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FirstFreedom
August 29, 2007, 06:12 PM
Would it not be perfectly safe to disengage the manual safety AFTER holstering, since (1) the trigger & trigger guard is covered by the holster, and (2) the grip safety acts as an additional safety?

I could see, possibly, if one were so inclined, disengaging the safety after holstering, and re-engaging before un-holstering so that the safety is always on when the trigger guard is exposed. The last time I asked this question on a gun board, years ago, the results were, ummm, *interesting* to say the least. :D

But the grip safety is only a trigger block, not a firing pin block, correct? Or is it a firing pin block? So wouldn't protect against a hard jar throwing the firing pin forward? I forget now....hmmmm.

FS2K
August 29, 2007, 06:19 PM
there's no advantage, tactical or otherwise.

FirstFreedom
August 29, 2007, 06:24 PM
I understand. But is it *safe*?

FS2K
August 29, 2007, 06:41 PM
The single stage trigger makes it dangerous. The thumb safety is a hammer block, and not a trigger block. The grip safety blocks the trigger. Too easy to bypass in my opinion freedom, but that's just my opinion. Have a good one!

nate45
August 29, 2007, 06:47 PM
The pistol simply will not fire unless the trigger is pressed.

Keep your finger off the trigger until ready to fire and no safety whatsoever is needed.

Bill DeShivs
August 29, 2007, 07:01 PM
If the hammer is hit hard enough, the sear can break and the gun WILL fire. You could hit the hammer on a door frame, drop the gun, or any number of other mishaps could cause a problem.
Keep the safety on.

FS2K
August 29, 2007, 07:10 PM
I realize that what I am about to tell you is a rare occurancem but it did happen to me. My first 1911 was a 'working' gun but little more that that. Little did I know at the time, but the gun had an extremely worn sear. I became aware of it the fist time I tried shooting it, the gun would go off as soon as I dropped the slide. the gun can and will fire without the trigger being pressed under the right conditions.

Gunner69
August 29, 2007, 08:00 PM
This topic was discussed at length on another forum, Same poster maybe...

If so you sir are a C/F waiting to happen...

If not NO I would not carry my 1911 cocked and unlocked, is the 1911 inherently safe w/o using the thumb safety yes, but like everything that has moving parts wear does happen especially if you shoot it enough to convince yourself that you are truly a god among men when it comes to packin heat. To summarize what was said in the other forum as well as what appears to be the majority here... DO NOT CARRY A 1911 COCKED AND UNLOCKED... But do what you want it's your weapon and you are going to do what you want anyway regardless of the potential legal/moral repercussions of an ND.

James K
August 29, 2007, 08:14 PM
IMHO, people who don't even know how the 1911 safety devices work shouldn't be in such a discussion. Learn enough to know what you are talking about and then you will have a basis for making a decision.

Jim

FirstFreedom
August 29, 2007, 08:18 PM
This topic was discussed at length on another forum, Same poster maybe

How recently? If a few (5-7) years ago, may have been me. If more recently, no. What's a "C/F"?

Is one a "god among men" if one carries a Springfield XD? Same wear and tear? Same likelihood of accidental firing? I just hope it's not the same people who cry "no such thing as an N/D", who are saying that wear & tear can lead to an (alleged) true A/D.

So for those that voted no way, jose, please state whether or not your answer would change or the be same for:

-Springfield XD?
-Para 1911 with LDA trigger?

Jim I disagree. My memory is bad and I've been "off" pistols for awhile, so I'm here in part to brush up and learn (again), since my recent acquisition of a Sig GSR. Do you have to know how the brakes work on your car to use them or ask why pressing the pedal down stops the car?

OK, I brushed up - thing are as I had vaguely recalled them above when I asked:

But the grip safety is only a trigger block, not a firing pin block, correct?

Nevertheless, the question stands more for curiosity than anything. And to bring up the actual realistic likelihood of forward pin movement while being carried. I mean, don't all 1911s now use the so-called "series 80" safety mechanism to prevent the firing pin from moving forward until the hammer goes to the rear? Does Sig in the GSR? I don't know; that's why I'm asking. If it has the "series-80" type safety, then it *should*, in theory, be 1,000% safe to carry in this manner.

Justme
August 29, 2007, 08:30 PM
I would not, and do not, even carry a round in the chamber of a semiauto. I find that I can rack a slide while drawing just fine. I heard somewhere that Mossad doesn't carry a round in the chamber but practice racking as they draw, but I could be wrong.

I will, however, carry a revolver fully loaded as long as it has a transfer bar/block.

For me the extra bit of safety seems a fair tradeoff, YMMV.

easyG
August 29, 2007, 08:35 PM
I vote "no way".
Unlike an XD, the trigger-pull is just too light on a 1911.

Any possible benefit (which I'm not convinced that there is) does not outweigh the additional risks.

I would not, and do not, even carry a round in the chamber of a semiauto. I find that I can rack a slide while drawing just fine.
I keep my pistol in condition three when I'm not carrying it for one reason only...children.
It's just too easy for a kid or a careless adult to switch off the safety and fire the pistol.

But carrying it in condition three might not be best because you might not have the use of your off-hand at the moment you need your pistol.

I've went back and forth on the issue many times.

FirstFreedom
August 29, 2007, 08:39 PM
But how's the trigger going to be pulled when the trigger guard is completely covered? Or, did you mean, during the draw?

Of course, we can NOT say that it's dangerous solely due to the light trigger, or else it would be dangerous the instant you draw, because flicking off the manual DURING the draw must become second nature to anyone serious about protection, and once it's off, then there's that light trigger. So the light trigger may not be good for everyone, that much is certain. But I think it's fair to say that *IF* the 1911 trigger is right for you, and *IF* you have a series 80 type firing pin block, and *IF* you choose to, for whatever reason, then it's perfectly safe to do so, or at least *no less safe* than carrying WITH the manual safety on.

I keep my pistol in condition three when I'm not carrying it for one reason only...children.
It's just too easy for a kid or a careless adult to switch off the safety and fire the pistol.

Fair enough. :)

RsqVet
August 29, 2007, 08:50 PM
I would not:

1. It buys you nothing

2. The proper way to draw any gun, well for all I have ever been taught, is to take a "firing grip" this deactivates the grip safety, prior to the draw which puts you at risk for hitting the trigger on something as you index the gun up.

3. ND's have happened with 1911's due to being of safe and more or less brusing the trigger, if I recall correclty one happened at front sight with I believe an instructor canidate who stuck an off safe gold cup in a holster not ment for the gold cup and the extra width trigger snagged on the holster causign a ND and wound.

4. The idea of going on safe, holstering and then going off safe, and then maybe even drawing in reverse order of this is akward enought to make one say heck why not carry with an empty chamber.... or tape your mags in your carry weapon for that matter.

5. Not all 1911's have a firing pin safety. the Colt series 80 do, the series 70 DO NOT, The GSR has a series 80 style FP safety, kimber and s+w hav e adiffirent varyation on the theam, Brown, Baer, Wilson, and many others still have nothing and no one is complaining.

nate45
August 29, 2007, 08:55 PM
I don't carry my 1911's with the thumb safety off however I recognized that the OP was an academic question.

I stated that the pistol will not fire with out pressing the trigger.

So far we have read that no, what about a faulty sear or if you hit the pistols hammer with machine hammer it might AD.

Or the trigger pull is to light or auto pistols with loaded chambers scare me.

LOL

I borrowed this saying from one of the other members.

Keep you booger picker of the boom switch!

kristop64089
August 29, 2007, 09:02 PM
I'm not a very eloquent speaker, and I suck when it comes to typing so bear with me, I hope this comes out right :o

I voted Noon side of error. I use whatever safteys a gun has. Just like hunting rifles.(that saftey stays on till right b4 trigger pull). It is inherint(sp?) For me to sweep the trigger on draw/target acquisition. I think the 1911 is safe enough for daily carry in the situation you describe, but i'd never do it.

I know nothing about Para so no comment

But, with the XD when the slide is "racked" it doesn't fully cock the Stryker, only partially(lets say 3/4) Trigger pull is what fully cocks and then sends Stryker home.

Also the XD uses an Inertia block so if the Stryker cuts loose from a resting position it is not "supposed" to detonate the charge.

Hope this helps

denfoote
August 29, 2007, 09:10 PM
What??
Are you crazy???:eek:

treg
August 29, 2007, 09:14 PM
Missing poll option -

yes; I'm an idiot

easyG
August 29, 2007, 09:18 PM
But, with the XD when the slide is "racked" it doesn't fully cock the Stryker, only partially(lets say 3/4) Trigger pull is what fully cocks and then sends Stryker home.
Not true as I understand things.

This is the way a Glock works.
But an XD is a SINGLE ACTION pistol....all the trigger does is release the striker.
But it does have a heavier trigger pull than the typical 1911.

easyG
August 29, 2007, 09:26 PM
But how's the trigger going to be pulled when the trigger guard is completely covered? Or, did you mean, during the draw?
Yes, during the draw would probably be the most dangerous time.

....because flicking off the manual DURING the draw must become second nature to anyone serious about protection...
I disagree.
I'm serious about protection, but I'm also serious about safety.
I sweep off the safety as my arms are extending, and when the muzzel is already pointing in the general direction of the target.
Not as I draw the pistol from the holster.
That sounds like a good way to shoot yourself in the leg or waste a bullet into the ground.

Fremmer
August 29, 2007, 09:46 PM
Use the safety. It's too easy for the trigger finger to curl around the trigger on the draw, and it doesn't take much with a 1911. Plus, it's a neat feature of the 1911. :cool:

And yes, I know, you're supposed to keep your finger off the trigger.

Supposed to. :D

nate45
August 29, 2007, 09:50 PM
I just did an experiment I took my oldest 1911 a Colt made in 1917 and rebuilt by Augusta Arsenal probably during WW2.

I friction taped the grip safety down and cocked the hammer I shookit, jarred it, I dropped it from a ladder onto the carpeted floor,I banged against the wall.

Guess what the hammer didn't drop till I pulled the trigger and shot a hole in the tv.(just kidding it wasn't loaded)

Disclaimer: I'm not recommending carrying a 1911 with the safety off.

Fremmer
August 29, 2007, 09:54 PM
Well Nate, you could donate your gun to FirstFreedom, and he'd have nothing to worry about, right?!? :D :D :D

Rimrod
August 29, 2007, 10:00 PM
The 1911s thumb safety is the primary safety, the others are secondary. People have disabled the grip safety and firing pin block, which I do not condone by the way, but don't mess with the thumb safety and keep it engaged whenever the gun is not being fired.

FirstFreedom
August 29, 2007, 10:09 PM
Jim Keenan tells me by PM that the internal safety blocks the SEAR, not the FIRING PIN. Thank you Jim. But what I'm reading says that the series 80 style safety blocks the FIRING PIN until the trigger moves backward, and that other designs, such as Kimber, block the FIRING PIN until the grip safety moves forward. So if both block the firing pin, then Jim you must be saying the the Sig GSR, and/or most 1911s in general, do NOT use either the series 80 type or its progeny..... correct? Or what are you saying, exactly? And what precisely does a sear block prevent? Do you know which makers use which. I'm trying to re-brush up on 1911s - I used to know a *little* bit about them. Thanks.

Well Nate, you could donate your gun to FirstFreedom, and he'd have nothing to worry about, right?!?

Exactly. ThisiswhatI'msayin.... :D

Fremmer
August 29, 2007, 10:10 PM
don't all 1911s now use the so-called "series 80" safety mechanism to prevent the firing pin from moving forward until the hammer goes to the rear?

That's an interesting question. This is what I found on the 1911Forum.com (http://forums.1911forum.com/showthread.php?t=15201) on the series 80:

The single biggest change to the 1911 design came about in 1983, when Colt introduced the "MK IV Series 80" pistols. These guns incorporated a new firing pin block safety system, where a series of internal levers and a plunger positively blocked the firing pin from moving until the trigger was pressed, thus eliminating the possibility of the gun discharging if dropped onto a hard surface or struck hard.

Regarding the "clone" guns (1911-pattern pistols made by manufacturers other than Colt), only Para-Ordinance adopted Colt's Series 80 firing pin block system as well. Kimber's Series II pistols and the new S&W 1911s have a FP safety also, but it is a different system than Colt's and is disabled by depressing the grip safety. No manufacturers aside from Colt ever adopted the Series 70 barrel/bushing arrangement, so technically there are no "Series 70" clone guns. What this means is that design-wise most of them share commonality with the pre-Series 70 guns, using neither the firing pin block NOR the collet bushing. Because of this it is important to remember that only Colt Series 80 models, and a couple of "clone" 1911 makers use a firing pin block. Older Colts and most other clone guns lack a firing pin safety and can possibly discharge if there is a round in the chamber and the gun is dropped on a hard surface, or if struck a blow hard enough to allow the firing pin to jump forward and impact the primer of the loaded round. By the way, Colt has just recently reintroduced new custom pistols lacking the S80 firing pin safety (called the Gunsite models) as well as a reintroduced original-style Series 70 to appeal to purists. Interestingly, the latter uses a solid barrel bushing and Series 80 hammer, so it is somewhat different mechanically than the original Series 70 models.

