Condition Five?
Cylinder & Slide's SFS "Widget" Makes The Impossible -- Possible.
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Condition five?  What's this?  Has Handgunner gone loony? No quite, although there'd be those who might argue the point.  That ner-do-well, Bill Laughridge of the Cylinder & Slide Shop offers the SFS kit that gives you a new option for safe, low profile carry of your single-action auto.  Really.

Let's say I told you there was and easy-to-install "thingy" which would magically transform your car or truck from manual to automatic transmission.  Better yet, it's reversible, so you could go back to shifting and such.  Well, I'd be lying, because there isn't such a thing.

But, this being American Handgunner, and not Wheels and Tires Magazine so let's talk pistols, not trucks.  As it happens, there is a "thingy" that makes and equally dramatic change in your 1911 or Hi-Power.  Bill calls it the SFS (Safety Fast Shooting) kit and he professes it has a bit of magic inside.  Typical Bill, of course.

Once installed, this clever conversation allows you to place your pistol in the instant-readiness of "condition one," but without a visibly cocked hammer.  Huh?

Why does it matter, anyway?  In a day where double action and striker-fired autopistols are the norm, carrying a cocked gun raises eyebrows among the uniformed.  Also, there are circumstances --- a pistol stored in a bedside drawer for example --- where "cocked and locked" may not be the best choice, yet the pistol must be instantly ready.

Easy as Eatin' Peanuts

Here's how it works.  After installing the SFS conversion in your Hi-Power or 1911 (fits series 80 pistols too), you make-ready by loading the pistol in the normal manner, then simply push the hammer spur forward until it rests against the slide.  The larger ambidextrous safety will rise automatically into the safe position.  When ready to fire, simply disengage the safety and the hammer will snap smartly to full-cock.  Ready to make safe?  Just push the hammer forward --- it's that easy.

The next question you should be asking is, "Will I have to retrain?"  The answer is a big "no," and a smaller "yes."  Because wiping off the safety makes the pistol ready to fire just as it always has, there's no danger of flubbing under pressure if you are forced to shoot for your life.  However, old salts may at first find themselves trying in vain to snick the safety on before holstering.  No worries mate, that's just your reminder to reach for the hammer spur and press it home to the safe position.

Double Safe & Good

There's another significant advantage to installing the SFS conversion.  It adds a positive hammer block safety to pre MkIII Hi-Powers and to 1911's lacking such a feature.  Is this a big deal?  Virtually every modern pistol design incorporates some way to block the hammer from firing the pistol, so maybe there's some merit to the idea.

Can you install the SFS kit yourself?  Yes, if you're capable of detail stripping and reassembling your pistol --- that means down to the last pin.  Otherwise, have your local 'smithy do it.  It's a simple job and the cost will be minimal.  Have him scrub the cobwebs out while he's got it apart and you'll be doing two good things for your pistol.

I'm not one to latch on to every "latest and greatest" whizbang that comes along (there's no Kydex in my holster drawer), but when it comes to the SFS conversion, I'm well, converted.  Try one and you'll be too!