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Front cocking serrations, revisited -- be honest

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Old Dog, Oct 16, 2018.

  1. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

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    For those of you who own autoloaders with front-cocking serrations, be honest: do you ever really use them?

    The USMC small arms instructors taught me how to do a "press check" some forty years ago on the venerable 1911. We certainly didn't need those front-cocking serrations to perform this function. Not once. Ever.

    Personally, I believe FCSs to be the spawn of the devil on any 1911 ...

    Can you imagine the classic lines of a Browning High-Power spoiled by front-cocking serrations? Why do we tolerate them on 1911s?

    Full-size CZ-75 pistols -- why would you despoil the prettiest pistol ever produced with front-cocking serrations?

    Why rail-less and tail-less SIG P-series pistols look much better without the dreaded FCS.

    Again: anyone think they're really needed? Anyone really use them? Be honest ...

    For the record: I have had to accept them on some otherwise perfect pistols. Do I like 'em? Nope.
     
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  2. Mn Fats

    Mn Fats Member

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    I avoid those abominations. On 1911's.
     
  3. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Member

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    Use them? No not really. Need them? Nope.

    Mind them? Typically no but some guns look better without them.
     
  4. JeffG

    JeffG Member

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    The commander length 1911 Iver Johnson that I bought has them. They aren't over done. They are finely cut. I don't use them, I wasn't trained to use them, because they didn't exist, when I started with the 1911. (1973) . It's more of a preference to use them.
     
  5. fxvr5

    fxvr5 Member

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    I love 'em. And use them!
     
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  6. lsudave

    lsudave Member

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    To me, they're the aesthetic equivalent of pinstripes and non-functional spoilers on cars. Something to dress it up and make it flashy, but doesn't serve a real purpose.
     
  7. kozak6

    kozak6 Member

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    Silly but harmless. Occasionally, tastefully implemented serrations can add aesthetic appeal. It's not a make or break either way for me.
     
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  8. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    NO
     
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  9. rbernie
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    rbernie Contributing Member

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    Proper technique for slide manipulation would infer that front cocking serrations are unnecessary. And yet I can accept the argument that, in a pinch, a body might need to resort to improper manipulations because that's all that they can muster at a given moment. It's kind of the same logic as using square-edged rear sights to facilitate one-handed slide manipulations, or magazine baseplate designs that allow a magazine to be forcefully gripped-and-stripped to clear a three-point jam - sometimes ya just gotta do things ugly because that's all that you've got.

    I do not understand why anyone would give away a possibly useful tool that doesn't have a negative impact on reliability or functionality just because the tool isn't normally or commonly needed and 'doesn't have that classic look'.
     
  10. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    My 1911s dont have them but my SR9C does. I use them when i eject a live round from tbe chamber and catch it in my palm.
     
  11. sota

    sota Member

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    @rbernie puts it well. If it's a "pretty" gun and serrations would make it look worse, then begone I say. If it's a "working" gun then, well, I'd rather have 'em and not need 'em than need 'em and not have 'em. Same goes for things like sights. Will I ever need to rack my gun 1-handed on my boot, belt, or pants? Probably not. Is it nice to know I can reliably, on my "working" guns? Sure.
     
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  12. Winkman822

    Winkman822 Member

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    Don't care for them on a 1911 or Browning High Power. On anything else, I really don't feel one way or another about them. Heck, I've got a number of guns that have them (HK P30L, HK P30 SK, Walther PPQ, Sig P226 Legion, Sig P229 Legion, Springfield TRP) and it doesn't affect me one way or the other. Do I use them? No. Does it offend me that they're on the gun? No.
     
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  13. walnut1704

    walnut1704 Member

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    Yes. Your objections seem to be all cosmetic. Which is fine I guess if that's what's most important to you. I have them on both my 1911's and I do use them, but both mine have large adjustable target sights installed with great big square blades. I find I prefer to keep my hand away from those rear sights so I use the front serrations.
     
