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Old 03-28-2011, 09:33 PM
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Default Sigma 9VE slide doesn't Lock Back

I bought the 9ve about 3 weeks ago and just got the chance to go shoot it today. I was completely amazed with the groups I shot with it. But, shouldn't the slide lock open when the magazine is empty? I shot 5 magazines with 15 rounds of WWB each and it did not lock open after the last round on any of them.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:36 PM
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Yes, it should lock back. When my son's did that it was a spring problem in the mag.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:39 PM
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Mine does it with both of the factory mags that came with the gun new.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:40 PM
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Get in touch with S&W, they should send you a return tag for your defective gun
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Old 03-29-2011, 05:13 AM
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I had that problem with the Sigma i shot at the range. Definitely get intouch with Smith.
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Old 03-29-2011, 05:44 AM
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There is something you can check before sending it in, if you want.

First, put in an empty magazine and pull the slide back by hand. Did the slide lock back? If yes, it is possible that the problem can be eliminated by disassembling and cleaning the magazines (I use CRC silicone, and wipe dry), and carefully cleaning and lubing the gun per factory manual (not excessively).

Then test the gun with a full-power quality ammo (WWB tends to be a little wimpy). Just put in a couple of rounds at a time for the test.
If it then works, after shooting it a few more times it will probably shoot the WWB OK.
A combination of not clean, brand new, and wimpy ammo can cause short-stroking the slide and failure to lock.
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Old 03-29-2011, 12:28 PM
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I did try a magazine of 124grn Remmington nato and it did the same thing. I am going to take it apart & clean it and check the mags over real good before I send it in. I was just thinking it was something to do with the gun it self since it did it with both the new mags that came with it.
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Old 03-29-2011, 01:18 PM
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I have had the same problem with both mags. I took them apart, stretched the spring a bit, and put a slight coat of lube in the mag well. Both work fine now. I believe that the problem occurs when the plastic follower doesn't return all the way.
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Old 03-29-2011, 01:28 PM
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Seems like that happens on most new Sigmas. Just keep shooting it and that problem would go away.
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Old 03-29-2011, 04:34 PM
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How do you take the mag apart? Bottom plate pops off somehow?
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Old 03-29-2011, 06:25 PM
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holding the pin in the middle of the plate while sliding it off. do it with it facing your body so the spring doesnt fly away.
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Old 03-29-2011, 10:48 PM
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Well I'm beginning to wonder if the issue with the Sigma is that the main spring is still so new and tight that the slide isn't recoiling back enuff to make it lock open. Just took it out to clean it and put a empty mag in and it locked the slide open, tried the second mag and it locked open fine. Think I'm going to try running a couple hundred more rounds thru it and see what happens.
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Old 03-30-2011, 09:26 AM
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Don't stretch the mag spring. Can do more harm in the long run and weaken the spring.
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Old 03-30-2011, 10:57 AM
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No plans on stretching any of the springs, what I was referring to is the main spring(recoil spring), I think it is still so tight from being new that it isn't letting the slide go back far enuff when firing. If I put one of the empty mags in it now and rack the slide back manually it will lock open every time with either mag.
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Old 03-30-2011, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
If I put one of the empty mags in it now and rack the slide back manually it will lock open every time with either mag.
If the slide stays locked back with empty mags in it, just clean, lube and shoot. It should work itself out.
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Old 03-30-2011, 04:14 PM
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Like I said earlier, my problem was that both magazines developed the same problem. Both were fairly new. Neither had been dissembled and cleaned. My problem was a result of the magazine follower NOT rising to the top of the magazine completely. The slide would not lock back on an empty magazine. Once I took it apart and cleaned it, I have not had any further problems. Yes, I did stretch the spring a bit, not much. Most of what I did was clean and spray some lube in the mag well. I no longer have problems with the follower failing to slide to the top of the mag opening. Perhaps when they are new, they aren't worn enough on the sides to slide up with out resistance. Put some lube on the inside of the mag and the follower will have less friction.

