Is my practice routine dangerous?

Is my practice routine dangerous?

This is a discussion on Is my practice routine dangerous? within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; In another thread I mentioned that I practice draw every evening when I come home. I carry a S&W 4516 in a Smart Carry holster. ...

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  1. #1
    Senior Member Array ep1953's Avatar
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    Is my practice routine dangerous?

    In another thread I mentioned that I practice draw every evening when I come home. I carry a S&W 4516 in a Smart Carry holster. When I get to my bedroom when I come home I draw the gun and click off the thumb safety while bringing the gun up to aim at my lamp. While bringing the gun to bear on the lamp I leave my trigger finger extended along the frame and not in the trigger guard.

    I do this to be in the habit of always clicking off the thumb safety so that if I ever have to use my gun in self defense it will be ready to fire.

    I figure that if I ever have a ND while doing this the only thing to be killed will be the lamp.

    I do have a question however. The lamp sits against the outside wall of my house. The wall is drywall and the exterior is brick. If I did have a ND doing this exercise, would a .45 hollow point be likely to penetrate the outside wall?


  2. #2
    Member Array CarryOrDie's Avatar
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    To answer your question, most likely no. If you've got hollow points in the chamber, not a chance. A FMJ....better chance but not likely.

    And btw, very dangerous. If you have to ask such a question, maybe you shouldn't be doing it. I never ever play with a loaded gun. My weapon never leaves my holster unless I am putting it on my nightstand or using the bathroom (don't want it falling out and having an ND). IMHO you need to find a new way of to train yourself now before you do have an ND.
    Just remember: When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.

  3. #3
    Member Array Archie's Avatar
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    Not so good.

    If I remember correctly, the 4516 is a DA/SA with a hammer dropper safety?

    Why bother have the safety engaged when holstered? Once loaded, the safety drops the hammer and renders the weapon 'safe'. After that, one may move the safety to the 'fire' position without danger.

    To answer your other question, the action is questionable. Practice drawing your weapon, certainly; but not loaded in a residence. The exterior brick will probably stop a single .45 round (meaning you could shoot through the wall with enough strikes in the same place.) However, doing so would make an ass of you. People would either giggle at you or avoid your presence as 'the guy who shot his lamp' or both.

    I'd suggest only doing this exercise with an empty weapon.
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  4. #4
    VIP Member Array NC Bullseye's Avatar
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    You need to curtail your carrying until you get the safety rules down. You're asking for many more problems that you anticipate. And yes, you do stand a huge chance of penetrating more than you think.

    If you insist on practicing your draw (which when done safely you should) take the time to do it right. Snap caps, or dry fire but only after you clear and make the gun safe. No live ammo in the area you practice and stop doing live draws on anything you don't plan to destroy.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Array dnowell's Avatar
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    That's really scary. The other posters have said the rest.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Array stevem174's Avatar
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    "Is my practice routine dangerous?"

    YES.
    Don't do things you don't want to explain to the Paramedics!

    Stupidity should be painful.

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    Of course it's dangerous... what are you going to do when you have a ND and it goes through the bricks and kills the kid next door, playing in his yard....

    If you have to ask... you probably shouldn't be carrying at all...
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  8. #8
    Member Array gymteach65's Avatar
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    I practice draw all the time and sometimes in front of a video camera to find my flaws. If you are going to practice a load weapon draw the only safe place to do so is at the range. If the weapon goes off there is no telling were that round will go. You may kill the lamp with an ND, but you may kill what ever is on the other side of the wall. Like someone next door or worse yet one of your family members. You never draw a loaded gun unless you are intending to shoot someone or something. The Range is the only place to practice with a hot weapon
    If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck.
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  9. #9
    Ex Member Array NavyLT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarryOrDie View Post
    To answer your question, most likely no. If you've got hollow points in the chamber, not a chance. A FMJ....better chance but not likely.
    Actually, tests have shown that most hollow points, when striking drywall, tend to not expand. Instead the plaster fills the hollow making the round essentially a full metal jacket after that point.

    Olympic Arms, Inc. - Real World .223 testing

    Summary
    The 55 grain HP .223 has less penetration than any of the other ammunition tested. Based on the results of this testing, there appears to be no basis for concern regarding the over penetration of the .223 [HP] round. In fact, it seems even safer in this regard than .40 S&W handgun ammunition.

    The hollow point cavity in the .40S&W round filled with material when shot through the wall. This caused [these bullets] to fail to expand when they entered the gelatin. As a result, they penetrated 8.5" farther than when shot directly into the gelatin.

    When the .223 [HP] was shot through he wall it began to fragment and as a result penetrated the gelatin only 5.5".

    Because the .223 [HP] begins to break up on impact, it has less potential for damage or injury than the 12 ga. in the event of a ricochet. The .223 [HP] is obviously safer in an urban environment than the 12 ga. with slugs or buckshot.

    Additional testing conducted proved that the .223 would penetrate a car door or glass. The .223 rounds fired into windshields began to break up after entering the glass and did not retain much energy. In most cases these rounds split in two.
    I used to think the same thing, BTW, until I was proven wrong.

