A common idea is when a shooter encounters an interruption in the cycle of operation, he or she should perform SPORTS.  If the shooter observes an obstruction during the observe portion of that action; he or she should then perform remedial action.  I am offering that one can get to the appropriate action much faster and I am outlining what that action is for a double feed/failure to extract.

In the comments of the video below and other discussions on the internet I have ran across numerous people who have said, “no thanks, I will stick with SPORTS for my double feeds.”

Many circles on the internet feel that SPORTS is the solution to any stoppage.  Lets take a look at SPORTS in more detail.



Double feeds can come in a various forms.

Slapping the bottom of the magazine is often a necessary maneuver to use when one experiences a failure to feed/fire. Potentially an issue has occurred where the follower has become stuck or tilted, the magazine was not seated properly to begin with or it becomes unseated in the course of firing.   Slapping the bottom of the magazine does absolutely nothing for a double feed or failure to extract.


Pulling the charging handle to the rear is also the right step for getting a bad round out of the chamber for a failure to feed/fire. Simply pulling the charging handle to the rear with a magazine in the rifle will do nothing, but possibly cause the stoppage to become worse. A shooter with a double feed or failure to extract can rack the charging handle as much as he or she desires, but the stoppage will not be cleared until the rounds are able to be removed from the rifle.


This is a good step to do first, so the shooter does not waste time applying the remedies for a failure to feed/fire when the stoppage calls for a different procedure. Even on a failure to feed/fire, there is no need to observe for ejection. A simple standard response to ‘click with bolt forward’ of tap, rack, and reassess will work.   Had the stoppage been a failure to feed than there would be no ejection to observe anyway.

The feel of the trigger alone can tell the shooter that tap rack bang isn’t going to work. Why waste time adding in unnecessary steps when the shooter could simply identify the stoppage and apply the appropriate action to clear the stoppage?



A manufactured DF for training. Allowing the bolt to slam forward with a small amount of force on the involved rounds can increase the realism of the stoppage.

With the failure to feed/fire, this step would be the one that chambers the next round and is absolutely necessary. With a double feed or failure to extract, it is the exact same technique I use to make a double feed more difficult and realistic in training. If SPORTS is followed properly, this would be the time when the shooter begins remedial action to clear the double feed/ failure to extract.   Time has been wasted with unnecessary steps.



Let’s say we followed the Internet definition of when and how SPORTS is to be applied when we had a double feed or Failure to extract and we got all the way to this step. Picture the bolt forward on two cartridges trying to occupy the same space, now tap the forward assist… It does absolutely nothing and is a complete waste of time. Additionally, there is no need to tap a forward assist after clearing a failure to feed/fire if the bolt and carrier were allowed to go home on 100% of the buffer spring’s energy.


I even disagree with this one in most contexts. The threat may have changed his or her behavior in the course of the time it took to clear the stoppages or he or she may not be visible or even present anymore. That is why I stress a reassessment instead of training to always shoot after any reload or clearance.

SPORTS will work for a failure to feed/failure to fire, but even then it’s less efficient than a simple tap, rack, and reassess. SPORTS does not clear a double feed, failure to extract, stovepipe, or brass above bolt. Each of those actions has their own action that needs to be taken to clear the obstruction, usually referred to as remedial action.

The action I teach to clear a double feed is not something I came up with on my own, it doesn’t belong to me, nor did I have any part in its development. I have made small tweaks as to how I perform and teach the steps, but at its core, the steps are the ones taught to me many years ago by men more seasoned than I.

There are devices that can help the shooter perform stoppage clearances and reloads with more efficiency and you will see that some steps can be skipped at times. I am always looking for a better way, but the following is the best I have found to fit the majority of worse case situations involving a double feed or failure to extract.



Skip the S. and the P. and simply observe unless the stoppage is already identified by other means.

While adequate vision is not always available the eyes are a human’s largest source of sensory input, so the first step in clearing a stoppage is to observe what caused the interruption in the weapon’s cycle of operation. Once the cause is determined, the corrective action for the stoppage can be applied.

One who knows his or her firearm well and trains often may be able to diagnose most stoppages by the feel of the trigger. For example, if the shooter feels and hears the click of the hammer falling, the stoppage is likely a failure to feed/fire. Likewise, a mushy trigger felt when the bolt locks to the rear on an empty magazine might feel similar to the mushy trigger felt on a double feed, failure to extract or brass above bolt.

Additionally, lowlight and darkness situations may not allow the shooter the ability to see the stoppage, so between the trigger’s feel and the sense of touch, the shooter must determine the problem and apply the solution.


In most double feed or failure to extract cases, the rear of one of the rounds involved is still stuck under the lips of the magazine holding the magazine in place resulting in the magazine becoming unable to drop free on its own. Locking the bolt to the rear reduces the pressure on the round holding the magazine in place in cases where the bolt is riding above the lowest round. Even with the bolt locked to the rear, the magazine will likely need to be removed with more effort than its own weight. Even without locking the bolt to the rear, the magazine may be tight, but still removable.

