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Condition 3: Guess who? Jeff Cooper..What!!

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Mad Magyar, Sep 15, 2007.

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  1. Mad Magyar

    Mad Magyar Member

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    I find it strange that some time ago the father of “cocked-n-locked”, Jeff Cooper in an article advocated Condition 3, chamber empty, magazine full, while describing the best means of home defense if you only had a lever-action carbine available. Look at what he says and tell me why this is any different with a 1911 in a similar home scenario or CCW in a Wally World parking lot.
    From the standard ready position, it is loaded as it is mounted---which it accomplishes somewhat more easily than if it were thumb-cocked. The lever is fully racked open, and the piece comes up into the shoulder as the lever is closed, in one smooth, simultaneous motion. You can rack it as fast as you can mount it.
    I’ve underlined the portion that I’ve preached & practiced for years with a 1911A1. What makes the circumstances different between Jeff’s take on a long gun vs. using a pistol? Are you shocked that Jeff actually wrote something like this? Condition 3: are you kidding me?:rolleyes:
    What say you?:confused:
    BTW, He agrees, like many, that the sound of a rack is more advantageous as a chilling deterrent vs not giving one’s position away while seeking cover. Yelling to an intruder that you are armed is somewhat different than letting the S.O.B. hear it for himself.:)
     
  2. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    For one thing, the rifle is in the firing mode , with hands on the firing position as you mount it -- not so with the M1911. You must shift your grip to load and fire.

    Secondly, you are in a red zone in your home, and fully justified in chambering a round. Out in the streets, chambering a round might be seen as a threat and make you the bad guy.

    Third, the chambering position with the M1911 puts you in a poor position for weapons retention if the bad guy is very close.
     
  3. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    What makes it different?
    You are unlikely to be shooting a rifle one-handed.
     
  4. Charles S

    Charles S Member

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    I have not read the article you reference. It does sound interesting and I am sure it is quite valid. I cannot however evaluate the article since I do not have it. To me there are a number of very valid rational for keeping a lever action rifle (not my first choice) or a shotgun in condition three in a home defense situation.

    Have you read the esteemed Col. Cooper's book The Art or the Rifle?

    In The Art of the Rifle contextually Col. Cooper is referring for the appropriate manual of arms with a lever action rifle without a safety in a hunting situation. Col. Cooper does not (in his book) address self defense with a lever action rifle. Again it sounds like a good article.

    The two afore mentioned weapons have a completely different manual of arms, and a completely different designed purpose.

    The 1911 is equipped with a safety that can be engaged when it is cocked. The lever action rifle Col. Cooper is referring to is not.

    A handgun assumes you can utilize it with one hand. A rifle is a two handed weapon.

    A handgun is for reaction where time is essential....A rifle is for action where you have a chance to prepare.

    Again concealed carry versus home defense.

    Try butt stroking a bad guy with your 1911.

    Try retention drills with your lever gun.

    Again I will ask, what professional instruction have you had that makes you an expert? Again I will ask, what professional instruction have you had that makes you believe that condition three is an appropriate carry method for the civilian in self defense?

    Again I suggest a little professional instruction (e.g shoot one quality handgun course...I can highly recommend Mr. Ayoob and Mr. Farnam) in the use of a handgun for self defense and then let us know what you think.

    I do think a long gun is a better choice for home defense.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2007
  5. Albatross

    Albatross Member

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    Jeff Cooper also commented on having a secured dwelling. Not the case at the Wally World parking lot.

    Locked and loaded on the street so you can use your weak hand to fend the attacker off you while you use your strong hand to draw/fire your weapon is a good idea.
     
  6. DevilDog0402

    DevilDog0402 Member

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    The 1911 was meant to be carried with a round in the chamber and the safety on (Cocked and Locked). To my knowledge, there aren't any leverguns that can be carried in this manner.
     
  7. Chris Rhines

    Chris Rhines Member

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    You would waste a lot less time cycling the action on a levergun (or pump-action shotgun, etc.) then you would racking the slide on a pistol. Fact of life.

    Have you ever tried drawing in Condition 1 versus Condition 3, against a timer?

    Sweet Kismet, why is this even a question anymore?

    - Chris
     
  8. rosco22

    rosco22 member

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    Motioned passed .........................

    Comparing an long gun to a hand gun , and the operation thereof is apples and oranges .
     
