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Old 06-18-2011, 05:13 PM   #1
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Default Auto-Forwarding, do you practice it?

I didn't find out about Auto-Forwarding until I purchased an M&P handgun a couple weeks ago. I had no idea what it was at the time and I just assumed it was a malfunction. My Glock never did this, nor did my Beretta M92.

If you don't know what Auto-Forwarding is, it's when you slam in a new magazine into your handgun and the slide stop drops by itself and slide moves forward, loading a new cartridge into the chamber.



I personally called Smith and Wesson customer service and I was told that this is intentional and it is used for "Tactical Reloading". I talked to my friends and they agreed, they told me that their guns do it as well.


So do you practice this Auto-Forward technique when reloading your handguns?
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Old 06-18-2011, 05:44 PM   #2
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My definition of a "Tactical Reload" is one where I don't shoot the weapon dry.

Shooting the weapon dry and locking the slide back means you are out of ammo. In a combat situation, where a "Tactical Reload" would be necessary, it would be prudent NOT to have an empty weapon in my personal opinion and those that I have taken some training from.

In the video I noticed that when the XD on demonstration was banged on the back of the slide, it dropped off lockback. Not ideal in my opinion and to have a feature built in to automatically drop on a loaded mag isn't really a feature I would embrace for my own personal carry weapon.

I saw that if inserted without duress that the weapon remained locked back, but if slammed home it automatically dropped the slide. I can see how that would be beneficial to some lines of thinking. However I would honestly like to look at the specs of how much pressure it takes to automatically drop the slide.

Over-exuberance of a new shooter could easily lead to a hot weapon pointed in the wrong direction.

It's an interesting concept, but not one that I would personally put forth or choose for myself.

As a direct answer to your question, it would be no. I don't practice it, because none of my weapons automatically drop on a loaded mag on their own. If they did, I would create a workaround for that feature or dump the weapon altogether.

JD

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Old 06-18-2011, 05:59 PM   #3
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I like this feature on my M&P. It took minimal training to determine how much force to apply when inserting the mag - weather I was doing slow reloads or was doing 'tactical reloads'. The force required is very deliberate. In fact in the first couple of months I owned my M&P when they first came out, I was unaware of this feature until I was doing drills - thought it was a malfunction and contacted S&W about it.

In my opinion, every bullet counts and I'm friggin out of my mind if I'm going to count how many shots I've taken in a high stress self defense shooting situation - I'd end up dropping a mag with three perfectly good rounds in it . This feature takes one more movement out of a reload which can be very precious.

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Old 06-18-2011, 06:59 PM   #4
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I prefer consistency. The one time you expect your pistol to do that, and it doesn't, is the one time you will left standing there confused.

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Old 06-18-2011, 07:09 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by dnthmn2004 View Post

In my opinion, every bullet counts and I'm friggin out of my mind if I'm going to count how many shots I've taken in a high stress self defense shooting situation - I'd end up dropping a mag with three perfectly good rounds in it . This feature takes one more movement out of a reload which can be very precious.
You'd be surprised how much clarity takes over when you are concentrating on what you are doing.

In some of the training at Valhalla where we were doing escort and protect drills I went through several mags dropping with only one round or on the magic number as we made our way through different rooms with unknown "adversaries".

There were also times when I dropped two or three rounds, but a full mag before I went through the next door made a difference on what I found on the other side.

If the feature works for you, that's great. Use it!

For me personally I will stick with the Riddle of Steel and a positive release on a locked slide.

JD
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Old 06-18-2011, 07:29 PM   #6
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My opinion its a major design flaw gunmakers are attempting to call a "feature" in order not to have recalls.

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Old 06-18-2011, 09:21 PM   #7
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If my 1911 did that, I would disqualify myself from the competition.

I should control the slide.

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Old 06-18-2011, 11:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dillinger View Post
You'd be surprised how much clarity takes over when you are concentrating on what you are doing.

In some of the training at Valhalla where we were doing escort and protect drills I went through several mags dropping with only one round or on the magic number as we made our way through different rooms with unknown "adversaries".

There were also times when I dropped two or three rounds, but a full mag before I went through the next door made a difference on what I found on the other side.

