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My PXT Extractor Broke -- Anyone else having problems with theirs?

4895 Views 51 Replies 20 Participants Last post by  shane45-1911
I took my WartHawg to the range last night to put 100 rounds through it and only managed to get about 25 rounds off before I experienced a FTE. I thought that it was strange because usually it extracts very reliably. The gun then proceded to FTE two more times, which caused me to start inspecting the gun. I immediately noticed that the claw portion of the extractor was completely broken off.

I thought these extractors were supposed to be bulletproof. Has any one else had problems with the PXT extractor yet? In searching through the archives, I could only find two other people on this forum who have encountered a PXT extractor failure.

I'll call Para service on Monday or Tuesday and see if they can ship me a replacement. I'm hoping they'll send me two so I can have a spare. I did a quick check on Brownells site and it doesn't appear that they carry the PXT extractor.

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Me Too

Broke mine on my LTC too. Call on Tuesday, they re-open on the third. They'll send one right out to you. Bulletproof, no such thing. If it's made by a man it can and will eventually break.
I guess they stopped the non-destructive testing on all extractors and went back to sampling.
When mine broke it puked into the action and tied it up. Para requested that I return the pistol on my dime so they could give it a good going over. I've had a couple of friends try to buy the pistol from me but I wouldnt feel right because most of my friends are Police Officers and if something happened to one of them because of something breaking on the pistol I would feel guilty. Para's might be great range guns but from my experience I would not trust my life to one.
I broke one last spring.... Too-hot reloads, I'm reasonably sure. No other damage except that the MSH retaining pin appeared to break - didn't find that for a while.

George Wedge sent me a new one almost overnight (three or four days) and no problems since.

I've also had two extractors fail on a Colt Combat Commander. :rock:

Yup. I had a broken extractor and other extractor issues.
I called Para today and they're putting a replacement in the mail for me. They don't sell parts and Brownells doesn't sell the PXT, so I guess I won't be able to keep a spare. Oh well, I'm the original owner so warranty replacement should never be a probblem if I ever experience the problem again.

The person at Para said that broken PXT extractors obviously do happen, but they are not common. He also mentioned that the part is MIM and that some times MIM parts can have weak spots. I wish this part wasn't MIM, but since I don't have a chioce, I'll just have to hope that my next extractor isn't defective.
Tedster said:
A) They don't sell parts and Brownells doesn't sell the PXT, so I guess I won't be able to keep a spare.

B)The person at Para said that broken PXT extractors obviously do happen, but they are not common.

C) He also mentioned that the part is MIM and that some times MIM parts can have weak spots.

D) I'll just have to hope that my next extractor isn't defective.
And in a nutshell -

Reasons a perfectly happy Para customer will not buy a Para with the PXT. :barf: I seek out used Paras when I get the urge.
Actually, considering that there are only seven of us total on the entire forum that have had a problem, I'm not too concerned at this point. I have been very impressed with Para's service to date, and I love the lifetime warranty.

From my experience, you are always more likely to experience failure with a new gun, car, computer, etc either when it's either very new, or when it's very old. My WartHawg is very new, so the fact that I had a failure doesn't surprise me too much. There's a reason why I'm shooting it so much right now -- to get the new gun bugs worked out.

I've even had some of my more high end guns have problems out of the box, so I know that the new gun problem syndrome isn't just limited to Para.

pangris said:
And in a nutshell -

Reasons a perfectly happy Para customer will not buy a Para with the PXT. :barf: I seek out used Paras when I get the urge.
are these all newer guns or some of the original PXT's too?
A friend of mine and myself both picked up single stack PXT's when they first came out. Both guns have had over 5000 rounds through them with zero problems, so they aren't all bad!
Mine broke too, I called PO and they sent me one, now I have to test it. Will see!.
Colt tried MIM extractors and it was a bust. Colt went back to real steel. As long as Para or anyone else uses MIM extractors, I'll pass.

Mine broke after I first got my CCO. But it was a real early model and I didn't know it was as common as it seems. I sent back to Para and it was returned in 4 days, no problems since (1000 rounds or so)

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Colt went back to "real steel" but not spring steel. The Para PXT extractor uses a coil spring and is a much better design that the original extractor - the old ones work and last forever if they are made from spring steel, Most now aren't, hence the coil spring idea. HiPowers made the move years ago with coil spring external extractors. I have over 1,000 rds through my SSP with nary a problem.

Stay Safe

Correct re the spring steel.... Tuner about ran me through with a cleaning rod over that one.... :)

Why the manufacturer's would change, I don't know. Probably a half a buck's savings....

I'm not sure if the aftermarket extractors are available in spring steel or not.