  9. joab

    joab Member

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    Both of my Marlins can be, a 336 and a 1894 Cowboy
     
  10. Rexster

    Rexster Member

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    With all due respect to joab, the newer Marlins' crossbolt safety does not "lock" anything. It merely prevents the hammer from falling far enough to contact the firing pin. :) I agree with those who say this whole matter is apples versus oranges. A lever rifle that is not in one's hands should have an empty chamber, generally. The same is true, IMHO, of most sporting long guns.
     
  11. DevilDog0402

    DevilDog0402 Member

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    Didn't know that. My 94 and my dad's (pre-64 94) do not have any safety (other than a half-cock notch).


    I do have to agree with Rexster though.
     
  12. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Member

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    DevilDog...There two safeties on the early Mod 94's (well actually three. One is you). The half cock, as you mentioned, and the lever safety that blocks the trigger. Still I would NEVER carry my Winchester with the hammer at full cock......With the chamber loaded and at half cock and the lever safety engaged?...Yes. For self defence in the home?...Bad choice...Way too much penitration. Bullet wouldn't stop until two houses down the street...
     
  13. DevilDog0402

    DevilDog0402 Member

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    That's right! I totally forgot about the lever safety (like the grip-safety on a 1911 ;))
     
  14. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Condition three makes sense for home defense where you're sleeping in a locked bedroom, but then so does a loaded shotgun. For Glocks, I'd prefer condition three for carry modes all, but IWB to keep from shooting myself instead of the BG. For CCW with my chosen weapons, no thanks. I want it ready to go, that's why I carry revolvers or DA/DAO autos.

    Rifles for HD? Sure, my .357 magnum loaded with 140 grain JHPs or even +P .38s would be preferable to a .30-30 or BLR in .308 or some real rifle caliber, though. That said, a revolver is in my bedside drawer and a coach gun leans against the wall, loaded, safety on. Defend with a gun that you killed hundreds of animals with and know like your own arms, I say! The revolver in the drawer is for if I have to leave the safe room.
     
  15. joab

    joab Member

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    I see his point about not locking the hammer back
    But the hammer could then be thumbed back like a SA revolver a lot quicker than manipulating the lever

    But I don't know when Cooper wrote this piece or when Marlin safeties of this sort came about
     
  16. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    I was never ever a diciple of Jeff Cooper. Sorry, but I don't bow to him or anything. He's just another FOS know-it-all opinionated gun writer far as I'm concerned. I know he's been in war, started IPSC or some stuff, so what? I always preferred reading Skeeter Skelton or Elmer Keith. Unfortunately, none of these guys is still with us. :(
     
  17. CajunBass

    CajunBass Member

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    Because people have been so brainwashed by the "but it might just go off" crowd that they're more afraid of their own gun, than they are the bad guy.
     
  18. El Tejon

    El Tejon Member

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    Because a shoulder weapon and a pistol are different platforms.

    BTW, Jeff Cooper always wrote about keeping the chamber of a bolt action empty while in hunting camp in Africa.
     
  19. Owen

    Owen Moderator Emeritus

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    Hammer down/half cock on a lever action requires pulling the trigger on a chambered round. Bad mojo.
     
  20. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    It's proof all humans are not descended from apes. Some of us are descended from salmon, forever swimming upstream.:p
     
  21. joab

    joab Member

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    Not bad at all with Marlin's hammer block safety
    Besides the fact that not that long ago it was a simple skill that a gunner was expected to master
     
  22. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Member

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    apples...oranges

    There is a huge difference in the circumstances in which you might need the weapon, as well as in the handling of the weapon, as well as in the operation of the weapon. These are two dissimilar platforms in many ways, not least of which, and one that hasn't yet been noted here, is the fact that the lever itself gives you considerable mechanical advantage in chambering that first round over the pistol.
     
  23. shooter1

    shooter1 Member

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    Not bad at all with Marlin's hammer block safety
    Besides the fact that not that long ago it was a simple skill that a gunner was expected to master

    Ain't it the da#n truth. Now days the common thinking is that one can't be trusted to lower a hammer on a firearm safely. I think we all need to keep the lifesaving trigger locks installed, and carry them in locked cases to prevent the evil things from hurting someone. I carry 1911s cocked and locked.
    str1
     
  24. Owen

    Owen Moderator Emeritus

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    aside from safing an already cocked revolver, when is lowering a hammer on a loaded chamber ever required?

    If you play with Murphy, Murphy'll play with you.

    and I carry my 1911 in Condition 1.
     
  25. joab

    joab Member

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    Lowering the hammer on an already cocked lever gun to half cock
     
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