More on Cocked and Locked


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Drakejake
February 22, 2003, 04:05 PM
I know this question has been disucssed many times, but not by me!

I just got my first 1911 style pistol, single action .45 with very effective manual safety which locks the slide.

I guess these are the main alternative for carrying a single action:

1. chamber empty (hammer down, no reason to have it cocked).

2. chamber loaded but hammer down.

3. chamber loaded, hammer cocked, manual safety on.

With any of these options, one has to do SOMETHING before being able to fire. I am sure that releasing the safety is the fastest and easiest, but must be done consciously. With option one, one would have to rack the slide and do without that extra round. With option 2, the hammer would have to be cocked by hand, a dangerous procedure on some pistols do not have modern safety features.

One problem with cocked and locked, on pistols with visible hammers, is that the hammer sticks out the back. It would seem that this makes it difficult to extract the pistol from a pocket or from a waist pack. The hammer could hit something and get stuck. It seems to me just a bit awkward. Putting this issue together with the need to take off the safety, doesn't double action/single action, which can be carried with the safety --if there is one--off, constitute a viable alternative to the traditional cocked and locked single action pistol. Even though the da/sa pistol has a longer, harder trigger pull on the fist shot, the pistol needs merely to be drawn and fired. No extra steps are required. And the hammer is down and out of the way.

Drakejake

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pogo2
February 22, 2003, 04:16 PM
You are right that a DA/SA or DAO (double action only) pistol is a little simpler to get into action than a cocked and locked SA, because you just draw and pull the trigger, without having to remember to release a manual safety. I think the people who carry a 1911 cocked and locked will usually defend their decision by saying:

1. I won't forget to release the safety because I have practiced this a lot and it is second nature to me when I draw.

2. I like the short, light trigger pull of a 1911 because it helps me shoot accurately and fast.

As for your point about the cocked hammer sticking out and creating a snag problem - the uncocked 1911 hammer would be just as much a snagging problem, because of the way it protrudes backwards from the gun, and the beavertail grip safety in common use on 1911's also protrudes back quite a ways and can snag things. Cocking the pistol doesn't really make this any worse, because the hammer usually fits into the beavertail a little and is somewhat shielded by it.

If you really want a simple pistol that is fairly snag-free, has constant trigger pull on all shots, and doesn't have any safeties to remember, something like a Glock or Kahr would be good.

seeker_two
February 22, 2003, 04:33 PM
If you really want a simple pistol that is fairly snag-free, has constant trigger pull on all shots, and doesn't have any safeties to remember, something like a Glock or Kahr would be good.

...or a revolver. :cool:

10-Ring
February 22, 2003, 04:40 PM
It will also depend on your mode of carry & on dedicated practice. Every system whether DAO, DA/SA or C&L will have plusses & minusses. Commit to one that you will master and it will serve you well.

triggertime
February 22, 2003, 05:21 PM
Drakejake: With all due respect, you have to stop thinking about things so objectively. ;)

To animadvert that a cocked hammer will present problems during the draw stroke is equivalent to saying that the exposed hammer spur on a revolver or on a double-action semi-auto will also.

In reality, it all depends on the technique and the skill level of the operator.

Generally, reservations about the complexity of an external safety or the extra step that it requires is usually circumvented by devoting yourself to the weapon system and applying generous amounts of daily dry practice until the manual of arms becomes second nature.

The problem comes in when people switch between different weapon systems with such regularity that what they've unconsciously ingrained into their subconscious mind is no longer applicable to the current weapon of choice.

Which is why it is always good advice to find one weapon system that you like and then stick with it.

Sean Smith
February 22, 2003, 05:48 PM
Well, a 1911 is pretty big to keep in your pocket. Trying to impress the ladies? :p

All handgun designs are compromises. Pick the compromises you can live with.

Monkeyleg
February 22, 2003, 07:40 PM
The act of releasing the safety on my 1911 is so ingrained that I have to pay very close attention to not doing so when handling a loaded pistol.

Also, it's very easy--for me, anyway--to short stroke the slide and have a round not chamber. With a round already chambered, I'm ready to go.

Lastly, I just can't get used to the DA triggers. It's almost like having one of those nightmares where you can't get the gun to fire.

MolonLabe416
February 22, 2003, 07:48 PM
The 1911 is NOT designed to be carried with the hammer down on a loaded chamber. This is not safe with pre series 80 pistols and serves no purpose with other types IMHO. It should be carried cocked and locked if for defense or hammer down on an empty chamber if you are not concerned with the defensive aspects of carry.

