Posted on June 15, 2022 by Grady Epperly in Uncategorized
CCW Safe Podcast – Episode 91: Langdon Tactical
CCW Safe Use of Force Expert Rob High and Firing Line Radio host Phillip Naman interview Ernest and Amy Langdon of Langdon Tactical also known as LTT. Well known for producing custom Beretta pistols and shotguns they have also recently launched the LTT Discover project which is a website and video series focusing on the basics of shooting, self-defense and safe gun handling for newer shooters.
Check out LTT Discover at: https://lttdiscover.com/
Video version of the podcast:
Voice-over: Welcome to the CCW Safe Podcast with Rob High and Phillip Naman.
Rob High: Hi, guys. Welcome to the CCW Safe Podcast. I’m Rob High in Oklahoma City joined by my guest today, Ernest Langdon and his beautiful wife Aimee. We are so pleased to have you and we still can’t get rid of Phil Naman, he’s in Arizona today. We’ll put up with him for today.
Phillip Naman: Who else would you have to kick around here Rob? Go on.
Rob: Thank you guys so much. We appreciate you guys coming on. I am excited to talk to you guys and especially the direction you guys are going with some of your focus on training. Everybody out there wants to be Tommy tactical and you got to have a basic groundwork before you can actually– it’s like everything else we do. I don’t care if it’s hands on stuff or less lethal stuff or lethal stuff. We have to learn how to crawl before we walk and walk before we run.
Over the last two and a half years, the numbers of brand new baby gun owners and I don’t mean anything disrespectful by that. We all started someplace at some time, but there are a lot of new gun owners in this country that are really looking for good quality instruction and direction on equipment. Nobody needs to start out with a Staccato, there’s plenty of good stuff out there.
Our content manager just did an article on a strict out of the box Glock versus a full race gun and his split times and things like that, honest to goodness, were really negligible. When you’re going into a race gun you’ve got some extra weights and other things in place so you’ve got a lot more managed recoil. As far as draw stroke coming out, he was getting a difference of 0.08 seconds and things like that. The fundamental things work with basic out of the box guns. There’s plenty of really good manufacturers out there and things like that.
There’s so many guys out there that are trying to impress, “Oh, you need a weapons mounded light, you need a dot or you need this or you need that,” and you really don’t. If I had my way, I’d put everybody on a wheel gun and start them out like that and let them learn the very basic fundamental things and then move up and keep growing. I’m really anxious, Aimee, to hear what kind of direction that you’re looking at?
Aimee Langdon: We obviously have a lot of new gun owners out there and Ernest and I sat down, we talked about it a lot when I first started shooting because my journey to firearms and learning to carry was very different than the way that he got into it. His was very hobby and then military driven, whereas mine was I want to learn and it was more from a self-defense standpoint.
As we moved through our journey together of restarting Langdon Tactical and building it up and transitioning it, one of the gaps that we realized was missing was this place for new firearms owners, people who were like me, they wanted to carry, they wanted to learn how to carry, but they didn’t have the background. They didn’t have the tactical law enforcement or military background and what information is out there, where do we go.
The point that I kept trying to make for Ernest and it’s a joke now, but everything that we looked for and that I would try to find of doing my own research if I would get frustrated with him and he’d be like, “Okay, then go figure it out.” Everything was tactical, it was very military-driven or [unintelligible 00:04:48] driven and it just was not realistic for what I was looking for from a self-defense or personal carry journey if you will.
We took that and we did a lot of research and we did a lot of work on putting together a program that could be an educational resource for anybody, to meet them where they’re at on their firearms journey from those starting and wanting to carry to those already caring or just sharing additional information.
Rob: That is so good. We’ve got so many people in this industry and I’ll tell you with decades of law enforcement background, I’ve been a firearms instructor on the police side for 25 years or so. Law enforcement is so terrible about nobody wants to change. This is how we’ve always done it and it was–
Phillip: That may not be just law enforcement. I think the Second Amendment community is when they get their teeth on something, it’s a little [crosstalk]
Rob: They do, but as I stepped out of the law enforcement realm and became a civilian carrier, obviously, you and I talk about it all the time, my mission is vastly different. I don’t have an obligation to go out and hunt down anymore. Mine now is if I can avoid it, man, I’m avoiding it. I’m not getting paid to do that anymore. I’ve done my time in the barrel.
Aimee: I think that’s a key piece, Rob, to jump in just on that key point is that mindset bled into if you are going to have a firearm, you have to have that mentality. It’s not to say that everybody actually believe that, to a degree of course they do, but that’s what was being portrayed as you must do this, you must be ready for this and if you’re not, then it’s not there. You don’t have a right to own a firearm or anything like that.
