The best solutions to pistol malfunctions

This is a discussion on The best solutions to pistol malfunctions within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Originally Posted by Gabe Suarez The gun stops. It is evident because the gun did not go "bang". As soon as I recognize that, without ...

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Thread: The best solutions to pistol malfunctions

  1. #16
    Senior Member Array DoctorBob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabe Suarez View Post
    The gun stops. It is evident because the gun did not go "bang".

    As soon as I recognize that, without doing anything else, I Tap-Rack-Shoot.

    Yes, I shoot automatically as soon as I complete the maneuver. If it worked I will be back to shooting. Nothing else need be done.


    Tell us what you think??
    What if it's a hang fire cartridge?

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  3. #17
    Senior Member Array Sweatnbullets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoctorBob View Post
    What if it's a hang fire cartridge?
    I have been training hardcore for 12 years now and instructing for around six years. Out of the hundreds and hundreds of thousands of rounds (likely into the millions) I have seen shot.....I have never seen one hang fire.

    You can stand idle due to the very small chance of a hang fire, or you can train how to respond correctly inside of a fight.

    The choice is yours.

  4. #18
    Member Array JodyH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sweatnbullets View Post
    Suarez International (SI) tends to train for fighting and not for the square range. Since the magazines are the very heart of the gun, we do not advocate habitually tossing them on the ground in your training, because inside of a very bad situation you would run out of magazines very quickly.

    We tend to advocate pattern recognition training over pattern training. If you train the pattern to always dump your magazines you are training in a pattern that could get you killed. Since you never know how bad your situation is going to be (Katrina, Mubai, Rodney King Riots, Beslan) ingraining always dumping your magazines does not make any sense. That is the heart of your weapon system.

    We reject almost anything that is square range focused and tend to look at being fight focused. Being fight focused means that you need to have pattern recognition responses......not pattern responses. Pattern responses work great on the square range when you are not fighting.......that is marginally interesting to us at SI.
    So... you are in the habit of having limited magazines and extra ammo just laying around?
    If you are mobile and engaged in an extended firefight you can envision a situation where you'll have a sack full of empty magazines and a box of loose rounds to insert in them?
    A sack full of empty magazines doesn't make sense if you are bum rushed and shot in the head while you're messing around stashing an empty magazine with an empty rifle in your hand.
    I train to get the gun back in the fight as quickly as possible.
    Planning for the future doesn't help you much if you are killed in the short term.

  5. #19
    Senior Member Array Sweatnbullets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoctorBob View Post
    What if it's a hang fire cartridge?
    I have been training hardcore 12 years now and instructing for around six years. Out of the hundreds and hundreds of thousands (probably into the millions) of rounds I have seen shot.....I have not seen one hang fire.

    You can stand idle due to the very small chance of a hang fire, or you can train how to respond correctly inside of a fight.

    The choice is yours.

  6. #20
    Member Array JodyH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gabe Suarez View Post
    Rather than venturing, which I suspect is simply wishful thinking to reinforce incorrect "range based" training, why don't you do some research and bring me true real life examples where that has happened. I will venture to say you won't find what you think. Reality and not fiction is what we need to base on training on bro.
    I'm venturing and you're venturing.
    Since you haven't supplied any data to back your assertion that malfunctions occur more than an empty gun, it looks like a wash.
    Reality and fiction have yet to be determined.

  7. #21
    Member Array JodyH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chad Rogers View Post
    While the .mil days and the realities of being a citizen gun owner may be different, I prefer to hang on to the magazines.
    They are different.
    In a military setting you have someone sending rounds downrange while you secure your gear.
    If you are on your own with your head down stashing a magazine you're a prime candidate for getting flanked and rolled up.

  8. #22
    Senior Member Array Sweatnbullets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JodyH View Post
    So... you are in the habit of having limited magazines and extra ammo just laying around?
    If you are mobile and engaged in an extended firefight you can envision a situation where you'll have a sack full of empty magazines and a box of loose rounds to insert in them?
    A sack full of empty magazines doesn't make sense if you are bum rushed and shot in the head while you're messing around stashing an empty magazine with an empty rifle in your hand.
    I train to get the gun back in the fight as quickly as possible.
    Planning for the future doesn't help you much if you are killed in the short term.
    I feel that it is important to have magazines to reload. You may not believe that is important......and that is fine. Seems odd to me to not want to have magazines to load.

    You are looking at things as "this or that." in order to try to make a point. If you read my post it mentions being "pattern recognition" focused. That means that my response is dictated by the situation. I never ingrain a pattern that can get me killed. On the other hand, you do. You train in a pattern that you learned while being focused on the square range activities. You do not consider the fluid situational responses that you would need inside of a fight. You do not look at the situation as being the dictating factor. You have become a slave to a technique and have ingrained a pattern response that may be totally inappropriate for the situation. I have ingrained working off of pattern recognition, where I have the best solution......dictated by the situation

    "Situations dictate strategy, strategy dictate tactics, and tactics dictate techniques........techniques should not dictate anything."

