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Here we go... Dry Firing.

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by mikebravo, Mar 31, 2012.

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  1. mikebravo

    mikebravo Member

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    OK, so I am a lower budget shooter who lives in Oregon. What this means is that I can't afford much ammo and that it is ALWAYS raining, limiting range time. To counter this, I dry-fire almost every day, doing reloads, etc. I'd say that of every pull of the trigger, 95% of the time, I am shooting an unloaded gun. I do this with both my Beretta 92a1 and S&W M&P15. Now I know that gun manufacturers say to always use snap caps, but does it really make a difference?
     
  2. TurtlePhish

    TurtlePhish Member

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    When I had an AR I dry-fired it a ton and suffered no ill effects. No visible damage to the firing pin and it still worked perfectly.

    I think the "dangers" of dry-firing are exaggerated somewhat. Just don't do it to a rimfire and you'll be fine.
     
  3. BUCKrub91

    BUCKrub91 Member

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    only time you will see a problem dry firing is with a rim fire

    And I still dry fire them sometimes and never had a problem
     
  4. mjsdwash

    mjsdwash Member

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    I know the beretta owners manual warns against it, but the ar should be fine.
     
  5. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

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    I never worry about a little dryfiring now and then (10 or 20 snaps with a gun once in awhile), but if I'm getting ready to do a lot of dryfiring (several minutes of practice), I generally do what I can to minimize the pounding the gun will take.

    Can't say it's ever prevented anything from breaking, but I think it would be hard to argue that it hasn't prevented any wear at all.
     
  6. Rail Driver

    Rail Driver Member

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    I dry fire everything EXCEPT my rimfires.
     
  7. InfamousLegend

    InfamousLegend Member

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    Why not rim fires in particular?
     
  8. GCMkc

    GCMkc Member

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    It is not advised on a rimfire because the firing pin will hit the face of the barrel and cause wear and broken firing pins if done enough.
     
  9. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Many old time inexpensive rim-fires would ding the edge of the chamber and leave a bur.

    Modern ones don't.

    Ruger and others say it is fine to dry-fire all you want.

    rc
     
  10. Busyhands94

    Busyhands94 Member

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    If you are dry-firing centerfire guns you should be fine. I do it all the time with no problems. If you are dry firing rimfires then stick a spent case in the chamber to cushion the blow of the firing pin, and if you are going to do it with a blackpowder gun then remove the cones.

    Levi
     
  11. tyeo098

    tyeo098 Member

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    Also don't dry fire an AR LOWER. Hammers are steel, lowers are Aluminum.

    When that steel hits the Aluminum... ouch.

    With an Upper its OK because the hammer hits the firing pin before hitting t he lower itself.
     
  12. Mike J

    Mike J Member

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    With some guns it is okay-with some it isn't. I just make it a point to read the owners manual.

    Just a suggestion for another inexpensive alternative. For a while I was using a CO2 powered air pistol in the yard. When I went back to the range & shot my centerfires my groups had tightened up.
     
  13. P-32

    P-32 Member

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    Dry fire practice is worth the time and effort. Most center fire rifles and pistols will take some dry fire without damage. I have a Marlin 336 which I dry fire but use a snap cap in it. The Marlin is used in matches too. I dry fire M1 Garands and match AR’s all the time. There are dry fire devices for these if you so desire.
    I have been around M1 Garands since about 1987 and dry firing as part of getting ready for a match as needed. 10 minutes here, ten minutes there etc. Until last Sunday, I had never saw or heard of dry firing hurting a M1 Garand when I was shown the tab off a M1 firing pin. The tab came off while shooting the match. The owner of this rifle had dry fired the rifle extensively in preparation for a match. I’m sure the same extensive dry fire happened when he was getting ready to a shoot a match for the last couple of years.
    This guy’s offhand was unbeatable. He was almost always got beat because he couldn’t get through a match mistake free. And besides the AR’s tear him up.

    I can also vouch for this. Mine's a match grade Daisy.
     
  14. GLOOB

    GLOOB Member

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    It's not ok to dryfire with all centerfire guns.
    It's ok to dryfire some rimfire guns.
    It's going to produce more wear on your trigger return spring if you're dryfiring a DA gun.

    Take a 1911, for example. The firing pin extends quite far when there's nothing in there to hit. This compresses the firing pin spring more than when it's actually firing. If you do it a lot, you might end up with a broken firing pin spring sooner than expected. No big deal if you have time on your hands and a replacement. Might be a big deal if it's your only gun and you don't have a spare spring, or if you can't replace it yourself.

    Rimfires: the design of the firing pin on most modern rimfires is such that they can't even reach the breechface. These are generally safe to dryfire.

    If you can't tell the difference on your own, then read the manual and/or do an internet search for your particular firearm.
     
  15. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

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    All the serious shooters I know are religious about their dryfire...usually 7:1 dryfire to livefire.

