Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Discuss those "what if" or "what would you do" scenarios you've been wondering about.

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Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by pyratemime » Sat Mar 30, 2013 2:55 pm

When I did a search for this the newest thread was from 2011 so if there is a more recent established thread my apologies.

At any rate I walked through my house for the first time with an eye towards clearing it. Until today I always figured the open floorplan would make this easy. Upon my walk through today I now understand that there are a few places where the offensive angles just suck and I have to pick which way to look first and the wrong choice would be horrifingly bad.

I am also faced with a situation where to get from my wife and I's room to our daughter's I have to detour and clear our kitchen which contains 2 "bad choice" angles or leave a giant blind spot at my back while I go for her.

My WWYD is two parts. First how do you train and what good resources are there to teach what I would call house clearing for home owners? Second baring exterior stimulus (ie screaming child or broken window) indicating a need to check one area first, which do you check first?
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DaJoker wrote:In regards to us "normal" humans... well that's why its best to follow pyratemime's advice.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Mr. E. Monkey » Sat Mar 30, 2013 6:20 pm

It's a good question, and I'm curious to see what information you find.

I'll leave the tactical advice to those who are qualified to give it, but something that may be worth considering/factoring in to your decision-making process are your enemy courses of action. What sort of criminal/gang activity are you most likely to face in your AO? What do you consider to be the most dangerous threat you face in a home invasion? What other realistic threats do you think are likely, that sort of thing. If thieves breaking in to steal electronics are more likely than thieves breaking in to steal prescription medications (as an example), it might make more sense to look in the living room before you look in the kitchen.
I don't know how much it'll help, in the long run, but I don't think it could really hurt to consider. :)


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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by pyratemime » Sat Mar 30, 2013 8:34 pm

I live in a college town so kids looking for cash, pawnable goods, or drugs are pretty equal in liklihood. As it is though my concern is not goods but rather my daughter who is on the opposite end of the house. I don't really care about the material in the kitchen but if I don't check it A. I turn my back to an area an assailant could be hiding and B. I still have to go back past it on my return and at that point could have my kid in my arms which creates a new set of problems if that is where an intruder was hiding to begin with.
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"It wouldn't hurt you people to think like a serial killer every now and again. You know just for the sake of prevention!" - Foamy the Squirrel
DaJoker wrote:In regards to us "normal" humans... well that's why its best to follow pyratemime's advice.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Sat Mar 30, 2013 9:03 pm

pyratemime wrote:I live in a college town so kids looking for cash, pawnable goods, or drugs are pretty equal in likelihood. As it is though my concern is not goods but rather my daughter who is on the opposite end of the house. I don't really care about the material in the kitchen but if I don't check it A. I turn my back to an area an assailant could be hiding and B. I still have to go back past it on my return and at that point could have my kid in my arms which creates a new set of problems if that is where an intruder was hiding to begin with.
Is it possible you could have the wife gun up and call the po-po while you move to secure the wee one? Both of you get to spots where you can hole up (bottleneck ambushes beat the shit out of assaults, every time) and wait while the 5-0 is en route. No big thing to communicate by voice (the Yell-o-phone) and you minimize exposure and travel. If you;re moving solo, you aren't clearing rooms, you're playing bullet hide and seek.
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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by pyratemime » Sat Mar 30, 2013 9:17 pm

My wife has many virtues grace under pressure and use of a firearm are not among them. At this point I am thinking speed to and from the progenies room may be best.
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DaJoker wrote:In regards to us "normal" humans... well that's why its best to follow pyratemime's advice.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by feedthedog » Sat Mar 30, 2013 9:36 pm

pyratemime wrote:My wife has many virtues grace under pressure and use of a firearm are not among them. At this point I am thinking speed to and from the progenies room may be best.
Probably a good call, but why not focus more on increasing the time that it takes for the bad guys to do something instead of trying to increase your own speed.

You win more by making them slower than by making yourself faster.

