Color me confused.

So I finally make it to the range after 3 weeks. (life has been less than conducive to range time lately).

I arrive with the two Para 3″ pistols (one daily carry, and one being evaluated for daily carry) and 150+ reloads in .45 ACP. ( I had some ammo that was going stale and I needed to burn up my 6 month old carry ammo anyway)

I settle in at the bowling pin bench and load a few mags. Step up to the bench and begin.

I am killing pins fairly well, running 43 for 50. I then switch to some empty/failure drills, just to keep in practice. Randomly loading different numbers of cartridges in each mag, and with a few snap caps thrown in just for fun, just to keep my malf skills sharp too. My reloads are going well, and I am clearing the snap caps easily and quickly when the hammer drops on them. I’m running the mags clear in about 3 seconds.

I go 30 rounds (running 28 for 30, if I can brag a bit), and am regaining some speed with my drills, when I squeeze off a shot and the hammer drops. *Click*. Nothing else.

Nothing. No big deal. Practice is what I am here for. Must be a snap cap.

I run the slide and still, only the click of the hammer dropping.

Now I know that I didn’t put two snap caps in consecutively, therefore the mag must be dry, and assume that the slide didn’t lock back for some reason….., so I hit the mag release, grab a reload and put it in the magwell.

Except it wouldn’t go. I tried twice. The mag just wouldn’t enter the frame. WTF?

Color me confused.

I  check that the weapon is clear, lock the slide back, and take a look. There appears to be a mag in the firearm, as I can see the top of it, but no follower, only air, and light showing through the mag body. Hmmm?

The baseplate for the mag (older welded factory Para 6 round) has left the mag, along with the spring and follower. Apparently, without the baseplate to hold things square, the mag is just distorted enough that it won’t drop free from the pistol.

I push the mag free from the top, and all is well.

Not sure what to do as a drill for that type of failure though.

I then went to the dueling tree for some hip shooting practice and went 38 for 50 there, but my composure was blown, my concentration wasn’t what it should be.

The new Para Carry ran flawlessly (for once). I think that after two trips to the factory for the extractor issue it is finally fixed….We shall see. More range time will tell.

Still not sure how to do a drill for this or how to deal with this sort of malf quickly.

It’s not one that I practice for, and to be honest, I didn’t recognize what was going on. How do you prepare for this sort of failure?

Other than new magazines (this was an older one, used only at the range) anyone got any suggestions?

And yes, I pounded the remains flat before disposing of it.

3 thoughts on “Color me confused.

  1. Sounds like the perfect "BUG Gun" drill. Unless you were blessed with solid cover and time, your WTF would have turned to an "Oh Shit" pretty darn quick! Just the universe reminding us all that there ain't nothin' perfect.

    Good report, thank you.

  2. That is one you 'can't' drill for… That usually happens with plastic mags though…

  3. This one was steel, welds(or staking)failed at the bottom.

    It sure confused me for a moment. If this was a real life encounter, I'd be toast.

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