Author Topic: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test  (Read 847 times)

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Offline melsauto

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Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« on: December 27, 2018, 05:27:28 PM »

CZ 75 SP-01 Tactical Urban Grey Suppressor-Ready 9mm.

One of my friends asked me to do a pencil in the barrel firing pin test, the pencil barely moved 2 inches.

I had fired around 150 rounds at the range last week. I am wondering if this test is valid at all.

Hope some of you have better knowledge please share your thoughts.


Offline anonymouscuban

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2018, 06:01:50 PM »
At the range, did you have any failure to fire, light primer strikes?

If not, then that's your answer.

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« Last Edit: December 27, 2018, 06:17:10 PM by anonymouscuban »

Offline 357MAGNOLE

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2018, 06:15:39 PM »
My P10C barely moves the pencil yet it fires rounds just fine.
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Offline M1A4ME

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2018, 07:10:14 PM »
1.  eraser end down or up? 
2.  eraser nice/new/soft, or old and hard?

Makes a difference.

My Glock barely moves itf, doesn't even come out the muzzle (striker fired, of course).
My XDM 9MM (2 of them) will bounce it up a few inches out of the muzzle (again, striker fired).
My Xd .45 acp will toss it a couple feet up/out of the muzzle (striker fired)
My M&Ps (9MM and .40) will not raise it up out of the muzzle (striker fired).

My old Colt Combat commander has stuck a sharpened pencil in the ceiling (celotex - remember that stuff) even when hitting the eraser end with the firing pin).

I have no specific memory of the CZ's even though I know I did the pencil test on a couple when I was having issues with the P01 looking steel framed Compact I converted to SAO.  I'd checked it and one or two others trying to figure out if I'd fixed the SAO conversion.
Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it.  So, if you see me walking the dogs with my SIG 556R, its okay.

Offline melsauto

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2018, 08:09:06 PM »

Thanks for taking the time, eraser end down hard, new standard 2 HB pencil.


Offline melsauto

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2018, 08:10:07 PM »
At the range, did you have any failure to fire, light primer strikes?

If not, then that's your answer.

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No sir

Offline Jav_eee

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2018, 08:15:04 PM »
Then the next question is WHY?


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Offline melsauto

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2018, 08:47:03 PM »

I had bought it used online, i did use it at the range. My friend said he saw someplace on the internet how to use a pencil to test.

Offline anonymouscuban

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2018, 08:51:03 PM »

I had bought it used online, i did use it at the range. My friend said he saw someplace on the internet how to use a pencil to test.
I wouldn't worry with this test. Sounds like you had no issue with the pistol at the range. I assume this test is supposed to diagnose a light primer strike from a weak firing pin spring. You would know if you had this problem with you had issues with rounds not going boom. Put the pencil down and enjoy your new to you CZ.

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Offline Joe L

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2018, 09:11:57 PM »
Keep in mind that the extractor contacts the pencil on some guns.  Try the pencil test while pushing in an the tail end of the extractor so the extractor head is moved away from the pencil.  If the pencil isn't dragging on the extractor, it will come out of a horizontal barrel if everything is OK.   

Don't ask me how I found this out.

Joe
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Offline M1A4ME

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #10 on: December 28, 2018, 06:36:30 AM »
While the amount of pencil movement may show you how much harder one pistol's firing pin/striker makes contact with the pencil than another pistol, it doesn't necessarily mean your pistol won't function.

I modified one of my steel framed P01 looking Compacts to be SAO.  Took it apart, stoned some surfaces, put the CGW parts in it and it worked great.  Nice trigger pull, pull the slide back, let the slide go forward, squeeze the trigger, nice break and the hammer fell.  Wonderful.

Took it to the range, put up some targets, pulled the slide to the rear, inserted a magazine, let the slide go forward, got my stance, aligned the sights, squeezed the trigger -CLICK!  A CLICK I could hear with the ear plugs in.  Thumb cocked it, squeezed the trigger, CLICK!  Ejected that round, looked at the primer - nothing.  Tried it again, nothing.  Unloaded it, put it in the bag and shot a different pistol that day.

