Kahr PM9, Failure to chamber with full mag?

This is a discussion on Kahr PM9, Failure to chamber with full mag? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hi All, I am looking at the Kahr PM9, looks like a great pistol. In my research I have bumped into complaints that if one ...

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Thread: Kahr PM9, Failure to chamber with full mag?

  1. #1
    Member Array ThumperACC's Avatar
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    Kahr PM9, Failure to chamber with full mag?

    Hi All,

    I am looking at the Kahr PM9, looks like a great pistol.

    In my research I have bumped into complaints that if one inserts a full magazine into the pistol (where the slide is not locked open but is in battery) and rack the slide that it will not reliably chamber a round because the first round will nosedive and get stuck. That (per Kahr) you must have the slide locked open when inserting the full mag and then release the slide.

    How common is this?
    Are those that are having problems doing something wrong?

    I am concerned because, yes I can chamber a round "according to instructions with the slide locked back" before carrying but:
    - What of the full mag that I put in after chambering a round, will the first round out of the mag jam?
    - What about a tap/rack/ready situation, will I get a jam there?
    - It just seems that there will be times (perhaps important times in a firefight for example) that inserting a mag with the slide locked open will not be convenient or difficult to manage.

    I really like this pistol, but if this is a real issue, it could keep me from buying one.

    I'd appreciate any feedback, especially from those who have owned one (or any Kahr) for a while.

    Thanks,
    ThumperACC

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  3. #2
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    It's not really an issue. The problem seems to be that with such a small pistol, the recoil spring, must be very stout. If you do not slingshot the slide using the proper technique and do it very sharply and strongly, it will jam. That isn't the guns fault, it's the user's. That's why Kahr tells you to use the slide release. After you run 200 or so rounds through it, it will loosen up nicely and functioning becomes must smoother.

    Making such a small pistol means tolerances are at an absolute minimum and there isn't any leeway. These guns are definitely not for inexperienced gun owners. If you are willing to except the fact these small guns require breaking in to function reliably, you will be pleased owning one. If not, I'd suggest looking for another gun...
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    Member Array Pete14's Avatar
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    My MK9 would not do it when new but after 120 rounds will do it fine.

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    These guns are definitely not for inexperienced gun owners.


    That is the rub right there. I love my Kahr and I have had zero problems with it. Then again I've been a shooter all of my life and I read the manual BEFORE my first trip to the range with it.
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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    I had a PM9 for a bit less than 1000 rds. It had bad problems with failure to feed, cycle, eject, some of which was related to the magazines. None of which cleared up over time, until it went back to the Kahr factory and they set things right. Was much improved, after their "massaging." But, by that time I had lost confidence in it as a potential carry rig and sold it.

    Many people experience flawless operation with it. Many others experience cycling problems similar to those I had. Being experienced with clearing jams is a useful skill, yes. Let's just say that if you happen to get one of the PM9's that has issues, you'll improve those skills.

    It's too bad, 'cause the PM9 is simply the finest combination of size, weight and accuracy. If only they could marry that with flawless reliability, it would IMO be the only 9mm micro to have.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccw9mm View Post
    I had a PM9 for a bit less than 1000 rds. It had bad problems with failure to feed, cycle, eject, some of which was related to the magazines. None of which cleared up over time, until it went back to the Kahr factory and they set things right. Was much improved, after their "massaging." But, by that time I had lost confidence in it as a potential carry rig and sold it.
    So, you really never gave it a chance once you sent it back to Kahr, right... If you did, you'd probably have the small 9mm gun, you desire...
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    VIP Member Array frankmako's Avatar
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    after reading many threads about the problems that peoples are having with kahr's it is looking to me that the kahr's are not worth the money. or should they drop their prices down to the kel tec level.
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    Member Array alnitak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frankmako View Post
    after reading many threads about the problems that peoples are having with kahr's it is looking to me that the kahr's are not worth the money. or should they drop their prices down to the kel tec level.
    You will always find the complainers on the boards (and the people who just repeat what they've read from trolls, rather than comment based on experience also add to the bad press). The number of people who have problems with Kahr is a small percentage of the number of Kahrs sold. My PM9 has been flawless with any ammo since day one and for the last two years. I can slingshot it 100% reliably with the right technique. I also agree with the other poster that the PM9 is the best combination of size/weight, caliber & price of any small CW out there. The fit and function are well worth the money, and the PM9 is FAR better than a Kel-tec -- not even close in the quality aspect. So, yes ... Kahrs ARE worth the money.

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    Some Kahrs seem to have this issue, and others do not.

    My first PM9, with well over 1200 rounds, did. It did not go away after the pistol "broke in." It ran fine as long as it was fired - no feed issues. But...if I tried a tap-rack with more than 5 rounds in the mag, it would jam with a JHP nose-down into the feed ramp. The only ammo that did not do this was FMJ and PowRBall. Several trips back to Kahr did not fix it. They finally sent me a new PM9 - same issue, even after 300 rounds (past the 200 round factory-mandated break in period).

