Monday, February 2, 2009

Praxis: The Patrol Order

Get this book.

From Amazon.

The Patrol Order is a companion book to the Ranger Handbook. The first 49 pages are a detailed first-person narrative of a ranger patrol order. This excellent, perfect bound work, with its distinctive desert camouflage cover, is written by an officer with over 20 years of Special Operations experience. Writing a patrol order is a critical task in Ranger School as it is in ROTC advanced summer camp and in the Officer Basic Course. This book is designed to give a potential Ranger student and other students a feel for the detail required to accomplish this task. The Patrol Order is also beneficial for any leader tasked with the responsibility of writing and issuing a patrol order. It reminds the junior NCO or officer of the many considerations that must be taken into account when planning and executing a combat or reconnaissance patrol. With this book, the reader can organize and conduct both a combat and reconnaissance patrol to ranger standards. Also contained in this work are eight pages of "muddy boots"; preparatory questions to be answered prior to executing a mission. Finally, the book closes with a fill-in-the-blank patrol order template. This template can be copied and used to tailor the order to a unit's mission and its SOP Ranger standards. The book details the various duties of every member of the patrol. Even if you have never conducted a patrol, this work will walk you step-by-step through the organization, instructions, and additional duties of all individuals, teams, and elements involved in the patrol.

The author:

COL Tom Davis is a twenty-five year veteran of Special Forces. He has seen duty on four continents and in eleven foreign countries. He has worn the Green Beret at every rank from Second Lieutenant to Colonel. In addition to being Airborne, Ranger, and Special Forces qualified, he is also trained in Military Free Fall and Underwater Operations. While assigned with Special Forces, he has commanded five A Teams, one Company, two Battalions, and a Joint Special Operations Task Force. His writings, both fiction and non fiction, have appeared in newspapers in Georgia and North Carolina as well as local, state, and national magazines. He has authored two collections of short stories entitled What Would You Like on Your Mashed Potatoes? and The Long and the Short. Additionally, he has authored a children's book entitled Pickaberry Pig. He holds a BA and a Masters Degrees and is a graduate of the Army's Command and General Staff College and War College.

Paperback: 104 pages
Publisher: Old Mountain Press (May 1994)
ISBN-10: 188477802X
ISBN-13: 978-1884778025



I called Colonel Davis; he runs "Old Mountain Press", and you can get the books there for $7.95 plus $3 s&h. Amazon only has one copy available for $26 and change. Hell of a lot cheaper.

I have 3 enroute, signed by the author. Had a nice chat with Colonel Davis and thanked him for writing the book and being on the more "pointy end of the spear" during his time. He enlisted in '68. Nice man.

Anyway, here's the info:

2542 S. Edgewater Dr.
Fayetteville, NC 28303
Ph: 910-484-5887


nick said...


I'd like to second the request for a Praxis: combat optics post... I have 3 naked guns with rails: a 20" AR15, 16" AR16, and standard FAL that all need to be dressed. Thanks though for all that you've done so far.

Anonymous said...

Hey nick: I hope this to be friendly advice here. How well do you shoot the rifles mentioned, with irons? Pleased so far? If not, what might optics do for you and them guns with their currently nekked rails?

Optics won't help you shoot them better basically...opticts will help you, possibly, to identify targets at closer ranges, and MAY help you shoot better at longer ranges once iron sight shooting is mastered.

The "rails" comment is just an attempt by your unneccessarily-modified rifle to be something that is should not be. Don't go there. Or if you do, realize the mistake.

You are the one who brought up the term nekkid as it pertains to guns which don't have extraenous garbage on them. Nekkid guns are fine. Garands, anyone?

Anonymous said...


Third for Combat Optics on a budget.

Just received Gun Parts Guy FAL top cover with Weaver rail. Doesn't interfere with iron sights until rings/scope are mounted.

One scope mount seems like the maximum number of rails needed on a battle rifle. Don't need bipod (have little Harris, but learning to do without), don't need a light/laser pointer, don't need iPod/iPhone to calculate drift/drop, don't need a quad-rail front handguard, don't need rail-covers to save my hands, don't need a forward vertical grip.

I'll take a double-helping of patience/determination, along with some snacks in a cache tube.

It seems that inexpensive sporting store scopes are better than ever (gas-filled/no-fog, good optical coatings, sturdy-enough for .30 cal service).

I have a Banner 3-9x40mm on a 10/22 that is bright with long eye-relief, big-enough exit pupil (at 3x, but not at 9x) and allows my 40 year old eyes to keep focused on one plane during rapid aimed-fire on multiple targets. $100 scope on a $200 rifle seems like a good value.

While an ACOG would look super on an FSL (gear-slut approved!), a mil-dot reticle hunting scope might give some of the same advantage to a high-power shooter out past the 300 yard war, for a small fraction of the price.

User training and familiarity is more important than better and more gear, once a minimum threshold of gear is achieved. This is a theme often repeated, and we must not forget it.

Knowing target distance and relative elevation is important in long-range fire, if you want hits. The Germans included an accurate optical range finder as big as bazooka (3000M full-scale) with MG-42, to improve first burst on-target, conserve ammunition, and increase surprise.

What do laser range finders look like in night vision? "Here I am!"


Anonymous said...

Would also find a combat optics post useful. Naked rails on two MSAR STG-556 20" (AUG clones) are clamoring for optics (preferring long eye relief for both eyes open shooting and lower power).

nick said...

To reply to Anon, all of my rifles have iron sights on them and I practice the AQT with them as they are. I'd like to add optics to enhance target recognition, speed of target acquisition, and precision at longer ranges (magnification for the FAL and 20").

I fully believe (don't bite my head off, purists) that given reliability, an optic is in all ways superior to iron sights.