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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Bought a new Kimber Custom II last Saturday. This is my first handgun purchase. I only had about 200 rds of experience w/ semiautos (mostly Glocks) before buying my 1911.
I put 50 rounds through the store's rental Custom II before buying mine. No problems, liked it.
Shot mine for the first time Sunday, had one FTF on round #86. Racked the slide, problem corrected. Fired 100 total, then cleaned it.
Put 50 rounds of the same 230g. range ammo through it last night w/ about 4 FTFs. Then Fired 5 Speer Gold-Dots & 8 CorBons, had 1 FTF somewhere in that mix - I believe it was the latter.
Did not clean it last night.
By the time I finished off 100 rds of the range ammo this morning, I was having a FTF on just about every mag. Lost count.
The FTF is occuring with both stock Kimber mags and my 8-rd Wilson Combat mag.
I was told when I bought the gun (and by others since then) that I'll have a 400-600 round break-in-period. When I mentioned my FTF problems at the range/store this morning, I was told that it should clear up in another couple hundred rounds or so - if not, talk w/ the 'smith.

Based on the posts I've read here, this seems to be unusual.
Guidance? Am I overly concerned? Or is this unacceptable even during the break-in period?

I'll be cleaning the heck out of it again tonight.
 

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Harley Dude
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14,651 Posts
Some Kimbers are very tight and you can tell by moving the slide slowly to check the fit. If there is resistance you will indeed need to pump some rounds through that gun.

Check the chamber with a bore light to make sure it is clear of any buildup, burrs, etc. I would clean it briskly and also the extractor. Light coat of grease on the link and the slide rails after you break it in first. They should have a break in coat of lube on the slide, if not light oil until it runs like the wind.

I have three Kimbers and one did take a lot of time to become about 100% reliable. It was tight as a well diggers azzzz, if you know what I mean.

I would look at the ramp to make sure it was clean and smooth.

I think it will clear up with use. If not they will stand behind any necessary repair work.
 

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Old School.
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11,011 Posts
I don't think you are overly concerned. First quit using the Wilson mags and just use the factory for right now. Go get 200rds of Winchester White Box a note pad and pencil. Mark the mags if you have more than one. Now clean and oil your pistol according to the owners manual.

Go to the range record every failure at what round and which mag. Pictures would be a real big help. If you have more than 4 failures I would call Kimber for a shipping tag to send it back to them. Send a clear written explanation and the pictures. When you get it back it should run just fine.

Sometimes any company can miss a little something in the making of a product. Sounds like weak mag springs but let them fix it. Good luck..:thumbsup:
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Sig - Thanks for the feedback. It is very tight, a lot of resistance, no play whatsoever in the slide. There was an original coat of lube, and I oiled it after cleaning last weekend - though I was trying to be careful & not over-oil the gun. I'll keep working with it.

Baldy - thanks as well. I'll keep records over the next couple hundred, & go from there.
 

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And here I am ready to drop a grand on one!
 

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Old School.
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Sig - Thanks for the feedback. It is very tight, a lot of resistance, no play whatsoever in the slide. There was an original coat of lube, and I oiled it after cleaning last weekend - though I was trying to be careful & not over-oil the gun. I'll keep working with it.

Baldy - thanks as well. I'll keep records over the next couple hundred, & go from there.
Mr Hat run that pistol wet for a little while. What I mean is put several drops of oil on that slide and take some with you to the range and add some about every 50rds. It will not hurt it. Take an old towel to keep it wiped off. If it is still having problems after that then call them. Good luck.:thumbsup:
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
by "range ammo" I was referring to some 230-grain hardballs - "Magtech" is the brand. That's the stock ammo sold at the range counter for most autos. I don't reload, though my dad does and I may take it up one of these days.

Not doubting anyone's expertise, but I'm cautious about using too much oil. The owner's manual is pretty clear about not over-oiling the weapon & Bill Wilson's 1911 DVD said the same thing. So is that standard advice mainly to keep inexperienced people like me from pouring it in every visible joint & crevice?

I just picked up 300 rds of WWB, plan to go back to the range tomorrow and keep cycling them through. Gun is cleaned & well-oiled. I'll take notes & post results on how this turns out. I hope nobody makes a negative buying decision based on my experience. As I stated in my original post - this is my first handgun purchase. I've hunted my whole life, have a .270 and Rem 870, and grew up shooting my father's revolvers on occasion - I'm comfortable w/ firearms but don't have the knowledge/experience to confidently troubleshoot my 1911 yet. From my research & the vast majority of posts here and elsewhere, "troubleshooting" isn't nearly as common w/ Kimbers as trouble-free shooting.
 

