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  1. #1
    babs's Avatar
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    Dramatic FTF with JHP's at bottom of Feed Ramp

    Love the P226, all in all has been a fun fun pistol.. Accurate and a joy to shoot. However, yesterday I noticed one occurrence and another one last night after cleaning of an interesting jam so I thought I'd throw it out for your thoughts.. With Gold Dot's and HST's it did this..

    The first round catches at the bottom of the barrel feed ramp and won't feed at all. Forcing removal by pushing the round back into mag and dropping the mag.


    Doesn't look like any deformation at the bottom of the ramp and the smooth portion doesn't appear to be the issue because if the round clears the bottom of the ramp, it chambers fine, which is the case with FMJ's and has typically in the past always been the case with JHP's.

    One change made I should mention... New hogue grips.. I did notice the bottom of the mag does make some contact with the new grips, and takes a little more effort to fully seat the mag.

    Possibly there's some grip pressure on the mag bottom plate causing just enough down-ward pressure so the round isn't high enough to feed correctly maybe?

    Not that I'm freaking about it.. but it's an interesting problem to troubleshoot. Your thoughts?

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  3. #2
    TOF's Avatar
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    I would try it a few times to confirm continued malfunction then put the original grips back on. If the Malf. goes away you will have your culprit. If the problem continues I would use a dremel to polish the feed ramp.

    If that doesn't fix it change ammo or gun.

    Good luck

    Also Magazine springs can go bad
    Last edited by TOF; 11-07-2008 at 09:38 AM. Reason: add spring statement

  4. #3
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    Almost guaranteed, it's the grips. If the mag is hitting the bottom of the grip, it is feeding enough to attach, but too low to clear the ramp... Like TOF said, swap back to factory grips, check for function, and shave the bottom of the grips in the magwell...

    My suggestion...

    JW

  5. #4
    babs's Avatar
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    I'm suspecting if there's any vertical play in the mag even if fully locked in there, the downward pressure at the bottom of the grips on the mag plate might be just enough to lower that top round to catch the bottom edge of the feed ramp instead of sliding over it.

    It was late when I was messing with it.. This evening I will definitely swap to original grips and try, also with different mags too. I can't imagine how the top round could have a "nose-down" situation pointing the front too low to clear onto the ramp. I suspect it's at the correct angle as it could only be, but the round height is the culprit.

    We'll see.

    If it turns out to be the grips.. I'll take the sharpest blade on my trusty old-timer to the bottom of the hogues for clearance on that mag plate.

  6. #5
    babs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffWard View Post
    Almost guaranteed, it's the grips. If the mag is hitting the bottom of the grip, it is feeding enough to attach, but too low to clear the ramp... Like TOF said, swap back to factory grips, check for function, and shave the bottom of the grips in the magwell...

    My suggestion...

    JW

    ... That's reassuring.. Thank you! Simple issue.. simple fix. I'll let you guys know.

    LOVE the grips though.. 1st time shooting with them.. Once I got my head straight and got used to them, I was grouping nice. Got some time swapping between my 226 and a friend's 229 (both 9mm) so got some nice comparison experience there. (I gotta better trigger for sure.. hehehe)

  7. #6
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    Suuurreeeeee.....this is just another excuse so you can get another (read: bigger) gun.

    Seriously though, good advice from TOF and JeffWard as usual.

    Quote Originally Posted by babs
    This evening I will definitely swap to original grips and try, also with different mags too.
    Just make sure you do one at a time.

    -Jeff-

  8. #7
    babs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BeefyBeefo View Post
    Suuurreeeeee.....this is just another excuse so you can get another (read: bigger) gun.

    -Jeff-
    HA!!! It took 2 hours and 15 whole minutes before I got a crack about that @#$% P220. You're slower today Jeff!

    hehehehehehe

    But I am practicing my doubu and twippu taps so my wittle 9 will du it's tang.

  9. #8
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  10. #9
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    How many rounds have you put through it? When was the last time you cleaned the mags? Not since the late 80's has the feed ramp needed to be polished and made less steep. That has been rectified by SiG since then. I've put the Hogues on all of my SiG's and have not had any problems.

