How safe are 1911's to carry cocked and locked?


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Topgun121
January 2, 2009, 10:40 AM
I see that most everyone on the board carries their 1911's cocked and locked. The reason I am asking of how safe they are, is that I just bought my first 1911, a Kimber, and in the manual it says to never carry it cocked, and never carry a round in the chamber. I realize for SD purposes that a round not in the chamber is in essence me carrying a brick. But as far as it being cocked, why would Kimber say not to do this? Is it really a safety issue, or is it just legal reasons for them having to state that?

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geronimo509
January 2, 2009, 10:47 AM
Use the search function, there are a million topics on this.

orchidhunter
January 2, 2009, 10:57 AM
Topgun121, That is Kimber looking out for Kimber. It is as safe as you are, to carry a 1911 type pistol cocked and locked. orchidhunter

exflatlander
January 2, 2009, 11:35 AM
"why would Kimber say not to do this"

Lawyers

General Geoff
January 2, 2009, 12:53 PM
Cocked & locked, THREE separate actions must happen for the weapon to be discharged.

1. The manual safety switch must be disengaged.
2. The grip safety must be engaged.
3. The trigger must be pulled.

That seems pretty safe to me. Millions of others over the past 100 yards would probably agree.

CrankyOldGuy
January 2, 2009, 01:26 PM
I've never carried a 1911 any other way but condition 1.
It is designed to be carried in this manner.
Otherwise you have an awkward club.

There is enough delay presenting from a holster, particularly if the presentation is from a concealed carry location. If you need to draw a handgun, someone is in imminent danger of grevious bodily injury, extra time may not be a luxury you can afford.

You do need to learn and practice how to properly draw the 1911, and at what step to disengage the manual safety. (as well as how to re-engage and properly holster)

As far as why Kimber says this, I've never seen any firearms manufacturer recommend a chambered round for carry. The lawyers win on this one. But common sense dictates otherwise.

wtfd661
January 2, 2009, 01:50 PM
I always carry mine cocked and locked, in my opinion there is no other safer gun out there if you are going to carry for SD. As it has been said you have to disengage the thumb safety, grip it to disengage the grip safety, put your finger on the trigger, and then pull it before it will go off. Now you will find some people who argue against carrying a 1911 for those very same reasons, stating that it takes to many things to happen before you can shoot the gun and that is why they won't carry one and instead carry other configurations ie, DAO,DA/SA, etc. Go out and shoot the crap out of your new Kimber and become familiar and confident with it. If you can try to take a firearms course from a reputable trainer to further educate and become more proficient with your gun. Good luck to you.

FoMoGo
January 2, 2009, 02:30 PM
I've never carried a 1911 any other way but condition 1.
It is designed to be carried in this manner.
The 1911 was actually designed WITHOUT a thumb safety.
The thumb safety was added at the request of the cavalry.
Cocked and locked didnt become popular till Jeff Cooper started advocating it.
I carry mine C&L too tho. ;)


Jim

dmazur
January 2, 2009, 02:38 PM
I have Colt Commanders from two different "generations" of manufacture. The first one is a "pre-80" and it came with an owner's manual that included instructions on how to detail-strip it. There is a caution, "When the pistol is loaded, do not allow the hammer to remain in the Safety (half cock) notch." There is a great explanation of how the 1911 works, including delayed blowback. There is nothing about modes of carry, and, while the various safeties are described, there is nothing describing when the Safety Lock (thumb safety) should be used.

The second is a Series 80 Commander. Its manual is quite a bit different. There is no description on detail-stripping. In fact, the manual says, "Do not strip your pistol further than previously described." There is a new section, "Carrying Modes", that describes

Mode 1: Magazine empty, chamber empty
Mode 2: Magazine loaded, chamber empty, hammer down
Mode 3: Magazine loaded, chamber loaded, hammer cocked, safety on

Colt advises the owner to use Mode 2 (Condition 3) when carrying the pistol ready for use, and to use Mode 3 (Condition 1) when you must be prepared to use the pistol immediately without warning.

I also like the repeated warning

"Warning: When you squeeze the trigger, you must expect the gun to fire and you must take full responsibility for firing it. Your care can avoid accidental discharge, and you will thereby avoid accidental injury and death."

So, yes, times have changed. The courts have forced the manufacturers to bend over backwards to try to make a product, and a user's manual, that is idiot-proof. It is not a reassuring development. If you don't follow the user's manual, you are afraid you are doing something wrong. What's worse, you might be afraid it will be used against you at some time in the future.

Other than the addition of the firing pin safety, there is no functional difference between these two pistols. Yet look at the difference in the manuals!

Do I carry both in Condition 1? Sure. Do I detail-strip both? Sure.

