What Is a Striker-Fired Handgun?
July 11th, 2020
3 minute read
On today’s post, we have a “Roy’s Insider Tips” by Roy Huntington, editor of American Handgunner, and shared with us by FMG Publications.
Roy notes that a lot of people often ask the question, “What is a striker-fired handgun?” And, with so many first-time handgun buyers on the market today, this question has become even more important.
While a striker-fired pistol can be a very simple, reliable and easy-to-operate design, it can be confusing to people new to the world of handguns. Roy states that his goal is to demystify this topic a bit.
Using a Springfield Armory XD-M pistol, Roy explains what a striker-fired pistol is, how it works, and what its advantages are. He begins by clearing the gun and making sure it is “safe” by removing the magazine, and then cycling the slide to ensure there is no round in the gun.
He explains that the XD-M, like Springfield’s entire XD-based line and the Hellcat, is a striker-fired pistol. He explains that the “striker” is basically a firing pin located in the rear portion of the slide that runs horizontally, parallel with the length of the slide.
The trigger of the XD-M pistol, which features a safety paddle on its face (and the pistol also features a grip safety that must be gripped for the pistol to fire), is designed to allow the striker to fire a round in the chamber. The result is a simple and reliable system of operation that will only fire in the trigger is pulled, thereby depressing the safety paddle and disengaging internal safeties as the trigger is pulled.
As Roy explains, a striker-fired gun may seem confusing to a first-time buyer, but they are actually quite simple and reliable to use. And, unlike other handguns like a 1911 or most revolvers, there is no external hammer that must be cocked and then released to fire the firearm.
So, if you’ve been eyeing a striker-fired pistol like the XD-M but was unsure about how it worked, we hope this info helped!
Editor’s Note: This content is based on material from American Handgunner. Also, be sure to check out The Armory Life Forum, where you can comment about our daily articles, as well as just talk guns and gear. Click the “Go To Forum Thread” link below to jump in!