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Old January 28, 2010, 03:18 PM   #1
Sea Buck
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S&W 5906 Extractor

I was at the range recently doing double taps with my S&W 5906 9MM and had 4 fail to extracts in two mags,same ammo in both. It has never done this before.Winchester bulk rounds. The extractor did not engage the rim at all.I'd like to think that it's the ammo,but maybe it's the extractor. What is the diffeculty and how do I change out the extractor on this model?
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Old January 28, 2010, 08:51 PM   #2
James K
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Don't fix what ain't broke. Clean the area around the extractor hook and examine the extractor closely to determine if it is bad; if it looks OK, try other ammo.

If you need a new extractor, they come out just by driving out a pin (use a good quality pin punch). For the part, try www.gunpartscorp.com or Brownells. It will run around $22 plus S&H.

Jim
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Old January 29, 2010, 11:59 AM   #3
Sea Buck
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Thanks Jim. Quite a lot of crud built up in front of and around the extractor. I guess it didn't brush out after the last range session.The hook looks good. I can hear my old insructor screaming in my ear: YOU'RE DEAD, DUMBASS!! Lesson learned..or relearned as the case may be. I'm glad it happened at the range and not in the middle of the night.
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Old January 29, 2010, 02:13 PM   #4
fastbolt
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Quote:
Don't fix what ain't broke. Clean the area around the extractor hook and examine the extractor closely to determine if it is bad; if it looks OK, try other ammo.
Not a bad thought.


If the extractor hook is clean and dry, and doesn't have any chips or a broken edge, it might be the ammunition (case rim tolerance), or, depending on the age and amount of usage the gun has received the extractor spring might be weakening.

How old is the recoil spring?A damaged or weak recoil spring can be involved with some failures-to-extract, too. FWIW, the factory recommendation to armorers is to replace the recoil spring (and mag springs) either every 5 years (of service use) or every 5,000 rounds fired, whichever occurs first.

In LE guns that are left with a round in chamber all the time (compressing the extractor spring) it's not unusual to see them start to exhibit weakening after something like 10 years or 10,000 rounds, meaning after a fairly long service life. I started to notice chipped/broken extractors and/or weakened extractor springs in our aging inventory of very early production 3rd gen S&W pistols as they reached the 12-16 year point in service.

Replacing the extractor is a job for either the factory, a S&W armorer or a gunsmith familiar with S&W pistols.

The extractors typically require fitting in the way of filing on an adjustment pad located behind the hook, which is what controls how far the hook reaches inward and engages the case rim. A Go/No-Go bar gauge tool is used to determine when the proper adjustment has been reached by measuring the distance between the extractor hook and the opposite breech face shoulder.

Back several years ago S&W armorers also used a flag gauge which checked for the dimension under the extractor hook to the breech face, but newer machining methods on later production guns and newer extractors have eliminated the need for it and this tool is no longer sold to armorers in tool kits.

The extractor spring tension is checked with a force dial gauge, and there's some variance of the recommended tension range depending on whether the pistol has the older rounded breech face machining or the newer straight cut breech face.

Also, sometimes an older 3rd gen model may require one or the other of the revised repair extractor springs in order to get the tension in the best range for feeding & extraction in the older model guns.

Getting the extractor pins out of the older guns can be a bit daunting, as they usually require some force to break them free and get them moving. We're talking a 4 oz ball peen hammer and a starter punch. Once free to move, the pins can be removed using a straight shank 1/16" pin punch, keeping the extractor compressed a bit to avoid bending the pin punch. (Bending the 1/16" pin punches is also a good way to create a new 'starter punch' when the punch is broken off at the base where the taper starts, and armorers can sometimes end up with a couple or more 'starter punches' because of bent pin punches. ) They're removed out the bottom of the slide and are reinstalled from the bottom. In older models armorers were given tapered needle reamers to clean out the slide's pin hole (taking care not to enlarge the pin hole).

Not really a kitchen table gunsmithing project for someone without the right tools and preferably some experience.

Just some thoughts.
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Old March 16, 2010, 01:45 PM   #5
hrnttwk
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Extractor issues

I have the same problem. Have tried several types of ammunition and the extractor appears to be structurally sound. I'll go ahead and change the spring out and if that doesn't work, will get with local gunsmith. Thanks for the info all.
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Old March 16, 2010, 02:16 PM   #6
fastbolt
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Why not call the factory?

In older 3rd gen 59XX series guns there were a couple of repair extractor spring sets made available.

One included a couple of different springs of different (heavier) tension and the other contained a pair of nested springs to be used together. (The nested springs were used together.)

One of the reasons for older 59XX guns needing some different extractor springs when replacement was required was due to some of the machining being controlled by hand with earlier manufacturing methods. The spring well for the extractor spring was sometimes finished without being flat at the bottom, making it difficult to get a regular newer spring to sit flat.

Sometimes the tech might use a small hand turned ball end mill to adjust the dimensions or else use one of the nested springs, where the middle spring supplied additional tension that a single heavier spring might not be able to provide and still fit in the hole. (This nested repair set was eventually considered 'obsolete', though.)

I've used a fair number of the nested repair sets to repair older 59XX guns and get them back in service.

We were told that sometimes the older 59XX guns might need to have a heavier tension than commonly listed in the armorer manual in order to provide for proper functioning, too, although care must be taken so the tension didn't reach the point where feeding issues resulted (too much tension to allow the case rims to slip under the extractor during feeding).

The factory techs might be better able to examine, identify and resolve your problem.
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Old March 16, 2010, 02:17 PM   #7
DiscoRacing
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As stated I would check for cleaning first... but,, IN answer to your question... its not very hard at all to change it out... takes nearly 2 minutes.
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