When we started LTT discover, it was literally that point of, it’s okay you can have it just for home defense. Maybe you’re not ready to carry. Maybe you just want to have it because it makes you feels better. That’s okay, let’s guide you in finding those rounds of and layers of confidence so that you can be more comfortable with a firearm, but not be in that like, oh, you’re hunting down trouble mentality. Sorry I interrupted you, but I just wanted to sideline on that point.
Rob: No, it’s absolutely on point, and that’s something Phil and I always discuss with our members is what is your mission? My equipment really should be influenced by whatever my mission is. Now, for me, mine can be different and it’s just going to be based on where I’m actually going to. I’ve got decades of experience in that realm. I’m not throwing on soft body armor to go to the mall. I don’t have a Batman belt on.
Phillip: You don’t live in Chicago either. That’s a valid point.
Rob: If I’ve got a pistol, I’ve almost always got some palm OC spray with me. I’d way rather not have to go through the hassle of not having any other option available and there are OC options out there that I can address this with something in that regard because we’re nowhere near a lethal threat.
There’s so many people out there that think that that gun, and this is such a horrible mindset, that if I just show it to them I’ll be okay, it’ll scare them. I’m sorry, I’ve worked with lots of guys that weren’t scared at the fact that I had a gun and I know how to use it. If your thought process is, “I’m going to address this threat and show them I have a firearm,” that’ll solve it, you’re going to get killed with your own gun.
Phillip: The issue with that, Rob, is you’re thinking rationally but you shouldn’t be brandishing, we’ve touched that a thousand times, but you’re thinking that somebody should be afraid of it, but the person you are dialoging with at that point in time is a criminal. If they were thinking rational, they wouldn’t be criminals. That’s their mindset is completely different and so you can’t negotiate with a tiger or you can’t feed a crocodile a finger at a time hoping he eats your whole body last or something like that. We’ve talked about it before, brandishing is almost always not the answer, and it won’t get the desired effect you think it would have anyway.
Rob: The other end of that is whether it’s in the military side, or the law enforcement side, or the civilian side, we’ve all seen all those people out there that are self-promoting, pompous idiots, that even if they do have a skill set, they really make that sour other people, especially new people. I’ve watched a guy that came, he did his time in the military. He wasn’t just an enlistee, he was in the teams, and really special guy, but he just berates just Joe Citizen and his wife. These people are just like, “That guy is just an absolute– He’s just a turd. I never want to be around that guy ever again.”
I’m not training operators. I’m training people that don’t know anything about these weapons platform and they’re very eager to learn. Actually, it’s been my experience that they’re easier to teach than cops, because a lot of people coming into that profession think that they have to be aggressive and they have to do this and “I got it figured out,” and they don’t. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have to teach them firearms. What is some of the stuff that– I don’t know if you guys are very actively plugged in running classes now, or if you’re doing online content, and that’s what I was really interested in.
Ernest Langdon: Yes, I do– what do I got? Eight classes on the books this year. I’m not teaching nearly as much as I used to, but I still teach quite a bit. To your point, a lot of guys that come out of the military have a very difficult time transitioning from the way they teach in the military to the way they teach and law enforcement too. You can get away with saying and acting ways in those career fields and those types of training programs that are just completely unacceptable for the civilian market.
I would argue that, often some of that is not accept– it’s not necessary and probably counterproductive in both the law enforcement and the military world as well. If you’re trying to teach someone a complex skill, what is a relatively complex skill of shooting a handgun, berating them, and yelling at them, and telling them they suck is not the right direction for skill improvement.
I would argue that point that the military probably tries to take what they would do in a physical training realm or a boot camp realm, and it’s like, “Oh, well, I’m going to do the same thing. I’m just going to plug in firearms.” It’s not the right direction in that realm either.
Rob: Exactly the same thing in the law enforcement. We’re evolving. They’re making improvements, but you still got guys that that was the program they came up under and they think, “I still need to come out here and just be hard-nosed and in somebody’s ear.” For somebody that has zero experience with a firearm, I don’t have to manufacture stressors for them. It’s automatic. They’ve already got it.
They stepped on the line with stressors, and then we increase those by going, “Now, we’re going to do it under time. Now, we’re going to force magazine changes. You’ve got mandatory reloads, or forced malfunctions or whatever, make it work.” It’s not done with– because we build in those confidence-builder things and those stressors from day one with just the change in environment for them. We know how to manufacture stress. When it comes time to learn any critical skill, the focus should be on learning the skill. The stressor stuff is already– we worked on that someplace else.
