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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Shot the P-3AT for the first time today and had some issues. Nothing that - at this point anyway - bothers me too much. Overall I would give it a C-.

Before shooting I cleaned it -

I loaded the first few mags with 6 cartridges and did not bother adding one more after racking the slide - no problems of any kind at first. Shooting Remington UMC MC 95 Gr - so about 1/2 a box latter I started loading up a full 7 rounds and right away had my first problem -very hard to clear jam after the first shot - would leave a big deep smile on the second round.

This happened about 3-4 more times before I had finished the first box of ammo. I even switched back to loading 6 rounds but still had the same issue. Not sure if this is related to the number of rounds in the mag - I have read that sometimes this type of jam will happen with a new magazine - but have never heard of this being an issue with Kel-Tec.

Switched over to Federal American Eagle FMJ and thought my problem was solved - but then after shooting a few mags the slide would not go completely forward on its own - I had to bump it to complete the loading of the next round after firing. I don't see this as quit as big of an issue as the other jams. Its like the spring was weak or like it was getting dirty - but I had only shot 70 rounds. I would have expected this after 200-300 shots.

I took a patch and wiped off the feed ramp (best I could without taking gun apart) - this seemed to help some - but the problem just kept coming back. I ended up only shooting 150 rounds - had planned on 300 - but think I will strip it - clean it & polish the feed ramp before I try again.

As far as how it shoots -

I took a chunk of bike inner tube (Walmart $3.00 - one tube should last a lifetime) and made a nice "custom" grip before heading to the range.

I think the grip really makes it more comfortable - I could shoot this little thing all day long - it has almost no kick. I need to get some +P ammo!

Accuracy wise.

My first dozen shots (10 foot range) were all grouped within 10 inches - not great - but I was happy. After shooting for a while my marksmanship took a turn for the worse. I had to really try hard to hit where I wanted. If I got the least bit lazy I was off 2-3 FEET - low and to the right. This is not the gun's fault - the combination of long firm trigger pull and lack of concentration = low and to the right. For me anyway. I have had this issue before - but with my other guns I end up shooting maybe 1 foot off target. The P-3AT is much less forgiving. Again this is not the guns problem - more of an operator error.

I also took my Kahr PM9 and S&W MP40 along - laying them out side by side they almost look like they could all be members of the same family. Its strange switching back and forth from a very small P-3AT to a medium size PM9 to a large MP40.

One side benefit - after shooting the P-3AT it was so easy to shoot my other guns - I think it was my best day ever for accuracy with the MP40.
 
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ztbill.  this sounds to me like it needs a good Fluff and Buff, polishing the ramp and chamber also.  Lube the rails, and the interface, take the magazine apart and check to see if the spring is inserted in right, you might also with 600 grit paper do alittle F & B to the magazine feed ramp and to the mag lips also.  Shoot good ammo and when feeding the first round, just rack the slide and let her fly, don't try to help it back to battery. Also, would bet after 200 rounds that it will smooth out ;D ;D
 

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z71bill said:
so about 1/2 a box latter I started loading up a full 7 rounds and right away had my first problem -very hard to clear jam after the first shot - would leave  a big deep smile on the second round.  

This happened about 3-4 more times before I had finished the first box of ammo.  I even switched back to loading 6 rounds but still had the same issue. Not sure if this is related to the number of rounds in the mag - I have read that sometimes this type of jam will happen with a new magazine - but have never heard of this being an issue with Kel-Tec.

 
My 1G P-3AT had some problems initially loaded 6+1. I had a number of jams on the first round. I used a ruler to work the follower up & down a dozen or so times to loosen the spring a bit and that solved the problem.

Give it a good cleaning and lube. It will probably work better the 2nd time around.
 

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Shoot 50 rounds of practice ammo plus a mag or 2 of carry ammo next time. Maybe if you shoot more than that, you might have a problem but this way you'll never know it ;D

Seriously, some new P-3ATs can start having problems when they're brand new & dirty after 50+ rounds. Some of them do need a bit of breaking in to work reliably and crud build up & loss of lube can cause problems in a small, light pistol that wouldn't effect a larger, heavier pistol. It's not an all day plinker.

And I do just shoot one box of practice ammo plus a couple of mags of carry ammo per session. I don't think so but perhaps mine might start choking after 150+ rounds but I may never know, I've never shot that much that in one session with it. It just needs to be reliable for 6+1 and mine has passed that test every time after the first session.
 

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Hi z71, by all means do a f&b and clean/lube it good, then next time try again but don't mix your ammo (if you did) till the bugs are out. imo 50 rounds are plenty if a problem is going to show itself. Mine has to be reliable 6+1 every time even after 50 at the range you never know what might happen on the way back to the house.
 

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I would normally interject something about finger extensions about now . . . but most have heard it so I won’t. Although, during break-in finger extensions do give added control needed while the shooter becomes accustom to the P-3AT and the internal parts wear smooth. They are also great at reducing hand fatigue as the new pistol doesn’t have to be held with a death grip until it loosens-up from extended shooting. If I were going to mention finger extensions, I would express my preference for the NAA but comment the Bersa finger rest would fit without alteration. Then I would post one of my seldom seen pictures displaying the NAA extension in the center and the Bresa on viewers left.

Wilson – who's happy he was able to resist the temptation and will only recommends cleaning every 50 rounds during break-in :)
 

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z71, just incase someone hasn't mentioned it to you, you might want to check to see if the buttonhead extractor bolt worked itself loose. I am getting the idea from your first post that you are experiencing failures to extract. Am I correct in this assumption? Nevertheless, check the bolt, and if it is loose then try to find a bottle of the blue or purple Loctite or some Guntite and apply some to the threads of the bolt. It would also be a goo idea to call KT and have then send you an extra one or two bolts. Anyway, hope your problem gets solved.

