Striker Fired vs 1911 - a dispassionate discussion?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by RPRNY, Jan 3, 2017.

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  1. azrocks

    azrocks Member

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    I'd argue that if you carry or store your handgun in a manner that would allow the trigger to come into contact with an object capable of pulling it through its full range of motion (or even touching it, for that matter), then you're doing things wrong from the start. So if you keep your finger off the trigger AND carry it properly, that pretty much takes care of the entire issue, not just 1/2 of it. There's no reason to be fearful of a handgun in a quality holster.

    Manual safeties require user manipulation, which means one likely failure is forgetting to engage the safety (the other is forgetting to disengage it). External safeties are not auto-magical, which means that the same training and practice that's required to engage & disengage them as required, could be applied instead to learning to use a striker-fired gun safely.

    I've personally witnessed NDs that were the direct result of people being sloppy with gun-handling because they had 'the safety on' (or rather, they thought they did). I was always taught as a kid to never trust the safety, and that teaching has served me well. I really see no functional difference between handguns with external safeties versus those that don't, because I treat them all the same. If anything, I believe the lack of a manual safety on at least some of the guns I've owned has caused me to become more vigilant regarding safe handling practices.

    Besides, Cyrus doesn't need no safety! Why should I? :D

    [​IMG]
     
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  2. azrocks

    azrocks Member

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    I've owned a Taurus PT-92. It has no grip safety like a 1911, and the safety lever detent is weak (compared to a 1911). The safety lever is also small, which means most holster designs will not effectively capture it in a manner that effectively prevents it from being inadvertently disengaged. So what you've got there is a gun that's one rub away from becoming cocked and unlocked with a single-action trigger pull. I, for one, don't consider that any safer than a striker-fired handgun. In fact, I consider it significantly more error-prone.
     
  3. CraigC
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    CraigC Sixgun Nut

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    IMHO, it's all preference and training. I've spent a good bit of time carrying SA revolvers, DA revolvers, 1911's, DA autos and striker-fired autos. I like to think I judge based on merit, not emotion. I will say that 1911's require more training to be proficient but the same is true of revolvers. What I carry the most is a Ruger LC9S. Why? Because it's light, it's more powerful but only slightly larger than a modern .380, it's flat, has rounded edges in all the right places and it's disposable. That said, I still want to make a holster to carry my Beretta 84. Also thinking about trying the Ruger American Compact.


    Sorry but that is the hogwash. I shot Glocks for 15yrs before jumping ship. I was very late to the 1911 game but that grip angle makes a HUGE difference for me. The angle and the uncomfortable blocky grip that leaves spaces between the palm and the grip frame are exactly why I sold/traded my Glocks and no longer own any. Give me an XD or virtually any other comparable pistol any day. Same reason the Browning Buckmark and Ruger 22/45 have always been more comfortable to me than the standard Ruger auto. That grip angle might not matter to you but it does matter to some folks.
     
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  4. Tirod

    Tirod Member

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    Hammer vs Striker isn't the same discussion as SA vs DA/SA, vs SAFE action. What has happened in the industry going to strikers is to adopt the SAFE Glock trigger as if it's the only answer, so that is what we get. It isn't the only way to do it.

    The bigger physical difference I see hammer vs striker is that the slide is significantly shorter on hammer - all the spring things wrapped over the firing pin and sear engagements are removed, leaving a short pin that can be contacted directly by the hammer. On the other hand, their is the issue of dropping them and jarring the hammers sear engagement. Having a lifting block on the firing pin resolves it. 1911's for the most part do not, therefore the slight risk still exists.

    On the other hand if you are carrying one, the hammer fired is shorter overall for the same barrel length, which aids in weight, handling, and concealment. Strikers are always longer because of the way they are designed, and they hang back over the firing hand further. I will suggest that it causes the gun to more easily tip at the fulcrum point of the grip and causes slightly more muzzle rise. We won't likely ever prove it tho, and for the most part that has been a nearly unrealistic goal despite all the low axis this and compensated that.

    Hammers allow recocking immediately, strikers require racking the slide for the most part. Goes to that dependency on the trigger and having the firing pin spring partially/fully cocked by slide movement. The HK P7 got around it in its quirky way, but the difference largely remains.

    Triggers are a separate discussion, actually. There are striker fired guns with safeties, Glock does make them, and the new M17 has one. And there are DA 1911's. Don't take things for granted.
     
  5. JDR

    JDR Member

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    I often shoot my Dan Wesson Valor alongside my Gen4 Glock 21, the DW is my all-time favorite but the more reliable of the two, which shoots every known type of brass, aluminum, and steel cased trash ammo "beautifully" is......
     
