semi-autos and jamming

Discussion in 'The Duck Hunters Forum' started by hartfish, Jul 4, 2011.

  1. hartfish

    hartfish Elite Refuge Member

    Feb 10, 2005
    Do they all jam, or is it just me?

    My son's Winchester SX3 kept jamming at the sporting clays range the other day. It's not the first time. He's good about cleaning it and the gun is about a year old.

    He also has a Beretta 391 youth 20 ga that jams something fierce. Clean it, shoot a half box and it won't kick shells after that.

    My wife's 1100 LT 20 also occasionally jams after a box or so.

    Do I just not know how to clean a semi-auto, or is this typical of all auto loaders?

    Any tips would be appreciated.
  2. rosevilleredneck

    rosevilleredneck Senior Refuge Member

    Jan 23, 2001
    roseville, ca u.s.
    My Benelli jams. my Beretta, 1100 and 1187rrarely jam.
  3. gone goosin

    gone goosin Elite Refuge Member

    Mar 17, 2007
    Eastern Shore

    The only semi I own is a SP 10.I use it all season and for years and it jammed twice and I believe that was due to the shells.

    I keep it clean and dry....never leave it "oiled up".
  4. h2ofwlr

    h2ofwlr Elite Refuge Member

    Jun 19, 2001
    In the land of 100,000 drained wetlands
    I have had SX2 and SX3, the SX3 right out of the box jammed. On the SX2 it worked well for a few year and then started to jam every so often. 2 years ago I replaced all the springs, and it worked better, but still after shooting 4 boxes it jammed once in a while.

    I had a 1100, it jammed in cold weather--good luck on anything under 25 degrees. Had a SP10, that even would jam once in a while, especially after a couple of boxes.

    As for Benelli's, well a friend of mine worked on his new (1 year old) SBE more than he did hunting with it while we were in Canada for a week.

    To answer your question, I do not think there is a fool proof semi out there. Especially ones that shoot 3.5" shells.
  5. thekillerofmallard

    thekillerofmallard Elite Refuge Member

    Dec 29, 2007
    Napa Ca.
    This is by Kevin:

    Cleaning your shotgun
    I get lots of calls and PM's on guns that are jamming, particularity auto's.

    This method works. I only shoot Beretta's but this will work for any auto.

    Cleaning your Auto.
    This is how I clean my Beretta's
    This works for any Beretta auto.

    Break the gun all the way down. On Xtrema's this takes less than a minute, less than 5 min with a recoil spring in the stock models.

    Put the barrel, forearm and stock off to the side for awhile.

    Ok, lets get out the cleaners, gun scrub or whatever you happen to like and spray the gun down real well and get the gross of the dirt off the thing. Spray down the trigger group and set it aside for a bit.

    Do the same to the gas piston assy. Set it aside also.

    Now get a plastic bucket, about a gallon should do it. Fill it half way with the hottest water you can get. Add a cup of 409 and dump all the small parts in it and let sit. Throw all the chokes in also.

    For all you Extrema owners, listen close. This is important. The mag tube is a major problem for not getting it clean. That tube should shine when you clean it. I use a green scratchy that you clean pots and pans with. The bolt assy and the recoil spring should be soaking now but it needs to cleaned well also.

    You should have the magazine spring and tube apart also. Pick up the receiver and a good stiff brush and your spray bottle of 409. Start in scrubbing the inside with the 409 and your brush. Look closely at the back of the action and if it needs to be scraped and pick out all the crap out of the bolt rails and the back of the action. It doesn't take much crap to slow the action down so look close.

    A good bottle brush makes quick work out of the magazine tube. lots of crap gets in there so get it clean.

    Rinse the action with hot water and set it aside. Dry it as good as you can with a dry towel.

    Pick up the barrel and lets get to it. Look close at the gas ports from the barrel to the gas piston housing. They make little stainless brushes to clean those ports. Plastic from the wads will be on the inside of the holes and needs to be cleaned off. Clean you barrel however you like. Its hard chromed and is pretty easy to get cleaned.

    Start pulling your small parts out of the bucket and start in on them with a brush and 409. Rinse everything with hot water and dry as well as you can.

    For the guys with the recoil spring in the stock, I use a .40cal barrel brush on a cleaning rod with a drill to clean out the tube. Treat it like a barrel and keep swabbing it out till it shows clean on a cotton swab run in the tube. I use syn wheel bearing grease to lube the spring and tube. Less is better.

    Use a hot blow drier to dry all the parts. Wipe down everything with a white terrycloth towel to see if you get it clean.

    You need about 4 drops of oil to oil the whole action. 1 drop will be put on the carrier hinge pin on the trigger group. The trigger should be almost dry.

    Put her back together and you should be good to go. Some anti seize on the choke threads is a good idea.

    I have a gathered a bunch of brushes over the years that I love. Auto parts stores and auto paint stores are a great place to look.

    I got my Beretta brush kit here.

    I hope this helps and if you have something that works for you I would like to hear it.

    If a life of wine women and song becomes too much, give up the singing.

    Panties not the best thing in the world, but close to it.
  6. tripleb

    tripleb Elite Refuge Member

    May 11, 2003
    NW Ohio
    Jamming with semi autos is usually related to a combination of things: Not having shot the gun to "break it in". Using too little or too much lubrication. Using "weak or weaker" shells than it's able to function with reliably.

