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  1. #1
    thx1970 is offline Junior Member
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    FEG PA 63 Decocker issues

    I have a PA-63 that will not allow the decocker to engage. It just will not let you thumb down the thing. Never had this problem before. Anyone have any advicee? If I pull the hammer back just a hair and push down on the decocker it works fine. I'm at a loss.

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  3. #2
    83v45magna is offline Junior Member
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    decocker issue

    I just got a PA-63 and have the same issue. The lever will move and decock but it takes heculean effort. I hadn't really focused on this until today. When I read your post, I tried some hammer movement and I am getting the same effect.

    As I said, I just got this and I just reassembled last night from a complete teardown and cleaning. The only thing I couldn't get out was the pin to release the trigger plunger assy. For whatever reason, it was just very solidly in there. I couldn't find my punches so I left it in there and cleaned by flushing it with Hoppes and CLP. It seemed to have smooth function and I do not believe it is contributing to the decocking effort.
    I really just wanted to see what effect a good cleaning would have on the pistol also. I really expected the whole decocker thing to get easier. I had been eying a new hammer release lever on numrich.com last night. If a part is needed, this is is my primary suspect but I can't tell if mine is worn as I have nothing to compare it to. Before I order anything, I need to investigate the hammer to cocking lever mating surfaces. That is where the hammer releases from the cocking lever. The problem is in these areas and not in the slide from what I'm seeing.

    My trigger spring is noisy as hell since detail stripping and the best I can tell it lost its layer of noise insulating grime and lint. I may order another spring while I'm at it. Of course I also have the requisite Wolff recoil and hammer springs on the way. I'd love to get a German Walther-like DA pull outta this thing before it's all over. ALSO, the lighter hammer spring may affect the decocking effort. I'll know that first because the springs shipped yesterday and should be waiting for me when I return from vacation this weekend.

    This teardown was just a trial, learning run as a I plan to strip it again and grind some aluminum off the lower two thirds of the back strap when my new grips get here. Along with polishing the frame. I may only polish the frame sides that look so rough. I'm leaving the slide as is, as the blueing on mine is magnificent. I did have to file off a spot at the left side rear of the slide (the DNA sampler) where it must have been dropped and contused at some point. From this point, a little polish and a little cold blue should make it all but disappear. I'd love to checker the front or back strap but I have no clue nor inclination to learn what I'd have to buy to make that happen. So I'll likely leave the backstrap smooth where I remove some material. It just forces my hand up the handle into that groove. I want a feel closer to my Walther PP. I think this is going to turn out to be a good little pistola. My first MAK caliber weapon.

    This is a new forum for me, I have never seen it before. I found it when googling decocker issues with the '63. I will try to post when I get further along on the decocker issue so you will benefit from anything I learn.

  4. #3
    bktrub is offline Junior Member
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    I have an issue with my PA-63 having the hammer drop on every shot- so it has to be shot double action every shot. This is a recent occurance. I have several hundred rounds thorugh it and have changed only two things- I put in a 13 pound recoil spring and a slightly lighter hammer spring. The problem has only cropped up recently, the spring changes worked like a charm for quite a while, so I don't that that that is the issue. Any thoughts?

  5. #4
    bktrub is offline Junior Member
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    Instead of taking material off of your backstrap, get some non-skid (it's like sandpaper but in black and with adhesive on one side, and cut it to fit and stick it on there. It works great and looks good too. And, it's something you can remove without screwing anything up.

  6. #5
    83v45magna is offline Junior Member
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    I am actually not doing it for grip traction (I intend to polish it up smooth afterward). I am taking material off to better fit my hand. This is like a permanent bulge back there that funnels my grip upward. I will match the wood grips to the new contour back there when I'm finished. I'm betting it becomes one of my favorite shooters when done. I'm also chopping about 2mm of the frame nose and contouring it to better blend with the arc at the beginning of the slide rails under the muzzle. When that is done, I am looking at maybe fitting a set of Meprolight night sights I already have for a Walther PPS. I would have to have that done so it's not bloody likely. Also milling a new rear sight dovetail would entail reblueing and I don't think I want to touch that. The original blueing is just in too good a shape. The frame proofs for this little bugger indicate it was produced in 1957. That would indicate to me that it was a probably a rework and didn't begin manufacture to become a PA-63. If I screw it up, I figure I pickup another and this one becomes a parts gun. I want to make it trustworthy enough to carry if I want to. I see it residing in my glovebox, ultimately.

