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hammer vs. striker fire

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by DavidB2, Nov 26, 2012.

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  1. DavidB2

    DavidB2 Member

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    What are the pro's vs.cons of the hammer fired w/de-cocker vs.striker fired pistols like the M&P?
     
  2. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    I can instantly tell that the thing is cocked because it is very obvious with a hammer gun.

    I can thumb cock it.

    I am of the opinion that the hammer mechanisms provide more energy to the primer resulting in more reliable ignition.

    And it is what I am used to. :cuss:


    SigP220.jpg
     
  3. JustinJ

    JustinJ Member

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    Its largely a matter of preference and configuration. A gun with a de-cocker will be a SA/DA so when uncocked the first trigger pull is extremely long and heavy which provides some level of protection against an accidental discharge. Also, the trigger pull from the cocked position can be lighter without the associated risk of accidental discharge like in a very light striker fired gun. However, the pull from the uncocked position will generally be much longer and heavier so one must cock before firing or endure the long pull. Follow up shots however will all be from the lighter cocked position.

    I think it's been clearly demonstrated that both types can be extremely reliable and durable.
     
  4. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    All of what he said:

    Plus:
    1. Generally a much better SA trigger pull.
    2. You can stuff it in your pants or pocket without it going off and shooting you.
    3. It is never loaded & cocked unless you want it to be.

    rc
     
  5. holdencm9

    holdencm9 Member

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    Technically striker-fired guns have a shorter lock time, but hammer-fired seem to have crisper triggers IMO. I also agree hammers usually provide more energy to the primer, you rarely hear of light strikes with a hammer-fired gun. The visual aspect of "seeing it is cocked" is nice, but some guns like the XD have the pin that sticks out to indicate it is "cocked."

    A decock is nice because you can return the gun to a very safe condition for carry, but still have the advantage of a crisp single-action trigger pull. You can carry DA (hammer down) safety off (heavy trigger is safe) and if you need a fast shot you won't even feel the trigger weight, then all the subsequent shots are SA. Some people hate that, prefer to have a compromise of consistent pull, although the pull is never as good as most single actions.
     
  6. 56hawk

    56hawk Member

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    Are you talking about just the M&P, or any striker fired pistol? For example the Walther P99 is striker fired and has a de-cocker.

    I really can't tell any difference in the trigger pulls between striker fired and hammer fired pistols. For me striker fired guns have the benefit of less area for dirt to enter the firing mechanism. When carrying single action I like guns with hammers better because most holsters have a strap that goes between the hammer and slide so there is less chance for an AD.
     
  7. Jaymo

    Jaymo Member

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    I like both. It really depends on the individual gun.
     
  8. CZ57

    CZ57 member

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    A shorter lock-time can result in better handheld accuracy for a lot of shooters. As far as crisp triggers, that is sort of gun dependent, some are better than others. I have a PRP trigger Kit in my XDm 4.5 .45 ACP. Take-up is almost non existent. Pull weight is a very crisp 4# with no overtravel. The only triggers that I've found to be any better are on 1911s that cost twice as much or more. ;)
     
  9. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    Striker fired leaves one less opening for crud to get into the guns internals, or between the hammer and firing pin. No hammer to get caught in clothing etc. and prevent the gun from firing in close range engagements. No hammer to be damaged and put the gun out of commission if dropped on a hard surface during a scuffle with a bad guy.
     
  10. JAshley73

    JAshley73 Member

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    I'll let my inexperience shine here, but I chose to go the striker fired route in part due to the simpler manual of arms. I like how simple it is to work the pistol. There's either one in the pipe or not. And if there's a round in the chamber, then you had to rack the slide to put it there, so the striker is cocked. Keep your finger off the trigger, and it won't go off.

    Again, I remind you that I am a new shooter without a lot of experience, but the simplicity is comforting.
     
  11. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    You mean like how the 1911 didn't work in the mud in the trenches in WWI?
    Or the sand on the beaches in WWII?
    Or the snow and ice in Korea?
    Or the rice paddys & jungle in Vietnam??

    Like that kind of crud?

    I SEE, said the blind man to his deaf daughter when he tripped over the stump.

    rc
     
  12. Jaymo

    Jaymo Member

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    We need a "dripping with sarcasm" emoticon. :) :!
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2012
  13. 56hawk

    56hawk Member

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    Depends on which striker fired pistol you are talking about. Some have safeties, decockers and many assorted trigger systems. Similarly you can find hammer fired guns that are single action without safeties.
     
