Browning HP Safety fast shooting system


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Sommerled
February 12, 2009, 12:17 AM
This past summer I aquired a new HP in 40 S&W and it has a unique system for CC.

After you chamber a round you push the hammer forward and the safety engages. To fire, thumb the safety down and the hammer falls back and the pistol is ready to fire.

Because I am somewhat new to handgun ownership and CC (less than 9 yrs), My query to the members of this forum is this:

1. Is this system new or is it tried and true and found to be reliable?
2. Any one else have one of these and had any problems?

Thanks for you input!

Sommerled

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stevemis
February 12, 2009, 03:01 AM
I think the SFS is made or produced (or both) by Cylinder & Slide. If memory serves, it's an expensive "enhancement".

IMHO, this product is a solution in search of a problem. There's nothing inherently unsafe about C&L carry, and I wish manufacturers (Para with their LDA and the SFS stuff) would stop feeding this misconception. I guess there's money in it, unfortunately.

I don't think Browning offered an HP with this option... so someone replaced quite a few parts in the gun prior to your purchase. As such, I doubt the pistol was "new".

Unfortunately, I can't answer your two questions due to lack of experience and interest.

HammerBite
February 12, 2009, 07:49 AM
The earliest U.S. patent reference I can find for SFS (Hubert, Belgium) is 1997. The earliest U.S. patent reference I can find for the core concept upon which SFS is based (Yoo, South Korea) is 1991. It is reasonable to assume that the U.S. patents are predated by patents in the patentees' home countries, so I would say that the basic idea has been around for a while.

The SFS is available from Cylinder & Slide as a retrofit for the HP and 1911. I don't know if SFS has ever been available in a HP directly from Browning or FN, but it would not surprise me if it has been, inasmuch as the SFS is of Belgian origin.

Implementations of the underlying core concept in double-action pistols have been marketed by Daewoo, Heckler & Koch and Para Ordnance.

vanderbilt330
February 12, 2009, 08:33 AM
Sommerled, I have the same pistol in 9mm. I have had mine for over five years and have never had any malfunction what so ever. As the other board members stated this is a Cylinder & Slide drop in kit and from what I have found there was a rumor that this was a limited run frm FN for the SAS. I can't confirm this but just pass on what I was told. My pistol came from CDNN.

Marshall
February 12, 2009, 08:56 AM
FN produced Hi Powers with the SFS system from the factory. Yes, they're a reliable system.

HexHead
February 12, 2009, 11:37 AM
IMHO, this product is a solution in search of a problem. There's nothing inherently unsafe about C&L carry, and I wish manufacturers (Para with their LDA and the SFS stuff) would stop feeding this misconception. I guess there's money in it, unfortunately.

I don't think Para is insinuating there is anything inherently unsafe about Condition 1 carry since about half their product line is standard 1911 fare.
The LDA is a solution for either PDs that don't allow Condition 1 carry, or for people that are just uncomfortable with it. I've got several pistols I'm comfortable carrying cocked & locked, but my wife has a Para LDA and it's a fine pistol with a great trigger.

Billy Shears
February 12, 2009, 11:55 AM
I think the SFS is made or produced (or both) by Cylinder & Slide. If memory serves, it's an expensive "enhancement".

IMHO, this product is a solution in search of a problem. There's nothing inherently unsafe about C&L carry, and I wish manufacturers (Para with their LDA and the SFS stuff) would stop feeding this misconception. I guess there's money in it, unfortunately.
I for one am glad they did not subscribe to your view. You see, there are factors you are not considering. I work for a police department that absolutely will not authorize any single action autoloader for off-duty carry by any of its personnel, period. Sure, you and I know there is nothing inherently unsafe about them, and that trained shooters have been carrying cocked and locked single actions successfully and safely for almost a century now. Try telling this to a police chief or city attorney who knows little to nothing about firearms and is deathly afraid of any hint of liability. See how far you get.