  7. #6
    83v45magna is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by bktrub View Post
    I have an issue with my PA-63 having the hammer drop on every shot- so it has to be shot double action every shot. This is a recent occurance. I have several hundred rounds thorugh it and have changed only two things- I put in a 13 pound recoil spring and a slightly lighter hammer spring. The problem has only cropped up recently, the spring changes worked like a charm for quite a while, so I don't that that that is the issue. Any thoughts?
    Well first off I'm not a gunsmith, so any of the following could be construed as and likely should be treated as, internet bullshit.
    That sounds like a worn trigger bar at the cocking step where the hammer meets the sear. The trigger bar is about $32 at Numrich but it is possible to create enough of a new ledge there if it has worn and you know what you're doing. Just replacing might not be so bad if you have detail stripped it before.
    I must say though, if it won't stay cocked with the safety off, definitely time for the gunsmith. That could be a bad thing waiting to happen.

    Good luck. Please do let us know what happens.

  8. #7
    83v45magna is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by bktrub View Post
    I have an issue with my PA-63 having the hammer drop on every shot- so it has to be shot double action every shot. This is a recent occurance. I have several hundred rounds thorugh it and have changed only two things- I put in a 13 pound recoil spring and a slightly lighter hammer spring. The problem has only cropped up recently, the spring changes worked like a charm for quite a while, so I don't that that that is the issue. Any thoughts?
    After completely detail stripping this thing, I think you may have just had the trigger spring slip off of the trigger bar. It's the end of the spring. There is a little tenon cut in the trigger bar to hold it. If it is isn't in the slot, the trigger bar isn't held upward and the pistol will decock on trigger return.
    Try looking at this and see if that is it.
    Here is a pic from a Walther PP (this part on the PA-63 is effectively exactly the same for example purposes):

  9. #8
    83v45magna is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by bktrub View Post
    Instead of taking material off of your backstrap, get some non-skid (it's like sandpaper but in black and with adhesive on one side, and cut it to fit and stick it on there. It works great and looks good too. And, it's something you can remove without screwing anything up.
    I like the coating on the aluminum from a practical standpoint so I will likely not be modifying the backstrap area at all. I did remove some material up under the muzzle at the nose of the frame to keep it from snagging and make the frame line flow into the slide. I'm about 2/3 done there and it has zero snagging up there when wiping down the pistol or holstering and the weapon shape looks far more smoothly 'finished' out as a result.

    I have also a beveled the magwell and inserting mags is a much more positive and certain experience. You'd never notice it unless looking specifically for it. Filing a channel inside the left side of the magwell so the empty mags will drop free is also on the list.

    I figured out why I wanted to shave the backstrap. This thing feels pretty darn good in my left hand but not so much in the right. My right hand has a much bigger thumb muscle than the left. That Glock-like backstrap is a bad fit for my right hand. The left is visibly smaller. I noticed early on during the 5 years I raced motocross and the many years of riding hereafter that my entire right forearm and hand were visibly larger. They still are, it's just not as noticeable. After getting the replacement wood grips from Thailand, this pistol feels much better in either hand. Though those grips slip/rotate pretty badly, I will have to do the JB weld trick to fix them. They are also a little thicker than I would have preferred but they feel awesome and look fantastic. Between the beautiful grips and the much better blueing on the slide than I expected, this pistol has turned out not to be the beater that I had envisioned at the start. I am going to permanently station this guy in my glove box and will carry it occasionaly. I already picked up a Don Hume #59 Makarov belt slide holster (used) for $20 to try out. A little loose but it'll do while I decide about another.

    After replacing the hammer spring, trying some different grease in different spots and operating the safety decocker alot, it feels about 80% as good as my Walther PP. 95% as good as my new post recall S&W PPK.

