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Old 09-12-2020, 04:22 PM
TriggerHappy1 TriggerHappy1 is offline
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Default 3913 - can't remove slide

Hi Guys. I recently picked up a 3913 sold as new with box (but no manual.) No reason to think it's not as advertised... except... can't get the slide off. I imagine the recoil rod and spring assembly disengaged from the notch on the barrel shroud. Just guessing. Any tips how to diagnose and/or fix? Thanks.
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Old 09-12-2020, 04:45 PM
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Have you looked for a video online to disassemble your pistol? There should be many available.




Last edited by Maddog 521; 09-12-2020 at 04:47 PM.
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Old 09-12-2020, 04:56 PM
TriggerHappy1 TriggerHappy1 is offline
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Originally Posted by Maddog 521 View Post
Have you looked for a video online to disassemble your pistol? There should be many available.



S&W 3913NL - Field Strip - YouTube
Thanks. Yah, I know how to field strip the 3rd gens, but never had this issue.
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Old 09-13-2020, 02:11 AM
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...can't get the slide off. I imagine the recoil rod and spring assembly disengaged from the notch on the barrel shroud.
Did you get the slide stop assembly out?

If so, can the slide be moved forward at all?

.
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Old 09-13-2020, 03:18 AM
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Originally Posted by BLUEDOT37 View Post
Did you get the slide stop assembly out?

If so, can the slide be moved forward at all?

.
I can remove the slide stop/takedown lever. The slide can then move forward on the frame approx 1/4 inch before it hangs up. I don't know for sure what it's hanging up on when I try to slide it off the front of the frame, but it feels like it's binding on the recoil spring. I have another functioning 3913, so I can visualize the internals. On the functioning 3913, with slide assembly mounted on the frame, then the little spring-loaded pin on the back of the guide rod inserts into a small hole in the frame, and the recoil spring seats in a larger diameter cavity concentric with the small hole. The guide rod and recoil spring in the gun with the stuck slide seems to have the same proper alignment as the functional gun. In other words, with the slide stop removed, when I look through the slide stop hole on the side of the frame (above the serial number), I can see the guide rod pin protruding through the hole. Hope that's a clear enough description. Thanks.
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Old 09-13-2020, 03:58 AM
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I've had some that were stubborn to get off because "something" was hung-up but they eventually came off, a little roughly, after reinstalling/removing the slide stop, cycling the action a few times, & then cussing at it a bit.

You might try removing the grips & mainspring to see if that helps, by chance.

.
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Old 09-13-2020, 08:06 AM
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I presume you also removed the magazine? The slides on S&W pistols can be a bit "bumpy" and "rough" during disassembly as they pass over the little levers located near the rear of the receiver. It sometimes takes a bit of effort and the recoil spring guide rod can pop out of that tiny little cut in the barrel and launch itself, so be careful.
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Old 09-13-2020, 12:45 PM
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I had a similar experience. It wouldn't go forward after removing the magazine and slide stop. Finally took a rubber hammer and gently tapped it out. This is how I solved my issue, I don't recommend you do this unless you're completely out of ideas and no one else here has a more viable solution.
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Old 09-13-2020, 02:07 PM
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It reads like the magazine is still inserted. I did that a time or two myself in my early days. All semi-autos will stop forward movement if the magazine is in the way.

Let us know how it goes.
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Old 09-13-2020, 02:29 PM
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When my 3rd gens hang up I rack the slide, things line up and they come apart.
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Old 09-13-2020, 03:16 PM
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As I try to mix and match my 2nd & 3rd Gen parts, I’m finding that I too have to back up and maneuver parts to get them to get back in place... I never had that problem with the 1911 platform, but metal frame Smiths just seem to be naturally cantankerous by design.

I’ll be interested to hear how your problem was resolved.

