Accidental discharge while chambering a round?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Paincakesx, Apr 1, 2011.

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  1. Paincakesx

    Paincakesx Member

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    This hasn't happened to me yet, but I've heard stories of this happening.

    Does this happen with modern handguns? If so, how common is it?
     
  2. REAPER4206969

    REAPER4206969 Member

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    No.

    End of discussion.
     
  3. ghostwriter

    ghostwriter Member

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    this happened to me just about a month or two ago with a NEW Springfield XD 45 ACP pistol. Here's what I think happened.

    Out at the range, plinking at some cans and paper with the 45, my Browning 9mm and a S & W 357 Mag Model 27. No big deal. I took the 45 and leveled it at the target, squeeze, and "click". A obvious misfire. I pointed the pistol groundward and then pulled the slide back, and upon releasing it the slide rips forward (as it should) and chambered a second round from the mag (again, like it should) and my trigger finger was laying next to the trigger and the shock or inertia of the slide flying forward and then stopping abruptly as it locked the round hard in the chamber caused my finger to bump the trigger, sending the round into the ground.
    Now, W.t.F. just happened? That played over and over in my mind and that is all I can figure happened. I had about a half dozen misfires that day, only the 45 and traced back to some OLD, OLD primers.
    Is this what you were expecting?
     
  4. bigfatdave

    bigfatdave Member

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    Well that matters.
    Do you monkey around with the fire-control internal components of your guns?
    Do you put your booger hook on the bang switch as you load and unload your guns?

    If the answer to both is "no" then your answer is also "no", except in the case of multiple failures of redundant interlocking mechanisms of almost all modern guns.
     
  5. ghostwriter

    ghostwriter Member

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    Actually, no, I didn't do anything to the 45. This pistol has no external safety like the Browning. It has the backstrap safety and the trigger, bang.

    So, anything, trigger finger etc. that can brush against the trigger sufficiently to cause the trigger to disengage, well, bang. The inertia of the slide soming to a stop can cause the pistol to abruptly stop and the opposite and equal reaction is the trigger can contact anything, including your finger or edge of it, and sufficiently press the trigger to cause a dischange, intentional or otherwise. I have now learned a very important lesson concerning this pistol and carry it everyday but that moment does come to mind and unlike the Browning, I only carry it with a full mag and empty chamber, no surprises. The Browning I carry fully loaded and ready to go but it has the external safety which I like much better.
    Oh, I've carried my Browning for the past 20 yrs CCW style so it isn't a lack of training if you was thinking of going down that road. Maybe being unfamiliar from a muscle memory standpoint with the 45, yes, I can agree with that but the original post has been answered.
     
  6. Manco

    Manco Member

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    If you mean through mechanical malfunction, then I suppose that it is possible for the firing pin or striker to get stuck and protrude enough to cause a slam-fire (loosely speaking). This could be caused through negligence in maintenance (i.e. failing to keep the firing pin/striker channel clean) or possibly even the breakage of parts. It's a pretty rare occurrence with modern handguns, in any case.

    On the other hand, if you mean through operator error, then obviously that's up to the operator. For one thing, people should keep their fingers away from the trigger unless they intend to fire.

    If I'm reading this correctly (let me know if I misunderstand), then placing your trigger finger alongside the trigger is not a very safe practice for ANY pistol, in my opinion. Most people place theirs on the frame right above, and I've even seen some point their fingers upwards over the slide just in case.

    Out of curiosity, in this case was the trigger depressed--safety lever and all--or just nudged on the edge (as far as you can tell)? The latter would be rather strange, I think.
     
  7. 451 Detonics

    451 Detonics Member

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    One some guns...modern or not...the hammer following the slide forward can result is an AD. I had this happen to me with a Savage 1905 and I have seen it happen at the range with a pre 70 series 1911.
     