    Also, to answer the OP's question, yes, your practice is dangerous.

  10. #10
    VIP Member Array 10thmtn's Avatar
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    Only thing I will add to what others have said is this -

    If you decide to carry with the hammer down and the safety set to "fire" you still need to practice putting the safety from "safe" to "fire" when you practice your draw (with an unloaded pistol). This is just in case the safety gets bumped into the "safe" position while in the holster. Don't just assume it is on "fire."

    Don't feel too bad - as long as your finger is off the trigger, you won't have a ND. I'm not too familiar with that pistol, but I think you are a long DA trigger pull away from firing (correct me if I'm wrong). What you're doing is not much different than what folks who use Glocks or similar pistols (such as me) do every time we unholster the pistol (finger off trigger, no manual thumb safety) to put it away. Same with a revolver - long DA trigger pull, no thumb safety. The difference is where you point it, how quickly you unholster, whether your brain is engaged, and the quality of your backstop.

    If you're going to repeatedly practice your draw, then unload it first. Otherwise, find a safer location and a better backstop.
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  11. #11
    VIP Member Array gottabkiddin's Avatar
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    IMO, it's a bad idea to practice anything with a loaded gun. The only time I practice with a loaded gun is at the range and that's strictly target practice. Just my .2 cents.

    Stay safe.

    GBK
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  12. #12
    Member Array 7mm Gumbo's Avatar
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    1. Never point a gun anything you are not willing to destroy.

    2. Be sure of your target and backstop.

    It seems to me you are not sure of your backstop. Good judgment would seem to preclude practicing in your home. This is what ranges with safe backstops are for.


    Also it has been my personal policy to assume that all guns are always loaded, always.... Even after I just unloaded them and checked to make sure they are unloaded.

    I would find a place that I was certain had a safe backstop to practice.

  13. #13
    Distinguished Member Array Rugergirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ep1953 View Post
    In another thread I mentioned that I practice draw every evening when I come home. I carry a S&W 4516 in a Smart Carry holster. When I get to my bedroom when I come home I draw the gun and click off the thumb safety while bringing the gun up to aim at my lamp. While bringing the gun to bear on the lamp I leave my trigger finger extended along the frame and not in the trigger guard.

    I do this to be in the habit of always clicking off the thumb safety so that if I ever have to use my gun in self defense it will be ready to fire.

    I figure that if I ever have a ND while doing this the only thing to be killed will be the lamp.

    I do have a question however. The lamp sits against the outside wall of my house. The wall is drywall and the exterior is brick. If I did have a ND doing this exercise, would a .45 hollow point be likely to penetrate the outside wall?
    The fact that you even asked this question, worries me.
    Please learn some firearm safety before you hurt or kill someone!
    Practicing anything with a loaded weapon anywhere but at the range is a NO-NO!
    That said I do practice draw drills at home, only when I am the only one home and only with an UNLOADED weapon. I empty the firearm and lock the ammo in the safe with the other firearms, holster, set a timer and go about my "normal" routine. The timer is my signal that somebody has come into the house, I need to draw, move to cover, and take aim. Even at this point I don't pull the trigger, my finger remains indexed along side of the frame.
    Dry fire exercises are a separate drill and done on alternate days. Those are done with a target taped to the wall, laser equipped guns I watch that laser for any unwanted movement, non laser equipped guns the drill is done with a dime balanced on the front sight.
    ANY drills done anywhere but the range are ALWAYS done with an UNLOADED firearm. No firearm is proven to be unloaded until it is checked at least twice.
    Please learn the firearm safety rules, or take a class on firearm safety and DO IT NOW!
    Disclaimer: The posts made by this member are only the members opinion, not a reflection on anyone else, nor the group, and should not be cause for anyone to get their undergarments wedged in an uncomfortable position.

  14. #14
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Is my practice routine dangerous? YES

    Quote Originally Posted by ep1953 View Post
    I mentioned that I practice draw every evening when I come home.
    So long as this is done with an unloaded gun, there is no danger.

    With a loaded gun, there is ... obviously so.

    I wouldn't worry about the lamp. I'd worry about what's beyond. IMO, unless you're doing this sort of live-round drilling on a range or other known-safe zone, you're playing with fire. Your draw/reholster drill has nothing to do with rounds. Thus, there is no reason to have a loaded gun while you're doing it. I suggest removing the ammo and ensuring the gun is clear, for safety's sake.

    You know this. You're here asking if it's safe and mentioning fears of penetrating the outside wall. Keep in mind the lamp isn't the only thing along your sight lines. It's merely the first thing along that line. Ask yourself if a 3yr old child could be along that line. If yes, then I think you know what the answer should be to your routine.
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  15. #15
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    Practicing draws with a loaded weapon is asking for a ND, not to mention flirting with disaster. While probably 99% of the time the round would not penetrate the brick wall, do you want to take that chance?

    If you want to practice your draw at home, unload your gun before you start your practicing.

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