This post provides a brief review of the “Handi-Racker” tool available for sale for $29.99 online (+they do run introductory “specials”) at http://www.handi-racker.com/
The ability, or lack thereof, to rack the slide to load/unload/clear a round in the chamber of a semiautomatic pistol prevents many people with weak, injured, or arthritic hands from using them. While switching to a revolver may sometimes be of benefit, grip issues while shooting DA (double action) will often persist. To date there are only a couple of manufacturers working to make racking a slide easier or providing an alternative method of loading in the first bullet on the semi automatic. I did a little “surfing” on this issue online and easily found the “Handi-Racker.”
I tested the Handi-Racker, with one of our pistols, a 3″ 1911 Colt Defender. This gun has a very tight 24 lb recoil spring. The Handi-Racker performed easily on the Defender, starting with the hammer down. Normally when racking the slide on this particular gun I cock the hammer back first, which gives me less resistance. I racked it one handed with my left (weak) hand, while taking the picture. While it is easier to use two hands while racking, with your other hand holding the “Handi-Racker” steady. if you are limited to using just one hand, it works really well!
I am pretty impressed.
My husband had been more than a little skeptical when I first purchased this “gadget,” but after watching me easily rack the slides on a variety of our handguns – from a small .380 to the larger 10 mm, he was curious enough to try it out himself.
His assessment, a solid (for him) “Pretty nice.”
This little device can be placed up against any solid surface like a wall, on a counter or tabletop, or held in your hand to assist in racking the slide on the gun and comes in a variety of sizes nicely color coded: SMALL (blue/White), MEDIUM (Black/White), LARGE (Gold/Black) , and XLarge (Tan/Green). I purchased the LARGE, which is advertised as
“Fits most duty sized guns like Glocks, Springield X’s, S&W M&P’s, 1911’s and many more!”
It is well constructed from heavy duty plastic material, fits nicely on the slide of the handgun and in my size-small hand.
Their website is very informative, is full of glowing reviews, and gives instructions right on the first page. The card it ships with also provides all you need to get started using it, and even has a code to scan to watch a video. From the card:
“Handi-Racker was designed to assist people who many have difficulty racking a pistol. It can be used to load or unload rounds, clear jams or field stirpping.
1. Place Handi-Racker on top of muzzle of gun.
2. Push grip towards hard surface till slide is fully racked, then release.”
If I was going to ask for anything more, it would be for somewhere to attach a lanyard, particularly for during shooting practice sessions. While there is a slot about 2/3 of the way lengthwise on the back piece of the block that is used for positioning the front sights (which I wouldn’t recommend using for ANY other purpose), there is no place to attach a cord. You could use a small pouch or put it in a pocket.
Overall I love the way it works, and it is a wonderful assistive device.
I found an excellent review that also gives a narrative history of the device online: Average Joe’s Handgun Reviews: Gizmos, Gadgets, and Goodies for Guns
Happy and Safe shooting – Peggy