Why carry a 1911 in Condition 1 over Condition 2?


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stchman
November 11, 2009, 07:30 PM
Hello all.

I have heard many a 1911 user say to carry their 1911 in Condition 1.

Is there a big advantage to carrying a 1911 with the hammer cocked and safety on vs. hammer uncocked (Condition 2)?

Since a vast majority of 1911s are SAO I see no advantage.

I had a 1911 guy tell me that he carries his 1911 in Condition 1 because it is the best way.

I figure if you draw your 1911 in Condition 1 then you will need to flip the safety off with your thumb.

If you draw your 1911 in Condition 2 then you will use your thumb to cock the hammer back.

Both methods require your thumb to actuate something on the pistol.

Let me know your thoughts.

Thanks.

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sigking
November 11, 2009, 07:35 PM
I think it has to do with not wanting the pistol to fire if bumped. I think with the hammer resting on the fire pin is not a good idea. The pistol is designed to be carried cocked and locked.

stchman
November 11, 2009, 07:38 PM
I thought modern firearms were designed to not have that happen.

Now my Romanian Tokarev has a first detent that locks the hammer away from the firing pin, but that pistol is circa 1953.

ichiban
November 11, 2009, 07:50 PM
I feel that if I have to draw my 1911 in a moment of high stress I will be much more likely to quickly and successfully complete the simple act of swiping the safety off rather than the more complex act of cocking the hammer. YMMV

Double Naught Spy
November 11, 2009, 07:51 PM
What do you mean by modern firearms? Series 80 Colts and current series II Kimbers are designed with additional safeties to preclude that from happening, but not original 1911s, older Kimbers (the ones we own don't have them), and most of the current production 1911s.

The pistol is designed to be carried cocked and locked.
I don't believe any plans current are known to the public that indicate that the gun was designed to be carried in any particular manner or not carried in a particular manner. Because of its design, however, it is safe to be carried cocked and locked and it is safe to be carried with an empty chamber and the hammer in any position.

tominct
November 11, 2009, 07:54 PM
It's much easier to sweep the safety off than it is to cock the hammer; there's much less wasted motion thumbing the safety down. When you acquire your grip, your thumb is RIGHT THERE at the safety. Thumbing the hammer back requires a much different motion, one that forces you to readjust your firing grip.

stchman
November 11, 2009, 07:56 PM
I thought pretty much all firearms made in the last 25 years had that bar that kept AD from happening if the firearm was dropped.

As far as safety off easier to actuate than hammer back I don't know.

All the more reason to get a striker fire pistol with a safe action trigger. Nothing to worry about.

tominct
November 11, 2009, 08:02 PM
You can't fire a properly-functioning 1911 by "bumping" the hammer, even if down on a loaded chamber. 1911s have an inertial firing pin that require velocity to contact the primer.

Field strip one, then push the back of the pin in until it's flush. It's not long enough to reach the primer.

For that matter, to answer the OP, borrow your buddy's pistol and compare relative efforts of safety vs. hammer cocking. You'll have your answer in about 15 seconds.

robriboflavin
November 11, 2009, 08:02 PM
1911's are designed to be carried cocked and locked.

The only way to un-cock the hammer is to hold the hammer back with your thumb while you pull the trigger, and then gently lower the hammer. You can't do this with the safety on, and remember you have a live round in the chamber. While you may be able to get away with this most of the time, sooner or later your thumb is going to slip and ka-bang!

This plus all the other reasons (thumbing hammer back is much slower and harder to do than releasing safety, hammer down can set off round on impact, etc) is why most people think cocked and locked is best for a 1911.

senior
November 11, 2009, 08:05 PM
If 1911 was "designed" to carried C&l, WHY did we not hear about till the Col. TOLD us thats how it was supposed to be carried, yet JB never made mention of this way to carry when he first gave us the gun?

stchman
November 11, 2009, 08:06 PM
Lets just say that you carry your 1911 in Condition 1.

Are you never going to lower the hammer?

Saying that your thumb can slip is completely independent of hammer cocked or not.

ckone
November 11, 2009, 08:07 PM
Condition 1 means you're protected by 2 manual safety's that need to be physically manipulated (grip & thumb, that with a proper firing grip will both be deactivated on the draw... but don't forget about the half-cock notch and firing pin spring that are there also, just in case) and is in a totally safe state that will not discharge without quite a bit of help... and oh yeah, IT'S READY FIRE IF YOU NEED TO USE IT TO SAVE YOUR'S or SOMEONE ELSE'S LIFE! (kinda important)

Condition 2 means you are trusting your chances of an ND to the strength of a very small firing pin spring... hit that hammer too hard by mistake or drop the gun just right and... BANG! (not to mention trying to cock the hammer on the draw is a pipe dream that will probably just lead to getting you killed or if you're lucky just a broken thumb at some point... unless of course the bad guy is kind enough to give you some extra time to carefully and deliberately prepare to shoot...)

MCgunner
November 11, 2009, 08:08 PM
I think it has to do with not wanting the pistol to fire if bumped. I think with the hammer resting on the fire pin is not a good idea. The pistol is designed to be carried cocked and locked.

This is not a problem. The firing pin does not protrude with the hammer resting on it.

However, if one cocks a series 70 and the hammer slip on cocking, bang. You can cock it with your off hand as you aquire, but you might not have a functional off hand in a fight. Condition one is faster, safer, and more natural.

JMHO, though. Do as you think best.

bang_bang
November 11, 2009, 08:14 PM
What if your 1911 has a "half-cocked" position? As of now, I don't feel enough safety with the "cocked and locked" position when carrying, so I've left mine half-cocked.

ckone
November 11, 2009, 08:16 PM
This is not a problem (hammer down). The firing pin does not protrude with the hammer resting on it.

The firing pin spring is designed with only enough strength to overcome the firing pin's inertia (firing pin weight)... how much more force it needs to go over that threshold to set off a primer you may find out at your own peril.

What if your 1911 has a "half-cocked" position? As of now, I don't feel enough safety with the "cocked and locked" position when carrying, so I've left mine half-cocked.

Half-cock is an extra "safety safety" for just in case the hammer somehow managed to slip off the full-cock notch. So carrying at half-cock may be the most dangerous since not only do you need to take a risk to manually cock the hammer to fire, you're also carrying without the thumb safety engaged, with the hammer in a position to have a bit of a head start on hitting the primer with no half-half cock notch to catch it if it was to get bumped... bad idea IMO.
If you're not ready for condition 1, carry condition 3. Besides, racking the slide is a gross motor skill, cocking the hammer is a fine motor skill, guess which one deteriorates most quickly under stress?

Jim Watson
November 11, 2009, 08:18 PM
I've done it both ways. I even had a Commander fitted with GM grip safety and wide spur GI hammer specifically for Condition 2 and I got pretty comfortable with it. Then I realized the guy who promoted that approach was lefthanded and learned in a day before ambidextrous safeties were common. I transitioned to Condition 1 and have been there ever since, about 25 years. Faster, easier, and safer. A few hundred IPSC and IDPA matches will get you in the habit of punching the safety on the draw.

EddieNFL
November 11, 2009, 08:25 PM
All the more reason to get a striker fire pistol with a safe action trigger. Nothing to worry about.

A striker fired pistol would get me killed. Anytime someone hands me a Glock to test fire, I spend three or four seconds trying to disengage the safety. That comes from spending 35 years with 1911s.

To answer the original question: Condition one. My thumb is on the safety once the holster is cleared.

In my opinion, striker fired is no safer than any other type.

robriboflavin
November 11, 2009, 08:25 PM
Stchman,

Generally, no I don't manually lower the hammer. Once I insert the mag and get a round in the chamber, I flick the safety on and it goes in the holster, ie cocked and locked. It stays that way until I either shoot it or unload it.

And after unloading and clearing it, I point the gun in a safe direction and drop the hammer by pulling the trigger. That way I am sure the gun is unloaded.

Lowering a 1911's hammer on a live round is just too risky for me. All it takes is one slip-up and you've got an ND. YMMV.

ckone
November 11, 2009, 08:30 PM
Generally, no I don't manually lower the hammer. Once I insert the mag and get a round in the chamber, I flick the safety on and it goes in the holster, ie cocked and locked. It stays that way until I either shoot it or unload it.

And after unloading and clearing it, I point the gun in a safe direction and drop the hammer by pulling the trigger. That way I am sure the gun is unloaded.

Lowering a 1911's hammer on a live round is just too risky for me. All it takes is one slip-up and you've got an ND.

AMEN!

metallic
November 11, 2009, 08:30 PM
It's mostly just a safety issue. If you want to carry in condition 2, you're going to have to pull the trigger and then lower the hammer on a loaded chamber. One mishap and you're potentially going to have a new hole in the floor. Much safer to simply rack the slide, flip the safety up, and then reholster.

tominct
November 11, 2009, 08:30 PM
Don't use the Half-cock as a safety. If you drop a series 70 pistol carried thus, and it lands in such a way as to shear off the half-cock notch, the mainspring may very well have enough energy to fire the cartridge.

highorder
November 11, 2009, 09:06 PM
As of now, I don't feel enough safety with the "cocked and locked" position when carrying, so I've left mine half-cocked.

You need a new pistol, or a better understanding of how a 1911 works.

dmazur
November 11, 2009, 09:17 PM
Well, it's kind of a circular argument, but for IDPA competition, which is supposed to simulate self-defense situations, the rules state -

14. Pistols must start from mechanical condition of readiness appropriate to their design. In general, single-action autos will start cocked and locked (ESP & CDP)

I'm not sure what the safety officer would do if you tried to start from Condition 2. Probably be a violation.

Most folks who have tried both, with a timer running, agree that Condition 2 isn't for speed, especially if you have a modern "bobbed" hammer spur.

So, it's slower than Condition 1 and potentially unsafe if you lower the hammer.

For those folks who believe in "combat zone" vs "rear area" thinking, do the administrative procedure from Condition 1 to Condition 3 as warranted, and hope that you never choose a readiness condition inappropriate for a given area... :)

bang_bang
November 11, 2009, 09:22 PM
You need a new pistol, or a better understanding of how a 1911 works.

I know how it works...just the fact that my arse is resting against it whenever I set down is bothering me...will with any gun really. I'll give condition 1 a try after reading that half-cocked isn't advisable.

David E
November 11, 2009, 09:25 PM
As far as (taking the) safety off (is) easier to (do) than (thumbing the) hammer back I don't know.

Serious 1911 carriers DO know. That's why they carry them cocked and locked.

dmazur
November 11, 2009, 09:28 PM
I will admit, however, that I don't have any extended safeties, or ambidextrous safeties, on my two Commanders. If the original safety is "firm" (for lack of a better word) and is worn on the inside, as would be done for R hand carry, it is very difficult to brush it off accidentally.

I'm not against the concept of extended safeties, but I don't have any experience with them.

If I was L handed, I think I'd get an ambi safety and have a gunsmith do something to the normal safety to minimize it. Maybe trim it to look like a GI safety, so it wouldn't get snagged.

cyclopsshooter
November 11, 2009, 09:29 PM
i mostly carry condition 3- if i am going into a "spooky" situation i will go condition 2-

it is a 70 series, i know how to decock safely- and have a heavy firing pin spring... itd have to drop 15 feet before it discharged

mokin
November 11, 2009, 09:31 PM
I never carried a 1911 but I did carry a Browning High Power for a year or so (and intermittently since). I was and am still not comfortable (and never did) lower the hammer on a loaded chamber. For that reason only I don't use condition two.

mljdeckard
November 11, 2009, 09:42 PM
The pistol was designed to be carried in one of three options. 1: C&L, 2. Hammer down on a loaded chamber, and 3, Hammer down on an empty chamber. Modern interpretations also suggest an empty chamber, hammer cocked, safety off, for ease of loading as you draw. (Sometimes called "Israeli" carry.)

The least safe option is the half-cock. It is really a safety notch which CAN BREAK if dropped, and if the hammer is hit that hard, it is possible to hit the firing pin hard enough to fire. When the hammer is all the way down, it can't.

Also look at it this way. YES, you can cock the hammer as you draw without too much difficulty. You CAN'T rack the slide EASILY with one hand. (There are ways to do it, and you should learn, but they are emergency measures, not something to depend on while you are being shot at.)

Carrying in condition 1 is perfectly safe. If it gives you the willies, practice doing it around the house with a cleared gun until you have convinced yourself that the hammer isn't going to fall as long as you obey the four rules. Use a holster that covers the whole trigger area. You can also get plenty of holsters that have a thumb break between the hammer and the firing pin if it makes you feel better.

The only time I carry hammer-down is when I use a fanny pack. Once I took it out, and realized that the safety was off. To this day, I don't know if I forgot to put it on safe or if it got worked off while I was doing my daily stuff, but I decided that for THAT method of carry, since the time to draw is longer anyway, and I can't verify the safety is on easily, I will leave the hammer down.

mljdeckard
November 11, 2009, 09:44 PM
And cyclops shooter, if a situation is spooky, why go there at all?

David E
November 11, 2009, 11:11 PM
i mostly carry condition 3- if i am going into a "spooky" situation i will go condition 2-

Let me get this straight: You carry the gun in an unready condition, but if it's "spooky," you'll go from NOT ready to ALMOST ready................interesting..........:rolleyes:

Echo9
November 12, 2009, 12:15 AM
Swiping the thumb saftey off is a natural movement that actually begins as you're beginning to draw the weapon.

IMO, there is never a reason to decock a 1911, save for storing a gun with an emty chamber.

cyclopsshooter
November 12, 2009, 12:27 AM
And cyclops shooter, if a situation is spooky, why go there at all?

getting home one night i thought i saw a shadow through the curtain, not enough to bug the police but enough to make the hair stand up on the back of my neck-

cyclopsshooter
November 12, 2009, 12:33 AM
Let me get this straight: You carry the gun in an unready condition, but if it's "spooky," you'll go from NOT ready to ALMOST ready................interesting..........


the chances of shooting yourself in the foot are far greater than needing the weapon to defend yourself-

im not a professional gunslinger and im not going to pretend that i am :neener:

R.Ph. 380
November 12, 2009, 12:34 AM
It's also a natural move to flick the safety off while the draw is proceeding, a much lighter and more affirmative movement than the cocking of the hammer would be.

Bill

lexjj
November 12, 2009, 02:05 AM
Reasons Condition 1 is better than Condition 2:
1. Condition 1 is faster. The thumb wipes off the safety on the draw. The hand is already going in that direction. Cocking the hammer requires 2 distinct motions - setting the grip and then thumbing the hammer. The grip is set when the thumb safety is wiped off (thumb rests on top of the safety).

2. Condition 1 is safer. Uncocking the hammer can certainly be done safely, but it is an unnecessary risk. You can accidentally slip and drop the hammer.

3. Condition 1 is smoother. Assuming you wait until the pistol is presented to thumb the hammer, this motion changes your grip and destroys your sight picture. If you thumb the hammer while the gun is in the holster, see number 2. Under stress, smooth is fast.

If 1911 was "designed" to carried C&l, WHY did we not hear about till the Col. TOLD us thats how it was supposed to be carried, yet JB never made mention of this way to carry when he first gave us the gun?
The same reason that James Naismith didn't teach anyone how to shoot a jump shot. I'm not sure whether John Browning designed the pistol to be carried cocked and locked or not (though there is at least some good evidence that he did at least intend it to be an option). Naismith didn't foresee the jump shot, the slam dunk, the alley oop, the sky hook, the pick and roll, the Princeton offense, the triangle offense, or 3 point shots. But I sure as heck don't want to play on a basketball team that only shoots underhanded set shots. The "game" evolves.

JoeSlomo
November 12, 2009, 06:06 AM
I know how it works...just the fact that my arse is resting against it whenever I set down is bothering me...will with any gun really. I'll give condition 1 a try after reading that half-cocked isn't advisable.

Clear your 1911 of all ammo, and wear it empty. TRY to get the hammer to fall while the hammer is cocked and the safety is on. Jump in the car and out, run around the yard, do some house work, even fall down a few times or tap it with a rubber hammer. If you have a functioning 1911, the hammer WILL NOT fall.

You've got to have faith in your equipment, and if you don't, use equipment you DO have faith in.

The 1911 is worthy.

johnnylaw53
November 12, 2009, 06:41 AM
to carry the pistol in condition 2 you have to violate one of the rules "do not put your finger on the tigger till you ready to fire" I think this is all the reason one need to never try to use condition 2

be safe

John Parker
November 12, 2009, 07:00 AM
Hold on everyone, I'm....trying....to....drag....this....dead....horse....out....of...my....basement....so...we...can....all....beat....it.....together....

It's really heavy. I need a winch.

EddieNFL
November 12, 2009, 07:53 AM
the chances of shooting yourself in the foot are far greater than needing the weapon to defend yourself

Commonly known as DAS (Dear Abby Syndrome)

1911Tuner
November 12, 2009, 08:16 AM
To address a few misconceptions...

First..."Cocked and locked by design and intent" is a myth, and a fairly recent one at that.

The gun wasn't designed and intended to be carried cocked and locked by Browning or anybody else. The first 8 prototypes that Browning submitted to the Army for evaluation didn't even have a thumb safety...so how could he have had an intent for Condition 1? It can be doesn't mean that it was meant to be.

The "Slide locking manual safety" was added on the request of the U.S. Cavalry so that a mounted trooper could resholter a cocked weapon and regain control of an unruly horse without shooting himself or the horse...or both. Even then, they understood that a man under stress may forget to take his finger out of the trigger guard before jamming the piece into a holster. If Browning had an intent at all, it was to carry the gun on half-cock. That's how all his previous guns with exposed hammers were designed.

The gun was absolutely designed to be thumb cocked and decocked. The checkering on the hammer was put there for a reason. So was the original wide spur with those sharp, pronounced corners. It's an added machining step. That costs time and money for a contractor trying to meet a deadline while staying within budget. If there wasn't a reason for it...it would have been eliminated.

There are a couple of good reasons to lower the hammer on a hot chamber, and carry the gun in that mode. The cocked hammer provides a larger opening for mud and other debris to get into the lockwork. The lowered hammer better protects the inner workings of the gun, and still provides the ability to operate it with one hand.

The hammer can be cocked with mimimal fumbling if the decision is made to carry in Condition 2. Simply cock it while it's still in the holster...draw...place your finger into the trigger guard...and fire. Cocking it after the draw is awkward. Before the draw is much better.

There is also a reason to put the gun in condition 1. That being..."When action is iminent" as spelled out by the early field manuals. Because it can be safely carried in Conditon 1 full time...it also offers the quickest, simplest method to bring the gun into an unexpected fight.

Finally...The 1911 was designed by a committee and a team of Colt's engineers...and John Browning. Browning didn't do it alone, and he didn't have complete autonomy. He gave what he was asked for. The Army wanted a grip safety, and they got it. They wanted a thumb safety...and they got that, too. If they'd asked for polka dots on the slide...they'd have gotten'em...because "He who pays the fiddler gets to call the tune."

I'm....trying....to....drag....this....dead....horse....out....of...my....basement....so...we...can....all....beat....it.....together....

Amen!

Cheers

The_Shootist
November 12, 2009, 08:24 AM
Its funny - when I started carrying my 1911 it was a bit unnerving in the C&L position. But not only did I carry it that way out and about but took to wearing it around the house (unloaded) just to see how safe Condition 1 is. Never had the hammer fall/negligient discharge in all the times I've carried it around and I've had mine for 10+ years.

In fact, I've only had one ND in my life, which was with my G19. Glocks I think are more unforgiving than 1911's, safety wise.

hammerklavier
November 12, 2009, 10:00 AM
Cocked and locked is safe. It's safer than condition 2, where you could AD while lowering the hammer. And if you ever need the weapon it's safer to get it into condition 0 from condition 1. Same goes for half cocked.

If you feel condition 1 is not safe enough for you, because an accident could happen, then you shouldn't be carrying a round in the chamber, because accidents could happen with condition 2 or half cocked as well.

christcorp
November 12, 2009, 10:01 AM
Tuner!!!! Thank you so much for being a voice of reason. The hardcore 1911 users will not buy what you've said, so it doesn't matter. But hopefully some of the less experienced users will at least think about what you said.

It is a FACT; when you hear people say that the 1911A1 "WAS INTENDED TO BE CARRIED COCKED AND LOCKED"; they have absolutely no idea what they are talking about. But lets keep this 2 separate issues.

