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How many of you have actually experienced failure of MIM parts?

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I am curious. I generally understand why people prefer tool steel parts over MIM, but I am wondering how valid the concern over them is, or perhaps MIM parts are like the 1911 boogie man where the fear is largely in peoples heads?

I own two SA TRPs, and the general feedback on them is that they are fantastic pistols, but I happened to stumble across an individual who commented something along the lines of "I USED TO OWN ONE OF THESE, UNTIL I FOUND THE MIM PARTS AND I SOLD IT OFF TO BUY A REAL 1911 FROM LES BAER."

This is not a debate thread, but I am curious if anyone here had actual experiences, and what exactly failed.

Another situation that comes to mind, which is off topic, is when Beretta was putting plastic guide rods in their M9 pistols. People were livid, immediately swapping them out for a metal replacement, yet the plastic rods seemed to hold up just fine.

Thanks
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I have had two MIM parts fail on a Kimber Ultra Carry II years ago - an extractor and an ejector. That's it. If MIM parts are done correctly, to the right stress specs, they are good parts that need a very small amount of fitting, but if they are not done right, they are junk. 10 or 15 years ago several manufacturers had problems with them, but these days most of them are fine. Having said that, I still prefer bar stock steel parts that are properly fitted because of my experience. That was one Kimber out of eight that I had, and several that my best friend had. I still have three of them and they are still going strong.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have had two MIM parts fail on a Kimber Ultra Carry II years ago - an extractor and an ejector. That's it. If MIM parts are done correctly, to the right stress specs, they are good parts that need a very small amount of fitting, but if they are not done right, they are junk. 10 or 15 years ago several manufacturers had problems with them, but these days most of them are fine. Having said that, I still prefer bar stock steel parts that are properly fitted because of my experience. That was one Kimber out of eight that I had, and several that my best friend had. I still have three of them and they are still going strong.
Is this why Kimber has such a doo doo reputation these days? Do you recall what your round counts were, approximately, when the failures occurred? Thanks for sharing your experiences.
 

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MIM is of the devil, indeed, or so we keep hearing. And that boogeyman lives in the heads of many a tacti-tube-video-operator! I have yet to lose a MIM part in any pistol, and some have been in match use for years - a TRP included.

Just like ammo improves, and polymers improve, and manufacturing in general improves, so does MIM. No reason to expect that MIM would be relegated to remain what it was decades ago.
 

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Kimber and SA are not great guns but NOT due to their MIM parts but due to their old worn machines and lack of tolerances (Kimber) and SA due to rough machining and entire lack of fitting. Colt...we don't even go there, a joker gun still...what are you doing Dan Wesson and when?

I have a bunch of SIGs, 226, 220, 320, 365, oh 210, those are FULL of MIM parts. The 220 SSE 45 ACP and the 226 SSE are the 2 I would grab when the zombies (or other) are coming for me. Never a FTF, any type of malfunction or anything else. The SIG parts on the P-series like hammer, sear etc are very finely finished, no mold lines, no ejector pin print marks and you'd never know they are made by Indomim in India. The 210 is Mim everywhere plus chem machined for slide frame fit and still a work of art when it comes to modern fabrication too good better than the old version to me anyway. So it's not about MIM parts, it is about the willingness to build a perfect gun. Kimber, Colt and The Springfield Armory are a few steps down from that, a few too many.
 

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Is this why Kimber has such a doo doo reputation these days? Do you recall what your round counts were, approximately, when the failures occurred? Thanks for sharing your experiences.
About 3000 rounds of 230 gr. and some of them were +p (which aren't supposed to be used frequently in an alloy frame gun).
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
MIM is of the devil, indeed, or so we keep hearing. And that boogeyman lives in the heads of many a tacti-tube-video-operator! I have yet to lose a MIM part in any pistol, and some have been in match use for years - a TRP included.

Just like ammo improves, and polymers improve, and manufacturing in general improves, so does MIM. No reason to expect that MIM would be relegated to remain what it was decades ago.
I will rest well tonight knowing my beloved TRP pistols are still gucci. Thank you sir.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Colts have MIM parts, jet engines have MIM parts. LAPD SWAT teams put Kimbers with MIM parts thru 5,000 round torture tests..nothing failed.. The same people probably didn't like it when they started putting milk in plastic jugs...:ROFLMAO:
In their defense plastic containers reduce testosterone levels in men. Though it appears that wouldn't bother you, so fair play. Also, now that you mention jet engines have MIM parts i am definitely not flying again, though I was 99% of the onboard with that idea already.
 

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Kimber and SA are not great guns but NOT due to their MIM parts but due to their old worn machines and lack of tolerances (Kimber) and SA due to rough machining and entire lack of fitting. Colt...we don't even go there, a joker gun still...what are you doing Dan Wesson and when?