(However, I am aware that the older Commander doesn't have a firing pin safety. I replaced its firing pin with a titanium one, duplicating what Springfield Armory did to get its 1911's to pass a drop test.)

It's a shame to see common sense, useful information being replaced by "fear of litigation" nonsense.

PcolaDawg
January 2, 2009, 03:36 PM
Hey guys, I know this topic has probably been beat to death, but I'm a handgun noob and this has really helped. I was scared to carry my new Kimber cocked and locked. Meanwhile, I have no worry at all carrying my revolvers with a round in the chamber, even though they have no safety at all other than my trigger finger.

So, even though many of you are repeating the obvious, and repeating things you've learned ages ago, it's helped me to see the obvious.

So thanks. :)

nalioth
January 2, 2009, 03:40 PM
and in the manual it says to never carry it cocked, and never carry a round in the chamber. The manual was written by lawyers.

Welcome to the 21st Century.

1911shooter
January 2, 2009, 03:51 PM
Its a safe as any other type of carry for pistols its the guy behind it that makes it dangerous. i carry a 1911 everyday, and i own a whole lot of them they are one of the finest no i'm sorry the finest fighting pistol ever made. the only reason the Kimber manual states to never ever carry with the hammer cocked and the chamber loaded is that the manual was written by lawyers. this way if you shoot your self they can say see we told them not to bo that. and they are safe from all liability. then again if you shoot your self with it you already broke one of the most impotant safty rules of all. keep your finger of the trigger till you are on target.

rino451
January 2, 2009, 03:52 PM
Lawyers, and the undeveloped ego's of those who can't admit that they shot themselves and insist that it's the guns fault. I lump this group into the same group as the guy allegedly suing S&W for cutting his thumb off with his .500.:barf:

Topgun121
January 2, 2009, 03:55 PM
Thanks for the relpies. i realize the 'cocked and locked' issue has been debated, it is just the 'legal/instruction manual' part that got me thinking. If I were involved in a shooting, I would hate to be bastardized by the courts since my 'instruction manual' said never to carry that way, therefore, I am negligent or some bull.

Deanimator
January 2, 2009, 05:31 PM
Thanks for the relpies. i realize the 'cocked and locked' issue has been debated, it is just the 'legal/instruction manual' part that got me thinking. If I were involved in a shooting, I would hate to be bastardized by the courts since my 'instruction manual' said never to carry that way, therefore, I am negligent or some bull.
That's the ONE thing that I've NEVER seen ANY evidence of, PERIOD.

You can debate reloads for self-defense.
You can debate hollowpoints for self-defense.
You can debate trigger jobs for self-defense.

I've NEVER even HEARD of cocked and locked being an issue.

Of course if your firearm isn't in a state where it can be used for self-defense, you'll never be arrested or sued for using it. The guy who murders you might, though.

SSN Vet
January 2, 2009, 07:59 PM
well if you can prevent yourself from doing the following three things ...

1. depressing grip safety
2. flipping off the thumb safety
3. pulling the trigger
4. pointing the firearm at something you don't want to shoot

then it should be very safe.

Elbert P . Suggins
January 2, 2009, 11:44 PM
After sliding one into the chamber do some if not all of you reload another round into the magazine or do you leave it at that? And does a full 1911 magazine under a full chamber cause any problems with the second round? And I have a SA GI.

burningsquirrels
January 2, 2009, 11:50 PM
millions for almost a hundred years agree - this is a cock n' lock pistol.

is it safe? read above.

that kimber manual is probably just for legal crap, before some hippie liberal or brady bunch carries it loaded, shoots self in foot, and sues kimber for not warning him so.

brisendines
January 2, 2009, 11:55 PM
Been carried that way for 100 years, right? I share the opinion that the 1911 is one of the most safe pistols to carry out there. Plus, they're GORGEOUS!!!!

ModificationVt
January 3, 2009, 12:05 AM
1. The manual safety switch must be disengaged.
2. The grip safety must be engaged.
3. The trigger must be pulled.

Many people carry XD's that only require Grip safety and trigger pull to fire, and MANY people carry Glock that only requires trigger pull, and most of those end up with out incident. 1911 cocked and locked is safe.

Walkalong
January 3, 2009, 08:23 AM
That is Kimber looking out for Kimber. It is as safe as you are, to carry a 1911 type pistol cocked and locked. Yep. C&L is the way to go with a 1911. Just remember, it's a gun, and it's dangerous. They would not be any good to us if they weren't. You still have to pull the weapon, point it at something you want to harm, take off the safety, and pull the trigger.

hk lover
January 3, 2009, 08:53 AM
Just makesure you dont carry it hammer down on a live round VERY UNSAFE.When u have a chambered round and you pull the trigger to release the hammer you have defeated all the safetys except grip and keeping your finger off the trigger,THE MOST IMPORTANT SAFETY OF ALL

Doc_Jude
January 3, 2009, 08:54 AM
1911 was made for condition one carry, it's two safeties away from being able to fire. What's the big deal again?

