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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi. I have an American Arms P98 22lr. pistol that I bought new decades ago and, while at the range recently, the slide cracked on the side. It cracked at the front of the slide, left hand side. This side has the recoil spring, hence the higher level of stress than the right side. The slide appears to be made of either Pot Metal (the AA P98 is not a high end pistol sadly) or an aluminum alloy. My guess is more towards the aluminum alloy. If anyone has more insight to the type of material this could be, that would be helpful.

Efforts to locate a replacement slide have not been successful, so I'm looking at a repair possibility. My thought is to make a piece out of 16 gauge Brass, and solder it to the side of the slide, bridging the crack. I'd also pin it using Brass rod, and soldering them in as well.

Has anyone tried anything like this? Any other recommendations? Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Thank you!
 

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Not a lot of help on what your going to try, but mine cracked the same way and could never find another slide. Held on to it for a couple years trying to get one and finally got a hundred cash for it at a buy back deal and bought a different pistol.
 

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welcome to the board :)

my recommendation, is to do what slackerd did, wait until there is a "buy back" and dump it. then put whatever you get for it toward a better handgun .

just a guess, but I suspect it's made from Zamak, Germans gun makers Erme-Werke, GSG like to use that composite for their inexpensive/cheap guns , which I don't believe Zamak is even "weld-able"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zamak
 

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The silver lining to this story is that you can "bubba" the hell out of this and, at the end of the day, still dump it at a buyback.

If it is made of zamac, or other "pot metal", it will not take solder or welding.
Best you can probably do is add a new side plate (as you intended in the first place) but bolt it on with machine screws.
Drilling and tapping zamac is not easy but can be done.
In the end it will be ugly but it might work.
 

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The silver lining to this story is that you can "bubba" the hell out of this and, at the end of the day, still dump it at a buyback.

If it is made of zamac, or other "pot metal", it will not take solder or welding.
Best you can probably do is add a new side plate (as you intended in the first place) but bolt it on with machine screws.
Drilling and tapping zamac is not easy but can be done.
In the end it will be ugly but it might work.
Building on this post I would try one of these epoxies in addition to stop drilling the crack and contact their help department. https://www.ellsworth.com/manufactu...+devcon plastic welder&utm_content=ITW Devcon

https://www.ellsworth.com/resources/ask-the-glue-doctor/
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
My thanks to the people who responded. Given that there are no replacement slides readily available, and the slide is cracked all the way through on the left, it really can't hurt to try a couple of different techniques to fix it. Trying to tap and screw on the plate would be tricky since the slide material, and the brass plate are both fairly thin. Muggyweld features a low temp "welding rod" which they claim will work on Pot Metal.....this, and pinning the brass side plate may be an option. If that doesn't work, then I'd try an epoxy and pinning it. Perhaps 5200 marine adhesive would work. In any case, there is no downside to trying since it's out of commission anyway. If it all fails, then I'll wait for a buy back program, and use the proceeds towards a Ruger SR22. If I have success, I'll post some pictures of the outcome. Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Update on P98 22lr slide repair project

Here's an update on the slide repair. Since the slide was completely cracked from bottom to top on the left side, I decided a reinforcing plate was called for. Also, after sanding down the finish, I could see the start of a crack on the right side, so matching plates would be in order. I ordered 1/16" brass plate and cut two reinforcing plates from it. I tried to solder the plates on, but the solder stuck beautifully to the brass, and literally rolled off the slide metal. I know how to sweat pipe, so I'm familiar with soldering, and I did as much research as I could to get the right solder and flux, but no dice. So I decided to pin, peen, and epoxy the slide. I bought brass rods, and drilled through the slide (both sides) and inserted the rods (3). Once everything was lined up and fitting snugly (I bought metric drill bits to ensure a tight fit) I mixed up slow cure JB Weld epoxy, and applied liberally to the slide, plates, and rods. I then clamped it all together and let it cure for two days. Once set, I used a dremel cut off wheel to trim the brass rods, then a file to finish getting the rods flush. Then I took a nail countersink and used it to peen the ends of the rods to ensure they can't come out. Some final filing and wet sanding, and the plates are on tight. I installed the slide and then did some final adjustments (filing and wet sanding) to get it to move freely. Finally, I painted the slide with some flat black high temp grill paint I had, which actually is close to the original finish. I'm planning on testing it soon, but it looks like it should work fine. If this were a high powered pistol, like a 9mm, I don't think I'd try this technique, but with the relative low power of a 22lr, I'm cautiously optimistic it will work. My only concern is that with the added mass of the side plates, it may not cycle completely if I use low powered 22's. We'll see. Even if it doesn't, it was a fun project and, since it was already broken, there's really no downside to giving it a try. The attached picture shows the slide with the plates pinned and glued on, but not finished yet so you can see the process. Thanks!
.
 

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There you go, then........
As predicted, ugly as hell but probably functional.
I see what caused your concerns about the very thin sideplates now, you were correct to be cautious.
They probably would not have held threaded rods or bolts.
Keep us posted after functional testing.
Thanks
 

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I had the same thing happen to me and a friend recommended someone who was extremely good at welding aluminum. He did a perfect job. I test fired it and it worked fine, cant tell its been repaired but I have not shot it since, not sure how long it will last. The reinforcing plates actually is probably a better long term solution, but I would not recommend using high velocity ammo.
Hope it works out OK.
Joe S
 
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