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Thread: Possible danger with Contender

  1. #41
    Boolit Master
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    Do you have a picture of how you hold your Contender? Maybe it's just the grip I used, but I don't think even a small kid could get a proper two hand grip on an Contender like you can a semi auto, revolver, or Encore. I am using the Pachmayer presentation grip. When I grip it with one hand, there is maybe 1/4" gap to the trigger guard.

  2. #42
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    M-Tecs's Avatar
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    Here's a pic of my 45Colt/410. When I shoot aerial targets with it I don't use that grip. For aerial targets I lay my left hand index finger along the trigger guard on trigger guard and the middle finger is on the lightlt on the trigger supper. It points better for me.

    I do use the grip in the pic for most of my offhand. For the scoped Super 14's I tend to use the push pull hold with the left hand on the forearm.

    * upload keeps failing so the pic isn't posting.

    What it would show is me cupping the bottom of the grip and my right hand with my left hand. Same as I have to do with an Encore.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 02-03-2020 at 12:48 AM.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimB.. View Post
    They are truly dangerous, the lot of them should be recalled. I really think you should take the opportunity to get them sold cheap before the rubes figure it out and stop buying them at any price.

    Do me a favor though, shoot me a PM when you list them, just want to avoid them you know.

    On a serious note, does anyone have any recollection of anyone shooting themselves, or anyone else for that matter, with a Contender?
    Montana Highway Patrol female officer was wounded bad enough to retire with a 30-30 round to the chest, in the late 80's or early 90's. IIRC, it was near a vest seam or her armpit. At the time I thought it an odd gun to bring to a gunfight.
    [The Montana Gianni] Front sight and squeeze

  4. #44
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    If I was an LEO I'd have considered a Contender for longer range shots, before they started carrying AR's (Nicely longer range than a 12 gauge.)

  5. #45
    Boolit Master
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    As many Contenders that were on the line during the hay day of IHMSA, I will say it is not a gun problem. Thousands of people millions of rounds.

    Contender,G2 and Encore that is it, no others. The Contender had some subtle changes over the years. Early frames were hard to open, the variations in selectors on the hammer.

    M-Tecs points out very well on the subject.

    As mentioned most if not all issues are more human related than mechanical.

    One thing I did not see touched on and that is the “auto eject” it will scare the crap out of you.

    Where these guns lock up on the shelf in the frame, the are designed to run dry. DO NOT lube or grease that shelf or barrel lug. Even cleaning solvent dribble down will cause issues.

    I roll my eyes every time I see G1 ain’t such a thing.

  6. #46
    Boolit Man
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    The Contender does have it's quirks. It's not hard to operate once you have a basic understanding of how it works. I certainly enjoy mine and the set trigger is quite nice.

    If you like the simplified mechanism of the Encore but want a Contender sized (and barrel compatible) gun, then look for a T/C G2. The G2 is essentially a baby Encore in mechanism that uses Contender barrels.

  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Sheesh View Post
    If I was an LEO I'd have considered a Contender for longer range shots, before they started carrying AR's (Nicely longer range than a 12 gauge.)
    Previous to contenders and AR's the 30-30 lever rode in a lot of patrol car trunks.
    [The Montana Gianni] Front sight and squeeze

  8. #48
    Boolit Master uscra112's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M-Tecs View Post
    I agree on your first two points after that not some much. First we agree if you adjust the trigger too light you can trip the first sear by slamming the action shut. Second we agree if you hold the trigger back and you lower the trigger manually the hammer will be resting on the firing.

    Now for the area of disagreement. Jarring or pulling the trigger when the hammer is down does not result in the hammer resting on the firing pin.

    When the hammer is down the hammer pressure is also holding the hammer block in place. If you pull the trigger or it is jarred off the hammer block is still in the up position holding the hammer of the firing pin. In this condition if you remove the hammer pressure from the hammer block the hammer block will retract and now the hammer will be resting on the firing pin. I tested this in the early 70's and due to this I opted for a full cover shoulder holster for hunting. Since that was a long time ago so I just tested a couple of mine to ensure my memory was correct.

    The hammer also needs to be pulled to lower the hammer block. If the trigger is not pulled the hammer slipping when cocking will not fire the gun since the hammer block remains up.
    THIS^^^ correctly and precisely describes the safety problem with Gen 1 Contenders. Warren Center got sued almost to extinction by the family of a hunter whose gun fell out of his shoulder holster after he had "decocked" it by pulling the trigger with the hammer down, then somehow manipulating the hammer so the hammer block dropped. Gun hit on the hammer while pointed right at him.

    That's why the delightfully light set trigger design had to be abandoned. I love the set trigger on mine, but I know the danger, too.

    BTW the hammer block can be a cause of light strikes if the spring that retracts it is too weak. Drove me to distraction until I figured it out. The hammer block and the hammer are released at the same instant, but if the hammer block spring is weak it fails to get out of the way in time. Simply stretching the spring to increase the preload solved the problem in my gun. (AFTER spending a bunch of $$ with Bellm for stronger hammer springs, which only made the problem worse. My respect for him plummeted when he refused to acknowledge that this problem could even exist.)
    Last edited by uscra112; 02-05-2020 at 05:53 AM.
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  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by uscra112 View Post
    THIS^^^ correctly and precisely describes the safety problem with Gen 1 Contenders. Warren Center got sued almost to extinction by the family of a hunter whose gun fell out of his shoulder holster after he had "decocked" it by pulling the trigger with the hammer down, then somehow manipulating the hammer so the hammer block dropped. Gun hit on the hammer while pointed right at him.

    That's why the delightfully light set trigger design had to be abandoned. I love the set trigger on mine, but I know the danger, too.

    BTW the hammer block can be a cause of light strikes if the spring that retracts it is too weak. Drove me to distraction until I figured it out. The hammer block and the hammer are released at the same instant, but if the hammer block spring is weak it fails to get out of the way in time. Simply stretching the spring to increase the preload solved the problem in my gun. (AFTER spending a bunch of $$ with Bellm for stronger hammer springs, which only made the problem worse. My respect for him plummeted when he refused to acknowledge that this problem could even exist.)
    I will fully admit the problem is that I did not do enough research before hand. Before this thread, I had no idea my trigger was adjustable, and I even learned of more safety considerations I did not know about. I was familiar with the Encore, and assumed the Contender was simply an older version of it. The only similarities between the Encore and Contender is that they are break open single shots.

    Now the safety problems with the Contender are not to be understated. If I had known these things before, I never would have bought one to try. Even worse would be someone getting hurt. They are a purpose built gun, that fits that role well. A simple single shot, they are not.

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