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Discussion Starter #1
Well, just got a 357 XD yesterday, took it out in the desert today and was very disappointed. Fired 100 rounds and had multiple failures to feed. The slide continuously failed to go far enough forward to completely seat the next round. Granted, I was firing that cheap, remanufactured Ultramax ammunition, and I'm hoping that's the problem. I did notice however, that the problem was worse when firing individual shots. Rapid fire seemed to cycle fine. I made sure that I wasn't limp-wristing and tried a variety of holds, but all to no avail. As a matter of fact, it got worse toward the end of the session. Will this break in over time? I've read some threads elsewhere with others having this problem and not getting a very friendly ear or prompt service at Springfield. I hope not, because I bought a lot of extras to go with this thing. Any help or stories of similar problems would be appreciated. Thanx-----
 

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number 6,

The 357 Sig headspaces on the case mouth, but it's common with some sizing dies in this caliber to not set the shoulder back far enough. In reality, there are two datum points for headspace on this cartridge, the case mouth and the shoulder. Some shellholders don't allow the case to enter into the sizing die far enough to properly set the shoulder back. I've had to mill off several thousands from two shellholders to cure this problem. Also adding to the problem, no one makes a loaded case guage for the 357 Sig, so a commercial reloader has to use a barrel to check his product, if he checks at all. Wilson makes a cartridge gauge, but not a loaded case gauge.

The bottom line is, before you condem the gun, get some factory ammunition from Speer, Remington, Winchester, Federal or PMC and shoot it through your pistol. This will tell you whether it's the gun or the ammunition, but my bet is it's the ammunition.

I'm very familiar with both the XD and 357 Sig round. In fact, I just finished loading a run of 9,000 rounds of 357 Sig ammunition for both my XD and my 357 Sig Witness. You won't find a factory barrel in 357 Sig for the Witness. I had this one made up special.

Check the gun with the factory ammunition and then let us know the results.

Hope this helps.

Fred
 

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Discussion Starter #3
R-Fred,

That was extremely helpful and makes a lot of sense. If indeed that is the case, why does a rap on the back of the slide set the round far enough in to fire? Does that squash the shoulder just enough to seat the round? Thanx---

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number 6,

You hit the nail on the head. The rounds are probably just a couple of thousandths too long, and since brass is relatively soft, and you're only dealing with a very, very small amount of excess shoulder length, then hitting the back of the slide will seat it. You'll probably notice that the problem gets worse as the chamber gets dirtier. There isn't any room left at the shoulder, so any residue makes it that much harder for the round to chamber properly.

My guess, without inspecting the gun and ammunition, is that the cases are right at the maximum length, either at the case mouth or at the shoulder. The XD's have a tendency to have tight chambers, which is a good thing, so it makes it harder to accept these rounds. There is a certain amount of springback in brass, depending on how much it's work hardened. This is probably why some of your rounds will chamber and some won't, even if they were sized in the same die. That's why I suggested trying some factory ammunition. It's usually loaded to SAAMI minimum, to fit in all factory chambers.

Hope this helps.

Fred
 

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Number 6,

I had the same problem with my .357sig, I was shooting reloads too. Never a problem now that I shoot factory ammo.
 

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I don't shoot any 357 sig, but from my experience, stay away from the ultramax ammo in general. It isn't much cheaper than other ammo and I have list of compliants about it posted on another thread here somewhere.

Good luck :wink:
 

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BillSXT2002 said:
I don't shoot any 357 sig, but from my experience, stay away from the ultramax ammo in general. It isn't much cheaper than other ammo and I have list of compliants about it posted on another thread here somewhere.

Good luck :wink:
Yuck. any ammo > Ultramax
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you all for your input--great diagnostic work! I went back out today with Winchester ammo and fired 100 rounds without a hitch. I went from total horror to total adoration. I'm crazy about this pistol now. I'm normally a lousy shot, but this thing makes me look like Rob Leatham. I had one more box of Ultramax and tried it again after the Winchester and same problem. I also tried it in my S&W Sigma (has anyone seen any more of these in 357 SIG-I can't find any reference to them anywhere) and they failed to feed in that also. So . . . . for anybody out there with a 357 SIG (and perhaps other calibers too), steer clear of Ultramax. And you're correct--the stuff's no bargain anyway. Thanks again for all y'alls feedback.

