Smith & Wesson Forum

Go Back   Smith & Wesson Forum > General Topics > Concealed Carry & Self Defense
Forum Register Expert Commentary Members List


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 12-27-2011, 04:55 PM
Bratastic007's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 271
Likes: 2
Liked 18 Times in 9 Posts
Default Carrying a DA/SA cocked?

OK, this may be a very stupid question, but I'll ask anyhow.

When carrying a DA/SA pistol without a safety, you carry it un-cocked, right?

I just acquired my first DA/SA pistol (HK P2000sk 9mm) and I'm not planning on carrying it until I log some good range time first. But in doing some dry-firing the other day, I noticed that the first squeeze of the trigger is very (very) stiff. I wouldn't feel safe carrying the pistol cocked, but at the same time that first trigger pull is kind of a bear, and must stiffer than the DAO pistols or even revolvers that I'm used to.

Any advice is appreciated.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 12-27-2011, 05:02 PM
jlanecole's Avatar
US Veteran
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 330
Likes: 33
Liked 64 Times in 30 Posts
Default

If a double action pistol doesn't have a safety, but has an external hammer, don't carry it cocked. Hypothetically, it would be safe in an appropriate holster, but I can't imagine anyone would actually recommend it.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12-27-2011, 05:02 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: In the weeds, AZ
Posts: 623
Likes: 0
Liked 30 Times in 22 Posts
Default

Unless you have certain DA/SA guns that also have a safety, permitting cocked and locked carry, you carry a DA/DA gun uncocked, and just have to deal with the heavier, longer initial pull.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 12-27-2011, 05:41 PM
Bratastic007's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 271
Likes: 2
Liked 18 Times in 9 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by RufusG View Post
Unless you have certain DA/SA guns that also have a safety, permitting cocked and locked carry, you carry a DA/DA gun uncocked, and just have to deal with the heavier, longer initial pull.
Thanks. That was my hunch, but I figured that I'd rather ask a stupid question and find out for sure.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 12-27-2011, 06:43 PM
vista461's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: S.E. WI
Posts: 751
Likes: 41
Liked 38 Times in 23 Posts
Default

I carry my 4003 with the hammer down and safety off. The heavy da pull is safety enough for me.
__________________
M&P Pro9, 9c, & 4003
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 12-27-2011, 08:00 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Huntsville, AL
Posts: 212
Likes: 2
Liked 15 Times in 6 Posts
Default

hammer down round in the chamber is condition 2
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 12-27-2011, 10:43 PM
Badkarma 1's Avatar
US Veteran
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: East St. Louis, Il.
Posts: 1,676
Likes: 3,244
Liked 534 Times in 317 Posts
Default

Hey Bratastic congrats on the HK, their phenomenal! Now about that trigger, first dry fire it A LOT! Second go out and put about 200 rounds thru it to break it in, then after you clean it put a few drops of oil into the lock work of the action itself.
My P30 was stiff when it was new, but now at 750 rounds it'll rival a SIG trigger! And PLEASE hammer down on a live round via decocker!! Dale
__________________
"Long live the S&W 3rd. Gen.!"
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 12-27-2011, 11:09 PM
Faulkner's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Arkansas Ozarks
Posts: 2,818
Likes: 950
Liked 3,952 Times in 754 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bratastic007 View Post
. . . I noticed that the first squeeze of the trigger is very (very) stiff. I wouldn't feel safe carrying the pistol cocked, but at the same time that first trigger pull is kind of a bear, and must stiffer than the DAO pistols or even revolvers that I'm used to.
That's why DA/SA suck as a carry handgun. The first round requires a 10+ lb pull, then the second round requires a long slack pull before you hit resistance of half or less of the first round. I've seen very few people who can accurately put a double tap downrange at 7 yards with the first two rounds a DA/SA.

I much prefer to carry something that, heavy or light, has the same trigger pull every time.
__________________
- Change it back -
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 12-28-2011, 04:21 AM
US Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Olympic Peninsula, WA
Posts: 89
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 4 Posts
Default

Quote:
DO NO HARM
It's all well and good to think about the ability to do a double-tap, but the bigger priority needs to be "Do no harm".


When the SHTF and the pucker factor is in full orbit, a long & heavy trigger pull is the best insurance there is against pulling the trigger prematurely and/or unintentionally. If I have to draw my gun in a real deal situation I want that last ditch chance to not pull the trigger available to me, just in case the bad guy turns and runs or an innocent person gets in the way or . . .

