HK45 Endurance Test: Week Seven

26-May-10 – 16:59 by ToddG

12,535 rounds

0 stoppages 0 malfunctions 0 parts breakages

At 12,500 rounds we hit the quarter-way mark on the HK45 Endurance Test last Friday during a 1,006-round marathon practice session. Unfortunately, circumstances have conspired to keep the gun in the holster and off the range ever since. Still, there have been zero problems with the pistol since removing the USP45 Compact floorplates (see last week’s report for details).

Once we hit the 12,500 mark, it was time to pull some preventative maintenance. Parts replaced include:

  • trigger return spring
  • sear spring
  • firing pin spring
  • firing pin block spring
  • elbow spring (aka “hammer rebound spring”)
  • recoil spring assembly

The first two got changed based on experience from the P30 test, while the rest were just parts HK said I should replace “at or before 20,000 rounds.” Since ease of detail disassembly and reassembly remains a major omission from the USP/P2000 design, I’m hoping to keep the detail stripping to a minimum during the test. Heck, it only took me eight tries to get the trigger return spring in the gun this time. I’m becoming an expert!

As for the shooting this past week, best F.A.S.T. run was 4.77 with a pretty bad reload:

  • 4.77 (clean): 1.45, .49 / 2.07 / .28, .24, .24

Doing a ton of 1-R-2 and 1-R-4 drills this past week I pulled off some reloads in the 1.5-1.6 range (from concealment), but getting it all to come together during a F.A.S.T. eluded me. In fact, compared to last week’s nine clean sub-5 F.A.S.T. runs in a row, this week’s performance was abysmal.

Another drill I ran a number of times during the thousand round practice day was a simple draw & fire five shots on a 6″ wide, 8″ high oval (see target at right; click on image for full size .pdf version) at 7yd. Best time for five hits from concealment was 2.04. That was a 1.28 draw and splits of .20, .19, .19, and .18. This is really a drill that should be accomplished in under two seconds.

On a lark I shot a 5-round group at 50yd with my carry ammo (Winchester RA45T) from an unsupported standing position. Result was slightly less than 4 inches center to center (and all within the 6×8 oval). That’s pretty impressive for a duty pistol, especially one that hadn’t been cleaned in about 3,000 rounds.

Train hard & stay safe! ToddG

Previous HK45 Endurance Test posts at pistol-training.com:

  1. 18 Responses to “HK45 Endurance Test: Week Seven”

  2. Todd,
    Were you using the Win. ranger in 9mm
    for carry.
    If so, was it the 124 gr. or 147 gr.

    By joe on May 26, 2010

  3. Todd,
    Do you feel the heat build up/dissipation is similar to that of the P30 in the same round per range session?

    By jwperry on May 26, 2010

  4. So where can regular folks find these springs?

    By Matt on May 26, 2010

  5. Wow that’s an impressive 50 yard group unsupported!!!

    By Shenaniguns on May 27, 2010

  6. …..comment no one will care about in 5,4,3,2,1,..”THAT is a cool photo!!!” Seriously. And I sell what I shoot w/ Canon 1DsM3; not what I shoot w/ Glocks. Good job!

    By Stephen on May 27, 2010

  7. joe — In 9mm, for the past couple of years I’ve used 124gr +p HST from Federal, which is my first choice. The 127 +p+ from Winchester and the 124gr +p Gold Dot from Speer are also excellent 9x19mm choices. For the HK45 test I would have liked to get 230gr HST, but there was just none to be found in the quantity I needed.

    jwperry — I’d say the heat situation is similar. Since I’ve not done any 2,000-round shooting sessions, it’s hard to compare apples to apples. The HK45 sometimes gets hot, but not as hot as the P30 did when I was doing 50 Bill Drills at a time.

    Matt — You can order spare parts directly from HK in Columbus, Georgia.

    Shenaniguns — Yup, I was pretty impressed.

    Stephen — Thanks! The wonders of Photoshop! FWIW, I shot it with a 1D MkII N and 24-105/4. EXIF says it was 1/160 at f/14 (manual) with compulsory fill flash. ISO was forced to low (50).

