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Bought an HK USP Expert .45...Now What?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Ops Officer, Dec 2, 2006.

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  1. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    A colleague sold me an unfired USP Expert .45, Variant 1 with four 12-rd mags for less than half of the original retail cost. I see light handling wear so I assume it was an unfired demo gun that HK reps took to shows or government demonstrations. The gun still had a heavy duty tie-wrap on it when I bought it. Since I'm a sucker for a good .45 ACP shooter and I've never owned an HK, I bit. But HK is new to me. (I use SIG professionally and SIG, SA, & S&W privately.) I've only dry-fired this HK and field-stripped it. I noticed a couple of things I don't see on my other auto-loaders. There is an O ring on the barrel that HK claims it improves accuracy. Also, there is an ambi control that is a safety and de-cocker, a very interesting feature. One control can allow Condition 1 and de-cocking.

    I know I'll need to replace the O ring and recoil spring. Who specializes in HK parts besides Brownells? What holsters fit the Expert? The trigger is not as smooth as my SIGs. What pistolsmith specializes in HK handguns? What should I have done besides a trigger action job?

    Sorry for the battery of questions, but the more I stare at this handgun the more I wonder about it.
     
  2. Devonai

    Devonai Member

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    Impressive deal!

    Any open-bottomed holster for the standard USP will fit, if you don't mind the muzzle protruding from the bottom.
     
  3. 10-Ring

    10-Ring Member

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    As HKs go, I would replace anything unless it's broke....so, as long as the o-ring is still good, leave it alone until it breaks. I'm still on the original o-ring on my Expert & I'm over 12,000 w/ it - the recoil spring too! As for the trigger - good luck finding a smith that will work on the match trigger that it comes with, but use does break it in...I really like the USP triggers so I'm a bit biased tho.
    As for the price....EXCELLENT!!! ;) Just invest in ammo & enjoy! :D Congrats

    P1020711.jpg

    my Expert & std 45
     
  4. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    Thank you, 10-Ring. 12,000 rounds on the original O ring and recoil spring? Who da' thunk! That surprises me, since I would expect to change a recoil spring with much less use. And I'm thinking an O ring is like any other gasket on whatever that I would need to lubricate after every use and replace periodically. Obviously, you know your gun. I learned Grayguns works on the HK as well as SIGs, but the company is moving to OR. It won't hurt to find out what Grayguns or a master pistolsmith held in similar esteem can do for my gun. Then there are things about this particular gun I don't know. I've yet to fire round one through it. I find the grip comfortable, though. A post on another forum complained about the front strap, which seemed rough. The description almost made me think of gripping a wood rasp.:)
     
  5. BlkHawk73

    BlkHawk73 Member

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  6. 10-Ring

    10-Ring Member

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    If grayguns is still working on HKs that's great. I had heard that Bruce had stopped working on them a while back - I guess it wasn't worth it for him....OTOH, his work on USPs is top notch & you should be please if you decide to go that route ;)
     
  7. SoCalShooter

    SoCalShooter Member

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    That's for me to know and not you!
    Congrats on the HK. The first gun I ever bought was an HK USP .45acp. Love it to death, gonna replace teh barrel with match barrel though, trying to figure out right now however if the expert's match trigger can be used on the standard. Also if you want a good thigh holster check out www.tacticaltailor.com
     
  8. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Bruce Gray said over on Sigforum that his assistant Flork was equal or better than him working on H&K. I'd drop him a line.

    [email protected]
     
  9. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    I emailed Scott (Flork) at Grayguns a couple of days ago. He is probably caught up in the move to OR right now. Scott has his following who endorse his HK work. I'll try again in a week or so if I don't get a reply. It might be worth waiting for him to get back to smithing.
     
  10. P0832177

    P0832177 member

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    The HK is not a finicky 1911! No sir! You bought a well engineered gun. My stock USPf in 45ACP has 30K on it, and I just decided to change to the recoil spring. As pointed out go hang out on www.hkpro.com. Good shooting! Just remember that HK's have polygonal rifling, and the idea is you should not shoot lead in these bbls although some people do. Me I shoot 230gr FMJ ahead of 4.8gr of TG in mixed cases, and I get awesome accuracy.
     
  11. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    Yes, I noted my USP Expert has a polygonal barrel, but I am unsure what that is and what restrictions it has. I would likely fire what I have always used, which is either FMJ 230 gr., JHP, or plated SWC. What is the problem with exposed lead for this pistol? For that matter, what is the advantage with a polygonal barrel?

    I suppose I should sign up on the HK forum. I peeked a couple of times, but I wasn't able to get much. I probably need to become a member to search the archive and ask questions. Good to know from you how tough this pistol is. That is remarkable that you didn't need to replace the recoil spring until 30K rounds. Appreciate your help.
     
  12. Lebben-B

    Lebben-B Member

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    What's the point of sending an infantryman to Ft S
    I own a USP45F, myself. Polygonal rifling is merely another way to impart spin to the bullet instead of cutting/forging lands and grooves in the barrel. Poly rifling gives a tighter seal around the bullet and results in a slightly higher MV vice cut/forged rifling. I know of no restrictions on ammo with the USP.

    RLTW,

    Mike
     
  13. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    I assumed there was a restriction against using lead bullets in a polygonal barrel when I read the earlier post. I "googled" polygonal barrels and read this from Wikipedia on Answers.com:

    "The manufacturer GLOCK advises against using lead bullets (meaning bullets not covered by a copper jacket) in their polygonally rifled barrels, which has lead to a widespread belief that polygonal rifling is not compatible with lead bullets. However, this appears to be due to other properties of the GLOCK barrel, as neither H&K nor Kahr recommend against lead bullets. The GLOCK barrels have a fairly sharp transition between the chamber and the rifling, and this area is prone to lead buildup if lead bullets are used. Since the GLOCK will fire while slightly out of battery (by design, as this increases reliabilty under adverse conditions), and since shooting lead bullets may result in failures to fully return to battery, shooting lead bullets can lead to an increased risk of a case head failure."