Aimee: For a lot of first-time shooters, those don’t even exist. It’s foreign. “What’s a reload?” They don’t even know. The chances that they’re going to get in a gun fight that involves a reload is not practical. They’re not going to have a two-second draw and a first shot straight on target. “What does that even mean?” They’re still trying to figure out, “How do I load the ammo and put the magazine,” [laughs] “Which way does it go?” It’s like a lot of that stuff just from an entry-level standpoint is not– that language has to be thrown out the window to just get people to know and understand that they have this fear-driven mindset of wanting it. You have to just start at the basic, simple level and to tie into the training.
As a company, we are trying to bring together that training full circle. We’re trying to start it at the entry-level shooter through the person carrying that’s just home defense, but then also who are the tactical headies, if you will, and the tactical shooters, or the competitive shooters. Ernest, that’s obviously his bread and butter, where he goes like, “Have that training and that teaching available to those shooters as well.”
Phillip: I think one of the things Rob said earlier that I want to touch on is, there’s a natural stressor. For first-time firearm, like you’re saying Aimee, that they don’t know how to make a reload or load the magazine the first time and now you’re going to talk to them about a tactical reload. There’s enough natural stressors and when you’re dealing with somebody for the first time as an instructor, it’s the person-to-person.
It’s making everything safe, but getting them in a comfortable mood before the gun ever goes off, that they’ve handled it, they know what the grip is, they know what you’ve talked about. You’ve had a long time of explanations before the first percussion cap goes and all of a sudden there’s a bang. I think that the time that you spend with them and in the manner that you spend with them would reduce all that natural stressor, at least get them comfortable to step up to the line the first time, they’re not definitely afraid of it.
Ernest: It depends on who they are. Aimee does a really good of, or has done a really good job, I think, of trying to change the terminology that we use and the way that we teach to certain people. Because people that come from the tactical world that, that grew up in law enforcement and military, whatever, there’s a lot of assumptions of that use terminology, and we say things, and we use acronyms, and we do all kinds of other stuff and we don’t even realize that we’re doing it.
Then we get in front of a brand-new shooter, and we’re saying all these things that mean absolutely nothing to them. They’ve never heard this terminology before. We start telling them that they’re doing something using some word that we’ve learned for the last 30 years in our careers. We’re like, “Well, of course you know what this means. You understand what I’m talking about because this is common knowledge.” It’s not common knowledge, not even close.
Aimee has done a really good job of pointing that out and saying, “Nobody knows what you’re talking about. You’re saying this word as if it’s common knowledge and they don’t know what you’re talking about because they didn’t come from a tactical background.”
That’s one of the things we’ve tried to do with the LTT Discover, and the training courses and everything, is try to change that terminology a little bit and come at it from a much simpler standpoint to allow people to understand that have never had any exposure before at all.
Phillip: It’s like a princess bride. You keep using that word. I don’t think that word means what you think it means.
Ernest: [laughs] Yes.
Rob: What kind of stuff have you got in the works, Aimee, as far as for those new shooters? What kind of programming have you been moving towards?
Aimee: Yes, that’s a good question. Well, it’s not a program that’s a step-by-step process here, “We’ll start you here and lead you through this,” because the one thing that we’ve learned is that it’s different for everybody. Some people are more willing to jump in and be ready, and some people are not. What we’ve done is we’ve taken the questions that people ask, “Hey, there’s other people like you that thinks they want a gun and they’re not sure where to start. How do I go about finding the right gun for me?”
We’ve put together several different video topics. Some of them are a little bit longer, but a lot of them are fairly short. It walks you through, “Okay, if you’re working on finding the right gun for you, here, go to your local gun store. Here are the questions you can ask. Here’s what you can do.” If you’ve got the gun and you’re having a hard time marrying the magazine, the ammo and the gun together because when you do that, oh, that’s scary. It goes, bang. Here’s how you can start with face comfortable gun handling just in your home. No magazine, no ammo inserted.
We go through each of those steps that it takes people to get started. Obviously, we can’t hold their hands and get them to the range. People have to do that on their own, but we guide them in that process of dry fire, handle the gun individually. As we’ve interviewed people and we’ve talked to people and we’ve pulled people in, that’s how it seems to start for everybody but they go about it differently. We put together different videos to try to guide people and help them or give them a tip or idea to hunt down a resource that could be helpful for them.
