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Production Division Problem


ivanhu

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Hi Friends,

first of all, thanks for the warm welcome.

Now let me present a small (?) problem that annoys me for a while now.

Suppose we have a production shooter appearing on the line. The gun ready condition is that per the rules - chambering is allowed.

He forgets to chamber a round. After the signal, he tries to pull the trigger, and nothing happens. He realizes that he forgot to chamber the round, so he cycles the slide, then starts to shoot.

Therefore, the shooter failed to agree the "first shot must be double action" requirement. However, he didn't "cock the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber" - and this is the only case when the PE should be assessed.

Am I right to understand that no penalty should be assessed in this case?

Now suppose the very same scenario, but this time the production shooter deliberately omits to chamber a round. After the draw, he cycles the gun, and starts to shoot. Since he again did not "cock the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber", therefore I do not have to assess the penalty. Am I right?

The question, for me, is even more vital, because here the duty carry state of the handgun for the LE people is empty chamber, loaded mag in - and they want to shoot production with selective action handguns.

Question is, whether I understand the rules regulating the production division well.

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Hi,

I'm speaking for IPSC rules.

The section in the rules that is relevant here is Item 17 of appendix D4, PD rules:

Single-action-only handguns are prohibited. First shot must be double action. Handguns with external hammers must be fully decocked. Competitors in this Division who, after the issuance of the start signal and prior to making the first shot, cock the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber, will incur one procedural penalty per occurrence. Note that a procedural penalty will not be assessed if the first double action shot attempted fails to discharge due to a malfunction, or in respect of courses of fire where the ready condition requires the competitor to prepare the handgun with an empty chamber. In these cases, the competitor may fire the first shot single action.

I read this that in the case you described, the shooter will NOT get a penalty, as he actually pulls the trigger DA in making his attempt to fire a first shot DA. I would treat forgetting to chamber a round the same as a malfunction in the first chambered round.

In the second case you described, the shooter does not make any attempt to fire a first shot DA, he actually and deliberately fires his first shot SA, so I would give him one procedural penalty for this.

This is my current view and understanding of the rules.

Of course I could be mistaking, but I'm sure it won't be long before uncle Vinny chips in ;)

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I do not often agree with Garfield :P but in this case I do. If the competitor deliberately omits chambering a round and does not try to fire the first round DOA he gets the PE, otherwise I consider it a malfuntcion (of the brain) which gives no PE.

Vince, are you OK with this?

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According to:

8.1 Handgun Ready Conditions

The ready condition for handguns will normally be as stated below. However, in the event that a competitor fails to load the chamber when permitted by the written stage briefing, whether inadvertently or intentionally, the Range Officer must not take any action, as the competitor is always responsible for the handling of the handgun.

The RO is not entitled to stop or warn a competitor that fails to load a round (when permitted by the stage briefing) at LAMR command.

Given this, and the rule quoted by Garfield,

Appendix D4

17. Single-action-only handguns are prohibited. First shot must be double action. Handguns with external hammers must be fully decocked. Competitors in this Division who, after the issuance of the start signal and prior to making the first shot, cock the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber, will incur one procedural penalty per occurrence. Note that a procedural penalty will not be assessed if the first double action shot attempted fails to discharge due to a malfunction, or in respect of courses of fire where the ready condition requires the competitor to prepare the handgun with an empty chamber. In these cases, the competitor may fire the first shot single action.

I'd say that, since the chamber was unloaded, if the competitor pulls the trigger (thus letting the hammer fall), then racks the slide to chamber a round and shoots it single-action, there will be no penalty assessed, whether the competitor did not load the chamber intentionally or unintentionally.

P.S. Welcome to the forums, Ivan, in the heat of discussion I forgot this. ;)

Edited by Skywalker67
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Hi Ivan,

An interesting and thought provoking question, so lets work through it:

1) Production Division rules require "first shot must be double action", and failure to comply will incur a Procedural Penalty. So far, so good.

