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View Full Version : Drop the slide with the ss, or pull it back and release?



mk21965
23rd May 2010, 21:38
Not sure if this is the correct place to post this but I think it falls under care of a 1911.

Had a friend tell me not to drop the slide with the ss when changing mags because it can wear the edge of the ss notch. He recommended pulling the slide back until the ss dropped out of the notch and letting it go (is this what is referred to as slingshotting?).

Anyway, it makes sense that it could save wear on the notch. Is dropping the slide with the ss a really bad thing, not recommended, doesn't matter?

I'm interested in what the forum gurus have to say on this.

Hawkmoon
23rd May 2010, 22:00
Pulling the slide back and releasing is, indeed, what is referred to as "slingshotting."

You'll find opinions divided on which method is better. The arguments in favor of using the slide stop are that (a) it's faster, and (b) the slide stop has a shelf and checkering so it was obviously designed to be used that way. It is unlikely to cause undue wear. If anyone is likely to use the slide stop as a release, it would be top-flight competitors, to whom hundredths of a second count. I've never heard of anyone complaining that their pistol wore out the slide stop notch.

The argument in favor of slingshotting is consistency in training. There's a sort of mantra that says "You fight as you train." If the only semi-auto handgun you ever use or carry is a 1911, then it doesn't matter. But not all semi-autos have the slide stop positioned and configured like the 1911, so people who may anticipate using other types of pistols will typically use the slingshot method because ALL semi-autos have a slide, and that method works for all of them.

Take your pick.

mk21965
23rd May 2010, 22:11
Thanks for the explanation Hawkmoon.

I hadn't considered the non-1911 side of it, that makes a lot of sense.

The friend who recommended always slingshotting owns and shoots a lot of different semi-auto handguns. I can see where it would be smart for him to do that from a "fight as you train" perspective.

Hawkmoon
24th May 2010, 00:10
I've never heard of anyone complaining that their pistol wore out the slide stop notch.
Allow me to qualify this statement.

Right here on this forum we have seen several threads involving pistols mostly from two manufacturers that had the aft, lower corner of the slide stop notch badly peened after a comparatively few rounds. This wasn't caused by wear from using the slide stop to "drop" the slide, though. This was impact damage, caused by the slide stop not going far enough up into the notch, combined with the notch not having been machined at an angle that paralleled the back surface of the stop itself. So when the slide wanted to come forward and was stopped by the ... stop, instead of the contact being distributed along the full height of the trailing edge, it was concentrated on the lower corner of the notch.

So I should have written, "I've never heard of anyone complaining that their pistol wore out the slide stop notch by using it to drop the slide when reloading."

mk21965
24th May 2010, 05:50
I read the threads about the ss not engaging the notch fully and checked mine. It goes completely up into the cut and the angles match (Kimber Pro Carry HD) so I don't think I have an issue there.

kenhwind
24th May 2010, 09:33
I have a Series 70 Colt that was bought in 1972 and has had a lot of rounds fired through it ( an awlful lot). It still has the same slide stop. I did have an issue with the slide stop notch, but it wasn't from using the slide stop to release the slide. I use the slide stop, I slingshot, I use my forefinger (Lefty), my right hand thumb.
What happened to the slide stop notch, was that after many years of locking the slide open, the notch was peened back slightly and a small ridge was formed in the notch. Well the slide stop couldn't lock up properly anymore. A little careful grinding with a Dremel fixed that.
As Hawkmmon has already posted, the 1911 was designed to have the slide released by the slide stop and that's how we were trained in the Marines.
I practice both ways for reasons that has also been posted.

gfavaron
24th May 2010, 13:29
Six of one and half dozen of another. But if you commonly use two hands, I personally find the sling shot easier and faster - especially when excited or stressed. Grabbing the back end of a relatively large slide with my left hand just feels surer and simpler than fumbling for a relatively tiny slide lock. Of course, if one has a shooting hand large enough to release the slide lock without shifting the grip then that would be the obvious way to go.

BigO
24th May 2010, 14:39
The argument in favor of slingshotting is consistency in training. There's a sort of mantra that says "You fight as you train."

Hmm actually I would think that the "You fight as you train" would be the argument against "Slingshotting" as unless you intend to carry the weapon with an empty chamber this isn't the way one would Fight .

Most people who are comfortable with and carry a 1911 do so in condition 1 "Cocked and locked" as they say and to begin shooting you need just remove the gun from safe to fire .

Once the weapon is empty the slide will be locked back so you wouldn't drop the slide after removing the empty magazine and prior to inserting a full one just to have to slingshot the slide to load the chamber now would you ? Instead once the slide is locked back you would insert a fully loaded mag and hit the slide release after the empty mag has caused it to lock open .