I doubt you will find a problem with the recoil spring that would result in this failure.
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Old 03-30-2011, 06:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nycems22 View Post
holding the pin in the middle of the plate while sliding it off. do it with it facing your body so the spring doesnt fly away.
+1 words to live by.
Altho, you don't wanna spoil the fun.
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Old 03-31-2011, 05:03 PM
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Just a bit of a range report. Finally had the chance to shoot my new SW9VE. After 40 Rounds or so with FMJ 115 Grain it locked back after it was empty...everytime. Then I wanted to try some JHP 147 I think it is....I had the magazine full, but only shot 5 rounds, ejected the mag, and racked back the slide to empty the chamber. Then my wife and I wanted to share the last 10 rounds (FMJ) 5 a piece. I shot the last 5 and it didnt lock back. Opened a new box, put one in the mag, racked it, fired, and it didnt lock back. Im thinking it will work its way out after I clean it... havent purchased a cleaning kit. Are the Walmart ones good?
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Old 03-31-2011, 10:46 PM
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Not necessarily good, but decent.
I use a walmart kit, hoppes #9 solvent, and rem oil on my sigma and haven't had a single solitary problem since I bought it 600 rounds ago

You could try a +p ammo to accelerate the spring wearing in, but my suggestion is to lock it back and leave it there for five minutes or so. Shoot a few rounds, then repeat until you get the behavior you want
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Old 03-31-2011, 11:24 PM
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I wouldn't wait, that is how people wind up outwaiting the warranty on their guns. I see it like this, I'd be wanting My gun to work correctly All the time. I Actually demand that guns I carry on my person work flawlessly All the time, otherwise I cannot and should not depend on that particular gun. Call S&W- they should be happy to send you a mailing label if you are the original buyer, they will return the gun to you after they repair it. Trust me, they Want your gun to work correctly, as they want you to buy some more in the future.

Last edited by billdeserthills; 03-31-2011 at 11:26 PM.
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Old 04-01-2011, 12:49 AM
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stretched the spring a bit, and put a slight coat of lube in the mag well
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Old 04-01-2011, 04:16 AM
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I wouldnt wait either and I can see your point. I thought S&W had a lifetime warranty though? Thats the only reason why im waiting. If Im wrong, Ill call today....and gordon...is it the winchester kit?
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Old 04-02-2011, 06:23 PM
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cleaned it up and took it to the range today. First few mags, same problems. Then I tried 147 JHP and it locked back.. Hooray!!! Then tried 115 FMJ again, and it didnt lock back. So I asked some questions, and an attendant test fired it with 115 FMJ and it locked back he said. Then I took my last 5 FMJ rounds and did what he said. Apparently, I wasnt locking my wrists together, but I was holding it tight. But I went back in there, last five rounds, locking my wrists and it locked back. My sign is stupid.
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Old 05-01-2011, 09:34 AM
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I had that problem with my Sigma when I first got it. Result was during the recoil, my thumb was hitting the slide release. I suggest putting your thumb under the slide release, loading one round in the mag, and shooting it that way a few times to see if that is your problem. Hope it works out for you.
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  #25  
Old 05-01-2011, 01:04 PM
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WWB is some of the worst ammo out there. Most problems can be traced back to ammo specifically WWB. id rather use blazer than WWB
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  #26  
Old 05-01-2011, 07:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OKFC05 View Post
There is something you can check before sending it in, if you want.

First, put in an empty magazine and pull the slide back by hand. Did the slide lock back? If yes, it is possible that the problem can be eliminated by disassembling and cleaning the magazines (I use CRC silicone, and wipe dry), and carefully cleaning and lubing the gun per factory manual (not excessively).

Then test the gun with a full-power quality ammo (WWB tends to be a little wimpy). Just put in a couple of rounds at a time for the test.
If it then works, after shooting it a few more times it will probably shoot the WWB OK.
A combination of not clean, brand new, and wimpy ammo can cause short-stroking the slide and failure to lock.
I second the clean the magazines idea. When I first started using my Sigma, I had a number of fail to feeds, times when the slide didn't lock back, even a couple when it locked back and shouldn't have. I had cleaned the gun before using it but not the mags. Then I read something on the forum about taking apart and cleaning the mags, problems solved. Now probably at least 2000 rounds and no worries.
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Old 05-01-2011, 09:32 PM
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No WWB for me, at least not in the bulk pack. Blazer brass and Federal are cheaper for me and I have never had a problem with them, WWB I had enough near-squibs in my 9mm that I decided to not buy any more.
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:28 AM
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Also if you keep your mags fully loaded all the time, will cause springs to get weak. Rotate mags and maybe try to load 8 in 10 rd mag and 14 in 16 rd mag. (lesson learned Afghanistan)
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cbr6864 View Post
WWB is some of the worst ammo out there. Most problems can be traced back to ammo specifically WWB. id rather use blazer than WWB
I have heard of several guns that were using WWB at the time they blew up
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Old 05-07-2011, 10:11 PM
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I find it hard to believe that WWB ammo could be that bad. That's all I've shot I'm my sigma and had nary a problem in 6-800 rounds.
However I clean meticulously after each shooting trip. THAT DAY ASAP.

