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Discussion Starter #1
A good friend (a Lt.Col.) just got his orders for an extended Mideast vacation. I've heard many of the rumblings about problems with the M9 pistol, and since he'll probably get issued one, I wanted to give him a "care package" as a going-away gift with items to help ensure his return. Most of what I've read has centered around mags and mag springs. Anything else? If I give him a brace of mags, will he be able to bring and use them?
Thanks.
 

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Johnny,

These are the issues I've personally dealt with on the 92 package as well as what I remember from other threads:

First, the locking block. This must be replaced, as routine maintenence, every 5,000rns. It requires no special fitting- it's a drop-in pieice. Without it, the pistol either locks up or becomes a single shot, and that single shot is dangerous. Taurus's is $30; I don't know what Beretta sells theirs for. I understand Beretta is an updated design.

I would get Wolff springs all around. He can drop in what he can in the field. The trigger return spring seems to be an issue. Ever since that was posted here I have been trying to figure out what it was about as mine is a captive coil spring. It may just be a Taurus change though. I'd look into it though.

Mags and springs and locking block, definetely.

Is your friend gun savvy? If so, I would send a few heavier recoil springs along if he can test shoot. The reason for this is I've heard reports of slides not going into battery fully and a heavier return on the recoil spring should help.

I believe the Beretta M9 is a sound design that has been hurt by the military mentality of "lowest bidder." If you could get some Mec-Gar mags over there with permission of course I'd send them. I don't want to think of how the heart of those autopistols were made. In fact, I would be very much interested in testing one of these.

For those who have inspected the M9, how bad are the chambers? My Taurus's was pretty rough and I hand to polish it for reliable extraction and ejection. Sandpaper and a dowel rod might not be a bad idea here either. Oh, and a BORE SNAKE! Both for M16 and M9.

Again, I don't know what all is allowed. I'll be thinking about other possibilities at work (teaching today) and post more when I get back, if I think of more anyway.

Josh <><
 

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Definitely a minimum of 5 mags. He'll loose one or two along the way, and more is better.

A bucket of Wolff +10% mag springs.

Dry Lube - also by the bucket.
 
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Gents,

OK, now you know why I'm not a fan of the M9...

Magazines: at a minimum clean and rebuild them with Wolff Springs (extra power prefered). Test fire in an M9 prior to deployment. Use only OEM or Mec-Gar...
Replace all springs with Wolff. ESPECIALLY, THE TRIGGER RETURN SPRING. That one almost cost a counterpart his life...
Keep it clean(daily)
That should put your Lt Col. buddy in good stead. Ammo, Winchester Ranger RA9T+P+ 127 grain. Get it and take it with you. Bring enought to test fired it in you magazines.
That should take care of any issues short of slide separation.
Wish him luck...

Wes
 
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That Ranger ammo could very likely see someone court martialed. Hate to see that happen.

Generally speaking, at the echelon of most LtCol and higher, the M9's in the armory are in piss poor condition - as they're rarely fired (either in garrison, OR in combat.) The last time I ran an M9 range (just prior to leaving Kuwait), there were plenty of magazine failures, so indeed, I would replace the springs, and if possible get him some spares. The problem is, I wouldn't, and currently don't, carry anything in combat that I haven't tested. Lt. Col's, at least in my Brigade don't have a lot of time pre-deployment to get to the range - so that could very well be an issue. Other than the ammunition suggestion, I agree with replacement of major component springs. I can't comment on the locking block, and would leave that to the armorer (however incompetent he or she may be), before I went altering issued equipment. If on the range the pistol fails, or the armorer can't produce paperwork stating the appropriate maintence has been fielding, ORDER the thing fixed, or replaced. If not, and something *does* happen on a weapon that's been modified by someone other than the armorer, you're looking at nasty UCMJ crud again. Would it hurt my lowly E4 career a whole lot? Likely not, I'd be a Private again. Would it be a nasty smudge on an O5's record, quite possibly.