Justme
August 29, 2007, 10:41 PM
Guns are mechanical devices, you can bang it on the carpet and wall all you want, just because your gun didn't fail in that one experiment doesn't mean another gun another time wouldn't.

As an ex fighter mechanic and engineer I can say without fear of contradiction that even the best built and designed mechanical devices fail. I was a reliability engineer and my job was to make sure the design ensured that when(not if) something failed it didn't cause a plane to crash.

The safety on a 1911 is there in part to help if there are a series of failures in other areas. Of course a safety is a mechnical device that can fail also, that is why I carry without a round chambered.

Wildalaska
August 29, 2007, 10:48 PM
Just buy a Radom ViS :)

WildthereyagoproblemsolvedAlaska TM

nate45
August 29, 2007, 11:22 PM
Let's say you had a 1911 holstered with the chamber loaded and the hammer cocked with the thumb safety off.

What could make it fire besides pressing the trigger?

If you have a 1911 with the chamber loaded and the hammer all the way down you could hit the hammer with anything you like as hard as you like and it is impossible for it to fire.

It has an inertia firing pin.

The least safe condition you can have a 1911 in is with the chamber loaded and the hammer in the half cock position.

The half cock notch could break if the pistol is dropped and the hammer could strike the firing pin with enough force to ignite the primer.

RsqVet
August 29, 2007, 11:46 PM
The Sig GSR DOES have a series 80 type FP safety, strip the slide off and look at it for yourself, you can see it as a little finger to the right of the disconnector that rises up and activates (releases the FP safety) on the slide. I know because mine jamed with millings or something when my GSR was new.

The statement that most 1911's have a FP safety is probibly only true by the numbers because places like sig, kimber and S+W sell a heck of a lot of 1911's by maker and model it's probibly 50/50 because most of the higher end guns such as Baer, Brown et. al. do not include it as many shooters dislike the series 80 for one reason or another, arguing worse trigger pull or more complexity with out need etc.

Of course great guns do exist with series 80 systmes and an intresting counter to the no series 80 argument is Dave Lack a high end 1911 guy who builds series 80 system into his very expensive (3k plus) all custom guns.

As to taking the safety off on the 1911 I retunr to the point about having been taught to do that while indexing the gun up to a firing position... I have carrried a 1911 in my hand for fear of needing it, however no immediate threat or target was present so it was at my side, on safe, if I'm wrong in this someone tell me.

Silentarmy
August 30, 2007, 12:00 AM
I am a "Plastic gun Person"! 7 Glocks in 5 calibers and HK USP .45, Various Beretta. However, My next planned pistol purchase is Springfields Loaded 1911A1 in Black Stainless. Maybe even a Sequential Serial#'d pair If I can get them! I was trained on the Glock pistols as LEO 12 yrs ago and the M-9 Berreta in my 13 yrs of Military Reserve service ( 3 branches). Because I had originally been trained on no manual safety, I had a little issue carrying the M-9 daily on my Post 9-11 tours. I would like to know how the safety works on the 1911A-1. It appears to be a hammer lock and I do not know what the grip safety locks out! I will not be carrying the 1911 but would like to understand this better before this purchase (investment) They are really pretty! can anyone tell me Accurately what does what? From what I know, I would not carry with safety off and I voted such.

nate45
August 30, 2007, 12:06 AM
Is "Cocked and Locked" Dangerous?
By Syd

When the gun is cocked and locked, the sear is blocked from releasing the hammer. Further, unless a firing grip is on the pistol, thumb safety swept off, and the trigger is pulled, the gun will not go off. For my money, this is much safer than a Glock or some of the other new pistol designs which have no external safety. The Glock, by the way, is also pre-cocked which is why it can have a much lighter trigger than a real double action gun. It could be said that the Glock is “cocked and unlocked” which is called “condition zero” with the M1911. Anecdotally, we hear of many more "accidental discharges" with Glocks than with M1911 pattern guns. The 1911 has two manual safeties. It may look scary, but it is really much safer than many current designs.

http://www.sightm1911.com/lib/tech/cockedandlocked.htm

Justme
August 30, 2007, 12:07 AM
If you have a 1911 with the chamber loaded and the hammer all the way down you could hit the hammer with anything you like as hard as you like and it is impossible for it to fire.

Yes, but could you snag the hammer on something? I don't have the schematic or IPB to look at the exact working of the mechanism, but I assume it would take several similtaneous failures for cause a problem. But failure of more than one thing at a time is a statistical possibility, and part of the reason we have such things as safeties in the first place.

It's all about your level of comfort. I had a cousin almost die from a Ruger security six, complete with transfer bar safety and 6" barrel, going off while he climbed over a fence. It shot him in the thigh and he nearly bled to death. The revolver was loaded(and the hammer was down) and carried on his hip in a Bianchi thumbreak holster. To this day I don't think he could accurately describe what happened. It's not something that should happen, it seems impossible, but it happened.

nate45
August 30, 2007, 12:20 AM
Negative what if thinking may have been a good quality for your Air Force specialty.

It is not a good one for a pistolero.

News flash guns are dangerous they are designed to kill.

Thats why I carry one.

And I always obey these rules.

1. All guns are always loaded!

2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy!

3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target!

4. Always be sure of your target!

abarth
August 30, 2007, 12:33 AM
XD is also a single action pistol, by racking the slide the firing pin is cocked fully, unlike the Glock. The XD on the other hand has a firing pin block which most of the 1911 don't. I don't see carrying 1911 with a FP block safety off be any different than carrying a loaded XD.

JohnKSa
August 30, 2007, 12:35 AM
The Glock, by the way, is also pre-cocked...The Glock is only PARTIALLY pre-cocked. According to Glock there is not enough energy stored in a pre-cocked striker spring to fire the gun. The remainder of the cocking stroke is performed by the trigger. For reference, the slide action compresses the striker spring about halfway (by length) and the trigger pull does the other half of the job.It could be said that the Glock is “cocked and unlocked”...A Glock is never truly cocked unless the trigger is nearly all the way to the rear. Likewise, unless the trigger is pulled, all of the safeties (three of them) are activated. Which means that a Glock is also never really unlocked unless the trigger is nearly all the way to the rear.

Regarding the Series 80 1911s. Many thought that the addition of the firing pin safety adversely affected the trigger pull. SIG incorporated a firing pin safety that was deactivated by the grip safety in an attempt to circumvent this problem. Regardless, a 1911A1 (what most people mean when they say 1911) does not have a firing pin safety. Some more modern variants have this feature, but it's not very popular due to the trigger pull issue.

nate45
August 30, 2007, 12:56 AM
Thanks for the information John.

It was not my intent to misinform anyone and I'm certainly not anti-Glock.

I just wanted to make my case that the pistols themselves are not inherently unsafe, but the manner in which they are handled.

JohnKSa
August 30, 2007, 01:20 AM
It was not my intent to misinform anyone and I'm certainly not anti-Glock.I didn't take it that way. Someone mentioned something I knew something about so I chimed in. ;)

MyXD40
August 30, 2007, 02:16 AM
I carry my XD's loaded and ready to go. The only real saftey is your finger. The saftey on the gun, well I should say all of them, are to be there "just incase" meaning..you act stupid, or you dont learn/follow proper gun handling

big shot
August 30, 2007, 02:19 AM
Hey all,

I've been a lurker on this site for a while now but this thread drew me out as I've often asked myself the same question about "cocked & unlocked" carry of 1911's.

I consider the thumb safety on the 1911 to be more of a safety device against human error and carelessness rather than a guard against the perceived "unsafeness" of the single action pistol design. In fact, John Browning originally designed the 1911 without a thumb safety; it was the U.S. Army that insisted on the device before they would adopt the gun.

Realistically, a cocked & unlocked 1911 is not going to go “bang” unless the trigger is pulled or you have some kind of extremely rare mechanical failure such as the sear breaking (as another poster accurately noted) or something similar. As far as a cocked & unlocked 1911 going off as a result of being dropped or otherwise smacked, this is pretty rare too. Most modern 1911's are extensively drop tested. Some have passive firing pin blocks (Colt series 80) which prevents the firing pin from moving fully forward unless the trigger is fully depressed. Others use light weight steel or titanium for their firing pins which ensures that the firing pin can't generate sufficient momentum to strike the primer of a chambered round even when dropped from a significant height. Also, ALL 1911’s have a half-cock notch on the hammer which, theoretically anyway, should cause the sear to “catch” the hammer before it strikes the firing pin in the event that it is unintentionally disengaged from the hammer as a result of being dropped or struck.

Having said all that, would I carry or store a 1911 cocked & unlocked? Not a chance, for the simple reason noted above: human error. Most 1911’s have a trigger pull of around 5lbs and a very short trigger pull. While this makes the 1911 very easy to shot accurately, it also makes accidental discharges all the more common. The last thing I need is to shoot my foot off while pulling my Kimber out of the nightstand for routine cleaning/maintenance because the phone just rang and I got distracted and inadvertently moved my finger from the outside of the trigger guard to the inside. Worse yet, just think of all those folks who carry 1911’s in Thunder Wear? Would you really want a cocked & unlocked 1911 that close to your, well….. stuff?

‘nough said.

Gunner69
August 30, 2007, 03:09 AM
After having read your response First I will concede that it wasn't you that posted in my aforementioned thread, your grammar is much better. And for that I appologize for my original tone, I don't know that durring carry and draw there would be a serious possibility of a ND, however what no one has mentioned here is the reholstering part... I think that the chance of a ND during reholstering of a cocked and unlocked 1911 even a series 80 would be what 50/50 remember even trained professionals have had ND's with Glocks while holstering them. The gun is travelling in the direction of trigger pull and only has to travel appox. 1/8" to fire... doesnt take much force either what 4-5lbs??

As far as my goes because it is new to me I actually carry it C3 until I get more comfortable with holstering it w/o depressing the grip safety.

Edward429451
August 30, 2007, 09:04 AM
I just wanted to make my case that the pistols themselves are not inherently unsafe, but the manner in which they are handled.

I gotta disagree with this. Guns are inherently unsafe. It is a design feature of all guns to be unsafe. You sir are confused and are transferring your competance with the handling of said instrument, to the instrument itself. You may be inherently safe with the handling of the instrument, but that doesn't make the gun inherently safe at all. Need proof? Hand your inherently safe pistol to a moron.:D

<Why not carry a 1911 with the safety off>

Because it goes against recognized safety protocol and the intended manual of arms for the piece. Acacademically speaking, it would be possible for someone to train themselves to do what the OP asked and never have an incident, but if one applied the same amount of traing to the the intended manual of arms he/she would be just as safe but moreso because they would be using accepted practice instead of the oddball.

Fremmer
August 30, 2007, 09:14 AM
firing pin block safety system, where a series of internal levers and a plunger positively blocked the firing pin from moving until the trigger was pressed

Mechanically speaking, perhaps someone with more knowledge can let us know the following: will the firing pin block safety system prevent the firing pin from moving if the sear breaks?

FirstFreedom
August 30, 2007, 09:29 AM
Hey guys I completely forgot something I meant to mention in the original post:

Would your answer change, or NOT change if you were carrying the gun in a thumbstrap holster in which the thumbstrap goes under the hammer, as many of the 1911 holsters do?

Then you'd have in theory 4 "safeties" even without the manual: trigger guard covered, grip safety, firing pin block tied to either the trigger or grip safety (IF your gun has one), and physical hammer block with a piece of leather snapped around the back.

Gunner69, no problem! :)

Big Shot, welcome!

madmag
August 30, 2007, 09:49 AM
You get your answer when you disassemble and look at how the grip safety works to block the trigger and see how the sear works. The answer is NO...it is not safe. Blocking the trigger does not really prevent the hammer from dislodging from the sear for some other reason. The thumb safety blocks (locks) the sear and is safe. Good example, I had a failure once on my 1911 with the hammer following the slide and falling all the way down due to poor sear contact. A strap can block the hammer, but thats not part of the pistol. Trigger guard covered does not mean it can be in the holster and not have the proper jolt dislodge the sear contact. You don't have to pull the trigger for this to happen.

XD (also own one) is not an issue. The grip safety blocks the firing pin release. As already said by others above.

BTW, this kinda reminds me of the old days with shotguns that only had trigger blocks. Many times these guns would discharge when falling to the ground while climbing fences, etc. Trigger blocks are not firing pin or sear blocks, and therefore are not completely safe.

Finally, look at this side view (3rd down) and see how the hammer rests on the sear. That should be enough to scare anyone from carrying without the thumb lock in place.
http://www.m1911.org/full_partname.htm

And better
http://www.m1911.org/full_1911desc.htm

Look at the live action view with the hammer cocking on the sear. You don't want to chance things to a sharp edge resting in a notch.