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  14. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    I don't personally use them, but I have seen quite a few competitors in USPSA who have learned to rack the slide by reaching from underneath the gun and pinching the front slide serrations. If you can learn to do it, it is an extremely fast way to work the slide. (Basically, at the end of retracting the slide, your weak hand is almost back on the grip.) Since that game occasionally requires people to start with an unloaded gun and load on the clock, this is an advantage. Similarly, since stoppages get cleared on the clock, it's also an advantage there.

    Just because you (like me) don't use them for anything, do not assume that nobody makes highly functional use of them.
     
  15. tarosean

    tarosean Member

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    Winner winner chicken dinner.
     
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  16. JR24

    JR24 Member

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    I could take them or leave them. I dont particularly love how they look, yet dont dislike them enough to avoid purchasing models with them.
     
  17. JR24

    JR24 Member

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    I had to go check my models that have them to see if I use them. No I dont really use them.

    When checking a gun or press check i use a thumb over near the front of the ejection port/trigger guard, but only my Sig 226 has serrations where I grip.

    Reloads i tend to slingshot, so no there, though using my same thumb over seems faster, I would just need to practice it a lot to not always default to slingshot.
     
  18. JTQ

    JTQ Member

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    Frank Proctor used to have a video (I searched for it, but it seems to be gone) where he works the slide using front cocking serrations using the web of his hand between his thumb and forefinger. It was very fast and efficient.

    I don't have any guns with front cocking serrations, so I don't use them, but I'm certainly willing to admit they have a function if you have them and prefer to use them.

    Edit to add: This is not the video I was referring to, but at the 1:15 mark Frank Proctor shows how he racks the slide.

     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2018
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  19. rbernie
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    rbernie Contributing Member

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    As I've heard it, the use of front cocking serrations has been historically discouraged by trainers because it encourages the placement of the hand in front of / too close to the muzzle for proper safety. I can see the point, and in general I try to train using an overhand grip on the rear of the slide.

    But I can also see where grasping the front of the slide might just be what happens. :)
     
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  20. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    You may have noticed that different "trainers" have different views on things. To reiterate, there are a couple of techniques that people use, very intentionally and very effectively, that involve the front serrations. They're not doing it on accident. They're doing it on purpose because, if done correctly, it offers a speed advantage. There are tradeoffs, including an increased possibility of sweeping the weak hand if they are doing it improperly.

    Again, I don't personally do what I'm talking about, but if you see someone who is skilled at it, you will no longer wonder why anyone would want to. It can be faster than either the slingshot or overhand rear serration method.
     
  21. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    Personal preference... I don't like them, and the one pistol I have, I don't use them. Not real hip on sticking my hand that close to the muzzle... but I'm not a gamer so shaving 1/10 of a second off my load time doesn't matter much to me. Are there techniques that would make use of them safely... I suppose so, but I would think that would require a higher level of training and practice.

    It's interesting the differences in slide manipulation techniques... I've always been a slide dropper, my buddy is a slingshot guy. I think slingshot is, if not 'dumb', then not as effective as dropping the slide... but my buddy says the same thing about the slide release. Go figure...
     
  22. rbernie
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    rbernie Contributing Member

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    The overhand / slingshot approaches have the advantage of working on virtually any pistol regardless of the presence / location of slide release. It's a good muscle memory to groove, IMO.
     
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  23. GunnyUSMC

    GunnyUSMC Member

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    I'm one of those that can live with or without them.
     
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  24. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    Virtually any pistol.... except the Kahr, which is what I carry.

    Actually, it works most of the time, but if I am training with my Kahr as I intend to use it, I don't want to develop a habit that only works 'most of the time.'
     
  25. doubleh

    doubleh Member

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    I can take them or leave them. I have guns with and without them and don't use them on the ones's that do. I think the only purpose they serve is for the manufacture's to try to out do one another. Straight cut, wiggly, fish scaley, whatever, they seem more un-needed decoration than anything else to me.
     
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