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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had several failures to feed in which the carrier failed to fully pick up the shell, and it wound up rattling around under the carrier arms and had to be fished out by hand. I was racking it HARD, so it wasn't a lack of enthusiasm on my part.

On many occasions I had a shell in the magazine and it stuck in place and would not move further down into the magazine, and would not allow another shell to be loaded. I have never experienced that in a shotgun.

Worse, I had multiple failures to fire. Several Winchester Super X 2 3/4 inch full power slug rounds (X12RS15, 1 ounce, 1600 fps) failed to fire at least twice. I finally got them to fire on the 3rd and 4th attempts. Several Winchester 2 3/4 inch Super X #1 Buck rounds (XB121) also failed to fire multiple times. I got one to fire on the 4th or 5th attempt, and another absolutely would not fire. (See photo. The two on the left are Estate birdshot rounds, and the one on the right is the Winchester Super X #1 Buck round that would not fire.) Cheap Estate bird shot rounds fed and fired without issue. Measuring under good light, it appears that the firing pin extends beyond the bolt face 3/64 inch at most. It's probably a between 1/32 and 3/64.

Lastly, the KS7 fired consistently low. Birdshot, #1 buckshot, and slugs all fired low. And I do mean low. If I shot at a human target mid-chest at 12 yards, I'd hit him in the groin.

At least I had no failures to eject.

Suggestions, comments, wisdom?
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There may be a single mechanical problem causing these different issues, but I can't think of one defect that could cause your multitude of problems.

Did you test the KS7 before the fluff and buff? Could the fluff and buff have caused some of these problems? I'm not asking to assign blame, but only in an attempt to locate the cause to provide a hint at a solution.

I've had a momentary problem where a newly loaded shell was trapped and wouldn't slide forward in the magazine tube to allow the next shell to be fed into the magazine, but it wasn't a persistent problem. It was just a snag. The rim of the shell was catching on something. It was odd and somewhat annoying, but that intermittent problem will probably lessen over time.

Your intermittent failures to fire are more troubling. As you probably know, these are usually caused by either the firing pin not protruding far enough from the bolt face (chipped or worn firing pin, or some blockage in the firing pin channel that interferes with the forward motion of the firing pin), or the bolt isn't fully going into battery.

Unfortunately, it sounds as if your KS7 is going to need a trip to Kel-Tec. Be sure to send a concise letter explaining the problem exactly. Otherwise, Kel-Tec may do a couple of common upgrades and fine tuning, test it with their usual ammo, and send it back without addressing the specific problems you're having, and that can be very annoying. In your case, I'd send a letter with a short numbered list of problems.
  1. Shells catching when loading magazine, preventing shell insertion
  2. Carrier dropping shells
  3. Failures to fire, including light primer strikes
  4. Consistently shoots 12 inches low at 12 feet
Good luck! If you learn anything that could help other KS7 owners, please share. KTOG is all about sharing information. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
@Liberty4Ever , the fluff & buff made the functioning of the action smoother, but all of the problems I had today at the range were also evident before he fluff & buff. That's why I did it!

I examined the bolt and firing pin closely and manipulated the firing pin to see if it moved through its full range of motion. It does, and that's why I measured how far the firing pin protrudes from the bolt face. I was hoping that someone knows how far a shotgun's firing pin should protrude. I wonder if filing down the shoulder of the firing pin just a little so that it'll protrude further is the solution.

The real head-scratcher is why the gun will fire cheap Estate rounds without issue, and hickups on better quality Winchester Super X ammunition.
 

