grab slide of automatic

Discussion in 'Marksmanship Arts' started by equilibrium, Jun 25, 2008.

  1. equilibrium

    equilibrium Member

    video showing what happens when you grab the side of a semi-auto pistol and it goes off.

    grab slide of semi auto
  2. tellner

    tellner New Member

    Nice! A minute of experiment is worth a year of speculation.
  3. KaliGman

    KaliGman Professional Man at Arms

    Grabbing the slide

    This works great in a nice, controlled environment on a large frame handgun like the Beretta 92 9mm shown. Often, the slide will not be grasped as tightly or perfectly in real life self-defense situations and the slide will move and superficially cut the hand. Generally, this will jam the gun, as the slide does not move fully rearward at the necessary velocity to extract and then eject the spent cartridge. Grasping the slide on a small handgun, such as a Walther PPK, Kahr K9, or a very small autoloading pistol such as a Beretta Tomcat, Seecamp .32, etc. is going to be very difficult in real time, real speed, real use of force encounters. The guns are small, the slides are smaller, and they are hard to grasp quickly and tightly enough to prevent the firearm from starting to cycle. I wouldn't recommend trying to hold the slide on a .50 caliber Desert Eagle either--those things are pretty heavy recoiling beasties that aren't that pleasant to fire even when you are on the "user end" of the firearm.

    Interesting video though. If you find the bad guy trying to shoot you with a double action revolver, a firm grasp on the cylinder will prevent the cylinder from rotating, and the gun will not fire at all, providing the bad guy has not cocked the hammer into "single action" mode. In general, grabbing the gun is not a bad ploy as a start to an arm destruction and/or takeaway. The really fancy, hit the takedown lever when you grab the handgun and rip the whole slide off the Beretta disarm so beloved of some movie and bad novel writers is a good way to get shot, though.
  4. lhommedieu

    lhommedieu Senior Member

    Secret Service agent Larry Buendorf attempted something similar to stop "Squeaky" Fromme's assassination attempt at President Gerald Ford in 1976 Fromme had 4 bullets in the clip of the .45 Colt auto that she pointed at the President, but none in the chamber. Some witnesses describe an initial "click" as Fromme attempted to fire her weapon at the President.

    One account has Beundof grabbing for the hammer as she was attempting to pull back the slide. This would mean that he was able to prevent the top bullet from chambering (there were four bullets in the clip) by keeping the slide from moving back completely, or that he got his hand between the hammer and the firing pin just before Fromme attempted to fire again.

    Fromme expressed her disappointment minutes later by stating, "Can you believe it? It didn't fire!" She was probably refrerring to her first attempt however. Silly Git.


  5. equilibrium

    equilibrium Member

    I tried out in practice:

    The really fancy, hit the takedown lever when you grab the handgun and rip the whole slide off the Beretta disarm so beloved of some movie and bad novel writers is a good way to get shot, though.

    with not a Beretta but a Taurus PT92, which is pretty much the same as a Beretta and found that I could pull the slide off with no bullets in the gun, but when bullets were in the gun the slide would not come off. Maybe makes for a cool demo though since then you can hit the guy with the slide after you take if off.

    The grabbing of the slide might be harder on smaller guns or realtime, but the point is, it can be done, and the slide really isnt something to be that afraid of, it isnt that powerful really. So on a semi auto whatever you can do to mess with the action of the slide might give you that second or so to take the gun away or hit him. Speaking of grabing the slide, on many if you can just push the slide back a little the gun wont fire.
  6. KaliGman

    KaliGman Professional Man at Arms


    The thing to watch when grabbing the small guns is the muzzle. It is very easy to have a piece of your hand in front of the muzzle when trying to grasp a small handgun held in an opponent's hand. When the gun goes off, whatever is in front of the muzzle is not going to be happy. An example of how easy it is to get your hand in the way of the firearm even when engaged in practice fire was driven home when a recruit screwed up and placed his middle finger in front of the short barrel of his MP-5 submachine gun. Of course, the next shot blew his finger off. I also worked a case where an armed robber, using a stolen handgun with which we was unfamiliar (a single action Colt autoloader), shot himself in the foot while trying to get into his getaway car, so I guess sometimes the muzzle pointing in the "wrong" direction works for the good guys too.
  7. tellner

    tellner New Member

    No Kaligman, it doesn't always work. But I can't count the times cops and trainers have said that it simply doesn't work, can't work, and that your hand will always end up torn and burned if you even try. The myth that everyone believed because "everyone knows" has been busted. Whether it's a high-percentage or more-desperation-than-usual move is another question.
  8. KaliGman

