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Old February 23, 2008, 07:37 AM   #101
SrA USAF
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I say Carry with one ready to go. Thats how Ive been trained and seems to be the only logical way to carry unless you are carrying just for show (which you arnt supposed to show unless you are gonna use it). I carry for self defense and sorry to say but if I need to pull my weapon then I will be probably crappin my pants at the same time. Im sure that most people who have never been in a dangerouse situation very nervouse. So having to rack the slide could cost them their life.
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Old February 23, 2008, 07:37 AM   #102
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Some of us have been to the dark woods and are merely pointing out that we've seen the critters...and that you might want to be ready.
I've dealt with a few critters myself, but civilian life means not looking for them around every corner.
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Old February 23, 2008, 08:54 AM   #103
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I've dealt with a few critters myself, but civilian life means not looking for them around every corner.
Whether it's in civilian life or military, critters are critters...and they are everywhere.
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Old February 23, 2008, 09:02 AM   #104
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but the odds are you will probably live longer if you habitually handle weapons unchambered than if you don't.
Source, please?
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Old February 23, 2008, 11:05 AM   #105
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"I've dealt with a few critters myself, but civilian life means not looking for them around every corner."

Nice summation. The problem is that the critters around the corner (whom you are not looking for) will eventually look for you. There is no special pass for being a "civilian".

Profitably playing the odds works for the casino industry, but isn't necessarily a good point of departure for planning your own safety.

-------------

I don't think this discussion will change any minds for adherants of one mode of carry over the other. Still, it's a fun and recurrent topic for debate until the Sturm und Drang inevitably reaches threadlock level. IMHO, it's more interesting than 9mm vs. .45 .

Few debates are worth having if you don't feel strongly about a point of view.

I feel strongly about this particular one, but don't lose any sleep over the disagreements. Opposing opinions are always educational. Reasoned debate helps a lot of readers/lurkers in making informed decisions regarding CCW and firearms ownership. We all make personal choices and live with the results.

Having said that... All of you empty chamber advocates are wrong and should simply donate your guns to the rest of us in a new Karma thread. Anything you donate will be well maintained and kept chamber empty...I promise.
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Old February 23, 2008, 11:28 AM   #106
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jabotinsky
A gift for the bloody obvious.
Hey, you're the one who argued that an empty chamber was somehow safer in a home with children. It cannot be so, except for people who regularly leave the firearm in places it should not be left. *shrug*

Quote:
I've dealt with a few critters myself, but civilian life means not looking for them around every corner.
True enough. There's something fundamentally unhealthy about spending half your life worrying about criminal attacks.

Incidentally, that's why I put a gun on with my clothes every morning, and do not take it off until I go to bed at night. It's as much a part of my daily routine as dropping my car keys into my pocket, and I ordinarily think about it just that much as I start my day.

For me personally, I'd be in an unhealthy mental place if, instead of simply, routinely getting dressed in the morning, I spent a few minutes every single stinking morning thinking about how dangerous my daily activities would be, whether I was going to go into a "safe" or "unsafe" area of town, how likely I was to encounter a criminal while I ran my errands after work, or whatever else it is that someone who carries only intermittently might need to contemplate before choosing whether to leave the gun at home or take it along. For me that would just be a bad place to be, mentally and emotionally. YMMV, of course! (Not everyone gets the same mental wiring ...)

Seems to me that the decision of whether to carry a round chambered or not pretty well falls into the same category as the choice whether to carry routinely or only intermittently. There are sound practical and logistical reasons why a person would carry with a round in the chamber, just as there are sound reasons to carry the gun routinely rather than intermittently. But if you feel more comfortable with an empty chamber, or carrying only occasionally, have at it. It's your life and nobody has the right to tell you how to live it.

The truth is, people who have actually had to use firearms in defense (as opposed to those of us who merely carry them) are pretty universal in saying that they really, really appreciated having a round already chambered at the moment of truth. Some such folks even report that the chambered round saved their lives. But if you don't find that a convincing factor, well, *shrug* ... who really cares? It's your life.

