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Old August 30, 2006, 06:42 AM   #1
Para Bellum
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Minimum Trigger Pull for Carry Gun?

The longer I carry, the lower the trigger pull of my Glocks (26, 19, 17) gets.
At the moment I carry with the following setup:

red firing ping spring
"minus" connector
"schuwiduu" firing pin safety (that one makes a difference!)


That makes a rater short soft and low-weight trigger pull. Friends of mine say that woul be to low for a carry gun. I don't buy that. The gun is perfectly safe still. All safeties work. And it only fires if you deliberately pull the trigger. That's what it ought to do.

So why not have a light trigger pull on a carry gun?
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Last edited by Para Bellum; August 30, 2006 at 08:23 AM.
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Old August 30, 2006, 07:12 AM   #2
mete
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Because under the stress of a shootout the fine motor coordination disappears !! Only the larger muscles work well, it's a survival process.In addition some guns like the 1911 may not be fully reliable at less than about 4 lbs. In a Glock the "New York" trigger was made to get a safer trigger for police use .A big difference between target and real combat shooting !!
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Old August 30, 2006, 08:20 AM   #3
Para Bellum
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Quote:
Because under the stress of a shootout the fine motor coordination disappears !! Only the larger muscles work well, it's a survival process.In addition some guns like the 1911 may not be fully reliable at less than about 4 lbs. In a Glock the "New York" trigger was made to get a safer trigger for police use .A big difference between target and real combat shooting !!
Hi Mete,

I knew all of this and have been there and done that myself. Still, I see no disadvantage in light trigger pull (with strong "red" firing pin spring) on a still reliable carry gun such as a Glock with the setup posted above...

BTW: AFAIK, the Glock NY-Trigger was made to ease the adaptation from revolvers to Glocks for badly trained cops... I don't see any reason why this would make anything safer at all.
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Old August 30, 2006, 09:09 AM   #4
CDH
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In a defensive situation, trigger pull doesn't mean diddely squat.

Light or heavy will not affect your speed of pulling the trigger. The adrenalin pumping through your brain will overcome the difference between 3 pounds or 7 pounds without your even noticing.

What DOES affect the outcome of a gunfight will more likely be your performance overall such as when you decide to draw and fire and how soon (not necessarily how fast) you draw and fire.
The time that a lighter trigger pull will save isn't even a factor.

Once that decision is made, whatever happens, it's all over in the blink of an eye.

On the other hand, the reliability of the weapon you depend to save your life when you need it the most can easily be affected by messing with the trigger.

Your life, your choice. I don't personally care other than it's interest as a discussion item. All my defensive carry weapons remain 100% stock. (XD45, XD9SubC, Colt XSE LTW SS Commander, Walther PPK, S&W 642).

Carter
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Old September 1, 2006, 08:42 AM   #5
shield20
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I am all for keeping my CCW pieces stock. More lawyer safe then if self-modified.

I think around 5 or 6# and up would be plenty accurate, and still safe.
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Old September 1, 2006, 10:55 AM   #6
oldbillthundercheif
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On a pistol with a manual safety, there is no problem with a fairly light trigger on a carry gun. For Glocks... it's questionable. If the trigger hangs up on anything you are likely to loose a toe. You don't want to be like the DEA agent in that famous video clip...
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Old September 2, 2006, 06:08 AM   #7
Ozzieman
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What you feel safe with.

It depends more on the shooter than the gun. For autos I don’t like to see anything under 4 lb’s. I have a Colt Gold cup that a good gunsmith worked on for target only. It has a 2.5 lb. I feel safe with it but I am very careful letting others shoot it. People that cushion there trigger pulls can get the gun to go auto for 2 or more rounds.
I have two Glocks and there for defense only and I wouldn’t mess with them, I agree with others here that when adrenalin is pumping, trigger pull weight means nothing, only training means anything. You will end up shooting like you train, so train with what you carry.
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Old September 2, 2006, 08:24 AM   #8
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Stock is the way to go...

+1 on keeping your gun stock.

I believe if you are PROPERLY trained with a firearm that has a 3.5# or even lower trigger pull...then it is OK for you to use that.

