Dropping the Slide

Discussion in 'General Firearms Forum' started by DonD, Jun 1, 2020.

  1. DonD

    DonD

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    Maybe my background is not completely current but I have an observation.

    It has always been my understanding that the proper way to release the slide on a semi auto with a loaded magazine was to relieve pressure on the slide stop by gently pulling back on the slide and simultaneously releasing the slide stop.

    More and more I see videos of both supposedly highly skilled shooters as well as ordinary shooters just releasing the slide via the slide stop. Seems to me that this practice will result in accelerated wear. Comments? Don
     
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  2. bac1023

    bac1023

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    I very rarely do that, as it can cause wear on the slide over time.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2020

  3. ronin.45

    ronin.45

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    It will only cause noticeable wear if your gun is of poor quality. The slide release is the best method.
     
  4. pokersamurai

    pokersamurai

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    Serious question, is your gun a tool or a showpiece?

    If you gun is a tool for defending your life than hit that slide release and get that gun back into action as quickly and simply as possible.

    If it’s a showpiece, than by all means, baby it as much as you want.
     
  5. Deputydave

    Deputydave Millennium Member

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    One of the instructor certifications I have is as an Israeli Instinctive Shooting Instructor. It was the most intensive combat course in firearms I every took. The method used to drop the slide is exclusively the slide stop/release lever. There are two main reasons;

    1. It is quicker to simply sweep the slide stop/release lever down with the thumb. It is a gross motor skill that is easily remembered and used when under stress.
    2. It only requires one hand to utilize the technique.
    The second is an often overlooked yet essential skill. If you rely on two-hand methods to load, chamber, reload or clear malfunctions you will be at a severe disadvantage in the event that you have one hand/arm disabled. You should be able to load/reload, chamber or clear a malfunction with one-hand and also with either hand without any additional equipment (such as relying on the use of a holster to complete a reload, it's bad training).

    For the last couple of decades I exclusively use only the slide stop/release lever to drop the slide. Any concerns that it will prematurely cause wear is a non-issue. Certainly if it's a handgun used for serious SD. Keeping in mind that there will be exceptions for those that may not be able to manipulate the level due to strength or disability.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2020
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  6. -JCN-

    -JCN-

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    You are correct. It does accelerate wear.
    I have also determined that shooting a pistol can result in accelerated wear to the barrel and frame compared to it sitting in the safe.

    (On a less sarcastic note, I think the slide lever is softer metal than the slide and the wear is minimal on the slide... kind of like rear sights being made out of softer metal. I have replaced worn slide levers, but they are very cheap)
     
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  7. bubbatime

    bubbatime

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    Some of the fastest, most highly trained and best combat oriented shooters in the business, advise their students to use the slide stop if its faster (it is) and if you can easily reach it. On a Glock, the entire lever cost $7, so its just good maintenance to replace it every few years with your normal maintenance anyways. So yes, on a Glock, use it. Practice both ways.
     
  8. FireForged

    FireForged Millenium #3936 Millennium Member

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    accelerated wear? you mean over the course of a decade or decades and thousands of times repeating the process?. What does a slide stop cost?

    Darn near everything causes wear, I don't consider it something to do any hand wringing over. I will make my decisions regarding "method" based on what I consider most practicable toward self defense, not wear and tear of a $4 part.

    My advice.. don't over intellectualize the process.
     
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  9. DonD

    DonD

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    I will be using it at the range and I suspect, occasionally as a CCW item. I have no "showpieces" in my inventory, they all get used.

    I probably do err on the side of being overly cautious in my handling of guns in general. Don
     
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  10. DonD

    DonD

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    By the way, thanks for the replies. Don
     
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  11. DrewBone

    DrewBone

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    Oh boy.
     
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  12. Bren

    Bren NRA Life Member

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  13. Deputydave

    Deputydave Millennium Member

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    You bet, it was a good question to discuss.
     
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  14. FireForged

    FireForged Millenium #3936 Millennium Member

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    I am certainly not concerned with the "wear" aspect of using a slide stop. That said, if the Israeli's are so concerned with milliseconds of "speed", maybe they should consider carrying with a round in the chamber.. ;)

    I don't think it matters one hill of beans which method a person uses to return the gun to battery. I have used the over the top method for 40 years and should I need to employ another method due to injury or happenstance. I can manage at least 3 additional methods to accomplish the task. I wont likely be confused by muscle memory or trained habit action if my arm isn't working. If that is my dilemma, I will be keenly aware of it.

    I seriously doubt that any gun fight will EVER be lost or won based on which method you happen to adopt to return the gun to battery
     
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  15. rayzer007

    rayzer007

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    The Kahr manual recommends locking back the slide, inserting the magazine, the releasing the slide stop for chambering a round.
     
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  16. FireForged

    FireForged Millenium #3936 Millennium Member

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    You know you have gotten old when you look at archie and think "hey he looks kinda young in this photo".
     
  17. Gray Dood

    Gray Dood

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    I was trained and use the slide stop.

    I don't really sweat what other folks do, unless they're trying to do it to me.
     
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  18. Lot

    Lot

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    Actually this thread is the first time I've heard using the slide stop lever referred to as a gross motor skill. In the past using your offhand to paw the slide was considered gross motor and hitting the button with a single finger was considered fine motor. Did this change in the past few years?
     
  19. Deputydave

    Deputydave Millennium Member

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    A fine motor skill involves a large amount of neural and mental engagement. Conversely, a gross motor skill involves a very small amount of neural and mental involvement. Sling shooting the slide involves using both hands, gripping at different angles and pushing in opposite directions. Using the slide stop/release involves sweeping the lever with one digit. While using both hands isn’t a huge investment of mental acuity, using the lever is also economy of motion.
     
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  20. sciolist

    sciolist On the Border

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    What is your question?