If the feature works for you, that's great. Use it!

For me personally I will stick with the Riddle of Steel and a positive release on a locked slide.

JD
With all due respect JD, you are absolutely correct about the undesirability of shooting a gun dry BUT sometimes you HAVE to. Please know that I'm not trying to be contentious, just relating what I have been lucky to learn from folks that are on the cutting edge of modern combat training (guys that are writing the new manuals). This is not from a shooting school, this is from active duty personel that are ventilating bad guys as we speak. Please know that I'm not putting down your training in any way shape or form. Valhala was a fine training center.

Moder training is shifting away from the term "Tactical Reloads" swiftly which is fine by me, I HATE that term. The terms most commonly used now are "reload" and "magazine exchange" which is kind of nice since they address the situations and nessesary actions in plain English.

In the scenario that you described where you clear one room and you have a natural pause with a lower threat level it is indeed wise to exchange mags so you go into the next scenario with a topped off gun. The same if you actually shoot a bad guy and the threat is basically over. You would scan the area and if no other perceived threat is there you then swap the mag for a full one so again you have a fully loaded gun at your disposal.

But in a scenario wher multiple threats are coming at you (just one example)and the shooting is fast and furious it is faster to reload a dry gun than to stop to do a magazine swap. It is not good for your health to stop shooting to exchange mags when you can just reload on the run. So in summary, if there is still shooting to get done, you shoot to dry and reload. If there is a pause in the action, specially when cover is available it is wise to swap mags.

Now on the subject of "auto forwarding" my HK P2000 and P2000SK both do that and I was surprised the first time it happened a few years back. Then I spent some time with them training and was informed that it is on purpose (hummmm). Never knew there was a name for it. The jury is still out on whether it is a design feature or an inevitable manufacturing defect. The problem is that if you make a slide locking mechanism that is strong enough to hang on to a slide while a double stack mag full with heavy ammo is driven home with authority you also will have a slide lock that is hell to disengage with just your thumb.

Now I'm sure some folks will say that if you reload a gun correctly you will NOT be using the slide locking mechanism to release the slide. Well folks you'll be happy to know that even within the elites there is a division of opinion on that subject but that is not for this thread.

I just got off the phone discussing this very subject with someone who trains some very cool folks that use the H&K USP as their standard sidearm which has the same tendency to slam the slide home when you smack a mag into the well. He actually discourages this for a different reason. His research has shown that if you are slamming the mag that forcefully home then you are not doing it in a smooth fashion which means you are loosing time on the reload. He would rather make the motion of inserting a mag smoother and then sweep the same hand over the slide and bring it home. If done correctly and smoothly the slide will NOT unlock when you push the mag home. But by the way other folks that I also respect a LOT have learned to live with the "feature" and have decided to use it in their training with great success.

Hey as long as you can get the shots out to the targets fast and accurate does it really matter how you get it done
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Old 06-19-2011, 12:35 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wambli View Post
With all due respect JD, you are absolutely correct about the undesirability of shooting a gun dry BUT sometimes you HAVE to.
See, invariably someone uses that phrase and then contradicts it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Wambli View Post
Please know that I'm not trying to be contentious, just relating what I have been lucky to learn from folks that are on the cutting edge of modern combat training (guys that are writing the new manuals). This is not from a shooting school, this is from active duty personel that are ventilating bad guys as we speak. Please know that I'm not putting down your training in any way shape or form. Valhala was a fine training center.
There are a LOT of opinions out there and there are a LOT of people out there that have spent time in real shooting situations. A lot of them are opening schools based on their "experiences". Some are good schools, but be careful you don't get the guy who got half his team killed in an ambush in the sandbox, then opened a school based on his "experience" where he featured having students stand downrange during live fire exercises.

Rob Pincus and his crew at Valhalla were absolutely great trainers and safety was number one. Rob is a member here and currently heads I.C.E. (another quality training outfit). I have also spent time with the types of folks you describe and there is always a difference of opinion on the topic because no two ways of approaching a shooting situation will be the same.

