Too weak to rack slide?

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Most everything that can be said, has been said (revolver, lighter springs, different techniques, etc.). You prolly knew all of these things before posting. Here's one thing nobody has suggested: Have her work with a professional firearms instructor. Even if you are a pro trainer, working with family is a bit different. Will she listen to you as well as she'll listen to someone else whose sole purpose that day is to teach her about using a gun? Will you treat her the same way you'd treat any other student? I can teach anyone to use a gun... except my wife. I'm not comfortable giving her orders, and she's not comfortable taking them from me. Hard to break out of the roles we play with certain people.

One last thing that has helped me help others in the past. It's sort of a "mind over matter" tactic. Visualize the strong hand pushing away WHILE you visualize the weak hand pulling in. Both hands have to be working at the same time. "See" the hands silghtly beyond slidelock, then "HIT IT!"
Yes and no. I just spent a week on the range with my female soldiers, familiarizing them with the M-9 and M-11 pistols. The reason I was with my mom, was that I needed to get her away from my dad. The truth is, he makes every cliche' mistake in the book when teaching women about guns, (none of my sisters were ever interested,) and refuses to let anyone else help. I actually got her by myself because he was too busy with something else, and I explained a few things to her, including the fact that this is just a beginning, not a conclusion. Carrying is a lifestyle that requires ongoing training, and she will need to seek training out from other places.

It feels kind of the same as when I broke the news to them that just because they had been forced kicking and screaming into the 21st century when we gave them a used computer, it was already obsolete, and they would soon need to get another one. Oh, the outrage!! It's kind of the same thing when I tell them; "Yes, you bought a gun, but now you need to buy better magazines, a real holster, a pile carry ammo to test, get some training, and commit to going to the range regularly and learning more skills to protect your life." SHE is ok with it. HE is a cheapskate who will talk himself into anything that doesn't involve buying another gun. (=Let her carry one of my .22s.)

I dunno. I thing I'm going to dig around for a Bersa Thunder and a tip-up Beretta to try out. Not sure a Beretta 92 is a good idea, if it has an easy rack pull, if NOTHING else about the gun fits her.
It was not only posted, I had already addressed it. I have instructed females who thought they were too weak to rack the slide. My mom's problem is that, due to an injury, her left wrist really can't take it.

I am digging for options, and I see that S&W makes a few revolvers in .327 Federal. I find myself wondering if this cartridge will be around for more than the next few years. It might beat her up a little less than that LCR did.
Went through the same issue with the wife three years ago. She had a devil of a time with the slide on a Walther PPK but did just fine with the Walther P88C, which is a much larger pistol and has more of a hand-hold. Of course, the P88C was far too large to carry concealed. We then worked on the push/pull method that has been described here, and that helped do the trick. Pushing as opposed to pulling the slide made a lot of sense to her; the technique became important for her to mastser and eventually solved the problem.
.327 isn't the answer to very many questions. If recoil is an issue, .38spl is more appropriate. Just my opinion. BTW, did you try both overhand and slingshot? Each method stresses the weak hand in a different way.
I know my LCP slide was a bear to rack when the gun was brand new. After 500 or so rounds, it is still rather difficult to rack, however, it seems easier now that I have the 'hang' of just how to best grab it.

If the gun was pretty wet or my hands were wet, I might have some issue racking it, I'm not sure. The combination of a tight recoil spring along with the tiny slide makes it difficult. I'm sure, if I had my wife try it, she probably couldn't rack it all the way open, however my wife has nothing to do with guns. :eek:
I would go either with one of the Beretta tip-up barrel models or a snubby with an easy trigger like a Model 60 Smith and Wesson in .38 Special. The J-frame triggers are an easy pull.
Sounds like it has already been mentioned several times so far but here it is again, in mayby slightly different form.

I've gotten several women who had problems racking the slide on a 1911 to accomplish it in this manner and they didn't believe it could be so much easier.

Assuming her left hand is able to grasp and hold onto the slide, hold it extended outwards pointing slightly downwards and then push with her right hand to work the action (finger off the trigger).

This way lets her select the most comfortable grip position for her weak hand and use the strength of her right arm to do the work.

