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S&W 40 cal Witness Semi-Auto

Discussion in 'The Ask the Pros & What's It Worth? Forum' started by firekidd, May 27, 2011.

  1. firekidd

    firekidd New Member

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    I acquired this semi a while back and was trying to locate information on the pistol. When was it made, take down procedure, any things I should know about this as far as problems ect...
    on the left side it reads Witness EAA-COCOA-FLA the right side reads CAL 40S&W CAT 9338 AE70953
    I am assuming that the AE70953 i s the serial number. On the grip it reds TANFOGLIO and I was told this was the manufacturer


    Any help or direction to a site with the information would be helpful
    Last edited: May 27, 2011
  2. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    Can't help with the date. But with those markings I'm reasonably sure that it was made after 1995.
    S/N is AE70953, as you suspected.
    European American Armory is the importer, manufaturer is F.TANFOGLIO in Italia.
    Take down:
    1. Lock the slide back and drop the magazine.
    2. Inspect chamber to make sure there is no cartridge in it.
    3. Push the slide back until the two "witness" marks on the left rear of the frame and slide line up (marks are scribed vertical lines or, in your case, are probably small, circular depressions.
    4. Push the Slide lock/take down pin in from the right side - you may need to use a piece of wood if the gun is still tight.
    5. Pull the td pin out and remove the slide towards the front.
    6. Turn slide with bottom upwards - push recoil spring towards muzzle, slightly until you can free the guide rod from the recess in the barrel lug - CAUTION - there is conserable pressure contained in the compressed spring, if it leaves your fingers it will fly quite a ways, unless it is stopped by your eye or other portion of your face.
    7. Remove spring and guide rod from slide, tip slide slightly downward at the muzzle until barrel slides towards front, then lift barrel from the slide.
    8. Reassemble in reverse order.

    I've owned 4 Tanfoglio WITNESS pistols (still have one in full size .45 AUTO), bought all NIB and on all of them the feed ramp needed a bit of hand polishing to help reliable feeding - did this rather than shooting a few hundred rounds to break-in. Also, two of the pieces a 9mm and the .45 needed stronger recoil springs to prevent FTF problems.
    One broken in - all four were fabulous shooters and very accurate.
    The WITNESS Line is a licensed variation of the CZ-75. They can be carried cocked and locked with a loaded chamber (single action), or with the hammer down on a loaded chamber (double action first shot). One major difference between these and the CZ-75 line, is that the frame mounted safety can be applied with the hammer down. There are examples with a slide mounted decocking safety.
    Very nice, well made guns with the ergonomic grip of the CZ75 but at 2/3rd the initial cost. The WITNESS line has blossomed to include a variety of competition guns and polymer framed pieces - most will have the Wonder finish, which is a baked, hard chrome plating which gives them a stainless look, but is harder.
    IMG_2597.jpg
    IMG_2597_2.jpg
    Last edited: May 27, 2011
  3. bluzmeister

    bluzmeister New Member

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    Hello,

    I just came across your post while doing a search for images of the slide lock release lever for the full size EAA Witness line. I hate the current design that has practically no grip and almost non-existant leverage. I was planning to have a machine shop modify mine by grinding it down welding some steel to it and extending and curving it under the safety with some added curved out thumb area. I was surprised to see what I imagined in my mind's eye as exactly what I'd like on my EAA Woitness 45/22 combo in your post! I wonder if this release would fit my gun and whether it's still available to order? If you check the EAA website parts list for full size Witness models, it just shows the current crappy slide stop release lever. Just do a search for EAA Witness FulL size images and you'll see what the current lousy lever looks like.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2012
  4. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    bluzmeister,
    The slide release lever is not original to the gun. It came off of a EAA/Tanfoglio FAB 92 9mm. The FAB (Foreign American Brands - weird huh?) was a short lived series that nearly duplicated the standard WITNESS, but meant to meet the needs of LE Agencies. That FAB had the extended release lever and a slide mounted Decocking safety. Other than that, everything else was identical in operation. I took the extended lever off of that and replaced it with the "standard" when I sold the FAB - actutally made 100 bucks more than I paid - bought a CZ75B. My FAB was Nickel Steel. Blah blah - the upshoot is - I have no idea where to get one or if anyone makes them. Sorry.
  5. bluzmeister

    bluzmeister New Member

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    Thanks for the reply and info. Interestingly, I also recently had purchased the CZ75B brand new in satin nickel having always liked the CZ series 9mm's (impulse buy...), but sold it right after I bought it since I was going to have to be buying three different cartridges (22, .45 and 40 cal S&W) if I kept it so I sold it for what I paid for it and bought the EAA Witness 45/22 combo as I already have a personal carry 45 auto ultra compact (Bersa Thunder Pro .45). When I got the EAA, it was not the design I thought I was getting. It came with a Picatinny rail. (Mixed feelings about that..
    What I wanted:[​IMG]

    What I got:
    [​IMG]

    Did you use the slide stop release on the CZ-75B? If not, would you consider parting with it?
  6. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    I used it on the .45 Witness as pictured above. I swapped from the FAB 9mm to the Witness. Sorry.
  7. bluzmeister

    bluzmeister New Member

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    Can you tell me if your FAB 92 was the one in this detailed owner's manual:https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&...LTEwz4&sig=AHIEtbQ7bKkpABla3wJrSfAgI6GrLYptkg