    By ToddG on May 27, 2010

  8. Todd,
    A bit off topic, but:

    I’ve been reading training AARs lately and find some of the best info out there is contained in reports of what guns have issues and what guns do not.

    Have you ever posted anything to the effect of what pistols you’ve seen reliability/QC issues with in classes (especially which 1911s)? If you haven’t, then do you remember seeing any other instructor that’s posted that kind of info?

    By Dave on May 27, 2010

  9. Todd,

    Do you predict there will further improvment in your time/splits when and if you go back to regularly shooting a 9×19? Just curious on your preference between .45 and 9×19 in terms of shootability. I apologise if this has been covered before.

    By Gordon on May 27, 2010

  10. Dave – I don’t track it scientifically enough to offer a formal analysis. I will say that 1911’s and XD’s seem to struggle the most, followed by Glocks which have been “tuned” by the owner (stock Glocks tend to be fairly reliable in my classes). I have certainly seen both 1911’s and “improved” Glocks make it through classes without trouble, though. Can’t say that for the XD, though in fairness I’ve only had three or four of then in class.

    Gordon – the only time I would choose a .45 over a 9mm would be if someone was paying for all my ammo.

    By ToddG on May 27, 2010

  11. FYI, we’ve been using the 124gr +P Gold Dot for many years here, to good effect in our OISs.
    The 124gr +P Ranger-T is also a very good 9mm load (we had to go with that in 2006 when we couldn’t get any Gold Dot for issue as duty ammo).

    By Chuck Haggard on May 28, 2010

  12. Todd, I’ve realy been enjoying your blog since I first heard about it when you started the P30 test. This led me to read about the M&P test and I was so impressed with the results, I bought one; except the FS 45. Your test on the P30 led me to get an LEM; except a P2000 9mm. Now maybe I’ve missed it somewhere, but I cannot understand why you shoot thousands and thousands of rounds without cleaning your pistol, especially in a pistol carried at the same time for self-defense. I don’t mean to put you on the spot or make you defend something, realy, I’m just currious? Thanks.

    By Matt on May 28, 2010

  13. Matt — No worries! It’s just a matter of experience. I’ve been shooting (and not cleaning) guns this way for many years and haven’t seen any kind of problems that would make me worry about it. I wouldn’t advocate treating your pistol this way, but in my mind a gun that doesn’t work well when it’s dirty probably isn’t a very reliable design.

    By ToddG on May 28, 2010

  14. Hey Todd,
    Not trying to start a internetz flame war or anything, but do you feel the .45 gives any tactical/defensive advantage over 9mm or do you feel caliber completely takes a back seat to shot placement?

    By eXtreme0327 on May 28, 2010

  15. So I’m shooting at the range today and hear this rat a tat tat tat from a few lanes down. When I get done and walk out I see a familiar orange bag. Dude, what’s up with the wrap on your arm? Too many trigger pulls? Are ya gonna need help shooting up some of that 45 ammo? :)

    Hope your practice session went well.

    By MichaelH on May 28, 2010

  16. eXtreme0327 – I would defer to my friend Dr. Gary Roberts on that score. The .45 has certain small advantages over the 9x19mm in terms of barrier penetration and expansion, but not enough to be a meaningful factor for most folks in terms of weapon selection. I’ve carried 9mm handguns for many years and never felt undergunned.

    MichaelH – I’m still at the range, taking a break. Any time you want to put some rounds through the HK45, just ask. I’ve been using the elbow brace since the M&P test. It keeps me from developing tennis elbow, which is pretty common among folks who shoot a lot.

    By ToddG on May 28, 2010

  17. Todd – would you ever do a test on a revolver? would even consider carrying one as your primary weapon for the duration of a test?

    By David on May 31, 2010

  18. David — Not as long as I can legally have a semiauto, no. While I appreciate the affection some folks have for revolvers, personally I have no reason to compromise on the firepower and shootability afforded by a compact or full-size autoloader.

    By ToddG on May 31, 2010

  19. How do you like that light compared to the Novatac?

    By AdamG on Jun 3, 2010

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