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P238 take-down lever

This is a discussion on P238 take-down lever within the P238, P938 Pistol forums, part of the SIG Sauer Pistols category; Thanks for the info GB. I would not suggest trying to swap the springs between pistols. There is a barb swedged on the length of ...


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P238, P938 Pistol All variations P238, P938

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Old 12-15-2016, 10:36 AM   #16
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Thanks for the info GB.

I would not suggest trying to swap the springs between pistols. There is a barb swedged on the length of the spring that extends into the hole in the frame. Pulling the spring out risks distorting the spring (it doesn't come out easily) and the barb will open the frame hole even more when it's pulled out. IMO, it's not worth it to satisfy our curiosity. Swapping the TDL would be low risk and potentially informative.

I have to assume that the half round tab on TDL was already outside of the slide notch when the slide was in battery for the TDL to fall out. Can you confirm that?

I think calling SIG is the best COA, but I would not accept a replacement spring from them as the solution. My sense is that there is a bigger issue and they need to evaluate the complete pistol to find and fix it. JMHO.
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Old 12-15-2016, 12:24 PM   #17
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@ ThnkFrst - I believe that you are correct about the spring being staked into the frame. (watched a youtube about that...). So I won't even try to remove it unless absolutely necessary and directed to do so by Sig. Thanks!

Yes, the half-round tab was outside of the slide notch.

I just got off the phone with Sig CS Rep. "Chris".
He thinks that the reason the T-D lever is falling out is due to an "Installation Error".
(Polite way of saying "You idiot, you're doing something wrong!" LOL)

He thinks that I didn't have the T-D Lever fully inserted so that the half-round tab was on the outside, rather than the inside of the slide.
Honestly, I don't see how that could happen. It is REALLY obvious when the tab is not behind the slide. I just took the slide on and off several times, and re-inserted the T-D lever. The tab HAS to be behind the slide, or else it sticks way out, quite obviously.

Also, I had to re-insert the T-D lever 4 or 5 times at the range yesterday - I doubt I would've made the same mistake that many times....
Another thing - I'm the same "idiot" that disassembled both P238's, cleaned and lubed them, and reassembled them the same way, yet my wife's P238 didn't have the same issue???

Anyway, Chris suggested that I shoot it some more and if the T-D lever continues to walk out, send the gun in to Sig.
Before sending it to Sig though, I'll take your suggestion and swap the T-D levers between guns to see if the issue follows the T-D lever. If it does follow the lever, then I'll get out my micrometer and/or calipers and see if I can find any discrepancies.
Like you, I like to know exactly what the cause of a problem is.
I'll keep you posted.

Last edited by GunnyBlue; 12-15-2016 at 12:28 PM.
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Old 12-15-2016, 02:49 PM   #18
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OP, I think there are many that sympathize with your situation and wish you the best in getting the problem solved. Keep us posted after you send the gun back to Sig for repair.
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Old 12-15-2016, 04:18 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GunnyBlue View Post

The build date on the one I bought for my wife is Oct. 2016.
The build date on mine is Nov. 2016.
Where do you find the build date?
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Old 12-15-2016, 05:11 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by kurrykid View Post
Where do you find the build date?
There is a sticker on the outside of the plastic case the pistol comes in that shows the date of manufacture (a.k.a., the build date).
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Old 12-15-2016, 05:18 PM   #21
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Cool...thanks.
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Old 12-15-2016, 05:32 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GunnyBlue View Post
I just got off the phone with Sig CS Rep. "Chris".
He thinks that the reason the T-D lever is falling out is due to an "Installation Error".
(Polite way of saying "You idiot, you're doing something wrong!" LOL)

He thinks that I didn't have the T-D Lever fully inserted so that the half-round tab was on the outside, rather than the inside of the slide.
Honestly, I don't see how that could happen. It is REALLY obvious when the tab is not behind the slide.
In Chris's defense, I suspect there have been more than a few P238/938 owners who have had difficulty installing the slide stop (the official name of the part). But I have to agree with you, if the tab on the lever isn't positioned inside the slide it would be very apparent with the lever hanging down next to the trigger.

So the question becomes how, why and when is the tab getting outside the slide where the stop can fall out of the frame? Because the tab on the slide stop can only go into and out of the slide when the notch in the slide is aligned in that one position. That is of course if all the part involved are to spec.

I've invited member agar13 to bring his report of a P938 slide stop problem (sig 938 slide stop) over to this thread as I'm starting to think these three are all the same problem.

Last edited by ThnkFrst; 12-16-2016 at 03:01 AM.
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Old 12-15-2016, 07:21 PM   #23
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When I first took my P238 apart, I wasn't putting it back together right. If you try to put the lever in after pushing the slide back to match the half moon to the lever (the same way you took it apart), the lever won't go into the barrel slot properly (please excuse the lack of technical terms).

