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Are Manual Safeties on Striker Fired Handguns Heresy??

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by BobinNC, Jul 28, 2021.

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  1. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    Most likely they were using the Berretta M92FS platform

    M9-pistolet.jpg

    picture from Wiki

    The M92FS, with the hammer down, requires a long double action pull necessary to fire it, comes with a decocker, so the ignition system is effectively de energized, it has a firing pin block, so it won't fire if dropped on its muzzle, a loaded chamber indicator, and a slide safety. It is easy to visually determine that the gun is cocked, because the big hammer is very visible. And yet, negligent discharges happen. I found a document, which indicated for the time period, that more Servicemen in Iraq and Afghanistan were being injured or killed due to negligent discharges (all weapons, not broken out by weapon) than by enemy fire. I talked to a Vietnam Veteran, and he claimed the same was true in Vietnam!

    Accident rates with 1911's were such, the Army was never going to go back to some single action pistol without a firing pin block, and you would think the Beretta would be a very safe pistol to issue. And yet they still have service men shooting each other with their weapons.

    And you know that it is still true, for the services have put out a number of documents emphasizing safe weapon practice. So if the services want manual safeties on their striker fired weapons, it has to be due to a desire to reduce the number of negligent discharges with the things.

    What the fan boys, or product cultists want, is of no consideration to institutions with millions of dollars in liabilities, when their employees accidentally shoot themselves, or others, with their weapons.
     
  2. trackskippy

    trackskippy Member

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    So they get what they want, and yet the problem still continues.

    What do you suppose the answer is then? Harsher language in the safety bulletins? More safeties? Or better training?

    Im betting when it comes down to it, the cost of the AD's is still cheaper in their minds, than the cost of better training.

    What is the usual hands on handgun training regimen for the average trooper in the military these days?
     
  3. Homerboy

    Homerboy Member

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    Funny you mention the SR9. Hicock45 has a review on one when they first came out. He hates safeties on striker fired guns, I think he hates them in everything but 1911’s, but he has specifically stated it in striker fired guns. I think we would all agree that he knows a thing or two about guns. He competed professionally and probably shoots more in a month than most of us here do in a year, especially since he hit it big and the ammo companies deliver cases to his door. When he reviewed the SR9C, he stated he wouldn’t carry one without a safety. Paul Harrell stated he liked the P365, but wouldn’t carry one without a safety.

    So it’s not just people who need training, I guess. I carried a Glock 19 and 26 for years without safeties. They had NY triggers and I never felt uncomfortable with them. I would have preferred choosing a hammer fired option but at the time I knew nothing about guns and the Glock was cheapest and I had to pay for them myself.

    But like it or not, striker fired polymer guns are lighter and smaller, and for me, weight is number 1 when it comes to carry, so a Ruger LC9S or Shield Plus are my carry choices. Both with safety. I occasionally carry a Bodyguard .380 in my pocket. It has a safety but I rarely use it. Trigger pull on that is very long and heavy and the safety is so tiny and stiff I don’t feel like I can reliably disengage it if I’m in a hurry. That also means it’s not going to accidentally engage. I still thumb down as I draw it. I also occasionally carry my old 640 .38 or a 3953 in a pancake holster.
     
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  4. lysanderxiii

    lysanderxiii Member

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    You're preaching to the wind.

    The "it doesn't need a safety" fan base will not recognize the logic here.
     
  5. lysanderxiii

    lysanderxiii Member

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    They get what they want, a safety, and the problem continues, yes.

    But, the numbers do not increase. You cannot fix stupid, but you can make it harder to hurt someone, or yourself, by being stupid.
     
  6. Zendude

    Zendude Member

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    A manual safety is simply a redundancy designed to prevent a gun from unintentional discharge in the case of a failure, either by the user or other influences. Airplanes are designed with multiple system redundancies in case of a system failure.

    If you don’t want any redundancies, that’s your choice but it is something that the user should consider carefully before making a decision.
     
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  7. trackskippy

    trackskippy Member

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    How? By adding more safeties, or actually training them to properly handle the guns?

    Its obvious people still screw up regularly, even with the safeties, so the safeties really arent the issue.

    Add all the safeties you want, if you dont train yourself, or youre people properly, and on a regular, and ongoing basis, you will continue to have problems. You dont learn to handle and shoot a gun in one class, and a couple of range sessions a year, it takes constant reinforcement and work.

    In the military, and other similar type groups, you will always have to deal with the lowest common denominator. No way around that. But what that requres, is a better training regimine to deal with it. If you arent going to train them, then dont give them guns.