Calhoun321
January 3, 2009, 12:25 PM
It appears from this thread that many who are carrying 1911s don't know how they work.

The short answer is that they are NOT safe to carry cocked and locked. This is because they do not have a firing pin safety. A blow to the muzzle can cause a discharge. A blow to the hammer or a failure of the sear can also cause a discharge. I 1911 in perfect working order can probably be dropped at least once in one of these ways without discharging. However, you will then have to inspect the parts such as the sear for damage. If you have a firing pin spring that is weakened through use, you will be more prone to accidental discharge.

Having said all of the above. If you like the 1911 format, and it is a fine format. I would 100% endorse the series 80 colts which do have a firing pin safety and are safe to carry.

I did carry a series 70 for a while. I changed when doing a training class with a top nationally known 1911 smith who advised me not to carry it due to the AD risk. He recommended the Colt if I wanted to stay with the 1911. Incidently, he carried a Ruger revolver (that also tells me something).

Guillermo
January 3, 2009, 12:40 PM
There is another carry condition other than cocked and locked?

Walkalong
January 3, 2009, 01:07 PM
The short answer is that they are NOT safe to carry cocked and locked. This is because they do not have a firing pin safety. A blow to the muzzle can cause a discharge. A blow to the hammer or a failure of the sear can also cause a discharge.
A non issue if you don't run around beating your muzzle on things. Firing pin safeties were an answer to a non problem (please list actual accidental shootings of this nature) It is there to make lawyers happy. No other reason.

wyocarp
January 3, 2009, 01:11 PM
I realize for SD purposes that a round not in the chamber is in essence me carrying a brick.

I have to take issues with this kind of blanket statement that makes a lot of assumptions that are very seldom true.

Calhoun321
January 3, 2009, 01:59 PM
Well, actually I read military analysis of the 1911 that indicated ADs from drops were a problem. I believe it was a report on testing performed by the Navy in the 50s or 60s. Its been a few years since I read it.

Again, its not just muzzle impact that can cause a discharge.

gc70
January 3, 2009, 02:11 PM
Again, its not just muzzle impact that can cause a discharge.

A blow to the hammer or a failure of the sear can also cause a discharge.

Would you care to explain how a cocked and locked 1911 would have a such discharge? Reference to the excellent illustrations of the operation of the thumb safety in Volume II (pages 10-11) of Kuhnhausen's 1911 manual would be helpful in any such explanation.

maxxwilde
January 3, 2009, 05:15 PM
Elbert Said:After sliding one into the chamber do some if not all of you reload another round into the magazine or do you leave it at that? And does a full 1911 magazine under a full chamber cause any problems with the second round? And I have a SA GI.

I always top off my magazine. Never had a problem in my Rock Island with the second round feeding with the mag topped off and one in the chamber, but I'm no expertLOL
I DO know for awhile I was loading the same 9 rounds of hollowpoint into the magazine when I was loading the gun for home defense after a range trip. I started to see some of of the bullets getting pushed back into the case, little by little. Wasn't sure if that would be bad over the long run so I fired those off quick at my next range outing.
Again, I'm no expert, just my experiences.


M

possum
January 3, 2009, 05:20 PM
kimber is watching their butts legally that is what that is all about.

you wil be fine, imho that is the only way to carry a 1911, people have been doing it for years, and that is the standard.

Beagle-zebub
January 3, 2009, 06:28 PM
Couldn't the plunger-tube pin come partially unstaked, allowing the safety to be tripped off with less-than-usual effort. Those things come unstaked a lot, don't they?

unisonic12
January 3, 2009, 06:33 PM
The short answer is that they are NOT safe to carry cocked and locked. This is because they do not have a firing pin safety. A blow to the muzzle can cause a discharge. A blow to the hammer or a failure of the sear can also cause a discharge.

Uh, ever hear of the Schwartz safety? My Kimber has a firing pin block very similar to what my Glocks and Kahrs have. A "lifting pin" pushes the spring loaded firing pin plunger up and out of the way when firing. Except my Kimber disengages the firing pin safety when the grip safety is squeezed, unlike Glocks and Kahrs which use the trigger pull to disengage the safety. NO WAY in the world is my Kimber going to discharge if dropped.

As far as Kimber saying you shouldn't carry it cocked and locked. Lots of gun manufacturers say it shouldn't even be loaded until you are actually ready to shoot. Well, I carry every day with a round chambered with no intention of actually shooting. Never had a problem, either, with various carry guns.