In most defensive shooting cases, the bad guy is less than 10 feet away - no need to aim, just draw and shoot. At those distances I can get off a first shot with one of my DA/SA just as fast if not faster than I can with my 1911's because there's no need to mess with a thumb safety - draw, rotate, shoot. Period.

As for getting that double tap?

Personally, I can double-tap with my Sig P226s just as well as I can my 1911s. I'm a bit slower with the Kahr K9 with its much longer NYPD trigger and definitely faster with my M&P 40L, but then that's with soft competition loads in a competition-prepared gun - in no way a proper defensive gun.

What slows me down more than the DA/SA trigger is recoil. The heavy Sig P226 Elite SS shrugs off recoil like my Lab sheds water. OTOH, the 27 oz Dan Wesson CCO loaded with Ranger-T +P or the Kahr PM40, also loaded with Ranger-T, are a whole lot tougher to shoot a good double tap with.

So, I prefer DA/SA guns for concealed carry over SAO or striker-fired. And I'll take the long trigger pull of a Kahr over the short trigger pull of a Glock,M&P or XD on a carry gun.

Yes, it is true that it's a challenge to master the DA pull on the first shot, but it's not an impossible task.

It's also important to remember that just because that DA/SA gun came with a 10#/4# trigger pull out-of-the-box, doesn't mean that it has to stay that way.


My M.O. on a new defensive gun is to:
  1. Break it in with 200-500 rounds,
  2. Send it to the manufacturer's custom shop for a trigger job and reliability work.
  3. Re-test with my favorite carry ammo
  4. Periodically use my carry gun in IDPA competition using my carry holster. That can be enlightening!


Now, some folks scream bloody murder when you suggest that they should send in their brand new RammelFrazzel 40 back for a trigger job. Sheeeesh, why didn't the manufacturer do that in the first place!?!? Well, because that costs money and 99% bought an inexpensive gun in the first place. Sigs aren't cheap guns, but they still have to compete on price in the market, so action work comes extra. Ditto for reliability work. I figure my butt is worth the extra bucks.



Here's a comparison of the before and after trigger pulls on three of our Sig classic P-series. Note, the two P226's went to the Sig Custom Shop. The P6 is a work in progress that I'm doing myself; different springs and a short trigger so far.

  • Sig P226R:
    • New: DA: 11.2# SA: 7.9#
    • After: DA: 7.1# SA: 3.7#
  • Sig P226 Elite SS:
    • New: DA: 8.9# SA: 4.2#
    • After: DA: 7.4 SA: 3.1#
  • Sig P6
    • Before: DA: 14.5# SA: 5.7#
    • After: DA: 9.2# SA: 5.0#

By comparison, here are the pulls on a wide assortment of our carry guns in alphabetical order . . .

  • Dan Wesson CCO #1: 3.6# SAO
  • Dan Wesson CCO #2: 3.9# SAO
  • Kahr CM9: 6.3# Striker Fired (SF)
  • Kahr K9: 5.6# SF
  • Kahr PM40: 6.0# SF
  • Kimber Ultra Carry II: 5.4# SAO
  • Sig P232 (brand new & unfired): 10.6# DA / 3.6# SA
  • Sig P238: 7.1# SAO
  • Springfield 1911-A1 Trophy Match: 3.7# SAO
  • S&W 3913LS: 10.4# DA / 7.1# SA
  • S&W 3913NL: TBD
  • S&W M&P 40L (new): 6.0# SF
    • For competition only after Apex Comp-AEK: 2.7#


So, it seems like most defensive pistols come with 5-7# triggers. The glaring exception are the nicer 1911's - scary light and fast right out of the box. The DA trigger on my Sigs are down to just over 7# and a whole lot smoother than any polymer gun's trigger, so there isn't much of a disadvantage to that DA on the first shot. OTOH, the follow-up shots are almost 1911-like with a 0.147" reset and a smooth 3.1# pull. Note: I used to have an M&P 9c for carry but decided that its trigger while technically safe, was too easy to operate unintentionally under stress. The same applies to the competition.



Bottom Line: Like everything in life, carry guns are compromises: weight, size, fire power, simplicity, reliability, and safety - both real and perceived. Oh, and a dash of ego.




