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My first gun... A Browning Hi-Power

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Gunsmoker, Sep 29, 2006.

  1. Gunsmoker

    Gunsmoker Well-Known Member

    I just came back from the gun store after the 10 day wait. This is my first gun ever. I got the Browning Hi-Power 9mm Mark III. I've gone through the manual and I've got some questions. I don't really trust the manual because the manual recommends some practices I don't condone (like manually decocking before carry or inserting a mag only with the slide forward.)

    1. The manual recommends that I clean the gun with gun oil before firing. Is this true?

    2. When I routinely clean the gun, what kind of solvent or liquid do I use to clean the inside parts?

    3. What about the outside to keep it looking great? Will the finish still look great if I don't maintain it?

    This is mainly a range gun and home defense so it won't be seeing a holster.

    4. What kind of cleaning supplies do I need?

    5. Is your Hi-Power finnicky about the kind of ammo I feed it?

    6. The manual recommends (It's actually in CAPITAL BOLD RED) that I insert a mag with the slide in the forward (normal) position and then rack the slide back. Did they write this because of liability issues? ... or is okay to insert a loaded mag with the slide back and then slingshot the slide forward?

    7. The manual has a portion that explains how to strip the gun into 4-5 parts. It says that further disassembly is not recommended. I don't plan on taking out the mag safety (the gun is for self-defense) or making any modifications. I just want to keep the gun clean. To keep the gun running smoothly is further disassembly required?

    I'll put up pictures and post a range report after the weekend.
  2. daysleeprx

    daysleeprx Well-Known Member

    1. Probably not, but it's good practice to clean any gun you've just received (new or used) just to make sure everything inside and out is kosher.

    2. Tons of options. I use Hoppes #9, but there's a myriad of solvents out there.

    3. I wipe down my guns with a silicone cloth as part of the usual cleaning routine, but that's just me.

    4. Brush, patches, solvent, some sort of lubricant. Of course, people clean their guns in different ways. (Some people spray the works down with brake cleaner, etc.) There's cleaning kits out there that come with pretty much everything you'd need to clean it.

    5. (Sorry don't have an HP myself!)

    6. Either way should be fine.

    7. Again, never owned an HP, but on my guns I've never gone (that much) past a simple field strip. Sometimes when I replace various springs but that's about it. Or to clean an extractor or something along those lines.

    Enjoy your new HP! By all accounts, it should serve you very well.
  3. Stephen A. Camp

    Stephen A. Camp Moderator In Memoriam

    Hello. The Mk III will feed about any JHP you wish to try. It has the "straight" ramp vs the "humped" ramp of the Pre-Mk II pistols.

    It is fine to release the slide using the slide release lever or slingshotting it. Works fine either way.

    You should be able to shoot thousands of rounds without having to detail strip the pistol. It actually has very few internal parts. The main problem I see with heavily-shot-but-seldom-cleaned Hi Powers is failures to extract. Normally, removing the extractor, cleaning the channel out and replacing solves the problem, but this is not to say that it's an everyday affair.

    Shoot the fire out of your Hi Power and enjoy it.

  4. 10-Ring

    10-Ring Well-Known Member

    As long as you get her dirty but shooting on a regular basis and keep her clean, you'll be good. Congrats!
  5. Black Majik

    Black Majik Well-Known Member

    Also quick general rule to not drop the slide on an empty chamber.

    Congrats on that hi-power. It'll serve you well if you take care of it.
  6. grimjaw

    grimjaw Well-Known Member

    3. What about the outside to keep it looking great? Will the finish still look great if I don't maintain it?

    Gunsmoker, did you get one of the blued versions or the one with the matte finish? The latter has been very resistant for me, and doesn't take as much maintenance to keep looking good.

    5. Is your Hi-Power finnicky about the kind of ammo I feed it?

    I haven't put alot of different types through, but so far it's been flawless. I picked up a used MKIII last year and I love it. Enjoy yours!

  7. PO2Hammer

    PO2Hammer Well-Known Member

    I'm impressed that you bought a High Power as a first firearm.
  8. Katigroszek

    Katigroszek Well-Known Member

    "Also quick general rule to not drop the slide on an empty chamber."