Calhoun321
January 3, 2009, 06:57 PM
Yes, series 2 kimbers have a FP safety.

Damage to the sear face or the sear engagements hooks can result in a hammer drop. Ever heard of hammer follow? Ever herd of the 1911 going full auto? Same problem, different symptom.

unisonic12
January 3, 2009, 07:13 PM
Calhoun, I was just commenting on your blanket statement that 1911s are not safe to carry locked and cocked, which is NOT true. Even if the hammer slipped off the sear on my Kimber, there's always the half cocked position that would catch it. Remember that? Even it did fall all the way and contacted the hammer, it still wouldn't fire because the grip safety would NOT be depressed. As far as hammer follow, that's a completely different type of malfunction that could happen when actually shooting, but not when carrying. However, since my Kimber has a firing pin block safety, if I caught it in time, I could stop the "full auto" malfunction by loosening my grip and releasing the grip safety so the firing pin safety would re-engage. But, anyway, my Kimber would NEVER go "full auto" if dropped muzzle down because the first round would never fire because the firing pin can't even extend past the breech face due to the firing pin block safety.

exflatlander
January 3, 2009, 07:37 PM
I understand these extra safety features have their place, but in my opinion (and that's all this is) if you need mechanics beyond than standard 1911 safeties than you shouldn't be carrying a single action with a chambered round.

The biggest safety is still between your ears. I can't remember ever dropping a loaded gun. If you can't keep it under control than you shouldn't be carrying it.

If your job entails physical movement of some type where a gun could come un-holstered than you need a better holster, preferrably with a thumbstrap.

tipoc
January 3, 2009, 07:55 PM
Calhoun321s statement that 1911s are not safe seems to fall under the category that any gun that is broken or has a mechanical fault can be unsafe. If a 1911 is somehow defective it can be as unsafe as any other type gun with worn or defective parts. No more so, no less so.

The purpose of the Colt series 80 firing pin safety and of Kimber's version of the old Colt Schwartz safety are to make a safe gun even safer. These safeties were specifically designed to prevent a 1911 with the hammer down on a live round that was dropped from a height of 10 feet onto a concrete floor from discharging. In it's original form a 1911 dropped from a height of 10 feet onto a concrete or steel deck could discharge if the weight of the firing pin overcame the resistance of the firing pin spring and caused the pin to strike the primer with enough force to set off the round. This could happen and did in tests. So the extra parts were added to make a safe gun even safer. An extra strength firing pin spring from Wolffs also does the same thing.

1911's are safe to carry cocked and locked. In the odd event that you drop your gun while you have the hammer down on a live round from 10 feet up and it lands just right and you don't have an extra strength firing pin spring in it, it may discharge. So try to avoid that.

tipoc

Calhoun321
January 3, 2009, 08:54 PM
The grip safety ONLY prevents trigger movement. If the hammer is moving (without the trigger having been pulled) the grip safety will do nothing to prevent an AD. The half cock on the series 70 is a good safety feature when combined with a good FP spring. It will prevent 95% of ADs. The recommended interval for FP spring change is 3000 rounds IIRC (just like recoil springs). How many people change them????? Weakend FP springs in a series 70 gun are trouble waiting to happen. How many people inspect their sears and hooks or even know how?

Again, my views are from doing a little study and smithing on a 1911 and from discussing this specific issue with one of the top 10 (or higher) 1911 smiths. I will not give a name (simple respect), but he is still in business and would be recognized by everyone who knows 1911s.

The 1911 is a GREAT gun, but it is appropriate for far fewer people than are carrying it IMHO.

mpmarty
January 3, 2009, 09:14 PM
Wow! Anyone care to compare the necessary chain of events to cause an AD in a 1911 with ... Glocks? And Glocks are absolutely safe cause the police all carry them. Sorry for the sarcasm but in my humble opinion, the 1911 C&L is the safest way to carry a serious self defense weapon. Anything "safer" is just not as good at its intended purpose, that of delivering large effective bullets quickly with decent accuracy while being narrow enough to carry comfortably.

gc70
January 3, 2009, 09:35 PM
Damage to the sear face or the sear engagements hooks can result in a hammer drop. Ever heard of hammer follow? Ever herd of the 1911 going full auto? Same problem, different symptom.

Nope, I have never heard of hammer follow or going full auto with the thumb safety engaged.

