I dry fire my center fire pistols On an empty chamber all the time. Never had a problem. Don't like snap caps because i don't want to get in the habit of dry firing any weapon with a round, even a dummy round, in the chamber. I don't dry fire unless I have checked the weapon to make sure it is clear, racked the slide several times and then checked it again before each trigger pull.
Safety habits must be redundant and eliminate to the fullest extent possible any chance of operator error. Any safety routine that relies on recognizing the difference between the appearance of a live round and a dummy round or expended casing is, IMO, dangerous because there is no failsafe for an incorrect observation.
One of the reasons that I don't like magazine disconnect safeties is because I don't like having a magazine in my pistol when I'm dry firing.
My recommendation if you dry fire is to place all magazines and ammuntion of any sort, live or expended in another room, lock the slide back, observe that the chamber is empty, put your finger in the chamber to confirm, rack the slide several times and then make a final observation of clear before pulling the trigger.
I know this sounds excessive, but just this weekend that procedure prevented a potential mishap for me. I returned home from the range with my 1911. I believed the gun was unloaded because I always clear my weapons before leaving the range. When I racked the slide back to cleck that the weapon was clear, a live round popped out. The only thing that I can figure is that I was shooting two pistols at the range. I must have cleared one, got distracted and then forgot that I had not cleared the other. The lesson - memory will fail you. Use safety procedures that assume that your memory and observations are wrong.
Centerfire pistols are designed to be dry fired on an empty chamber. Don't put something in the chamber that isn't needed because one day that something may turn out to be a live round.
Last edited by Fabius; 08-24-2012 at 08:36 PM.