    I've read lately in a polish gun magazine, that it does not harm any gun to do that, because the stroke is much lighter than in auto cycling after previous shot, which is trong, rapid and brutal compared to "Hollywooding" a gun. Not true?
  9. Gunsmoker

    Gunsmoker Well-Known Member

    I got the matte finish. I don't see many guns with this kind of finish. Is this made to last?
  10. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

    There was a pretty big discussion on that here recently. Doing it once or twice, probably not a big deal. Doing it with any more than that WILL put un-necessary wear on the gun. Remember the friction of the round stripping off the top of the magazine and riding the ramp into the barrel softens the impact at the end. Letting the slide slam forward on an empty chamber wears on the locking lugs, chamber and breech faces, and extractor, possibly other parts I cant remember. It's just best not to do it.
  11. ETXhiker

    ETXhiker Well-Known Member

    Congratulations on buying a quality pistol for your first purchase. Take care of it and it will take care of you.
  12. the naked prophet

    the naked prophet Well-Known Member

    Get a holster for your home defense gun. When something goes bump in the night, and you need both hands, you don't wanna stick it in your waistband. If nothing else, it will cover the trigger (velcro the holster to your nightstand for a quick draw or something) while on your nightstand.
  13. Northslope Nimrod

    Northslope Nimrod Well-Known Member

    A BHP Mark III was my first handgun (other than .22lr) as well.

    As to reliability with ammo.....It is the ONLY handgun I have owned that has NEVER...I mean NEVER had a malfunction, misfeed, etc. A couple times I accidentally hit the slide lock and the slide stayed back...but that was when I was experimenting with a new style of gripping.

    Great choice!

    I load the mag with the slide back....as did every soldier to use the weapon in combat.
  14. distra

    distra Well-Known Member

    Nice choice for a first pistol. Very accurate and reliable. Don't worry about inserting the mag with the slide back. I do it all the time. Mine will shoot just about any ammo. This is one pistol that will out shoot the shooter every time. Keep it cleaned, I use Hoppes 9, and lubed, I use Miltech, and it will serve you well. You might want to think about removing the mag safety since this is a range gun. It makes a world of difference on the trigger.
  15. bubbygator

    bubbygator Well-Known Member

    Congratulations, your HP will outlast you & be a wonderful heirloom for your descendants. Mine has Crimson Trace laser-grips & resides in a touch-vault at my bedside. Have fun trying to measure-up to your gun - it's one of the very best.

    Be careful to test all purchased magazines - especially the 17-round ones. I bought 5 & 3 were super... had to throw away 2.
  16. Guns_and_Labs

    Guns_and_Labs Well-Known Member

    1. Yep. All sorts of stuff come out when I first clean a stock pistol.
    2. To each his own. I use Breakfree CLP.
    3. Like daysleeprx, I use a silicone cloth.
    4. One of the little kits with extra patches and CLP ought to do it.
    5. Mine aren't finicky, but they do shoot slightly better with their favorites. In terms of defense accuracy or reliability, I think they all work pretty well.
    6. I normally do it the way the manual describes, more to assure that the magazine is seated correctly. But then, when I compete with it, I'll reload from slide lock and hit the release with abandon. As the old gunsmith says, "that's why they call it a 'slide release'".
    7. Field disassembly is pretty much all I do for routine maintenance, though I did try the dunk-it stuff once to deep clean. I do a detail strip when I'm replacing springs, though.
  17. tegemu

    tegemu Well-Known Member

    The mag safety mentioned is a Magazine Disconnect which makes the gun safer (Supposedly) because you cannot pull the trigger and drop the hammer with no magazine in the gun. I had my Magazine Disconnect removed to make the Superb BHP function exactly like my 1911's. Removing the Mag Disconnect will also lighten the trigger pull a tad. Mine will and has fed every kind of Ball and Jacketed Hollow Point (JHP) I have fed it. The other responders have told you true about your concerns. IT IS A WHALE OF A GOOD PISTOL, CONSIDERED BY MANY TO BE THE GOLD STANDARD OF 9MM's.
  18. Marshall

    Marshall Well-Known Member

    Congrat's! Welcome to the world of one of the best autoloaders ever made. Enjoy!

    Oh yea, I use Hoppes #9
  19. R.Edd

    R.Edd Member

    A Browning High Power .40 was the first gun I got too. Its been 100% reliable every time I've needed it. Even though I have a collection of guns now, its the one I still keep by the nightstand. I even took the Texas concealed carry test with it.

  20. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

    Gunsmoker, forgot to say it earlier, but congrats on the first handgun. You made an excellent choice going with a BHP. You've set the bar high though; you're gonna have some mightly lofty expectations of any handgun you look at after this one :evil: Post some pics and a range report when time allows.

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