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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,

I know there has been much ink spilled over "polishing the feed ramp" of an Interarms .380 PPK; however, I want to ask if anyone knows if it is possible to undo this massacre of a job on a PPK/S I recently received as a gift. Chambering the first round is always a chore with this particular pistol. However, after the first round is down the line, the gun fires all rounds, even FMJ and hollow points, without a single hitch. Having said this, I want to restore the firearm to working order where I can count on racking the slide without having to worry if the round will get stuck in the ceiling of the barrel or not.

I called up Interarms and they seemed a bit clueless as to whether they can do anything or not. I went to see a local gunsmith today and he was stumped. Any ideas?

Please see some up-close pictures for a better idea of what I mean:

97703

97704

97705

97706
 

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Hello everyone,

I know there has been much ink spilled over "polishing the feed ramp" of an Interarms .380 PPK; however, I want to ask if anyone knows if it is possible to undo this massacre of a job on a PPK/S I recently received as a gift. Chambering the first round is always a chore with this particular pistol. However, after the first round is down the line, the gun fires all rounds, even FMJ and hollow points, without a single hitch. Having said this, I want to restore the firearm to working order where I can count on racking the slide without having to worry if the round will get stuck in the ceiling of the barrel or not.

I called up Interarms and they seemed a bit clueless as to whether they can do anything or not. I went to see a local gunsmith today and he was stumped. Any ideas?

Please see some up-close pictures for a better idea of what I mean:

View attachment 97703
View attachment 97704
View attachment 97705
View attachment 97706

Darn, that doesn't look good. When you called Interarms, what number did you use? Do you by chance remember who at Interarms you talked to? Was his name Sam maybe?
 

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So how are you racking the first round? (, hammer down)

After shooting the first mag, If you insert a second magazine does the first round load properly when you release the slide?

When I rack my S&W PPK sometimes I don’t pull it back far enough for it to properly load. I blame my weak hands when that happens. I bought a lower power recoil spring and that problem went away. I also bought a hand exerciser.
 

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Trailblazer_32: You should have a gunsmith inspect your pistol to ensure it is safe to fire.

Wildtoad, I think you nailed it. Short racking (by hand) the first round is common with a new 20 pound recoil spring. However, this usually won't happen (as often) on firing because the recoil kicks the slide all the way back (to what would cause slide lock on an empty mag.) A first round (loading) stoppage can also be caused by riding the slide forward instead of letting it slam shut (as it does when firing.)
 

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Welcome Trailblazer. The good news here is that the pistol feeds and functions fine with exception of feeding and chambering the first round. It could be worse, much worse. The problem when you screw around in this area you are working on two critical components....the frame and the barrel...or, essentially the pistol. I think I would try to go at it another direction. The problem with the first round could be the magazine or not pulling the slide all the way rearward and letting it fly...slingshotting we call it.. Have you got another magazine to rule out a mag issue?

Will it feed that first round properly if you just load one round into the mag. If so, chamber that first one that way then eject the mag, load and lock it back in. Further work unless done by a very experienced gunsmith familiar with this make of pistol could ruin the entire firearm. Good luck with it. 1917
 

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Trailblazer you might contact Mike McClellan at http://www.mmgunsmith.com/home.html if you are interested in further pursuit of corrective work on your pistol. Mike is an expert on these and might be able to better advise if you were to e-mail some good photos of the chamber area. Sometimes metal can be built up and re-machined but I have no idea if this is possible for this firearm. Everyone that I've read reports from have been very pleased with both his work and associated costs. 1917
 

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I suggested getting a gunsmith safety inspection because a lot of metal has been removed and you want to be sure a loaded cartridge is still safely supported. Your pistol may be perfectly fine, but ask yourself this - would you ever buy a used pistol that looked like this? And if not, what would be your concern?
 

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The gun essentially runs okay when firing? Is the ejected brass straight, not displaying any odd bulges?
Try that really energetic chambering of the first round; the stiff recoil spring is a challenge.
It may be the bubba-smithing is unsightly but otherwise harmless. If everything checks out, hit it with some cold blue and call it good.
Moon
 

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Yeah. What half moon said.
 
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Discussion Starter #12
So how are you racking the first round? (, hammer down)

After shooting the first mag, If you insert a second magazine does the first round load properly when you release the slide?

