"Magazine Safety": Good Idea or Tool of the Devil?


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coop923
December 31, 2010, 02:02 AM
I've been trying to decide on a compact polymer-type auto for some time now and one consideration that has come up is that of "magazine safety" vs. no "magazine safety", and I was curious what THR members thought and their experiences and/or reasons.

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REAPER4206969
December 31, 2010, 02:09 AM
I hate mag disconnects with a fiery passion and will not have them on a serious use weapon. They are now required on all newly submitted pistols in your state BTW.

Ben86
December 31, 2010, 02:11 AM
I find them to be an insult to my intelligence, tactically unsound and sometimes they interfere with the quality of the trigger pull.

I accidentally bought one with a S&W M&P9C a while back and the darn thing not only made the trigger a little grittier, but would keep the gun's sear deactivation lever from "activating" properly once a magazine was re-inserted. They are a solution looking for a problem IMO, completely unnecessary for the responsible gun owner.

There are plenty of great guns that don't have them by the way.

highorder
December 31, 2010, 02:16 AM
As a non-LEO, I don't see much use for a mag safety.
Most of them interfere with trigger pull. That's bad.

For cops? Another useful tool during a struggle for your sidearm, perhaps...

The Lone Haranguer
December 31, 2010, 04:56 AM
You didn't have an option for "I don't care" :p so I went with the third option. I've owned S&W metal frame pistols as well as a Beretta 86 that had mag safeties, and other than having to insert a magazine (empty, of course) to dry fire them, the operation of the rest of the gun is completely unaffected. It is a benign feature that neither helps nor hurts. Some mag safeties do affect trigger pull, notably the Browning Hi-Power.

CajunBass
December 31, 2010, 07:43 AM
I'm in the "I don't care" camp too.

x_wrench
December 31, 2010, 10:38 AM
i have not shot a pistol with one, so i can not comment on how they shoot. i do not like the idea. and, i do not like the idea that it is another peice of @#$%^ that the anti's can shove down our throats if they can not keep us from owning firearms. personally, i think we should round up all the anti-gun people, and ship them to a dictatorship, and see how they like that way of life. :cuss:

highorder
December 31, 2010, 11:35 AM
Easy there.

We're just talking about a mechanical feature.

bartman06
December 31, 2010, 11:38 AM
I don't like them but i bought a Ruger that has one.

pingpingping
December 31, 2010, 12:05 PM
I did the unthinkable and removed mine from my m&p. *gasp* For whose safety do they exist?

clutch
December 31, 2010, 12:10 PM
Tactically they could have some use as in if you are fighting for your gun, dumping the mag would render in inoperable.

Having said that, if I ever need to reload, I'd like to be able to swap mags and still have the firearm capable of firing during the reload.

Most of my pistols do not have mag safeties and it is just a matter of time before I fix the one that does.

Clutch

Wishoot
December 31, 2010, 12:11 PM
I have guns with and without. Frankly, I don't really care if a gun has a mag safety. As long as I can shoot it well, I'm good to go.

KIX
December 31, 2010, 12:20 PM
With regard to Clutch and disabling my safety....

I thought about doing that to my CC gun, but...... in my state, if I ever needed to defend myself and I modified that safety, I'd be in deep doo doo.

CT isn't the most friendly state with regards to second amendments rights.

Jonathan

Old Fuff
December 31, 2010, 12:32 PM
Personally I don't like them. They're intended purpose is to prevent someone from ejecting a cartridge, chambering a new round, and then removing the magazine and pulling the trigger with a predictable result. Also you can leave the chamber loaded but remove the magazine, and the pistol is secured against an unexpected discharge.

In some large law enforcement organizations and military services with mixed levels of training and experience this feature may have merit. In circumstances where the individual user is trained they are unnecessary, and prevent one from shooting the last round in the chamber if the magazine has been removed - even if they want or need to.

I count myself among this latter group.

Hangingrock
December 31, 2010, 12:42 PM
I have a S&W 4506 and a M&P9 both with magazine safeties. I have no problematic issues with either. They allow me the convenience of having a round chambered and with the magazine removed are rendered safe for residential storange.

1911Tuner
December 31, 2010, 01:22 PM
Depends a lot on who you ask.

Personally, I don't like'em but I can live with'em. For the cops who were able to "Pop the Clip" during a hand-to-hand struggle...just before losing their pistol...they've been lifesavers.

Deanimator
December 31, 2010, 01:27 PM
Utterly useless to me.

If somebody tries to snatch my gun, my plan isn't to dump the magazine, it's to shoot them.

When I bought a Browning Hi Power in the '80s, the first thing to go was the magazine safety. It improved the trigger 100%.

Rocketmedic
December 31, 2010, 01:49 PM
I wholeheartedly support them. I feel that my personal weapons, although I know them, may one day be manipulated by someone without that training or familiarity with my weapon. A magazine safety is reasonably unobtrusive and doesn't affect use of the weapon, while it potentially saves lives. I can pop a magazine out should I fight for it in a home-invasion scenario and render the weapon inoperable, and should a child or unresponsible adult open the case and handload a round, it still will not go off.

Miniscule benefits in trigger pull and accuracy, to me, are not worth the loss of the mag safety.

joe_security
December 31, 2010, 02:00 PM
My '75 BHP still has it. I dont use the gun for anything but the range so its no problem. I often wonder how much better that trigger could be without it. I could see someone with kids pulling the mag and feeling better about it. There are storys about Illinois State Troopers dropping the mags at the last second, right before someone disarmed them (S&W model 39/439 back in the old days before Glocks).

bigfatdave
December 31, 2010, 02:16 PM
If somebody tries to snatch my gun, my plan isn't to dump the magazine, it's to shoot them.Damn right. Someone taking your gun isn't a time to go to fisticuffs, that's the time to utilize the felon repulsion switch, you'll find it under the gun in a little lopy thing, pull rearward when the shooty opening in front of the gun is pointing at the person trying to take the gun.

