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light primer strikes - .22 pistol

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by KAS1981, Feb 20, 2012.

  1. KAS1981

    KAS1981 Member

    Jan 9, 2011
    The last time I had my Colt Challenger out, I was getting some light primer strikes. At least one per magazine. I was shooting a mix of Federal & Remington bulk .22LR.

    What would cause this? Cheap ammo? Dirty firing pin channel? A little of both?

    After I got home I stripped the slide and cleaned everything, but I haven't got to shoot it yet.
  2. Powerglide

    Powerglide Member

    Apr 28, 2010
    SW Nations, Oklahoma
    If what you did doesn't help, try flipping the hammer spring around.Sometimes, that helps.I assume the hammer area is free and clean.
  3. BCRider

    BCRider Mentor

    Nov 15, 2008
    Pacific North"Wet" Coast of Canada
    The hammer on that style setup lives down in the lower frame. Flushing out that area of fouling will ensure a snappy travel of the hammer. It doesn't take much drag on the hinge of the hammer to reduce the speed such that there's not enough energy for the firing pin.

    My favourite solution for a "flushing" treatment is the Ed's Red mixture. It's a solvent soup with some thin oil in it. Does an excellent job of dissolving fouling and leaves behind a light oil film for protection of the metal after it drains and dries. Just right for ensuring a snappy hammer action.

    If you still have troubles then I'd suspect that the main spring is becoming fatigued and no longer has the power to push the hammer with a snappy action.

    By all means also check the firing pin channel as mentioned above. Any buildup in the hammer or the firing pin channel can produce enough drag to slow things down. The primers work best from the shock of the hit, not the pressure. So a snappy drag free system from end to end is needed to ensure a good FAST hit.
  4. CZguy

    CZguy Senior Member

    Mar 25, 2004
    BCRider beat me to it, with a definitive post on light primer strikes.

    Follow that advice and you will fix it.
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Sep 17, 2007
    Eastern KS
    I agree a good mainspring housing cleaning is probably in order.

    However the Woodsman housing doesn't lend itself too well to flushing out with it assembled.

    It would be best to knock out the retainer pin and take the mainspring & mainspring cap out of the housing and gofer it with a bore brush & solvent.

    Heres a schematic:


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