Author Topic: ...getting half cocked?  (Read 1057 times)

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Offline cousinmark

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...getting half cocked?
« on: July 01, 2019, 08:05:26 AM »
Forgive me if this isn't the correct area for this topic? In another thread it came up that carrying a safety model CZ in the half cock, what I think of as "decocked" was a safe situation. I'm a fairly new CZ owned and have a PCR and RAMI BD so for me this is sort of a non issue, I use the decocker. I have owned 1911s for a while and was taught that the half cock or hammer down positions weren't acceptable conditions even though my pistols have block safeties. One of the theoretical problems is the potential to let the hammer slip and maybe lose a toe or worse :-(
So my question is with a CZ safety model, should one choose to want to carry in "half cock" is there a best way to get there? Obviously, be careful has crossed my mind :-)

Thanks

Offline sberres

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2019, 08:54:11 AM »
  For the CZ, assuming it’s not an SAO, the decocked position (hammer on the safety notch, not all the way down on the FP) is considered ‘safe’ and opinions will vary whether it’s better to carry ‘cocked and locked’ or simply decocked.
  But your question was how to get there safely and reliably with a safety model. You will find plenty of places here with various techniques described that are all slight variations on the same technique; that being to physically block the hammer from falling and to then get your finger off of the trigger as soon as the sear is released.  This allows the safety notch to catch the hammer when you move your blocking fingers/thumb out of the way.
  Personally, I prefer to pinch my thumb and forefinger together between the hammer and back of the slide. This allows me to solidly catch and release the hammer without getting pinched. I think most would concur that you don’t hold the hammer itself with either thumb or a pinch grip as it will eventually slip.
  As to whether or not you should decock at all without a specific lever to do so; that debate seems endless.  No matter how you prefer to approach it just be sure to follow the rules of gun safety and practice proper muzzle control.
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Offline Walt Sherrill

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2019, 09:16:01 AM »
Whether you're comfortable using the "safety" (i.e., half-cock) notch on a DA/SA CZ will depend on you, but that is the position that the decocker-equipped CZs decock to.  It's safe.

Starting from half-cock, the trigger pull is slightly shortened and slightly lightened.   (You can't do it in IDPA for a safety-equipped model; I'm not sure about USPSA.)

Offline cousinmark

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2019, 09:20:45 AM »
Thanks sberes, I'm glad you mentioned that the entire concept of decocking a safety model is not etched in stone? That's what I was thinking.
On a somewhat related note, I suppose you could say "getting cocked"...
...A RAMI is decocked and holstered, during draw is manually recocking it fully with your thumb a good bad or ugly idea? Personally I'm cool with the DA first round, this just a question that ran through my head?

Offline cousinmark

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2019, 09:28:20 AM »
Whether you're comfortable using the "safety" (i.e., half-cock) notch on a DA/SA CZ will depend on you, but that is the position that the decocker-equipped CZs decock to.  It's safe.

Starting from half-cock, the trigger pull is slightly shortened and slightly lightened.   (You can't do it in IDPA for a safety-equipped model; I'm not sure about USPSA.)

Thanks Walt, I get that once it's there (1/2 cock) things are safe. I'm more wondering if getting there is considered safe? I've gotten contradictions on the question from more esteemed CZ owners than myself.  Like I mentioned even with a series 80 1911 it's frowned on by the faithful and any manufacturers I've seen. Maybe it's just a carry over from the series 70s era. Things can move slow in 1911ville :-)

holidaypf

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2019, 09:29:56 AM »
I cut my teeth on a H&R break-open, single-shot, shotgun with a hammer four decades ago. I think that is why the consternation regarding safely dropping a DA/SA hammer on a loaded chamber has always seemed a bit exaggerated to me. Between the old H&R and lever rifles over the years, I've done it thousands of times without incident, before ever picking up a DA/SA handgun.

BUT STILL, I think other than good technique discussed by sberres, the most important thing you can do is keep your muzzle pointed in a safe direction. In the house, out here in rural Texas, I usually point to the ground through a window. (I think, what would be the easiest fix if a round does go off.) They make range devices for this purpose, or you could fill up a Home Depot bucket with sand and place it where you gear up and off every day if you don't have as much space. 

The main points are: 1) manually lowering a hammer on a loaded chamber can be accomplished safely and regularly; 2) Be AWARE while doing it and choose a good manipulation method; and 3) ALWAYS point in a safe direction - preferably one that is less expensive when considering home repair costs.  ;D

Regarding how CZ's are designed for half-cock as opposed to other pistols: Other pistols are other pistols. CZ's, as I understand it, are designed for carry in the half-cock position. (It really looks more like a 1/4 cock to me.) For example, old six-shooters are not designed to be carried in half-cock, hence the term, "going off half-cocked." Use the method best for each pistol.

