MIM Parts on Sig 1911

Discussion in '1911 Forum' started by g17frantz, Oct 4, 2011.

  1. g17frantz

    g17frantz New Member

    1,361
    0
    0
    Hey guys, I've been struggling trying to find this information out, I have looked everywhere and even emailed SIG. Their response was not really informative at all and was worded (not quoting here) "we're not really going to tell you what parts are MIM however, we can assure you that every part is of the highest quality". OK so.....what the heck does that mean?!! I know when they first started producing 1911's there were absolutely no MIM parts. Now I've heard different. The only thing I've read in other forums were maybe the slide stop and ambi safety, quite possibly the grip safety. Does anyone know or know how to find out? I'd like to replace them. I have switched out my slide stop for an ed brown, wanted to anyway b/c of the color combo I wanted for the sig. Well thanks if you can help me out!
     
  2. gollygee

    gollygee New Member

    1,019
    0
    0
    I can't help you with identifying which are MIM parts, but speaking for myself, I wouldn't be overly concerned with it. I'm relatively new to pistols, but my experience in the pump world was that there are mim parts & then there are MIM parts. I've seen them that were a piece of junk & I've had experience with those that were just as serviceable & dependable as machined parts.

    I've read a lot about them, in regard to pistols, & concensus has been that if used/made by a reputable manufacturer, they are fine. Personally, I'd include Sig in that group, along with Colt, Kimber & Springfield.

    Of course, it does seem a shame that the 1911 world has come to that point, but that is the way of the world, sadly. One thing that has struck me is that other pistol platforms are full of MIM parts & no one questions it. It's just in the 1911 platform that I read complaints.

    Anyway, I hope you get your answer resolved.
     

  3. bartwatkins

    bartwatkins Member

    512
    0
    16
    I know that there were many & various reported problems and issues with the MIM process when it was new. However, MIM produced parts today are reportedly very high quality. This is probably why that once the guns you speak of were produced with no MIM parts and now there are. And also why they make the statement "we're not really going to tell you what parts are MIM however, we can assure you that every part is of the highest quality".
    They are trying to get around the question by not getting into the whole MIM debate because (in their eyes, at least) it is now a non-issue.

    All that said, it is an ongoing debate and many choose to replace all non-bar stock parts. I have no idea how you could find out which parts are and which are not based on their answer - if I were you and this was important to me, I would err on the side of caution and assume that everything except the frame, slide & barrel are MIM (and thus replace everything).
     
  4. gollygee

    gollygee New Member

    1,019
    0
    0
    One alternative, assuming you will be doing the replacement yourself, is detail strip it & order the ones you want to replace. Of course, means your pistol will be out of service longer since you'll be waiting for parts or having to reassemble it & a second tear down when you get them.:(
     
  5. JonM

    JonM Moderator

    20,110
    19
    38
    the big myth about metal injection molding is its weak.

    this is a total myth. mim can be stronger in critical stress ways than steel. it all depends on the composition and what stresses the mim formula is created to endure.

    steel parts can be cheap and easily broken just like mim parts can be.

    personally i wouldnt worry about it. just swaping it out to swap is no gauruntee the new part wont break sooner than the original mim.

    if a block of steel is turned to molten metal and injected into a mold that is MIM. ruger 1911s are 100% mim as they are investment casted which is a form of metal injecion molding.
     
  6. bartwatkins

    bartwatkins Member

    512
    0
    16
    +1
    I agree with this completely...
    My Springer Loaded is chock full of MIM parts & I have over 1500 rounds through it with absolutey no problems whatsoever. I would not hesitate to carry this gun.
     
  7. g17frantz

    g17frantz New Member

    1,361
    0
    0
    Thanks for replying you guys! I was worried that no one had any insight to offer! The question I was surprised that didn't get asked is why I didn't just go with an ed brown or Wesson, Wilson combat etc etc....to answer that question..I wanted my first 1911 to be of production class instead of semi-custom/custom solely b/c if I got a ed brown/Wesson/Wilson then I would probably never shoot another 1911. I'm new in the 1911 field and wanted to get a nice one then go up to an even better one to have something to compare too. I'm not totally against MIM, hell I'm sure almost every other firearm I have is all MIM parts, and the stuff that I want to change out in the future would be common stuff that would be MIM on other 1911's (only from what I've been told) safety, slide stop, firing pin, grip safety. I'm not worried about the grip safety, honestly more concerned with the ambi safety, slide stop, firing pin? (I dunno if firing pin would be a big deal or not, would it?) I've changed out the slide stop first since it was the most simple.
     
  8. gollygee

    gollygee New Member

    1,019
    0
    0
    Before you go to a custom, you show read the sticky above about choosing a 1911. Mainly the part about getting a 1911 & shooting the snot out of it to help you decide what features, etc. that you want.

    Another idea would be to get a good name brand starter pistol & when you're sure about the changes you want, send it to Wilson, or someone, to have it customized & reliability work done on it.
     