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Originally Posted by Wambli View Post
In the scenario that you described where you clear one room and you have a natural pause with a lower threat level it is indeed wise to swap mags so you go into the next scenario with a topped off gun. The same if you actually shoot a bad guy and the threat is basically over. You would scan the area and if no other perceived threat is there you then swap the mag for a full one so again you have a fully loaded gun at your disposal.
Okay.....

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Originally Posted by Wambli View Post
But in a scenario wher multiple threats are coming at you (just one example)and the shooting is fast and furious it is faster to reload a dry gun than to stop to do a magazine swap. It is not good for your health to stop shooting to swap mags when you can just reload on the run. So in summary, if there is still shooting to get done, you shoot to dry and reload. If there is a pause in the action, specially when cover is available it is wise to swap mags.


1) How many civilians do you know that have been in MULTIPLE threat shooting situations with a pistol? For that matter, how many police officers have engaged MULTIPLE threats with a pistol??

If you are in a multiple threat shooting situation with a pistol, your tactics suck.

2) Gonna have to disagree with you. An empty weapon is an empty weapon. Once you have officially shot it dry, you then have to process that fact and be moving to change the magazine. With the thought of changing magazines during a shooting situation the weapon is still hot and allows you to fire and move.

As evidenced by the North Hollywood Shootout. The police officer that was caught in the middle of the street, I forget his name, shot his sidearm dry and was changing magazines when he was hit with AP rounds from the gunman. He was the guy who was rescued by the guys who commandeered the armored truck. Now you can say the guy would have ended up getting shot anyways, and you might be right.

The other side of that coin is that Shooter #2 shot his handgun dry (Beretta 92 just like the police officer), was reloading and got hit with a near fatal round from another police officer about the same time he allegedly reloaded and shot himself under the chin.

Look, if you find yourself in the middle of a football field with 5 targets to engage, you are probably going to die even if you have 100 rounds at your disposal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wambli View Post
Now on the subject of "auto forwarding" my HK P2000 and P2000SK both do that and I was surprised the first time it happened a few years back. Then I spent some time with them training and was informed that it is on purpose (hummmm). Never knew there was a name for it. The jury is still out on whether it is a design feature or an inevitable manufacturing defect. The problem is that if you make a slide locking mechanism that is strong enough to hang on to a slide while a double stack mag full with heavy ammo is driven home with authority you also will have a slide lock that is hell to disengage with just your thumb.
Okay, that is now two weapons that are offering the "feature" so it leads me to believe this isn't a manufacturing error and someone thought this through. Leads credit to the fact that this may indeed be a forthcoming training type, mindset or "manual of the moment" dictate.

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Originally Posted by Wambli View Post
Now I'm sure some folks will say that if you reload a gun correctly you will NOT be using the slide locking mechanism to release the slide. Well folks you'll be happy to know that even within the elites there is a division of opinion on that subject but that is not for this thread.
I don't use the slide release. Used to use it exclusively. Spent some time shooting with some folks who don't use it and why they don't. Their training stuck and I don't use it either now. To each their own.

Quote:
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Hey as long as you can get the shots out to the targets fast and accurate does it really matter how you get it done
Which is what I said above. If it works for you, that is the most important feature the weapon can provide. Does it work for you? Great, use it!
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Old 06-19-2011, 01:02 AM   #10
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Thanks for taking my comments in the light they were offered. Healthy discussion on these subjects is nessesary for folks to see different points of view and evaluate/try different things and see what works for them. I agree with your point of the likelyhood of encountering multiple targets but I have been told that if you train to the worst possible the normal will seem like a walk in the park. That has served me well.

In any case I also mentioned that multiple targets was only ONE scenario that shooting to slide lock applies to. Think of a guy high on the exotic drug of the day, still coming at you while you empty your 1911 into him. At which point do you stop (while you still have ammo in your mag) to do a magazine exchange? But in any case we can just agree to disagree on this one point.

Your point about choosing "schools" is absolutely right on the money. Any idiot can hang a shooting instructor shingle and get someone to pay for their "services". Even when you pick the right school you still have to deal with the lowest mouth breather in the class slowing things down too. I've been very lucky that my training is (and has been over the years) one on one at the hands of good folks that are the top of their field.

Anyway thanks for the lively exchange.

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