No, I do not think cocking a DA/SA on the draw is wise. There is too much else going on at that time to worry about that. Fine for old Colts in Western movies, but there is no need or benefit in running the inherent risks with a modern CZ.

Offline cousinmark

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2019, 10:20:56 AM »
Thanks for the input holidaypf, I have to say after decocking my old Ruger Super Blackhawk countless times over the years I can't recall a slip? That is a tad larger hammer on the Ruger though :-)
I actually am enjoying training with the DA trigger on both my CZs, I'm getting better and am particularly impressed with the SA accuracy I can get out of both. These questions are more academic than anything else. I like my decockers :-)
I'll be sending the PCR in to CGW for a "SPA DAY" hopefully in the next week or two, I'm on the list... I'm really looking forward to seeing what I can do with the tricked out version.

holidaypf

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2019, 11:02:11 AM »
I hear ya cousinmark. I have a couple safety 75 compacts and really find very little use for the lever. I'd rather it not be there at all.

Offline M1A4ME

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2019, 02:59:42 PM »
I would argue that "decocked" is not the same as a B model with the safety in the SAFE position. 

If you pull the trigger (or the trigger is magically/accidently/who knows how) the gun will fire.

If the B model safety is in the SAFE position you can pull the trigger till your finger falls off and it will not fire.

The hammer/sear on the half cock notch may take finger strength/effort to fire than a B model with the hammer fully cocked and the safety in the FIRE position, but that is not the same as safe.
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Offline Walt Sherrill

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2019, 09:38:24 PM »
Quote from: cousinmark
Thanks Walt, I get that once it's there (1/2 cock) things are safe. I'm more wondering if getting there is considered safe? I've gotten contradictions on the question from more esteemed CZ owners than myself.  Like I mentioned even with a series 80 1911 it's frowned on by the faithful and any manufacturers I've seen. Maybe it's just a carry over from the series 70s era. Things can move slow in 1911ville :-)

If you shoot at an indoor range, check the walls and ceiling.   You'll typically see a lot of holes where there ought NOT be holes.   

Those holes were almost never caused by a decocking accident.   They're generally often caused by people just squeezing off a first round, or trying to draw and fire from a holster (if that's allowed at the range).   Those holes ARE FRIGHTENING!!  Over the years I've spent a lot of time at ranges and in matches.  I've worked as an IDPA Safety Officer. and helped run a number of matches.  I've seen a few stupid things over the years (and may have done one or two stupid things myself, early on), but I don't think I"ve ever seen a negligent discharge that happened while someone was decocking a weapon.

You don't HAVE to decock  -- lower the hammer -- using just one hand; you can use the other hand to control the hammer.  (You might even eventually learn to do it one-handedly and safely.)
  • The important part is keeping the gun pointed in a safe direction while doing it: down range and maybe pointed at the ground 5-6 feet in front of you.  Then, if you do make a mistake, the only thing damaged will be your ego...
I've never understood why so many people are SO DARNED AFRAID OF DECOCKING A SEMI-AUTO OR REVOLVER!!  Decocking a weapon is a basic gun-handling skill that all shooters should (and can easily) master.   
Most negligent discharges happen when the shooter thinks the gun is empty, not when they think it's loaded.  Decocking a weapon isn't rocket science.

Quote from: M1A4ME
I would argue that "decocked" is not the same as a B model with the safety in the SAFE position.

If you pull the trigger (or the trigger is magically/accidently/who knows how) the gun will fire.

If the B model safety is in the SAFE position you can pull the trigger till your finger falls off and it will not fire.

The hammer/sear on the half cock notch may take finger strength/effort to fire than a B model with the hammer fully cocked and the safety in the FIRE position, but that is not the same as safe.

All that IS true, but if you pull the trigger it's supposed to go bang.  If you don't want it to go bang, you shouldn't have your finger on the trigger,  whether the safety is ON or OFF! 
« Last Edit: July 02, 2019, 08:47:21 AM by Walt Sherrill »

Offline cousinmark

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2019, 03:44:08 PM »
You are 1000% correct about that finger on the trigger Walt. At my club there are 3 areas, each with a number of lanes. When I go in I always do a quick scan of who's where. The guys that run the range let me choose where I want to shoot. I also try to go at off times. I too find those holes in the walls and ceilings worrisome.

Offline wizzles

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Re: ...getting half cocked?
« Reply #11 on: August 05, 2019, 11:19:11 PM »
I prefer to de-cock my "safety" model CZ's to the half-cock position, similar to if I was using a Decocker model.

This video shows three methods:


I've always thought nothing of decocking with my strong hand thumb only, but that's because I was always playing with toy guns growing up and it's muscle memory.  When I realized that the hammer could drop too fast and I could ND, possibly injuring myself or others, I opt to cover the firing pin and roll my thumb, or grab both sides of the hammer.

 

anything