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6/25/2018 7:04:05 PM
Posted: 7/11/2017 2:41:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/11/2017 3:45:46 PM EDT by MADUCE]
I've seen it done for years and I can't find anyone who can tell me where it came from. I'm talking about the NRA process for clearing your weapon. I know it was the NRA, but why. Shooters are told to clear their weapons and then drop the hammer. Now we all know that the weapon should be pointed at the berm, but we also know it should be clear. We also know that unless the instructor physically looks into each chamber, there are no guarantees. I'm assuming that the clearing method came from the days of the 1911. The hammer was cocked and locked when you were hot and the hammer was dropped so the RO or instructor could observe the weapon in a non firing state.

I personally hate the process. I'm told that finger is off the trigger until sights are on the target. Then the rule is contradicted when you point the gun and squeeze the trigger demonstrating that the weapon is clear, or maybe not. As shooters become complacent the safe direction becomes closer and closer to their feet. I recently had a student go through the NRA clearing process, then go low ready and discharge the weapon into the ground. He was shocked as well as everyone around him.

The days of mass quantities of 1911s in classes are long gone. Most of what's on the line is some type of striker fired weapon. Looking at them you have no way of knowing if a round is in the chamber or not. It seems far easier to have each shooter holster with the slide locked to the rear and magazine out. Doing this you know mechanically that the weapon is incapable of firing, unlike the slide forward position. Am I crazy?
Link Posted: 7/11/2017 2:54:54 PM EDT
Pulling the trigger is for firing the weapon.



Unless you own a poorly designed Glock 
Link Posted: 7/11/2017 3:44:59 PM EDT
Um...so...everyone leaves their unloaded weapons cocked at all times?

Not following.
Link Posted: 7/11/2017 3:47:44 PM EDT
The last sentence: It seems far easier to have each shooter holster with the slide locked to the rear and magazine out. Doing this you know mechanically that the weapon is incapable of firing, unlike the slide forward position. Am I crazy?
Link Posted: 7/12/2017 12:31:46 AM EDT
Link Posted: 7/12/2017 9:17:17 AM EDT
My revolver will not fit back in my holster with the cylinder open...

Hammer down on an empty chamber mag-well empty seems to work pretty well for all the practical pistol sports.
Link Posted: 7/17/2017 7:28:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/17/2017 7:34:28 PM EDT by echo5whiskey]
I think it depends on the circumstances when clearing, the weapon systems, and who is declaring the firearm "clear."

If at the range, and I have shooters clear each other on the line, I want cylinders closed/slides forward, hammers forward, and weapons holstered.

If they are being cleared on a bench, I have cylinders opened/slides locked, hammers forward (for revolvers only, obviously), chambers visible on the bench.

If I am clearing them on the line, I have the weapons in the same condition as on the bench, just in the shooters' hands.

I've never really heard or witnessed anyone wanting slides locked to the rear while holstered at the range.


ETA: With ARs, I have the shooters place their weapons on safe, and the hammer must be cocked for that.
Link Posted: 7/18/2017 6:47:47 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By echo5whiskey:
I think it depends on the circumstances when clearing, the weapon systems, and who is declaring the firearm "clear."

If at the range, and I have shooters clear each other on the line, I want cylinders closed/slides forward, hammers forward, and weapons holstered.

If they are being cleared on a bench, I have cylinders opened/slides locked, hammers forward (for revolvers only, obviously), chambers visible on the bench.

If I am clearing them on the line, I have the weapons in the same condition as on the bench, just in the shooters' hands.

I've never really heard or witnessed anyone wanting slides locked to the rear while holstered at the range.


ETA: With ARs, I have the shooters place their weapons on safe, and the hammer must be cocked for that.
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This is what I experienced. A small group of shooters were on the line. They had shot for two days and it was crazy hot and humid. At the end of day #2 we were doing some drills on the dueling tree when they were told to clear their weapons. Standing behind students, I could not see this shooters movements, and I really wasn't to concerned "my bad" as he was a NRA instructor in just about every skill set. Heat, fatigue dehydration or what, he went through the usual NRA procedure, obviously leaving out the part about clearing the chamber. He went low ready and squeezed the trigger and BANG.

