Just wondering for any owners of Semi-AUtos
and especially 1911 users, before going to a beavertail
grip safety equipped model was Hammer Bite on the
web of the hand an Issue?
I shot the 1911A1s back in the day in the USN but only
once did I get a slight mark on the web of my hand and get
bit, so to speak. Now it seems most 1911s have the Commander
style hammer and beavertail - is it really necessary?
The Walther PPK/S also seems to be a biter bt I've never
shot one. BhPs and CZ 75Bs got commander style hammers as well
with some variants getting a re-sculpted rear frame tang.
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Guy de Loimbard
August 12, 2008, 05:19 PM
I have both a 1911 and a CZ-82, both of them have the spur hammer. Neither of them has bitten me.
August 12, 2008, 05:45 PM
My dad just bought a SA G.I 1911 with a traditional safety, and he is very large with very meaty hands. I warned him about the possibility, we'll see what happens when he shoots it.
August 12, 2008, 05:48 PM
I have never had a 1911 (GI, Commercial Colt) bite me, never.
August 12, 2008, 05:52 PM
Been bit by BHP's w/ spur hammers. Can't recall getting hit w/ 1911's, however. My old Colt NRM Series 80 had a spur hammer, never bit me once. And I hold as high as humanly possible, too.
August 12, 2008, 05:52 PM
I have been shooting 1911's since the early 70's. Most have been with the the old spur hammer and orginal type grip safety.
I have NEVER been bitten by a hammer. I have large, but not "beefy" hands. So, I like my 1911's just like JMB designed them. Or at least the 1911A1 version.
It is what I carry ....
August 12, 2008, 06:04 PM
No hammer bite for me.
August 12, 2008, 06:16 PM
Ive been bitten by some 1911's, and not by others. Same goes for the High Powers. Its usually not a common thing for me, but it can happen. Some guns just bite, or you do something you normally dont when it does.
My PPK's were vicious, and drew blood every time I shot them.
August 12, 2008, 06:37 PM
I've only been bitten by a PPK(multiple times). However I have fired many different autos. Yes, it does hurt.
August 12, 2008, 06:40 PM
BlindJustice; you just brought up an old fear from when I was about 9 yrs old back in 1951. I saw a man get bit in the web of his hand, and of course to a young lad, it looked bigger than life. I remember seeing lots of blood, and that remembrance kept ME away from .45's most of my life.
Even in the war in NAM, they tried to give me a .45, and I wouldn't have it. Took a Military .38 instead. My younger brother finally introduced me to the GI .45 later on, and I just loved it. Never been bitten either. :D
August 12, 2008, 07:22 PM
Heh, Sagetown, you just reminded me of my one and only time I got
bit in the web of my shooting hand.... my Dad always bought me as a
kid the cheapest bb gun, .22 LR, etc. I had a single shot 12 guage
shotgun from Western Auto - whatever they rebadged the cheap line of
guns they gcarried. One time out at the farm I shot from the hip, swinging
at a cottontail with a loose grip - yup the tang that pivoted to
break open the action went into the web of my hand. I pulled my
hand off of it - looked at the tear in the web of my hand then it filled
with blood - I wrapped a hankerchief around the hand - I had to ride my
motorcycle 5 miles to town - I took 5 stitches on that one.
August 12, 2008, 07:43 PM
Many of the "Mil-Spec" 1911s produced today have a longer spur on the grip safety that helps prevent hammerbite.
When a person shoots a real M1911 with the stubby grip safety spur, or a Sistema with the wide spur hammer, while using a high grip on the gun, hammerbite is possible.
I wrote a bit about hammerbite here (http://xavierthoughts.blogspot.com/2006/08/hammerbite.html), with illustrations. That short article effectively sums up my experience. Some pistols are prone to it. Others are not. Some people are prone to it with certain pistols because of the grip they use. With other pistols in these folk's hands, it is not an issue.
Hammerbite (http://xavierthoughts.blogspot.com/2006/08/hammerbite.html) does exist with some pistols, for some people, using certain grips on the gun. If that is you, the problem can be solved by revising the grip safety, either a longer spur or a beavertail, bobbing or swapping the hammer, or changing your grip. How one choses to resolve the problem is a personal choice.
August 12, 2008, 10:11 PM
Ah yes. Hammerus chomperus, it hurtemus. Walther PPK/S - absolutely. Still hurts when I think about it Grrrr!!! One reason I don't own one anymore. A similar gun -The Sig P230 or P232 is not nearly as prone to it. Um, even with Cor-Bon! Which reminds me, I'm suppose to buy one of these soon. Hmmmmmm...
As for the 1911-A1, only once, but my fault. The lil' Springfield Compact from the 1990's. However THE reason I use the beavertail grip safety is not for that. I used either a Wilson Combat or Ed Brown beavertail on guns that I set up because after the gun modification required to fit the part, it makes the gun feel alot better in the hand, greatly improves recoil and hand positioning control when firing - especially when doing it fast.
August 12, 2008, 10:22 PM
I have a small scar on the web of my primary shootin' hand from M1911 hammer bites.
Probably has to do with how you grip your pistol. I use as high a grip as I can on my M1911s.
Main reason why all my primary M1911s have spur hammers and beavertails.
August 12, 2008, 10:25 PM
Yes on PPK, BHP, certain 1911's. This is more to do with my grip, I'd suggest, than the actual firearm: I'm willing to take a few scratches for the gain in controllability.
Using a non-beavertail 1911 as a baseline, I can easily fire several hundred rounds before I even notice any ill effects: to me, the benefits gained outweigh the need to shift my grip.
I choke all my handguns very high on the grip: just the way I was trained and am comfortable shooting - and it's worked well for me to date, so I don't see dropping to avoid a few bites.
Yes, I know this methodology will be picked apart :)
August 12, 2008, 10:43 PM
I've never been bitten by the 1911, either in the Service, or during the many years since; no problem with the ppk or ppk/s either.
I have large hands, but they're lean.
August 12, 2008, 11:02 PM
Nope, its never been a problem for me.
August 12, 2008, 11:34 PM
It's a problem for me. I grip high and have fat hands. A beavertail grip safety is a must on a 1911 for me. I can't shoot a stock BHP, CZ75, or glock without getting some kind of bite. M&Ps are comfortable to shoot.
Before my first 1911, I just knew I wanted a BHP and one day walked into a store with the money to buy one. I racked the 40 BHP once and it was obvious hammer bite would be a serious issue. I ended up shooting some different 45s and buying a 1911A1 with a fitted beavertail instead. It was comfortable and easy to shoot. Best of all, no blisters or gashes on my hand after a few boxes of ammo.
I recently had a chance to handle a stock WW1 era 1911 45. I racked the slide and the web of my hand was caught between the hammer spur and grip safety; that really hurt. It was a beautiful pistol, but I had no interest in joining others to shoot it.
August 12, 2008, 11:51 PM
I haven't been bitten by a hammer, but my friend has a px4 that likes to grab my finger under the trigger. My trigger finger ends up numb, every time I shoot it.
August 13, 2008, 12:04 AM
Yep. My Rocks and my Colts all bite my fat hand. Not bad, just little "love nips".