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Old February 23, 2008, 01:24 PM   #107
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having experienced both

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If you're toting around an M4 you're already in a different world than me. For me as a civilian, life should be experienced differently when shopping at a suburban strip mall on a Sunday than when theoretically patrolling some insurgent haven in Iraq. It's about the quality of one's life, the richness, some of which is not fully realized when one's center is constantly drifting off in rumination over tactics to be used against mythical attackers that never appear.
I might add that experiencing hypervigilance, and living to tell about it, adds a certain richness to life not to be found in more effete pursuits.

Regular, intense, and correct training in self defense actually frees up brain bytes for other pursuits, by moving more and more tactical thought to the level of "background process".

As a civilian, you have a greater range of training available to you than to all but a few very special military members. There's a lot of mall-ninja, make-a-buck tripe out there, but you can also sharpen skills to a level beyond the average battle-tested soldier through quality classes and sports like three-gun and IDPA .

Military training on M-4 and pistol is geared to getting the lowest common denominator up to an acceptable standard. That safety floor, enabling military folks to employ weapons in close proximity without fratting each other, is what folks often point to when they say, "some folks shouldn't carry with a round in the chamber", "only cops should carry handguns" or even, "civilians shouldn't be allowed to have fully automatic weapons." However, civilian folks, with a little initiative, can achieve a level of firearms proficiance far beyond the average military member/cop.

I wouln'd urge a civilian to train like someone carrying and M-4 on MSR Tampa. I'd urge you to train like someone who wants to be able to defend himself with a black rifle, and who wants to be better than the that guy in uniform. After all, you get to train on your terms, because it's fun, not because of what training evolution you're in, or how many rounds are left on teh books for the fiscal year.

Likewise, there are military men who do the minimum training, because they have to as part of their job, and there are those who get the best training they can find--from any source--because they remember what they love about the job....
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Old February 23, 2008, 03:02 PM   #108
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No doors or airbags...deathtrap! You should not take that thing out of the driveway. I am surprised you have survived five minutes in that thing.

Dunno, Playboy, I think you must lead a very sheltered life!
C'mon out to the country and see how the other half lives!
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Old February 23, 2008, 03:25 PM   #109
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John, what else can we go with when planning for safety? I have two kids under the age of 5 in the casa...hard for them to rack most of my weapons...statistics tell me there's more deaths from kids getting guns than not having the additional step in an SD situation of racking a slide; more deaths from NDs, etc statistically.
Statistics are ONE input that should be considered. Common sense, logic, the experience of others, knowledge of your firearm, legal issues, safety issues, the specifics of your particular situation, are a few of the other things that should be considered.

Let me be perfectly clear.

Relying on the difficulty of racking a slide as a child-proofing method for firearms is negligent.

Even a surprisingly small child with some ingenuity can rack the slide on a pistol if given some time to figure it out. One method I've heard of is holding the grip with both hands, placing the rear sight against a table or other hard edge and leaning into the gun.

The gun needs to be made inaccessible to children and unauthorized persons.

As others have pointed out, a much more safe option (which has other benefits) is to keep your gun on your person when it's doing self-defense duty.
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Old February 23, 2008, 04:30 PM   #110
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"I find it interesting when threat analyses disrgeard extremes, in that clasically preperation for extremes insures success in dealing with the body."

OK, OK. A little too academic sounding.

I'll take a shot at explaining it:

(Please don't get to hung up on the examples; that's all they are.)

One extreme: The time to perceive a threat, draw, chamber a round, adopt your favorite stance behind cover all in one fluid action which would make your trainer(s) proud and... what ever.

The other extreme: No time. Your perception of the threat begins with the assault. You're fully engaged. Drawing is not an option and won't be be until fighting for the position and control to do so. You do so with the violence and determination which would make your trainer(s) proud and... what ever.

