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Old 03-31-2012, 07:38 AM   #1
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Default 1911 question

I'm new to 1911s, and have a question about mine.

I have a S&W 1911, and when I rack the slide, it feels more difficult unless the hammer is cocked first. Is this normal? If not, how do I fix it? If it is, is there a way to change it?

Thanks..

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Old 03-31-2012, 07:54 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Mason609 View Post
I'm new to 1911s, and have a question about mine.

I have a S&W 1911, and when I rack the slide, it feels more difficult unless the hammer is cocked first. Is this normal? If not, how do I fix it? If it is, is there a way to change it?

Thanks..
Normal...it will loosen up over time as you shoot it. I have a 1911PD and it was also really tight when new. Have you field stripped it and oiled the slide rails...that will help as well. If it is a real problem for you, you can switch out the recoil spring for a lighter one but I don't recommend making any changes until you get a couple hundred rounds through it.
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Old 03-31-2012, 08:09 AM   #3
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I've had it for a couple of months, and put about 300 rounds through it. I bought it off of my lgs owners friend before he passed, so it's used.

I've also lubed the slide rails (as I normally do on all my semis), but I only have a hard time when the hammer isn't cocked.

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Old 03-31-2012, 08:29 AM   #4
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Still don't think its a problem. When the hammer is forward it is under tension from the mainspring. Racking the slide, you have to overcome the resistance of both the recoil spring, about 18# and the mainspring, about 23#. When you manually cock the hammer you remove the tension of the mainspring.

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Old 03-31-2012, 08:41 AM   #5
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OHHHHHH....

Ok. That's what I was looking for. Like I said, new to 1911s. Most of my other handguns have been hammerless types, so... not something I'm used to. I carried an M9 in the Army and never felt that kind of tension, which is why I was wondering if it was normal on a 1911.

Thank You, that really helped alot.

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Old 03-31-2012, 08:53 AM   #6
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OHHHHHH....

Ok. That's what I was looking for. Like I said, new to 1911s. Most of my other handguns have been hammerless types, so... not something I'm used to. I carried an M9 in the Army and never felt that kind of tension, which is why I was wondering if it was normal on a 1911.

Thank You, that really helped alot.
you're welcome. The Beretta definitely has a lighter slide pull, 9mm and .45ACP differ greatly in power so the M9, given it's size and weight, doesn't have to deal with a heavy recoil like a 1911 does. I have a CZ compact in 9mm and the slide pull on that is a bear as well.
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Old 04-01-2012, 04:51 AM   #7
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That extra effort when racking the slide with the hammer down has everything to do with the timing. It keeps the barrel locked up for a split second and slows the slide speed down as it compresses the main spring.

Do yourself AND your gun a favor and don't mess with the gun's timing.

Making it easier to rack the slide will degrade accuracy and the gun will beat itself to ruin.

Man-up and run the gun the way JMB designed it!

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Old 04-01-2012, 06:45 AM   #8
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Default Different efforts while racking slide.

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Originally Posted by Jpyle View Post
Still don't think its a problem. When the hammer is forward it is under tension from the mainspring. Racking the slide, you have to overcome the resistance of both the recoil spring, about 18# and the mainspring, about 23#. When you manually cock the hammer you remove the tension of the mainspring.
Perfect answer to the newby's ?. Concur completely.
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