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My next round of Wilson parts arrived today for my Beretta 92A1; the oversize mag release and "D" spring, or a 16# mainspring. I'd watched vids and whatnot, and felt rather prepared.

I was not.

For starters, I'd posted in another thread that it's a 1 1/16" punch for the roll pin that holds the mainspring plug in that doubles as the lanyard loop. It is actually a 1/16" punch. So correction on that. The hole for the detent spring when changing the mag release is a 3/64" hole for a punch; I ended up using a very tiny screwdriver, as a punch smaller than 1/16" is very hard to come by. These are about the only tools you need to get the job done.

We'll start with the D spring, as it was the semi-easier end of things.

For those who don't know, the D spring refers to the mainspring used in the now-out-of-production 92-D, a double-action-only pistol designed for carry. And for those who have felt a Beretta's double action pull, this sounds like an idea of pure hell. To mitigate this, Beretta used a 16# mainspring to lighten the trigger pull. How successful this was tends to vary from person to person who shoots it; some love it, some say they don't feel a huge difference. The fact it's out of production probably speaks for itself. However, you can send brand new 92s off to some custom shops and they'll bob the hammer and convert it to DA-only, so if you want to pay extra for it, the D Model still can exist.

To get the mainspring plug out, you have to depress the plug and punch out the roll pin. I will tell you now, on a brand new pistol, this is in there quite tightly. Quite tightly. I needed a second set of hands and resorted to a rubber mallet to hit the punch to get it out. Once its out, it's just a case of drop out the stock 20# spring for the 16# I chose. There was also a 14# that was rated for competition only; and while I don't carry the Beretta, I felt 16# was sufficient.

Getting the plug back in was another task involving 4 hands; just like getting it out, it was one person to hold the plug in place while the other hammered the roll pin back home. So, be aware of that issue on a brand new gun.

Now for the mag release. This was quite the PITA.

Getting it out isn't hard; remove grips, and press it out from the side that does not have the button, and it pops out fairly easily. The Wilson part did not have the detent pre-installed, so I had to reuse the one from the 92's original mag release. This is one of those things best done in a baggie or somewhere where the parts will be caught, because there is no graceful way to get the detent out, and things will go flying. It's 3 tiny pieces, all under pressure. And then those 3 tiny pieces need to go back in your new mag release.

Getting the first part in is a breeze; put the longer piece towards the release button, rounded side facing 'up,' or towards the long face of the release. This insert spring from the top. Now here's where the smaller punch or screwdriver comes into play. Setting the shorter spring catch on top of the open end of the spring, you run the punch/driver through a teeny-tiny hole at the end of the spring catch, and then depress carefully to coil the hole thing together, so the punch becomes a guide rod of sorts. It's just enough to get the spring catch onto the lip of the inside of the mag release, and then push it in with your fingers. It's nearly impossible to do by hand. And this part is also best done in a baggie or something to catch flying springs when (not if) it all comes apart on the first few tries.

I know this would be better with pics, but I wasn't taking the damn thing apart again for photo opportunities. There are plenty of vids on this, but the part that bears most emphasis is using a punch as a guide to get the spring catch into the release.

Now, this is the part I felt no one really explained well. And that's seating the magazine release back into the pistol.

You'll want to feed it into the grip from the side you do not want the button on (so if you're a righty, and want the release on the left, feed it from right, and vice versa for lefties) and into the side you do want to the release button on. Seat it into the trough where the release will lay. Now, it won't fit directly back into the slots. And this is the key part that is kind of glossed over and really hard to see in vids. There's a lip on the inside of the trough where the detent spring will live. You have to tip the release ever so slightly towards the side with the button, so the detent will catch on this lip, then compress the spring so it will sit in this trough. Then it will drop the rest of the way in and slide into the non-button side. It took me forever to realize this, and as I said, it's a little hard to see in a vid, and you can wonder what you're doing wrong unless someone points it out and tells you what they're doing.

It's a nice mod; the release now sits back a bit, and is raised higher off the grip. It has a slightly different center to actuate the release now; I have to get used to that, since I was reaching so far forward before. The D spring made a bit of difference, more noticeable on the SA pull than the DA pull. For what the spring cost, I guess it was worth it, but I feel like I should have gone all in with the competition spring for a really big gap. However, once I get the trigger conversion kit in there and an SRT, we'll see how that feels. The biggest thing was really knowing how to get the plug out and the release in; everything else was pretty easy, even to get the detent back in once I had the right size driver to guide the spring in.
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