PM45 3000 round report (with pics) - the good, bad & ugly [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Wilson 2008
02-26-2010, 13:51
I recently went over 3000 rounds on the PM45 I bought in mid-2008. Since there aren't that many posts about high round count Kahrs (and lots of questions about how they hold up) here's my sample of one:

My PM45 is a great shooter and has been since day one. It has malfunctions only after 150+ rounds have been shot in one session, and a quick wipe and lube fixes it right up. I always clean it after I shoot it, use grease on the metal contact points on the rail, and have polished the feed ramp a few times using silver polish from the kitchen. Otherwise it gets no special treatment - just a lot of lint.

Around 2400 rounds it started dropping the magazine uncommanded while firing. I ordered a new magazine catch spring and took the opportunity to get new recoil and striker springs as well. It went in the safe and my Sig took over as my carry gun.

The magazine catch spring didn't help at all, and by now it was dropping the magazine every few shots. It dropped the 5 round mag. It dropped the 7 round mags I carry as spares. It did it strong hand, weak hand, with a buddy shooting it... It wasn't me.

I like figuring things out myself, so next I ordered a new magazine catch. When it arrived I was disappointed to find that it looked exactly like the old one. (See pictures below. The top one is the old, the bottom is new).

http://i535.photobucket.com/albums/ee357/Wilson20082008/PM457.jpg

http://i535.photobucket.com/albums/ee357/Wilson20082008/PM458.jpg

I went to the range figuring it would only take a few shots to drop another magazine. It didn't. I shot 200 rounds without a single malfunction. A week later I went and shot another 200 without a problem. This was mostly FMJ with a box of carry ammo thrown in just to make sure. I am amazed that the new part made such a difference. I guess it just shows how tight the tolerances are on Kahrs.

My PM45 is back on my hip now. It's gone a little over 3100 total rounds. I'm going to replace the recoil springs every 1000 rounds from now on and get a new magazine catch at the first sign of trouble. I'll post any other problems if they happen.

- Wilson



More pictures:

http://i535.photobucket.com/albums/ee357/Wilson20082008/PM451.jpg

http://i535.photobucket.com/albums/ee357/Wilson20082008/PM455.jpg

http://i535.photobucket.com/albums/ee357/Wilson20082008/PM456.jpg

viniglock
02-26-2010, 14:54
Thanks for sharing!

Pistol Pedro
02-26-2010, 20:33
Thanks for the report. I have just under 800 through my P9. Reliable so far.

kgwld1
02-27-2010, 11:48
I'm alittle over 12000 rounds with my Kahr pm 9 I've replaced the guide rod and spring every 3000 rounds. Nice report.

Catshooter
02-28-2010, 00:32
Very helpful report Wilson, thanks.

Did you see this thread of mine : http://glocktalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1177060

Thought you might find it interesting.


Cat

Wilson 2008
02-28-2010, 13:11
Very helpful report Wilson, thanks.

Did you see this thread of mine : http://glocktalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1177060

Thought you might find it interesting.


Cat

I did see your thread, and I love the direction you took your PM45. I'm glad people are taking the time to add to the knowledge base about the PM series, especially the PM45 since they are still relatively new and untested compared to Sigs and Glocks.

- Wilson

BackDraft
02-28-2010, 21:32
Wilson
Great review. I have and E-9 and a PM-45 and a K-40. Mt E-9 has in excess of 35,000 rounds mostly Federal 124 +P+ and Nato Surplus. My K-40 has been somewhat of my problem child. First was a peening problem, then some failure to return to battery. Some polishing of the rails and few other parts fixed the problem. That has been my safe queen mostly because I am not to fond of the S&W 40.This one has at the most 5,000 rounds thru it in almost 10 years. Now my PM-45 is my first and only poly gun and it has taken alot to get use to it. I have found that at 2,500 is time to replace the recoil and striker springs. It had some feeding and returning to battery problems and some fluff and buff took care of that. The PM-45 will be replacing my E-9 as a carry piece down the road. Keep us posted on how yours goes.