The details entailing "what ever" are irrelevant for our purposes.

The "I'm perpetually in yellow so that could never happen to me" comments are... unrealistic. (Unrealistic is a nice enough word to avoid offense, I trust. I was tempted to use others.)

The body I refered to consists of everything between these two extremes; the bulk of the threat scenario continuum, for lack of a better term. Reasonable preperation for the extremes is essentially reasonable preperation whoich can be applied across the continuum.

I hope that helps. Any economists or others familiar with the concept care to flesh it out further?

Anyway, I find the disregard of the extremes interesting.
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Old February 23, 2008, 04:58 PM   #111
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And now for the common excuses for ignoring the extremes:

Ignorance: When someone doesn't know what they don't know. Everyone's been there. Most never leave.

Denial: When someone upon hearing of an extreme denies it applies to them.

Definition: When someone defines their extremes too narrowly. Realted to one of the above, maybe both. Conversely, if someone defines them too broadly, they may end up in an unworkable training quandry, become frustrated, and give up altogether.

Value: When someone is over-values in their knowledge, skill, and ability levels. They may acknowledge the extremes, but do not train for them thinking, erroneously, that they have. Conversely, when someone under-values the knowledge, skill, and abiliuty of potential threats.

I'm sure there are others. These simply came to mind.

Best - Erik
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Old February 23, 2008, 05:33 PM   #112
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This all seems pretty simple to me...

If you wish to carry your weapon without a round in the chamber and risk losing precious seconds when you may really need them, be my guest. I am not saying it's a great idea, so don't blame me when it blows up in your face. You may have all the time in the world to cock and lock, you may not...why not just cut that step out?

If you are worried about your kid/unauthorized doofus ND'ing your weapon if you keep one in the chamber, you should probably investigate better ways to secure/retain your weapon. Noone has ever taken my wepaon off of my person and nobody without one helluva blow torch is gonna get into the safe when I ain't wearin my weapon.

Yea, so that's just my .02.
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Old February 23, 2008, 05:40 PM   #113
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Attend some FOF courses and you'll discover your answer if the arguments for carrying with one in the pipe didn't convince you of its merrit.

I believe in Darwinism.
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Old February 23, 2008, 05:48 PM   #114
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Quote:
Relying on the difficulty of racking a slide as a child-proofing method for firearms is negligent.
The original quote never implied it was the sole method. It is part of a redundant safety system including biometric safe for guns, difficult height, no loaded mags in guns in the house, no rounds chambered, ammo stored in separate locked area, hard to rack slides or separate trigger locks, etc.

As for what I was trying to say, it's mainly that most of us don't even need to CCW everyday, it may make you feel better, or for any reason, it's your right. But I use my CCW to mostly transport my weapons or have them nearby. I make sure I live and travel only to safe areas at this stage of my life. Every life & death situation I've been in was caused by being in the wrong place so I only got to right safe, places. Yeah, bad things can happen there, too...when your card is up, it's up...but I'll keep playing the odds until then.
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Old February 23, 2008, 06:55 PM   #115
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I make sure I live and travel only to safe areas at this stage of my life.

Which planets or alternate dimensions are those?

The Mall - Tacoma
The University = NIU, VT, etc.
Church - Colorado
The Amish
Your gated, upscale community - the Petits
Your home in the nice country - The two Dartmouth professors, etc.

Yep - all scenario are rare events, you don't need ammo for most defensive gun uses.

We are going around in circles and just having folks who are stubborn insisting on their way.

Boring, boring, boring.
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Old February 23, 2008, 08:29 PM   #116
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As for what I was trying to say, it's mainly that most of us don't even need to CCW everyday, it may make you feel better, or for any reason, it's your right.
It's true. At any given time the VAST majority of persons these days don't need to CCW.

It's also true that at any given time the VAST majority of persons don't need to have a spare tire, airbags, a seatbelt, insurance, a fire extinguisher, a first aid kit, a smoke detector, locks on their doors, a security system, etc.

