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P320 100% Failure Rate Observation and Research

This is a discussion on P320 100% Failure Rate Observation and Research within the P250 & P320 Modular Pistols forums, part of the SIG Sauer Pistols category; flhtci2006, my 320CA worked 100% with just 17 rounds loaded (aka 16+1). It seems your firearm is one of the tighter-spec ones (like mine and ...


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P250 & P320 Modular Pistols P250, P320, and Exchange kits

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Old 07-13-2015, 12:03 PM   #31
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flhtci2006, my 320CA worked 100% with just 17 rounds loaded (aka 16+1). It seems your firearm is one of the tighter-spec ones (like mine and the range rental) with that slide running just a little bit closer to the frame.

Twistedracer, you hit the nail one the head. Tim with Sig CS (see below) again confirmed that some break-in is sometimes needed with the 17-round mag springs and a particularly tight pistol. It all reminds me of old Hi-Powers and P220's with the Texas DPS mags. It is worth noting that despite needing to be downloaded one round, each of those guns has an incredible reputation for reliability and capability. It seems like the P320 is cut from a similar cloth.

So I called Sig again today regarding the compact slide on subcompact frame trigger issue. Tim from CS was very pleasant. He told me that using any slide other than the subcompact slide on a subcompact frame is NOT recommended and that the trigger-reset issue is completely possible and even expected. He reiterated that Sig did NOT design the firearm with the intent of mixing slide and frame sizes, hence why Sig sells the kits with frames included. I have NOT shot the firearm with the carry slide on the subcompact frame.
On that note, they are not currently shipping subcompact conversion kits, and won't be until towards the end of the year.

Since I got such a great deal on this P320CA, it wasn't much of an investment and my return for selling it would be low. It will hang around for awhile, awaiting a .357 Sig full-size conversion and a 9mm subcompact slide.
I selected the gun after handling and shooting dozens of other models because it fit my hand just so darn well. Like Texasproff and many other users, I shoot one-hole groups with the P320. I can almost see my Ed Brown EE flushing in embarrassment!

I will update this thread based off my experiences with the P320 as a sort of gun-log.
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Last edited by NWGunEnthusiast; 07-13-2015 at 12:05 PM. Reason: Addition of info: firearm was not fired with carry slide on subcompact frame.
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Old 07-13-2015, 12:48 PM   #32
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Happy to see you didn't just give up on such a great gun. A lot of people have issues like yours and that's where you get the Ole, "This things **** and I'm going back to the other brand"..blah blah blah.

The more I shoot mine the more I'm impressed. No sight adjustment and no need to mod it with triggers or sights.
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Old 07-13-2015, 03:16 PM   #33
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NW, I did another test today with some AE 115 gr target fodder and was able to duplicate what you described, loading 17 in the mag and starting with one in chamber. I was only able to duplicate this twice and it was when the pistol was cold. Once it warmed up it did not occur again. I do believe it is something tolerance and or mag spring related.

FWIW even in duty situations, I load magazines to full capacity and then load the chamber, and do not top off the magazine. I stopped loading to capacity then adding one when I moved away from single stacks. So all things being equal, other than that slight bobble, when it is run with 17 only it has been flawless. I ran another 300 rounds through it today so that puts it at 600 for the total. I'm calling it good, and as soon as my ALS arrives, it will begin service as one of my duty weapons.

The accuracy of this thing stills gets me. I actually had to switch out targets today just to see where the rounds were going. After about 50 rounds, there was no paper in the center of the target to hit...)


TXPO
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Old 07-13-2015, 09:24 PM   #34
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Here's my thought, one made without making actual measurements. When I load the 17th round, I cannot push that round down any further. I believe the mag spring is being fully compressed (therefore, spring tension isn't in play) and the 17 rounds take up the full distance up to the top of the mag. I think if the mag spring was made slightly shorter, maybe .125 to .156", there would be some "play" allowing the slide to push the round down as it moves. I just think the top round is being pushed hard against the slide.

I'm not an expert by any means but I know that on my other pistols (Glocks, S&W, Springfield) with the mag loaded to its maximum, I can push the top round down a bit.