Al Thompson
February 22, 2003, 09:41 PM
Agree with Steve. Hammer down on a live round is a discharge arrested by your thumb. I've done it before and won't do it again. Cocked and locked or Condition three.

Minute_Of_Torso
February 23, 2003, 02:53 AM
I carry cocked and locked. I train for presenting from a cocked and locked carry. If you're uncomfortable with that then I would recommend a DAO pistol or train to rack the slide on the 1911 as you present from the holster (hammer down, empty chamber).

Either way you go, train as you would carry.

Have to agree with the other guys: hammer down on a loaded chamber is not the way to go with the 1911. They don't have those nifty Ruger transfer bars to keep the hammer from being slammed into the round accidentally.

Drakejake
February 23, 2003, 10:19 AM
My Star PD has a manual safety that can lock the hammer in the down position. But I understand that having a round in the chamber and the hammer against the firing pin, and no firing pin safeties, can be risky.

Drakejake

Art Eatman
February 23, 2003, 01:18 PM
I've spent a lot of time out and about where I was the only person at risk if I got stupid. This naturally tends to lull a person about safety. I've had zero problems in some forty years of "messing" with a 1911, always carried cocked and locked. This includes truck consoles, holsters, hip pocket or vest.

Art

Alan Fud
February 23, 2003, 02:01 PM
Simple rule of thumb (and this applies to any firearm with a thumb safety) ... as you raise the sight toward the target, your thumb should be flicking the safety off. As soon as you start lowering your gun and the front sight is leaving the target, your thumb should be flicking the safety back on.

jrhines
February 23, 2003, 02:47 PM
For my nickle, the condition of carry is not as important as the presence of a safety. If, by some quirk, the BG manages to disarm me, he has to know to toggle the safety off before he can fire the gun. If he is not as well trained as he should be, or only familer with DAO pistols, maybe, just maybe, that hesitation will allow me time for my backup to come into action.
Any bad guy can pick up your Glock and kill you with it. And I have taken into account how much of a bad dude the perp would have to be to disarm you! The world is full of tougher guys than me.
As for hammer hang-up, if you are not comfortable with your gun handling skills under conditions that you are willing to anticpate/accept, then get a different gun, practice more, or don't carry. I know this may sound harsh from someone in a "shall-not-issue" state, but in another life I did, and would continue to. And it was always cocked and locked.

ArmaLube
February 23, 2003, 02:57 PM
As you know, there are many fine quality SA autos. Used correctly, they are excellent fireams.

In my opinion, carrying cocked and locked is a very dangerous methodology. Empty guns, as everyone knows, have a way of turning out to be LOADED. Safeties have a way of unexpectedly finding their way to the FIRE POSITION. A bullet in the leg or foot would represent the hardest way to learn proper safety procedures.

Hammer down on a loaded chamber is also potentially dangerous. While thumbing the hammer into the cocked position, a slight slip could fire the gun. Such an event would most likely do a real number on one's thumb. The fired bullet would proceed to 'who knows where?' Keep your fingers crossed and PRAY.

The smart solution? Carry hammer down on an EMPTY CHAMBER! Jacking the slide back will quickly bring the pistol into play.

Don't like these options and insist on safety? Switch to a good DA pistol, preferably one with 'non-safety' decocker. The SigArms pistols represent a great choice.

Stay safe! Stay Happy!

"Armalube (http://www.armalube.com) Hits The Mark"

Edward429451
February 23, 2003, 03:10 PM
The problem with condition #3 (hammer down on empty chamber) is that when you need it, your other hand may be busy fending off the attacker.

Cthulhu
February 26, 2003, 02:43 AM
As an extension to Edward429451's post, your weak hand might be wounded, blown off, broken or otherwise disabled. Better practice all those one handed cycling techniques if you choose to carry condition three.
If you go the condition three route, also seriously consider the accessories you put on your trusty war horse. Those lowmount snagfree night sights give you a great sight picture, but lack the edge needed to rack your slide against your belt or shoe or what have you.
No matter, just put the edge of the slide on a convenient horizontal surface and push....wait...Damn those full length guiderods!

In the 1911, the grip safety, combined with a proper holster that covers the trigger in stiff leather or kydex, will prevent an AD in the event that the manual safety unexpectedly finds its way into the fire position.