The problem with the MIM Para extractors is that there's a complex MIM extractor body there that must be 100% tested. I'm not sure that you could make the thing any other way for a target MSRP in the $50 range. There a re three weak links. The hook itself (likely to break real fast), the little projection that holds the two halves together (even more fragile), or the square section between the two halves. Mine broke in that area. Looks like a void issue, plus it did get beat on by a hot round.

(The replacement's taken about 1000 rounds that I'm sure of, and probably another three or four hundred I've forgotten about.)

I would have preferred that it had broken earlier on, because that reload wasn't that hot, but....

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Hi Stu

I think from what I have read and from talking to George Wedge the early extractors were not 100% tested. I understand they are now. I think this really is a non-issue moving forward. The extractor works and like the HI-Power extractors will over time become a non-issue.

You are right regarding the new extractors. I think there are two issues, one is obviously cost in an age where keeping the costs down so we can afford the guns becomes an issue plus the old extractors had to be tuned by somebody and training individuals to do this tuning obviously jsut adds to the cost if you can find people to do it in the first place. My Norinco Commander while functioning perfectly throws brass all over hells half acres including and mostly into my forehead. My Norinco A1 hasn't figured out where my forehead is yet but brass goes everywhere. My Para tends to throw them in a small arc at least to my right. The only gun that I own that is just a treat in this regard is my STI Trojan 9MM that just dumps them to my right in a neat pile.

On balance I prefer the new extractor and while there were some issues with it, I suspect no more than with the traditional extractors that are out there. Must not be a problem because there are a lot of LEOs out there carrying Paras with the extractors.

Talking to Gunnar over in Pr. George yesterday, and he tells me the gun of choice for the hunting guides now is the Para LDA 14 rounder with .45-08 cartridges. If the Paras will take that cartridge in stride it speaks volumes to the quality of the gun.

Stay Safe
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I got my new PXT extractor from PARA right after the Christmas exodus. Installed it and now have 300 rounds w/ new extractor. Only problem was with hollow points in my most worn mags. Had 2 FTFeeds on last round in mag, classic weak mag spring problem. I'm gonna replace the springs with wolff extra power and I'm sure this will be fixed. The new PXT extractor feels much stronger than the one that broke.
robertbank said:
Hi Stu

The extractor works and like the HI-Power extractors will over time become a non-issue.
Except that there are plenty of customers, me included, who will only buy used Paras with a traditional extractor. They are giving up market share so that they can claim an innovation.

Want to see if it is a good idea? Offer them BOTH WAYS. Many consumers who don't give a crap or buy into GSC's hype will buy it.

Many customers, like myself, with a bunch of other 1911s, will stay with the proven standard... a quality extractor tuned properly will last thousands upon thousands of rounds. Replace every 5000 with other springs and call it a day.

I can appreciate Paras desire to improve and differentiate, but this is pushing the issue.

I'm kind of new to the argument - I've only had a Para PXT for about 18 months, and have little experience with the older Colt/Browning extractor.

However, I think that they do work, and are inherently more reliable than the original.

If they don't break....

IMHO the Colt/Browning extractors fail softer - the gun becomes much less reliable, rather than simply failing entirely. I've since retired it for other reasons, but my Combat Commander has been through about three extractor since I inherited it. The first one was damaged somehow, probably by Wolf steel cases. The gun continued to work, but was much more reliable when the extractor was replaced.

Then a shock buffer self-destructed inside the gun, leaving bits of itself all over the place. Reliability went completely south, but it would get a shot or two off. Didn't take long to figure that out, but the extractor had to be replaced again.

Meantime, the PXT in my Tac-Four broke. No more extraction at all....

Which is better? Either way you're in deep stuff. However, IMHO (and bear in mind that I'm not a gunsmith, don't buy into hype too well, and only drive by a Holiday Inn Express on the way to and from the range), if the folks at Para are indeed doing 100% inspection, the overall design is just bigger, and more likely to hold together. Lots of little bits inside, but there are only two failure points I can see - the little projection that holds the halves together, and the square section that links that to the body of the claw portion. (I suppose the little spring in there could fail, but it might still extract anyway if dirty.) Meantime, if you survive the failure, the part is a drop-in, and nearly indestructable otherwise.

Which is better? I'm not sure. I wouldn't (didn't) let a PXT or the lack thereof keep me from a purchase. I think Browning would have entertained a design like this in 1911 if it'd been possible to make it without serious extra expense. IMHO the standard claw is too tiny for reliability with a round this size anyway, but it is impossible to self-spring anything much bigger. I'm told, too, that the originals were made from a spring steel that made it difficult to "tune", but once properly done, was very reliable. More recently a "tool" steel is used that's easy to set up, but eventually fails. There ought to be a marketing opportunity there someplace....

I like the idea of offering both, but....

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The "safe" bet would have been for Para to design their power extractor in the same size hole as the current extractor.

That way, if you don't want the power extractor, just replace it with a normal one.

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