Whether or not you think a high-priced everyday carry gun should dine exclusively on high-powered, high-priced hollow points, your ballistic life saver shouldn’t go click instead of bang. Ever. In the above video, Christian from the American Firearms School was firing 147-grain American Eagle FMJ. Occasionally. This contravenes part of the company’s warning that the “Solo is designed to function optimally using premium hollow-point self-defense factory ammunition with bullet weights of 124 or 147 grains.” Yes, well, we’d already tried shooting [manufacturer recommended] Federal Hydra-Shok JHP and Bill Wilson Signature Match 125-grain hollow-point ammo with even less success. About that. Turns out the SOLO did not like Wilson hollow-points at all . . .
The Kimber has a funny sort of reset; between shots, you have to let the trigger return to its full, upright and locked position. (Note: the Wilson ammo didn’t fire from the git-go.) A 147-grain nine-millimeter cartridge has plenty of oomph for a small gun; limp wristers need not apply.
All that said, a variety of veteran shooters mucked-about with the SOLO without any better result than Christian’s three-out-of-four success rate. Some (i.e. me) with less.
As promised, I brought the Kimber SOLO to my gunsmith for expert analysis. He used pointy-tipped Blazer aluminum 147-grain cartridges to confirm the obvious (the gun she no fire) and agreed with my equally obvious diagnosis: light primer strikes. Which kinda makes the choice of ammo a moot point, really.
So the ergonomically excellent Kimber goes back to the gun dealer and, presumably, back to the factory from whence it came. For fans of the brand, it’s a crying shame.
[NB: As with all anecdotal evidence of a failed firearm, YMMV (Your Mileage May Vary). Whenever you buy a gun upon which your life depends, make sure you fire it. A lot. What you don’t know can hurt you. Or not hurt someone who needs hurting. Who could end-up hurting you.]