First time shooting in six months. Met a coworker at the Marksman in Puyallup. Last time was with another coworker at Bullseye in Tacoma. Awesome shop with knowledgeable and courteous staff. Being my first time there as a shooter, I had to take their “orientation class”. $10 one-time fee for it and it took about 10 minutes. Read and sign a form with the rules and legalities then sit in a classroom where the rules and consequences were explained. The staff demonstrated points with “dummy” weapons to provide a visual of the behavior and/or consequences resulting. A demonstration of the target mechanism was done and the class concluded with a question period. The rules are basic and clear as they should be.
Indoor facility with lines on the wall downrange at distances of 15, 25 and 35 feet. Run the target all the way back and it’ll be set at 50 feet. Lighting on the range is adequate at the benchmark distances. Better than at Bullseye in that it is consistent all the way down each lane but far from stellar. There is a platform at each position for your gun, mags, ammo and such. Each lane position is separated by plastic dividers rear of the line and a steel armor plate in front of the line. Still the occasional brass would find its way from one position to another, but no big deal. Ventilation was decent but far from great. Of course I am somewhat spoiled as I left this facility in Colorado Springs: https://www.whistlingpinesgunclub.com/index.asp
I started my warm up with my P220. It was smooth as ever and my shots grouped mostly within 6 inches at 25 feet with a few fliers. Next up my P226 and the experience was much like the P220. Groups were smaller (about 4 inches) as I am more comfortable with 9mm than .45.
Next up I (finally) deflowered my SP2022. Not a huge fan of the standard sights, but that’ll get rectified with TFO’s one day (hopefully soon). Trigger was smooth. I’ve been practicing drills and dry firing with it since I got it in May. I like it, a lot. If there was a way to get one into my P228, my favorite would be as perfect as possible in this imperfect world. That said, it was VERY smooth even in DA. A near flawless performance for its first time out. The only problem encountered was minor, IMO. Loading 10 rounds into each mag, there were 2 instances where it only partially closed when returning it into battery. It closed about half way but a slight tap on the rear of the slide with the heel of my non grip hand and all was ready for action. Having read about “that” particular thing on the SiGForum, I wasn’t and am not concerned. That is one part of the break in process I couldn’t simulate at home with snap caps.
The next part of my session was spent on my P228. Being my primary carry (the SP will join the rotation for day use only until the TFO’s get installed) and so not getting out to shoot as much as I would like, I spent the most time with it. Groups were good, IMO, for not having shot in six months. For my “qualification” target I went with 40 shots center mass and 10 head shots. We are our own worst critics, but I’m still confident in my ability to place my shots.
While at the range, I shot my friends XD9SC. It was a bit small for my hands but shot well. I wouldn’t buy one but can’t say anything against it if it fits your hands. Also tried a rental P229SAS in .40 as well as a P250. Still not impressed by .40 as a caliber though the P229 has been the most comfortable thing I’ve shot in this caliber. The P250 was okay. I wasn’t thrilled with the trigger and action, but I was comparing it to my SP (as far as polymer frames go). Overall it was not a terrible experience, but I will not be adding it to my personal inventory.
I HAVE to find somewhere closer to shoot than the 50 minute drive to Puyallup. Sure it was more enjoyable shooting with a friend compared to punching holes alone. Still there has to something closer and if there isn’t, there should be.