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Discussion Starter #1
We have a steady stream of first-timers who come onto the forum complaining that their Walther pistol does not work as they think it should. They ask for diagnosis.

By far the preponderance of them do not think it's important to disclose:

1) the exact location and attitude of the cartridge or cartridge case that is involved in the stoppage;

2) a specific description of the ammunition being used, by manufacturer and load, and

3) any modifications they have made to the gun just before the malfunction occurs.

In the absence of such information, it's fruitless to attempt a diagnosis, and a waste of everyone's time.

M
 

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While I agree with this, my feeling is that often these posters don't know what information would be useful in getting a better answer and need guidance in how to diagnose the signs and symptoms of the problem.

They often need us to tell them what to look at and how to look.
 

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What's wrong with my gun?

98.5% operator error. The other 1.5% is reserved for failures. (High Point comes immediately to mind..)


What's my gun worth?

Whatever an individual can scrape out of his wallet, minus the attached lint, and gas money needed to propel your vehicular conveyance to the rendezvous point.



My gun won't shoot, what do I do?


Squeeze the trigger, dumbarse...


;)
These answers ought to be the first fix(es) attempted. :D
 

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Well let's see. I'm new to guns so I gave it "a good cleaning". Which translates to I took it all apart and now it's a mess. I never read the manual but shot a friends gun with "hot" ammo, now my gun don't work. I "upgraded" the trigger and some other parts now my gun don't work. You get the picture. :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
... You get the picture. :rolleyes:
I think both you and T-bird missed my point. I was not exasperated about manifestations of stupidity. On the contrary: let's assume that the malfunction being complained of is a real one, the cause of which is not obvious.

My complaint was (and is) with introductory posts that do not contain fundamental information necessary to obtain effective assistance; sometimes clues vital to an accurate diagnosis are not disclosed until much later, often only after considerable prodding.

For example there does not seem to be an appreciation that handguns operate semi-automatically solely from the energy generated by a fired cartridge, and that ammunition is not generic like 87-octane gasoline.

Olsoul's response above was in large measure correct: some posters just don't know what information would be helpful and need guidance. Others do know but don't stop to think that we are not mind-readers.

Which is why I identified three areas of most-frequent omission.

M
 

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I understood your meaning, it was just my usual (misplaced) humor getting the best of me...

It is most helpful not to mention much quicker to help diagnose issues when the customer/forum poster regales with as much detail as possible, WRT the issue(s).

My car makes a funny noise.

It's pretty vague, and as a (former) mechanic, it can (and did) drive me up the wall trying to figure out exactly what and where the noise was and coming from.


Sometimes it was made easier: "my car makes a funny noise from the left front when I use the brakes and it's raining/wet"

(those type are about one in 25) :)

In short, be very descriptive of all the problems, issues, things that could lead up to the issue(s), and what you've tried to correct them thus far.


Please n' thanks.. ;)
 

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I agree with you MG. The specifics of a firearm malfunction could possibly lead to the under lying problem. But until that information is given, one can only speculate.
 

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The hardest part of getting some of my customers to explain the problem to me is to have them get to the point.

I don't need to know that they were on their way to see their cousin because his daughter graduated from the community college and we stopped for a Dairy Queen shake on the way and... yadda yadda...

The facts ma'am, just the facts.

After all these years I should know better.
 

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Know what you mean.

I used to work for AR15 company, and I would have to deal with the malfunctioning returns. If the customer sent a description of the problem with their gun, it was usually vague at best, and just like when I was in the U.S. Army doing weapons repair. "WON'T FEED. WON'T FIRE.'


Can't fix stupid.-Ron White
 

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It's a ubiquitous problem. I have had lots of jobs over the many decades and quite a few involved problem resolution. The Id ten "T" issue was the common factor among them all.

One of the most memorable was while I was selling and servicing the early business computers. One of our clients was a bank and their printer stopped working yet again in payroll. No one was very happy.

"Get over here and fix it and don't tell me to see if it's plugged in. We need it NOW!"

Well, this was about the fifth time that the printer had stopped working and in every case the issue had been that it was unplugged from the wall. But out I go, and I'm greeted by the bank manager who welcomes me with "And don't just push some button and expect us to pay for a service call!"

A quick look at the lights on the printer and sure enough, the problem is No Power. Plug sitting on floor at the base of the machine. I call the manage over and point at the plug and was told "It wasn't there before you got here!"

So plug it back in and suggest that maybe they should move the printer in front of the outlet so it does not get unplugged again but was informed that they needed to get to the outlet to charge their pagers.


Hmmmmm!
 

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Happened to re-read this with the new posts, and was reminded of a late hunting buddy's response to the cause of all malfunctions: "The part that makes it work is broken."
Moon
 

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-- the absence of info sometimes is, itself, revealing and often leads to very basic causes/fixes: ammo; maintenance; improper assembly (recoil spring), etc.
-- more seasoned gun owners and/or forum members know what info to provide. less seasoned owners and/or forum members will always need to be prompted and once they are "mentored" they will be replaced by others needing mentoring.
-- asking for help while at the same time declaring what the problem is NOT, often delays isolating the root cause.
-- finally, a common false assumption is to believe that all Walther pistol models within a given variant (ZM / Ulm / IA / S&W / FS) have the same reliability (or lack of.)
 

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A quick look at the lights on the printer and sure enough, the problem is No Power. Plug sitting on floor at the base of the machine. I call the manage over and point at the plug and was told "It wasn't there before you got here!"


Hmmmmm!
Hahaha, when I got back from Nam I got a job for a short time at service station. Mini skirts were in and there were some clean windshields that left that station....but I digress. A woman called and said her car wouldn't start. I went over a couple of things with her. No, she had done all of that. I told her I would be out and there was a $30 service call charge. OK she said. I drive over, get in the car, notice the gear shift lever hasn't been placed in park but is still in drive. I shift it to park and of course the car starts right up. "I'm not paying for this, you didn't have to do any work," she said. I had to drive over here, look at your car and I told you the charge would be $30." I'm not paying. Fine, if you have problems in the future...don't call us. 1917
 
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