This sort of thing is very far from being "a solution in search of a problem." Oh I'll agree that it in purely practical, mechanical terms, that may be so. But those aren't the only considerations out there. The truth of the matter is that cocked and locked has always had limited appeal, and has always made some people nervous. Even some very well trained and gun savvy people are leery of it, and won't carry a cocked and locked single action. Their fears may be unjustified, all things considered, but they still have them even so. That's a reality. The SFS system and the LDA are solutions to that problem, which is no less real for not being a mechanical one. And it's a very good solution for those of us who want to carry 1911s or BHPs because we like those guns and shoot them better than anything else, but who work for departments which will never authorize such weapons for carry in a million years.

Eightball
February 12, 2009, 03:57 PM
And it's a very good solution for those of us who want to carry 1911s or BHPs because we like those guns and shoot them better than anything else, but who work for departments which will never authorize such weapons for carry in a million years.So, if you have a 1911 or HP with SFS, they'll let you get by with it? Even though you do the exact same thing to make it and a regular 1911/HP ready to fire?

Wow.

I work for a police department that absolutely will not authorize any single action autoloader for off-duty carry by any of its personnel, period.I might just be ignorant......but how can they tell you what you can and can't do to protect yourself while you're not on the clock?

Billy Shears
February 12, 2009, 05:06 PM
So, if you have a 1911 or HP with SFS, they'll let you get by with it? Even though you do the exact same thing to make it and a regular 1911/HP ready to fire?
Yep. That's exactly what I mean. Remember, you're dealing with administrators and bureaucrats. They seldom make sense.

FN and the BATF technically call the SFS a double action because the hammer doesn't stay cocked. That's enough.

I might just be ignorant......but how can they tell you what you can and can't do to protect yourself while you're not on the clock?
It's real simple, they make it a general order. And if you don't follow it, they barbecue your ass if they ever catch you. For example, let's say you shoot someone off duty, let's say you find yourself in the local convenience store when someone comes in to rob it. If you happen to shoot him with an unapproved firearm, you may simultaneously be praised for stopping the crime, and given a few days' suspension for disobeying orders. And if there is the least little thing questionable about the shooting (and perhaps even if there isn't) you have given the city attorney an excuse not to represent you in any civil suit brought by the deceased scumbag's relatives. And if you don't think they'll throw you to the wolves, guess again.

Storm
February 12, 2009, 05:06 PM
I had an FN HP with the SFS. I found it to be so counter-intuitive that I traded away the gun. I'm now looking for a classic Browning HP.

jaydubya
February 12, 2009, 07:40 PM
After considerable study, I had the C&S SFS kit installed in my T-series BHP that I carried as a personal weapon during Vietnam. First of all, I do not want to get into an argument over whether 'cocked-and-locked' is safe. I am simply stating that an SFS-configured pistol with its hammer flush against the slide not only looks safer, it is. Now to the nuts and bolts.

When someone draws an autoloading pistol cocked-and-locked, his/her thumb rises to grasp the safety and pull it down, rendering the pistol ready to fire all rounds single action. That is the advantage it has in the eyes of many over weapons that fire the first round double action, and the remainder single action. I agree -- this is an advantage. However, an SFS-configured pistol has exactly the same advantage. When someone draws an SFS pistol, his/her thumb rises to grasp the safety (now a hammer control) and pull it down, which flicks the hammer back into firing position, rendering the pistol ready to fire all rounds single action. In this description, I tried my best to use exactly the same language I had in describing drawing and firing a single action pistol just above, changing only what had to be. My point is this: anyone who is used to carrying cocked and locked has nothing whatever to learn when using an SFS pistol.

Except for how to field strip an SFS -- You no longer can lock the slide all the way back so as to remove the slide release/stop. This has flummixed a number of very experienced handgunners, who became convinced that in order to remove the slide stop, they had to hold the slide well back with their fingers. Two demonstrate this completely unnecessary exercise on a youtube video. Others have complained about having to do this, considering it a fatal step backward. All because FNH inexplicably did not explain a wonderful new feature of SFS Hi Powers -- which I stumbled upon. With the slide in battery, cock the hammer by flicking the safety/hammer control down; then push/pull the slide stop out to the left and ease the slide off forward. That's it! The SFS Hi Power is the easiest autoloader to field strip that I know of. Reassembly is just as easy.