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My best guess when I read your original post is that the Estate shells have a thinner hull and may be chambering more readily than the Super X, which may be causing a slight out-of-battery condition, but without seeing it for myself that's only a guess. It's good info for anyone troubleshooting the problem, so make sure Kel-Tec knows this if you send the KS7 in for repair under warranty. It's possible that the chamber reamer was worn and you have a slightly undersized chamber, leading to chambering problems and out-of-battery operation. I wouldn't assume that, but if it could be proven to be true, that's something you could fix at home with some sandpaper, a slitted wooden dowel and a drill, followed by a proper chamber honing (I have a commercially available tool to do this). Of course, you should need to do exactly none of this on a new firearm, and Kel-Tec has a very generous lifetime warranty for the original owner.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
@Liberty4Ever , since you have the chamber reaming tool, I presume you know when and when not to use it. If I field stripped the KS7 (again), and manually tested the fit of the Estate and Super X shells in the chamber, is there a way to test your theory? What would I look for? What would I feel for?
 

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@Liberty4Ever , since you have the chamber reaming tool, I presume you know when and when not to use it. If I field stripped the KS7 (again), and manually tested the fit of the Estate and Super X shells in the chamber, is there a way to test your theory? What would I look for? What would I feel for?
You could measure the inner diameter of the chamber, and while I was doing that, I'd also measure the runout - basically how oval the diameter is... the difference between the minimum and maximum inner diameters. It would also be a good idea to measure the chamber depth although that can sometimes be a bit tricky in practice because it's not a simple cylindrical pocket.

Chamber GO - NO GO gauges are the way to quickly get a read on whether the chamber was reamed correctly. While they provide a quick yes or no answer when checking against SAAMI specifications, there's not as much information about what's wrong if you needed to correct a problem.


Pretty good explanation here:


Again, if there's a manufacturing defect, Kel-Tec needs to see it so they can correct their manufacturing process. They should already be gauging the chambers to ensure they meet SAAMI specs.
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Okay, I printed out page 22 of SAAMI Z299.2 – 2015 (R2019) Voluntary Industry Performance Standards for Pressure and Velocity of Shotshell Ammunition for the Use of Commercial Manufacturers, which is the page that provides the cartridge and chamber drawings and specifications for 12 gauge 3" smooth bore.

I certainly do not have a chamber length problem because the KS7 is chambered for 3" shells and I was shooting 2 3/4" shells exclusively.

I removed the barrel from the shotgun and found that the Estate birdshot, Super X slugs, and Super X buckshot rounds all fall into the chamber without any impediment. Visually, all three chamber identically. With an engineering scale marked off in 64ths, I can find no difference in the depth to which the Estate and Super X shells chamber. No discernable difference in the way these three shells chamber.

Using an inside caliper, I found no runout in the diameter of the chamber. You can't use a vernier caliper to measure the chamber without interference, but you can use an insider caliper to gauge the diameter and then measure the inside caliper with a vernier caliper. It's a bit crude, but I got 0.820 inch. The SAMMI spec is 0.8111 if I read the diagram correctly, so using a crude and two-step measuring method it's in the ballpark.

So I can't find any difference in how those three shells chamber, and I can't find anything wrong with the chamber itself. That makes me wonder about the Super X shells themselves, although they are of the same approximate vintage as the Estate shells, and are all stored in an indoor safe with a dehumidifier. If only the Super X slug rounds or the Super X buckshot rounds had failures to fire, it would be easy to conclude that I had bad shells. But both the Super X slug and buckshot rounds had failures to fire, and it seems unlikely that a simple "bad box of shells" conclusion about BOTH the slugs and buckshot could be all there is to it.

I guess it's back to the range before I ping Kel-Tec.
 

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DON'T alter the firing pin.
First, that positively will void the factory warranty, and second, either the pin is defective or not and if defective should be replaced not altered.
Unless you have a known good extra pin to compare it with there's no good way to ID a factory defect.

NOTE: I measured my KS7 firing pin protrusion, and it's 0.050".
My KS7 is totally reliable on ignition.

In your case I suspect that you have a gun with some factory defects causing your problems.
If new factory ammo still gives problems I strongly recommend sending it back to Kel-Tec for a factory level diagnosis and repair.
By all reports Kel-Tec is doing warranty work in a reasonable turnaround time, and with excellent correction of problems.
If they replace parts, you can do any fluffing and buffing again to smooth it up.

