Written by: Greg Ellifritz
Last week I got a couple of questions about a new product on the market. A bunch of readers linked to Muzzle Stand Off Device by Proof Mark written by my friends at Recoil Magazine and asked whether I think the product is a useful addition for the average defensive shooter. Here’s what it looks like:
Please read the linked article for additional details. The device is designed to prevent the out of battery safety from stopping your ability to make contact distance shots.
For those of you unfamiliar with the out of battery safety, it is a safety mechanism found in most modern semi-automatic pistols. It is designed to prevent a round from firing when the slide is slightly retracted and the cartridge is not fully supported by the chamber.
It doesn’t take much movement to activate the safety. Take a look at the photo from the Recoil article below. They demonstrated that the Glock went out of battery when the slide was retracted less than a quarter of an inch. Vigorously shoving a pistol into your attacker’s body when making a contact shot could activate your safety and thus deactivate your trigger in the very moment you need it most.
The muzzle stand off device referenced in the link above allows the shooter to press the muzzle in direct contact with a hard object without moving the slide and activating the out of battery safety. These devices are not new. I remember when GG&G introduced something similar in the late 1990s.
Is it useful? Maybe…
It does allow you some “wiggle room” for poor performance in the close contact gunfight. That could be beneficial if you are not trained to shoot your firearm from a good retention shooting position.
Extending the gun towards your attacker when fighting in close quarters is universally a bad idea. Even more worrisome than the activation of the out of battery safety is the fact that your attacker may be able to deflect or take away your extended handgun. It’s always best to keep the gun in a tight retention position when within arms’ reach of your attacker. I’m afraid this device will only encourage the bad habit of extending the gun towards your attacker and invite a disarm attempt.
So, should you buy one of these things? I’d generally say “no.” You are better off spending the money on a close range gunfighting class where you can actually learn how to shoot without driving the gun into your attacker’s body. Everyone wants the cool guy gear, but very few of you are interested in taking a class to learn the skills you need to win a gunfight at extremely close range.
Fighting over pistols with an assailant in contact distance is a lot of work. It’s humbling. Sometimes you will lose. You will get banged up a bit during your practice sessions. The work to prepare for a gunfight like this can be exhausting. It’s a lot more fun to shoot bullseye groups and do mag dumps on a steel target than it is to learn to fight effectively at close range.
If you are honest enough with yourself to admit you don’t have the time/money/desire/fitness to take a close range gunfighting class, this product might help you hit your target without de-activating your trigger. Having said that, I still wouldn’t buy a muzzle stand off attachment for my pistol.
Instead of buying a new gadget, I think an unquestionably better plan is to take a class from Craig Douglas, Chris Fry, Cecil Burch, the Tactical Defense Institute or myself. You don’t have to spend money to train with me or my friends, but you should seek out a quality instructor who can teach this skill set . You don’t know what you don’t know.
Buying stuff like this is trying to solve a training problem with an equipment solution. Those efforts are rarely successful. Save your money and do some work instead.