    It might be possible that the grip screws have gone in too far and may be preventing the mag from seating properly. However if you are making sure the magazine seats when loading, then it could be as simple as cleaning the mags. If you have a particularly high round count, the mag springs may need replacing. Go with the simple fix before seeking something bigger.

  11. #10
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    Growler67, I seem to remember from another thread that he has a pretty low round count through it (something around 400 rounds I think). That's what makes this so interesting, and I'm curious to see the result/diagnosis.

    -Jeff-

    ETA:
    Quote Originally Posted by babs View Post
    I do.. maybe 300ish rounds or so (how you guys keep up after the first box I have no idea).
    http://www.handgunforum.net/showthre...871#post139871
    Last edited by BeefyBeefo; 11-07-2008 at 05:51 PM.

  12. #11
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    Damn unreliable Sigs...


    KIDDING!!!!!!!

  13. #12
    babs's Avatar
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    Ok.. gotta a few minutes to do some trouble-shooting.

    To answer the round-count question.. Jeff's right.. It's a CPO but since I've owned it, maybe 6 or 7 trips to the range, probably 400ish rounds through it. Feed ramp looks fine. Here's what I did:

    Went ahead and dremmeled a nice beveled edge around the inside bottom of the hogues.. The hogues and the feed well were and remain a non-issue. Best I could tell, no ends of screws inside the mag-well but I will certainly verify. Good idea, thanks.

    I have indeed localized the problem to one of the mags.. I picked up two refurbs from TGS a couple months back and I guess that's the first time I've loaded JHP's rather than just FMJ range ammo in that particular mag. The other matching mag appears to be ok... Both are very recent purchases but had only a couple trips to the range.

    Tried all four of the mags I have currently for the gun, two original equipment and the two refurbs.. All but that one fed great.

    On the offending magazine, the top round does appear to be seating flush/correctly at the top of the mag against the part I do not know the name for, sorry. Spring tension appears to be fine. And the mag appears to load and lock into place fine.. Perplexing. It's almost as though the top round angle or height is just out of spec enough to not clear that bottom feed-ramp edge.

    I will go ahead and clean the mags.. Especially the offending mag and retry.. Though those mags have had only a couple range visits.

    For mag cleaning: I assume standard hoppes-9 wipe down and complete wipe to dry on all parts. ??? I can search.

    If that doesn't help that mag, I guess I'd have to write it off as a non-JHP capable "dud" mag, and label it "FMJ Only" or something equally shameful. hehe

    Ain't trouble-shooting fun.

  14. #13
    babs's Avatar
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    And all the above doesn't surprise me as I've seen guys in here and on the Sig forum say that 99% of feed issues are magazine related.. Not surprising.. It's gotta put that round at the right height, center and angle to throw up into that feed ramp and into battery.

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by babs View Post
    Ain't trouble-shooting fun.
    No. That's why I own reliable handguns.

    Seriously though, it sounds like you have it narrowed down. These were refurbished factory magazines? Again, good luck with it.

    -Jeff-

  16. #15
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    http://www.topgunsupply.com/sig_p226...nditioned.html

    ... These. Oh the little German is quite a reliable gun, if it's fed good mags I guess, about like any semi.

  17. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by babs View Post
    Oh the little German...
    Umm...nevermind. You make it too easy.

    Just curious, when you say...

    Quote Originally Posted by babs
    I've seen guys in here and on the Sig forum say that 99% of feed issues are magazine related
    Are the majority of these with non-OEM magazines?

    -Jeff-

  18. #17
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    I personaly will not keep a magazine that does not feed everything properly. I either fix it or dump it.

    Compare the good (came with gun) mag to the defective one. There could be different style followers, the mag lips might be a slightly different configuration or the opening between the lips might be tighter etc.

    The followers or other parts could be of an early version that didn't work as well as the current version. If the mags were rebuilt there must have been a reason they were not kept with their original partner/gun.

    You might try coating the feed ramp with a black felt tip pen and feed ammo through with one of your good mags. Note where the bullet nose contacts the ramp then re blacken and repeat using the defective mag.