ETA: Apologies if you are asking more specifically about the whole CQB/MOUT/whatevs thing. Anyone who has ever played OPFOR with simunitions knows how awesome it is to sit still and whack people as they try to move from room to room. The less moving around the better.
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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Red Tamarillo » Sat Mar 30, 2013 9:38 pm

Can you get a dog? And let it inside.

If you're really worried, maybe look into selling and moving into a house where the little one can be closer, and you can just hole up.
If you can't move, can you remodel?

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Sat Mar 30, 2013 9:43 pm

Let me run through the OOB here.

Alert to noise
Acquire gatpiece, wake wifey
Move across danger zone leaving wifey unarmed, go to the wee Baby Shamus
Acquire Wee Baby Shamus
MOVE THROUGH DANGER ZONE POSSIBLY INHABITED BY BAD DUDEBROS WHIEL ONE-HANDING A WEAPON IS BECAUSE WEE BABY SHAMUS IS IN HAND
Rejoin wifey.

I'm just seeing somethings here that make me think it might be time to get the wifey some training.
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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by jtjf_1 » Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:06 pm

What about you and wife feel danger move to little ones room and have a planned route of escape from there (maybe window with roll up fire ladder if needed). This way gun stays with all family and if needed you can all get out. It also means you can move directly to the kids room no need to check the kitchen cause you don,t need to go back. Also with moving to the kids room it gives wife something to focus on that will be very important to her and she will keep her cool better than you leaving her in the bedroom to worry until you get back.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by feedthedog » Sat Mar 30, 2013 11:20 pm

Doctorr Fabulous wrote:Let me run through the OOB here.

Alert to noise
Acquire gatpiece, wake wifey
Move across danger zone leaving wifey unarmed, go to the wee Baby Shamus
Acquire Wee Baby Shamus
MOVE THROUGH DANGER ZONE POSSIBLY INHABITED BY BAD DUDEBROS WHIEL ONE-HANDING A WEAPON IS BECAUSE WEE BABY SHAMUS IS IN HAND
Rejoin wifey.

I'm just seeing somethings here that make me think it might be time to get the wifey some training.
Or something to increase his warning time, or the time it takes for said dudebros to enter the danger zone.

The easiest way would be to build a wall across this highway to the dangerzone. Better doors, locks, windows, fences, and wireless anunciator.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Kutter_0311 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 12:00 am

Having cleared my dwellings a few times, I know most suck to clear, and 1-man CQB is a losing game.

That said, BG's in your house are not OPFOR, you ain't Snake Pliskin, your home ain't MW3. Angles where you can see a BG are just the start. What's through/behind that BG? Where are your wife and kid? Bullets go through walls!
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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by rednekrampager » Sun Mar 31, 2013 12:14 am

Bro, you & the mrs seek out some professional training . No matter what tactics y'all work out later , having wifey on board as a team mate is much better.


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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Red Tamarillo » Sun Mar 31, 2013 2:15 am

If wifey's at your back, there's less chance for a Pistorius to occur.
If she can't handle a gun, maybe a taser (lets hope it doesn't stick you in the back), or even a bigass maglite would be better than nothing.
If Mr Alsatian was along he could charge into the kitchen whilst you two are scooting past to get to bubba.

Might pay to try and see if you can do anything with locking up the kitchen knives- no reason to give a weapon of opportunity if it's an unprepared bad guy.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Red Tamarillo » Sun Mar 31, 2013 3:37 am

Re training, it's good firearms training needed- target id, looking at backstops (and lack of bulletproofness), just training under realistic conditions- lack of light, high stress, malfunctions etc...
A lot of people can give advice about getting the wife trained, but you're the one dealing with the reality. Some partners are never going to become amazons, or allow fortifications. That's why I suggested even just a maglite.
You don't need an Alsatian either, a properly trained Jack Russell would be better than nothing.