For the love of FSM, someone trying to take your gun is grabbing the slide while you have a freaking pistol grip in your hand ... who has a better handle? It isn't a tug-of-war, pull back, if the violent felon doesn't let go the slide will be in battery as you pull back and your finger will have little difficulty moving the trigger rearward.

The magazine INTERLOCK (it is NOT a safety, no matter what some mouth-breathing marketing clown or politician says) is a useless gadget trying to substitute for inability to follow the 4 rules. I avoid them, or delete them as possible ... only one left and it is in a plinker, I'm looking into just permanently fixing the mag-sensing device into the "mag in" position.

For the "unauthorized access" worry, just put a damn cable lock through or take the slide off. Don't add hardware to a simple device designed to go "bang" on demand that might cause it to NOT go "bang".

rondog
December 31, 2010, 02:26 PM
I'd never really thought about it, my 1911's don't have that. If there's a round in the chamber, they'll fire it.

I suppose it's OK for most people and uses, it certainly prevents a lot of accidents for sure. I was at a party once where one friend shot another friend in the leg with a .25 that had just been "unloaded", by ejecting the round first and pulling the mag second. A mag safety would have prevented that.

And the ability to eject the mag and make the gun inoperable during a wrestling match for it sure sounds like a good idea for cops. I'd never thought of it that way.

But I could sure see a lot of reasons for NOT having that feature too.

EddieNFL
December 31, 2010, 03:00 PM
Mag safeties, firing pin safeties, trigger locks, safety rounds, smart guns, propellant tags, ammunition coding...

All belong in the Charlie Foxtrot file.

2ndamd
December 31, 2010, 03:14 PM
I did not know if I should vote for choice #1 or choice #4. I am voted for #4 but, I like #1 as well.

Mag safeties suck and I absolutely hate 'em. But, they can be an option for those that want them. Just do NOT mandate them on me.

Tomcat47
December 31, 2010, 03:33 PM
^^^^^^^^^ what he said ! ^^^^^^^^^:d

Hanzo581
December 31, 2010, 03:53 PM
Doesn't really bother me, having one or not would not be a determining factor to whether or not I buy a particular gun.

goon
December 31, 2010, 03:56 PM
IIRC, the original Browning HP design used a magazine disconnect as a way to help officers who were used to revolvers remain alive when they switched to semi-autos.
But I still utterly freakin' hate them!
They're a useless mechanical part that does nothing for me other than adding one more thing that can fail on my gun. No thanks. I won't buy a handgun with a mag disconnect.

fastbolt
December 31, 2010, 04:11 PM
Magazine safeties have been around for quite a while. Studies have reportedly shown that they've saved numerous LE lives, but not cost any lives. Some LE agencies have required them and some have specifically requested pistols normally produced with them be made without them for a contract order. The manufacturers have met demands as requested.

I've carried a number of issued S&W 3rd gen guns for 21 years without any issues involving the magazine safeties. I've fired many tens of thousands of rounds through such guns myself and have observed upwards of 50-100K rounds per year fired by our folks since we adopted them 21 years ago. I've seen one ejector depressor plunger (the mag safety plunger) badly chewed up by a broken ejector tip due to repeated usage with the broken ejector. Naturally, I replaced both parts.

Bottom line, as long as the design of the mag safety doesn't compromise the normal functioning when everything is in normal good condition, or adversely affect the trigger pull (like on the Browning design), I have no qualms about it.

Just my thoughts and experiences. Other folks certainly have their own.

earplug
December 31, 2010, 04:17 PM
If you ever shoot IDPA or USPSA or other games, you have to show the weapon is clear and drop the hammer/firing pin prior to holstering the pistol.
Its a hassle to carry a empty magazine to drop the hammer.

Hangingrock
December 31, 2010, 06:56 PM
If you ever shoot IDPA or USPSA or other games,
Those are games as you said are they not?;)

FIVETWOSEVEN
December 31, 2010, 07:33 PM
I hate the one in the Hi Power. I don't like them in general either.

basicblur
December 31, 2010, 07:37 PM
And the ability to eject the mag and make the gun inoperable during a wrestling match for it sure sounds like a good idea for cops. I'd never thought of it that way.
Yup-I'm not much for 'em since I'm not an LEO, but I don't automatically dismiss 'em either-they have their place. I recently picked up a used (1 month old, looked like never fired) M&P 357 SIG Police Special (night sights, 3 magazines, magazine safety).

Folks who automatically dismiss 'em just sounds like a lot of 'Net chatter-mebbe the same folks that used to automatically pull their catalytic converters?
I'm pretty sure I've run across all the following info in the past:
1. Some studies have shown a large number of officers were killed with their own weapon (can't recall the percentage, but it was much higher than I'd have thought).
2. As others have stated, a magazine safety has allowed a number of LEOs in a struggle that realized they weren't going to be able to maintain control of their weapon to hit the mag release, let the BG have the (now useless) gun, and go for distance and their backup gun.
3. Is not the Browning High Power the only gun on which the magazine safety has a direct impact on trigger pull? From what I remember, seems newer models/makers learned from that?

DenaliPark
December 31, 2010, 07:46 PM
Magazine disconnects are the work of the devil if you happen to get killed because your magazine dropped on you, or a gift from God because it did, and you didn't!

highorder
December 31, 2010, 08:10 PM
Is not the Browning High Power the only gun on which the magazine safety has a direct impact on trigger pull?

The Ruger SR9 trigger is drastically affected by the mag safety.

My S&W 4506 mag safety has no affect on trigger pull.

fastbolt
December 31, 2010, 08:14 PM
Some studies have shown a large number of officers were killed with their own weapon (can't recall the percentage, but it was much higher than I'd have thought).

