Readiness (or carry) Conditions
I've been around guns off and on for most of my life, but when I started looking into my new pistol buy I started hearing about condition 1, condition zero, etc. So after a little research I found the following info in wikipedia (where else?) and provide you the link to the write up. Hopefully it can clear up some confusion for some other new folks.
The Link. Jeff Cooper - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cooper favored the Colt M1911 and its variants. There are several conditions of readiness in which such a weapon can be carried. Cooper promulgated most of the following terms:
Condition Four: Chamber empty, no magazine, hammer down.
Condition Three: Chamber empty, full magazine in place, hammer down.
Condition Two: A round chambered, full magazine in place, hammer down.
Condition One: A round chambered, full magazine in place, hammer cocked, safety on.
Condition Zero: A round chambered, full magazine in place, hammer cocked, safety off.
Some of these configurations are safer than others (for instance, a single action pistol without a firing pin safety such as a transfer bar system should never be carried in Condition 2), while others are quicker to fire the gun (Condition 1). In the interest of consistent training, most agencies that issue the 1911 specify the condition in which it is to be carried as a matter of local doctrine.
This firearm condition system can also be used to refer to other firearm actions, particularly when illustrating the differences between carry modes considered to be safe for various actions. For example, DA/SA is designed to be carried in Condition 2, which is not safe for 1911s without firing pin safeties.
As for me, my choice will be Condition 2 with my Bersa since it is a DA/SA pistol and some folks get really nervous if they see you have the hammer back. But that's just me.
Those condition codes are pretty specific to a sa firearm with a hammer, one of Mr. Cooper's favorite firearms being the 1911, this makes sense
the military also utilizes condition codes for firearms, and there are only 4, 4 to 1. However due to the difference between one firearm and another the condition codes can change up little bit by bit.
M9 Condition Codes:
4: Chamber empty, slide forward, no magazine inserted, safety on.
3: Chamber empty, slide forward, magazine inserted, safety on.
2: Does not apply.
1: Round in chamber, slide forward, magazine inserted, safety on.
You see that there's nothing about a hammer in these codes, and the safety is ALWAYS on until ready to fire (as per universal firearm safety rule 4) and taking it off and carrying it as such is not a carry code.
Out of uniform I carry firearms with no manual safeties. I still refer to them as Condition one, despite the lack of safety. Condition Zero has always sounded dumb to me, to my mind condition zero sound more like out of ammo or dead, IMHO.
I see what you mean GM, thanks for the extra info.
My side arm has a hammer so I kinda forgot the ones that don't. I do agree the Safety should always be engaged and I know some folks carry Con 1, I just don't feel comfortable that way. If you pack a DA/SA gun why bother?
For those with hammers, I prefer having it down, though you can't engage the safety on a 1911 that way (IIRC). In my MP days we carried Con 3 by policy. With my new Bersa I'll go with Con 2 as I can decock and still engage the safety. I recently watched a video where the hammer back was the major issue between an OCer and another patron at a diner. The OCer had a 1911 and that's the only way he could have the safety on. No amount of explaining could convince the complainer either.
Note that this is another one that varies by manufacturer. It's not possible to engage the safety with the hammer down on my CZ-83, and there is no decocker, thus the carry mode recommended in the manual is round chambered, and carefully letting the hammer down.
Originally Posted by Gunners_Mate
So for a Striker fired handgun such as the Ruger SR9/40/c (which has a manual safety), would these be the corresponding "conditions" ?
Condition Four: Chamber empty, no magazine
Condition Three: Chamber empty, full magazine in place, striker disengaged (see NOTE1)
Condition Two: A round chambered, full magazine in place, striker disengaged (see NOTE2)
Condition One: A round chambered, full magazine in place, striker semi-cocked, safety on
Condition Zero: A round chambered, full magazine in place, striker semi-cocked, safety off
NOTE1: getting A SR9/40c to this condition would require that the slide be in the forward position before a magazine was inserted & then the pistol dry-fired to release the Striker
NOTE2: I can not figure out a way to get the SR9/40/c into this state because the only way to chamber a round is either 1) manually with the slide open or 2) by racking the slide with a mag in-place; since racking the slide semi-cocks the Striker and there is no de-cocker I can't see how it's possible
The manual safety is one of the main reasons I've decided to buy a SR9c over the other Striker fired guns I tried/ considered (PPQ /various Glocks / XDm); so if I lived in a CCW state, I would carry in Condition One...
Yep, lots of different pistols out there. I think it would be complicated to come up with a different set of codes for each type.
There really should be a basic code set and we apply the one that most closely applies to our own gun. If yours doesn't have a hammer then don't worry about that one. If you have a round chambered, full magazine in place, and safety on, you're still Con 1 (or 2, take yer pick).
The whole point (I thought) is to have a somewhat uniform set of condition codes. Otherwise we'd have a dozen or so and it'd be like a group of people all from different countries trying to speak, but not knowing any other language.
How about :
Ready to rock.
Almost ready to rock.
I'm gettin there.
Hey BG give me a minute here will ya?
Yup! That works Phil.
So to encompass a wider range of weapon types we could say Cocked, Half Cocked (for those equipped with a decocker) and Un-cocked to include hammer and striker fired weapons?
If your pistol is incapable of achieving a certain condition code then naturally you just disregard that code.
Didn't mean to turn this into some divisive discourse guys. Sorry if I stepped on any toes, but this is a topic that's definitely worth discussing and I have learned quite a bit from it already.
So lets try this one.
Condition Four: Chamber empty, no magazine, uncocked, safety on (*)
Condition Three: Chamber empty, full magazine in place, uncocked, safety on (*)
Condition Two: A round chambered, full magazine in place, half cocked, safety on (**)
Condition One: A round chambered, full magazine in place, cocked, safety on.
Condition Zero: A round chambered, full magazine in place, cocked, safety off.
(*) Many pistols can only engage the safety in the cocked position.
(**) For pistols equipped with a firing pin safety or capable of engaging safety in the uncocked or half cocked positions.
As for Condition Zero, I honestly don't see myself using that as a normal carry option. I would certainly be at zero in a tactical situation though with pistol drawn.
And then you have the HK's and FNP which can be carried with a fully loaded gun, round in the chamber and:
1. hammer down/safety on
2.hammer down safety off double action on the first shot
3. hammer cocked/safety on just like condition 1
4. hammer cocked/safety off just like condition 0
When I carry the HK I carry with the gun fully loaded, hammer down safety off. I figure the DA pull for the first shot is just like a revolver and they have no safeties so I don't either. When I carry a 1911 it is ALWAYS condition 1
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