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Thread: 1911 hammer down...

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    Newbie cato's Avatar
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    1911 hammer down...

    With one in the chamber and the hammer down is a 1911 SA considered to be two stages from firing for the purpose of non-licensed lawful open carry?

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    Quote Originally Posted by cato View Post
    With one in the chamber and the hammer down is a 1911 SA considered to be two stages from firing for the purpose of non-licensed lawful open carry?
    Utah's UNLOADED definition has two parts: One is the so called 2 actions before firing, the other absolutely specifies that the camber MUST BE EMPTY on a semi-auto and on a revolver that the cylinder under the hammer be empty and also the next cylinder in sequence ALSO MUST BE EMPTY!

    The above only applies to those without a concealed carry permit!
    Last edited by JoeSparky; 01-16-2011 at 09:53 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeSparky View Post
    Utah's UNLOADED definition has two parts: One is the so called 2 actions before firing, the other absolutely specifies that the camber MUST BE EMPTY on a semi-auto and on a revolver that the cylinder under the hammer be empty and also the next cylinder in sequence ALSO MUST BE EMPTY!

    The above only applies to those without a concealed carry permit!
    +1 Joe - very concise and correct explanation of Utah Law
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    Joe has answered the question about Utah law very well.

    My question is how does the OP propose to safely lower a 1911 hammer onto a live cartridge?

    A 1911 is designed to be carried cocked and locked. If the hammer is to be carried down, it really should be carried with an empty chamber.

    Charles

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    Quote Originally Posted by utbagpiper View Post
    Joe has answered the question about Utah law very well.

    My question is how does the OP propose to safely lower a 1911 hammer onto a live cartridge?

    A 1911 is designed to be carried cocked and locked. If the hammer is to be carried down, it really should be carried with an empty chamber.

    Charles
    You are of course correct Charles, due to the fact that a dropped firearm may result in a discharge, but the Model 1911 has the 1/4 cocked position that will prevent such a discharge. (I just went and checked this on all my Model 1911s.)
    My cats support the Second Amendment. NRA Life Member, NRA Instructor: Pistol, Rifle, & Personal Protection - NRA Certified Range Safety Officer, Utah BCI Certified Concealed Firearm Permit Instructor.
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    Thanks, this hypothetical question came up recently in another discussion.

    On another note when is the great State of Utah going to repeal this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by jpm84092 View Post
    You are of course correct Charles, due to the fact that a dropped firearm may result in a discharge, but the Model 1911 has the 1/4 cocked position that will prevent such a discharge. (I just went and checked this on all my Model 1911s.)
    Dropping the gun is the secondary concern. The primary concern is how to safely drop the hammer on a live round.

    Yes, one can lower the hammer slowly, thus preventing a discharge. And, done with two hands it can be done fairly reliably. Some fancy themselves good enough to do it safely with a single hand. But the fact remains, that the 1911 is not designed with any guaranteed safe way to lower the hammer onto a live round. One of the basic rules of handing a gun is to not put your finger on the trigger until you want to discharge the gun. But to decock a 1911, you have to flat out pull the trigger as if you were discharging the gun, but then prevent a discharge my retarding the fall of the spring loaded hammer.

    The only ND to which I've ever been a personal witness was someone lowering the hammer on his 1911. That was his preferred carry method and I expect he'd done it hundreds if not thousands of times. This time his thumb slipped. I don't know why, but it did. Fortunately, he was observing the other rules of safe gun handling and the bullet did not strike anything important. The recoiling slide did a bit of a number on the webbing between his thumb and index finger. But no real or lasting damage inflicted.

    Charles

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    Quote Originally Posted by cato View Post
    Thanks, this hypothetical question came up recently in another discussion.

    On another note when is the great State of Utah going to repeal this?
    We have a bill this year that would give us full, constitutional carry: loaded or not, open or concealed, as the owner/carrier desires.

    Charles

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    Cocked and Locked

    If the 1911 is handled/carried correctly, John Browning designed the first loaded chamber indicator.

    Cocked and locked: Chamber Loaded
    Hammer Down: Empty Chamber
    Last edited by combatcarry; 01-27-2011 at 03:11 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by utbagpiper View Post
    But the fact remains, that the 1911 is not designed with any guaranteed safe way to lower the hammer onto a live round.
    I'm not advocating Condition 2 carry, but please don't rely on the weapon's design to make your argument. In this instance, the history doesn't support the assertion.

    See the discussion in this thread:

    http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...=1#post1449717

    I only seek to see condition 1 advocated for nothing but the strongest possible reasons.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marshaul View Post
    I'm not advocating Condition 2 carry, but please don't rely on the weapon's design to make your argument. In this instance, the history doesn't support the assertion.

    ...

    I only seek to see condition 1 advocated for nothing but the strongest possible reasons.
    I stand by my statement that there is no guaranteed safe method to decock a loaded 1911.