I've also encountered a few instances where other instructors came up with "statistics" that showed surprisingly large numbers of cops were killed with their weapons.

The FBI stats from 2000-2009 show that of the 536 officers feloniously killed in that 10 year period, 26 were killed with their own weapon when the weapon was stolen and 15 were killed with their own weapon when it wasn't stolen. http://www2.fbi.gov/ucr/killed/2009/data/table_13.html

Just in 2009, 48 cops were feloniously killed, 2 of them by their own weapons. http://www2.fbi.gov/ucr/killed/2009/feloniouslykilled.html (Lots of tables with other data can be found linked further down in the subject topics.)

Naturally, some of the situations taken from that 10 year total, viewed from localized areas and perspective, might show a higher or lower percentage of an occurrence in specific areas.

bigfatdave
December 31, 2010, 08:42 PM
Is not the Browning High Power the only gun on which the magazine safety has a direct impact on trigger pull? From what I remember, seems newer models/makers learned from that?
nope!
Hel, my Ruger mkIII has one, and it is a pure target gun.
Removing the magazine interlock (it is NOT a safety!) made as much improvement in the gun's function as adding a target hammer and sear.

basicblur
December 31, 2010, 09:24 PM
The Ruger SR9 trigger is drastically affected by the mag safety.
The quote I read 'bout the High Power being the only gun with a mag safety directly affecting the trigger pull was probably made before the SR9 came out.
There's no reason why a well designed magazine safety should make any difference in the trigger pull of a gun.

Hel, my Ruger mkIII has one, and it is a pure target gun.
I (and I'm sure the person making the quote 'bout which guns have 'em) was referring only to SD guns.

I don't care for 'em, but if I was a LEO, I'd think awfully hard about dismissing 'em.

1Deernut
December 31, 2010, 09:30 PM
hate 'em. Have one on an old duty 4006. Like the gun, hate the disconnect "safety"...

GLOOB
December 31, 2010, 09:42 PM
I don't mind them at all... (as long as I can disable them).

Actually, even then I find it annoying. I keep meaning to disable the mag safety on my friend's MKIII, but then I remember what a royal PITA it was the first time around.

19-3Ben
December 31, 2010, 10:38 PM
Another vote for 'absolutely could not care less about them one way or another.'

KodiakBeer
December 31, 2010, 10:43 PM
On the BHP it adds about 15% to the trigger pull weight which doesn't sound bad, but worse, it adds a grittiness to the trigger that is just... undesirable.

On older Hi Powers it takes less than a minute to remove since you can knock a small pin out of the trigger and drag the offending part out through the mag well. On the newer Hi Powers it takes more like 10 to 30 minutes since you have to remove two pins, remove and replace the trigger assembly. Still pretty easy, and well worth the trouble.

Jim K
December 31, 2010, 10:45 PM
My, my! More ranting and screaming.

Magazine safeties made sense in the early days when folks were not familiar with auto pistols and thought removing the magazine really unloaded the pistol, forgetting about the round in the chamber. Today, I think they are unnecessary, but I don't much care and am not going to go raving insane about them.

Jim

orionengnr
December 31, 2010, 10:50 PM
Why can't I select options one and four?

I bought a used Ruger MkIII Hunter for a couldn't-pass-it-up price.
Mag safety, loaded chamber indicator, internal lock...no thanks. Sold it--I'll stick with my MkII.

EddieNFL
December 31, 2010, 10:51 PM
Magazine safeties made sense in the early days when folks were not familiar with auto pistols and thought removing the magazine really unloaded the pistol, forgetting about the round in the chamber.

When trying to make something idiot proof, never underestimate the power of an idiot.

KodiakBeer
December 31, 2010, 11:03 PM
A gun, any gun, is only as good as its trigger. The trigger determines how well you can shoot the gun in the real world.

If a mag disconnect doesn't affect the trigger pull it's just an academic question whether to remove it or not.

On some guns (the BHP in particular), it really does affect the trigger and is best removed (IMHO). On other guns, maybe not so much...

carbuncle
December 31, 2010, 11:43 PM
I've been a long-time S&W 3rd Generation pistol owner and shooter, so I'm well used to the magazine disconnect "safety" feature. I prefer a gun to not have a magazine disconnect, but that hasn't stopped me from buying 3 guns which have it.

FIVETWOSEVEN
January 1, 2011, 09:27 AM
firing pin safeties

Now Eddie that isn't just some stupid unnessecery safety. It prevents the firing pin from moving without the trigger being pulled like if the sear broke or the gun was dropped muzzle down.

Someone did tested a 1911 on this forum I believe without the firing pin safety and it fired when dropped.

sansone
January 1, 2011, 09:44 AM
on some guns it's easy to undo the mag safety. On my BHP I polished the little spot on the mags where the interupt rubs and can feel no difference in trigger pull. So I decided to leave the mag safety in place. given the choice I would rather not have the safety

EddieNFL
January 1, 2011, 10:27 AM
Now Eddie that isn't just some stupid unnessecery safety. It prevents the firing pin from moving without the trigger being pulled like if the sear broke or the gun was dropped muzzle down.

Someone did tested a 1911 on this forum I believe without the firing pin safety and it fired when dropped.
Also been know to keep the gun from firing WHEN the trigger was pulled.

The number one safety is the operator. You can hang a dozen different mechanical safeties on a firearm and some idiot will manage to shoot himself.

If you feel you need these devices to be safe, that is perfectly fine...but I can do without them.

I don't store my ammo separately, either.

1911Tuner
January 1, 2011, 11:21 AM
I think that Jim Keenan just gave the definitive answer. Many people who aren't familiar with the clear drill for a self-loader don't understand that removing the magazine doesn't
unload the pistol.