    In the civilian world, its on the buyer/owner of the gun to do that by themselves. And I think we know how that usually goes, and even with "gun"people. It still doesnt change anything. All those holes in the ceilings, walls, dividers, benches, etc, at your favorite range were all there before the striker guns without a manual safety became popular. ;)

    And just out of curiosty, since many seem so down on it, how many people here work on their handling and dryfire skills on a daily, or at least a couple of times a week basis, and work on it in live fire on a regular basis (at least a couple of times a month)? Are you constanty instilling and reinforcing proper handling and safety with the gun you carry or use? Or do you believe youre "trained" and dont need to do that?

    I still see this as being a software problem. And it appears Im in the minority. You boys can keep arguing the hardware side all you want, until you actually address the software or problem side, youre not going to solve anything.
     
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  8. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

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    The reason why you have a positive manual safety, or full-stoke, full-weight DA trigger, is because Mr. Murphy happens. You can never eliminate his influence, and he doesn't care about your "software" or frequency/location/style of training. You can only try to minimize his impact and potential effects while still maintaining a weapon in a usable condition.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2021
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  9. TarDevil

    TarDevil Member

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    You are right. And 4 decades in aviation, including commercial pilot's license with multi engine and instrument ratings, has taught me (and anyone else who retired from a lengthy aviation career) that when dealing with equipment failure or deteriorating weather you increase safety options where able. Same with guns.

    Both require responsible decisions by the person with his/her hand on the controls.
     
  10. TarDevil

    TarDevil Member

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    I watched one of his videos this morning wherein he mentioned the SR9c... said he shoots that gun as good as anything he's ever shot.
     
  11. trackskippy

    trackskippy Member

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    You can never eliminate the problem, but you can reduce it greatly by constantly working to do just that.

    Personally, I think everyone should assume the gun is a gun with no safeties and go with that mentality while handling it. Youll be more likely to pay more attention to it and what you do with it, than over-relying on a gun that has extra safeties, that are supposed to think for you.
     
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  12. gc70

    gc70 Member

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    I provided bait and you predictably took it. Ordinary people understand ordinary statements without spinning off into fantasy land. I will simply ignore your poorly informed, nitpicking and overly imaginative complaints going forward.
     
  13. Homerboy

    Homerboy Member

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    skip to 14:20 when he begins to talk about the safety. He specifically states around 15:20 he wouldn’t carry it without the safety engaged.



    And Paul Harrell with the 365. Go to 26:45. He talks about he totally different the Sig trigger is and he wouldn’t carry it without a holster. He says a pocket revolver or a BG 380 he wouldn’t hesitate to carry thrown in a pocket but not the 365. He even mentions how the Gen 1 Glocks had a longer trigger, but the Gen 2 and on got lighter and shorter.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2021
  14. Homerboy

    Homerboy Member

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    Your argument has a major hole. It only mentions ND’s that happened with a gun with a safety, and many of those were undoubtedly from users who pulled the trigger, thinking the gun was on safe and it wasn’t. I can’t imagine the rationale for intentionally pulling a trigger without not wanting to fire. Why would somebody pull the trigger because they thought the weapon was on safe?

    It doesn’t and can’t mention the ND’s that are prevented, because the shot never went off, so there’s nothing to report. Some that have been reported are by cops who had their gun taken from them and the bad guy couldn’t get the gun to fire, saving the cop from being shot.
     
  15. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    I didnot intend to, either. But the safety routiney became disengaged while the gun was in the holster. I couldn't trust it.
    .
    I specifically chose the model with the safety. I could not conceive of carrying a semi-auto without a safety.

    Some time later, for reasons beyond our scope here, I ended up acquiring a Ruger American Compact pistol--without a safety.

    The following became my morning routine:
    1. Put on my pants with an empty holster
    2. Make sure my undershirt is kept from the holster by the leather part of my Superslide holster
    3. With my fingers, check to make sure that the holster is clear
    4. With the gun pointed in a safe direction, holster it gently, paying attention to the force required
    5. Put my shirt on over it and keep it there for the day
    I do the same thing now with my EZ 9, which has a grip safety.

    I treat the gun as if it were a rattlesnake.

    Risks that I am striving to mitigate include that of pulling a trigger with engaged in the gravest extreme.

    I so not like defensive pistols that require an operation separate from gripping the gun for firing to disengage a safety.
     
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  16. JR24

    JR24 Member

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    Yes, my SR9c constantly disengaged the safety in the holster too. I personally didn't have a problem with the trigger sans safety, it felt just like a Glock to me, maybe a bit smoother but I wouldn't feel bad about one without a safety. If it didn't have a safety I might still have it since I dumped the Ruger for a Glock 26.