2) However there are two exceptions to the above. The first is for a "malfunction" where, for example, the chamber is actually loaded and the competitor makes a legitimate attempt to fire his first shot double action, but the round of ammunition fails to detonate. The second is where the COF requires the gun have an empty chamber. In the cases you mentioned, neither of these exemptions apply. Note that failing to chamber a round is not a malfunction by any stretch of the imagination, because the word "malfunction" only applies to the gun, not the competitor's brain!

3) The other issue to which I think you're alluding is Rule 8.1, which states: "However, in the event that a competitor fails to load the chamber when permitted by the written stage briefing, whether inadvertently or intentionally, the Range Officer must not take any action, as the competitor is always responsible for the handling of the handgun". This rule deals with two issues. The first issue is competitor "brain fade", whereby the RO is prohibited from intervening with a competitor who forgets to chamber a round, because it's not a safety issue and it would be unfair if the RO spotted and corrected one competitor, but he subsequently failed to spot and correct a subsequent competitor making the same mistake. The second issue is a competitor electing not to chamber a round when the COF allows him to do so.

4) However the "crunch" comes with Rule 8.2.1 which states: "The handgun is prepared as specified in the written stage briefing, and is in compliance with the requirements of the relevant Division". In other words, Division rules take precedence over "General" rules.

Is there a conflict between Rule 8.1 and Rule 8.2.1? No, not at all.

If the competitor was in, say, Standard Division and the COF allowed a loaded chamber, then the competitor would be lawfully entitled to avail himself of the provisions of Rule 8.1. and he could elect not to chamber a round, because there is no requirement in Standard Division for any specific action.

However since the subject competitor is in Production Division, Rule 8.2.1 requires him to comply with "the requirements of the relevant Division", notably the "first shot must be double action" requirement, and failure to do so, inadvertently or otherwise, would incur a Procedural Penalty because neither of the exemptions under (2) above apply.

Conclusion: In both cases you mentioned, one Procedural Penalty would apply.

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Conclusion: In both cases you mentioned, one Procedural Penalty would apply.

Sorry Vince,

but I do not agree on this latter conclusion.

In the examples provided above, the first competitor actually pulled the trigger (first shot double action), then realized he didn't have a round in chamber, racked the slide and shot single action. This competitor actually attempted to fire the first round double action.

The second competitor didn't pull the trigger double-action, simply racked the slide and shot consequently.

Then, if your conclusion still applies, I'd ask what's the difference between a competitor that (unknowingly) chambers a dud round, pulls the trigger, clears the malfunction racking the slide and fires the subsequent round single-action, and a competitor that doesn't chamber a round, pulls the trigger, corrects the situation chambering a round and fires single action?

The actions of the two competitors I brought as an example are pretty much the same, but the second gets penalized and the first not, according to your post.

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Skywalker,

My dear young Jedi warrior, "pulling the trigger" is irrelevant. Production Division rules require "first shot must be double action". Please refer to Rule 12.5 for a definition of the word "shot", viz:

"Shot ............A bullet which passes completely through the barrel of a firearm"

In other words, merely pulling the trigger does not constitute a "shot".

As far as "attempted to fire a shot" is concerned, it's physically impossible to even make an attempt with an empty chamber, so he merely pulled the trigger.

Are you pulling your hair out yet? :P

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Hi Sky,

I can follow Vince's train of thought.

I think Vince is pointing out that the competitor with an empty chamber is in violation of the starting condition.

Following that line of thought, I feel that it can be argued that the competitor shouldn't have been allowed to start at all !

Because the handgun is not in the prescribed ready condition (8.1) and as the handgun ready condition is part of the competitor ready condition (8.2.1) the competitor does not meet al the requirements of the competitor ready condition (8.2) so he cannot start :wacko: .