    "As a default" has a meaning! We default to retaining our magazines. But that does not mean that I do not have the ability to strip my magazine and dump it. I train that also.......dictated by the situation. But my default is not to throw my magazines away, but I do when the action is extremely urgent and the shinola is extremely deep

    I train LEO, Military, Special Units/Teams, and typcal civilians. For me to teach "ingraining to throw the magazines away" would be a huge disservice to my students. This is not training for the square range......this is training for the reality of the fight. If you throw all of your magazines away, your weapon becomes a club.

    Yes, I carry a supply of ammo and magazines. I lived through the Rodney King Riots and know the reality of the fight. The streets were not the square range.

    You keep doing what you do. I see it has old outdated training that is influenced by a square range mentality. Much of the training of the recent past does not take the reality of the fight into consideration. It would seem that is the training that you participate in.

    Good luck with that!

    Been there and have done that. I have found a better way to train now and I will never look back.

  9. #23
    Senior Member Array Sweatnbullets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JodyH View Post
    They are different.
    In a military setting you have someone sending rounds downrange while you secure your gear.
    If you are on your own with your head down stashing a magazine you're a prime candidate for getting flanked and rolled up.
    You assume that our head is down to stash a mag. I do it by feel if there is something down range that I need to see and I have it down quite well.

  10. #24
    Senior Member Array Chad Rogers's Avatar
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    The simple quick stashing of a magazine in a side or back pocket on the side of your body where your reload carrier is anyway is NOT some sort of 10-second plus operation.

  11. #25
    Senior Member Array CR Williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JodyH View Post
    If you are on your own with your head down stashing a magazine....
    Do they actually teach you to look down like that during mag changes or weapon manipulations where you train?

    That boggles the imagination if they really do that. Do they really do that?
    My cats support the Second Amendment.

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    "Oh, bother," said Pooh as he rocked another mag into the 556R...

  12. #26
    Distinguished Member Array tcox4freedom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CR Williams View Post
    Do they actually teach you to look down like that during mag changes or weapon manipulations where you train?

    That boggles the imagination if they really do that. Do they really do that?
    I was thinking the same thing!

  13. #27
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    I have a drop pouch on my rifle set up, makes it really easy to retain my magazine after a reload. I think leaving magazines on the deck is a bad idea, I never saw a re-supply that included magazines.

    Also, I never ran dry in a gunfight, after engaging, while still behind cover, I would replace the partially empty magazine with a fresh one. FWIW, this was in combat, and I had 10 30 round magazines. But then again, I maintained my weapon, and didn't have any malfunctions either. I have had several malfunctions on ranges with M-16's, and except for 1 round over bolt incident, most were double feeds, caused by worn out government magazines (I bought my own PMAGs to take to country). A quick shift of the weapon allows the operator to see what kind of malfunction it is (if the bolt is closed, tap, rack bang, if it isn't all the way forward, remedial action, including taking out the magazine.)

    Additionally, in a live gunfight, if someone is reloading, or attempting to clear a malfunction, and not trying to move to cover at the same time, in my mind, they are wrong.
    Fortes Fortuna Juvat

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  14. #28
    VIP Member Array 10thmtn's Avatar
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    My default is to retain the magazine, if at all possible. I'm too poor to just leave my mags all over the place.

    If the BGs are so close that you cannot take the time to stash your empty mag, you should probably be transitioning to your pistol anyway.

    IMHO, your scenario will dictate much as well. I live in a typical suburban area - homes are all around. With a wife and 2 small kids, my default will be to defend in place. The realistic threats? Looting, rioting - that sort of thing. In my case, since homes are all around, any shot I take will have to be very carefully aimed. Thus, there is little functional difference, for me, between a semi-auto, bolt, pump, or lever rifle. A scope is a must, for accuracy.

    While I have a Mini 14 Ranch Rifle with a scope, I recently bought a Marlin 336 package lever gun (in .30-30) with a scope. Just wanted something with better barrier penetration (heavier bullet) than the 5.56, given the amount of trees and other cover in my area. I like the fact that I can top off the mag tube as I go, if necessary. For the money (less than $500, see aforementioned wife and kids) I think it is a great choice for my needs. Plus, it eliminates the toss-or-keep mag debate rather nicely...

    Wow - talk about thread drift...

