"Flinging forward" the Single Action Revolver to Cock It

In a recent discussion of one handed versus two handed hand gun shooting, the excellent question was posed about the difficulty of re-cocking a single action revolver after having fired it one handed.

The one handed hold of a single action places the hand high up on the back strap such that the gun will roll in the hand before the recoil forces the arm up. This results in the friction between the hand and the grip to absorb some recoil energy being dissipated as heat, which we really don't feel amid the rest of the energy present. But the absorption is enough to reduce recoil in a noticeable amount.

The question of re-cocking arises if we do not dink with our hammer springs, which I have not done. My Ruger old model Vaquero has a very stiff hammer spring, which I suspect results in a positive and sufficiently vigorous hammer strike through the transfer bar safety mechanism against the primer, resulting a a predictable shot. This stiff spring is tough to cock if we just try to use our thumb without "the fling."

The flinging-forward technique goes like this. You hook the last knuckle of your thumb over the hammer. You rotate your wrist back and fling the revolver forward to allow momentum to cock the hammer. Once you're used to the technique, you'll fling from the position the gun ends up in after the shot.

There are subtleties involved.

First, there's the grip on the grip. The size of one's hands will be a factor here. My hands allow me to keep my index finger off the trigger, my middle finger slightly relaxed on the grip below the tirgger guard, and my ring finger gripping rather more tightly. The center of the rotational arc is my wrist, with my thumb knuckle stopping the gun from spinning down and possibly dropping to the ground; this will be hard with a Bisley hammer.

Another subtlety concerns barrel length and therefore the momentum which may be generated. If we assume five cylinders will be loaded and one with just the brass in it, barrel length becomes a consideration. My Vaquero has a 4-5/8 inch barrel; the longer the barrel, the greater the potential momentum. The number of loaded cylinders also matters, yet that mass is closer to the axis of rotation, so it matters a bit less than barrel length.

A final subtlety will be the material of the grip. I have rosewood. Those folks with rubber or Pachayr grips or what not will encounter problems with this technique. I am a fan of oiled wood on single ation revolers. I have Pachmayrs on my 1911 which I truly love, and I have the standard rubber grips on my GP100 which I accept as designed.

When I first learned this technique back in the day, I practiced unloaded over a bed or over the sofa in case I dropped it. Once I felt good doing it, I tried it at the range fully loaded. If you want to pull the trigger between flings, I would recommend the use of snap caps and to aim at a target that's OK to destroy. Even while practicing with a snapped cap gun, we always must pay attention to the Four Rules, second of which being "only point the gun at something that's OK to destroy." I prefer the light switch.

I would urge single action owners to try this technique, which will lead to the "proper" way to shoot a hand gun, which is not a hands gun. :-0

Crazy cat peekin' through a lace bandana
like a one-eyed Cheshire, like a diamond-eyed Jack

Re: "Flinging forward" the Single Action Revolver to Cock It

Hello I have a Blackhawk 357/9mm conversion ( a separate cylinder for each) and I love it! I have found that with the barrel rise after the shot; that is the time to place thumb on hammer. Yes the flip down is achieved when placing sights back on target . That works well for me. The trick is to let the gun rise and do not resist it. Once back on target then the strength of the wrist and arm are engaged. Wallydo

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest