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Old 08-13-2017, 10:51 PM
Gordon11 Gordon11 is offline
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Default Range report SD9VE

This post is a near duplicate of my reply to my earlier thread "New guy with SD9VE" but I thought this range report might be worthy of a thread of its own, especially since helpful advice may be needed.
FINALLY got to the range. Fired 132 rounds, a mixture of 124gr Federal +P HST, Blazer Brass, and Fiocchi 115gr. I found the gun pleasant to shoot. As I suspected, the trigger was fine and contributed to the shootability. At 7 yards, most rounds were within the 10 ring and those that weren't were shooter error. I knew as the gun fired whether I'd done my job and those shots that were off weren't a surprise at all. As for reliability.... I had one extraction failure in the first magazine, resulting in a double-feed. It was flawless thereafter until about 120 rounds in, when I experienced another extraction failure. Both of these failures occurred about midway through a magazine. I'm not quite panicked over the failures and will make another trip to the range this week to finish break-in but I would be concerned if I experienced a few more failures. The gun had a bit more snap than I expected for its size and I wouldn't rule out some limpwristing since it was hot and my hands were a tad sweaty. I also wonder if some of the grease from the slide rails may have made it onto the extractor, giving some unneeded lube to the cartridge rims. We'll just have to see how it goes. I'll report back.
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Old 08-14-2017, 08:09 AM
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Seems like a good ways for grease to migrate, and I wouldn't think that a little lube/grease on the extractor would cause this, not without there being a problem there already. I've shot lots of pistols that were way over-lubed, without issue.
But, it can't hurt to use a flashlight and magniying glass and take a real close look at that extractor.
But, I suspect these are likely just some early teething/break-in issues, and possibly an occasional limp wrist, as you mentioned.
BTW, did you pay attention to which rounds you fired when the malfs occured?
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Old 08-14-2017, 07:29 PM
Gordon11 Gordon11 is offline
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Thanks Mark IV for the response. Your response pretty much sums up my thinking. I'm zero tolerance when it comes to malfunctions in a defensive weapon but only after break-in. With the darkness of the range, I couldn't tell for sure which round didn't extract during that first mag. With the resulting doublefeed, I couldn't tap-rack-bang so I actually had to forcibly pull the mag out and rack out the round where it mixed with my other shell casings. It was either some old Federal Champion or my HST (hoping the former). The second extraction failure was Fiocchi 115 gr fmj. BTW, the Fiocchi was H-O-T. I couldn't believe how much thump it had.
I'm going to run a full mag of the HST first on my next range trip. It's my preferred carry ammo and I want to make sure it's cycling 100%. Hopefully I can get to the range by Wednesday or Thursday.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:27 PM
Kencan Kencan is offline
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prob the ammo, i have 3 of the 9's, two have under 500 rounds but my cc has over 2000 rounds through it now and not one problem at all, not one.
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Old 08-14-2017, 11:23 PM
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I have two of the original all black SD9 and one SD9VE. I don't think I've had a single malfunction with any of them. I would suspect the Fiocchi ammo, I have had some issues with their ammo in other guns.

I can shoot the SD9 more accurately than my M&P 9. My former Marine stepson had the same experience. I only keep the M&P because of the laser grip on it, makes a great home defense setup.
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Old 08-15-2017, 10:22 AM
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I've never had ANY issues with Fiocchi ammo. In fact, it's been a big favorite of me and my best shooting bud, for decades now. The overwhelming number of reviews/reports found on-line also concur.
Obviously, any given gun can take issue with any given ammo, that's why we test them out, even if other identical guns like that identical ammo.
But Fiocchi (especially their spicy hot 9mm!) is excellent ammo,regardless.

Last edited by Mark IV; 08-15-2017 at 10:24 AM.
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Old 08-15-2017, 06:12 PM
sd9boi sd9boi is offline
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Gordon, ammo sure may cause issues. I've been having slide-lock issues for about the last 6 months. Today, I changed from my usual Federal brass to Tula steel cased ammo. Not ONE issue w/ the Tula. NONE !! Slide locked open after the last round till the ammo was GONE. Then I started shooting the Fed. and the old issues returned. Try other ammo and see if the problem persists. Ammo of the same weight but by different manufacturers can vary quite a bit, both in accuracy and function. It's tedious to cull the good ammo from the bad, but necessary, IMHO !!! BTW, even w/ the failures, I still love this gun and it's still quite accurate.