As a side note I understand if you attend any of the popular schools that teach defensive shooting they will "Or at least many of the ones I've heard of will" teach a person in a gun battle to "if there is a lull in the shooting yet the encounter isn't over/or they have to move from one cover position to another prior to exposing yourself" , reload their weapon to full capacity even if you're sure of how many rounds you have left in the gun but have used it at all so when/if the battle resumes you have the maximum number of rounds available to you in the gun as you can . With this training if at all possible you would neither reload by slingshotting or dropping the slide if able to avoid it .

TrickyVic
24th May 2010, 14:56
Using Slide stop= Fine motor skill
Hand-over or Slingshot= Gross motor skill and easier to remember and perform under stress.

Plus not all pistols have the same SS, some are easier to engage than other. YMMV.

Spyros
24th May 2010, 15:22
Once the weapon is empty the slide will be locked back so you wouldn't drop the slide after removing the empty magazine and prior to inserting a full one just to have to slingshot the slide to load the chamber now would you ? Instead once the slide is locked back you would insert a fully loaded mag and hit the slide release after the empty mag has caused it to lock open .With all due respect, I don't think you fully understood what 'slingshooting' is: you don't drop the slide that's locked back, on an empty chamber, to rack it again after a new mag is inserted. What you do, with the slide locked back, is you drop the empty mag, insert the loaded one, and instead of using the slide stop to drop the slide, you pull back on the slide. This makes the slide stop fall away from the slide stop notch (since no mag follower is bearing against it anymore), so when you let it go, it races forward, stripping a fresh round from the new magazine...

So the 'train as you fight' reference is about training in reloading from slide lock, for different types of defensive semi-auto pistols. No matter where their slide stops are placed (technically, some of these, on other designs, should be called 'slide releases'... oh well), when on slide-lock, their slides will race forward when pulled back after the magazine is replaced.

As for combat reloads... I suppose they do make the 'reload from slide-lock' less likely, but enough not to train for?

Hawkmoon
24th May 2010, 16:46
Hmm actually I would think that the "You fight as you train" would be the argument against "Slingshotting" as unless you intend to carry the weapon with an empty chamber this isn't the way one would Fight .

Most people who are comfortable with and carry a 1911 do so in condition 1 "Cocked and locked" as they say and to begin shooting you need just remove the gun from safe to fire .

Once the weapon is empty the slide will be locked back so you wouldn't drop the slide after removing the empty magazine and prior to inserting a full one just to have to slingshot the slide to load the chamber now would you ? Instead once the slide is locked back you would insert a fully loaded mag and hit the slide release after the empty mag has caused it to lock open .
I always carry cocked and locked. This question has NOTHING to do with carrying in any condition other than Condition 1, or in Condition 1 for that matter. I don't think anyone carries with the slide locked open. If the slide isn't locked back you don't have an option of using any method to drop the slide, so this discussion would not apply.

If you shoot to slide lock and swap magazines, you then have to drop the slide to put the pistol back in action. Some people prefer to use the slide lock. Others prefer to slingshot the slide. I'm in the slingshot camp, personally, for multiple reasons, but I know a lot of people who prefer to use the slide release.

As I wrote in a previous post -- take your pick.

wichaka
24th May 2010, 18:05
The fine motor skill thing is garbage, pressing the trigger without jerking it is a fine motor skill if we want to go there. Its all about training, with consistent perfect practice.

Talk to a combat pilot and ask them about the finesse it takes to fly those machines, it doesn't change when they are in combat.

Some have the combat mindset, and some will never get it. In other words, some do very well under stress, and some never will.

mk21965
24th May 2010, 20:58
FWIW my original question was regarding dropping a locked open slide after inserting a full mag. I had been using my weak side thumb since it falls right on the ss as I come back up on the target and seemed faster to me.

I will try it both ways next time I'm at the range but since I don't own anything other than a 1911 I will go with what works for me.

Great insights from all who posted BTW, I learn at least one thing every time I log in here.

BigO
24th May 2010, 21:19
Well if we want to be completely correct in regards to "Training to fight" especialy if your work involves the carry of a weapon you had better train both ways to reload with an empty gun and with these guns that don't lock the slide when empty .

While you're at it you better come up with a way to slingshot your slide with one arm as in the real world with bullets flying I have read that often people when being shot at instinctive fire at the weapon that is aimed at them .

Assuming this is true you have a very high probability of getting wounded in a
hand or an arm and loosing the use of it .

So I guess if you use an auto that doesn't have a slide stop you had better practice pulling that slide back with you teeth or toes or whatever so you can load your gun with 1 hand/arm dissabled .