1. Was the weapon designed and intended to be carried Cocked and Lock??? NO, IT WASN'T.
2. Is it BETTER to carry the 1911A1 Cocked and Locked and ready to Rock???? That is totally subjective. That is up to the person who has the gun.

I've carried different 1911A1's for about 30 years. I no longer carry one, but that isn't important. I always carried mine with the hammer down on a live round. It is safer at this condition that cocked and locked. Better??? I won't debate that. That is an individual preference. Safer??? No one can argue; it is. All the mechanical issues in the world can happen to a gun. But the one thing mankind can not CREATE is "Gravity". In condition 2; every safety and physical malfunction in the world can happen; however, you can't MAGICALLY pull the hammer back. That is intentionally done. In condition 1, there are plenty of things that can happen to cause a problem.

But for those who are hell bent convinced that Condition 1 is the way to go, you need to realize how it was carried. Until recent years, the 1911A1 was NOT a Concealed Weapon!!! Very important to know. The military holster was a "Flap" design holster. Another very important bit of information to know. Why??? If it wasn't CONCEALED, then there was no clothing or anything else that could snag the safety and click it off. (YES, THAT DOES HAPPEN). Also, with a flapover holster covering the gun, you can't accidentally touch the gun and alter it's condition. And many holsters, actually has a strap that can be laid across the weapon, between the hammer and the firing pin.

Well, the problem with the holster issue is the time required to unholster the weapon, and make it ready. Remember; the 1911A1 Was NOT DESIGNED AS A CONCEALED WEAPON!!! And that is where the "Cocked and Locked" crowd is misguided. When going into battle, having a condition 1 1911A1 style weapon; in it's APPROPRIATE HOLSTER; is perfectly safe. And if you want to carry your 1911A1 open carry, with a Bianchi M1 style holster with flap over, or an open strapover holster that put a strap between the hammer and weapon, then THAT IS HOW IT WAS DESIGNED TO BE CARRIED.

But for the "Civilian" who will be carrying the weapon concealed, condition 2 is the better method of carrying the weapon. YES, THESE Guns WERE DESIGNED to be decocked. If it has an exposed hammer, then it was designed to be let down. As tuner mentioned, that is the purpose of the machined contour of the hammer.

This debate always comes up. I personally don't give a Rat's A$$ how a person carries their 1911A1. Carry it cocked and locked and stuffed in your underwear. I truly do not care. However; there are a lot of rookies coming to this boards who are looking for answers. And many will believe that if they heard it here, it must be the truth. Well, I just feel compelled to comment so those people know that the don't HAVE to carry their 1911A1 cocked and locked.

JTQ
November 12, 2009, 11:38 AM
"christcorp" wrote the following,

there are a lot of rookies coming to this boards who are looking for answers. And many will believe that if they heard it here, it must be the truth. Well, I just feel compelled to comment so those people know that the don't HAVE to carry their 1911A1 cocked and locked.

But for the "Civilian" who will be carrying the weapon concealed, condition 2 is the better method of carrying the weapon.

I always carried mine with the hammer down on a live round. It is safer at this condition that cocked and locked. Better??? I won't debate that. That is an individual preference. Safer??? No one can argue; it is.

They are out of order, but my intention is not to take them out of context.

The first point about the "rookies coming to this boards" is an excellent one and I'm sure it is why this topic comes up so often. All of the new guys, and the experienced guys, should know that there are different options for carrying the 1911 and this is why there is still value to these threads. The folks do look for good, honest, advice from the knowledgeable folks on the site.

However, I will certainly argue with your opinion that Condition 2 is safer than Condition 1.

You don't have to look far (you can find them here on THR) to find somebody that lost control of the hammer putting the 1911 into Condition 2 and fired a round when they didn't intend to. As mentioned earlier in this thread, to get to Condition 2 you have to pull the trigger when you aren't intending to shoot the pistol, along with intentionally defeating the grip safety, and thumb safety.

I haven't found any threads (doesn't mean they aren't out there) where the 1911 fired when the user was putting the pistol into Condition 1, or fired while being carried in any way without the trigger being pulled, no matter what style of holster was used or not used.

I will agree with "1911 Tuner's" point that Browning didn't specifically design the 1911 to be carried in a specific way. However, I would contend that a 1911 with a beavertail grip safety and commander style ring hammer would be more difficult to decock than a 1911 with the wide spur hammer and a GI grip safety. I don't have the exact sales figures, but my guess is that the vast majority of 1911's over the past 20 years have been sold with a beavertail grip safety and ring hammer of some design thus making decocking the 1911 a more difficult (less safe?) proposition than originally designed by Browning.

The basketball analogy used by "lexjj" is right on the money. Tactics and techniques evolve as we gather more information. I don't smoke, ride in the bed of a pickup on the highway, ride a motorcycle without a helmet (or leather jacket and boots), drive a car without wearing a seat belt, shoot at the range with out hearing or eye protection, or run with scissors.

Sure, people have done those things for years, and most have lived very long lives without injury. I don't think there should be a law against doing any of those things, or carrying a 1911 in Condition 2, but I choose not to in order to limit my exposure to unneeded risk. I'm sure there is situation out there where I may find Condition 2 to be beneficial for me, but I haven't found it yet.

MICHAEL T
November 12, 2009, 12:00 PM
People carried both ways till Cooper started pushing the C&L carry and the increase use of the commander type hammer and the beaver tail.. Has pretty much done away with the hammer down carry. In 1914 the military changed the spur hammer to a larger design to allow easier thumb cocking I carried hammer down with a Gov model for years and never a thought . As late as 1984 Was a article in one of the special 1911 only magazines On how to lower hammer and carry you 1911 condition 2 . people lower hammers on all types of guns The 1911 isn't any different Point in a safe direction and be careful .Its not rocket science

Kleanbore
November 12, 2009, 12:17 PM
The gun was absolutely designed to be thumb cocked and decocked. The checkering on the hammer was put there for a reason.

But if there is a live round in the chamber, there is always the possibility that the gun will go off when de-cocking, and thumb cocking is not the fastest way to get the weapon into action.

By the mid 1930s, a number of new designs incorporated hammer drop safeties, and a few had a double action pull for the first shot.

In Sixguns, Elmer Keith opined that there would be far fewer accidents with the Smith and Wesson Model 39 than had been experienced with the 1911. That, and real experience in lowering the hammer on 1911 pistols (Army issue, Commanders, and Gold Cup target), caused me to select a Model 39. I never had an accident, but I always considered the act to be more risky than I liked.

The biggest disadvantage of the Smith was the difference in trigger pull between the first and subsequent shots.

I've since bought a 1911 because I can shoot it better.

I always carried mine with the hammer down on a live round. It is safer at this condition than cocked and locked. Once the hammer has been successfully lowered, yeah...but your safety may be compromised by having to take the extra time to cock the hammer before firing.

To me, the holster is the key, whether the gun is carried outside the belt or inside, or under a jacket or without one. If the safety can be relied upon to not move, I'm OK with Condition 1 and I prefer it.

To my knowledge, the vast majority of all police and other official units who use the Model 1911 today carry it in "Condition 1", as do all of the police officers I know who carry compact 1911 pistols for back up.

EddieNFL
November 12, 2009, 12:26 PM
We're a long way from 1911. Safety lies more with the shooter than the gun. I know people who could get a weapon to function with the firing pin remove. Anyone choosing to carry a firearm should be familiar enough with whatever is in the holster to carry in condition one or two without danger of an ND; if not they shouldn't be carrying it.

Recently, holster makers are offering versions that hold a 1911 safety locked in place. One more safety feature for a safe weapon.

AFA carrying in your underwear, that didn't work out very well for Plaxico Burris.

jdh
November 12, 2009, 12:51 PM
It is either MP carry (AKA cond 3. Work slide to insure chamber is empty, drop hammer on empty chamber, safety on, insert loaded mag) or the more preffered C&L for me. Yes I have carried a 1911 type pistol in the line of duty.

A M1911, M1911A1 or a Colt Model O series 70 do NOT have firing pin blocks. Firing pin blocks arrived with the series 80 Colts and most (but not all) recent iterations do have them.

Many are forgetting the other safety for a 1911 type pistol. The strap on the holster that goes across the back of the slide and snaps in place to hold the pistol in the holster and blocks the hammer from reaching the firing pin should it fall while still in the holster.

Lastly I submit that is you are more prone to shoot yourself in the foot than need a pistol to protect yourself you should find another self defence tool. Perhaps peper spray would be a better choice for you.

markallen
November 12, 2009, 01:09 PM
I'll put my two cents in.
As for carrying in condition 1 vs condition 2, and wether the 1911 was "designed" to carry C&L, back in the fities, and sixties, of the people I knew as a child ( one of my neighbors was a deputy sheriff) those that carried a 1911 carried in condition 2.
I have, and sometimes still carry a Detonics Combat master, which by the way was designed ( check the scalloped rear of the slide) to carry in condition 2.
I now usually carry Govt 1911, and I do carry cocked and locked. But the main reason for me is the impossibility of maintaining a grip while I'm trying to stretch my thumb, around an extended beavertail safety, while my finger is in the trigger guard trying to balance my gun while I'm trying to thumb cock a commando hammer.
For me I'm safer carrying cocked and locked with my current 1911. And I have grown to like carrying this way. I'll admit I was a little concerned carrying C&L at first. But I got used to it pretty quiuckly.
As for lowering a hammer on a live round, I have for used the following method to decock: I grip the 1911 in my right hand, unlock the thumb safety, grap the hammer between my thumb, and fore finger of my left hand.
I push back on the hammer a little till I feel the tension, that way I'm not surprised when the hammer falls. I then squeeze the trigger, and when I feel the hammer move slightly foward I take my finger OFF the trigger, and gently let the hammer come to half cock. At this point half of the inertia from the hammer is gone. I then do the exact same motions again to bring the hammer down to the firing pin stop.
All I can say is this has worked for me. NEVER try to uncock a hammer using your thumb alone.

Vern Humphrey
November 12, 2009, 01:57 PM
Quote:
If 1911 was "designed" to carried C&l, WHY did we not hear about till the Col. TOLD us thats how it was supposed to be carried, yet JB never made mention of this way to carry when he first gave us the gun?
Condition 1 was standard long before Jeff Cooper attended Boot Camp:

FM 23-35
BASIC FIELD MANUAL

AUTOMATIC PISTOL, CALIBER .45
M1911 AND M1911A1

Prepared under direction of the
Chief of Cavalry

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, April 30, 1940.

SECTION VII
INDIVIDUAL SAFETY PRECAUTIONS

ē 25. RULES FOR SAFETY.-

. . .

i. On the range, do not load the pistol with a cartridge in
the chamber until immediate use is anticipated. If there is
any delay, lock the pistol and only unlock it while extending
the arm to fire. Do not lower the hammer on a loaded
cartridge; the pistol is much safer cocked and locked.

j. In reducing a jam first remove the magazine.

k. To remove a cartridge not fired first remove the maga-
zine and then extract the cartridge from the chamber by
drawing back the slide.

l. In campaign, when early use of the pistol is not fore-
seen, it should be carried with a fully loaded magazine in
the socket, chamber empty, hammer down. When early use
of the pistol is probable, It should be carried loaded and
locked in the holster or hand. In campaign, extra maga-
zines should be carried fully loaded.

m. When the pistol is carried in the holster loaded,
cocked, and locked the butt should be rotated away from
the body when drawing the pistol in order to avoid displacing
the safety lock

Note that the M1911 was designed for the Army (and specifically the Cavalry.) Browning was an inventor and a businessman, not a soldier, lawman, or gunfighter. His original design did not have a safety -- and was rejected by the Army. Only when he added a grip safety and a thumb safety lock would the Army accept the pistol.

In other words, the M1911 was designed to be carried cocked-and-locked (Condition 1) at the Army's insistance.

LancerMW
November 12, 2009, 03:21 PM
gah, this is getting old, if your scared of carring in C1 get a revolver or something! id hate to see someone dead because they are fumbling to pull back a hammer.

Vern Humphrey
November 12, 2009, 03:24 PM
Many are forgetting the other safety for a 1911 type pistol. The strap on the holster that goes across the back of the slide and snaps in place to hold the pistol in the holster and blocks the hammer from reaching the firing pin should it fall while still in the holster.
The military holster has no such strap. And snaps on straps like you describe are notorious for rubbing against the safety lock and disengaging it.

The safest carry is cocked and locked, with no strap.

Sniper X
November 12, 2009, 03:26 PM
Depends on how much and how you are willing to train, but just on point, it is far easier, faster and safer to carry cocked and locked when it comes time to put the weapon into use.

rondog
November 12, 2009, 03:36 PM
I rarely decock my 1911, but when I do I always use BOTH hands to do so. I use the thumb, forefinger and middle finger of my left hand to grip the hammer, I'm not about to let it get away from me. And I always carry in C1, period.

6_gunner
November 12, 2009, 04:04 PM
I have personally witnessed a ND resulting from someone trying to decock a 1911.

I was in a local gunshop when I was startled by a loud "BOOM," and turned to see a very embarressed man with a 1911 and a very displeased gunshop owner. Luckily, he had enough sense to keep it pointed in a safe direction, so the only resulting damage was a hole in the floor.

That was enough to convince me that lowering the hammer over a loaded chamber was an unnecessary risk. I know that many carry that way without mishap, but I'd prefer not to risk it.

rondog
November 12, 2009, 04:07 PM
I have personally witnessed a ND resulting from someone trying to decock a 1911.

I was in a local gunshop when I was startled by a loud "BOOM," and turned to see a very embarressed man with a 1911 and a very displeased gunshop owner. Luckily, he had enough sense to keep it pointed in a safe direction, so the only resulting damage was a hole in the floor.

That was enough to convince me that lowering the hammer over a loaded chamber was an unnecessary risk. I know that many carry that way without mishap, but I'd prefer not to risk it.


And I'd betcha $100 that Mr. Macho was trying to de-cock it one-handed, wasn't he? It's not any more dangerous than de-cocking any other weapon, as long as it's done right. No more so than any Colt SAA, or Winchester, Mosin rifle, Enfield rifle, etc.

NMGonzo
November 12, 2009, 04:15 PM
I could carry my 1911 without the safety on.

Still ... have the grip safety, and the proverbial index finger off the trigger.

One more safety than the glock! (j/k ... not really, don't try it at home)

1911Tuner
November 12, 2009, 04:40 PM
Yes...one must not only understand how to perform a risky move safely, he must also be careful while doing it. The hammer can be safely lowered with one hand if one knows how. This assumes that the gun doesn't have an upswept ducktail grip safety. That makes it pretty hinky...but two hands will suffice, if one is mindful of what he is doing.

The much maligned pinch check can also be done in complete safety...if one knows how.

Learn how. Be careful. Concentrate on the task at hand, and all will be well.

If you carry a lever-action rifle or a revolver afield for the taking of game...and the opportuity for the shot is lost...what do you do? You lower the hammer. Right? No? What do you do?

As far as Condition One goes...Cock an empty gun...holster it...and carry it around all day for a month...with the safety off. If you don't remove the gun from the holster and pull the trigger...the hammer will still be cocked at the end of the month.

Kleanbore
November 12, 2009, 04:58 PM
Thanks, Vern, that's great.

I once had a set of early manuals for the M1 rifle, and for the models 1903, 1911, and 1917 Revolver, but they are long gone and I could not begin to remember what was said about carrying the 1911. I do now remember reading the section you posted.

Mine were given to me by a still-active Army Lt. Col. who once demonstrated firing and reloading the 1911 (he simply referred to it as "the .45") while on horseback--to one Herbert Hoover.

We never discussed how to carry it. He kept his unloaded at home--he believed that keeping the magazine springs compressed would weaken them.

I labored under that misconception for almost half a century!

christcorp
November 12, 2009, 06:06 PM
vern; you are correct that the military style holsters don't have a strap. I merged two thoughts apparently. There are holsters however that are designed for the 1911A1 that has a strap, similar to a revolver's holster; whereby the strap goes across the weapon and under the hammer.

And it is very easy, AND SAFE, to lower the hammer on a 1911A1. Are there retarded people out there that aren't safe? Most definitely. But these are WEAPONS!!! No weapon is safe if a retard is handling it. So many people talk about the shooter being the #1 safety. So true!!! But that same argument says they should have no problem putting the gun into condition 2. Think about it; it's not like you have to lower the hammer on the weapon numerous times a day. The ONLY time you need to lower the hammer, is after you've loaded it and chambered a round. When I carried my SA 1911A1, that was about once a month when I took it out to shoot or if I wanted to clean it. Other than that, it was loaded with the hammer down and ready to go.

And YES, in actual BATTLE, the military would have a 1911A1 in condition 1. But that is NOT how they carried, or were trained to carry, the 1911 when not in battle. And contrary to what the zombie killers want to believe, you are NOT IN BATTLE every second you walk out of your house. It take absolutely no more time or effort to cock the hammer as it does to turn off the safety.,

Vern Humphrey
November 12, 2009, 06:14 PM
And it is very easy, AND SAFE, to lower the hammer on a 1911A1. Are there retarded people out there that aren't safe? Most definitely. But these are WEAPONS!!! No weapon is safe if a retard is handling it. So many people talk about the shooter being the #1 safety. So true!!! But that same argument says they should have no problem putting the gun into condition 2.
But the same argument also says there is no danger in carrying in Condition 1.

NMGonzo
November 12, 2009, 06:28 PM
Some people can cause a massacre retracting a measuring tape.

Double Naught Spy
November 12, 2009, 06:31 PM
Note that the M1911 was designed for the Army (and specifically the Cavalry.) Browning was an inventor and a businessman, not a soldier, lawman, or gunfighter. His original design did not have a safety -- and was rejected by the Army. Only when he added a grip safety and a thumb safety lock would the Army accept the pistol.

In other words, the M1911 was designed to be carried cocked-and-locked (Condition 1) at the Army's insistance.

Maybe, maybe not. Just because you can do something with a given item does not mean it was the designer's intent for the item to be used in that manner. No doubt the military was involved in the design. That is documented. Missing from the documentation, either in design plans or letters from the military to Browning is any stipulation that the gun be designed in a manner for it to be carried cocked and locked. If somebody has come across said documents, that would be outstanding and put this concept to rest, but otherwise, there is no actual proof that this was a design intent.

So sure, the military was involved and the gun can be carried cocked and locked. They mention only temporary carrying of the gun in that manner. If the manual above is any indication of intent, then at best the gun was meant only for limited carry in that manner. The manual states that condition 1 is safer than condition 2, but does not state that condition 1 is safe for continued carry. In fact, it is only suggested if it is believed the gun will be needed. In other words, condition 1 poses some risks, but less risk than being killed by the enemy. So you only carry it that way if danger from the enemy exists, otherwise, it is back to an empty chamber. So that is what the manual indicates, but do you think that is what was intended by the design?

So just because a manual was written after-the-fact does not mean that what is in the manual was a necessary design element. It very well may be that those writing the discovered the capability of condition 1 carry and wrote it into the manual.

Note that the gun also can be cocked by pressing the muzzle into a hard surface. Was that an intended design feature? Was hammerbite an intended design feature? Was difficulty seeing the sights in low light a design intent as well?

Some of these things were recognized after production began and the negative ones eventually corrected.

6_gunner
November 12, 2009, 06:39 PM
And I'd betcha $100 that Mr. Macho was trying to de-cock it one-handed, wasn't he?

He could have been. I was on the other side of the store not paying any attention to him when I heard the shot.

I'm not saying that it isn't possible to safely de-cock a 1911; I just said that I think it's an unnecessary risk. In most situations, I would personally feel more comfortable carrying cocked-and-locked.

Vern Humphrey
November 12, 2009, 06:58 PM
Some people can cause a massacre retracting a measuring tape.
And such people should not be encouraged to decock a loaded .45.

jdh
November 12, 2009, 07:29 PM
The military holster has no such strap. And snaps on straps like you describe are notorious for rubbing against the safety lock and disengaging it.

The safest carry is cocked and locked, with no strap.


A properly designed holster for the 1911 will not wipe the safety off. BTDT.

If the safety is being disengaged in the holster then either the holster is not proper, the safety was not fitted correctly, or the spring in the plunger tube is weak/safety plunger worn.