Edward429451
August 30, 2007, 05:16 PM
Don't trust those firing pin safties too awful much. My buddy had a GSR and lost one of the actuator levers which wasn't put back in, and when we went to the range they actually got about 1 round per mag to fire.

Check the condition of the FP lock and look for the peening of the inside edges where its hourglass shaped sorta. The more its peened the less you should trust it. I keep a few extras around for replacement because I dry fire without snapcaps routinely.

Dry firing without snap caps causes accelarated wear to the lock because the FP will travel further than it usually does with a cartridge chambered.

spacemanspiff
August 30, 2007, 05:28 PM
I remember back in the day there was some poster who bragged about disabling all of his guns safetys because, and i quote, "when I want to shoot I want to shoot, don't want to be hampered by having to manipulate the safety."

That guy was a laugh riot!

meanoldman
August 30, 2007, 06:39 PM
Some folks (and I would consider them knowledgeable) have pinned the grip safety on a 1911 (think highpower). No one I respect advocates not using the thumb safety.

WESHOOT2
August 30, 2007, 07:48 PM
9/12 I wore my Caspian 1911 with its thumb safety disengaged.

I stopped that practice because I practice with the thumb safety.

oldbillthundercheif
August 30, 2007, 08:09 PM
John Browning originally designed the 1911 without a thumb safety; it was the U.S. Army that insisted on the device before they would adopt the gun

I thought Browning designed the 1911 without a grip safety, but the military insisted?

If I remember correctly, the pre-1911 Browning autopistols like the 1903 pocket hammerless have a regular, manually manipulated safety, but no grip safety. I'm pretty sure the earliest Browning .45 autos were also set up this way.

big shot
August 30, 2007, 11:47 PM
oldbill,

you might be correct, however, I did come across this pic on the internet of what appears to be an early incarnation of the 1911 which clearly shows it without the thumb safety but with the grip safety. However, I'm not sure where this particular gun figures in the development of the 1911.

madmag
August 31, 2007, 12:01 AM
If I read the attached correctly the grip safety is what was added, and the thumb safety was there on the original.

http://www.sightm1911.com/1911%20History.htm

dwatts47
August 31, 2007, 12:06 AM
I'm not going to say that its "unsafe" with the safty off (sounds dumb already don't it?), but I would say its "unsmart" and "unproper".

Who hasn't dropped a $2300, loaded, cocked 1911 just to see what would happen if the safety was off. (kidding)

I'm not a "don't even carry a round in the chamber for safety guy" but I'm definately not a "trust the grip safety and 3 1/2 pound trigger pull guy" either. I don't put my finger in side the trigger guard until I'm gonna fire. But I'm not gonna start flickin my Wilson safety on and off at random just cause it supposed to be ok.

C'mon, what could you say if you had and accidental discharge. "well I had the saftey off, but it supposed to be..."
Finish that one up however you see it going.

BluesBear
September 1, 2007, 01:40 AM
NO the grip safety was there before the thumb safety.
Just look at the Model 1910. You can see it had the grip safety but no thumb safety.
Browning designed the gun to be carried in what we now call condition two. Hammer down on a loaded chamber. Hence the big wide hammer spur on the original 1911 models.
As a calvary gun attached to the soldier by a lanyard, the grip safety would prevent the gun from firing if it became dislodged from a trooper's grip while in a cocked condition.

Browning's earlier .25, .32 and .380 caliber pocket pistols built by Colt also had grip safeties.

Bill DeShivs
September 1, 2007, 02:42 AM
The 1910 has both a grip safety and a thumb safety.

BluesBear
September 1, 2007, 05:30 AM
No it doesn't. The 1910 had only a grip safety.
http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=26587&d=1188628365
Now you show me a thumb safety anywhere on it.

FS2K
September 1, 2007, 05:45 AM
Even if those "1910's" don't have a thumb safety on them doesn't mean they were nessesarily carried condition 1, and the problem with carrying cocked but unlocked isn't nessesarily drawing the gun, but re-holstering it where anyone would be more prone to forget about trigger finger position and the chances of something catching and depressing the triger in much higher.

Just my .02 cents.

Tanzer
September 1, 2007, 07:05 AM
It was designed to be used a certain way. Use it that way. There are other designs if you don't like it.

auto45
September 1, 2007, 07:18 AM
Not much "engagement" of the hammer and sear on a 1911, meaning not much "metal to metal"...short trigger throw...very!!

So, without a thumb safety which blocks the sear, drop it, wear, broken parts, too heavy a spring, "touch" the trigger by accident...and BANG.
Remember the trigger pull "length" compared to other "modern" autos.
Would anyone carry a revolver with the hammer cocked...really?

Colt, Para, AO, Sig and Taurus have what's known as the series 80 FP safety system. Pulling the trigger moves a FP plunger that allows the FP to move forward.

Kimber and S&W have the "plunger" system activated by the grip safety.

FirstFreedom
September 1, 2007, 07:32 AM
the problem with carrying cocked but unlocked isn't nessesarily drawing the gun, but re-holstering it

The original post presumes that you are putting the manual on before reholstering, until it's reholstered, when handling the gun ordinarily, and vice versa (engage safety before unholstering during normal handling).

RsqVet, thanks very much. That's the kind of information I was really looking for. You da man:

The Sig GSR DOES have a series 80 type FP safety, strip the slide off and look at it for yourself, you can see it as a little finger to the right of the disconnector that rises up and activates (releases the FP safety) on the slide. I know because mine jamed with millings or something when my GSR was new.

The statement that most 1911's have a FP safety is probibly only true by the numbers because places like sig, kimber and S+W sell a heck of a lot of 1911's by maker and model it's probibly 50/50 because most of the higher end guns such as Baer, Brown et. al. do not include it as many shooters dislike the series 80 for one reason or another, arguing worse trigger pull or more complexity with out need etc.

Of course great guns do exist with series 80 systmes and an intresting counter to the no series 80 argument is Dave Lack a high end 1911 guy who builds series 80 system into his very expensive (3k plus) all custom guns.

And you too, auto45:

Colt, Para, AO, Sig and Taurus have what's known as the series 80 FP safety system. Pulling the trigger moves a FP plunger that allows the FP to move forward.

Kimber and S&W have the "plunger" system activated by the grip safety.
Interesting. Running almost 10% (1 out of 10) who think it's safe to carry cocked & unlocked. Small minority, but a definite contingent of folks.

There are other designs if you don't like it.

No there are not other designs with the features I like on a 1911 (trigger, looks, etc.), without a manual.

SDC
September 1, 2007, 08:07 AM
For the same reason I don't carry a cocked mousetrap in my underwear.

Bill DeShivs
September 1, 2007, 08:22 AM
I thought you meant the Browning/FN 1910.

auto45
September 1, 2007, 08:35 AM
Interesting. Running almost 10% (1 out of 10) who think it's safe to carry cocked & unlocked.

That is interesting and "amazing" IMHO. But, I believe that's only in a "philosophical" type discussion we are having...not real world.

IMveryHO, the key to making the manual safety a "non-issue" for the 1911 is the way the gun is gripped and shot. If you train to have your thumb on safety when you grip or shoot the 1911, it's "automatic". You do have to flip it up when "done", but that's easily learned if 1911s are what you shoot. I can see it being an "issue" if you shoot a variety of different handguns.

The "problem" with the thumb on the safety can be hand size and gun set-up. Thumb safeties are either "standard" height or real low. It's not "comfortable" for some people for various reason. That type of grip can also affect the operation of the grip safety. Meaning, not depressed enough to work or work reliably.

So, it has to be "worked out", if needed, for that to work. Easy for some and a struggle for others. ;)

WESHOOT2
September 1, 2007, 09:27 AM
1911s have been around for a long time.

Glocks have not, but they've been around a while.

Anyone care to guess which piece of equipment has more ND history?

It stiill boils own to the operator.

My 1911s are worn cocked with saftey applied.
My Witnesses are worn cocked with safety applied.
My DA revolvers are worn loaded, hammer down, as is my Taurus PT22, but it has its safety applied.

My single-action revolver is worn uncocked, with its cylinder's chambers 'splitting' the barrel; my 'always'.

Double Naught Spy
September 1, 2007, 10:26 AM
I could see, possibly, if one were so inclined, disengaging the safety after holstering, and re-engaging before un-holstering so that the safety is always on when the trigger guard is exposed. The last time I asked this question on a gun board, years ago, the results were, ummm, *interesting* to say the least.

Okay, so why would you even want to disengage the safety while the gun was in the holster but engage it when it came out? What benefit would there be to carrying a gun with the safety off?

Are you maybe taking a backdoor approach and asking if a 1911 is safe in the holster if the safety has been swiped off?

It was designed to be used a certain way. Use it that way. There are other designs if you don't like it.

Really Tanzer? Just what way was it designed to be used? The reason I ask is that I have yet to see anyone produce a document from the designer that says anything along those lines. People have claimed the 1911 is designed to be carried cocked and locked, only nobody has presented JMB's notes on this matter. Nor has anyone produced JMB's notes saying anything about carrying in any condition (0,1,2,3,4). JMB had previous semi-autos with and without thumb safeties and a similar lack of carry insight on them. If you have something from JMB that states how the 1911 is to be carried, please do share it with us and put this puppy to bed.

madmag
September 1, 2007, 10:50 AM
This is a mechanical issue, not so much how anyone intended or not what condition the 1911 should be carried. With thumb safety the grip safety does block the trigger, but this does not prevent discharge. This is just a mechanical fact. The sear can be released from the hammer notch other than by the trigger, so guarding the trigger does nothing to stop this possibility.

One thing we can say about JMB for sure. He certainly understood his own design and knew that the thumb safety locks the sear preventing hammer fall. He also certainly knew that the trigger block is just that, and that there or other means to dislodge the sear from the hammer if the thumb safety is not active.

I think the mechanics are what is important, but as far as intent on how to carry I will add this. When I was in the Army in the 50's I carried a Colt (of course) 1911. The procedure then was to have empty chamber and hammer down, so cocked & locked was not an issue. For all I know JMB did not discuss cocked & locked with the Army because of the politics of having a round in the chamber, so he just said keep it empty and rack the slide.

Magyar
September 1, 2007, 11:09 AM
When I was in the Army in the 50's I carried a Colt (of course) 1911. The procedure then was to have empty chamber and hammer down, so cocked & locked was not an issue. For all I know JMB did not discuss cocked & locked with the Army because of the politics of having a round in the chamber, so he just said keep it empty and rack the slide
Gun literature discusses the many AD's by the military in Condition 1. M. Ayoob has referenced this issue many times....

madmag
September 1, 2007, 11:51 AM
Gun literature discusses the many AD's by the military in Condition 1. M. Ayoob has referenced this issue many times....

Yes, and I probably should not have added my own personal experience to cloud the issue.

For me, the bottom line is this. The argument about what condition some have advocated will go on for ever, but the mechanical reality is that the grip trigger block does not prevent other means to dislodge the sear. The thumb safety does prevent other means to dislodge the sear & hammer. So, from a mechanical stand point the cocked & locked is the only safe mode. If mechanical engineers were sitting in a room with no past knowledge about what people think, then they would choose cocked & locked.

Cremon
September 1, 2007, 02:42 PM
I carry my 45 with a round chambered but with the manual safety on. Like easyG, I don't disengage the safety when I draw, but rather when I extend my arms. I Fire my first shot in double action mode since my 45 (a S&W 4516) does not have a hammer that you can pull back without racking the slide. It is flush with the back of the slide when at rest.

The reason I do this is because I might not have both hands free to rack the slide. It only takes one hand to disengage the safety (two to rack the slide), but I DO keep the safety on (it blocks the firing pin when engaged) and MUST be fired in double action mode when the safety is disengaged (there is no stored energy when the gun isn't cocked). You have to rack the slide or fire it once in double action mode - thereafter, it can be fired in single action mode. I have LOTS of practice firing it in double action mode.

But I would never carry a pistol with the safety off. (My personal preference).

nutty ned
September 1, 2007, 03:49 PM
Don't worry about it, just go shoot yourself in the foot.

oldbillthundercheif
September 1, 2007, 04:35 PM
I think I need a 1910. Did the design have anything besides a fat hammer to keep you from lighting one off while decocking?

madmag
September 1, 2007, 04:58 PM
I think I need a 1910. Did the design have anything besides a fat hammer to keep you from lighting one off while decocking?

No, but you really don't have to let down on a live round if you don't want to, just rack the slide and eject the live round.

Everybody that is somebody needs a 1911.:D

Question: Are some concerned about the reduction in time to fire by releasing a thumb safety, or are they worried that they will get confused and not release the safety? If it's just a time to fire issue, then I remember a test I read a while back timing shots to release a safety compared to no time to release. The result was that for most mortal humans the time saved is so small it is almost impossible to measure any benefit.

Cremon
September 1, 2007, 08:20 PM
Are some concerned about the reduction in time to fire by releasing a thumb safety, or are they worried that they will get confused and not release the safety?

