Saturday, June 23, 2012

Dead Trigger Issues

In my previous post I mentioned that I was having some trouble with my S&W M&P Pro.  I've had this gun for 3 years. I've probably put 8-10K rounds through it, shooting monthly IDPA and USPSA matches, and lots of practice, etc. I've never had any problems whatsoever. Utterly reliable. The only upgrades I've made to the internals of the gun are installing an Apex competition trigger and RAM. I love this trigger.

The past two matches I've had a problem. It typically happens at the reload, either slide lock reload or USPSA-type reload. Insert the new mag.  Slide returns to battery. Round chambers.  But no bang. NO CLICK when I squeeze the trigger. There's no mark on the primer. It's like the sear didn't reset with the last shot or the reload. It's NOT that there is a click and no bang. There's no click. The trigger's not reset.  It's dead.  This happened twice in both matches. Not on every reload. It happened again once after the matches during a practice session. Just once out of 200 rounds or so.

I posted this problem on the Enos forum and got some good advice.  This afternoon I finally got a chance to take the sear housing block out of the gun and look at everything.  It was filthy.  I have only done field strip cleaning on the gun for years.  So I cleaned up every little piece, especially the sear spring and plunger.  There was a lot of gunk in the sear housing.  Before I cleaned it I checked the trigger and reset and it seemed to work "okay."  But after I cleaned it, I noticed the difference right away. The trigger is now crisper and clicky. The reset is noticeably loader and crisper.  I'll take it out this week and  put it through a workout.  But I suspect that the problem is solved.

I should have thought about this before.  I break down my 1911s completely every year to clean them.  I guess I need to start doing that with my M&P.  No problem. It's a lot easier to strip down than a 1911.

UPDATE: I put enough rounds through it last night at the range to be confident that the problem is solved.  It just needed a good, thorough cleaning.  Yay!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

USPSA Sparta Match - June 16, 2012

While everyone else seems to be at Area 5 this weekend, a few of us drove to Sparta, IL, for their club match.  I've been keyed up so much lately preparing for the two big local IDPA matches (IL State and MO State) that it was awful nice just to relax and shoot a fun match.

It's been a while since I donned my Contour video camera and recorded an entire match.

I shot this match with my new back-up M&P Pro.  My older one is having some hiccups and I need to tear it down and give it a thorough cleaning.  I had some problems with it at both IL State and MO State.  But my new gun performed flawlessly today—no jams, no dead trigger, no problems with ammunition.  So nice.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Missouri State IDPA Championship 2012

The two sanctioned matches I thought I had a chance of winning are over.  I didn't do so hot at the IL State match.  I smoked MO State.  Well, "smoked" isn't really the best was to describe my performance.  Maybe it's just me, but in any given match I'm often very happy with the way I've shot a particular stage, but I usually kick myself mentally for the match as a whole (even when I win).  So I did have the top score in SSP at the Match (against 80 SSP shooters) and won SSP Division Champion.  I'm pleased, but not satisfied.  I continue to make some inexcusable mental errors.

SSP Division Champion - ME!
First, the mistakes that need to be worked on.  I've got gun problem with reloads.  I'd guess that at least a fifth of my reloads went wrong.  After seating the magazine and closing the slide, the first shot went "click."  Nothing.  So I had to rack the slide again.  Because it was a major match and everything was happening so quickly I couldn't tell exactly what went wrong.  I'm pretty sure that racking the slide after the glitch did not eject a round, so it may be a magazine problem.  But I may not have noticed the round being ejected either.  I'm also pretty sure that the slide went back into battery after the reload.  I actually replaced my recoil spring last week and I have not had problems with any FTRB at practice sessions.  The whole thing's a mystery to me and I need to find out what's going on quickly.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Illinois State IDPA Championship

This weekend I shot in the Illinois State IDPA Championship at the World Shooting Complex in Sparta, IL. Before analyzing my performance let me just say a few things about the match as a whole.  The match director Jeff Duckworth did a fantastic job organizing and running the match--very well done!  The lunch was fantastic (BBQ pork sandwiches and/or huge beef hotdogs).  The weather was amazing (maybe 75 on Friday and in the mid-80s on Saturday).  The 12 stages were challenging and fun.  And after the last shot on Saturday, when everyone had bagged their guns, Jeff broke out the beer!  What a treat.  Loved it.

Guys from our club (ARPC) did really well.  Tim Barker placed first in ESP Expert division, but unfortunately there wasn't enough Expert shooters in the match for him to get a bump to Master.  Bummer.  He is shooting crazy fast and accurate.  He deserves it.  Ken Rihanek shot well even after the rear sight fell off his CZ on the second stage of the day.  He shot Vince's back up gun (Glock 34) the rest of the match.  Mark Goede should have won an award for the most friendly, helpful, gracious, and competent Saftey Officer for the match.  Mark's our Match director at ARPC and is a Grand Master of promoting IDPA in our area.  Rod Aman won 1st place in SSP Expert division and was bumped to Master!  Steve Filla was not too far behind him (3rd place in SSP Expert).