Firestar M43 9mm questions - any experts out there?
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Thread: Firestar M43 9mm questions - any experts out there?

  1. #1

    Default Firestar M43 9mm questions - any experts out there?

    I bought a Firestar slide on GB. It came with a 9mm barrel and the recoil guide and spring.
    It went right onto my frame, but the hammer would not drop - in fact, it hangs up on the right side of the hammer cutout.

    On further inspection, I noticed a few things:
    The extractor pin is way thicker than on my Firestar
    The extractor is slightly different
    The MARKINGS are different. I have a blued gun, early before the recall. This slide is Starvel, and is the same style. However, I do know that the first model of the Firestar in 40 S&W had the same slide profile, and later they made it slab sided due to battering.
    I also notice that the rear sight is silghtly different - it is a bit longer, and the legs don't have a step.
    So the question:
    Has anyone ever used a 40 S&W slide on a 9mm Firestar (NOT THE PLUS)? Do I possibly have a 40 S&W slide and that is whythe hammer profile is not right?
    My slide is marked FIRESTAR in BIG letters on the right hand side of the slide. This Starvel slide is marked in much smaller letters, like 1/4 the size. The STAR symbol on the left side of mine is MUCH bigger, and I also notice that the ejection port profile and machining is WAY different.
    Anyone have any ideas? I don't know why the hammer channel would be thinner, but maybe the .40 hammer has a slightly different profile?
    Of course the OTHER possibility is simply that someone cranked it down too tight in a padded vise when they changed the extractor and squeezed the slide inward, but I sort of doubt that because the rails fit perfectly, and with the hammer cocked the slide cycles freely.

    Anyone got any info for me? I would like to send it back to the seller since it is worthless to me, to say nothing of the fact that someone really did a number on the feed ramp. But that's another story. Do I have a .40 slide, and are they supposed to work on a 9mm?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Backwoods Virginia


    Simplest way to distinguish the 9mm slide from one in .40 is to compare the breach face. A .40 cartridge rim will not fit the counterbore of a 9mm slide.

    Which recall are you are referring to? If you have one of the very earliest series (sold only in Europe) that has flat striated slide latch and safety levers rather than the concave "finger-pad" checkered type, the Firestar was significantly redesigned before it was introduced into the United States, and some parts may not be interchangeable. Is your gun marked "Interarms"?


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Saint Peters,

    Default There was a change in manufacture

    A couple of years ago, I purchased a new extractor from Star, a member here, and a few other star parts because I own a few. He actually threw in what he called a 'new style' vs. the 'old style' extractor for my m40, with pins and springs. The new style that he sent me was shaped a little differently, and the pin was definitely larger in diameter than the one on my pistol. I may be mistaken, but it looks to be more like the one in my Firestar Plus. though I've never disassembled it to be know for sure. I'm certain that if you contact him, he will be able to explain the differences, changes in manufacture, and dates of the changes.

    Just an FYI for anyone reading. The extractor on my m40 Firestar broke after only a couple boxes of rounds being fed through the gun, as they are known to do. Upon inspection I noticed that the loaded chamber cut out was actually impacting the extractor during recoil and the chambering of the next round. With a great deal of care and a dremel tool, I removed a slight amount of material from it, to provide the clearance that is present on my m45. I've since fed several hundred rounds through the pistol without issue.
    I love my Firestar pistols, they are very reliable aside from the extractor issue with the m40, and almost scarily accurate, considering the 'jerk' on the trigger!

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  5. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 1969


    I can't answer on the difference between the old and new styles but a complete slide from a M43 is interchangeable with a complete slide from a M40. I have both and can swap slides between frames without any problems.

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