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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; Hello all! I am a new P320 Carry 9mm owner and long-time Sig fan (P229, P226, P238 and P239 so far). I took my P320 ...


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Old 07-05-2015, 04:27 PM   #1
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P320 100% Failure Rate Observation and Research

Hello all!
I am a new P320 Carry 9mm owner and long-time Sig fan (P229, P226, P238 and P239 so far). I took my P320 Carry out to fire it's first rounds and lo, the sky fell! I will describe the issue and ask that you all try to replicate my result, letting everyone know.

The pistol has either an failure to extract or failure to eject with the first round, 100% of the time, when it is loaded with 17+1 rounds of 115gr FMJ ammo. The Federal AE doesn't eject and the other brands (Fiocchi, Sellier and Belloit) didn't even extract (the slide hardly moved).
Think I have a lemon? Maybe, maybe not. The RSO's and I shot the range-rental (read: broken-in springs) full-size 9mm and encountered the same failures, 100% of the time, when loaded to 17+1 with 115gr FMJ ammo.
What about higher-power ammo? Yup, it solves it, with Federal 9mm +P+ JHP's feeding just fine when loaded to 17+1 capacity. This makes sense, because...
The problem is there is no spring compression room left in a fully loaded 17-round magazine. This creates a lot of friction resistance on the bottom of the slide that the slide has to overcome to cycle properly after the shot, if the gun is loaded with one in the chamber and a full mag. Normally, when inserting a full 17-rounder and racking the slide, this isn't a problem, as only 16 rounds are in the mag and the pressure is much less (although as you have all likely noted, the slide really resists racking with a full mag). Of course, inserting a full mag from slide-lock, with the slide open, then releasing the slide gives no issues; this is because the 17th round is stripped off the mag before the under-slide contacts the top rounds upon closing.

Now riddle me this: why did Sig make a handgun that is 100% unreliable when fully loaded and using the most common 9mm ammunition?

Before you say it, yes, the firearm works fine otherwise, albeit with very weak ejection using the 115gr FMJ stuff (I'm talking, land-on-my-shoulder kind of weak). I get it that this was designed to handle some really strong stuff (like 124gr NATO and +P/+P+ equivalents), but never-the-less, when ****, 115gr stuff will be everywhere.

Before you say it part two, I am not limp-wristing or retarding the slide with my grip, a suspicion discarded after multiple experienced shooters encountered these malfunctions consistently on two different firearms.

My options right now are to A.) Use only the hottest ammo I can find, an issue in the urban environment where I live, B.) NOT fully-load my 17+1 capacity handgun. Either way, these are not options a modern striker-fired handgun shooter should have to deal with, especially with a "To Hell and Back" Sig (*cough* Glock 17 works fine *cough*).
Sig is going to have some answering to do tomorrow when I get a phone call to them (which I will update you all on).

So, all you P320 9mm owners, try this experiment for yourselves and let me know your honest result. Load up with a full 17/15/12 +1 capacity of 115gr FMJ and let's see what happens.

Remember to shoot safe!
~NWGunEnthusiast

Last edited by NWGunEnthusiast; 07-05-2015 at 04:32 PM.
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Old 07-05-2015, 04:43 PM   #2
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Do you have the right spring in it…or one that is too stiff?

It sounds a bit like the early Gen 4 Glock 19's hat had the 23-strength spring assembly in it.
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Old 07-05-2015, 04:48 PM   #3
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Whoa! Where to start? Welcome from WV! Sorry to hear of your 320 issues. I have had a 320sc in 9mm since April 2 of this year. Close to 550 rounds without a single issue. Other wiser sages here will no doubt reply to your troubles, but overall the 320 has been largely a winner. Sounds like a warranty call may be in order.
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Old 07-05-2015, 04:49 PM   #4
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Springs

It is completely stock, brand new. I inspected the spring upon initial strip/clean/lube and it revealed no inconsistencies. I also compared it to the diagrams in the Sig manual and noted that they appeared identical.
If there is a way to check to see if it is the "correct" spring assembly, like identifying markers, then please let me know.
These failures occurred on the full-size range rental too.
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Last edited by NWGunEnthusiast; 07-05-2015 at 04:57 PM.
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Old 07-05-2015, 05:10 PM   #5
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Do not have that problem whatsoever with our P320 compact model in 9mm. I can load the chamber eject mag top off and fire away, no problem. 2k+ rounds.
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Old 07-05-2015, 05:48 PM   #6
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Thanks Steve!
Lets keep the reports a-comin!
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Old 07-05-2015, 05:52 PM   #7
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Make a precise list of the mfg / weight and count each of the rounds you fired, the detail of problems, (you'll have to write all that down to include with the gun in the return anyway) and then call Sig CS. They will want a lot of detail, so be precise, calm, and ask for assistance.