gb6491
03-02-2010, 12:12
Around 2400 rounds it started dropping the magazine uncommanded while firing.
Hi,
Excellent review; in regards to the magazine dropping, did it happen at any particular round count? I ask becuase my pistol (CW45) started dropping mags at about the 100-150 round mark and it was almost always with two rounds left in the magazine (a new latch fixed the problem; BTW my new latch is machined slightly different from the original).
Regards,
Greg

Wilson 2008
03-06-2010, 12:54
Round count when it started dropping magazines was over 2000. It was insidious. The first few times it happened I blamed myself ("must be my grip...") It started happening more regularly, and finally it happened when a friend was shooting and I could see it wasn't his grip or fault. I had about 2400 rounds through it and that's when I started replacing parts.

Hope this helps.

- Wilson

gb6491
03-06-2010, 17:19
Thanks Wilson!
Regards,
Greg

JR1
03-13-2010, 16:03
I have a K40, PM40, and a PM45. The PM45 still keeps dropping mags. I put in the new mag catch, but it didn't fix it. I love the way it fits in my hands and it has the best trigger of my Khars. It also has fail-to-feed and stovepipe malfucntions every magazine or two -- always on the third round or next-to-last round (?). The magazine self-eject usually happens on the next-to-last round. 635 rounds of 230 grain fodder through it so far. I just don't carry it because I don't trust it.

I plan to sell it and buy a P40.

viniglock
03-13-2010, 18:10
I have a K40, PM40, and a PM45. The PM45 still keeps dropping mags. I put in the new mag catch, but it didn't fix it. I love the way it fits in my hands and it has the best trigger of my Khars. It also has fail-to-feed and stovepipe malfucntions every magazine or two -- always on the third round or next-to-last round (?). The magazine self-eject usually happens on the next-to-last round. 635 rounds of 230 grain fodder through it so far. I just don't carry it because I don't trust it.

I plan to sell it and buy a P40.

Did you ever send it to Kahr?

gb6491
03-13-2010, 21:27
I have a K40, PM40, and a PM45. The PM45 still keeps dropping mags. I put in the new mag catch, but it didn't fix it. I love the way it fits in my hands and it has the best trigger of my Khars. It also has fail-to-feed and stovepipe malfucntions every magazine or two -- always on the third round or next-to-last round (?). The magazine self-eject usually happens on the next-to-last round. 635 rounds of 230 grain fodder through it so far. I just don't carry it because I don't trust it.