All the way down to, “Here’s CCW laws in your state. Here, go to this website, what state you live in, start here.” Then beyond just the firearm, we’re also tying fitness and nutrition into it. Not at the level of, “Here’s a rigid program that you’re going to follow and this is what you’re going to do,” but talking about everything beyond the gun too. You can be a fantastic shooter. You can have a some one-second draw and two shots and 1.7 seconds fashion. That’s great, but if you can’t run a block or pick up your kid and run down a block to get behind cover or get away from what’s going on in general, then what good does your ability to shoot do you?
Really, gun tactical guys would be, “Well, because I’ll shoot you before you can do anything, blah, blah, blah,” or whatever, but the reality is, is there’s so much that happens before a first shot should even be fired, and tying nutrition and fitness into just being healthy body, healthy mind, being more physically aware, getting your phone out of your hand when you’re going in and out of the grocery store. Have a flashlight, if it’s dark and you got your kids, don’t be on your phone, get your kids in the car safely. Just trying to tie in different layers of information all the way across firearm, fitness and nutrition.
Rob: I think that’s a great fit. Obviously, you’ve talked to some of the same guys I’ve talked to too about that with that response. We have a responsibility for our own care. We are the first responder to whatever happens to us. If you are physically incapable of defending yourself or leaving an area that leaves only the use of deadly force to protect you where something else should have been available. It’s our responsibility to– I’ve had four knee surgeries and a shoulder surgery so I’m the walking wounded, but it’s our responsibility to maintain ourselves in the best shape possible to protect our loved ones or to evacuate. Maybe it’s a fire or it’s a car crash and you’ve got to lift some things and move them. It’s more than just the firearm. It’s about being a functioning person that can help when help is needed.
Ernest: I would take it even one step further. There’s a lot of people in this industry that they’re great shooters and they spend all the time in the range and they go to all the stuff. The number one killer in the United States is still heart disease. People are dying of heart attacks because they haven’t taken care of themselves and they can’t control their eating and it’s like, “Great, you’ve got a spectacular draw and you can pull 15 splits, but you’re going to die of a heart attack long before, or way more likely that that’s going to happen that you’re ever going to need to use your firearm to defend yourself.” I think I’m a gun guy as much as a gun guy can be.
If I leave the house, I’m carrying a gun, half the time I’m carrying a gun when I’m in the house. A lot of these guys that are like that, they’re like, “Oh, here’s my band aid. I have this, this will take care of me and that’s all I need.” The chances of you really needing that gun are relatively slim, thank goodness. Obviously, things are changing in our country I believe right now, but relatively slim, but your chances of you dying of a heart attack if you don’t take care of yourself are relatively high.
Rob: We touched on a little bit of everything. I think you have a responsibility to be physically fit enough to not just get yourself out of the way, but in the event that we’re not at a lethal force kind of thing, I can at least keep you off of me or keep you off of me until help arrives or whatever. We press really hard for education for– I still really press gun retention, holster gun defense, strong gun defense.
If you’re carrying a gun, you have a great responsibility to make sure that you’re carrying that as safely as possible. If I get shot with your gun because somebody took away from you, I’m going to be really angry. The same goes for understanding, Aimee was talking about, the legal system, the laws that are covering these rights that I have and there’s attacks on these rights.
I want to be as responsible as I possibly can and eliminate the silly narrative that’s coming from people that are uneducated. “No, we do this and I do it like this, and this is how I do this.” I’m looking at the big safe sitting behind you and it’s not just a willy-nilly thing. You are responsible and you’re securing things. We talked about first aid. If I’m carrying a firearm, I’m carrying at least a tourniquet, probably a chest seal or two. I do that for me. I don’t anticipate that I’m going to be victorious on everything that I do. I’ve seen guys that I had a lot of confidence in that didn’t win all the time.
We had a young officer in Oklahoma city a couple of weeks ago that was shot, very aggressively ambushed. Even as he broke and was moving for cover, the guy is running after him shooting. As soon as he gets around the car, he’s already been shot but he draws, returns fire and he’s engaged and in the fight chases bad guy away. Then you can see in his body cam that he’s immediately pulling his tourniquet out. He’s self-administering and taking care of that. I would also preach to people that you’re far more likely to roll up on a really significant accident on the way home that requires some type of quick medical intervention than I am to be walking into the 7/11 and watch a clerk with a gun in their face.
Aimee: I think one of the things you’re making a point about Rob, and correct me if I’m wrong but you are trying to tie together of, you’ve got law enforcement, they’ve got training, they know how to do all these things but not all civilians do. If you’re going to carry a firearm, there’s layers of responsibility to bring into it, including the medical piece. Is that what you’re saying?