The main reason that the bolt should be locked to the rear is to allow the shooter to clear the cartridges when they do not fall free after the magazine is removed. Having the pressure off the rounds as the magazine is removed can result in the rounds following the magazine out of the mag well.  Even when the bolt is not locked to the rear, there is still potential for the rounds to fall free when the magazine is removed.


This picture was caught as I was setting up a DF for this post. The round sticking out of the magazine was not staged.

A double feed that has been manufactured for training purposes will often result in the rounds falling free when the magazine is removed. This is not always the case in a realistic stoppage. Some would also suggest simply ripping the magazine out and immediately racking the charging handle to clear the stuck rounds. This will work some of the time, but not every time. Interestingly, the afore mentioned method is the exact method I use to create a hard, realistic double feed to work through on the range.


Get a solid grip on the magazine while depressing the magazine release and pull hard and fast to remove the magazine. If only one magazine is available, the magazine should be kept close. The magazine that was in the gun may have been the cause of the double feed, but it could also have a round sticking out in a way that causes an additional step or two to make the magazine ready to be seated in the mag well again. It is important to rip the magazine out in a way that allows gravity to help clear the stoppage.

Clear (Fingers in)


Rounds stuck with bolt locked to the rear and magazine removed.

On a hard double feed and some failure to extracts, the rounds are stuck partly in the chamber and/or pressing against each other and the inside of the receiver. If the rounds fall free when the magazine is removed, skip this step and go to the next step immediately. If the rounds do not fall free, clear the rounds by pressing upward on them through the magazine well. I typically shove my first three fingers up through the mag well and press hard against the rounds. In some cases a little more finesse and/or violence is needed to get them to come loose and fall.

If during the previous step, the chamber becomes known to be clear and there are no other obstructions, go directly to the next step and finish the procedure with a reload. If there is a round stuck in the chamber then the shooter should pull the charging handle to the rear and let it go home on 100% of the buffer spring’s energy until the shooter observes the round being ejected. In low light or when the shooter has not observed a round in the chamber, the shooter should rack three times keeping in mind that if he or she observes ejection, no additional racks will be necessary.

If available, reload with a different magazine from that favorite speed reload pouch and reassess.

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Daniel Shaw is a retired US Marine Infantry Unit Leader and is currently the Director of Training for Thunderbird Firearms Academy in Wichita, Kansas.

A special guest contributor from the Swedish Forces wrote an overview of their service weapon, the AK5c.

The Swedish AK5C

Well, you know the FN FNC? The Swedes have their own modern version known as the AK5 C the C stand for Cesar, it’s a licensed built and standard issue weapon for the Swedish Armed Forces. I’m a Swede, soldier, photographer and gun nut so please bear with my English while I’ll write about this weapon system.


Short History

The AK5 which means Automatic Carbine was adopted in the later 80’s, replacing the old AK4 (HK G3A3) the AK5 is a licensed built FN FNC by Bofors modified for the Swedish climate and specs. The two first versions Adam and Bertil was in service until somewhere in the 2006/7 where it was replaced by the now issued and modernized Cesar and David, the David being a shorter barreled version.

AK5B above and AK5A below. Not my picture so copyright goes to Henrik Svensk

The Features

Well, Imagine having magazine compatibility with the STANAG magazine (AR-15 rifle platform) but the somewhat same operation and reliability of the famous Kalashnikov rifles?  Well here it is, today, there are lots of manufacturers that can use a long stroke piston and AR-15 magazines in their weapons, but the FNC was designed in the late 70’s so this was somewhat new.


The gun itself operates very similar to the Kalash, using a rotating bolt and a long stroke gas piston system, the gun could be fired a lot before needing actual cleaning unlike the M16. Now using M16 mags giving it compatibility with other NATO countries that uses STANAG 5.56 magazines. Instead of having a big chunky Kalash safety, the AK5 has a more and ergonomic style selector resembling the G3 and MP5 series.
AK5C left side fire selector, and bolt catch

AK5: Old versus New

The main difference is that it of course has M1913 rail systems, ambidextrous safety and missing of a burst fire function (only semi and full auto), the sliding stock is also new and it’s still fold able as all other versions, also in the new C and D versions, a bolt-catch was installed.

All the new features and touch ups makes the system more modern in all ways, and in my humble opinion the FNC was a gun before it’s time.


AK5 Technical Data

Caliber: 5.56×45 Nato using STANAG Magazines.

Weight: 5 kg loaded and with red dot.

Barrel length: 350 mm (13.8 inches)

Combat effective range: 400 meters.

Rate of fire: 650 rounds per minutes.