Froggie
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Old 09-14-2020, 01:52 AM
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Hey thanks for the tips. Sorry I was busy today, Sunday. Yes, I had the mag out. I'll disassemble as much of the frame as I can. I'll call S&W for any advise they can provide. I doubt they'll offer for me to send it to them for repair. If they do, it would probably be a six month wait considering COVID. Whacking with a mallot is of course absolute last resort. One thing I'm thinking about doing is grabbing the guide rod with a pair of vice grips to compress the recoil spring. Maybe it'll free up the assembly so I can get the slide off. I'm willing to let the guide guide rod get chewed up a bit. This so feakin wierd because the slide racks fine otherwise when the gun is assembled. BTW, I also used Kroil penetrating oil. That stuff is magic for most uses but didn't seem to help free up the slide in this case.
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Old 09-14-2020, 08:11 AM
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TriggerHappy1, you seem to be familiar with the 3rd Gens, so I'm hesitant to mention this, but here goes.

Is the safety off? With the safety engaged, the 3rd Gen slide will not come off.
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Old 09-14-2020, 08:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TriggerHappy1 View Post
Whacking with a mallot is of course absolute last resort. One thing I'm thinking about doing is grabbing the guide rod with a pair of vice grips to compress the recoil spring. Maybe it'll free up the assembly so I can get the slide off. I'm willing to let the guide guide rod get chewed up a bit.
BTW, I also used Kroil penetrating oil.
Oh, MAN! You used Kroil, that's what messed ya up--
--shoulda used Ballistol!!


Seriously tho, tap back end of slide lightly with pine 2x4,
before wrangling on the guide rod with visegrips.
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Old 09-14-2020, 10:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GaryS View Post
TriggerHappy1, you seem to be familiar with the 3rd Gens, so I'm hesitant to mention this, but here goes.

Is the safety off? With the safety engaged, the 3rd Gen slide will not come off.
Yes the safety is off, but thanks for helping.
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Old 09-14-2020, 10:58 AM
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Oh, MAN! You used Kroil, that's what messed ya up--
--shoulda used Ballistol!!


Seriously tho, tap back end of slide lightly with pine 2x4,
before wrangling on the guide rod with visegrips.
I'll give it a shot.
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Old 09-14-2020, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TriggerHappy1 View Post
Hey thanks for the tips. Sorry I was busy today, Sunday. Yes, I had the mag out. I'll disassemble as much of the frame as I can. I'll call S&W for any advise they can provide. I doubt they'll offer for me to send it to them for repair. If they do, it would probably be a six month wait considering COVID. Whacking with a mallot is of course absolute last resort. One thing I'm thinking about doing is grabbing the guide rod with a pair of vice grips to compress the recoil spring. Maybe it'll free up the assembly so I can get the slide off. I'm willing to let the guide guide rod get chewed up a bit. This so feakin wierd because the slide racks fine otherwise when the gun is assembled. BTW, I also used Kroil penetrating oil. That stuff is magic for most uses but didn't seem to help free up the slide in this case.

I would not dismiss SW option - I had a 5904 with problem reassembling after I had some difficulty getting slide off (nothing like what you had - it was just stiff). It also had recalled grip. I emailed and told them what I had. They send return Fedx label with understanding that if it was not covered by warranty, they would give me estimate before proceeding.

Pistol went back first week of August and I heard nothing but it showed up today (5 weeks) working fine, with correct new grips, and looking like new. I understand that there have been others with less positive experiences, but I would have to rate my experience as A+++ despite Covid.
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Old 09-14-2020, 11:21 AM
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The MANUAL



https://snwcdnprod.azureedge.net/sit...s_10-01-15.pdf


You may have to convince it!


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Old 09-14-2020, 11:33 AM
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Thanks for the encouragement, I'll call Smith shortly.
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Old 09-14-2020, 01:51 PM
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It's only help if it, you know, actually helps!

I mentioned it because I did that once. Also, somewhere in this forum I seem to recall a similar problem and it was an issue with the safety apparatus. I can't recall any details unfortunately.

Quote:
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Yes the safety is off, but thanks for helping.
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Old 09-14-2020, 02:36 PM
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Quote:
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It's only help if it, you know, actually helps!