What I needed to do was put the slide on, then start the lever in the hole. Put a little pressure on it while you slide the half moon mark back to the lever (being careful not to scratch your gun). It will push through when lined up. The key is to have it started in the hole before you start to move the slide back.

I'm not sure if this is your issue but I know there was a "technique" I needed to figure out. I confirmed with Sig CS and they said the lever was missing the slot in the barrel that it was supposed to go through doing it the way I was doing it. What was happening for me was the guide rod was sticking out of the front of the gun an inch or two and that's what I noticed. I never tried shooting with it like that but just in case, I thought I'd mention it.

HTH
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Old 12-16-2016, 06:48 AM   #24
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The slide stop on my P938 has been easy to push in and remove since the day I bought the pistol. This concerned me, but it has remained in position while operating the pistol.

It will be interesting to learn what is causing this issue with some pistols and not others, as in GunnyBlue's case.
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Old 12-17-2016, 08:52 AM   #25
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Update:
Yesterday, following the Sig CS rep's advice to make sure that the Slide Stop was correctly installed, I took my p238 to the range. Same problem - the Slide Stop would walk out.
I then swapped my Slide Stop with the Slide Stop from my wife's p238.
Her Slide Stop continued to walk out of my P238, whereas her p238 did not exhibit any walk out. So that eliminated the Slide Stop itself as the issue.

Last night, with my original Slide Stop back in my P238, I noticed that while holding it with the left side of the pistol facing my workbench and racking the slide, the Slide Stop would fall out onto my workbench after racking the slide 10-15 times!
I could rack my wife's P238 many, many times and the Slide Stop did not move.
That told me that the problem had to be the Slide Stop Pin.

So, I then did the "unthinkable". I removed the Slide Stop Pin from the frame!
* I do not advise or recommend doing this - it's a PITA to get out and back in.
But, if you are a stubborn and determined person like me,who insists on fixing his own stuff......
(I'm pretty confident in my mechanical skills, having worked as an auto mechanic, machinist, heavy machinery repairman, and Mechanical Engineer early in my career.)

Once I had the SS Pin out, I then "re-shaped" it. After several attempts of re-shaping, I finally got it so that racking the slide would no longer drop the Slide Stop.
*Note - Shaping the pin a little too much in one direction (I'm talking Imperceptible thousands of an inch) will cause the slide to lock back WITHOUT a mag in when the slide is racked.
A little too much in the other direction will cause the Slide Stop to fall out when racking the slide.

I took my P238 to the range this morning, and fired 100 rounds of the same ammo (CCI Blazer Brass FMJ)
Success!
The Slide Stop DID NOT walk out! Nor did the slide lock back except after the last round as it's supposed to!


I am going to ask Sig to send me a replacement Slide Stop Pin, because bending spring steel multiple times can ruin the integrity of the steel and cause failure in the future.
I am going to create a new thread with the correct nomenclature in the title, and describe the cause of the issue, so that other members can find the information without wading through this rather long thread. I'll also include a section of a youtube video that helped me understand the issue.

Thank you to all that helped me resolve this problem.
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Last edited by GunnyBlue; 12-17-2016 at 09:09 AM.
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Old 12-17-2016, 09:41 AM   #26
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With my mediocre experience I'm studying this thread and studying my P238 and I'm not convinced that the slide stop spring actually holds the slide stop in place. Here's my observations.
The tab on the slide stop that engages the spring, slides under the spring and from what I can tell has zero clearance but doesn't engage or depress the spring until the stop is levered or pushed up. That tab seems to be level and has a square edge. If the spring was designed to have pressure on that tab, the tab would either have to be slanted or have a chamfered edge to be able to push it under the spring and create tension.
Supporting this observation is the fact that if I line up the slide notch with the hump on the stop "perfectly", and hold the gun on its side, I can get the lever to drop in by gravity alone. Sometime a little shake of the gun is needed to get it to drop but without touching the slide stop. Also turning the gun on the reverse side I can get it to fall out. The click I hear, and others speak of when casually inserting the slide stop, I now believe is just not having the notch "perfectly" aligned and it clicks bringing it into alignment.
Maybe my gun has some wear after 1825 rounds but the slide stop has never moved out on it's own.
So I'm wondering if anyone has confirmed that the spring actually holds the lever in.
John
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Old 12-17-2016, 09:44 AM   #27
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Good on you GB! Glad you got it worked out. It's funny how that little pin can move around so easily and yet be so darned difficult to get out of the frame. I think you are wise to replace the slide stop pin.

If your experience is anything like mine, the new pin will continue to walk out of the frame a bit as the pistol is operated. I've made it a habit before I reassemble the slide to the frame to press the pin back down flush in the pocket by pushing on the straight portion just forward of the pin mounting hole with my thumb nail.