However, every day a few people DESPERATELY need those things. Same with CCW. By the most recent estimates of defensive gun uses, around 5500 persons a day use a firearm in self-defense. Even if only 1% of those are CCW holders that's about 50 a day in the U.S.
Quote:
...I'll keep playing the odds until then.
Not me. Just because something's unlikely doesn't mean I'm willing to bet on it not happening to me. Why? Because if it were to happen, the results are unthinkable.
Quote:
I make sure I live and travel only to safe areas at this stage of my life.
Unfortunately it's hard to get criminals to agree to stay out of "safe areas"...
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Old February 23, 2008, 08:41 PM   #117
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I make sure I live and travel only to safe areas at this stage of my life.
Yeah, and i believe rubbing a unicorns horn will protect me from evil.
Get real!
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Old February 23, 2008, 10:23 PM   #118
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As for what I was trying to say, it's mainly that most of us don't even need to CCW everyday, it may make you feel better, or for any reason, it's your right.
Yep, in 8 years of concealed carry and a few years prior in carrying while "traveling," I have never had to shoot anyone. I have never had to point a gun at anyone. I have never had to draw. I have never been robbed, raped, beaten or murdered. So I guess I don't need to carry either. Oh wait, historical data of mutually exclusive events bears no significance on future mutually exclusive events.

Quote:
I make sure I live and travel only to safe areas at this stage of my life.
People always seem really surprised when they or somebody they know is burgled, robbed, raped, beaten, or murdered in safe areas. I don't like to be surprised by bad things so I live, work, and travel in unsafe areas. That way, I am only surprised by the good fortune of not having something bad happen to me! Its just good common sense.

Odds are something huge like one in a million that a plane I fly on will have a bomb on it, so I always like to bring a bomb with me because odds are one in 100 million that there would be TWO bombs on the same flight, hence I am that much safer if I bring my own bomb - just good common sense.
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Old February 23, 2008, 10:51 PM   #119
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The OP wanted to know if there are scenarios that forum members could suggest where the extra step of racking the slide could spell disaster. My assertion is that those scenarios are almost nonexistent in real civilian life and that I believe a habit of leaving the chamber empty could contribute more to general longevity.

If I were CCW daily with the intent of self defense, I'd keep a round chambered. But I've chosen to make the trade-offs necessary to live in a relatively low-crime area. I remember walking through downtown Jersey City at 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning as a young punk because I had to get home and nobody was gonna tell where I could walk or when...now I bend in the wind as the cliche goes, try to think the best of people I meet, not have plans to kill them, try to connect, get along on my way, keep it all real. At the end of the day, there's always somebody badder than you out there if you want to go to bed every night with sharpened chopsticks by your bedside.

I think this thread has been great, folks have been passionate but not personal, maybe it's not entertaining enough for some, but a lot of us are staying inside this weekend 'cause of the cold & snow, and this thread has been pretty cool.
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Old February 24, 2008, 03:35 PM   #120
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As for what I was trying to say, it's mainly that most of us don't even need to CCW everyday, it may make you feel better, or for any reason, it's your right.
I felt that way and then needed it in my first year. Now, over a decade since the incident, I still feel it is not needed 99.9% of the time. I just don't know when or if that .1% will pop up again...
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Old February 24, 2008, 06:54 PM   #121
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Wyocarp wrote:
Time? Are people not aware of their surroundings? I've not been attacked by a person. I have had several different attacks by animals. There are no animals quicker than lions and bears. I've had both happen. They are so quick that people would look like they aren't moving in comparison. I'm not convinced of the time thing.
You think that bears and lions are more lethal than people?
Try checking out how many people lions or bears kill, vs. the amount of people humans kill.

Also, try some force on force classes. You’ll quickly understand why you need to be able to shoot with one hand, and always carry with a round in the chamber.
Against a younger, stronger adversary, you’ll have no chance without a chambered round, you’ll be beaten to pudding, specially at the ranges attacks are likely to occur on the street.