Making any alterations blind hoping to hit on a fix will usually ruin parts, cause other problems, and will require paying to have it corrected.
In short, when a new gun fails to work let the maker correct it on their dime.
 

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I hear of a lot of problem regarding the KS7….. Too bad because when keltec makes a good one ( any of their guns) it’s always the best and my favorite in its class.
 

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Of course, the only guns that get posted about much are the one's with problems.

To be fair, I'm not hearing much bad about the KS7 after the usual start up production problems.
Most KS7 owners seem to have no trouble.
 

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Just use a standard dial or digital caliper.
You can buy these cheap from Harbor Freight, and inexpensive ones from reloading supply companies.

These will have a pin or rod that extends out of the gage that can be used as a depth measurement.

Extend the depth pin then hold the firing pin forward with the bolt out of the gun.
Position the depth rod or bar of the gauge on the bolt face and gently press the gage down until the butt of the gage contacts the firing pin.
This will give a read on the protrusion.
I usually do it a couple of times to insure a valid measurement.

Extend the depth bar or rod #2, then put the butt of the gage over the firing pin #1 and press down until the gage stops.

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thank you, @dfariswheel ! My caliper didn't come with instructions. Now I know something new. (y)

With the bolt lying down on a flat surface (granite countertop) and the caliper lying down on a slightly raised flat surface to put it in alignment with the firing pin, I measure 0.055". Since your KS7 is reliable at 0.050", then the problem I have isn't the protrusion of the firing pin.

Back to the range! (But this time I'll know a lot more.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
ROUND TWO

The first thing I did was try to get that one round of Winchester #1 buck left over from the last range session to fire. Nope, two tries and nothing. So I thought, "Hey, maybe it's just a dead round." And maybe it is...

But the next thing I tried was Remington #4 buck. The first one fired, the second one didn't. Examination proved it was a light strike. (See photo, the light strike round is on the right. The round that fired is on the left. Note the difference in the depth of the dimples on the primers.)

And finally, I tried some fresh rounds of Winchester #1 buck. Several fired, one just wouldn't. (Again, see photo.)

The target photo is the results of today's range test. The target was at 12 yards, point of aim in every case was the "nose" of the target image, and all rounds were fired from a rest. It shoots a bit low at that range.

So sometimes this KS7's firing pin strikes the primer hard enough to fire, and sometimes it doesn't. An unreliable gun. Frustrating at the range, unsuitable for home and self defense.

So how does one best get Kel-Tec's attention on a matter like this? It has to go back to the factory.

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This is all incredible I'm reading here.
I have two KS7s with just aiming mods and Butt pad additions done.
Mine feed the shortys and the standard buck shot and bird shot rounds without issue.
As far as shooting low. I used a laser bore sighter to align my optical dot on one unit and a upper laser with rear iron site on the other.
Set to 40 feet, I saw no horrifically low shots.
This info from the OP is really interesting.
 

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ARA.........
All you need to do is contact Kel-Tec.
They'll pay for shipping both ways.

I recommend enclosing a copy of the photos of the light primer strikes. DO NOT send a live shell.

Use their Support Ticket system and they'll take care of you........

 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
ARA.........
All you need to do is contact Kel-Tec.
They'll pay for shipping both ways.

I recommend enclosing a copy of the photos of the light primer strikes. DO NOT send a live shell.

Use their Support Ticket system and they'll take care of you........

Done! They are very responsive, and have promised that FedEx will send a prepaid shipping label to me within a few days. Kel-Tec specified an unmarked box. All I can think of is to paint the factory box black so that it isn't obviously a firearm. Does anyone have a better idea?
 

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Wrap the box with heavy brown shipping paper and a good amount of good tape.

The only question is.... will Kel-Tec send the original box back or a new box.
Some people like to keep original boxes, but that's up to you.
If you don't care, buy some cheap light brown spray paint and cover the markings on the box.

Still another option is to go to a shipping store and see if they have a box that could be used that's not too big.
 
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