I didn't do the pencil test prior to going to the range.  Finally figured out the issue was the SAO trigger was making contact up in the frame on the front of the trigger (nope, not the adjustment screw at all) and that was keeping the trigger from moving forward enough to let the trigger bar move forward enough to get the firing pin block lifting arm to reset behind the back of the trigger bar.  It was such a small amount it was hard to believe - but it was enough.  Removed the trigger, took some metal off the top/front of it (up inside the frame where you couldn't even see it), reinstalled it, used the pencil test to confirm that now/finally, the firing pin block mechanism was properly resetting and the darn thing would go bang the next range trip. 

The pencil test is not the only test to determine whether your pistol has an issue, just another tool in the tool box.

Oh, had an issue with an AR9 pistol a couple months ago.  Bought new Wilson Combat firing pins for them as spares.  Wilson Combat is good stuff.  My nephew went ahead and installed his spare figuring it was higher quality/less likely to break than the PSA firing pin in his bolt.  He went home for a visit, grabbed the AR9, the magazines and some boxes of ammo and targets and headed to the mountains.

Got out one morning, put his targets up and all he could get was click, click, click.  Darned good thing all he needed it for was target shooting.  Brought it home and we took a look at it.  It would just barely make a pencil bump.  Mine (same PSA upper/bolt) would bounce a pencil all the way out of the long barrel.  Pulled the firing pins from both and noticed the PSA firing pin had a much longer tip on it than the Wilson Combat firing pin.

Did some more swapping around and found that the PSA bolts seem to be made different inside - the bolt face must be thicker as the firing pin from my PSA bolt would work in his or mine, the Wilson Combat firing pins wouldn't work in either but would work in my Faxon bolt in the AR9 carbine.  I ordered a couple Taacom (think that was the name) firing pins and they work fine in the PSA bolts.

Guns.  They're different.  The more of them you work on, the more odd stuff you see/learn.  The pencil test is just a tool to help diagnose a problem.  Sure it quieter than putting alive round in the chamber and pulling the trigger to see if the firing pin will set off the chambered round.

For me the bottom line is - if one pistol doesn't bounce the firing pin as much as another the weak one may still fire fine.  But if the pencil doesn't move or just jiggles from the movement of the hammer falling, then you might want to investigate further.
Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it.  So, if you see me walking the dogs with my SIG 556R, its okay.

Offline melsauto

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2018, 10:03:15 AM »
Thank you for your time and detailed explanation.

Offline melsauto

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2018, 10:07:21 AM »

I had bought it used online, i did use it at the range. My friend said he saw someplace on the internet how to use a pencil to test.
I wouldn't worry with this test. Sounds like you had no issue with the pistol at the range. I assume this test is supposed to diagnose a light primer strike from a weak firing pin spring. You would know if you had this problem with you had issues with rounds not going boom. Put the pencil down and enjoy your new to you CZ.

Thank you very much.

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Offline rdcinhou

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2018, 12:25:37 PM »
I use the pencil test only to determine if the decocker is "safe" and doesn't result in a discharge.
Of course ALWAYS point the barrel in a safe direction when decocking--just in case.
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Offline Micah68

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Re: Pencil in the barrel firing pin test
« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2018, 05:00:28 PM »
Keep in mind that the extractor contacts the pencil on some guns.  Try the pencil test while pushing in an the tail end of the extractor so the extractor head is moved away from the pencil.  If the pencil isn't dragging on the extractor, it will come out of a horizontal barrel if everything is OK.   

Don't ask me how I found this out.

Joe

Joe,

I don't care how you found out, you're a genius.  Now I can actually shoot my pencils clear of my Glocks and P10c.  It always bothered me that the polymer striker guns I had would barely make the pencil move - didn't instill much confidence that they'd work 100% of the time with CCI or S&B primers...
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