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Description of the“ trouble“ with my Walther P4
The gun is unloaded, no magazine in, the slide is in the back (locked) position, hold by the slide-lock lever. To prepare the gun for shooting I inserted the loaded mag and – as trained with my SIG P220 – I gave a light hit on the mag bottom to ensure the mag is properly locked. When doing so, the slide unlocks unexpected and load the gun, without touching the slide-lock lever. This was not normal for me!
So I did some investigations and found out, that:
1. The slide didn’t release when an empty mag is inserted, also very strong hits on the mag bottom wouldn’t release ist.
2. The slide released when a loaded mag (I took inert rounds for testing, same dimensions as the 9 mm Parabellum rounds) is inserted and a light hit is applied.
3. The slide didn’t release when a loaded mag is smoothly inserted. After smooth insert oft he mag, a hit on the bottom released the slide again.
4. The slide released when no mag is in and light hits are applied.
5. I dismantled the grips and checked the slide-lock lever spring and the slide-lock lever it self, no findings.
I’m very happy with the accuracy of this gun an I wouldn’t miss it, so did anybody have an idea if this behaviour is normal or if not how I can solve the problem.
Thanks to the Walther Community

Vaempi58
 

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Are you sure the P-4 is not designed to release the slide and load a round from the newly inserted loaded magazine? I don't have a P-4 so I can not test your issue directly but my Mauser HSc locks bac after the last round is fired and then upon loading a loaded magazine it closes the slodeand loads a new round.
 

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Description of the“ trouble“ with my Walther P4...I dismantled the grips and checked the slide-lock lever spring and the slide-lock lever it self, no findings....


First make certain that the spring is correctly installed and not upside down. It is correct when its arms extend from the bottom of the mounting stud, not from the top. If the orientation is correct and the spring is not obviously bent or damaged, the engagement surfaces between the lever and the slide might be worn and rounded off; if so, try replacing the lever.

Failing any of the above, just don't smack the floorplate, and you won't have the problem.

M
 

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Are you sure the P-4 is not designed to release the slide and load a round from the newly inserted loaded magazine? I don't have a P-4 so I can not test your issue directly but my Mauser HSc locks bac after the last round is fired and then upon loading a loaded magazine it closes the slodeand loads a new round.

Walther's do not operate like Mausers (or early HKs, my HP4 operated the same way as my Mauser ). The slide is supposed to stay open after loading a new mag until the slide is racked or the slide release is pulled. I personally rack the slide on mine , I like to think it cuts down on wear of the edge of the slide lock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Here is a picture, I think the spring is correctly installed. Please crosscheck. If ok, the next step I will replace the slide-lock lever.
I keep you informed, thanks

@MGMike

You see, smack the floorplate was really well trained in the army. You do it automatically ...
 

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It looks OK to me, Vaempi58. Here: I just grabbed my P.38 (same design) and took a picture of the spring orientation for you:



I might be something to focus on the corners of the slide lock lever for wear or rounding of the interface.

-Pilotsteve
 

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Vaempi58, The spring is installed correctly. Check the lever next, it might be excessively worn.

On your photo, it looks like there is a lot of powder residue/crud on the recoil spring guides. Or it may just be artifacts in the photo.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
@jt1968
I can ease you, it is the good old so called "Automatic Grease", used in the Swiss Army. I think it is a good stuff. But you are right, a little too much ... :)
 

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I returned to your initial post and read it more carefully. Do I understand correctly that this malfunction does not occur if the magazine is empty?

Next question: does it occur if you use live ammo -- not your dummy rounds?

Finally, are you using the same magazine, and one only, to lock open the slide? What happens if you lock the slide open manually, by pushing up the lever?

M
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
MGMike
Yes, when the magazine is empty, it does not occur.
I found out the effect when I was on a shooting range, with live ammo. An other, more expierienced shooter made a crosscheck with both magazines (I have two), same findings.
For the investigation at home I used dummy rounds due to safety reasons, same findings, with both of the magazines.
I have no problem to lock the slide open manually using the slide-lock lever, it works perfectly.
I think the next step will be to replace the slide-lock lever.

But to all of you, I thank you very much for your ideas and helpful hints. I keep you informed, first I have to purchase a new lever.

vaempi58
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi Folks
Today I received some spare parts for the Walther P38 (post WWII)/P1/P4. I replaced the slide-lock lever of my P4, now the slide doesn't release even when smacking hard to the mag bottom - as we expected. The edge of the old slide-lock lever was rounded. Good experience for me and it is a pleasure to share this with the community in this Forum.
So, thank you for your hints and tips

Heinz
 
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