  14. Plan2Live

    Plan2Live Member

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    I rotate between a hammer fired DA/SA 9mm and a striker fired .40 caliber for my carry guns. Which one I choose depends on the day, where I'm going, etc.

    I'm equally accurate with both in slow fire drills.

    When clocked on a shot timer I'm faster at drawing and shooting with the striker fired.

    If I am going to be unholstering and re-sholstering while seated in the vehicle, like when I go into no-carry locations, I prefer the DA/SA hammer fired gun. I just feel safer handling a hammer fired gun outside a holster than I do a striker fired gun with a round in the chamber of either.

    My hammer gun digs into my side a bit.

    I would sleep/have slept with a loaded and chambered DA/SA pistol under the pillow I don't sleep on. Wouldn't dare do that with a Striker.

    The exposed hammer does give a combatant one more option for preventing you from firing your gun in a tussle. The exposed hammer gives you one more option for preventing a combatant from firing your gun at you in a tussle.

    Hammer guns tend to be more attractive (to me) than striker fired guns.

    Bottom line, personal preference.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2012
  15. Patrick Gookin

    Patrick Gookin Member

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    The Colt 1903 / 1908 pocket pistols have a hammer located intside the slide for those very reasons. There's even another thread discussing it right now.

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=686823
     
  16. tarosean

    tarosean Member

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    This....
     
  17. TimboKhan

    TimboKhan Moderator

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    Lol, I can come up with a counter-point to every comment for or against one or the other in this thread!!! The point being, it really is personal preference. My two main pistols represent one of each, and I honestly don't think I could definitively say that I prefer one over the other.
     
  18. snakeman

    snakeman Member

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    Yes RC! I love my m&p but see it only as a matter of preference. I have always wanted a 1911.
     
  19. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    I like shooting my M&Ps and M1911s but I am not comfortable carrying them loaded.

    The triggers are a bit different but I shoot them similarly.

    So I suffer with a DA/SA pistol for carry. I figure the first round would not hit its intended target and plan accordingly.
     
  20. Walking Dead

    Walking Dead Member

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    Best analogies ever!
     
  21. JROC

    JROC Member

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    My Colt Combat Elite, and CZ75 are both good guns and use hammers. My Glock 20SF is my best handgun and it's a striker fire pistol so I guess I prefer striker fired pistols even though I don't think there is anything wrong with a gun using a hammer.
     
  22. coalman

    coalman Member

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    Generally:

    Striker
    Pro: Consistent trigger pull. Easier to clean. Fewer parts. Fewer access points for debris. Lacks manual safety. Most with poly frame.
    Con: Lacks second strike. Does not hit primer with as much force. Lighter trigger easier to ND. Lacks manual safety. Most with poly frame.

    Hammer:
    Pro: Hits primer with more force. DA/SA guns offer second strike. SA guns offer cocked-n-locked manual safety. Heavier trigger of DA pull or manual safety for SA harder to ND. Most with metal frame.
    Con: DA/SA have different first long/heavy trigger pull vs. subsequent short/light pull. SA guns have cocked-n-locked manual safety. Generally harder to clean. More parts. More access points for debris. Most with metal frame.

    I prefer shooting SA guns. I prefer thin SA manual safety hammer-fired guns for CCW (1911 and CZ). I prefer 9mm Glocks for gaming in production class.
     
  23. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    It look like no one has yet mentioned that with a hammer fired gun, you can place your thumb over the hammer as you reholster, to ensure that nothing gets caught in the trigger guard to push the trigger back as you push the gun in.

    Generally speaking a slide of a striker fired gun is lighter than that of a hammer fired one...more metal is removed from the slide for the striker mechanism
     
  24. 1SOW

    1SOW Member

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    The striker fired has the same trigger pull every time.
    A single action hammered gun also has the same pull, but a shorter and crisper break.
    A DA/SA has a longer heavier pull in DA and usually a little lighter and shorter pull in SA. Some offer the decocker or safety and half-cock as an option.

    With some work, 6# and 2# is can usually be attained on some of the DA/SA guns, but the first pull is longer and so is the reset. With "TWO" trigger pulls, practice is needed , but with that practice, the first and second shots become second nature.

    Shooters' preference.

    Hammers are 'manly'.:neener::D
     
  25. Jed Carter

    Jed Carter Member

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    Actually Glock safe action (striker fired) pistols first trigger pull is more like the DA pull of a DA/SA pistol, only better than most. The subsequent trigger pulls if you only release the trigger to reset, is more like a SA pistol, still better than most DA/SA pistols in SA.
     
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