    Hey CR - Nice to see you over here!
    The more good folks carry guns, the fewer shots the crazies can get off.
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  15. #29
    Member Array Cruel Hand Luke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JodyH View Post
    I'd venture to say more guns have run dry in a gunfight than those that have malfunctioned.
    If you travel about with a low cap gun maybe.Depends on whether you have a single stack gun or a hi cap. In a civilian close range gunfight the odds are just about zero that you are going to run your gun empty.

    There is however a pretty fair possibility that due to either getting a less than robust grip on the gun, the BG getting a hand in and fouling your draw or the possibility of getting it hung up in clothing as you fire that you may well end up with a failure to eject if you were not able to either gain better physical position on the bad guy, or gain distance before you attempt to draw.

    Any time we are in physical contact with the BG when the fight starts then there is a HIGH likelihood that the gun will get grabbed or the draw fouled. The way to fix this in the first place is to solve the hand to hand part first and work to better your position BEFORE you draw, but if you are still a "I carry a gun so I don't need to know how to fight" kind of guy then you are probably going to get ONE shot off and then have to clear a malfunction.

    The other issue is getting a less than robust grip on the pistol and "limp wristiing" it. What tends to happen is fighting your way through the Level 3 retention holster (if a cop)while trying to repel a contact distance physical attack tends to leave you with a less than ideal grip on the pistol when it finally clears the holster. The common result is "BANG" and then "CLICK" as the slide does not come back far enough to pick up the next round. Tap Rack fixes that. (Actually making sure you get a full firing grip on the pistol keeps the malfunction from even happening, but that is a subject for another time).

    Guns almost never malfunction on the range. Well let me change that . Modern, high quality guns that are kept relatively clean almost never malfunction on the range. Now add a live adversary at arms reach and the uncertainty of the REAL thing and suddenly things happen that are not normal. So no, I'm afraid that running the gun empty is not more likely than a failure to eject ...at least if you carry a hi cap pistol. If I have to run my Glock 34 empty and shoot some more, then something BIG is happening and it will be on all 3 networks, CNN, FOX News and probably wikipedia.

    But if you want to use " unload/reload" to fix a simple failure to eject just be aware that you are using the slower method that fixes a LESS likely problem.Tap/Rack can be done in about 1/4 the time and it solves empty chamber, failure to fire, and stovepipe, where unload reload is only needed to fix a failure to extract (or double feed) and since you are about as likely to see a unicorn as a double feed with a modern pistol, I'd err on the side of what the problem most likely is and make Tap/Rack my default response if the gun fails to go "bang" and the BG is less than 10 yards away.

    The closer we are, the less time we have. If I am 2 or 3 arms reach away, then it is now a hands on problem and the gun is now a club. If it is 3 steps or more away I cannot cover the distance fast enough and clearing the malfunction as I move to cover is more likely to get better results. If I am behind cover or at distance greater than 15 yards (against pistol armed assailants) then if you want to unload/reload, then that will PROBABLY work...due to the distance involved. But Tap/Rack is always going to be faster.
    Randy Harris
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    TRAIN with me....http://www.suarezinternationalstore....px?find=harris

  16. #30
    Member Array Cruel Hand Luke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chad Rogers View Post
    The simple quick stashing of a magazine in a side or back pocket on the side of your body where your reload carrier is anyway is NOT some sort of 10-second plus operation.
    You are correct Sir!

    A "reload with retention" as they call it in IDPA or a "Proactive Reload" as we call it takes about 2 seconds for most folks and a little less for some. And it is NOT something done while standing in the open with bullets flying at you. We are NOT risking our life to rescue a magazine. But if you reload BEHIND COVER then there is no real reason not to stash the mag as you reload. And if we are simply topping off after the shooting is done...or at least it is done FOR NOW....then there is no reason not to stick the mag in your back pocket as you reload.

    Now if we shoot to slidelock and the threat is still there....eject and slam a new one in ASAP. But if we are not taking incoming fire, then stashing the mag has no disadvantage and plenty of advantages for folks who may be operating in a context other than urban civilian CCW shooting with a 1 minute police response time.

    In fact, John Farnam used to teach a "Military" and a "civilian" reload. The Military reload was a "reload with retention". The civilian relaod was a simple "speed reload". That is you would eject the mag whether it still has ammo or not and reload with a new mag as a means of topping off your gun when there was a "lull" in the action. But apparently during Katrina and the ......issues....surrounding it..... there were some reports of people using that method and then losing the mag, They culd get more ammo...but not more mags so he was saying he was going to teaching the military reload only.....Just like we do.
    Randy Harris
    Suarez International Tier 1 Staff Instructor
    NRA Certified Instructor
    Master Class IDPA SSP

    TRAIN with me....http://www.suarezinternationalstore....px?find=harris

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