Well, did the NRA clearing technique work, it sure did on several points. One it let me, the instructor know that he used to have a round in his chamber. Second it showed that he had the muzzle in a safe direction, although I would have been defenseless if he hadn't.

Me, I'm a simple guy. The more techniques to accomplish the same desired effect the more chances something will get screwed up. It's hard for me to give a safety brief, tell them finger is off the trigger until sights are on the target, and then tell them to stand, point the gun down range and squeeze the trigger for no reason. If he had done it my way, magazine out and slide locked to the rear, it would never have happened. Add this to the fact that 80% of the shooters are using some type of striker fired weapon, I still can't look at a guy walking around and know that he is clear.
Link Posted: 7/18/2017 9:19:09 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By MADUCE:


This is what I experienced. A small group of shooters were on the line. They had shot for two days and it was crazy hot and humid. At the end of day #2 we were doing some drills on the dueling tree when they were told to clear their weapons. Standing behind students, I could not see this shooters movements, and I really wasn't to concerned "my bad" as he was a NRA instructor in just about every skill set. Heat, fatigue dehydration or what, he went through the usual NRA procedure, obviously leaving out the part about clearing the chamber. He went low ready and squeezed the trigger and BANG.

Well, did the NRA clearing technique work, it sure did on several points. One it let me, the instructor know that he used to have a round in his chamber. Second it showed that he had the muzzle in a safe direction, although I would have been defenseless if he hadn't.

Me, I'm a simple guy. The more techniques to accomplish the same desired effect the more chances something will get screwed up. It's hard for me to give a safety brief, tell them finger is off the trigger until sights are on the target, and then tell them to stand, point the gun down range and squeeze the trigger for no reason. If he had done it my way, magazine out and slide locked to the rear, it would never have happened. Add this to the fact that 80% of the shooters are using some type of striker fired weapon, I still can't look at a guy walking around and know that he is clear.
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This is exactly why I require two sets of eyes in order to pronounce a weapon clear. Whether they cross-clear each other on the line, or I go through and check everyone myself; I never allow any shooter to individually clear his or her own weapon. This is also why I am a proponent of looking and feeling for and empty magwell and chamber. I don't necessarily follow the NRA technique per se, but in the case of that situation, it met its intended purpose. If your shooter had not had the muzzle in a safe direction, there is more work that needs to be done with safety rules than with clearing procedures.
Link Posted: 7/19/2017 9:39:05 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/19/2017 9:41:59 PM EDT by topgunpilot20]
I don't know where the NRA got it, but it's been standard in IPSC forever. I'd guess it's because 1911s ruled the game in the beginning, so having the hammer down on the 1911 let everyone know it wasn't capable of firing. 

The problem with leaving the slide to the rear is that the retention devices on most holsters won't work. Plus rear corners of the slide constantly stab at your arms when moving around. 

I think leaving the gun in the holster unless on the firing line keeps it from going off regardless of the chamber condition.
Link Posted: 7/25/2017 12:29:32 AM EDT
After firing, place the weapon on safe and remove the source of feed. Lock the bolt (or slide) to the rear and conduct a three point safety check consisting of the bolt face, magazine well, and chamber. When finished, release the bolt (or slide), point your weapon in a safe direction down range, and conduct a dry fire. Re-charge the weapon and place it on safe.
Link Posted: 9/14/2017 4:45:01 PM EDT
DoD/DoS has these stupid rules at all clearing barrels where the last step is to pull the trigger. And then they wonder why they still have NDs. All NDs involve pulling the trigger. Guns are always considered loaded, period!


CD
Link Posted: 9/18/2017 3:01:49 AM EDT
Unless it is for maint. on the firearm, I don't understand the need to "clear" the gun if it is to be placed in a holster.

