People who THINK they get hammer bite on a 1911, actually get cut by a sharp edge on a grip safety. The correct solution to that one would appear to be to break out a honing stone, not to put on a bigger aftermarket part that adds nothing but bulk to the weapon. Look at the mil spec 1911 with the hammer in the cocked position. Its impossible to get "hammer bite" from it, unlike say, the Hi Power, which actually extends out and down PAST the tang.Others theorize on the cause of hammerbite with no empirical evidence to speak of.
Also, I'd bet the term "hammer bite" is a "catch-all" for cutting, bruising, etc the hand. Meaning, a lot of people will cut and bruise themselves because of the frame/beavertail edges impacting your hand on recoil and might call it hammer bite. It's not the hammer, but the effect is the same...basically.Apparently these folks have held a pistol loosely and have felt the unrestrained recoil. It is impossible for a tightly held handgun to impact your hand, just as a properly shouldered shotgun will not bruise your shoulder. Saying that hammerbite is a myth because it never happened to you is like saying bones don't break because you never had a fracture. It's incredibly egocentric and ignorant. Here's another statement fresh off a forum:
I would probably pay cash money to see anybody get "hammer bite" with a stock 1911 when shooting it with their thumb DOWN in the proper position. If you stick your thumb in the air like you are hitchhiking when trying to shoot so you can imitate some idiotic gamesman who never survived a gunfight in his life, that's YOUR fault, not the guns.Yep, there goes that hitchhiking accusation, and a little name calling tossed in for good measure. Is my thumb pointing at the clouds in any of these photos? Arrogance based on erroneous presumptions often makes the speaker appear more ignorant than he would like. This quote though, is my favorite.
I have loose fleshy hands that are on the large side, and the only gun I ever got hammer bite from was a Model 29 with stock factory target grips. But then again, I realize that I have an opposable thumb and what nature intended it for. Grasping, not hitching a ride...How the hell does a person get hammerbite shooting a revolver? Oh, and there goes that opposable thumb thing again.
I have shot a Sistema in my usual high shooting grip and taken the photos above for one reason. Proof of hammerbite's existence and it's cause. In the first photo, the hammer can be seen pinching the flesh of my hand. In the second photo, with the pistol moved forward, the impression of the grip safety can be seen with no abrasions present. The pinched flesh wound can be seen immediately proximal to the grip safety impression.
These same people who deny the existence of hammerbite hate the beavertail grip safety. They declare that it is a trendy contrivance not needed by real men who know how to grip a handgun properly. Bullshit. The proper way to hold a handgun is to get the web of your hand as high as possible behind the bore axis. Doing so changes the recoil impulse from a lever action to a push straight back. The recoil of the properly held pistol is unable to act as a lever against the wrist. Follow-up shots come quicker, and they are more accurate. A beavertail grip safety effectively eliminates hammerbite, allowing the pistol to be held as high as possible, giving better control and enhancing accuracy. The beavertail grip safety is a simple, elegant, and permanent solution. It adds no bulk, and it allows the pistol to be shot without pain for a long period of time. The beavertail grip safety solves the hammerbite problem. It works. Period.
Failure to recognize this and calling the beavertail grip safety trend chasing is what psychologists call projection. That's right. The insistence on a GI style grip safety is as trendy and fashionable as the desire for a beavertail ever was. Those who refuse to accept the reality of hammerbite also lack the insight to see their advocacy of the GI grip safety for what it truly is. Reverse elitism. Snobbery. It is true that some pistols look better with a GI grip safety. I keep a GI grip safety and a Rowell hammer on my Series 70 Commander because I like the way it looks. Yes, the rounded Commander hammer occasionally nips my flesh. I like the looks of the GI grip safety on my Commander, so I keep it. That's fashion. If I were to install a beavertail grip safety, I would be responding to my needs to shoot this pistol more effectively. That is form following function, not fashion.
There are those who will say that all a person needs to do to eliminate hammerbite is trim the hammer. They would be right. I have done this on pistols. Still, there is a huge advantage for many people, as I stated above, to adopting a high grip on a 1911. The thumb sitting on top of the thumb safety provides leverage to prevent what little muzzle flip is left after raising the web of the hand behind the bore axis. The pistol pushes against the web of the hand rather than levering against the wrist. As a result, the sights stay closer to the target, and the target is reacquired quicker. That is not inconsequential. The improvement is measurable in split times. Some beavertail grip safeties get the hand higher on the pistol than others. I prefer the Ed Brown grip safety. It gets my hand a full quarter inch higher on the pistol than a stock grip safety. It also prevents hammerbite. That is not fashion. That is form following function. That is the evolution of design and an improvement worth keeping. All else is just fashion.
Labels: 1911 Basics