But an untrained or even poorly trained person should be relegated to NO FIREARM, or between 7-12# trigger pulls so they do not AD.

I think with the poorly / untrained person - the AD is the bigger danger than pulling and shooting.
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Old September 2, 2006, 08:28 AM   #9
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I had 3.5 lb connectors in my glock - then I found I shoot them better with the stock configuration. That's seems strange to even me, because their stock triggers are really pretty bad.
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Old September 3, 2006, 04:16 AM   #10
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I would say 4.5 as BARE MINIMUM, this should be no problem to use, and there is a margin(slight!) for safety. 2.5 might be ok for compitition, but I think it's crazy for a ccw or duty carry gun. I have been in situations where I had to fight for control of my weapon, and I was damn glad for my 12# DA(/SA) trigger.
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Old September 3, 2006, 08:12 AM   #11
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Quote:
Because under the stress of a shootout the fine motor coordination disappears !! Only the larger muscles work well, it's a survival process.In addition some guns like the 1911 may not be fully reliable at less than about 4 lbs. In a Glock the "New York" trigger was made to get a safer trigger for police use .A big difference between target and real combat shooting !!
What is it that magically happens below 4 lbs to make the gun unreliable?
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Old September 3, 2006, 10:14 AM   #12
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Quote:
In a defensive situation, trigger pull doesn't mean diddely squat.

Light or heavy will not affect your speed of pulling the trigger. The adrenalin pumping through your brain will overcome the difference between 3 pounds or 7 pounds without your even noticing.
Isn’t a short and light (4 lbs. or so) trigger pull helpful in achieving accurate hits? Wouldn’t a 12 lb pull make it hard, or harder to achieve accurate shot placement as the distance to the target (bad-guy, whatever) increases? In addition, if only a portion of the BG is exposed (part of his head, and firing hand for example) wouldn’t a heavier trigger pull make it harder to hit a smaller target as compared to a shorter, lighter pull?

You mention triggers in the 3-7 lb range, but I am talking about a your typical 4-5 lb. factory 1911 pull versus a long DA (or heavy striker fired DA onlys) with a pull of say 10-12 lbs.

It seems to me that different shooting conditions require different engagement techniques. A close in target for example would get what I call a ‘snap shot’. As the difficulty of the shot increases, so does the amount of care used in squeezing the trigger and sight alignment. Granted, with adrenalin making your heart pound and your knees wobble, it will be harder to achieve the same amount of accuracy as on a peaceful range, but when a shooter must make a difficult shot, wouldn’t he or she apply the same skill sets that were learned on a range? Specifically, sight alignment and trigger squeeze? Wouldn’t a lighter pull facilitate easier target engagement for difficult shots? Please correct me if I am wrong.
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Old September 3, 2006, 10:21 AM   #13
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my Springer 1911 is set at 3 lbs.

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Old September 3, 2006, 11:21 AM   #14
CDH
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Quote:
Isn’t a short and light (4 lbs. or so) trigger pull helpful in achieving accurate hits? Wouldn’t a 12 lb pull make it hard, or harder to achieve accurate shot placement as the distance to the target (bad-guy, whatever) increases? In addition, if only a portion of the BG is exposed (part of his head, and firing hand for example) wouldn’t a heavier trigger pull make it harder to hit a smaller target as compared to a shorter, lighter pull?
Don't romanticize how a defensive shoot would go down.

Point 1: The most common scenario involves a shot at a VERY close range, usually several feet. If you missed at that range, it wouldn't be because of trigger pull. You would miss because you're scared out of your wits, but you're supposed to train for that so that you can keep a clear head.

Point 2: I'd like to hear of any defensive shooting on record where the potential victim (armed) decided the outcome by shooting the big toe off of a bad guy hunkered down behind a barricade. That's Annie Oakley talk.

Point 3: If you don't like the trigger pull of a particular pistol, then you need to get a different gun DESIGNED to work at a lighter trigger pull. All guns are "designed" to work the way they come out of the box, and modifying them very often leads to unreliability. Modifying competition guns or range guns is fine and fun, but messing with a defensive pistol is not something I would consider.
For example, I never did like the DA first shot trigger pull on my S&W 6906. But I carried it because, at the time, it was the safest choice for the way I liked to carry (chambered with hammer down and safety NOT engaged).
Then along came the XD pistols, and I instantly fell in love. At about 5 pounds trigger pull on first and subsequent shots, it is exactly what I've been looking for, and with no heavy first shot nor any silly safety to futz with. Additionally, I shoot standing, off-hand groups with my two XD's (9SubC and .45/4") as tight as I do with my 1911's. Yup, that surprised me too.

While I wouldn't personally choose to carry a pistol with a 12 pound trigger pull (any more ), I never doubted that it would be a great defensive pistol if I ever needed it. I know I could count on my adrenlin giving me the strength I needed when the time came.
The other part of that equation is that trigger pulls set too light are even more dangerous because the same adrenlin that will allow me to quickly and efficiently pull a 12 pound trigger will also, combined with fear and panic, urge me to acquire the trigger and squeeze it too soon while drawing the weapon. I don't think I could bear hearing the laughter of the BG as he watches me look down at the hole in my foot.

I've been a "gun nut" since I was 8 years old, and I have done some really stupid at-home gunsmithing when I was younger (and ruined some really nice pieces at that ).
I'm now much older and smarter, and while I am capable of doing some proper tuning on guns, I have never even considered screwing around with any of my self defense weapons, nor will I let anyone else do so either unless it's a necessary repair or maintenance issue done by a factory technician.
That's all I'm trying to say.

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Old September 3, 2006, 02:43 PM   #15
Para Bellum
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Thank you all for your time and thought.

I still found no arguments against a light trigger pull provided that the functionality of your gun doesn't suffer. In stress you won't notice any difference, but in practice with your carry gun(s) you get quicker which again influences you behavoir in a stress situation....

The setup I have now is perfetly safe.

Standard Glock
+ Glock 3,5lb connector ("minus connector")
+ red firing pin spring (increased power and more reliable than standard)
+ "schuwiduu" firing pin safety (just makes the trigger more precise and lighter)

That's it. IMHO and AFAIK now this is the best Glock setup I have seen in carry Glocks.
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Old September 3, 2006, 04:47 PM   #16
oldbillthundercheif
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A 3.5 trigger on a carry gun with no manual safety seems safe to you?

You might as well carry a 1911 with a rubber band over the grip saftey with one in the pipe, hammer back, and the saftey off. It would amount to the same thing. I hope your holster completely covers the trigger-guard!
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Old September 3, 2006, 06:09 PM   #17
Blackwater OPS
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I still found no arguments against a light trigger pull provided that the functionality of your gun doesn't suffer.
Then you need to read those posts again.
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Old September 3, 2006, 08:33 PM   #18
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I still found no arguments against a light trigger pull provided that the functionality of your gun doesn't suffer. In stress you won't notice any difference, but in practice with your carry gun(s) you get quicker which again influences you behavoir in a stress situation....
How would you defend yourself in a court room when the other side has their expert declare that a 3.5 pound trigger was intended for competition at the range and never intended to be used on a carry gun.
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Old September 3, 2006, 09:12 PM   #19
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I realize that everyone on here has been in multiple gun fights with hundreds of drug dealing gangs, so I will probably be the only one to admit that while I carried for years as a deputy sheriff, I never fired a shot in anger.

Still, I was in a couple of tacky situations and I will reveal, that unlike all you experienced gunfighters, I was nervous as hell and scared to boot. Looking back, I think that the last thing I needed was a trigger so light that my shaking hand would have emptied the magazine. Of course, as all you folks who have undergone extensive training know, when you are faced with the prospect of killing someone or taking a bullet yourself, you will be calm, clear headed and careful. You would never touch one off accidentally or have any fear or trepidation. (If you agree, you are nuts!)

Of course, there is no need to be afraid when your shooting has been done on the range or in the video game. In the less perfect atmosphere of the real world, I never cocked my revolver, preferring DA both for the heavier pull and for control.

Jim
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Old September 3, 2006, 09:34 PM   #20
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How would you defend yourself in a court room when the other side has their expert declare that a 3.5 pound trigger was intended for competition at the range and never intended to be used on a carry gun.
Where are these carry gun rules of trigger pull posted? Either you had the right to use lethal force or you did not. Trigger pull won't change it.