When I rack my S&W PPK sometimes I don’t pull it back far enough for it to properly load. I blame my weak hands when that happens. I bought a lower power recoil spring and that problem went away. I also bought a hand exerciser.
Thank you--and to all who replied with the same recommendation--for this advice. The slingshot method works 9/10 times racking the slide, which is far better than practically never racking properly.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Darn, that doesn't look good. When you called Interarms, what number did you use? Do you by chance remember who at Interarms you talked to? Was his name Sam maybe?
I honestly do not remember the name of the gentlemen I spoke with at Interarms. I used 713-476-0888 when I called them.

Interestingly, I did call Walther first; however, Walther directed me to Interarms since their warranty covered Interarms firearms "for only one year" after the new production firearms began assembly (up to 2020 I suppose...however, I'm not sure).
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Welcome Trailblazer. The good news here is that the pistol feeds and functions fine with exception of feeding and chambering the first round. It could be worse, much worse. The problem when you screw around in this area you are working on two critical components....the frame and the barrel...or, essentially the pistol. I think I would try to go at it another direction. The problem with the first round could be the magazine or not pulling the slide all the way rearward and letting it fly...slingshotting we call it.. Have you got another magazine to rule out a mag issue?

Will it feed that first round properly if you just load one round into the mag. If so, chamber that first one that way then eject the mag, load and lock it back in. Further work unless done by a very experienced gunsmith familiar with this make of pistol could ruin the entire firearm. Good luck with it. 1917

Thank you 1917-1911M. It could definitely be much worse. Slingshotting works like a charm the vast majority of the time. I tried using different magazines, cleaned them out and so forth, but was finding the same jammed slide until using the slingshot method. Thank you for the recommendation!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The gun essentially runs okay when firing? Is the ejected brass straight, not displaying any odd bulges?
Try that really energetic chambering of the first round; the stiff recoil spring is a challenge.
It may be the bubba-smithing is unsightly but otherwise harmless. If everything checks out, hit it with some cold blue and call it good.
Moon
Yes, the gun runs fine after that first round. The good news is the bluing looks great on this particular piece and runs fine now using the slingshot method 1911-1917M, Wildtoad and others recommended. Thank you for your help.
 

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Trailblazer you might contact Mike McClellan at http://www.mmgunsmith.com/home.html if you are interested in further pursuit of corrective work on your pistol. Mike is an expert on these and might be able to better advise if you were to e-mail some good photos of the chamber area. Sometimes metal can be built up and re-machined but I have no idea if this is possible for this firearm. Everyone that I've read reports from have been very pleased with both his work and associated costs. 1917
Thank you for recommending Mike McClellan. I'm going to reach out to him just to ask for his opinion on the piece and if it's safe to keep firing...maybe it would be best to let it be and hopefully firing it is not further damaging the ramp.
 

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I doubt you are going to damage the steel ramp....the issue of concern is unsupported brass. By this I mean that the walls of case are supported by the steel chamber which is why regardless of caliber most semi auto pistol disconnect the firing link somewhere....so that the primer isn't struck while the cartridge is not fully chambered. If there is a problem it will sometimes show up as a bulged area on the side of the case...hopefully before one blows out. If you ever see this....it is a serious issue. You don't want any cartridge including .22 lr to blow out the side of the case. Chamber pressures are extreme....20,000 psi and higher.

There was much discussion regarding this with the Ruger LCP. A considerable portion of the case is not supported. Yet few issues were seen. I have a good picture somewhere......somewhere. Just inspect your spent cartridges until you are certain there is no expansion of the cases. 1917

97786


What you never want to see....
 

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What 1917' said; hence my admonition to inspect your fired brass for odd bulges.
While none of us here can give you an absolute assurance without inspecting the pistol and spent brass, barring bulged empties, you should be good to go.
Early Glock .40s (a much higher pressure round than a .32) bulged cases on a regular basis, with an occasional blowout. It's a much less likely case with your gun.
Moon
 
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97787


Above is a .380 fully seated in a Smith and Wesson Bodyguard. As I recall, the Ruger LCP was very similar and there was concern regarding the amount of unsupported brass case this combination of feed ramp and chamber design allowed. I don't remember reading of real issues regarding factory ammo but re-loaders beware. This is what can happen when the entrance to the chamber is ground away....unsupported brass which can and sometimes does blow out with catastrophic results. Eye protection always...any pistol. 1917
 

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Put a bunch of rounds, including my standard .380 reloads, thru' several LCPs, and never encountered the issue. The issue was called 'smileys' on .40 S&W brass, but never encountered it with .380s
Trailblazer, is it possible to judge how much of your case remains unsupported?
Moon
 
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