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SPaikmos
04-21-2011, 9:35 PM
I apologize if this is obvious or has already been asked... I did a search, and most of what I got was SP-01 Tactical questions :p

My question is, why would someone want a decocker vs a safety? I haven't handled either much (I have a glock). I'm curious what the advantages and disadvantages are for the two systems. And, can a gun have a safety + decocker, or is that a silly idea?

DannyZRC
04-21-2011, 9:44 PM
there are plenty of guns with both a safety and a decocker.

some guns have a safety that decocks the gun when on the safe position, other guns have a decocking operation separate from the safety.

a gun that is decocked but is not on safe has a double action trigger pull (usually longer than half an inch pull travel, and a consistent resistance of around 10lbs for the entire travel) for the first shot, and then the action of the pistol cocks the hammer for subsequent shots on Single Action (usually 1/4 inch or thereabouts travel, most of which is very lightly resisted, increasing to 4-5lbs resistance right before the shot breaks).

many guns with a safety are intended to be carried on single action, with the safety engaged, so all shots are fired with the short and light SA trigger.

some people are not comfortable with their ability to consistently disengage a safety in a high-stress defensive shooting, others are not confident of their ability to manage the heavy and long trigger pull of double action.

some people are not comfortable with either, and they shoot glocks and glock-offs.

pick your poison, heh.

smittty
04-21-2011, 9:47 PM
HK USP has one lever that is both safety and decocker so yes it's possible to have both on one gun,

The purpose of the decocker is to safey drop the hammer to half-cock or uncock the hammer. With a gun that doesn't have a decocker you have to manually hold and drop the hammer while you squeeze the trigger.

Trusting a human to safety drop a hammer while squeezing the trigger is an obvious hazard therefore the manufacturers devised a safer method for uncocking the hammer...someone called it a decocker and I guess the name stuck!

Safety vs decocker is a personal preference.

I prefer the decocker instead of a manual safety. I carry my guns in double action so my first shot requires a long trigger pull. Follow-up shots are single action and when I'm finished if there is still a live round in the chamber I use the decocker to bring the gun back to double action mode.

No safety means I don't have to do anything other than squeeze the trigger just like with your Glock. The difference with the Glock is that every squeeze of the trigger feels the same regardless if it's the first shot or the last.

SPaikmos
04-21-2011, 9:54 PM
Thanks. That clears up a lot of my confusion.

The thing I'm not quite understanding is dropping the hammer. In the glock, if there's a round chambered, I simply drop the mag and rack the slide to eject the round. I imagine that should work the same way with a decocker gun?

So in a sense, the DA pull acts as a "safety" in that it requires more resistance to fire? And an SA gun would want to be "cocked and locked" (this is the correct term, yes?) because you cannot fire it until you cock it, and once you cock it you want to lock it?

Hmm... one more question then. My glock acts as a SA only gun, so it stays cocked and "unlocked" in my holster. Can other SA guns be carried that way (i.e. cocked and safety off) or is there a chance of an AD due to the design of the gun?

DannyZRC
04-21-2011, 10:12 PM
a glock is only partially cocked, the trigger pull finishes the rearward stroke of the striker before releasing it forward to impact the primer. some people debate that this qualifies as double action, since the glock trigger cannot cock the striker from a rest position. this only matters if the mechanisms restraining the cocked striker breaks, as long as the pistol is functional the state of the ignition mechanism isn't really germane to a discussion on safety.

a glock is not substantially different from a DA/SA gun that is cocked to single action, the trigger pull is a tiny bit longer and the break is about 1lb heavier, the most substantive difference is probably the small trigger safety, which reduced the cross section available for random objects to interact with the trigger and fire the gun.

some people see red when you say a cocked sig/beretta are hardly different from a glock, because those magical letters "DAO" in the BATF classification are their talisman against accidents.

erikdjs
04-21-2011, 10:13 PM
Hmm... one more question then. My glock acts as a SA only gun, so it stays cocked and "unlocked" in my holster. Can other SA guns be carried that way (i.e. cocked and safety off) or is there a chance of an AD due to the design of the gun?