    KaliGman Professional Man at Arms


    Interesting. I have never heard anyone I've trained with say that you couldn't hold a slide closed on a medium power pistol. Having been a firearms instructor on a municipal police department and a member of a federal SWAT team, I have had quite a bit of interaction with various trainers, trainees, weapons and gear manufactures and firearms. A firearm is just a machine with moving parts that runs on gunpowder. I can keep parts from moving on many machines, and this causes malfunctions. A firearm is no different. Of course, I have been involved in quite a few actual tests of firearms and related gear (shooting bullet resistant vests to test their effectiveness, testing handguns in sub-optimal conditions to check reliability when mistreated, etc.). For over 12 years I have taught, in officer survival courses as a law enforcement instructor and in other venues, that if you grab a handgun and it goes off you will probably receive only superficial injuries if any at all, as long as some body part is not in line with the muzzle or muzzle blast. I say probably, because weird stuff happens sometimes in real life. Of course, gun related "common knowledge" spouted by many runs in cycles--from the "the .357 magnum will instantly shatter an engine block" (laughable, based on test shootings) to the ".357 will not reliably penetrate a standard car door" (in tests we ran both 9mm and .357 rounds penetrated into the interior of the vehicle at a pretty high percentage rate, depending on the range at which the projectile was fired and other variables, which was born out in shootings I observed on the street). I have been cut by the slide of a Walther PPK/S in .380 ACP (superficial cut). I have seen handguns jam and otherwise fail. I have seen a pretty interesting jam where a guy was trying to use one of the latest "tacticool" close to the body, close quarters shooting positions, and got his "Miami Vice" untucked shirt tail somehow caught up in the slide when his weapon fired. That was a mess to get unjammed. I also had a Smith & Wesson pistol malfunction once and go unexpectedly full automatic on me--nothing like having the thing rip off 10 rounds downrange in machinegun mode. I have seen enough strange crap with firearms that I will say that almost nothing is impossible and that almost nothing works all the time. For instance, I worked a shooting where the "killer" did almost everything right--got close to the victim unobserved, aimed the handgun correctly, picked the correct target, and put a bullet into the center of the victim's forehead. Unfortunately for the bad guy, the bullet did not penetrate the skull--the base of the bullet was visible in the victim's skull when I was interviewing him and, at the hospital, they basically pulled the thing out with forceps and that was that (after tests and X-rays of course). With guns, the "one is none" and "two is one" rule is a good one--because weird stuff happens.

    Oh, absent a weapon that has been fired a lot in a short period of time, grabbing a handgun barrel is not going to give anything but mild discomfort (or maybe superficial burns if you decide to hold it a long time). Muzzle blast is another thing--I have been burned by that when we had to shoot in a very close quarter environment, but, unless you are in line with the projectile (in which case the muzzle blast really isn't high on your "ouchie" priority list) it is usually pretty superficial as well. I somehow, despite wearing armor, tucked in uniform, various weapon belt/accessories, did manage one time to get a .45 ACP freshly fired shell casing inside the waistband of my trousers and down the old boxer shorts. Now that was a bit painful (blistered my butt, actually), but more comical than anything else. Trust me, you do not want to see me dance, and nothing is more conducive to the "range officer shimmy" than hot brass on the old backside.

    I don't see the handgun grab disarm as being as viable as many other techniques, but it can be workable. Just my opinion, your mileage may vary.
  9. equilibrium

    equilibrium Member

    The gun I shot and grabbed the slide was a 9mm.... that being said, I recently read the story of a guy shooting.. I will get this wrong, but the .500 magnum S&W revolver....he put his thumb over the gap between cylinder and barrell and it blew his thumb off... so caliber is important in some of these situations.
  10. KaliGman

    KaliGman Professional Man at Arms


    I don't think you got it wrong at all. The .500 S&W Magnum is a behemoth of a gun. Despite having shot some very powerful weapons in my time, I'll be honest and say that if I never shoot a full power .500 S&W round I will not exactly be disappointed. The gap between the front of the cylinder and the barrel of a revolver always leaks, and it is like muzzle blast--it will burn and cause damage if you are in front of it. Caliber matters, as does type of firearm, and other variables. The odds of facing someone armed with one of these cannons is slim, though--you almost need a wheelbarrow to haul this beast around. Then again, if someone sees it on a movie and thinks it's "cool," he might carry it. I saw a .50 caliber Desert Eagle (also a huge beast of a gun) that a bad guy had stuffed in his waistband. How he was walking around without it either yanking his pants down, falling down the leg of his pants and making him look like his colostomy bag was trying to escape, or making him walk like Dr. Frankentein's assistant, Igor, I will never know.
  11. tellner

    tellner New Member

    I'm glad your experience has been more reasonable, KGM. All I can report is what I've experienced. Mind, a lot of them also talk about using pepper spray in deadly force situations. Watcha gonna do :(

    If I ever come up against a guy with a .500 S&W or any other young piece of field artillery I will certainly not grab the cylinder. Like you say, it's not exactly the most common scenario. Someone who can afford to buy and feed something like that probably has so much money he'll lose out financially robbing me. Revenge is sweet :D

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