3 position decocker/safeties not as cool as I thought?


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Scott_S84
September 6, 2008, 08:54 PM
So I was talking to some fellow shooters at the range today and mentioned my Browning Pro -9 and how great its 3 position decocker/safety was. When I first discovered that feature I thought wow why don't more gun makers design it into their guns. It seems however that I'm alone in thinking that it is a highly desireable feature. I sought out and paid an extra 40$ for the gun over its FN brother because of it. I intitially bought it to familiarize myself with SA/DA guns and to try to master the DA/SA transition but it was nice knowing I could carry it cocked and locked if my usual carry guns(S&W M&P's) failed somehow. The decocker made that sort of practice very easy and it was an excellent way to familiarize my mother with Semi-autos. So does anyone else like these kind of safeties? The only other guns that have them that I'm aware of are the Taurus PT-92/99 and the HK Mk.23. Granted I am trying to sell it as I've got plenty of pistols and have been bitten by the AR bug and those things are damned expensive but I'd like to know other forum goers thoughts.

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Treo
September 6, 2008, 09:52 PM
I like the idea but I hate the gun (Taurus) it's on

The Lone Haranguer
September 6, 2008, 10:13 PM
The idea is good on paper, I guess, but select a gun based on your needs, not on what other people think is "cool." Also, this type of safety gives you a number of choices of carry modes (hammer down for DA first shot/safety off, hammer down/safety on, cocked and locked), but IMO you should experiment, select the mode you're most comfortable with and stick with it to avoid confusion under stress.

Jason_G
September 6, 2008, 10:49 PM
The H&K USP and the HK45 can be had like that. "Variant 1" is what it's called on those two models. I have a USP like that, and I think it's the best of both worlds. I like it.

Jason

wally
September 7, 2008, 12:25 AM
I think its a great idea that makes it easy to demonstrate the superiority of cocked and locked over DA/SA operation.

The feature I really wish more gun makers would pick up is allowing the slide to be racked for loading and unloading with the safety on -- the one thing Tanfoglio improved from the CZ75 when they made the EAA Witness guns.

--wally.

skinewmexico
September 7, 2008, 01:22 AM
I don't like any pistols with manual safeties. Technology has moved on.

basicblur
September 7, 2008, 01:43 AM
It seems however that I'm alone in thinking that it is a highly desireable feature.
You're not, but if you find yourself turning into a pragmatist, be prepared for the ridicule you'll find hurled your way! :what:

As another poster, I also have an HK USPC in Variant 1. 'Bout the safest way for a civilian to carry IMO-multiple options, and if you don't want the safety on, you don't have to use it.
BTW...to me HK and 1911s have the best safeties I've seen so far. The lever is big enough, solid enough, & works in the "correct" direction-unlike my S&W 4013TSW, which requires a "thumbs up" to knock the safety off. :banghead:

loop
September 7, 2008, 06:43 AM
+1 Wally.

Best feature I've seen yet on a self-stuffer.

Don't need a decocker because I'll carry cocked and locked or hammer down on an empty chamber. I hate DA first and SA second. Makes me neurotic on the firing line.

Last thing I want in my life is a schizophrenic pistol.

krs
September 7, 2008, 07:45 AM
That feature is the reason that my old Smith & Wesson 469 is still with me. It's got a long heavy double action pull for first round OR if I decock on a loaded chamber with the safety left off it holds the hammer back far enough to use my thumb to bring it to full cock if time allows. The single action pull is light and crisp.

VERY ugly gun, but I still go to it when I walk around here, and it's fairly small for 12+1 capacity.

Siderite
September 7, 2008, 12:42 PM
Scott_S84, welcome to THR! (though it looks like you've been lurking for a while, that's fine too - I started the same way).

At first, I also liked the idea, having seen it on the Taurus PT92. However, I found that un-safing quickly (as if under stress), I might end up holding the decocker down, and end up pulling the trigger with no result. That ruled the Taurus out for a serious gun. I don't know if the Browning suffers from that problem, but I'd recommend checking if there's a chance you may carry it.

HB
September 7, 2008, 01:06 PM
I don't like any pistols with manual safeties. Technology has moved on.

I guess you also like heavy triggers and grip safeties? or revolvers, on which I agree

HB

basicblur
September 7, 2008, 01:17 PM
Technology has moved on.
That may be, but unfortunately, humans have not.

BHPshooter
September 7, 2008, 01:44 PM
Initially, that was the one thing that kinda bothered me about the FNP series, as opposed to the Browning Pro-series. I liked that the Browning had the 3-position safety. Many options, which I would think would appeal to the widest audience.

I believe Browning Dropped the Pro-series, which kind of sucks.

However, now FN has SAO FNPs, which I like even better. That's just my opinion -- and it surely won't appeal to nearly as many consumers -- but it's my personal slice of pie.

Wes

DWARREN123
September 7, 2008, 06:27 PM
I like the minimum amount of controls on my pistols, less to do or mess up.

