School me on press checks

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by Yellowsupersport, Dec 6, 2018.

  1. Yellowsupersport

    Yellowsupersport Well-Known Member

    Sep 1, 2015
    From what I’m seeing on YouTube these days, it appears that press checking is all the rage with all the kool kids. So without starting another 9mm vs 45 / striker vs hammer / CLP vs KY type, what’s the deal with press checks ? Are they a sound practice, or tacticool weapons admin ?

    Reason for asking is I don’t quite understand the need. When I load my weapon I know a round has chambered, both from the sound and feel. I also top off the magazine, so have a secondary physical check that a round has been stripped from it.

    Press checking seems to be primarily driven off the FCS, a practice that scares me - I was taught, right or wrong, to always keep my fingers behind the ejection port. This way, should a live primer be pulled into the ejector, my important bits are out the way of the bang.

    Another thing I was told - again right or wrong - is that a round is designed to be chambered by the action of the recoil spring. It seats it properly in the chamber, and that’s why we never ride the slide closed. Press checking undo’s this, by pulling the round off its headspaced position, and the slide is closed again under resistance.

    And finally, if press checking is done to check if a round is chambered, why is this only done for the first magazine ? No one, that I have seen, is press checking during an IDPA stage and at a slide lock reload. So if you trust your weapon to work mid-stage, why don’t you trust it before the buzzer goes off ?

    What am I missing ?

    Flamesuit on, go !

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  2. retrieverman

    retrieverman Well-Known Member

    May 16, 2013
    Good question! I’ve been hearing more about “press checks” lately too.

    Personally, if I have a mag in my gun, the SOB is loaded. I don’t need to “check” to see if it’s loaded.

  3. Kip

    Kip Sir Kip Esquire

    Apr 12, 2016
    Agree with both.
    I loaded the damn thing,it stays that way!
  4. tac45

    tac45 What me worry ? Supporting Addict

    Mar 4, 2012
    On sale at TTT !!!

    All the kool kids have them
    Send cash !
    FWoo45, UBOATDOC, 45caldude and 7 others like this.
  5. Ethank

    Ethank Well-Known Member

    Mar 8, 2017
    It sounds like you are very familiar with your firearms. I have seen countless people on a line insert a loaded mag in the chamber, think it was seated, and attempt to chamber a round. The magazine is still not seated and they are stuck with an unloaded gun. When the buzzer, timer, command to fire goes off, they get a click instead of a bang.

    A press check is an administrative step that is just a confirmation of loading on a firing line. Rarely do I see people top off their magazine after chambering the first round during a practice session.

    When you load your gun for real, IE CCW carry, duty, etc, obviously you are going to top off the magazine. In that instance, I agree that it doesn’t make much sense.

    During an IDPA stage, time is off the essence and no one will be checking after each reload.

    If you are intimately familiar with your gun and the sounds it makes, and you feel comfortable, don’t bother press checking.

    If I were to tell you that a gunfight was about to happen and you can either check your gun to see if it’s loaded or trust you life on the sound you heard hours, days or weeks before, would you take the opportunity to confirm it? I know I would.

    To each his own, but I’m a fan of it.
  6. mikegalway

    mikegalway CEO of DILLIGAF industries Supporting Addict

    Feb 23, 2014
    It looks cool when John Wick does it .
  7. Karsten

    Karsten Well-Known Member

    Feb 19, 2013
    Yeppers and that goes for a couple shotguns I keep around for things that go bump in the night.

    Press Checking to me would be a kin to carrying a pistol with an empty chamber....If you need to check to see you are most likely dead or dying....If you need to rack the slide to chamber a round you are most likely dead or dying....

    I might Press Check the Salsa Pump at the Taco Bar just so I don't spray crap everywhere.

    Then again, if I have to draw my pistol the safety comes off as I am about half way between the holster and the staring at the BG.......Just about the time my left hand meets my right and I try the break my trigger trigger until I have the shot.

    I might Press Check the Brakes going down a canyon in my Corvette but I rarely touch the brakes going up the canyon.

    And those Hard Plastic Toy Shells with the button and the hole that says Press Here......To hell with that.....Flipping thing might be a bomb and go Boom.

