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Using the Decocker

This is a discussion on Using the Decocker within the SIG Sauer Pistols forums, part of the SIG Sauer Forum category; I've been a firearms instructor for 25 years and during that time I have been fortunate enough to train under some of the best in ...


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Old 04-22-2011, 12:10 PM   #16
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I've been a firearms instructor for 25 years and during that time I have been fortunate enough to train under some of the best in the country; Pat Rogers, Louis Awerbuck, Ken Campbell, etc. I have also seen some that are very poor.



Unfortunately for you, you found one that was very poor and very dangerous. Lowering the hammer in this manner disengages the firing pin safety and creates an extremely dangerous situation. You would have been well within your rights to walk off the range and demand a refund.



The lesson learned here is that just because someone is offering a class, and calls himself an instructor, does not mean he has some mystical power that makes him smarter than anyone else. In this case he probably does not deserve to own a gun.



Choose carefully.
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Old 04-22-2011, 01:18 PM   #17
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I've had friends do this (Mostly Glock owners) and it drives me nuts.
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Old 04-22-2011, 04:18 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by littlebob View Post
When I was in a carry conceal class the instructor had a sig 226 and to decock it he would place his thumb on the hammer then pull the trigger and slowly let the hammer down.



After seeing this happen a few time I ask… Hay, why don’t you use the Decocker, and would it not be safer to use it.



He answered that he believe it would ware out the Decocker!



Has anyone hear of that before?



LittleBob


Little Bob,



I have been a Sig owner since the late 80's... "Wearing out the decocker" is a new one for me. I have heard some pretty lame excuses for not using the decocker, but I think that one just topped my list. The Sig decocking lever's sole purpose is to safely lower the hammer from the cocked position without a round being discharged. The engineers at Sig would not design a system to wear out, especially being a safety device. There would be some liability issues...



Did the instructor also mention that he didn't use real ammo in the gun because he thought that it would wear the firing pin out?
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Old 04-24-2011, 08:09 AM   #19
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"Did the instructor also mention that he didn't use real ammo in the gun because he thought that it would wear the firing pin out? "



LOL!



LittleBob
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Old 04-24-2011, 10:04 AM   #20
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This is stupid and here's the technical explanation why:



The decocker in theory COULD wear out, and when I say COULD wear out I am saying the arm on the decocking lever that moves the sear out of the way so that the hammer can return to the DA position COULD break off - in the same sense that your frame COULD break in half.



Seriously, all the decocking lever does is manipulate the sear out of the way - the safety lever and firing pin safety never engage and puts the hammer back on the DA position with some help from the mainspring housing.



If the "instructor" and I use that term loosely says he does not want to wear out his decocker, he should not be wearing shoes, lest he wear out the soles.
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:43 AM   #21
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You guys are way overblowing this. I don't mean to be Mr. Argumentative, and I understand the concern for safety, but let's really think about this.



First of all: the muzzle shouldn't be pointed in the direction of any person at any time, regardless of how the hammer is being let down.



People who trust safety mechanisms and de-cockers 100%...are people who have accidents. Those mechanisms are backup options for common sense and personal responsibility.



I agree that the "it could wear out" excuse is really, really lame. It would have been better had he said, "I don't trust it".



And for the record: I don't intend to ever buy a double-action handgun without a de-cocker. Just in case I don't like the hammer tension.



But to all the puritans who are decrying this instructor: I'd like to know how you think a 1911 or a lever-action rifle should be de-cocked.



Quote:
Originally Posted by col132 View Post
Lowering the hammer in this manner disengages the firing pin safety and creates an extremely dangerous situation.
I could be wrong in how I understand internal safeties...but isn't it possible to let the trigger reset before lowering the hammer all the way, and thereby re-engaging the safety? I know that Sigs don't traditionally have a half-cock setting, but I would think that any firearm with both a half-cock hammer position and a firing pin safety would have to allow for that.



In which case, it's entirely possible that the firing safety could still be used as a fall-back should your thumb fail.



