The price of ammo has skyrocketed as once more demand outstrips supply. The logical result is an explosion in price, with some companies selling 9mm ammo for more than a buck a round. These trying times require creativity and lots of dry fire to keep your skills sharp. One simple training tool I recently discovered is the TRT Dry Fire training aids.
These simple training tools look like a deformed cartridge. They are small, made from polymer, and look very simple. They install into your magazine and press the follower down roughly a quarter of an inch. The TRT Dry Fire training aids come in 9mm/40 S&W, 45 ACP, and there is a model for AR 15 magazines.
The TRT devices come from Rogers Shooting School. Bill Rogers is a top tier shooter who operates a firearms training academy outside of Atlanta, Georgia. Mr. Rogers is a former FBI agent, world-class IPSC shooter, and inventor of the TRT Dry Fire training aids.
Dry fire is an important and affordable means to build and retain your shooting skills. While many think dry fire is nothing more than literal dry firing, those of us who get bored easily know you have to spice it up. My dry fire regiment includes the classic act of simply pulling the trigger on an empty chamber, as well as reloads, malfunctions, and various manipulation techniques. I always work with my main carry gun, the SIG P365.
Reloading drills, in particular, have always been a been challenge. With an empty magazine in place, the slide lock is in play and is a real hassle. Trying to work the slide with a proper slingshot method doesn’t work with an empty magazine. My old go-to was to shove Snap Caps into my SIG P365, and that works, but it gets old, constantly removing, collecting, and reloading Snap Caps into magazines.
This is where the TRT Dry Fire Training aids proved to be invaluable. They hold the follower down and allow you to work a reload as if the magazine was loaded. These training devices replicate an actual reload down to each and every movement, which builds perfect muscle memory while reloading.
My personal method is to load a TRT Dry Fire Training aid into one P365 magazine and to leave one completely empty. The empty mag goes in the gun, and my TRT equipped magazine goes into my Accomplice mag carrier. I execute a reload, reset, and do it again and again and again.
This was the same method I used with Snap Caps, but it was nowhere near as efficient, especially if a Snap Cap rolled under the fridge. With the TRT Dry Fire Training aid, I’m accomplishing more training in less time. I’m also considerably less frustrated and annoyed, and I find myself looking more forward to the training.
My SIG P365 doesn’t require you to fully operate the slide to recock the gun, so I didn’t need it for resetting the striker. However, certain guns do require the slide move completely rearward and forward to function. These devices make it a lot less time consuming to reset the striker or hammer when practicing some basic dry fire.
From a safety perspective, I do like that the TRT Dry Fire Training aid is a high visibility orange that’s easy to see, and you know, without a doubt, the magazine is unloaded. Also, the price is unbeatable. You can get a three-pack of TRT Dry Fire Training aids for less than ten bucks! Pair these with something like the MantisX, and you can conquer dry fire practice. These are just one tool in the box to make dry fire more efficient and less frustrating.
Check ‘em out, and I hope they bring you the same joy they’ve brought me. It dawned on me that these can’t be the only awesome, affordable, dry fire tool out there. With that in mind, if you have a great training aid or technique, please share your wisdom with us.
Travis Pike is a former Marine Machine gunner who served with 2nd Bn 2nd Marines for 5 years. He deployed in 2009 to Afghanistan and again in 2011 with the 22nd MEU(SOC) during a record-setting 11 months at sea. Travis has trained with the Romanian Army, the Spanish Marines, the Emirate Marines, and the Afghan National Army.
He serves as an NRA certified pistol instructor and pursues a variety of firearms based hobbies.
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