Originally Posted by eborden1122
Look at the manual and see what it says.
I have an XDm Compact 9mm. The manual says Copyright 2011, so it's pretty current. They make two slightly different statements in the space of about 4 pages.
First statement : "Before attempting to shoot, practice operations by using snap caps (dummy rounds). Become familiar with the safety features, trigger control, and handling of the firearm."
Second statement : "Before attempting to load this firearm with live ammunition, follow the sequence of operations shown here without ammunition or with dummy rounds. By practicing operations with snap caps (or with dummy rounds), you will become familiar with:
* Safety features,
* Trigger control (snap caps),
* Handling of your firearm."
The phrase "without ammunition" leaves a door open for misinterpretation by anyone looking for the excuse to skip the snap caps. But in context, they both tell the owner to use snap caps for trigger practice. I think the "without ammunition" phrase is there because the statement is about the entire sequence of operations, including locking the gun, field stripping, cleaning and reassembly, all of which must be done without rounds.
When I have tried to use snap caps for trigger practice, I find that the snap cap gets ejected when I try to "bump" the slide to re-cock the trigger. It's possible to pull the slide back about 1/4" and re-cock the trigger without dislodging the snap cap. But much more than that and the snap cap pops out of the chamber and either jams the gun or ejects completely.
Ejecting is just a nuisance. After 5 repetitions, I'm crawling around the living room chasing snap caps.
But I worry about the jams creating problems in the action of the gun. Maybe all the working parts of the gun are harder than the soft metal of the snap cap. Anybody know about that for sure?
Personally I prefer empty dry-fire for a somewhat different reason. The XDm comes equipped with a loaded chamber indicator. I find that indicator (showing empty) to be very reassuring when I'm dry-firing. I've tried both ways, and find the snap caps to be a nuisance. But the manual is pretty clear about recommending them.