Quote:
Originally Posted by BrickTop View Post
I've had friends do this (Mostly Glock owners) and it drives me nuts.
How do you de-cock a hammerless DAO pistol with your thumb?
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Old 04-25-2011, 01:40 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txshurricane View Post
But to all the puritans who are decrying this instructor: I'd like to know how you think a 1911 or a lever-action rifle should be de-cocked.


I'm with you on this one, but my thoughts on the 1911 are that you really don't decock the 1911 while there is a round in the chamber. That's primarily why they have the hammer guard. Frankly, if I tried decocking my Ed Brown with a round in the chamber I'd have it going off half the time. That hammer cannot be eased forward very easily. It is simply wicked.



That being said, my Kimber 1911 is easy to decock and the sig 226 I just got does not seem to be a big issue. No matter what, I'd just be dang sure the pistol was pointed somewhere safe or at least at someone I don't like (kidding here, just kidding)



So yea, I agree, ease up on the instructor. He might not trust the decocker. It's understandable.
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Old 04-25-2011, 02:46 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txshurricane View Post
In which case, it's entirely possible that the firing safety could still be used as a fall-back should your thumb fail.


It's my understanding, someone corerect me if I am wrong, that when one pulls the trigger to decock using the thumb on the hammer method, the safeties are disengaged ( that's why we can fire the gun). The decocker works while keeping the safeties in place.



One slip of the thumb and 'BANG', regardles of direction, that's not a good situation.



I respectfully disagree with giving this instructor a break. He did not say he did not trust it, he said it could wear out. That's beyond poor word choice in my opinion.



As far as 1911's are concerned, their safety system is built around the manual safety and grip safety. One does not decock, they put the manual safety on.



DAO's automatically decock as part of their function, no comparison to be made here.
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Old 04-25-2011, 06:01 PM   #24
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I'm getting quite a laugh at the anonymous down-votes on my post above. Obviously there are at least two people in this world who have forgotten that de-cockers are a fairly recent development.



These are the same people that would leave a car in neutral and set the parking brake. Derp derp.



Quote:
Originally Posted by bbach View Post
I'm with you on this one, but my thoughts on the 1911 are that you really don't decock the 1911 while there is a round in the chamber. That's primarily why they have the hammer guard. Frankly, if I tried decocking my Ed Brown with a round in the chamber I'd have it going off half the time. That hammer cannot be eased forward very easily. It is simply wicked.
In my opinion - what's good for the goose is good for the gander. Okay, so you wouldn't de-cock the 1911 with a round in the chamber. Unless I'm missing something, the instructor in the O.P. was also de-cocking an unloaded pistol. Why is it safer to de-cock an empty 1911 than an empty double-action?



That's rhetorical, by the way - I understand that you're not necessarily disagreeing.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Reliable View Post
It's my understanding, someone corerect me if I am wrong, that when one pulls the trigger to decock using the thumb on the hammer method, the safeties are disengaged ( that's why we can fire the gun). The decocker works while keeping the safeties in place.



One slip of the thumb and 'BANG', regardles of direction, that's not a good situation.
Well, I experimented with one of my Sigs, and it turns out you can pull the trigger to the break, then let the trigger reset before you lower the hammer. When the trigger resets, the internal safety re-engages. You cannot push the hammer all the way to the firing pin unless you hold the trigger back.



So, as far as Sigs go - as long as you don't hold the trigger, your thumb can slip and the gun still wouldn't fire. Theoretically.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Reliable View Post
I respectfully disagree with giving this instructor a break. He did not say he did not trust it, he said it could wear out. That's beyond poor word choice in my opinion.
I agree with that. But really I suppose I'm responding to anyone who generalized about people and firearms safety in general.







