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Kimber Eclipse Pro II problems?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Wakal, Dec 27, 2002.

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  1. Wakal

    Wakal Member

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    Just had a ex-NIB Kimber Eclipse Pro Carry II leave the shop in the happy hands of its owner.

    She had trouble with the grip safety...seemed more of a problem with the ubergeeky "II" firing pin block hanging up than the grip safey disengaging. She would get the hammer to fall but the firing pin wouldn't move. She did have small hands, but was quite competent.

    I had her work with a wide variety of .45's I had on hand...ranging from full-up STI raceguns to Para carry and competition models, WWII "as-issued" GI pistols, to a Wilson CQB. She had no problems with any of those.

    Just that $900 Kimber.

    So, I pulled the slide apart and removed the business end of that firing pin block system. Problem solved.

    Anyone else? Was that a problem with one gun, or have others had problems with the firing pin block?


    Alex
     
  2. blades67

    blades67 Member

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    How did you solve that problem exactly? What parts did you remove?
     
  3. John Galt

    John Galt Member

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    Could it have been because it was too new? Perhaps 50 rounds and then a cleaning with some teflon grease in that area would have fixed it.

    I have what is basically the same gun and never had the problem once in 1000 rounds.

    (Gold Match Stainless Target II or whatever it's called.)
     
  4. Wildalaska

    Wildalaska member

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    Should have bought a Colt....
     
  5. Jester

    Jester Member

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    I have a Kimber Eclipse Pro II and haven't had any problems. Sometimes you will find a Series II with an improperly fitted Series II safety from the factory though.

    This thread on 1911forums lists some basic tests to tell if the Series II parts are fitted improperly.
    www.1911forum.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=29826

    Removing the Series II parts from the slide leaves some extra space for gunk to get built up in.

    You should be able to disable the Series II safety by just installing a standard Colt style firing pin. The plunger will press down on the firing pin when the GS isn't engaged but I don't think it would be enough to cause any problems.

    I haven't actually tried it and I'm not a gunsmith or firearms expert so I can't be sure though.
     
  6. Wakal

    Wakal Member

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    I thought about that (swap the Kimber pin for a standard firing pin), but without playing with it wasn't sure how much drag on the pin that little spring loaded gizmo would have.

    To remove the safety...I field stripped the pistol, then pulled the firing pin stop/extractor/firing pin from the slide. Opened the rear sight up (watch those springs!) and removed the Allen-head set screw. Drove the sight out of the dovetail with a brass punch and pulled the firing pin block/safety and spring from the channel. Reinstalled the rear sight as normal.

    There is a chunk of metal missing under the rear sight, but it is under the rear sight...I rather doubt, carrying it cocked and locked, that anything will work its way in there. My competition guns roll off the line a LOT more radically cut than that, and I run 'em a thousand rounds or better between cleanings in all sorts of cruddy conditions.

    While this was a new gun, I had no problems with it when I shot, nor did her husband. The customer was rather short and small of grip, and the hammer would fall 3 times out of four, but the gun would only fire once of those three. It seemed as if she was depressing the grip safety just enough to kick it out of the way of the trigger but no enough to clear the firing pin. Remove the stupid lawyer-mandated silly firing pin block and it worked great (100%) for the 250 rounds I coached her for this afternoon.

    Disclosure: my carry P14, built up on a Para frame with my own little paws, has a series 80 firing pin block...and a crisp 4-pound trigger...as well as a functional grip safety. I really don't mind the Colt pattern block, but am not fond of this, my first exposure to the Kimber system.

    An aside: those MIM parts are quite slick...very well shaped...but seem softer than the forged and machined parts I prefer in my own guns. The MIM parts coming out of Israel in the BUL pistols are hard like rocks, wonder why the Kimber stuff is soft like mud. Weird.



    Alex
     
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