Problem with hold open on a Star .45 compact


June 22, 2004, 10:03 PM
I've been going to the range with my neighbor, and we just started having trouble with his .45ACP Star pistol. When firing, the slide does not stay open after the last round, and that's using three different mags all doing the same.

The first 50 rounds had no problem, but then all of the sudden it wouldn't stay open. We cleaned it, checked it over, and can't figure it out. Anything I can look for/check to clear it up?

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June 22, 2004, 10:46 PM
Third Rail; You might have already tried this, but in case you haven't, here it goes. With you pistol unloaded, and the chamber clear, with the silde closed, insert an empty magazine. Now withdraw the slide to the rear, and check to see if the magazine's follower is engaging the slide stop lug. The follower should be pushing up on the slide stop lug, causing it to rise, and thereby engaging the slide's stop notch on the slide. You might waqnt to check the slide's stop notch, to see if it has a rounded corner, or any grit lodged on the recess area. Weak Magazine springs will also contribute to poor slide stop engagment by the follower.

June 22, 2004, 10:49 PM
That works. When I insert an empty mag and pull the slide back, it locks back.

It just doesn't work when firing. :confused:

June 22, 2004, 11:01 PM
Third Rail; Do you have a factory stock recoil spring?

June 23, 2004, 06:41 AM
Look for wear on the slide stop.

Either on the area where the stop engages the slide or where the stop engages the follower.

With the slide locked back, magazine out, if you smack the butt hard with your other hand does the slide drop?

June 23, 2004, 05:28 PM
It's all factory springs, and I tried the test with a mag out, etc.

It didn't close. I don't know if that's good or bad.

Perhaps all of the mags have bad springs??

June 23, 2004, 08:38 PM
Under powered springs can be the culprit to many problems associated with things that happen during recoil. The impact of the slide on recoil, with an under powered recoil spring can cause the slide stop to disengage on the last round, resulting in a failure to lock. Weak magazine springs can also contribute to this, as you have already mentioned, but it will also cause the bullets to nose dive on feeding.

June 23, 2004, 08:55 PM
Using FMJ, so I haven't noticed any nosediving. I think I'm going to get a new magazine and try that.

N.M. Edmands
June 23, 2004, 10:13 PM
NOT trying to be a smart aleck here, but have someone stand [ safely ] to your left rear and watch your hands/pistol . Sometimes I find myself lightly riding the slide stop W/ my thumb.

June 23, 2004, 10:17 PM
Oh... I hadn't thought of that. I'll check next time I go to the range.

July 1, 2004, 04:44 PM
UPDATE: Not only was I slightly limp wristing on my two hand hold (not the one handed), I had my thumb on the slide stop, pushing down slightly due to my grip. Mystery solved, right? Wrong.

I fixed these problems, tried a brand new production mag, and the same thing happens: the slide WILL NOT lock back with an empty mag after firing, yet it still locks when manually pulled back on an empty.

Any more ideas?

July 2, 2004, 10:59 PM
I had this problem with two pistols. One was my Beretta 92fs, I found that I was riding the slide release with my support hand.:o The other was my Star B from 1945. It did it a few times for different reasons. At first it was the mag not engaging the slide stop, I just bent the follower up a little bit and it worked. The second time it was too much dirt and not enough lube. Dirt collects in the parts and makes it much harder for it to engage. Weak mag spring may be the problem but since it happens with all three mags and the problems just started happening (I assume), I would look elsewhere.

My guess is that it is just dirty. Try using break cleaner to blast the gunk out and then spray some oil into the parts.

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