Last edited by sd9boi; 08-15-2017 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 08-15-2017, 06:17 PM
sd9boi sd9boi is offline
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BTW, I believe my issues are due to magazine spring tension being weakened by being consistently loaded to the max 16 rounds. i would not be surprised to learn that (at least MY gun) needs to be downloaded by a round and ammo rotated between magazines. These are the guns weakest link, so I wouldn't be surprised !!
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Old 08-15-2017, 07:11 PM
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All brands not one hiccup!
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Old 08-16-2017, 07:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sd9boi View Post
BTW, I believe my issues are due to magazine spring tension being weakened by being consistently loaded to the max 16 rounds.....
From everything I've read, for many years, and from very authoritative sources, magazine springs are not weakened by prolonged compression, but by repeated cycling (compression and release). Among countless other examples, this has been illustrated by magazines found from WWII that were still fully loaded, and fired perfectly,decades later, with no discernible loss in spring tension.
Your pistol may very well function better loaded down a round (I often prefer to do that myself), but you haven't damaged the mag springs by keeping the mags loaded.
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Old 08-17-2017, 08:26 PM
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I still haven't made it back to the range. Maybe this weekend....
For clarity, the second failure was Fiocchi. The first one definitely wasn't Fiocchi. The failures were roughly 100 rounds apart. It cycled a full box of Blazer Brass without fail and I was about through the box of Fiocchi when the second failure happened. I'm familiar with Fiocchi and aware that they make quality ammo. For years, I've kept my Kel-tec P32 loaded with their 73gr FMJ.
When I finally get back to the range I'm going to run 2 full mags of Federal HST and 100 rounds of WWB. Hopefully I'll get 100% function with the HST (my preferred defensive ammo).
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Old 08-18-2017, 07:00 PM
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One other thing to make note is which magazine(s) the extraction/ feeding issue happens. All of mine are numbered, just in case.

Sent from my BLU STUDIO ONE using Tapatalk
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Old 08-19-2017, 02:27 PM
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Default Ok, here's what happened today

When I got to the range today I marked one of the mags on the bottom with an X so I would know which mag any issues happened with. Fired 2 full mags of Federal HST (32 rounds) with zero issues. Opened the 100 rounds of WWB, fired a full mag with no issues. On the 2nd mag I had another extraction failure about halfway through the mag. This time it didn't remain fully chambered. It pulled about halfway out. I forcibly pulled the mag out and racked that round out of the way. I went through the remainder of the box- 75 rounds or more without issue. So... no issues at all with HST. Previous issues with Fiocchi, Champion and now one with WWB. I have to add that at the end of my range session today, I fired a few rounds one-handed and tried to intentionally limpwrist to see if it would fail. Those rounds cycled without issue. I haven't ruled out the possibility of some squirm when I fired the round that failed. While I don't lube my mags, I do wipe them down with a silicon cloth. It's possible that when loading the mags (I hold them with my right hand and insert cartridges with my left), maybe my hand got a little slick or maybe sweat was a factor. I'm just grasping here. I'm used to having flawless function with semi-autos, especially 9mm. I'm also considering the possibility of a break-in issue that has about worked itself out.
Any thoughts? Should I contact customer service?

Last edited by Gordon11; 08-19-2017 at 04:44 PM.
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Old 08-19-2017, 04:52 PM
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One other thing about today's range trip....
I continue to enjoy the stock trigger and overall shootability of the gun. The center of the target is gone. I had a few flyers that were shooter error. I've been shooting so long that I know as soon as I pull the trigger if I didn't do my job. I practiced rapid acquisition, point shooting and careful aiming. All three were a breeze. As soon as I get my issues worked out where I can trust the gun 100%, we're going to have many happy years together.
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Old 08-31-2017, 05:45 PM
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Thanks for the report.

I sure do like mine.
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Old 08-31-2017, 06:01 PM
Flattop5 Flattop5 is offline
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Quote:
"I also wonder if some of the grease from the slide rails"
Not to sound insulting, but may I ask: why are you using grease on a 9mm handgun? Grease slows moving parts down. You don't want to slow moving parts down. Why not use thick oil?



