VP9 Complete Lower Receiver Disassembly And Trigger Job

Ever since the day I got my HK P30 I’ve wanted a gun with such great ergonomics to have a better trigger system.  The VP9 is the gun that I was looking for.

The P30 does have a nice trigger, compared to the PPQ, the VP9 trigger is less gritty and has a faster take up, though the VP9 trigger does have a noticeable and gradual creep that measures 5.8 pounds before breaking in.  So it’s time to take the gun apart and see what I can do.  Of course, I would have taken it apart anyways just to understand how it works. 🙂

** Disclaimer **

Any disassembly would void the warranty on your pistol, and any alteration to your pistol can be potentially dangerous or fatal.  This blog post is a reference and not meant to be instructions.  Do not attempt this if you’ve never had prior gunsmithing experience.  Also consult an experienced gunsmith in person if you have questions.  Perform at your own risk.

Tools you’ll need:

  1. 2mm punch
  2. 3mm punch
  3. mallet/hammer
  4. 3/4″ flat screwdriver or smaller

You can make it work with punches in imperial sizes, but the 1/8 punch is slightly bigger than 3mm and can easily hurt the frame by enlarging the holes.  Money not worth saving.

Disassembly – trigger group

We start off by removing the slide.  If you can’t perform that task then you really shouldn’t continue with the rest of this guide 🙂

First, remove the spring pins.  There are TWO spring pins, one within the other.  Remove the smaller one with your 2mm punch, then the larger one with the 3mm punch.  These pins are really tight!  Rest the gun on thick cloth and clamp the gun down with bar clamp so it won’t bounce around and cause scratches.

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There is another pin to remove.  This is a solid pin that only goes in half way.  I use a flat head screwdriver for better leverage when pushing it out.

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Remove the slide lock next.  You’ll need to hold the trigger back, then push the slide lock forward and you can take it out.

IMG_7338 IMG_7339

Last piece holding the trigger group together is the slide release on the right side.  There is a clip that keeps the slide lock in place.  You can easily pop it out with any screwdriver or pin punch.

IMG_7329 IMG_7330

The trigger housing can be taken out, but be careful or springs will fly out in all directions. 🙂

First, remove the trigger return spring

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Now make note on the slide release return spring, be sure not to lose it.

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Now turn the gun around and it’s time to take the trigger housing out.  As you start taking the housing up, you’ll see a black metal tab.  That is the magazine ejection lever.

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Put your thumb on it as you take the housing out, or it’ll pop right out into the 4th dimension, where all lost springs go.IMG_7332

Time to collect the slide release return spring if you haven’t already done so

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The trigger bar comes out on one side, side release comes out the other.  Note that I already polished some of the contact points so the bar has silver marks on them.  The silver spring wire keeps the trigger bar against the disengager that’s sitting right above it in the photo.  When the slide is not in battery the disengager will push the trigger bar down and keep it from contacting the sear.

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Disassembly – Sear Group

Sear housing is held together by one pin, however it can’t come out unless the trigger bar is first removed.

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The housing itself is held together with one spring pin.  The rest can be easily taken apart with the 2mm or 1/16 pin punch by hand.

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If you wish to smooth out the trigger, all the work will be done on the sear itself.  You can polish out the sear where it rubs along the sear housing, then of course, you can polish the sear itself.  For those who are more adventurous can be more aggressive on the top corner of the sear, and creep will be lowered as trigger weight would also go down by about 1/4 pound.  The sear spring itself can be replaced with a lighter one to further reduce trigger weight.  I wouldn’t recommend anything more than 1/2 pound lighter for safety reasons.

Another easy mod to lower trigger pull is to bend the trigger return spring slightly to reduce the weight of initial update which adds to the overall weight of the break.

At the end, I smoothed out the trigger and got the pull down to 4lb with adjustment to the trigger return spring, the sear, and replacing the sear return spring.  Your mileage may very.

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16 thoughts on “VP9 Complete Lower Receiver Disassembly And Trigger Job

  1. Just had this done on my VP9; this explains all the precision work you gunsmiths do. I appreciate all your gunsmith skills each time I fire the HK.
    Thanks to you and other gunsmithers for helping make a Great gun even better! Really enjoyed the informative post.

  2. Pingback: VP9 Trigger - Page 6

  3. I purchased a H&K P30 a month ago.
    Ive shot 500 rounds into it.
    Feels great in my hand
    The only issue I have is the trigger.
    Its too heavy.
    What can i do to make it lighter?

    Thank you

  4. I have noticed that even when the trigger is released just to the reset point, there is still creep in the factory trigger of my VP-9. Is this typical and can it be eliminated. My G17 and SA XDM have no takeup at all if the trigger is just released to the reset point.

    • Yes. Only some pistols have the “ability” to affect creep by adjusting the reset point or amount of pre-travel. It mainly has to do with the angle of the engagement surface and how the sear is engaged. Reducing creep on the VP9 involves grinding on the sear. Some gunsmiths will say that is the only way to decrease creep on any pistol, otherwise there will be reliability problems.