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Old School.
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You can't hurt the dang thing if you stuck it in a bucket of oil. I am talking about the slide. Hit it with a few extra drops as you don't want the metal to gall up on you. You want it to wear in even and flow the fine particals out and the cartridge soot.

I have a new Kimber too and I ran 50WWB through it and oiled the slide. Then I ran 50 of my own LSWC's throught it. I take a part and clean it after every outing. It hasn't missed a lick yet and I am running it wet. I got about 400rds through it now. I have used 4 different types of mags and they all have worked fine. Good luck.:biggrin5:
 

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Harley Dude
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14,651 Posts
I take a small bottle of "Break Free" with me that allows me to keep that slide rail lubed lightly until it runs like on ball bearings. And they will, run like on ball bearings when they start breaking in properly.

Damn sweet pistols, Kimbers. I am an old Colt fan also. I have owned several of the series 70 Colts. Still own a Gold Cup National Match that is a prize.

The Kimber Gold Match will shoot just as good or better than the Colts of the 1970s.

I understand the new Springfields are very nice too. The older ones had lots of problems.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
another 200 rds...

Cleaned thoroughly and oiled it liberally (esp. the slide/rails). Put 200 WWB rds through it this morning, for a total of 463. Used only my Kimber mags, marked I & II. Here are today’s 5 feeding issues:
  • Round #3, mag I – 3rd round (of 7) in magazine
  • Round #17, mag II - 3rd round (of 7) in magazine
  • Round #164, mag I – 4th round (of 7) in magazine
  • Round #183, mag II – 4th round (of 7) in magazine
  • Round #197, mag II – 4th round (of 4) in magazine
I did not clean/oil the gun at any point during the session. All were cleared by racking the slide, didn’t have to drop the magazine. So this is an improvement over my previous two sessions.

Will clean & oil it again today, probably won’t hit the range again until next weekend. I have another 100 rounds of WWB in my bag. If issues continue after that box, will have the gunsmith look it over and/or send it in to Kimber.
 

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Harley Dude
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14,651 Posts
Did you in fact change ammo to the Winchester White Box? I have had a batch of underpowered stuff cause those types of issues before. It is also possible to get a box of bullets that are a bit oversized and they tend to stick in the chamber and that can result in several different running problems.

I still get the feeling that it is the slide resistance. Recoil spring might be weak, but am betting you just got one of the unusually tight pistols.

If so you will be amazed at the accruacy of the gun from the get go.

I might oil up the magazines a bit too just to make sure they are not dragging a bit. Feed ramp look OK? Chamber loose enough to finger pull bullets out?

Look for wear points on the slide groves and frame rails when you clean it again to see if you can identify any tight areas that are showing early wear.

If the problem does not clear up soon I would have it looked at by Kimber or a local gunsmith.
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
Yes - I bought 3 boxes of 100 each Winchester White Box .45acp last night at WalMart. I shot 2 of those boxes today. All previous firing (except 13 rounds of defensive loads - just to feel the difference) was Magtech brand 230g hardballs.

Slide is moving freely now, I didn't notice any wear points when I cleaned it earlier today, but I'll look again next time. I looked closely at the feed ramp, felt it, cleaned it again thoroughly - nothing I could find, no burrs, nothing rough, etc.
I haven't tried dropping a round in, or pulling one out w/ my fingers.

I will lube the mags a little. Especially when loaded, there is a bit of friction.

I've been getting advice here & elsewhere about lubing after every 100 rounds. I'll do that in the future.

The gun is definitely more accurate than I am. All of my shooting has been offhand, distances from 21' to 60'. I don't know what the gun can do, but it shoots where I aim it.
 

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Old School.
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11,011 Posts
That's a lot of rounds on a new pistol without lube. Take CLP or Gun Butter and turn the gun upside down and run some oil along where the slide meets the frame on both sides and a drop or two on the barrel at the slide. Do that at every 100rds. Wipe it off and shoot some more.

I am with Sig on this. You have a real tight slide. I would do it once more and if it didn't inprove I would call Dennis at Kimber and send him all the info if he has you send it in. Keep your records going on it.

Sometimes you just get one that is a pain to get going but once they do you usually have a very fine pistol for life. Good luck. :thumbsup:
 
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