For a 1911 to fire with the thumb safety engaged, either: the entire nose or both feet of the sear would have to break off, or; both the full-cock and the half-cock-notch (pre-80) or follow-through stop ledge (series 80) would have to break. Those are not breakages that occur spontaneously while a 1911 is being carried cocked and locked and would be exceeding rare if a 1911 was bashed directly on the hammer.

gc70
January 3, 2009, 09:36 PM
double

gc70
January 3, 2009, 09:57 PM
triple

pith43
January 3, 2009, 10:57 PM
1911's are safe to carry cocked and locked. In the odd event that you drop your gun while you have the hammer down on a live round from 10 feet up and it lands just right and you don't have an extra strength firing pin spring in it, it may discharge. So try to avoid that.

Got a good giggle out of that.


Just for fun I did a couple of Google searches:

1) 1911 accidental discharge: Got mostly gun forums debating the possibilities of a 1911 discharge.

2) Glock accidental discharge: Got mostly news stories on...Glock accidental discharges.

geronimo509
January 4, 2009, 12:04 AM
+1

I feel more comfortable with a 1911C&L that a glock or xd (without new thumb safety) with a round chambered.

Beagle-zebub
January 4, 2009, 12:30 AM
Glock accidental discharge: Got mostly news stories on...Glock accidental discharges.

Well, to be fair, the Glock is issued to police (who are mostly not gun guys) far, far more often, while the 1911 is mostly just the choice of people savvy enough to know all the idiosyncrasies of the design--I think this is a case of pretty significant selection-bias. A Glock-like design with some sort of manual safety, like in certain XD45s, would be ideal, I think.

What do you 1911 guys have to say with regard to pre-series 70 designs? Without the firing-pin block or the half-cock notch, it sounds like it would be a relatively bad choice for carry. Granted, it would still be fine 99.9% of the time, but that one in a thousand can really ruin your day.

Guillermo
January 4, 2009, 12:37 AM
This is all rather interesting. While it is possible to make a 1911 fire if you were to "power dribble" it in reality, it is unlikely. Impossible? No. On the other hand practicality happens.

I used to carry a Combat Commander and always carried it cocked and locked. I have never had an unintended discharge and I handle a loaded gun virtually every day.

Of course I always use a holster and don't put my finger into the trigger guard until I am ready to shoot. If you follow those rules you could carry your 1911 cocked and UNLOCKED.

Calhoun321
January 4, 2009, 01:56 AM
GC, I have never heard of a 1911 going full auto or having hammer follow while the safety is engaged. I have, however, heard of them firing when the thumb safety is disengaged due to damage to the lockwork.

gc70
January 4, 2009, 02:14 AM
GC, I have never heard of a 1911 going full auto or having hammer follow while the safety is engaged. I have, however, heard of them firing when the thumb safety is disengaged due to damage to the lockwork.

Certainly, Calhoun321. There are several ways a 1911 can go full auto or have hammer follow, but those things would occur when the safety was disengaged and when chambering a round or firing the gun.

The OP's question was "How safe are 1911's to carry cocked and locked?" If you can successfully chamber a round and engage the thumb safety, a 1911 is pretty darned safe to carry in cocked and locked mode. Dropping a 1911 without a firing pin safety on the muzzle or hammer, particularly when the thumb safety is not engaged, is another matter.

CDH
January 4, 2009, 09:33 AM
My stainless Commander is always carried Cocked and Locked, specifically because it's the safest way to carry a 1911 and still have it ready for immediate action.

I've read several good articles on the subject, but this is my favorite:

http://smartcarry.com/cocklock.htm

Calhoun321
January 4, 2009, 12:30 PM
GC, we're probably in pretty close agreement overall.

I have heard of a sear shattering (I don't recall the circumstances). Perhaps it was made with MIM. If that occured during the drop of a series 70 gun, it would be very prone to firing.

I know tests have shown a muzzle drop onto a hard surface from around 10 feet is necessary for a AD. I'm not overly concerned about such a discharge. However, I have done a little informal drop testing with a 1911. In doing so I found that a loaded 1911 will be much more likely to impact on the hammer than the muzzle, hence my concern over the necessity of the lockwork being in perfect working order for it to be safe. Again, I fear that most 1911 shooters do not have the technical knowledge to know if their gun is in "perfect working order".

unisonic12
January 4, 2009, 01:03 PM
Again, I fear that most 1911 shooters do not have the technical knowledge to know if their gun is in "perfect working order".

Why? It ain't that hard. Just check the thumb and grip safety independently. Make sure the hammer positively locks into place when fully cocked and make sure it stops at half-cock with the grip safety released. Drop a pencil (eraser first) down the muzzle and dry fire it to make sure the firing pin shoots it up out of the barrel. Heck, I even learned how to detail strip my 1911s from tutorials available on-line.

Calhoun321
January 4, 2009, 02:40 PM
You just proved my point.

