an optical sight generally put you into open class.
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  #15  
Old 12-05-2009, 4:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BunnySlayer View Post
For any interested we have monthly tactical pistol matches in Corona at Corona gun club. We are very beginner friendly and everyone will be more than happy to help anyone trying to get started. Go to www.coronasportsmensclub.com for info.
Cool. Can other please post the other locations where such matches take place?
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  #16  
Old 12-28-2009, 9:56 AM
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ar15Barrels, thanks for the post... Good info. Being a complete newb right now, what type of holsters are Illegal for matches?

and regarding BunnySlayers post.. if anyone from USI in Concord is reading this Myself and wife would love to begin to get started.
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  #17  
Old 12-28-2009, 10:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BusBoy View Post
ar15Barrels, thanks for the post... Good info. Being a complete newb right now, what type of holsters are Illegal for matches?
Any holster that will securely hold the gun while moving. Some matches have rules that require a "carry/duty" type holster for all but the Open class. In general a decent quality kydex holster will be fine. I use a Blade-tech.


Quote:
Originally Posted by BusBoy View Post
and regarding BunnySlayers post.. if anyone from USI in Concord is reading this Myself and wife would love to begin to get started.
Info here http://www.actionpistol.com/modules....me=Orientation
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Old 12-28-2009, 10:44 AM
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Awesome, thanks TMC for both sets of info!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TMC View Post
Any holster that will securely hold the gun while moving. Some matches have rules that require a "carry/duty" type holster for all but the Open class. In general a decent quality kydex holster will be fine. I use a Blade-tech.

Info here http://www.actionpistol.com/modules....me=Orientation
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Old 05-16-2010, 2:29 PM
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What kind of shells are typically used in matches? #7 seems to be the most common I've researched. Does that apply to all the clubs/matches? Is that what I should stock up on if I want to get ready to try out shotgun/3-gun matches?
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Old 05-16-2010, 3:55 PM
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7 1/2 or 8 bird shot. Lead only, usually low base will be fine. Some shooters change their chokes for a stage, some will change their ammo. I usually run light modified choke, but have a full and an IC with me. I have had to use high base #6 on a long distance Texas Star once. Some matches have a slug stage. Most use low/managed recoil slugs.
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Old 06-11-2010, 8:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BusBoy View Post
ar15Barrels, thanks for the post... Good info. Being a complete newb right now, what type of holsters are Illegal for matches?

and regarding BunnySlayers post.. if anyone from USI in Concord is reading this Myself and wife would love to begin to get started.
To piggyback off of TMC's post, if you are a member of any of the USI clubs, they have a great action pistol outreach event on Wednesdays that does not involve drawing from a holster and is the perfect way to get your feet wet.

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/s...d.php?t=297902

Show up between 5 and 7 pm with five bucks, your sidearm in a bag/case, 5 magazines for it, and ~200rds per shooter just to be safe. There are usually three courses, each with five targets, and each is shot five times, or in five "strings." You are not allowed to reload on a string, so go slow and hit what you are aiming at.

Just tried it for the first time last week and everyone I met was helpful. Some of us loaded for others who didn't have 5 magazines so they could focus on what they were doing.

There's nothing like having one of your stages go really smooth on your first day out.

Range Dude: Shooter ready.
Me: Ready sir!
Range Dude: Standby.......*beep*
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Last edited by wombat303; 06-11-2010 at 8:39 PM.. Reason: Found the Link
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Old 07-10-2010, 8:18 AM
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Cool. Can other please post the other locations where such matches take place?

This is not a complete list, just USPSA and some of the 3 Gun's
http://www.uspsa2.org/uspsa2.htm

IDPA matches
http://idpa.com/clublist.asp?pick=CA

Steel Challenge at Piru, there are others also
http://www.isishootists.com/match_schedule.htm

local action pistol (not sanctioned - run by club rules)
http://www.wegc.org/wordpress
http://www.palmspringsgunclub.org/Scheduled_Matches.htm
http://www.ssashooter.net/

once you have shot a few matches, you pretty much know where everything is at.
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Old 08-12-2010, 9:40 AM
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RR, what do you run in a semi shotgun for 3G shooting?
I got an eye on a benelli SBE, wood, chokes, 26" barrel..
Thanks for the work on my 870 wingmaster!!
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Old 08-12-2010, 9:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1911ZENSHOOTER View Post
RR, what do you run in a semi shotgun for 3G shooting?
Banelli M1S90.
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Old 09-03-2010, 12:16 AM
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sounds like I have another expensive hobby on the horizon
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:48 AM
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Question Competition Shooting in San Luis Obispo County?

