Is it wise to use the slide release to chamber a round?

Is it wise to use the slide release to chamber a round?

This is a discussion on Is it wise to use the slide release to chamber a round? within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; My only handgun at the moment is a Beretta 92FS. My father and I were at the range, and when I shoot I normally use ...

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Thread: Is it wise to use the slide release to chamber a round?

  1. #1
    New Member Array Hakkapell's Avatar
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    Is it wise to use the slide release to chamber a round?

    My only handgun at the moment is a Beretta 92FS. My father and I were at the range, and when I shoot I normally use the firearm's slide release to chamber the round, rather than cocking the slide. I did the same with my father's AR, and he said that it wasn't good for the gun to do that and it could cause a misfire.

    Is that true? I've heard conflicting opinions, and I'd like to get it cleared up.


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array Brad426's Avatar
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    Only with a Kahr. I have slingshotted the first round into just about every gun ever (icluding Kahrs, gasp!) and have never had it be an issue.
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    Senior Member Array patri0t's Avatar
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    Most quality sidearms will chamber a round just fine with the slide release. On some models, that catch is not a true slide release (the manual will normally tell you or call it something other than a slide release).
    I've had some semis that only offer a little 'nub' for a slide-lock.... those are self explanatory when you try to use it.

    Either way, it won't harm the sidearm, but some may need to be chambered by pulling back the slide to reliably place a round 'in-battery'.
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    Depends on the gun, read the manual.

    Ruger Mk II/III's are a slide stop, and you should slingshot. If you use the stop as a release, it will round over time, and then you will have last shot hold open failures.

    On the other hand, the XDS manual instructs you to use the slide release.

    I always slingshot unless doing causes feed problems (like in the XDS, which loads more reliable when using the slide release).
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    VIP Member Array pittypat21's Avatar
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    He told you not to do that on an AR? It's perfectly normal and fine to do that with an AR. I'm not sure how sending the bolt home with the bolt release is supposed to cause a misfire. The bolt is operating the same way whether you use the bolt release or the charging handle.

    On some guns, the slide stop is ONLY slide stop. On some it's a slide stop/release. Reading the manual will inform you of the proper way. If I remember correctly, Beretta specifically instructs users to use the slide release to chamber a new round on a fresh mag.

    On many guns, the sling shot method is used not because using the slide release is bad, but because it can be done with gross motor skills rather than fine motor skills. Its more of a tactic rather than a more mechanically sound option.

    On an AR, the mechanism is a bolt catch/release. It operates on a fulcrum, with a lower and upper portion, the lower portion to be pressed to lock the bolt to the rear, the upper, much larger portion to send the bolt home. It's bigger so as to make it easier to find and use. It is specifically made and placed to be used to release the bolt after reloading.
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    Distinguished Member Array Exacto's Avatar
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    I prefer to reach up and grab the slide, pull back and let her fly, don't ride it down. The gun is designed to function this way. There are some tactical advantages to this as well as opposed to using the slide lock lever, but that's another story altogether. Either way, it won't hurt the gun.
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    Member Array grbr's Avatar
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    On an AR there is zero need for the stop/release to even have an external button except for the purpose of being used as a release. So if it's not supposed to be used as a release button, then it would mean a moron designed it if they added a button that has no need to be there and shouldn't be pressed. And the whole misfire thing makes zero sense at all. The bolt is operating the same in both methods, nothing different.

    I'd place more money on the guy telling you that you shouldn't do it is wrong than Eugene Stoner being wrong.

    It's fine on the 92FS as well.

    I've heard people say that on all handguns you should rack instead of slide release for the purpose of developing it as habit since some handguns don't have such a feature or have a poor release that is hard to press, etc. That way the skill would be the same and transfer from gun to gun.

    But I've never heard anyone say that on an AR or 92FS there would be some sort of mechanical problem from using the slide release. And on a 92FS even the "do it as habit" thing I believe is overruled because of the safety location: way too easy to accidentally go safety on during reload if you use the slide (which is a bad time to have your next attempted shot fail on you). I highly recommend using the slide release on a 92FS. I do on mine.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Array tubadude's Avatar
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    It's fine. I use the slide release all the time on my ARs and handguns.
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    I don't think there is a single semi-auto pistol out there that will not reliably and positively chamber a round by pulling the slide completely to the end of its rearward travel, and letting it go. I rarely use the slide stop/release to chamber a round - yep, even with both Kahrs. Whether by thumb-and-forefinger 'slingshot' or over-the-slide grip, it always works.

    As for ARs, if I'm starting with the bolt locked back, I find it easier to hit the bolt release, rather than yanking on the charging handle. Starting with the bolt in battery, it's a yank on the charging handle. Functionally, there's not a whit's difference in the gun's function; if using the bolt release was in any way dangerous, harmful or unreliable, it would have disappeared via design change by now.

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    I think that many 1911 platforms using low rated recoil springs may not provide enough force to strip and chamber a round from the magazine, therefore pulling back on the slide and releasing is recommended.

  11. #11
    Distinguished Member Array BurgerBoy's Avatar
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    Bersa says to chamber a round with the slide release. I always do that and have no problems with it.
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    I learned the slingshot method and have always used it. I figure larger muscles are more reliable when in the moment. I've also been told the other way can wear down the catch. Considering most of us put thousands of rounds a year through our guns, I imagine it could after a while. I've just always stuck with the way I was taught and never had a problem.
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    Senior Member Array Zralou's Avatar
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    I've always used the slide release. When shooting IDPA, after releasing the mag for a reload, my thumb goes from the mag release to the slide release while i'm inserting the new mag and i'm ready to drop the slide soon as the mag locks in place.

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  14. #14
    Senior Member Array Matthew Temkin's Avatar
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    I do not like the slingshot method with Beretta type decocking levers, since it is painful and can cause the safety to engage if not done "properly"
    With other guns one can use either or, depending upon personal preference.

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    Senior Member Array Chad0724's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PEF View Post
    Depends on the gun, read the manual.

    Ruger Mk II/III's are a slide stop, and you should slingshot. If you use the stop as a release, it will round over time, and then you will have last shot hold open failures.

    On the other hand, the XDS manual instructs you to use the slide release.

    I always slingshot unless doing causes feed problems (like in the XDS, which loads more reliable when using the slide release).
    I never thought of this good point!! Does the actual slide round off or the slide stop? I'm def going to quit using it to release the slide


    Chad
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