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  #1  
Old 05-24-2012, 10:57 PM
BILLCALLEY BILLCALLEY is offline
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When was "Condition 1" for 1911 invented??




.


Before you say "since 1911, moron", I think I can safely say that that is not even close. Condition 2 and 3 were the recommended carry methods, but during some very recent period Condition 1 was "invented", and began to be commonly used. Invented by who or exactly when I do not know, but it was apperently unheard of as late as 1955.


A paragraph from an article found in the May 1955 edition of Guns Magazine called "Belly Guns" by the uber-famous gun authority Colonel Charles Askins, infers that he had either never heard of Condition 1 for tactical carry, or had merely dismissed it in the past for some unknown reason:


"A one-hand gun to earn the distinction "belly gun" had better be a six-gun. The automatics of U.S. vintage do not measure up. For in purest interpretation the title implies a lot that at first blush does not meet the eye. Maybe most of all it implies a kind of hardware that can be swung with flashing speed. No auto-loader can be handled that pronto. The self-loaders must be cocked for the first blast and that is godawful slow, finding and earing back a tiny hammer. The automatic pistol is not a worth-its-salt belly job and despite the fact that Mausers and Walthers do have a double action, they still run second fiddle [to double action revolvers]." -Colonel Charles Askins


Any 1911 experts out there who know when Condition 1 came about?



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  #2  
Old 05-24-2012, 11:28 PM
hdm25 hdm25 is offline
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At that point in time the old guard were revolver guys, just like today's old guard at single-action auto (normally 1911) guys that grew up suckling at the teat of Jeff Cooper. Bill Jordan, for example, specifically states in his book "No Second Place Winner" that the 1911 just wouldn't cut it as a gun for close-in self shooting.

As an aside, I am largely weaned but I still suckle every now and again.
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  #3  
Old 05-24-2012, 11:33 PM
mbroadway mbroadway is offline
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I do not currently have a 1911, but I'm seriously (seriously) considering getting a new Springfield EMP in either 9mm or .45ACP. I'm curious how many carry in Condition 1. It makes sense from a safety standpoint. Obviously, Condition 3 would be perhaps more comfortable for someone a little uncertain about Condition 1 carry, but you've still got that rack-the-slide-chamber-a-round-time-span to consider in a critical situation. Plus if you end up with a pesky round that doesn't want to chamber, then you may be in a worse situation altogether. I'm thinking I probably will go with Condition 1 when I get the EMP. I would be interested to hear what others are doing. And, if the moderators think this post should be moved, that's fine. I wasn't sure where to post it. I'm new here.
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  #4  
Old 05-24-2012, 11:33 PM
jupiter7 jupiter7 is online now
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Seems like crazy talk, but has merit. 5" 1911 would make a terrible "belly gun". As a secondary weapon, it excels as far as it's intended use from conception, a military sidearm.
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  #5  
Old 05-24-2012, 11:37 PM
RedRiderF26 RedRiderF26 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbroadway View Post
I would be interested to hear what others are doing. And, if the moderators think this post should be moved, that's fine. I wasn't sure where to post it. I'm new here.
The fact is that MOST everyone carries in C1.
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  #6  
Old 05-24-2012, 11:42 PM
mbroadway mbroadway is offline
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Thanks Red. I kind of had that suspicion, but I wasn't sure.
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  #7  
Old 05-24-2012, 11:50 PM
yocan yocan is offline
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just a thought, but I found it very difficult to carry condition 1 with the gi safety, with the extended safety much more practical. For a person that doesn't practice (not safety perspective but simplicity) pulling the hammer back made more sense. running your thumb on the safety like I do obviously the safety makes more sense. (from a safety standpoint obviously condition 1 makes more sense but in an age where men are men and can handle anything safety wasn't the priority)

so when did extended safeties come about? I imagine thats when condition 1 came mainstream.
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  #8  
Old 05-25-2012, 01:04 AM
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Someone must have recognized that there was no reason to thumb-cock immediately before firing (a technique for which Askins was well known; I have old Guns & Ammo magazines from the '80s, in which Askins is talking about thumb-cocking, long after condition one had become promoted by the tactical and competitive crowds), just from looking at how the gun was configured.
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  #9  
Old 05-25-2012, 01:49 AM
Rock185 Rock185 is online now
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No expert here, but I believe I first became aware of condition 1 carry from something I read by Col. Cooper sometime in the 1960s. I believe that even much later, many shooters considered condition 1 some kind of irresponsible "cowboy" thing and were afraid of it. I do recall a gun shop owner in the early '70s, demonstrating how to whip out and cock a Browning Hi Power, demonstrating the then-new spur hammer, as if it were an old Colt Peacemaker single action...
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  #10  
Old 05-25-2012, 02:22 AM
Kamerer Kamerer is offline
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Quote:
Invented by who or exactly when I do not know, but it was apperently unheard of as late as 1955.
Actually it was about 1909 or 1910.

