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Kimber Custom II crushing brass

Discussion in 'Maintenance & Gunsmithing' started by RangerEric, Feb 17, 2011.

  1. RangerEric

    RangerEric Southern Oregon, United States Active Member

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    Howdy all-

    I've been working my way through resolving a number of failures I've been experiencing with a Kimber Custom II, and am down to the last one, but need some guidance. When I got it, it was said to have 1000+ rounds through it, so it's well past "break in." On my first trip out with it, I was experiencing intermittent premature slide locks, failures to return to battery, and it would drop the hammer but not strike the primer if the grip safety was not 100% depressed. (Mentioned all of these issues to Kimber, btw, and they declined to offer to address them because I was the 2nd owner...) Experienced these over the couse of 100 rounds of WWB. Ordered a modified slide stop which resolved the premature slide lock, a 18.5# Wolff spring which resolved the FTRB, and ripped the dang Scwartz safety junk clean out, which resolved the hammer dropping w/o firing issue. Took it out yesterday w/ a box of Blazer Brass. Ran approximately 30 rounds through flawlessly. I then, out curiosity, wanted to see if it would function w/o a mag in placed. Chambered a round from mag, ejected mag, and would fire, but would not eject, instead smashing empty case in ejection port. 2 attempts, same result with both. Reinserted mag, back to running normal.

    At this point, my buddy wanted to try shooting, so I let him. He ran one mag flawlessly, then tried a 2nd, and the 3rd or 4th round had the same problem - case was smashed in ejection port. Cleared, reinserted mag, and he finished it off with no more problems. I then ran one more mag of Blazer and a mag of PDX1 HP's through with no problems.

    Now, my buddy is a pretty scrawny guy, and has had problems with limp wristing other guns before. Is it reasonable that his limp wristing caused the problem, and that it just doesn't like to eject empties with no mag in place? Otherwise, I'm wondering if the problem relates to too heavy of a recoil spring, or possibly an extractor issue? It just seems weird that it had problems so infrequently if that were the case. What does everyone think?

    Thanks in advance.

    -Eric
     
  2. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    2 thought.
    1. recoil spring is broken or in backwards. The closed end of the factory spring goes toward you. Assume FLGR.
    2. i am thinking extractor is flakey.
     
  3. RangerEric

    RangerEric Southern Oregon, United States Active Member

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    I did doublecheck the recoil spring, it is in correctly. If I bought an aftermarket extractor like an Ed Brown, what are the odds it would fit/function correctly as a drop in? Or will it need to be "tuned"..?
     
  4. RangerEric

    RangerEric Southern Oregon, United States Active Member

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    I did doublecheck the recoil spring, it is in correctly. If I bought an aftermarket extractor like an Ed Brown, what are the odds it would fit/function correctly as a drop in? Or will it need to be "tuned"..?
     
  5. duginsky

    duginsky Tualatin Active Member

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    Another possibility may be that the extractor is "clocking" or slightly rotating against the firing pin stop; if you do a search on the 1911 forums you can find a lot of info regarding this as well as "tuning" a replacement extractor - it really isn't difficulty to "tune" one.
     
  6. RangerEric

    RangerEric Southern Oregon, United States Active Member

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    I've been reading about the "clocking" possibility, and wondered about that, except it seemed weird that it wasn't doing that more often, and I at least didn't notice it throwing brass all over the place. It seems like the solution to "clocking" is to get an oversized firing stop...? Is that correct? And maybe I should just throw in a higher quality extractor while I'm at it? Read the directions for "tuning", and at least to me they made no sense.....
     
  7. Velzey

    Velzey Estacada, Oregon Gunsmith Gunsmith Bronze Vendor Bronze Supporter

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    my vote is for the extractor!
     
  8. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

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    First, lets bag the "break in" garb, its not a hi-speed machine, its a gun. If its built properly, it'll run, it doesn't have a choice.

    Your intermittent slide locks, are usually caused by the bullet contacting the slide stop as it rises in the magazine and/or being loaded into the chamber. Sometimes the slide stop lug that contacts the magazine follower needs to be dressed back a bit, so there's no contact with the bullet.

    The "Swartz" type firing pin safety that Kimbers use are the most finicky of any of the firing pin safety designs, and heavily depend on timing of the grip safety. Not the best for a combat carry gun.

    The original design of the 1911 used a 14lb recoil spring, with production makers using 16lb springs now. If the gun needs a heavier spring to run, it's masking an overall problem that should be addressed.

    The extractor is not handling the case as it should, it's dropping it mid ejection cycle.

    An over sized FPS will solve the a 'clocking' issue, but an extractor has to be fitted, they are not drop in...and most still need to have the hook prepped.