Rob: Yes, I do. I really do. I don’t mean I’m carrying a backpack full of gear everywhere I go.
Phillip: Those are snacks.
Rob: [laughs] I’m absolutely minimally prepared all the time. I’ll have a flashlight. I’ll have OC. I have a compact gun, a spare magazine, and a little bit of med gear. That doesn’t take-
Aimee: You certainly fall into that prepared category of where it is. There’s even just the advantage of it and Ernest and I talk about this all the time, he laughs at me, the advantages to everybody just having a good flashlight. I used to be like, “Oh, your flashlight,” and then the minute he has a good flashlight, you use it once. I was like, “Can I have your flashlight? Can I borrow your flashlight? He finally bought me my own flashlight and I’m still like, “Can I have your flashlight?” There’s power of information of understanding that there are tools out there that can help you personally but they can also be a deterrent if you feel like you’re being victimized.
Craig Douglas from Shivworks, he does a fantastic job talking about this in his managing unknown contacts portion of a lot of the classes that he does. I’ve always believed in intuition and awareness levels, but there really is power in awareness in your intuition. Yes, you can have a firearm, you can talk about it, but sometimes even just a bright flashlight, that’ll deter somebody because your confidence combined with just shining a flashlight if you think you see something will make somebody walk away because you are illuminating and drawing attention to somebody who doesn’t want attention drawn to them. I think there’s a lot of power in looking at equipment as a whole and not just focusing on the firearm and the tactics behind being a seasoned firearm owner.
Phillip: That’s awesome. A little bit earlier, you made a comment about the level of responsibility. I think that it’s important as firearm owners and as trainers people in the industry like Rob, that we explain and expect people to rise up to this level of responsibility because we’re in the– well, because I’m in the people’s republic of occupied California.
What we don’t want them to do is to legislate it as a requirement, which would be one more impotence to stop people from owning firearms or being able to protect themselves. It’s almost like a self-policing thing that, “Hey, here’s where we believe as responsible gun owners. You should also be at this level, this level, and preach it and teach it like you’re doing.” I think we have to shy away from a legislative fix on that because it will be used detrimentally.
Ernest: Yes, absolutely.
Rob: Oh, yes. You mean, everybody needs a certain level of training before they can purchase a firearm or a certain skill level or something. Absolutely.
Phillip: That’s what they’re doing in California.
Rob: I thought about that many years ago, and it came up in a conversation with a friend of mine and he said, “Look, first of all, the argument being, you have to take a test to drive a car. You have a driver’s license, you have to take a test and do that.” The two points that he made were, hey, one driving a car is not a right. It’s not a constitutional right.
Number two, you’re saying that your grandmother, right, or your mother that’s in their 70s, 80s, 90s, they’re not allowed to defend themselves because they can’t meet an arbitrary training standard that has been put forward. When you start looking at it from that standpoint, the real purpose is not that you are a tactical gun fighting God, it’s the point that you have the God-given [unintelligible 00:32:56] right to defend yourself. That is one of the big keys there and you can’t just put in there, well, you need this level of skill and this level of training or you are not, you don’t have that right.
Phillip: Yes, it’s a right. One of these sheriffs out here in San Bernardino County, he’s retired since, but Gary Penrod, no, this is John McMahon, sorry. He was talking about where he understood issuing CCWs, because he was one of the few counties in California that actually issued them, go down and apply with the rules, you got one.
He had an 84 year old lady who lived in San Bernardino write down on her application, her good cause statement was simply, I live in San Bernardino, period. That’s what opened his eyes. I don’t know if you’re familiar with that, but it’s South Chicago sometimes. He said, “Look, the good cause statement, self-defense is a good cause. What is this 84 year old woman supposed to do? She’s supposed to go hand to hand to protect her purse or her goods or her livelihood or her body?”
That’s her only choice is a firearm and that’s just for an 84-year-old, but a lot of females, or other people, it might be slight of build and not be able to physically defend themselves. What choices are you giving them if you’re going to make them run through a mag full [unintelligible 00:34:25] course if they can’t finish that, then they can’t have a firearm. I think it’s just important that we point out that these are the responsibilities and we put it on them to finish that and encourage them to finish that but like you said, not make it a requirement that can restrict people from protecting their lives.
Aimee: It’s funny that you say that because after Craig’s class, Ernest was like, “Oh, so now we’re going to go practice jujitsu. I was like, “Absolutely not.” “Well, you won’t learn or get better if you don’t go to jujitsu.” I was like, “I don’t give a shit. I’m out.” That is not enjoying to me. It was awful. It was brutal. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good, horrible, hard workout, but you know what? I’m good. There’s a layer at which people just don’t, they also don’t want to. You got to meet them where they’re at and guide them accordingly.
