Kimber jamming issues

Discussion in 'The 1911 Forum' started by thunderstruck507, Aug 27, 2007.

  1. thunderstruck507

    thunderstruck507 New Member

    Jan 12, 2006
    OK, so a friend of mine got a brand new Kimber 1911. I forget the model but it has a rail, skeletonized hammer/trigger, and in blue cost him around $900

    He keeps having issues with jams. The magazines are Kimber brand 8round.

    Is it likely just the magazines needing to get broken in and loosen up a bit or is there something else I should tell him to try? I've seen it jam 4 times in 150 rounds.

    And to clarify I do mean jam as in the round fails to chamber, not a stovepipe.
  2. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2003
    Hesperia, CA
    The loading cycle has two stages, obviously. The first is getting the spent cartridge out while the second is getting the new cartridge in. Your friend's gun is doing the first fine and not the second (commonly called failure to feed or FTF).

    It often is the magazine that does not present the round correctly for the slide to strip it off. It could be the spring is not strong enough (stretch the spring to fix) or the mag lips are shaped wrong or the magazine is not fully seated into the frame (it must click into place...judiciously use the palm of the hand like a hammer to seat the mag). Have him try a different magazine.

    It can be the ammo. If the power level of the ammo is too low for the choice of recoil spring then the slide does not travel to the rear far enough to uncover the new cartridge waiting in the magazine and returns to battery empty. A burr on the rails or anything else that hampers the travel of the slide on the rails could keep the slide from getting full travel to the rear. It could also be that the gun is not worn in yet. It takes several hundred rounds to get a tightly fit slide and frame to wear into each other and remove all the high spots that slow the travel of the slide. Lastly is how the gun is being held. If the gun is not resisted in recoil enough the frame and slide travel to the rear in recoil togehter, not opening the gun sufficiently for a round to feed.

    So try a different magazine, different ammo, check out the shooters gun hold and shoot a bunch more ammo through the gun (it can take 500 rounds for a tight gun to wear in). If none of that works inspect the slide and rails for a tight spot (remove the recoil spring and move the slide on the frame with the hammer cocked). Also a change to the next lower level of recoil spring might solve the problem but hold that out for last as the recoil spring protects the gun from getting battered by the recoiling slide.

    Just to cover all the bases the extractor and ejector may be holding the spent cartridge in the chamber area too long and hampering the feeding up of the new round...this is possible but unlikely (??).


  3. thunderstruck507

    thunderstruck507 New Member

    Jan 12, 2006
    lots of good info, and I will pass it along

    I'm willing to bet it ends up being that the gun has tight tolerances and needs to settle in. I went ahead and tried all his mags though my gun without any issues.

    His recoil spring might also be tighter than my taurus so the ammo we both used might not be enjoyed by both guns...

    thanks again!
  4. williamd

    williamd New Member

    Mar 21, 2007
    All good input but I'd be on the horn to Kimber. No reason whatsoever that a new Kimber (or any othter for that matter) should do this. They WILL make it good. Having said that ... I had a Para P-16 that had similar problems. Was a clip lip issue on one of four clips.
  5. torpedoman

    torpedoman New Member

    Aug 26, 2007
    chattaroy wa.
    tighten those tolerances up , that fool browning didn't know what he was doing anyway.
  6. thunderstruck507

    thunderstruck507 New Member

    Jan 12, 2006
    i sense some sarcasm in the last post but dont know what it means as i'm no gun expert, just a gun lover

    i was just curious because its his first 1911 too (he's now an active duty marine working as a recruiter until oct when he goes to finish some training and then become more active duty) and we were just curious, neither of us thought much until I didn't have any of the same issues with my gun, being as his is a kimber and mine is a taurus the tolerance thing would likely explain the issue well

    he prolly only has about 400 rounds through it over the last month
  7. thunderstruck507

    thunderstruck507 New Member

    Jan 12, 2006
    on a side note though my roommates reconditioned sig broke the slide release pin/lever yesterday...he was not happy seeing as how its had under 1500 rounds through it
  8. drobs

    drobs Member

    May 17, 2004
    Chicago burbs
    On the Kimber I would recommend pulling the slide back and letting it release on the 1st round of each magazine till it breaks in. Do this for chambering the 1st round on the range and when the slide locks back. Once the gun is broken in he ought to be able to use the slide lock to chamber a round.

    Also check out the ammo. I have found most of my pistols do not like wolf steel ammo or CCI aluminum ammo. My pistols work best with brass cased ammo. I would also recommend getting new quality mags such as Wilson or Novak mags. The 1 mag ships with Kimber is usually the source of many problems.
  9. Mosin_Nagant_Fan

    Mosin_Nagant_Fan Active Member

    Jan 18, 2007
    Montgomery, AL
    I read in a magazine to clean out and lightly lub new magazines, kinda the same way you should do after using it after a shooting session. Probably should do some slide cleaning, too.
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