I have a bunch of SIGs, 226, 220, 320, 365, oh 210, those are FULL of MIM parts. The 220 SSE 45 ACP and the 226 SSE are the 2 I would grab when the zombies (or other) are coming for me. Never a FTF, any type of malfunction or anything else. The SIG parts on the P-series like hammer, sear etc are very finely finished, no mold lines, no ejector pin print marks and you'd never know they are made by Indomim in India. The 210 is Mim everywhere plus chem machined for slide frame fit and still a work of art when it comes to modern fabrication too good better than the old version to me anyway. So it's not about MIM parts, it is about the willingness to build a perfect gun. Kimber, Colt and The Springfield Armory are a few steps down from that, a few too many.
That is an interesting point. Do you think that Kimber and SA are still machining on their clapped out equipment? I do not really go into gun stores and padiddle guns like some people do, so I have no idea what theyre pumping out. My TRP Operator is very tight, smooth slide, complete silence if you give it the honey badger shake.
 

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It's also like the plastic main spring housing's, never had a problem with one, I have replaced a few but it's because I like an arched housing. If you were going to shoot 3 thousand rounds a month then a Wilson or Bear might be in order but for the average shooter like me, not a thing wrong with MIM. If something breaks replace it then, I'm sure you've heard, if it aint broke don't fix it!!!!!!!!!!!
 
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Kimber uses pretty good MIM parts...so does Sig. I'm in the habit of replacing 1911 MIM parts, so I've never really given one a chance to fail. I think MIM can churn out some really smooth and decent low-stress parts like sears and disconnectors...even hammers. I avoid MIM slide stops and barrel bushings...not because I've ever broken any, but because I'm a shrewd snob and hobbyist (y)
 

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I’ve been away from the Forum for more than a year, but I see that some discussion subjects never change.

But to partially respond to the good, fair question, there have been countless photos of broken MIM 1911 parts. Almost always, these are the parts that are the most stressed, given the 1911s design. Of course, non-MIM parts have also broken. That’s a regular counter-argument. As to myself, I’ve never purchased a 1911 with MIM parts. So my lack of MIM breakage doesn’t mean anything with regard to 1911s. But I have had no issues with a gun that’s designed from the outset with MIM parts, sized with sufficient mass to assure reliability. So no negative sentiments or negative personal experiences with MIM. But I still prefer to use/accept MIM only in parts that are less stressed and/or that are sized in a gun’s original design for MIM fabrication. Just me…not preaching to anyone else. MIM has a place, but people do have different perceptions.
 
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I’ve been away from the Forum for more than a year, but I see that some discussion subjects never change.

But to partially respond to the good, fair question, there have been countless photos of broken MIM 1911 parts. Almost always, these are the parts that are the most stressed, given the 1911s design. Of course, non-MIM parts have also broken. That’s a regular counter-argument. As to myself, I’ve never purchased a 1911 with MIM parts. So my lack of MIM breakage doesn’t mean anything with regard to 1911s. But I have had no issues with a gun that’s designed from the outset with MIM parts, sized with sufficient mass to assure reliability. So no negative sentiments or negative personal experiences with MIM. But I still prefer to use/accept MIM only in parts that are less stressed and/or that are sized in a gun’s original design for MIM fabrication. Just me…not preaching to anyone else. MIM has a place, but people do have different perceptions.
Welcome back! You didn't miss much, other than sharing in the foreboding general sense of consternation :LOL:
 

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I've had three broken MIM parts, all in Kimbers from the early 2000's period when they seemed to break parts every week. Slide stop, ejector, and FP safety plunger. It was these perpetual failures in early Kimbers that gave both the brand and MIM parts in general a black eye. Since then Kimber got their s*** together and MIM parts failures in their guns are a rarity. Same goes with most other guns as well. MIM failures do happen, but no more frequently than cast or even machined parts. Gun parts are very small and often subjected to a lot of stress and fatigue, and they can break no matter what they're made of.
 

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Ah, I see. Another OP thinly veiled invitation to bash certain manufacturers.

Do you think that Kimber and SA are still machining on their clapped out equipment?
Seriously? If you're here, you have access to the internet, no? If you really want to believe there's a modern firearms manufacturer in this country (or most others) churning out guns machined on "clapped out" equipment, you're simply not keeping up with industry news.

I have probably bought upwards of 50 or so pistols (and the odd revolver) with MIM parts over the past thirty years. Was an instructor for a large agency that issued a pistols chock full o' MIM. Attended regional competitions, commercial and LE training, lo these many past years. Never had a MIM part fail on one of my handguns, never saw a pistol part fail that was attributed to the fact it was MIM.

The NASA space shuttles were full of MIM. Two self-destructed, but not due to MIM. The commercial airliners we all fly tons of miles on are loaded with MIM. Don't believe any crashes have been attributed to MIM parts breaking. Oh -- and how 'bout the big fancy trucks we all drive? Wanna know how much MIM is used in them? I'd think most folks would be more concerned about the vehicles they load their kids in every day and drive to and from work in, take long road trips, instead of wondering about low-stress MIM parts on firearms that only have a hundred rounds put through them every few months or so.
 
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