This would imply that in the end the RO DOES have to verify that the competitor has chambered a round ? :wacko:

Where's my botlle of Schnaps I took home from my trip to Austria ? ;):wacko::(

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Vince,

my hair is still in place, I'm aging softly... :lol:

I read the definition of shot before posting, but I thought (and still think) that the action of the "absent-minded" competitor could have been deemed to fall into the provision made by the very same rule: an exception to the procedural penalty to be applied is provided in the case of "first double action shot attempted fails to discharge".

The rules thus recognize the possibility of actually pulling the trigger double-action, and not having the result of a bullet passing completely through the barrel.

Given this possibility, to me the difference between a competitor pulling the trigger on an un-primed round, and a competitor pulling the trigger on an empty chamber is nil.

They both pulled the trigger double-action, they both racked the slide, they both consequently pulled the trigger single-action, but the first will get away and the second will receive a procedural.

This is not fair to me.

Garfield,

if the penalty is related to a violation of the starting procedure, why then issue a rule 8.1, enabling a RO to let a competitor starting a COF without complying with the starting condition?

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Arvid,

Hey, save some of that schnapps for me, or shall we demand Ivan buy us a new bottle?

Under Rule 8.1, the RO cannot intervene in respect of an unchambered round. He can correct the position of the gun (holstered, on table), and he can correct the position and stance of the competitor (standing with hands by side, seated with hands holding floppy hat), but the issue of chambering a round is 100% the onus of the competitor.

Skywalker,

The RO can never know for certain whether the competitor has an empty chamber intentionally or otherwise, unless the RO violates Rule 8.1 and asks, but then he's interfering. This is why Rule 8.1 says "inadvertently or intentionally". We know it could be either case, so we must base our decision on the facts, not by trying to determine intent.

Anyway, I've gotta go out for a few hours, so y'all be good now while I'm gone, y'hear?

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Vince,

according to your line of thought, it's physically impossible to even make an attempt to fire a round if the same round is un-primed.

Are you telling me that a RO has to determine the cause of the malfunction, to deem if the competitor could have fired the first round single-action or not?

I will judge upon the competitor's actions (the only thing I could do in such a small amount of time), upon facts as you suggest:

- double-action first pull of the trigger (double-action shot attempt), no shot fired, malfunction clearing/round chambering, single-action trigger pull, GO.

- no double-action first pull of the trigger (double-action shot attempt), no-GO, procedural penalty.

Now, I'll go in the corner facing the wall, and you can put a donkey hat on my head... :D

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So, summarizing:

In IPSC it's a competitors responsibility to make sure the handgun is in the prescribed ready condition.

An RO can not and will not intervene when the competitor fails to chamber a round.

In IPSC PD the first shot must be DA.

The only 2 exceptions are a failure to discharge of a chambered round or a stage briefing which prescribes an empty chamber.

If the competitor has failed to chamber a round prior to issuance of the start signal, he must chamber a round, decock the weapon and then fire a DA shot if he wants to avoid a procedural penalty.

Should the chambered round fail to discharge, the competitor is allowed to chamber a new round, which may be fired SA without incurring any procedural penalty.

Should the stage briefing prescribe an empty chamber as the handgun ready condition, the first shot may also be fired SA without incurring a procedural penalty.

How's that ? Can I go and have my lunch in peace (or: one piece ;) ) now ?

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If the competitor has failed to chamber a round prior to issuance of the start signal, he must chamber a round, decock the weapon and then fire a DA shot if he wants to avoid a procedural penalty.

This is exactly what we (IPSC) try to avoid. When under time pressure (even aggravated by the malfunction) adrenaline runs high and the risk of an AD when not carefully decocking the hammer is very likely to happen.

I'm in favour of interpretating (I know I'm gonna regret this :ph34r: ) this rule considering the pulling the trigger on an empty chamber as a malfunction.

Garfield, just skip lunch - you don't need it :rolleyes:

Sky, I'm afraid Master Vinnie will be mad at me and send me to the same corner where you are. Please spare me some room ...