  8. Kip

    Kip Sir Kip Esquire

    Apr 12, 2016
    Ha,I'm not the only one!!!
    I never trust those holes....figure a rat trap,high voltage,or that friggin bomb thing.
    Ain't playing!! :D
    retrieverman, tac45 and xerts1191 like this.
  9. Kip

    Kip Sir Kip Esquire

    Apr 12, 2016
    Don't forget the Steven Segal check....
    Thumb in the trigger guard, forefinger on the spring plug. Shaky hands? BLAM!!
    UBOATDOC, Harleyvato, tac45 and 2 others like this.
  10. Karsten

    Karsten Well-Known Member

    Feb 19, 2013
    I would have to disagree.....Way back when I always carried a extra mag in my right hip pocket, rack the slide and top off the mag....I still do it today.

    If I am wearing my Gun it was most likely clean, oiled and loaded once a week and mag was topped off....

  11. Kip

    Kip Sir Kip Esquire

    Apr 12, 2016
    The "Barney" mag.
    retrieverman likes this.
  12. Ethank

    Ethank Well-Known Member

    Mar 8, 2017
    Glad you have a routine. I also have one. If I don’t have constant custody of my gun, and I’m relying on it to save my life, I press check it when I pick it back up. Put it in nightstand for the night, I check it next morning when I put it back on my hip.

    While on the range, I don’t like to spend the extra time to top off each mag as I load the gun. Seems silly to me. I’d prefer to shoot and train more.
    fieldgrade and FWoo45 like this.
  13. azguy1911

    azguy1911 I'm done buying guns, I'm just a bystander now

    Oct 22, 2015
    I'd say there's no real need for them but a gun owner should be aware and comfortable of nearly everything that has to do with his/her weapon.... and performing a "press check" is simple and safe as you are only bringing the slide back a 1/4 of an inch.
    retrieverman likes this.
  14. Karsten

    Karsten Well-Known Member

    Feb 19, 2013
    Humm.....You must have evil little Critters that mess with you.....Gremlins, Vermin....Evil little Children from the past that hate you......Maybe you Bullied them.

    Hell I don't know but I take mine off, loaded and the mag still in and I wake up and the holster and gun have not moved....I get up and it is all as I left it.

    Now I know there was that guy...forget his name but he could take the gun out of you hand, field strip in and toss it back without the Firing Pin....That Dude don't live around me.

    Now as for Range time and real time to me it is all the same......You go to the firing line, rack the slide, Load the pistol and load a fresh mag.

    Train the same way all the time time and you don't have to worry about the last time you did something.

    retrieverman and Kip like this.
  15. Kip

    Kip Sir Kip Esquire

    Apr 12, 2016
    Like azguy said,it's not a complicated maneuver. Still never felt the need for it.
    Karsten, repetition is key. You know damn well you'd feel a "hiccup" chambering,and then just rack again. I've yet to have problems picking a round up from the ground!
    retrieverman likes this.
  16. Ethank

    Ethank Well-Known Member

    Mar 8, 2017
    This is what I live about this forum and America. You have a way that works for you, and I have a way that works for me, and neither one is wrong. I have made plenty of mistakes in my life, had plenty of brain farts, and made mental mistakes. I like to press check my guns and ensure a round is there. Makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.

    As for the range being the same as real life, I have different practices for real life that I don’t do for the range. All of my defensive rounds get chamber checked before loading in to my mags and I make sure the primer is properly seated. I don’t do this on the range.

    Glad your way works for you, and it would appear I may be one of these tacticool millennials based in this thread. I’m cool with that.
    FWoo45 and Kip like this.
  17. july19

    july19 Womb? Weary? He rests. He has travelled. Supporting Addict

    Sep 16, 2013
    I did it once in a GS. When I first heard the term I thought I needed to check my Rockchucker for functionality.
    FWoo45, retrieverman and Kip like this.
  18. B81

    B81 Well-Known Member

    Aug 12, 2018
    Let me just stop you right there.
  19. BigDeeeeeeee

    BigDeeeeeeee Idaho 1911er

    Aug 19, 2011
    Oops, wrong spot.:egg:
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
    retrieverman likes this.
  20. GeorgiaRedfish

    GeorgiaRedfish Well-Known Member

    Aug 19, 2011
    I always do it. I want to be 100% sure. Redundancy in firearms is never bad. Sometimes we get so used to doing something we get complacent. I’d hate to load up a mag and forget to rack one in. I don’t see a draw back to it unless you fail the basics of firearms safety.

    Plus if you knew 100% you were about to go into a dangerous situation I bet you would press check. Why not be sure after you conduct an initial load?

    Just my 2 cent
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018

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