I don't know how to lock up knives myself, I could just put a toolbox with padlock in my kitchen, but my wife would crack it. Does anyone know any good looking ways of doing it, besides installing a lock in a pre existing drawer/cupboard? Are there any classy looking boxes/containers you can put a padlock on?

I had another thought that you could try and funnel any intruder/s away from your kitchen/bad zones into good zones for you by displaying loot there i.e. where you put a glass doored liquor cabinet, if you hang some of your PAW trading pre 1965 silver coins mounted behind glass on a wall etc...
Where I'm originally from the methamphetamine bad guys craved and collected sharp things (samurai swords, crossbows)- there were newspaper reports about the phenomenon. There were guns available for them, but for some reason their paranoid brains preferred swords.
When I was growing up a (non junky) friend had a wallhanger samurai sword, which he was poking in a fire one day, and it melted. It was lead core covered in thin tin or something. Those are the kind of swords it would be good to have on display, as potential loot, in a good place for you (near the solid looking but mostly cloth furniture that they could hide behind). I'd rather have to deal with a lead sword than the kitchen knives.

If the kids bedroom is becoming the refuge, try and increase the bullet resistance of it- get heavy furniture, big bookcases etc... Afterall if phonebooks stop bullets, books can too, and having more books around can help your kid overall.
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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by LowKey » Sun Mar 31, 2013 4:11 am

Does your home have a crawl space? If it does and any access to it from outside the home is secure against forced entry you might consider access doors in the floors of your bedroom and your child's. Then beef up both bedroom doors.

1- Hear noise indicative of a break-in.
2- Lock your bedroom door and have wifey call the police.
3- Go down your rabbit hole and move through the crawl space to the other end of the home.
4- Come up through the rabbit hole in your child's room and lock the bedroom door.
5- Both of you go back down the rabbit hole and return to wifey in the master bedroom and wait for the police to arrive.

Steps 2 through 5 can be done with or without your sidearm.
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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by pyratemime » Sun Mar 31, 2013 4:42 am

We rent so heavy modification of the house is not an option. We have two dogs so in most likely scenarios they are going to give me some indicators on threat vector. I do agree on getting my wife on board with defense of hearth and home, at the moment though she hyperventilates when my firearms are visible so that is a long term issue to address and a short term reality that will not change.

On the issue of training I agree entirely that there is a need. I would ask short of actual physical training, which would be best, what resources can be used to supplement that training?
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DaJoker wrote:In regards to us "normal" humans... well that's why its best to follow pyratemime's advice.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Red Tamarillo » Sun Mar 31, 2013 4:53 am

pyratemime wrote: On the issue of training I agree entirely that there is a need. I would ask short of actual physical training, which would be best, what resources can be used to supplement that training?
A friend gave me some Magpul and Thunder Ranch training vids. They're good. But you need to train how you expect to fight. So you need to train in your house, darkness, under stress, with the dogs running underfoot, loud noise, after you've just sprinted 100m etc...
And do run throughs with the wife getting from your room to the little ones.

It might also pay to get some kind of inside safe shooting weapon (even a Nerf gun) to practice potential angles etc... (with the wife not there, as it could look embarrassing).
And actually shoot some targets in the kitchen with it as if it was for real.
Obviously spending most of your practice with your real weapon/s at a range that does better courses than static shooting i.e. night, smoke, loud noises etc...

One 'successful' school shooter even did most of his training with those light guns at the arcades (you know the plastic ones you hold and point off screen to reload). Some of those special forces guys apparently do the same with their kill houses after training accidents with real bullets.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Red Tamarillo » Sun Mar 31, 2013 5:06 am

But then if you rent, you can rent somewhere else. Whilst still hard and a pain in the a, moving between rentals is easier than between places you own.

(Remember Ferfal who was in dodgy Argentina moved to Northern Ireland, and says a lot of guys think about fortifying their house, buying more guns, getting more training etc..., when they should put that effort into just moving somewhere better).