M&PVolk
September 7, 2008, 06:47 PM
I really like a 3 position safety. I will never understand why some people don't like options.

I think decocked with safety off is the safest way to carry. You get a genuine revolver type feel on that first pull that makes accidental discharge under stress much less likely, and you get precision follow up shots once you return to SA.

Cocked and locked is great if you don't miss the safety under stress. Botch that, and you may have a very expensive club in your hands.

I carry a DA only M&P .40, as it fits me like a glove, but I would love a triple action safety. I believe point and shoot is the best way to handle defense, but a long first pull helps prevent accidents under duress.

Tribal
September 8, 2008, 12:43 AM
I actually really like the three-position switch on my USPc. Decocked-and-locked works well for me and makes me a little more comfortable than single-action 1911s and BHPs.

Cocked and locked is great if you don't miss the safety under stress. Botch that, and you may have a very expensive club in your hands.

I have to say that I never understood this argument. Wouldn't you just flick your thumb again if you missed it the first time?

Trebor
September 8, 2008, 12:49 AM
The problem with a three position safety that goes from "Safe" to "Fire" to "Decock" is that under stress you can thumb the safety down from "Safe" to "Fire" and accidentilly go all the way to "Decock."

I believe John Farnam reported this happening to some of his students in training classes.

Granted, the gun will still fire if you accidentilly decocked it, but now you've lost that SA trigger pull.

It's up to you to determine how much of a drawback this is to you, but you asked about possible downsides, and that is a very real downside.

Personally, I want either a simple decocker or a safety that goes down for "Fire." No slide mounted safeties that go up for "Fire" and no triple position safety/decockers. If I want a gun with a safety, I'll buy one, and if I want a gun with a decocker, I'll buy one of those.

Disaster
September 8, 2008, 11:44 AM
I read about the argument of accidently decocking but I can't see it being a real problem for anyone who spends the proper amount of time becoming familiar with their sidearm.

On the USP, you really have to go wayyyyy past safety off to decock. If you were so hyped up, you did that, I'm sure you'd have plenty of hype to squeeze through a DA pull.

Mad Magyar
September 8, 2008, 12:26 PM
Personally, I want either a simple decocker or a safety that goes down for "Fire." No slide mounted safeties that go up for "Fire
Well, that eliminates my PPK.....I find it interesting that in some of the posts above some all of sudden see that flicking safety under stress can be problematic.
These comments were conspicuously absent when discussing "cocked-n-locked" threads vs racking a slide.....:rolleyes:

M&PVolk
September 8, 2008, 09:10 PM
It's not that hitting the safety is difficult, but assuming a worst case scenario when you have someone on top of you or someone who has delivered a blow already, it might be surprisingly difficult to hit that safety. That's why I like the decocker...carry decocked with safety off. Long first pull, nothing to try and switch off.

wally
September 8, 2008, 09:31 PM
If you can get the gun out of its holster, you can get the safety off as it clears leather. I wipe off the safety as I draw even if the gun doesn't have a safety.

Other than range toys, I won't buy a gun with a safety that rotates the wrong way!

--wally.

Jason_G
September 8, 2008, 09:55 PM
The problem with a three position safety that goes from "Safe" to "Fire" to "Decock" is that under stress you can thumb the safety down from "Safe" to "Fire" and accidentilly go all the way to "Decock."

I believe John Farnam reported this happening to some of his students in training classes.
Familiarization. It's pretty hard to accidentally decock a USP going from safe to fire. You have to go way down with it, and pass up a stiff and easily felt and heard "click."

Jason

NG VI
September 9, 2008, 09:07 AM
Familiarization. It's pretty hard to accidentally decock a USP going from safe to fire. You have to go way down with it, and pass up a stiff and easily felt and heard "click."

Jason

I find the same thing, the USP decocker is a very conscious device, it does not just smoothly slide through fire into decock.

sqlbullet
September 9, 2008, 11:34 AM
I had a Taurus in 40S&W with this feature almost 15 years ago. Normally being a cocked and locked guy, I too expected a best of all worlds flexibility.

I had the exact issue expressed by a couple of others. In rapid draw drills with a range buddy timing me, I would sweep the safety too far about 30% of the time. This left me with a DA pull.

I have no experience with this concept executed in any other handgun. The HK or Browning may not give me the same problem. I do like the concept.

Snipe315
October 10, 2008, 06:03 AM
Well my favorite pistol right now is my USPf 45.

The only thing I don't love about it is that I OFTEN will accidentally decock the pistol when trying to just take it off safe.

:banghead:

I can see where it would be very hard NOT to do this under stress. I've thought about changing it to Variant 9 which doesn't have a decocker for this single reason.

Of course, my USP is over a decade old and has tens of thousands of round thru it so that might be why it is so well worn in.

:rolleyes:

RX-178
October 10, 2008, 06:17 AM
When my USP45 Tactical was brand new (it's only a year old now though) I had to actually change my grip on the weapon to force that decocker down. It's easier to operate nowadays, but still not something I could do by accident. We'll see if that changes as time goes on.

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