APEX Sear and RAM - Light Primer Strike? - Page 2 - MP-Pistol Forum

APEX Sear and RAM - Light Primer Strike?

This is a discussion on APEX Sear and RAM - Light Primer Strike? within the MP Gunsmithing forums, part of the Smith & Wesson MP Forum category; Originally Posted by IntenseImage I just checked mine out of curiosity and have the S bar as well. However I'm lucky that I don't have ...


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Old September 24th, 2012, 08:16 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IntenseImage View Post
I just checked mine out of curiosity and have the S bar as well. However I'm lucky that I don't have issues w my Comp kit and USB
FS .40 also has S bar w/comp kit, no issues.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 06:06 AM   #17
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I ran into the light primer strikes with Apex parts, but it was not due to the sear, i think.

I have installed the Apex DCAK kit on my M&P 40 FS and never experienced light primer strikes with my reloads. I then installed the new AEK trigger (not the competition trigger) and started having problems. Turns out that the little lolly pop loop on the trigger bar was not engaging the sear enough to properly release the sear. I had to open up the loop so it would engage more of the sear and cause it to lift more so the striker would properly release. Since making this tweak the gun has run better, but not perfect.

I narrowed the issue down to primer mfg. I got a "good" deal on a few bricks of Russian PMC primers. I never had a problem using these until I installed the new Apex trigger, so thats what I thought was causing my light primer hit issue (it still may for all I can tell). I then tried using CCI and Winchester Small Pistol primers and have had Zero light primer strikes.

So I think my issue is a combination of factors. Yes the Apex trigger/trigger bar probably have some affect on my few light primer strikes with the PMC primers. But there is also a quality issue with the PMC primers that is not there with the more expensive CCI and Winchester primers.

So, PMC primers for practice, CCI/Winchester for competition.

P.S... Where is the "S" stamped on the Trigger bar. I could not tell if my trigger bar had the "S" stamp from just removing the slide.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 06:31 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by breyton490 View Post
P.S... Where is the "S" stamped on the Trigger bar. I could not tell if my trigger bar had the "S" stamp from just removing the slide.
I don't have access to upload a photo, but as I recall it's loccated on the inside face of the of the trigger bar, just to the rear of the trigger block, where the trigger bar takes a small 90 degree bend. It is easily visible with the slide removed.

BTW, Apex says that part of the solution lies in "tuning" the "trigger loop" and that this is covered in ther video on installing the AEK. I haven't re-viewed that video yet, so I'm just repeating was I was told.

Last edited by DaveInNH; September 25th, 2012 at 06:37 AM.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 01:16 PM   #19
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I also got a heads up from Jon from APex to "tune" the trigger loop. It's just been a headache. I'm still deciding whether or not I want to even try this or just keep it stock.

Either way, Apex has been great with their customer service.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 02:19 PM   #20
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Here is a picture of where the "S" marking is on the trigger bar. ( thanks to G&R tactical - borrowed this screen capture from one of their ads )
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Old September 25th, 2012, 03:25 PM   #21
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So, what's the "trigger loop"? The p-shaped bend at the top of the photo in the last posting? Just wond'rin'...
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Old September 25th, 2012, 04:29 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveInNH View Post
So, what's the "trigger loop"? The p-shaped bend at the top of the photo in the last posting? Just wond'rin'...
Yes .....
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Old October 2nd, 2012, 03:37 PM   #23
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Update on Light Primer Strike with Apex trigger:

I hit a big patch of light primer strikes today. Like 3-4 per mag (and I only have a 10 rnd mag) Looking at the FTF rounds, the firing pin is leaving a small dimple in the primer, on rounds that do fire, the dimple is significantly deeper. I did more searching and found a thread (think it was on Brion Enos Forums) that talked about the striker leg (chrome plated arm that contacts the sear) dragging across the top of the sear thereby reducing the force it strikes the primer with.

I looked at my Apex sear and noticed there is a polished streak/line on the top of the sear that matches with a polished section on the striker leg which is held back by the sear. Based on the shininess of the mark on the sear, the striker leg is sliding or dragging across the top of the sear.

I never really had FTF light primer hits with the Apex DCAK kit until I installed the Apex Trigger. Doing so required me to open the loop up on the trigger bar to get the sear to move enough to release the striker.

Using a caliper, I measured the height of the sear from the pistol frame while holding the trigger, it measured 0.050" high. I looked at my other M&P which just has the Apex DECAK, and the sear moves much more, almost level, when pulling the trigger. On the M&P with the Apex trigger, the angle was more pronounced and far from looking close to level/flat when pulling the trigger.

I opened up the lolly pop loop on the trigger housing up quite a bit more, so that the sear come up just short of level/flat which is similar to my other M&P, now about 0.035" above the frame. I then took a black sharpie and blacked out the top of the sear, reassembled the gun and dry fired a few times. Disassembled the gun to check if I could see any indication of the striker leg dragging across the top of the sear... none was indicated.

So tomorrow I am going back to the range to see if this tweak/fix solved my problem. I don't think its a case of worn springs, since the FTF problem really started after I installed the Apex trigger (not the FSS). I have about 6,000 round in the gun.

**************
Update 10/5/12
**************

Went to the range and still had light primer / FTF issues. One thing I did notice is that many of the rounds failed to cycle correctly. After firing, the slide often would not fully rack the new load into the chamber and would get hung up. I then noticed that all my ejected rounds basically fall next to my feet. Sometime I would get a FTF, but when I racked the slide, it turned out the empty case did not get ejected.