  8. Loyalist Dave

    Loyalist Dave Member

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    As has been mentioned, it is possible in something like the older versions of the Colt 1911A1, hence the pin perpendicular to the firing pin on series 80 versions. It supposedly was caused in the past in wartime with a very dirty & rusty firing pin and spring that remained protruding, and caused a slam fire. I find that suspect I have used WWII vintage .45 ACP ammo and the dang primers are really hard, so I wonder.

    The other way is reportedly due to either an aftermarket firing pin being installed and waaay too long, or the firing pin spring was monkey'd with, and was waaay too week or short, and again caused a slam fire. I think the aftermarket (maybe homemade?) firing pin being too long is plausible.

    The POS Raven .25 was supposedly prone to this again due to lack of proper cleaning.

    NOTE the words supposedly, reportedly, and plausible...., though I have heard of these when asked when and where???? ...., nobody gave me a good reference source. So, theoretically speaking, yes.

    LD
     
  9. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    Accidental discharge while chambering a round?
    Always point the muzzle in a safe direction.
     
  10. Strahley

    Strahley Member

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    There are no accidents
     
  11. rooter

    rooter member

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    Sure there are. They can also occur on any floating firing pin system.
     
  12. Ben86

    Ben86 Member

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    It's also known as a slam fire. It usually only happens, even so on rare occasion, if the firing pin is broke and sticking out of the channel when chambering a round.
     
  13. Comanche180

    Comanche180 Member

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    I had a S&W 22A that produced a couple slam fires. That was just before I transfered it to a gunsmith I know. Not something I want around.
     
  14. bartman06

    bartman06 Member

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    AD's usually happen through carelessness.

    It is common IMO by people who don't respect the 4 rules of handling a firearm.

    I saw a guy safety check a Glock 22 with his finer on the trigger.

    Remember that AD isn't a problem with the gun but a problem with the user! Amen and Amen!
     
  15. Zerodefect

    Zerodefect Member

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    Clean and maintain your guns. Keep crud from building up on your firing pin. If you don't know how to detail strip your slide, learn. Know your recommended maintenance intervals for springs.

    Slam fires do happen. I've seen 2 of them. One from a Glock with a very dirty firing pin. (pure abuse) The other was from a 1911 that was dry and had a weak firing pin spring.
     
  16. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Not unless you drop the round in the chamber and then drop the slide on it.

    A 1911 will not feed a round from the magazine if the firing pin is sticking out the front of the breach face. It will stop cold in it's tracks with the case rim stopped by the firing pin before it can slide under the extractor.

    rc
     
  17. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

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    If you can't keep your finger out of the trigger guard, you will have a negligent discharge sooner or later. There's a rule about that somewhere... :banghead:

    It is also possible to have something like a broken firing pin spring, or debris in the firing pin channel create a situation where the pin will contact the primer upon closing the action. That would be an accidental discharge.
     
  18. seanie!

    seanie! Member

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    So any old lady who has ever fallen and broken her hip has done it on purpose? Or would she just be negligent of allowing herself to live to old age?

    Accidental Discharges(AD) are usually referred to as problems with a gun, ie. mechanical issues.

    Negligent Discharges(ND) are usually referred to as problems with the end user, ie. negligence to pay attention to the 4 rules of handling a firearm.
     
  19. bartman06

    bartman06 Member

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    Your right seanie!. I stand corrected. Thank you
     
  20. Smaug

    Smaug Member

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    While everyone gets all cranked up saying how it only happens to irresponsible people, I will remind you all that it could be a hang fire. The gun manuals warn of this very rare condition. When the round's primer gets hit, and either the primer is not quite right or the powder is not quite right, but something starts burning slowly in there, it could be a few seconds before the gun fires.

    Or, if the primer is seated too high, so that the slide slams into the primer, that could cause a slam fire.

    These things could lead to an accidental discharge. If the 4 rules of gun handling are being followed, it should still be pretty harmless. It could be a bit worse if a whole magazine of rounds was loaded with high primers. Theoretically, it could machine gun through a whole magazine, causing excessive muzzle rise. This could in turn cause the gun to be fired up at a 45° angle and hit someone a few blocks away.