It didn't become the standard way of caring it until that was promoted by civilian gun gurus as mentioned above.

The very late models of the gun - the final prototypes after years of development - didn't have the thumb safety. It was only added in 1910 IIRC. The grip safety was to secure the gun if the hammer was back and the gun wasn't to be fired. The cavalry asked for the thumb safety - Ordnance was Ok without it apparently.

The back and forth on the design of the gun is very well documented with features requested or modified along the multi-year development path. Some initiated by Browning and the team of Colt engineers, and some from various sources within the Army.

I have a copy of a 1914 Army manual for the pistol that details putting the gun in Condition 1, 2 or 3 (though not with that nomenclature). The nomenclature is perhaps what sprang up in the '50s, but the gun was used in various states since the beginning. Another detail well documented demonstrating Condition 1 carry was the design of the M1912 holster. Early variants had no inner wood bolster (a wood block sewn into the inner holster vertically). Documents show the cavalry wanted the holster modified so the safety was not disabled while riding. Clearly, they were using it with the safety enabled. The bolster cants the frame away slightly to keep the thumb safety from rubbing against the inner lining when carried condition 1. This need was addressed in 1912.

These details were around and well known in the '50s if you looked for them. An early book on the Colt pistols by Donald Bady came out about 1951 (I think). I re-read it recently and it mentions many of the above points.
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Last edited by Kamerer; 05-25-2012 at 02:37 AM.
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  #11  
Old 05-25-2012, 07:05 AM
flyinrock flyinrock is offline
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Excellent response and new info. I learned it from Cooper and from what I uderstand he was the one who rejuvenated it? I spent a lot of years USMC as a team shooter and didn't learn about Condition One until I met Cooper in the mid 70's.
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  #12  
Old 05-25-2012, 07:30 AM
WethePeople WethePeople is offline
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Why else would it need a thumb safety ? It only works in C1 right?
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  #13  
Old 05-25-2012, 08:53 AM
Imbel45 Imbel45 is offline
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If not mistaken, we owe the conditons of the 1911 to Colonel Jeff Cooper

Cooper favored the Colt M1911 and its variants. There are several conditions of readiness in which such a weapon can be carried. Cooper promulgated most of the following terms:

Condition Four: Chamber empty, no magazine, hammer down.
Condition Three: Chamber empty, full magazine in place, hammer down.
Condition Two: A round chambered, full magazine in place, hammer down.
Condition One: A round chambered, full magazine in place, hammer cocked, safety on.
Condition Zero: A round chambered, full magazine in place, hammer cocked, safety off.

Now as for the years, I think it might have been coined between 1965-1975....which is the years I have seen as the " Modern Combat Handgun technique" years
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Last edited by Imbel45; 05-25-2012 at 08:55 AM.
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  #14  
Old 05-25-2012, 09:31 AM
JetBlackGT JetBlackGT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickB View Post
Someone must have recognized that there was no reason to thumb-cock immediately before firing (a technique for which Askins was well known; I have old Guns & Ammo magazines from the '80s, in which Askins is talking about thumb-cocking, long after condition one had become promoted by the tactical and competitive crowds), just from looking at how the gun was configured.
I'd guess any "revolver man, bred through-and-through" as Colonel Askins was, always carried hammer down, over an empty chamber. As far as I know there are no revolvers with safeties so unless he had a special one, he either had a firing pin resting directly on a hot primer or he really carried a "five-shooter".

Therefore he would always carry hammer down, on any other gun without, for instance, checking the manual to see how he should be carrying the firearm.

Hammer down on a loaded chamber, on a 1911? Dangerous and silly.

It would have been easy to take him aside and let him know that you never need to touch the hammer, on a 1911. You load a magazine, insert it, rack the slide, engage the safety, drop the mag and load the final round to top it off. Then it goes in your holster.