You might as well ask how you would defend yourself in court because you were carrying a gun and why would you be carrying a gun unless you intended to shoot somebody. Or why are you carrying hollowpoints, why carry X caliber, etc.

With that said, a negligent discharge resulting in injury to another is a complete other matter and in that case, factors such as trigger pull may indeed come into play and that is a very real concern and that sort of enters into Jim Keenan's comments. You don't want to shoot until you have decided you should be shooting and not before.
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Old September 3, 2006, 09:40 PM   #21
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I realize that everyone on here has been in multiple gun fights with hundreds of drug dealing gangs, so I will probably be the only one to admit that while I carried for years as a deputy sheriff, I never fired a shot in anger.

Still, I was in a couple of tacky situations and I will reveal, that unlike all you experienced gunfighters, I was nervous as hell and scared to boot. Looking back, I think that the last thing I needed was a trigger so light that my shaking hand would have emptied the magazine. Of course, as all you folks who have undergone extensive training know, when you are faced with the prospect of killing someone or taking a bullet yourself, you will be calm, clear headed and careful. You would never touch one off accidentally or have any fear or trepidation. (If you agree, you are nuts!)

Of course, there is no need to be afraid when your shooting has been done on the range or in the video game. In the less perfect atmosphere of the real world, I never cocked my revolver, preferring DA both for the heavier pull and for control.
Not sure where you're going with this, it looks to me like most people are not advocating a light trigger pull. I haven't read anywhere in the thread where anyone talked about their multiple gunfights. As for extensive training, that means different things to different people. To some it's the military training they received 20 years ago, to others it's going to the range every week and doing FOF training a few times a month and going to a shooting school one or two times a year, most people are probably somewhere in between the two.
To me whatever you're happy with, go forth and prosper. You are the only one who has to answer the mail on your training, your weapon and your actions.
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Old September 3, 2006, 09:48 PM   #22
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In all my Glocks, carry or competition, I use a NY-1 trigger spring and 3.5 lb connector. It gives a 7 to 8 lb pull with no stageing of the trigger. Just a strait pull backwards.

Now you will far far more likely have to hold a person at bay for police than shoot them. It's holding one at bay, nervious and finger on the trigger, that makes the use of a heavy trigger pull a good thing. And that is why I use that setup.

I don't fault those who carry 1911s or 3.5 connecters as long as you keep your finger off the trigger unless you want that gun to go off. This is especially true in winter if you wear glovers and have to shoot a Glock or a SA that has the safty off. Gloves must might make your fingers insensitive to the trigger, and thus set up for a AD/ND and someone dead. Lawsuits happen that way....
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Old September 4, 2006, 07:23 AM   #23
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For my use as a defensive/duty gun, 5 pounds minimum. FWIW I've never had a problem getting good, fast hits at a realistic distance with a 10-12 pound DA trigger on a revolver. For me the quality of the trigger (smooth and consistent) is more important than light weight.
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Old September 4, 2006, 09:57 AM   #24
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"Now you will far far more likely have to hold a person at bay for police than shoot them."

If I have drawn and not fired I want the perp to hit the road. Trying to hold him for police would just make him desperate enough that I might have to shoot. The police always call for backup when holding a perp at bay. If faced with being shot or getting out I think most perps will leave. The police can capture him and the Persecuting Shysters Office can try to put him in jail. I have no delusions that I am Supercop, and given the choice between maybe having to shoot him and running him off, I will take the latter.
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Old September 5, 2006, 01:05 AM   #25
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Quote:
A 3.5 trigger on a carry gun with no manual safety seems safe to you?
On the gunzone.com there is a bit about a cop who was at the range with his "POLICE" windbreaker on. When he went to re-holster his gun one of the draw strings got caught in the trigger guard. He didn't know this untill he sat down in his car and the draw string pulled the trigger on his glock resulting in a bullt in his thigh. OUCH.

If you guys want to carry any single action gun with nothing more then a trigger saftey cocked and locked that's fine by me, but I wouldn't.
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