    If willing to risk it, tweak the mag lips to allow the round to move up a tad and recheck.

    Good luck and keep us posted.

    PS: Contact the vendor and see if they will send a replacement.
    Last edited by TOF; 11-09-2008 at 01:56 PM. Reason: Add vendor contact note

  19. #18
    babs's Avatar
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    I agree.. That mag is in the box awaiting ideas.. And thank you now I've got a few. Being the quality engr I am, I'll approach disposition of the "suspect" mag in this order then:

    1. visual compare to known-good
    Might identify the possible cause for failure from visual inspection to a good standard

    2. break down and clean the mag, retry
    Also might find something going on .. maybe crud somewhere, etc.
    Can't hurt.

    3. I like the tweek mag-lips idea actually..

    Actually, probably be a good idea to take a few measurements there, and from the top to the locking notch. But a very small "tweek" on the muzzle-side to allow just the slightest (talkin' millimeter or smaller) higher point of the top round.. might do the trick.. IF, cleaning doesn't do it and there's no other found reason from comparison.

    If that doesn't cut it, I'll see what it sounds like when it hits the bottom of the big city rubber-maid for Thursday pickup.

    Thanks TOF!

    The study continues with the newb learning something again.

  20. #19
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    Update.. no time lately for cleaning, but did inspect.. Findings:

    Compared the "offending" mag to the others..
    There is slight but apparent angle difference in top round as I expected and I know why. As the round begins it's push forward to exit, this is where it gets interesting.

    There is slight rounded deformation/bulge in the width between the two lips of the mag where it holds the top of the round, in the middle, from front to rear. The leading edges of the lips revert back to about the same width as the rear ok. It's the typical thing you see with stamped metal when not "flattened" properly by the die.

    So, when the round pushes forward, the round's primer base dips upward into that wider gap (under spring pressure), which in turn drops the front of the round downard just enough to be too low to properly hit the feed ramp. viola!!

    A pic's worth 1000 words.. I'll try to take a couple.

    So, looking at the two nice flat sides of the known-good mags, the defect is fairly obvious. Very discrete, gentle "adjustment" to flat while maintaining lip angles which should support and lie flat on the top of the round should fix it. I'm going to try it with prejudice and caution and do before/after pics if I can with known-good mags for comparisons. A very very slightly flattening of the "bulge" on each lip (and I'm talking not even a mm of gap.. probably in the thousanths).

    Once satisfied with hand tested round ejection for good single rounds with no multi-ejects or crazy angles, test load JHP's, then test fire once satisfied.

    Is messing around with it worth the risk.. not really. But it's a good opportunity to learn how something so simple can separate a good mag from a bad one. So hooray if I can fix it. For info purposes only.. anyone else mess with their mags, it's at their own risk. Contact your local qualified gunsmith for professional assistance.

    But yeah new OEM mags are the way to go if the "stamping" into proper shape is better.

    By the way about those OEM Sig magazines... They're Mec-Gar's as I read somewhere.. But these are marked "Mec-Gar Made in Italy" One says P226 9mm, the other just says Sig Sauer. Interesting.

  21. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by babs View Post
    Compared the "offending" mag to the others..
    There is slight but apparent angle difference in top round as I expected and I know why. As the round begins it's push forward to exit, this is where it gets interesting.

    Is messing around with it worth the risk.. not really. But it's a good opportunity to learn how something so simple can separate a good mag from a bad one. So hooray if I can fix it. For info purposes only.. anyone else mess with their mags, it's at their own risk. Contact your local qualified gunsmith for professional assistance.

    By the way about those OEM Sig magazines... They're Mec-Gar's as I read somewhere.. But these are marked "Mec-Gar Made in Italy" One says P226 9mm, the other just says Sig Sauer. Interesting.
    Nothing ventured, nothing gained. If you don't attempt, it's trash and if you screw it up further it's trash so have a bit of fun and learn something new. You could end up with a good mag. Mec-Gar makes great mags.

    I'm curious which is the defective mag. The one marked 9MM or the generic version.

    Did you contact the vendor and if so is he willing to stand close behind his product or is he so far behind that he is invisible?


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