Chamber empty carry – maybe not so stupid!

In 2010 the Thinking Gunfighter had a very interesting post on why chamber-empty carry, AKA the Israeli method, AKA Condition 3 carry, may not be as stupid as we’ve all been taught.  Go read the entire thing.  One key point to pique your interest:

Let us assume that racking the slide adds a half second to your total presentation time (which is pretty slow, by the way). And let us assume that you can draw and fire at the 2 second mark. If the attack comes before you can draw and fire (2 seconds) having the chamber loaded or not doesn’t matter, as you don’t have time to draw and fire at all. If the attack comes after a 2.5 second time frame having the chamber loaded or not doesn’t matter, as you have time to chamber a round. Only if the attack happens in that critical time frame after 2 seconds but before 2.5 seconds does the chamber condition matter.

I’m still loading one in the chute, but it does make one think, now don’t it?

Finally: I’ll hit this point often and hard: if you carry a gun for self-defense, you have to know the law. Invest the money you’d spend on shaving a tenth of a second off your splits with Andrew Branca’s book or seminars — it’ll pay far greater dividends. Visit this link to learn more, and use the discount code “streetstandards” for a 10% discount.


2 thoughts on “Chamber empty carry – maybe not so stupid!

  1. Very interesting discussion.

    Two factors I did not see mentioned that could be very important.

    Why is it assumed the chambering of a round will go smoothly?
    A FTF at this point would be very bad news. Some autoloaders are sensitive to this, and need a very firm hard pull and release of the slide, especially with the first round, as there is a lot of spring compressed behind it. I have worked on this a little and feel the best is to pull so hard on the slide that the fingers simply slide off the serrations when the slide reaches it’s end of travel. Still, I have had FTF the first round on occasion. Depends on the ammo also.

    Second, the assumption is there will be two hands free.
    This may or may not be the case- there may be a more important use for that arm, like deflecting a blow.
    ( This reminds me, the last time I was charged by an aggressive dog, I had both hands occupied. The box of firewood did discombobulate the dog somewhat when I dropped it on his head. )

    I want to compliment you on your attitude and thinking- this is a breath of fresh air after a lot of the BS on self defense sites, So many of them start and end with the gun. Many seem to have no content regarding situational awareness. According to SunTzu, the best way to defeat an opponent is to win without ever having to fight them


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