This is just my opinion. Still allowed in this great country but definitely being infringed upon . Anyway, part of my safety program is to not leave a round in the chamber but always assume there is one in general. If the time comes where I need to use my weapon, I know my first action is to chamber a round. Doing so is most likely first and last warning the intruder will get.

This gun is a keeper. I love the feel. I just consider it a 16+1 and not a 17+1. Can't wait to void the warranty I load my own reloads!
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Old 07-13-2015, 09:32 PM   #35
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Haha. The only warning an intruder will get in my house will be a very pronounced, "BANG" which will most likely be followed by more of the same.
As someone else posted on another thread.
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Old 07-17-2015, 07:40 AM   #36
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Update

Hello all!
I went out and ran another 135 rounds through the P320CA yesterday. I was trying to determine what rounds caused the 17+1 failure. The last two weeks, all of my magazines have been loaded to 17 rounds to compress the springs, per recommendations. I tediously kept the 17-round mags topped-off to test as many rounds as possible fully-loaded. Here is what I ran through the gun:

22 rounds Fiocchi 115gr FMJ, 54 rounds Federal AE 115gr FMJ, 26 rounds Speer 147gr Lawman (AKA Gold Dot JHP in TMJ form), 29 rounds Federal 9BPLE 115gr +P+, 2 rounds Speer Gold Dot 124gr +P JHP, 2 rounds Hornady 135gr Critical Duty +P.

Remarkably, the Federal AE worked when loaded to 17+1. The Fiocchi did not, and even jammed on the third round in a magazine once due to a failure to extract. I fired the Fiocchi and the Federal in the same mag, alternating brand, and determined that the Fiochhi was considerably weaker than the Federal; this is interesting, as Fiocchi is actually rated faster (1200 FPS) than the Federal (1180 FPS). Of course, barrel length was not specified by the manufacturers.
None of the other rounds created the 17+1 failure to extract, including the 147gr stuff. I tell you, the 115gr +P+ recoils like a .40, but is still very controllable.

Bottom line?
It appears that breaking-in the magazine springs has resolved the Federal AE feeding issue, although I will still be wary of loading the pistol to 17+1 with 115gr ball ammo.
Fiocchi ammunition is not to spec, and I will no longer be purchasing it after I run through my last two boxes. I cannot recommend Fiocchi 9mm 115gr FMJ based off of my experiences, but YMMV.
Safe shooting!
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Old 07-17-2015, 10:32 AM   #37
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Thanks for keeping us updated.
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Old 07-17-2015, 12:23 PM   #38
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Glad to hear it running well in general. It's also good for you to realize not all ammo is the same or equal even from lot to lot . Some thing like the speer lawman is good to keep a few boxes around just to have to proof the handgun IF you run into another failure to cycle problem again .

The sig does have a tighter chamber than ,, say a m&p or glock and they tend run a recoil spring that is on the heavy side so some ammo my run fine in other pistols you have .

Chronographs tend to show ammo for what it really is when shot from your pistol . Many companies use a fixed test barrel for velocity so results can run high . Darn near all reloaders have them . Get into reloading and have dependable practice ammo !!

Try some of underwoods +P+ ammo. Eye opening stuff and tends to meet advertised velocity plus from 4" barrels .

Glad your running well know . Edit your title . " Some ammo is JUNK and causes failures " haha

Last edited by hardluk1; 08-19-2015 at 05:31 AM.
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Old 07-17-2015, 12:31 PM   #39
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I don't have a 17rd mag to check but I wonder if it's the spring bottoming out or possibly the follower bottoming. Could have been a few out of spec mags. I would take the base plate off, load the mag, and put the base plate back on without the spring. If there is no wiggle room left the follower is bottoming and causing the problem.
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Old 08-19-2015, 01:09 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Texaspoff View Post
NW, I did another test today with some AE 115 gr target fodder and was able to duplicate what you described, loading 17 in the mag and starting with one in chamber. I was only able to duplicate this twice and it was when the pistol was cold. Once it warmed up it did not occur again. I do believe it is something tolerance and or mag spring related.

FWIW even in duty situations, I load magazines to full capacity and then load the chamber, and do not top off the magazine. I stopped loading to capacity then adding one when I moved away from single stacks. So all things being equal, other than that slight bobble, when it is run with 17 only it has been flawless. I ran another 300 rounds through it today so that puts it at 600 for the total. I'm calling it good, and as soon as my ALS arrives, it will begin service as one of my duty weapons.

