My P-3AT Road to Reliability ...

Discussion in 'P-3AT' started by dyno, Nov 19, 2008.

  1. dyno

    dyno New Member

    May 21, 2007
    My Road to Reliability …

    • P-3AT NIB serial JCBxx , cleaned & lubed, shot 100 plus FMJ flawless
    • Started trying JHP’s, many FTF’s, Fluffed & Buffed which cured problems
    • 200 plus rounds & signs of peening began, JFB washer, peening halted
    • 250 plus rounds tried One Rd Mag Ext & KT Grip Ext, mags started dropping at percussion,
           experimented w/my grip, no change, replaced mag catch, reliable again
    • 350 plus rounds assembled 10 Rd 3AT mag (Nu_Agin_Shooter’s Guardian mod)
    • Started dropping all mags again … trip to Mother Ship- new grip & mag catch
    • Upon return still dropping mags!?!  (P-32 then getting all the carry time)
    • Considered NAA Guardian replacement … put all mags back to original flat base plate & became 100% again
    • Found source for metal mag catch, installed it & put my mods back on all mags ...
           now 100% through three mags of each, slow & rapid fire, one & two handed.

    It took me quite awhile, but now I have a well broken in 3AT that is carry reliable!
    Everything I needed to know to make it happen came out of KTOG’s Search function.

    Thanks KTOG!!!

    Thanks also to:   JFB & Nu_Agin_Shooter (Washers & 10 Rd mag)
                            DaveNC (top notch metal mag catch) (& virtual-rjhauser for tip to DaveNC)





    Smoothest & quickest draw out of “Guru” leather pocket holster
    (my favorite, I just like leather, looks just like a wallet in the pocket)

    Best value, most comfortable plus carry spare mag out of “PocketPal” holster
    (gets most carry time, minimal printing))

    Great deep carry option, 10 Round Mag makes grip easy, keeps pockets free, wear it even under gym shorts  - “Low Rider” holster
    (similar to SmartCarry but no where near that quality, but half the cost, ok for a light pistol, carry spare mag, has pocket for cash/ID ect.)

    You know I'm happy to have a 380 I can take anywhere  ;)

  2. hiredgun

    hiredgun New Member

    Sep 9, 2007
    Wow, Dyno! That is a great report. Thanks for the details, it really instills a sense of confidence that there is a solution for all issues to be found here on KTOG, and a path to utter reliability to be found for those who are dligent in searching the KTOG site. Plus, a lot of fun along the way! Thanks for sharing this. :)


  3. JFB

    JFB New Member

    Jul 25, 2005
    Great report. However, I would like to ask one more thing from you.

    would you mind adding a couple lines about YOUR cleaning and lubing?
  4. doubloon

    doubloon New Member

    Jan 5, 2008
    Houston-ish, TX
    Nice post, a few more details about on a couple of the steps as JFB mentioned would add good value.

    I really like the comments about that Nu_Agin_Shooter guy.  He must be a smart fella!  ;)
  6. dyno

    dyno New Member

    May 21, 2007
    JFB I agree that cleaning & lubing is a key element of reliability.
    And I knew the cleaning & oil part before I began reading this website …
    but y’all have taught me all about the lube!

    I always break down and clean/lube after every firing session, even though I normally shoot only between 30-50 rounds per session …usually about every two weeks, but sometimes just once a month … btw I shoot 9 mm & 38 Spl for bulk practice.

    I simply wipe/clean all the lube & residue out with paper towels first, use stout wooden tooth picks to get in the tight areas …
    if it’s especially dirty I use non-chlorinated Break Parts Cleaner,
    but this is seldom as I don’t like to totally remove all the lube on  every cleaning.

    I pay special attention to areas directly exposed to firing residue …
    on these I use a small bristle bore brush with old Hoppe’s No. 9 …
    and  I run a solvent dipped copper bore brush through the bore numerous times … then a wipe/clean again all over.

    Next a small amount of gun oil (currently Outer’s Gun Oil … I’m not particular about the name brands of solvent/oils I use … these are what I have on hand to clean my rifles & IMO they’re adequate for routine cleaning of any firearm) Light coat to the entire barrel in & out, light coat to firing pin channel & all friction areas for trigger action …
    small amounts only …wipe down of mags with an oily towel.