I am not concerned at all with releasing a thumb safety. I lose no time at all. I draw my pistol and as I am extending my arm(s) and fixing my target, the safety is quickly disengaged. I would not gain any time if the safety was already off in the holster. I have practiced that move hundreds of times and it is instinctive now. I don't even realize I am doing it, it is so second nature to me.

madmag
September 1, 2007, 09:12 PM
I am not concerned at all with releasing a thumb safety. I lose no time at all.

I agree with you, and I do the same. That is why I asked the question. I have run onto this before and I was just trying to understand why anyone would want to not use the thumb safety on a 1911. Now if you have a system like my XD then no problem. The XD does not release the firing pin block until the trigger is almost completely rearward, also the grip safety does block the pin release. On my 1911 I do use it cocked & locked.

As I said before, for me this is just a mechanical issue. When the hammer is cocked you have a sharp edge of a sear resting into a small notch of the hammer. The sear holds due to friction between notch and sear and forward spring pressure of the hammer against the sear. Because the trigger is blocked it does not mean the sear cannot dislodge by other means. Of course I am talking about older models like my own that do not have grip satiety connected to firing pin lock.

Time to stop. I have said all I can say and am now repeating.

FirstFreedom
September 2, 2007, 01:57 PM
but the mechanical reality is that the grip trigger block does not prevent other means to dislodge the sear. The thumb safety does prevent other means to dislodge the sear & hammer.

In a series 80 style (or similar) mechanism, the FIRING PIN is blocked until either the trigger or the grip safety moves, so it doesn't matter that the hammer falls.

So, from a mechanical stand point the cocked & locked is the only safe mode.

From the foregoing, it follows that that is a clearly an incorrect statement, for many types of 1911s.

This IS a mechanical issue. It's just that 2/3rds or more of the people posting are wrong and just do a drive-by chastising without really considering the question asked. Or if I'm wrong, no one's been able to explain why. Look at RsqVet's post, which I quoted above. How can a firing pin fire if it's BLOCKED?

For your convenience, I will re-quote it again:

Rsqvet: The Sig GSR DOES have a series 80 type FP safety, strip the slide off and look at it for yourself, you can see it as a little finger to the right of the disconnector that rises up and activates (releases the FP safety) on the slide. I know because mine jamed with millings or something when my GSR was new.

The statement that most 1911's have a FP safety is probibly only true by the numbers because places like sig, kimber and S+W sell a heck of a lot of 1911's by maker and model it's probibly 50/50 because most of the higher end guns such as Baer, Brown et. al. do not include it as many shooters dislike the series 80 for one reason or another, arguing worse trigger pull or more complexity with out need etc.

Of course great guns do exist with series 80 systmes and an intresting counter to the no series 80 argument is Dave Lack a high end 1911 guy who builds series 80 system into his very expensive (3k plus) all custom guns.

auto45:

Colt, Para, AO, Sig and Taurus have what's known as the series 80 FP safety system. Pulling the trigger moves a FP plunger that allows the FP to move forward.

Kimber and S&W have the "plunger" system activated by the grip safety

For those who say it's unsafe, which of those two guys are you saying are wrong, RsqVet or auto45?


Yes, the concern is forgetting to disengage the safety, not the microsecond of time saved (which is a non-issue since you can disengage while drawing). But forgetting under stress/adrenaline dump is a real possibility. It's mostly theoretical, but it's almost comical how many people refuse to confront the reality and obvious logic of the mechanical safety which makes it no less safe with roughly half of 1911s than it would be with a Springfield XD or similar, yet no one's answered my initial question of "would your answer be different if it was an XD?" People are so set in their ways and ideas, and think that JMB was a deity, that they refuse to think critically and analyze the actual facts - they just kneejerk respond instead. I could probably carry this way for 40 years without incident and folks like nutty ned would still say "go ahead and shoot your foot off", even though it's a PHYSICAL, MECHANICAL IMPOSSIBILITY while in the holster, even if I was dropped from a 10 story building with my gun on.

BluesBear
September 2, 2007, 09:14 PM
Would it not be perfectly safe to disengage the manual safety AFTER holstering, since (1) the trigger & trigger guard is covered by the holster, and (2) the grip safety acts as an additional safety?
Why are you assuming that ALL holsters cover the trigger and triggerguard? There are several types that do not.

And...

Why is everyone ignoring the simple fact that with many (if not the vast majority of) holsters it is extremely difficult to reach the safety once the pistol has been holstered?


Now to the facts...

If you look at all of Mr Brownings pistol designs the majority of them featured an INTERNAL hammer. So if the guns in the .45 series (1905-1911) were not intended to be manually cocked or uncocked then why pray tell do they all feature an external hammer?

I have read many articles over the past 40 years that stated Browning's original intention was that the gun be carried hammer down on a loaded chamber. After drawing from the holster it was to be thumb cocked and later decocked before reholstering. It was the US Army who decreed it be carried differently. Therefore it can be said that browning DESIGNED the gun to be carried in what Col Cooper later designated as Condition Two.

There are several US military manuals that state the gun is to be carried hammer down and chamber empty. IF, after firing, it is not prudent to immediately clear the chamber the pistol is to be reholstered with the hammer cocked and the safety applied. And let's face it folks the 1911 was designed from the ground up to be THE handgun of the US military. Civilian sales were just an added bonus. Pleasing the military board was the number one priority.
Therefore the way the military intened it to be used it the way it was BUILT to be used. Thus the thumb safety was added to Browning's original no safety design.

The military certainly didn't consider the gun safe to be carried hammer cocked with the safety off.
And we know this because they only considered it to be safe when cocked with the safety on as a short term proposition. And this with a full flap holster even. Forget the triggerguard, the entire gun was covered.

So it was DESIGNED to be carried hammer down on a loaded chamber.
But it was BUILT to be carried with the safety on IF it became cocked.


In conclusion...

It is my personal opinion that this entire thread exists for one of two reasons.

#1 Tthe OP has already made up his mind to carry this way and knowing it is flying in the face of conventional wisdom is merely looking for personal validation of a rather kooky idea.

or

#2 It was specifically designed to create a conflict for the amusement of the original poster.

Either way I predict it will soon resort to outhouses at 20 paces.

JohnKSa
September 2, 2007, 11:17 PM
will the firing pin block safety system prevent the firing pin from moving if the sear breaks?If the firing pin block is operating properly, it will prevent the firing pin from moving forward far enough to fire the gun.

As pointed out by another poster on this thread, the firing pin (like any other part) can be damaged. IMO, if you detect any peening at all on a firing pin safety it is evidence of abuse or of damage to or a defect in the gun. The firing pin and firing pin block should NEVER come into contact unless the gun is being manipulated in a non-recommended manner or unless there's a problem with the gun. For example, I'm aware of one autopistol which has a magazine safety that operates via the firing pin block. Dryfiring the gun without the magazine installed pounds the firing pin agains the firing pin block and can eventually peen the firing pin block to the point that it prevents the firing pin from moving forward at all. A safe failure mode, to be sure, but not one you'd be happy to encounter if you NEEDED the gun to work.

Gary L. Griffiths
September 2, 2007, 11:45 PM
When my regular carry piece was my Detonics, I carried it cocked and unlocked, albeit in a thumb-break pancake holster, with the safety strap between the hammer and the firing pin. Never had any problems with that mode.

FirstFreedom
September 2, 2007, 11:57 PM
Why are you assuming that ALL holsters cover the trigger and triggerguard? There are several types that do not.

First of all, I'm assuming that the holster covers the trigger guard because that's how I chose to set up my question, and moreover, 99.5% of holsters actually do. It's not worth the leather it's made from if it doesn't. Obviously, this discussion does not apply to holsters which do not.


Why is everyone ignoring the simple fact that with many (if not the vast majority of) holsters it is extremely difficult to reach the safety once the pistol has been holstered?

That's just flat out incorrect. It's quite easy to reach the safety in any holsters for 1911s I've used and do use.

So it was DESIGNED to be carried hammer down on a loaded chamber.

I'm not concerned with what the original/predecessor was designed to do. I'm concerned (as I made clear I thought) soley with whether it's safe to do what I suggest with modern designs. And it's been demonstrated that it is, with an FP block safety as many modern 1911s have.


But it was BUILT to be carried with the safety on IF it became cocked. Again, maybe in the past but not now. *BUILT* by whom? By the original JMB design? That's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about modern Colts, Kimber, Springfield, Sig, Taurus, etc.

It is my personal opinion that this entire thread exists for one of two reasons.

#1 Tthe OP has already made up his mind to carry this way and knowing it is flying in the face of conventional wisdom is merely looking for personal validation of a rather kooky idea.

That's your opinion. But you'd be wrong. (A) As has been amply demonstrated, it's not kooky, because it's 10,000% safe - at least, that is, equally as safe as any other light-triggered gun with an FP block (XD, etc.), and (B) I haven't made up my mind to do anything. I'm merely *asking a question*. I need no validation whatsoever for anything I do. What makes you think you know why I do something?

or

#2 It was specifically designed to create a conflict for the amusement of the original poster.

Again, you'd be wrong. Though an incidental benefit does indeed happen to be the amusement from the kneejerk reaction of folks like yourself who call it "kooky" simply because it's different and non-traditional, even though you can offer not a single logical reason why my specific example is unsafe, or at least, *less safe* than any other light-trigger (SA), FP-block safety gun - again, such an a Springfield XD.

LightningJoe
September 3, 2007, 03:58 AM
You can't carry it that way. You'll violate Glock's patent on "Safe Action."

auto45
September 3, 2007, 07:44 AM
On "paper" , I think you have a discussion that a "series 80" 1911 cocked and unlocked is as "safe" as a XD...in so far as the "mechanics". Both have FP blocks that will prevent ADs if dropped or if something breaks, etc. XD has the 'safety' in/on the trigger also...I don't quite "get" that type of safety though!

But, in everyday "use/handling", the very short trigger throw of a 1911, without the manual safety, "invites" ADs more than the long trigger throw of a XD...has to!

I "believe" Browning did design some small autos with a SA trigger without a manual safety. I don't think you'll find a design like that today...not safe in the "real world". "Safety" is in the head and "keep your finger off the trigger" isn't "enough".

madmag
September 3, 2007, 10:22 AM
On "paper" , I think you have a discussion that a "series 80" 1911 cocked and unlocked is as "safe" as a XD...

Agree, my 1911 is pre-70 so I do carry it with manual safety on. I also have an XD and am very comfortable with carrying it with chamber loaded. If I owned a series 80 I am sure I would still use the thumb safety. Why? Because of years of shooting 1911's and releasing the safety is automatic with me.

When I hear that someone is concerned about using a particular guns safety in a panic situation, then I feel that person has just not trained enough on that gun. I have had a couple of panic situations in my life, and I found that I operated my pistol manual safety without any conscious effort. Enough training and your fingers will do the right thing.

ronc0011
September 3, 2007, 10:27 AM
A proper grip on a 1911 is going to put your thumb on the safety. For me it takes more of a conscious effort to not disengage the safety than it does to disengage it. So this seems a non issue to me.

Of course that grip is the result of practicing to the point that my hand automatically assumes this position without any conscious effort on my part.

Edward429451
September 3, 2007, 11:00 AM
For me it takes more of a conscious effort to not disengage the safety than it does to disengage it. So this seems a non issue to me

This is true for me also. Sometimes when I dry fire practice I go to a no shoot as if BG surrenders or a kid walks in the backdrop area and I can not shoot so (try) to not disengage the safety. More often than not the thumb safety dis engages anyway and it takes a real concious effort to not dis engage it.

Freetacos
September 3, 2007, 12:59 PM
I keep my 1911 cocked and locked in my night stand. If I am suddenly awaken and grab my gun I like the extra safety that can be tuned off with the flick of a thumb.

madmag
September 3, 2007, 01:12 PM
If you add the two categories that are for thumb safety it adds to 90.54%....so I don't want to be around the other 9.46% when they un-holster their 1911's with no thumb safety set.:p

Ok, we beat this one to death, how about changing to 9mm VS .45ACP argument....just joking:D:D

MythBuster
September 3, 2007, 01:16 PM
Posted by Bluesbear,

"Browning designed the gun to be carried in what we now call condition two. Hammer down on a loaded chamber. Hence the big wide hammer spur on the original 1911 models"

Thank you sir. If I had a dollar for everytime I heard some moron claim Browning designed the 1911 to be carried cocked and unlocked I could quit my day job.

madmag
September 3, 2007, 01:47 PM
I have always had this thought (can't prove it) about JMB and the 1911. We all know he was a smart guy when it came to gun design, but he also proved he was a smart businessman. He did not have an easy road to get a semi-auto approved by the Army. Many in the Army at the time were still revolver advocates. Maybe JMB was willing to bend a little depending on what he thought would be well received. In the days of cocked revolvers looking dangerous, maybe he just did not want to convince people that a cocked & locked 1911 was safe.

