What’s your condition?

| September 2, 2014 | 4 Comments

I carry my Glocks with a round in the chamber. When I carried 1911s, I had a round in the chamber with the safety on.

All of our long guns are kept with the chamber empty, bolt closed, and safety off. Any weapon we expect to use in an emergency have a loaded magazine inserted, but are otherwise in the same condition.

As I’ve written before, my bag-carry vSBRs and PDW are carried with chamber empty, bolt closed, safety off, full mag onboard.


I do this because I don’t trust the safety to stay in the “ON” position if I had a round in the chamber.

Now, some people feel comfortable carrying their rifle with a round in the chamber, but that’s on them. Although I don’t do it, I could understand keeping a loaded rifle with the safety on in a safe, or even in a case secured in a trunk or underneath a seat (all local, state and federal laws apply, of course). In these circumstances, there isn’t enough movement to jostle a safety off — probably.

However, in a bag that gets carried just about everywhere, I don’t trust it.

My only exception is the KPOS enclosure. Because of its unique foregrip  that covers the trigger, I do carry a round in the chamber. I would not carry a round in the chamber if I used the RONI stock, and certainly not the Triarii with its completely exposed trigger design.

I have a friend who’s working on trigger protectors for rifles, but it’s a slow, custom process. When this type of device gains more popularity / uniformity I might reconsider my protocol.

About the Author:

Short Barrel Shepherd Short Barrel Shepherd is a regular guy and works to make Web sites and mobile apps easier for people to use. He spends his free time attending fight-focused firearm, knife, and combatives training, motorcycling, writing, and playing games. His daily carry is a Glock 19 pistol and an AR15 .300 Blackout pistol in a backpack.

4 Comments on "What’s your condition?"

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  1. nDjinn says:

    I carry my Fiveseven and Glock 20 with a round in the chamber; thigh, chest or belt rig- the Fiveseven with the safety on. My SW Shield is full mag, chamber empty because I carry it in a pocket often w/o a holster. My SBR and Tavor are carried like yours; chamber empty, safety off, bolt closed, and full mag.

  2. B R Kurtz (EDELWEISS) B R Kurtz (EDELWEISS) says:

    I dont mind carrying a pistol loaded and ready because I have control of the muzzle all the time, likewise a rifle carried openly in my hands can always be kept in a safe direction and the trigger clear, so its loaded and ready. Conversely a rifle in a bag has more potential for movement. Is it in a laptop bag over my shoulder, pointed forward or pushed to my back (with the muzzle pointed to my side? OR in a backpack with the muzzle UP; but whats above it?, and what happens when I have to take it off?

    Many or most handgun safeties are designed with more than a a trigger block, can all rifles say the same? are they safe against drops and hard hits? For my “money” IF its in a bag, I’ll carry with a loaded mag but chamber empty.

  3. Dustin says:

    I carry my Glocks chamber loaded-think revolvers (which don’t have any safeties at all and yet we feel comfortable with them). As for my Hera Arms Triarri and GCC it’s also chamber loaded because my Glocks in them have Siderlocks-this way it’s open trigger with easy manipulation because the safeties are already in the trigger itself. As for my KPOS it’s also loaded because of the folding grip/guard. In my gun cabinet my rifles are unloaded. Probably different when I take it out in the field-lock and loaded safety on. In a bag it’s chamber empty. Having had a few accidents my mindset is now always “gun loaded, finger off the trigger.”

  4. Mike says:

    I carry my Glock chambered and in a trigger-covering holster. Were I to carry a CZ-75 (my preferred 1911-type platform) it’d be chambered, cocked and locked.

    Long guns are stored cruiser safe, as you do; empty chamber but otherwise ready to fire; safeties are small and easily tripped, but a pump or charging handle is a gross motor motion that is not going to be accidentally replicated in storage. As a note, I store my Mossberg 590A cocked with chamber empty; my usual drill for picking it up and charging it includes squeezing the slide release (right behind the trigger guard) with my right middle finger; this keeps the heavy, light-equipped pump from drifting open while stored.

    Long guns being CARRIED (slung or in hand) are kept chambered with safety on. I do not hunt, the only reason I would be carrying a longarm is if I have some suspicion of needing it in a hurry. Your method of bag carry, however, is a hybrid of ‘stored’ and ‘carried,’ where I do believe I would keep the gun in ‘stored’ (empty chamber safety off) condition. If you were to procure a kydex grip cover “holster” of some sort that protected the trigger and safety in your bag and was affixed to its interior walls, I might switch to a different condition, but as is I’d be thinking of it as Stored.

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