How long is it ok to leave semi-auto in "cocked" condition?

How long is it ok to leave semi-auto in "cocked" condition?

This is a discussion on How long is it ok to leave semi-auto in "cocked" condition? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I have a S&W M&P 9mm that I keep loaded and with a round in the chamber 24/7 as my carry weapon. Since it is ...

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Thread: How long is it ok to leave semi-auto in "cocked" condition?

  1. #1
    Member Array vashooter's Avatar
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    How long is it ok to leave semi-auto in "cocked" condition?

    I have a S&W M&P 9mm that I keep loaded and with a round in the chamber 24/7 as my carry weapon. Since it is a striker fired pistol, this means that the firing pin spring is in its compacted, "tensioned" state. I only fire the pistol once every 2 months or so. Does leaving a pistol like this hurt it or weaken the springs at all?


  2. #2
    Senior Member Array bluelineman's Avatar
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    I've had my Glock 26 fully loaded (10 in mag, 1 in chamber) since 1998. No problems. I get it inspected by TR Graham (Glock Armorer, worked for Glock in Smyrna, GA for a while) every few years at the local gun show. All springs good to go. I wouldn't worry about it.

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    I hope not. I have an XD40sc for my carry weapon. But I do fire it every two weeks. Also, XD40 service for HD is fired every 2 weeks or less. I don't unload either in between.

    My very inexpert opinion is that 2 months is not a problem, but an occasional cleaning wouldn't hurt.

  4. #4
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    It should not. Read the owners manual. Does it specify storing with the striker fired? Springs wear from flexing from compressed to resting position and back. Same with mags. Loaded mags can stay loaded without harming the springs.
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  5. #5
    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Geez. . . . we need a special sticky for "Gun Springs/Mag Springs - Fear of constant compression"
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    VIP Member Array obxned's Avatar
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    I have a suspicion that many 'weak' springs are more a case of accumulated crud than the age of the springs.
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    Senior Member Array Pete Zaria's Avatar
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    Get a couple of extra springs to have on hand, and forget about it! That's my theory...

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    Senior Member Array HowardCohodas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vashooter View Post
    I have a S&W M&P 9mm that I keep loaded and with a round in the chamber 24/7 as my carry weapon. Since it is a striker fired pistol, this means that the firing pin spring is in its compacted, "tensioned" state. I only fire the pistol once every 2 months or so. Does leaving a pistol like this hurt it or weaken the springs at all?
    A good question to ask on the forum The #1 Compact, Full Size, and Modified M&P Pistol Source :: MP-Pistol.com
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    Senior Member Array tegemu's Avatar
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  10. #10
    Distinguished Member Array snowdoctor's Avatar
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    not problems keeping them stored cocked. it doesn't put any abnormal force on the spring.
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  11. #11
    Member Array Bline's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tally XD View Post
    Geez. . . . we need a special sticky for "Gun Springs/Mag Springs - Fear of constant compression"
    +1

    The physics of it are that a sping will only "wear out" if it's constantly compressed and released. The over extention of a spring will also do damage. Niether are the case with a loaded mag or a "cocked" firing mechanism as I understand it. Just my $0.02(the cent sign is a thing of that past isn't it.)
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  12. #12
    Member Array realitycramp's Avatar
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    This is an interesting discussion. A quick thought would say the spring would lose compression over time. My engineering background with materials still says that can't be totally discounted but it may be such a slow decay process that it is irrelevant.
    Facts are negotiable, perceptions are not.

  13. #13
    VIP Member Array Kerbouchard's Avatar
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    I find that you can only keep the spring compressed for a period of 38 hours and 20 minutes. Anything longer than that leads to increased chances of brittle facture and/or ductile failure. As temperature is lowered, the time frame goes down. A 5 degree change in temperature can affect the time until possible brittle fracture by up to 1 hour.

    Either that, or pretty much indefinitely. Your call.
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