SDC
September 3, 2007, 01:50 PM
I have my doubts that "Browning designed the gun to be carried in what we now call condition two. Hammer down on a loaded chamber." They knew it wasn't safe for a single-action revolver to be carried that way, why would he design a semi-auto to be carried the same way? Without some sort of firing-pin block (which the original design didn't have), carrying a 1911 with the hammer down on a loaded chamber is just as unsafe as carrying an original 1873 SAA fully loaded with the hammer down on a loaded chamber.

madmag
September 3, 2007, 02:56 PM
carrying a 1911 with the hammer down on a loaded chamber is just as unsafe as carrying an original 1873 SAA fully loaded with the hammer down on a loaded chamber.

Basically I agree, with one minor note. The 1911 pin does not rest on the primer with hammer down and the SAA does. Anyway, still unsafe.

nate45
September 3, 2007, 03:24 PM
Without some sort of firing-pin block (which the original design didn't have), carrying a 1911 with the hammer down on a loaded chamber is just as unsafe as carrying an original 1873 SAA fully loaded with the hammer down on a loaded chamber.

Wrong.

The 1911 original design and current has an inertia firing pin.

With the hammer all the way down on a loaded chamber it cannot fire if dropped or even hit with a machine hammer.

JohnKSa
September 3, 2007, 06:40 PM
An inertia firing pin would make it LESS likely to fire if the hammer was hit, but it's certainly not impossible. It just takes a harder blow.

oldbillthundercheif
September 3, 2007, 06:55 PM
Why the heck have I heard endless credible persons say that carrying a 1911 in condition 2 is the ultimate in stupid risks if the pistol was purpose-built to be carried in this manner?

Are they all in need of a history lesson and a brain transplant or is there something else going on here?

SDC
September 3, 2007, 08:31 PM
The 1911 original design and current has an inertia firing pin.

With the hammer all the way down on a loaded chamber it cannot fire if dropped or even hit with a machine hammer.

I don't think I'd want to bet MY leg on that proposition, inertia firing-pin or not; the "classic" example of a SAA being fired in a holster happened when a horseman threw a stirrup up over the saddle so he could cinch the saddle to his horse, and that stirrup fell back down to hit the hammer. I could easily see that having enough energy to get a 1911 to fire, and cavalry use was still an important consideration when the 1911 was adopted.

gordo_gun_guy
September 3, 2007, 09:15 PM
Why the heck have I heard endless credible persons say that carrying a 1911 in condition 2 is the ultimate in stupid risks if the pistol was purpose-built to be carried in this manner?

1. Admin handling: getting to condition 2 requires pulling the trigger on a live round and hoping your thumb doesn't slip. (If you realease the trigger early, you'll be caught up on the half-cock notch, which leaves SOME engergy in the hammer system, with no other positive safety. Going off half-cocked?:D)

2. A small possibility that the hammer could be acclerated by SOMETHING from a position short of the half-cock notch hard enough to make the inertial pin fire the gun. In the rest position, nothing really constrains the motion of the hammer until its move to half or full cock.

My $.02 on condition 0:

Mechanically: not unsafe, but less safe (adds additional failure modes)

Morally: why risk it?

Legally: you can't answer the mail if failing to use a safety device in any way appears to cause an injury

BluesBear
September 3, 2007, 10:45 PM
Years ago™, when this forum was on vacation, I posted on another forum the story of an Indiana deputy that had a defective holster allow his Colt Commander to hit the floor and simultaneously discharge.

I was then hired to determine exactly how and why this happened.
We then embarked on extensive testing with over a dozen different pistols.
We employed Colt Governments, Commanders, one Gold Cup, two old military A1s, one full sized Stainless AMT, one Stainless Vega, one parts built gun on an Essex frame, One Star Model B and one Llama with an inertia firing pin. This was because that's about all that was available back then. In 1978 the Series 80 guns were still a few years away and I couldn't get my hands on a Detonics. (note SOME Llamas did NOT have an inertia FP)

Besides the firing pin springs in the guns, we also employed extra strength springs, brand new factory replacement springs, used GI parts box springs and several springs with various numbers of coils deliberately removed.
We used standard small pistol primers made by Remington, Winchester, Alcan, Federal and CCI.

After 2 months of testing we proved that a properly functioning cocked and locked 1911 pattern pistol WILL NOT discharge if dropped.
No way. Couldn't make it happen. Even with a weakened FP spring.
We did find one gun with weak plunger spring. And on more than one occasion the thumb safety would disengage during the test.
So we extended the test to include dropping and impacting the guns cocked but with the safety off. Cooper called this condition Ready To Fire but several people have since dubbed this as Condition Zero.
On more than one occasion, on guns with a lightened trigger pull (approximately 3 to 4 pounds) the hammer would sometimes fall to half-cock if dropped with the safety off.

With a gun in Condition Two (hammer down on a loaded chamber) the guns would not fire when dropped, with ONE exception.
IF the firing pin spring IS just a little weak, then a pistol in Condition Two WILL FIRE if dropped directly on the muzzle. With a four foor drop, each and every time in fact. Even with a lightweight firing pin it can happen! However if the gun had a an extra strength FP srping it would not fire even when dropped on the muzzle.

A gun in Condition Two will NOT fire even when subjected to a five pound hammer blow directly on the hammer spur.

The only way we could get a cocked and locked gun to discharge when dropped on it's muzzle was to completely remove the firing pin spring or to clip off enough coils that standard firing became unreliable.
With several coils removed I could get an occasional tiny dent on a primer but never enough force to detonate one.


The conclusions were;
#1 A properly functioning pistol in Condition One will not fire if dropped even if dropped on its muzzle.
#2 A pistol in Condition Two MIGHT discharge but only if dropped directly on its muzzle.
#3 Even if dislodged, the hammer was stopped by the half-cock notch every time.




So go ahead and believe all of the myths if you want to.
After all I'm just another errornet expurt and most of you have forgotten more than I'll ever know. Or so I'm told.

nate45
September 3, 2007, 11:05 PM
A gun in Condition Two will NOT fire even when subjected to a five pound hammer blow directly on the hammer spur.

Thank you.

How can it fire? Answer it can't.

So go ahead and believe all of the myths if you want to.

It's amazing how many are in this thread alone.

JohnKSa
September 3, 2007, 11:36 PM
A gun in Condition Two will NOT fire even when subjected to a five pound hammer blow directly on the hammer spur.Ok, I'm intrigued--what mechanism prevents it from discharging?

Maybe you should get more basic than that and start with explaining how the inertial firing pin system works in the 1911. I guess the first question is: "Is the hammer in contact with the firing pin in Condition 2?"

Frenchy
September 4, 2007, 03:03 AM
There's a reason for the design, so I use it!

imp
September 4, 2007, 04:21 AM
I know this is just an academic question, but i think, if you practice drawing and firing a 1911 more than about 3 times, flicking off the thumb safety becomes automatic. JMB knew all about user friendly design. Its about as hard as bunting in T-ball.

BluesBear
September 4, 2007, 06:48 AM
Wow I get to be the 100th reply to the original post!

Maybe you should get more basic than that and start with explaining how the inertial firing pin system works in the 1911.Okay John, here goes;

The rebounding inertia firing pin system of the 1911 design works on the basic Newtonian principles of inertia.

A object at rest tends to stay at rest unless acted upon by outside force.
An object in motion tends to stay in motion with the same speed and in the same direction until acted upon by outside forces.


So here we have a firing pin that is shorter than the firing pin channel which means that it's not long enough to touch the hammer and the primer at the same time. When the hammer down the tip of the firing pin is still a safe distance from the cartridge and held back by the tension of the firing pin spring.

When the hammer is cocked the firing pin spring pushes the firing pin further rearward until it protrudes about .032" past the firing pin stop.
When the hammer falls it strikes the firing pin and the force imparted drives the pin forward until the tip strikes and dents the cartridge primer.
Upon firing it is immediately drawn rearward by the firing pin spring until it once again is stopped by contact with the hammer. In effect it "bounces" off the primer.
This is the rebounding portion of the rebounding inertia firing pin system.

In condition two the hammer is resting against the firing pin stop and the firing pin is held against the hammer by the tension of the firing pin spring. And since the firing pin is too short to reach the cartridge you do not have the problem of the firing pin resting on the primer.
So even though the firing pin is touching the hammer, if the hammer were to receive a blow the firing pin would not move forward.
If there was no firing pin spring to hold the firing pin back then the force of the slide slamming into battery while loading a fresh cartridge into the chamber would cause the gun to fire every time the slide cycled.
Trust me on this, I've had it happen. The trouble is, the only way to stop it is to run out of ammo.
NOT RECOMMENDED!

When the gun is dropped muzzle first and it comes to a stop, the firing pin will tend to continue forward due to inertia. With the hammer cocked the tip of the firing pin is far enough away from the cartridge that it cannot overcome the force of the firing pin spring to reach the primer with enough force to detonate it.
However with the hammer down the distance of the tip to the cartridge is reduced and if the spring is weakened and the force from the fall is strong enough, the firing pin can move forward far enough to contact the primer.
This was the primary inspiration for the firing pin block.


Contrast this to the earlier poster's comparison to a loaded chamber under the hammer of a Colt SAA.
In the case of the SAA when the hammer is completely down the firing pin is resting directly against the primer under pressure from the mainspring. The only thing preventing the hammer from moving that last few thousandths of an inch is the strength of the metal forming the primer cup.
When carried in the "safety notch" the firing pin is then far enough away from the primer to be safe. UNLESS something falls against the hammer with enough force to shear off the safety notch or break the tip off the sear. When that happens the firing pin will hit the primer just as if it was intentionally fired.

This is also why you should never carry a 1911 pattern pistol with the hammer in the "half-cock" position. In this case a hard enough force could also break either the sear or the notch and the hammer could strike the firing pin with enough force to fire the cartridge.


It's 4:30am and I'm fading fast. I hope I haven't left anything out. Please excuse any typos.

auto45
September 4, 2007, 08:44 AM
BlueBear,

Good explanation.

For the sake of "discussion", not questioning the validity of your experiments or knowledge of the 1911. ;)

The 1911 manufacturers have gone to some "lengths" to insure the 1911 doesn't AD when dropped, particularly with California. Starting with Colt in the "'30's" and the swartz safety, Colt series 80, to the current light FP and heavy FP spring and modified swartz by Kimber and S&W.

I "believe" even the semi-custom makers use the titanium FP, strong FP spring for the Cali test. These 1911s are well made and new when tested...meaning they shouldn't AD on a Cali test...correct?
It seems odd to me that they would "alter" the design for something that can't happen. Again, that's not an attack on your experiments, because I have read similar tests with the same results from other people. But, I've also read of AD's of 1911s when dropped. That's read...not verified.

It's possible these "alterations" are "insurance" for out of spec 1911s and/ or softer primers, improper maintenance, etc.
Or, dropped from unrealistic heights maybe?

The one "exception" that I've experienced, seen and read about many times, given the rarity of ADs in general, is the half cock notch does not always catch the hammer and you can/do get some ADs that way.

SDC
September 4, 2007, 09:25 AM
The explanation given by Colt for the addition of the series 80 firing-pin lock was that previous pistols were known to fire if they were dropped muzzle-down on a surface that resisted enough to give the firing-pin sufficient momentum to fire a chambered cartridge. That being the case, I don't see how an impact on on uncocked hammer, resting on that same inertial firing-pin, couldn't do exactly the same thing. The firing-pin doesn't know if an impact comes FROM the hammer or THROUGH the hammer.

Bill DeShivs
September 4, 2007, 12:48 PM
SDC
You aparently have no idea how an inertial firing pin works.
The guns in question's firing has nothing to do with the hammer. They were dropped, MUZZLE DOWN-thereby giving the firing pin enough forward motion to fire a cartridge. BTW- even this occurance is very rare.

JohnKSa
September 4, 2007, 12:50 PM
BluesBear,

Thanks for the explanation, that's how I understood the system as well.So even though the firing pin is touching the hammer, if the hammer were to receive a blow the firing pin would not move forward.The little desk toy with the multiple swinging balls demonstrates to us that momentum (blow to the hammer) will be transferred through a non-moving object (hammer) to a movable object (firing pin) if they are in contact. That momentum transfer will cause motion in the movable object.

That means that the firing pin WILL move forward from a blow to the hammer, what your testing revealed is that the force of the firing pin spring (even if weakened) is sufficient to prevent the momentum transfer from a blow (from a 5lb hammer) to the hammer of the gun from firing the chambered round.

I'd say that should be pretty comforting, but it doesn't quite allow one to state definitively that a blow to the hammer CAN'T fire the gun--only that it's highly unlikely given that a 5lb hammer blow is insufficient to do so.

SDC
September 4, 2007, 12:53 PM
No, I understand perfectly well how an inertial firing-pin works; what I DON'T understand is how a given amount of energy imparted to that firing-pin from DROPPING that pistol is any different from an IDENTICAL amount of energy imparted to that firing-pin from a blow to the hammer. The firing pin doesn't know or doesn't care either way. Have you got an explanation, or just another wiseacre remark?

ronc0011
September 4, 2007, 02:38 PM
You remember those little things you used to get for peoples desks. They had 5 ball bearings suspended from fishing line and if you pulled the end one back and let it swing forward to strike the next the last ball on the other end would swing out an equal distance as the distance that the one you let drop or if you pulled two out and let them drop then two on the other end would fly outward by an equal distance.