    So I guess it's OK to use lead in my USP Expert if I wanted to, but I have lots of .45 ACP in FMJ, JHP, and plated SWC right now. It will be interesting to see whether this pistol likes plated SWC, remanufactured from either Lancer or Georgia Arms. My other semi-automatics don't. I use this PSWC in my revolvers without a problem.
     
  14. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    I have a USP Elite in .45 acp.
    Great pistol but I do not shoot any lead bullet ammunition in it.
    The polygonal rifling in an H&K can build up lead particles like the Glock and pressures can rise dramatically from the bullet trying to force its way down a restricted bore.
    H&K pistols are built hell for stout and they can probably stand a great deal more overpressure than a Glock but they are also expensive and I can't see risking the gun just to prove a point.

    As for a holster, I ended up buying a Blade-Tech thigh rig to carry the gun.
    The gun is a monster and isn't well suited to a speed draw from a high hip mount, F.B.I. cant holster. HTH
     
  15. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    Onmilo, I agree with you. Why risk it, even though HK didn't mention it? (I just might re-read the manual, though.) Personally, I can shoot what I have without assuming the risk.

    BTW, I just compared my XD-45 Tactical with my USP Expert. They are almost the same size with the HK about a 1/4" longer at the rear of the slide and a tad wider at the frame and slide if I match them even at the muzzle. l have a Rafter S leather OWB holster for the XD-45 Tactical, which works fine, but the HK is too wide for it. So, I suppose I'll need a holster. I'll check out the Blade-Tech. I am sure I'll have plenty of time for that if I send the gun out for a trigger action job plus. Thanks.
     
  16. Kowboy

    Kowboy Member

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    HK does mention it. I think it's page 22 of my owner's manual that specifically recommends the firing of jacketed ammunition only, and for the same reasons.

    Kowboy
     
  17. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    Just checked my HK USP Operators Manual, April 2003 edition. Page 20, Section 4, Ammunition has no recommendation to use jacketed ammunition. It has the standard warning not to use reloaded, remanufactured, or handloaded ammunition. What is your edition?
     
  18. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    You nailed the keywords with your last post OO.
    "Reloaded, REMANUFACTURED, or Handloaded Ammunition."


    Since no MANUFACTURER that I am aware of, is currently producing a factory NEW .45 acp lead bullet load, I think they have pretty well covered this without actually coming out and saying directly, 'Don't use lead bullet ammunition in these firearms.'

    Many producers offer a REMANUFACTURED lead bullet .45acp load but nobody, at least none of the big makers, offer a new production load.
    All the stuff is jacketed or copper bonded.
     
  19. Darth Muffin

    Darth Muffin member

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    Congrats on the gun purchase, that was a good deal, I'm sure you'll love it!

    The following online dealers have parts, including the O-ring if you need it:
    http://www.calssportingarmory.com
    http://www.robertrtg.com
    http://www.hkpartsonline.com (prices here are on the high side)

    The Expert manual says to put a drop of oil on the O-ring when you clean the gun. It should last you for quite some time.

    The polygonal rifling, besides looking neat, gets you very slightly more bullet velocity as mentioned as well as a longer barrel life. Personally I use jacketed ammo. Not so much as for concern about the gun but for less smoke, ease of cleaning, and lead vapor is one less health hazard I need to worry about.

    I use a bladetech dropped-offset holster for mine. It's secure and very fast, I like it. You can remove the offset portion if you want a regular holster too.
     
  20. Highland Ranger

    Highland Ranger Member

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  21. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    Well, I received email from Scott @ GrayGuns. He is not taking on new work right now until the move is completed. He said he would get back to me soon. He gave details of what his work would be. I can hardly wait. He has a sterling reputation on the SIG Forum. Meanwhile, I've got to get to the range with this pistol, but the holiday chores and holiday functions are erasing most of what little discretionary time I have. Then there is my day job.

    Appreciate the heads up on lead issue. Highland Ranger, I noticed Midway is out of stock of the Black Hills SWC, but expects to get more just after Christmas. Guys, you may be right about manufacturers not really producing new lead cartridges. The pickin's are lean. I might order some for my revolvers. They punch nice round holes in paper. I've had problems with SWC in my pistols. But I've plenty of FMJ and JHP .45 ACP for the pistols. Thanks for the parts source.

    Where is a good source for the BladeTech holster?
     
  22. StiKiller

    StiKiller Member

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    h&K ftw! Welcome to the family! Personally, I love how my USP shoots compared to my Sig 229, that is why i'm selling the Sig to my friend and keeping the USP~ maybe i'll purchase another h&k~ p2000?
     
  23. Ops Officer

    Ops Officer Member

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    Just a quick update. Found an email from Scott @ GrayGuns when I arrived home this evening. I'm in the queue for his work. He expects to get to me in about 3 - 4 weeks. He also agreed I should get acquainted with my HK Expert before I send it in. That works for me. The holiday frenzy and rush to clear business has me searching frantically for a day I can get to the range. I'll fondle it periodically, clean, and lube it until my fun day at the range arrives. This puppy looks and feels unlike a SIG...not a bad thing, just different.
     
  24. 10-Ring

    10-Ring Member

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    Welcome update! I look forward to reading a range report on your Expert after it returns from Grayguns!
     
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