As I’ve mentioned before in this slow running series, singular anecdotes of individual guns failing or working well aren’t demonstrative in of themselves, but my observations at this month’s 2-gun match reminded me of something I had forgotten to bring up.
In my squad of a baker’s dozen shooters, the Springfield Inc XD was well represented with three examples. Remarkably for even a piece of junk like the XD, all three had at least one stoppage over five stages. You might think even a derp-tier gun could run for 40 rounds without issue, but you’d be wrong. One of them even locked up so hard it took a good fifteen minutes to get it back into action so the competitor could reshoot the stage.
This put us way behind on time and for a while we had to share a bay with the squad behind us, holding up another twelve shooters and dragging the match out.
Inconvenience was not the only problem, as encountering a stoppage while the shooter is deep into Beeper Fever can lead to some pretty hairy malfunction clearance techniques. I didn’t see any obvious 180 violations and nobody cranked off a round inadvertently, but in the excitement, people swept themselves and forgot where their trigger finger ought to be during remedial actions. This is not an issue that was the direct fault of the XD, but if your gun doesn’t go down, then you won’t have to mess with it either.
I’ve repeatedly pointed out that cheap guns, optics, holsters, belts and other ancillary gear are a false economy if you value your own time, safety and frustration levels, but if you go shooting with others, you’re also costing them wasted time and potentially putting their safety at risk because you wanted to save $50 or thought you were too much a unique snowflake to get a Glock.