Just a quick side note: I know an Army vet who de-cocked a Beretta PX4 Storm using the de-cocker, and it fired. Beretta inspected it and found it to be of sound manufacturing. They did nothing but clean it and send him some safety tips. I didn't want to mention it at first, because it was an embarrassing incident and I was afraid people would take potshots at him without knowing the context, but since it's appropriate to the conversation...there you have it. Once again: people who trust firearms safeties unconditionally are people who have accidents.
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Old 04-26-2011, 01:11 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txshurricane View Post
Well, I experimented with one of my Sigs, and it turns out you can pull the trigger to the break, then let the trigger reset before you lower the hammer. When the trigger resets, the internal safety re-engages. You cannot push the hammer all the way to the firing pin unless you hold the trigger back.



So, as far as Sigs go - as long as you don't hold the trigger, your thumb can slip and the gun still wouldn't fire. Theoretically.




Sorry, I am not basing firearm safety on "as long as". The point is you still have to pull the trigger and that sudden forward motion of the hammer is the most likely risk of a slip.



Decockers my be recent, but I would bet, in part, they were developed for the very reason I described.



I do not question the example you provided as I am not familiar with it, but even putting a car in park or gear can fail too.
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Old 04-26-2011, 04:53 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reliable View Post
Sorry, I am not basing firearm safety on "as long as". The point is you still have to pull the trigger and that sudden forward motion of the hammer is the most likely risk of a slip.



Decockers my be recent, but I would bet, in part, they were developed for the very reason I described.
I completely respect your opinion.



The bottom line for me from this discussion is: the only truly, 100% safe way to de-cock any firearm is to do it on an empty chamber. How you do it, then, becomes a discretionary matter.

This is true for rifles, it's true for 1911s, and it's true for double actions. Anything less than that is a risk, and it's up to the user to decide how to best avoid an accidental or negligent discharge.



I don't believe that anyone who is just foolish enough to use the de-cocker on any loaded pistol has any clout saying that someone else is somehow less qualified to handle firearms because they de-cock an unloaded pistol by the hammer.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Reliable View Post
I do not question the example you provided as I am not familiar with it, but even putting a car in park or gear can fail too.
Which is why you always have the wheels turned away from traffic.
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Old 04-26-2011, 12:26 PM   #27
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Copied directly from SIG P226 Owner's Manual :



4.3 Loading the pistol (ready to fire)



1. Point the pistol in a safe direction.



2. Insert a full magazine and ensure it is engaged.



3. Pull the slide back fully and release, allowing the slide to fly forward.



4. Push down the decocking lever with your thumb (Not valid for DAO/DAK pistols).



2.1.3 What You Should Know About the Decocking Lever



The decocking lever on the SIG SAUER pistol is designed for the express purpose of







decocking the firearm. The reason it is there is because it is not safe practice to decock a







pistol by pulling the trigger and attempting to ease the hammer forward manually.







To decock your pistol, push down the decocking lever (keep your finger OFF the trigger while







you do this).



 
Old 04-26-2011, 12:31 PM   #28
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Copied directly from SIG P226 Owner's Manual Part 2:



Always use the decocking lever to decock your SIG SAUER pistol. This is the only way to



safely lower the hammer from the cocked position and prevent an accidental discharge. This



warning applies to all pistols with decocking levers.



The positive way to safely lower the hammer is by use of the decocking lever. Never lower



the hammer by pulling the trigger and attempting to ease the hammer forward manually.



Manually lowering the hammer is dangerous and prevents full application of the pistol’s



safety features.



The decocking lever is the only proper means of lowering the hammer and assuring that the



hammer rests in the intercept notch.



Again,







DO NOT THUMB THE HAMMER DOWN:



the consequence can be serious injury or death –







only and ALWAYS use the decocking



lever!



 
Old 04-26-2011, 01:54 PM   #29
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Can you please also copy/paste the part where Sig denies all liability from use of their firearm?
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Old 04-26-2011, 02:11 PM   #30
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Gladly - right after You find a Firearms Manufacturer that doesn't have a disclaimer! Hell Ruger even Junks up their guns with Warnings!



2. REALLY ?



Quote:
Originally Posted by txshurricane View Post
Can you please also copy/paste the part where Sig denies all liability from use of their firearm?
 
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