Since the military has gone to the M9 for general issue the military flap holster is a moot point. The UM-12 was not designed for the 1911. Those units which procure 1911s do not use WWII vintage flap holsters.

mljdeckard
November 12, 2009, 07:54 PM
I actually use an M-12 for woods carry, but I took the flap off, it won't close over my beavertail safety. (I saw no need to cut a hole to accomodate it.) I did order the optional thumb break, and While it CAN be snapped between the hammer and pin, I usually carry hammer-down, since I am frequently on horseback and ATVs.

Vern Humphrey
November 12, 2009, 08:01 PM
A properly designed holster for the 1911 will not wipe the safety off. BTDT.
Does that include the Galco Fletch?

While it CAN be snapped between the hammer and pin, I usually carry hammer-down, since I am frequently on horseback and ATVs.
When I carry an M1911 on horseback, I carry it in Condition 1.

1911Tuner
November 12, 2009, 09:09 PM
When I carry an M1911 on horseback, I carry it in Condition 1.

Well now...what little I get on a horse these days...I usually carry a single action revolver. It just seems like the right thing to do. :)

Hammer down on an empty chamber, of course. I do forego the rolled-up double sawbuck though.

Clarence
November 12, 2009, 10:36 PM
Condition 1 because

It is quicker to bring the gun into action should the need arise.
It is safer because you don't have to lower the hammer on a live round.
Col Cooper said so.

Heck, the last reason is good enough for me.

Vern Humphrey
November 13, 2009, 09:06 AM
Hammer down on an empty chamber, of course. I do forego the rolled-up double sawbuck though.
You're counting on Social Security to cover your burial, right?:evil:

christcorp
November 13, 2009, 09:46 AM
Condition 1 because

It is quicker to bring the gun into action should the need arise.
It is safer because you don't have to lower the hammer on a live round.
Col Cooper said so.

Heck, the last reason is good enough for me.

I carried condition 2 because:

It is JUST AS quick to bring the gun into action should the need arise. (Especially for a leftie without ambidextrous safeties.
It is totally safe because lowering the hammer on a live round isn't actually on a live round if you know what you're doing. But I admit, you have to be smarter than the gun. And I've manually decocked numerous handguns without a safety problem. Again, I'm smarter than the gun.
Because I have first hand experience carrying both ways, and I believe in thinking for myself and deciding for myself.

Heck, the last reason is good enough for me.

DougDubya
November 13, 2009, 12:12 PM
He could have been. I was on the other side of the store not paying any attention to him when I heard the shot.

I'm not saying that it isn't possible to safely de-cock a 1911; I just said that I think it's an unnecessary risk. In most situations, I would personally feel more comfortable carrying cocked-and-locked.
An amateur only practices until he gets it correct once.

A professional practices until he never gets it wrong once.

Most people who opt for a 1911 do so from a mindset of professionalism, and consistent training and adherence to the other three of the basic four rules of gun safety will prevent an unintentional discharge from causing harm.

Mental focus, a safe backstop, and both hands on it do not make it a risk.

Vern Humphrey
November 13, 2009, 12:48 PM
A professional practices until he never gets it wrong once.
And how many times does he get it wrong before he reaches that level of proficiency? And how many boots, friends, TVs, and so on get shot in the process?

There is no reason for Condition 2. You gain nothing by lowering the hammer on a loaded round.

Kleanbore
November 13, 2009, 03:38 PM
There is no reason for Condition 2. You gain nothing by lowering the hammer on a loaded round.

I'm convinced.

DougDubya
November 13, 2009, 03:50 PM
And how many times does he get it wrong before he reaches that level of proficiency? And how many boots, friends, TVs, and so on get shot in the process?

There is no reason for Condition 2. You gain nothing by lowering the hammer on a loaded round.
No boots. No friends. If you're shooting your foot while attempting to decock a 1911, you obviously have engaged the Darwinian law of natural selection.

Hard to walk around, let carry a firearm, when you've destroyed a chunk of your foot with 230 grains.

But then, you're pretty good at ignoring anything other than pulling the trigger - like the focus and the backstop mentioned previously.

And frankly, given what's on television these days, you'd be doing the planet a favor with one less idiot box.

David E
November 13, 2009, 04:53 PM
cyclopsshooter wrote about going from Condition 3 to Condition 2 when things get "spooky": (the chances of shooting yourself in the foot are far greater than needing the weapon to defend yourself-

im not a professional gunslinger and im not going to pretend that i am

With all due respect, if this is a serious concern for you, get some ( or more) training.

I mean, how do you practice going from C-3 to C-2 ? You could make a better case for Condition 3 all the time. But when things "get spooky," you take the gun from your regular state of (un)readiness to a slightly higher state because you're 'spooked.' It seems to me that is an accident waiting to happen, since you seldom (never?) practice that way.

Perhaps find a gun that you are comfortable and competent with to carry chamber loaded and ready to go. (S&W 642 or Kahr P-9, for example) And get training with that one.

If you STILL are worried about shooting your own foot, leave the gun at home and carry a can of pepper spray.

David E
November 13, 2009, 05:05 PM
christcorp wrote: I carried condition 2 because:

It is JUST AS quick to bring the gun into action should the need arise. (Especially for a leftie without ambidextrous safeties.

WRONG. It is slower and less consistent. If you're a lefty, then get an ambi safety!

And I've manually decocked numerous handguns without a safety problem. But I admit, you have to be smarter than the gun.

Ok, so what happens when you carry Condition One ? Are you suddenly NOT smarter than the gun? Odd.......

Because I have first hand experience carrying both ways, and I believe in thinking for myself and deciding for myself.

If you're carrying the gun for recreational purposes only, fine. BUT, if you're carrying for defense, then you're needlessly putting yourself at a disadvantage that could easily cost you your life.

rondog
November 13, 2009, 05:48 PM
Quote:
There is no reason for Condition 2. You gain nothing by lowering the hammer on a loaded round.

I'm convinced.

And some people STILL think that the 1911 is the only gun the hammer is ever lowered on a loaded round? And that it's just inherently dangerous and unsafe to do so? Unbelieveable. If you can't lower the hammer onto a live round on a 1911, or any other gun, without breaking out into a cold sweat or discharging the weapon, then you have NO business handling firearms. My God, it's not rocket science. Only a fool would try to do it one-handed.

Eightball
November 13, 2009, 05:58 PM
It's much easier to sweep the safety off than it is to cock the hammerIt's been said a while ago, and this is pretty much it. Also, more safeties are inherent if the hammer is back (half-cock notch, thumb safety, etc).

Kleanbore
November 13, 2009, 09:21 PM
And some people STILL think that the 1911 is the only gun the hammer is ever lowered on a loaded round?

I've done it many times with Marlin and Winchester rifles. One handed.

And that it's just inherently dangerous and unsafe to do so? No, but I think that it does entail an unnecessary risk.

Years ago, I (and according to his writings, Elmer Keith) thought that certain design features made the 1911 less desirable from the standpoint of safety than other, more modern designs. I selected something else at the time.

But the design does have its advantages.

So--why lower the hammer on a loaded round, anyway? If you want to fire the gun, you'll have to cock it. The Army manual says, "Do not lower the hammer on a loaded cartridge; the pistol is much safer cocked and locked." Remember, a large number of the people for whom that was intended were commissioned officers--people with college degrees.

And if you may have to draw it, why have to cock it?

jad0110
November 13, 2009, 09:49 PM
I carried condition 2 because:

It is JUST AS quick to bring the gun into action should the need arise. (Especially for a leftie without ambidextrous safeties.

Maybe. For some. Before unholstering, and just before taking the grip, I suppose this is when you'd cock the gun. Again, perhaps as fast, but it just isn't as natural as swiping the saftey off on the draw ... for most of us anyway.

If it works for you, go for it.

Cocking the hammer after the gun is drawn from the holster would be awkward, especially with a beavertail-style grip safety. Afterall, we aren't talking about an 1873 Single Action Army of Ruger Single Six that is ergonomically designed for thumb cocking.

Thing is, I don't quite trust myself to lower a hammer on a loaded chamber, even two handed. It makes me nervous in the same manner that some are nervous about condition one. I carry my 1911, condition one, in a Gary Brommeland Max Con V. It is a leather holster who's sweat shield also serves to complete cover the manual safety. I've never come close to even getting any article of clothing (or anything else, other than air) between the sweat shield and the safety switch.

Also, prior to loading the gun I go through a number of safety tests. All tests are done after I've verified an empty gun, about half a dozen times.

With the hammer cocked, I apply fairly heavy pressure with my thumb several times for around 10 seconds at a time. Next, I load a few of my homemade dummy rounds (no primer or powder) into a mag and I'll drop and rack the slide to again test for hammer follow through (chambering rounds, dud or not, has a cushioning effect - dropping the slide without a round to scoop up can lead to battering of the locking lugs). I'll also release the hammer and test to verify that the half-cock notch catches the hammer before it comes to full rest. With the hammer cocked and safety on, I try pulling the trigger with and without the grip saftey depressed (it shouldn't drop). Then, I swipe off the safety and pull the trigger without depressing the grip safety. Again, the hammer shouldn't fall. I also rack the slide with my finger depressing both the trigger and grip saftey to test for hammer fall and proper disconnector operation.

There are a number of other tests I do, but these are the ones relating to the cocked and locked part :D . Again, I do these each time before loading up the weapon; only takes a few minutes.

In the end, I usually carry a S&W revolver of some sort, so this is all moot most of the time. :p

christcorp
November 13, 2009, 10:57 PM
Rondog; you are so correct. There are plenty of weapons where lowering the hammer is the norm. And there's no increased risk; if you know what you're doing. You are also correct, that if a person breaks out in a cold sweat even thinking of lowering the hammer, then they have no business even with the gun.

David; you have no place on the planet to tell me I'm wrong; and to SHOUT IT (WRONG); that I can cock the hammer back on my 1911A1 just as easily and quickly as thumbing the safety. You have absolutely no idea what I'm capable of. And NO; I should not have to buy an ambidextrous safety. I've been shooting 1911A1 45acp variations for more than 30 years. And for more than 40 years, I've been shooting cowboy single action revolvers. Single action guns are so second nature to me, that I feel a little out of place with my Sig P220. I sometime find myself cocking the hammer on the first shot; even though it's a double action pistol. So; if you want to shout (WRONG); shout it to yourself in a mirror. Now; if you carry it cocked and locked, are you NOT smarter than the gun? No. That's you interpretation of what I said. Grow up and learn to interpret words instead of allowing your biased emotions to get in the way. But any weapon; from a ruger six single action; to an M1 garand and M16; requires learning the weapon. And I don't care who the person is, or what guns they've shot. You need to learn your weapon. And it doesn't take long. And just like kleanbore was saying; dropping the hammer down on a marlin/winchester 30-30 is the NORM. So is every single action revolver out there.

I CAN cock the hammer back on a 1911A1 JUST AS FAST as I can sweep the safety off. And if you say it's not possible; then YOU my friend are the one that is wrong. Just because YOU CAN'T, doesn't mean it isn't possible. It's is completely possible. And lowering the hammer can also be 100% safe. And with gravity on your side, a lowered hammer is ALWAYS safer than a cocked hammer. ALWAYS!!! Just because you don't think so; or you don't know how to lower a hammer safely; doesn't mean it can't be done properly. It simply means that YOU can't do it properly. And with modern guns, there is no danger of the hammer resting on the firing pin, thus resting on the primer, and firing the weapon.

Now; anyone is free to carry their 1911A1 any which way they choose. I am not here to tell anyone that the way they are doing it is wrong. If you are more comfortable a certain way, then have at it. That's the way it SHOULD BE. But when people say that the 1911 was INTENDED, DESIGNED, MADE TO, etc... be carried "Cocked and Locked"; then they are the ones that are wrong. It was never intended to be carried that way, except in direct military battle confrontation. And even then, when not in use, it was in a holster "ORIGINALLY" with a flap over cover. The gun was never intended to be worn concealed; pancake holsters; ankle holsters; inside jackets; etc.... That is not how it was "Originally" intended. It was built for the military; in a holster; on your belt. But if you want to carry it cocked and locked; go for it. I won't say that's bad, wrong, etc... This is a free country. If you swing a golf club 50 yards further by crossing your hands backwards; screw what others say. Do it that way. But I'm here for the novice. For the rookie. For the noob who comes lurking on these forums because they truly don't know. And I am here to tell you right now; it is perfectly fine to carry the 1911A1 in "Condition 2" with the hammer down. It can definitely be done safely, and drawing the hammer back can be done just as quickly as turning off a safety. Even the Israeli military figured that one out. So, if you are like me, and don't trust mechanical devices; but I trust gravity and know that the hammer can't cock itself; and you learn how to safely decock and cock the hammer; then you can carry condition 2 just as safe and effective as condition 1. And it's not wrong to do so.

Clarence
November 14, 2009, 12:56 AM
Maybe you should share with the group the proper procedure for safely letting the hammer down on a live round. I can just imagine one of the novices you are advising on this forum shooting his foot off. On the way to the hospital he'll be telling his wife, "But I read on the internet it was safe to let the hammer down on a live round.

mljdeckard
November 14, 2009, 01:26 AM
I will agree that you should practice until you can comfortably and quickly cock the hammer if you NEED to. Just because it isn't how you carry doesn't mean that you can assume that it will never be necessary to do it.

As for how to decock it, you should know how to do it one-handed just like you should know how to draw, clear a stoppage, and reload one-handed. Know how to run your gun. Now, the way that's regarded as the safest is going to be with two hands. (Clear the weapon before you practice these, and continue to observe all four safety rules.) Pinch the cocked hammer with your weak hand, pull it slightly to the rear, pull the trigger, and ease the hammer forward with the weak hand. OR, pull back on the cocked hammer with both thumbs. Pull the trigger, and ease the hammer forward.

As someone pointed out, if it wasn't meant to be decocked, why does it have a rough surface to grip? Or for that matter, why have a hammer spur at all? It would have had a flush hammer like a DAO auto.

cyclopsshooter
November 14, 2009, 01:50 AM
David E,
I know 1911s quite well, inside and out- I am well practiced in de-cocking a 1911 one handed (wide spur hammer and gi grip safety)

I have no intention of shooting myself in the foot and do not fear that I will- I apologize for the misleading joviality of my earlier posts... At the time I had the impression that this thread was a friendly community, gathering for discussion- Had I known that this was a court setting I would have deferred to my lawyer.

cyclops

-eaux-
November 14, 2009, 02:00 AM
to carry the pistol in condition 2 you have to violate one of the rules "do not put your finger on the tigger till you ready to fire" I think this is all the reason one need to never try to use condition 2

'nuff said.
condition1 is proven safe and trustworthy. no extra steps. wanna clear weapon? simply drop magazine, drop safety, rack slide to clear chamber.
wanna engage threat? simply draw/disengage safety and fire with intent.
that is JMB's golden child singing it's sweet song of instinctiveness.
*disclaimer* the SA 1911 platform comes naturally and intuitively to ME. wanna see me fail to fire at a target? maybe shoot my own foot off? send me out with a striker fired pistol with a trigger safety.

*edited* to add: if i ever see you 'uncocking' your SA 1911 on a stuffed pipe, we aren't shootin' buddies anymore.

David E
November 14, 2009, 02:42 AM
christcorp, you're changing the parameters.

You originally pronounced: It is JUST AS quick to bring the gun into action should the need arise.

I was addressing this pronouncement, stated as fact, when I said "WRONG!"

NOW you say: I can cock the hammer back on my 1911A1 just as easily and quickly as thumbing the safety. And: I CAN cock the hammer back on a 1911A1 JUST AS FAST as I can sweep the safety off.

As for your personal statement, about what YOU can do, I'll take you at your word. But I have some questions.

1) How do you know you're "just as fast?"

2) If you are "just as fast" either way, then you need more practice time with the thumb safety.

3) How consistent is your first fast shot after cocking the hammer with the gunhand thumb?

Then again, I guess we'd need to define "fast" so we're on the same page. Let's say 1.5 seconds, starting with hands at sides, gun holstered, reacting to the beep of a shot timer, to draw and fire one shot in the "A" zone of an IPSC target at 7 yds.

christcorp
November 14, 2009, 03:00 AM
I haven't changed any parameters. You said the words: "Bring the gun into action". I define those words to mean: DECIDE to pull the weapon out of the holster; take aim; and fire. Now; depending on whether the weapon is in condition 1, 2, or 3; determines any extra steps. And I am saying that I can draw the weapon, pull the hammer, aim, and fire; just as quickly as draw the weapon, turn off the safety, aim, and fire. And no, I don't need more practice.

Do whatever you want. That is the difference in our debate. You are saying that it's condition 1 or the person is WRONG. That statement is wrong. It is quite safe to lower the hammer on a 1911A1. Just like it's quite safe to lower the hammer on most every other gun with an exposed hammer. And most modern guns have no risk of the hammer physically resting on the firing pin/primer. So that's not even an argument. But again; do whatever you want. I know, and have seen, for a fact, issues with 1911A1s when they are carried concealed, inside clothing, IWB, etc... But again, it doesn't matter. One thing I've known for years about people that own guns. Different personalities will have different opinions. And most times, there isn't a single thing that anyone can say that will make them even consider another position or opinion. And that's fine. I just hope noobs reading this or a similar thread, realize that there isn't some hard written law by Browning or anyone else, that says cocked and locked is the "Way the weapon was DESIGNED" to be carried; or that any other method is wrong...

David E
November 14, 2009, 03:35 AM
You are saying that it's condition 1 or the person is WRONG.

Noooooooo, I'm saying that cocking the hammer is slower and less consistent than wiping off the safety.

And I am saying that I can draw the weapon, pull the hammer, aim, and fire; just as quickly as draw the weapon, turn off the safety, aim, and fire.

Maybe you can.........but again..........how do you know ?

purebred
November 14, 2009, 04:33 AM
ah this is the number 1 rule!

CombatArmsUSAF
November 14, 2009, 09:18 AM
I am of the STRONG opinion that manually lowering the hammer on any loaded autoloader not specifically designed to do so is extremely dangerous. Your also asking to get your thumb bit pretty good by the slide when the hammer slips under your thumb. Probably end up injuring yourself bad enough, that shooting isn't going to be an option for a week or two.

The only time you should decock any autoloader is when it has a decock feature built into it, like the Beretta 92FS.

christcorp
November 14, 2009, 09:52 AM
Maybe you can.........but again..........how do you know ?

Because I've been shooting 1911A1 variations for more than 30 years. And I don't just take it to the range and practice plinking at a piece of paper or tin can. I've practices with it in the military; practiced in "Hot House" setups. Just as you are so sure that it can't be done, I am telling you that it can.

As for safety in lowering the hammer, it most definitely can be done safely. Especially with modern 1911A1's (Last 20 years). If you can't lower the hammer safely, then it's a problem with the operator. Not the weapon.

But go ahead and continue with the conversation. I think I've said all I wanted to. If your position is that condition 1 is the "ONLY" safe method; or if you contend that the 1911A1 was "DESIGNED/INTENDED" to be carried in condition 1; as the ONLY method; then I will simply say that you are wrong. And hopefully some people who read these forums and threads and have questions, will investigate and see the mechanical pros and cons of each condition. That they will look into the history of the weapon. And that the next time they go to the range; they will experiment (With an empty magazine) with their 1911A1 and realize what you can and can't do with it; and the safety capabilities of the gun; and the possibilities of each condition.

Billy Shears
November 14, 2009, 11:07 AM
Because I've been shooting 1911A1 variations for more than 30 years. And I don't just take it to the range and practice plinking at a piece of paper or tin can. I've practices with it in the military; practiced in "Hot House" setups. Just as you are so sure that it can't be done, I am telling you that it can.
I'm not sure you're getting what he's driving at. Perhaps you are, indeed, much faster than the rest of us would be cocking the hammer, and perhaps you are faster cocking the hammer than you are wiping the safety, because you have practiced thousands and thousands of draws from condition two, and this has been so thoroughly trained into your muscle memory that it's totally automatic for you now, and is also smooth and fast. But have you really spent an equal amount of time drawing and firing from condition one? Have you incorporated that into your muscle memory to an equal degree? Probably not, since you are an advocate of condition two, and clearly favor that method, and I would guess that you have devoted the bulk of your training time (in drawing from the holster) to that method.

