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Discussion Starter #1
Recently I was contacted by Tommy Thacker of Loudoun Guns in Leesburg Virginia to see if I was interested in testing and evaluating a modification that he does on the USP LEM trigger. He has been working very hard on a modification that takes the LEM trigger to the pinnacle of its design.
The standard LEM trigger on the USP, USPC, P2000, and P2000SK are all pretty much the same design and function, coming in several different trigger pulls but all having the same characteristics as they come from HK. The lightest trigger pull you can achieve sticking to stock parts is about 4.5 to 5 pounds with a trigger reset of .300 inch. Compared to the USP/C standard variants with a SA pull of 5 pounds and a trigger reset of .235 inch and a DA pull of 11 pounds with a reset of .545 inch, the P2K’s .300 inch reset is extremely good, and the V1 five-pound pull ‘ain’t’ bad either.
But Tommy thought it could be better, especially for a competition type firearm.
The pistol I tested for Tommy was a USP .40 S&W with the LEM trigger system. The first thing I noticed was that it had the match trigger in the pistol. The over travel screw gives the pistol the look of the newly introduced HK Combat Competition, but since the CC with the LEM Match trigger is not out yet, I cannot compare his trigger modification to the CC trigger, but I suspect with today’s litigious society the CC’ trigger is not going to be taken to the level that the Thacker modification has taken it.
If putting in a match trigger was all that was involved then I don’t really see much excitement in that, but Tommy has done some modifications in the insides which make the trigger a true competition grade fire control mechanism.
One of the things Tom does is to remove the firing pin block and spring. This alone will help make the trigger more smooth and have less pull weight, but it also makes the gun less safe in regards to an AD if dropped, and because of this the modifications will only be done on competition pistols and NOT on carry weapons or duty weapons, so don’t put Tommy in the spot of having to tell you “NO” by asking. This is a target trigger that gives a very consistent, light, and lightning fast trigger, but IMO it does not belong on the streets. Of course, the FPB can be put back in but then you will not have the same trigger that I have tested here.
Also on the pistol I tested it has the match hammer spring in it. In other guns with milsurp ammo Tom said this has resulted in light hammer strikes, so while this pistol has the match hammer spring, it is recommended to run the standard spring if misfires are encountered. The factory spring will have minimal impact on the trigger pull anyway since the hammer is mostly cocked before you start pulling the trigger.
The modifications that Tommy did resulted in a pre-set trigger pull of 4 pounds 9 ounces (average of 5 pulls) which is great, but not the most interesting part of his improvement. The most exciting result is the reset of the trigger, which is an astoundingly short .065 inch (that’s not a misprint, a reset of only a hair over 1/16th inch), rivaling many 1911 race guns, and this out of a DAO LEM trigger system. It has to be felt to be fully appreciated.
Three of us tested the pistol, one being a die-hard 1911 fan, and as bad as I hate to admit it (and as it was repeatedly pointed out), the 1911 trigger was lighter and crisper than the LEM modified trigger. But as we all know, the 1911 isn’t a DAO trigger and even the 1911 Guru admitted the Thacker trigger was the next best thing to the 1911 trigger, and BETTER than some factory 1911 triggers. Compared to the other two pistols we were shooting, a Compact .45 and SOCOM, the USP LEM modified trigger kicked sand in their faces. From the number of times I have been contacted by people wanting to know what can be done to shorten the reset on the LEM trigger, there seems to be quite a bit of interest and this trigger modification is just the ticket.
My son-the third shooter-expressed a concern about the super short reset causing inadvertent double taps, sort of like when you bump fire an AR-15 or AK-47. Try as we might to cause the gun to double we could not do so. Even though the reset is only .065 inch we could find no way to cause the pistol to double, and we wasted a fair amount of ammo trying to make it malfunction in any way. We failed miserably in this respect.
All in all we put 200 rounds of WWB through the pistol with only one questionable burp. One time I pulled the trigger and nothing happened. This occurred on my 10th or 11th shot out of the first mag and I was still getting to know the trigger. Had the trigger not reset? Releasing the trigger fully reset the trigger and shooting continued. However, at that time I was deliberately holding the trigger fully to the rear during cycling and then releasing the trigger to reset very slowly, getting the feel for the negligible amount of release until reset. When releasing the trigger slowly two clicks are felt within that 1/16th inch of travel. The second click is the reset and I cannot swear with any certainty that I had released the trigger fully to that reset point. Considering nobody else had this problem and it did not happen again to me, I would bet dollars to doughnuts that it was user induced error and not a malfunction of the pistol (and if you knew how much I like doughnuts you would realize this is not a bet taken lightly). This pistol was filthy and by the time we got done it was even more so, so if this trigger system can function as dirty as it was with no problems, then if I suspect it will run through anything one can dish out.
While I cannot say that I have ever favored a DAO trigger, not even the LEM, the LEM trigger with the Thacker modification is one that I could live with. It has the pull weight of the match trigger, no OT just like the match, and a reset that is about a third of the SA reset (match included) and one fourth of the normal LEM reset. And when shooting from a reset trigger, the break is as clean as a match trigger. All three of us were very favorably impressed with Tom’s efforts. Mr. Thacker has a winner here.
Now, I have saved the best for last. The modification is done with HK’s full blessing and does not void the HK warranty on the pistol like other trigger jobs can do. On top of that, Tom warrants the trigger work for one year. Turn around time is generally three weeks from the time the gun is delivered to them.
So now you can have 1911 trigger reset on your LEM or even V1 trigger for the average cost of a premium trigger job and not too much more for what a standard match trigger install runs, but would still have the long reset. What’s not to love?
Since this is an information board I am not posting the results for your enlightenment. For more information regarding pricing contact Tommy Thacker (FastUSP on HKPRO) at [email protected].