IMO all guns should be carried with one in the chamber.

DannyZRC
04-21-2011, 10:15 PM
IMO all guns should be carried with one in the chamber.

not under dispute here.

THE NEW GUY
04-21-2011, 11:18 PM
The Sig 220, rack the slide and hit the decocker and have about 10 lbs of pull on the trigger.

Do not hit the decocker and now its down to 3-5 lbs of pull.

Think of your glock...

rack it and pull the trigger at 3 lbs of pressure, or hit the decocker and now that first pull is 10 lbs.

PandaLuv
04-21-2011, 11:39 PM
I am a new gun owner and I chose to have my first handgun to have a decocker only. Manual safety with DA/SA is unnecessary.

mixwell
04-21-2011, 11:58 PM
Taurus pt92 has a 1911 style safety and when pressed down decocks like a sig or beretta 92

wang949
04-22-2011, 12:10 AM
Do you guys believe that if you practice enough with condition 1 (round chambered, hammer back, manual safety on), that your muscle memory will kick in during a stressful situation and remember to disengage the safety??

ilkhan
04-22-2011, 12:12 AM
The biggest difference between SAO/safety and DA/SA(de-cocked) is that you have to manually disengage the safety on the SAO. Its a separate motion between draw and "bang".
I prefer DA/SA over SAO, but ironically I have a 1911 and not a DA/SA gun. Yet (it'll be a P220).

DannyZRC
04-22-2011, 12:58 AM
I am a new gun owner and I chose to have my first handgun to have a decocker only. Manual safety with DA/SA is unnecessary.

Necessary is not a word that is germane to the discussion, IMO.

Do you guys believe that if you practice enough with condition 1 (round chambered, hammer back, manual safety on), that your muscle memory will kick in during a stressful situation and remember to disengage the safety??

I do.

9mmepiphany
04-22-2011, 8:57 AM
some people see red when you say a cocked sig/beretta are hardly different from a glock, because those magical letters "DAO" in the BATF classification are their talisman against accidents.
That is very good and very true...well done



Do you guys believe that if you practice enough with condition 1 (round chambered, hammer back, manual safety on), that your muscle memory will kick in during a stressful situation and remember to disengage the safety??
I do.
I do too...it is just a matter of training and practice

himurax13
04-22-2011, 9:05 AM
I apologize if this is obvious or has already been asked... I did a search, and most of what I got was SP-01 Tactical questions :p

My question is, why would someone want a decocker vs a safety? I haven't handled either much (I have a glock). I'm curious what the advantages and disadvantages are for the two systems. And, can a gun have a safety + decocker, or is that a silly idea?

Specifically since you want a SP-01 Tactical SA/DA, I will answer why someone would want a Decocker.

1. When you draw from the holster, you simply aim then pull the trigger, no grip or thumb safeties to disengage.
2. The decocker goes to halfcock which gives you a slightly lighter and shorter trigger pull from hammer down.
3. If you get a P-01 as a backup gun, they will operate the same.

Now the advantages of having a thumb safety instead, like a regular SP-01.
1. 1911 shooters have a place to put their thumb.
2. You can choose whether to carry in DA mode or SA mode (ala 1911)
3. Performing detail stripping and modifications is far easier than the decocker model.
4. You have the option to go SA only which can reduce the length and the weight of the trigger pull.

HK's have a decocker that is also a safety.

M. D. Van Norman
04-22-2011, 9:53 AM
A cocked-and-locked pistol is ready to fire. A mechanical failure (however unlikely) could cause the gun to discharge.

A de-cocked pistol cannot discharge due to a mechanical failure.

J.D.Allen
04-22-2011, 10:09 AM
The biggest difference between SAO/safety and DA/SA(de-cocked) is that you have to manually disengage the safety on the SAO. Its a separate motion between draw and "bang".


