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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,
I just obtained a Manurhin PP at my LGS. It’s in very good condition, and came with one magazine. I was so excited to make the deal that I didn’t examine it as closely at the dealer as I probably should have....:)
The question I have is this; when the slide is racked on the empty magazine that came with the pistol, it locks back correctly. But, when the mag release is pressed and the mag is ejected, The slide slams forward.
The supplied magazine has no markings on it, so I’m thinking it’s an aftermarket magazine, if that makes any difference.
Any ideas about what might be going on would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
 

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Can you post a photo of the magazine? I wish that you could try a known working magazine (like a ppks mag since those are plentiful) to rule a magazine issue out. It could be worn mag lips (left side edge), worn mag spring, damaged follower, etc. But it could also be a problem with a sear or the spring under the slide stop if it’s not being pushed up high enough to fully engage/stay engaged when mag is released. The easiest thing to troubleshoot first is the magazine...
 

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The early magazines were either marked "France", Manurhin, or completely unmarked. The quality of the magazine itself will tell the tale.
Since the magazine hold open works on an empty magazine but the gun is releasing the slide when the mag is removed, I would have a close look at the mag hold open lever, remove it and clean the slot.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Attached are some pics of the magazine. I’ve ordered a Mec-Gar magazine to see if that does any better.
When this mag is inserted and the slide locked back, I found that I can push the slide lock lever farther up
using hemostats through the ejection port. When I do this, the slide will stay locked back when I eject the mag.
93555
93556
93557
93558
 

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Attached are some pics of the magazine. I’ve ordered a Mec-Gar magazine to see if that does any better.
When this mag is inserted and the slide locked back, I found that I can push the slide lock lever farther up
using hemostats through the ejection port. When I do this, the slide will stay locked back when I eject the mag. View attachment 93555 View attachment 93556 View attachment 93557 View attachment 93558
Is your gun a .32? I’m asking because .32 mags in a .380 gun are known to have ‘random lock back’ problems due to the follower and mag design. I’d bet it’s either that or the tiny spring assoc with internal lock needs to be replaced but ... the new mag will definitely help with diagnosis.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yes, the pistol is a .32. I really hope it’s a mag issue and not the hold open lever and/or spring.
 

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... I’d bet it’s either that or the tiny spring assoc with internal lock needs to be replaced but ...
Internal lock? The ejector does double duty as the slide hold open lever. It has a small spring that pulls it downwards, the follower of the magazine is supposed to push it up. If there is dirt in it, or the spring isn't seated well, the upward movement can be impeded.

Grayarrow, the magazine that you pictured looks good. I would recommend to take the slide off and have a good look at the ejector. With the slide off, you can c heck the lift of the ejector by the mag follower and see how much higher you can manually manipulate it to move.
 

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Internal lock? The ejector does double duty as the slide hold open lever. It has a small spring that pulls it downwards, the follower of the magazine is supposed to push it up. If there is dirt in it, or the spring isn't seated well, the upward movement can be impeded.

Grayarrow, the magazine that you pictured looks good. I would recommend to take the slide off and have a good look at the ejector. With the slide off, you can c heck the lift of the ejector by the mag follower and see how much higher you can manually manipulate it to move.
Yeah, the internal slide lock = ejector hold open function. That’s how it is on every one of my PP models. If the gun is clean and the mag functions properly, he is going to have to take that gun apart. I can’t tell if a magazine is ‘good’ or properly functioning from looking at photos...
 

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Yes, the pistol is a .32. I really hope it’s a mag issue and not the hold open lever and/or spring.
Yes I hope it’s a mag issue too! If so it’s an easy fix and all you’d have to do is polish the bevel on the new mag to get it into the gun. I recently bought new mags and couldn’t get them to slide into my French/German guns... had to polish them first.

If the new mag solves your issue, you might just need new mag springs for your old mag. Its follower looks decent but it’s springs might be too weak to push follower up enough to keep the lever up inside the gun when mag dropped.
 

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We had a recent thread regarding a transition period of early pistols where the follower held the slide open...a month ago or so. Release the mag and the slide slammed shut. What is show is not one of the mags associated with that era pistol. This was news to me and it was before Walther made modifications to the frame, ejector, etc. On you pistol the slide should not close when the mag is dropped.

I'd vote for step one being a careful inspection of the current follower, front left corner and the ejector leg it engages before new parts are bought. All that happens is that when the last round is removed from the magazine the left, front edge of the follower is ready to engage the ejector/slide hold open arm. This occurs immediately as the last round presses the slide rearward, the spent case is ejected and before the slide can move forward under power of the recoil spring the rear edge of the ejector pops up in front of the breech face where it catches it holding the slide open. The ejector is constantly under spring pressure to remain in the down position and clear of the slide until the more powerful mag spring acting through the follower pushes it up. There it will remain until the mag is removed or a loaded mag inserted and the slide carefully retracted to release the arm which is being held by friction against the breech face.

All of this is very easily observed if you insert an empty mag, pull the slide rearward while looking in through the ejection port. You should be able to see if the follower is engaging the ejector, lifting it as the slide is fully retracted and if the part securely catches the face of the breech. Like wise you can drop the mag, have a look as you retract the slide to see if the ejector arm drops which will free the slide to close. Neither the rear of the ejector should be worn or damaged or the breech face. You will also be able to see if the follower securely engages the ejector to lift it. 1917



Seeing it all through the ejection port is just this clear. Here the rear end of the ejector/slide hold open arm is well up on the breech face and holding the slide open. You arm may or may not reach this high, doesn't matter but it does need to be at least securely in front of the breech and not barely catching it at the bottom. If the arm isn't being lifted at all with an empty mag inserted then you either have a damaged follower or ejector engagement leg. A careful inspection of the parts should show you.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I cleaned the area around the ejector and the slide where the hold open lever rests against when the mag is empty.
When I removed the slide and inserted a mag, the ejector lever raises up as much as it can...I can’t manually push it up any more.
But when the slide is on and locked back, I can push the lever up a little more.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
We had a recent thread regarding a transition period of early pistols where the follower held the slide open...a month ago or so. Release the mag and the slide slammed shut. What is show is not one of the mags associated with that era pistol. This was news to me and it was before Walther made modifications to the frame, ejector, etc. On you pistol the slide should not close when the mag is dropped.

