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 slam fire in Witness Pistols
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Gunjnkie
Starting Member


40 Posts

Posted - 09/13/2011 :  10:24:38 PM  Show Profile Send Gunjnkie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Has anyone ever had a slam fire on their Witness?

Background: This is for a 38 Super, full size barrel/slide, compact poly frame, 17 round Mecgar magazine. I load my own ammo and had unloaded, resized and loaded with different bullets. When I started seating bullets though, I noticed they were sliding back into the case, and a thumb check on some others revealed the same thing. So, I used the Lee built in crimp of the seating die to put enough of a crimp to hold the bullet in place. Since acquiring this pistol in December and putting probably 600-700 rounds down the barrel, I have never had any problems with this pistol, not one.

Situation: I went to the range on Sunday and fired 10 rounds which all fired fine. The next 10 is when the problems started. The first 4 rounds fired and ejected the shell, or at least I thought it had ejected the 4th round. When I tried to fire again, I got a click. So I waited appropriately to make sure the round was not still going to discharge. When I went to eject the round, I got a very big shock. The shell casing was completely black. So I went ahead and ejected and tried to chamber another round, but it wouldn't. So I tore the pistol down and found a bullet stuck about 1/4 inch in front of the chamber. Took it in and we pounded the bullet out, cleaned the barrel and inspected for any damage - none. So I reassembled the pistol, chambered and fired the first round, this time I was sure the shell ejected as I felt it hit the catch net and confirmed that visually. But when I pulled the trigger again, I got another click. And sure enough, when I ejected the case it was completely black, and another bullet was stuck in the barrel about the same place as the first time. When I counted the fired rounds and the rounds remaining in the mag, I had 10 rounds. My regular smithy wasn't there so I put it all away and will take it back out to him tomorrow to check it out. But I also wanted to find out if anyone here has ever had this problem.

The only conclusion that I have at this point is that for an unknown reason, the round being chambered is firing while still entering the chamber, the bullet is shooting forward and sticking in the barrel without proper momentum which causes the gases to blow back around the brass and also push the primer out slightly. Other than being completely black, there were no other signs such as bulged brass, etc.

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

John

billymarr
Starting Member



USA
34 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2011 :  12:38:01 AM  Show Profile Send billymarr a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Jacketed or cast bullets? May be put of spec bullets. If they are to big you would still have enough preasure to cycle the slide with a light load
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H2obouget
New Member



USA
73 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2011 :  12:48:11 AM  Show Profile Send H2obouget a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Since you are loading your own ammo...could you maybe have missed putting powder in some of the rounds?
As I understand it, a primer has enough power to push the bullet into the rifling and not much more.

Not sure how you are attributing this to a slam fire.
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Rod Slinger
Moderator



USA
1553 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2011 :  01:04:50 AM  Show Profile Send Rod Slinger a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Gunjnkie What H2obouget said would be the first place I would look. Pull the bullets and check the charge weight. I would also look at the firing pin to make sure it is not damaged. A true slam fire results in a unplanned double tap. On the older AE prefix Witness this could happen if the firing pin safety was installed incorrectly. The reason for EAA's recall on these models.

Remembering Col. Jeff Cooper
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Gunjnkie
Starting Member



40 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2011 :  09:52:47 AM  Show Profile Send Gunjnkie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The bullets are jacketed, Zero 125 gr, .356 diameter, verified with a mic. I've fired close to 200 of them without a problem. I'll check the charge weight on the rounds as suggested. I'm very careful when I load. I use a scoop and scale, and then eyeball each charge in the case after I have finished a tray to be sure I haven't missed one, double charged or short charged. My smithy runs the range that I shoot at, so I'm going to have him check it out today when I got out. Will let you know what I find out.
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Gunjnkie
Starting Member



40 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2011 :  8:10:18 PM  Show Profile Send Gunjnkie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, I'm going to have to eat crow here guys.

My smithy cleared my barrel and looked the pistol over, everything is fine with the pistol. I took it out and fired one round at a time. The 3rd round, "click" and the bullet was stuck in the barrel! So after I got home, I pulled the bullets from the rest of that batch of rounds and sure enough, had two that had no charge, just the primer. The how and why the rounds weren't charged is too long of a story to type here; suffice it to say that if the why happens again, it will be handled in a different way.

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Rod Slinger
Moderator



USA
1553 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2011 :  10:05:59 PM  Show Profile Send Rod Slinger a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Gunjnkie...No crow eating on this forum allowed. You made a mistake, you learned from it, and you put you learning ahead of ego. I my book this proves that you will be exceptional at what you sit your mind at.

If you read much of the postings on the reloading section you will note that I am a belt and suspenders kind of guy when it comes to reloading. We all make mistakes. The trick is to learn from them and not keep doing the same thing. Thanks for you posts. R S


Remembering Jack O'Connor
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jeffpatton00@hotmail.com
Starting Member



USA
1 Posts

Posted - 08/19/2017 :  11:05:52 PM  Show Profile Send jeffpatton00@hotmail.com a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have a new Witness .40 S&W with maybe 50 rounds through it, and last week when putting it away, I experienced a slam fire. Fortunately I'm careful about keeping it an a safe direction so no one was harmed, but my home is going to need some work.

Since my M&P 9 carry pistol holds so few rounds, I typically load a round in the pipe, let the slide close, then insert the magazine. I've done this countless times without problem. Following the same procedure with the Witness for the first time, I got a slam fire.

This was a reload with once-fired Win brass, Win 231 powder and Win WSP primers. The primer was fully seated and flush with the cartridge base.

Has anyone had a similar experience or know anything about this? This pistol is newer than the range of serial numbers covered by the safety recall notice.
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Rod Slinger
Moderator



USA
1553 Posts

Posted - 08/20/2017 :  10:57:20 AM  Show Profile Send Rod Slinger a Private Message  Reply with Quote
jeffpatton00... Very sorry to hear about your problem. I strongly recommend that you do not load or shoot this pistol and send it back to EAA. For this to happen the firing pin safety must be missing or installed incorrectly, firing pin return spring missing, or firing pin stuck in slide. Any of these need to be checked out by someone that understands the Witness safety features. R S



Remembering Col. Jeff Cooper
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