As the others have said before, if feel that you would forget to disengage the safety when the time comes, then the best route is to carry a different style of firearm.

Pendragon
February 26, 2003, 04:53 AM
In my opinion, carrying cocked and locked is a very dangerous methodology. Empty guns, as everyone knows, have a way of turning out to be LOADED. Safeties have a way of unexpectedly finding their way to the FIRE POSITION. A bullet in the leg or foot would represent the hardest way to learn proper safety procedures.


C&L is a very safe method of carry on a 1911. I understand that a lot of people are uncomfortable with seeing that hammer hovering over the firing pin.

A properly functioning 1911 should have a very positive thunb safety. If yours does not, you should get it fixed.

Should the thunb safety get bumped to the fire position, the trigger of the gun still has to be pulled.

Should someone bump your trigger or claw at it to depress it, the grip safety will prevent the gun from firing unless it is depressed.

Some models have additional safeties internally.

C&L is only as safe as the person practicing it. DA and DAO guns are not necessarily safer, they have their own areas where you have to be careful.

I did C&L with a BHP clone for a couple of years - the one time I drew it, I was suprised at my own lucidity - draw gun, move it to low ready, disengage thumb safety - trigger finget jutting along the right side of the frame.

Ah.....

buttrap
February 26, 2003, 04:54 AM
Well the cocked and locked drill does work for folks that are practiced and drill in that mode but the gun was not disigned to be used in that mode even though it works well. In my cheep opinion I like the DA action do to the stiffer finger on trigger pull for that first shot when hyped up,much less chance of a round going of when not wanted covering a person.

Sean Smith
February 26, 2003, 08:53 AM
You people gotta be kidding me. That scaaaaary hammer has got you psyched out again. :rolleyes:

How safe is cocked & locked?

Well...

You HAVE to drop the thumb safety, AND...
You HAVE to depress the grip safety, AND...
You HAVE to actually pull the trigger.

If something fails internally, and the hammer drops without the trigger being pulled, the half-cock notch will still stop the hammer. If the half-cock notch somehow fails simultaneously, on guns with firing pin blocks the gun STILL won't fire. Wow, redundant internal AND external safties to prevent multiple failure modes. Sounds reckless.

What is so unsafe about that? The answer, of course, is absolutely NOTHING. Meanwhile, people shoot themselves with those "safe" DA/SA guns all the time. Strong suggestion that their relative "safety" is bogus. Maybe because they don't have a positive sign (hammer back) indicating that they are ready to fire? Maybe because you don't have to depress a positive manual safety in order to fire them? Maybe because the whole fear of cocked & locked carry isn't rational at all?

:rolleyes:

If you like something else better, fine, but don't expect us to buy irrational dribblings that aren't based in fact.

buzz_knox
February 26, 2003, 10:15 AM
Well the cocked and locked drill does work for folks that are practiced and drill in that mode but the gun was not disigned to be used in that mode even though it works well.

Yes, it was. At the time it may not have been the primary mode of carry envisioned, but Browning did design it to work in cocked and locked.

P95Carry
February 26, 2003, 10:49 AM
I have always felt ''uncomfortable'' with C/L .... partly cos have not been up to skill std with 1911 type piece ... and have instead settled for DA first ...... S/A to follow ... thus the P95.

The D/A pull is something that needs practice .... remembering then the transition to a short and sensitive release for all subsequent rounds. Like most things, familiarity is the deal. I do tho enjoy the comfort level of not being C/L and know that I have the piece totally ready at all times, added to which, if a situation presented the ''luxury'' of time, then a manual hammer cock will set me up just fine.

Cthulhu
February 26, 2003, 12:46 PM
What really boggles the mind is that we have so many members that are nervous about carrying a 1911 C&L, but wouldn't hesitate for a second to carrying an AR-15, shotgun, or other long gun in the same manner. In ready condition, they all have rounds in the chamber, hammers cocked (although you can't see them) and the safeties on.
In many cases the redundancy of safety is much less than that of the 1911 type design, yet we don't see countless debates as to their innate safety in this carry method.

Master Blaster
February 26, 2003, 01:22 PM
You hit the nail on the head, a bolt action rifle is also carried cocked and locked, just like an ar-15 or any pump or semi-auto shotgun. You just cant see or dont think about the hammer.

Glocks have a 5.5 lb trigger pull, no manual safety of any kind,

folks have accidents with these safe pistols all the time, police have lots of accidents with them that would never happen with a 1911, because you can see that the hammer is cocked, and it has a thumb safety.