How many of us have known/seen/heard of/read about someone dropping the magazine and immediately killing somebody because they didn't know about that chambered round?
I've even heard of it happening with experienced gun handlers in a moment of inattention.

So, in that light...we have a valid reason for having a magazine to trigger disconnect feature. I've been around a few people when handling guns that made me want to lop their fingers off. A disconnected trigger would have made me feel a lot better.

KodiakBeer
January 1, 2011, 11:45 AM
On my BHP I polished the little spot on the mags where the interupt rubs and can feel no difference in trigger pull.

Reach inside the mag well and push in the mag disconnect plunger against the spring tension. That amount of weight is added to the trigger pull. It's certainly under two pounds of weight, but it's there. If you're not fussy about triggers then leave it alone, but you will get a lighter trigger pull if you remove it.

EddieNFL
January 1, 2011, 11:53 AM
I think that Jim Keenan just gave the definitive answer. Many people who aren't familiar with the clear drill for a self-loader don't understand that removing the magazine doesn't
unload the pistol.

How many of us have known/seen/heard of/read about someone dropping the magazine and immediately killing somebody because they didn't know about that chambered round?
I've even heard of it happening with experienced gun handlers in a moment of inattention.

So, in that light...we have a valid reason for having a magazine to trigger disconnect feature. I've been around a few people when handling guns that made me want to lop their fingers off. A disconnected trigger would have made me feel a lot better.

Said people shouldn't own or handle firearms...or operate heavy equipment.

c1ogden
January 1, 2011, 10:24 PM
Your poll question is misleading because you, like many others, have been duped into playing the gun control game by the anti-gunner's rules.

There is no such thing as a "magazine safety". Some guns, including one of my Browning Hi-Powers came equipped with a magazine "disconnector". It is NOT a safety. Think about it. A safety is "engaged" or in the "safe" or non-firing position almost all of the time when the gun is being carried/used. It is in the "off" or firing position only from just before the shot is made until just afterwards. A "magazine disconnector" is just the opposite. It is in the firing position ALL of the time that the gun is being carried/used except during reloading.

Some people consider magazine disconnectors to be a "safety feature" and I'm aware of a number of cops that are still alive because they were able to activate the disconnector (by dropping the magazine) when they were struggling with a criminal who had gotten hold of thier gun. I am also aware of a similar number of good guys who are still alive because they were able to fire without the magazine being in place. I have seen quite a few officers accidentally hit the mag release button as they drew their guns. Fortunately this was during training and qualifications and not on the street. Set your guns up the way you like them (or the way your agency requires them to be) and learn to live with the shortcomings. In my case, none of my guns have any kind of magazine disconnectors or key locks on them and never will.

Yes, I'm aware that some manufacturers refer to it as a "safety". That is just a marketing/liability thing that was started by John Browning when he designed the Hi-Power. The military establishment that the gun was being designed for had specified that it have two "safety" devices, as the U.S. military had done when the 1911 was being developed. Browning knew of the many problems with the grip safety that he used on the 1911 so he came up with a magazine disconnector and passed it off as a "safety". Liability lawyers have pushed many other companies to include disconnectors on their guns to protect the companies from unethical plaintiff's lawyers.

Another terminology problem is “high capacity” magazines. While we all know that these items are inherently evil and can cause otherwise normal citizens to commit random mass murders, most of us don't know exactly what a “high capacity” magazine is. A true high capacity magazine is a magazine of greater capacity than the one that a particular gun was designed for. Thus, a 17 round magazine in a Glock 17 is a “standard capacity” magazine, (regardless of what some corrupt/malfeasant/incompetent legislature has decided to label it) while the same magazine placed in a Glock 19 (designed around a 15 round magazine) is then a “high capacity” magazine. Likewise, a 10 round magazine made for a Glock 17 is a “restricted capacity” magazine.

Let's use the proper and accurate words instead of the propaganda terms of the gun banners and maybe we can move this discussion to a more level field. Stay safe!

FIVETWOSEVEN
January 1, 2011, 11:56 PM
How many of us have known/seen/heard of/read about someone dropping the magazine and immediately killing somebody because they didn't know about that chambered round?


One of my Dad's Friend's son was killed because of that. Granted the safety would have saved him. But still proper handling makes such a safety moot.

rondog
January 2, 2011, 12:34 AM
Please drop the attitude about the word "safety". Some of us just couldn't think of the big fancy term "disconnector", and "safety" works just fine. We all know what the subject is about. We don't need word police, thank you!

cfullgraf
January 2, 2011, 01:02 AM
While in general, I do not like magazine disconnects, my Hi Power still has it's disconnect in place. Except for casual target shooting, I am more likely, at this time, to use the pistol for some self defense role and would be concerned about some hot shot lawyer would conjure up.

The Hi power is the only handgun I have that has a magazine disconnet.

On the other hand, I did disable the automatic safety on my Beretta Oynx. After years of shooting skeet with a Browning Citori with a manual safety, the automatic safety on the Onyx was just wrong. You don't break many clay targets with the safety on!

GLOOB
January 2, 2011, 01:35 AM
Please drop the attitude about the word "safety". Some of us just couldn't think of the big fancy term "disconnector", and "safety" works just fine. We all know what the subject is about. We don't need word police, thank you!
__________________
This isn't the word police, and there's no attitude. No one is challenging your mastery of the English language. He's simply pointing out how words affect peoples' perceptions. Sometimes we adopt terminology that can influence our decisions in a subtle way. I completely agree with the idea. Anyone who is pro-gun should make a conscious effort to avoid using "anti" terminology wherever possible.

Here's a non-gun example. I've heard an internet mogul raise objection to the term "IRL" (In Real Life). This term suggests that the internet is fake. He prefers the term "AFK" (Away From Keyboard).