I think this would be less of an issue with the P238/938 if SIG would machine a slight undercut in the side of the frame pocket where the lower curve of the spring could nest. The barb on the pin and the staking that SIG does on the edge of the pin mounting hole just doesn't seem to get the job done. But what the heck do I know.
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Last edited by ThnkFrst; 12-17-2016 at 09:47 AM.
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Old 12-17-2016, 11:11 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steamer View Post
With my mediocre experience I'm studying this thread and studying my P238 and I'm not convinced that the slide stop spring actually holds the slide stop in place. Here's my observations.
The tab on the slide stop that engages the spring, slides under the spring and from what I can tell has zero clearance but doesn't engage or depress the spring until the stop is levered or pushed up. That tab seems to be level and has a square edge. If the spring was designed to have pressure on that tab, the tab would either have to be slanted or have a chamfered edge to be able to push it under the spring and create tension.
Supporting this observation is the fact that if I line up the slide notch with the hump on the stop "perfectly", and hold the gun on its side, I can get the lever to drop in by gravity alone. Sometime a little shake of the gun is needed to get it to drop but without touching the slide stop. Also turning the gun on the reverse side I can get it to fall out. The click I hear, and others speak of when casually inserting the slide stop, I now believe is just not having the notch "perfectly" aligned and it clicks bringing it into alignment.
Maybe my gun has some wear after 1825 rounds but the slide stop has never moved out on it's own.
So I'm wondering if anyone has confirmed that the spring actually holds the lever in.
John
@Steamer - I agree with you. That was my thinking as well when I first began examining this issue. And we are correct - the slide stop pin/spring does not hold the Slide Stop in, per se.
However, this is what I *think* is taking place:
The slide stop pin/spring applies upward pressure on the Slide Stop lever.
If the long side of the pin/spring is bent ever so slightly downward, then the tension on the slide stop is reduced, allowing the half-round tab to cant slightly as the gun is fired or the slide is racked, which then allows it to align with the notch in the slide, which in turn allows the slide stop to walk out/fall out.
When removing the Slide Stop for normal cleaning, you naturally wiggle the slide stop slightly which aligns the half-round with the notch allowing it to be pulled out.

Does that make sense?


Quote:
Originally Posted by ThnkFrst View Post
Good on you GB! Glad you got it worked out. It's funny how that little pin can move around so easily and yet be so darned difficult to get out of the frame. I think you are wise to replace the slide stop pin.
Thank you ThnkFirst!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ThnkFrst View Post
If your experience is anything like mine, the new pin will continue to walk out of the frame a bit as the pistol is operated. I've made it a habit before I reassemble the slide to the frame to press the pin back down flush in the pocket by pushing on the straight portion just forward of the pin mounting hole with my thumb nail.
I think this is a factor of the slide stop pin loosing some of its tension due to usage over time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ThnkFrst View Post
I think this would be less of an issue with the P238/938 if SIG would machine a slight undercut in the side of the frame pocket where the lower curve of the spring could nest. The barb on the pin and the staking that SIG does on the edge of the pin mounting hole just doesn't seem to get the job done. But what the heck do I know.
I agree. BTW - the slide stop pin is not "TIG" welded in, or epoxied, as some Youtubers have implied. The end of the pin is barbed as you have said, and is also held in by spring tension. It's shaped something like this |/ , instead of this |_ (Sorry, best I can do with keyboard graphics LOL)
|/ <-- places tension against the side of the pinhole.

The Ruger LCP had a similar issue with the take down pins walking out. Ruger fixed it by cutting a flat notch on one side of the take down pin.
Totally different design, however. In the case of the LCP, the spring is what actually holds the take down pin in. The slide stop is not involved at all.
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Old 12-17-2016, 11:51 AM   #29
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GB. That does make sense and this thread is teaching me much. I just a much closer look and now believe my spring may be bent up just a tad. I remember some time ago snagging that spring with a rag. Even after reading somewhere to watch out for just that. I didn't think I damaged it but now with a closer look I believe it is bent up a bit to where it's not lying flat on its resting place. I think if the spring laid flat that the square edge on the tab of the stop, would engage the spring just a bit below center forcing it up and creating tension. Your problem and solution has educated me & possibly others. Thanks. I try illustrating.
Stp Sprng 01.jpg

Stop02.jpg
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Old 12-17-2016, 01:07 PM   #30
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@ Steamer - Are you experiencing any issues with your Slide Stop?

I think with the spring tip bent upward can cause the slide to lock open with no mag inserted, and with the spring tip bent downward can cause the walk out/fall out issue.
(But, it might be the other way around...)
It doesn't take much.

If yours isn't causing any problems, I wouldn't mess with it, no matter how it looks.
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