If you just picked up guns, there’s no doubt that you probably heard quite a few words that are related to the firearm terminology – words that you probably have little to no knowledge about. Some of those terms may include single and double action platforms.
Which one you choose is pretty much a matter of personal preferences. You will want to go with the one that feels most comfortable in your hand and that allows you to shoot more accurately. However, in order to decide which one to go for, and determine whether the single action option is the right choice for you, you will have to learn as much about it as possible.
Why Do You Have to Know About These Terms?
Single and double action – does it actually matter? As a matter of fact, it does. It is very important that you have a clear understanding of what gun types are out there. This will allow you to make a more educated decision regarding the weapon that you are about to carry.
No matter if you go for a single action or a double action gun, it might have quite a serious implication on your proficiency with your weapon, along with your training. Choosing the wrong one might affect your aim, which is why you need to be careful that you make the right choice.
Ideally, you might want to test the weapon first before purchasing it. In the end, it is mostly a matter of personal preference, and while others might feel better using a double action 9mm handgun, others prefer the simplicity of the single shot version.
Difference Between Single Action And Double Action
The single action shot derives from the fact that you can only fire one shot at a time after cocking the hammer. On the other hand, a double action gun may be fired just like a single action gun – or, if you prefer, by simply pressing on the trigger. The fact that you can shoot in two ways is the reason why it’s called “double action.”
Nowadays, pretty much every single-action handgun is loosely based on the Colt Single Action Army (also referred to as the “SAA”). The design was so practical and timeless that it is still in use up to this day. There’s quite a number of manufacturers that produce these kinds of guns: Colt, Urbeti, Ruger, Magnum Research, and Freedom Arms.
You may also purchase double-action handguns from manufacturers such as Colt, Smith & Wesson, Taurus, and Ruger – both from the brand new and the used market. Colt’s Anaconda, an excellent double action pistol, is no longer being produced – but you may still find it on the market as used and use it as a backup weapon for your hunting trips.
Both revolver types may be calibrated to withstand big-game hunting and act as backups for whatever game that you may have. That being said, they also have different recoil. For example, a double-action handgun will transfer all the recoil right into your hand’s web, whereas single action guns tend to experience a barrel rise and upward rolling.
Determining Your Intentions
Before you make a decision, you will have to first define the handgun’s purpose. Do you plan on using it as a backup? Or do you want to use it as your main hunting weapon – occasionally as a backup as well?
If you are planning to use it as a backup gun, then the double-action revolver tends to be more efficient and offers quite a number of advantages. This is because you will not have to pull the hammer back each time you make a shot – putting it at quite a convenient point when you have to make a quick draw.
On the other hand, if your purpose for the weapon is to make it your primary, then a single action gun might be a much more suitable choice. This will allow you to have more accuracy in comparison to the double-action models.
Pros and Cons: Why People Still Prefer the Single Action
Unlike the single action gun that works by the system “cock, fire, cock, fire,” the double action does things a bit differently. In a way, you may say that it cocks the gun by simply pulling the trigger. With that in mind, it actually begs to differ: if it simplifies your shooting action so much, why even bother to go with the single-action gun again?
Indeed, the double action revolver is reloaded much easier in comparison to a single-action model. You accomplish the reloading by simply swinging that cylinder from the gun frame and removing all the shells at the same time – after which you can quickly reload again. Shots are also fired much quicker with a double-action revolver, as you will no longer have to spend time cocking the gun.
On the other hand, a single-action revolver is much slower to load and unload, and it also tends to be a bit slower to shoot. That being said, the double action handgun’s pull weight is a bit bigger – on average, three times bigger in comparison to the single action model.
Why does this matter, you may ask? It matters because the more pull weight you have on a trigger, the more your accuracy decreases. Beginners, in particular, might have a difficult time adjusting to a double action handgun, and they tend to prefer the accuracy of the single action model.
Plus, in most cases, those who carry a concealed gun do not carry a backup as well – so, they just need a main gun that can do a proper job. In this case, a single-action handgun seems to be the most reliable choice, as the shots it makes are accurate and featureless recoil.
In the end, it is all a matter of preference – but also of purpose. Some people find more use in the double-action handguns, but there are still individuals that appreciate the efficiency of the single-action model. Think well about your choice and get the one you feel most comfortable with.