It's not a separate motion. If you practice enough (which of course you should no matter what type of gun you carry) it all becomes one fluid motion. Your thumb starts at an upward position before your hand gets to the grip, and while you're still drawing and presenting the weapon your thumb sweeps downward, thus disengaging the safety by the time you are ready to fire. With enough practice it is no slower than drawing any "DAO" (debatable term) pistol.

rgs1975
04-22-2011, 10:34 AM
Decocker =

http://img12.imageshack.us/img12/6509/30390615.jpg

SPaikmos
04-22-2011, 12:23 PM
Ok, I think I'm starting to understand it a little bit better. Let me try and categorize how I see the use cases right now:

1) In the case of a SP-01 Tactical (decocker only), the person would holster the pistol in DA mode only. It shouldn't be holstered in SA mode, because there is no safety and this is dangerous (this is one part I need more explanation on - why is this dangerous? Or am I wrong?)

2) In the case of the standard SP-01 (safety only), the person could holster the pistol:
a) In DA mode, w/ safety off.
b) In SA mode, w/ safety on.
c) Does it make sense to holster in DA w/ safety on, or SA w/ safety off?

3) Therefore, all pistols in SA mode should be worn with the safety on at all times.

4) All pistols in DA mode may be worn with the safety off. I guess if people want to be extra careful, they could engage the safety (if it has one) as well?


From this, it makes sense when people talk about personal preference of decocker vs. safety. In reality, what they're saying is, do you want to carry in DA mode or SA mode, correct?

Now (please bear with me, I don't know much about gun mechanics) the point of the safety is to keep the gun from accidentally discharging due to being dropped or some other event, right? This is in addition to pulling the trigger. So, for example, I guess the Glock's mechanism makes it impossible to fire without pulling the trigger, so holsters that cover the trigger completely make the Glock safe. Whereas a gun in SA mode w/ safety off might still fire accidentally. Is this correct?

I'm not trying to argue which is better, I'm just trying to understand how these mechanisms work and what their intended uses are. I'm guessing that some people like to carry SA mode w/ safety off, or DA mode w/ safety on, even though it may not be correct...

SPaikmos
04-22-2011, 12:26 PM
One more question...

The decocker on an SP-01 lets the user "reset" the gun from SA mode to DA mode.

On a normal SP-01 (i.e. safety only), is it presumed that the user will not need to "reset" the gun, but instead will clear the weapon when they're done for the day? It seems that both weapons would benefit from a decocker, to prevent the human factor of a ND.

eltorito
04-22-2011, 12:42 PM
A negligent discharge by definition would mean that the operator pulled the trigger. As such, it does not matter if the gun has a decoker, safety, etc...

If you are talking about being done at the range, then regardless of the weapon design, it should be cleared of live ammunition.

Only way to be 100% sure that no negligent discharge will occur is by simply not having a round in a chamber and a clear magazine well.

Otherwise... treat every weapon as if it was loaded.

himurax13
04-22-2011, 12:44 PM
Ok, I think I'm starting to understand it a little bit better. Let me try and categorize how I see the use cases right now:

1) In the case of a SP-01 Tactical (decocker only), the person would holster the pistol in DA mode only. It shouldn't be holstered in SA mode, because there is no safety and this is dangerous (this is one part I need more explanation on - why is this dangerous? Or am I wrong?)

2) In the case of the standard SP-01 (safety only), the person could holster the pistol:
a) In DA mode, w/ safety off.
b) In SA mode, w/ safety on.
c) Does it make sense to holster in DA w/ safety on, or SA w/ safety off?

3) Therefore, all pistols in SA mode should be worn with the safety on at all times.

4) All pistols in DA mode may be worn with the safety off. I guess if people want to be extra careful, they could engage the safety (if it has one) as well?


From this, it makes sense when people talk about personal preference of decocker vs. safety. In reality, what they're saying is, do you want to carry in DA mode or SA mode, correct?

Now (please bear with me, I don't know much about gun mechanics) the point of the safety is to keep the gun from accidentally discharging due to being dropped or some other event, right? This is in addition to pulling the trigger. So, for example, I guess the Glock's mechanism makes it impossible to fire without pulling the trigger, so holsters that cover the trigger completely make the Glock safe. Whereas a gun in SA mode w/ safety off might still fire accidentally. Is this correct?