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I've had failure to feeds with Corbon 125gr hollowpoints, and recently I even had failure to feeds with Speer 125gr Gold-Dots.

I haven't quite figured out what the problem is. :?
 

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SKeefe said:
I've had failure to feeds with Corbon 125gr hollowpoints, and recently I even had failure to feeds with Speer 125gr Gold-Dots.

I haven't quite figured out what the problem is. :?
Even though I've never had any FTFs with the XD-357, those two brands happen to be the only ones that I fire in the pistol.
 

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SKeefe,

If the problem just started, then something has changed in your pistol. Look for a buildup of carbon, etc. in the chamber, at the shoulder area. This would only be the cause if the rounds fail to chamber fully, but since you didn't specify what is exactly happening, this is just a suggestion.

If the rounds aren't feeding properly from the magazine, and are hitting the chamber at the wrong angle, then inspect the feed lips of the magazine and make sure they haven't gotten bent or have any burrs on them. The magazine spring could also have weakened, though this is pretty rare with a fairly new magazine.

Hope this helps.

Fred
 

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I've never put any reloads through my XD357, and the only ammo I've had trouble with was that Sellier and Bellot stuff. I got 4 Fail to fires from one box because of bad primers. The ammo I like best for the range is Speer Lawman Ball Ammo, WWB, and PMC Ball Ammo.
 

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I find it interesting that there are so many posts concerning problems with S&B ammunition in the XD, since this is the ammunition the factory in Croatia uses to test the guns. I don't have an opinion on S&B ammunition, one way or the other. I just find it curious.

S&B has been making ammunition for about as long as the majority of the U. S. companies, so you would think they would have the bugs worked out. I've loaded lots of their brass that I've picked up at the range and it's good quality, especially their .45 ACP brass.

I've only fired two boxes of factory ammunition through my XD, out of the thousands of rounds I've put through it. Those rounds were Remington, and they worked just fine, and were almost as accurate as my handloads.

Fred
 

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ReloaderFred said:
SKeefe,

If the problem just started, then something has changed in your pistol. Look for a buildup of carbon, etc. in the chamber, at the shoulder area. This would only be the cause if the rounds fail to chamber fully, but since you didn't specify what is exactly happening, this is just a suggestion.

If the rounds aren't feeding properly from the magazine, and are hitting the chamber at the wrong angle, then inspect the feed lips of the magazine and make sure they haven't gotten bent or have any burrs on them. The magazine spring could also have weakened, though this is pretty rare with a fairly new magazine.

Hope this helps.

Fred
Thanks for the suggestions, and yea I wasn't very specific about the problem.

The past few times I've been shooting, I've been shooting mainly 9mm WWB through my EFK conversion barrel. After that, I'll usually put my 357SIG barrel back in and shoot some hollowpoints (so the barrel/feed ramp is completely clean at this point).

A while back I had the problem with the Corbons, and I posted about it here (although, the thread is probably lost now).

Last time I went shooting was when I had the problem with the Speer. The rounds simply weren't making it up the feed ramp, they were just jamming into the bottom of the feed ramp (so that the round was actually completely horizontal, not at a slight incline like it would be at to go up the ramp). It did this about 3 or 4 times in a row. 1 or 2 of the times I could simply bump the back of the slide and it would chamber, another 1 or 2 times it was really stuck in there good, and I had to drop the mag and really put some effort into getting the round out.

One thing I did notice when comparing how my 357Sig barrel (factory) looks when installed to how my 9mm (EFK) barrel looks installed is that it seems that the 357SIG barrel might actually go a little too far back, as in it actually sits a little bit too far back on the little lip (the part that is actually part of the gun, the little lip/ramp area where the feed ramp of the barrel meets). This is really hard to explain when you don't know the technical terms, I will try to post a picture later of the area I'm talking about, although I'm not sure you will be able to see this tiny overhang I'm referring to in a picture.

BTW, when shooting 357SIG FMJ rounds, I've not really had a problem at all, even with the really cheap yellow box UNC rounds.
 

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Scott,

That makes it a lot clearer. I know the relationship of the barrel to the frame you're refering to, but it's hard to tell what it is when the barrel is locked in place with the slide closed because you can't see in there.

