Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Next Campfire Question

Okay, so we've all shared our stories about the grail guns, Glen Filthie has brought us back to reality with his observations. The fire starting to die down. The bottle gets passed around again. Borepatch shifts his arm in the sling a bit and winces.

Someone pokes the fire with a stick then looks up and offers, "Okay, here's another gun question. What the biggest piece of junk gun you ever owned? Or fired? Or tried to fix? What was it and what did you do with it?"

As before, I'll look them up the best I can and you'll see them featured in the coming days. Just give me your worst one and don't be shy. I have one and I'll share mine as well.


bluesun said...

I've had an old winchester 75 that none of the magazines can stay seated in, not even when wrapped with tape and other redneck shenanigans. But on gunbroker I see that they're still going for like $1000 so I'm not sure if that's "a peice of junk" no matter how junky it is.

kahr40 said...

My dad had a Bauer 25 cal that I inherited for a short time after his death. Damn thing wouldn't feed consistently no matter what I did. I ended up giving to my brother and I've no idea what he did with it.

Low key said...

I briefly had a tourettes (taurus) millenium. Never made it through a full magazine without a ftf. Traded it in at my next fun show. Got the amount I paid for it knocked of the price of a gently used M&P.

Murphy's Law said...

A COP .357. Only two of the four chambers would fire reliably. I tried to fix it, only to find out that I could not reassemble it. Two actual gunsmiths also botb tried and failed to get it back together so I sold it off as a parts kit for exactly what I'd paid for it. It was heavy and bulky and the trigger pull was abysmal. Due to the ergonomics of the little grip, recoil was wicked when it actually did go off. Total hose job of a defensive arm.

burt said...

Not a big gun... but I owned a Kel-Tek PF9 that sprayed rounds everywhere. Sent it to Kel-Tek *twice*. They replaced the barrel twice and replaced the slide once. Never got good accuracy on it beyond 10 feet. Yes, I know it's a c/c gun, but I expected something better than that.

Too picky about what it would eat, and it would ftf way too often on almost any jhp ammo (and ftf every d*mn time on Gold Dot). Gold Dot rounds would get wedged between the breech and the edge of the chamber. No amount of fluff-n-buff helped. The feed ramp was just too steep. And the grip was... awful.

Sold it to someone else who just wanted a CC for about half what it cost me. Yes, I warned him about feeding it jhp, but he just wanted a cheap c/c.

Tony Tsquared said...

I inherited 2 Bryco model 38 in 380ACP - one is black and the other is chromed. One will shoot it's mag all the way through. The other will FTF/stovepipe on every bullet. Switch magazines and I have the same results. On both guns if the target is more than 15 feet I cant get a bullet on the paper. They both will have a light strike with the firing pin once in a while. These are close up, Saturday night specials that may or may not fire when you squeeze the trigger.

BTW: They are for sale for a good price. :)

Comrade Misfit said...

I bought a S&W 2nd Generation compact 9mm in the mid-`80s. From a rest, it shot so far to the right (with decent ball ammo) and low that something was seriously wrong with the gun.

I probably should have sent it in for repair, but I traded it off.

abnormalist said...

My dad had a Remington 597 that he bought as a "gunsmiths special". We brought it out and it would only shoot about 60% of the time you pulled the trigger.

It was DIRT cheap cause that's the only way he buys guns... After some work, we got it up to about 80% of the time working, but then it stopped entirely.
After a complete tear down we found the firing pin had been broken, welded, and broke again. $10 in parts and we had it running. The down side is it never liked ANY aftermarket mags... One of these days I'm buying that man a 10/22 just so he has one :-)

Dave H said...

Being a cheap@$$ you'd think I'd have encountered some real dogs, but so far they've all been fairly good. (Although like I remind people regularly, the secret to happiness is low expectations. I'm pretty easy to please.)

Probably the most frustrating gun I own is the PSL. I built it from a parts kit on a Romanian receiver that had already been hardened so it was difficult to work. The fellow helping me build it, who was a whiz at building AKs, ended up curling the lip of the chamber when we were inserting the barrel after riveting everything together. I had to smooth that out with a Dremel.

It shoots, and it's even reasonably accurate when shot cold, but the bolt carrier sits too low and won't always cycle all the way back after firing because it drags on the hammer. So it'll eject a spent case but it won't chamber a new one once or twice out of every magazine.

