Am I being paranoid? No safety on pistols?


Annee

New member
I'm fairly new to gun ownership I bought my first pistol last summer, a Ruger LC9S, and love it. I almost bought another one this weekend. I loved it. It was a M&P Shield 9 mm, but I didn't get it because it didn't have a safety. My Ruger LC9S has a safety, and I've been training with it already.

And what about these belly bands and deep concealed over the undies bands without a safety? There's nothing much covering the trigger with those, right?

And those flash bang holsters scare the pants off me. The pistol hangs horizontally and if it would accidentally go off it would hit whoever is beside the women. It breaks one of the three basic rules, Keep the gun pointed in the safest possible direction.
 

That little bottom hinge on the trigger lever is the safety, the pistol will not fire unless someone or something pulls the trigger. When not in your hand the pistol should be in a proper holster that covers the trigger. When it's in your hand, one is assumed to possess the control necessary to not allow things into the trigger guard that shouldn't be in there. I've been carrying a Glock (among other things) since they were first imported into the US (summer of 85, I believe) and in thirty some odd years I've never worried about it firing by negligence so long as I did my part.

No, you're not being paranoid; but you are obsessing unnecessarily.
 
Welcome to the forum!

First of all, the S&W M&P Shield 9mm is a great firearm and is one of the very few that are produced in two variants: with a thumb safety and without. You apparently had your hands on the variant without the thumb safety.

Thumb safeties on handguns are often misunderstood. Why do you think you need a thumb safety on a S&W M&P Shield 9mm? Its trigger pull is 6.5 pounds. I suggest learning about the root causes of negligent discharges - exhaustion, distraction and poor procedure:


There are lots of different carry systems out there. Some are better that others, and some are just stupid. In any case, it is up to you to understand the inherent dangers they might pose.

I don't like belly band holsters as I simply don't like the belly band part. If a belly band holster covers the trigger guard and offers adequate retention than it should be fine.

I don't recommend the flash bang holster. The biggest problem with it is that the holster design lends itself to poor procedure: (1) when drawing the firearm out of the holster downwards you are lazering your head with it and (2) this particular holster is susceptive to constantly adjusting its position leading to an accidental gun drop, followed by a grabbing of the falling gun and the inevitable negligent discharge. There is also the combination of both: Fatal ND: Bra Holster Goes Boom - The Truth About Guns.
 
I have a Glock 23 and all Glocks have no thumb safety. I like my Glock a lot!!! I also Have a S&W M&P Shield with a thumb safety. I got it with the thumb safety so I could (perhaps) have more options in carrying or where and how the gun was stored. Most of the time I carry it with the safety off in an holster because I do not want to have to stop and think which gun I have on my hip!!!

You only need to practice trigger safety and train to never put your finger on the trigger UNTIL you are ready to shoot. The Shield is a great gun and if you work at it IMHO you will love it. But it causes you to always fear it then trade it for something that you will feel comfortable with.
 
First, Welcome to gun ownership.

If you haven't already, spend some time learning about double action vs single action pistols. modern revolvers without safeties is a good example. When you pull the trigger, (1) the hammer is forced back with extra effort before (2) the hammer is released on the firing pin "double Action". If you cock the hammer with your thumb first, pulling the trigger (1) releases the hammer with much less effort "single action".
Many semi auto pistols use a stiff double action trigger system like a revolver eliminating the need for a safety. Some use a "hammer cocked" style of trigger system with a safety to protect against a light trigger pull. There are too many variations of this basic rule to tell here but any good instructor can explain it.
Add to this the many unseen internal passive safety mechanisms, and you will begin to trust the way way each pistol was designed to be carried.
Learn about your pistol whatever it is, follow the 4 safety rules and you should be fine, Good luck and have fun.
 
The major reason for safeties is to keep the gun from firing when handled (other than the finger on the trigger). You won't see safeties typically on revolvers as most are relatively immune from firing when dropped, etc... Many of the autos that lack safeties like my Sig have other mechanisms to restrain the firing pin when the trigger is not pulled. A safety on an auto that only locks the trigger isn't worth too much. It needs to hold the firing pin/striker.
 
I have a Ruger LC9S Pro (no safety) and several Glocks. A good kydex holster around the trigger guard should remove all doubts of an accident, and allow for fast access!
 
I really don't want a safety on my carry weapon. We (wife also carries) chose Springfield XD line for our primary carry guns. We also like the feel of the XD's, how the fit our hand, etc.

The trigger is protected by a proper holster.
The trigger has the ultra safety assurance trigger (similar to the Glock)
The gun has a grip safety.

Without thinking about taking a safety off, If needed, I can draw and fire as long as I have a proper grip on the gun.
 
