Dry Firing

Discussion in '1911 Forum' started by RocketGuy, Dec 30, 2010.

  1. RocketGuy

    RocketGuy New Member

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    Is it best to rack the slide or just pull the hammer back to cock a gun when dry firing.
    Yes I am a newbie.

    Thanks
     
  2. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    Is the gun brand new, or has it been used/broken in and is new to you?

    And there is nothing wrong with being a newbie. We were ALL newbies at one point or another. ;)
     

  3. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    When racking the slide, do not let it slam foward on its own on an empty chamber.
     
  4. RocketGuy

    RocketGuy New Member

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    Thanks for the replies.
    Gun is new, has not been fired. I cleaned and lubed it when I got it, just haven't made it to the range yet.
     
  5. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    In that case I would recommend racking the slide to cock the hammer, and as was indicated, do not let it drop on an empty cylinder, then dry fire.

    The 1911 design was built with dry firing in mind ( the military only had SO much money for ammo, so dry firing was part of training back in the day ), so there is no need for snap caps or anything like that.

    After you rack the slide and let it down gently a few hundred times for break in, then you can just pull the hammer back and dry fire that way in the future.

    The slide racking is to just simulate action use and will help "loosen it up", though opinions on that sort of thing do vary from user to user. There is no harm as long as you don't lock it open and hit the slide release, letting it slam home on an empty chamber.

    Happy practicing. :D
     
  6. RocketGuy

    RocketGuy New Member

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    Thank you Dillinger, very much !
     
  7. HOSSFLY

    HOSSFLY New Member

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    Sums it up :cool:
     
  8. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    letting the slide slam home uncontrolled empty is bad mojo for any semi-auto rifle or pistol, not just 1911's
     
  9. SecPro

    SecPro New Member

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    Also I'd recommend snap caps or dummy rounds of some sort for dry firing.
     
  10. jpg366

    jpg366 New Member

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    Bad practice

    And not on a chambered round either, unless you want a broken extractor.

    Slam home ONLY for feeding a round from the magazine.
     
  11. nightal

    nightal New Member

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    Take out the recoil spring while racking slide a lot makes it easer and won't hurt a thing.
     
  12. CHLChris

    CHLChris New Member

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    What forces would cause an extractor to be damaged from allowing the slide the "slam" forward? I'm just trying to get a better picture about why stripping a round off the magazine (as opposed to an empty chamber) would make a difference.

    When I rack the slide to cock the hammer, I certainly don't just let go and allow it to slam forward. I think I keep my hand on the slide. But I'd like to know exactly what I need to be careful about.

    An added question to this thread concerning etiquette of dry firing. If I know that dry firing is fine, and I know how to do it safely for the weapon, should someone ask for permission of the owner before dry firing someone else's gun? Would anyone here be offended if someone correctly dry-fired their 1911 without asking? (Of course while handling the gun with permission)
     
  13. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    You have to understand the mechanics of the extractor. In the closed battery position, the extractor is down and over the rim of the shell, locked in place basically. If you load a round in the chamber and let the slide slam forward, you are forcing the extractor which is in down mode, to ride up over the ridge/rim of the shell and come to rest where it normally should be in that position.

    In the case of having just ejected a shell, when the slide strips the shell out of the magazine, the extractor has room to move laterally, as it is required to eject the previous shell, so it is part of normal operation and nothing is being forced.

    It all in the design. Battery open and slide back, the extractor is free to eject, and thus move laterly, with it closed, it is SUPPOSED to be firmly in place over the rim of the shell and hold it firmly to get a positive grip upon firing of said weapon.

    Make sense?

    I always ask permission to try the trigger. Anyone in the know understands what will take place and will understand and usually say sure go ahead. Those that do not will suggest a snap cap first, but they are most definitely not required with the 1911 design.

    It's a personal manners/etiquette thing for me. It's there gun, may I try it as intended without shooting it for real?

    JD
     
  14. CHLChris

    CHLChris New Member

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    Etiquette is something that must be learned. Some things aren't purely common sense. And some people are so nice they won't tell you when you just violated proper etiquette. I play golf and get a little bugged every now and then when people don't behave appropriately. I never want to be one of THOSE GUYS.

    And yes the description of the extractor makes sense. So it sounds like one just needs to help the slide forward, keeping with some support hand pressure on it until it slides all the way forward.

    Thank you for being a good teacher, JD!
     
  15. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    Actually I might have just mislead you in re-reading your response to what I posted...LOL

    I was talking about loading a shell in the chamber and letting the slide slam forward over the rim of that shell.

    In the case of just letting the slide slam home, there is a mild concern of the same type of damage to the extractor, but MOST of the damage concern is that you have an #16 or #18 pound spring that is compressed and wants to stretch out.

    Without the added resistance of stripping a shell from the magazine to SLOW the natural motion of that spring expanding, what you have is your slide just SLAMMING into your frame at full force, which is where damage can occur.

    I apologize for the slightly misguided previous statement, I thought you were asking about stripping a round versus loading one in the chamber by hand. :eek: *clearly time for some caffeine*

    JD
     
  16. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    My concern is the sear and hammer set up when someone lets a slide go without a round in the chamber.

    1st, the round acts like a "cushion" as it goes into the chamber, and one should not let the slide slam forward even then. On the first round, gently let slide go forward. One problem that can arise is if firing pin spring is weak, then firing pin may go forward and ignite the primer.

    2nd, most people do not hold the trigger when racking the slide. The 1911a1 is set up that when the slide slams forward (when live firing), the trigger is being held to the rear (pulled) position. Some gunsmiths will use the slide slamming as a test on a limited basis, but continued usage can have adverse affects on the sear / hammer engagement.