Is it bad for the gun if you lock the slide and release it (not gently)?

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    1. #1
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      Is it bad for the gun if you lock the slide and release it (not gently)?

      My friend the other day who's an avid hand gun owner and collector told me that pulling back the slide and then letting it go is super bad for the guns mechanisms.

      I told that gun shops don't like you to do that because its not technically the shoppers gun, whats the deal with this topic. Any insight would be greatly appreciated!

    2. #2
      Senior Member paratrooper's Avatar
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      I assume that you are talking about when it's unloaded. By the way, I have no reason to let it slam home when it's not loaded.

      Loaded, let it slam home.

      Gun shops don't like it either, when you look at a revolver, open the cylinder, and then with a flick of the wrist, you snap it closed.

    3. #3
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      Quote Originally Posted by paratrooper View Post
      I assume that you are talking about when it's unloaded. By the way, I have no reason to let it slam home when it's not loaded.

      Loaded, let it slam home.

      Gun shops don't like it either, when you look at a revolver, open the cylinder, and then with a flick of the wrist, you snap it closed.
      Why don't they like it?

    4. #4
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      Is it back for the gun, or the noise that irritates the owners? I do it to my gun at home all the time.

    5. #5
      Senior Member paratrooper's Avatar
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      First off, if you're in a gun shop handling ANY firearm, remember, it's not your gun. Handle it with due respect.

      There's no reason to snap shut a cylinder on a revolver. They might do it in the movies, but that doesn't make it right. And yes, by doing that, you could do some damage. Why even take the chance.

    6. #6
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      Quote Originally Posted by paratrooper View Post
      First off, if you're in a gun shop handling ANY firearm, remember, it's not your gun. Handle it with due respect.

      There's no reason to snap shut a cylinder on a revolver. They might do it in the movies, but that doesn't make it right. And yes, by doing that, you could do some damage. Why even take the chance.
      Due respect? How could it damage the gun?

      How do you release the slide correctly then? Gently pull the slide release and bring it back to its original position with ease?

    7. #7
      Senior Member TAPnRACK's Avatar
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      Re: Is it bad for the gun if you lock the slide and release it (not gently)?

      No... never guide the slide into battery to chamber a round. Pull the slide back and let go (once retracted) using the spring tension to chamber a round... the way the weapons disigned to. Guiding the slide into battery is a great way to cause a malfunction.

      The "slide stop" is not also a "slide release" lever. Looks cool in movies, much like spinning the cylinder on a revolver then flicking it shut... but serves no purpose and can damage the firearm. In the case of revolvers... you simply push on the crane (metal bar connected to cylinder) to close the cylinder. Snapping or flicking causes stress cracks over time and can cause the cylinder to index incorrectly (rotate to next chamber in cylinder).

      Main reason to train to pull back on the slide and release is it is a gross motor skill vs locating the slide lock and releasing the slide (fine motor skill). Most shooters also change their grip when they use the slide lock... you don't have to when you grasp the top of the slide and "rip it's head off".

      In a high stress, combat situation your fine motor skills are diminished making gross motor skills preferred during weapon manipulation.

    8. #8
      Senior Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by TAPnRACK View Post
      No... never guide the slide into battery to chamber a round. Pull the slide back and let go (once retracted) using the spring tension to chamber a round... the way the weapons disigned to. Guiding the slide into battery is a great way to cause a malfunction.

      The "slide stop" is not also a "slide release" lever. Looks cool in movies, much like spinning the cylinder on a revolver then flicking it shut... but serves no purpose and can damage the firearm. In the case of revolvers... you simply push on the crane (metal bar connected to cylinder) to close the cylinder. Snapping or flicking causes stress cracks over time and can cause the cylinder to index incorrectly (rotate to next chamber in cylinder).

      Main reason to train to pull back on the slide and release is it is a gross motor skill vs locating the slide lock and releasing the slide (fine motor skill). Most shooters also change their grip when they use the slide lock... you don't have to when you grasp the top of the slide and "rip it's head off".

      In a high stress, combat situation your fine motor skills are diminished making gross motor skills preferred during weapon manipulation.
      This is called "riding the slide" and with most semi-auto pistols, is not a good idea to do. In fact one gun manufacturer, Kahr Arms, specifically states in their owners manuals NOT to do this. However you can do this safely with a few guns. Glock is one of them.

      The reason you can ride the slide with a Glock is because the extractor does not move over the rim of the case but rather up under it. You can prove this, which I have, by keeping a finger on the extractor while riding the slide forward on a live round. The extractor never moves. Now why would you want to do this?

      Trigger discipline. Since my SD Glocks are always loaded and chambered, when doing trigger discipline exercises, I naturally have to unload the gun which means removing a round from the chamber as well. When I am finished and reload, I do not want to just let the slide go to move the round into the chamber as doing this too much can possible cause bullet setback... something I check for whenever I re-chamber a round after practice.

      So yes, riding the slide with most semi-autos is not a good idea. With a few, it makes no difference.

    9. #9
      Member XD40inAVL's Avatar
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      Revolver cylinders are not designed to slam home, it never occurs when the gun is being fired.

      Slides on semi-auto's slam home every time they are fired, except for the last round. But designed to drop the empty mag, put in a full one, and again "slam" the slide home. It is the way they are designed. If the slide is eased home, the gun may not be in battery.

