What not to do.

Discussion in '1911 Forum' started by texastom101, Feb 6, 2014.

  1. texastom101

    texastom101 New Member

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    Hey all,
    What do y'all think the worst common upgrades for 1911s are? Hopefully we can help some newer 1911 owners out. My list is as follows:
    1-extended slide stop
    2-full length guide rod
    3-drop in barrel bushings
    I am sure I am forgetting something, but what do y'all think?
     
  2. Gatoragn

    Gatoragn Active Member

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    Whoops!

    I have done all of that in some form or another. :eek:
     

  3. Doc3402

    Doc3402 New Member

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    This thread is very timely for me. I have never done anything to modify a 1911, but I have been thinking of buying a cheap one to play around with. I'll be paying close attention to the suggestions and warnings. Thanks.
     
  4. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    Polish the feed ramp for fun and giggles.
    Buy non-quality magazines (being cheap).
    Play with the hammer and sear in hoping to reduce trigger pull without proper tools.
    Get a cheap holster.
    Change the springs to a lighter load than designed.
    Play with the sear spring.

    (Every sentence can have the word "Don't" in front of it.)
     
  5. Doc3402

    Doc3402 New Member

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    Jeeze. Can I change the grips? <grin>

    Seriously, except on S&W revolvers I tend to leave the trigger groups alone, and I never mess with the sear. My thoughts on my little project were to do mods to help reliability, and in many cases pay a gunsmith for the work. I want to try taking a Hunk-O-Junk and making it a dependable shooter. I want to plan the work, but let someone more skilled than I am work the plan. Would it be a waste of time on my part?
     
  6. Gatoragn

    Gatoragn Active Member

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    With one caveat, I have some Triple K mags for range use, I have not done any of Dan's no no's. But I also have some Tripp Cobras for TEOTWAWKI.
     
  7. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    Barrel bushing compensators.
    Drop in beavertails. (I hate all of the big gaps)

    On sears: I was afraid to mess with them until I watched my gunsmith do a couple sear and hammer fittings. WITH THE RIGHT TOOLS it isn't hard to get a crisp trigger. A proper jig, and stone set is a must.
     
  8. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Extractor should be high on the list of improvements you would want done.
     
  9. therewolf

    therewolf New Member

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    Ghastly grips are a pet peeve of mine.

    Especially the smooth grip, "I think I'm Cobra",

    off color ones...
     
  10. texastom101

    texastom101 New Member

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    I knew I forgot one, adjustable sights(on anything but a target gun).
     
  11. texastom101

    texastom101 New Member

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    As far as building a heap into art, it can be done but there is a lot of work involved. Fitting is uber important so if your going to do it start there. True the frame first, then fit the slide to the frame then the barrel to the slide and barrel bushing to barrel. The only thing is dropping 1500 to build up a junk gun results in a 1500$ gun that's worth 300.
     
  12. therewolf

    therewolf New Member

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    The other caveat is, no matter how well intentioned, any gun you "build"

    will still, likely, sell for it's original purchase price, or less.

    So it's a good idea, only when you're building this gun for yourself.
     
  13. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

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    i guess i'll have to remind myself to leave my 1911's alone from now on and leave them stock.
     
  14. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    My Fusion started out like this. From the beginning I intended it to be a target gun for Service Pistol matches. The Slide, Frame, and barrel were fitted for me by someone much more experienced in 1911s. I did the rest.

    [​IMG]

    This is what it looks like finished. I had it sandblasted after I got everything fitted together. I then Parkerized it, and then applied Norrels Moly Resin to it. The grips were made by a retired Coastie. For Srvice pistol competition, it externally has to look like a issued gun, with the exception of sights and trigger. No beavertails, no extended controls, etc.

    [​IMG]

    This was how it shot the first time I took it to the range at 50 feet.

    [​IMG]

    I was pretty tickled. Threw a stray shot there in the chest, but the gun is capable.
     
  15. texastom101

    texastom101 New Member

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    I was just trying to make the point that its not as simple as buying a cheap gun and dropping in a bunch of drop in parts. This is intended for new 1911 owners as a help to avoid common mistakes.
     
  16. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    My Springfield was a Pawn shop rescue. When the shop owner showed it to me it was in a box in pieces. It was missing three grip screw bushings and screws, the grip safety, the trigger, the barrel bushing, the grips and the front sight was loose. The frame, the slide and barrel all looked OK, so I bought it. I ordered a Smith and Alexander grip safety, and fitting jig. I bought Millet sights, standard grip screw bushings and screws. Got a used set of Pachmeyers from a buddy. A Colt Commander hammer from a gunsmith I knew. Replaced the sear and fitted it to the hammer. I didn't bother having this one blasted and re-Parkerizing it. I just sprayed on a new coat of Norrels and baked it. I ordered a fitted EGW barrel bushing and installed the sights. I had a spare aluminum trigger, I replaced the springs and was set. It's not accurate as the Fusion, but it is accurate enough. and has proven to be very reliable. I didn't take before pics. But it was built to be a no frills practical gun.

    [​IMG]
     
  17. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    I agree. I'm helping reenforce that you don't need a bunch of bells and whistles to make a 1911 a great shooter. Basic works well.