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Apex Tactical Specialties Heavy Duty Striker for FN 509

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Apex Tactical Specialties has released their Heavy Duty Striker for the FN 509 series of handguns.  Pre-ordering is available as of this writing.

https://store.apextactical.com/WebDirect/Products/Details/193350

APEX119-185-a.jpg

 

The Apex Heavy Duty Striker for the FN 509, FNS and FNS Compact is a direct drop-in replacement option for customers with FN 509 and FNS series pistols. The striker is machined from a billet of stainless steel and heat treated for enhanced durability. 
 

But Why?

Unfortunately the FN 509 uses an MIM (metal injection molding) striker which has been known to break, particularly with repeated dry-firing.  FN recommends that dry-fire be done with snap caps only and never with an empty chamber, for this reason.  Many other striker fired handguns have no such problems.

Savvy FN 509 owners have been known to source the cast steel striker from FNS model handguns, which is identical albeit not manufactured via MIM, but supply of those can be difficult to find.

This new Apex billet striker should solve both any reliability concerns as well as address sourcing problems of finding FNS strikers.

 

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I’m a Toolmaker. When MIM started being used in guns I was one of the guys (along with many others) that had worked with it that warned MIM is junk. It’s one step above pot metal and is only used because it is cheap to produce high quantity of like parts.

Then I had a catastrophic failure of my SW1911 that rendered it unusable. While I was showing my BIL how the safeties worked on a 1911; I engaged the thumb safety pointed it downrange at a target and pulled the trigger. The weapon fired. The gun would not operate after that. The guys at the range said they had never seen anything like it either. I did not disassemble the gun, but I’m convinced the thumb safety broke. I sent it in. S&W would not answer me about if the safety broke. They only would say the safety was improperly fitted. When I asked them to replace it with a safety that wasn’t MIM; they said they couldn’t, that was all they had. My 1911 has become a range gun, I don’t carry a 1911 much anyway, but until I get this safety change to stainless; I don’t trust it for a self-defense weapon.

Bottom line…as many of us warned, MIM has an application; gun parts is not it.

This is a public service announcement. :)

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Kind of off topic, I guess, so please feel free to peel this off.

How does MIM differ (if at all) from casting metal? I'm curious both about the manufacturing process and the strength and appropriate application of the resulting parts.

Thanks!

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55 minutes ago, TomInMN said:

Kind of off topic, I guess, so please feel free to peel this off.

How does MIM differ (if at all) from casting metal? I'm curious both about the manufacturing process and the strength and appropriate application of the resulting parts.

Thanks!

In casting you are melting metal and pouring or injecting it. In forging you are hammering metal into the parts you want. And in machining you are machining the part you want from a billet or round of solid material. Those parts can then even me heat treated and finished. In MIM the metal is in powder form, binders are injected and it is sintered or “cooked” into the shape of the mold with heat and pressure without going liquid.

As you can imagine the metallurgy or the physical and chemical properties plus the hardness of the finished part may differ greatly depending on the method and material used. The choice of material and forming method are based on many factors. Cost is always a big factor; and sometimes the wrong deciding factor.

MIM, just like dry firing will be (and is) discussed, debated and argued on gun forums for years to come. But like the big 3D gun model drama we just saw; by folks that really have no clue. Smith & Wesson, Glock and some others decided MIM parts were a good thing because they reduced their cost. (Not yours; yours continue to rise no matter what) And for some their favorite gun company giving the stamp of approval is all it takes. I’m a Smith & Wesson fanboy and they got this one wrong. But they will find that out eventually and stop the practice. Lets hope no one gets killed in the meantime.

BTW… I didn’t mean to imply that dry firing had anything to do with the FN striker problem. Just that its another physics, metallurgy and metrology issue that is easily overcome by a MFG saying it is okay or because someone has done it and their gun hasn’t fallen apart; it must be okay. Sometimes Engineers get it wrong. The test of a company is how they deal with it when they find out.

:cheers:

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43 minutes ago, DaveTN said:

In casting...

In forging...

And in machining...

In MIM...

Thank you for the knowledge, @DaveTN!

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Thanks for the info. I recently picked one up and had been thinking about one of these. I have the trigger jig if anyone needs to borrow it.

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