Now if you had devoted an equal time to both methods, you would be faster in condition one. You would have to be. You would have to be, because given that your reflexes, reaction time, basically your neuromuscular speed are the same, then if you are equally proficient in both methods, the fact that wiping off the safety is more economical in terms of motion would allow you to be quicker using that method. And it is indisputable that wiping off the safety has greater economy of motion. When you take a firing grip on the weapon, your thumb is right there at the safety lever. The hammer, on the other hand, is not so naturally placed (unlike the hammer on an SAA which is naturally placed), and you have to shift your grip slightly in order to reach up and around the grip safety tang, and then reassume a firing grip after you have cocked. This is far less economical of motion than simply wiping the thumb down the side of the frame and leaving it where it rests at the end of that motion. Therefore all other factors being equal, wiping the safety off WILL be faster than cocking the hammer.

None of this is to say that you can't train yourself to be very fast and very deft cocking the 1911 on the draw. If you say you have, I'm quite prepared to take your word for it. But there are easy ways to do things and hard ways to do things. You have to train a lot harder to master the hard things. In martial arts, for example, Aikido can be a very effective means of self-defense, but it takes a longer time to learn because so many of its techniques are rather involved, and some are rather counter-intuitive, and you have to spend hundreds or even thousands of extra hours in training to make executing them automatic. Jeet Kune Do (which is also a different art -- a striking art rather than a throwing and locking art), on the other hand, uses much simpler techniques, which build on one's intuitive reactions, rather than requiring one to train out of them and "reprogram" oneself to do something else, and thus can be mastered more quickly, and a student can become better able to defend himself in a shorter amount of time.

If you've become extremely proficient in drawing from condition two and can do it, great. If it works for you, and you're most comfortable with it, you're probably right to carry that way -- for you. But I'd advise anyone else trying to make his mind up to carry cocked and locked. It's at least as safe, if not safer, and it's quicker, more economical of motion, involves less use of fine motor skills (important under stress), and more intuitive to learn.

louie1961
November 14, 2009, 11:08 AM
From Col Cooper's perspective, which I happen to respect immensely:


Condition Three. Chamber empty, hammer down. This requires you to manually cycle the slide before firing. To return the gun to its carry position after firing, you have to drop the magazine, empty the chamber, drop the hammer, reload and reinsert the magazine, all without shooting an innocent bystander. Condition Three is the slowest-into-action of any method of carrying a 1911 and, as such, is a dangerous concession to those whose nervous systems are conditioned to revolvers whose hammers are always at rest when not in use and which are not equipped with the operator-controlled safety systems of the 1911.

Condition Two. Chamber loaded, hammer down. This requires you to cock the hammer with your thumb before firing. It also requires you to very carefully pull the trigger and lower the hammer over a loaded chamber before returning the gun to its holster. The technique for manipulating a Condition Two carry is best practiced out in the country in a freshly plowed field, where the bullets will not ricochet off the pavement or the occasional rock every time you re-holster your gun.

Condition One. Cocked and locked. Chamber loaded, hammer cocked, thumb safety on. This requires you to snick the safety down before firing and snick it back up when youíre finished. Simple. And as safe as any mechanical safety can possibly make a gun, which is to say as safe as is consistent with practical readiness. Condition One is the fastest way to get your 1911 into action, the least prone to mistakes, and therefore the only way to go.

bullbarrel
November 14, 2009, 12:45 PM
I don't know what condition it is but I carry prepared for the Israeli draw. That is hammer cocked and no round in the chamber. That way the piece racks easily and rapidly. I just do not like the idea of keeping a round always chambered. As a purist I do not want to "punish" the gun by not ejecting an empty. My way is a trifle slower and requires two hands. But there is always a trade-off of some kind. Just my two thousand (inflation adjusted) dollars.

mljdeckard
November 14, 2009, 01:50 PM
CombatarmsUSAF,

If the 1911 wasn't designed to be decocked, why is there a spur on the hammer at all?

EddieNFL
November 14, 2009, 05:14 PM
The Army manual says, "Do not lower the hammer on a loaded cartridge; the pistol is much safer cocked and locked." Remember, a large number of the people for whom that was intended were commissioned officers--people with college degrees.

That's why SNCOs exist; to explain it to them.

If the 1911 wasn't designed to be decocked, why is there a spur on the hammer at all?

Because handgun hammers always had them?

ep2621
November 14, 2009, 05:25 PM
Condition 1 for me.

mljdeckard
November 14, 2009, 05:25 PM
But Browning had already designed hammerless guns. It had certainly occurred to HIM to make it an option.

Frankh
November 14, 2009, 06:18 PM
a lowered hammer is ALWAYS safer than a cocked hammer. ALWAYS!!!

Just out of interest, why is it safer? Talking std 1911,s

Thanks Frank

orionengnr
November 14, 2009, 07:56 PM
It is totally safe because lowering the hammer on a live round isn't actually on a live round if you know what you're doing.
Sorry, but this statement makes absolutely no sense at all. A live round is a live round no matter what you "know", no matter who you are, no matter what you think or what you say...

If you are saying that you can mitigate the risk, I agree. However, "mitigate" is not the same as "eliminate". It is still a live round (see above).

I have read every post in this thread, and many other threads on the same subject. While I can perhaps see Tuner's special circumstance for not getting mud/detritus into the open hammer/firing pin area (and since I don't Open Carry or own an ATV, this one circumstance has no practical use for me) I see no other reason to carry a 1911 in anything other than C1.

Just my .02.

JTQ
November 14, 2009, 08:33 PM
For me, this is the definitive post on Condition 2. With all due respect to fellow site member "PcolaDawg" I link to his post.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=441761&highlight=pcoladawg

christcorp wrote,
And it is very easy, AND SAFE, to lower the hammer on a 1911A1. Are there retarded people out there that aren't safe?

I don't think "pcoladawg" is retarded. I think he is probably a pretty safe and conscientious gun owner, just like the rest of us, that, for a split second, lost control of the hammer of his 1911 while putting it into Condition 2. What are the chances of it happening again to "pcoladawg", or to anyone of us? Pretty small.

What are the chances any of us will have a Negligent Discharge (ND) putting the pistol into Condition 1 or Condition 3? It may not be 0 (admittedly anything could be possible), but the chance of a ND going to Condition 1 or 3 is significantly less than Condition 2.

While I think it is good to have an option like Condition 2 for 1911 users, and it is probably a good one for an experienced user like "christcorp". However, for the new user, Condition 1 or Condition 3 are better choices. Of the three Conditions, Condition 2 requires the most skill and concentration from the user while Condition 1 and 3 require the least user skill and allow the user to take advantage of the redundant safety system of the 1911.

dmazur
November 14, 2009, 10:01 PM
As I commented in the "pcoladawg" post, I believe it is important to be able to clear from Condition 1 to Condition 3 safely.

Even if you carry Condition 3 all the time, you want to be able to do this safely if you ever do have to rack the slide and use your weapon...you're going to have to return to your normal routine sometime.

I have seen way too many new shooters who don't seem to have too much trouble loading semi-auto pistols, but if they have to unload one (that hasn't been shot empty) it can sometimes be somewhat awkward.

Practice solves this.

Oro
November 14, 2009, 11:19 PM
Just out of interest, why is it safer? Talking std 1911,s

There is an unlikely, but possible, combination of events that can lead to a condition 1 gun having an ND. It is virtually impossible in a secure holster and not really relevant to that mode of carry.

There is virtually no circumstance, or set of, that can result in a ND in condition 2. The inertial fp system prevents it even in the case of a direct hammer strike or drop on the hammer. For unholstered carry, it has it's advantages.

MR_A
November 14, 2009, 11:29 PM
You have always heard dont go around half cocked-as this it true with the 1911.

David E
November 15, 2009, 02:07 AM
I asked (twice): How do you know you're just as fast thumb cocking the hammer as you are wiping off the safety?

christcorp replied: Because I've been shooting 1911A1 variations for more than 30 years. And I don't just take it to the range and practice plinking at a piece of paper or tin can. I've practices with it in the military; practiced in "Hot House" setups. Just as you are so sure that it can't be done, I am telling you that it can.

Christcorp, you keep making the same dodge and same mistake.

The dodge: I asked you twice, "how do you know" and twice, you dodged giving a factually based answer. It seems that you "just know," so there is no need to actually test it and see. :rolleyes:

The mistake: First, you make a proclamation, ("It's just as fast....") stating it as unassailable fact, but it's based only on your opinion. When challenged, you change it to: "_I_ can to it just as fast..."

Those are two different statements.

If you ARE just as fast, then it betrays a lack of training and time spent taking off the safety.

That is my only point in this thread. Then you went down a rabbit trail telling me I'm wrong saying "it was designed for cocked and locked," but _I_ never made that statement, so how can I be wrong about something I didn't say?

Here's the bottom line: christcorp, I don't care how you carry your gun. I hope your method continues to work for you and nothing happens that proves otherwise.

But for others reading thru this thread, the best way to carry a 1911 for personal defense on your person is cocked and locked. This requires a certain amount of dedication to the 1911 system. C&L is not for the casual shooter. Thinking you're smarter than everyone else on the topic and deciding to carry it hammer down on a chambered round is your choice, but a poor one.

Thumb cocking the 1911 hammer is SLOWER than wiping off the safety (this presumes a proper safety and sufficient practice.) It is less positive under speed and stress. It is less consistent for a speedy first shot on target.

If you are not comfortable carrying a 1911 in Condition One, then why not find a gun that you are comfortable with that's ready to go with minimum manipulation? If you favor the 1911 for all its other features, then why not consider a Para Ordnance LDA ?

Fighting your equipment when you have a choice in the matter is ignorant.

EddieNFL
November 15, 2009, 07:59 AM
How do you know you're just as fast thumb cocking the hammer as you are wiping off the safety?

Easily proven...or disproved. Gotta timer?

Frankh
November 15, 2009, 08:21 AM
@ MR A

Half cocked- just dont see the point . Fully cocked safety on. Best carry option for self defence IMO.

Frankh
November 15, 2009, 08:34 AM
There is an unlikely, but possible, combination of events that can lead to a condition 1 gun having an ND. It is virtually impossible in a secure holster and not really relevant to that mode of carry.

I carry 24/7 Wilson QCB and use a wilson IWB leather holster. The holster is moulded to secure the safety. It can be forced of in the holster but reasonable force is needed.


There is virtually no circumstance, or set of, that can result in a ND in condition 2. The inertial fp system prevents it even in the case of a direct hammer strike or drop on the hammer. For unholstered carry, it has it's advantages.

Same would apply in condition 1 if you have a grip safety.

When the SHTF I certainly don’t want to be buggering around. That split second counts.

Guillermo
November 15, 2009, 10:36 AM
Not even sure why this is a debate other than the fact that we gun folks like to debate. Cocked & locked is by far the better way to carry a 1911.

A- you maintain your grip when disengaging the thumb safety which is not the case if thumbing the hammer.

B- it is quicker

C- you never have to lower a hammer onto a live round

BTW
many pistols have the safety "backwards" like a Beretta 92. After years of 1911 ownershio, were I to pick up one in order to prepare to shoot it I would push the safety lever down. Of course this would engage the safety. Because of these design of these "safeties" those guns are not welcome at my house.

CombatArmsUSAF
November 15, 2009, 11:32 AM
CombatarmsUSAF,

If the 1911 wasn't designed to be decocked, why is there a spur on the hammer at all?

To aid in cocking the hammer, I presume. Maybe it was a requirement for the military contract? Just because you can lower the hammer on live round, doesn't mean it's particularly safe to do so.

Also, a design that is meant to be decocked safely is a design like the Beretta 92FS. Where in the action of decocking, the possibility of hammer contact with the firing pin is eliminated 100%. Therefore eliminating the possibility of a ND/AD 100% in that particular situation.

David E
November 15, 2009, 05:02 PM
How do you know you're just as fast thumb cocking the hammer as you are wiping off the safety?

Easily proven...or disproved. Gotta timer?

Why, yes it is and yes I do ! :D

The thing is, if christcorp, for example, in the unlikely event prove he is "just as fast" either way, then that simply proves he has not practiced wiping off the thumb safety properly.

Likewise, if I should prove to be faster wiping off the safety, he'd say I've not spent enough time doing it the "slow" way.

Let's look at top level shooters that have the choice and see what they decide to do. Looking at IDPA and USPSA/IPSC, it appears that virtually 100% of the shooters running a 1911 based platform, including the left handed shooters, do so cocked and locked.

Why? Because it's FASTER, MORE RELIABLE and results in a MORE CONSISTENT FIRST SHOT.

If SPEED, RELIABILITY and CONSISTENCY don't matter to you, then thumb cocking the hammer is perfectly fine, as is starting from Condition 3, or even an unloaded gun.

mljdeckard
November 15, 2009, 06:10 PM
But there is never any need to cock the hammer if you leave it cocked when you chamber a round. The only reason for a spur is to DEcock it. Just because other pistold were LATER designed with a .....backwards positive safety rotating decocker doesn't mean that the 1911 was NOT designed to be decocked.

Oro
November 15, 2009, 06:22 PM
+1 to mljdeckard - later innovations don't "backwardly predict" what a prior design was trying to do or capable of...


I carry 24/7 Wilson QCB and use a wilson IWB leather holster. The holster is moulded to secure the safety. It can be forced of in the holster but reasonable force is needed.

The statement was about creating a ND, not merely inadvertently releasing the thumb safety. It takes a whole lot more than that to create an ND in a holstered weapon.


Same would apply in condition 1 if you have a grip safety.

No, the grip safety would be pointless if a direct hammer strike on a Condition 1 gun defeated the cocking notch(es). The grip safety works solely on the trigger bow to prevent sear spring release. To understand the safeties, STI has an excellent animation you can customize here:

http://www.m1911.org/loader.swf

When the SHTF I certainly don’t want to be buggering around. That split second counts.

That is your choice, certainly. The point is there are various acceptable methods of carry, and anyone is free to choose the one they want for a given situation or set of circumstances.

The gun is a versatile platform that can be carried in a variety of ways with varying levels of safety and readiness. No single one is superior in all aspects in all circumstances.

kwelz
November 15, 2009, 06:23 PM
Carrying a 1911 in condition 2 or even three is the same as carrying it with no ammo in the gun at all.

Seriously, if you don't feel comfortable enough to carry the gun then don't carry it. But don't put yourself and others in danger by carrying it in such a way that you have to screw around with the hammer in an attempt to make it usable.

And as for people that feel it is no different than working the safety, you are ignoring the ergonomics of the firearm. Your thumb naturally rests on the safety. to cock the hammer you must shift your grip and in doing so youa re putting your thumb in a place you don't want it to be on a firearm.

mljdeckard
November 15, 2009, 06:36 PM
I'll clarify a bit on what I said before.

I carry condition 2 in my fanny pack because I have pulled it out and found the safety worked off, and I don't know how it happened. It takes long enough to draw this way that it doesn't make much difference. I carry condition 2 when I'm on horses or ATVs because I commonly get a LOT of dust on it, and I don't like looking down and seeing the strike face caked with dust. Other than that, IWB, OWB, or shoulder carry, it's condition 1.

jdh
November 15, 2009, 07:23 PM
The 1911 is a single action. That being the case there is no second strike capability. The hammer spur is there so you can re-cock the hammer to get a second strike on a cartridge that did not fire the first time. Yes, most users are taught the immediate action drill of tap-rack-fire. BUT, there are some conditions where a second hit on the primer is the best course of action.

PT1911
November 15, 2009, 07:30 PM
the process of dropping the hammer time after time day after day on a loaded round is simply unsafe and in the instance that you actually need the gun, you must first cock it... if you dont feel safe carrying a 1911 cocked and locked, sell it and get a double action.

mljdeckard
November 15, 2009, 08:28 PM
jdh-

When is it EVER better to re-fire the same cartridge than rack and fire a new one?

earlthegoat2
November 15, 2009, 08:42 PM
Because if you arent up to carrying condition one then you are not up to carrying any gun with a round in the chamber. I see no difference between carrying a 1911 condition one and carrying one in the pipe on a Glock, or a revovler with a loaded cylinder.

If you are not up to carrying a 1911 condition one then carry something you are comfortable with carrying a round in the chamber. Condition one carry is the best and fastest and safest way to carry the gun with a round chambered. In a world of compromises this is the compromise of the 1911. To have speed with this gun you need a round in the chamber and the hammer cocked. That is why there is a manual safety.

You cannot even call yourself a fan of the 1911 if you cannot muster the nerves to carry condition 1. Get a different gun. Get a revolver.

Or better yet get a Para Ordinance LDA so you can have the hammer down and the safety on. Of course then you dont have a traditional 1911, but rather another cookie cutter double action pistol with the looks of a 1911.

EddieNFL
November 15, 2009, 09:03 PM
The thing is, if christcorp, for example, in the unlikely event prove he is "just as fast" either way, then that simply proves he has not practiced wiping off the thumb safety properly.

I agree. While it certainly may be possible to train enough to be equally quick using either method (I remain skeptical), training and real-world are "worlds" apart. Fine motor skill goes out the window under duress.

When is it EVER better to re-fire the same cartridge than rack and fire a new one?

When it's the only cartridge you have?

mljdeckard
November 15, 2009, 10:47 PM
So you just keep cocking and trying to fire a cartridge you already know is defective? When you can reload just as quickly?

DougDubya
November 16, 2009, 02:00 AM
BTW
many pistols have the safety "backwards" like a Beretta 92. After years of 1911 ownershio, were I to pick up one in order to prepare to shoot it I would push the safety lever down. Of course this would engage the safety. Because of these design of these "safeties" those guns are not welcome at my house.

Huh? Really?

Because I make the same motion to swipe the 1911 safety as I do with the 92.

But then, that's a push forward. It will push the 1911 safety down and the 92 safety up.

You've just got bad handling practices that you push down a Beretta safety.

Double Naught Spy
November 16, 2009, 06:13 AM
The thing is, if christcorp, for example, in the unlikely event prove he is "just as fast" either way, then that simply proves he has not practiced wiping off the thumb safety properly.

I agree. While it certainly may be possible to train enough to be equally quick using either method (I remain skeptical), training and real-world are "worlds" apart. Fine motor skill goes out the window under duress.

It isn't like threading a needle. Swiping off the safety isn't a fine motor skill.

EddieNFL
November 16, 2009, 07:50 AM
It isn't like threading a needle. Swiping off the safety isn't a fine motor skill.

Never said it was. I was referring to attempting to cock the hammer while drawing/presenting.

EddieNFL
November 16, 2009, 07:51 AM
So you just keep cocking and trying to fire a cartridge you already know is defective? When you can reload just as quickly?

If it's the last round you have, what are you going to reload with?

Billy Shears
November 16, 2009, 08:54 AM
Quote:
"So you just keep cocking and trying to fire a cartridge you already know is defective? When you can reload just as quickly?"
If it's the last round you have, what are you going to reload with?
We're getting into some pretty unlikely scenarios here. I think we ought to abandon the idea that any design features of the 1911 are based on such improbable "what ifs."

woad_yurt
November 16, 2009, 09:10 AM
Why carry a 1911 in Condition 1 over Condition 2?

Short answer:
It was designed to be carried like that.

Long answer:
Look at a drawing of the gun's works and have someone point out what actually happens in there. Mechanical things do what they do regardless of your feelings towards them.

I'd rather have my thumb on a safety on the side than have it up and directly behind the slide if a situation got sticky. If you slip and the thing fires, you may be looking at some stitiches. Those slides bite deep sometimes. The safety is out of harm's way.

EddieNFL
November 16, 2009, 09:45 AM
We're getting into some pretty unlikely scenarios here. I think we ought to abandon the idea that any design features of the 1911 are based on such improbable "what ifs."
There is a statistic for everything, but my post was a jest.

xXxplosive
November 16, 2009, 09:52 AM
My $0.02, You can Cock what ever you want but mine is Locked and Loaded always....Condition 1.

tmoore912
November 16, 2009, 11:15 AM
As a relative noob to carrying a firearm, about three years now, I did a lot of investigation on the 1911 platform before buying one. I read books, chatted on gun forums, watched videos and rented them to shoot at my local gun ranges. There is no question that the 1911 can be carried in several different conditions, but the condition I chose to always carry in was condition 1. Condition 3 was not acceptable to me, because I wanted to be able to draw and fire as quickly as possible to be able to maybe survive a close force on force encounter. Condition 2 was also not acceptable because I could not practice it real world at my shooting range, but also because it was really slow to draw, cock and fire compared to condition 1. The other main reason I stayed away from condition 2 is that I would have to violate one of the major safety laws by pulling the trigger while releasing the hammer on a live round. So, condition 1 was the way to go for me. Cocked and Locked with it being very easy to flick the safety off while drawing from the holster.