    While the gun was obviously designed to allow manual decocking it was not designed with a fail safe method of doing so. Pulling the trigger with a live round in the chamber when you do not intend to put a hole in anything is a direct violation of one of the most widely accepted rules of safe gun handling.

    Browning was a great gun designer. But nobody is infallible and the addition of the thumb safety to allow safe carry cocked-and-locked is a significant improvement over requiring the operator to manually decock. Guaranteed safe decocking levers on newer gun designs are another testament of the foolishness of needlessly decocking a loaded gun manually.

    Further, I can see no safety nor tactical benefit to carrying condition two rather than condition 1. Therefore, taking any risk at all to move from condition 1 to condition 2 cannot be justified in any objective cost-benefit analysis unless undue benefit is given to mere visual perception of those ignorant of safe handling procedures and design.

    All the best.

    Charles

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    not sure if this has been mentioned yet but i was always taught to one thumb between the hammer and the pin so there is no accidental miss fire while releasing the hammer
    "best shooting gun is the gun you shoot best" tony mar

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    Campaign Veteran marshaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by utbagpiper View Post
    I stand by my statement that there is no guaranteed safe method to decock a loaded 1911.

    While the gun was obviously designed to allow manual decocking it was not designed with a fail safe method of doing so. Pulling the trigger with a live round in the chamber when you do not intend to put a hole in anything is a direct violation of one of the most widely accepted rules of safe gun handling.

    Browning was a great gun designer. But nobody is infallible and the addition of the thumb safety to allow safe carry cocked-and-locked is a significant improvement over requiring the operator to manually decock. Guaranteed safe decocking levers on newer gun designs are another testament of the foolishness of needlessly decocking a loaded gun manually.

    Further, I can see no safety nor tactical benefit to carrying condition two rather than condition 1. Therefore, taking any risk at all to move from condition 1 to condition 2 cannot be justified in any objective cost-benefit analysis unless undue benefit is given to mere visual perception of those ignorant of safe handling procedures and design.

    All the best.

    Charles
    I agree with all this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by k31 View Post
    not sure if this has been mentioned yet but i was always taught to one thumb between the hammer and the pin so there is no accidental miss fire while releasing the hammer
    Decreases the risk but does not eliminate it as the thumb between the hammer and pin can slip, the thumb on the hammer can slip before the other thumb is in place ect.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jpm84092 View Post
    You are of course correct Charles, due to the fact that a dropped firearm may result in a discharge, but the Model 1911 has the 1/4 cocked position that will prevent such a discharge. (I just went and checked this on all my Model 1911s.)
    My understanding is that the 1/2 cocked position (that's the term I've commonly heard) is not a safety per se. It is in fact designed to prevent the hammer from falling on the firing pin should one's thumb slip while cocking the gun from Condition Two -- something that most experts these days agree should not be used. In the 1/2 cock position, the hammer is resting on the rather delicate trigger sear, and if dropped on the hammer could easily break the sear resulting in a possible AD -- that is assuming no firing pin interlock. Furthermore, if you'll check, you'll find that you can't pull the trigger which is in the 1/2 cock position because the sear is in a notch. Actually you can pull it, but doing so hard enough will break the sear. Given the fact that most experts agree that Condition Two is a bad idea, you should never have reason to put the gun in 1/2 cock, says I.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alneuman View Post
    My understanding is that the 1/2 cocked position (that's the term I've commonly heard) is not a safety per se. It is in fact designed to prevent the hammer from falling on the firing pin should one's thumb slip while cocking the gun from Condition Two -- something that most experts these days agree should not be used. In the 1/2 cock position, the hammer is resting on the rather delicate trigger sear, and if dropped on the hammer could easily break the sear resulting in a possible AD -- that is assuming no firing pin interlock. Furthermore, if you'll check, you'll find that you can't pull the trigger which is in the 1/2 cock position because the sear is in a notch. Actually you can pull it, but doing so hard enough will break the sear. Given the fact that most experts agree that Condition Two is a bad idea, you should never have reason to put the gun in 1/2 cock, says I.
    I yield to your argument. It has merit and logic. So, I amend my position. For the Model 1911, the two safe carry methods are Condition 1 cocked and locked - or - unloaded within the meaning of Utah Law (no round in the chamber - hammer down).
    My cats support the Second Amendment. NRA Life Member, NRA Instructor: Pistol, Rifle, & Personal Protection - NRA Certified Range Safety Officer, Utah BCI Certified Concealed Firearm Permit Instructor.
    "Permission Slips" from Utah, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arizona, and Florida. _ Verily, thou shalt not fiddle with thine firearm whilst in the bathroom stall, lest thine spouse seek condolences from thine friends.

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    1911 Hammer, Safety, Sear Diagram

    I came across a website with a good diagram of the 1911 hammer, safety and sear.

    http://www.sightm1911.com/lib/tech/cockedandlocked.htm

    There's also this related link to the "conditions of readiness."

    http://www.sightm1911.com/Care/1911_conditions.htm

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