Author Topic: New-To-Me R9 At The Range  (Read 360 times)

Offline boscobarbell

  • Sharpshooter
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Guns, Knives, and Liquor
New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« on: March 27, 2023, 10:34:01 PM »
So, I finally got my R9 Stealth to the range...twice, as it turns out. 

The story starts with me taking my newly purchased and practically new late-issue R9 Stealth home and giving it a good cleaning while I patiently waiting while some good choices for carry ammo arrived from the e-stores from which I bought them.   I ended up going to the range with Gold Dots, ARX Inceptors, Federal HSTs, and Sig V-Crowns...but I never got to try them all.

I shot a couple of mags of the ARX rounds (which my previous R9 loved), but had a few FTF issues and moved on.

Speer Gold dots had a different problem: they would properly extract.  And the last of those failures was the worst still: it was stuck in the throat of the barrel so tightly that I could extract it at the range.  When I got it home I used a dowel to pound it out, and was alarmed to see that the case was not only badly swollen but also split longitudinally  Not good.

I spoke to a local gunsmith about it, and he feared the worst about my barrel, guessing that it was out-of-spec.  I feared that I a $1200 paperweight at this point, but I ended up talking at length with Eric Rohbaugh, who patiently went over what he thought may the possible causes, and what he recommended I could do moving forward.  We decided that the best course of action was to give the pistol a good cleaning and try it one more time at the range before throwing in the towel. 

So, today I got it out again.  This time I brought the Remington HST ammo, along with Sig V-Crown and Underwood Xtreme Defender.  As it turns out, I only shot the HST.  This time, it was because it cycled perfectly, and I was so excited with that success that I put 30 rounds downrange to ensure that all was well, and then quit while I was ahead and before I got the gun too cruddy and inviting failures. 

I can now only assume that I had a bad batch of Speer Gold Dots on my first trip...maybe week casings that lead to bulging/splitting?  Regardless, it's nice to know it was the ammo and not the gun.  Phew!!   

I've got more Speer inbound to give them another try, and next time out I'll finally test out the Underwood and V-Crown ammo as well.

Regardless, though, I've got a fully functioning R9 and a decent self defense round to feed it.  All is good with the world!   8)
Those who dream of the banquet, wake to lamentation and sorrow.
Those who dream of lamentation and sorrow wake to join the hunt.
               —The Wisdom of Laotse, 236

Offline MikeInTexas

  • Grand Master
  • *****
  • Posts: 744
  • Hello from Texas
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2023, 01:56:57 AM »
Gotta love a story with a happy ending :)


.

Offline backupr9

  • Grand Master
  • *****
  • Posts: 1564
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2023, 07:51:56 AM »
Some would recommend that you shoot at least 150 failure free rounds before carrying for self defense, perhaps 20 rounds each time followed by tightening the grip screws and cleaning the weapon.  Your post reminds me that it is past time for me to take my R9 to the range!
"Those who would sacrifice a little freedom for a little order, will lose both, and deserve neither." 
Thomas Jefferson

Endur Fortis

Offline ECR

  • Grand Master
  • *****
  • Posts: 1637
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2023, 08:34:01 PM »
I'm glad everything worked out for you boscobarbell with a simple good maintenance cleaning and oiling. It was amazing how many "defective" R9 pistols we had to go over while we were in our heyday, and most of them were simply dirty and dry.
Nice work good Sir! Carry on now. . . . .

ECR
Makers of the NRA Shooting Illustrated: "Handgun of the Year for 2005" and receiver of an NRA Golden Bullseye Award.

Offline boscobarbell

  • Sharpshooter
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Guns, Knives, and Liquor
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2023, 01:23:44 PM »
I managed to get in another range day to test out various ammos, and the results were....mixed.

My R9 apparently does not like any configuration of Gold Dots, be it 115 gr or 124 gr.  It also experienced malfunctions (a mix of FTF and FTE) with Underwood Xtreme Defender and Sig V-Crown 115 gr.     So I went back to the Federal HST ammo just to make sure that last time wasn't a fluke, and I put another 40 rounds or so through the pistol with no issues.  I also remembered that I had some Hydra Shoks in my range bag, and it also fired those just fine. 

So, while it's nice to have some ammo that seems to function quite well, I am less than thrilled that my R9 is so ammo-picky that only one brand of ammo works in it.  Given this, I may see about grabbing some V-Crown in 124 gr and see if that works, as well as the new Federal Punch and Deep ammos.  Because the more ammos it likes, the less likely that I may be stuck one day with no ammo for this little guy, since bullet manufacturers seem inclined to change out their offerings far too often.

Overall a disappointing result, but I intend to persevere......
« Last Edit: March 31, 2023, 03:29:18 PM by boscobarbell »
Those who dream of the banquet, wake to lamentation and sorrow.
Those who dream of lamentation and sorrow wake to join the hunt.
               —The Wisdom of Laotse, 236

Offline tracker

  • Grand Master
  • *****
  • Posts: 5365
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2023, 02:25:09 PM »
You mentioned "Remington HST" and "Hornady HST"---did you mean Federal HST? 

Offline boscobarbell

  • Sharpshooter
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Guns, Knives, and Liquor
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2023, 03:30:15 PM »
You mentioned "Remington HST" and "Hornady HST"---did you mean Federal HST?

Thanks for catching that.  Yes, Federal HST. 