In short: springs, and keep it clean, and make sure you qualify with YOUR weapon (no pencil whipping allowed - it happens!)


Anthony
 
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Josh,
Springs may or may not be a go either, and it's the users choice, but really anything over springs I wouldn't go changing. If I needed a firing pin for my M16, it'd come from the armory, likewise a plunger, or any other number of non-fitted parts for my rifle.

Anthony
 
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Well as a long time armorer about to take over anouther arms room in my unit that is preparing to deploy (Darn having that skill set, I never get anywhere that doesn't get wind that I won a couple of awards for being a good armorer and stick me in there "Cage") I would suggest asking around for a competant armorer and that does not mean third shop as most of them dont know a small arms issue from there nether regions. I used to do work for individuals from other units who knew me from my civillian range time and word of mouth that would bring me thier weapons so they could get fixed right. What unit is your freind deploying from? I may know of a good armorer in his Unit if not I can ask around and see who might know someone there worth his salt.

Zack
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I forgot to ask;
Will mags and spring sets for a Beretta 92 fit an M9? Are there any differences I need to know about?
Thanks.
 
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Great stuff, thanks.

I sent the H&A web address along to a friend who's a captain and was telling me about an M9 he saw that would fire only intermittantly when the trigger was pulled.

Do these problems occur with the civilian model? I have a stainless 92 that I will be carrying shortly. Sounds like the mag springs need replacing, at least. How hard would it be to replace a trigger return spring? I like to do these things myself if possible.
 

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The civilian and military Berettas are identical other than markings of course. Remember that the military uses 15 round mags, and not the politically correct, anti-drive-by-shooting 10 rounders.

Apparently, the US government bought magazines from an after-market source that have proved less than reliable. The finish as well as weak springs cause mis-feeds. If the magazine has a crinkle textured lacquer finish, it will jam sooner or later.

Although it hasn't been mentioned as a problem, I suspect that the external trigger bar arrangement is a problem in the extremely dusty environments of Iraq and Afghanistan.
 

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Although it hasn't been mentioned as a problem, I suspect that the external trigger bar arrangement is a problem in the extremely dusty environments of Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Israelis never seem to have a problem with the Berettas they had.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Israel never used the 92, and the old 951s were issued very rarely, usually only to special troops who took better care of their equipment, or to officers who never used them.
 

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I personally would tend to rely on JonnyC's first hand knowledge.

Which reminds me, Jonny, were many of those former (captured) Egyptian Helwans, or all Beretta made?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
A little of each actually. The Helwans were considered real trash, as the only 9mm readily availible was very hot Uzi ammo. I know of a few Helwans that met an untimely death due to Uzi loads.
Besides the 1951s and Helwans, there was a sprinkling of HPs and .380 Enfields in service circulation. In civilian circles, I saw lots of HPs, TZ75s, PPKs, Walams. My carry piece was a ratty but lovable Radom. My whole time in Israel I saw and fired only one Beretta 92, and even that one was a civilian Taurus!
 

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No surprise there Mate. If it works, use it.

Those WWII Enfield revolvers were still in use for CMF (Aus. Army Res.) support arms officers (for training at least) even into the late '70s.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The last Enfield I saw issued was in 1988. A friend of mine got stuck escorting UN officers around Israeli sites in Lebanon. That's what he got as his only weapon! At least I got a new .380 headstamp for my collection.
 
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The after market locking block may or MAY NOT drop in without fitting. M-9's are held to specific tolerances because the Army required that their main parts be swappable in the field. This is not necessarily true for the civ version (92FS) and certainly not true for the aftermarket parts.

Be careful about lock blocks because I suspect that some are made a shade oversized so they can be "fitted down" to get a tight barrel fit. I recently fitted new barrel and block into my 92 and the block needed some fitting.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
OK, I got mags, bore-snake, dry-lube, and Wolff springs to send along.
One last bit of help needed. Any good on-line field/detail stipping sites for this pistol. I want to make sure he can replace the springs himself when he gets in-country.
Thanks for all the info above.
 
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