I carried it around unloaded IWB for several days in the cocked and locked condition to see what would happen with the safety. My 1911 has ambi safety, and it never once moved to the off position. I did house chores, drove my truck, did yard work, went to work and rolled around on the floor wrestling with my two young daughters. Never looked back since. You newbies out there..............read this thread and do your own investigating, and in the end you will figure it out for yourself.

http://i265.photobucket.com/albums/ii218/tmoore912/Smileys/1911OneClickAway.jpg

jdh
November 16, 2009, 11:23 AM
When is it ever better to try a restrike on a cartridge rather than tap-rack-fire?

When you are shooting one handed because your other hand has been incapacitated.

Hawk
November 16, 2009, 11:27 AM
Why carry a 1911 in Condition 1 over Condition 2?

Short answer:
It was designed to be carried like that.

The myth dies hard. It's even repeated in the same thread.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=6037266&postcount=41

I prefer condition one myself but it likely has something to do with Jeff Cooper and nothing to do with JM Browning.

mljdeckard
November 16, 2009, 02:13 PM
My posts were not in jest.

Billy Shears
November 16, 2009, 02:15 PM
The myth dies hard. It's even repeated in the same thread.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost....6&postcount=41

I prefer condition one myself but it likely has something to do with Jeff Cooper and nothing to do with JM Browning.
Well, to be fair, it's not entirely wrong. It's true enough that there probably was no intent on the part of Browning, his colleagues at Colt's, or of the army to have the gun carried full time cocked and locked. However a manual safety was included at the request of the army to allow the gun to be safely reholstered -- and thus carried -- with the hammer cocked and the safety engaged. This was probably meant only as a limited duration means of carry, and in response to particular circumstances (e.g. the previously mentioned instance of a cavalryman with a drawn pistol needing to bring an unruly mount back under control without shooting himself or the horse). The pistol was probably meant to be either redrawn or returned to condition 3 carry as soon as circumstances would permit. But nevertheless, the pistol was meant to be capable of being safely returned to its holster with the hammer cocked and the safety engaged, and so it, in a sense, designed to be carried that way.

It's simply that later on, Cooper and others realized that the safety was entirely capable of being used full time instead of part time, and the gun was no more prone to negligent discharges if carried this way by a trained shooter, and that by carrying this way, said shooter could be faster to an accurate first shot than he could be with any other practical sidearm.

Vern Humphrey
November 16, 2009, 02:33 PM
The pistol was probably meant to be either redrawn or returned to condition 3 carry as soon as circumstances would permit. But nevertheless, the pistol was meant to be capable of being safely returned to its holster with the hammer cocked and the safety engaged, and so it, in a sense, designed to be carried that way.

Absolutely right. As FM 23-35 (my version is dated 1940) puts it: "Do not lower the hammer on a loaded cartridge; the pistol is much safer cocked and locked."

M1911
November 16, 2009, 02:49 PM
Is there a big advantage to carrying a 1911 with the hammer cocked and safety on vs. hammer uncocked (Condition 2)?

Since a vast majority of 1911s are SAO I see no advantage.

I had a 1911 guy tell me that he carries his 1911 in Condition 1 because it is the best way.

I figure if you draw your 1911 in Condition 1 then you will need to flip the safety off with your thumb.

If you draw your 1911 in Condition 2 then you will use your thumb to cock the hammer back.

Both methods require your thumb to actuate something on the pistol.
Personally, I think there are several advantages to condition 1 over condition 2.

First, to carry in condition 1, you charge the chamber and apply the safety. That can be performed quite safely.

In contrast, to carry condition 2, you charge the chamber and then have to lower the hammer on a loaded chamber. That is a far more error-prone process than applying the safety -- one that is far more likely to result in a negligent discharge. So condition 2 is significantly more dangerous to get into than condition 1.

Second, drawing and firing in condition 1 is significantly faster and less fumble prone than in condition 2. With condition 1, you draw from the holster, as the gun rotates through a 45 degree angle you lower the safety, and then fire once the gun is on target. This is easily accomplished with one hand, as the thumb safety is positioned where you thumb naturally goes.

In contrast, with condition 2 you have to draw from the holster and cock the hammer. This is significantly harder to do one-handed, particularly if you have a beavertail safety and a commander-style hammer. You also break your grip while doing so, making it easier to drop the gun and also requiring you to reacquire your grip prior to firing. If you use your left thumb to cock the hammer, you have to cock the hammer and then move your left thumb back to your normal grip position on the left side of the gun, so it is also slower than using the safety.

In summary, condition 2 is more dangerous and slower than condition 1, and it provides no advantage over condition 1. If condition 1 scares you, get over your fears, carry condition 3, or get a different gun.

Kleanbore
November 16, 2009, 02:55 PM
I prefer condition one myself but it likely has something to do with Jeff Cooper and nothing to do with JM Browning.

Cooper may have influenced your preference but he didn't come up with the concept. The 1940 version of the Army manual calls for carrying the pistol, holstered or in hand, cocked with loaded chamber with the safety switch on "in campaign, when ... early use of the pistol is probable", and it advises against carrying the weapon with the hammer down on a loaded chamber under any circumstances.

Thanks to Vern Humphrey for that.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=6037784&postcount=51

If you are carrying a handgun for self defense you are going to have to carry in a ready condition. "Early use" may not be probable, but quick deployment sure may be necessary.

I'd be interested in seeing what it says in earlier versions. World War I editions do not seem to be available.

"Condition 1" may seem unnerving to many, condition 2 was recommended against in the manual, and condition 3 does not lend itself best to readiness (try the Tueller drill from an empty chamber).

I see two alternatives: use a different pistol or learn to accept that Condition 1 is OK. Forty three years ago I opted for the former with a Smith model 39, and early this year I traded it for a Smith M&P 9c.

My shying away from the 1911 back than resulted from a preference for a hammer drop safety and DA trigger and from the fact that the "reliable" .45 pistols I had fired had atrocious triggers, miserable sights, and loose tolerances. Those things had been used in WWII. Elmer Keith was no fan of the 9MM, but he contended that the Model 39 was safer and much more accurate than the 1911, and he influenced my decision very strongly.

Having since received advice regarding Condition 1 carry from the writings of Cooper and others, from police officers I know who carry 1911 pistols as backup, and from members of this forum, and having realized that the longer trigger pull of the aforementioned pistols makes me less effective with them than with a good 1911, I recently changed to a 1911.

The manual? I had one once but I forgot what it said years ago.

Hawk
November 16, 2009, 02:56 PM
Well, to be fair, it's not entirely wrong.

I can go along with that, but it is "mostly wrong" and implies the existence of documentation that doesn't exist or paranormal abilities on the part of the claimant.

If we're to be guessing about "design and intent" I'd suggest that the original design and intent of the single action army of 1873 was to use the "safety notch" as, of all things, a "safety notch". The issue holster of the SAA had a full flap which made six-up carry with the safety notch reasonably safe (at least in an era where "tort reform" was in nobody's vocabulary).

Nearly 150 years later and full coverage holsters are rare and nobody suggests carrying a SAA pattern revolver fully loaded and "safety notched". The 1911 holster was similar. Things have changed in fundamental ways.

The 1911 was intended by JMB to be carried in condition one in much the same manner as Sam Colt intended the SAA to be carried with 5 rounds, which is to say "hmmm. it'll work but it's not what we had in mind".


Disclaimer: I no better at channeling Sam Colt than others are at channeling J.M. Browning but the notion of loading six at one time seems plausible, does it not?

U.S. Army manuals are available to the average citizen. However, divining the intent of the designer requires paranormal abilities. The two are not interchangeable.

Vern Humphrey
November 16, 2009, 03:47 PM
This always brings me back to a time I was in the woods with a friend. He was carrying a Ruger .22 automatic and I was carrying an M1911 with a Colt Service Ace conversion kit.

He made a big thing about it, claiming carrying cocked-and-locked was "unsafe." Then I pointed out that he was carrying cocked-and-locked, too. He didn't realize it because he couldn't see the cocked hammer on the Ruger and had never thought about it.

Then I pointed out my gun had two safeties, and his only had one.

mljdeckard
November 16, 2009, 04:28 PM
And jdh, If you can't draw, fire, reload, and clear a stoppage with one hand, and EITHER hand, you need to learn.

DougDubya
November 16, 2009, 05:52 PM
If I come across a 1911 and it doesn't have ambidextrous safeties, then I'd have to resort to Condition 2.

But that's only in the instance where I'd be without 1911's purpose bought for protecting my hide and in an emergency.

It's a rare circumstance, but it's one I can foresee, and thus, PRACTICE PRACTICE momma-lovin' PRACTICE.

bhk
November 16, 2009, 05:57 PM
From an original copy of Description of the Automatic Pistol, Caliber .45, Model of 1911 dated April 1, 1912 with a February 14, 1914 revision date. It was printed by the Washington Government Printing Office in 1917 and marked Ordance Department U.S.A. in the flaming bomb symbol.

If it is desired to make the pistol ready for instant use and for firing with the least possible delay the maximum number of shots, draw back the slide, insert a cartridge by hand into the chamber of the barrel, allow the slide to close, then lock the slide and the cocked hammer by pressing the safety lock upward, and insert a loaded magazine. The slide and hammer being thus positively locked, the pistol may be carried safely at full cock, and it is only necessary to press down the safety lock (which is located within easy reach of the thumb) when raising the pistol to the firing position.

Although the manual does not recommend carry in a hoster cocked and locked except in an emergency, it goes on to state:

If the pistol is so carried in the holster, cocked and safety lock on, the butt of the pistol should be rotated away from the body when withdrawing the pistol from the holster, in order to avoid displacing the safety lock.

So, it appears the Army in 1914 felt the gun was designed to be carried cocked and locked in some circumstances.

I am 60 years old and received this manual when my step grandfather died. He worked testing firearms for Springfield Armory. I received many other manuals, included interesting stuff on how to synchronize machine guns mounted on propeller driven fighter planes so the bullets do not shear off the blades!

David E
November 16, 2009, 06:07 PM
Well, there ya go ! It WAS "designed" that way!

jdh
November 16, 2009, 06:57 PM
Not only can I but I taught others to do it as a collateral duty.

You slam the mag on a hard object, you hook the sight on your belt push hard and hope the sight stays hooked on the belt for the full stroke. Takes longer to explain it than do do it.

The problem is that the shooter has all ready sustained a serious injury, is full of hormones which reduce his coordination and give him the jitters, his pistol is covered in very slippery bodily fluids and you want him to execute a complicated maneuver that he has, at best, practiced a few times in the controlled environment of the range/classroom.

Try this, pour some blood over the back of the slide, wait a little bit for it to soak in and clot up then try to fire you 1911. If it was not a dud but a light strike because some of those bodily fluids have slowed the hammer fall or gummed up the firing pin it only takes a couple seconds to thumb back the hammer and pull the trigger again. If his is lucky the cartridge fires and all is well. If not only a couple seconds have been added to the one handed immediate action drill.

David E
November 16, 2009, 06:59 PM
Now THERE'S a likely scenario for any CCW'er out there ! :rolleyes:

1911Tuner
November 16, 2009, 07:09 PM
Well, there ya go ! It WAS "designed" that way!

Sure it was. It was also designed to use either of the other options. It has an inertrial firing pin that's shorter than the breechblock...so it was designed to be carried safely with the hammer down on a loaded chamber, too.

Of course...it was also designed to be carried in Condition 3 or 4 as well.

It was designed to give the user a choice. Nothing more. Nothing less.

earlthegoat2
November 16, 2009, 07:56 PM
If it is desired to make the pistol ready for instant use and for firing with the least possible delay the maximum number of shots, draw back the slide, insert a cartridge by hand into the chamber of the barrel, allow the slide to close,

Not only does this go against the conventional wisdom I was taught about not loading the chamber directly on a 1911, it also sounds like some serious dexterity would need to be employed to pull it off. Add that to meybe even being on horseback and whew.

Vern Humphrey
November 16, 2009, 07:58 PM
it was designed to be carried safely with the hammer down on a loaded chamber, too.
To say that, you need documentation.

It's kinda like a flat tire. Tires can go flat, but they weren't designed to work that way.

1911Tuner
November 16, 2009, 09:17 PM
To say that, you need documentation.

Don't need documentation, Vern. The firing pin can't reach a primer with the hammer resting against it. That's kinda self-explanatory.

mljdeckard
November 16, 2009, 10:37 PM
jdh-

You have left the realm of whether or not the hammer was designed to be de-cocked or not and into where you are screwed no matter what gun you are carrying.

rondog
November 16, 2009, 11:19 PM
Has anybody got a beater 1911 for an experiment? Mine are all pretty, and I don't want to do this with one of mine.

I'd like to hear of somebody taking a 1911, putting a primed, EMPTY case in it, lowering the hammer (to replicate Cond. 2), and then start whacking the gun's hammer with a small ballpeen hammer to see how hard it really is to set off the primer.

I'd like to know just how difficult it really is to fire the weapon in Con. 2 by a blow to the hammer. Hey, this would be a great YouTube video!

ugaarguy
November 17, 2009, 03:45 AM
I'd like to hear of somebody taking a 1911, putting a primed, EMPTY case in it, lowering the hammer (to replicate Cond. 2), and then start whacking the gun's hammer with a small ballpeen hammer to see how hard it really is to set off the primer.
It won't go off. The hammer has to be back so the firing pin spring can push the firing pin back, allowing it to protrude from the rear of the firing pin channel. From there, the hammer falls on the protruding firing pin sending it forward, via inertia, into the primer. The firing pin is shorter than the firing pin channel, so the only way to get primer contact is via inertia as mentioned above.

The danger with condition 2 isn't that the hammer is down. It's the risk that you lose control of the hammer as you're lowering it, sending it into the primer of a live round, causing an AD.

The only way I know of to get a condition 2 1911 to fire is for it to land on the muzzle after a pretty high drop. In this case the gun's movement is stopped by the deck, but the firing pin keeps moving, overcoming the FP spring. This is remedied by installing a titanium firing pin, and slightly heavier FP spring. This combination eliminates the FP having enough inertia to overcome the FP spring in all but the most extreme circumstances.

dmazur
November 17, 2009, 04:12 AM
And the Series 80 Colts (and imitators) have a firing pin block that "helps" get it into Condition 2 with slightly more safety...All you have to do is get the hammer to move slightly, with your thumb (opposite thumb?) blocking it, then let go of the trigger. That activates the firing pin block. If the hammer should slip, the firing pin is blocked, even if the final hammer notch doesn't catch it.

Theoretically, the hammer can be lowered from this final notch gently without damaging the sear or creating an AD.

However, even though this mechanism is there, I still don't do it.

1911Tuner
November 17, 2009, 06:38 AM
Lord...

If I had a video camera, I'd make a little movie demonstrating the correct, safe method for lowering a hammer...and another segment demonstrating the correct, safe method for executing a pinch check.

Hint:

You don't pull the trigger and try to catch the hammer. You get full control of it before you touch the trigger. This is SOP when decocking ANY gun. It's a good habit to get into, even with a pistol that has a decock function. The hammer falling is ultimately what fires the gun. If the hammer can't fall...the gun can't fire.

Pinch check hint:

You place your strong-side thumb on the hammer and get control of it before placing your other thumb into the trigger guard.That allows the grip safety to engage the trigger and block it...and it prevents the hammer from falling in any event.

Hint:

THe checkering on the hammer isn't for decocking. It's for cocking the hammer.

And the Series 80 Colts (and imitators) have a firing pin block that "helps" get it into Condition 2 with slightly more safety...

Won't help a bit. The Series 80 safety disengages when you pull the trigger.

Vern Humphrey
November 17, 2009, 03:22 PM
it was designed to be carried safely with the hammer down on a loaded chamber, too.
(My emphasis)
Don't need documentation, Vern. The firing pin can't reach a primer with the hammer resting against it. That's kinda self-explanatory.
It is true the M1911 has an inertia-type firing pin. But that's a long way from proving that the reason for that is so the pistol can be carried hammer-down.

To find the reason for a design feature, you need documentation, showing that was the intent. Clearly, the M1911 was designed to Army specifications. It was the Army that demanded the grip safety and the safety lock. And clearly the Army's intention wazs to carry either empty chamber or cocked-and-locked. That has been documented.

Now let me point out that the design includes a lanyard loop. You could carry the pistol by letting it dangle on a string -- but to say it was designed to be carried that way would a long stretch!

dmazur
November 17, 2009, 03:38 PM
Won't help a bit. The Series 80 safety disengages when you pull the trigger.

Yes, it does. And I continued with, "...then let go of the trigger. That activates the firing pin block."

It means that, with a Series 80, you should be able to lower the hammer on a loaded chamber without worrying about a ND if the hammer "gets away from you".

However, the rather fragile firing pin block isn't a decocker and if you ding the thing up a few times it can jam in its channel. Series 80's with poor timing cause this kind of damage sometimes. If it jams in the "up" position, and you're used to using the thing as a decocker, you find out with an ND.

Also, if you have a carefully prepped hammer and sear, you may not want to damage the sear on that final notch by letting the hammer slip. (No longer a "half cock", but there's still another notch on the hammer on a Series 80.)

So, the "belts and suspenders" design of the Series 80 is nice, but it doesn't really offer much. Maybe for those folks who can't believe the slide safety (thumb safety) is going to function, the Series 80 firing pin block is another layer of defense against ND's.

I have one Commander with the firing pin block and another without. For me, there's absolutely no difference in how I use them.

1911Tuner
November 17, 2009, 03:59 PM
It is true the M1911 has an inertia-type firing pin. But that's a long way from proving that the reason for that is so the pistol can be carried hammer-down. To find the reason for a design feature, you need documentation, showing that was the intent.

You haven't been paying attention, m'fren. I never said that it was meant to be. I said that the intent was to offer a choice...and I always have. There was no intent for the gun to be carried any certain way. The intent was to allow any carry that the user chose or deemed necessary or desireable...but we'll concentrate on the inertial firing pin for the moment.

To state that it can be placed in Condition One doesn't prove that it was meant to be carried that way...only that it could be. Condition Two is assumed...the same way that it's assumed that double-action revolvers are assumed to allow being carried with a full compliment of ammunition. They can also be carried with the hammer down on an empty chamber, if so desired...or empty, as the user chooses.

There are several single-action designs out there that were decidedly not designed to carry hammer forward on a hot chamber. The 1873 SAA and the original Model 94 Winchester carbine are two such. The Star BM/BKM/PD series also will not allow it, due to the fact that the firing pin will reach the primer with the hammer resting on it. The 1911's inertial firing pin allows it. It's a choice that the design provides. A choice that's not present in all, but is present in some.

then let go of the trigger.

It'd be simpler and safer to just learn how to do it correctly. All that fumbling and dual manipulations make it more risky. I will concede that the customized pieces with radically upswept ducktail grip safeties and round hammers provide an excellent opportunity to have an unintended discharge while executing a decock...but that's an example of what is often lost when altering a design. Learn the drill. It's really very easy and not at all scary.

Browning desined it to be carried Cocked and Locked!

If Browning had any intent at all, it was to carry it with a loaded chamber on half-cock...but that tends to throw people into screamin' fits. It's the way that all his other exposed hammer guns were "meant" to be carried...at least if the user chose to carry it with a loaded chamber. Or are we to assume that the intent was to carry those in Condition Three?

He didn't even put a thumb safety on the gun until the U.S. Cavalry asked for one. How could his intent have been for cocked and locked when the first submissions didn't even have a lock?

Vern Humphrey
November 17, 2009, 04:11 PM
I said that the intent was to offer a choice...and I always have.
When we say "intent" we are saying we can read minds -- or else we have documentation.

There was no intent for the gun to be carried any certain way. The intent was to allow any carry that the user chose or deemed necessary or desireable...
It was an Army pistol, designed to Army specifications (and redesigned before being accepted by the Army) and the Army definitely had intentions as to how the gun was to be carried, and those intentions were published in official documents.