  6. tarosean

    tarosean Member

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    Yet there are plenty of videos online about Glocks with going bang from coats, keys, strings, etc.

    I own several Glocks, but they are not infallible when humans are involved.
     
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  7. Zerodefect

    Zerodefect Member

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    Stop watch.
    Target.
    Amount of holes in your foot.

    Those facts are as dispassionate as you can get.

    -The Glock is slow to reholster safely. So if you have to transition from carbine to Glock, back to carbine, then a 1911 has an advantage. You have to make sure that holster is clear with a striker pistol.
    -I've had excellent luck with Glocks lately. My 1911's lack much of an advantage in anything other than slow fire.
    -snow and ice can't melt and re freeze between the slide and hammer on a Glock as easy as a 1911. Then again, IWB carry would keep my pistols toasty and solve that little rare 1911 problem.
    -for many shooters a Glock 19/23 draws faster than a 4-4.5" 1911.
    -Glocks long, long sight radius can almost make up for the trigger with practice.
    -it's easy as pie to reshape a polymer frame
    -There aren't a bunch of silly nonsense carry conditions with a Glock as there are with the 1911. You don't have to worry about shmucks CCW carrying at half cock, hammer down etc. etc. just because some guy riding a horse into BATTLE did it 100 years ago.
    -the 1911 is pretty much the safest pistol to CCW out there. That can be an advantage around kids. One hand op is easier.
    -IMO 1911's are the easiest pistols to detail strip and detail clean. The darn pins on a Glock can be really easy, or a pain. Depends on the cycle of the moon or something.

    Each has it's place. But I'm leaning more and more towards Glock these days instead of my 1911's. Because:
    -1911's weigh more than the wheels on my F350.
    -my 1911's are always running out of ammo. 8 rounds is usually a revolver or mouse gun, seems weird in an auto
    -Glocks are extremely corrosion resistant.
    -lately I feel that I'm shooting Glocks better under practical scenarios
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2017
  8. Deanimator

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    1. How will any of these things cause a Glock in a proper holster to go off?
    2. The only "firearm" that's "infallible" is a solid plastic "blue gun".
     
  9. pblanc

    pblanc Member

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    There have been numerous instances in which a foreign object entered the trigger guard of a Glock or other striker-fired pistol unnoticed while reholstering. These have typically been a fold of clothing, a drawstring, even the flexible edge of a too-worn leather holster. In most instances, the discharge occurs during reholstering, but I recall reading about one instance in which the drawstring of a jacket got into the trigger guard during holstering and did not cause an immediate discharge. But when the shooter removed their jacket, the drawstring pulled the trigger and caused a discharge. One can argue that this type of thing should never happen, but the fact is it has too many times.
     
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  10. Confederate

    Confederate Member

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    Without seeing the exact model, I'm not sure what you mean. There is no grip safety, granted, but the downside of grip safeties (and there's always one downside) is that they're difficult to manipulate if injured. As for the other safeties on the PT92, I like having the cock and locked function. The detente is adequate despite the ample grips.

    The bottom line is that no gun is perfect and so safety adequate to protect against carelessness. My primary gripe is that I'm still not convinced that the Glock safety is enough to protect even when carelessness is not a factor. Months ago, a cop shot and killed a man who had been restrained and was being cuffed. No one knows exactly why it happened, but it involved an officer with a Glock. Who knows why his finger went to the trigger, but the gun had virtually no slack in the trigger (as does my S&W 3906). The gun discharged, killing the prisoner. One can argue it was carelessness -- a lack in training or practice -- but man is given to err and sometimes I think we need to factor that into our tools. The Glock needs more safety built into its function in my view. If I jack a round into a Glock's chamber and put the gun on the table, then jack a round into the chamber of my 3906 and place it next to the Glock, either gun will discharge if the trigger mechanisms are tripped. But the 3906 has one remaining safety. One has to take up the slack in the trigger before it will discharge, whereas the Glock will immediately discharge, having no appreciative slack.

    In the end, it's what one is comfortable with. In the above state, I would be uncomfortable putting either gun in a holster and charging off. If others are comfortable in so doing, I wish them the best of luck.
     
  11. azrocks

    azrocks Member

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    The PT92 is a DA/SA gun for a reason. It was never designed to be carried in Condition 1, and the lack of a grip safety + strong safety detent underscores this fact. Just because you can carry it cocked & locked doesn't mean you should, or that it was designed to be carried safely in such a manner.