My guess is the magazine isn't placing the round in the right location for the slide to pick it up and strip it into the chamber. In other words, the bullet tip is being held too low and it's striking the feedramp too low. This can also be caused by a weak magazine spring, because it doesn't hold the round firm enough against the magazine lips and allows the bullet to tip forward.

With the slide locked open, place a loaded magazine into the magazine well and lock it in place. Look and see what the relationship is between the bullet and the chamber. On my factory 357 Sig XD, the top of the bullet is even with the bottom lip of the chamber, so when the bullet is moved forward by the slide, it hits squarely on the barrel portion of the feedramp and is pushed into the chamber. From what you describe, this is the area I would look for the problem.

Hope this helps.

Fred
 

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ReloaderFred said:
Scott,

That makes it a lot clearer. I know the relationship of the barrel to the frame you're refering to, but it's hard to tell what it is when the barrel is locked in place with the slide closed because you can't see in there.

My guess is the magazine isn't placing the round in the right location for the slide to pick it up and strip it into the chamber. In other words, the bullet tip is being held too low and it's striking the feedramp too low. This can also be caused by a weak magazine spring, because it doesn't hold the round firm enough against the magazine lips and allows the bullet to tip forward.

With the slide locked open, place a loaded magazine into the magazine well and lock it in place. Look and see what the relationship is between the bullet and the chamber. On my factory 357 Sig XD, the top of the bullet is even with the bottom lip of the chamber, so when the bullet is moved forward by the slide, it hits squarely on the barrel portion of the feedramp and is pushed into the chamber. From what you describe, this is the area I would look for the problem.

Hope this helps.

Fred
Thanks again for the help.

I put the magazine in with the slide locked open, but as far as I could tell, it looked OK.

I then released the slide, and it jammed up. I couldn't drop the mag, couldn't bump the slide to get it to go forward. While trying to rack the slide back again, push forward, etc., it went forward and I was able to eject the round. I then got out the digital camera and tried again, and it jammed again, so here is a short video of what I have to deal with. :roll:

http://home.sc.rr.com/scottk/Gun/100_0177.MOV

I then got my other magazine (the one that is the "spare") and inserted it with the slide open. Again, as far as I could tell, it looked OK. I then released the slide and it loaded fine. I did this a few times and had no problems (knock on wood).

So, it looks like the problem may indeed be with the magazine.

edit - Damn it, nevermind, this time it just did the same thing with the "spare" mag.
 

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I got one of the "skinnier" or "more sharply angled" Hornady hollowpoints that I had and tested it out, and it loaded perfectly every time.

Here are two pics (pretty crappy ones at that, apparently I can't take good pics even with a 4.0 megapixel camera) that show the comparison between the Hornady and the Speer if anyone is unfamiliar with the Hornady HPs.


 

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Scott,

I live pretty far from town, and use a very, very slow dial up modem. I tried to get your video to download, but it timed out twice, each time after waiting for about 20 minutes, so I finally gave up on that.

It still sounds like an alignment problem. I don't know how skilled you are with working on your handgun, but if it was my pistol, I would polish the feedramp, and if that didn't cure it, I'd experiment with the feedlips on one of the magazines. I'd spread them a couple of thousandths on the forward edge, and try to get the nose of the bullet to come up a little higher, so it would enter the chamber at a better angle. If you do this, use something that won't mar the feedlips. Pliers have ruined more magazines.

If you're not comfortable with doing those things, then don't do it. You can always have a gunsmith who is familiar with semi-auto pistols look at it.

My XD feeds just about anything I put through it. I've got a 1911 that will feed empty cases and I think my XD is almost that reliable, but I haven't tried an empty in it yet.

The problem is right where you're looking. Try the same drill with your flatpoint bullets and see what the relationship is between the nose of the bullet and the feedramp. This should give you a clue as to what is causing the Gold Dots to misfeed.

I load both the Hornady XTP's and the Speer Gold Dots for my .357 Sig XD. They both work just fine in my gun. I also run them through my Witness in 357 Sig.

I'm assuming you're loading these rounds yourself. If you are, have you experimented with different seating depths? I've found that mine work best at about 1. 135" OAL. Just something elso to think about.

If all else fails, stick with the XTP's. Their a good bullet and expand well.

Hope this helps.

Fred
 
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