Switching Sides

by
posted on March 21, 2015
sinews.jpg (11)

While it's seldom an ideal choice to clear rooms in your home alone when there are armed intruders inside who mean to do you harm, there are times when you have no other option. If you're forced to clear your house, you may run into a quandry: As you approach a turn in the hallway, you think about switching from your strong side to the opposite shoulder (and therefore eye and firing hand) in order to minimize your exposure as you clear around the corner. Is this the correct thing to do?

First, let's look at the weapon system—the gun and the shooter. Is it completely ambidextrous? If so, this means the speed and accuracy of any task will be about the same regardless of which side is being used, whether it's manipulating the safety, turning the weaponlight on or off, firing multiple shots on multiple or moving targets, reloading or performing an immediate-action malfunction clearance.

Now, let's look at the environment. Is the corner you are clearing providing cover or concealment? If your house is like mine, corners offer only concealment at best, except for maybe the fireplace or near the refrigerator (maybe). Therefore, I need to be able to shoot very fast and very accurately once I have identified a threat in my house, because I have almost nothing to get behind that will stop a bullet. Furthermore, any round I fire from my carbine could pass into another room if it exits the bad guy, which means I need to deliver a hit to the skull or sternum and also make sure none of my family members are behind the threat.

I believe sheetrock and wood are better than nothing, but most modern handgun rounds will pass through a lot of residential construction materials. If I switch to my weak side, that may just make it harder for me to accurately engage the bad guy. If he engages me, his bullets will only be slowed a little by a couple layers of sheetrock and maybe a 2x4. Unless you can perform equally well shooting from either side, I suggest staying with your strong side unless you have solid ballistic cover.

Latest

Colt Anaconda revolver
Colt Anaconda revolver

Review: Colt Anaconda Revolver

We cannot lie: Colt’s latest revolver oozes class—and power. The new Anaconda is impressive and tough.

I Carry: Taurus G3 TORO Pistol in a Kinetic Concealment Holster

In today's episode of "I Carry," we have a Taurus G3 TORO optics-ready pistol equipped with a Bushnell RXS-100 red-dot sight and carried in a Kinetic Concealment outside-the-waistband holster.

Solving Issues with Brass Casings

Recently, while shooting a Norinco SKS, I experienced a failure to go into battery. Upon removing the cartridge, I found the round to be “shrouded” by another brass casing.

Handgun Grip Vs. Hold: What's the Difference?

Grip and hold on the firearm are often viewed by handgun shooters as one and the same. However, seasoned defensive and competitive shooters break down handgun shooting stability into two distinctly but equally essential subcomponents: grip versus hold.

First Look: FN America FN 303 Tactical Less Lethal Launcher

New from FN America is the FN 303 Tactical Less Lethal Launcher with a modular chassis system that allows operators and armorers to quickly customize the buttstock, grip or sighting system.

First Look: Diamondback Sidekick Rimfire Revolver

Diamondback Firearms is introducing the Diamondback Sidekick, a 9-shot, single- and double-action rimfire revolver that has an interchangeable swing-out cylinder.

Interests



Get the best of Shooting Illustrated delivered to your inbox.