View Full Version : How do glocks work? (and other non hammer handguns)

September 14, 2005, 03:33 PM
I know the title sounds stupid but let me explain some more. So on your basic 1911 you pull the trigger, hammer is released, hits the primer, boom, slide moves back shell is ejected, hammer is cocked and a new shell is in the chamber. What are the internal workings on glocks and other semi's w/out hammers? is the firing pin just pulled back by the slide? or half pulled back is what i've read somewhere. Does anyone have a site with diagrams. I'm just curious. Thanks

September 14, 2005, 03:59 PM
What are the internal workings on glocks and other semi's w/out hammers? There acutally is a hammer of a sort, but it's completely conealed internally, and hits an elongated firing pin, better known as a striker.

Sorry, I can't find a diagram, and others will be along to explain it better. :rolleyes:

September 14, 2005, 04:03 PM
I don't have diagrams, but you are pretty close.

When the slide goes back it pulls the striker to the rear. When the slide starts it's forward movement the action catches the striker and holds it to the rear while the slide continues back into battery.

The trigger is then pulled to release the striker which comes forward hitting the primer and starting the cycle all over again.

September 14, 2005, 04:11 PM
And there are 3 safety mechanisms that keep the striker from hitting the firing pin.

Diagrams and explanations: http://www.glock.com/_safe_action_.htm

1) A trigger safety
2) A drop safety
3) A firing pin safety

A well thought out design if you ask me. However, it could use a grip safety.

Check out the Springfield XDs because they are similar but also use a grip safety. www.springfield-armory.com

September 14, 2005, 04:22 PM
leadcounsel is correct, execept that he forgot the most important safety, the shooter! :D
IMHO, I hate grip safeties. There would be many tactical situations in which a grip safety might be bad. For example, if your hand was injured enough that you could not grasp the weapon, you might not be able to fire the weapon. Supposed that you had winter gloves on and need to access your gun quickly. The soft thick gloves might prevent the safety from engaging, depending on variables such as hand strength, folds in the fabric, glove thickness, etc.
In our excellent CCW class, we were taught a weak hand cross draw in which your grab the gun upside down and pull the trigger with your pinky.
This would engage in a close struggle where you needed to draw your weapon with your left and didn't have time other than to grab it how it sat in your holster. You might or might not have enough grasp to engage the safety. In this case, it would be a bad idea. There are other senarios, but why do you need a grip safety, when you have the trigger safety. How many safeties do you need. Everyone is a door you have to open to fire your weapon. Glock has just the right amount for me! I feel more comfortable with a chambered glock in my pants than a 1911 cocked and locked! Just me. Seen too many 1911 hammers fall accidentally.

September 14, 2005, 04:32 PM
A few almost-correct answers, but, so far, no cigar. :cool: When the slide is retracted, the firing pin (there is no hammer, or anything like a hammer) is held at half-cock. When the trigger is pulled, the firing pin is cocked all the way back, then released by the cruciform part of the trigger bar.

September 14, 2005, 04:55 PM
So in a way its sort of a double action?

September 14, 2005, 04:57 PM
In the HK P7 the cocking lever retracts the firing pin which is then released when the trigger is pulled.

September 14, 2005, 05:08 PM
Don't think so, because it can't go from zero to cocked merely by pulling the trigger.
I see alot of people referring to it as DOA, but IMHO that's inccorect. Someone corrected it by saying it was "safe action", not DOA.
(shouldn't it be DAO(double action only) instead of DOA(dead on arrival!)) :D
Since the glock slide has to be racked to reset the trigger, it can't be considered double action.

September 14, 2005, 05:11 PM
For those that like to argue, my answer was exactly correct in addressing the exact question: :D

1) Question asked was how does a Glock work, NOT about how a person makes a gun safe. The shooter is the primary safety for all guns, not just Glock, and is implied in the question AND answer :D
2) My answer and link to the diagrams was right on. I stated a block keeps the firing pin from being struck by the striker. :D

September 14, 2005, 05:11 PM
except by the IDPA classes :confused:

September 14, 2005, 05:38 PM
The glock design is good. Working the slide partially cocks the firing mechanism then pulling the trigger cocks it all the way, then releases it to fire.

The thing I don't like about glocks is that you cannot have repeat strikes.

If the bullet fails to fire for some reason, the slide will have to be worked.

September 14, 2005, 07:29 PM
Zeke, That's what i've heard before it's just been a long time so I wasn't sure. That it's half cocked once the slide ejects the round then the trigger cocks it the rest of the way and then lets the pin go to fire the round.

September 15, 2005, 01:55 AM
...hmmmm...instructions would take too long for me...just make sure that you point the barrell (the end with the hole) away from you or in any direction that may hurt other people.

September 15, 2005, 05:21 AM

September 15, 2005, 05:25 AM
Answering the "and other non-hammer guns" part of the question.......

The XD is not like the Glock internally. It is classified as a single action by the ATF, but that's not completely accurate, they haven't come up with new classifications to go with the striker fired pistols yet.

The XD's striker is fully cocked when you rack the slide. Pressing the grip safety, allows the trigger to be pulled, releasing the striker, and the trigger pull moves a block up out of the path of the striker.

Personally, I like the grip safety on the XD. It doesn't have a strong spring. I don't even notice it's there at all.

September 15, 2005, 09:20 AM
leadcounsel: Better bone up on your "intellectual property", at least where Glocks are concerned. ;) The firing pin and striker are the same part, (Glock calls it a firing pin; others call it a striker.) so your post is still incorrect. :) The firing pin (striker) isn't "struck" by anything.

September 18, 2005, 09:36 PM
Hope you're not a heavy smoker, Zeke, cuz no cigar for you, either. ;)

Strictly speaking, the Glock firing pin is held at partial tension by the trigger bar when the slide returns to battery, not when the slide is retracted. :p

September 18, 2005, 09:48 PM
Some designs combine the hammer and firing pin into one part called a striker. If you ever look at a bolt action rifle you'll notice that the cocking piece (if it has one) is directly attached to the firing pin. The whole part works against spring pressure so that when released by the trigger it will fly forward and (hopefully) ignite the primer. This kinda takes another step out of the equation. I think the Walther PP works in this manner although it incorporates another mechanism to allow a double action pull wheras a rifle has no such device.

September 18, 2005, 10:27 PM
Here is a great animation showing all the internal workings, click on the transparent or hidden boxes for best viewing.


September 18, 2005, 10:35 PM
Boing: I didn't say, "Leave the slide retracted." I kind of thought that anybody'd understand that it ain't ready to fire with the slide retracted. :D