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How to Use a Gun Lock

​​​​​​​​​​​​1. Unload Your Firearm

Before inserting your gun lock, unload the weapon first. Gun locks only work if your weapons are not loaded.

For automatic pistols:

  1. Eject the magazine, then pull back the gun slide to take out any ammunition from the chamber.

  2. Lock the slide rearward and check the chamber again to make sure it's clear from any rounds.

  3. If your pistol needs an empty magazine loaded for the slide to lock, insert an empty magazine after clearing out your weapon, before ejecting it again.

For revolvers:

  1. Press the cylinder release button, then tilt back the gun and press the ejector rod.

  2. Make sure each chamber in the revolver is not loaded.

2. Unlock Your Gun Lock and Thread It Into the Handgun

For automatic pistols:

  1. Once your gun's cleared out, use the key provided to unlock the gun lock, then thread the cable end into the open action and through the magazine well. You can also thread the cable through the barrel and out towards the muzzle.

  2. After threading the lock into the handgun, insert the gun lock's free end into the lock and engage the lock with a twist of the key before removing it. The trigger shouldn't engage if you've locked the gun properly

For revolvers:

  1. Check how your revolver rotates from the back – If it rotates clockwise, position the lock on the left side. Otherwise, position it on the right.

  2. Next, thread the free end through the top exposed cylinder and into the bottom cylinder to prevent it from rotating.

  3. You can also thread the lock through the barrel just like with an automatic, but it's riskier than the first method.

3. Store Your Firearm Properly and Securely

With the slide still locked, store your handgun in a safe, secure location. Leave the recoil spring compressed while the lock's engaged to protect the gun slide from damage.​

​This video playlist includes Español, Af Soomaali and Lus Hmoob​ language versions with voice translations courtesy of St. Paul Police Department Law Enforcement Career Path Academy cadets.