Cracked slide

Discussion in 'FN Hi-power/Inglis' started by DanM1, Feb 1, 2014.

  1. DanM1

    DanM1 G&G Newbie

    My only BHP is a Belgian/Argentine MkI. It is one of the Belgian pistols brought to Argentina in parts for training purposes. All matching, with all those cool Belgian proofs. Also marked "Policia Buenos Aires 61". I got it about 20 years ago from CDNN, and it arrived with some tiny pits or voids on the top of the slide. They didn't seem to be that bad, so I kept the pistol and had the pits filled in by a buddy who is a real expert with a TIG welder. I polished the welds smooth and had the pistol cerro-koated along with installing Novak sights. It has been a wonderful pistol, and everyone that shot it wanted to buy it from me. Well, I was enjoying it at the range with my light 105gr cast practice loads and the slide suddenly hung up on the return. Took it back to the table and found a hairline crack right through the area where those little pits were.:( Ruined my day to say the least. It was an accurate and fun pistol to shoot, certainly one of my favorites. I have looked for replacement slides, and what I have found are all MkII or MkIII slides with the exposed extractor. Maybe someone here can tell me if a later model slide will work on this early model frame. I hate to turn it into a non-matching gun, but it will still be fun to shoot. I doubt that the crack could be welded as it goes all the way around thru the rail area. A very sad day for me, like loosing a good friend....DanM
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2014
  2. jerry

    jerry Since 2002 Forum Contributor

    I cant take away your enthusiasm and love of your gun. It obviously worked for a while for you. I am compelled however to not suggest this type of repair to anyone with limited knowledge of the potential consequences.

  3. DanM1

    DanM1 G&G Newbie

    I don't plan on having the crack welded. Unless I find a real expert to send it to for the work, will probably just replace the slide. That should not be difficult if the later model slides will work. Of course I have been wrong before....DanM
  4. texnmidwest

    texnmidwest Sir Loin of Beef Forum Contributor

    What you might try is calling Browning and see what they suggest. Be prepared for them giving you a little grief for your "repair" but they will or rather should be able to tell you what is the best course of action. Another option is to scour the used gun parts sites to see if you can find a "gunsmith special" that will give you the part you are looking for. Slides seem to be running almost as much as a good used pistol.

    Since you know the quality of the High Power and what a fantastic pistol they could always pick up another example.....and keep the TIG welder away from the thing! :09:
  5. Cyrano

    Cyrano Resident Curmudgeon Forum Contributor

    New York
    Dan, do what tex and jerry said. Don't try to weld your original slide yourself, and do try to find a replacement. Here are some places I'd suggest contacting:

    The Old Western Scrounger

    Gun Parts : The Old Western Scrounger LLC.

    Numrich Arms

    Sarco, Inc.

    Sarco, Inc.


    Shop Shooting Supplies | Reloading | Gunsmithing | Hunting gear — MidwayUSA

    As I said, I suggest you contact them instead of just scanning the catalogs. If they don't have the slide in stock, they may be able to direct you to someone who does.

    It's more likely they could advise you on the possibility of replacing it with a later model slide that will fit your frame. They also might be able to advise you on a master gunsmith who could weld the slide, possibly after cutting out the crack. As I know from my time in the Merchant Marine, a weld is stronger than the original metal; one movie we watched in classes on damage control showed a welded hull plate tested to destruction in the lab. The plate tore, but the weld did not break.

    But the sort of welding required to repair a cracked slide requires the hand of a master gunsmith, and there are few enough of those around. The repair would be costly; but if it would preserve the gun and restore it to shooting condition, it might be worth it to you. I encourage you to do whatever you must to restore your Hi-Power to shooting condition. I understand about favorite guns.

    NRAJOE YOU TALKIN' TO ME!? Forum Contributor

    Last edited: Feb 1, 2014
  7. I remember when huge number of Argentine 9mm Hi-Powers were shipped into the US. There should be a lot of Argentine parts that came with them. Try those sources first, then consider a non-Argentine slide.

    I have a discontinued 9mm Star BM. Great gun, but I hope nothing breaks.
  8. M14man

    M14man I don't take prisoners... Forum Contributor

    There is a High Power forum. Those guys know all. The TIG welding may have had an effect on the slide making it brittle. My guess is that a later slide will work. Get on the HP forum and get your info.
    Browning Hi-Power Owner's Forum
  9. Felix's Tattoo

    Felix's Tattoo G&G Evangelist

    I got one of those things when you did. It had been reblued. The bore was minty, but the grips were worn almost smooth. Don't know if someone did that, or if he just wore them smooth, offing little street urchins at night like the PO-lice are prone to do down there. I replaced them with some better ones. I also broke the slide holdopen and had to replace that. I think that I was using a BFH to reinstall the hold open, when it popped and broke right in the middle.

    Maybe it was a little BFH, though. Can't remember.
  10. DanM1

    DanM1 G&G Newbie

    Thanks guys, have gone to the BHP forum as suggested....
  11. DanM1

    DanM1 G&G Newbie

    Well, this problem is 'solved'. A member on the BHP Owners Forum made me a good offer on my old frame, and I went for it. I kept the bad slide with the Novaks and sold him the frame and all other parts. Done deal, and the Novak sights are going on my FEG-GKK which needs a sight upgrade badly....DanM
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2014