I would bet you'll get a return label for a trip to the motherland.

Let them sort it out.

BTW, is this a factory-new gun, or just new to you?
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Old 07-05-2015, 06:07 PM   #8
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I buy the cheapest 115 grain out there and have had no problem with it when fully loaded. Yes, the better rounds are more accurate as they should be, but no FTF, FTE nor any such thing. I also used 165 with my 40 and had no problems either. I have had a Smith, a Canik and a Tanfoglio that had bum springs from the factory. It happens. Not saying that's what you have, but.....
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Old 07-05-2015, 06:07 PM   #9
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I have a 2014 Carry (Compact) in 40 with a 9mm Carry Xchange kit. Never an issue with either caliber even using weak range reloads.
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Old 07-05-2015, 06:13 PM   #10
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I had 2 p320's. One was a compact in 9mm and the other is Fullsize in 9mm. I put right around 100 rounds through the compact loading the 15 round mags all the way. It never had a single malfunction. Fed everything and ejected everything. The Fullsize now has just over 500 rounds and it too has never had a malfunction of any kind, also loading the mag to 17 plus one in the chamber. I have shot 50 rounds of Hornady XTP 124gr split between the two guns, the rest was 115gr Blazer Brass, WWB, Magtech and steel case blazer. All lighter target loads. I sold the compact but still own and love my Fullsize. It's a great platform and I'd say the OP has a lemon. This is not a common issue. Hopefully Sig will send an RA and take a look at it. Keep us posted as you go.

Last edited by MajorTitan; 07-05-2015 at 06:17 PM.
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Old 07-05-2015, 06:47 PM   #11
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Interesting and sorry to hear of your troubles. I have a P320C and it remains loaded 15+1 at all times. I practice with it the same way however, my EDC rounds are Federal 124gr HST and my practice rounds are either 124gr Lawman or 124gr AE, I have had not one single failure of any sort that was not directly related to limp wristing -you get tired after a few 100 rds. If this was recurrent with both your pistol and the range's as well experienced shooters shot both pistols with the same failure a call to NH is certainly in order. Good luck and please, keep us apprised. Thanks!
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Old 07-05-2015, 07:03 PM   #12
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@ CCC: Brand new, from the LGS, never been fired prior to me.

It sounds like it is possibly a spring issue.
What about the range rental, though?
The 100% failure rate can't be coincidence with that one too.
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Old 07-05-2015, 07:27 PM   #13
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Can't say I've had any issue with my 9mm P320 Compact, and I've even bought and used commercial 115gr reloads through it.

Like what was posted above, get back in the range and make very careful documentation of further issues. Video it if you can, and let Sig view the video.
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Old 07-06-2015, 03:30 AM   #14
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You did take your mags apart and clean up and debur the follower if needed right ?? Check that the recoil spring is not in backwards .

How many rounds have you run thru your pistol ?? NO mention of that .

Have you let those fully loaded mags set around for a day or two and try again. That works with softening some brands recoil springs just to be able take the last round in the mag much less feed it .

I don't carry a full mag +1 in a high cap pistol or carry fully loaded mag as back up . Always one short if it really max's out the recoil spring . Hard on mags spring to stay fully compressed long term compared to one round down . But have tried mine fully loaded to be sure they work but again I don't shoot the same day . They hang around fully loaded for a few days first while I get use to the new trigger .
I also don't shoot those three loads on a new handgun . Speer lawman for a first 100 fired and to use as a proof load when other ammo causes problems !!


If nothing else works contact sig cs and let them take your 100% unreliable pistol in for some TLC . OR send it to me . I'll get it running well . I need a 9mm version . Love buy'n some ones problem firearms too .
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Last edited by hardluk1; 07-06-2015 at 03:34 AM.
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Old 07-06-2015, 06:32 AM   #15
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Ran boxes of Federal, Winchester WB, and Blazer Brass through my P320c without a single malfunction. Mine its a full size but still. I only have 10-rd magazines though, since I live in crappy CT.
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