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Old October 30, 2007, 10:07 AM   #1
HisSoldier
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auto pistol barely extracts empties.

I have a Star SS (Well, it's an S now, I bypassed the stupid mag safety) that barely tosses the empties out, they fall at my feet or on occasion are captured horizontally by the slide. Will a longer ejector help? How about a weaker recoil spring? Any ideas are appreciated as I really like these little .380 Stars, I have two of them.
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Old October 30, 2007, 04:21 PM   #2
Tom2
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Have you tried more than one brand of ammo in it? Detail cleaned and lubed? Reducing the recoil spring does not sound great to me, reduce to what? how? cut off coils? Does not seem that there would be aftermarket springs for that model. I would see if hotter ammo helps if none of the above helps. Might be worth a gunsmith visit as they might spot something from experience that is not obvious to the weekend gun tinkerer.
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Old October 31, 2007, 11:49 AM   #3
HisSoldier
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Thanks Tom, I haven't tried different ammo. I also wondered about extending the ejector to make it kick the case out a bit earlier. Only problem is I'm leary of that since replacement parts seem to be hard to find. I'd tig it up too long and keep shortening it until it did what it should. I checked the extractor tension, it's fine. It seems to me that a healthy pistol should function with most ammo, and a really persnickety gun is a sick gun.
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Old November 1, 2007, 09:07 PM   #4
HisSoldier
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Tried different ammo today. About 125 rounds, 50 white box, 50 federal, and 25 factory reloads. No difference between them, in the first few rounds of a magazine the empty is laying there captured by the slide. I'm wondering is extending the ejector would help.
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Old November 1, 2007, 10:49 PM   #5
Dfariswheel
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First, be SURE the extractor is good.
Make sure it has sufficient tension, and the extractor is undamaged or worn, and has a good grip on the case rim.
Many if not most of these types of problems are often the extractor not the ejector.

Second, I'm not failure with the newer Star pistols, but by any chance does the ejector assembly play any part with the magazine safety?
If so, put the parts back in and test fire again.

Third try ANOTHER brand of ammo. Testing a problem gun with reloaded ammo is a very poor choice. Reloads often cause problems, and you have no idea whether it's the ammo or the gun.
Try some quality ammo, and for testing, forget the cheap stuff and the reloads.

Next, make sure the chamber is good. No rust, pitting, machine marks, or bulges or rings.
Make SURE it's clean. Easy to assume but can cause big problems.

Make sure the recoil spring is the correct one, and not an "extra power" or one from an entirely different gun.

Parts can be bought from Gun Parts, although you'll probably have to buy the parts under another model name.
http://www.e-gunparts.com/model.asp?idDept=238

Jack First should have a new ejector, but you have to actually call.
http://www.jackfirstgun.com/

Only after you've thoroughly exhausted all other checks should you start playing with the ejector.
A damaged or too short ejector can usually be spotted with no trouble.
Simply pull the slide back and LOOK to see if enough of the ejector is showing.
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Old November 2, 2007, 12:11 AM   #6
HisSoldier
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I have an almost identical gun, new in box, a model S, that's without the mag safety. The way the mag safety works on these is the mag insertion forces a spring out of the way so that the sear bar can move past a certain point, there is no connection to the extractor or ejector as it is lower. I didn't take the mag safety out, I just inserted a small piece of steel under it with epoxy to simulate the presence of a magazine. But it failed to extract before that. Getting a shorter recoil spring, or one that has a few thousandths of an inch smaller wire would be an easy way to check if that's the problem, and the fact that cases that do eject fall right at my feet tells me that the slide is probably not moving far enough or fast enough to kick the cases farther. The chamber is good.
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File Type: jpg StarSS.jpg (147.3 KB, 13 views)
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Old November 2, 2007, 12:35 AM   #7
Bill DeShivs
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Check your extractor spring. Don't mess with the recoil spring-there is nothing wrong with it. You are making this a lot harder than it really is. Try the magazine from gun #2. There is a minor problem. Don't mess with the pistol's timing unless you really know what you are doing.
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Old November 2, 2007, 12:42 PM   #8
HisSoldier
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It's not difficult to replace the ejector, and putting one in that is .03 longer wouldn't be dangerous, and easy to undo. The long 1911 ejectors are quite a bit longer than that I believe. As for the spring, it's possible that someone put a stronger spring in. What I was hoping for was advice like "when 'a" happens, do "b". The extractor holds a loaded round in the breechface of the removed slide even with light shaking, so I tend to not think it's the extractor, it also has nice sharp edges. Unfortunately I don't intend to shoot the NIB Star, which might show me some things. I can however check the spring against the one in the new Star. The extractor looks the same on both. I do have some "+P" self defense ammo, but am loathe to shoot them as they are expensive! I'll check the ejector and spring of the new gun against the beater in the photo. It's true, I have a lot to learn, and the only way to learn is by asking or doing
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Old November 2, 2007, 02:33 PM   #9
HisSoldier
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Ok, I hope the photo shows up well. The one on the right is the new pistol, the one with the ejection problem is the left one. The ejector on the new pistol sticks out of the breechface .058 farther than the one on the older pistol. So I think that's the problem. It is probably a matter of timing, the slide is moving back far enough that the round below it kicks the casing up and out of the extractor before the ejector makes contact, that explains it pretty well. By the way, the first thing I checked was the recoil spring, and the new one was (as one might expect with a new gun) longer than the old one. Now, that was fun! Now I just need to either tig up the old ejector or buy a new one, if I can find one.
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File Type: jpg Star S 004.jpg (196.1 KB, 20 views)
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Old November 4, 2007, 08:52 PM   #10
HisSoldier
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Ok, I welded up the ejector and remilled it .050" longer. The gun shot a full mag without a jam for the first time! I'm a happy guy.
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