It's worked for others but I never had any of them having to deal with the pain issue.

Good luck.
Another plug for the Beretta .380 86.

I went through this same thing 2 years ago with my 70 (then) year old mother, she wanted a pistol but couldn't rack the slides of most guns, or deal with the DA pull of revolvers.

We ended up with a Taurus with the same tip up barrel, and she can handle it OK.
I'm looking at one on Impact's site right now, and I'm thinking that it might be the best solution. Lower recoil, solves the racking problem, doesn't have a positive safety. The only trouble is actually finding one. :) I will also have to talk to the guys at Double-Tap for some of their ammo.
I've been through the exact same thing with my mother and while much good advice has already been given, I thought I'd add the option of an NAA Black Widow in .22 Magnum. I understand the bias against the .22. The Magnum out of the 2" barrel in the Widow achieves pretty decent energy. The hammer is easy to cock and after that there's just a single action trigger pull. Recoil is light and the grips are comfy (whether the rubber J-frame style ones or the folding grip). I'm not by any means calling it perfect but it could be something to consider if all else fails.

My wife uses a Sig P-238 with a bullet in the chamber--she has no trouble pulling back the hammer-----BANG !!!!!!!!!!!!
Maybe she can switch hands to rack the slide? Might be worth trying.
One pistol I have used that seemed to have a easy rack was the Star Firestar in 9mm (M43). Relatively well built and reliable too. It has more surface to grab at the rear of the slide.
so could she shoot the lcr ok? It has a good trigger. Get her a lcr with a laser and practice. I think a .327 is a good idea. She could shoot 32h&r or 32 longs and after she warms up to shooting, she could then shoot the 327 mag. Buy her a cheap highpoint 380 and see if she will warm up to the semiauto. If not, throw it in the trash and buy a revolver. Some females just cant rack the slides...its just that way sometimes.
I've been through the exact same thing with my mother and while much good advice has already been given, I thought I'd add the option of an NAA Black Widow in .22 Magnum. I understand the bias against the .22. The Magnum out of the 2" barrel in the Widow achieves pretty decent energy.

That's an interesting option, and just for comparison, .22 Magnum out of a 2" barrel approximates the ballistics performance of .22 LR out of a 6" barrel (of course, the blast & flash of the .22 Magnum will be far greater). These are two very different types of guns optimized for different applications, but I just thought the comparison might be useful. Both can achieve an effective level of penetration for self-defense with non-expanding bullets, and therefore represent a useful minimum standard for this purpose, in my opinion.
If I was going to have her carry a .22, I would set her up with a 1911 conversion, with 15 rd magazines, and show her how to dump them all COM. (She CAN rack THAT slide.)

If your mom can dump a bunch of .22 LR rounds into a target significantly faster and more accurately than she could larger calibers (like my own mom), then maybe it would be the best way to go. While training can overcome much, sometimes physical issues ultimately impose lower limits than we'd normally want (as they do with racking slides), and if this turns out to be true, then you will have significantly narrowed your choices down.

Speaking of smaller calibers that are easier to shoot (and kinder on injured wrists), I wonder how hard it is to rack the slide of a Kel-Tec PMR-30 (30 rounds of .22 WMR would hurt some) or FN Five-seveN, as I've never handled either.

Does the kid have a cracked left wrist that healed incorrectly and the onset of osteoporosis?

Looks like he may soon enough. ;)
Skateboard Tape

Not sure if anyone has tried this, but it worked for my wife who couldn't rack any of my XDs. We tried all the shoulder, body shifting techniques mentioned and she still couldn't do it. The problem appears to be grip versus arm/shoulder strength. Buy a sheet of medium grade skateboard tape, about $5 a sheet. Cut two small strips, about 1/4" X 1" or whatever fits the slide, and stick them to the slide behind the ejection port or wherever she habitually holds. I think you will find there is now enough friction for her to easily rack it. The adhesive is very strong so you don't need to worry about it coming off, even when the pistol gets hot. Apply acetone to remove it should you need to in the future. I have several thousand rounds through the gun and it works great. I also use the tape on the front side of the pistol grip of my daughter's XD Sub-compact with good results.

De Oppresso Liber!
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