Firing out of battery? Explanation please?


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shotgunner
January 12, 2006, 10:55 AM
What does this mean? I'm sure that it's bad, and it's what is preventing me from buying a GLOCK until I learn more about what it is and why it can be so bad...
If someone could elaborate on it for me I'd really appreciate it so I have a more thorough understanding of how the mechanics of semi-autos work.

Thanks in advance!

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1911 guy
January 12, 2006, 11:00 AM
When a firearm has a moveable breech (slide or bolt), being locked in the foreward (firing) position is called being "in battery". Firing out of battery happens when something malfunctions and the hammer follows the bolt/slide and the weapon fires before it locks up. This does not contain the pressure from firing properly and can be dangerous. The only exception to this is some, mainly machine guns, are designed to do this. But, because they are designed to fire "from an open bolt", they are also designed to do it safely.

TexasRifleman
January 12, 2006, 11:04 AM
and it's what is preventing me from buying a GLOCK until I learn more about what it is and why it can be so bad...


As much as I dislike Glocks for aesthetic reasons, I don't believe you have anything to worry about there. You can find a story here and there about just about any brand of firearm having a kaboom or failure.

NavyLCDR
January 12, 2006, 11:09 AM
Here's a good explanation of firing out of battery and the dangers: http://survival.com/IVB/lofiversion/index.php?t107.html

I do not know what mechanism on the Glocks prevent it, so I can't help there.

Jim Watson
January 12, 2006, 11:11 AM
I don't worry about it. It would take gross misalignment of working parts.
Most reports of Glocks firing "out of battery" are coverups for screwups by handloaders. Of the two that kaBoomed on the same IDPA stage here last Sunday, one had the firing pin indent perfectly centered on the primer.

The casehead was lost out of the other, but there was no indication of anything causing that event but high pressure, maybe from an overload of fast burning powder or bullet setback in worn range pickup brass.

rocky
January 12, 2006, 11:13 AM
While I do not own a Glock, I feel they are as safe of design (for firing out of battery) than any other gun out there. Lots of PD's and individuals own em, and if they were that bad, I think you would have heard more , or they would be recalled.
I see nothing wrong with Glocks, but prefer something with a manual safety.

1911 guy
January 12, 2006, 11:26 AM
This kind of malfunction is pretty rare. It can happen, but I wouldn't avoid any reputable brand because of it. The odds are very slim of getting an out of battery detonation. "Hammer follow" can happen with 1911's, and I carry them exclusively. Never had it happen to me or anyone I know. With ANY pistol.

Steve499
January 12, 2006, 11:42 AM
I blew up a Winchester made M-1 carbine back in the 70s when it fired out of battery. The problem was not with the design of the rifle, as a matter of fact, it's a tribute to the design that I still have both my eyes and didn't lose any blood at all. The failure was with my reloads which had stretched cases. The case which caused the failure had stretched to just the length where the bolt didn't rotate enough to lock but had rotated enough for the hammer to hit the firing pin. Rimless cases which headspace on the case mouth need to be checked for length if you are reloading them, a step I hadn't taken. My firing out of battery incident wouldn't have happened with factory ammo or a more competent reloading tecnique.

Steve

Inline_6
January 12, 2006, 12:20 PM
It's my understanding that Mr Glock designed his pistols to be capable of firing out of battery. This was to make it uber-reliable so that it will still fire no matter what you have done to abuse the gun. I don't think it's worth it, but I am not convinced it is something to worry over either.

There is a thread at Glocktalk where a guy has been abusing his G21 or a while now... he picks it up, squeezes the trigger and it always goes bang. Part of this is the internal striker (no external hammer to get fouled) and part is that it will fire out of battery. He put an HK USP45C through some of the abuse and it would not fire the first time he pulled the trigger... it is my belief it was slightly out of battery.

It is also my opinion that the level of "goes bang" reliability a Glock gives is excessive. I have never had a problem with Sigs, Paras, HKs, Glocks not performing... but a handgun is still a mechanical device. I'd rather it not go band when out of battery bcz the risk of injury to myself is not worth it. It all goes to tactics... if you are behind cover, or have a backup gun... then you may have to work feverishly to save your hide. But I think it's better than trying to shoot the bad guy and having your gun blow... taking away it's ability to defend you and possibly injuring you to boot.

BigG
January 12, 2006, 12:26 PM
Locked breech firearms have a disconnector system to prevent firing when breech is not in battery. It is extremely rare that such out of battery firing occurs. One way is for a firing pin to get stuck forward by being dirty.

Most reports of Glocks firing "out of battery" are coverups for screwups by handloaders. Of the two that kaBoomed on the same IDPA stage here last Sunday, one had the firing pin indent perfectly centered on the primer. {which indicates the gun was in battery}

The casehead was lost out of the other, but there was no indication of anything causing that event but high pressure, maybe from an overload of fast burning powder or bullet setback in worn range pickup brass.emphasis and {comment} added

I agree wholeheartedly with Jim's observation, above.

The only times I have seen problems with Glocks is with handloading. I checked out the brass the first time I used Glocks and noted the pregnant guppy profile of the lower part of the brass conforming to the feed ramp. I have since chucked Glock brass instead of reloading it while many friends scarf it up and use it until they have an "accident." BTW, the ones who have blown up their guns usually don't seem to be too mechanically iinclined and have bought a progressive press, usually starting with "D" soon after beginning their shooting career.

The same is true of any high intensity autoloading cartridge like .38 Super fired in a 1911 Colt. Chuck the brass. JMTC

middy
January 12, 2006, 04:54 PM
It's my understanding that Mr Glock designed his pistols to be capable of firing out of battery.
Horsefeathers.

TexasRifleman
January 12, 2006, 05:02 PM
It's my understanding that Mr Glock designed his pistols to be capable of firing out of battery. This was to make it uber-reliable so that it will still fire no matter what you have done to abuse the gun. I don't think it's worth it, but I am not convinced it is something to worry over either.



Hah hah... oh that's funny... I can't breathe...... hah hah.......

Did he also design them to explode with handloaded ammo?

Glocks are a fine weapon, but that story is a bit much.....

rero360
January 12, 2006, 05:27 PM
I saw a M16 fire out of battery, the kid shooting it was unharmed, mag, mag release, shot out of the gun and bolt stuck back, man did he get a yellin at by the DIs

azredhawk44
January 12, 2006, 05:39 PM
I have shot my G21 out of battery.

Yes it was with handloads.

I was crimping the bullet too tightly. It did not headspace correctly, the slide got stuck partway into battery but close enough it could fire.

It was also close enough to still contain the pressure.

If the top of the barrel does not line up evenly with the top of the slide on a Glock, you are out of battery.

My G21 is still fine, my reloading technique is much improved, and I've put about 3000 rounds thru this gun between .45acp and .400corbon.

If you handload, make sure you know what you are doing, or else buy nothing but new ammo. No need to fear the glock, though. It will take abuse.

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