If FNH had done a decent advertising job on the SFS-configured Hi Power when it first came out with it, I believe the Hi Power would still be king of the road. Unfortunately, it seems that FN would rather make assault rifles and machine guns than Hi Powers. Someone should buy the SFS configuration patents, and start making chocolate clones.

I will now tell a story. In 1916, in a Mexican border town, CAPT George Patton and his wife attended a social event. Georgie thrust a Colt 1911 into the front of his pants, certainly cocked and presumably locked. During the party, that gun went off, almost taking off the family jewels. Georgie brazoned it out (presumably without bleeding noticeably), and no one ever knew it was his gun that went off that night until his biography was written about twelve years ago. (If you want a citation for this, PM me.) Is this a slam on 'cocked-and-locked'? Gracious sakes alive, no! Could happen with a Glock! In fact, I think it did recently.

Cordially, Jack

Ruggles
February 12, 2009, 07:52 PM
Look only one negative post in reply! Nice to see. The solution in search of a problem reply is pretty silly IMO. The SFS has been around for a good number of years and as with most retail products would not be if it was not successful. By this standard I would deem it a solution to a problem (rather perceived or real matters little) by a good number of folks.

FN did produce factory guns with the SFS installed as has been stated.

Eightball
February 13, 2009, 01:26 AM
All because FNH inexplicably did not explain a wonderful new feature of SFS Hi Powers -- which I stumbled upon. With the slide in battery, cock the hammer by flicking the safety/hammer control down; then push/pull the slide stop out to the left and ease the slide off forward. That's it! The SFS Hi Power is the easiest autoloader to field strip that I know of. Reassembly is just as easy.Whaaaaa? What causes this difference?

dogtown tom
February 13, 2009, 10:05 AM
Another thumbs up to the SFS system from me.

I have one HP with the SFS system and six without. If I HAD to choose one to carry into battle versus drunken zombies it would be the SFS equipped HP.

I dearly love my classic or standard versions but the SFS is the most practical.

Often overlooked is the fact that the SFS equipped HP is the best for concealed use- the itty bitty (and ugly IMHO) SFS hammer is the only snag free hammer available for the Hi Power.

"solution in search of a problem"? Shoot one before you regurgitate Jeffcooperisms.

avpro
February 13, 2009, 03:41 PM
FN did produce new HP with the SFS system. I know, I bought two. I wish I bought more.

I like the SFS, because it adds another level of safety. The 1911 has the passive grip safety that the HP does not have. I would feel comfortable carrying a 1911 cocked and locked, but not a normal HP. Putting the hammer forward on the SFS HP locks the gun up tight. The hammer can not be thumbed back and it can not fall forward. The hammer actually is not all the way forward, it does not contact the firing pin. The is a little chunk of metal that comes up to prevent the hammer from contacting the firing pin. Also of note is that the SFS does not decock the gun. The gun is still cocked (spring is still under tension), it's just that the hammer is able to move independantly. I'm not a gunsmith so I hope you all can follow what I'm saying.

As far as field stripping the SFS HP I would agree this is the fasted gun to take down and reassemble that their is. I haven't timed it, but taking the gun down and reassembling it only takes about ten seconds total, unless you have installed an 18.5 lb recoil spring. That makes it harder:o

ajoker31
February 13, 2009, 07:42 PM
I owned an HP in 40sw and 9mm with SFS. I've sold both and miss the 9mm version very much. I bought a standard MKIII 9mm HP a few days ago without the SFS, to be honest it really doesn't matter to me either way. I don't CCW with the HP, it's more of a target/range pistol for me.

I never had an issue with the SFS system, but I wouldn't spend $10 to put it on a pistol. If you CCW with an HP it would be nice to have for concealment, other than that I really don't see the point...but then I carry a Glock.

Best,
Jerry

ghostman1960
April 25, 2009, 08:03 PM
My FN SFS .40
http://i596.photobucket.com/albums/tt45/ghostman1960/HiPower005.jpg

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