This is especially true of NDs that happen when the GLOCK is being disassembled, and folks forget there is a round in the chamber before they pull the trigger (required) to dissassemble them.

You dont pull the trigger on a cocked 1911 to dissassemble it.

:rolleyes:

Edward429451
February 26, 2003, 01:29 PM
Yes, it was. At the time it may not have been the primary mode of carry envisioned, but Browning did design it to work in cocked and locked

Correct. Also, IIRC, I read that they made JMB add a grip safety for soldiers who wanted to carry it in condition zero (Cocked & Un-locked)!

Drakejake
February 26, 2003, 07:10 PM
Not all 1911 type pistols that can be carried cocked and locked have a grip safety. My only 1911 is a Star PD--no grip safety. The PD has a half cocked position as an extra safety. If the hammer is dropped, it is stopped before it gets to the firing pin, provided the trigger isn't being pulled. There is no firing pin block other than the manual safety and this half-cock position. (Am I making sense?) The only pistol I have with a grip safety is my Beretta 418 in .25.

By the way, Star's Megastar and model 31 P, double action autos, can be cocked and then the safety put on. Hence cocked and locked. The decocker position of the safety is separate from the on-safety position.

Drakejake

Handy
February 26, 2003, 08:07 PM
There seems to be a huge misunderstanding that's being repeated in this thread:

JMBrowning DID design the 1911 to be carried hammer down, the Cavalry men in the Army expected to carry it that way, and it is a safe carry practice.

The Cavalry was coming off of SA revolvers. Cocking a pistol on draw made sense to them. To this end, JMB used an inertial firing pin so hammer down impacts could not fire the gun. (If the gun was only to be carried cocked he could have used the simpler, less troublesome floating, full length firing pin. See Tokarev and M16/AR15).

The safety, which later became a carry mode, was added to allow a quick means of safeing a fired pistol instead of thumbing the hammer down during a cavalry charge. The design of the later Radom pistol swaps a safety for a decocker to achieve the same ends.

There is no added danger in carrying a 1911 hammer down. The earlier versions of the Beretta 92 and CZ-75 were carried the same way with no pin block device. These pistols also lacked decockers, yet have DA triggers.

The danger of a pistol lacking a pin block is it going off if dropped on the muzzle, not the hammer. And a 1911 will go off if dropped on the muzzle hard enough if cocked or not.


Cond. 2 may not be preferred, but it is how the gun was envisioned and is no more dangerous than any number of guns designed for such carry.

Pendragon
February 27, 2003, 05:17 AM
Not all 1911 type pistols that can be carried cocked and locked have a grip safety. My only 1911 is a Star PD--no grip safety. The PD has a half cocked position as an extra safety. If the hammer is dropped, it is stopped before it gets to the firing pin, provided the trigger isn't being pulled. There is no firing pin block other than the manual safety and this half-cock position. (Am I making sense?) The only pistol I have with a grip safety is my Beretta 418 in .25.

That is neither here not there. I like some of the Star pistols, but comparing your Spanish Bastard to a more standard 1911 is not really a valid comparison.

My BHP Clone did not have a grip safety either and I never had a problem with it.

By the way, Star's Megastar and model 31 P, double action autos, can be cocked and then the safety put on. Hence cocked and locked. The decocker position of the safety is separate from the on-safety position.

Again - I like the Star guns - they are based on the 1911 concept but they are not 1911s - not in looks or shape or the totality of features.

TheFrontRange
February 27, 2003, 11:40 AM
I used to be psyched-out by Condition One carry, until I traded my way into a Colt 1991A1 Compact, got myself a good holster, and just wore the gun around the house for a while, cocked, locked, and unloaded. I wanted to "prove" to my bedazzled little mind that that hammer wasn't going to just fall all by itself.

Over the years I've carried DA revolvers, DA autos, even a single-action Ruger Blackhawk briefly, and have come all the way back to a 1911. As previously posted, whatever works for you, whatever you're the most comfortable with, the marketplace offers dozens of options for a defensive handgun. I carry a cocked-and-locked Kimber these days because that's what works for me.

M1911
February 27, 2003, 12:17 PM
In my opinion, carrying cocked and locked is a very dangerous methodology. Empty guns, as everyone knows, have a way of turning out to be LOADED. Safeties have a way of unexpectedly finding their way to the FIRE POSITION. A bullet in the leg or foot would represent the hardest way to learn proper safety procedures.Huh? What does confusion over empty or loaded have to do with cocked-and-locked? A doofus who can't check the magazine well and chamber is just as dangerous with a Beretta 92 as he is with a 1911. That's completely immaterial to the current discussion.

