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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I picked up my new Fort Smith made PPK around Thanksgiving. I’ve done a fair amount of research on this forum and others, trying to answer this question. Any search for passive hammer block, passive safety, etc yields many results, none of which answer my question.

I read a lot of reports about people having the known issue with damage or cracking of the safety drum, presumably by decocking without easing the hammer down. What I understand is that this issue occurs because the hammer slaps down on the drum, over time stressing this drum.

On my PPK, it doesn’t appear that the hammer touches the drum during a decocking, as it is blocked by a passive firing block, which is retracted when the trigger is pulled all the way to the rear. With the hammer fully at rest after a decocking, it is at rest on the block, with noticeable space between the hammer and the drum.

My question is this. How could the safety drum be stressed in such a manner, if the hammer is not making contact with the drum at any point during the decocking. You can see in my picture (if I posted it correctly) the hammer block (red) and the channel in the hammer that the hammer block fits into (blue).

Am I missing something here? How could decocking the gun cause a “slap” to the safety drum when it doesn’t make contact except in the case of firing? Is there just enough slop in the system that it is able to make contact from the inertia of the hammer as it falls?

Added a pic of the gun with my Hogue grips. It took a substantial amount of filing to make them fit and they don’t work with the pinky rest magazines. I like the way they look but I’m not sure if I’ll keep them on.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
when you move the safety lever on a cocked hammer, the hammer hits the drum.
It does look like it hits, I filmed a slow motion video of dropping the hammer via the safety and it moves all the way down, but then back to a resting position off the drum. It is possible to press the hammer forward a small amount when it is uncocked and make it contact the drum. I wonder if the spring resistance of the hammer block slows it down to any degree or if we should expect the drum cracking issue to be just as prevalent on the new guns as older PPK models.
 

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It does look like it hits, I filmed a slow motion video of dropping the hammer via the safety and it moves all the way down, but then back to a resting position off the drum. It is possible to press the hammer forward a small amount when it is uncocked and make it contact the drum. I wonder if the spring resistance of the hammer block slows it down to any degree or if we should expect the drum cracking issue to be just as prevalent on the new guns as older PPK models.
I always keep my thumb on the hammer when dry firing or decocking with the safety lever to soften the blow. Why put unnecessary stress on the parts?
 

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... I wonder if the spring resistance of the hammer block slows it down to any degree or if we should expect the drum cracking issue to be just as prevalent on the new guns as older PPK models.
Who said it was "prevalent"?

M
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Who said it was "prevalent"?

M
I suppose one could take issue with the word prevalent, but it does seem to be a commonly acknowledged issue based on my readings here and elsewhere. I see a lot of discussion about riding the hammer down while decocking and I suppose I should start doing that. I am just curious if this same weakness was manifest in the new production PPK’s as well, since it seems the hammer block at least partially cushions the blow to the drum.
 

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In PP-series Walther pistols, the passive trigger-actuated hammer block mounted in the frame is independent from and unrelated to the hammer-blocking function of the manual safety/decocking lever mounted in the slide.

The former blocks the hammer only when the hammer is at rest, i.e., forward in its "rebound" position. As the hammer is drawn back to the cocked position, the block rides the sear and moves upward about 75% out of its blocking position; the last 25% is completed by rearward motion of the trigger to fire.

In contrast, the manual safety, when applied, captures the firing pin and rotates the drum to intrude into the hammer slot, so that when the decocking lever releases the hammer, the hammer falls on the left and right buttresses of the drum and is blocked from reaching the firing pin. This can be observed very clearly if one holds back the hammer and rotates the safety lever; it has nothing to do with the operation of the passive hammer block.

M
 

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The safety drum issue has been beaten like a rented mule here on several occasions.
On the one hand, it seems prudent to ease the hammer down when decocking.
On the other, the drum does take a whack every time the gun is fired, albeit on a broader face, and with some slight cushioning from the firing pin.
So, ease the hammer down, and don't worry about it otherwise. The drums crack, but not often.
Moon
 
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