    These are pretty outside chances though.
     
  21. ghostwriter

    ghostwriter Member

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    @ Manco:

    My finger was alongside the trigger, not ON the trigger. As the recoil of the slide slamming forward and suddenly stopping, the trigger finger laying alongside (as most of us do) brushed against the trigger causing it to move backwards releasing the process. One thing to keep in mind here in regards to thei S.A. XD-45 ACP pistol, the trigger is like the accu-trigger that Savage has developed on there product. In addition to the backstrap safety lever, the primary trigger has to be depressed and then your finger continues to contact the actual trigger to continue the release process. How this happened on a reload fire like I've descibed is a mystery to me... but the end game result would have to point at me the operator.
    It wasn't negligence, despite what & how people try to explain it, accidents do happen and this was a perfect example of a condition that is not totally explained in any owners manual, except that sentence that says something like, "...when a cartridge is in the chamber it's ready to fire." well, duh... except that this particular model doesn't have an external safety lever, which I disagree with. The Browning has never had anything like this happen in the decades I've owned it. BUT... in all fairness, the safety is NOT on in the Browning when you release the slide to rechamber a second round either. So, one of two things happened here. #1 the trigger is very sensitive to movement and the recoil shock was sufficient to overcome that spring pressure and fire the round, or... #2 I just plain sscrewed the pooch and had too much finger covering the trigger as I attempted to get a more secure grip on the large frame pistol. Plain and simple.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2011
  22. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

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    I don't want to be a nag, but "most" of us don't put our finger alongside the trigger. We put our finger along the frame well above the trigger guard. That was the first thing I taught my 5 year old son when I introduced him to his Chipmunk .22. He still practices that 15 years later. I practice that. Every safe gun handler practices that.

    I don't repeat this admonition to belittle or embarrass you, but to point out a very important lesson that needs to be absorbed.

    I took this picture just three days ago while wringing out some mods on a Hi Power. Note where my finger is. And yeah, I really am that ugly...

    HPhappy.jpg
     
  23. ghostwriter

    ghostwriter Member

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    well that's a very safe photo you have there... and you aint so ugly for an "old guy" LOL Anyway, also notice... the slide is closed in that picture. I'm curious where you put your finger when the slide is in the process of closing?
    THAT'S my whole point. During the process of releasing that slide and it slamming forward, if you had your finger anywhere near that location, you'd be bleeding soon thereafter. Get my point now? It's all about timing.
     
  24. Loosedhorse

    Loosedhorse member

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    Since no one's mentioned it yet:

    It is possible when a round is out of the mag but not seated in the chamber (for instance, when clearing a stoppage--especially one cause by a faulty extractor--or when loading a round "in the tube" directly rather than from the mag) to have the ejector hit the primer. Can be a real mess, as the brass is then not supported by the chamber.

    Don't think that's what happened here, but it is another way that a gun can "fire" on slide closure.

    I would think an AD can also be caused if the round being chambered has a high enough primer.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2011
  25. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

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    My finger stays on the frame just above the trigger guard until my sights are on the target even when (especially when) releasing the slide. That's the way most people do it. That's the way the military teaches it. That's the way the NRA teaches it. It's the only safe way. Once it becomes habit you won't even think about it.

    99.9% of all negligent discharges happen because somebody's finger is on the trigger. Think about it. You can break every other rule (not that I advise that), like pointing your gun at people, loaded, with the safety "off", the wrong ammo... In fact, you can break all the other rules all your life, and the chances are you'll never have a problem UNLESS you break the finger/trigger rule in conjunction with one of the other rules. That's just the way it works.

    Yeah, there's the odd 01% mechanical failure (which is why we have those other rules), but the vast majority of gun accidents (99%+) happen because somebody touches the trigger. So, don't put your finger near the trigger until you're ready to destroy something.
     
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