My Pistol Won’t Fire: Part 2

Sometimes semi-auto pistols have a failure to feed a cartridge from the magazine into the chamber. The reason for the failure to feed may be that the magazine is not seated all the way into the pistol. The shooter, not knowing that the chamber is empty, presses the trigger and gets a click instead of a bang. There is a simple solution to this. It’s commonly called “Tap, Rack, Bang.”

Tap: With the pistol pointed at the target and finger OFF the trigger, use the palm of the support hand to slap the base of the magazine to ensure it is seated correctly.

Rack: Grasp the rear portion of the slide with the support hand and pull it smartly to the rear and let it go. A fresh cartridge should now be loaded into the chamber and the pistol is ready to fire.

Bang: Sights on target; Finger on trigger; shoot!

If Tap, Rack, Bang does not work, remove the magazine and lock the slide to the rear.

1) Examine the chamber to see if a previously fired (empty) cartridge case is lodged in the chamber. Do NOT look down the muzzle (front end of the barrel)!

2) Examine the magazine to see if it has ammunition present and that the cartridges are not jammed in there.

If in doubt about the condition or safety of your pistol, lay it down on the shooting bench, muzzle pointed downrange and call a range officer to assist you.


Author: bryan