Difficulty racking the slide

Difficulty racking the slide

This is a discussion on Difficulty racking the slide within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; First of all, this is a question for my girlfriend, not me. I'm 6'2" and 215lbs so an itty bitty spring isn't stopping me ;) ...

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 31

Thread: Difficulty racking the slide

  1. #1
    Member Array FallenPhoenix's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Tx
    Posts
    72

    Difficulty racking the slide

    First of all, this is a question for my girlfriend, not me. I'm 6'2" and 215lbs so an itty bitty spring isn't stopping me ;) She, on the other hand, is 5'4" (and a half, she claims) and of fairly small build. Secondly, I'm reasonably certain I put this in the correct forum, but feel free to move it, slap me around a bit, and call me Shirley if I was mistaken!

    I took her shooting a few weeks ago, as she had never shot a handgun, and was blown away (drum riff) at how well she controlled both my XD9 and Kimber, putting darn near every round just where I directed her to put it. The only concern is, she can't quite rack the slide all the way yet.

    As she is very interested in getting her CHL (yep, she's a keeper!) and has already claimed my next purchase (Kahr PM9) I've got her practicing racking the slide of my XD whenever she is here. If, for some reason, she is unable to reliably rack the slide on a particular firearm, what are our options? I recall the slide on my father's PM9 being a bit stiffer than most, and as tight a gun as that is, I would hesitate to replace any of the springs for fear of fouling up the near perfection that Kahr seems to have with this particular firearm.

    In short, other than practice, practice, practice, what are her options?


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array KenpoTex's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    SW Missouri
    Posts
    2,193
    what technique is she using? (overhand, slingshot, etc.)

    One thing that may help is to have her use the overhand method but to "punch" the gun out instead of trying to draw the slide back...What I mean is, have both hands near the chest, grab the slide in an overhand grip, and then push the gun out with the strong hand.
    This method seems to work well for people with less hand/arm strength.

    You're probably going to get a bunch of posts telling you to buy her a revolver, but I think the answer is to just work on it with her until she can do it...it can be done.
    "Being a predator isn't always comfortable but the only other option is to be prey. That is not an acceptable option." ~Phil Messina

    If you carry in Condition 3, you have two empty chambers. One in the weapon...the other between your ears.

    Matt K.

  3. #3
    Moderator
    Array RETSUPT99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Central Florida
    Posts
    45,057
    It's not so much strength as it is technique. My wife could not rack a slide on a KelTec, a Kimber, or a Glock. I had to help her learn to grasp and then 'push with both hands' smoothly...once she got that, no problem.
    I had her put her elbows out and then push with both hands...one hand on the grip...the other hand on the slide. Once she got the technique, it really became much easier for her...she just had to learn to feel it.

    Good luck with the teaching...
    The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.

    ***********************************
    Certified Glock Armorer
    NRA Life Member[/B]

  4. #4
    Member Array FallenPhoenix's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Tx
    Posts
    72
    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoTex View Post
    what technique is she using? (overhand, slingshot, etc.)

    One thing that may help is to have her use the overhand method but to "punch" the gun out instead of trying to draw the slide back...What I mean is, have both hands near the chest, grab the slide in an overhand grip, and then push the gun out with the strong hand.
    This method seems to work well for people with less hand/arm strength.

    You're probably going to get a bunch of posts telling you to buy her a revolver, but I think the answer is to just work on it with her until she can do it...it can be done.
    She tried both at the range, but was unable to rack it either way fully. She was able to release the slide from lock with the slingshot method 90% of the time however. I'll have her try the "punching" tomorrow evening.

    Quote Originally Posted by retsupt99 View Post
    It's not so much strength as it is technique. My wife could not rack a slide on a KelTec, a Kimber, or a Glock. I had to help her learn to grasp and then 'push with both hands' smoothly...once she got that, no problem.
    I had her put her elbows out and then push with both hands...one hand on the grip...the other hand on the slide. Once she got the technique, it really became much easier for her...she just had to learn to feel it.

    Good luck with the teaching...
    I think she is only really using the strength of one arm when trying to rack the slide. The method both of you describe sound like it would use the strength in both arms very well. She's almost there as it is, so that little bit extra may be enough to get by for now. Of course I'll have her keep practicing to develop those muscles that are probably not used very often in other activities.

    I've thought about loaning her my 637 for home defense, but given the anti-second-amendment slant of her current apartment complex, I'm wary to put her in any sort of situation that may cause her trouble that she just doesn't need right now.

  5. #5
    VIP Member Array NY27's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    2,387
    Quote Originally Posted by KenpoTex View Post
    what technique is she using? (overhand, slingshot, etc.)

    One thing that may help is to have her use the overhand method but to "punch" the gun out instead of trying to draw the slide back...What I mean is, have both hands near the chest, grab the slide in an overhand grip, and then push the gun out with the strong hand.
    This method seems to work well for people with less hand/arm strength.

    You're probably going to get a bunch of posts telling you to buy her a revolver, but I think the answer is to just work on it with her until she can do it...it can be done.
    +1. Tell her to imagine ripping the slide off of the frame as she punches the gun towards the target. These two forceful opposite movements should make it easier for her. Also after time she will develop the muscles involved in the movement.
    Police Defensive Tactics, Firearms, Carbine Rifle and Taser Instructor
    Glock Armorer
    NRA Life Member
    It is better to have your gun and not need it, than to need it and not have it!
    You cannot choose the conditions for a gunfight, so train in all conditions!