Just so you know, what did I get out of all this? Only an afternoon of shooting the best USP competition trigger I have felt and reimbursement for return shipping. The above is NOT a paid commercial, merely my report on a solution for one of the more frequent questions I am asked, "What can be done about my USP trigger?"
 

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Thanks Big Bore. Does he have an option for carry pistols!?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
You will need to contact him about that.
 

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I suppose I know the answer to this, but: this mod is only for the USPf LEM as it involves Match parts...and NOT for the USPc LEM system. Am I correct?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
He only does this on full size. He has done the Compact in the past but there have beem problems so currently he is only doing full size and on target guns only. He WILL NOT DO CARRY OR DUTY WEAPONS, ful size or Compact. The geometry of the Compact is a little different and still has some bugs to be worked out.
He can do this on the full sze LEM and the normal V1. Really, I have told pretty much all I know and if one has questions they really need to contact Tommy about it.
 

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Very interesting! Myself I have LEM/Match parts combo (measuring some 3.8-4lb) in my USP Expert for close to 2 years now (I used it for IPSC until I switched to STI). As Expert is not in use I started to plan some experiments with it in effort to make it competitive against S_I guns in IPSC. Part of this is plan for shortening trigger reset. I found out than if firing pin stop will be removed, then trigger group can be modified to extremelly short reset (as most of USP reset comes from firing pin stop travel back). What holds me is problem with obtaining HK parts in Poland (while I don't want to "ruin" working gun during this excercise). Seems my thinking went same way.

Other parts of "The Plan" are 18-19rd .40 magazine modification (to fit in IPSC box!), enlarged magazine release, putting more weight on front, modified recoil assembly and slide (last 3 to make it more flat shooting and faster cycling).
 

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Hey Big Bore

Big Bore, Now that the Combat Competition trigger system is out, how does this this trigger system compare the Combat Competition?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I have not felt the CC trigger and while I believe it will be the best trigger yet by HK, I don't feel it will be as nice as Tommy's trigger. Two reasons. First is that Tommy does away with the firing pin block and due to our litigious society these days HK would never let a gun out on the market without the FPB, even a competition trigger. And second is that Tommy does more than just remove the block, he reworks the trigger in ways that would be too costly for HK to do on a production gun. If HK did do that they would have to have a custom shop set up just for doing CC triggers.
If you want a pure competition trigger on a HK, Tommy is the man. If you want a gun that will double duty as a carry, duty, and/or range piece then the factory trigger is the best bet. A serious use gun without a FPB and a hair reset is a law-suit looking for a place to happen.
 

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Thanks for the great write up! Big Bore, I think if more people took the time to read it and fully understand it, they would understand this is only for a competion weapon.

It looks like Tommy has come up with a truly vieable system for a HK competive shooter. That should leave some tounghs wagging at some events!! lol TJ
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I believe he would be able to to combine his work with your match trigger, although it would be converted over to LEM function. The trigger job he does is based on the LEM trigger system but would incorporate some of your match parts, such as the trigger itself. He then reworks everything and takes the LEM/match, or what HK is calling the CC trigger, to the next level. It is unlike any trigger you have ever felt on the HK platform. For a competition trigger on a HK pistol this is about as good as it can get and still be a safe trigger.
 

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Tommy Thacker

BIGBORE,
Tommy now works for FNH, i think on one of their riffle products.
I emailed him after readind your blog on the .65 trigger pull, because he now works for FNH CAN'T legally work on any other guns. He responded to two emails i sent him, seemed like a good person!

thanks,
david
 

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Yeah, I got the same response. His rec was to send it to hk for the CC trigger, which I did. I like this trigger way better than the stock one but the reset still sucks. I would like to know how to improve it because everything else about this trigger rocks.
 

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SAO EXPERT

Bill Gray at GRAYGUNS will put SAO plus complete trigger job, for $200. Very little trigger take-up. Says will come very close to my Kimber 1911.

I'm bailing out of the sa/da.

thanks,
david
 
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