It seems like most problems come from user error in maintenance and technique. Not that I have perfect technique.

At least you figured it out
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Old 05-07-2011, 10:16 PM
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I had the same problem and some time I have FTE. In my opinon, you dudes need to send your gun back to S&W.

I got mine back last year and I dont even think about it any more. Let the PRO's do their work FOR FREE!!! Why even "figure" it out?

Call them NOW! Be safe. Good luck
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Old 05-24-2011, 03:53 AM
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Guys... I see most folk jump directly to equipment error...

Not to insult anyone, but have you all entirely eliminated the possibility of operator error?

I see one reference was made to 'limp wristing', and correcting this solved the problem. Next thing I would look at is how you shoot. Thumbs up or thumbs down?

If you shoot thumbs up you may very well be preventing the slide lock from functioning. The Sigma (and the SD) have honking great slide lock levers. ANY pressure on them will prevent them from activating.
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Old 05-24-2011, 10:44 AM
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My used 9VE started to experience the same thing a couple of days ago. Not knowing how old the magazine was I took it apart, cleaned it, stretched the spring a bit and the slide now locks back on empty like it should. However, Iíll order a new Wolf spring to replace the old one just to be on the safe side.

BTW, I personally havenít had a major problems with WWB in the majority of my 9mm firearms. The only thing that I've noticed is inconsistency in COAL which resulted in a feeding problems in one of my pistols. For that particular pistol I run the rounds through my bullet seating die to obtain a consistent length.
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Old 05-25-2011, 02:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garpo View Post
My used 9VE started to experience the same thing a couple of days ago. Not knowing how old the magazine was I took it apart, cleaned it, stretched the spring a bit and the slide now locks back on empty like it should. However, Iíll order a new Wolf spring to replace the old one just to be on the safe side.

BTW, I personally havenít had a major problems with WWB in the majority of my 9mm firearms. The only thing that I've noticed is inconsistency in COAL which resulted in a feeding problems in one of my pistols. For that particular pistol I run the rounds through my bullet seating die to obtain a consistent length.
The lifetime repair policy doesn't require registration and they are apparently honoring used guns as well....you might simply send it to them with the slide-lock issue and let it be "repaired" for free rather than ordering a new spring on your dime....the warranty was meant to be used, and was a huge part of my buying mine....they will generally not be looking to clang a claim with the "normal wear and tear" thing, as it's about customer relations on a gun which costs them very little in the first place....we are not talking forged/machined/hand-fit parts here....
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Old 05-25-2011, 02:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billdeserthills View Post
I have heard of several guns that were using WWB at the time they blew up
I had feeding issues with the 115gr but not the 147gr, also on a stiff new mag...I shoot Winwhite all the time and find it great and consistant ammo, maybe a bot of variation in OAL, but generally, far Far FAR above Blazer brass with the soft lead bonded copper plating/burred-case-mouths/inconsistant-crimp/COL-all-over-the-map as well as loaded rounds, and this is my experience through multiple calibers of the stuff....of course, i only shoot about 1000rds a month, so folks with more experience may have some better input.
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Old 05-28-2011, 03:08 PM
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i too had this problem but ive only put 41 rounds tru it so far and i think it was user error for me because after i fired one mag full it didnt hold back so i got both mags and 2 bullets and got a better grip/hold of the gun sure enough both LRHO worked........ on a side note i really want to shoot it more but the place i buy my ammo is sold out of 9mm
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:56 PM
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Used many 100 value packs of WWB in several guns in 9mm and .45 ACP in the past 10+ years, never had a problem.

Also had several of the 50 round boxes with NATO marked (+) brass. Don't know if the ammo was an overrun on a NATO contract, or just an overrun of the brass.
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Old 05-28-2011, 07:20 PM
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I've got the sigma 9ve and was having this problem after putting about 200 rounds through it. Took the mag apart, cleaned it and I've not had the problem again after another 400 rounds. Didn't stretch the spring or lube it at all and it still works like a charm.
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