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Benelli M1 not firing/light strikes?


A5H556
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In shooting my Benelli M1 recently I've had this issue where the 3rd or 4th shot will be a "click" instead of a "boom." If I fire the gun slowly it works fine. However, when trying to go fast I will experience this issue. Primers from "click" rounds have varying degrees of primer indention and usually off-center. Rob Romero was at the match I shot this past Sunday and I asked him about it. (At the time I thought I was outrunning the bolt with the trigger). He explained that it's likely bolt bounce. The trigger is pulled as the bolt bounces slightly out of battery and thus no ignition. He recommended a +25% action spring with a few coils cut off.

I just disassembled, cleaned, and lubed the gun prior to the match, so that's not an issue.

Before I purchase the spring I wanted to do some more reading (the gun hasn't had more than 600-700 rounds through it, so I wouldn't think the spring would be that worn yet). I found an older thread here where someone mentioned about the barrel nut being tight enough. I am using the RNT bolt release tab on my shotgun and am wondering if maybe I didn't relieve enough handguard material. The tab would be preventing the barrel from fully seating, thus causing the bolt to not go fully into battery sometimes.

The obvious solution is to take it off and see if the gun runs without it. I won't have a chance to shoot it again until Friday night, but does this sound like it could be the problem? Anyone else with a similar issue/solution would be appreciated. Thanks!

ETA: more info, I recently re-configured the gun and that's when the issues started. The gun was 100% with this same ammo with it's 28" and 18.5" barrels before this. During the reconfig. I swapped the 18.5" for a 21" field barrel. I also installed the RNT tab, a Nordic +5 in place of the factory + 4, and installed a different lifter. Really hoping it's not the barrel.

Edited by A5H556
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If you have a timer, run it until you get the malfunction, and look at the split for the cycle during which it occurs. If it is happening in the .16 to .19 second range, it is likely the bolt bounce issue that Rob described. You can run it faster than this and it goes away, or slower and it goes away. I can (with a full magazine) start with a fairly quick trigger cadence and speed up my trigger splits until it happens every time. Usually doesn't happen in competition or real practice, because there are few situations where I can transition between targets fast enough to make it happen. But when dumping shells into the berm it is pretty easy. Just a quirk of the inertia design.

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I don't have a reliable timer at this point, just a cell phone app that doesn't record splits well. A real timer is top of the list for Father's day. Anyway, I removed the RNT tab and tightended the barrel nut as tight as I could. Same malfunction multiple times. I'm shooting 1-1/8 oz loads so that should be fine. I took some pics of the position of the bolt and the primers on various rounds as well as some pics of my bolt removed from the gun so you can look for wear issues. I read in an older thread where Kurt mentioned something about cam pin wear. Unless someone sees something, I guess Rob's action spring recommendation is what I'll try next.

ETA: as far as shooting fast enough to cause the issue not being realistic unless just dumping rounds into a berm, that is not my experience. Video from our local match last Sunday shows both me and another shooter who borrowed my shotgun having to clear said malfunction, him on a plate rack and me on a popper array.

F097F176-3FE6-4C11-B265-685ABDBEBD8B.jpg

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37EDB624-DD6D-4B19-82E0-ADA2135B8390.jpg

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http://i854.photobucket.com/albums/ab104/ASH556/2A868782-01B5-47AF-9C2A-44E02AD02529.jpg

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I was digging around and found this older thread with some responses by kurtm. Quote and my answer below, please someone help!

Ok, don't worry about the roll pin. Next test, lock the bolt to the rear on an EMPTY gun. Hold it horizontal right in front of your face, up right so that you are looking right at the bolt...or where it will close. Drop the bolt with the bolt release button and watch to see if it bounces back. It will to a small degree but if it comes back a bunch, 1/2"-1" you got problems. Let me know.

I tried this yesterday. My bolt stays firmly in-battery, no rearward bounce that I can see either with or without a shell going into the chamber.

This makes me think the recoil spring is not the deal and also the bolt should be fine. So, where do I go from here? Please watch the videos above. We're not going all that fast (I don't think) so what's causing the issue?

Edited by A5H556
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Still no feedback, huh? I did have one other thought: Is it possible that overlubrication could cause this issue? I bathed the bolt in Fireclean before the last match hoping to prevent this issue. Wondering if that might be it?

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Wow, guys, does everyone just have me on ignore or what? Despite the gun not failing the bolt bounce test, I went ahead and ordered the XP Wolf spring from Brownells. Start by replacing the cheapest part, right? I spoke with Taran Butler via phone about it and he made me a generous offer, but I'm not to the point in 3gun (one local match a month) that I'm ready to dump a grand into mods to my shotgun. I just want it to run. That's why I bought a Benelli instead of something cheaper to begin with. Hopefully the spring fixes the gun.

Here's to hoping someone cares enough to offer some help...

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Not much help, but my son did that to his M2 and had all kinds of issues including the shells sliding past the stop. Don't need a whole lot of lube on these. We cleaned the inside of the upper and the bolt assembly of all oil and just lubed where a very good Benelli shooter told my son to lube and the gun went back to running 100%. Not sure of the spots to oil, but it was very light in comparison to his Winchester SX3 that he was running. It like to run wet.

gerritm

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Not sure exactly what the problem is, but unless your bolt is running really sluggish, you're not outrunning the gun. How slick does the bolt feel? If you are regularly over-lubing then put it away in the safe butt down oil can run down and eventually gum up your recoil spring. Might just be a break down, fully clean, lightly lube and re-assemble fix.

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Will an unfired round of ammo easily drop completely into the chamber? Or is it tight, requiring a little push to get the metal base of the round to fully seat into the chamber?

Simply dropping it into the chamber with the bolt locked to the rear or using the bolt to push it in? If the former, I've not tried that, but will tonight along with detail stripping, cleaning, and then sparsely lubricating everything. Thanks for the replies gents! Mr. Rose, I actually tried to call your shop yesterday AM, but it was apparently before you opened and then work got in the way of my shotgun resolution. :closedeyes:

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Take the barrel off the gun and drop a round into the chamber. We are checking to see if the shell will slip in without undue pressure – or perhaps the shell base is snagging and causing the shell to not seat fully and allow the bolt to close all the way. Try this with more than one round of ammo using the brand/type that seems to be the least reliable when it comes to firing.

Call me around 3:30 to 4:00 Central if you get a chance. 270-348-3 two 6 two

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Take the barrel off the gun and drop a round into the chamber. We are checking to see if the shell will slip in without undue pressure – or perhaps the shell base is snagging and causing the shell to not seat fully and allow the bolt to close all the way. Try this with more than one round of ammo using the brand/type that seems to be the least reliable when it comes to firing.

Call me around 3:30 to 4:00 Central if you get a chance. 270-348-3 two 6 two

Steve, thanks for the time on the phone this afternoon! I got home this evening and pulled the gun down. I checked several rounds including buck and bird and there were no issues with any of the shells dropping into the barrel. I then tore the gun all the way down, trigger group, everything. I cleaned the living snot out of everything and then re-assembled. I lightly oiled (like 2 drops) the rails and cam pin with some factory Benelli oil I got with my M1S90 SBS I just picked up. There was a ton of lube caked inside the bolt and on the firing pin. Also lots of grit and grime in the trigger group. Everything's nice and clean now. Hopefully between this and ensuring that I have the gun properly mounted I will not have any further issues. I plan to run a box of bird along with some 7/8 oz Fiocchi slugs Friday night. Here's to hoping for a good report. Thanks again for the help!

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