    10. #10
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      I'm pretty sure the OP is referring to looking at a new, unloaded, pistol in a gun shop. Most clerks cringe just a little when people slam home the slide on an empty weapon. Doing this occasionally will do no harm, but repeated slamming of the slide on an empty weapon is not considered polite, and some people think this action can damage the breech face, or other parts on the gun. I think, if everyone were honest, this is why most of us prefer to get a gun from the "back," in a box, rather than buy one out of the gun case.

      Allowing the slide to run free is the preferred means of chambering a round, but there is really no reason to do this with an empty gun. I think many people do this because they have seen it on TV.

    11. #11
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      Don't drop an auto's slide or wrist snap a revolver shut,here's why.

      On an auto chambering the round slows down the slide's speed,without a round the slide slams home harder and batters the lockup surfaces over time.On a 1911 doing this 2 or 3 times is a way to check for a bad fitting of the lockwork,with a few exceptions.Trigger bounce is the normal culprit (that's why the Gold Cups had an extra spring installed) but poorly mated hammer and sear engagement will cause hammer follow also.A few times is OK,but don't make a habit of it.The slide stops on 1911s have broken from doing this regularly.

      On a revolver,the yoke or crane is what holds the cylender to the frame.Shutting it causes the spring loaded locks to hold the cylender locked in place.When you snap the cylender shut,it hits these spring loaded locks before latching in and stalls movement.The weight of the cylender carries the momentum but the crane is light in weight.Depending on the lockup of that gun,you can bend the crane causing cylender to barrel misalignment or bend the ejector rod.Smiths use a latch at the front of the rod,if you notice one with a bad wobble it's because the cylender was slammed shut repeatedly.

    12. #12
      Senior Member paratrooper's Avatar
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      Years ago, I used to work part-time at a friend's gun shop.

      He was adamant about supervising customers and the way they handled firearms. No horsing around of any kind. If for some reason, we had to ask a customer to give the firearm back to us, once we had it back in our possession, they were asked to leave.

      It didn't happen all that often, so when it did happen, we didn't feel bad about asking them to leave.

      And yes, snapping the cylinder shut on a revolver was a big no no. They weren't asked to leave, but we made it clear that what they did was not okay.

    13. #13
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      So I'm a little confused, lets say you pull back the slide and lock it without the intention of chambering a round. How do you guide it back properly without putting the weapon in any danger? Or do you simply not lock back the slide unless you intend on putting rounds in the gun?

      Thanks again, I'm just a little confused.

    14. #14
      Senior Member paratrooper's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by TheLAGuy View Post
      So I'm a little confused, lets say you pull back the slide and lock it without the intention of chambering a round. How do you guide it back properly without putting the weapon in any danger? Or do you simply not lock back the slide unless you intend on putting rounds in the gun?

      Thanks again, I'm just a little confused.


      Okay, so let's cut to the chase.

      Pull the slide back and lock it back if you want. You can either ride it back with your hand, or depress the slide release and let it return on it's own, if the mag is empty, as well as the chamber.

      When you want to chamber a round, let the slide slam home. NEVER use your hand to ride it back.

      Any more questions and we're gonna start charging you a fee.

    15. #15
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      If your chambering a round pull the slide back n let er fly

    16. #16
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      Quote Originally Posted by TheLAGuy View Post
      So I'm a little confused, lets say you pull back the slide and lock it without the intention of chambering a round. How do you guide it back properly without putting the weapon in any danger? Or do you simply not lock back the slide unless you intend on putting rounds in the gun?

      Thanks again, I'm just a little confused.
      Put that px4 away and lock it up ,,LaGuy. You are excessively unnecessarily wearing out the grip!

    17. #17
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      Quote Originally Posted by paratrooper View Post
      Okay, so let's cut to the chase.

      Pull the slide back and lock it back if you want. You can either ride it back with your hand, or depress the slide release and let it return on it's own, if the mag is empty, as well as the chamber.

      When you want to chamber a round, let the slide slam home. NEVER use your hand to ride it back.

      Any more questions and we're gonna start charging you a fee.

      I understand that, but from what I've gathered from this discussion and previous discussions, if you dont have a if the mag is empty, you let her rip, its bad for the gun.

    18. #18
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      Re: Is it bad for the gun if you lock the slide and release it (not gently)?

      Quote Originally Posted by TheLAGuy View Post
      I understand that, but from what I've gathered from this discussion and previous discussions, if you dont have a if the mag is empty, you let her rip, its bad for the gun.
      It can be, depending on the gun.

      If all you're doing is administrative handling (no ammo) just ease the slide forward with your other hand.

    19. #19
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      here's the cliff notes version.....

      BAD - letting the slide slam home on an empty chamber
      BAD - riding the slide home with your hand while chambering a round
      BAD - using the slide stop lever to release the slide from its locked back position

      GOOD - letting the slide slam home while chambering a round
      GOOD - pulling the slide back to release the tension from the slide stop lever and riding the slide home with your hand when NOT chambering a round

    20. #20
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      Quote Originally Posted by Broondog View Post
      here's the cliff notes version.....

      BAD - letting the slide slam home on an empty chamber
      BAD - riding the slide home with your hand while chambering a round
      BAD - using the slide stop lever to release the slide from its locked back position

      GOOD - letting the slide slam home while chambering a round
      GOOD - pulling the slide back to release the tension from the slide stop lever and riding the slide home with your hand when NOT chambering a round
      Thanks broondog, now I know why the gun shop guy wasnt happy when I kept on slamming the slide back with the PX4 before I bought it. I kept slamming it back, then he said. "Hey man, easy" and I didnt know what I was doing wrong!

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