Well the same forces of physics that makes those balls behave the way they do are also working on that firing pin you are discussing. Just because the hammer is resting against the frame and firing pin does not mean it is not able to impart or transfer energy. The only inhibiting factor with the firing pin is the spring which is going to mitigate, actually bleed off or absorb some of that energy. The question is simply how much energy are you dealing with on any given occasion and is it enough to overcome the spring with sufficient force to cause a discharge.

BluesBear
September 4, 2007, 10:01 PM
The little desk toy with the multiple swinging balls demonstrates to us that momentum (blow to the hammer) will be transferred through a non-moving object (hammer) to a movable object (firing pin) if they are in contact. That momentum transfer will cause motion in the movable object.
I KNEW someone would throw that into the mix.
Magicians and lawyers call that misdirection.

The bouncing balls on your dest are not the same as a 1911. There are no springs. There are no pieces fitted into other pieces. Therefore they will not react in the same way.

In the 1911 there is the firing pin stop. The firing pin stop is tightly fitted into the slide therefore it becomes part of the slide. And that is what the hammer is really resting solidly against.
The firing pin just happens to be there as well. The firing pin is "floating" in it's channel with the hammer on one end and it's spring pressing against the other end.
Now if the firing pin were merely resting against the firing pin stop with no spring on the other end then it would behave like the balls on your desk.

Remember Newton's laws of motion. The firing pin resting against the hammer will tend to remain at rest.


**********************


The gun will fire when it's dropped on it's muzzle because the firing pin is NOT at rest. Indeed it is falling at the same speed as the rest of the gun. And since it is floating, when the gun comes to a stop, the firing pin "tends" to stay in motion and will do so until it cannot move any further.


This is also why no one manufactures firearms that have balls hanging from strings inside them.

JohnKSa
September 4, 2007, 10:15 PM
The bouncing balls on your dest are not the same as a 1911. There are no springs. There are no pieces fitted into other pieces. Therefore they will not react in the same way.I'm not saying that the two situations are "the same"--that would be foolish. However, the same scientific principles apply (that's the nature of scientific principles). Your testing showed that the momentum transfer through the hammer to the firing pin is insufficient to fire the pistol (given that the blow to the hammer is equal or less than the blow given in the test.) That is clearly due to the springs, pieces fitted into other pieces, etc. which make the two situations different. If it weren't for the differences it's almost certain that gun would fire.

But proving that the gun won't fire is not the same thing as proving that the "firing pin would not move forward". Physics tells us that it does move forward, your testing proves that it doesn't move forward enough to be dangerous.

Frenchy
September 4, 2007, 10:56 PM
But proving that the gun won't fire is not the same thing as proving that the "firing pin would not move forward". Physics tells us that it does move forward, your testing proves that it doesn't move forward enough to be dangerous.

That is if everything in the gun is in perfect working order. I would believe that in this case, there are no absolutes.

BluesBear
September 4, 2007, 11:23 PM
The force of the moving object against the hammer attempts to move the entire gun in the opposite direction.

There are two scenarios you can use.
One is something along the lones of the old fashioned stirrup fallin and hitting the hammer while it's in the holster.
The other is the gun is thrown across the room or dropped or is in some way in motion then the hammer strikes a solid ojbect such as the ground or a wall.



So the stirrup slams into the hammer.
Disregarding the tension of the firing pin spring, the firing pin, being a separate piece will actually resist the urge to move. it will "tend" to stay at rest. It will actially press even harder against the hammer.
Now here's where the tension of the firing pin spring comes into play.
IF the gun moves far enough (and that's a big IF) to overcome the inertia of the firing pin at rest, then the firing pin spring will continue to hold the firing pin tightly against the hammer.


The gun falls to the ground and lands on the hammer.
Once again the entire gun is in motion and when it comes to a stop the firing pin will actually "tend" to keep moving and will once again actually prerss itself even tighter against the hammer.

Either way the firing pin will not move.



(note SOME Llamas did NOT have an inertia FP)

There was also an odd duck 1949 vintage Llama 9mm partially tested that did not have a true inertia firing pin.
With this model Llama the firing pin protrudes slightly from the breech face when the hammer is down. This means the firing pin was in contact with the primer if the hammer was down.*
When cocked and locked it would also fire when dropped muzzle down.

We then shortened the firing pin until it was .015" below the breechface when the hammer was down.
Once shortened it would not fire when the uncocked hammer was hit. It would not even mark the primer.
But even with an extra power spring it WOULD still fire when dropped muzzle down even with the hammer cocked.

Shortening the firing even further finally stopped it from firing when dropped muzzle down then cocked. However it then became unreliable in normal firing.


So I stand by my conclusion that the firing pin does not magically "bounce off" the gun's hammer when the gun's hammer is struck by a 5 pound lead dead blow hammer from a height of 24".





*This is why I always tell Llama owners to check their pistols to make sure they have a true inertia system.
It's also why we sold my Father's 1949 Llama.

JohnKSa
September 4, 2007, 11:40 PM
Either way the firing pin will not move.In both cases it will move. In the first case it will bounce away from the hammer due to the momentum applied to the hammer. In the second case it will bounce away from the hammer because steel bounces--just as the gun bounces when it hits the ground, the firing pin will bounce inside the firing pin channel.

In BOTH cases, the spring (and inertia) will resist that motion to one extent or another, but they will not hold it motionless.

I do agree that based on your testing results that a discharge in a 1911 carried in Condition 2 seems very unlikely even without a firing pin safety.

gordo_gun_guy
September 5, 2007, 03:56 AM
Good explanation!

I do agree that based on your testing results that a discharge in a 1911 carried in Condition 2 seems very unlikely even without a firing pin safety. [emphasis mine]

I agree, but the potential for having an AD in getting to Condition 2 is why I think so many instructors rail against carrying in Condition 2.

The desktop ball analogy: I mostly agree with bluesbear on this one--the anolgy is stretched too far. The balls on strings are essentially uncontstrained in the horizontal direction: they're suspended on strings, which ideally only apply tensile force along the direction of the string's long axis. For small displacements from the rest position, the component of force acting in the horizontal direction is negligeable. BTW, the whole point of the toy is that the middle balls appear to stay in place (small displacement), so it's apparent that the momentum transfer occurs over a very small distance; the momentum transfer occurs so efficiently (enough so to raise the ball on the other end almost as high as the start of the first ball) due to this lack of constraint.

The 1911 firing pin stop DOES constrain the the hammer. Some momentum transfer to the firing pin occurs, but this is due to the elastic nature of the steel; the hammer/stop system flexes enough to impart some motion to the firing pin.

BluesBear: I agree the dead blow test covers the vast majority of accidents that could happen to the back of a 1911, but I'd be curious about the following experiment:

Hold the hammer away from the firing pin stop, but not so far as to engage the half cock notch (simulating snaged on clothing or something). Release this constraint as you drop the 5# hammer from 24 inches on the displaced hammer. My mechanical intuition tells me that more 1911s will go bang this way.:D Reason: the momentum transfer from the hammer to the firing pin is not constrained by the firing pin stop.

BluesBear
September 5, 2007, 06:45 AM
What are the odds of snagging the hammer not quite far enough to engage the notch while it simultaniously gets hit with a hammer?

Actually it still wouldn't fire. We essentially did that test. Remember we did this for two months. For that test we simply removed the mainspring housing and tied some orange surgical tubing around the trigger and grip safety.
We then pulled the hammer back to where it would be in the safety notch and held it in place with wooden toothpicks as a shims between the hammer and the frame.

Sometimes we'd get a tiny mark on the primer but not always.
Never anywhere close to being deep enough to fire. For that you'd probably need a much bigger hammer.

I'm sure with enough force you could make it fire. But we used a five pound lead, dead blow hammer dropped from heights ranging from 24" to 72".
And with the gun's hammer at rest, we couldn't make any of them fire.
Heck fire, we couldn't even make the Llama firing pin move .018".


I used to be able remember off the top of my head the amount of force transmitted by the hammer from full cock with a 22 pound mainspring. But that upper part of my head seems to have fell out with my hair.


For the fun of it sometime try this at home.
Chamber an empty primed case.
Depressing the grip safety and the trigger with one hand pull the hammer back with the other hand just a little and let it drop.
Pull it back a little bit more each time until you get to the point where it will fire the primer.
Now you have found the point of no return. As long as you lower the hammer past that point while decocking it won't fire even if your thumb slips.
Just keep your finger off the trigger when cocking and even if you slip the safety notch will catch it.

Ain't science fun?

MythBuster
September 5, 2007, 08:30 AM
I did these experiments years ago. I took two 1911's a Colt and SA and loaded a primed case in the chamber.

These were the early guns without the firing pin lock. I tried every possible way to get them to fire the primer from a blow to the hammer. I hit the old worn out Colt hard enough to damage the hammer.

Since then I have tried to do this several times with other 1911's to prove the point to people who wanted to argue the point.

The 1911 WILL NOT FIRE from a blow to the hammer in condition two.

If you don't believe my try it. Until then you have no idea about the subject.

madmag
September 5, 2007, 09:03 AM
The 1911 WILL NOT FIRE from a blow to the hammer in condition two.

MythBuster, I believe you, that is good information. My 1911 is pre-70 and I really have no hang-up in letting down on a live round. If it is safe at rest then that is OK. I will still carry in #1, but you have dispelled one myth.

I don't see this as any worse than letting the hammer down with my GP100. Of course I let my finger off the trigger so the transfer bar drops, but still always some danger and you have to point in safe direction.

Your analysis makes sense because the hammer at rest has already depressed the firing pin, so the hammer is just basically resting on steel surface. But one other issue. For some it is the letting down of the hammer that is a problem for #2. They just do not feel comfortable doing this, so that is a problem.

My final personal conclusion: Cond.#1 is safe. Cond#2..can be safe with proper control. But cocked & not locked on an older type is not safe. In that case the hammer does have distance to fall and is only being help by hammer notch & sear.

gordo_gun_guy
September 5, 2007, 03:00 PM
Good data set, BB--and one I'll not replicate; the 1911s I do have aren't ones I want to smack with a hammer.:eek: Also a good thought on the point-of-no return experiment; I'll be doing that one soon.

Condition 2: Is the preferred technique to carry on the safety notch or all the way down? As BB mentioned, releasing the trigger and stopping at the half cock is less safer from preventing NDs from thumb slippage. However, (I hate to be this guy) I read on the Internet that the safety notch on some hammers is easily worn or is too rough on the mating sear surface and ruins a good trigger pull, etc.

Bad joke: anyone perform BluesBear's PONR experiment with a live round? If so, please send pictures of your bloody thumb.:D

Bill DeShivs
September 5, 2007, 05:08 PM
Never carry a 1911 on half cock. Should the half cock notch break, the gun could fire. H/C is meant to catch the hammer if it slips while you are cocking/decocking the gun.
As per above- a 1911 (properly fitted) can not fire from a blow to the hammer in condition 2. They can fire from a blow to the hammer on half-cock.
Now, something that REALLY bugs me is the guns with the slide-mounted firing pin block-ala Walther PP. People actually think these are safe to drop the hammer on. These safeties will work-harden and break from full hammer falls. Semi auto hammers should ALWAYS be lowered gently.

stevelyn
September 5, 2007, 07:57 PM
Err on the side of safety. I've had mine slip of "Safe" several times and without incident. I'm pretty confidant that a cocked and unlocked 1911 will be safe enough as long as you're not screwing with it and it remains holstered.
However, I wouldn't think of intentionally carrying it off "Safe".

HammerBite
September 5, 2007, 08:40 PM
Now, something that REALLY bugs me is the guns with the slide-mounted firing pin block-ala Walther PP. People actually think these are safe to drop the hammer on. These safeties will work-harden and break from full hammer falls. Semi auto hammers should ALWAYS be lowered gently.
I always ride the hammer with my other thumb when using a decocking safety of that type.

BluesBear
September 6, 2007, 07:27 AM
H/C is meant to catch the hammer if it slips while you are cocking/decocking the gun.That's only about 37.85% true. ;)
And while that is a tremendous side benefit, it's not the real reason it's there.

It's primary purpose is to prevent the gun from firing if the hammer were to "follow" the slide into battery.
IF the trigger pull is set too light or IF the sear/hammer-hooks angle is damaged or IF the tri-fingered spring is damaged or improperly installed, the hammer COULD be jarred off the sear as the slide closes. This is known as "hammer following".

