View Full Version : Get back in the fight (stoppage)

16-05-2009, 05:13 PM
Fix the most common stoppage!
The loudest sound in the world is not the crushing noise of ammunition igniting in your pistol. No, the the loudest sound in world is the audible ''click'' you hear when you're expecting a ''bang''. In a deadly force situation this is when things get really interersting, fast.

When that blaster in your hand goes click instead of bang you have a choice. You can either fix it, get it back up and running rabidly or you can stand there staring at it like a hog looking at a wristwatch. How long do you have to clear a stoppage in a gunfight? You have the rest of your life. How long your training and how quickly you act.

The Problem

From a technical standpoint, a stoppage is any unintentional interruption in a guns's cycle of fire. While the cycle of fire varies slightly from gun to gun, the most common stoppage is ''failure to feed, failure to fire.'' In many training circles this is referred to as a ''Type 1 Malfunction.'' Although it's difficult to put a number on it, the Type 1 is the culprit nine times out of ten.

Failure to feed, failure to fire can include any number of factors. The chamber might be empty, as in, you did not properly load the weapon or the magazine has come unseated and it's sticking out an eighth of an inch. In some cases there may be a problem with the magazine itself . The ammunition may have shifted or been loaded in the mag improperly. Of course the magazine spring might be stuck, kinked or not working properly.

Second Strike?

Another factor in the failure to feed/fire is the ammunition itself. A rond was indeed chambered but did not ignite for some reason. While this is extremely rare, it happens. Yes, the majority of ammunition that did not ignite on the first primer strike will often ignite with the second one.

There are a number of gun manufacturers and firearms trainers out there that extol the virtues of the ''second strike'' handgun, the double-action (DA) or double-action-only (DAO) pistols that allow you to press the trigger a second time even though the round has not ignited. On the surface this sounds like a good idea. I rarely wear my X-Ray vision glasses when I shoot and i cannot peer though the steel of the slide and barrel to see whether or not there is round that needs a second strike or if the chamber is completely empty.

When i am expecting a bang and instead get a click, i dont't know why that happened. If the magazine has come unseated and a fresh round was not chambered or if i fouled up and did't load the chamber, then a second, third, fourth, etc. trigger press isn't going to help out much. Remember, stoppages are unexpected occurrences that take us by surprise everytim
For the sake of argument, let's say that you are sure that a round was loaded into the chamber and are determined on performing that second strike. In my current occupation, i work with over one hundred new shooters a month and we expend thousands of rounds of ammunition. During the last four weeks i've had students turn in rounds of ammunition that were duds; they did not go off at all with several strikes.

If our students have a Type 1 they immediately clear it. If a round didn't ignite it ends up on the ground . As instructors, we will later inspect it and, if it only has a slight primer hit, we will put it back in the training box. During two instances this month even after a second primer strike, the round would not ignite.
The Fix

For the semi-automatic pistols the steps are bit more complex but not exceedingly so. After all, it's not rocket science. we call the fix ''Tap, rack, reassess'' Yes, it used to be ''Tap, rack, bang'' but we were teaching our people to snap the trigger the moment they clear the stoppage. Not a good idea for those who need to justify every round fired.

Before you start a working on/fixing your gun, bring it back toward your body. This is your work area and where human beings are most comfortable using their hands. The easiest way to do this is simply pull the elbow of your shooting/strongarm into your ribs. keep the pistol held up in your chest area. This keeps your head and eyes up, versus looking at the ground.

STEP 1: Tap the magazine. It may not be properly seated; make it so.

STEP 2: Rack the side firmly and deliberately to the rear. Let it go; avoid the habit or
temptation to ride slide home with your hand on it. Belivee me, the recoil
spring knows what to do; it doesn't need your help sending the slide home.

STEP 3: Reassess the situation. Is the threat still present? Do you truly need to fire or
continue firing? Is the target where it was two seconds ago?

Lethal force ecounters are fast and furious events and they are extermely dynamic. In the second or two it took you to clear your stoppage the threat may have moved out importantaly, a friendly, no-shoot person may have moved into your line of sight.

If u have dummy rounds or ''snapcaps,'' they are fantastic training tools to aid in your practice . Take a few dummy rounds to the range and randomly load them into your magazines. It needs to be random so you aren't looking for the stoppage. After a few training sessions the ''Tap, Rack, Reassess'' should be second nature.

18-05-2009, 01:33 AM
nice info!

18-05-2009, 11:52 AM
a gun in need is a gun indeed.. ;) nice information bhai

18-05-2009, 04:34 PM

Conceal Carry
19-05-2009, 02:29 AM
nice info, thanks.

Enigmatic Desires
22-05-2009, 10:40 PM
We appreciate your wisdom Berreta..

I'll make it a point to practice..

06-06-2009, 05:52 PM

Check it out. Very nice video. This guy's an ex-Marine. His other videos are pretty good as well.

07-06-2009, 12:43 AM
Nice information KageFox.............Keep it up.

07-06-2009, 09:22 PM
very informative

07-06-2009, 09:47 PM
Thanx for sharing