Dispelling 3 Myths About Ruining Your Concealed Carry Firearm
There are a lot of ccw practices that are necessary in order to maintain your concealed carry readiness. Exercises like dry firing, regular routine maintenance, and changing magazines are all essential (changing magazines from a good magazine holster is ideal to get the most out of your training). But what about when someone says, “eh, that'll ruin your gun?”
We'll examine three different practices as it relates to the concealed carrier and see what the evidence shows.
Myth 1: Dry Firing Will Ruin Your Gun
If you can break your gun by dry firing it, you need to choose a different everyday carry. Revolvers, for instance, can be dry fired until your thumb and forefinger break off and will not fail. The bigger concerns come with more complex systems – like SA/DA and striker-fire pistols. These have more moving parts and the worry is that with repeated dry firing, the recoil spring and firing mechanisms may be prone to decay.
Evidence To Support? None. We researched and there's no real verifiable incidents of weapons failure due to excessive dry firing. The only pieces that would be prone to damage in dry firing are the parts that lock and receive the upper receiver. If you discover your pistol isn't locking to the rear like it ought to or isn't seating properly at the range, try cleaning and lubricating to manufacturer's specs.
Myth 2: Heat Damage Due To Storing It In A Hot Car
The lowest grade steel begins to deform at 2500-2750°F. The temperature in your car will likely never exceed 150°F. The only thing that pistol is going to damage is your hand if you grab the metal portion of it. But what about polymer?
At approximately 150°F, polyethylene terephthalate (PET) begins to exhibit transitional properties. PET is a common polymer used in thermoplastic polymer resin (used in some thermal injection molding methods). It CAN be extremely durable in the proper configuration and chances are good, if your gun has polymer on it or in it, it's designed to withstand the heat and abuse of munitions.
Will heat from normal range of temperatures destroy a gun? Very Unlikely.
While your gun will not deform or melt at car temperatures, if temperatures rise above 400°F, Kydex and other polymers may begin to exhibit deformation. Your car will likely never reach greater than 200°F on the hottest day of the year. If you are parked in long-term parking in Death Valley, as long as your firearm isn't exposed to direct sunlight continuously for a lengthy period of time – it will be fine. If you grab that same gun into your hand, though, you're in for an unpleasant surprise..
Myth 3: Water And Sweat Will Ruin A Gun
Clean, desalinated water, on its own, exhibits very little oxidizing power along the protected and lubricated metal parts of a firearm. Obviously, you should never store your firearm in water or wet enviornements. And if it's been submerged in water, dry it and lubricate. The polymer portions of your gun could care less.
Where this myth begins to find basis in fact is sweat. Sweat isn't desalinated water – it's salt water and certain mixtures of oil.
For daily carriers in hot weather environments, your firearms will be exposed to a decent amount of sweat. That sweat does have the capacity to corrode and rust the metal components of your gun over time. If you're looking to avoid this mess, remember to dry and clean your firearm every couple days. AA modern firearm isn't going to give up its ghost because it was pressed up against your sweat-drenched hip for a week. If you pour a lot of sweat on your firearm, always remember to dry it off, clean it and lubricate the exposed parts. To avoid this get a sweat protection concealed carry holster with neoprene backing that keeps the sweat away from your firearm.
Do you have any other myths you'd like us to examine? Tell us in the comments section below.
About The Author
James England (@sir_jim_england) is the contributing editor for Alien Gear Holsters. He is a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom and private defense contracting in Afghanistan.