I found out after the fact that the last batch of Romy PSL receivers imported into the States were suspected of being drilled wrong. Nothing like paying $90 for a piece of scrap metal.

Goober said...

Charles daly autoloader 20 gauge. Spent more time fixing it than shooting it. The bolt block is broken and the part to fix it is not available anymore. So it's a boat anchor now. I'd heard good things about Charles daly and with the aluminum frame and super light weight during the time I was having back problems it seemed like a good option.

Also have an ejector style NEF single shot break action in 243 win. The extractor styles work fine, but the ejector styles are notorious for not being strong enough to eject casings. So you have to carry a cleaning rod with you everywhere you go to eject the odd stuck casing, which happens every five shots or so.

jon spencer said...

Had a single shot break open shotgun that had a legal length barrel and the OAL was at the number too.
When you fired it, you had to keep upward pressure on the forearm to keep the action closed.
Because of the lack of choke the spread at twenty yards was quite large.
The good things about it,
In a cloth case and broken open, it would ride on the transmission hump and if you did not know it was there.
It went bang when you pulled the trigger.
It was in the car all the time.
If someone managed to steal it, it was their problem.
It did account for a few ruffed grouse.

Sherm said...

Ruger P97.
99% of the time it worked just fine but occasionally the take down lever would slide part way out disabling the gun. I've heard that early ones could shoot the lever across the room. Mine just moved enough to shut things down.

ZerCool said...

Like Abnormalist, a Remington 597, which was the first gun I bought myself. It had an out-of-battery discharge and left its extractor/plunger combination somewhere in a cornfield and a handful of powder freckles on my hand. I had a 'smith fix it, but it never worked right again. Failures to feed, failures to fire, on and on. I tried every tweak and tune I could find online (changing tension on guide rods, new magazines, thorough cleanings, etc) and it still refused to work right. I finally put the thing on a classified ad, cheap, with a full disclosure of what had happened and what it was doing, and sold it down the road to be someone else's problem. I've since sworn off Remington rimfires.

J Bogan said...

Some kind of crappy 25 acp (raven?) I bought because Maryland was going to ban them. Wore the chamber out after a couple hundred rounds. It would also disassemble itself when firing on occasion. After one impromptu disassembly, I gathered up the parts and pitched them in the pond.

Ancient Woodsman said...

A National Ordnance M1 carbine about 1983-84ish. What a piece of crap. No mil-spec anything on it, just "looked like" an M1. Gas cylinder was welded on tube of metal that had stripped threads/no staking, turning it in to a semi-automatic-two-shot, sort of like the old Armalite Golden Gun. Two shots and done, then the piston & ring floating around in the forearm somewhere. Rear sight dovetail was too loose, couldn't hold the sight in place; front sight some abomination that only vaguely resembled what an M1 sight might have looked like if made in late-war Japan with a nail file by candlelight.

Parted it out to a guy who was former Army armorer of local fame - he got frustrated, too. It was that bad. Got a Winchester M1 that I wish I still had.

But yep, that National Ordnance was something of a project that never turned in to anything useful. Bag gun-genes, I guess.

Geodkyt said...

Taurus Millenium. Made a hasty promise to buy it from a friend "once I had the money".

Lousy accuracy, trigger like a cap gun, malfuntions at least once on every magazine (and not consistantly on the same round count).

Still have to get rid of that dog, but I don't want to pass a lemon off to someone who might get killed because of it. So I need a buyer who doesn't care how crappy it is, even after I tell him.

In the meantime, I think of it as a malfunction training gun. . .

Arthur said...

S&W .45acp 1911. Bought new.

Chambering any ammo at all in any brand of magazine will hammer the bullet back into the case until the powder stops it. I tried putting a cannelure into the brass behind the bullet - like federal does with its 45 ammo - and it shoved the bullet through *that* as well.

I've heard S&W has great customer service, but I'd rather have a root canal than deal with any company's service department so I haven't gotten around to calling them.

Raptor said...

SIG P232 that I bought used from my favorite gun shop. Red Flag #1 should have been that it was the only gun in the used case with "AS IS" written on the tag. Red Flag #2 should have been that it didn't want to field strip. But I ignored that uneasy feeling in my gut and bought it anyway.