    The Wolff Springs make this thing a pussycat to fire. I am loving this thing.

  10. #9
    bktrub is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for the reply, I haven't looked at the t gun, I will today, but I'm thinking you're right about this. I'll let you know.

  11. #10
    bktrub is offline Junior Member
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    Not the trigger bar spring

    Quote Originally Posted by 83v45magna View Post
    After completely detail stripping this thing, I think you may have just had the trigger spring slip off of the trigger bar. It's the end of the spring. There is a little tenon cut in the trigger bar to hold it. If it is isn't in the slot, the trigger bar isn't held upward and the pistol will decock on trigger return.
    Try looking at this and see if that is it.
    Here is a pic from a Walther PP (this part on the PA-63 is effectively exactly the same for example purposes):
    I just checked, the trigger bar spring is engaged with the trigger bar, so that is not the issue. When I rack the slide, the hammer stays back. When I shoot the gun, the hammer goes forward every shot but does not contact the firing pin. So, essentially this gun will shoot only double action every shot.

  12. #11
    83v45magna is offline Junior Member
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    Well I was hoping it was as simple as that.

    I copied the stuff below from a sticky at waltherforums. It might give you some ideas before going to a gunsmith with it.
    From your description, some obviously don't apply. I'm thinking #3 is more applicable.


    When the hammer won't stay cocked...
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Malfunctions in which the hammer won't stay cocked between shots and follows the side back to battery are not uncommon.

    There are basically four causes:

    1) Short recoil. By far the most common cause. Even if the fired case gets ejected, the slide may not be moving rearward far enough to recock the hammer. Try other, more powerful ammunition. Or, if it's a used gun, check the recoil spring to be certain that a previous owner has not substituted a stronger spring.

    2) Grips (usually Pachmayrs) are fouling the sear or the trigger bar, preventing unimpeded movement. Remove the offending grips and throw them away.

    3) Worn hammer. Cock the hammer with your thumb then try pushing forward on it with moderate pressure to see if it holds engagement. Then, with the magazine removed, try retracting the slide fully to the rear and letting it slam home a few times to see if the hammer jars off from the impact of the slide. In either case, if the hammer won't stay cocked, the toe of the hammer is worn. Or one of the sear rivets is broken or wobbly, or the sear is broken or chewed up. If you have to replace the hammer or the sear, it's likely that the decocking lever will then be out of adjustment. It will release either too early or not at all. Fixing it is a gunsmith job. Trying to set a new rivet or fix a bad one is a good way for an amateur to bend the frame and wreck the gun; that also is a job for a gunsmith.

    4) The safety drum is kissing the decocking lever as the slide closes, decocking the hammer. The decocking lever is sitting too high. A telltale sign is if manual decocking drops the hammer too early. The hammer should be released when the red dot is 1/3 to 1/2 covered by the safety lever. Fixing that problem is also a gunsmith job.

    5) Confirm that the cocking piece spring (i.e., the hammer block spring) is present, unbroken and has enough strength to do its job.

  13. #12
    thx1970 is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by 83v45magna View Post
    I just got a PA-63 and have the same issue. The lever will move and decock but it takes heculean effort. I hadn't really focused on this until today. When I read your post, I tried some hammer movement and I am getting the same effect.

    As I said, I just got this and I just reassembled last night from a complete teardown and cleaning. The only thing I couldn't get out was the pin to release the trigger plunger assy. For whatever reason, it was just very solidly in there. I couldn't find my punches so I left it in there and cleaned by flushing it with Hoppes and CLP. It seemed to have smooth function and I do not believe it is contributing to the decocking effort.
    I really just wanted to see what effect a good cleaning would have on the pistol also. I really expected the whole decocker thing to get easier. I had been eying a new hammer release lever on numrich.com last night. If a part is needed, this is is my primary suspect but I can't tell if mine is worn as I have nothing to compare it to. Before I order anything, I need to investigate the hammer to cocking lever mating surfaces. That is where the hammer releases from the cocking lever. The problem is in these areas and not in the slide from what I'm seeing.