What angle are your sear hooks cut at? your sear nose? Are they in spec? Do you know how to check? Can you measure them? Would you know a problem if you saw it? Most would not.

unisonic12
January 4, 2009, 02:43 PM
Why do I even need to go to that level of detail? I can tell if my hammer is positively locking back by wiggling it from side to side, pulling up and pushing down on it, banging on it, etc. Either it works or it doesn't. If my hammer is falling off the sear, I know how to detail strip it and replace it. If the new sear needs any tuning, then that's what my local gun shop is for. Geez, ,man...you make it sound like you have to be a master craftsman gunsmith or something to operate a 1911. :rolleyes:

gc70
January 4, 2009, 02:51 PM
GC, we're probably in pretty close agreement overall.

Agreed.

Again, I fear that most 1911 shooters do not have the technical knowledge to know if their gun is in "perfect working order".

Unfortunate, but true. The information about basic safety checks is readily available and the process is not difficult, but many 1911 owners don't take the time to check their guns. But that is not unique to 1911's; many owners of other types of guns also don't perform safety checks.

Calhoun321
January 4, 2009, 03:14 PM
I'm being a little "over the top" to make a point. Your gun can pass the basic external safety check even with damaged parts. Perhaps your sear has a chip and is only engaging the hammer hooks on 1 side. Maybe it was cut wrong at the factory or by a gunsmith (happens). It may pass your test, but is it still drop safe w/o a FP safety? It is certainly less safe by any measure.

I would never suggest detail strips and measurements after every use. But I would suggest a more detailed check of the lockwork once or twice a year on a series 70 carry gun. I doubt if more than 1% of shooters can or actually do, do this.

I personally love the 1911, but would only carry a series 80 colt. You get a safer gun with no real down side.

Mello
January 4, 2009, 03:19 PM
1. All guns are always loaded.
2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you wouldn't destroy.
3. Keep your finger off the trigger unless your sights are on the target.
4. Be sure of your target and of what's beyond.

unisonic12
January 4, 2009, 03:43 PM
But I would suggest a more detailed check of the lockwork once or twice a year

And, I actually do this. That's why I wanted to learn how to detail strip it. I do this for all of my firearms because I don't want to be reliant on a gunsmith should any parts break. Here's my "real life" example. Many, many moons ago when I was young (and ignorant), the trigger return spring on my Glock 19 broke and the trigger wouldn't reset. Can you believe I paid a gunsmith 75 frickin' dollars to change out a spring that only cost a couple of dollars...on a Glock??? The simplest semi-auto to detail strip in the world? I didn't know any better at the time and soon after is when I started researching and saving any and all tutorials I could find for the guns I owned. The internet has made it much easier these days!

gc70
January 4, 2009, 04:17 PM
You get a safer gun with no real down side.

What is your trick to get those danged firing pin safety levers in place when reassembling a 1911? :evil:

unisonic12
January 4, 2009, 04:24 PM
Firing pin safety levers? It's a snap with my Kimber. It's just a single "lifter" piece that sits on the right of the sear. Just drops in place.

mpmarty
January 4, 2009, 04:43 PM
So, for all the years since 1911 us dumb Americans have been exposed to unsafe pistols. Boy! What a great opportunity for us to all band together and file a class action suit against John Moses Browning!:barf:

Get real here please; if you are uncomfortable with a C&L 1911 then by all means carry something else. Please don't try to muddy the waters for new users of this fine pistol by impugning its reliability and safety.

Nothing is foolproof for a dedicated fool.

unisonic12
January 4, 2009, 05:15 PM
Right on mpmarty! The Glock is FAR more "dangerous" than a properly working 1911. And that's with the essential design and not a malfunction. Now, I'm not going to argue whether external safeties are better or not...or how revolvers never had them, etc. The Glock will fire no matter what if you PULL the trigger, whereas the 1911 will not if BOTH the thumb and grip safeties are engaged. Many people have had NDs with Glocks because they tried to catch them when dropped. Many have had NDs with Glocks because a shirt or something got caught in the trigger guard when re-holstering. Many have had NDs with Glocks because the Glock requires pulling the trigger to field strip it...and they didn't properly clear it. I really can't recall seeing any 1911 stories about NDs because of these situations.

Walkalong
January 4, 2009, 05:43 PM
I personally love the 1911, but would only carry a series 80 colt. You get a safer gun with no real down side.except for a unnecessary device that can fail to let the gun fire an a really inconvenient time. :)

Safety checking a 1911 is very easy, and instructions how to do so are available online.

This is another reason MIM parts are not liked by 1911 fans. They can fail catastrophically vs forged/machined parts. A properly made sear is not going to disintegrate. A finely tuned sear/hammer (which should not be used on a carry gun) may slip and let the hammer go to the "interceptor/safety" notch, but it won't go all to pieces.

