Tactical World - - Contents - TEXT BY ROB PIN­CUS | PHOTOS BY WODHAWK

When you are train­ing for armed de­fense with a ri­fle around a ve­hi­cle, there are key el­e­ments you must know. In Part II, we have more. By Rob Pin­cus

The use of the ri­fle in de­fense around ve­hi­cles is a com­mon theme in law en­force­ment and ur­ban mil­i­tary train­ing. For peo­ple who reg­u­larly carry ri­fles in their ve­hi­cles, learn­ing some con­cepts spe­cific to us­ing their long gun around that ve­hi­cle only makes sense.

In our last is­sue, we went over shoot­ing through glass, shoot­ing over cover, and us­ing tires as cover. Here are a few more tips to keep in mind when you are prac­tic­ing or plan­ning for armed de­fense with a ri­fle around a ve­hi­cle. — Editor

01 Ve­hi­cles as a Rest

If you are in a sit­u­a­tion where you are en­gag­ing a threat at a sig­nif­i­cant dis­tance, or have an­other need to con­trol de­vi­a­tion at a higher level than you can re­li­ably man­age offhanded, a ve­hi­cle can of­fer many op­por­tu­ni­ties for im­pro­vised rests. The hood or trunk, mir­rors, bumpers, spare tires mounted on the backs of Jeeps or other SUVS, trailer hitches, or the roofs of shorter cars can all be used as im­pro­vised rests to in­crease sta­bil­ity.

Of course, us­ing a ve­hi­cle as a rest de­creases its value as cover or con­ceal­ment. You should al­ways try to use the “hard-on-soft or soft-on-hard” rule for im­pro­vised rests when­ever pos­si­ble, plac­ing a jacket, bag or other soft item be­tween the ri­fle and the hard sur­face of a car when you can. This will in­crease sta­bil­ity and im­prove re­coil man­age­ment. If you are us­ing a ver­ti­cal fore-grip or some ri­fles’ mag­a­zines or mag­a­zine wells as a brace, you may also be able to “lean into” the ri­fle to in­crease sta­bil­ity.

Re­mem­ber that any con­tact with your bar­rel can af­fect ac­cu­racy in ex­treme sit­u­a­tions and al­ways keep your me­chan­i­cal off­set (the dif­fer­ence in the po­si­tion of your sights/scope/op­tic and your muz­zle) in mind when us­ing a ve­hi­cle as a rest. Many a truck hunter has put a crease into their hood or a hole through the op­po­site side of their pickup bed af­ter fail­ing to ac­count for this!

02 Be­hav­ioral Cover

You may need to re­mind your­self that you have the abil­ity to see the bad guy through tinted or dirty glass when he is look­ing for you around the ve­hi­cle. I coined the term “be­hav­ioral cover” in the mid-2000s af­ter see­ing sev­eral videos where bad guys hes­i­tated on pulling the trig­ger at po­lice of­fi­cers or tar­gets, be­cause they did not have a clear line of sight to the part of their body they wanted to shoot.

One of the most dra­matic ex­am­ples was an un­der­cover of­fi­cer who sim­ply put his hand up in front of his body af­ter be­ing knocked to the ground. The bad guy can be seen very ob­vi­ously try­ing to ma­neu­ver and an­gle his hand­gun around the of­fi­cer’s hand to get a “clear shot” at his head or chest. The of­fi­cer con­tin­ues to move his hand in front of the muz­zle of the threat’s gun long enough for the quick re­sponse team to get into the room and take the bad guy out of the fight.

I have seen count­less ex­am­ples of po­lice of­fi­cers and oth­ers fight­ing around ve­hi­cles, when they had the op­tion of both look­ing and shoot­ing through the glass. Hav­ing seen this phe­nom­e­non oc­cur of­ten enough to

Try to use the “hard- on- soft or softon- hard” rule for im­pro­vised rests when­ever pos­si­ble, plac­ing a jacket, bag or other soft item be­tween the ri­fle and the hard sur­face of a car.

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