I'm not trying to argue which is better, I'm just trying to understand how these mechanisms work and what their intended uses are. I'm guessing that some people like to carry SA mode w/ safety off, or DA mode w/ safety on, even though it may not be correct...

These answers are with the assumption that you have a Standard SP01 with the FPB still installed.

1. It should be holstered with the Thumb Safety On in SA mode because the trigger requires far less pressure and distance to engage (10 pounds vs 5 pounds). Guns without a FPB has no other safety than the Thumb Safety. Guns with a FPB still need to have the trigger pulled in order to fire.

2.
a. Yes
b. Yes
c. No and No
Using the thumb safety in DA mode requires one extra action in order to fire the pistol while you are presenting it. The trigger pull in DA mode is much longer and much heavier than in SA mode. Once again, in SA mode the trigger pull is much lighter and shorter than in DA mode and you could have an AD while presenting your gun.

3. Yes. Once again, using the thumb safety in DA mode requires one extra action in order to fire the pistol while you are presenting it.

4. Yes, No. Using a Thumb Safety in DA mode will require an extra action and it pulling the trigger smoothly in DA mode does take a bit of concentration. This is about as ridiculous as putting on your parking brake every time you stop at a traffic light.

5. Yes

6. That is extremely dangerous and can either cause an AD during presentation or several seconds of hesitation during the moment you need to take the shot.

7. In order to reset the SPO1 into DA mode, you will need to manually thumb the hammer down. This involves slowly letting the hammer with your reaction hand while lightly pulling the trigger. The Decocker system on a CZ is vastly different than the safety version. There are not many guns that have a decocker and a thumb safety, that sort of mechanism can be very complicated. Accidental Discharges can happen whenever there is a round in the chamber and the operator has his finger on the trigger. Nothing can prevent this other than the Safety that is installed between your ears.

The Standard Safety CZ guns are far easier to work on than the decocker models.

Cnynrat
04-22-2011, 12:45 PM
Ok, I think I'm starting to understand it a little bit better. Let me try and categorize how I see the use cases right now:

1) In the case of a SP-01 Tactical (decocker only), the person would holster the pistol in DA mode only. It shouldn't be holstered in SA mode, because there is no safety and this is dangerous (this is one part I need more explanation on - why is this dangerous? Or am I wrong?)

You've got that right. The reason you wouldn't carry in SA/cocked with no safety is with the light SA trigger pull there is too much risk of accidental discharge.

2) In the case of the standard SP-01 (safety only), the person could holster the pistol:
a) In DA mode, w/ safety off.
b) In SA mode, w/ safety on.
c) Does it make sense to holster in DA w/ safety on, or SA w/ safety off?

Also right. You could holster in DA with safety on, but kind of defeats the point. As above, SA/cocked with safety off is a no-no.


3) Therefore, all pistols in SA mode should be worn with the safety on at all times.

Yup.

4) All pistols in DA mode may be worn with the safety off. I guess if people want to be extra careful, they could engage the safety (if it has one) as well?

Yup.

From this, it makes sense when people talk about personal preference of decocker vs. safety. In reality, what they're saying is, do you want to carry in DA mode or SA mode, correct?

I think the choice revolves more around what kind of trigger do you want. Some want to have a crisp, light trigger at all times, and they are willing to practice enough to become proficient with removing the safety when they unholster their weapon, so they chose SA guns with a safety such as the 1911 platform. Others value not having to flick off the safety when they unholster, and are willing to practice enough to become proficient with both a DA and SA trigger pull, so they choose DA/SA guns with a decocker. Others want the simplicity of no safety/no decocker and are OK with the slightly less refined trigger, so they choose "same action" pistols like the Glock.

DannyZRC
04-22-2011, 1:16 PM
the CZ safety cannot be engaged in DA mode, as far as I know.

the point of the safety is to prevent the trigger from firing the weapon, the safety catch is not really involved in the drop safety schema (the FPB (firing pin block) does not interact with the thumb safety, the firing pin is not arrested by the safety so a non-FPB CZ is not as drop safe as a FPB pistol)

a CZ with a safety could be considered a little risky to carry in DA mode, because lowering the hammer on a chambered round involves pulling the trigger to disengage the sear, and arresting the motion of the hammer manually to prevent it from energetically hitting the firing pin. if your hand slips off the hammer, it's conceivable that it fires the weapon. this can be mitigated somewhat by technique, but you'd never want to decock in this fashion in a stressful environment.