    A IPSC GM and Master IDPA shooter once told me that if he had to choose between the two to improve or maintain his skill level, he'd choose dryfire as more beneficial. He is also the one who advised me not to abuse my pistols in dryfire .

    You don't even have to spend money on snap caps just to work on trigger press...you will need them for magazine changes. You can go with an O-ring between the hammer face and the firing pin or even just a foam ear plug
     
  16. ObsidianOne

    ObsidianOne Member

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    I'm not sure if people are 100% sure if dryfiring hurts modern firearms (I'm not aware of this).
    However, I made the decision to purchase a pack of snap caps and my reasoning was this:
    What's more expensive, firearm failure and repair or a pack of snapcaps for >$15 (depending on caliber).

    As I said, I bought the snap caps :)
     
  17. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Member

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    You can use empty .22 LR cases as snap caps. They will have to be replaced frequently as the rims get more and more smashed, but a couple of handfuls will get you many hundreds of dryfires.
     
  18. Beach Nut

    Beach Nut Member

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    I dry fire my revolvers on ocassion but I am hesitant about dry firing my
    semiauto pistols. Is it ok to dry fire an AK? I just bought my first one
    last week.
     
  19. TurtlePhish

    TurtlePhish Member

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    AKs are perfectly fine to dryfire. They have no bolt hold-open so it'll happen all the time anyway.

    For rimfires, Savages should all be safe to dryfire. My 93 is- info here.
     
  20. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    How about Enfield #4s, #5s, the Spanish FR8 and the Garand or SKS?
     
  21. Gtimothy

    Gtimothy Member

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    I don't know if your reference to reloads means you are practicing reloads or whatever but it's easy to make snap caps if you reload your own ammo. Just take a fired case, resize and deprime it. Seat and crimp a bullet into it..NO POWDER..then fill the primerhole with silicone caulk and let dry. I've done this for all of my guns so I can practice without worrying about damage to the gun. As for rimfires, I just don't dryfire them.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2012
  22. youngda9

    youngda9 member

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    Dry firing a gun is a lot easier on it than an explosion going off in the chamber with violent acceleration of the slide with hot gasses and brass being flung out of the gun. Think about it for a second, LOL.
     
  23. Spdracr39

    Spdracr39 Member

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    Question, Instead of using those ridiculously expensive plastic cartridges could you just use a fired round? I suppose that would be a little dangerous but you could color it with a sharpie or something to mark it.
     
  24. Tbag

    Tbag Member

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    Here I fixed it to be a bit more clear.

    Also don't dry fire an AR LOWER WITHOUT an UPPER ATTACHED. Hammers are steel, lowers are Aluminum.

    When that steel hits the Aluminum... ouch. IT COULD CRACK THE LOWER'S MAG CATCH WALL.

    With an Upper its OK because the hammer hits the firing pin before hitting t he lower itself.
     
  25. 230RN
    • Contributing Member

    230RN Marines raising the left-leaning Pisa tower.

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    As a side note, it's not universally true that you can dry-fire modern handguns with no problem. By practical experience, I find that dry-firing a PF-9 even once (which happened accidentally) can break out a small cross-piece in the frame.

    I always use dummy rounds when dry-firing, no matter what the conventional wisdom is. I figure a couple of bucks for dummies beats a couple of hundred bucks for a gun. And getting into the "habit" of dry firing without dummies may well lead to damage when you pick up an older arm and click it a few times without thinking.

    For another thing, it takes a deliberate action to remove the dummy or dummies, thus separating dry fire practice from having a live gun lying around. To me, this mental separation of modes is important.

    I usually make my own dummies.

    One hangup there is on .22s. Although they make plastic dummies in .22LR, I have found them unsatisfactory. What I do is take a fired .22 case and clip off a portion of the rim with a pair of flush cutting diagonal cutters ("dikes") and insert that case into the gun with the cut-out portion under the extractor. Thus, you can manipulate the action for re-cocking without extracting the case. (When done, of course you need a rod to push out the case.)

    These "cutaway" dummies don't last very long --perhaps 20 or 30 cycles --but then again, neither do the plastic commercial .22 dummies.

    Flush cutters can be obtained from electronic parts outlets, although other methods can be used to remove part of the rim. Needless to say, you should not do this with a live cartridge. That's my lawyer talkin'.

    Incidentally, if needed, using a cutaway case deactivates a rimfire gun for unauthorized usage because it won't feed a live cartridge into the "dummied" chamber. A cleaning rod is needed to extract the case and reactivate the arm.

    Also incidentally, a dinged-up .22 chamber can be ironed out with a simple little inexpensive tool available from Brownell's among other suppliers:

    http://www.brownells.com/.aspx/pid=8869/Product/-22-CHAMBER-IRONING-TOOL

    I cannot testify as to its effectiveness.

    Because I use dummies in the first place.

    Terry, 230RN
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2012
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