Personal Experiences and Thoughts

As compared to other weapons, 5kg is quite heavy, for a gun in 5.56, but since the gun was designed to fire rifle grenades it needed a rugged construction, otherwise the ak5 is quite ok.
The safety is very easy to operate, it moves easily  without needing to change grip of the gun.
The bolt catch is a nice addition but since the old A and B versions did not have bolt catch function, using the old steel issued mags the gun will not lock up when the last shot is fired, the new “plastic” mags solves that problems but they are arguably the worst magazines, being wider and bigger inserting the plastic mags into the magwell is harder than the steel ones, and no the FNC does not have a flared magwell like the M16, which is kind of a downer, the plastic mags is also less reliable and more sensitive to sand/dirt, using a non issued mag, Magpul Pmag Gen 3 for example, its more reliable, sturdier and the bolt catch actually works, but the if the officers catch you using it they will do insane back flips of anger, hate and discontent.



The mag release and bolt catch is located in the same positions as the M16/AR 15 system and they’re not ambidextrous, so AR operations would still be able to operate this system without much re-training, the charging handle though is like a Kalash, it moves with the bolt and BCG and is located on the right side of the gun, the dust cover is spring loaded and will always keep dirt out of your gun.


The flash hider is just terrible, we could at least had a flash hider and comp hybrid… the rails are quite ok, no need for fancy stuff, and if needed an M203 40mm can be mounted under the gun.  The Aimpoint CS which is the issued red dot has lots of points to improve, in my opinion, but the kill flash and see trough covers are nice!


In arctic climate it performs good, just keep you gun dry when it’s colder than -30c and your gun should not freeze, walking in and out of -30c to +15c and back out could still make your gun sweat and freeze,(even at warmer temperatures)  and that happens to basically every gun.
Overall, the AK5 does not have the same reliability as the famous Kalash weapons, but it still jams less than an AR-15 direct impingement system and in my time using it from mid 2010, I had less than 50 jams, and if I remember correctly 4 were operator error and 2 were from a mag mixed with sand… but in the end, I guess it depends on how much your weapon is worn, many ak5s are all too worn and as as result more jams are popping up.




Only dust, nothing that will interfere with the gun. my rifle, also tape on steel mags, I prefer the steel ones.


Summary: The AK5C is still a good carbine, rugged for harsh use and a reliable gun when used correctly, a skilled operator can go pretty far with it, and even though it’s been upgraded to modern standards , the renovated guns are still wearing out.


Me, at the range 2012 I think, a borrowed Ak, with tape for marking that it’s just been maintained from the armory


Mates from the platoon, practicing CQB with BFA and blanks




Unloading procedure,thumb in magwell then dry firing




Medic going to take care of wounded during exercise







CQB Training, mount for aimpoint magnifier seen on top rail, it’s issued.


The Polish weapon manufacturer Łucznik Arms Factory is designing a weapon that can be converted from a conventional assault rifle into a bullpup using the same internal components and receiver.

There are rumors that a functioning weapon will be at SHOT Show 2015. Last year they only had a 3D rendering of the weapon.

As a huge bullpup fan, I see this is the gun that can bridge the divide between the two camps in the tactical world.

Do you know what a squib is and how to detect one? Check out the two videos below.

A squib is when a round gets lodged in the barrel of a weapon.  This normally occurs because the powder either did not burn off properly or it was never there to being with.  When this happens, the pressure which pushes the bullet through the rifling is not there but the primer does generate enough force lodge it in the barrel.

The user will feel the gun went “off” but it will have a different characteristic in how it sounds (not as loud) and recoil (not as sharp).  It’s important that all shooters understand this can happen to anyone.  Ammunition that isn’t properly stored and reloaded rounds are what puts the shooters at the most risk.

Ever wanted to SBR your AR-15?  Not even sure what that means? Well, SBR stands for “Short Barreled Rifle”.

Any rifle shorter with a barrel length shorter than 16″ must be registered as an NFA item through the ATF.  Traditionally, to “Form 1” your own lower receiver it was a strictly by-mail process that had a turnover rate of up to 1 year!  However, they have been renovating their online infrastructure and the wait times have been turned into a fraction of what they were.  Reddit Users are routinely posting 17-21 days on the subreddit r/NFA. 45422 Pictured: An AR-15 lower receiver.  These can be bought for $60-$80 and are the only part actually required for creating a Form 1 SBR AR-15. It’s still by no means an ‘easy’ process but now that most of the wait time will come on ‘your’ end; I could see more people taking advantage of this. First thing is setting up an NFA trust and getting your lower receiver stamped or engraved with:

(1) the model number, if any; (2) the caliber or gauge; and (3) in the case of a domestically manufactured firearm, (a) the manufacturer’s name, and (b) the city and state where the firearm was made; or (4) in the case of an imported firearm, (a) the importer’s name, (b) the city and state of the importer’s place of business, (c) the foreign manufacturer’s name, and (d) the country in which the firearm was manufactured

After that’s done, you upload your NFA trust (a lawyer and notary can make one for you) to the ATF’s online E-Forms website along with the specifications of your rifle and mail them a $200 check: AACMPW Pictured:  Advanced Armament Companies Personal Defense Weapon.  If you wanted a rifle like this, you’d have to order their “Upper” receiver separately as AAC can’t transfer the full rifle to you on a Form 1.  Those are still Form 3 items and the wait times are still 9 months to a year out.  Convoluted… I know.