I've got a 9mm that I love to shoot and am interested in learning more about- and ideally getting into- competitive shooting with it. Does anyone here know what my best resource for information about competition shooting on the central coast is?

Thanks.
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Old 02-13-2011, 10:59 PM
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thanks good easy info, im starting up this way and so far it looks like i'll be saving for a bit longer to get it rolling
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Old 02-14-2011, 10:14 AM
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You say "magazines for 50 rounds of ammo." Do you have any idea what the general consensus is on pre-ban high capacity mags at these events?
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Old 02-14-2011, 10:33 AM
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Check the rules specific to each class. Not sure about production (I've only seen folks use 10 rd mags, but I'm still new), but limited 10 and single stack (I think) have round limits. If you've got pre-ban standard capacity mags, I'd assume you'd still be ok if you only load 10+1 in the gun and 10 in the additional mags.
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Old 02-14-2011, 10:56 AM
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beauregard, that would be Morro Bay, San Lois Action Pistol

http://www.slosa.org/
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Old 02-14-2011, 11:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighLander51 View Post
beauregard, that would be Morro Bay, San Lois Action Pistol

http://www.slosa.org/
Thanks. I just emailed Gary. See you on the 12th.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:07 PM
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I was looking at the USPSA rules and I cannot find Kimber or any 1911 in the legal handgun list. I have a hard time believing that. Is this right? Am I going to have to shoot my GGGggggllock?...lol.

Also, what is the consensus on AR's. If you have a bullet button, can you eject the mags without getting chewed out? I'm pretty sure I should just get over it and put a monster man grip on mine, but I am still protesting.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:25 PM
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USPSA has a single stack division.
Whats wrong with removing your mag? Featureless and 30rd mags, FTW.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:41 PM
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OK just wanted to make sure. I know there are some that don't understand the law and freak when the mag is ejected.
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:43 PM
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Shoot some matches, no one is worried there.
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Old 02-22-2011, 11:03 AM
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I'm seeing up an IDPA type course at a friend's ranch tomorrow evening. This is gonna be rad.
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Old 12-19-2011, 8:45 PM
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I'm interested in IDPA & I wear glasses, my proscription sunglasses wrap around and have plastic lenses> would they let me wear them for eye protection or would I have to wear bulky/funky goggles over them? (BTW the indoor ranges are ok with my eyeglasses for eye protection)
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Old 12-20-2011, 7:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Rocket Man View Post
I'm interested in IDPA & I wear glasses, my proscription sunglasses wrap around and have plastic lenses> would they let me wear them for eye protection or would I have to wear bulky/funky goggles over them? (BTW the indoor ranges are ok with my eyeglasses for eye protection)
At the last (and only, so far) USPSA match I was at last month, a guy showed me his expensive sunglasses, there was as streak on them from where some piece of jacketing or something flew back and hit them! It could have blinded him!! He got off easy, but it did ruin his sunglasses. Protect your eyes first, of course, but then also protect your expensive prescription glasses with some $5 safety glasses!!

I used to just wear my glasses at the range, then a hot 9mm case popped up, hit the lane divider, and bounced down the top of my glasses, the case sat against my cheek while I quickly put my gun down safely and it left a painful burn on my face for 2 weeks! So from them on I always were large safety glasses over my glasses. And of course a baseball cap would have deflected the case from divebombing my face too.
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  #39  
Old 02-03-2012, 2:24 AM
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1madmnky 1madmnky is offline
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Originally Posted by BunnySlayer View Post
For any interested we have monthly tactical pistol matches in Corona at Corona gun club. We are very beginner friendly and everyone will be more than happy to help anyone trying to get started. Go to www.coronasportsmensclub.com for info.
Good info here, thanks!
I'm going to try and make it out.
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Old 02-03-2012, 2:24 AM
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1madmnky 1madmnky is offline
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Originally Posted by BunnySlayer View Post
For any interested we have monthly tactical pistol matches in Corona at Corona gun club. We are very beginner friendly and everyone will be more than happy to help anyone trying to get started. Go to www.coronasportsmensclub.com for info.
Good info here, thanks!
I'm going to try and make it out.
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