Monday, December 31, 2012

Trigger safeties: Can we stop pretending yet?

This is the trigger safety on a Glock pistol. It is the only external safety on the gun, and it is an automatic safety, meaning that if you operate the gun normally it will fire without manual deactivation of the safety.

Basically, if you pick up the gun and pull the trigger, it's going to shoot.

If this makes the safety sound decidedly unsafe, do not be alarmed. This is a feature, not a bug.

There is some argument about this, but the thought is that Glock needed another safety to meet the requirements of the most law enforcement organizations (their target market). So by adding this safety, they could say it had three, count 'em, three safeties, and is therefore sooper safe and totally fine for cops to use safely.

The problem isn't that they designed with their audience in mind, but that the idea somehow managed to catch on.

Now we've got guns of all kinds that have trigger safeties on them (with a wink and a nudge when I say the word "safeties"), and they are absolutely pointless.

Well, not absolutely pointless, the only lipstick on that pig is in situations where something brushes against the side of the trigger without actually pushing on the middle of the trigger, the trigger will be locked in place, and the negligent discharge will have been averted.

But on the Smith and Wesson M&P pistol series, we've got trigger safeties that are built into the entire body of the trigger!

If you push on this trigger, anywhere but at the top, it will deactivate the safety. (Of course, if something is pushing on the top of the trigger, that nice little curve guarantees whatever is pushing will slide down to the trigger safety portion and deactivate the safety anyway!)

Next is the Bersa BP9CC (which is an EXCELLENT gun, by the way), which builds the entire safety into the rocking motion of the trigger!

If you push on the trigger anywhere, it's going to shoot.

Can we please stop this?

Trigger safeties are NOT safeties, and that's OK!

We're big boys and girls, and we realize that our safety is between our ears, not attached to our triggers.

Can we just skip the formality, and make guns that don't have any external safeties?

"Oh, but the extra safety there just gives me piece of mind!" Does it really? Because if so, simply remove the trigger safety from the gun, and put it under your pillow, because it'll do about as much good there, as it would on your trigger.

I don't have a problem with safeties, some people really want a manual safety on their gun. What I DO have a problem with is a bang switch masquerading as a safety.

Lets skip the pretense and skip trigger safeties.


Sevesteen said...

I've never thought that trigger safeties were primarily intended to prevent non-fingers from pulling them--I assumed they were a form of drop safety, to prevent inertia from pulling the trigger if the gun were subjected to a severe, mostly theoretical blow to the back.

ErnestThing said...

Nope. Almost all modern firearms have firing pin safeties. You can practically beat them against the ground and the firing pin will not go forward without the trigger being pushed to the rear. Regardless, the trigger is lightweight and not subject to any serious inertia.

JP said...

The only "trigger safety" that makes sense is Savage's on their rifles as the pull on those is so light, drop firing was a worry. I prefer mine J. M. Browning style but have looked at the Springfield XD and I can shoot them, but I like the single action trigger pull. An ex-brother-in-law was a deputy in Memphis, and there some moron ADed a Glock so the local gov't disallowed the area LEOs from using them. He therefore was stuck with a DAO Beretta that had a 12 1/2 Pound pull. He had nightmares where a perp had the draw on him and he was unable to pull the trigger. He was a trained SP in the Navy and used a 1911 there. They would not allow those to be used either.
I've seen pics of Glocks carried Mexican Style that went off when stuffed into a waistband, or were tucked in with a shirt and pulling the shirt up to access the pistol caused it to fire. S&W has theirs to try and differentiate from the Glock. The first Sigma was supposedly so much a copy of the Glock, someone took a slide off one, put it on the other and the action worked, They didn't get brave enough to do anything other than dry fire it, but after the lawsuit, S&W changed the look a ton in part to keep the lawyers away.

ErnestThing said...

Agree on the Accutrigger, that's valid because you can set that trigger as light as possible and beat it against the ground without it going off.

Brian M said...

What do you think about the Sig P229 DAK ? No external safety. The only thing that determines if the gun is fired by a trigger pull is if a round is chambered.