    My trigger spring is noisy as hell since detail stripping and the best I can tell it lost its layer of noise insulating grime and lint. I may order another spring while I'm at it. Of course I also have the requisite Wolff recoil and hammer springs on the way. I'd love to get a German Walther-like DA pull outta this thing before it's all over. ALSO, the lighter hammer spring may affect the decocking effort. I'll know that first because the springs shipped yesterday and should be waiting for me when I return from vacation this weekend.

    This teardown was just a trial, learning run as a I plan to strip it again and grind some aluminum off the lower two thirds of the back strap when my new grips get here. Along with polishing the frame. I may only polish the frame sides that look so rough. I'm leaving the slide as is, as the blueing on mine is magnificent. I did have to file off a spot at the left side rear of the slide (the DNA sampler) where it must have been dropped and contused at some point. From this point, a little polish and a little cold blue should make it all but disappear. I'd love to checker the front or back strap but I have no clue nor inclination to learn what I'd have to buy to make that happen. So I'll likely leave the backstrap smooth where I remove some material. It just forces my hand up the handle into that groove. I want a feel closer to my Walther PP. I think this is going to turn out to be a good little pistola. My first MAK caliber weapon.

    This is a new forum for me, I have never seen it before. I found it when googling decocker issues with the '63. I will try to post when I get further along on the decocker issue so you will benefit from anything I learn.
    So you figure out why your decocker wasn't working?

  14. #13
    83v45magna is offline Junior Member
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    It always worked, it just didn't work smoothly. I pulled the safety drum out and gave it the same notch 'help' I had to do on a new S&W PPK. That consists of removing a very small amount of material near the ball detents and polishing to make the transistion begin easier and work smoother. I also applied TW25B to the safety drum especially where it meets the decocker lever. I then just worked the hell out of it with a piece of rubber tubing to keep the hammer from slamming into the safety drum every time. It showed a bit of particulate in the same area of the decocker lever so I cleaned and regreased and worked it some more. This and the weaker wolff hammer spring have all combined to make it work pretty well.

    I did pickup a complete slide assy from an AP9 marked '9mm short' off ebay that fits and functions perfectly including the safety decocker (with cleaning, without 'optimizing' the drum detents). Also, I cannot see any visual difference in the breach face or ejector under magnification or with a digital caliper.

    I already fitted an old two dot rear sight from a SIG to the original slide. I am using the AP9 slide while finding someone to mill a front sight groove to accept SIG common sights. Having a decent front sight at least was very desireable to me. Since I like night sights, having it be replaceable is pretty nice too. It is surprising that every quote I have gotten to mill a sight groove in the DFW TX area far exceeds the price of the pistol. I'm sure they just don't want to mess with it and the pricing is simply prohibitive. I am actually looking at filing it in by hand. Once I get the sights sorted out, I just might carry this mean little hungarian on occasion.

    I changed the crappy plastic thumbrest grips for a nice smooth set of caramel colored walnut grips I got from a guy on another forum. They are Marschal grips from Budapest and they have changed my mind about reshaping or working the frame further. They are smooth with no checkering at all and have a simple FEG logo at the bottom on each. Makes this pistol nice and slim. I love 'em. They made all the difference to me.
    Last edited by 83v45magna; 01-05-2013 at 12:42 PM. Reason: embellishments

  15. #14
    bktrub is offline Junior Member
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    I think you may have something there

    Quote Originally Posted by 83v45magna View Post
    After completely detail stripping this thing, I think you may have just had the trigger spring slip off of the trigger bar. It's the end of the spring. There is a little tenon cut in the trigger bar to hold it. If it is isn't in the slot, the trigger bar isn't held upward and the pistol will decock on trigger return.
    Try looking at this and see if that is it.
    Here is a pic from a Walther PP (this part on the PA-63 is effectively exactly the same for example purposes):

    I took the pistol apart and the trigger bar just fell off- an occurance that should not happen if the trigger spring is inserted properly in the tenon as you described. So- I think you might have something there. I haven't fired it since, so I don't know for sure, but I thank you for your gunsmithing virtuosity.

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