If you feel strongly about the subject, one way or the other, you might consider such things. If all you care about is shootin' yer guns till someone comes and takes them away, then don't sweat it.

BHPshooter
January 2, 2011, 01:42 AM
C1ogden,

your paragraph about John Browning and the mag disconnect is completely fallacious. John Browning did not come up with the mag disconnect, nor did he "pass it off" as a safety. The forerunner to the Hi Power, the Grand Rendement, was designed to compete for the French military Concours de Pistolets. The French had a laundry list of demands, among which was a magazine disconnect. Browning simply gave the French, by way of FN, what they asked for.

As to the original post, I hate magazine disconnects. All of my BHPs have them removed. I can recognize that they can have a place in law enforcement. I like the way that S&W offers them as an option.

1911Tuner
January 2, 2011, 07:14 AM
One of my Dad's Friend's son was killed because of that. Granted the safety would have saved him. But still proper handling makes such a safety moot.

Precisely my point...but how many people have we all seen who handle loaded guns as though they were toys? Some of the more experienced gun people I've been around are enough to give me the heebie-jeebies. My step-father...age 88 with former military experience...and my ex father in-law/USN vet...are two such examples. Hand either one a gun, and their fingers immediately go to the trigger, and they're not all that careful about where the muzzle looks. For people like that, the magazine disconnect gives me a little more security because I can remove the magazine and put it in my pocket.

My older Belgian High Power has its disconnect in place and operational. The trigger isn't all that great, but it's completely manageable, and I can shoot the gun just fine. In its intended role as a close-range emergency tool...the gun is more than satisfactory. It may be more difficult to shoot a tight group on a bullseye target at 50 yards than one with a crisp 3.5 pound trigger...but that's not the High Power's venue. It doesn't bother me one bit, so it will remain in place.

kokapelli
January 2, 2011, 10:28 AM
Every now and then I read in the paper that some kid messing around with his dad's gun drops the magazine and thinking the gun is safe shoots his sibling or friend.

If you don't have any kids around the house you can easily remove the magazine safety from most guns.

Hangingrock
January 2, 2011, 11:17 AM
If good old John Browning had designed the final version of the 1911 with a magazine disconnect and Jeff Cooper had thought it to be a wonderful idea would there be this discussion?:what::rolleyes:

hapidogbreath
January 2, 2011, 11:38 AM
Why does everyone talk about fighting over the GUN and retention????? If you are engaged in a fight for your gun shove your thumb in the eye of the attacker and he will forget about the gun. End of fight. For correction officers where you are dealing with numbers????? Possibly.

1911Tuner
January 2, 2011, 11:52 AM
If good old John Browning had designed the final version of the 1911 with a magazine disconnect and Jeff Cooper had thought it to be a wonderful idea would there be this discussion?

Possibly. One thing for sure...If the US Army had requested a magazine disconnect, it would have been there. Browning didn't have complete autonomy. He gave'em what they asked for. No more and no less.

If you are engaged in a fight for your gun shove your thumb in the eye of the attacker and he will forget about the gun. End of fight.

That doesn't guarantee anything. One of middleweight champ Harry Greb's opponents jammed a thumb in his eye early in their fight, giving him a detached retina. Greb went on to give him a drubbing for the next 12 rounds. Some people don't give up because they're hurt. Many of them get positively vicious. Some become even more dangerous when hurt.

hapidogbreath
January 2, 2011, 12:02 PM
"Greb went on to give him a drubbing for the next 12 rounds" Greb was fighting for a reason. To win. Most Things I fight with on the street aren't up for that and when you keep pressing the attack, digging the digit into the socket it gives you time to also do other things. We are not talking boxing.

postalnut25
January 2, 2011, 01:24 PM
I have no use for a magazine disconnect. When practicing dry-firing, I don't like having to have a magazine in place.

I would prefer to have the magazine well empty, and just rack the slide after each trigger pull in order to dry fire. That is why I had to look around and make sure that my M&P didn't have the magazine disconnect.

Billy Shears
January 2, 2011, 01:34 PM
Why does everyone talk about fighting over the GUN and retention????? If you are engaged in a fight for your gun shove your thumb in the eye of the attacker and he will forget about the gun. End of fight.
I just love it when armchair ninjas feel qualified to pontificate authoritatively about how to deal with a situation they've never had to face.

Tpr0811
January 2, 2011, 01:39 PM
I have used weapons with the magazine disconnect for 17 or 18 years and have learned to live with them. They have all been issue weapons. Still don't care for the PC reason they are there.

kokapelli
January 2, 2011, 01:41 PM
I would prefer to have the magazine well empty, and just rack the slide after each trigger pull in order to dry fire. That is why I had to look around and make sure that my M&P didn't have the magazine disconnect.
So you would not have purchased the M&P if it had a magazine disconnect even though it would take a full three minutes to remove it?

76shuvlinoff
January 2, 2011, 01:44 PM
For me they belong in the same file as seat belt and helmet laws.
Fine with me as long as I am allowed to choose ...but that's just me.

postalnut25
January 2, 2011, 01:50 PM
So you would not have purchased the M&P if it had a magazine disconnect even though it would take a full three minutes to remove it?
Yep. I would have waited until I got one without the disconnect. I shouldn't have to work on a brand new gun when I can buy one the way I want it.

waterhouse
January 2, 2011, 01:58 PM
Why does everyone talk about fighting over the GUN and retention????? If you are engaged in a fight for your gun shove your thumb in the eye of the attacker and he will forget about the gun. End of fight. For correction officers where you are dealing with numbers????? Possibly.

It isn't only corrections officers who may have to deal with numbers. I posted this in a previous thread on the topic:

None of my guns have magazine disconnects. I don't see the point for me and agree that I don't see a purpose for them on concealed carry guns. When I was in law enforcement our issued gun did not have a magazine disconnect either.