1911Tuner
November 17, 2009, 04:12 PM
Now let me point out that the design includes a lanyard loop

If we're gonna use a strawman, I'm game.

Let me point out that your car was designed to run faster than a hundred miles per hour. Does that mean that you should drive a hundred miles per hour all the time?

Or does it simply mean that it can be driven that fast if the need or the desire should arise?

Vern Humphrey
November 17, 2009, 04:15 PM
Let me point out that your car was designed to run faster than a hundred miles per hour. Does that mean that you should drive a hundred miles per hour all the time?
My point, exactly. The fact that the car can run faster that a hundred miles an hour does not mean the designer intended me to drive a hundred miles an hour, nor that he considered it safe to drive that fast.

(In point of fact, when I worked for General Motors, we covered this very point -- engines are designed not for top speed but for acceleration -- merging with traffic, for example. The high speeds possible with modern engines are a consequence of that design for quick acceleration, and not an intent that the vehiles be driven at such speeds.)

1911Tuner
November 17, 2009, 04:17 PM
It was an Army pistol, designed to Army specifications (and redesigned before being accepted by the Army) and the Army definitely had intentions as to how the gun was to be carried, and those intentions were published in official documents.

And those published documents stated that when action is iminent...the gun CAN
be placed in Condition One if so desired. I've read many of those documents and field manuals too. Nowhere does it say that the gun should be carried in a constant cocked and locked conditon...and if we were caught with one like that without a reason, we got reamed out good and proper...just the same as with a rifle.

Vern Humphrey
November 17, 2009, 04:31 PM
And those published documents stated that when action is iminent...the gun CAN
be placed in Condition One if so desired. I've read many of those documents and field manuals too. Nowhere does it say that the gun should be carried in a constant cocked and locked conditon...and if we were caught with one like that without a reason, we got reamed out good and proper...just the same as with a rifle.
You're absolutely right -- the Army did prefer Condition 3 (loaded magazine, empty chamber.) But they also recognized what today we call Condition 1, cocked-and-locked.

What they did not recognize -- except to condemn -- is what we call Condition 2, hammer down on an empty chamber. From FM 25-35, "Do not lower the hammer on a loaded cartridge; the pistol is much safer cocked and locked."

Kleanbore
November 17, 2009, 10:34 PM
And those published documents stated that when action is iminent...the gun CAN be placed in Condition One if so desired. I've read many of those documents and field manuals too. Nowhere does it say that the gun should be carried in a constant cocked and locked conditon...and if we were caught with one like that without a reason, we got reamed out good and proper...just the same as with a rifle.

So, to me the question would appear to be, for civilian concealed carry, what is best?


For an Army officer, artillery man, signal corps equipment operator, quarter corps man, whatever, in uniform and within a protected perimeter, Condition 3 would seem fine--to my mind.

For someone armed for the purpose of facing an emergent threat that may materialize in a second and a half within in an unprotected perimeter, Condition 1 would seem more appropriate.

Provided for discussion and reflection.

christcorp
November 18, 2009, 12:02 AM
When I use a holster with a strap, I carry condition 1. The strap goes between the hammer and the firing pin. When I carried in other type holsters, I carried condition 2. Because of the firing pin, there was no chance of accidental discharge.

EddieNFL
November 18, 2009, 07:51 AM
You could carry the pistol by letting it dangle on a string

Didn't Eli Wallach do that in the Good, the Bad and the Ugly?

HexHead
November 18, 2009, 08:39 AM
For someone armed for the purpose of facing an emergent threat that may materialize in a second and a half within in an unprotected perimeter, Condition 1 would seem more appropriate.


So, to me the question would appear to be, for civilian concealed carry, what is best?


As a civilian, carrying would be defined as in an unprotected perimeter and generally under emergent threat.

I don't get why people feel the need to re-invent a very well working wheel? If you're not comfortable with cocked & locked carry, there's plenty of other good choices out there. My wife got her Para PDA with the LDA trigger for just that reason.

HexHead
November 18, 2009, 08:43 AM
xxxx

David E
November 20, 2009, 01:51 AM
1911Tuner wrote: You place your strong-side thumb on the hammer and get control of it before placing your other thumb into the trigger guard.That allows the thumb safety to engage the trigger and block it...

I believe you meant to say GRIP safety, since you cannot retract the slide with the thumb safety engaged. At least, it wasn't designed to retract..... :D

David E
November 20, 2009, 01:55 AM
(the 1911) has an inertrial firing pin that's shorter than the breechblock...so it was designed to be carried safely with the hammer down on a loaded chamber, too.

Often, the designers are able to outwit the idiots ! (Thank God!)

tipoc
November 20, 2009, 07:57 AM
Donald E. Bady's book "Colt Automatic Pistols" documents the development of the 1911 and it's predecessors. The 1911 was intended to be carried in 3 different ways, what Jeff Cooper, many years later described as Condition 1,2 and 3. This was well documented in Bady's book, for those wanting documentation that is a good place to go.

The gun did not begin that way though. It evolved there.

Originally the 1911 had no thumb safety or grip safety. Both were added to solve specific problems that arose during field testing. The cavalry (the elite special forces units of their time) were holding out for revolvers and stubborn about it. They preferred the Colt SAA or a large caliber da revolver. To prevent the gun from accidentally discharging if a trooper was thrown from a horse the grip safety was added in 1907.

At this point about everyone else, particularly the artillery, was good to go with the 1911. Consider what that meant, a gun that had to be manually cocked and decocked like a Colt SAA. But the cavalry had another problem still. "So", they said, "We've fired 2 or 3 rounds and we are done shooting and want to reholster. Our horse is acting up and we need one hand to control the animal yet it takes two hands to decock the hammer like normal. We won't take the risk of holstering a cocked weapon (no wheelgunner would) how do we make the weapon safe or decock it one handed?"

To answer that question the thumb safety was developed. (The Walther P38 and the Radom Vis answered the same question with a decocker a few years later.)

The intent was not to build a gun that could be carried cocked and locked. The intent was to have a gun that was carried Condition 2 or 3. Condition 1 was the happy outcome to a specific question. It has become the preferred mode of carry but the other modes have always been used and will continue to be used. They have their place as the military showed by all three being used during it's service.

tipoc

tipoc
November 20, 2009, 08:15 AM
A bit more. Folks can drop by here and study the pics of the predecessors of the 1911. Use to "quick search" feature, just below the masthead, to view the pics. For example the military model of 1905 in .45 acp. Note what ain't there, no grip safety or thumb safety. Follow the evolution of the gun in the pics....http://www.coltautos.com/

Note the wide spur hammer designed to aid in cocking and decocking. The half cock notch, the tiny thumb safety,etc.

Consider that when the gun was first brought to the military for consideration it was meant to be carried in condition 2 or 3 there was no condition one. The thumb safety was meant to solve a particular problem. How to make the gun safe during interruptions in firing while on horse back and safe for one handed reholstering.

When the gun was done and adopted it could be carried 3 ways and it was.

tipoc

1911Tuner
November 20, 2009, 08:38 AM
I believe you meant to say GRIP safety, since you cannot retract the slide with the thumb safety engaged. At least, it wasn't designed to retract.....

I did, and I'll go correct it. Haste will be my undoing, I fear. :rolleyes:

Often, the designers are able to outwit the idiots ! (Thank God!)

Yes and yes. The Army knew full well that when men are in a situation where every advantage...whether real or imagined...helps, and it makes them feel a little better...and that in such situations, regulations be damned...the pistol would be topped off with an extra, possibly lifesaving round...and the hammer lowered to give the impression of complying for the benefit of those spit'n'shine/nickel'n'dime types that are like blowflies. (They eat (expletive deleted) and bother people.)

woad_yurt
November 20, 2009, 09:29 AM
And those published documents stated that when action is iminent...the gun CAN be placed in Condition One if so desired.

Because it can be safely carried in Conditon 1 full time...it also offers the quickest, simplest method to bring the gun into an unexpected fight.

When carrying for self-defense, action will probably not be imminent, but it may be. Can one honestly say the opposite? One never knows when one will be accosted and thus end up in "an unexpected fight." Like someone said already, there is no safe perimeter out there in society. It sounds like condition one is a good thing when something could happen at any moment.

As to the gun not being designed originally for condition one, maybe that's true. But they then added the additional safety stuff to satisfy military requirements; they redesigned it. A redesign is for a change of appearance or function; it's the definition of the word. They redesigned it to function differently from the original.

I thought we were talking about the final, accepted product anyway, not the first versions.

1911Tuner
November 20, 2009, 10:31 AM
I thought we were talking about the final, accepted product anyway, not the first versions.

That was only tossed in to disprove the myth that Browning intended C&L. i.e How could he have had that intent if the first ones didn't even have a (slide locking) thumb safety?

Browning had no such intent. He was asked to aid in designing a pistol with certain features...and that's all he did. Beyond that, he probably didn't give a rotund rodent's rump how it was carried.

woad_yurt
November 20, 2009, 01:21 PM
All I said was that the pistol in question mentioned by the OP, the 1911, was designed for C&L carry. The 1905 wasn't but this one was. It was a condition of acceptance imposed by the military. They wanted someone to be able to swipe a safety and holster the gun (carry!) safely and they got it. It doesn't matter who did it or when; it was done. The resulting 1911 was indeed designed to be carried that way.

David E
November 20, 2009, 01:29 PM
Regardless of how it was "designed," the smart way to carry a 1911 on the body for defense IS condition one.

If you are not comfortable carrying it that way, then a better route would be to choose a different gun design that can be fired with minimal manipulation instead of choosing a less effective, slower method of carrying the 1911.

DougDubya
November 20, 2009, 04:32 PM
I carried it around unloaded IWB for several days in the cocked and locked condition to see what would happen with the safety. My 1911 has ambi safety, and it never once moved to the off position. I did house chores, drove my truck, did yard work, went to work and rolled around on the floor wrestling with my two young daughters. Never looked back since. You newbies out there..............read this thread and do your own investigating, and in the end you will figure it out for yourself.


People make way too much ado about ambi-safeties, especially if carried in good holsters.

Locked and cocked is great for this southpaw, with the proper levers.
If they're not present, *sigh* I'll make do with Condition Two until I can get that fixed on a 1911.

DougDubya
November 20, 2009, 04:36 PM
Regardless of how it was "designed," the smart way to carry a 1911 on the body for defense IS condition one.

If you are not comfortable carrying it that way, then a better route would be to choose a different gun design that can be fired with minimal manipulation instead of choosing a less effective, slower method of carrying the 1911.
You presume options that might not be available at TIME OF NEED for a pistol.

This is why people practice, and smart people try to keep their skill-sets broad for eventualities.

It's also why I think 1911 fans complaining about "unusable double-action triggers" need to put on their man pants and do what guys like Ernie Langdon and Skeeter Skelton did and develop some hand strength.

EddieNFL
November 20, 2009, 04:49 PM
Don't think I would waste my time with an "unusable" trigger.

Vern Humphrey
November 20, 2009, 04:52 PM
The Army knew full well that when men are in a situation where every advantage...whether real or imagined...helps, and it makes them feel a little better...and that in such situations, regulations be damned...the pistol would be topped off with an extra, possibly lifesaving round...and the hammer lowered to give
Can you document that?

The Army clearly authorized carrying in what we today call Condition 1 (cocked and locked.) What we call Condition 3 was preferred, but Condition 1 was authorized. Condition 2 (hammer down on a loaded chamber) was specifically not authorized. From FM 23-35:
Do not lower the hammer on a loaded
cartridge; the pistol is much safer cocked and locked.

From Description of the Automatic Pistol, Caliber .45, Model of 1911 dated April 1, 1912 with a February 14, 1914 revision date:
If it is desired to make the pistol ready for instant use and for firing with the least possible delay the maximum number of shots, draw back the slide, insert a cartridge by hand into the chamber of the barrel, allow the slide to close, then lock the slide and the cocked hammer by pressing the safety lock upward, and insert a loaded magazine. The slide and hammer being thus positively locked, the pistol may be carried safely at full cock, and it is only necessary to press down the safety lock (which is located within easy reach of the thumb)

DougDubya
November 20, 2009, 05:52 PM
Don't think I would waste my time with an "unusable" trigger.
Again, these are morons who drop their 1911 triggers down to three pounds, then wail and howl when the average DA pull of 9-11 pounds is something their puny little fingers can't control - all the while people not raised on sneeze-activated triggers hit the X-ring with regularity with .38/.357 revolvers, or Glock-alikes with a seven pound average trigger pull.

Oro
November 20, 2009, 07:32 PM
Quote:
The Army knew full well that when men are in a situation where every advantage...whether real or imagined...helps, and it makes them feel a little better...and that in such situations, regulations be damned...the pistol would be topped off with an extra, possibly lifesaving round...and the hammer lowered to give
Can you document that?

Yes, both in practice and in Army training. You can read war diaries and find these references. One I recall in particular was Hampton Sides' book on Cabanatuan. Con. 2 carry was mentioned.

Also, while the field manual said NOT to do it in one place, then they trained soldiers to fire from Con. 2 in another. See W.D. Doc 905, the original army pub. on the 1911, published in 1914 and again in 1918. Perhaps it is the one you are quoting from above. See the last section on training and drills. It has field drills to draw, cock and fire from Con. 2 and this is the only firing/aiming drill specifically described for squad training. It is the very last section of the manual.

A thorough reading of the manual shows that the army was not consistent in training/practice and printed doctrine. I don't think this should be terribly surprising.

David E
November 20, 2009, 07:45 PM
Originally Posted by David E
Regardless of how it was "designed," the smart way to carry a 1911 on the body for defense IS condition one.

If you are not comfortable carrying it that way, then a better route would be to choose a different gun design that can be fired with minimal manipulation instead of choosing a less effective, slower method of carrying the 1911.

Doug Dubya responded: You presume options that might not be available at TIME OF NEED for a pistol.

I do? Like what? Please elaborate.

It's also why I think 1911 fans complaining about "unusable double-action triggers" need to put on their man pants and do what guys like Ernie Langdon and Skeeter Skelton did and develop some hand strength.

Chuck Taylor, one of the most vociferous opponents of DA autos (at least in the past) needs to address this issue, himself.

There is "unusable" and there is "practice." Often, the latter takes care of the former.

DougDubya
November 20, 2009, 11:32 PM
David - like your right trigger and middle fingers have become fractured, and listening to people like John Farnham, you got rid of your ambidextrous safeties because you thought they COULD have been knocked off (despite expertise of thousands otherwise). Interdicting a thumb, ring finger or pinkie between hammer and firing pin puts it to Condition 2, and is more certain than bringing it up from Condition 3.

There's also rusted levers... and such. Who knows? Which is why all safe firearm handling methods should be in your quiver.

Or, just be a southpaw who prefers to have your smart hand in control of the 1911 at all times. :p

Practical manual decocking is also NECESSARY for old Walthers, Tokarev's, Beretta 1930's models with impractical 180 degree levers or Brigadiers with crossbolt's...

bluecollar
November 21, 2009, 01:30 AM
Its funny how some will forever knock the Glock for having to pull the trigger on an EMPTY gun to fieldstrip it but think nothing of manually lowering the hammer on a knowingly LOADED and CHAMBERED round in a 1911 to put it in condition 2. There's no need to ever touch the hammer on a 1911. Use it as a "cocked" indicator.

inSight-NEO
November 21, 2009, 01:33 AM
Conditional states and information regarding Conditions 1 and 2, minus my remarks of course, are courtesy of /www.sightm1911.com


-For those who may be viewing this thread and are unaware of various "conditional" states-

Condition 0 - A round is in the chamber, hammer is cocked, and the safety is off.

Condition 1 - Also known as "cocked and locked," means a round is in the chamber, the hammer is cocked, and the manual thumb safety on the side of the frame is applied.

Condition 2 - A round is in the chamber and the hammer is down.

Condition 3 - The chamber is empty and hammer is down with a charged magazine in the gun.

Condition 4 - The chamber is empty, hammer is down and no magazine is in the gun.


-Specific to the OP-

The mode of readiness preferred by the experts is Condition One. Generally speaking, Condition One offers the best balance of readiness and safety. Its biggest drawback is that it looks scary to people who don't understand the operation and safety features of the pistol.

Ill add that, regardless of weapon, anyone who chooses to carry in this manner must pay utmost attention to safety and be completely familiar with their weapon.

Condition Two is problematic for several reasons, and is the source of more negligent discharges than the other conditions. When you rack the slide to chamber a round in the 1911, the hammer is cocked and the manual safety is off. There is no way to avoid this with the 1911 design. In order to lower the hammer, the trigger must be pulled and the hammer lowered slowly with the thumb onto the firing pin, the end of which is only a few millimeters away from the primer of a live round. Should the thumb slip, the hammer would drop and fire the gun. Not only would a round be launched in circumstances which would be at best embarrassing and possibly tragic, but also the thumb would be behind the slide as it cycled, resulting in serious injury to the hand. A second problem with this condition is that the true 1911A1 does not have a firing pin block and an impact on the hammer which is resting on the firing pin could conceivably cause the gun to go off, although actual instances of this are virtually nonexistent. Finally, in order to fire the gun, the hammer must be manually cocked, again with the thumb. In an emergency situation, this adds another opportunity for something to go wrong and slows the acquisition of the sight picture.

Ill reiterate that lowering the hammer on any live round is not a safe practice. Do not do it if it can be avoided! If you do, take it slow, pay attention to what you are doing and most of all, do not point the muzzle towards anything that can die!

In addition, pulling/making ready such a weapon, while under stress, would be much safer in condition 1 over conditon 2 in that if you "slip" the safety, you try again....if you "slip" the hammer, the gun just may go BOOM. Hence, condition 1 is less prone to error, IMHO.

Vern Humphrey
November 21, 2009, 07:48 AM
Yes, both in practice and in Army training. You can read war diaries and find these references. One I recall in particular was Hampton Sides' book on Cabanatuan. Con. 2 carry was mentioned.
You can read in diaries and books stories of people deserting, going AWOL, and even killing prisoners. But that doesn't make such things Army policy.

Find an official Army document that says Condition 2 carry is approved.

EddieNFL
November 21, 2009, 08:01 AM
Its funny how some will forever knock the Glock for having to pull the trigger on an EMPTY gun to fieldstrip it but think nothing of manually lowering the hammer on a knowingly LOADED and CHAMBERED round in a 1911 to put it in condition 2.

It's no different than dropping the hammer on any firearm for any reason; say a function check. Judging by various pix on the net, it does seem Glock owners are more prone to covering the muzzle with their hand.

Kleanbore
November 21, 2009, 08:06 AM
Happened to talk to an ex-Army friend last night.

He carried with an empty chamber; said that was he was within a reasonably secure perimeter. People who out into the delta area or up into the jungles always carried cocked and locked. He also said that Condition 2 was a total no-no. Lowering the hammer on a loaded round was considered to be excessively risky.

He served a couple of years in SE Asia starting in 1968.

He chuckled when he recalled my having selected a Smith & wesson Model 39 because I thought it was safer. Well, it is, it you want to carry with the hammer down on a loaded chamber; the hammer drop safety makes it a (quiet) snap. Having switched to a 1911 over 40 years later, I choose to not lower the hammer on a loaded chamber.

I can understand some peoples' natural aversion to Condition 1. It just looks dangerous, to the layman. However, if you think about it, the Colt 1908 (or Browning's later .380) in a pocket , or a Colt Woodsman in a holster on the trail, would likely be carried with a round in the chamber with the safety "on", and they would both necessarily be cocked. It's just that no one sees a cocked hammer to get worried about.

Frankh
November 21, 2009, 04:51 PM
http://www.smileyvault.com/albums/basic/smileyvault-popcorn.gif
This has been interesting.

Vern Humphrey
November 21, 2009, 05:13 PM
I can understand some peoples' natural aversion to Condition 1. It just looks dangerous, to the layman. However, if you think about it, the Colt 1908 (or Browning's later .380) in a pocket , or a Colt Woodsman in a holster on the trail, would likely be carried with a round in the chamber with the safety "on", and they would both necessarily be cocked. It's just that no one sees a cocked hammer to get worried about.
The same is true for the Ruger .22 Automatic -- it has an internal hammer which is cocked when you chamber a round. I think I mentioned being in the woods with a friend who was carrying a Ruger, and my Colt Service Ace conversion (mounted on my M1927 Argentine) gave him the willies -- and when I explained he was also carrying cocked and locked, it took a while to sink in.