I carry a 1911 cocked and locked. My safety has never been swiped off. I know, because I check. And even if the safety did get swiped off while in the holster, how would that cause the gun to go off? There's still the grip safety and half-cock notch. A holstered gun is a safe gun. The only way it is going to go off is if I draw the gun from the holster, put my finger in the trigger guard, and pull the trigger.

Regarding Sigs, they are fine guns. But what makes them so much "safer" than 1911s? Many NDs occur while drawing and reholstering. Lets consider the difference between a 1911 and a Sig in these circumstances.

With a 1911 carried condition 1, when drawing from the holster, the finger should be kept out of the trigger guard until the gun is on target. As the gun is withdrawn from the holster and the barrel clears a 45 degree angle with the ground, the safety is swiped off. The gun cannot discharge until 1) the safety is lowered and 2) the trigger is pulled. How can this go wrong? If the shooter gets his finger on the trigger too early but the safety is still on, nothing bad happens. If the shooter gets his finger on the trigger too soon AND lowers the safety too soon, then something bad can happen.

Now consider the draw stroke with the Sig. There's no manual safety on the Sig. As the gun comes on target, the finger gets on the trigger. How can this go wrong? If the shooter gets his finger on the target too soon, then he can have an ND. There's no manual safety that might or might not save him. The Sig's DA trigger is longer and heavier than the 1911s trigger. Might that reduce the chance of an ND, all other things being equal? Maybe. But I've read that when startled, people tend to clench their fists and in doing so can easily exceed a force of 50lbs in their trigger finger. The difference between 5 and 10lbs of force isn't going to save someone in that event.

Let's now consider reholstering. The typical reholstering ND happens when the shooter forgets to remove his finger from the trigger guard while reholstering. What happens then is the finger is stopped by the holster, the gun keeps moving downards, and thus the trigger is pulled. Here's an example of where this has happened: http://www.frontsight.com/safety.htm Scroll down to Unintentional Gunshot Wounds.

Suppose the shooter is using a 1911 and reholsters with his finger on the trigger. If he remembered to apply the safety, then nothing happens. If he forgot to apply the safety, then there's a short, light trigger pull to be overcome and he will probably have an ND.

Suppose the shooter is using a Sig and reholsters with his finger on the trigger. If he remembered to apply the decocker, then he's got a somewhat longer, harder trigger pull to overcome, but is still likely to have an ND. If he forgot to decock, then he's in the same situation as a 1911 with the safety off -- a short light trigger pull to overcome, likely resulting in an ND.

So how, exactly, is a 1911 in condition 1 much more dangerous than a Sig? I just don't get it.

Don't get me wrong, Sigs are fine guns. I own one. But this idea that 1911s are unsafe in condition 1 is something that I just don't buy.

As others have pointed out, shotguns and rifles are carried cocked and locked. They also have much heavier firing pins and generally do not have a firing pin safety. As a result, they are much more likely to go off when dropped than a handgun. But the same people who are terrified of a cocked 1911 are unafraid of a loaded rifle or shotgun. I just don't get it.

Edward429451
February 27, 2003, 12:36 PM
Its my understanding that the Series 80 type pistols have no true half-cock notch. It was redesigned for some reason or another having to do with the conversion to Series 80 when the put in the firing pin block. If its not half-cock, what is it and whats it for?

Anybody got the scoop on that?

Handy
February 27, 2003, 12:46 PM
Colt got rid of the half cock notch (there's still a bump there, though) when they put a pin block in. They may have been thinking it was no longer necessary and the halfcock can affect sear shape.

Its main purpose is to catch the hammer if the most fragile part of the sear fails. That function is better handled by the pin block.

moxie
February 27, 2003, 01:13 PM
Drakejake,
The Star PD is a fine pistol, my son and I both have them. You are correct, it doesn't have a grip safety. Preferred carry in a holster is condition 1, cocked and locked. If you are uncomfortable with that, go with Condition 3, hammer down on empty chamber. With the Star in Condition 3 you can also apply the safety, which you can't do with most 1911s. This is of little value except possibly to slow down a BG who gets your gun. Personally, I would only carry any 1911 in my pocket in Condition 3, unless I had a pocket holster which helped keep the gun oriented correctly. We used to carry 1911s in Vietnam in Condition 2, trusting the inertial firing pin and the grip safety and believing cocking the hammer was a cleaner operation than wiping off the safety. That was then. Now I trust Condition 1 for holstered carry. I've heard tales of Condition Zero, but never actually met anyone with the moxie to do it.
Cheers,
Moxie
P.S. Anyone have a good source for Star PD recoil buffers??