    As for a Glock trigger, it's not even close to what you describe. There's plenty of take-up. It's certainly not excessive but it's there. And you can always get a New York trigger if you want a heavier pull.

    I honestly don't understand your reasoning. You knock Glocks due to their lack of an external safety, but justify carrying a PT-92 - cocked & locked - without a grip safety because <insert excuses here>. The entire premise of your argument is that redundant safeties increase safety, yet you poo-poo the one safety that was specifically made to address relevant issues with single-action autos (or in your case, double-action autos that are carried like they're single actions).
     
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  12. M1key

    M1key Member

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    This guy has an opinion I tend to agree with.



    M
     
  13. Confederate

    Confederate Member

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    I wouldn't necessarily carry a Taurus cocked and locked at all times, but in the case of cuffing a subdued suspect I would trust it. I might also carry it into potentially hazardous situations with no angst whatsoever. That's because I've tested it with two different holsters and it was more than adequately secure. I've also tested my sister's Glock with rough handling and it discharged a dummy round. Using my S&W 3906 with a dummy round, I was able to get it to "discharge" while cocked; however, with rough handling the Glock with a round in the chamber always discharged easier with very little contact with the trigger.

    Granted, contact with the trigger was required to get the Glock to go "click," but contact with the trigger was also necessary with my S&W to get the hammer to drop. I've not yet tested my Taurus, but suspect it would react similarly. If I can find the time, I'll try to do the test on video. I'd put dummy rounds into all three.

    I'd cock the S&W and the Taurus with no other safety (definitely not recommended with live ammo!) and I'd put a dummy in the Glock's chamber. Then I would subject each to some rough or careless treatment. Hopefully I could determine if the two cocked guns were any more or less susceptible to accidental discharge than the Glock. So far, the take up on my Smith has made it more difficult to trip.

    Those of you with Glocks and hammer-fired autos may wish to conduct your own tests. If others find I'm wrong, I'll concede, but I'd never carry a Glock with a round in the chamber, and if I were a police chief, I'd find a gun with a safety on the side and train my people to operate them.
     
  14. Deanimator

    Deanimator member

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    What SORT of "rough handling"?

    Was the trigger pulled or not?

    Was the gun modified in some way?

    I can't imagine a Glock in proper working order going off through "rough handling" which didn't involve the trigger being pulled.

    I can imagine it even less if it's in a properly designed and manufactured holster, in proper condition.

    I've got a Glock 19 and a Glock 22 and neither has ever gone off without my pulling the trigger, with my finger far enough in to engage the trigger safety. And both of them have Ghost 3.5lb. connectors.
     
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  15. azrocks

    azrocks Member

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    So you're telling me that your tests show it's easier to accidentally pull the trigger on a stock glock (~7lbs trigger pull + trigger safety) than it is a cocked DA/SA handgun with the safety disengaged (~2-3lbs trigger pull & no trigger safety)?

    Best case scenario: your test was heavily flawed in execution.
     
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  16. Confederate

    Confederate Member

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    Oh, absolutely. I was trying to get them to discharge. The thing is, the Glock went click more readily than the S&W, yet I'd never consider cocking a S&W 659/5906/3906 and carrying it in that condition!


    Well, that's why I'm inviting others to duplicate my tests. My other double action autos also have take ups, but I used my S&W guns in my tests. I wouldn't cock any of them and carry them, to be honest, but I would also never jack a round into the chamber of a Glock and carry the Glock, either. I'm convinced many accidental discharges (like the fellow being cuffed who was killed) by people carrying Glocks. Had they been carrying a S&W 5906 or another DA auto, that the take up would have prevented the discharges.

    The fellow who put a crease in his leg when his Glock discharged in his holster now doesn't much care for Glocks, but I don't think it would have happened with my cocked S&W because the take up in the trigger would have prevented it. His gun discharged because it didn't have that take up. You can say he was careless, untrained, whatever, but the gun did discharge.
     
  17. Deanimator

    Deanimator member

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    ...under what circumstances we STILL don't know.

    HOW? We have literally NO idea what you did or whether it had even the vaguest resemblance to ANYTHING which might happen in the real world, with a properly functioning firearm, in a properly designed holster in proper condition.

    You're basically telling us that nobody should keep electric fans plugged in because of the danger of electrocution... without telling us that's based on the initial fight scene in "Goldfinger".

    My standard advice to people is that if doing something stupid or ridiculous would cause harm, then don't do something stupid or ridiculous.

    People who exercise a minimum of proper care don't have negligent discharges with Glocks. Those who don't, do.

