South Kent Sportsman's Club
Dorr, Michigan

3-Gun FAQ

When and how are 3-Gun Matches held at SKSC?

Matches are held every third Sunday of the month, the day after the monthly Saturday USPSA match. The season begins as early as March, depending on weather, and continues through October.

Registration opens at the Clubhouse starting at 0815, and closes at 0915 with a shooters’ brief shortly afterwards in the Match Bunker section of the Range.

Matches usually finish at about 1400, depending on the number of shooters and complexity of the stages.

Matches typically involve five or six stages, with target distances ranging from five to 100 meters and targets consisting of cardboard, steel and clays. 

Description of how a match is run at SKSC:

Our match philosophy is to offer stages that require employment of all three weapons systems within a stage, that require loads and reloads on the clock, that stress fire and movement, and that require the shooter to shift from CQB to intermediate-distance targets within a stage.

Our scoring (using USPSA “classic” a/k/a “amoeba” targets) also reflects this emphasis on practical weapons-handling skill and accuracy.

One A-Zone hit, or two hits in C-Zone, are necessary to neutralize a target. Two D-Zone hits is a Failure to Neutralize (FTN). As Wyatt Earp reportedly said, “Speed is fine, but accuracy is everything.”

Only prerequisites to participate are one of the following:
  (a) prior action-shooting experience [IDPA, USPSA/IPSC, Steel Challenge, etc.]
  (b) completion of the SKSC 101 Class [see the “Match” page on this website for details]; or
  (c) recent military and/or law-enforcement live-fire training.

Bottom line is that you must be able to safely handle live firearms while moving, shooting and reloading in different positions and on the clock.

Divisions:

  • Limited
    • (a) any magazine-fed semiautomatic rifle without magnified optics;
    • (b) any semiautomatic pistol with iron sights;
    • (c) any pump or semiautomatic shotgun with iron sights, 8+1 magazine capacity limit. Unmagnified holographic rifle sights are allowed.
  • Tactical
    • (a) any magazine-fed semiautomatic rifle with a single optic, magnification allowed;
    • (b) any semiautomatic pistol with iron sights;
    • (c) any pump or semiautomatic shotgun with iron sights, 8+1 magazine capacity limit.
  • Open
    • (a) any magazine-fed semiautomatic rifle with magnified and/or multiple optics;
    • (b) any semiautomatic pistol with optics;
    • (c) any pump or semiautomatic shotgun with optics, 10+1 magazine capacity limit.
  • Heavy
    • (a) any 7.62 mm magazine-fed semiautomatic rifle;
    • b) .45 ACP semiautomatic pistol;
    • (c) 12 ga. pump shotgun with iron sights.

Round Counts:

Ammo requirements for the average match are:

  • Pistol – minimum 100 rounds;
  • Shotgun – minimum 100 rounds of birdshot [nothing heavier than 6 shot is allowed, i.e., no 00-Buck, goose-loads, etc.] and minimum 10 rounds of slug;
  • Rifle – minimum 150 rounds.

Equipment:

(a) quality pistol holster with sufficient retention to keep pistol secured while running [we strongly prefer not to see Serpa holsters on the range, but they are not strictly prohibited];

(b) at least two rifle magazines, and at least one mag carrier for rifle;

(c) at least three double-stack or four single-stack pistol mags, and two mag carriers for double-stack/three carriers for single-stack;

(d) shotgun-shell carrier of some sort;

(e) belt that is sturdy enough to securely carry all this gear at the same time;

(f) flag safeties for rifle and shotgun;

(g) eye and hearing protection;

(h) sensible shoes.

We say again: flag safeties for rifle and shotgun are required.

Safety:

These are club matches, and are not presently sanctioned by USPSA, 3-Gun Nation, etc..

Accordingly, our safety rules may differ from those in force at sanctioned matches, and are a combination of SKSC club rules and the consensus judgment of the 3-Gun match directors.

Competitive tactical shooting is an exciting sport, but it is also extremely dangerous if done carelessly. This is not golf. We want to have fun, but we must make certain that every match ends with every shooter alive and healthy, and with every single round that left the muzzle of any weapon safely planted in an SKSC berm.

SKSC matches are run as a cold range, and the only time a shooter may load any weapon is when he/she is under the direct supervision of a safety officer (SO) and at that SO’s direction. Match disqualification (DQ) policy is as follows:

(a) Allowing the muzzle of any firearm to break the 180° plane parallel to the back of a stage-bay is an immediate match disqualification. Put another way: pointing a muzzle even 1° up-range is a match DQ.

(b) Any accidental discharge of a weapon during a course of fire (COF) is a match DQ.

c) Any dropping of a weapon during a COF is a match DQ.

(d) Three warnings for “muzzle” and/or “finger” is a match DQ. Muzzle warnings are given when a shooter allows his/her muzzle to approach the 180° plane and, in the judgment of the SO, appears to be unaware of the fact that he/she is about to break the 180° and needs to reorient the weapon downrange. Finger warnings are given when a shooter’s finger remains inside the trigger-guard at any time other than when actively firing at a target, such as during movement between positions (except when firing on the move), during reloads, and during malfunction clearing.

(e) Sweeping any part of a human body – yours or someone else’s – with a weapon is a match DQ. Muzzle may never cross meat.

(f) Depositing a loaded long-gun in a barrel with the safety disengaged is a match DQ.

(g) Handling any weapon outside of a marked “Safe Area” when not under the direct supervision of an SO is a match DQ (except when moving between stages and racking long-guns).

(h) Handling ammunition in a marked “Safe Area” is a match DQ.

(i) Firing at pistol steel closer than 10 yards, or firing a rifle at pistol-only rated steel, is a match DQ.

Note: The above may sound like the warden’s “Spend a night in the box” speech from Cool Hand Luke, but it is not difficult for a competent weapons handler to successfully, safely, and enjoyably shoot one of our matches. Posting all of the DQ scenarios is our way of increasing the odds that we won’t have to DQ anybody, because none of our SO’s or MD’s enjoy doing that.

For More Information

For the matches at SKSC, contact:

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