Edited for correction.
Those who dream of the banquet, wake to lamentation and sorrow.
Those who dream of lamentation and sorrow wake to join the hunt.
               —The Wisdom of Laotse, 236

Offline backupr9

  • Grand Master
  • *****
  • Posts: 1564
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2023, 09:56:03 AM »
Tiny high quality handguns with close tolerances (think Rohrbaugh and Seecamp) are notoriously ammo picky and, interestingly, seem to have disparate preferences unique to each gun.  My R9’s love Gold Dots of any weight, handle Federal and several others, but neither gun likes Underwood.  With these tiny guns, even ammo from the same company but a different batch can cause problems….that is why Larry Seecamp advised that one should end a practice session with a new box of the preferred ammo, firing 13 rounds and if all went well loading the last 7 for carry.
"Those who would sacrifice a little freedom for a little order, will lose both, and deserve neither." 
Thomas Jefferson

Endur Fortis

Offline boscobarbell

  • Sharpshooter
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Guns, Knives, and Liquor
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #8 on: April 01, 2023, 11:58:31 AM »
Tiny high quality handguns with close tolerances (think Rohrbaugh and Seecamp) are notoriously ammo picky and, interestingly, seem to have disparate preferences unique to each gun.  My R9’s love Gold Dots of any weight, handle Federal and several others, but neither gun likes Underwood.  With these tiny guns, even ammo from the same company but a different batch can cause problems….that is why Larry Seecamp advised that one should end a practice session with a new box of the preferred ammo, firing 13 rounds and if all went well loading the last 7 for carry.

Yes, it reminds me very much of my Seecamp for a number of reasons.

I am considering biting the bullet (see what I did there?!) and buying a case of the Federal HST.  If I only shoot enough to cycle my ammo a couple of times a year, that would last me well past this lifetime. 

Still, having a couple of options would be nice......
Those who dream of the banquet, wake to lamentation and sorrow.
Those who dream of lamentation and sorrow wake to join the hunt.
               —The Wisdom of Laotse, 236

Offline boscobarbell

  • Sharpshooter
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Guns, Knives, and Liquor
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #9 on: April 07, 2023, 04:35:15 PM »
Okay, looks like 3rd time's the charm. 

Got my R9 out again, this time with a few different ammos to try out.  I had one hiccup with the Underwood 124 gr JHP ammo.  Moved on to Sig V Crown 124 gr, and put about 25 rounds downrange without failure.  Next up was the Remington Ultimate Defense 124 gr (which look an awful lot like Golden Sabers to me), and I was able to shoot another 25 rounds without issue.  At that point I figured I was flirting with disaster and decided to get my pistol back home for a good cleaning. 

But I now have 3 solid carry ammo choices--Federal HST, Sig V Crown, and Remington Ultimate Defense.  In my experience, this is excellent for a micro pistol, and I am now fully confident that the R9 will serve me well moving forward.   I'm still inclined to stockpile one or more of these choices as a hedge against the manufacturers moving on from these, but I think having even 500 rounds or so on hand will be enough of a security blanket.  This is probably the most I'll ever shoot this little guy, since from now on all I'll be doing is cycling my carry ammo a couple of times a year. 

Now my attention will turn to stockpiling spare parts, or perhaps purchasing a second R9 as a "parts gun."
Those who dream of the banquet, wake to lamentation and sorrow.
Those who dream of lamentation and sorrow wake to join the hunt.
               —The Wisdom of Laotse, 236

Offline backupr9

  • Grand Master
  • *****
  • Posts: 1564
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2023, 10:04:37 AM »
Remember to tighten the grip screws on the right (ejector) side after every 20-30 rounds.  Should that grip become loose, the trigger return spring will not function.  Never ever glue the grip screws in with something that cannot be easily overcome with a little heat (first-hand experience here, which is why I would rather just keep the screws tight but not over tight in a carry piece that would at best be shot 7 times in a close self defense encounter).  The R9 is, IMHO, the single best high caliber concealable pistol for EDC, and the most comfortable as well.
"Those who would sacrifice a little freedom for a little order, will lose both, and deserve neither." 
Thomas Jefferson

Endur Fortis

Offline boscobarbell

  • Sharpshooter
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Guns, Knives, and Liquor
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #11 on: April 09, 2023, 09:24:24 PM »
Remember to tighten the grip screws on the right (ejector) side after every 20-30 rounds.  Should that grip become loose, the trigger return spring will not function.  Never ever glue the grip screws in with something that cannot be easily overcome with a little heat (first-hand experience here, which is why I would rather just keep the screws tight but not over tight in a carry piece that would at best be shot 7 times in a close self defense encounter).  The R9 is, IMHO, the single best high caliber concealable pistol for EDC, and the most comfortable as well.

Thanks for the reminder.  I just checked mine, and they are pretty tight on the left side, but can be loosened.  The right side screws appear to have been sealed with Locktite, because they simply won't budge.  At some point I'll probably need to heat them up and see if I can remove them, just for a deep cleaning. 
Those who dream of the banquet, wake to lamentation and sorrow.
Those who dream of lamentation and sorrow wake to join the hunt.
               —The Wisdom of Laotse, 236

Offline tracker

  • Grand Master
  • *****
  • Posts: 5365
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #12 on: April 10, 2023, 11:10:21 AM »
Karl wisely advised me several years ago to not remove the grips for "maintenance." The trigger sear bar spring can become loose and difficult to reinstall. There are several previous posts on this subject.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2023, 12:36:30 PM by tracker »

Offline boscobarbell

  • Sharpshooter
  • **
  • Posts: 62
  • Guns, Knives, and Liquor
Re: New-To-Me R9 At The Range
« Reply #13 on: April 10, 2023, 04:24:00 PM »
Karl wisely advised me several years ago to not remove the grips for "maintenance." The trigger sear bar spring can become loose and difficult to reinstall. There are several previous posts on this subject.

I was not aware of that.  Thank you. 
Those who dream of the banquet, wake to lamentation and sorrow.
Those who dream of lamentation and sorrow wake to join the hunt.
               —The Wisdom of Laotse, 236