Real world situations rarely allow time for 'thinking'. The best I can hope for is to have enough time for doing, and to not do something I'll live to regret.



That DA/SA trigger is the best device available to prevent the shot I didn't really want to make. A DA/SA gun with a good trigger job will give me a trigger that's ideal for defensive use.



Second choice is the long and silky smooth trigger of the Kahrs. Some Rugers like the LC9 are similar, albeit not as smooth.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 12-28-2011, 09:39 AM
Bratastic007's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 271
Likes: 2
Liked 18 Times in 9 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Badkarma 1 View Post
Hey Bratastic congrats on the HK, their phenomenal! Now about that trigger, first dry fire it A LOT! Second go out and put about 200 rounds thru it to break it in, then after you clean it put a few drops of oil into the lock work of the action itself.
My P30 was stiff when it was new, but now at 750 rounds it'll rival a SIG trigger! And PLEASE hammer down on a live round via decocker!! Dale
Is it OK to repeatedly dry fire my new HK? I do want to break in the trigger, but not at the expense of potentially damaging the firing pin or anything else.

If dry fire is OK, should I be racking the slide or cocking the trigger manually before each trigger pull? Or should I just give it the heavy DA trigger pull each time?
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 12-29-2011, 12:55 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 226
Likes: 50
Liked 125 Times in 54 Posts
Default

No DA/SA does not suck and that is just personal opinion. I have shot DA/SA all my life with Beretta 92, Sig Sauer, and now HK. It is my preferred system. What you have in the HK is a real trigger system designed in classic terms. Takes a little work to get used to it but well worth it.

You have been given good advice in dry firing the pistol. Than go to the range and fire 50 rounds double action only and learn that trigger pull. With practice you will find you can be accurate with that DA pull and its not that difficult. You have a weapon designed for combat and not target shooting. Do not stage the trigger but press the trigger smoothly with out hesitation until the pistol fires Then fire one shot DA followed by one shot SA. Decock and repeat many, many times. Than one shot DA followed by two SA. Soon the transition between the first DA shot and subsequent SA shots will become natural and you won't even notice it. Increase speed as your confidence builds. Best of luck with this and enjoy your HK. Bill
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 12-29-2011, 02:22 PM
Bratastic007's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 271
Likes: 2
Liked 18 Times in 9 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Sarge View Post
No DA/SA does not suck and that is just personal opinion. I have shot DA/SA all my life with Beretta 92, Sig Sauer, and now HK. It is my preferred system. What you have in the HK is a real trigger system designed in classic terms. Takes a little work to get used to it but well worth it.

You have been given good advice in dry firing the pistol. Than go to the range and fire 50 rounds double action only and learn that trigger pull. With practice you will find you can be accurate with that DA pull and its not that difficult. You have a weapon designed for combat and not target shooting. Do not stage the trigger but press the trigger smoothly with out hesitation until the pistol fires Then fire one shot DA followed by one shot SA. Decock and repeat many, many times. Than one shot DA followed by two SA. Soon the transition between the first DA shot and subsequent SA shots will become natural and you won't even notice it. Increase speed as your confidence builds. Best of luck with this and enjoy your HK. Bill
Excellent advice, thank you. I'll try that exercise at the range this weekend.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 12-29-2011, 07:42 PM
Badkarma 1's Avatar
US Veteran
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: East St. Louis, Il.
Posts: 1,676
Likes: 3,244
Liked 534 Times in 317 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bratastic007 View Post
Is it OK to repeatedly dry fire my new HK? I do want to break in the trigger, but not at the expense of potentially damaging the firing pin or anything else.

If dry fire is OK, should I be racking the slide or cocking the trigger manually before each trigger pull? Or should I just give it the heavy DA trigger pull each time?
Yes! HK designed that gun with a 25,000 round life span before you need to send it in for an overhaul! They do recommend you replace the recoil spring every 15,000 round though.
I would work on your presentation, and DA first shot till you master it, then work on the transition. If you can get a partner to rack the slide while your using preferred grip and stance even better. If not then you'll have to do it your self while holding the trigger back during the slide rack, this way you using the trigger reset instead of just cocking the piece.
Also 'The Sarge' has given some very sage advice for your firing routine...use it!!
Mastering the TDA pistol isn't hard, it just takes PRACTICE. Dale
__________________
"Long live the S&W 3rd. Gen.!"
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 12-31-2011, 10:21 PM
US Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Olympic Peninsula, WA
Posts: 89
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 4 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bratastic007 View Post
Is it OK to repeatedly dry fire my new HK? I do want to break in the trigger, but not at the expense of potentially damaging the firing pin or anything else.