Guillermo
January 4, 2009, 06:25 PM
this is all pretty theory. A well made gun is as safe as its owner.

Is it POSSIBLE that your 1911 can misfire...sure. It is absolutely true that a swimming pool is bigger if you pee in it.

Where the rubber meets the road, it is 99.99% about the handler.

Keep your finger out of the guard until you are ready to shoot. Keep other stuff out of the trigger guard by using a good holster made for that weapon.

Those 2 factors will stop virtually every unintended discharge.

unisonic12
January 4, 2009, 06:26 PM
except for a unnecessary device that can fail to let the gun fire an a really inconvenient time.

Agreed. That's why I put in a smooth series 70 firing pin in my Kimber. Completely bypasses the Schwartz safety and I can return it to stock configuration very quickly and easily.

ngc2289
January 4, 2009, 06:45 PM
Didn't the NYPD request Glock put manual safties on their guns? It seems that several accidental discharges occured when officers put there fingers on the trigger during stressful situations, discharging the firearm.:eek:

1911shooter
January 4, 2009, 06:45 PM
Hey lets not forget Jeff Copper and others had their grip safties pin down. the 1911 is one of the safest and best combat pistols ever built. this whole issue boils down to if you dont feel comfortable in carrying cocked and locked then dont carry a 1911. if you take the time to learn the 1911 and are willing to make a compitent attempt to master it then the 1911 is for you.

brisendines
January 4, 2009, 08:06 PM
I guess I'm just weird. I never thought twice about c&l 1911s, but holstering my glock scares the crap out of me some times. Leaving it by the bedstand is dangerous as well.... if I flail around trying to find it in the dark some night I may very well have an oopsie.

Guillermo
January 4, 2009, 10:02 PM
brisendines

I agree, you are just weird

The Glock will not shoot unless you holster your shirtail too and the mass "pulls" the trigger.

brisendines
January 4, 2009, 10:13 PM
Thats exactly what I'm worried about. I wear long shirts to cover it and when I tuck it in, I'm afraid I won't sweep the whole shirt and get some caught in the trigger guard.

Guillermo
January 4, 2009, 10:23 PM
being so concerned I would be surprised if it ever happened

tipoc
January 4, 2009, 10:30 PM
... I fear that most 1911 shooters do not have the technical knowledge to know if their gun is in "perfect working order".

This may be true but it is also besides the point. It is also true that most gun owners do not know if their guns are in "perfect working order" no matter what type gun they have.

With the 1911 the first signs of trouble usually appear at the range. A damaged sear normally first appears as a hammer that follows the slide down to the half cock position and requires the shooter to manually recock the gun before another shot can be fired. This is often the first sign that the gun is unsafe to carry and is due for a trip to the gun smith.

The average shooter of the 1911 does not need to know the proper sear angle to safely carry the gun. Nor for any other sidearm. Hundreds of thousands of servicemen have carried the 1911 in several wars and only a relative few knew the proper sear angle or how to get a better one or much else about them other than that they worked.

Either the series 80 safety or the Schwartz make a safe gun safer. But the gun is safe without them if properly handled.

tipoc

redneckrepairs
January 4, 2009, 10:31 PM
Nowadays manuals are written much more by lawyers than gunsmiths . If you dont think that " cocked and locked " is safe then ill respectfully suggest that a 1911 is not for you . In fact ill extend that and state that if you have reservations about carrying a round chambered in any auto then an auto is not a wise choice for you . A 1911 of any maker should be carried " cocked and locked " . A double action such as a sig or some other brands should be carried chambered and decocked ( CZ excepted , and then see 1911 imho lol ) . Glocks , XD , Kahr , ect are revolvers with slides in the sense they have NO active decocker or safety . All have safetys , but are passive , and if you pull the trigger thro intent or misfortune you WILL hear a loud noise , and notice a hole where likely there was not one before , kinda like a revolver lol . If they ever invent a truly safe pistol i for one wont own it , because i count on my firearms to be dangerous .

rbernie
January 4, 2009, 10:33 PM
I know tests have shown a muzzle drop onto a hard surface from around 10 feet is necessary for a AD.I'd like a cite, please.

CDH
January 5, 2009, 08:13 AM
Glocks , XD , Kahr , ect are revolvers with slides in the sense they have NO active decocker or safety . All have safetys , but are passive , and if you pull the trigger thro intent or misfortune you WILL hear a loud noise , and notice a hole where likely there was not one before , kinda like a revolver lol.