  5. Have you looked at quality of manufacture? I have read that the HK VP9 has welded parts. Don’t know if Walther PPQ 9 has MMM parts.

    • HK makes great pistols and I have not heard any reliability issues. Our cars have numerous welded parts and we rely on them with our lives. I’m sure if it is unreliable, HK would not choose to weld those parts.

      But to be fair, traditionally most pistols do not carry welded parts for quality and reliability concerns. Some parts like the rear slide rail could have been forged or casted as a single piece of steel, so you know it’s a cost savings technique, and some people will take points away from the VP9 for having that.

      My concern on the VP9 actually has to do with its traditional sear design as well as a flimsy trigger bar block. Much like the debate over MIM parts, I highly doubt that the welded parts would cause real problems, or we would be hearing about it.

      I personally think that the PPQ is higher in quality and has better internal design which will make its parts last longer.

      • It is the Trigger Bar Block – rail unit that has the welded rails on the VP9.

        I have been informed, locally, that the Walther is “owned” by S&W and they have taken steps to reduced the manufacturing costs of the PPQ. In so doing have cut into quality. I have heard that there are strange import rules that cause issues.

        One thing I do not understand is the rails on the frame. In both the CZ 75 Compact and on the Sig P226 the rails run the full length of the frame and sliode but in both the VP9 and PPQ there are only two short rails, one at mid point and one in the rear. Obviously this works and the difference in frame/slide rail thickness has been worked out by engineers. It just seems improper.

        I like the trigger pull of the PPQ, I like the mid trigger guard firing point on the VP9. My concern is which one will still be a carry gun reliable weapon 15 to 20 years and 20,000 rounds from now and still as good as when new. I have a piece that I have had and still shoot that old, which is still in NIB shape and condition over 20 years old. Yes, I am looking to buy either a PPQ or a VP9.

        Lastly, I want to thank you personally and I am sure on behalf of scores, if not thousands of readers for your incredibly informative comments on these two, as well as other guns. Thank YOU.

  6. Hi John,

    The trigger bar block is just a protruding metal that stops the trigger bar. I wasn’t a fan in how a 1mm movement upward on the trigger bar would cause it to slip above the stop and get the trigger stuck. It shouldn’t happen under normal use but just an engineering nit-pick.

    It’s too bad that Walter doesn’t have popularity it deserves in America for wide channel distribution and support. One can only hope that the newer pistols will be up to par in quality. On the practical side, it is the duty of the gun owner to really break the pistol in and locate any potential issues early on. Once a pistol is broken in, it is rather hard to find reliability issues down the road. Much like buying a new car, break-in and maintenance early on should surface any quality issues.

    Your point about slide rail length is a comparison between metal/alloy pistols and polymer pistols. When a frame is made of metal and is stiff, it makes sense to have a full rail as it adds that tiny bit of stiffness. Polymer frames are inherently flexible, and having a stiffer rail to slide fit is out of the question as there’s nothing to gain but to add stress to the frame. Hence almost all polymer guns out there only have only rails on front and end. The subject of slide to frame fit is a matter that affects accuracy rather than reliability. (and for Pistols below the $1500 range, always negligible)

    One down side of the PPQ is that the trigger group is from the DA/SA P99, which resulted in a longer pre-travel. However I would say that in a stressful situation, having a trigger further back is probably a good thing? (personal preference of course) PPQ has a much shorter reset, which technically is better for action shooting but I’m not there to give an expert opinion.

    I really can’t imagine why either gun will not last for more than 20,000 rounds. But if I have to place bets I would place it on the PPQ because of its sear group’s design. My personal advice still, is that you should just buy which gun end up being more accurate at 25 yards. Percent of error in accuracy always outweigh percent chance of breakage by a huge factor. (then our own discipline outweigh everything else by another magnitude 🙂

    Good luck!

  7. Hey Lanzer,

    I have a bump on take up on the VP9 trigger. When the trigger take up hits the wall there is a bump and a slight 2nd take up before the break.
    Polishing the disconnect did not help at all for this issue.
    Can you add some possible close up pics of any fixes to this?

  8. I have a vp9. I would like to know if there is anything i can do to reduce the reset travel. Im comfortable with the trigger pull, but im not happy with how far the reset is.

    • Sorry, I have not looked into adjusting the reset on the VP9. I don’t think simple grinding can shorten the reset without changing out a few parts in the trigger group. The most you can get rid off with a trigger work by a gunsmith would be about 10%, which is probably not worth the trouble.

      • Yeah, this is where I am, too. I replaced the trigger return spring and sear spring (the pull is almost too light, now) but the reset still sucks. It’s my understanding that HK makes a short reset trigger pack that will fit the VP9, but won’t sell it to mere mortals. I guess I’ll just wait and hope that some day someone makes a replacement trigger or HK stops hating its customers and sells the short reset pack to them.

  9. Maybe someone will come out with a short reset pack for the vp9 not pleased with my vp9 trigger or the fact of having to manipulate the trigger to get the slide off to clean it have sent it in a couple times for the slide issue, really liked the vp9 but starting to shy away worrying about reliability issues. Hopefully its a isolated problem they are talking complete replacement.

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