    Anybody who wants a firearm which will protect them from their own laziness, ignorance or stupidity should limit themselves to what are called "blue guns". You can even buy them through the mail.
     
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  18. bsms

    bsms Member

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    I've got one striker-fired gun. No safety. It is a S&W Shield, and I hate it.

    Doesn't make it unsafe. Doesn't make it a bad gun. Lots of folks carry it and shoot it well. Me? My habit patterns came from 40 years of revolvers. I also feel pretty comfortable with a Beretta 92 - decock/safety, DA/SA, feels good in my hand.

    I like being able to put my thumb on the hammer when holstering a gun. I have no problems with the DA trigger pull of a big S&W revolver. Or J-frame. And sometimes, what you start with and build your habit patterns for is right - for you. Lots of folks carry and shoot Glocks safely and well. Lots of folks freak out over the DA trigger pull of a revolver. I would feel intensely uncomfortable carrying a 1911 cocked and lock - but millions have for a century without problem.

    Seems more productive to me to focus on what is needed to carry a given gun safely and shoot it well. There is no one gun that is superior to all others. I truly dislike my S&W Shield, but it is a darn good gun - for some.

    BTW - any gun can be holstered safely by a thinking, aware person. And as one of my high school teachers told me in the 70s: The stupid always suffer.
     
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  19. Deanimator

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    I carry a 3 1/2" Citadel M1911 every day. It's always carried cocked and locked. It doesn't bother me in the slightest. Of course I don't carry it in a $2.00 piece of garbage holster I got off of eBay either. Nor do I try to play stupid tricks with it.

    I've frequently carried a Glock 19 or Glock 22. No problems there either. Again, I don't stick it in my waistband, but then at 5' 7 1/2", I've never played in the NBA. I don't have a felony record either.

    I've also carried a 3" Smith 65 and a 2" Smith 36. I have no problem with the genuine revolver double action. But then I put forth the effort to learn it, just as I did to learn the Glock trigger.

    I've owned, but never carried a DA or DAO auto, and never will, with the very slight possibility of a Walther PPK for pocket carry. I can't stomach true DA or DAO in an auto. It meets no need I have in any way in which I want it met.
     
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  20. jmf552

    jmf552 Member

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    This is just my personal thinking, not pontification. It only applies to me and my decisions. I'm sure there are people here who think differently. That's fine, but I have enough experience I doubt you will convince me otherwise.

    I competed on a Navy shooting team with a match-tuned 1911 and I own a Colt MK4 Series '70 (early serial #). I have more rounds through 1911's that I will ever get to with any other gun. Both the out-of-the box and the match triggers are the best there is, IMHO. The gun has a natural point of aim. But by today's standards, it's heavy for a carry gun, low capacity and not as reliable as modern guns. I have had malfunctions in shooting classes with my Series '70, using new, high-quality, FMJ range rounds. One jam was so bad TRB didn't work. The instructor had to stop the class and literally pry the action open. This gun has only had moderate rounds through it, the mags are all Colt made and I maintain it well. But now I don't trust it as a carry gun.

    I have fired strikers I've rented. I think the out of the box trigger on Glocks is awful. I owned squirt guns as kid with better triggers. And I don't believe in messing with triggers for carry guns. And the grip angle is not to my liking. The Springfield triggers and grips are better, but still not like 1911s. Also, I think there are safety issues with both 1911's and strikers. They are either NDs waiting to happen or FTFs waiting to happen in pressure situations.

    To me, DA/SA, is the way to go. To me the Sig SP2022 is the ideal in terms of price and functionality. I wish they imported the the compact, the SPC2022.
     
  21. mavracer

    mavracer Member

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    If you never take the gun out of the holster they won't, but then if you always leave the gun in the holster it's not much good.
    The problem is reholstering and with a Glock you pretty much have to put eyes on it to reholster safely.
     
  22. Deanimator

    Deanimator member

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    That's funny, I never have and I've never had an ND with a Glock.

    But again, if you develop a "foolproof" gun, only a fool will want to use it.

    There are a lot of "special snowflakes" who want to be protected from their own laziness and irresponsibility. Some of them carry guns.
     
  23. mavracer

    mavracer Member

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    yet :eek:
     
  24. Deanimator

    Deanimator member

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    Other things which have not yet happened to me:
    • being hit by an asteroid
    • seeing bigfoot
    • being abducted by aliens
    • being attacked by a grizzly bear and a polar bear in the same day
     
  25. tarosean

    tarosean Member

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    These two get along better than people here.
    [​IMG]
     
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