The Utility of Second Strike

There are essentially four failures in a firearm– a failure to feed, a failure to chamber, a failure to fire, and a failure to eject. A light strike is a failure to fire, and is corrected by either A: Doublestriking or B: corrective action. Light strikes can be caused by a large number of factors, including bad anvil alignment in the primer, firing pin fouling, a gun very slightly out of battery, or a weakened trigger spring.

But a light strike, in the heat of the moment, looks and feels exactly like many other kinds of failures, and in a gunfight, the solution to fixing a problem with your firearm is not ‘stare at it, diagnose the specific issue, apply the specific remedy, return to shooting’.

It’s ‘corrective action’, ie. ‘slap rack bang’, because in almost all cases, corrective action will fix /any and all problems you have/ short of a major or catastrophic malfunction.

The question you should be asking is, ‘are light strikes a common enough failure in a given weapons platform that training second-strike is more viable than general corrective action?’

Even if you can re-shoot 75% of your light strikes, are light strikes a more common failure than, say, a failure to lock into battery? Or a failure to feed? If you can correct 75% of your weapon failures with a second strike, is that better than correcting 99% of your failures with corrective action?

Keep It Simple, Stupid– KISS– is the byword of any training you do. If it’s a process that requires thinking or extrapolation, a gunfight is literally the worst time to be playing that game.


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