I'm sure the 1911 was the Glock of it's time. Probably touted as being 100% reliable when it patently wasn't and it held a monstrous 8-9 rounds. The hardliners certainly said "If you can't get the job done in five shots, what's the use of carrying nine?"

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  #15  
Old 05-25-2012, 09:49 AM
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Askins was a lefty, and that may have had something to do with preference for Condition 2. Of course, he had the same access to ambi safeties that everyone else did, but maybe he really did think C2 was the way to go.
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  #16  
Old 05-25-2012, 10:14 AM
HarryO45 HarryO45 is offline
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I love COL Cooper too, but:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kamerer View Post
Actually it was about 1909 or 1910.

It didn't become the standard way of caring it until that was promoted by civilian gun gurus as mentioned above.

The very late models of the gun - the final prototypes after years of development - didn't have the thumb safety. It was only added in 1910 IIRC. The grip safety was to secure the gun if the hammer was back and the gun wasn't to be fired. The cavalry asked for the thumb safety - Ordnance was Ok without it apparently.

The back and forth on the design of the gun is very well documented with features requested or modified along the multi-year development path. Some initiated by Browning and the team of Colt engineers, and some from various sources within the Army.

I have a copy of a 1914 Army manual for the pistol that details putting the gun in Condition 1, 2 or 3 (though not with that nomenclature). The nomenclature is perhaps what sprang up in the '50s, but the gun was used in various states since the beginning. Another detail well documented demonstrating Condition 1 carry was the design of the M1912 holster. Early variants had no inner wood bolster (a wood block sewn into the inner holster vertically). Documents show the cavalry wanted the holster modified so the safety was not disabled while riding. Clearly, they were using it with the safety enabled. The bolster cants the frame away slightly to keep the thumb safety from rubbing against the inner lining when carried condition 1. This need was addressed in 1912.

These details were around and well known in the '50s if you looked for them. An early book on the Colt pistols by Donald Bady came out about 1951 (I think). I re-read it recently and it mentions many of the above points.
This is the answer.

Use common sense, if you were a Doughboy jumping in an enemy trench how would you have carried it.
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  #17  
Old 05-25-2012, 12:18 PM
Six Six is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JetBlackGT View Post
Hammer down on a loaded chamber, on a 1911? Dangerous and silly.
New registered old lurker, and still need to make an intro, but as I was researching series 70/80 info awhile back, I came across a few ND/AD's that could result from using either Condition 1 or Condition 2.

Currently do not have a working 1911 in my possession, though I did carry hammer down on quite a few firearms years ago. I do use shoulder rigs now, which has me a little concerned with a 1911, over carrying my Glock, for example. Which unless the firing pin safety has failed, it wont fire unless the trigger is pulled.

Please excuse the linking to external sites, but I tend to do a lot of researching, and reading, which takes me all over.

Muzzle drop ND/AD (pics included, must see)

Hammer down AD

Info to first link, with possible fix on page 2
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  #18  
Old 05-25-2012, 12:20 PM
skipperbrown skipperbrown is offline
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The hammer on my Aegis doesn't allow for any 'thumbing'. You can only cock it by manipulating the slide. There is no Condition 2.
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Old 05-25-2012, 12:43 PM
BILLCALLEY BILLCALLEY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Six View Post
New registered old lurker, and still need to make an intro, but as I was researching series 70/80 info awhile back, I came across a few ND/AD's that could result from using either Condition 1 or Condition 2.


Muzzle drop ND/AD (pics included, must see)
The Condition 1 AD of your first external Web link ("RIA 45 acp ND") with the RIA 1911 hitting the tile floor was almost certainly due to the manual safety being somehow disengaged (Reason: he stated that the slide had moved backward after the ND); and the RIA's sear then slipped from the hammer on impact with the tile floor (Reason: he stated that the primer dimple was as deep as it is normally).

This still doesn't explain how the sear slipped passed the hammer's half-cock notch, but that could have been due to a "bounce" of the hammer on impact skipping the half-cock notch (pure speculation though)...

Condition 1, especially with a proper functioning and intact Series 80 system, is as safe as it gets, but make sure your trigger is not set too light (<3lbs) and that the manual safety has a heavy and positive engagement/disengagement feel.