Why do people feel the need to know that someone's firearm on the range is unloaded if it is in their holster. I don't get the "nosey nellys"...If the firearm is not pointed at me I don't give a shit if it is loaded or not.

If the firearm is to be placed on a table/bench or anywhere outside of the holster, the magazine should be removed and the slide locked to the rear on Autos. Revolvers with swing out cylinders should have their cylinders "swung out"

I don't shoot many single action revolvers so maybe some of the "cowboy action" guys can help me in that area.

Col. Cooper's first rule...All guns are always loaded..why, because they are.
Link Posted: 9/18/2017 6:42:25 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By AR15-SBR:
Unless it is for maint. on the firearm, I don't understand the need to "clear" the gun if it is to be placed in a holster.

Why do people feel the need to know that someone's firearm on the range is unloaded if it is in their holster. I don't get the "nosey nellys"...If the firearm is not pointed at me I don't give a shit if it is loaded or not.

If the firearm is to be placed on a table/bench or anywhere outside of the holster, the magazine should be removed and the slide locked to the rear on Autos. Revolvers with swing out cylinders should have their cylinders "swung out"

I don't shoot many single action revolvers so maybe some of the "cowboy action" guys can help me in that area.

Col. Cooper's first rule...All guns are always loaded..why, because they are.
View Quote
The "nosey nellys" come from the fact that not everybody observes Col. Cooper's first rule, and the range safety officers/line staff might not always be able catch those infractions. At a public range or open enrollment course, you can bet your next paycheck I care if someone's gun is clear. I don't know them from Adam; and, frankly don't necessarily trust them to always observe all the safety rules. That doesn't mean I'll treat them like idiots (unless they prove themselves to be such), just that I have seen way too many negligent discharges to be comfortable with an unknown. I'm not trying to sound like a jerk, and my apologies if do; I'm just trying to stay alive.
Now, if I'm training with guys I know and trust, I don't really care about clearing all the time--because I trust them.

As an instructor, that can become a major liability issue if there's a mishap--especially if it involves an injury.
Link Posted: 9/23/2017 9:25:20 AM EDT
Have the shooter and the instructor visually inspect that the chamber is clear, slide forward, aim (not point) but aim down range in a safe direction and pull the trigger. If the gun fires it is on those two people. Yes mistakes happen, but they will happen no matter what you do. There is always someone who goes fast to unload for no reason and fucks up.

And I say aim down range so you know what your gun is aimed at.
Link Posted: 9/24/2017 5:42:31 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/24/2017 6:31:26 PM EDT by ColtRifle]
Pulling the trigger into a clearing barrel is stupid.

The USMC doesn't clear weapons that way but some USMC units who work closely with Army units sometimes adopt their clearing methods.

Pull the charging handle back, inspect, then watch the bolt go home on an empty chamber. When clearing a pistol, same thing and watch the chamber as you send the slide forward.

If you ALWAYS watch the slide/bolt close on an empty chamber you'll never be surprised to find a round in your chamber.

I had a discussion with some senior enlisted types one time about punishments for troops who fire into a clearing barrel. I took the stand that by following stupid rules, they are setting the troops up for failure when they fire into the clearing barrel. On the other hand, if you clear your weapon properly and watch the bolt/slide close on an empty chamber, then don't dry fire it, you'll never be surprised to either find a round in the chamber or by a bang when you meant it to go click. Dropping the hammer into a clearing barrel is stupid and is asking for trouble. Plus, it really violates the third safety rule...Keep your finger straight and off the trigger until you intend to fire. Since you don't intend to fire into the clearing barrel, then why would you tell your troops to intentionally do it?

I always told me troops not to do it. I've even been places where some dumbass tried to tell me and my troops they were clearing their weapons wrong. We always refused and my troops were instructed if I was not there they were to politely and respectfully refuse and inform the person that their command gave explicit orders not to fire into a clearing barrel when clearing a rifle. It's only the fobbits we ever had issues with.
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