I plan to sell it and buy a P40.
I agree with viniglock about giving Kahr a chance to fix it at the factory.
That said, I had the same issue as you in regards to my CW45 dropping the magazine. I'm kind of a "hands on" guy and decided to address the problem myself. The following is how I did it, not a "how to" YMMV:
The magazine self-eject usually happens on the next-to-last round.
My pistol did this and a new latch fixed it. Now, that is all well and good, but I’m began to wonder why the original latch always dropped the magazine with two rounds in the magazine and not some random sequence.
Here’s my conclusion:
There is some side to side play of the magazine when it’s in the magazine well. With the top end removed and a magazine (sans follower and spring) in the well, if you twist the magazine base back and forth, you will see that the magazine latch stays engaged in the magazine, but that depth of engagement varies from just enough to quite a bit inside the magazine body. The latch itself does not move during this evolution. Now, my first thought was that the bullet noses were somehow disengaging the latch if the magazine twisted when there was minimal amount of latch engaged. Inserting a loaded magazine into the well, I twisted it back and forth trying to disengage the latch; no luck perhaps recoil forces are more violent and could do it. Then I tried stripping rounds out of the magazine to see if that bumped the latch out of place, no joy or movement until…the follower came up in the magazine latch cutout window.
Here, I noticed that the magazine latch moved; twisting the magazine at this point caused the magazine latch to move quite a bit, but not enough to disengage the latch. However, the most movement of the latch occurs at this point and this point happens to be at the magical two rounds left in the magazine mark.
http://i42.tinypic.com/qrcklw.jpg
So what gives? I believe that when the follower is at this position, during recoil the magazine twists, pushing the latch out of the frame and then twists the other way faster than the latch can sometimes react. The magazine’s spring tension and forces from the slide working over it (possibly causing it to twist as well) push it down and out of engagement while the latch is playing catch up. I believe this is why the modified latch works: the magazine would have to move slightly upward to disengage from the latch making it a little more difficult to shake loose from or possibly limiting how far the latch is pushed out from the frame. A stronger magazine latch spring would probably work as well and I believe that pistols that do drop magazines probably have a less than optimal spring (for the OP: replacing your current spring might be a good idea) vice a bad latch (though the machined latch makes up for this as a repair). Still, I worried that the problem could return (big trust factor issue) and turned my attention to the magazine follower. I believe that the magazine follower would benefit if it was redesigned in a manner that would significantly reduce the chance of a marginal latch, latch spring, or both allowing a magazine to drop. The follower simply needs to be made so that it does not contact the latch at anytime. To prove this to myself, I marked the area of the follower that appeared in the latch window, then reshaped the upper portion of the follower and cut off a portion of the skirt. Now, the follower does not contact the latch at any point. I can twist the magazine to Hades and back while the latch stays in place (no movement at all). The original magazine release now works as intended (no more drops) and the magazine (in regards to this) also functions flawlessly.
Magazine latch window (OEM follower on the left, modified on the right):
http://i41.tinypic.com/ig9j7b.jpg
http://i42.tinypic.com/2lrm0g.jpg
OEM follower (notice areas contacted by the magazine latch):
http://i41.tinypic.com/2rmmo9i.jpg
Modified follower:
http://i44.tinypic.com/149rtkm.jpg
Disclaimer; I imagine there are quite a few (most?) CW45s out there that do not have this issue. I further believe that the modified latch and a new/stronger latch spring would fix/prevent the issue. Regardless of this (and for my own peace of mind) I'm going to run the modified magazines in my gun.

BTW: the description of the ftf issue, at first, reads like a technique problem, but it is odd in it's predictability of occurrence (that would seem to preclude limp wristing). Perhaps, you could post some photos of the failure.

Regards,
Greg

Wilson 2008
03-14-2010, 06:42
Greg,

Great post - thanks for the effort. I also noticed the issue with the follower pushing the magazine catch. I'm glad to see your reworking of the follower helped. I think I'll give that a closer look when I get the time.

- Wilson

gb6491
03-15-2010, 10:39
Thanks, Wilson :)

I've had two major issues with my CW45 and modifications to the magazine have fixed both.
FWIW, the other problem began at about the 500 round mark; the last round would fail to eject cleanly: sometimes getting jammed back down into the magazine (exactly like the one in the photos (http://kahrtalk.com/11646-post1.html) posted by this PM45 owner). What I found was that the magazine lip on the ejector side was tipping the last round in the magazine slightly upward and slightly off the extractor before it got to the ejector in the ejection cycle. When this happens the case often does not clear the ejection port and gets driven back down into the magazine or barley ejects (more like falls). With rounds still in the magazine, spent casing are (usually) held high enough by the following rounds that this would rarely happen.
To counter this (new extractor and spring didn't fix it), I decided to take some material off the magazine lip. I was pretty aggressive on the first magazine; I cycled a spent casing by hand and removed material until I felt the casing would stay in place long enough to hit the ejector. I took less off the next magazine and it seems to function fine. I imagine, with some patience and testing at different stages in the process, that even less material would need to be removed. No more FTE issue with the modified magazines: also, they hold the rounds securely and I've had no feed issues with them (I've even dropped them a couple of times with no lost rounds).
Stock magazine and modified magazine (right):
http://i48.tinypic.com/2iuc9k8.jpg
Modified magazines: the second one done is in the background; the modification on it closely follows the contour of the stock feed lip on the other side of the magazine:
http://i50.tinypic.com/2wqgxdz.jpg
I'm not saying this will work for all; it's just something to consider if someone's gun is malfunctioning as described above (again, this just how I did it; not a "how to" article).

BTW: my apologies if I've led your excellent thread too far astray.

I really like my CW45 and am looking hard at a PM45 or PM9 as a future purchase.

Regards,
Greg