If dry fire is OK, should I be racking the slide or cocking the trigger manually before each trigger pull? Or should I just give it the heavy DA trigger pull each time?
While generally not considered necessary, it's a good idea to use Snap Caps when dry firing. If your pistol has had an action/trigger job, then it's advised to avoid letting the slide slam home on an empty chamber - another good reason to use Snap Caps.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01-01-2012, 01:15 AM
US Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Olympic Peninsula, WA
Posts: 89
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 4 Posts
Default Walking the Talk

I posted a lengthy & detailed note on why I prefer a DA/SA trigger on my defensive guns.

What I didn't mention was that I do have a 1911 for carry. Why a 1911? Well, you see we RV a lot and often into Canada where they aren't fond of handguns, especially handguns with barrels less than 4.13" long. Have you ever tried to find a single stack handgun with a long barrel that's not a 1911? I tried and gave up, hence my Dan Wesson CCO. Naturally, it has a crisp SAO trigger - a 3.9# SAO trigger. I'm fine with a 3.7# trigger in my Springfield Trophy Match or the 2.7# trigger in my M&P 40L because they are competition only guns. Way too fast for a CCW.

Then the wife discovered the S&W 3913LS and that led to a lot of research on the 3rd Generation S&W pistols which led to discovering that there is a real live high quality single stack DA/SA pistol with a 4.25" barrel. So, we set about finding one and did the deed a few hours ago. The Dan Wesson is for sale and the new S&W 4563TSW has been bought and is in the works. Naturally, it will take a ride to the S&W Performance Center for a tune up and trigger job before being assigned to duty.

Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 01-05-2012, 09:27 AM
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 58
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Faulkner View Post
That's why DA/SA suck as a carry handgun. The first round requires a 10+ lb pull, then the second round requires a long slack pull before you hit resistance of half or less of the first round. I've seen very few people who can accurately put a double tap downrange at 7 yards with the first two rounds a DA/SA.
This is a great point, the flip side though is simplicity and accuracy (after the first shot). With a DA/SA you pull the trigger and it goes bang every time. With SAO you need to turn the safety off, with training that works for some but it doesn't always work for me. I say this based on the number of deer, duck and clay pigeons I've lost when I went to pull the trigger and couldn't because the safety was on. I've thankfully never had that happen in a handgun but it is safe to think the trend would translate in a self defense situation. I will give up the accurate first shot for the simplicity of no safety to fool with.

I do own two SAO handguns but they are plinking "range queens" for any carry or self defense work I use either a DA/SA auto or a revolver.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
1911, 3913ls, 3913nl, beretta, ccw, concealed, dan wesson, glock, idpa, kahr, kimber, lock, p238, performance center, polymer, presentation, sauer, sig arms, springfield, transition

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
Concealed Carry & Self Defense Thread, Carrying a DA/SA cocked? in General Topics; OK, this may be a very stupid question, but I'll ask anyhow. When carrying a DA/SA pistol without a safety, ...
LinkBacks (?)
LinkBack to this Thread: http://smith-wessonforum.com/concealed-carry-self-defense/223692-carrying-da-sa-cocked.html
Posted By For Type Date
Review: SIG Sauer P6 This thread Refback 01-23-2014 10:07 PM
Review: SIG Sauer P6 - INGunOwners Post #9 Pingback 05-06-2012 09:30 PM

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Leaving the 15-22 cocked? .50AE Smith & Wesson M&P 15-22 54 02-20-2012 04:37 PM
Cocked or not? GKC Concealed Carry & Self Defense 57 04-07-2011 05:56 PM
745 Cocked and Locked??? DRADW Smith & Wesson Semi-Auto Pistols 5 11-14-2010 04:42 PM
A+ for Cocked & Locked bubbajoe45 Feedback 0 10-12-2009 01:56 AM
Any one carry Cocked, Not Locked? TwoGunsStanding Concealed Carry & Self Defense 139 01-07-2009 08:20 PM

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
smith-wessonforum.com tested by Norton Internet Security smith-wessonforum.com tested by McAfee Internet Security

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:13 PM.


S-W Forum, LLC 2000-2015
Smith-WessonForum.com is not affiliated with Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC)