Kimber questions

Discussion in '1911 Forum' started by everfred, May 30, 2011.

  1. everfred

    everfred New Member

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    I'm thinking about upgrading to a Kimber 1911, specifically a Custom TLE II, but I have two questions: 1) Are Kimber pistols custom-tuned at the factory before sale? 2) Did all Kimber pistols adopt the safety modifications of the post-1991 Colt Series 80 pistols? Any help is appreciated, thanks.
     
  2. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    Welcome to the FTF Community. Some of our more experienced members would like to see you stop by the Introduction Section and tell us a little about yourself. I will leave that up to you.

    Concerning your questions: 1) Can you define "custom tuned" in your realm? Because that is a pretty broad spectrum to cover with an open ended question like that.

    2) I believe you are referring to this:

    "the M1991 has several safety devices.
    • There is a conventional frame-mounted manual safety at the left rear of the frame that locks the slide and sear when engaged. Yes, this is utilized by the Kimber in question.
    • There is also a grip safety located on the upper rear part of the grip frame. Yes, this is utilized by the Kimber in question.
    • There is a safety stop (quarter cock) position on the hammer, designed to catch the hammer should it slip from under the thumb while being cocked. Note that this is not a hammer safety notch and that the hammer can be dropped from this position by simply pulling the trigger. I honestly don't know about this feature, so I can't say for sure.
    • There is a disconnector that prevents a round being fired before the barrel and slide are locked. Yes, this is utilized by the Kimber in question.
    • Last, there is an automatic firing pin lock. Yes, this is utilized by the Kimber in question.
    Hope that helps,

    JD
     

  3. mesinge2

    mesinge2 New Member

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    This safety is present but it is different than the Colt Series 80 saftey. It has a Swartz safety. The Colt Series 80 firing pin safety is activated (or deactivated, depending on how you wish to express it) by pulling the trigger, so you have that additional safety in place at all times right up to the moment you pull the trigger.

    Not so the Swartz. It's activated by the grip safety, so the moment you pull the pistol out of the holster and grip it in even a pre-firing position (such as low ready with your finger extended along the frame), that safety is deactivated. Proponents of the Swartz system claim it's "better than" the series 80 system because it doesn't increase trigger pull weight, but that has been shown to be generally a bunch on hot air. A competent gunsmith can bring a Series 80 down to 4 pounds, perhaps even less, with little trouble. IMHO the biggest "advantage" to the Swartz over the Series 80 is that the patents have expired on the Swartz system, so the manufacturers who use it don't have to pay royalties to Colt.
    .
     
  4. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    That is something that I did not know. Thank you for taking the time to explain that mesinge, I have learned something today and I always appreciate that. ;)

    *respect*

    JD
     
  5. canebrake

    canebrake New Member

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    Taken from this article by Hilton Yam: (If you have the time, please read the entire article.)

    Choosing a 1911 for Duty Use

    Firing pin safeties typically fall into the Colt Series 80 pattern which are actuated by the trigger (Colt Series 80, Para Ordnance, Sig GSR) and the Swartz style safety which is actuated by the grip safety (Kimber, Smith & Wesson). Of all the firing pin safety mechanisms on the market, the original Colt Series 80 - in a Colt - is the most reliable of them all. The platforms utilizing the Swartz safety are a less than ideal choice across the board due to the inherent reliability problems of the design. The Swartz safety is extremely sensitive to the fit of the grip safety to the frame and the timing of the grip safety's trigger blocking arm. Tolerance issues can also lead to a Swartz safety that will time properly when the grip safety is depressed a certain way, and time differently when depressed a different way. This will typically be a product of loose fit of the grip safety to the frame tangs and/or loose fit of the thumb safety shaft through the grip safety. It is possible to have the grip safety timed such that the trigger will be able to release the sear well before the firing pin safety plunger has been moved far enough to clear the firing pin. Problems with improper timing of the Swartz safeties can lead to a situation where you get a "click" when you wanted a "bang." That's a serious problem. Unless department policy mandates a firing pin safety, I would choose a 1911 without one. It is possible to have a drop safe 1911 without the firing pin safety, and given the potential reliability problems with a poorly executed system, the perceived risk of drop safety is outweighed by the real risk of a failure to fire.​


    The Colts Series 80 Firing Pin Safety System gets a too much grief for a system that works. IMHO, a novice messing around inside the 1911 with the Swartz system stands a greater chance of rendering their 1911 inoperable than a 1911 with the Series 80 system. Key word here is "messing". If you don't know what you're doing, DON'T!

    [​IMG]

    ^ Kimber's Swartz-variation FPS.

    [​IMG]

    ^ Colts Series 80 FPS.

    [​IMG]

    ^ The Swartz patent.