The biggest safety that no one talks about is the trigger guard. Also the rules of gun safety apply to handling guns. A gun in an iwb holster is going to point at your body at some point. Those feelings are normal. I was the same way when I bought my first gun. Now I carry a Glock aiwb. It's a pretty big turn around lol
 
The major reason for safeties is to keep the gun from firing when handled (other than the finger on the trigger). You won't see safeties typically on revolvers as most are relatively immune from firing when dropped, etc... Many of the autos that lack safeties like my Sig have other mechanisms to restrain the firing pin when the trigger is not pulled. A safety on an auto that only locks the trigger isn't worth too much. It needs to hold the firing pin/striker.

Note that there is only a small set of handguns that are not drop safe, including old revolvers that don't have a transfer bar and poorly designed semi-autos. You shouldn't carry such handguns anyway. All new handguns today have internal safeties preventing firing when dropped.

Manual safeties are meant to prevent user error and not equipment malfunction. As with every safety measure, at some point the safety measure itself can become a source for error.
 
You have run across one of the main design arguments between the striker fired and hammer fired pistols.

Striker fired pistols normally have all their safeties built into the trigger, and sometimes additionally a grip. While many people think this is sufficient there are many others who think this is not safe.

Hammer fired pistols normally include a physical saftey that often includes a hammer block and decocker. As such hammer fired pistols can be rated as physically safer.

If you are going to purchase a striker fired pistol and are concerned about the lack of a physical safety, look for one with a manual decocker. That will put the pistol in a non-fireable profile with a round in the chamber, yet ready for a double-action trigger pull.

In the end, as long as you have reservations about pistols that have no physical safety (thumb safety) then you should avoid them. It is becoming more difficult since most manufacturers are jumping on the Glock design bandwagon.
 
You have run across one of the main design arguments between the striker fired and hammer fired pistols.

Striker fired pistols normally have all their safeties built into the trigger, and sometimes additionally a grip. While many people think this is sufficient there are many others who think this is not safe.

Hammer fired pistols normally include a physical saftey that often includes a hammer block and decocker. As such hammer fired pistols can be rated as physically safer.

If you are going to purchase a striker fired pistol and are concerned about the lack of a physical safety, look for one with a manual decocker. That will put the pistol in a non-fireable profile with a round in the chamber, yet ready for a double-action trigger pull.

In the end, as long as you have reservations about pistols that have no physical safety (thumb safety) then you should avoid them. It is becoming more difficult since most manufacturers are jumping on the Glock design bandwagon.

Good lord, what a bunch of nonsense. Glocks do have an internal firing pin safety and a separate internal drop safety, so have most if not all the other striker-fired handguns. Also, Glocks and almost all striker-fired handguns are carried half-cocked. Pulling the trigger, fully cocks and releases the striker.

Again, manual safeties are meant to prevent user error and not equipment malfunction. As with every safety measure, at some point the safety measure itself can become a source for error. It is up to you to decide if you need a manual safety, because you do not trust yourself to operate the gun correctly under normal conditions, such as inadvertently pulling the trigger. It is up to you to decide if you do not want a safety, because you do not trust yourself to operate the gun correctly under stress conditions, such as forgetting to switch off the safety in a self defense situation.

Neglegent discharges do happen with manual safeties as well:

 
Not all "Glock types" are the same..

The S&W MP that I own does not function the way a Glock does.
Both my M&P and my S.A .45 cal. are striker fired but the firing pin is fully cocked once you rack the slid and is fired with the full pull of the trigger.
The trigger on these weapons only releases the pin, it doesn't "Finnish" the cocking of the firing pin.
Now the Kahr line of pistols work just like the Glock action.
Racking the slide chambers a round and partially cocks the firing pin.
The trigger finishes cocking the pin, drawing it back the rest of the way to be fired.
 
What Glock proponents gloss over is that a physical safety isn't there nowadays to prevent a mechanical malfunction, it's there to prevent a user induced discharge with the requirement to physically place the weapon in a fireable state. It's about the firing process.

Many of the current physical safeties include a hammer block which answers the mechanical failure issue.
 
I'm sorry but I must disagree. There are plenty of guns (even ignoring the old peacemaker revolvers) that rely on the manually operated safety to safety for handling OTHER than defense against pulling the trigger. We're obviously in agreement about modern revolvers (again this is why revolvers don't typically have safeties) but your statement is certainly NOT true for the entire range of popular/modern automatics. Of course it always behooves you to understand how your particular gun works to know how to carry/operate it safely.
 
What Glock proponents gloss over is that a physical safety isn't there nowadays to prevent a mechanical malfunction, it's there to prevent a user induced discharge with the requirement to physically place the weapon in a fireable state. It's about the firing process.

