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Old June 3, 2006, 11:19 AM   #1
FastDraw
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It's 2:00 AM and an Intruder is in your house


Hello All,

I would like your opinion on cocking a DA/SA prior to shooting. In this case assume you have a Ruger P90 (DA/SA) as your night stand gun. You hear a noise at 2:00 in the morning a you KNOW you have an intruder in your house.

After retrieving your pistol from the nightstand would you immediately cock the P90 so your first shot (if you have to make that choice) is a short SA shot?

( For what it's worth I have found that my first shot ........ shooting targets at the range...... is generally LOW, and that following up (SA) shots are on center mass.)

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Old June 3, 2006, 11:44 AM   #2
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I would suggest cocking the lever only because I prefer SA-only pistols. You will have to remember to keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to take your shot (safety rule #3) especially b/c most DA/SA pistols cannot be put on safe w/o de-cocking.
My reccomendation would be to get a 1911 because every shot is SA.
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Old June 3, 2006, 12:05 PM   #3
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Practice like you may have to employ your tools (meaning, practice at the range DA/SA if thi is the HG you have). This means DA first round, SA the rest. This is how we qualified in the 'Corps, and it makes sense (again, if this is what you have). You should practice like this IMO....or, get a HG that is DAO, SAO, etc. (more consistancy)...and/or, of course, a shotgun.
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Old June 3, 2006, 01:12 PM   #4
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It is safer not to cock a DA/SA pistol for your situation...

1) the trigger pull is considerably lighter...you might squeeze at a time when you dont want to (startled...surprised...touched)...maybe shoot an un-armed intruder...now you are a murderer.

2) try explaining to a gun hating judge and jury that you didnt intend to shoot that 14 or 15 year old kid that broke into your house...when you cocked your gun before you identified who the intruder was (i guess your daughter can get another boyfriend)...get my drift?

In a real situation as you describe...you will have plenty of strength to pull the trigger if you have to...but you can never stop the bullet you sent accidentaly because you cocked it first.

Also remember...Home invasion is a felony...but not punishable by death...be ready to explain why you needed to set out with the intent to fire your weapon.
(I carry a Sig 226 DA/SA...12lb pull is nothing in a real gunfight.)
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Old June 3, 2006, 01:24 PM   #5
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Quote:
1) the trigger pull is considerably lighter...you might squeeze at a time when you dont want to (startled...surprised...touched)...maybe shoot an un-armed intruder...now you are a murderer.

2) try explaining to a gun hating judge and jury that you didnt intend to shoot that 14 or 15 year old kid that broke into your house...when you cocked your gun before you identified who the intruder was (i guess your daughter can get another boyfriend)...get my drift?
Someone who forcibly enters an inhabited dwelling is not there for tea and crumpets pal. Trial by six instead of carried by 12. Armed or not, are you willing to take the chance with your family to wait and see?

Verify your family members are present and safe, then shoot. Practice shooting DA first shot SA for follow ups. Thats my advice.
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Old June 3, 2006, 01:57 PM   #6
CraigJS
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DA, at bad breath ranges 0-15' shooting a bit low and L or R isn't going to make a lot of change in point of impact. At home distances you aren't going to have time to aim like you do at a range. Practiceing point shooting at these distances are a more realistic training..
As far as shoot or not, YOU have to make that choice. All the internet advice in the world won't help you in the split second you have to decide!
Above all check to see what your state laws are on the subject, lots of little twists that can hang you if your wrong!

This is more of the internet advice I warned you about.

Take care!
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Old June 3, 2006, 03:05 PM   #7
Dwight55
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Fast draw asked: "I would like your opinion on cocking a DA/SA prior to shooting."

Remember, opinions are like dirty socks, . . . everyone has a couple of them and pretty much all of them stink.

Having said that, . . . No, . . . I would not cock the thing. As previously posted, learn to shoot it as it was intended, . . . DA first, . . . then SA all the way to slide lock. If you really don't like that scenario, . . . get yourself a pistol or revolver that fits the one you like.

I would thint that any louse of an attorney for the other side will work you over as much as they could over intentionally changing the manual of arms of that weapon "significantly enough to ensure a quicker first shot".