    A gas operated semi auto functions by a balance of gas pressure, gas duration, friction, inertia, spring resistance to compression and spring power due to extension. The gun maker builds his guns to function within a relatively wide range of those factors, but if you don't clean your gun properly ... if you have only fired a few boxes of shells through the gun ..... if you have over lubed or under lubed the gun's moving parts ..... if you use shells which use small amounts of fast burn rate powder ... you can have malfunctions.

    I usually figure that it takes about 4 to 6 boxes of heavier (1 1/4 oz.) lead loads through a shotgun to break it in .... Guns come from the manufacturer with tight spots, tight springs, and rough areas which the process of "breaking in" helps smooth out. Some high grade guns don't need this .... but I assume it can't hurt to run the shells through it anyway.

    Shot shells come in a wide range of shot weights and velocities. If you're trying to run cheap, low velocity, 1 oz. lead target loads through a relatively unused gun .... count on having problems. You might not .... but if you have a tight gun ...your odds are better for having them. Use at least a 1 1/8 oz. lead load with 3 dram equiv. (1200 fps.) rating until you have it functioning flawlessly. After the gun breaks in, you may be able to use the light loads without issues, but if and when that happens varies with the gun.

    Use a good gun lubricant .... Shooter's Choice is one very popular lubricant and is better than most commonly used for that purpose. Most guns function best with a light film of lubricant. If you put lube on the magazine tube of a gas operated gun, expect a carbon build up which might impair functioning if not cleaned off. Clean the gas ports with a pipe cleaner soaked in a good gun powder solvent .... or I have read of people using welding torch nozzle cleaners or undersized drill bits (rotated by fingers) to scrape out the hard carbon build up in the barrel gas ports. If you haven't yet done so, strip the gun down and clean the storage grease off of it. It's presence will slow down the functioning of the gun.

    Try different ammo. Some guns work better with some brands and less well with others. There's a wide variation in shot shell dimensions and using one which is compatible with your gun can improve reliability.

    Finally ... you can switch to using a good pump gun and you can disregard nearly everything I wrote above. I only shoot pump shot guns any more (Brownings) and almost never have functioning issues.
  7. duck stopper

    duck stopper Elite Refuge Member

    Mar 8, 2001
    I think the key is to give them a "thorough" cleaning. I had a problem (not firing or not ejecting) with my 391 two years ago and thought I was cleaning it correctly. I posted a question on the Shooting Forum and was given a link to a site that showed how to "thoroughly" clean this gun. Following those directions seems to have solved my problem.
  8. sherlockbonez

    sherlockbonez Senior Refuge Member

    Oct 22, 2008
    I would think the problem is what your cleaning techniques. I've own both browning and beretta and they rarely jams (maybe once a year, usually with lighter loads). I also hunt with guys that shoots benelli to mossbergs, never seem to be that much problems with them.
  9. 4got2duck

    4got2duck Elite Refuge Member

    Oct 15, 2002
    southeast pa.
    When you clean an auto-loader it is not a matter of just cleaning the barrel. The entire shotgun needs to be cleaned. You need to clean the gas piston, the barrel ring and gas ports, the magazine tube and the receiver along with the trigger group. All the carbon needs to be removed from all gas system components if the gun is expected to perform flawlessly. I own an SX2 which is basically the same gun as the SX3 and have never experienced any jamming problems whatsoever. I've owned 1100's and Beretta auto-loaders and have never had any jamming problems with them either. So I'd say something is wrong with your cleaning or lubing process.

    You can use synthetic safe Gun Scrubber and some 0000 steel wool to remove the carbon residue from the gun and lube it with Shooters Choice FP-10 or CLP and you should be good to go. The gun should look like brand new after its been cleaned.

    Be sure you're using the correct ammo for the SX3. If its a 3.5" gun the lightest load it will cycle is a 3 dram 1 1/8 oz load according to factory specs.

    Hope this helps.
  10. kwsmith

    kwsmith Elite Refuge Member

    Nov 29, 2003
    pineywoods of texas
    excluding the remington autoloaders, and discounting the occasional lemon you might get in any model, most auto-loaders shotguns are fairly reliable.

    if you were having problems with just one gun, you might could blame it on the gun.

    but having problems with three different guns in the same household suggest that it's something in the operation or maintenance- as in the owner.

    detail strip and clean. each and every single part. pay close attention to your extractor, ejector, and the firing chamber inside the barrel. extractors and ejectors, and their associated springs, can get worn or weak. also check your shell stops. a fire ring can develop inside the barrel and trap/hold shells to stop them from extracting- that's rare, but can happen- especially if you frequently shoot different length shells and don't keep your barrel clean.

    a .45 caliber brush is good for cleaning a 12 gauge chamber.

    after cleaning, do not over-lubricate. doing so will only gum things up.

    if you're not going to be using the gun for awhile after cleaning, slip a condom or a piece of tape over the muzzle to help keep dust fron settling into the barrel.

    watch your storage environment. stick them back into a closet in a hot humid climate for any length of time, and you're asking for rust. ditto for a salt air/ocean-side environment. try to store them in a clean dry and well-ventilated place. if that's not possible then clean and lightly oil frequently. if you're in a really cold environment, graphite won't gum up like oil.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice