If there was ever a company that outgrew its name too quickly, it’s Dry Fire Training Cards. As you might have guessed, this company’s original and most prominent product is a simple deck of cards. They randomly command a shooter through a variety of dry fire practice drills that don’t require the use of any live ammunition.
Dry Fire Practice with Dry Fire Training Cards
From there, instructor and IDPA master-level shooter Mike Ochsner built an entire training system that centers around the way the human brain functions. This program is simple, concise, and effective, especially when the other products are used.
The best place to start understanding Ochsner’s company is to look at the premier item—the Dry Fire Cards. The deck contains 51 drills broken down into five categories. The colored band on the top of the card tells you the skill level of the drill. Likewise, it details other aspects that might be involved, like low light or exercise.
Each routine is intended to reproduce stressors found in typical shooting scenarios. They can be conducted with little to no additional equipment.
Dry Fire Cords
While dry-firing a firearm doesn’t require any additional material, the company’s other items enhance the experience with very little additional investment. Take, for instance, the Dry Fire Cords (not a typo).
These diameter-specific safety devices consist of a simple chamber plug that is attached to a colored piece of nylon. Just thread it through your barrel, and it provides a visual indicator that your pistol is unloaded.
Furthermore, they keep the slide out of battery, allowing you to depress the trigger more than once. This enables you to conduct double-tap routines and multiple target engagements.
Dry Fire Targets
Lastly, targets help a whole lot, particularly when they can stand on their own. Dry Fire Cards self-standing Tough Targets are made from a heavy polyester-blend material and can be set up or broken down in seconds.
They are also light enough to hang on a wall with a thumbtack or a simple piece of scotch tape if you wish. Through an assortment of shapes, colors, letters, and numbers, Dry Fire Cards offers over 50 different unique drills. These drills cover everything from practical pistol competition to long-range precision shooting.
For more information, visit DryFireTrainingCards.com.
High-Tech Training with Mantis
Microprocessors and electronic sensors have found their way into every facet of life, changing the way we do nearly everything and shining light onto the finest details. If you’ve been following the trend, then it’s apparent that firearms and electronics are destined to be together too.
The Illinois-based company, Mantis, has been working hard at affirming this statement. And it shows through products like the Mantis X and Blackbeard.
The Mantis X is an electronic sensor that hangs off of any accessory rail or a variety of magazines and can be used at home for dry fire practice or even on the range with live ammunition in some models.
The product integrates with a smartphone app. Together they record and relay information regarding the gun’s movements during a practice session. Features like consistency comparisons can help shooters learn to contour their movements. Likewise, daily challenges keep practice sessions fresh and interesting.
Although the Mantis X is the company’s best-selling item, I have recently gravitated to the Blackbeard dry-fire device.
My biggest qualm with dry-fire practice is having to re-cock your gun in between each shot. This limits you to single-shot drills unless you want to change your trigger out or use a replica gun. The Blackbeard system replaces your AR-15’s bolt carrier group, charging handle, and magazine with electronic parts and a battery pack that resets the trigger when you press it.
There is also the option of adding a laser system that works with a variety of third-party electronic targets. I liked that this device has a provision to zero the laser to match your optics instead of the other way around. This saves you the task of re-zeroing when you are finished.
The magazine component of the system comprises the battery pack and can “fire” more than 100,000 times off of a single charge (via a USB power source). Another key feature is that it is removed the same way as a standard magazine. This allows you to run drills that require a reload.
I dropped mine into a custom build made from a skeletonized receiver set from War Dog Industries. I also decided to challenge the Blackbeard with a Rise Armament Blitz self-contained trigger group. Its short reset requires a fast electronic actuator to run at full speed without live ammunition.
The Blackbeard didn’t disappoint, and it has earned a permanent place in my dry-fire routine.
For more information, visit MantisX.com.
This article was originally published in the Combat Handguns May/June 2022 issue. Subscription is available in print and digital editions at OutdoorGroupStore.com. Or call 1-800-284-5668, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.