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I am new to the forum but not to shooting & collecting Lugers. I bought a 1917 Artillery in 95% original finish about a year ago & began shooting it after firing aprox 500rds thru it of Win.115gr factory amo the firing pin retainer blew out the rear of the breechblock. I know this is a original gun with all matching #s as far as I can tell. In all my years of shooting Lugers I have never encouterd this. I am truly puzzeld? Why? Bogus gun? Defective firing pin retainer? Any info would help!
 

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Hi,Sorry to hear about this.I shot a 1917 artillery in pistol

competition and target practice for 2 years without a problem using

Winchester 115 grain factory ammo.Also used a snail drum with it.

I guess I was just lucky.
 

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More common than you belief with WWI guns. Mauser went with a VENTED firing pin to get gas past the firing pin. I think a bit of gas gets past the case occasionally so you might not even have to have a case let go from hi pressure to get this condition. Most guys will buy a vented WWII firing pin to use only when they shoot their Luger to help prevent this from happening. Pressue on the front of the firing pin will shove it reward compressing the firing pin spring and pushing hard on the retainer pin and the small bit of metal at the rear of the breechblock that retains the pin will shear off.
 
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