I'll respectfully disagree with regard to the XD's for sure, because they add the grip safety similar to the 1911.
It's virtually impossible to fire an XD, no, make that just "impossible" to fire an XD accidentally. You may do it "unintentionally" by stupidly playing with it, but you can't fire it unless the grip safety is down AND you pull the trigger; a situation impossible to set up without properly and intentionally gripping the pistol and pulling the trigger at the same time.

That's the single most reason that I chose XD's (XD9SC and XD45/4") over any Glock.

steve4102
January 5, 2009, 09:15 AM
I have a Para Ord. 14-45. I carry it C&L. One reason, if I want to use the thumb safety the hammer must be back. If I close the hammer the thumb safety cannot be put back on.

unisonic12
January 5, 2009, 10:20 AM
If I close the hammer the thumb safety cannot be put back on.

Aren't all 1911s like that?

45auto
January 5, 2009, 03:22 PM
Almost two "issues" being discussed, since FP safeties don't have much to do with "cocked and locked".

C&L, in itself, is safe since you have a manual safety.

1911's without FP blocks can AD. Recent thread on the 1911 forum of a 1911 dropped a short distance and it went off.

Hammer can follow the slide down, on a reload, and AD. Seen it, done it and read about it. That happens because of "faulty parts or fit/ wear, etc"...whatever! But, it can happen and it can't with a series 80.

I find it amusing to read it "can't happen". Colt knew it could happen in the early 1930's because they designed the swartz safety.

Again in the 1980's when the series 80 was developed.
And, again when CA stipulated drop tests and all the companies "did something". Neo-swartz safety, lighter Fp's, heavier Fp springs, etc.
Awful lot of "scurrying around" to modify something that "can't happen".

unisonic12
January 5, 2009, 03:29 PM
Hammer can follow the slide down, on a reload, and AD. Seen it, done it and read about it. That happens because of "faulty parts or fit/ wear, etc"...whatever! But, it can happen and it can't with a series 80.

Why can't it happen with a series 80 if someone is holding it properly when loading from a magazine? The thumb safety has to be off to rack the slide and the grip safety would be depressed. If the hammer follows down because it failed to lock back after chambering the top round, that firing pin safety is still disengaged. It WOULD fire in that situation without the shooter pulling the trigger.

rcmodel
January 5, 2009, 04:06 PM
No, actually it wouldn't fire.

The series 80 hammer has no intercept notch like the older design, but it does have a "bump" on the hammer that catches on the sear and it slows the hammer enough to prevent full firing pin energy hitting the primer.

Unless the trigger is pulled to get the sear out of the way, it will not fire.

rcmodel

unisonic12
January 5, 2009, 04:15 PM
Hey, who let you out of the KTOG romper room, rcmodel? ;)

SuperNaut
January 5, 2009, 05:00 PM
Aren't all 1911s like that?

Oddly enough steve4102's own brand is one of the exceptions. The Para LDA "1911's" can have the thumb safety engaged with the hammer down. That said, since the newer LDA's don't have a hammer spur I really don't want to know how one would utilize that "feature" with one in the pipe. *shudder*

unisonic12
January 5, 2009, 05:58 PM
Good point, SuperNaut.

45auto
January 5, 2009, 06:04 PM
It WOULD fire in that situation without the shooter pulling the trigger.

The series 80, i.e Colt, Para, Sig, AO, Taurus "types" have a FP block that is released only if you pull the trigger. If the hammer drops all the way down, it hits the FP...but the FP is blocked by the "plunger".

On a Kimber, S&W style FP block, the gun would fire as you stated, since the FP plunger is activated by the grip safety...and your holding the gun.

unisonic12
January 5, 2009, 06:08 PM
Yes, 45auto, you are absolutely correct. I forgot the series 80 safety was disengaged by the trigger. I knew that, honest! Didn't they mostly go away because people didn't like how it messed with the "holy grail" 1911 trigger and, by and large, move to a grip activated safety?

gc70
January 5, 2009, 08:53 PM
The series 80 hammer has no intercept notch like the older design, but it does have a "bump" on the hammer that catches on the sear and it slows the hammer enough to prevent full firing pin energy hitting the primer.

The follow-through stop ledge on a series 80 hammer does prevent the hammer from hitting the firing pin. Series 80 hammers can be partially cocked, but the movement is small and not nearly as apparent as the half-cock position of pre-80 hammers.

Calhoun321
January 5, 2009, 09:29 PM
The series 80 did not go away or even fade away. Colt designed the system and has consistently used it. Some other companies continue to use the system too. IMHO, the series 80 does not interfere with a good trigger pull.

Edited to add in response to question: The drop tests that confirmed the 1911 would fire from a 10 foot fall was performed IIRC by the US Navy during the 50s or 60s. It has been years since I read it and I can't give a cite, but it does exist.

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