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Old 09-17-2017, 10:22 AM
Gordon11 Gordon11 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flattop5 View Post
Not to sound insulting, but may I ask: why are you using grease on a 9mm handgun? Grease slows moving parts down. You don't want to slow moving parts down. Why not use thick oil?



-----------------
No offense taken. Grease on the slide rails, or as a lube, in general, is a subject of varying schools of thought and experience and expertise seem to have little bearing on the opinions of the matter. I'm not a one size fits all guy when it comes to lubing my guns and there are some guns I don't use grease on at all. Grease on the slide rails and hammer interface is a habit I got into with my mouse guns after a smith who specialized in mouse guns advised it for pocket .380s etc. I decided to use it on a full size 9mm just because my previous compact 9mm seemed to like it. Your view on slowing the slide down via grease, may prove to be helpful as my next range trip the SD9VE will be sans grease. I will report back.
Also, I did find a spent casing from my previous range trip and inserted it into the chamber and turned the barrel up to see if a spent case would fall out. -It did. I'm still thinking I may have allowed some movement on the rounds that have failed to extract. I'm generally not a limpwrister but I'm also used to guns that aren't grip sensitive.
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Old 09-17-2017, 05:36 PM
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If it slides, grease. If it turns, oil.
Applied with a toothpick.
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Old 09-18-2017, 08:19 PM
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I use tetra gun grease on rails, top of the barrel , around the barrel mouth . on top of the barrel hood . On the slide around the mouth and area that the hood slides under . Some where the barrel and locking block engage . I use very little and it is rubbed in as per directions . I use Ballistol to clean the barrel . So far so good
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Old 09-28-2017, 01:15 AM
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Default Just the way I did it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by sd9boi View Post
I believe my issues are due to magazine spring tension being weakened by being consistently loaded to the max 16 rounds. i would not be surprised to learn that (at least MY gun) needs to be downloaded by a round and ammo rotated between magazines.
Put 200 rounds though my SD9VE today, alternating magazines each time and never loading more than 15 at once. No failures whatsoever. I fired off 150 rds of Winchester "USA Forged" (the cheapest 9mm you can buy and very dirty, literally) and finished up with 50 rds of Federal "Champion", both brands 115 grain; again no failures.
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Old 10-08-2017, 09:33 AM
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My issues are probably worthy of a new thread, but for now, I'll continue here. I've officially decided to contact S&W customer service. The failures to extract/doublefeeds have now happened with: Federal Champion 115gr brass, Blazer Brass 124gr, Blazer Brass 115gr, Fiocchi brass 115gr, WWB 115gr. Yesterday, I actually got a spent casing hung on the extractor and it took some force to get it loose. All of the problem casings appear unremarkable. Oddly, I now have around 100 rounds of Federal 124gr HST through the gun with zero issues. Anyway, I'm hoping S&W will get it straightened out. This is a very easy gun to shoot accurately and I plan on keeping it.
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Old 10-08-2017, 12:19 PM
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Since I bought a CZ P-07 and a Kahr CM9 the SD9VE has taken a backseat when it comes to range time. Buying the .22 conversion kit for the CZ affords me more range time and more getting to handle the CZ while shooting cheaper ammo. The Kahr....well it just is a great CCW as it is very concealable and accurate. However....... every time I take the SD9VE to the range, I get nothing but great results with the operation of this firearm. I am less accurate than with the other two, but only slightly. Mine will perform with any and all ammo I have ever loaded in it. Also, I have never lost the feeling of how great it just fit my hand the first time I picked it up at the LGS. I have sold or traded many firearms over the years, but the SD9VE will be a hand me down to a family member when I die.
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Old 10-08-2017, 03:12 PM
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Finally had a few minutes this morning to get out and get a few mags through the 1st SD9 I got this spring. This was 50 rounds of Blazer Brass 124 gr fmj doing rapid fire and double taps.
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Old 10-12-2017, 07:30 PM
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Called Smith & Wesson. Had a return label in my inbox before I even hung up the phone. I'm hoping they'll take time to put enough rounds through the gun to see what I'm experiencing. The failures happen about every 50-60 rounds or so. If they only fire a mag or two, they many not experience any failures. The failures have now happened among 3 different shooters with about the same frequency. I can't wait to get this thing running 100%.
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