    I didn't like how the little safety was different enough from a 1911 to occasionally give me issues confidently disengaging it every time with my oft broken thumb.

    Still a nice gun, but I personally think both the thumb and mag safety (giant LCI, while we are at it) weren't needed, and not wanted by me.

    I like Hickok45 but I certainly don't always agree with him when it comes to gun preferences.
     
  17. TarDevil

    TarDevil Member

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    I'm not sure mine "routinely" disengages, but that's irrelevant. It's happened enough that I don't trust it to be where it should. When carrying the gun and able, I find myself frequently checking the safety. And practice always includes the safety.
     
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  18. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm sorry--I was remembering my M&P 9C.

    On the SR 9c, the problem was that swiping the safety of on the draw was too easily fumbled for me.

    Yep.
     
  19. Homerboy

    Homerboy Member

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    I guess body type comes into play. I carry my LC9S in a Hidden Hybrid Holster at 3:00 and it never came engaged. Not once.

    But assume it does. Multiple people here have said a quality holster is all the safety you need, and all here have stated you should always train to disengage the safety on the draw if your do carry it. So even if it does come off at some point (not one gun I have ever carried has, from Ruger, to
    Smith, to Beretta, and even a Taurus once) have ever disengaged, at least it was in when the gun was holstered which is the most likely time you
    Could have a problem.

    Either way, nobody is ever going to convince me that a 5.5 pound striker fired trigger is no more likely to be present during an ND than a hammer fired trigger, or even a striker with a safety. And apparently the LASD agrees with me.
     
  20. Alllen Bundy

    Alllen Bundy Member

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    At least with a Sig P365/X/XL, you can cut off the manual safety lever from one side. I saw photos where a guy had not only cut off the safety lever from the right side, but he had also brazed on an addition to the safety lever on the left side that protruded about an extra 1/8" further outward to the left side.

    I don't have any issue with a manual safety lever on both sides. But I'm all for customizing your pistol your way, as long as it isn't going to explode or otherwise recklessly endanger people.
     
  21. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

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    Late to the party, per usual. I just couldn't get through more than the first three pages of this thread.

    Honestly, I don't know why this topic becomes so quickly contentious, with so much holier-than-thou spewing of opinion from both sides. Seems each side finds new ways to deride the other side, fairly consistently.

    I've been training with, and training people on, small arms since 1979 (combined forty-two years of military and law enforcement ). All things considered, I'd prefer most folks go with handguns that have manual safeties. But that's just MY preference based on my personal experience (and having witnessed, or been privy to, countless NDs and "accidental" shootings over the years.

    Eleven frickin' pages of this stuff. Anyone changed their mind as a result of reading all these posts?
     
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  22. Alllen Bundy

    Alllen Bundy Member

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    It wasn't this discussion, but instead a Warrior Poet Society video on YouTube, that was bashing manual safeties, that convinced me that I NEEDED a manual safety. So yes, discussions do sometimes sway people's opinions.

    Discussions like this are probably the most useful for people new to firearms.
     
  23. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    Clearly you still haven't read the "bold claim" carefully or by now you would realize that what you're saying doesn't contradict it. :D
    I will admit that I have not tried to accumulate that kind of accurate information on "most, nearly all" striker pistols. It was hard enough for me to get accurate numbers for just one brand so if you have good data you can post for other brands that would be great. For the Glock 17, the slide compresses the striker spring about 5.5mm, the trigger compresses the spring about 4.7mm. About 46% of the compression by distance is by the trigger.
    Actually, I try to get my finger as close to the tip of the trigger as I can when pulling it. It gives better leverage which results in a lighter effective pull weight. I also try to keep the pull weight measurements close to the trigger tip because that's where I try to keep my finger.

    At any rate, in the interest of being able to make apples-to-apples comparisons, the trigger travel figures I provided were all measured at the tip of the trigger.
    It doesn't really surprise me. That's kind of what I've been saying all along. If a person isn't safe, you can't make them safe by putting another control on the gun or even by making the trigger harder to operate.
    The logic that a true DA, hammer fired gun with a manual safety still doesn't keep them from ND'ing at an alarming rate? Ok...

