Table of Contents:
- What Is The Cool Fire Trainer?
- Where Does it Fit In A Dry Fire Toolbox?
- Why You Need This Tool
- Some Drawbacks
- Cool Fire Trainer Video Review
The Cool Fire Trainer is a product designed to retrofit your real handgun to turn it into a CO2 powered dry fire tool. The product is VERY gun specific generally replacing the barrel and the recoil spring. The barrel itself contains/stores the air and thus when the gun fires the barrel releases pressured CO2, causing the gun to cycle (recoil).
You can also add an optional laser add-on that attaches to the end of the muzzle and “fires” a laser with each shot.
The recoil isn't the same as live ammunition but it is fairly realistic and does allow the user to train anywhere with one's own gun (sights, trigger, grip, etc).
I have a lot of different products I use for different elements of my dry fire training (see a list of my favorites here). I install the Cool Fire Trainer when I want to work on recoil management. When I care about “testing” the quality of my grip and my ability to reacquire sights after recoil for follow up shots I turn to this product.
The ongoing cost of use is just CO2 which is fairly inexpensive and easy to find. Outside of the initial expense it's cheap and easy to install and use.
It isn't the best tool for practicing reloads or rapid-fire shooting and I'm generally going to use a different tool (like a SIRT pistol) if I'm not concerned at all about recoil management and I just want to get in some quick dry-fire trigger presses.
It is a valuable part of my dry fire toolbox and if I had to only have one tool for dry fire it might be the one I choose. Overall, I think it's one of several tools I use depending on how much time I'm going to dedicate to practice that day and what skills or drills I'm going to focus on.
The Cool Fire Trainer isn't a cheap gimmick. It is going to cost you $250+ and that is a serious investment for most people. However, if you are serious about improving your skills as a shooter the investment is easy to make.
$250 wouldn't buy that much ammo in the long run so having a tool that you can use for hundreds of thousands of trigger presses at that price does make a ton of sense.
Especially given you will be using your gun, and thus: (and this is where Cool Fire Trainer shines)
- Your grip profile
- Your sights
- Your trigger (not a simulation … your actual exact trigger)
- Your magazine and magazine release
- Your holster
That value is hard to overstate.
I also think the addition of the laser module is important. When I dry fire I generally want visual feedback and when combined with a tool like LASR I also get the advantage of perfect reporting with split times. All around Cool Fire Trainer Plus LASR is a hard combination to beat!
Okay, so NO DRY FIRE TOOL IS PERFECT. That is why I have a “toolbox” of products I turn to depending on the objective of the practice session.
Cool Fire Trainer can only hold so much air. The air is stored in the barrel itself so the larger the gun the more air it will hold. In my Glock 19, it is correctly advertised to hold enough CO2 to give you 15 quality shots before you need to “re-charge” the air. This is an annoyance.
Now, you might be thinking: Jacob, your Glock 19 has a capacity of 15 rounds in the magazine so doesn't running out of air perfectly train you for a reload? Well, not exactly because I can't run out of air, drop the magazine, insert a fresh magazine and get 15 more shots.
I can certainly perform a reload (drop the mag and insert a new one) but I cannot simulate 15 shots with CO2 powered air, perform a reload, and then simulate 15 more.
The only other drawback I would add is that the laser module screws on to the end of the muzzle … the same place where you recharge the air. So if you are using the laser module you will need to unscrew it and screw it back on every time you recharge the air–which in my case is every 15 shots fired.
This might be one of those “it is what it is” things but it sure would be cool if the smart dudes over at Cool Fire Trainer could figure out how I could recharge my air from the top of the slide instead of the front of the muzzle so I don't have to constantly take off the laser adapter.