  9. g17frantz

    g17frantz New Member

    1,361
    0
    0
    It seems to me you're saying my sig isn't a very good starting pistol......it is there top of the line 1911. Not starting BLEEP with you just saying. I did my research and for the $ I wanted to spend the SIG offered the features I wanted ie: front strap checkering, match grade trigger, barrel, sear and hammer set, night sights, custom slide, two tone color and ambi safety. I spent $1000 after taxes on it and have shot now 700+ rounds since I bought it 3 weeks ago and not one single problem except the one round of hornady TAP 200 grn HP which I found out i needed to shooting a 230 grn round. I'm pretty accurate from 15 yards and and do OK from 25. The thing shoots some pretty tight groups! I am very happy with my choice and I think Sig has made a fine production 1911, I just can't leave anything alone is what my problem is. I'm in no means trying to "pimp" my 1911 out. It originally had wood grips and I've decided to switch to alumagrips, changed the slide stop from silver to black and then want to switch my ambi safety to black as well.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

    12,369
    57
    48
    MIM has improved.

    If you do not need to replace a part, then leave it alone. Change the springs, check the disconnector and ejector as time goes on.

    Shoot the heck out of it.
     
  11. g17frantz

    g17frantz New Member

    1,361
    0
    0
    Dan any idea on how many rounds before switching out the extractor? My biggest MIM concern would be the ambi safety, solely since its such a crucial part, I want it to be of the highest quality available.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  12. gollygee

    gollygee New Member

    1,019
    0
    0
    I appologize if you took my post to mean the Sig would not be a good starting pistol. In fact, I would think just the opposite as the Sig has a very good rep. No, the point of my post was to not jump into a custom pistol too quickly, but to buy one with good quality major parts (frame, slide, etc). Then put some rounds down range, getting used to it & making decisions on what upgrades/improvements you want. I believe the Sig would certainly fall in that catagory. As he said, when you have a custom pistol done, you tell the gunsmith what you want. If you select an option, then later decide you don't need/want it, you've spent a lot of money for nothing.
     
  13. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

    12,369
    57
    48
    I have a couple extractors that have outlasted the normal lifetime of other handguns. I just take care to load from the magazines after they were tuned.

    If you are concerned about the thumb safety, then by all means, get a new one. Nobody has said "Don't replace", just "You may not have to replace"
     
  14. g17frantz

    g17frantz New Member

    1,361
    0
    0
    Its all good brother. I'm not ready for a semi custom yet, its only been about a month since I bought the sig. That's pretty far into the future before that happens. I plan on buying a 9mm 1911 next year and then go from there. If I'm dropping major cheese, ill do my homework. The sig 1911 was the start to what I think will be a meaningful, yet obsessive 1911 fetish.
     
  15. g17frantz

    g17frantz New Member

    1,361
    0
    0
    Thanks Dan
     
  16. bountyhunter

    bountyhunter New Member

    454
    0
    0
    Inspect the part under a mgnifying glass. If it is MIM, it has to have at least two surface holes: one where the mix is injected into the mold and one where air escapes.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  17. bountyhunter

    bountyhunter New Member

    454
    0
    0
    They are the quality that results from however good the subcontractor's quality control is. Some are good, some are junk. This trigger lever came out of a brand new $1300 SW model 627. The MIM process is a terrible choice for long, thin pieces.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  18. bountyhunter

    bountyhunter New Member

    454
    0
    0
    Not correct. MIM uses metal powder mixed with glue to inject into the mold, then the part is sintered at high temp to fuse the particles into a solid piece. Molten metal poured into a mold is "casting", not MIM.

    http://www.pim-international.com/aboutpim/binders



    MIM is prey to two primary defect modes: an air void (bubble) in the part where the mix did not fill the mold, or defects resulting from not having the metal powder be a consistent grain size throughout. The problem with MIM is that internal defects do not show and are not discovered until it fails. With a tool steel part, it would typically fail during the machining process if it has a weakness or defect. MIM parts are not subject to machining, the just get molded and baked. The weak ones are not detected until they fail in service.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  19. MrWray

    MrWray New Member

    6,424
    0
    0
    If a part does break it easy to tell if its MIM, the broken area will have a grainy metallic consistancy unlike a smooth area that a machined part will have if a break occurs
     
  20. kvtcomdo

    kvtcomdo New Member

    75
    0
    0
    I agree completely

    Much a do about nothing in my opinion.

    Have read a lot on different forums over peoples objection and opinions.

    I have seen nothing but anecdotes and old wives tales from those that object and not one shread of scientific proof that these parts are substandard.

    I have read a response from a gun maker (can't remember which) basically reviewing their testing peocedures to insure that their life time warrantee's would not come back to haunt them concerning these parts.

    Seems the sound business decisions are also the well thought out and tested ones at that.

    Don't be frightened, shoot with impunity and only replace what actually breaks.

    My $.02.:)