However, to address a few of the points raised [these are quotes from the old thread, but similar thoughts seem to be here as well]
--------------------------
Quote:
How about avoiding the struggle, or not deploying a firearm if you are planning a wrestling match?
Quote:
"...cops who have had their weapons taken..." Operator failure, a lack of training and/or a bad holster.
Quote:
If you have time to drop the mag, you have time to pull the trigger.
----------------------------------

I did a lot of hand to hand training with a police gun belt on. No matter how aware you are of your surroundings, you really don't have eyes in the back of your head.

Our duty holster had a retention loop that you rocked down and forward to release. If someone tried to grab my gun, which was common in training, I could reach across with my left hand and block the retaining strap from traveling forward while delivering elbows with my right arm. This maneuver kept the gun safely in the holster, where the trigger was guarded, though all of the wrestling and rolling around.

While the gun was holstered, I could have easily dropped the magazine. It would have done me little good to do so, because our guns didn't have a magazine disconnect, but the point is that there are times for a cop when, no matter what you train and how aware you are, someone might get a hand on your gun without you having access to the trigger. If you had a magazine disconnect, it could be useful in that situation.

Keep in mind that these training scenarios were often 3 or 4 on 1, full contact with guys in red man suits. At some point most students had their gun taken away, usually after several minutes (it doesn't sound long, but feels like an eternity) of fighting. If a cop saw that he was outnumbered and that he was likely to lose his weapon (4 guys pulling your wrists away from your holster will usually get the job done) he could be saved by a magazine disconnect. Planing on emptying your magazine via the trigger isn't always an option.

All that said, I'm glad our didn't have them, and I don't personally want them on my guns, but they can serve a valid purpose for law enforcement.

Slightly OT for the disconnect conversation, but I also don't think blanket statements like "an eye gouge will end the fight" are always valid either. First, fights don't always offer the convenience of being situated to deliver a thumb into an eye socket.

Greb was fighting for a reason. To win.

Second, in the situation described, you are fighting over a deadly weapon, where your life is literally on the line. You state that the reason a boxer stayed in a match after an eye gouge was because he wanted to win. How much harder do you think he would have fought it it was his life, not a boxing match, at stake? Humans can endure incredible pain to survive . . . don't count on someone in a fight for their life letting go of a gun because you inflict a certain amount of pain.

shockwave
January 2, 2011, 02:02 PM
I don't like them but i bought a Ruger that has one.

First thing I did, when I got my SR9c home, was to break it down for cleaning.

At that time, I used a metal punch to depress the pin in the back of the slide cover.

With the pin depressed, the small plastic cover slid off the back of the slide.

Then, depressing the metal tab under the slide, it was easy to extract the firing pin.

At this time, with the firing pin about halfway out, the mag disconnect popped up from its seat in the slide. It's a little horseshoe-shaped piece with a tiny spring on one side.

The disconnect piece went into my spare parts box.

I finished cleaning the gun up, oiled it, and later took it to the range. After a box or two of ammo was through the gun, I made sure one round was in the chamber, dropped the magazine, and fired the round in the chamber, ensuring the mag disconnect removal had been accomplished correctly.

hapidogbreath
January 2, 2011, 02:18 PM
To Billy S. I am Far From an "ARM CHAIR NINJA" 16 years of LE and 6 years USMC. I happen to know a thing or two. I'm not saying its an absolute fight stopper but it has worked very well in my experience.

kokapelli
January 2, 2011, 02:25 PM
First thing I did, when I got my SR9c home, was to break it down for cleaning.

At that time, I used a metal punch to depress the pin in the back of the slide cover.

With the pin depressed, the small plastic cover slid off the back of the slide.

Then, depressing the metal tab under the slide, it was easy to extract the firing pin.

At this time, with the firing pin about halfway out, the mag disconnect popped up from its seat in the slide. It's a little horseshoe-shaped piece with a tiny spring on one side.

The disconnect piece went into my spare parts box.

I finished cleaning the gun up, oiled it, and later took it to the range. After a box or two of ammo was through the gun, I made sure one round was in the chamber, dropped the magazine, and fired the round in the chamber, ensuring the mag disconnect removal had been accomplished correctly.
Yes if your cleaning the pistol and already have it dissasembled it only takes about 30 seconds more to remove the magazine disconnect and if your replacing the firing pin spring it's almost part of the procedure.

One of the reasons I like striker fired pistols is the simplicity of the firing system.

Billy Shears
January 2, 2011, 02:44 PM
To Billy S. I am Far From an "ARM CHAIR NINJA" 16 years of LE and 6 years USMC. I happen to know a thing or two. I'm not saying its an absolute fight stopper but it has worked very well in my experience.
Then you ought to know better! If it were as simple as that do you really imagine that so many officers would have had their guns taken and been killed with them over the years? Sure a thumb in the eye is a fight stopper... if you're assailant isn't flying high on PCP and can't feel any pain, or if he isn't larger and stronger than you, or if you aren't worn slam out after a lengthy foot pursuit and you know that if you take both hands off the gun, he'll tear it right out of your weakening grasp and kill you with it, or if any number of other possible things. Though I see you have qualified this statement now, you initially offered this advice without qualification. so it came across with the air of "I don't see what the problem is. Just do this, problem solved." Well, if you have the experience that you say you have, then you should know that NOTHING works every time in defensive scenarios. There are no fool proof techniques in defensive tactics. Every situation is different and every combatant is different.

I'm a ten year veteran LEO myself (4 year army infantry), so I certainly know better than to make unqualified, authoritative pronouncements like the one you made. A thumb in the eye is an effective fight stopper. But neither it nor anything else is the universal solution to a given problem, and as I say, if you have the experience you say you have, this is something you should certainly know.