    Kahr recommended a "fix" of sorts - smack up hard on the bottom of the mag. This did seem to get the stuck round to "nose up" and feed. Thus, a tap-rack drill becomes a tap-rack-tap drill with a PM9.

    After many, many issues with two other Kahrs, and numerous trips back to the factory, I finally gave up on them, and sold my replacement PM9. I just could not trust their products anymore. And I refuse to modify my technique to accommodate a finicky pistol. Sorry.

    And for the record, I can manually rack every other pistol I've ever used just fine - Beretta M9, Glocks, XD's, LCP's, 1911's, MK II's, etc etc etc...
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    Member Array alnitak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThumperACC View Post
    - What of the full mag that I put in after chambering a round, will the first round out of the mag jam?
    NO

    - What about a tap/rack/ready situation, will I get a jam there?
    If you use proper slingshot technique, NO

    - It just seems that there will be times (perhaps important times in a firefight for example) that inserting a mag with the slide locked open will not be convenient or difficult to manage.
    Empty mag = slide locked, no issue as it is simply a matter of pushing on the slide release. Other problems can be addressed by proper slingshot.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alnitak View Post
    You will always find the complainers on the boards ...

    The number of people who have problems with Kahr is a small percentage of the number of Kahrs sold.
    Yes. It's important to remember that when you fish for reports of problems, that's basically what you'll unearth. Though I have yet to hear of Kahr report the percentage of PM9 guns that have experienced such problems, or the total number of all PM9's sold, I too guess it to be a relatively small percentage of the total. Hard to tell, with any degree of certainty, simply based on reports from people regarding their specific firearms.

    I also agree with the other poster that the PM9 is the best combination of size/weight, caliber & price of any small CW out there.
    At some point, I will absolutely have another PM9 or two. It's an unbeatable combination. It fits the hand well, balances well under fire, is accurate, points well, feels decently good even after 100rds or more.

    The trick will be to find one or two that are flawless in function. As with any gun to be carried as a life-saving tool, it's got to run if it's to be relied upon for that.

    I'd love to see Glock get into the game of making magazines for other companies. Theirs are so excellent: durable, strong, error-free. Perhaps, then, Kahr could perfect their micros. They are already so darned good, with the exception of this little cycling problem that seems to plague some of the plastic ones.

    Haven't heard much about the P380, yet, either good or bad. It has only been on the market about 6mos or so. I'm hoping they're finding the solution. Perhaps it can translate to the PM9.
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    Member Array lock's Avatar
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    If I had to sell my pistols, the pm9 would be the last one. For me its the perfect CC gun. I shoot it well and it disappears in a pocket holster or iwb. Im able to rack mine but I typically pracitce using the lever. I use Speer gold dots and they feed fine.

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    Thank you All

    Thanks to all who responded, this has been an excellent discussion.

    ThumperACC

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    Quote Originally Posted by ccw9mm View Post

    I'd love to see Glock get into the game of making magazines for other companies. Theirs are so excellent: durable, strong, error-free. Perhaps, then, Kahr could perfect their micros. They are already so darned good, with the exception of this little cycling problem that seems to plague some of the plastic ones.
    From what I've been seeing, it's going to take more than a redesign of the mag to fix the Kahr feeding problem. What they need to do is stagger the aft of the rounds a bit toward the top of the mag so that the pressure from the mag spring is toward the front of the round, not the rear.

    I don't think a magazine designed this way will fit into the current but of the pistol because IIRC, the magwell is only as wide as the mag.

    Walther had this same problem with early P22s and the current magazines for them stagger the 4 or 5 rounds below to top one eliminating this type of failure.

    p.s. I rented a PM9 once and I intentionally used the slingshot method to chamber rounds and didn't have any problems. Couldn't hit the broad side of a barn with it though as the trigger was too different from my other guns. It seems like a very cool pistol but I think it's off my short list.

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    My CW9 had some failure to lock using the slide release when new. I did some deBurring and polished it up,and after a couple hundred rds thats gone. But what concerns me is after about 4-5 hundred rds and carrying it for awhile( usally 6-8 weeks before i clean it) i had a failure to ignite a primer on the third rd. I will have the gun as i normaly carry then shoot the mag thats been in there for that 6-8 week period. Bang ,Bang, Click is not good. So i cleaned out the striker channel and removed the flake that came off of it. Then polished the striker and channel. That was 2 months ago, buut have not tried it again yet, but hoping that takes care of the light strike problem. NOTE only had one light strike, that was when carrying fo awhile in that condition.

    BTW i think Kahrs are overpriced. I think they are made well but not that well.

    GMan

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