The hammer really doesn't follow1 the slide, that's just an expression, rather as the slide closes the hammer falls. And it will fall with enough force to fire the cartridge. Therefore the safety notch (commonly called the half-cock notch2) stops the hammer before it can fire. That is also why the original notch was truely a notch. That way the sear couldn't bounce of of it. The Series 80 guns introduced the half-cock "shelf". With the hammer resting on this shelf if you pull the trigger the hammer will fall. But not with enough force to fire the gun.3
If someone wishes to put the gun into Condition Two when the hammer is resting in the half-cock notch, the hammer must be pulled nack far enough to clear the notch and then the trigger is pulled. The problem is that quite often the hammer has passed the point of no return. And since the trigger is being pulled there's nothing to stop it.4


Not if you look at the full cock position on a 1911 pattern pistol you'll notice there are two hammer hooks that engage the sear to hold the hammer at full cock. There is a space between the hooks that must be there in order for the hammer strut to be able to pivot. That gap isn't there at the half-cock (safety) notch.
If the hammer falls to half-cock enough times of if the shooter tries to pull the trigger too hard while the sear is in that notch burring, peening or other damage can occur that can change the trigger pull. And usually it's not changed for the better.

In the late 1960s a fellow by the name of Armand Swenson rationalized that you really didn't need that full width half-cock notch on the hammer. So he started removing the outer two thirds of the half-cock notch leaving the middle third as the only potrion that would contact the sear if the hammer fell.
So now you had the outer two-thirds of the sear controlling the trigger pull and the middle third acting as the fail safe.
Now, no matter how many times the hammer fell to half-cock or how hard the trigger was pulled in that position, the important part of the sear could not be damaged.

Nowadays it's common occurance in custom guns. In fact, some aftermarket hammers you buy today are produced that way. Personally I have "Swensonized" all of my 1911 pattern hammers for the past 20 years.

This is the best photo I have handy that illustrates one way to modify the notch.
http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=26671&d=1189081368

With the hammer cocked, if you look down inside just below the firing pin stop you can see if the hammer is so modified. I consider it to be cheap insurance to ensure your trigger pull doesn't change or become unsafe.



1) If you totally remove the sear from a 1911 pattern pistol and let the slide fall on a loaded chamber the hammer will indeed follow the slide but the gun will not fire.

2) When the hammer is in the "half-cock" notch it's not really half way back. It probably should have been called the one-quarter-cock-notch but that just sounds dirty.

3) This is why we know the "point of no return" must be further back than the half-cock notch.

4) The combination of the firing pin block and the safety shelf on the hammer are the reasons that I believe the Series 80 guns are completely safe to carry or handle in Condition Two. This is also why I divested myself of all of my older Colts and replaced them with Series 80 models. Strictly a personal preference based on all of my previous experience and testing.

Now, something that REALLY bugs me is the guns with the slide-mounted firing pin block-ala Walther PP. People actually think these are safe to drop the hammer on. These safeties will work-harden and break from full hammer falls.
This is precisely why I also got rid of my WWII vintage P-38s.
Hitting my P-38 hammer with the same five pound hammer didn't make the gun fire. But it did break the safety block making it hazardous to activate the safety. As I understand it, the newer P1 models used a better metal and a slightly different design for that part.
The safety block did NOT break in the 1940s vintage .32 cal PP, the 1950s vintage .380 cal PPK or the 1970s vintage .22 cal TPH. I believe they possessed a stronger design all along.


.

MythBuster
September 6, 2007, 08:29 AM
I have seen too many firearm accidents where people were hurt or killed because of their own ignorance.

A local man was killed when his old Colt SAA .22 clone fell out of his holster and landed on the hammer. I personaly told the man two weeks before his death not to carry the pistol with a round under the hammer. His ignorance of gun design killed him.

Another idiot droped a Davis .32 auto in a K-Mart and the junk fired when it hit the floor and sent a round through the ankle of a 79 year old lady standing about 50 yards away. The idiot in question was told many times not to carry that POS with a loaded chamber.

Another stubborn nut blew a hole in his brand new roof when he droped a 1911 on the hammer while it was on half cock. I also told this idiot not to carry his pistol like this. The round missed his head by about two inches.

A lot of modern centerfire rifles, the Remington 700 for example, is not a safe design espically after a trigger job. You must be VERY carefull with these.

BluesBear
September 6, 2007, 10:53 PM
Good advice all around Mythbuster.
Luckily I have never know anyone who died from theur own firearms stupidity. But I have known a couple who were wounded and shaken by the second loudest sound in the world.

My guess is that the all time leader would have to be the original SAA design guns. However the most that I have personally seen have occured with the good old lever action Winchester. Completely lowering the hammer puts the firing pin in direct contact with the primer. That's why Winchester and Larlin used to put that nice deep safety notch on their hammers. Unlike a SAA, the Winchester and Marlin guns had a rather robust arrangement that made it extremely resistant to hammer blows. A very good thing because very few rifles employ an ineretia firing pin.

Even something as simple as resting one against a cabin wall. Or against a tree while answering the call of nature*. The force of a Model 94 when it falls over can jar it enough to fire. With the hammer fully at rest, dropping a lever action rifle from any angle can more than likely cause them to go boom.



*Needless to say my buddy in Wisconsin had a difficult time for the rest of the day. What with the entire front of his trousers frozen like that.

seeker_two
September 12, 2007, 11:02 AM
....but then, with 1911-style pistols, I usually carry them in Condition Two.

Flame away...then use the search function...my reasoning can be found there.... :D

BluesBear
September 13, 2007, 05:54 AM
You're not alone Seeker. It could get warm.
A few years ago, when TFL was on vacation, I made the mistake of admitting on another forum, that I often handle my Colt automatic pistols in Condition Two and had done so for over 30 years with nary a problem. :cool:

I think I would have been treated better if I had just said my first name was Adolph, my last name was Rodham and in addition to being a Grand Wizard of the Bayou Knights, I was a child molester who worked for the IRS. :eek:
So I just started telling folks that I carried a revolver. Since fools are treated nicer than idiots. :D

But folks are a little more civilized over here. Just don't ever mention using a thumb break holster. ;)

44 AMP
September 13, 2007, 11:01 PM
Kids took hunter safety courses. Before they even had a chance to be in the police or the military, kids in those days had a chance to be exposed to firearms, and to learn that there was (and is) only one true safety for all firearms, and that one is between your ears.

No mechanical safety system is completely failure proof. Only proper gun handling (and this includes when and when NOT to have the chamber loaded) can provide safety.

Arguing that the only proper way to carry is the GI way (chamber empty) is the safest route, but remember, the military carry is intended to protect the military as a whole, rather than the individual carrying the pistol. The military arms many, many individuals with weapons, who's first (and only) exerience with them is the limited training that the military gives them. Do the math and you will see that empty chamber ups the odds for safety.

How safe is safe? How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?

I was Army trained to repair and maintain the M1911A1, and for my money if it isn't an original GI gun, or made by Colt for commercial sale, it isn't a 1911. Clones, series 70 (collet bushing), series 80 (firing pin block), are of no interest to me. That's a personal thing, but considering all the different makers today, and the modifications they have made to the original design, it hardly seems fair to put them in the same category.

Browning isn't around to ask, and since we don't seem to have personal diary entries from the master to tell us what he actually had in mind for each feature's use, arguing about it seems kind of pointless.

Is it safe to carry loaded with the thumb safey (safety lock) off? It is as safe as you are. And if you carry it that way, I don't think you are prudent and safe. With an inertial firing pin, a grip safety, and a safety lock (thumb safety) the original 1911 design is mechanically safer than 99%+ of the people who have carried them. Isn't that good enough for you? It is for me.

Hunter0924
September 14, 2007, 12:47 AM
Here is a picture I got from my friend OD off m1911.org. I believe it is also featured on The Site.
It is the position of the lug on the safety blocking the sear.
http://i66.photobucket.com/albums/h264/Hunter1911/safety_on.jpg
I believe it would be best to carry a Government Model with the thumb and grip safety in play.

MythBuster
September 14, 2007, 08:42 AM
Also on a 1911 with the safety on before the hammer can fall all the way down it will hit the safety lug. It has to push the safety to the off position before it can fall.

Detail strip a 1911. Put the hammer and safety back in the frame. Leave the sear and disconnector out.

Put the safety on and try to push the hammer down.

BluesBear
September 14, 2007, 10:37 AM
Any one that does not take advantage of any and all available safteys, is in my opinion an Idiot.
My girlfriend carries her S&W 6904 with the hammer down and the safety off.
Does this mean you are calling her an idiot?
I double dog dare ya to look her in the eye and say that.

FirstFreedom
September 14, 2007, 10:45 AM
I guess prussian has never owned a phoenix .22. BB, truth or not, you ought to revise your last statement, since it's a personal attack (silly prime time game shows about being smarter than a 5th grader notwithstanding).

Alnamvet
September 14, 2007, 11:02 AM
I have always carried a 1911 with a round in the chamber and the hammer down...it was the way I was taught back in the 60's in flight school...have yet to have had a ND...damn...I've been an idiot for over 40 years:o

BluesBear
September 14, 2007, 11:26 AM
actually i am calling whom ever taught her hand gun safety an Idiot, she is just a victim of bad information.
The person who taught her has been a multiple NRA certified instructor since 1981.
A 6904 carried hammer down/safety off is absolutely no different than carrying a 6926 with the hammer down.
Sounds like you're just a victim of no information.


First Freedom, that remark was not personal because it was not directed toward just one person. If it had been the number would not have been equal to five.

I've been an idiot for over 40 years40 years? You and me both.
But I've only been a certified idiot since 1981.
I have my suspicions there are a few around here that have been idiots even longer that us. ;)

saltpepperPA
September 14, 2007, 11:26 AM
I'm not going to call anyone an idiot or discredit anyones experience, but, IMHO I would keep the safety on as a precaution. I tend to take the extra steps to ere on the side of caution. It may be because I did not pick up handguns until a little later in life and was not brought up around them. Just my two cents.

BluesBear
September 14, 2007, 11:45 AM
Welcome ABoard™ SaltPepperPA!

That's a good philosophy to have.

saltpepperPA
September 14, 2007, 11:47 AM
Thanks Blues.

gordo_gun_guy
September 14, 2007, 03:54 PM
My girlfriend carries her S&W 6904 with the hammer down and the safety off. Does this mean you are calling her an idiot?

Not being familiar, I had to check out the 6904 to confirm it was a traditional DA.:) I see no problem with carrying it safety off, decocked, with a round chambered.

That's the way the Air Force trained me to carry the M-9: round chambered, decocked, safety off, "relying on the judgement of the armed officer as the only safety." Yes, this used to create conflict on Army FOBs since they seem to depend on unit SOPs for what condition their weapons are in at various locations. God bless those Joes for all they do, but none of it makes much sense to me.:D

Yes, we decocked without riding the hammer down, but that's what the clearing barrel is for, I guess.:eek: Only ever heard of one or two going off when decocking....;)

Let the flames start: I think carrying a 6904 or Berretta with the safety off (hammer down) is just as safe or safer than carrying a Glock.:D

Back to the OP, I did mention my 1911s are carried condition 1, in a pistol safe condition 3, and transported/long term stored unloaded. I'll just add, that, when I practice, if I've drawn/fired on a threat, I keep the gun in condition 0 until I re-holster. I learned that lesson the hard way during a live-fire scenario based drill when I had a requirement to shoot and found that I couldn't due to having re-engaged the safety. I build the habit pattern of safety off at stage 3 of my 4 step draw, and safety on when I go to holster....

prussianblue50
September 14, 2007, 04:18 PM
There is considerable difference between carrying a single action semi-auto and a double action semi-auto, It just doesn't make sense to me not to utilize a safety on a loaded weapon, I can definitely see an advantage to using any and all safeties built into a firearm by its designer, but i see only liability by not using
all safeties provided, can someone tell me why not using a safety is a good idea?

gordo_gun_guy
September 14, 2007, 04:35 PM
can someone tell me why not using a safety is a good idea?

In the case of the Beretta, and presumably the S&W traditional DAs, the less than ergonomic safety could cause a fatal delay in employing the weapon. At least, that's the way one branch of the military views the situation.

From personal experience, I never had trouble snicking off a 1911 safety as I come to "3" (position of maximum dexterity--chest level close to body). Having tried to use my civilian Beretta 92 both with and without the safety, I've sometimes had difficulty. Either from sweaty hands, grabbing the gun with a poor shooting grip such that my thumb is trapped below the beavertail, etc. Your thumb is pretty weak pushing up, and some of those DA safeties are pretty stiff. Also, they tend to be sharp and cut up the edge of my thumb over time.

Carrying a traditional DA with the safety off isn't much different than carrying a Sig or decock only Ruger.

One of the big deals about the military adopting the M-9 over the 1911 was being able to safely carry it at "ready pistol" without needing to thumb cock the hammer on the draw. Plus, when you need to reholster, you just decock and you're back to the same draw drill you started with, versus re-holstering a 1911 in condition 1 and having a different draw than the condition 2 the military starts with....