David E
November 21, 2009, 05:56 PM
David - like your right trigger and middle fingers have become fractured,

Um..............are you serious ?

and listening to people like John Farnham, you got rid of your ambidextrous safeties because you thought they COULD have been knocked off (despite expertise of thousands otherwise).

I've taken a few classes from Mr. Farnam. When I carry a 1911 with an ambi-safety, I carry it in a KyTac holster, which locks the safety in place.

Interdicting a thumb, ring finger or pinkie between hammer and firing pin puts it to Condition 2, and is more certain than bringing it up from Condition 3.

But Condition One is more certain still !

There's also rusted levers... and such.

Someone that carries a gun for defense and allows his levers to become crusted with rust and stuck deserves whatever befalls them. :rolleyes:

Who knows? Which is why all safe firearm handling methods should be in your quiver.

To a point. Consistency should not be overlooked. Some folks in this thread say sometimes they carry it C&L, other times, C-2, still other times, C-3. How can one train for that? If they routinely carry C-2 but something tells them to go to C&L, but they never practice wiping off the safety at speed, well, the problem is obvious to most.

Or, just be a southpaw who prefers to have your smart hand in control of the 1911 at all times.

They make ambi safeties. In stainless, if rust is a valid concern for you !

Practical manual decocking is also NECESSARY for old Walthers, Tokarev's, Beretta 1930's models with impractical 180 degree levers or Brigadiers with crossbolt's...

This part belongs in the thread: "Practical Manual Decocking for Old Walthers, Tokarevs and Beretta 1930's Model." THIS thread is about 1911's.

DougDubya
November 21, 2009, 08:43 PM
David E - if you lose your main gun, and ALL that's on hand is a rusted 1911, don't come crying to me.

Also, I NEVER KNEW ambidextrous safeties existed... in STAINLESS no less!

They don't magically appear on firearms you have to scrounge, and unless you're in MEU-SOC, few US Armed Forces issue 1911's HAVE them, if you end up issued one. At least a few military folks who are southpaws that I've read from have carried unmodified, bare bones 1911's in Condition 2 because poorly fitted safeties could just ruin your day.

Also, the OP asked WHY?

I was coming up with answers.

And am I serious about two fingers on your primary gun hand being fractured and unusuable for firearms usage? You've never broken a couple of fingers in a car door, or jammed them worthless playing basketball? Or never burned yourself on a stove?

You'll be injury free for your entire existence? Or better yet, never get shot in the hand, arm or shoulder?

Someone that carries a gun for defense and allows his levers to become crusted with rust and stuck deserves whatever befalls them.

Plane goes down in woods. Your luggage (and stored firearms) flew out of the hold 15 miles back, but your pilot has a rusty old beater 1911 in his flight box. Hammer and trigger work, but the safety's rusted.

You go unarmed? Do you end up wishing you'd learned to safely handle a 1911 in Condition 2 or 3? Or do you train now and be prepared for contingencies?

phamily man
November 21, 2009, 09:17 PM
condition 1 no question.
if you have a grip safety the gun wont go off in your pants accidentally
Cocked and Locked!

Kleanbore
November 21, 2009, 10:15 PM
I think I mentioned being in the woods with a friend who was carrying a Ruger,...


You did indeed, Vern. I did not intend to fail to acknowledge it.

christcorp
November 21, 2009, 10:49 PM
People like "Claiming" how a 1911 was "INTENDED" to be carried. Meaning which condition. However, with all the talk about safeties, hammers, letting down the hammer, etc... No one on the Pro Condition-1 side of the isle seems to mention that as a military weapon, the 1911 was NEVER INTENDED to be carried concealed. And that it WAS INTENDED to be carried in a holster that covered the hammer and thumb safety. And when carried this way, OWB, flap type holster; then it is almost impossible for there to be any interference with the weapon. But in this conversation, I'll bet anyone here a pay check that most don't carry the 1911 in such a holster. Many here carry it IWB. Many carry it concealed. Some carry in shoulder rigs. And the list goes on. And there are a lot of other considerations for this weapon when it's not carried the way it was "INTENDED". So, if you're going to insist that the magical "THEY" intended the 1911 to be carried cocked and locked (Condition 1); then you have to concede that it was also intended to be carried open carry, and in a holster that completely covered the weapon.

Kleanbore
November 21, 2009, 11:08 PM
No one on the Pro Condition-1 side of the isle seems to mention that as a military weapon, the 1911 was NEVER INTENDED to be carried concealed.

Is that relevant? Are you suggesting that it should not be carried concealed? How about open carry, without a "flap" holster? Do you recommend carrying something else?

mljdeckard
November 21, 2009, 11:22 PM
I actually have the full family of all holsters the U.S. Army has used with the 1911, and I have carried it condition 1 in all of them.

Oro
November 22, 2009, 12:02 AM
Find an official Army document that says Condition 2 carry is approved.

That's not what you asked for. You asked the prior poster to document that someone did it. It was done. And the Army trained soldiers in snap shooting from condition 2 - and I provided the precise docutment and pub. date. It doesn't say they should carry it that way. But it trains them to shoot it from that condition. It's inconsistent, but does not instruct to carry that way.

christcorp
November 22, 2009, 12:26 AM
I actually have the full family of all holsters the U.S. Army has used with the 1911, and I have carried it condition 1 in all of them.

Exactly. And there's quite a difference in carrying such a weapon condition 1 in a military style holster than in a concealed manner. I've never said that a person shouldn't carry a 1911 cocked and locked. Feel free to carry it anyway you like. I happen to have absolutely no problem carrying it with the hammer down. I'm simply commenting that while people are so eager to point out that they "think" the weapon was designed to be carried in condition 1; that it was ALSO designed to be carried in a holster designed on the outside with the weapon covered. And little to no chance of having the safety clicked off like it can in a concealed carry situation. But I guess that's not a possibility in some people's minds.

But I think that's where the big controversy comes into play. Different people carry the 1911 in many different ways. And for some, condition 1 is not a problem. For others, condition 1 isn't the best way to carry it based on the way they are holstering the weapon. When I carried my full size Springfield, I carried it open carry with a thumb strap that went between the hammer and the firing pin. Condition 1 was the norm. When I carried my commander concealed, I carried it condition 2. IWB did at times, during practice, manage to disengage the thumb safety while withdrawing the weapon. So for me, when carrying it in such a manner, I preferred carrying it in condition 2. Placing a 1911 in condition 2 is not something you do 2,3,4 times a day. It's something you do once in a blue moon. I'd do it at the range, when I was done shooting and cleaning it; at which time in went back in my holster. The only other time might be if for some reason I needed to clear the weapon. Which is rare to never. So, carrying the weapon in condition 2 is perfectly safe. And it's perfectly safe to lower the hammer on the weapon. And no, the firing pin isn't resting on the primer of a live round. Not with an inertia style firing pin.

But my comment was mainly to point out that it's convenient that many who want to argue that the ONLY POSSIBLE WAY to carry a 1911 is condition 1; and that it was intended to be carried that way. Yet, they don't mention that the style of carry and the holsters designed for the weapon were also conducive to carrying it in condition 1. My point is: Carry the gun any way you want to. Condition 1,2, or 3. And just like you learned how to properly carry, shoot, clear, clean, and overall handle the weapon; the same training is applied to putting the weapon into condition 2 status. And once there, there is absolutely no chance of the weapon firing unintended. In other words, people shouldn't be scared of carrying in condition 2. The condition is obviously safer than condition 1. Even the army manuals mention that when imminent danger is no longer a problem, to clear the weapon and bring it back to condition 3. The only part dangerous, is for those who don't know how to handle a weapon and can't put it in condition 2 properly.

David E
November 22, 2009, 12:29 AM
And am I serious about two fingers on your primary gun hand being fractured and unusuable for firearms usage? You've never broken a couple of fingers in a car door, or jammed them worthless playing basketball? Or never burned yourself on a stove?

I thought you meant seconds before or during the gunfight.

If it happens prior to one, then you have the ability to choose a different carry gun, if necessary.

In my case, I have a left handed set-up ready to go. You ?

David E
November 22, 2009, 12:35 AM
There are some key points that the champions of Condition 2 and 3 carry are not addressing.

For example, you hear a noise downstairs. It's not enough to call the cops, but it's enough for you to check out for your own peace of mind.

Your chosen gun is a 1911. If in Condition 3, do you chamber one before investigating? If Condition 2, do you cock the hammer? In either case, you're walking around with a loaded and cocked gun with no safety applied.

Or do you apply the safety? You know, the one you never apply in practice or use?

Or do the Condition 2 guys investigate the noise with the hammer down, but thumb on the hammer, ready to cock it immediately? If so, how fast can you reacquire your firing grip?

None of these issues are a concern for a 1911 carried Condition One.

Rexster
November 22, 2009, 12:42 AM
I have not tried to read all of the responses, so I am only replying to the OP, and am likely to say what others have said. Quite simply, sweeping the 1911's safety lever downward is a natural, uncomplicated movement, that can be done smoothly, while holding the pistol in a firing grip, and smooth equals fast and sure. Cocking the hammer of most autos is a rather clumsy, complicated movement, often difficult to do while holding the pistol in a firing grip, which means slower and unsure. Moreover, after chambering a round, the hammer IS cocked, and DECOCKING A 1911, while not all that difficult under calm conditions, can be subject to fumbling when things are not so calm, or one is preoccupied. Fumbling the decock can result in an unintended discharge, which is an undesirable event, at best.

FWIW, I find cocking the hammer of a single-action sixgun quite natural. I find cocking the hammer of a SIG P229 to be fairly smooth and sure, especially with my more dextrous left hand, But, cocking a 1911 hammer is not so smooth.

christcorp
November 22, 2009, 01:42 AM
There are some key points that the champions of Condition 2 and 3 carry are not addressing.

For example, you hear a noise downstairs. It's not enough to call the cops, but it's enough for you to check out for your own peace of mind.

Your chosen gun is a 1911. If in Condition 3, do you chamber one before investigating? If Condition 2, do you cock the hammer? In either case, you're walking around with a loaded and cocked gun with no safety applied.

Or do you apply the safety? You know, the one you never apply in practice or use?

Or do the Condition 2 guys investigate the noise with the hammer down, but thumb on the hammer, ready to cock it immediately? If so, how fast can you reacquire your firing grip?

None of these issues are a concern for a 1911 carried Condition One.
With that kind of "LOGIC", if that's what you call it; you've just made the point for everyone to have a SigSauer P220 instead of a 1911A1. Totally illogical. Are you saying then that a double action, like the P220, is a better choice than a 1911; because it incorporated the best of both condition 1 and 2?

Frankh
November 22, 2009, 06:01 AM
Iíve carried condition 2 for at least 10 years without a problem. I have however seen the light and for the last year or so carried cocked and locked. I donít really care what anyone says, releasing a hammer under tension onto a live round is looking for s**t. No matter how many times youíve done it without a problem, the day will come when that hammer slips from under you thumb or from between your fingers.
Yes it can be done, but there is a reason they call them accidental discharges.

The Lone Haranguer
November 22, 2009, 08:16 AM
I simply find it easier to wipe off a safety as the gun clears my body and comes up on target than to cock a hammer.

EddieNFL
November 22, 2009, 09:14 AM
No one on the Pro Condition-1 side of the isle seems to mention that as a military weapon, the 1911 was NEVER INTENDED to be carried concealed. And that it WAS INTENDED to be carried in a holster that covered the hammer and thumb safety. And when carried this way, OWB, flap type holster; then it is almost impossible for there to be any interference with the weapon. But in this conversation, I'll bet anyone here a pay check that most don't carry the 1911 in such a holster.

You certainly have the choice to holster you like. I encourage you to use the flap style holster.

I couldn't care less what JMB or the army intended. Occasionally, thinking outside the box is a good thing.

EddieNFL
November 22, 2009, 09:20 AM
I simply find it easier to wipe off a safety as the gun clears my body and comes up on target than to cock a hammer.

IMO finding the safety with the thumb is a part of securing a proper grip and is, arguably, the simplest motion involved with firing a 1911. If a person can't learn this with minimal training, the 1911 probably isn't for him.

Kleanbore
November 22, 2009, 09:33 AM
IMO finding the safety with the thumb is a part of securing a proper grip and is, arguably, the simplest motion involved with firing a 1911. If a person can't learn this with minimal training, the 1911 probably isn't for him.

That works for me.

My Smith & Wesson M&P compact has a safety (I wish it weren't ambidextrous so I could add a CT grip), and personally, I wouldn't have one without it.

I got the thing before I finally accepted the idea of "Condition 1" carry with a 1911 and because I wasn't sure about a small .45, but what I have found is a higher likelihood of shots on target with the 1911 due to the better trigger pull. Again, that's personal.

David E
November 22, 2009, 05:38 PM
With that kind of "LOGIC", if that's what you call it; you've just made the point for everyone to have a SigSauer P220 instead of a 1911A1.

If you read what I actually wrote, you wouldn't have jumped to this conclusion. Evenso, a point I've made previously is that if one is NOT comfortable with Condition One, then a different firearm, such as a 220,(chamber loaded) would be a better choice than carrying a 1911 in Condition 2 or 3 for serious purposes.

Totally illogical.

Not when you read the words written.

Are you saying then that a double action, like the P220, is a better choice than a 1911; because it incorporated the best of both condition 1 and 2?

<sigh> Nooooo, I'm saying that if you're not comfortable carrying a 1911 cocked and locked, then choose a different platform (carried chamber loaded) that you ARE comfortable with.

christcorp
November 22, 2009, 05:56 PM
Well; I feel equally comfortable carrying my Sig P220 or my 1911 in condition 2. No problem here. But I do agree with you that if a person paranoid about carrying a 1911 in condition 1; and their sweating at the thought of putting a 1911 in condition 2 because they mistakenly think the gun is going to blow their foot off; then they are better off with a gun with a decocker. It will give them peace of mind.

FWIW; I didn't change my primary winter carry gun from the 1911 to the Sig P220 because of any safety issue. I changed simply because "In My opinion, FOR ME", the P220 is a better and higher quality gun. I still love my Spingfield Armory 1911A1 circa 1985. I just think the W. German P220 circa 1989 is a better gun.

DougDubya
November 22, 2009, 07:28 PM
I thought you meant seconds before or during the gunfight.

If it happens prior to one, then you have the ability to choose a different carry gun, if necessary.

In my case, I have a left handed set-up ready to go. You ?
There was the question of why someone would carry in Condition 2.

I was trying to answer that. It's a mental exercise. I'm a WRITER and part of being a writer is "WHAT IF" games. If I have the time to choose, I'm not limited to 1911's, but love Commander XSE's which come naturally with southpaw friendly levers, the Springfield Loaded pistols and the EMP, but I've been known to crank around with Beretta 92FS', P226's, Walther PPK's, Springfield XD's, and Smith and Wesson revolvers.

I don't shave down the right-hand friendly levers on any firearm I have with ambis, and never believed in ambidextrous slide stops or reversible magazine buttons for 1911's. However, there are a lot of purpose-built guns - the P2000, the S&W M&P, the P250 that have great ambi-slide stops. The only reason I can see for a reversible magazine drop is so that you right-handers can enjoy the swiftness and trigger-finger occupying joy of how we southpaws drop our mags. Browning put the button on the wrong side.

(I know, I blasphemed.)

With that kind of "LOGIC", if that's what you call it; you've just made the point for everyone to have a SigSauer P220 instead of a 1911A1. Totally illogical. Are you saying then that a double action, like the P220, is a better choice than a 1911; because it incorporated the best of both condition 1 and 2?

No, but what is being said is that the P220 has one good condition to carry it in, and there's no need to fuss with all this different stuff of 1911 conditions (even though locked and cocked IS the best).

'sides, a box stock P220 would be my choice over a box stock 1911.

David E
November 22, 2009, 07:48 PM
Well; I feel equally comfortable carrying my Sig P220 or my 1911 in condition 2.

I'm surprised you didn't say you were "equally fast" with both guns ! :D

David E
November 22, 2009, 07:54 PM
There was the question of why someone would carry in Condition 2.

The reasons you cited are not good reasons to carry a 1911 in Condition 2. Nearly everyone that carries a 1911 in Condition 2 do so because they don't fully understand the 1911. (they, of course, will argue that point)

I was trying to answer that. It's a mental exercise. I'm a WRITER and part of being a writer is "WHAT IF" games.

I understand "what if" games. But sometimes, they get so moronic as to be ludicrous.

DougDubya
November 22, 2009, 08:33 PM
The reasons you cited are not good reasons to carry a 1911 in Condition 2. Nearly everyone that carries a 1911 in Condition 2 do so because they don't fully understand the 1911. (they, of course, will argue that point)

It took a while, because I'd read a ton of Jerry Ahern as a kid, and Condition 1 was never in his world view. Luckily, I've gotten better.

I understand "what if" games. But sometimes, they get so moronic as to be ludicrous.

No. Just the vehemence over "you're wrong!" "no you are!"

'course this is someone who uses his imagination for a living. YMMV

David E
November 22, 2009, 08:40 PM
Here's what I have observed: Some people play "what if" to the point of idiocy. They ultimately land on a ridiculous "conclusion" that they then prepare for.

I call it "Preparing for the possible while ignoring the probable."

As far as Ahern goes, I like him better since he stopped pointing the gun straight into the camera at every opportunity.

tipoc
November 22, 2009, 08:46 PM
The question under discussion is not condition one versus condition 2 or 3. Neither is it which condition is "best". The question is do you know the 1911 or not? Are you comfortable with the gun or not?

If the answer is yes. Then all three methods are available to you based on the situation and conditions. As those conditions change the 1911 is versatile enough to adapt. Folks who want to know the 1911 should learn all three methods and know that they are available. Conditions one, two and three have been a part of the 1911s manual of arms from it's inception (this has been amply demonstrated in this thread and elsewhere) and there is no useful reason to eliminate two of them from the picture and leave yourself with a less versatile weapon. The same is true of the BHP.

If a person is uncomfortable with lowering the hammer on a live round another type gun may be best. May be best to avoid revolvers and leverguns as well.

tipoc

Nasty Ned
November 22, 2009, 11:46 PM
I carry cocked and locked and always will. If you feel you must lower the hammer, the only safe way is to point the pistol in a safe direction, place your off thumb under the hammer, press the trigger and slowly roll your thumb up and out from under the hammer. I learned to do this due to a ad I had. Easy and safe. I am probably alive today because of my always carrying in condition one.

christcorp
November 23, 2009, 02:52 AM
Here's what I have observed: Some people play "what if" to the point of idiocy. They ultimately land on a ridiculous "conclusion" that they then prepare for.
David; if you weren't so hypocritical, you'd be funny. Go back and read all your "WHAT IFs". You've come up with every scenario just to tell anyone who doesn't carry their 1911A1 in condition 1 that they are wrong, and you are right. Please!!!!

And it would be stupid; yes; to imply that I would say that I can shoot my P220 equally as fast as my 1911. It's obvious that the P220 is multitudes faster. When you don't have any mechanical issues to deal with, it is faster. But I know exactly what you were getting at. And YES; I CAN cock the hammer back on the 1911 from condition 2, just as fast as taking off the thumb safety. But see; you don't want to hear that. You believe in the whole "It was designed for ....." crap. Well, southpaws SHOULDN'T have to go out and buy and have put on, ambi safeties. So while the magazine release is actually EASIER for a southpaw, the thumb safety isn't.

But I regress. That isn't why I carry the 1911 in condition 2. I carry it in condition 2, because of the way I carry/holster my 1911. It is SAFER in condition 2 when carrying it IWB concealed. Yes, I've been told first hand, that when concealed in tight clothing, that sometimes the safety has in fact clicked down while they were retrieving the weapon from the holster. But see; you don't want to hear that either. Yet, you don't recognize that the 1911 was never intended to be carried concealed or in anything other than in a belt holster with a flapover cover. Not that you can't carry it holstered in other methods; but for some people; that might require some altering on how they carry it. For me; I allow the person to determine the best way to carry the weapon. For you, you can't admit that your way ISN'T the ONLY WAY.