I'd vote for step one being a careful inspection of the current follower, front left corner and the ejector leg it engages before new parts are bought. All that happens is that when the last round is removed from the magazine the left, front edge of the follower is ready to engage the ejector/slide hold open arm. This occurs immediately as the last round presses the slide rearward, the spent case is ejected and before the slide can move forward under power of the recoil spring the rear edge of the ejector pops up in front of the breech face where it catches it holding the slide open. The ejector is constantly under spring pressure to remain in the down position and clear of the slide until the more powerful mag spring acting through the follower pushes it up. There it will remain until the mag is removed or a loaded mag inserted and the slide carefully retracted to release the arm which is being held by friction against the breech face.

All of this is very easily observed if you insert an empty mag, pull the slide rearward while looking in through the ejection port. You should be able to see if the follower is engaging the ejector, lifting it as the slide is fully retracted and if the part securely catches the face of the breech. Like wise you can drop the mag, have a look as you retract the slide to see if the ejector arm drops which will free the slide to close. Neither the rear of the ejector should be worn or damaged or the breech face. You will also be able to see if the follower securely engages the ejector to lift it. 1917



Seeing it all through the ejection port is just this clear. Here the rear end of the ejector/slide hold open arm is well up on the breech face and holding the slide open. You arm may or may not reach this high, doesn't matter but it does need to be at least securely in front of the breech and not barely catching it at the bottom. If the arm isn't being lifted at all with an empty mag inserted then you either have a damaged follower or ejector engagement leg. A careful inspection of the parts should show you.
Thanks for all this detailed info. The mag that came with the pistol does not push the hold open leg up as much as your illustration shows. It barely engages the breech face unless I manually lever it up some more using surgical clamps.
I’m waiting on another mag to see if it‘S follower will push the Hold open leg up far enough to securely hold the slide back when the empty mag is ejected.
 

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I believe this to be a .380 mag/follower but the operation here is essentially the same, .22, .32 or .380. The follower engages the ejector arm and raises it only with an empty mag and only when the slide is retracted. What you would be looking for is positive engagement of the follower with the ejector arm regardless of caliber.

It doesn't matter if you can lift the arm a bit more, all it has to do is lift high enough to securely catch the breech/slide and not slip down and into the slot below it where it normal rests when functioning as an ejector only. Raising it up is the job of the follower and only when the mag is empty. Due to wear, height of the follower due to lip shape, dirt, etc. the rear of the arm might vary a bit but as long as it sits securely in front of the breech...all should be good....assuming there is no damage or rounding of the steel at the breech or rear of the arm. 1917
 

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I cleaned the area around the ejector and the slide where the hold open lever rests against when the mag is empty.
When I removed the slide and inserted a mag, the ejector lever raises up as much as it can...I can’t manually push it up any more.
But when the slide is on and locked back, I can push the lever up a little more.
Of course the import part is does it work with the slide on. Slide off, "ejector arm held against the left side of the frame" where is sits allows you easy viewing but the real test is with the slide on. You can still look in there an have a look....Get tired of holding that slide, remove the recoil spring, makes life much easier while diagnostic procedures are underway. Be sure to reinstall before firing.

All the follower has to do is lift the ejector arm enough to catch the slide....but, it has to do it very fast. A wimpy, dirty magazine follower/spring might not push it up fast enough. If the empty mag won't lift it high enough or at all then you likely have a follower issue. Who knows what follower might get put in a mag over the years or if someone has been smithin' on it. Just remember, how it is supposed to work is very simple. The pictures above should show you what to look for. Most followers have a wear mark on the front left edge where it engages the steel ejector. It is usually pretty close to the left edge so if someone has been polishing that edge of the follower....they might have removed too much steel. A close inspection will tell. 1917
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Of course the import part is does it work with the slide on. Slide off, "ejector arm held against the left side of the frame" where is sits allows you easy viewing but the real test is with the slide on. You can still look in there an have a look....Get tired of holding that slide, remove the recoil spring, makes life much easier while diagnostic procedures are underway. Be sure to reinstall before firing.

All the follower has to do is lift the ejector arm enough to catch the slide....but, it has to do it very fast. A wimpy, dirty magazine follower/spring might not push it up fast enough. If the empty mag won't lift it high enough or at all then you likely have a follower issue. Who knows what follower might get put in a mag over the years or if someone has been smithin' on it. Just remember, how it is supposed to work is very simple. The pictures above should show you what to look for. Most followers have a wear mark on the front left edge where it engages the steel ejector. It is usually pretty close to the left edge so if someone has been polishing that edge of the follower....they might have removed too much steel. A close inspection will tell. 1917
Thanks again very much for all your detailed information. The ejector in my pistol looks a little different than the one in your pictures.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Finally received a new Mec-Gar 8 round magazine that I’d ordered, inserted it into the pistol, and racked the slide, which held open. When I ejected the magazine the slide stayed open....the first time. Subsequent ejections of this mag resulted in the slide releasing.
I have not fired this pistol at the range yet..I guess that will be the real test of the slide hold open function, but I will say none of the other PPs I’ve had exhibited this behavior when manually charging the slide on an empty mag. Their slides would always stay open when mags were ejected.
 
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