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This is exactly what we (IPSC) try to avoid. When under time pressure (even aggravated by the malfunction) adrenaline runs high and the risk of an AD when not carefully decocking the hammer is very likely to happen.

I'm in favour of interpretating (I know I'm gonna regret this  :ph34r: ) this rule considering the pulling the trigger on an empty chamber as a malfunction.

I agree with this, master Yoda, this is why I'm wearing my kevlar helmet and making room for you in my X-Wing starfighter for a quick escape...

:ph34r:

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As an RO with a mid-level of experience, my first inclination would be to agree with Garfield on his initial take, ie. the extra time taken on an unintentional empty chamber is all the penalty a shooter deserves, but if it was done INTENTIONALLY, it would be no different than knocking your muffs or glasses off to get a re-shoot; ROs are given that call in the rule-book, so why not this one?

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Well, thanks for all for all your time. You've echoed my dark thoughts... :)

Vince, you wrote:

1) Production Division rules require "first shot must be double action", and failure to comply will incur a Procedural Penalty. So far, so good.

Fine, but the text continues, and the next sentence specifically defines when to assess the penalty. It says Competitors in this Division who, after the issuance of the start signal and prior to making the first shot, cock the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber, will incur one procedural penalty per occurrence. Therefore, IMHO, it's not just the general case - whoever does not follow the first sentence will be penalized; rather, we have the clear(?) guideline when to penalize.

Problem is, that in this case, that's not that happens - none of the shooters has ever clocked the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber. This sentence IMHO makes the difference - the first one you've quoted pins down a fact, and the next one defines when should the penalty be assessed.

So, the real question is, what was the real purpose of this rule? To exclude the SA guns? Fine. Then, it'd be unfair to let some shooters use selective actions and others the double actions. Fine. But then, we already reached this intended purpose, therefore, if someone makes a mistake (forget to chamber a round), wastes his own time (tries to pull the trigger), then he already has got the due penalty - the wasted time. But if someone deliberately avoids chambering a round, then he's gooing to circumvent a rule - that should be discouraged and penalized.

So I personally think that we should rule according to that Garfield suggested. Regardless, the mere fact that experienced ROs debate over my hypothetical scenario means that we need an Authority to pin down: this is the sentence of the High Court, follow it! I'll do on either way - but we all should do on the same way.

Thanks again for everybody. Now let Lord of Sith to judge now... :)

Best Regards,

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Hi guys,

OK, let me try a different angle to see if I can convince you of my argument.

If a competitor fails to shoot at a target, intentionally or otherwise, he gets a Procedural Penalty. No exceptions.

If a competitor fails to fire a first shot double action in Production Division, intentionally or otherwise, he gets a Procedural Penalty unless one of only two exceptions apply. The "malfunction" exception does not apply because his gun is working fine - it just had an empty chamber (Note 1), and the "empty chamber is required by the COF" exception does not apply either, because that was not the case.

Conclusion: One Procedural Penalty in each of the cases stated by Ivan in his original post (empty chamber, competitor racks his slide).

Note 1: If "brain fade" by forgetting to load the chamber is a malfunction, then surely "brain fade" by forgetting to shoot at a target is a malfuntion? NOT! We don't rule on intent. You get the Procedural Penalty in both cases by your actions (or lack thereof), not according to your thoughts (or lack thereof) B)

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Ivan,

Let's now deal with the sentence: "Competitors in this Division who, after the issuance of the start signal and prior to making the first shot, cock the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber, will incur one procedural penalty per occurrence.". This deals with an entirely different situation to the two cases of "empty chamber" which you used to start this thread, because the above rule specifically deals with a loaded chamber.

Consider two guys in Production Division who both come to the line with a loaded chamber. So far, so good.