And yes; if a person can't put the 1911 into condition 2 safely, then they aren't smarter than the weapon, and probably should have a different gun.

1911Tuner
November 23, 2009, 06:39 AM
Lordy! NINE...count'em...nine pages over such a simple point. That being choice. Whew!

For the record...

Condition One has a distinct advantage in speed bringing the gun into a fight. No question about that. I carry in Condition One 99.9% of the time. Knockin' around the ol' homestead, I carry it in Condition Three, or I carry a revolver...usually a SAA clone.

Condition Two also has its advantages under certain circumstances. It better protects the gun's internals from dirt and debris, especially when used in conjunction with a full flap holster. Although slower to deploy, it still allows the user to ready the gun with one hand.

Lowering the hammer safely is a matter of knowing how.

Cocking the hammer when the gun is needed...relatively quickly and fumble-free...is also a matter of knowing how. Hint: You don't cock it after drawing it.

Until you figure out how to do it...practicing both the above functions with an empty gun is a good idea.

Said it many times, and I'll say it again:

If the day ever comes that I don't have the manual dexterity and/or the mental acuity to lower the hammer on any exposed hammer weapon without killing a dog...a TV set...or myself...I'll sell the guns and take up gardening, because at that point...I'm not capable of handling a gun safely.

xXxplosive
November 23, 2009, 11:37 AM
+1.....What he said
1911Tuner knows his business.

DougDubya
November 23, 2009, 01:07 PM
Christcorp - I agree with you on Condition 2 being an option for southpaws who want to use their 1911's BOX STOCK.

And yes, there are quite a few 1911's that are inexpensive and have southpaw friendly levers - I LOVE them, especially the Charles Daley ECS or whatever its name is.

However, if I had a M1991A1 Officer's model (or any Colt Officer's model), it'd have to be carried Condition 2. Same with something like the SIG P238, or its poppa the Colt Mustang. (Or a Springfield Micro, which has the southpaw side safety at no extra charge.)

There are options out there, and there are options for carry, like 1911Tuner points out.

Also, the act of decocking a 1911 mirrors the decocking of a cocked revolver, and dozens of other single action pistols like the Beretta 1934, the 1951 Brigadier, the AMT Automags, and old non-firing pin block double action sidearms like the Walther PP, PPK and P38, the first model Berettas, the pre-decocker Taurus PT99's, the CZ-75...

Can I go on?

tipoc
November 23, 2009, 03:22 PM
It's been said by many but unfortunately bears repeating...

The gun was designed to be carried and deployed in all three conditions.

There is no question in my mind that C&L is the fastest way to deploy a gun for defensive purposes from a suitable holster. It is also a very safe way to carry. When self defense is the primary concern Condition one is the best way to carry the gun from a proper holster designed for that task. However the gun can be carried or had about you in ways in which Condition One is not the best and when immediate deployment in a self defense role is not the primary concern.

I've slept with a 1911 in a sleeping bag, on more than one occasion, in condition two.

I've carried a 1911 in a paper bag inside a tool bag in condition two.

I've stood security with a 1911 in my coat pocket in condition 2.

I've carried a 1911 while hunting where it was in condition 3 in a full flap holster which was underneath a coat. It was with me but the longarm was a more useful defensive weapon if I needed it for such.

I've carried a 1911 condition 2 in a briefcase.

A 1911 has sat in a vehicles glove box condition 2.

I've stuffed a 1911 condition two between the cushions of a couch.

These situations, and others, prompted me to utilize the versatility that the three conditions allow. Condition 2 or 3 are useful when no holsters are possible or desirable. Or when immediate access to the gun is not possible or needed.

It is useful to know how to take advantage of the versatility the weapon has to make it a more useful tool.

tipoc

christcorp
November 23, 2009, 04:19 PM
tipoc: excellent post. Indeed, there is no condition that the 1911 was INTENDED to be in. If there were, then it would only have 1 condition. Obviously, there are reasons, which the designer had in mind, for carrying the weapon in condition 2. And it is totally up to the person carrying the weapon to determine which way they want to carry it. I will never argue anyone who wants to carry a 1911 in condition 1. Nor would I argue someone who wanted to carry theirs in condition 2 or 3. But I will argue anyone who says the only legitimate way to carry the 1911 is in condition 1. Or that it was intended to be carried that way. As you eloquently said, it wasn't INTENDED to be carried any particular way. It's whatever way is right for your use and purpose. Especially when it comes to safety.

DougDubya
November 23, 2009, 05:54 PM
Great post, tipoc.

As has been mentioned, fanny pack carry is not usually a place where Condition 1 is worthwhile - they're the definition of soft holster.

David E
November 23, 2009, 11:05 PM
David; if you weren't so hypocritical, you'd be funny. Go back and read all your "WHAT IFs". You've come up with every scenario just to tell anyone who doesn't carry their 1911A1 in condition 1 that they are wrong, and you are right. Please!!!!

Just for fun, I re-checked all my posts in this thread. I didn't post the "what ifs" you assert. I did ask a few questions of the champions of Condition 2 carry, but as usual, they remain unanswered. Further, I'm not saying that the Condtion 2 folks are "wrong," only that they are creating a needless hurdle to overcome.

YES; I CAN cock the hammer back on the 1911 from condition 2, just as fast as taking off the thumb safety.

That simply betrays a lack of practice in Condition One.

But see; you don't want to hear that. You believe in the whole "It was designed for ....." crap.

I corrected you the last time you accused me of this. Please re-read the posts. Further, in post #179, I said:
Regardless of how it was "designed," the smart way to carry a 1911 on the body for defense IS condition one.

If you are not comfortable carrying it that way, then a better route would be to choose a different gun design that can be fired with minimal manipulation instead of choosing a less effective, slower method of carrying the 1911.

This remains true.

well, Southpaws SHOULDN'T have to go out and buy and have put on, ambi safeties.

There are many 1911's that come from the factory with ambi safeties.

Yes, I've been told first hand, that when concealed in tight clothing, that sometimes the safety has in fact clicked down while they were retrieving the weapon from the holster. But see; you don't want to hear that either.

You've been told ? Well, then it must be true! :rolleyes: Evenso, a proper holster protects the safety.

Yet, you don't recognize that the 1911 was never intended to be carried concealed or in anything other than in a belt holster with a flapover cover.

I never said that and you know it. I did say that when I carry a 1911 concealed, it's in a KyTac BraveHeart holster. It locks the safety in the "on" position. I've carried a concealed 1911 for nearly 30 years. I recognize that the 1911 CAN be carried concealed fairly easily for most folks. Good holster and belt required.

For you, you can't admit that your way ISN'T the ONLY WAY.

I never said "my way" was the only way. :rolleyes: But it is the best way to carry a concealed 1911 on your body for personal defense. Off-body carry/storage is another matter.

As I've said previously, if speed and consistency are not important to you, then it doesn't matter how you carry your 1911

christcorp, please read my entire posts before responding.

EddieNFL
November 24, 2009, 09:31 AM
Synopsis of the previous ten pages:

"I'm right, you're wrong!"

"No! You're wrong, I'm right!"

<ad nauseam>

Vern Humphrey
November 24, 2009, 10:34 AM
One point that should be raised here is that the gun is not fired every time it is drawn.

If you carry in Condition 2, you have a loaded, cocked gun, safety off, pointed at a person. That's a recipie for a tragedy.

If you carry in Condition 1, you have the safety engaged, with your thumbs on it, ready for an instant shot.

David E
November 24, 2009, 11:16 AM
Dang, Vern, now why did you have to go and bring up some real facts ?

:D :D :D

Vern Humphrey
November 24, 2009, 11:34 AM
Sorry. I forgot the rule banning facts and logic from discussions like this.;)

DougDubya
November 24, 2009, 01:32 PM
One point that should be raised here is that the gun is not fired every time it is drawn.

If you carry in Condition 2, you have a loaded, cocked gun, safety off, pointed at a person. That's a recipie for a tragedy.

If you carry in Condition 1, you have the safety engaged, with your thumbs on it, ready for an instant shot.
If it's in a holster, being carried, it's NOT pointed at someone.

Vern Humphrey
November 24, 2009, 02:03 PM
If it's in a holster, being carried, it's NOT pointed at someone.
But in a self-defense situation, it comes out of the holster, does it not?

And in the overwhelming majority of cases, where a firearm is used in self-defense, it is not fired. So that would put those who carry in Condition 2 in the situation of pointing a loaded, cocked gun at someone with the safety off.

David E
November 24, 2009, 02:10 PM
And as I had asked earlier, (with no reply) if you are doing a sweep of your house to investigate a strange noise, do the Condition Two champions cock the hammer or not? If not, where is the thumb?

DaveBeal
November 24, 2009, 02:42 PM
It won't go off. The hammer has to be back so the firing pin spring can push the firing pin back, allowing it to protrude from the rear of the firing pin channel. From there, the hammer falls on the protruding firing pin sending it forward, via inertia, into the primer. The firing pin is shorter than the firing pin channel, so the only way to get primer contact is via inertia as mentioned above.

I'm not convinced. Ever see one of those "swinging wonder" toys? The kind with five steel balls each hanging from a pair of fishing lines? If you draw back two of the balls and let go, they strike the middle ball and cause the other two balls to kick out. The middle ball doesn't move, but it conveys the energy to the other two.

It seems that the same could happen to a 1911 with the hammer down. Something strikes the hammer. The hammer, without any perceptible motion, conveys the shock to the firing pin, driving it far enough to hit the chambered primer.

I agree that a YouTube video of someone hitting the hammer of a condition 2 1911 clamped in a vise would be a great idea.

And BTW, with the swinging wonder, how does it know to kick out two balls, rather than kicking out just one twice as high? :scrutiny:

Vern Humphrey
November 24, 2009, 03:13 PM
A standard test for that is the drop test, when the gun is dropped muzzle down from a fixed height. At a certain height, the firing pin itself can have enough inertia to pop the cap. But that's higher than you would be able to drop it in the real world.

Billy Shears
November 24, 2009, 03:49 PM
And BTW, with the swinging wonder, how does it know to kick out two balls, rather than kicking out just one twice as high?
Because only the movement of two balls in this case conserves both energy and momentum. If one ball moved twice as far, it would conserve one, but not the other.

dmazur
November 24, 2009, 03:53 PM
Elastic rebound (kids toy with the steel balls) doesn't work if they aren't suspended...

The idea of the "hammer down is safe" argument is that any energy imparted to the hammer is transferred to the slide, which it is resting against. The slide is in battery, so it can't move forward. Even if the slide is clamped in a vise, there isn't going to be any significant transfer to the firing pin. The slide/vise is going to absorb the impact (and turn it into heat), due to the relative contact areas involved.

When the inertial firing pin sticks out (hammer back), things are different. Now it is no longer protected by the slide.

christcorp
November 24, 2009, 07:19 PM
David; 1st; your Post #205 is a completely "What If" post. Also; both you and Vern have solidified way too many assumptions. In this thread, we are mainly speaking of CARRYING a 1911; and as such, debating condition 1 or 2. You are assuming that if I have a 1911 in the house; in the dresser or wherever; that it too would be in condition 2. Maybe!!! Maybe not!!! Maybe condition 1 or possibly condition 3. Again; you are making an assumption. You are also assuming that if I do have it in my dresser or wherever, and it's in condition 2; that the minute I pick up the pistol, that I'm going to cock the hammer and; in Vern's words; have a recipe for disaster. Maybe I don't cocked the hammer immediately. Again; I have no problem cocking the hammer, in what I feel is the same amount of time as switching the thumb safety off. And NO David; that doesn't mean a "Lack of practice" in condition 1. Maybe you have a lack of practice in cocking a hammer. There are Single Action cowboy shooters out there that I guarantee can cock a hammer and hit their target faster than you can sweep the safety and do the same thing. Especially if the safety is on the OPPOSITE SIDE of a the gun from your thumb.

Way too many assumptions. There is a right time and a wrong time to carry a 1911 in condition 1. Until you can admit that there are times when carried, that condition 2 could in fact be better, then you are saying that your way is the only right way. And I will answer one of your silly assuming questions; not that it will mean anything; but depending on the scenario (No, not all "Sweeping of the house looking for zombies" requires a cocked hammer); if I haven't cocked the pistol, then chances are that I am holding the pistol with 2 hands; and my non-shooting hand will be the thumb that's resting on the hammer. Then again, there are times when I might immediately cock the hammer, and put the safety on. Stop assuming. And stop thinking that there are only extreme situations. I.e. That a person who believes in condition 2, would NEVER EVER have the gun in condition 1.

I am going to allow you to post whatever you want. I WILL NOT be replying again on this topic, so enjoy yourself. I am sorry if I seem disrespectful, but trying to discuss this particular topic with some people, is a total Waste of my time. And that, is something I won't do. There is NO one way the weapon was designed to be carried. Anyone who believe there is/was; is in fact WRONG. There is no ONLY 1 way that it should be carried. Again; if someone believes that there is only 1 way that it SHOULD be carried; then they are WRONG. As far as in condition 1 BETTER than 2 or 3; that is totally dependent on the shooter, how the weapon is being carried, and the situation in which it needs to be used. I've carried in all three conditions. Through 21 years in the military, and the last 10 years since retiring. I've already stated I carry condition 1 in certain circumstances. But I know for a fact, that there are times when carrying, that condition 2 is better. So, go ahead and comment all you want. I'll find and wait for a more meaningful topic to jump in on. Best to all.

Vern Humphrey
November 24, 2009, 07:42 PM
Also; both you and Vern have solidified way too many assumptions. In this thread, we are mainly speaking of CARRYING a 1911
You have lost sight of the purpose of carrying a gun. We carry guns because we may need to use them.

Now, if we carry them in such a manner to make use excessively dangerous or difficult, we have defeated the purpose of carrying them, haven't we?

We know that most defensive uses of handguns do not result in a shooting. The attacker is stopped by the presentation of the gun, with no need to shoot. Holding a cocked gun, safety off, on another man who has stopped his attack is a recipe for a tragedy.

Oro
November 24, 2009, 08:19 PM
If you carry in Condition 2, you have a loaded, (un)cocked gun, safety off, pointed at a person. That's a recipie (sic) for a tragedy.

There, fixed it for you. The gun is not cocked in Condition 2. No tragedy imminent. And who's pointing the gun at a person?

Dang, Vern, now why did you have to go and bring up some real (non)facts ?

Fixed that one, too.

1911Tuner
November 24, 2009, 08:34 PM
If you carry in Condition 1, you have the safety engaged, with your thumbs on it, ready for an instant shot.

Don't wanna bust your bubble, Vern...but if you're pointin' a gun at me...finger off trigger and safety on, and I've got one in my hand, pointed at the ground...if I decide to shoot...my shot will hit you about the same time your safety goes click.

I'm not convinced. Ever see one of those "swinging wonder" toys? The kind with five steel balls each hanging from a pair of fishing lines? If you draw back two of the balls and let go, they strike the middle ball and cause the other two balls to kick out. The middle ball doesn't move, but it conveys the energy to the other two.

It seems that the same could happen to a 1911 with the hammer down.

There's a difference between the inertial firing pin and the swinging balls. If the hammer is down, resting against the firing pin stop...and you smack the hammer, it pushes the whole gun forward. The firing pin obeys Newton 1A and stands still. It's also got a spring pushing backward on it.

tipoc
November 24, 2009, 08:51 PM
I find these questions quite odd and reveling of either a lack of experience or a lack of insight...

From Vern:

If you carry in Condition 2, you have a loaded, cocked gun, safety off, pointed at a person. That's a recipie for a tragedy.

If you carry in Condition 1, you have the safety engaged, with your thumbs on it, ready for an instant shot.


And in the overwhelming majority of cases, where a firearm is used in self-defense, it is not fired. So that would put those who carry in Condition 2 in the situation of pointing a loaded, cocked gun at someone with the safety off.

From David E:

And as I had asked earlier, (with no reply) if you are doing a sweep of your house to investigate a strange noise, do the Condition Two champions cock the hammer or not? If not, where is the thumb?

Let's look at the last question first. In this situation or any other like it (gun in a fanny pack, deep cover, etc.) the gun is drawn and cocked and the safety put on. You are now holding a condition 1 gun in your hand ready for the "sweep of your house" or whatever may be.

On Vern's points: The gun is drawn and can be either fired or the safety applied as the situation calls for. The safety would be on if a person is being held at gunpoint for example.

If a 1911 or BHP is kept condition two it can easily transitioned to condition 1. The one does not exclude use of the other. As I said only a fella unfamiliar with the 1911 or ackwardly bending the stick some to make a point, would believe so, seems to me.

tipoc

huckster
November 24, 2009, 09:00 PM
Seems to me like apples and oranges from a shooting point of view, if you're gonna draw and shoot from either condition then TRAINING is the variable, not the position of the controls between the mind and the trigger.


OTOH... the safety (or lack thereof) of placing the gun into condition 2 is the reason I don't carry in condition 2.

delt167502
November 24, 2009, 10:15 PM
there is a place for all 3 conditions 1 about to use. 2 carry with little chance of use. 3 in transport ,but still that chance. at one time i was forced to carry,( 24/7) but in a safe area,condition 3 was required after we had a plunger come loose letting the safety slip and the weapon went off.

David E
November 25, 2009, 12:12 AM
David; 1st; your Post #205 is a completely "What If" post.

Here is Post #205: For example, you hear a noise downstairs. It's not enough to call the cops, but it's enough for you to check out for your own peace of mind.

Your chosen gun is a 1911. If in Condition 3, do you chamber one before investigating? If Condition 2, do you cock the hammer? In either case, you're walking around with a loaded and cocked gun with no safety applied.

Or do you apply the safety? You know, the one you never apply in practice or use?

Or do the Condition 2 guys investigate the noise with the hammer down, but thumb on the hammer, ready to cock it immediately? If so, how fast can you reacquire your firing grip?

It's not a "what-if" post, it is a series of questions for the promoters of Condition 2 . I was hoping to gain insight from those folks on the matter. But christcorp completely ignored them, then took the post completely out of context.

Clearly, it wasn't me that made assumptions.....

David E
November 25, 2009, 12:22 AM
It seems that the promoters of C-2 go back and forth between "it's too easy to miss the safety," or, "it's just as fast to cock the hammer," to "I put the safety on and carry in Condition One when needed..." Dang, which is it?

This thread has been about a private citizen carrying a gun on your person for defensive purposes. It's irrelevant how you store your gun in the dresser, safe, etc.

As I've stated several times, if speed and consistency do not matter to you, then the state of readiness you carry your gun in is moot.

If a deadly threat is imminent and requires a fast, deadly response, that's where Condition 2 creates a risk for the user. All of the top instructors teach to get a full firing grip at the initial contact with the gun. If the holster won't allow it, buy one that will. The C-2 carriers cannot achieve a full firing grip if they have to cock the hammer during the draw, unless they first get the grip, draw the gun, change the grip to reach the hammer, cock the gun, then re-establish the firing grip before shooting. But I suspect that most C-2 carriers will place their thumb on the hammer at initial contact and cock the gun while bringing it up and finally establish their firing grip (hopefully) before firing the gun. Most people would see the problem(s) with C-2 in this scenario. I hope the C-2 folks have an immediate "Plan B" for when they fumble the draw or the hammer slips to 1/2 cock.....

Contrast the above with Condtion One: establish grip, draw, snick off safety, align gun on identified target BANG!

Is a tight time frame likely? Would you really have time to cock the hammer and establish your firing grip in plenty of time? Maybe.......probably........ Not to over-dramatize, but would you bet your life on that? How about the lives of your family?

It seems that a better solution would be carrying the gun in Condition 1, or buy a DA auto carried chamber loaded.

Oro
November 25, 2009, 12:57 AM
This thread has been about a private citizen carrying a gun on your person for defensive purposes. It's irrelevant how you store your gun in the dresser, safe, etc.

I think you have misinterpreted the original question. Go read the original post. It asks what advantage there is and does not specify holstered/unholstered or "on your person" as you say it does. Nor does the OP restrict it to civilians. It is a very generic question.

There have been a large number of posts stating that Con. 2 offers some advantages in some scenarios. No one has argued it should replace Con. 1 in all situations in any post that I recall reading, and I have read every post in this thread along the way. Hopefully, some readers will have learned a bit about the operation of the gun and improved their understanding of it as a machine and its versatility. That will have made the thread worthwhile.

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