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  • Police academy firearms test

    What guns are typically used for firearms testing in the police academy? I'd like to become a police officer some day, and I was wondering what types of guns I should be practicing with. I have a Ruger GP-100 that I take to the range every weekend to practice, but that's about it.

  • #2
    Handguns

    It varies greatly. Most people will shoot what their department issues. Most departments will permit you to shoot any reputable firearm (Glock, HK, Sig, Springfield) that you would rather use. I would rent a few different models of semi-auto's and see what you like. Even if you buy one now and your Dept makes you use theirs, you can never have enough firearms (in best voice without sounding like Charleton Heston). Good luck

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    • #3
      Sarah,
      Please keep in mind that, yes you are getting yourself accustomed to firearms, but more than not people pick up bad habits without proper training. I have seen that it is harder for someone to break a bad habit than it is for someone to learn from the beginning.

      What should someone do that is in your circumstances? Find someone that is willing to teach you the proper way.

      You can not go wrong with the firearms already listed. Good luck.
      Patrick
      Excuses only please the one telling them!

      The object of war is not to die for your country, but to make the other bastard die for his.

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      • #4
        Most departments issue semi-autos. If you go through a Police Academy program, you probably will be issued whatever the department carries. However, if you are required to provide your own handgun, you MAY have the option of going through with your GP-100 revolver.

        IMHO, a quality DA revolver is a great platform to practice basic handgun skills. As was noted by others, it would be best to get some training if you are just starting shooting handguns. (Once you get some training, practice dry-firing and target shooting until your sights don't waver or move from your target when the hammer falls on an empty chamber).

        Good luck

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        • #5
          I think a good revolver shooter will outshoot a good automatic shooter, even when shooting an auto.

          Out of curiosity, what does the qualification course consist of in your departments? I assume all depts will be slightly different.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Sarah83 View Post
            What guns are typically used for firearms testing in the police academy? I'd like to become a police officer some day, and I was wondering what types of guns I should be practicing with. I have a Ruger GP-100 that I take to the range every weekend to practice, but that's about it.
            Shoot whatever you're going to carry at work.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by The Rabbi View Post
              I think a good revolver shooter will outshoot a good automatic shooter, even when shooting an auto.

              Out of curiosity, what does the qualification course consist of in your departments? I assume all depts will be slightly different.

              I don't know, rabbi. I out shot an experienced target shooter with a Wilson Combat .45 ACP complete with custom sights and junk. I had a standard issue Glock 22. I ended up with a 98.7% accuracy rating; first place out of 85 people. I was please, lol. It was the first time I'd ever gotten first place at anything. I should note, I like to shoot, but I've only had pistols for maybe two years where he'd had them for probably tree decades or more. I don't shoot often though. I never find time. You must have 80% to qualify.

              To qualify in the academy, here, you had to shoot for four days, and it's amazing how many people couldn't do this.... You got four chances to shoot each day. Each "chance" involved 50 rounds in what's referred to as the speed and accuracy course. A perfect score is 500 each time. You must shoot two qualifying targets in a row on one given day. You could never even hit the target during the other 14 "chances," sadly.

              You started with six rounds from the 25 yard line; seven rounds at three yards right handed, seven yards at three yards left handed although you had to draw it right and switch, I think seven more with both hands; then X number of rounds at seven yards; and finally X number of rounds at 15 yards. Each distance of shooting was done with timed, action targets.

              Here, at my agency, you must shoot one round of the speed and accuracy course to qualify and shoot some admin chosen course quarterly to remain qualified.

              In Arkansas, nearly every agency goes to the same 12 week academy. After that some have rigorous shooting requirements, yet some cops probably never shoot again.

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              • #8
                What I mean was, when an experienced revolver shooter switches to an automatic, he will frequently outshoot an experienced auto shooter. Trigger control with the revolver is much more difficult.
                Are the targets moving or stationary? Is the shooter moving or stationary?
                I have seen some LEOs who were wonderful shots and practiced intensely. I have also seen some who treated their sidearm like a flashlight or something.

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                • #9
                  Sarah,

                  The points mentioned above are all good ones. As for your weapon, I'd suggest renting a variety of the more popular semi-autos (Glock 22, H&K USP, Sig, Springfield XD, and several others). You'll be better off that way, instead of getting used to one gun, then having to train with another.

                  I do also agree that you want to learn good habits from the start. I shot a little bit on my own, and found myself having to retrain while I was at the academy. Some of our best qualification scores were shot by cadets that had never shot a handgun before.

                  As for the qualification course, they all vary by dept. and academies. They all seem to include X number of shots from 3, 7, 15 & 25 yards at a standard silhouette (spelling). Most will include several reload drills. At our academy, we had a failure qualification (separate from the regular qualification) that required shooting from "failure to feeds", stovepipes, double feeds, as well as firing, and reloading with injured body parts (racking a slide with your boot is kinda fun).

                  Hope that helps, and good luck.

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                  • #10
                    if you're sponsored through an academy, you will shoot whatever the department issues. Get one that fits your hands.

                    if you're self sponsored, check the academy requirements for a firearm. It'll probably be a semi-auto of some sort. If this is so, get one (within what they want you to have) and make sure if fits you / your hands.
                    ''Life's tough......it's tougher if you're stupid.''
                    -- John Wayne

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