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Dry Fire Training
I have been looking for a long time for a solution to do dry fire training at home. But I had not found anything satisfactory so far. Because either the systems had no recoil which is far from reality. Or they only allowed double action shooting, which is not realistic either. In production Optic, the first shot is in double action but the following ones are fired in single action with much lower trigger weights than double action.
I had tried the Air Soft solution, I had bought a Shadow 2 in Airsoft, it is the same weight as the real one but the trigger has nothing to do with the real one. Moreover I had difficulty in making hold my Shield SMS red dot on it. It is the that one sees the limits of these Airsoft models.
Dry fire training – A hybrid solution
And then I found a solution that suits me quite well, even if it is obviously perfectible. First I found at coolfire a system to do dry fire training with my Shadow 2. So I can shoot at home with my match weapon, my Shield RMSx red dot, my prepared match trigger….
The product is called Coofire Trainer, when you order it you choose your weapon because you will receive a replacement barrel and a light recoil spring. So there is no generic model, it is specific to your gun.
The barrel has a CO2 tank that will be used to generate the recoil of the slide. There is practically a real cycle. You also have to choose the method of filling the tank, there are different options. Me I selected for the use of sodastream CO2 bottle (25 € in the trade), and the kit will include an adapter for these bottles that will fit into the coolfire barrel. 2 seconds and it’s filled!
From dream to reality
The recoil is quite close to reality, it’s obviously not as brutal as shooting a 9 Para, but strong enough to lose your front sight or your red dot between 2 shots.
As I also wanted to be able to use an application to draw my stages and get the results in terms of accuracy (alpha, Charlie, delta, miss) as well as my split times, I added a laser option. There are 2 at coolfire, I took the one that includes an extra tank of CO2, it increases the autonomy between 40 and 50 shots. Knowing that a bottle of sodastream will allow us to shoot nearly 2000 shots, it is a solution that pays for itself quite quickly. The complete Coolfire trainer + laser/reservoir kit costs a little over 500€ at double alpha academy.
An online application to train
Now that my CZ Shadow 2 Prod Optic Ready with Shield RMSx is customized with a laser, a barrel with a system that generates recoil, I just had to find an application to make my own training courses and have a real dry fire training system for the TSV.
I found my happiness at dryfireonline.com. You just have to take a monthly subscription (from 3€ to 12€) depending on the options you choose. From there you can make your own courses, you choose your decor, you add targets (IPSC or others), you place them where you want and you save. You need an iOS or Android smartphone that will be used to shoot the application that runs on a browser. In my case, I was using a Mac connected to a video projector in my living room to have a large image and thus have transitions between targets that are quite realistic. But it can work on a TV or computer screen. In this case you have to put something reflective on the screen because as they are anti-reflective, the laser will not be visible.
How it works ?
My iPhone detects the impact of the laser on the screen and the application sends the information to the dryfireonline server which updates in real time the image displayed on my browser. There is 1/10th of a second of latency between the shot and the impact displayed but it is largely usable. So I have the results in terms of accuracy on the targets as well as my splits between each shot. Sometimes the application on the iPhone does not detect a shot correctly and announces a “miss”. It happens but not too often. In any case, the benefits of being able to shoot without burning real cartridges (so always time to save on reloading) by defining your own courses are much greater than the few inconveniences when the application misses a shot… 🙂