Carrying SA with the safety off is the most popular method of carry in the modern context, see Glock & M&P & SR9/40 & XD & on & on & oooon.

eltorito
04-22-2011, 1:25 PM
Danny is correct. The safety can not be engaged on a CZ while in DA mode. What would be the purpose of having the gun in DA with the chamber loaded??

You have to remember that these weapons are designed for combat, not for "killing" imaginary paper enemies.

himurax13
04-22-2011, 1:48 PM
the CZ safety cannot be engaged in DA mode, as far as I know.

the point of the safety is to prevent the trigger from firing the weapon, the safety catch is not really involved in the drop safety schema (the FPB (firing pin block) does not interact with the thumb safety, the firing pin is not arrested by the safety so a non-FPB CZ is not as drop safe as a FPB pistol)

a CZ with a safety could be considered a little risky to carry in DA mode, because lowering the hammer on a chambered round involves pulling the trigger to disengage the sear, and arresting the motion of the hammer manually to prevent it from energetically hitting the firing pin. if your hand slips off the hammer, it's conceivable that it fires the weapon. this can be mitigated somewhat by technique, but you'd never want to decock in this fashion in a stressful environment.

Carrying SA with the safety off is the most popular method of carry in the modern context, see Glock & M&P & SR9/40 & XD & on & on & oooon.

My safety can be activated in DA mode. I called the CZ Custom shop and they said this can happen with the competition hammer installed. It does prevent the slide from moving.

Glock & M&P & SR9/40 & XD type guns are not true single action pistols, but are classified as striker fire type pistols. In function, they seem to be.

J.D.Allen
04-22-2011, 2:04 PM
I'm sorry but a light (around 5.5 lb) smooth trigger pull and no safety with a round in the chamber is the same as a 1911 cocked and locked with the safety off. Only difference is you can't see the menacing cocked back hammer. This is why Ruger put a manual safety on the SR9, and why S&W offers the M&P with a manual safety version as well. I believe it's also why theres a grip safety on the XD, although I don't think that really changes much.

The principal reason for a safety is for holstering and unholstering. A weapon with a smooth, light trigger pull and no safety (read: Glock) can be dangerous while performing these actions in a stressful situation. Just look up "Glock leg" to get an idea of what I mean. They don't call it "1911 leg"...

CSACANNONEER
04-22-2011, 2:25 PM
The principal reason for a safety is for holstering and unholstering. A weapon with a smooth, light trigger pull and no safety (read: Glock) can be dangerous while performing these actions in a stressful situation. Just look up "Glock leg" to get an idea of what I mean. They don't call it "1911 leg"...

I'm with you on everything except thinking that Glocks have either a smooth or a light trigger pull.

J.D.Allen
04-22-2011, 2:32 PM
I'm with you on everything except thinking that Glocks have either a smooth or a light trigger pull.

Ha! Right. Well I meant that in comparison to a "traditional" DA/SA configuration where the first trigger pull is like lifting 10 lbs of bricks and is as long as the day is...well...long. I wasn't comparing it to a competition tuned 1911 or BHP ;)

Point being that with a DA/SA gun that is decocked it is reasonable to not have a manual safety engaged. Somepeople seem to think that striker fired pistols are like that when they are really a lot more like SA triggers.

himurax13
04-22-2011, 2:32 PM
I'm sorry but a light (around 5.5 lb) smooth trigger pull and no safety with a round in the chamber is the same as a 1911 cocked and locked with the safety off. Only difference is you can't see the menacing cocked back hammer. This is why Ruger put a manual safety on the SR9, and why S&W offers the M&P with a manual safety version as well. I believe it's also why theres a grip safety on the XD, although I don't think that really changes much.

It is true that in function, these guns perform almost like a Single Action Pistol without a thumb safety.

