To Extract And Eject A Chambered Cartridge

When the pistol is fired, the same gas pressure that drives the bullet forward also acts through the cartridge case to push the slide to the rear. The action causes extraction and ejection of the fired cartridge case. If a cartridge fails to fire or if the shooter wishes to eject the chambered cartridge manually, follow the procedure "To Unload" step 3, p.18. When the slide is operated by hand, there can be a failure to extract the cartridge from the chamber, or a failure to eject the cartridge clear of the pistol. These failures usually are the result of the slide not being pulled rearward vigorously. From the foregoing, it is clear that the gun user must:

1. Always visually check the chamber and the breech-face after opening the slide to eject a chambered cartridge. If the slide is not vigorously retracted when being operated by hand, the extracted cartridge can be "ejected" into the magazine-well of the grip frame or remain held to the breech-face by the extractor.

2. Thoroughly clean the chamber and the extractor as often as necessary.

If an empty magazine is in the pistol when the slide is being hand retracted to extract a cartridge, the cartridge may drop on top of the magazine or remain held to the breech-face by the extractor. Then when the slide goes forward, the cartridge will be chambered again! Remember — always remove the magazine before clearing the chamber, and visually ensure that no cartridges remain in the gun.


Any autoloading pistol may occasionally malfunction. If a cartridge hangs up, jams, or binds when being chambered, do not attempt to force it into the chamber by pushing or striking the slide. Carefully remove it.

Most failures of a cartridge to feed or to chamber properly are caused by a damaged magazine, incorrect gun handling, insufficient lubrication, or improper ammunition. Whatever the cause, the user of the pistol must, above all, recognize that any cartridge jam can result in the very potentially dangerous situation of a cartridge discharging before it is properly chambered. If this happens, the cartridge case may rupture and its fragments fly out of the ejection port of the pistol with sufficient force to cause serious injury. Always wear shooting glasses!


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