Jason
 

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Unless you used a dab of grease on the slide rails, (see earlier link), I'd give the gun a solid "B+". Some of these will do 150 trouble free rounds right out of the box; some won't. Most people don't try. It is not a 2 pound duty sized pistol designed with a sustained fire-fight in mind. I don't think you have any issues aside from break-in, cleaning, proper lubrication and perhaps expectations. Now had that been a Glock, I'd give it an "F".

It's also good to try different rounds as these ultra-light, micro pistols can have their favorites. Clean... lube... shoot... repeat... a box or so at a time. 8)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I understand this is not a gun you would normally shoot hundreds of times between cleaning - I just wanted to break it in & get to know it a little -

I took 3 other guns with me - like to shoot a couple of mags and then switch guns - mainly because I don't like them to get really HOT.

I have read where others have shoot 200+ right out of the box without cleaning and had no problems - so thought I would shoot as long as I could -    

Before my range trip I gave the gun a good cleaning - and oiled everything - but did not use any grease - I like to put lots of oil on - and then wipe 99% of it off before I put it back together. Never used grease before on a gun - but will give it a try - I always thought too much lube would cause more problems than too little.

I printed out the links on how/where to oil & grease - just got back from hardware store - needed some polishing tips & polish for my dremmel. I also got some 600 grit sand paper - they were sold out of 400  - I also need some gun grease.

Not sure if I want a finger extension - my hands are not big - the gun really is not hard to hold on to - I used both a 2 hand push/pull type grip as well as the one hand - like I said I think the rubber grip I put on really helps.

Thanks for the links & advise - I am looking forward to this project -
 

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these are the opposite of the glocks, I find my little p3 needs the oil, and shooters choice greasse on theslide rail helps. and when rakcing the slide after reasembly, I wipe the grease into the slide, then wipe it off, just kind of protects, and waste not want not.

just my .02
 

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I predict you'll like this gun. Lube can be more critical in these little buggers than some bigger/heavier guns that have more margin of error, as it were. While you don't need to do it, a bit of polishing will get you familiar with it quickly.

Here's a disassembly link for the1st generation P3. The attached recoil spring catch and different extractor are the only differences in the 2ng gen guns.

http://www.1bad69.com/keltec/disassembly.htm
 

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The first grease I used on mine was regular household white lithium grease. I just spread it thin down the slides, racked it a few times and wiped off the excess. That worked great for my first few range sessions until I got some Militec grease. But if I hadn't switched to the Militec, I'd still be using the lithium. It worked fine for me
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Bought some Hoppe's gun grease  and 400 grit wet dry sand paper today - and started "the project"

After taking the P-3AT apart and looking things over I sort of got cold feet & changed my mind -rather than  a complete F&B I did maybe 1/3 of a fluff and no buff.

I cleaned all the crud off from my first range visit  and took a good look at the gun with a magnifying glass - most of the parts looked OK - some pitting on the lug and inside the camber - but nothing that looked like a real problem.

I just kept thinking - its MUCH easier to come back and sand more off if I still have problems - than it will be to add some back if I sand  too much off!

99% of the time I used 600 grit - only used the 400 on a few sharp edges.

I also had some issues with the grease.  I put it on and wiped it off -  put it on and wiped it off. I just could not make myself put the slide back on with any  visible grease still showing.  Although I did use a very thin (very very thin!) coat of grease on the parts as recommended by the above links.  

I need some advise on how much grease to use next time  I clean it.  

I also polished the feed ramp (600 grit plus light dremmel) - very nice mirror shine with very little effort.  

I should get a chance later in the week to try it out at the range - if I still have jams I will need to go back in and polish some more.  

I worked the slide a few times before I cleaned it - and now it is noticeably smoother. I know I did some good - time will tell.

   
 

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z71bill said:
I need some advise on how much grease to use next time I clean it.
I don't like to use grease on semi-auto pistols, but I was talked into it here. Doesn't seem to affect it adversely at all.

You just need to make sure it doesn't harden by changing it often or allow it to get hard during cold conditions. Otherwise it's just a thick oil and doesn't slow down the slide.

I actually use a spray type Primis grease that's thinner than the Hoppes or any other type of commercially purchased gun grease. It is literally more like "snot" than grease. ;D

I don't spray it on, but put a dab on a q-tip and run it along the rails and in the lug. Just apply a small amount and then don't worry about it. The only possible harm even if you applied too much (pretty hard to do) would be that it would splash when firing or possibly slow down the slide. I think the slide force in this little gun is so fast and hard it wouldn't likely do that even if you used axle grease. I would not say the same about a 1911 or other pistol with longer slide action.

Don't over engineer this stuff. Just put a dab on the rails and lug and be done with it.... ;D ;D
 

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On my P-11 I usually place a dab of Hoppe's gun grease, pencil eraser size, on a cloth and run it along the slide rails and on the inside of the slide. After that I apply a thin coat of grease on the assmebly pin and assemble the pistol. I work the slide back and forth a couple of times and then wipe off any excess grease near the rear of the frame. I have approx. 1200 rounds through my P-11 without any problems or unusual wear marks, so I have to give Hoppe's a good grade as far as grease goes.
 
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I have always used "shooters choice" grease.  It comes in its only little push dispense tube and has teflon in it so it doesn't get hard.  Works great for me and I can dispense as little or as much as I want without any mess.  Any gun shop sells it.
 

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Hutch01 said:
I think the slide force in this little gun is so fast and hard it wouldn't likely do that even if you used axle grease.  
Many do. Wilson likes Slick 50 bearing grease. I use a bit of Militec grease applied with a Q-tip to the slide rails, hammer interface, barrel lugs and assembly pin.
 
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