After the start signal, one guy only uses his trigger, so he has complied with the "first shot must be double action" requirement. No problem. The other guy cocks his hammer first, therefore he is clearly in breach of the "first shot must be double action" requirement. And once again, we are ruling by the competitor's action, not his thoughts.

I hope this helps. Now, where's that schnapps, huh? :)

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OK, Vince, I have to accept your reasoning, and I'll act accordingly on the stages. However, please take a note that this part of the rule book should be somehow reconsidered in the future, because this interpretation has one serious consequence: we might see shooters who'll try to decock their guns in the run. It won't happen frequently, I allow. But since the exception clausa specifically mentions that this "first shot must be double action" shouldn't be enforced if the stage briefing orders the "un-chambered start", I guess that the intent here is to avoid decocking in the run.

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Vince,

I don't really understand what's the purpose of this sentence.

Let's now deal with the sentence: "Competitors in this Division who, after the issuance of the start signal and prior to making the first shot, cock the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber, will incur one procedural penalty per occurrence.".  This deals with an entirely different situation to the two cases of "empty chamber" which you used to start this thread, because the above rule specifically deals with a loaded chamber.

If the first sentence (first shot must be double action) is an all-inclusive one, then why we need this second? If someone cocks the hammer, then he won't shoot double action. Therefore, the first sentence already covers this case - this second sentence is unnecessary, and confusing - one might think that the penalty should be assessed ONLY in this case, and that the first sentence is not an absolute rule.

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Consider two guys in Production Division who both come to the line with a loaded chamber. So far, so good.

After the start signal, one guy only uses his trigger, so he has complied with the "first shot must be double action" requirement. No problem. The other guy cocks his hammer first, therefore he is clearly in breach of the "first shot must be double action" requirement. And once again, we are ruling by the competitor's action, not his thoughts.

Vince,

I can clearly understand your previous argumentation, and you have convinced me about not considering an unloaded chamber (when loaded is required) as a "malfunction": you have cleared the point quite well.

I'm still not completely convinced on the penalties assessed in each of the cases Ivan mentioned, since I too want to judge according to the competitor's actions and not on his thoughts.

I mean, according to your post, if I realize the competitor has pulled the trigger double-action, and no shoot breaks, I have to look for the racking of the slide: if a round comes off the chamber, it's a malfunction, thus subsequent single-action shot won't be penalized. If nothing comes out of the chamber, it was unloaded, then the subsequent single-action shot by the competitor deserves a procedural.

My guess is the RO's life would be easier if he only had to look for the trigger pull:

- double-action first pull of the trigger (double-action shot attempt), no shot fired, malfunction clearing/round chambering, single-action trigger pull, GO.

- no double-action first pull of the trigger (double-action shot attempt), no-GO, procedural penalty.

Besides, there's the safety consideration Yoda brought up: do we really want to have competitors, that had a brain fade (not chambering a round) instants before, deal with decocking the hammer to break the shot double-action in those jerky and feverish moments?

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Sky: your post above could have been written by me, I fully agree with you.

Is this the point where this thread is going into politics by the way ?

The questions have been answered, the rules have been explained, now the debate about the rules themselves begins.

Still, I think continuing this thread could be very useful.

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Vince,

I don't really understand what's the purpose of this sentence.

Let's now deal with the sentence: "Competitors in this Division who, after the issuance of the start signal and prior to making the first shot, cock the hammer on a handgun which has a loaded chamber, will incur one procedural penalty per occurrence.".  This deals with an entirely different situation to the two cases of "empty chamber" which you used to start this thread, because the above rule specifically deals with a loaded chamber.

If the first sentence (first shot must be double action) is an all-inclusive one, then why we need this second? If someone cocks the hammer, then he won't shoot double action. Therefore, the first sentence already covers this case - this second sentence is unnecessary, and confusing - one might think that the penalty should be assessed ONLY in this case, and that the first sentence is not an absolute rule.

Ivan,

The second sentence specifies the penalty for cocking the hammer after the start signal is given --- one procedural.

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