BluesBear
September 14, 2007, 08:09 PM
what can i say,
you have already proved my point. And just what point is that?
Do you own any firearm with an internal keylock? Do you carry that gun so locked? After all that internal lock is a safety.
Do you carry your gun with the cable lock and trigger lock, the Million Moron Moms are always whining about, in place? After all those are safery devices.


Now back to reality.

You are correct Gordo.
And S&W also produced the 6926 which was exactly the same except it had a decocker instead of a safety. When it was decocked it was in exactly the same condition as our 6904 with the safety off.

S&W even made a revolver with a manual safety especially for the French. Now can anyone tell me that was really necessary?

Why doesn't every gun made have a grip safety plus a thumb safety with a rebounding hammer with a transfer bar hitting an interia firing pin with a FP block with a safety trigger and a magazine disconnect? Wouldn't owning any gun that didn't have every safety possible be less than intelligent?


But how can I expect anyone who does not comprehend the use of something as simple as the comma to understand the workings of a traditional double action pistol?

MyXD40
September 14, 2007, 08:56 PM
Idiot is such a strong word..honestly, can't we all just be friends???

I dont find it an issue. Carry whatever you want with safety on or off. You shoot someone or yourself, lemme know so I have something funny to watch on the news:rolleyes:

BluesBear
September 14, 2007, 09:13 PM
Gee I thought there was a minimum of 20 posts or 30 days of membership before you could personally insult other members?

prussianblue50
September 14, 2007, 09:18 PM
I am sorry, i had the safety off on my tolerance emotion. it went off accidentally.

JohnKSa
September 14, 2007, 09:32 PM
Insulting another member is against the rules of TFL.

If one of your posts on this thread is missing or edited, consider it a warning.

Wildalaska
September 14, 2007, 11:03 PM
Hey after all these pages is it OK if I carry my Colt the way I always have? Thumb safety on?


Is that OK?

WildsomeonesendmeapmandletmeknowseeyaAlaska TM

teeroux
September 15, 2007, 03:50 AM
the only thing i can say is if you weren't ment to use it it wouldnt be on the gun.;)

Not being familiar, I had to check out the 6904 to confirm it was a traditional DA. I see no problem with carrying it safety off, decocked, with a round chambered.

Yes it would seem safe to carry i agree but if you get used to carrying it that way you should still practice flicking the safety to fire in the event that you draw and the safety is somehow engaged. So wouldnt useing the safety just make more sense.

BluesBear
September 15, 2007, 06:35 AM
Hey after all these pages is it OK if I carry my Colt the way I always have? Thumb safety on?
Is that OK?

Makes sense to me Ken. After all that's the way 75.96% of us do it.

Alnamvet
September 15, 2007, 06:53 AM
...I guess I'm not in the circle of trust...I carry mine with one in the pipe, hammer down, and of course, safety off...forty+ years walking through a fog:D

marshaul
February 25, 2008, 11:26 PM
I have my doubts that "Browning designed the gun to be carried in what we now call condition two. Hammer down on a loaded chamber." They knew it wasn't safe for a single-action revolver to be carried that way, why would he design a semi-auto to be carried the same way? Without some sort of firing-pin block (which the original design didn't have), carrying a 1911 with the hammer down on a loaded chamber is just as unsafe as carrying an original 1873 SAA fully loaded with the hammer down on a loaded chamber.This is a really good point. It's a well-known fact that people routinely used to carry cap and ball revolvers with and empty chamber underneath the hammer, because it simply wasn't safe to let the hammer sit on a live cap.

The question then is whether JMB considered a firing pin and a primed casing to be sufficient improvements to render such carry safe. Obviously that is the purpose of the inertial firing pin, but I couldn't help but notice that in the tests reported by BluesBear, the only way they ever managed to get an AD was in Condition Two (albeit with a weakened FP spring).

Kids took hunter safety courses. Before they even had a chance to be in the police or the military, kids in those days had a chance to be exposed to firearms, and to learn that there was (and is) only one true safety for all firearms, and that one is between your ears.

No mechanical safety system is completely failure proof. Only proper gun handling (and this includes when and when NOT to have the chamber loaded) can provide safety.

Arguing that the only proper way to carry is the GI way (chamber empty) is the safest route, but remember, the military carry is intended to protect the military as a whole, rather than the individual carrying the pistol. The military arms many, many individuals with weapons, who's first (and only) exerience with them is the limited training that the military gives them. Do the math and you will see that empty chamber ups the odds for safety.

How safe is safe? How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?

I was Army trained to repair and maintain the M1911A1, and for my money if it isn't an original GI gun, or made by Colt for commercial sale, it isn't a 1911. Clones, series 70 (collet bushing), series 80 (firing pin block), are of no interest to me. That's a personal thing, but considering all the different makers today, and the modifications they have made to the original design, it hardly seems fair to put them in the same category.

Browning isn't around to ask, and since we don't seem to have personal diary entries from the master to tell us what he actually had in mind for each feature's use, arguing about it seems kind of pointless.

Is it safe to carry loaded with the thumb safey (safety lock) off? It is as safe as you are. And if you carry it that way, I don't think you are prudent and safe. With an inertial firing pin, a grip safety, and a safety lock (thumb safety) the original 1911 design is mechanically safer than 99%+ of the people who have carried them. Isn't that good enough for you? It is for me.And this is easily the best post in this thread.

First of all, you touched on one of the biggest problems with gun safety in the US today: we are more and more living in a society where parents don't encourage their children to have respect for, and learn the responsible use of, firearms. And, even worse, as more and more parents expect their kids to be raised totally by outside influence: school, which is becoming an increasingly anti-gun environment in the wake of so many school shootings; and media (TV, movies, the internet), which have a tendency to send very mixed messages about gun violence, by simultaneously glorifying its use when enacted by the heroic agents of Good, but condemning the ownership of the tools by which it is enacted by private individuals (anybody see Shoot 'Em Up?). In a free society, where individuals must have the rights associated with firearms ownership (in my view these include the right to carry, openly or concealed, and the right to use a firearm or any other means for reasonable self-defense), this cannot be a healthy environment to raise our young citizens in.

Furthermore, your thoughts on the safety of the 1911 (especially the army's likely logic for their own policies), mirror my own. When I read the first post in this thread, my immediate reaction was identical to something you said: Is it safe to carry loaded with the thumb safey (safety lock) off? It is as safe as you are. And if you carry it that way, I don't think you are prudent and safe. With an inertial firing pin, a grip safety, and a safety lock (thumb safety) the original 1911 design is mechanically safer than 99%+ of the people who have carried them. Isn't that good enough for you? It is for me. :D

Personally, I carry mine in Condition One when I'm out in public, but often if I'm at home or even at a friend's house I will leave it in Condition 3, unless I've already put it into Condition One at some point during the day.

Also on a 1911 with the safety on before the hammer can fall all the way down it will hit the safety lug. It has to push the safety to the off position before it can fall.

Detail strip a 1911. Put the hammer and safety back in the frame. Leave the sear and disconnector out.

Put the safety on and try to push the hammer down.
I actually never noticed that before. Sure is clever though. The safety stud not only directly blocks the sear from disconnecting; should the sear break, it also directly impedes the hammer's rotation.

drail
February 26, 2008, 08:58 AM
A few years back one of the gun rags published a photo of John Browning's personal working prototype 1910 or 1911. I have that photo framed over my bench. It had only a grip safety that looked almost like it was pinned. No thumb safety. Would I carry a 1911 like that? Absolutely not.

Chui
February 26, 2008, 09:21 AM
I voted "No way in Hell, why would you even consider". You can do whatever you wish. You sound either ignorant or reckless. Maybe both. More importantly (much more importantly) what do you think you'd gain by purposely carrying in this manner??? Unless you're missing the distal metacarpel your strongside thumb there is nothing to be gained in speed with the greater than zero chance of having an unintended discharge.

To be honest, I've on occasion noticed my safety was off while the pistol was holstered in a thigh rig during a carbine class. I was not too concerned as the pistol was very secure, but it was disconcerting as I'd not purposely place it in that condition for the reasons mentioned above.

With a grip safety, external safety and with a Ti firing pin and extra power spring the pistol is "safer" than the majority of us. Just learn the manual of arms.

Justme, whoever told you "Mossad doesn't carry a round in the chamber" either lied or misspoke. I mean, think about it... :confused:

B.N.Real
February 26, 2008, 02:38 PM
This thread makes feel better about the modern double action revolvers I own.

I've always read and heard that you simply don't carry a 1911 original lockwork style auto pistol with a round in the chamber.

Modern da/sa action semi auto pistols that have firing pin transfer blocks and locks are safe to carry.

At least safer.

It takes a half a second to get a bad grip on a gun and miss it as it heads to the floor.

And you'll be chasing it with your head down,face facing the falling pistol.

That's a bad deal.

Chui
February 26, 2008, 03:46 PM
This thread makes feel better about the modern double action revolvers I own.

I've always read and heard that you simply don't carry a 1911 original lockwork style auto pistol with a round in the chamber.

Modern da/sa action semi auto pistols that have firing pin transfer blocks and locks are safe to carry.

At least safer.

It takes a half a second to get a bad grip on a gun and miss it as it heads to the floor.

And you'll be chasing it with your head down,face facing the falling pistol.

That's a bad deal.

Geesh! That's a lot of MISinformation in your post. One could load, cock and lock a 1911 and pitch it across the room and it won't go off. Oddly enough, it reminds me of a buddy of mine who was a USMC FAST Company instructor who had a student have a ND with his 1911. The guy was trying to state that "it just went off" and he grabbed the pistol, cocked it and locked it and PITCHED it across the room into a wall and had the guy go fetch it. Of course, he went ballistic on the poor guy as the hammer did not fall.

So what's up with the flippers there, B.N. Real? Simply secure the pistol before putting the cart before the horse is all that's required.

USMC FAST Instructor: Smooth is fast, fast is smooth. Speed is the reduction of unneccesary motion. Try it.

RsqVet
February 26, 2008, 03:55 PM
I suspect that those who have always read and heard that 1911's should be carried empty chamber read and heard this from folks who had little faith in the abilities of those under their command and little real apreciation for either the 1911 or the men who might carry it in harms way.

What actually happened / happens in real life is another thing and of course 1911's are safe with a round in the chamber.

B.N.Real
February 26, 2008, 04:18 PM
I'm just repeating what I was told growing up about the 1911 pistol.

And I've read and heard stories of the pistol loaded firing when dropped on the floor.

And,indeed,it's the user's duty to use all firearms with maximum attentiveness and safety.

But the chance of a drop fire is there and many firearms (old s/a revolvers) may fire if dropped on their hammer ends.

It's not a disrespect to any soldier,I can guarantee that.

My pop was a veteran of Korea and did things he only talked about for twenty minutes one night in the fourty five odd years I knew him.

No opinion I ever post will purposely disrespect a soldier or service person.

Edward429451
February 26, 2008, 05:57 PM
Geesh! That's a lot of MISinformation in your post. One could load, cock and lock a 1911 and pitch it across the room and it won't go off.

This is true because I have tested it with my dads old beat up commander. I loaded a primed but otherwise empty case into the gun and proceeded to drop it muzzle first, throw it tumbling across the (carpeted) floor to crash into the wall. I did this at full cock without the safety engaged and it never went off or dropped the hammer or anything. Nothing like first hand knowledge to make one confident in their weapon.

I've been carrying condition one for more than 20 years and never had an incident beyond finding the safety disengaged in the holster. That was during a period of high activity. These pistols are safe. I wouldn't carry it safety off intentionally though.

vox rationis
February 26, 2008, 07:55 PM
I voted "No way in Hell, why would you even consider". You can do whatever you wish.....More importantly (much more importantly) what do you think you'd gain by purposely carrying in this manner??? Unless you're missing the distal metacarpal in your strongside thumb there is nothing to be gained in speed with the greater than zero chance of having an unintended discharge.

Exactly my thoughts. I mean what would be the point of carrying Cocked and Unlocked. It is no faster and it can increase the incidence of an AD. If you are afraid of not being to manipulate the safety in a crisis, well then you haven't practiced enough with that mode of carry that's all. After a decent amount of practicing, sweeping the safety off becomes as natural as pressing the magazine release when you go to slide lock to reload. The only time it can be a problem is if you generally carry guns that don't have a sweep down safety and you only rarely carry the 1911. If you don't have that "sweep down the safety" neuromuscular facilitation developed, then that is when you can get into trouble by carrying an essentially unfamiliar 1911 for self defense.

warrior poet
February 26, 2008, 08:12 PM
In theory (evil word) it is 'safe' to carry with the thumb safety off, as it will not fire without the grip safety disengaged and the trigger pulled. Am I ever doing it? In a word, NOPE.

Bill DeShivs
February 26, 2008, 09:20 PM
"But the chance of a drop fire is there and many firearms (old s/a revolvers) may fire if dropped on their hammer ends."

The 1911 has an inertia firing pin, and will not fire if dropped with the hammer down, even ON the hammer.
If the gun is cocked, and something knocks the hammer off the sear, the "half cock" notch should stop the hammer from hitting the firing pin.