The accuracy of this thing stills gets me. I actually had to switch out targets today just to see where the rounds were going. After about 50 rounds, there was no paper in the center of the target to hit...)


TXPO

Did your holster arrive yet? I've tried two 6360's and both are crazy tight with an x300, ultra and regular
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Old 08-19-2015, 04:57 AM   #41
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Yup, picked it up a few days ago. Pistol fits like a glove, no issues at all. I do not use a light bearing holster though so I cannot comment on the fit with those.

I also received my Compact frame and three mags as well. Honestly I believe I prefer the Compact set up over the carry. The slight difference in the grip seems to allow me to lock in my grip better on the Compact.

I am wearing it as I type.




TXPO
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Last edited by Texaspoff; 08-19-2015 at 05:03 AM.
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Old 08-19-2015, 10:17 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by Texaspoff View Post
Yup, picked it up a few days ago. Pistol fits like a glove, no issues at all. I do not use a light bearing holster though so I cannot comment on the fit with those.

I also received my Compact frame and three mags as well. Honestly I believe I prefer the Compact set up over the carry. The slight difference in the grip seems to allow me to lock in my grip better on the Compact.

I am wearing it as I type.




TXPO

Ah gotcha, ya I called them after I received my first one and apparently they did a new mold because people were having issues. Just received the updated one and it's not any better. Might be time for a heat gun and dremel..
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Old 08-19-2015, 01:30 PM   #43
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Its a funny thing. We all (myself included) carry a chambered round, drop the mag and top it off again. In my case with the Compact P320 its 15 + 1. And nary an issued at all. But what's interesting to me is that for some reason, although many gun makers claim firepower as 17 +1, or 15 + 1, etc., none of the owner's manuals that I've encountered ever recommend this. Load the mag to capacity, insert to mag well, rack the slide and that's it. No topping off.
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Old 08-19-2015, 03:28 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by NWGunEnthusiast View Post
So I called Sig again today regarding the compact slide on subcompact frame trigger issue. Tim from CS was very pleasant. He told me that using any slide other than the subcompact slide on a subcompact frame is NOT recommended and that the trigger-reset issue is completely possible and even expected. He reiterated that Sig did NOT design the firearm with the intent of mixing slide and frame sizes, hence why Sig sells the kits with frames included. I have NOT shot the firearm with the carry slide on the subcompact frame.
On that note, they are not currently shipping subcompact conversion kits, and won't be until towards the end of the year.
REALLY? This is news to me! What does everyone think? Is this a case of SIG's legal department not wanting to stand by anything (e.g., "Centerfire Kits (9mm,.357 & .40) are intended for use on .22 Classic Framed Pistols. SIG SAUER does not guarantee or advocate the use of .40/.357 kits on standard centerfire 9mm frames.") or does anyone know of an actual example of something going wrong by putting a compact slide on a subcompact frame?

My friend got a P320, and I thought it would be nice to give him a subcompact grip module. I didn't get to fire it, but I noticed in dryfiring, also, the absence of the reset when putting the compact slide on the subcompact frame. He put about 30 rounds down range and LOVED it. Frankly, I was amazed at his accuracy. He decided against getting a subcompact slide BECAUSE he felt the longer barrel and sight radius let him shoot better than my M&P shield, but he felt he didn't need a smaller length to ccw effectively because the frame was so small. I was pretty amazed that the subcompact frame was a doublestack. I actually thought SIG would release an official "5th" version because it seems to be such an effective combination. Do I need to go back and tell him he shouldn't use the subcompact grip?

Sigh, one more thing the P320 disappoints when compared to the P250! (The other disappointment, with the P250, you could at least use the same FCU between a 9mm and 45acp. The P320 45acp is completely non-compatible with the other calibers).
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Old 08-19-2015, 03:57 PM   #45
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The P320 45acp is completely non-compatible with the other calibers).
I too am unhappy about this but the P320 is good enough for me it really is a non-issue.
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Last edited by Longitude Zero; 08-19-2015 at 06:27 PM. Reason: Spelling
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