    I'm trying to find just the slide stop pin for the FAB 92 for my EAA Witness 45 /22 combo, however the description for this pistol shows three pieces. The pin, slide stop pin spring, and slide stop pin spring pin. Also I see that ths pistol has the safety on the slide. Anyway, I'd like to know if your pistol had the three parts, but that you were able to use just the main pin on the EAA Witness 45 or did you have to use all three parts if yours in fact had three parts? I just want to make sure I know the correct pistol and part number in the event I'm able to find parts for the FAB 92 somewhere (maybe a gunsmith like Gunsmoke - or even Tanfoglio), although Tanfoglio still hasn'tt replied to my email from weeks ago. Thanks in advance!
  8. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    bluzmeister - Yes it is. Part 18.1 (if I read that correctly).
  9. 3/2 STA SS

    3/2 STA SS Active Member

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    I would love one in .40.....had the Baby Eagle in 9mm. That is a great weapon.
  10. bluzmeister

    bluzmeister New Member

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    Thanks for confirming the part #. Did yours have the three parts or just the one? I emailed E.A.A with the picture of the F.A.B. 92 detailing the slide stop pin desired and part number shown (18.1), as well as the E.A.A. Witness slide stop pin that I did not want sent in its place (they use the same part number for the full size E.A.A. Witness line). They replied that that it's the correct number and included a price plus shipping, but didn't absolutely confirm that the F.A.B. 92 style slide stop pin is what I would get. I replied that I needed absolute confirmation on the desired part being what I would get and no reply. They replied in less than a day on my first inquiry. I'll bet they were just gonna send the EAA Witness pin and leave me stuck paying shipping costs both ways having to return the undesired part. I called and tried to get someone in parts, but no luck so I talked to a gal in sales and she said they would only be able to sell EAA parts. So not quite sure what to make of that first inquiry email reply as I was very clear and had photos and all.

    UPDATE!!! Got a hold of a much better sales rep than the first I spoke with today and she knew exactly what I wanted (and was very helpful versus the first gal just saying some reheearsed line about what is available). This gal named Dawn, described the F.A.B. 92 slide stop pin as the "dog leg" version pin and said "I know the part you need". Very nice person and got it ordered right then with her as well. Made my day! So if you ever need this part, call EAA and ask for sales rep Dawn and for the 'dog leg' slide stop pin. $46.00 w/shipping and some might say a bit pricey but for that price versus constant aggravation and pain ( I mean real pain), from trying to release the slide with EAA Witness' current version atrocious flat no-grip / no leverage slide stop pin release is a bargain to me!
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2012
  11. bluzmeister

    bluzmeister New Member

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    I am one happy camper as of today! Got my dog-leg style slide stop release pin and I can now release the slide with my shooting hand whereas with the original current design pin, I could barely release it with my free hand. That was a real pain...literally. It's a breeze now! The only bad thing is the old lever left a scratch mark on the frame that's visible now, but the trade-off was worth it. So here's my newly modified EAA Witness .45/.22 combo ready for the range!

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
  12. Jim Hauff

    Jim Hauff New Member

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    Outstanding.
    Glad to have helped out - nice gun - enjoy shooting. The "dog-leg" shurely doo make a difference in slide release. Everything seems to come with the Picatinney rails on them nowadays. I just can't abide holding a lit flash light in front of my face in the dark trying to get a sight picture on someone/thing that may want to kill me. Old habits die hard.
    Enjoy, thanks for the undate.
  13. 3/2 STA SS

    3/2 STA SS Active Member

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    Me either...not one flashlight on any of my weapons.
  14. bluzmeister

    bluzmeister New Member

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    Yeah you did, and I appreciate it. Also, I'm not at all happy I got the Picatinny rail version when it arrived from Smokin' Guns since the picture on the website didn't have the rail. Like you said, seems like everything comes with that rail now, but the websites haven't updated the pics. See my previous post above with pics showing what I wanted versus what I got. I'll learn to live with it I guess...or have it machined the heck off if I can't get it to smoothly pull out of a holster!!!;)
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2012
  15. bluzmeister

    bluzmeister New Member

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    Hello Jim,

    Haven't been on here for a while. Had lumbar spinal fusion surgery and other things going on and well, time just slips by. Since posting here about the slide catch pin issue, I've purchased (and subsequently sold) two full sized steel EAA Witnesses and was able to special order two dog leg pins for them, but never got around to installing them before selling the guns.

    If anyone is interested in them, post here. They are new in the EAA bag with insert label and outer bag label with item number etc. These are great as you know and I already have one on my 999119 combo as shown above. I thought a couple of my firearms had been stolen including the combo and bought two Witnesses to replace what I thought was stolen. I just forgot that I had changed where I was keeping them (and I was ill and we had a death in the family at Christmastime when I relocated the guns so had a lot on my mind), but I later found what I thought was stolen, leaving me with two more .45 Witnesses than I could use. So now maybe I can help someone else have a great mod to their EAA, CZ or other similar firearm.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2013
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