May God bless,
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Old June 3, 2006, 03:06 PM   #8
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Fastdraw - honestly, get more rounds through your gun & practice that transition DA/SA, you'll be better off. Being half asleep, half scared & half who knows what else is not the best time to have a cocked pistol in your hands getting oriented to the situation.
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Old June 3, 2006, 07:04 PM   #9
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It's 2:00 AM and 30 seconds, and there is a bloody mess in my house...

He did not ask shoot/ no shoot, let's not get distracted.

You said you KNOW there is an intruder in your house. I don't know how you would for sure, unless you have a video feed or something, but if you are SURE go SA, this is combat time and every 1/4 of a second counts. The dangers of an accident in this case are minimal. VERIFY YOUR TARGET BEFORE you engadge it.

Edited to add: Better yet though, get a good shotgun. Beats a pistol every time.
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Old June 3, 2006, 07:12 PM   #10
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Options

1. Consult notebook you made from notes taken during a training class.

2. Get Training

3. Search function for finding training near you.

4. Take SWAT ? if so - check there as well.
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Old June 3, 2006, 09:19 PM   #11
BobK
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As others have said, DA first then SA. Don't cock the gun. The DA/SA auto has a higher learning curve but can be effective with practice. I recently got rid of the last DA/SA auto I had because I just didn't like it. It was a Sig P226 which was a nice gun and was quite accurate. I just could not get used to that first DA pull. So I've decided to stick with my Kimber, XD 45, and a few others that are not DA/SA. I probably will never own another DA/SA gun but at least I gave it a try. So your options are, practice very much, or buy another gun. Another option would be a shotgun.
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Old June 3, 2006, 10:04 PM   #12
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If you need to ask this question, you are not an experienced-enough shooter to risk holding a cocked pistol in your hand at a moment of high stress. Leave it in double action.

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Old June 3, 2006, 10:27 PM   #13
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This may just be misinformation on my part or not fully understanding case law, but at least here in TN I seem to understand that anyone in your house that has entered illegally with forced entry is automatically presumed to be a threat and whether they are armed or not doesn't matter due to the castle doctrine. Can anyone give better information on this? TN law if possible.
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Old June 3, 2006, 10:58 PM   #14
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Quote:
1) the trigger pull is considerably lighter...you might squeeze at a time when you dont want to (startled...surprised...touched)...maybe shoot an un-armed intruder...now you are a murderer.
maybe in some hippie state chock full of liberals who think it'd be a violation of their rights to get shot while they were breaking into a home that wasn't theirs. You don't have to sit around and wait to see what someone who has broken into your house is going to do.
I'd stick with a DAO if I where you, no chance of accidents, and can be safe and ready to go with a round in the pipe, tucked away in your nightstand, unless you have kids to worry about. The other option is to get a 12 gauge pump. If he doesn't run like the wind when he hears you chambering a round, or state who he is (if it's your teenager sneaking back into the house at 2 AM), he's intending to do something more criminal than breaking in and he gets a spray of 00.
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Old June 4, 2006, 12:29 AM   #15
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I say learn the DA pull. Dryfire in DA and you'll get used to it real quick. The DA pull doesn't have to avoided, its not that difficult. Double tapping a DA/SA pistol is a little more tricky.
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Old June 4, 2006, 08:39 AM   #16
chrisandclauida2
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it is always good the have that first da pull for two reasons.

stress of the situation

not being fully awake

these two equal negligent discharge
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Old June 4, 2006, 08:42 AM   #17
FMUStewart
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Quote:
1) the trigger pull is considerably lighter...you might squeeze at a time when you dont want to (startled...surprised...touched)...maybe shoot an un-armed intruder...now you are a murderer.
A murderer? Nothing like those who protect criminal rights...if he's in my house, doens't matter if he's armed or unarmed...

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Old June 4, 2006, 09:09 AM   #18
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A murderer? Nothing like those who protect criminal rights...if he's in my house, doens't matter if he's armed or unarmed...
For your sake, and your family's sake, it had BETTER matter.

For the original poster, a couple of suggestions:

1. Remember Rule #2: Keep your finger OFF the trigger until you are ready to shoot. Keep that trigger finger indexed.

2. Consult your local prosecutor and verify the laws concerning deadly force in your State.

3. Get some training, and practice, practice, practice! And, don't just stand in one place and shoot. Get some training that teaches dynamic shooting and shooting accurately under stress.
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Old June 4, 2006, 09:14 AM   #19
joab
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maybe shoot an un-armed intruder...now you are a murderer.
In who's world?