The Lone Haranguer
January 2, 2011, 02:47 PM
Deleted, please disregard.

Airburst
January 2, 2011, 03:19 PM
The Lone Haranguer
You didn't have an option for "I don't care" so I went with the third option. I've owned S&W metal frame pistols as well as a Beretta 86 that had mag safeties, and other than having to insert a magazine (empty, of course) to dry fire them, the operation of the rest of the gun is completely unaffected. It is a benign feature that neither helps nor hurts. Some mag safeties do affect trigger pull, notably the Browning Hi-Power.
I concur with the I don't care. I have owned S&W autoloaders since the late 80's and with them, there is an easy cure. If your gun has fixed three dot sights, you drift off the rear sight, exposing the the two safety features. The one on the left side I believe is the mag safety. Remove the spring and plunger, re-install the sight and you have a non-mag safety gun. The adjustable rear sight comes off differently, but everything else is the same.

Silvanus
January 2, 2011, 03:25 PM
Tool of the Devil definitely! First thing I did before even shooting my HP was removing the mag safety. I really don't like that feature on a firearm.

hapidogbreath
January 2, 2011, 03:26 PM
Billy, I do apologize for the misinterpretation. I agree with you that there is no one fight stopping move out there other than a shot to the brain housing group. What i meant to convey is that when a threat is close enough to grab your gun and you can't get a shot off re-holster. Not sure about your duty rig but we have triple retention. If he grabs for your gun...the eye is a very nice target and does have a tendency to get the individual to refocus. It is a very viable option.

sansone
January 2, 2011, 03:32 PM
Reach inside the mag well and push in the mag disconnect plunger against the spring tension. That amount of weight is added to the trigger pull. It's certainly under two pounds of weight, but it's there. If you're not fussy about triggers then leave it alone, but you will get a lighter trigger pull if you remove it.
thanks kodiac, now I have a good reason to fiddle around with my favorite pistol.

KodiakBeer
January 2, 2011, 04:06 PM
thanks kodiac, now I have a good reason to fiddle around with my favorite pistol.

If you really want a slick trigger, also replace the 32 pound stock mainspring with a 22 or 26 pound Wolff spring.

1911Tuner
January 2, 2011, 04:49 PM
We are not talking boxing.

Yes. I know. I guess you missed the point. That being that pain is no guarantee of incapacitation, and sometimes provokes the opposite response. It might work...but it wouldn't be wise to believe that jamming a thumb in his eye will immediately end the affair.

If people can be shot multiple times and continue to fight, then a poke in the eye can't be counted on to do much better.

mustang_steve
January 2, 2011, 05:28 PM
I have pistols with and without them...honestly, I really don't care either way. It never makes itself obvious to me outside of cleaning the firearm, in which case it doesn't need to be fired anyways.

1911Tuner
January 2, 2011, 05:48 PM
I have pistols with and without them...honestly, I really don't care either way.

Me too and me neither, Steve. Personally, I don't want or need one, but if it's there, I ain't gonna lose any sleep over it.

hapidogbreath
January 2, 2011, 06:47 PM
1911 I agree that people can be shot multiple time and continue to fight. The fight or flight instinct is strong. But like I said it is an OPTION and given the proper application of force works great.

reflex439
January 2, 2011, 06:52 PM
For a target, competition, or range firearms, I don't see the need for them. With that said, I wouldn't pass up buying a specific firearm I liked just because it had one either, nor would I feel the need to bypass it. Proper handling and training is all that is needed for safe use.

For a self defense firearm, I've warmed up to magazine disconnects as a feature that I now prefer, and can find I can use to my advantage. I'm not 6'2", 220lbs, young, and in perfect shape. If circumstances find me in a wrestling match over my firearm with someone fitting that description, there is a very real possibility I may be overpowered and loose my firearm, even with proper open hand defensive training. The opposing risk of having the disconnect feature is that of dropping the magazine accidentally, and am prevented from firing at that moment.

I personally find I can easily mitigate the risk of inadvertently dropping a magazine, since that resolution it is already part of normal malfunction drills I practice regularly. However, becoming unarmed against an armed attacker is far more complex and risky.
If I had the choice of facing both scenarios, I'd choose the well trained tap-rack-reload over going unarmed against an armed opponent. I'd rather have to perform a malfunction reload drill then face my own firearm with empty hands ;)

For a SD firearm, there are some clear advantages that outweigh the disadvantages IMO.

KodiakBeer
January 2, 2011, 07:06 PM
The opposing risk of having the disconnect feature is that of dropping the magazine accidentally, and am prevented from firing at that moment.

Stick a finger up the mag well, depress the plunger and shoot.

I think the likelihood of the mag disconnect saving you or not is pretty far-fetched, though it can be "what if'd" to death.

I don't know how mag disconnects work on guns other than the Hi Power. On that model, they interfere with the trigger pull so I take them out. If they don't affect the trigger pull on other guns, I would leave it alone.

1911Tuner
January 2, 2011, 07:19 PM
But like I said it is an OPTION and given the proper application of force works great.

Maybe I misunderstood this post.

If you are engaged in a fight for your gun shove your thumb in the eye of the attacker and he will forget about the gun. End of fight.

The way I read it...it suggested that a thumb in his eye would end it immediately then and there...and that was where we parted company.

There are no guarantees. There are only things that we do to increase our odds of coming out on top. It's an option. So is the mag disconnect. Carrying a gun in the first place is an option. The disconnect been salvation for several uniformed cops who have had professional training in weapon retention...who had the bad fortune to go up against some 250-pound cretin who spent the last 10 years pumping iron in the prison yard.

kokapelli
January 2, 2011, 07:33 PM
Stick a finger up the mag well, depress the plunger and shoot.

I think the likelihood of the mag disconnect saving you or not is pretty far-fetched, though it can be "what if'd" to death.

