weak hand strength

weak hand strength

This is a discussion on weak hand strength within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; After years of my telling her it would be a good idea, my mother has finally decided she wants a gun and to learn how ...

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Thread: weak hand strength

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array nightsonge's Avatar
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    weak hand strength

    After years of my telling her it would be a good idea, my mother has finally decided she wants a gun and to learn how to shoot.

    I dug out my guns for her to dry fire and found that her hand strength is virtually non existent. She liked the size and weight of the snubbie, but barely got the trigger pulled twice. Even the 4 1/2 lbs. pull on my 1911 gave her trouble.

    I was thinking of taking my snubbie to a gunsmith to lighten and smooth the trigger pull, but I'm not sure if it can be made light enough. Just how light can you get the double action pull on a Taurus 605 stainless snubbie .357 and still have it be reliable?

    "BTW, it won't be loaded with .357 for her, standard velocity .38's" No range time yet, first I have to get a gun she's physically able to use.
    A 1911 is Not an obsession, it's simply a recognition that it's THE Gun. :-) All others are runner ups. And hey, if all else fails, aim for the nose and fling it to knock out your foe. Let's see y'all do that with a kel-Tec. ;-)


  2. #2
    Distinguished Member Array Exacto's Avatar
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    A rubber ball to squeeze on a regular basis would do alot to correct that.
    OldVet likes this.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Array nightsonge's Avatar
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    She's 73, and has had the strength in her hands deteriorating for several years in spite of exercise.
    A 1911 is Not an obsession, it's simply a recognition that it's THE Gun. :-) All others are runner ups. And hey, if all else fails, aim for the nose and fling it to knock out your foe. Let's see y'all do that with a kel-Tec. ;-)

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    Senior Member Array nightsonge's Avatar
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    I think if we can get the pull down to a smooth, though long, 8 or 9 lbs. she'd be able to handle it for at least limited range time. I don't know if the gun would be reliable with that low of a trigger weight. So I'm asking. hm, maybe I should have this posted in the gunsmith forum? In any case, have any members had this or a similar gun's trigger pull lightened to this extent? and did the reliability suffer?
    A 1911 is Not an obsession, it's simply a recognition that it's THE Gun. :-) All others are runner ups. And hey, if all else fails, aim for the nose and fling it to knock out your foe. Let's see y'all do that with a kel-Tec. ;-)

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    Distinguished Member Array phreddy's Avatar
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    Getting to an 8 or 9 lb pull on most guns should not be a problem for an experienced gunsmith, but you said that she had trouble with the 4 1/2 lb pull on your 1911. Getting lighter than 4 1/2 lbs is getting in an area that I believe would create additional safety risk, especially for someone who is not actively training.

    If she has trouble with a 4 1/2 lb pull , I think you should look into other methods of self defense.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Array nightsonge's Avatar
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    She was able to manage the double action pull on the revolver, but only a couple of times before having to rest, decent wrist strength, so the actual firing I don't think would be a problem with standard velocity loads. She did have trouble even with the 4 1/2 lbs. trigger on the 1911, though that may have been partially the reach. I do think that with an 8 lbs. trigger she'd be able to manage a box of shells or so at a stretch for some limited training.

    She's even interested in getting her carry license, most likely because her mother "granny is 94 and lives alone in the country" has been robbed twice by people who forced their way in, and my mother goes over to granny's a few times every week. I think she feels she may walk in on something. I'd escort her if I could, but my work schedule conflicts.
    A 1911 is Not an obsession, it's simply a recognition that it's THE Gun. :-) All others are runner ups. And hey, if all else fails, aim for the nose and fling it to knock out your foe. Let's see y'all do that with a kel-Tec. ;-)

  7. #7
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    It might be worth hunting around for a shop that's got a good handle on revolvers, particularly used, classic revolvers. It's amazing how much smoother and easier to operate one of those can be, as compared to some of the newer off-the-shelf variants available today. A trigger pull that's smooth as "buttah" at a ~4-5# pull weight can surprise ... even her, I'd think.

    Bottom line, her strength is going to need improvement and the gun's difficulty of operation is going to need to be brought in line with what she's capable of effectively manipulating and training with. Might well mean a different gun is more appropriate. It certainly means strengthening of the hands/wrist/forearms is called for.

    A decent gunsmith that knows revolvers can make a big difference. I'd think it's worth finding one, and exploring options with that person, given the situation.

    As for strengthening the hands, as some have suggested a "squeezy" ball or hand exerciser (even rolling/squeezing towels) can go a long way, with weak hands. So can grabbing a shovel, simple hands tools and even the bare hands when used in moving earth around in the garden. Worth doing, if indeed a firearm is going to be pursued as a useful, effective defensive tool.

    Some ideas: Hand strengthening exercises @ LiveStrong.com.
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    Buy a shotgun!
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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    Have her try shooting a Sig 238 the slide racks really easy and it has one of the mildest recoils Ive ever felt not to mention a great trigger and accuracy
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    --Mayor Marion Barry, Washington , DC .

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