I mentioned it because I did that once. Also, somewhere in this forum I seem to recall a similar problem and it was an issue with the safety apparatus. I can't recall any details unfortunately.

If you have grip off and mag out, try to see if anything moves up where top of mag would be - it sounds a lot like what would happen if the mag was still inserted - but I would not force anything pending discussion with SW - if they say send it in, I would jump at that opportunity.
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Old 09-14-2020, 03:03 PM
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Sounds good. Will check it out this evening after my day job.
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Old 09-15-2020, 04:00 AM
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Apparenty, this is a thing. I've have a bunch of 3rd Gens but never encountered it.

GaryS, here's the similar problem you may have been thinking of...

Difficulty removing slide on 3rd Gen? (w/ photos)

I finally got the slide off. I should have whacked it with a rubber mallet from the start like a few of you suggested. But instead removed the safety (while the slide was still on the gun.) I have a feeling that was quite unnecessary.

But eventually the slide loosened up and came off. There was a little residue of some sort on the inside of the frame, but the issue was probably the bottom of the safety/slide hanging up on one or more of the three levers. Not sure which one.

The slide hung up going back on the gun as well. Again, friction on the levers. The two levers on the right don't seem to depress down into the frame as easily as my other 3rd Gens. Stiffness possibly explained by it being a new gun. Running it wet with a good break in might resolve it.

Now I can enjoy my previously unfired 3913... that is, until it's time to strip it for cleaning.

Last edited by TriggerHappy1; 09-15-2020 at 04:05 AM.
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Old 09-15-2020, 06:35 AM
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You can lay a wooden dowel, or an ice cream stick across all three levers and depress them at the same time, while pushing the slide back on the frame.

Good luck! Regards 18DAI
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Old 09-15-2020, 10:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TriggerHappy1 View Post
Apparenty, this is a thing. I've have a bunch of 3rd Gens but never encountered it.

GaryS, here's the similar problem you may have been thinking of...

Difficulty removing slide on 3rd Gen? (w/ photos)

I finally got the slide off. I should have whacked it with a rubber mallet from the start like a few of you suggested. But instead removed the safety (while the slide was still on the gun.) I have a feeling that was quite unnecessary.

But eventually the slide loosened up and came off. There was a little residue of some sort on the inside of the frame, but the issue was probably the bottom of the safety/slide hanging up on one or more of the three levers. Not sure which one.

The slide hung up going back on the gun as well. Again, friction on the levers. The two levers on the right don't seem to depress down into the frame as easily as my other 3rd Gens. Stiffness possibly explained by it being a new gun. Running it wet with a good break in might resolve it.

Now I can enjoy my previously unfired 3913... that is, until it's time to strip it for cleaning.

I recently bought a LNIB 3913NL. While it was in excellent condition I had to take it completely apart down to bare frame and slide in order to remove the tarnish from years of storage. I didn't try to shoot it and it did strip down without too much effort but needed a good cleaning. Perhaps the internals of yours was a bit sticky like mine was. I still haven't shot it but will soon. I'm glad you solved the issue and I'm confident you will be good from here.

The single stack 9mm 3rd gen platform is a favorite of mine. I'm happy to have this pair to go with the others.
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Old 09-15-2020, 10:12 AM
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Quote:
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You can lay a wooden dowel, or an ice cream stick across all three levers and depress them at the same time, while pushing the slide back on the frame.

Good luck! Regards 18DAI
I like this idea! Ive ended up with my thumbnail cracked up each time Ive tried to reassemble my Franken-Smith and this would have prevented that. Thanks!

Froggie
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Old 09-15-2020, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 18DAI View Post
You can lay a wooden dowel, or an ice cream stick across all three levers and depress them at the same time, while pushing the slide back on the frame.

Good luck! Regards 18DAI

That is good practice. I use the toe of the polymer magazine base for pressing down the levers when reassembling. Stops the back of the slide from getting all scratched up also


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