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array AZ Husker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Phoenix
    Posts
    4,244
    Overhand left hand technique, and equal, quick pushing with both hands. My girlfriend suffers from arthritis, and I got her using a G19 with the proper movements. If she's trying the "pinch" technique from the rear of the slide like I see so often, it'll never work.
    Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.

  7. #7
    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Fayetteville, AR
    Posts
    13,687
    Agreed.....push and pull---technique.

  8. #8
    cj
    cj is offline
    Senior Member Array cj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    1,008
    I always recommend the article on the Cornered Cat: "Rack the Slide". The rest of the site is also a good one for her to explore as it gives an excellent overview...in pink! :)

  9. #9
    Member Array MsXD9's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    172
    I agree with CJ. Have her review the link on cornered cat on proper techniques for racking the slide. It is more about technique than strength. Also, cornered cat is a great resource for female shooters.
    MsXD9


    [B]"When seconds count police are minutes away"!

  10. #10
    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    texas
    Posts
    15,179
    I would have her get some hand grip strengtheners and work on her grip and maybe some upper body/arm it shouldn't take too much work before she builds her strength up enough to rack the slide easily,After I broke my neck I couldn't hardly twist the cap off a tube of toothpaste ,but can rack the slide on all my firearms today no problem
    "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country,"
    --Mayor Marion Barry, Washington , DC .

  11. #11
    Member Array spooter66's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    433
    While she's trying this watch her and make sure she's keeping her finger off the trigger. For some people when they struggle to rack the slide they want to get a death grip and end up with their booger hook on the bang stick. They concentrate so much on racking the slide they forget all else.
    "I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals." - Sir Winston Churchill


  12. #12
    VIP Member Array AZ Husker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Phoenix
    Posts
    4,244
    Another recommendation for the "Cornered Cat" website. They can convince your wife or girlfriend to do things you could never accomplish. There's just something about that website that works. Women shooters helping other women, WITHOUT the man-hater feeling of so many other womens' sites.
    Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.

  13. #13
    Distinguished Member Array GWRedDragon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Arlington, VA
    Posts
    1,413
    Quote Originally Posted by spooter66 View Post
    While she's trying this watch her and make sure she's keeping her finger off the trigger. For some people when they struggle to rack the slide they want to get a death grip and end up with their booger hook on the bang stick. They concentrate so much on racking the slide they forget all else.
    This is good advice. I have recently been teaching my mom how to shoot handguns and she has had this very problem. Racking the slide is very difficult for her, and while trying to get a good grip with her strong hand she reflexively puts her finger on the trigger
    "Trust in God with hand on sword" -Inscription on my family's coat of arms from medieval England
    ---Carry options: G26/MTAC, PF9/MiniTuck, PPK/Pocket, USP40/OWB---
    ---NOTE: I am not an expert. If I ever start acting like a know-it-all, please call me on it immediately. ---

  14. #14
    Distinguished Member Array Agave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    West Tennessee
    Posts
    1,464
    Hold the grip in the weak hand and pull the slide back with the strong hand. I remember doing this when I was a small child.
    The preceding post may contain sarcasm; it's just better that way. However, it is still intended with construction and with the Love of my L-rd Y'shua.

    NRA Certified Pistol Instructor, Tennessee Certified Instructor

  15. #15
    Senior Member Array Roadrunner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    NW PA
    Posts
    737
    Overhand grip and give it a little time. With just a little practice those muscles will build up enough to work the slide, and practice will take care of the rest.
    - Kurt
    “Freedom is the sure possession of those alone who have the courage to defend it.” ~Pericles of Athens
    Primary Carry - Colt Commander .45 in a Brommeland Max-Con V

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Similar Threads

  1. Improperly Racking the Slide
    By TheOhioan in forum Defensive Carry Guns
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: March 29th, 2010, 07:34 PM
  2. Easy slide racking
    By firebug8 in forum Basic Gun Handling & Safety
    Replies: 28
    Last Post: December 19th, 2009, 04:41 PM
  3. Racking slide with heel of hand
    By 1611mac in forum Defensive Carry Guns
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: October 18th, 2009, 12:13 PM
  4. Ding on primer when racking slide, dangerous?
    By GreenHorn in forum Defensive Carry Guns
    Replies: 32
    Last Post: March 13th, 2009, 06:35 PM
  5. Is it me or the gun? Slide difficulty Witness .40
    By flaboatbum in forum General Firearm Discussion
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: December 21st, 2008, 08:16 PM

Search tags for this page

commander 1911 difficult racking slide?
,
difficult racking slide
,
difficulty racking 9mm
,
difficulty racking kahr pm9
,
difficulty with racking a slide
,
do women have difficulty racking ruger 380
,
handguns women reviews racking slide
,
hands lack strength to rack slide
,
racking slide women it's about technique not strength
,
slide racking
,
toothpaste on slides and rack it
,

walther p99sc

Click on a term to search for related topics.