Not a good range trip with the Herters

Discussion in 'P-3AT' started by angel71rs, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. angel71rs

    angel71rs Active Member

    Oct 21, 2009
    Got my order in on Friday, off to the range Saturday. Shot of a couple of magazines of WWB to make sure my pistol was in good order, no problem. Herters up next... got the 1st jam on this pistol on the 3rd round. The 1st of 4 I was to have with the Herters. No stove pipes, all were stuck horizontally.

    The last jam was really a bear: spent casing and live round were both trying to go into the chamber and wedged in hard. Could not even drop the magazine?!? I had to pull the slide back, hold it locked with the palm of my left hand while clamping the grip with the fingers of that hand, then pushed the live round down into the magazine with the index finger of my right hand. This allowed me to drop the mag, push the spent case down the magwell.

    One fail to fire, primer had a nice, deep hit near center, so pistol was not issue, just a dud primer.

    As far as how it shot... shot at 7 yards, all groups were ~ 4" low and loose, about 30% of hits showed keyholing. I'm thinking that might be undercharge, but the felt recoil was about the same as the WWB, so???

    Ammo was dirty, turned my trigger finger and right thumb black and gray. I had taken 2 boxes of the Herters, 2nd box had the same issues. After about 60 rds of this stuff, switched back to WWB for about 30 rds and had no issues. At least I know my P-3AT will fire when dirty and nasty. Oh yeah, what a mess when I cleaned it last night while watching the Cowboys do to Philly what the Herters did to my poor pistola. Yech! A couple of shots of Makers Mark soothed my soul after I got it all back together...

    Considering the other range reports so far with this stuff being positive, I can only guess quality control will be an issue with the Herters. Some will luck out and get a good lot, some will end up getting bopped on the forehead by spent cases. Oh yeah, that was another joy of shooting this ammo. Happened 2 or 3 times, never happened before with any other ammo. And I mean dead center of my forehead; I saw it coming, saw it leaving on it's way down the range after it bounced off my noggin. Remembering all this again this morning is depressing me all over again, had hopes this would be decent ammo.

    0730... is it too early for another shot of the Makers Mark?
  2. TxCajun

    TxCajun Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator Supporter

    Sep 7, 2004
    Can we assume this was the BRASS-cased Herters and not the STEEL stuff?

    Heck, I'm sitting on 500 rounds, untested.  It could have been a bad lot or, in light of the other (good) reports, it could be your gun just doesn't much care for it.  You know these little things can often be ammo-selective.  Still, even if this were the only ammo you could find things could be worse.  Finding any 380 range fodder has been tough going for a while.  4 FTEs out 60 rounds + one bad primer?  We've all seen far worse.  At least you were able to get some of rounds down range and hopefully no one is planning to use this stuff for SD.  And yea, dirty ammo is a PITA, huh?   :-/

  3. angel71rs

    angel71rs Active Member

    Oct 21, 2009
    Yup, this was the brass stuff. I'm thinking of using this only as technique practice stuff. Smooth trigger pull practice, follow thru... and jam clearing. ;)
  4. sprinter1

    sprinter1 New Member

    Jan 1, 2006
    WOW! That's a bummer. I fired another 50 rounds of it on Friday without a single problem, that makes 110 rounds so far without a hitch. I haven't found anything yet I haven't been able to fire out of any of my 3 P3AT's.
  5. angel71rs

    angel71rs Active Member

    Oct 21, 2009
    Decided to try another box, pulling it out from the bottom row of the 500 rd pack.

    Shot off a box of wwb, everything good, trigger is getting much better. Then loaded up a mag of Herters, shot off with no issues. In fact, the whole box had zero jams, no keyholed hits. Ammo was still dirty, and shot low, but only 2" low at 7 yds. So I started aiming a little high.  ;) Groups still not as good as with wwb, but much better than the 1st 2 boxes.

    I'm surprised that within the same 500 rd pack there would be such a difference, you'd figure it was all part of the same run. Reviews on other sites are all over the place, including some that think it kicks like +p ammo? Either way, this stuff is ok for range fodder for the price I paid for it.

    Did you get around to trying out your Herters?

    At around the 400 rd mark, I'm liking the hell out of this P-3AT. As I said, trigger is getting smoother/easier, zero issues with US made ammo. The sharp recoil never bothered me much, but seems to be getting softer. I know that's not possible, can only guess I'm getting more and more used to it. Band aid on trigger finger helps too.
  6. nmshooter

    nmshooter New Member

    Jan 25, 2008
    Could it be that the box of wwb got the pistol dirty and then it was dirty enough that the second go round foulded it up to the point where it started jamming? It seems like my 3at always shoots the best with the first 1 or 2 mags.
  7. pointpro

    pointpro New Member

    May 9, 2005
    Just got my new cat and I see where they are saying this stuff is steel case. Maybe there is two differant kinds but I didn't see them. I'm still thinking about getting some.
  8. angel71rs

    angel71rs Active Member

    Oct 21, 2009
  9. angel71rs

    angel71rs Active Member

    Oct 21, 2009
    1st trip with the Herters when I had jams, I only ran 2 mags of WWB before switching to the Herters. After the jammulicious Herters, switched back to WWB, which fired with no issues.

    2nd trip with the non jammulicious Herters, my pistol had no issues, even though it was filthy again. When I took it apart for cleaning, the feed ramp was completely caked with crud. So don't think it is a cleanliness issue, just something about the ammo out of those 2 boxes.

    The jams I had the 1st go round were all spent cases stuck horizontally, trying to get back into the chamber, preventing the next round from feeding, all identical. That, plus groups being so low, plus keyholed shots, maybe = undercharge???

    Don't know, but it was good practice clearing jams.
  10. Klutch

    Klutch New Member

    Feb 13, 2010
    Sounds like Herter's should pick up a copy of Lee's Reloading. What the OP is describing sounds just like a light poorly crimped load that can't cycle the slide.
  11. angel71rs

    angel71rs Active Member

    Oct 21, 2009
    Yeah, quality is not strong with the Herter's. Luckily I scored big at Academy, combined with what I already had, enough WWB to bring my non Herter's .380 stock up to ~ 800 rds. More than enough to last for a while. Besides, my new Sigma is my new range queen, and 9mm is easy to find for it, cheap.

    So I'll just leave the Herter's in storage or sell it off.