Turns out that the takedown lever was busted, so the locking block wouldn't rotate down far enough for the slide to retract far enough to clear the guide rails. If I'd done due diligence and actually researched the gun before I bought it, I would have learned that busted takedown levers seem to be very common with modern P232s. Something about SIG switched making their small parts from forged steel to MIM components.

Oh, and the magazine it came with was buggered up too: the feed lips were cracked, so it would only feed FMJs, no HPs of any kind.

Anyways, brought it back to the shop, and they sent it back to SIG, covered all the costs too. Put less than 1000 rounds though it before the lever broke again. So I sent it to SIG myself and got it fixed again, than brought it back to the shop a few weeks ago, where I traded it towards a brand-new Springfield Range Officer Compact. The gave me $100 less than I'd initially paid for the gun.

Between repairs, new grips, three new mags, and a full holster/belt/mag pouch combo, I don't even want to think about how much money I wasted on that POS.

Old NFO said...

Universal M-1 Carbine... Dead on (A BIG sheet of paper) at 25 feet, beyond that who the hell knows... Sold it for $25...

Will said...

Beretta .25 Jetfire(?). New. IIRC, on the second mag of FMJ, it disassembled itself in a spectacular fashion. Slide ended up hanging from the rear of the frame, dangling from the mousetrap recoil spring, with the tilt-up barrel pointing at the ceiling. Magazine was on the floor. I had ensured the barrel lever was correctly seated before shooting.

The following mag, the slide seized on the frame so tightly, I had to toss it into my bag to fix at home. Had to whale on it with a deadblow hammer to get it free. The problem was the factory had neglected to stake a crosspin in the frame. It ran from one rail groove to the other side rail groove, and would drift out and drag on the slide. I checked 3 of these, all with different serial number sequences, that had the same problem. Called the factory, and they didn't care. They were busy with the Army 9mm order, I guess.

This thing was keyholing at 5 yds. The previous one would punch perfect holes at 25yds. The third one was ok at 15 yds, but keyholed at 25yds.

The mag button is in the bottom of the left side grip. It protruded so far, that I could dump the mag with either hand in a normal firing grip position, if I held it tightly. Gave it back to the dealer. BTW, these were built in the US factory.

chuck w said...

I had a Colt Combat Commander that would toss the brass right into my forehead. I had to wear a billed hat when I shot it. We tried changing the extractor, ejector, and barrel but nothing fixed the problem. As I was the only one who had the problem, I now suspect it was my grip but I eventually sold it.

wyowanderer said...

It would have to be my Mossberg 142.
It's accurate, sized right, but it won't feed cartridges from the magazine into the chamber without a bit of fussing. Got for Christmas when I was a cub, so it'll stay in the safe until I die.

lelnet said...

Ruger MkIII. It was either the second or third gun I ever owned.

Jammed constantly. Wouldn't feed reliably. Lost count of the number of times I drew blood from my thumb while trying to reload the magazines.

Took it apart once, trying to figure out what might be wrong, and was never able to get it back together again. The pieces (or at least most of them...I'm not really sure I didn't lose one or two) are still sitting under a pile on the junk counter in my kitchen.

Will said...

Got another one. Well, more than that, really. Bought this one from the same dealer that sold me that Beretta 950. Hmm, might be a trend, there. Anyway, it's a LLama .32acp, and looks like a 3/4 scale Colt GM.
I'm still not quite sure what is out of dimension, or how many parts, that is. It has an extended tip ejector, like the short slide Colts do. When you seat the magazine, the top of the mag smacks the bottom of that extended tip, and bends it upwards. Then when the brass hits it, it tends to bend it up a bit more. Eventually, it starts dragging on the roof of the clearance slot that is milled into the base of the slide. This drag slows down the action, and then it has problems with stopping out of battery, and other cycling issues.
Thinking the mag might be seating too high, I shimmed it down a bit for test, but then it wouldn't feed, so that wasn't the bad part. Got three mags, and all are the same. Sent it back to the importer, but their fix wasn't the correct thing to do. They tig welded a beefier tip on it, but that didn't fix the height problem, and it still bends upward. Another dust collector. Some day, I'll mill that slot deeper, and move the tip up a bit. Another project, sigh...