Ernest: My wife came to one of my jujitsu classes and after she goes, “You guys do that on purpose?”
Aimee: I feel that.
Rob: Well, I want Ernest and Aimee to give me the low down. I need to know what I need to be prepped for because I actually see Craig tomorrow for his managing unknown contacts and his ECQC Saturday, Sunday. What am I getting myself into?
Aimee: Well, when he says you need a nut cup, I would highly recommend that you bring that because you will need that.
Ernest: Yes, there’s a lot of physical contact. I would definitely wear a beanie or something along those lines. Your ears are going to hurt. There’s going to be a lot of standup Greco-Roman stuff. There’s going to be close end pistol shooting. There’s going to be fighting for a gun. If you’ve got a holster, a good holster for a Glock 17 Sims gun, I would bring that because instead of just sticking the thing in your pants, you’ll have a holster to stick your Sims gun in, unless you have your own Sims gun. He’ll allow you to use it if it’s an actual correct Sims gun. I would prepare to–
Aimee: A box of Kleenex for your tears, or maybe that was just me.
Ernest: I personally thought it was one of the best training classes I’ve ever been to. It was a lot of fun for me. I don’t think it was as eye opening for me as it is for a lot of people, but for a lot of people, it’s a very eye opening experience because they think, “Oh, I have a gun so I’ll just shoot you.” That doesn’t work out that way.
Craig does a really good job of pointing that out. I would also say that as an instructor, you will get a lot out of the class because Craig does a phenomenal job of how he structures the program and how he manages time and makes things work and how engaged he is with every single student in the class. It’s impressive to watch as someone who’s been teaching for over 30 years now, it’s one of those very, very impressive. Craig is an excellent teacher, an excellent instructor, does a tremendous job. I think you’re going to be very, very [crosstalk]
Aimee: And Scott. I love Scott there. Scott’s amazing. You’re going to enjoy it. You’ll have fun. You’ll learn a lot.
Ernest: If you like to scrap a little bit, I do–
Rob: I was going to say, did you have any grappling or martial arts background prior to?
Ernest: Me or Aimee?
Ernest: Yes, I have some, and that’s very helpful. Aimee managed to take on a full-size man and beat his ass, take his gun from him and shoot him with it and she has no background.
Aimee: I also managed to get my butt kicked by other men. It was eye-opening.
Ernest: She can also deadlift double her body weight so that’s a different issue. [laughs]
Aimee: It was mind-blowing, but I took away a lot of information as a civilian. I refer to myself as civilian, non-military, non-taxable trade, no previous training. The managing unknown contacts, I have a plethora of notes that I used today in conversations that I have with people and that we have used and quoted Craig in some of the development of discover, because I think it’s such good information that everybody should know and everybody should practice.
A lot of it is based around awareness and intuition and confidence and just being your yourself. Then I think the eye opening piece of that class for me as a non-trained person was, “Hey, look, this can happen.” Whether people know that it can happen or not, or they’ve been in a situation where that can happen or not, it’s still very eye opening. I don’t ever want to be in that situation so I need to take other steps from awareness and intuition and readiness to make sure that I can avoid that at all costs and that’s where I bring in– go ahead.
Rob: What I was saying as a bonus of that is having that understanding now, having that knowledge of just how bad that sucks probably steers your direction a little bit more towards the avoidance thing. If you’d asked me just a second ago, Ernest, I’ve been involved with the sport of wrestling for more than 50 years. I coached high school wrestling up until about a year and a half ago. I’ve done martial arts for decades now. I’m really excited about this opportunity. I want to see what he’s done related to gun things.
I was the Defensive Tactics Coordinator for the police department and I did that for about 13 years. In 2000 or 2001, we took a thing from the department of justice when they were running training for police corps. It was a great program that came in, it just died on the vine. It was terrible that they let that go away. It was their defensive tactics but they called it their arrest and control instructor course.
The very first thing we did right out of the box, physical, was laid a gun down on the ground on the pistol, and Ernest, you get two hands on it, I get two hands on it, ready go. Absolutely eye-opening, but we’ve developed an awful lot of stuff as far as drawn gun retention or drawn gun disarming that I still believe has saved officers because of it. That is an embrace the sack kind of thing that a lot of people have never given thought to so it is a big deal.