    I am particular with the grease though … as my gun shop has this “Tetra Gun Grease” a fluoropolymer penetrating heavy duty grease lubricant… supposedly it “embeds into metal pores and is effective even when grease layer is not visible.” My grease layer is always visible, however, as I’m happy with a good coating on slide rails and frame rails, on slide portion where the hammer slides across, on the barrel lug area and assembly pin, and on the recoil spring guide. Basically I liberally lube any area that will have direct kinetic friction. I’ll stick with this one brand of grease to see if I can discern their claims are true.

    BTW I started greasing the larger autos that I occasionally shoot too … can’t go wrong there the way I see it.

    Sometimes the pistol gets some lint & fine dirt on it from the pocket …
    I’ll break it down & do a partial cleaning then … but not to remove the lubricants that are in place.

    Overall the thing is babied IRT to staying clean …

    Incidentally when it started peening I considered just letting it go as I could always get a new slide later … but a couple reasons I didn’t want to do this ... friction related, so also related to the cleaning topic …
    Foremost, it’s clear to me that through break-in, the slide and frame “mate” together in a custom way … I don’t want the new friction situation from a new slide. Secondly I’d rather avoid the expense (albeit small) and hassle and time without the piece, to send it to the Mother-Ship.

    Anyway … thanks for the interest … I have nothing new for y’all … as all I get & do I got from you … this website is the best reference I could ever ask for … a Kel Tec library right at my fingertips!  Thanks KTOG!   :cool:

    P.S. It's true there are many many impressive posters on this website ... most cordial & informative & vibrant place I regularly stop by ... even the poobah Nu_Agi_Shooter guy fits in there.  :-?
  7. Old_Bill

    Old_Bill New Member

    Jun 15, 2008
    I've also heard that Nu_Agin_Shooter guy is handsome, kind to children, and a true gentleman! :cool:

    Of coures...I might have been misinformed.... ;D ;D

    Old Bill
  8. JB

    JB Guest

    Sounds like it. Of course, if only I could find a thread detailing that ten round mag mod then I would have proof of just how smart he is (tried a search - actually tried a few different ways, no luck.)
  9. voigts

    voigts New Member

    Sep 30, 2008
    Thanks for the long term feedback there. Very interesting. At 250 rounds so far the only thing my P3AT will feed reliably is Winchester FMJ. I went back and did a more detailed F&B as I only did a very light one when I first got it, so hopefully it will fire better next time I get it back to the range. I didn't want to get too happy with the F&B the first time given that mine is chrome, and I was concerned that I could damage it if I sanded too much. I used a Dremel and some rubbing compound to give the interior a much better polishing.

    I have been looking at that low rider holster. I just got my carry permit in, and although the Desantis Nemesis is OK, I don't particularly like sitting on my gun when in the car. My car has leather seats and it is less than comfortable to say the least. This has proven to be a real pain when you are running errands and getting in and out of the car a lot.

    Do you find the leather pocket holster wearable when sitting?

    I really wish I could find a decent paddle or maybe pancake holster for this gun with an Armalaser, but no one seems to make one. Most of the holsters I see are geared toward pocket carry.
  10. pedro

    pedro New Member

    May 28, 2008

    Here ya go.  I carry my P-3AT in this holster everyday.  I can't stand pocket carry, IWB is my preferred method of carry.  The Galco holster is really top notch.   ;)

  11. JB

    JB Guest

  12. tweed

    tweed New Member

    Nov 15, 2008

    Here ya go.  I carry my P-3AT in this holster everyday.  I can't stand pocket carry, IWB is my preferred method of carry.  The Galco holster is really top notch.   ;)


    now that is just a very nice picture pedro.... very nice i applaud you ... it looks like my 3at...
  13. goodbrewing

    goodbrewing Active Member

    Oct 2, 2008
    I guess I am 1 of the lucky ones. Mine was great out of the box with a good cleaning. I haven't added the +1 or finger extention but am considering the metal catch as I don't like the idea of plastic there. I did start to get some peening so my washers have been ordered to stop that problem. I crawl around in the dirt under houses and am suprised at how well the P3 has taken the abuse. After a year the blueing is gone in places and the grips tend to change colors with the clay content where I happen to be working but I have never had any problems with it going bang. Knock on wood. Good to hear you worked through the problems and have a good reliable pocket pistol.
  14. dyno

    dyno New Member

    May 21, 2007
    Voigts ... you might also take a look at this one piece only kydex paddle holster from JS.
    I have one for my PF-9 & it goes on & off easily & works great ... it's their "flagship" holster & they make one for the P-3AT.

    I find the leather pocket holster totally comfortable while seated ... but no quick draw ability.