    By the way, for whatever it's worth, I'm not one of those people who believes that there is no place for manual safeties. As I've already said, I not only own, but also sometimes carry guns with manual safeties. There are certain circumstances where I would only carry a gun if it did have a manual safety.
    If we take the position that a manual safety is supposed to handle a failure by the user, we must take into account the fact that the user is also the person who must correctly operate the manual safety. That's not really redundant because it still depends on the same system that is expected to fail. Imagine a "redundant" system on an aircraft that depends on the system it's supposed to replace in the event of a failure.
    It's impossible to have a constructive discussion about assessing the safety of a gun for carry based on the idea that all a person needs to know to make that assessment is the pull weight and travel distance of the trigger. Wouldn't you agree that drop safety is an important aspect of a carry pistol? Certainly you can see that two pistols with identical trigger pull weights and travel distance can still be very different in terms of drop safety based on other aspects of their design, right?
    I think that anyone who pays attention to gun designs and is willing to make an honest assessment of them will say something like this at some point. I definitely own guns that I would not carry at all without the manual safety engaged. Also some guns that I wouldn't carry certain ways without the manual safety engaged. Also some guns that I wouldn't carry certain ways at all because they don't have a manual safety.
     
  24. Homerboy

    Homerboy Member

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    I am definitely not cutting or otherwise home jury rigging any component of a firearm. Would the removal of one side cause it to bind up? Maybe cause it it not work but it appears to be working? I once had a post on another forum about this. I was asking why aren’t their aftermarket safety levers offered for S&W M&P pistols? The safety on the larger guns are on both sides, obnoxiously big, and not quite positive enough for me. I don’t carry them so they’ve never come on when I didn’t want them to. The one in the Shield and Bodyguard is a hair too flush, but at least they’re on one side and no chance of them engaging accidentally.

    First responses were predictable. “They’re not needed”. “They’re gonna get you killed”. “They’re only put in there so S&W can sell them in states that require them”. “Get some training”. Admittedly, this forum has been much more civil in that regard.

    Once I got through all of that, the do it yourself advice came in. Cut off the side you don’t want. Add some JB Weld and paint to the Shield and Bodyguard safety. Not doing any of that.

    It just surprises me they’re not an aftermarket item. Everything else is. Triggers, magazine releases, slide stops, extractors, barrels, striker plates with Hello Kitty or The Punisher, Zombie ammunition, Zombie targets, pistol bayonets, wood furniture for AR’s, plastic furniture for M1 Garand’s, kits to make a 10/22 look like an M1 Carbine or a space gun, whichever you choose. Mag Guts to increase capacity of mag without adding any size to magazine. Magazine loaders to save your precious thumbs some effort. The list goes on and on. Most of these weapons were offered with or without safety. The person who bought it clearly wanted it in that configuration. Why not allow them to customize that component, as they allow you do all the others? They don’t think they’d sell enough to make a profit? It’s a piece of plastic and a spring. Not a whole lot of research and development would go into them. How many buy that pistol bayonet or Glock Entrenching Tool?

    Smith and Wesson puts plugs in the slots where the safety sits in the M&P pistols, allowing you to add a safety if you like. They sell the plugs in case you remove the safety and need to plug the slots where it rides.

    Offering an aftermarket or even a factory part to make it whichever side you want, a slightly smaller version (Beretta does it with both the 92 and particularly the PX4 series, with their bat-wing factory safety), or a stronger spring to make the safety require a more deliberate click so we wouldn’t have any real possibility of a seatbelt or a love handle engaging it (at the very least, substantially reducing it) seems like a no-brainer to me. It’s not a legal issue. Apex and others lighten the trigger pull in already light trigger weapons. Beretta will sell you a G conversion kit to remove the safety entirely and just have a de-cocker. There’s a company that will sell you an aftermarket loaded chamber indicator for the large one on the SR9. If being worried about being sued is an issue, removing safeties, loaded chamber indicators, and installing hair triggers so light a stiff wind could almost pull it would be at the top of the list.
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2021
  25. Homerboy

    Homerboy Member

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    I saw that video. Complete garbage. Names like Warrior Poet Society are what I’m talking about. How many people watching that crap are actually “warriors”? He pretty much hits every box on the list of the mall ninja types who say “get your booger hook off the bang switch”.

    By the way, I don’t hate Glocks. I’ve owned a couple and they’re good guns. For carry, they are mostly a no-go due to the safety not being an option and I also don’t like their grip angle all that much. That being said, I might get a Glock 17 at some point. I have a Ruger PC9 and I put in the Glock mag well adapter. It would be nice to have a pistol that shares magazines for it. If either Ruger or some other company makes a mag well adapter for the M&P series of guns I’ll be putting that in. It would also be nice if S&W or Mec-Gar came out with 30 round magazines like Glock has. If I do get one, that Striker Control Device, where if you thumb the back of the striker plate, it prevents the gun from being fired, is definitely going in there.
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2021
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