I don't know how mag disconnects work on guns other than the Hi Power. On that model, they interfere with the trigger pull so I take them out. If they don't affect the trigger pull on other guns, I would leave it alone.
The magazine disconnect on some striker fired pistols simply drops into a groove in the striker when the magazine is removed.

When the magazine is installed the magazine pushes the disconnect up clear of the striker.

hapidogbreath
January 2, 2011, 07:35 PM
1911 I have had experience and am saying that it is an OPTION. I am sorry if you misinterpreted what I meant and agree that I may have been a little unclear but it does give the attacker something to think about while you press your attack. The best way to avoid is to not let that 250 prison graduate close to within the 21 foot danger zone.

reflex439
January 2, 2011, 07:49 PM
Stick a finger up the mag well, depress the plunger and shoot.I hadn't thought of that, and it may be an option I'll explore in more detail. I'd rather pop in a new magazine, but if that's not an option, depressing the plunger might allow me to get a round off and give the me time to disengage, retreat, or reload and re-engage as the situation dictates. Good point, thank you.

hapidogbreath
January 2, 2011, 08:48 PM
What about people like me with short fingers. Most of those disconnects are a long way up.

reflex439
January 2, 2011, 11:35 PM
What about people like me with short fingers. Most of those disconnects are a long way up.
What would you do when faced with any malfunction with a semi-auto? I was taught to 'Tap-Rack-Reload' while moving to cover, which will resolve it very quickly right at 'Tap'.

It's probably quicker, easier, and safer to perform the malfunction drill then trying to aim and shoot with a finger up the magazine well, but its a good thing to know its possible for odd scenarios.

bigfatdave
January 3, 2011, 12:37 AM
Stick a finger up the mag well, depress the plunger and shoot.I'm not sticking my finger into a sharp-edged box that's about to recoil if I can just delete the feature.

Appropriately, I just picked up a gun that isn't available without the feature, a Yugo Tokarev.
In that gun the magazine pushes a leaf spring out of the way of the 1911-like trigger linkage. It shouldn't interfere with trigger pull but I'm trying to work out how to delete it in a non-permanent way on principle. And as my sausage-fingers don't fit in a single-stack Tokarev magwell (longer but just as wide as 9mm) I won't be shoving them in there any time soon, but I might pin back that leaf spring to prevent some malfunction blocking the trigger bar.

In the Ruger mkIII it is an extra device in the trigger/sear/hammer group, removing it requires an oversize bushing to take up space on the hammer pin. As it over-complicates stripping and assembly as well as adding to trigger pull, I replace them when I'm in there for a detail strip.

hapidogbreath
January 3, 2011, 08:02 AM
BTW I do not own a Pistol with a disconnect.......

hapidogbreath
January 3, 2011, 09:35 AM
I agree REFLEX. TRR is it. What I think the question or scenario was... You are fighting for your gun. You drop the mag to render it inoperable and then an opening presents itself where you would try fire without the mag in the gun.. I think that is what brought up the finger in the well.

sansone
January 3, 2011, 09:47 AM
for the op: don't like the mag safety but would purchase the gun based on features more important to me

reflex439
January 3, 2011, 03:22 PM
Gotcha. I misread your meaning.

I don't know how to answer that question since there are so many what ifs in any situation.

What I do know is that most criminals are not very savvy when it comes to firearms, and may not even know what a magazine disconnect is or how it works. In a struggle for the firearm, this can be a clear advantage to those that are aware. Retention holsters, manual safeties, etc, have saved lives when the attacker didn't know how to overcome those common features, while they proved to be no obstacle to the firearm owner because of their training with those features.

In a struggle for the firearm, both parties know how to pull the trigger and fire the gun. The result is lop sided when one party is clearly stronger or more adept at fighting than the other. They all know if they can get the muzzle pointed at the other person, they can fire.

However, if the situation is such that the victim is loosing control of the firearm, it can be just a matter of time before the muzzle is pointed at them, and not the bad guy. If that happens without a disconnect, there are very few options left. If there are multiple attackers all fighting to get the gun away from me, its only a matter of time.

However, stripping the magazine and rendering the firearm inoperable in those situations can churn the table and even up the odds, or at least reduce them considerably. It may give the victim of the attack time to get distance, find something to use as a weapon, access a backup gun, etc. That may be all they need to get away or take control. And if the attacker tries to fire and feels it has malfunctioned and discards it, the possibility to reclaim it, reload, and again regain control is now another option.

These for me personally, these options far outweigh the possibility that I may have to do a TRR if I draw and the magazine is not fully engaged. TRR is fast and instinctive, struggling over a firearm to keep it from being used against myself is much harder. There are risks to having the disconnect, and not having the disconnect, and this changes considerably based on the scenario presented. Assessing the risks for me personally, clearly the disconnect is more favorable in my situation.

bigfatdave, I agree with you about the dangers of putting a finger in the mag well and firing. I'd never consider trying at the range, but in a life or death situation, it's only a finger tip of my weak hand. I'll gladly sacrifice it if it will save my life, or that of my family members. At least its an option on the table.

I hadn't thought of that as a possibility before, and am glad it was brought up. It adds another option that the bad guy isn't aware of, but I am. To me, that makes it a desirable feature to have.

KodiakBeer
January 3, 2011, 04:36 PM
I'm not sticking my finger into a sharp-edged box that's about to recoil if I can just delete the feature.

Me either, but it's an option for those who don't want to disconnect the feature, or have some sort of pistol where the feature is not easily disconnected.
Really though, I think the whole subject is far-fetched. The odds of such an event happening are extremely remote. And if it did, the same feature (at least on the hi power) prevents the magazine from falling free anyway, so you'd just have to pop the bottom of the mag to re-seat it.

I take them out solely to improve trigger pull.

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