Last edited by BILLCALLEY; 05-26-2012 at 09:44 AM.
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  #20  
Old 05-25-2012, 12:58 PM
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I usually carry in condition one.
Sometimes I carry in condition "2 1/2 ", cocked hammer , empty chamber full mag and no thumb safety engaged.
Makes it easier to rack the slide without fumbling with the safety.
I do practice drawing and racking the slide so I dont have to think aboout it.
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  #21  
Old 05-25-2012, 04:01 PM
Sgt 45 Sgt 45 is offline
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I remember reading Charlie Askins in the 50' and 60's. He hated autos. Period. He was a revolver guy all the way especially the big SSA's. I would also agree that "condition 1" came about in 1911.
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Old 05-25-2012, 04:52 PM
BILLCALLEY BILLCALLEY is offline
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Originally Posted by Sgt 45 View Post
I would also agree that "condition 1" came about in 1911.

Sgt45, I don't know about C1 carry starting in 1911. Who would have done that, considering the U.S. Army adopted it in 1911, with the Navy and Marines following suit by the next year or two. All 1911 production would have had to go for military use for quite some time. The military, most unarguably, would NEVER allow Condition 1 carry -- not now, not then, not ever. (Current or recent Special Forces units might allow C1 nowadays, but I simply have no idea).


.

Last edited by BILLCALLEY; 05-25-2012 at 04:56 PM.
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  #23  
Old 05-25-2012, 06:32 PM
DSims DSims is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BILLCALLEY View Post
Sgt45, I don't know about C1 carry starting in 1911. Who would have done that, considering the U.S. Army adopted it in 1911, with the Navy and Marines following suit by the next year or two. All 1911 production would have had to go for military use for quite some time. The military, most unarguably, would NEVER allow Condition 1 carry -- not now, not then, not ever. (Current or recent Special Forces units might allow C1 nowadays, but I simply have no idea).


.
FYI


A previous poster indicated that the US Army calvary most likely did carry in Condition 1. Which makes sense, due to the need to manipulate the reigns with one hand, draw and fire with the other.

I can't speak for other services in modern times, but in the early 1990s, USMC Conditions for the 1911, were:Condition 1, Condition 3, and Condition 4,
were the authorized carry conditions. The command would decide which condition was approprioate, for a given environment/duty. The conditions that firearms are carried in, are sometimes part of post orders, and may vary from post to post depending on threat condtions, and post duties.

The M9 was adopted during this time, and its conditions similar, but without the cocked hammer. IE: magazine loaded, round in the chamber, hammer down, safety engaged, is Con 1. Con 2 doesn't exist on the M9. Con 3 was empty chamber, full magazine inserted, with safety on. Con 4 was empty chamber, empty mag well, safety on.

Typical conditions for me when I stood post, were:

*M16A2 with loaded magazine inserted, safety on, dust cover closed. (Con 3)
*M9 with loaded magazine inserted, a round in the chamber, hammer down,
safety engaged. (Con 1)
*590A1 fully loaded magazine tube, empty chamber,"hammer" in the fired
position, safety off. (Con 3 Modified). (Was the same for 870s).

Those might be modified, on some posts, by disengaging the safety on the M9, or fixed bayonets on the rifle or shotgun. The position the weapon was to be carried, or slung might also be specified by post. IE: Port arms, Muzzle up on the strong side, or Muzzle down on the weak side.

I have seen Condition 1 on many 1911s during my tour of service.
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Old 05-25-2012, 06:33 PM
Dave Waits Dave Waits is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt 45 View Post
I remember reading Charlie Askins in the 50' and 60's. He hated autos. Period. He was a revolver guy all the way especially the big SSA's. I would also agree that "condition 1" came about in 1911.

charlie may have hated the 1911 in the 50s and 60s but, he eventually came around to the 1911. I remember reading a lot of his articles on Survival and defensive shooting in the five years before he passed, in every case he advocated the 1911.

A little hint; Can anybody name this Holster?

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Old 05-25-2012, 08:24 PM
oldman45 oldman45 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jupiter7 View Post
Seems like crazy talk, but has merit. 5" 1911 would make a terrible "belly gun". As a secondary weapon, it excels as far as it's intended use from conception, a military sidearm.
I have carried one in every conceivable location and they work well. Shoving one into the belly of a combatant also works very well in stopping aggression.

Most people do not carry enough to be comfortable carrying in any position or method.

Very few people will ever encounter close combat with a gun, much less a full frame 1911. If they ever do, they will never carry anything but a 1911 again.
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