M1911
February 27, 2003, 03:05 PM
Personally, I would only carry any 1911 in my pocket in Condition 3, unless I had a pocket holster which helped keep the gun oriented correctly. We used to carry 1911s in Vietnam in Condition 2, trusting the inertial firing pin and the grip safety and believing cocking the hammer was a cleaner operation than wiping off the safety. You must have mighty big pockets to fit a 1911 in there:D

I'm not a fan of condition 2 carry, partly because of the need to manually decock on a loaded round. To me, that seems to be something that can easily be fumbled. That said, if you compare a 1911A1 to something like a Kimber, the 1911A1 was easier to thumbcock (smaller grip safety, larger hammer spur) than a Kimber.

Drakejake
February 27, 2003, 03:53 PM
Pendragon,

A couple of questions.

1. Why do you call the Star PD a "Spanish Bastard"? Many pistols are modified versions of the 1911. Does that make all of them "Bastards"? By the way, the Star PD is considered an innovative pistol in that it is said to be the first compact .45. Many people think highly of this pistol and one peson said it was the best pistol Star ever made (hard to prove).

2. Why can't one compare the PD to a 1911? It is similar in some respects, different in others. Since it is single action and can be carried cocked and locked, a comparison with the pure 1911, especially in this thread--which I started-- seems to be in order.

Addendum

I don't know of any source for Star PD recoil buffers except for Jack First. I think he sells them for $14 each and a hefty shipping charge. Someone with a model to work from and some skill with tools can probably make them by hand.

Drakejake

moxie
February 27, 2003, 08:00 PM
For M1911:

I was referring only to the Star PD in my earlier post. It is pretty small, about the same size as an Officer's Model and a bit lighter. It is certainly suitable for pocket carry by someone who desired to. If one chose to do so, I was recommending how best to do it, namely with a pocket holster, but that's not even an issue if you carry in condition 3. Even a full size 1911 can be carried in a coat pocket safely, no print through, no sag, no problem. Is there a problem?
And, like I said, some of us used to carry in Condition 2, as in past tense. Times have changed. That was in Vietnam, like I said, so the 1911s involved were stock Colt, Ithaca, Remington, etc., production with small hammers and grip safeties. Not much "beavertail." Thumbing the hammer was easy. And, in that environment, the danger of manually decocking the hammer on a loaded chamber didn't even get on the bottom of the list of things we were worried about. Now, as I said, I prefer Condition 1 or 3.

For Drakejake:

Don't worry about someone denigrating your pistol. It's fine.

I called Jack First. $14.00 each is ludicrous for a shock buffer. Best approach is cut the flange off a worn one (stock) and install it under the spring in front of a 1911 recoil buffer such as sold by Wilson which are about a buck apiece. Essentially you have the same as stock, just in two pieces. Works fine.

Pendragon
February 27, 2003, 08:16 PM
Honestly, I meant it as a term of endearment.

I would buy one if I found a nice one...

Its just that when talking about C&L on a pure 1911, its a little different than the PD

:)

M1911
February 27, 2003, 10:40 PM
Even a full size 1911 can be carried in a coat pocket safely, no print through, no sag, no problem. Is there a problem?Yes. No way are my pockets big enough for that:p

And, like I said, some of us used to carry in Condition 2, as in past tense. Times have changed. That was in Vietnam, like I said, so the 1911s involved were stock Colt, Ithaca, Remington, etc., production with small hammers and grip safeties. Not much "beavertail." Thumbing the hammer was easy. And, in that environment, the danger of manually decocking the hammer on a loaded chamber didn't even get on the bottom of the list of things we were worried about. Now, as I said, I prefer Condition 1 or 3.Yes, the beavertail safety on Kimbers and such definitely gets in the way of thumb-cocking. I can certainly understand how in Vietnam the danger of manually decocking would not show up on the radar screen. Thankfully, I was 15 when we pulled out of Saigon (G*d what a humilating thing to watch, the UH1s taking refugees off of the rooftops -- it still makes me mad), so I missed the draft.

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