Glock describes their action design as "safe-action," and it has characteristics of both single- and double-action designs.
Like a single-action, chambering a round sets the striker (firing pin) mechanism, but like a double-action that striker is pulled back farther by pulling the trigger.

The idea behind the design was to have a shorter and lighter trigger pull than a DA gun, but not to have a fully cocked striker ready to fall like a SA gun, without requiring a manual safety like SA guns.

This is why I classify most combat tupperware guns as striker fire and not Single Action. I believe the XD is fairly similar to the Single Action.

Extreme care should always be taken when reholstering a pistol.

M. D. Van Norman
04-22-2011, 2:36 PM
Iím sorry but a light (around 5.5 lb) smooth trigger pull and no safety with a round in the chamber is the same as a 1911 cocked and locked with the safety off.

Actually, it is not. The 1911 could spontaneously fire due to a mechanical failure, but the Glock could not. Otherwise, the rest of your point about safe handling by the user was correct. :)

J.D.Allen
04-22-2011, 2:56 PM
Actually, it is not. The 1911 could spontaneously fire due to a mechanical failure, but the Glock could not. Otherwise, the rest of your point about safe handling by the user was correct. :)

What mechanical malfunction could cause a 1911 to fire all by itself?

DannyZRC
04-22-2011, 3:14 PM
failure of the sear and half cock hammer arrest notch.

it is true that the glock striker is not cocked to a sufficiently energetic state at rest that it would fire a cartridge if all of the safety mechanisms were to fail.

however, for a difference to be a difference it has to make a difference, and I don't believe that it's even remotely remotely possible on your very worst day to have the firing pin block, your hammer arrest half cock notch, and your sear all fail at the same time.

or even, for that matter, for them to fail one by one and for the operator to continue using the pistol without noticing some or all of these features breaking down.

from a human factors standpoint, a glock is a short trigger (length of pull longer than an SAO gun, but about on par with the SA pull of a DA/SA gun) and a light trigger (stock is slightly heavier than most SAO/SA pulls, but many many people modify them to be lighter). Basically, an SA gun with no additional safety measures.

sacluded
04-22-2011, 4:24 PM
I have a Walther P99 QA. It does not have a manual safety, and the decocker is just for disassembly. Once decocked, it can't be fired unless you pull the slide back enough to reset it.

J.D.Allen
04-22-2011, 4:38 PM
from a human factors standpoint, a glock is a short trigger (length of pull longer than an SAO gun, but about on par with the SA pull of a DA/SA gun) and a light trigger (stock is slightly heavier than most SAO/SA pulls, but many many people modify them to be lighter). Basically, an SA gun with no additional safety measures.

FYI that was the argument I was making :D

Right, I wasn't saying that they're the same in design, but in practicality of end user function they are basically the same.

And it makes me uneasy. Especially with new shooters who may not have learned to keep that "booger hook off the bang switch" quite well enough yet.

DannyZRC
04-22-2011, 4:43 PM
FYI that was the argument I was making :D

Right, I wasn't saying that they're the same in design, but in practicality of end user function they are basically the same.

And it makes me uneasy. Especially with new shooters who may not have learned to keep that "booger hook off the bang switch" quite well enough yet.

http://files.sharenator.com/i_see_what_you_did_there_RE_Anyone_else_see_it-s450x545-95526.jpg

SPaikmos
04-22-2011, 11:19 PM
FYI that was the argument I was making :D

Right, I wasn't saying that they're the same in design, but in practicality of end user function they are basically the same.

And it makes me uneasy. Especially with new shooters who may not have learned to keep that "booger hook off the bang switch" quite well enough yet.

And I think this is where the confusion started for me.

Glock is similar to SAO.
SAO generally uses a safety, whereas glock does not.

I guess the glock leg (that's a new term to me) is the risk / consequence of not having a safety on the glock, or not using a safety on a SA gun in general. Also possible on a DA, but you'd have to overcome a lot more force for it to happen.

And, the FPB is totally separate from the safety itself. I.e. SA/DA/Glock all have similar "safety" in terms of accidental (drop) discharge if they have a proper FPB.

Thank you all for helping me with this! I feel like I learned something today!