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Kutter_0311 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 11:12 am

RE: Training your Wife: GET SOMEONE ELSE TO DO IT!

Regardless of a husband's level of training/education/experience in a given field, many wives never see them as anything more than the schmuck they married. I thought I might be alone in this, but then I read an article in SWAT Magazine that related the same thing. The answer? Send your wife to a well-reputed basic firearms course. Our local tech school has 3 different levels of civilian firearms training, though I'm thinking I may start my wife at an all-female, female-led gathering like the local chapter of The Well Armed Woman. One Monday night a month, they have the run of the new indoor range/training area in town for a few hours. For $10, it looks like it's worth a shot. If she looks more interested after a few, then I'll sign her up for the tech school classes. Just remember: baby steps! It doesn't take much to burn out my wife's interest in something, so 2 hours once a month is about her pace. If I try to force it, she'll just get pissed and hateful, so I let her go when she feels like it. Never more than a casual reminder: "It's range night with the girls if you feel like getting away from the kids..."
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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by MacAttack » Mon Apr 01, 2013 4:53 pm

I like the idea of the Nerf gun for fun practice.

Find a free day and a buddy. Get the wife and kids out and you and your buddy have some fun shooting each other all over the house.
Each of you starting out from different places all around the house, both trying to clear the house of the other.
Hang a sheet or towels with thumb tacks on the doors and walls you don't want to shoot through. such as the kids bedroom. When you see them behind the bad guy don't shoot.
Do it in the day and in the dark for best testing.

You could convert a few lights in the house to wireless remote. That way you can turn on and off lights in the next room to illuminate the bad guys first. Or to even draw their attention to another direction than yours for a second or two.


You can also let your GOOD friend try to break into your home. Let him decide how to do it. He could have ideas that you have not thought of yet. Also look into getting into the house by the east way, human error, following the car into the garage before the door comes down, or walking up behind someone as they unlock the door. The unlocked second floor windows and such. The hard to see garage window that would let them get to and have time to get through the house door without being seen or heard.


You can't stop a determined thief but you can make it harder for them.



Clearing your house should be your last resort. Its best to keep them out then get them out.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Red Tamarillo » Mon Apr 01, 2013 6:30 pm

The nerf gun is to be totally safe.

To increase the stress levels- get an old mattress as a backstop and put some old phonebook targets in the kitchen (making sure what's behind is okay if you were really shooting). Plus one of those pistol BB or airguns that look like the real thing (I remember one guy here a while ago was talking about doing some training with a Beretta? air pistol that looked the same as his real one- in the backyard presumably with good fencing).
As there's potential with the air pistol to break stuff or ding the walls if you miss, it increases the stress level (the wife will crack it, and the landlord/lady too), helps make it a little bit more real. (Can airsoft guns break stuff too?).
And like I suggested go for a run around the block, get the heart pumping, then come straight inside pick up the nerf or air pistol and do some training. Go for another run, repeat.
Have too many drinks the night before (will help simulate grogginess, headache, being rudely awoken, not being on the top of your form), run, practice. Practice with your weaker hand.

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Re: Working the Angles - Clearing Your House

Post by Red Tamarillo » Mon Apr 01, 2013 8:53 pm

MacAttack wrote:I like the idea of the Nerf gun for fun practice.
Find a free day and a buddy. Get the wife and kids out and you and your buddy have some fun shooting each other all over the house.
Each of you starting out from different places all around the house, both trying to clear the house of the other.
Hang a sheet or towels with thumb tacks on the doors and walls you don't want to shoot through.
That's a good idea with the human shaped moving target buddy. Moving, and also helps desensitise, which is part of the military training programs with the blanks/lasers shooting at humans.
If your friend was really understanding you could armour them up (leather jacket, gloves, old motorcycle helmet, phonebook strapped to chest) and practice shooting them in the chest with (weak) BB/airsoft etc...

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