If he is in your house he is a threat to be dealt with as a threat.

In Florida and a lot of other progressive states you would merely be an unprosecutable non-civilly-liable home defense veteran.

But following BlackWater's lead
If you are absolutely positive that it is a viable threat and not a misbehaving teen do what you are most comfortable with.
Many shots taken inside a house will require precision and speed if SA gives you that edge take it.

But I also agree with using a shotgun for HD
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Old June 4, 2006, 09:39 AM   #20
Rangefinder
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In my view of things, a DA is a useful tool and safety feature in this case. The gun is every bit as deadly, but it's not going to go off unless you are FULLY COMMITTED to the squeeze. A lot less chance for a AD, less possibility something is going to happen that really should have been prevented. Lets keep in mind, there are a number of reasons NOT to shoot an intruder---daughter's boyfriend sneaking in/out (even though you may want to shoot him at the time), son/daughter sneeking in/out, whatever. I live in a college town, 2 blocks from the university. Most houses in my neighborhood not only look alike, but most have basement apartments that rent to students. I scared the be-jeezus out of a poor kid last fall when he came stumbling in late, trying very hard to be quiet, but was actually intending to be at the house next door. I really wouldn't want to have it on my conscience to have shot a drunk college kid for trying to make it to his buddy's house to crash for the night but found mine instead. There could be countless other reasons for an intruder that doesn't deserve a bullet. DA is still just as "ready" as SA, but a little safer for both sides at the same time.
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Old June 4, 2006, 10:00 AM   #21
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Old June 4, 2006, 10:33 AM   #22
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Double Action for first shot as there is less chance that you pulled the trigger due to a "nervous trigger finger"; scared as h*ll is probably more like it. This is one of the reasons I prefer double action revolvers or a pistol such as a Glock for home protection. I would have to be VERY sure of my target prior to a shot. I don't want a death on my conscious if there is ANY other choice short of my own serious injury or death. Don't block their exit unless you want to kill the intruder. A cornered dog will fight; but if they have a place to retreat, they may just run.
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Old June 4, 2006, 07:21 PM   #23
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Quote:
maybe shoot an un-armed intruder...now you are a murderer
Not in the real world, it matters not whether this person is armed, if you perceive a threat he is a TARGET.

Quote:
it is always good the have that first da pull for two reasons.

stress of the situation

not being fully awake

these two equal negligent discharge
Not if you are neutralizing a threat.

Quote:
This may just be misinformation on my part or not fully understanding case law, but at least here in TN I seem to understand that anyone in your house that has entered illegally with forced entry is automatically presumed to be a threat and whether they are armed or not doesn't matter due to the castle doctrine. Can anyone give better information on this? TN law if possible.

+1 In TN you are correct ( I am in Nashville)

Quote:
Someone who forcibly enters an inhabited dwelling is not there for tea and crumpets pal. Trial by six instead of carried by 12. Armed or not, are you willing to take the chance with your family to wait and see?

Verify your family members are present and safe, then shoot. Practice shooting DA first shot SA for follow ups. Thats my advice.
Yesterday 01:12 PM

+1 on this, this is the best advice in this situation.
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Old June 4, 2006, 07:48 PM   #24
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For your sake, and your family's sake, it had BETTER matter.
Or? What? He's in my house, he hasn't identified himself, or complied with my commands...so...what you're saying is if he's unarmed, that's his free ticket?

Let me make sure my stairs are in good condition do, so he doesn't sue me because he tripped on his way in.

You sir, are a victim waiting to happen.

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Old June 4, 2006, 09:05 PM   #25
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OK. Here's a question...

Why does it seem that a lot of people on this thread are almost eager to kill? To drop the hammer, pull the trigger, blast, smoke check, etc.

First of all, if someone is in your house, you have the drop on them, and they are not armed, why shoot? You do not have a reason to shoot them at that point.

If your family is not in imminent danger, why shoot?

If they want to run, let them. If they are running with some of your prized possessions, let them go! There is almost NOTHING you own that is worth a person's life.

FMUStewart:

As far as me being a victim waiting to happen, please read my profile.
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