Ernest: I think you’ll really like the program. Craig has put a lot of thought into it, it’s very well laid out. He discusses all of those topics and he has several of the evolutions I believe he calls them, start with both of you holding both hands on the gun or you both have a hand on the gun and then go, see how this works out for you. It’s really is you. If you’ve got a wrestling background, you’ll do better than most because there’s things that you’re going to understand that other people do not, and you’ll be able to do quite well I think.
Rob: I’m just excited I know a lot of really, really strong solid instructors and I don’t believe I’ve had any of them ever say anything other than positive. Again, when I walk in and sit under another instructor, I am absolutely there to steal. I’m going to take whatever you got and if I can form that and put it into my programming, guess what? Thanks, Ernest, I appreciate you.
Phillip: There’s the other part of this that they’re going to see Rob come in and sit down and be a nice mild-mannered not know he’s got 30 years of judo and wrestling coach behind him until he steps up on the mat and then he educates them when they try and put hands on him. There’s always that part to look forward to when Rob’s on the mat.
Ernest: That’ll be fun for you for sure.
Phillip: That also counts as fair warning to everybody else in the class. He’s a ringer, watch out.
Ernest: I think Dave Spaulding said, early 2000, I left the national conference in Ohio and Dave was running it, and all the guest instructors came in and he said to the whole class, not the whole class, all the instructors that were in the classroom that were going to be teaching. He said, “Look, you need to understand, a good instructor is a good thief. If you teach something good here that we like, we’re going to steal the shit out of it. If you’ve got a problem with that, you probably shouldn’t teach it.” That was a good point.
Rob: One of our co-founders for CCW Safe, Mike Darter, he was actually my first judo sensei but he also has just opened up a brand new dojo downtown Oklahoma City that is maybe the best club in the southwest. It’s loaded with fighters, it’s got guys that have been Olympians, it’s got guys that have competed at Abu Dhabi and all over the world and they officially open on Saturday, I think. That’s going to be a nice little benefit to working in the downtown area. I’m going to twist Brian Eastwood’s arm a little bit. He lives like six blocks away so he doesn’t even have to drive. He can limp home from there.
Phillip: Brian, this is your warning too.
Rob: What is your website again there, Aimee?
Aimee: The Discover the education stuff is the lttdiscover.com.
Rob: I want to make sure that people are aware of that and they know that they can jump on that. How about the YouTube stuff?
Aimee: It’s all on our Langdon Tactical YouTube channel if you go to YouTube and follow it on at Langdon Tactical. It’s all there in its own playlist.
Ernest: There’s links on the website too. If you can’t find it from the website, you’re not looking very hard.
Phillip: Tell us a little bit more about Langdon Tactical.
Ernest: Langdon Tactical is, I would say a relatively diverse company at this point, Discover being a growing part of it but really it’s almost at this point a way for us to give back to the industry. I would say we really needed to do that. We do custom gun work. We sell custom guns. We bring in guns and do custom gun work. Right now we’re working on obviously Berettas 92S and PX4s. We’ve done really well with the Beretta 1301 shotguns, the 1301 tactical shotgun. We are working on Glocks, as well as a broad variety of Glocks.
We have some parts for Glocks that– one we’re bringing back is striker control device if you’re not familiar with that, but the striker control device is a part that we’re producing and selling now. We have a new part for the Glock that we’ll be launching here relatively soon, we think it’s going to be really popular. We also work on Hellcats as well. We’ve got both the regular Hellcat and Hellcat Pro. We’re working on those which is a cool little concealed carry gun that we think meets the needs of a lot of people and then we’ll be branching into other stuff very soon as well.
Rob: That was the question I had. I wanted to know what other pistols you’re going to start doing–
Aimee: We’re really focused on– Oh, go ahead.
Ernest: I was going to say I’d like to say it’s a secret, but there’s been some pictures leaked on Instagram. I don’t know exactly what the timeline is going to be but very likely we will be launching into working on HKs here very soon the P30s primarily.
Rob: Most excellent.
Aimee: It’s the first time he said that out loud, Rob, you should feel special.
Rob: That’s really cool because as I mentioned off the air earlier, Brian sold me his Beretta and I’m telling you, nobody can have it. That’s my gun. I’m not letting anything–
Aimee: We’re really focused on customization and making the customizations that make sense for shootability and building confidence in the shooter versus being super artistic and fancy if you will. You guys were talking about martial arts earlier, all the martials without the arts and so we’re working on that from a brand diversification standpoint.
From new products, reinvigorating products that needed to come back but then also coming up with new ideas and developing new content in conjunction with other people but then also just figuring out how to work on pistols highly driven from our customers and the big group of people asking us to keep expanding but also just learning more and understanding the diversification of the shooters and the things that we do, how it helps shooters, beginners to season as well.
