Dry-Fire Exercises. Repeated training and diy-fire practice are the most effective means available to ensure all soldiers can function efficiently after dark.
Target detection and diy-fire exercises must be conducted before the first live round is fired. They can take place almost anywhere—elaborate live-fire range facilities are not needed. Modified fundamentals can be taught in a classroom/practical exercise situation. Further training in the proper zeroing and engagement techniques can take place anywhere that targets can be set up and darkness can be expected.
Without extensive dry-fire training, soldiers do not perform to standards during live fire. Valuable range time and ammunition are wasted in a final attempt to teach the basics.
The soldier must demonstrate skill during daylight live fire. Next, he is trained in the differences and modifications needed for successful night firing. Many diy-fire exercises are conducted until skill at night firing is displayed. Only then is the soldier ready to move on to the night live-fire exercises.
Live-Fire Exercises. These exercises continue to develop the firing skills acquired during dry-fire exercises, and they allow the soldier to experience the effects of darkness on downrange performance.
The basic unassisted live-fire exercise allows all soldiers to apply night-fire principles, and to gain confidence in their abilities to effectively engage targets at 25 and 50 meters. Practice and proficiency firing can be conducted on any range equipped with mechanical lifters and muzzle flash simulators. A small square of reflective material and a shielded low wattage flashing light (protected from bullet impact) may be used to facilitate target detection. (Figures 5-3, page 5-6) The light should be placed to highlight the center of the target with a flashing, faint glow (intended to represent a muzzle flash). The light should not be on constantly, when the target is not exposed, or on when the target is exposed but not being used in actual engagement. The light should provide the firer with a momentary indication that a target is presenting itself for engagement. It should not be attached to the target or provide the firer with a distinct aiming point, regardless of how dim it may be. Practice can also be accomplished by the use of MILES equipment and target interface devices.
When an automated record fire range (RETS) is used for this exercise, the two 50-meter mechanisms are used. Before training, one E-type silhouette target is replaced with an F-type silhouette target. The F-type silhouette target is engaged at 25 meters from the prone unsupported position. The soldier is issued one magazine of 15 rounds (5 rounds ball; 10 rounds tracer) and presented 15 ten-second exposures. The firing line is moved, and the soldier engages the E-type silhouette target at 50 meters. He is issued a second 15-round magazine (5 rounds ball; 10 rounds tracer) to engage 15 ten-second exposures.
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