So I thought, could my issues be due to my loads being too light to cycle properly or reset the striker correctly? I am using 5.1 HP-38 with Montana Gold 155 FMJ bullets. I am using the factory recoil spring. Next option is to load up new rounds with a bit more powder. Min with HP-38 is 5.0 GR, Max is 6.0 gr. Will aim for the middle and see it this has any effect.

*********
Final Update 10/23 ---- Bad Primers, Apex parts not at fault
*********

I finally figured out the source of my light primer strikes and it turns out it has nothing to do with the Apex parts I have installed in my pistol. The cause....bad Russian made PMC primers. After replacing a worn recoil spring (+5K rounds) and putting in a new striker assembly with extra strength springs, I still ran into FTF with these primers.

I loaded up 300 rounds using both Winchester SP and CCI small pistol (think 500's) primers and everyone went bang. So at least I know its not my M&P that's at fault. The Russian PMC's must either be very hard or just poor quality or both. Too bad, I still have 6,000 of these left..looks like the good price I got on these is not such a good deal after all. I am hoping my SW 4906 9mm may be able to better digest these primers since it has an external hammer firing pin. Maybe the extra ummff from the hammer will be enough to get these Russian primers to go off on the first hit.

Anyway, its only Winchester, CCI or Federal primers for my M&P for now on even if they are a few bucks more. It just not worth the headache of not knowing if the rounds are good even if just plinking.

Last edited by breyton490; October 24th, 2012 at 11:39 AM.
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Old January 12th, 2013, 04:05 PM   #24
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Just recently Installed AEK trigger. worked great with my newer production M&P (S stamped trigger bar. Mfr April 2012).

However when I tried installing the DCAEK, i had to open the loop from ~.008 all the way to .032".

The trigger felt amazing, with almost no overtravel.

Took it to the range worked flawless, no malfunctions in 200 rounds Blazer. no dead trigger/sear flutter.

However I realized after dry firing it more, if I pressed down on the rear of the slide (above the striker), and then tried to pull the trigger. The sear would not release.

I then opened up the candy cane to .035" , and it will release now when pressing down on the slide. But now the problem is that I have about 1mm in overtravel more than before.

I will call apex on monday.

Anyone have similar experiences?

Last edited by accuracy; January 12th, 2013 at 04:11 PM.
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Old July 5th, 2014, 06:58 PM   #25
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Here's a picture of the sear before and after pulling the trigger. It never goes flush. Adjusting the loop on the trigger bar enough to MAKE it go flush after pulling the trigger makes it so that pulling the trigger doesn't make the gun go *click* and I can't remove the slide by pulling the trigger, I have to use the sear takedown lever. I have no idea why it does that. Does anyone care to share their thoughts on why pulling the trigger doesn't disengage the weapon? Does opening up the loop too much cause it to slide out of the housing block like when the weapon cycles?
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File Type: jpg IMAG0348[1].jpg (1.16 MB, 47 views)
File Type: jpg IMAG0349[1].jpg (1.15 MB, 40 views)
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Old July 5th, 2014, 10:25 PM   #26
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Old July 6th, 2014, 02:39 AM   #27
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These problems are really frustrating. I've had issue after issue with my M&Ps.

When the 9MM went south I got an APEX CAEK kit and put it in the gun. Worked great for a few months. Then more problems (like yours this time, several failures to fire out of a magazine). Blamed it on the Tula primers for awhile.

Then it was doing it with non Tula primers. Changed the parts over to my M&P .357 SIG and the 9MM began working and the .357 SIG started having failures to fire. Up to that time the only issue I'd had with the .357 SIG was throwing plated bullets sideways in "patterns" at 10 yds. The same reloads work fine in my Glock M31 with a Wolf barrel in it.

I thought I'd found some odd wear issues with the APEX sear so I stoned it to increase the angle on the striker engagement side and at the first range session after that it worked great. Second range session I had one "dud" round that finally went bang after 5 trigger pulls (cocked it between trigger pulls). The striker just did not seem to be hitting that one primer very hard (at least till the last time, when it finally went bang).

When I posted about that here someone mentioned a "timing" issue. I'm still not sure I understood that but I need another range session to see if the most recent adjustments to the S&W parts fixed that possible issue.

I really liked these guns. The way it fits my hand, the ambidextrous safeties that make going between them and my 1911's so natural and the accuracy of the FS 9MM with those 147 grain HPs. However, I need guns I can depend on and so far these two M&Ps have not been reliable for more than a few months at a time between fixes (parts replacements/adjustments).

Good luck with your efforts. I'd be keeping mine if I could get them to work all the time.
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Old July 6th, 2014, 04:59 AM   #28
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I know lots of people install Apex parts and rave about the performance...or issues with the M&P after installing those parts. All parts are produced to a tolerance, but even with computer controlled machining, a part is never perfect. For me, not being a gunsmith, I would send my pistol to Apex or a gunsmith to have those parts installed. Just because a part is easy to install, doesn't mean adjustments won't be necessary....those tolerance issues.
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Old July 15th, 2014, 12:33 PM   #29
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Many of the problems with failures to fire after swapping in apex sears is more than likely striker drag. Ensure the trigger bar loop is open enough to engage the sear sufficiently so that the striker is not dragging on the sear. The drag can retard the striker forward movement enough to cause light primer strikes.
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Old July 15th, 2014, 01:23 PM   #30
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Then again... could be the striker block not being fully disengaged by the time the striker is released. Difficult to say not having eyes and hands on.

Last edited by Twichinator; July 15th, 2014 at 01:25 PM.
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