Kimber Solo-I Don't Understand

Kimber Solo-I Don't Understand

This is a discussion on Kimber Solo-I Don't Understand within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I just finished an article in Shooting Times Personal Defense on the Kimber Solo. Of course I realize that gun mags usually write puff pieces ...

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  1. #1
    Senior Member Array Gaius's Avatar
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    Kimber Solo-I Don't Understand

    I just finished an article in Shooting Times Personal Defense on the Kimber Solo. Of course I realize that gun mags usually write puff pieces for new products introduced by their major advertisers, but this one left me scratching my head. A few points of interest. The article points out that the gun is designed for 124 - 147 grain "high pressure hollow point defense ammunition". Do not fire 115 grain ammo or it will malfunction. Except for my more wealthy friends, i can't really spend that kind of money on the amount of ammo that I consume in practice sessions. The article also points out that you should replace the recoil spring at least every 1000 rounds...or else. Ok, I know that for most people, their personal defense weapon will never see 1000 rounds in a lifetime. However, I am not one of those people. I fire at least once a week, and go through 1000 rounds very quickly as a matter of course. The article also points out that this type of pistol requires "scrupulous maintenance". Also, be careful as to your reassembly. Anyway...for over $700 why would I want to buy this thing? My Walther PPS requires minimum maintenance, feeds anything that I can somehow get to fit into the magazine, may have to replace a recoil spring every 30,000 rounds or so, and assemblies in seconds. Please, someone tell me what I am missing here.
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    I think you covered all the relevant facts nicely. What do you not understand?

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    VIP Member Array Rollo's Avatar
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    Congrats, you just realized the solo is a overpriced, ammo finicky POS that has to be babied.
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    Reliability and decent price is often spelled--- R U G E R!!
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    First they complain when a gun feeds ball ammo fine but jams with HPs. Now they complain when a gun feeds HPs fine but won't work with ball ammo. Jeez...

    It's pretty much impossible to make something that's all things for all people. The Solo is designed for a particular purpose and ammo. Step outside of those parameters and you get what you get. With all firearms, one should follow the manufacturor's recommendations.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldVet View Post
    First they complain when a gun feeds ball ammo fine but jams with HPs. Now they complain when a gun feeds HPs fine but won't work with ball ammo. Jeez...

    It's pretty much impossible to make something that's all things for all people. The Solo is designed for a particular purpose and ammo. Step outside of those parameters and you get what you get. With all firearms, one should follow the manufacturor's recommendations.
    What specific purpose is the Solo designed for which merits such a narrow range of ammo, high price-tag, and short component life? I cannot see where it is much of anything at all to more than just a few people.

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    JD
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    While I'm no fan of Kimber, shorter guns in higher calibers are going to wear out springs faster. The shorter the gun = shorter spring which = stiffer spring, to get that slide cycling the way it needs to it takes higher power ammo. We just saw Glock do the same thing with the Gen4 and use the same excuse "Not to be used with "light" ammunition, such as the 115 standard velocity"

    Do you HAVE to replace the spring every 1K rounds? Probably not, bu it would be wise to do so in order to ensure the gun runs properly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JD View Post
    While I'm no fan of Kimber, shorter guns in higher calibers are going to wear out springs faster. The shorter the gun = shorter spring which = stiffer spring, to get that slide cycliung the way it needs to it takes higher power ammo. We just saw Glock do the same thing with the Gen4 and use the same excuse "Not to be used with "light" ammunition, such as the 115 standard velocity"

    Do you HAVE to replace the spring every 1K rounds? Probably not, bu it would be wise to do so in order to ensure the gun runs properly.
    Glock, as far as I know, reported no problems with its subcompact, higher-capacity subcompact Gen4 models.

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    JD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike1956 View Post
    Glock, as far as I know, reported no problems with its subcompact, higher-capacity subcompact Gen4 models.
    True, that's because they got raked over the coals for the G19 and remedied the issue on the gen 4 G26 prior to it's release.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JD View Post
    True, that's because they got raked over the coals for the G19 and remedied the issue on the gen 4 G26 prior to it's release.
    So, it seems Kimber may have a similar raking in store, as well.

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    JD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike1956 View Post
    So, it seems Kimber may have a similar raking in store, as well.
    I don't think we'll see that. I don't recall Glock really coming clean on this "Use higher powered ammunition" in the manual or in other print forms etc., that was all 2nd hand reports from customers calling in with issues. Until the spring replacement program came out.

    Kimber has made a pretty good effort to make sure that people are "in the know" regarding it's ammunition requirements. It's in the manual, it's in the gun rags and the following is in pretty big font on the website:


    USE ONLY RECOMMENDED AMMUNITION
    Solo is designed to function optimally using premium hollow-point self-defense factory ammunition with bullet weights of 124 or 147 grains.

    EXAMPLES INCLUDE:

    • Federal® Hydra-Shok® JHP
    • Remington® Golden Saber™ HPJ
    • Hornady TAP® JHP

    While other ammunition may perform well, lighter bullets and inconsistent pressures that can be found in lower-quality ammunition may lead to decreased slide cycle time and compromise function.
    I might very well be wrong, but I don't think Kimber will release a lower weight spring that may add more issues to this somewhat problematic piece.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JD View Post
    I might very well be wrong, but I don't think Kimber will release a lower weight spring that may add more issues to this somewhat problematic piece.
    Chances are, the aftermarket (e.g., Wolff) will. In the meantime, reloaders have to pony up for heavier bullets and maybe a whopping 0.1-0.2 grain more powder...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius View Post
    I just finished an article in Shooting Times Personal Defense on the Kimber Solo. Of course I realize that gun mags usually write puff pieces for new products introduced by their major advertisers, but this one left me scratching my head. A few points of interest. The article points out that the gun is designed for 124 - 147 grain "high pressure hollow point defense ammunition". Do not fire 115 grain ammo or it will malfunction. Except for my more wealthy friends, i can't really spend that kind of money on the amount of ammo that I consume in practice sessions. The article also points out that you should replace the recoil spring at least every 1000 rounds...or else. Ok, I know that for most people, their personal defense weapon will never see 1000 rounds in a lifetime. However, I am not one of those people. I fire at least once a week, and go through 1000 rounds very quickly as a matter of course. The article also points out that this type of pistol requires "scrupulous maintenance". Also, be careful as to your reassembly. Anyway...for over $700 why would I want to buy this thing? My Walther PPS requires minimum maintenance, feeds anything that I can somehow get to fit into the magazine, may have to replace a recoil spring every 30,000 rounds or so, and assemblies in seconds. Please, someone tell me what I am missing here.
    Not sure I would agree with this...I took a two-day point shooting course and put 1400 .45 rounds down range.
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    JD
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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmitty View Post
    Chances are, the aftermarket (e.g., Wolff) will. In the meantime, reloaders have to pony up for heavier bullets and maybe a whopping 0.1-0.2 grain more powder...
    Yeah, but how many people that may be new to carry that purchase this gun are reloaders?

    Quote Originally Posted by retsupt99 View Post
    Not sure I would agree with this...I took a two-day point shooting course and put 1400 .45 rounds down range.
    Similarly, while a good number of us on this forum attend training that is above and beyond most state's requirements, it is not the norm for the "average" Joe-carrier.

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    Just as an FYI - Kahr recommends replacing the recoil spring in the PM9 every 1200-1500 rounds. I'd do it every 1000 just to be sure. Would assume the CM9 is the same. Small pistols with smaller/lighter slides have less inertia, which means more recoil energy is absorbed by the recoil spring. No way around physics.
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