D.A.
24th May 2010, 21:34
I rarely use the SS on my 1911's I have a shorter reach than some and I can't hit it without shifting my grip so I just rack the slide with my off hand.

wichaka
24th May 2010, 23:11
I rarely use the SS on my 1911's I have a shorter reach than some and I can't hit it without shifting my grip so I just rack the slide with my off hand.

I have large hands, and can reach the ss with my grip thumb, but I still use my off hand thumb, it works much better. Might try it that way.

wichaka
24th May 2010, 23:20
Well if we want to be completely correct in regards to "Training to fight" especialy if your work involves the carry of a weapon you had better train both ways to reload with an empty gun and with these guns that don't lock the slide when empty .

Train to fight with the gun you will carry. Every gun I carry is a 1911 based platform. From my full size, right down to my Colt Gov 380...they all work the same.
Other than an initial loading before leaving the residence etc., the only other way to load a gun that's empty, is if it's shot to slide lock (back). Drop the empty magazine, insert fresh magazine, drop the slide and off you go...pretty simple.


While you're at it you better come up with a way to slingshot your slide with one arm as in the real world with bullets flying I have read that often people when being shot at instinctive fire at the weapon that is aimed at them .

Assuming this is true you have a very high probability of getting wounded in a
hand or an arm and loosing the use of it .

Most who train, do train for one hand manipulation. If the slide is locked back, drop the magazine, stow the gun, reload with fresh magazine, grab said gun, rack slide on belt, or hard against pants etc., and all is well again.



So I guess if you use an auto that doesn't have a slide stop you had better practice pulling that slide back with you teeth or toes or whatever so you can load your gun with 1 hand/arm dissabled .

Train as you fight. If you carry such a gun, train to work around problems you may encounter and all will fall into place if such a thing happens.

1911Tuner
25th May 2010, 06:34
Using Slide stop= Fine motor skill


Why would it be any finer than pulling the trigger or pressing the mag catch button?


Hand-over or Slingshot= Gross motor skill and easier to remember and perform under stress.

Unless you happen to miss it or fail to grasp it with enough force...which is a possibility under stress because your hand has to find it.

As Wichaka said...This gross/fine issue is sheepdip.

Assuming that you'll actually need a reload...and assuming that you'll need a fast reload...slamming the magazine in, and reaching up with your left thumb to trip the slidestop is both faster and less fumble prone than the overhand or the slingshot method.

garrettwc
25th May 2010, 09:58
Had a friend tell me not to drop the slide with the ss when changing mags because it can wear the edge of the ss notch. He recommended pulling the slide back until the ss dropped out of the notch and letting it go (is this what is referred to as slingshotting?).
Getting back to the original question, no, using the slide stop to drop the slide won't do any damage if everything else is right on the gun.

As for the other part of the debate - some people like french fries, some like onion rings. Just for giggles I watched some youtube videos from training classes (from several famous schools). After about 8 videos in, it was evenly divided between the slide locks and the slingshots, and the brand of gun made little difference. It was what worked for the user.

In my case, I can run the 1911 either way, with a slight advantage to hitting the slide stop button.

On a Glock, I absolutely have to slingshot it for two reasons.

One, that little button (even the extended version) is just in the wrong spot and wrong angle for me to hit reliably. And two, all those years of riding the thumb safety on a 1911 causes problems when I grip the Glock. About one out of three times, my thumb will ride just enough that the slide closes on an empty chamber, so I have to rack the slide anyway.

On Sigs, it's about 50/50 depending on the grips on the gun.

Bottom line is try it both ways and see what works for you.

Frank
25th May 2010, 11:45
...Just for giggles I watched some youtube videos from training classes (from several famous schools). After about 8 videos in, it was evenly divided between the slide locks and the slingshots, and the brand of gun made little difference. It was what worked for the user...That's been my experience in the classes I've taken. Some teach slingshot and some using the slide stop. I tend to consider it a user option.

DVC

Blue Duck
30th May 2010, 09:28
I have several different guns, and I do it both ways. Some guns mainly 1911's and Highpowers usually work well by pressing the slidestop, but I have had some 1911's that the slide stop was pretty stiff, and I found it much eaiser to just grab the slide and pull back and let go, plus my Glock 22 is eaiser to slingshot.

There is another reason to slingshot some guns, and that is reliability. On some guns, I have found that pulling the slide back and letting it go, gives the slide a better run at stripping the top round off of the mag, where sometimes just depressing the slide stop would allow the round to sorta stick on the feed ramp and cause a jam. On a gun that is not that well tuned this is a real possibility.

Hawkmoon
30th May 2010, 09:51
I just re-read the Gun World review of the new Walther P380 and realized that ... it doesn't HAVE a slide stop/release.