Many of the current physical safeties include a hammer block which answers the mechanical failure issue.

Which is exactly what I, as a "Glock proponent", said in my posts in this thread. On modern handguns, manual/external safeties are are meant to prevent user error and not equipment malfunction. Most "Glock proponents" do not gloss over this fact, but actually strongly agree with it. The gun itself is safe. It is all about the user and his/her ability to handle a gun without the need for a manual/external safety.
 
I'm sorry but I must disagree. There are plenty of guns (even ignoring the old peacemaker revolvers) that rely on the manually operated safety to safety for handling OTHER than defense against pulling the trigger. We're obviously in agreement about modern revolvers (again this is why revolvers don't typically have safeties) but your statement is certainly NOT true for the entire range of popular/modern automatics. Of course it always behooves you to understand how your particular gun works to know how to carry/operate it safely.

While I agree that there are inherently unsafe handguns that rely on a manual/external safety to assure that they do not accidentally discharge, no-one should ever consider carrying such handguns in the first place. I don't think that there is a single popular/modern semi-automatic handgun that is inherently unsafe (with the exception of the Remington R51 lemons sold and recalled last year).
 
The most important safety by far is the one between your ears. No external or internal safety system is a guarantor against a negligent discharge...any and all safeties have in fact been overcome by stupidity, carelessness, complacency, or a cavalier attitude while handling a firearm. It is also important to remember that firearms and the safety systems incorporated in them are mechanical devices, and any mechanical device can fail. This is an uncommon event with modern firearms, but parts can and do fail. If you follow the fundamental rules of firearm safety with something that approaches religious zeal you should never have a negligent discharge, and in that extremely rare instance where your firearm has malfunctioned and your firearm discharges when you didn't intend, nobody would get hurt and no significant property damage would occur.
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For the OP, it is very important that whatever holster you choose that it fits your firearm properly and securely. I have no experience with the "Flashbang" holster system, however it is not entirely unlike other deep concealment holsters. The draw from this position is a more complex motion than drawing from the hip, and like a shoulder holster it can be difficult to avoid covering yourself or others with the muzzle of your firearm during the draw. If you go with a rig like that I recommend a lot of dry practice working on that draw.
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As far as external safeties go, it simply is not true that a particular firearm is unsafe because it has no visible external safety. But if you're more comfortable with them don't let anyone shoo you away from them. You just need to make sure your thumb has been properly trained to take that safety off after the muzzle has been rotated downrange during the draw. Repetition is the key. Have someone knowledgeable watch you practice it from time to time.
 
The most important safety by far is the one between your ears. No external or internal safety system is a guarantor against a negligent discharge...any and all safeties have in fact been overcome by stupidity, carelessness, complacency, or a cavalier attitude while handling a firearm. It is also important to remember that firearms and the safety systems incorporated in them are mechanical devices, and any mechanical device can fail. This is an uncommon event with modern firearms, but parts can and do fail. If you follow the fundamental rules of firearm safety with something that approaches religious zeal you should never have a negligent discharge, and in that extremely rare instance where your firearm has malfunctioned and your firearm discharges when you didn't intend, nobody would get hurt and no significant property damage would occur.
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For the OP, it is very important that whatever holster you choose that it fits your firearm properly and securely. I have no experience with the "Flashbang" holster system, however it is not entirely unlike other deep concealment holsters. The draw from this position is a more complex motion than drawing from the hip, and like a shoulder holster it can be difficult to avoid covering yourself or others with the muzzle of your firearm during the draw. If you go with a rig like that I recommend a lot of dry practice working on that draw.
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As far as external safeties go, it simply is not true that a particular firearm is unsafe because it has no visible external safety. But if you're more comfortable with them don't let anyone shoo you away from them. You just need to make sure your thumb has been properly trained to take that safety off after the muzzle has been rotated downrange during the draw. Repetition is the key. Have someone knowledgeable watch you practice it from time to time.

Good post!! As some one has posted or whatever. This may not be word for word but you will get the meaning! The most important defensive weapon you have is between your ears! Don't leave home without it!!!
 
While I agree that there are inherently unsafe handguns that rely on a manual/external safety to assure that they do not accidentally discharge, no-one should ever consider carrying such handguns in the first place. I don't think that there is a single popular/modern semi-automatic handgun that is inherently unsafe (with the exception of the Remington R51 lemons sold and recalled last year).
Again, I would disagree. The Walther is a reasonable example. While the hammer is blocked when the trigger isn't pulled, the firing pin itself is restrained by the safety. If the safety is off and the gun is struck on the muzzle end, it may indeed fire. KNOW YOUR WEAPON.
 

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