Phillip: Obviously, you can go as crazy as you want, but if somebody had a defensive pistol they’re going to carry for CCW, they send you their Glock 19, what would you recommend for that? What would you do for that?
Ernest: Well, we have a custom work order form that they’re going to have to fill out. We do custom trigger work on them, to make it a little bit more manageable on the trigger we put an Apex trigger in there. We don’t have to, but we do on all of those. The Apex trigger piece makes the trigger a little better. It’s not dramatic. We don’t change any springs on the Glock, so we’re not making it crazy light. We make it more consistent and make it slightly lighter because that’s part of the consistency.
You could argue that it’s like getting a trigger on a Glock after you’ve got 3,000 or 4,000 rounds through it. It’s not the same trigger as it was when it was brand new, so we’re accelerating that to where now it’s the trigger is going to be after 3,000 or 4,000 rounds. The Apex piece makes it a little bit gentler on your finger for a lot of people. The Glock’s trigger can be rough as far as how it feels and what it does after a long training session. We undercut the trigger guard.
For me on a Glock, that’s almost a requirement. I can shoot a stock Glock, but I don’t want to shoot it much because it just destroys my middle finger. I already have a big knock on my middle finger as it is, I don’t need it to be any worse. We do laser stippling on the grip which makes the grip– we have various patterns for that depending on how you want it to look and how aggressive you want to be, but it allows you to control the gun better, give it better texture to the grip.
Obviously we have several different types of night sights to put on the gun that are much better visible sights than the classic sights that come on the gun. Then we have various optic mounting plates if you want to run a red dot on a gun as well. Again, obviously, striker control device being a big piece. There is no lightning cuts in the slides or chopping of this, none of that stuff. It’s just basic, again, trigger work, reliable trigger work is the big key for us, better sights, better control of the gun with the grip, and those types of things.
Phillip: How far back is your backlog?
Ernest: Not too bad. We get things turned out pretty quick. We can turn things pretty quick right now. We got three full-time gunsmiths. That’s what they do all day, every day. The biggest thing with Glocks, we sell brand new guns. If we could get more of them, we could sell more of them, but they can be hard to get right now especially the MOS guns.
Rob: We have our own range out here at [unintelligible 00:53:20] where I record from. I’m really anxious to see what you’re pushing out with these new models that you’re doing now. I’m really excited to see that we really need to get you guys down here. We do affiliate summits every year. This year it was scheduled super late which is really difficult in this industry. Everybody’s booked out a year ahead of time, so I’d really like to get an invite to you out for later.
Ernest: We looked at this last one and we just– I forget what happened, but it was literally– I’m 90% sure I was teaching class that weekend somewhere else.
Rob: It was. It sure was. That’s just the nature of this industry. Guys that are worth your soul, they’re just going to be in demand. We’ve got a good turnout coming this year and we will absolutely stay in touch with you guys. We would love to host you and get you out here to come visit. I obviously have very selfish reasons. I want to see your works. Is there anything else you guys have coming up, anything you’d like to plug or talk about a little bit?
Ernest: I’m not going to plug things too much unless it’s ready.
Rob: I get that.
Ernest: Aimee is the one that’s smart about doing the business stuff and launching things correctly. One of the things that we at this point pride ourselves on is when we launch something, we’re actually ready. Obviously, we let the cat out of the bag with the HK stuff that’s coming, but we want it to actually be ready when we say it’s ready.
Rob: That is fantastic. Well, thank you guys so very much. I appreciate you taking the time to sit in and visit with us. As always for our members, you are always welcome to reach out directly to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. We always welcome your questions, concerns, suggestions. The critiques on Phil have slowed down, so I think we got him in line finally, but we’ll see.
Phillip: We’ll see.
Rob: Ernest, thank you, brother. I appreciate it. Aimee, thank you for helping us get this set up and for the direction that you’re going. I think it’s a huge, huge step forward to go out there and help these new people in the industry, make sure that they’re getting off on the right foot and they’re getting safe and reliable consistent instruction. That’s a big–
Aimee: Thank you. We hope it’s helpful.
Rob: That’s a big thing to be jumping into. That’s a great responsibility. I’m glad we got such good people that are accepting that and doing it, so thank you so much. Thank you, guys. Tune in. We’ll be back with you next week and we look forward here on the CCW Safe Podcast. Thank you.
Ernest: [unintelligible 00:56:50].
Phil: Thanks guys.
Aimee: Thanks guys.
Ernest: Thanks for having us.