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Old February 24, 2008, 06:54 PM   #122
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That was a course at a range.
Sorry, but it is pretty tough to get that timer into action during a real gunfight. But as the issue was one of time, how much is needed, how much the racking adds, etc. the range is the best place to do that. And we find that there just isn't enough difference in the time for it to matter much.
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In the civilian world you MUST prepare for the worst,....
Why? The worst rarely happens, and being prepared for the normal works almost all the time. Very few of us, if any, are always prepared for the owrst all the time. We all compromise.
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if you can not rack your pistol while fending off one or more badguys (and it will happen, badguys are 3D and not stapled to a target board at known ranges..) You are dead, and just gave the badguy more to carry in the form of your weapon, if you have family or friends with you they just might be killed by your weapon.
Again, if this was much of a problem, we’d have seen it by now. We haven’t. In fact, just the opposite, we have not seen any evidence that the quick draw ability makes a difference. So, I guess we have that traditional problem...should we worry about something that is made up and would be very rare, or should we base decisions on what is normal and common? More important, IMO, is why one should get so excited if another chooses a different sort of solution to meet their different situation?
Quote:
You have locks and you probably use them, so why would anyone NOT load their weapon they have the right to carry and defend themselves and others?
Depending on the situation, I might lock the doors at times, at others I might not. There is more to the home life than a single "keep everyone outside" situation. And there is far more to life and CCW than the gunfight.

Quote:
My view is centered on having the arm out of action.
Right Glenn, that is probably the most valid reason, and of course it is part of that situational analysis. If you only have one arm available, chamber-empty carry is probably not a very good choice. Of course, one could also argue that given that situation an autoloader might not be the best choice either. lots of variables coming into play.
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Old February 24, 2008, 07:00 PM   #123
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The "statistics" represent historical data that are mutually exclusive from whatever situation you may find yourself in when you need a gun. Such data are not good for predicting what may or may not happen to YOU in YOUR situation.
On the contrary, they are very good about predicting exactly that. The stats won't always get it right, but they do predict to a pretty good degree what may happen, or what may not happen. And far from being mutually exclusive, your situation becomes part of the ever-growing database one can use to make those predictions. It is no different than using statistics to predict any other danger.

Quote:
Hope is not a viable strategy & empty chamber carry is utter foolishness.
And yet we have seen over and over how so many of what most consider to be some of the best fighters in the world, in some of the toughest places in the world, opt for that "utter foolishness." I guess that it works so well for them they just haven't needed to find out what was wrong with it.
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Old February 24, 2008, 07:14 PM   #124
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Some of us have been to the dark woods and are merely pointing out that we've seen the critters...and that you might want to be ready.
And others, who have also been in the dark woods and seen plenty of critters, are suggesting that if your version of "ready" is determined by whether or not you walk around with a round chambered, you probably aren't ready. I carry chamber loaded, I carry chamber empty, and at times I don't carry at all. But that has nothing to do with me being ready.
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Old February 24, 2008, 07:23 PM   #125
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Empty revolver chamber? One-arm practice?

Do any of the posters who recommend chamber empty carry for SA autos also recommend carrying DA revolvers with the hammer on an empty chamber?

For David Armstrong: I don't think people are talking about knowing they will have only one arm to use, in advance, so much as suggesting the possibility that an arm will be disabled early in the fight via bullet wound, knife wound, grab, or pinning of the body by the assailant(s).

Given those criteria, do the range timed tests use any scenarios where shooters are 1) evading an attack while attempting to draw and chamber; or 2) drawing and attempting to rack the slide using rear sights against belt or nearby solid object? If not, then time comparisons are a bit incomplete.

Note: practicing use of belt, boot top, or other solid object to rack a pistol could be hazardous; obviously, use of inert training ammo would be safest for this, but such practice is useful.
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