What would you do? 1911 Question


December 30, 2002, 05:45 AM
All those pretty pics of .45's finally spurred me into deciding the time was right to have some work done to a 1911 I have.

I bought a blued series 70 Colt commander a number of years ago from a guy at work. I have fired it twice, cleaned it and it's been a safe queen since then. It came with some parts (It was a project gun that never got finished). I have what I believe is a group gripper full length guide rod from Wilson Combat. The gun has a beavertail grip safety installed, Ed Brown I believe and it also has an aftermarket trigger, Videcki I believe. The front sight is missing.

So, with this setup, what would you do? I installed the group gripper, but it seems the slide does not go fully into battery. I assume the slide spring is probably original, and weak. I will need some sights and have a few hundred buck to spend. It will probably need to be refinished also. Thanks for your thoughts.


BTW, MN does not have a decent CCW right now, but that's what I will build it for in the hopes that changes soon.

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Bottom Gun
December 30, 2002, 09:35 AM
If it were mine, I'd put new springs in it and have a good set of sights installed. I'd also get rid of the full length guide rod.
Shouldn't be terribly expensive, depending upon your choice of sights and you'd have a fine pistol.

December 30, 2002, 09:38 AM
Personally? Not a real big fan of FLGRs. I don't think they really hurt anything (except ease of disassembly), but I don't think they really help anything, either.

Still Learning
December 30, 2002, 09:45 AM
Personally, I would send it to a reputable 1911 'smith and let him do the work. It will cost a bit more but unless you're really know the 1911 and are skilled at fitting parts, etc., it's worth the extra $$$.

When I had mine done, Royce Weddle in Norman, OK was still building PPC revolvers and pin guns. He's mostly retired now and is not looking for work. I have no first hand experience with others.

Good luck on your 1911!

El Tejon
December 30, 2002, 10:03 AM
Here's what I like, YMMV: Focus on what matters--sights and trigger. I like night sights, yellow in back, green up front, unless colour blind. I like a 4.5 trigger with no overtravel screw. I'd lose the FLGR and beavertail. Have it dehorned. Ensure it can feed everything and zero sights for your carry load. I could care less what it looks like, but some do.

As others have said, I would send it to a good gunsmith. I've had work done by Cylinder & Slide and Wayne Novak. Both are outstanding.

Get another just like it and a box full of good magazines.

Good shooting.

Still Learning
December 30, 2002, 10:17 AM
I'm no big fan of the FLGR either but both my Kimbers have them and they have been 100% reliable and are both far more accurate than their owner. I swore when I bought them I would lose the FLGR but I'm not about to fix something that ain't broke!

Many of the "problems" associated with 1911's are caused by folks who want to "improve" these pistols, IMO.

December 30, 2002, 10:40 AM
Depending on what you can do yourself, I would take it to a gunsmith and have the front sight put on, change all the springs, standard recoil plug, safety and function check if you are not sure.
After that I would just shoot it to make sure it's reliable, trigger and accuracy are what you want depending on your use.
Then make changes if needed or wanted.
Those are nice guns.

Good luck

Jim Watson
December 30, 2002, 11:38 AM
Nothing wrong with a FLGR if you don't mind the more complicated takedown.
HOWEVER, the Group Gripper can be problematical. Some guns it helps, some it hurts. A local guy was eating slide stops until he ditched the Group Gripper and had the barrel properly refitted.

For yours, I would get sights, fitted barrel bushing, and finish to suit. Good luck finding a 'smith.

December 30, 2002, 06:10 PM
Check out http://www.burnscustom.com/ I always look there when I think about playing around with 1911s. :)
Lots of pretty guns, and gunsmitting packages.

December 30, 2002, 07:48 PM
Reliable, accurate, fit to me--are my priorites
FLGR, answer to a non problem perhaps, I live without them fine
Sights, I prefer no dots or nightsights

An old Mil-Spec with a crisp 4# trigger that is reliable is what I've been shooting most. Nice Kimber Cutom Target I has only had trigger smoothed, does what I want...Just less is more as I age.

Rather spend $ on ammo, once gun fits MY priorities JMHO

December 30, 2002, 08:01 PM
George Stringer may be able to help you with your pistol. He's the gunsmith around these parts. :)

December 30, 2002, 08:30 PM
I'd ditch the group gripper, got no objection to a FLGR though..

I assume the tigger is OK..if so throw a set of Novaks on and go for it.....

I ove the way Novaks look[

December 30, 2002, 08:53 PM
Ditch the group gripper, it is a bandaid at best.

Send it to Bob Cogan at Cogan Custom in Florida, tell him what you want to do with it and send a check. He will send it back doing exactly what you wanted. If you want it plated or finished he will have it done on site too.

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