To 1911 Tuner...


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Vic
July 31, 2006, 12:39 PM
I went to a website that has your "signature", and down loaded the 1936 revision of the 1911 reciever. I'm the one with the Essex that I cannot get the grip safety to function correctly. The dimension for the sear spring shows 2.40 but it's not clear as to being from the bottom of the pistol grip frame or the center of the pin hole for the mainspring housing retaining pin. I blew up the drawing, but still cannot make it. At any rate, all holes are within specs according to the drawing. I tried messing with a spring (altering), but results were that it would cock, but it would not re-set the disconnector. I put a new spring in and it has the "always on" mode for the disconnector. The gun functions fine and is accurate...all but the grip safety. I'm not sure, but I think the site is 1911.org. Very informative! I thought about a Caspian frame but I hate to mess with a 1911 that is that tight and accurate. Being how it's my gun that I built, the half cock works perfectly and the thumb safety works perfectly, I don't see trashing it for one obsolete safety feature that is inoperative. If I push the slide back with the hammer back...the disconnector does it's job and will not allow the hammer to drop. I know I need to get my hands on a Colt 1911A1 in perfect working order and closely look it over. Maybe I'm missing something but everything looks fine physically and according to the prints (as near as I can tell). You've been a lot of help thus far and I do appreciate your help. I now know alot more about a 1911A1 than I ever wanted to know.

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1911Tuner
July 31, 2006, 09:48 PM
Hi Vic,

What is it that the grip safety isn't doing?

Vic
August 1, 2006, 11:27 AM
The disconnect is always engaged, grip safety not pushed in. I checked IAW the blue prints with digital calipers (all specs about +/- .005), they appear to be right. If I understand what I'm looking at, the disconnector is supposed to be down (out of battery) until the grip safety is pushed in, and the disconnector rises allowing the hammer to fall when the trigger is pulled. If you release the grip safety even with the hammer in the ready to fire mode, the disconnector should drop back down out of battery preventing the hammer from falling. I've replaced the grip safety with a known good one, the sear spring, the hammer, altered and destroyed 2 sear springs (whew, lot of time into this). I get two results, the disconnect will not rise causing the pistol not to function at all, or the disconnect is in the up position all the time (the condition that exists with a new unaltered spring),thus the grip safety is engaged (in battery) pushed in or not (the grip safety pivots on it's axis normally). Like I said, it's tight, it's accurate, and it would be a shame to dismantel it due to a simple thing like this. Half cock, full cock locks are solid and release from full cock (firing) is normal and crisp. I guess another question would be is if the disconnect is mechanically directed in both up and down position, or is gravity utilized for the down position when the grip safety is released.:confused:

1911Tuner
August 1, 2006, 11:48 AM
Hi Vic,

No. The grip safety doesn't have anything to do with the disconnect. It moves up into the connected position via the center leg of the sear spring...into the keyway cut in the slide's center rain...and is pushed down into the disconnected position by the flat area of the center rail when the slide moves rearward.

If the disconnect isn't moving up far enough to connect the trigger and sear, either the sear spring's center leg isn't exerting enough tension, or is too long and pushing straight in on the disconnect instead of pushing upward on the angled area...the keyway cut in the slide is blocking the top of the disconnect, or the disconnect is hanging up on something...or it's out of spec somewhere.

Standin' by...

Vic
August 1, 2006, 01:04 PM
I know you get busy. I've got to head out for a college entrance test and I'm not going to be able to look into it until Friday so take a rest for now. I'll utilize the above information and try to figure out what's happening before I contact you again. Thanks! If the pic takes...this is my 62# Lab/Pit "Wednesday" (as in the Adams Family). She's a sweetheart and a heck of a protector for the grandchildren (she grabbed a guy who stuck his hand in my front door where the 2YO grand son was standing while I was out of the room). My wife is even jelous of the closeness that this dog and I have (she's my buddie till the end of time).

Ken Rainey
August 1, 2006, 01:33 PM
Hey Vic, not to butt in, but just to put this in a simple way, The grip safety is just suppose to block the trigger's reward movement until it is depressed - that's all.....;)

As cousin "Tuner" said, the dis'connector' works off of the sear spring's middle "finger" and is disconnected by the slides movement....in other words, it works automatically if everything is as it should be .... sounds to me that everything is fine as long as your grip safety is blocking the trigger.....ain't that right cousin Tuner ? :scrutiny:

1911Tuner
August 1, 2006, 02:13 PM
Yep, Cousin Ken...That'd about cover it.

And...as Ken can testify...the sear spring can cause some real interestin' surprises when that sucker ain't juuuuuuuust right!:D

(Still wish I'd had a camera.)

Ken Rainey
August 1, 2006, 02:18 PM
Ain't that the truth ! :eek: :D

Vic
August 1, 2006, 06:19 PM
The grip safety in the undepressed mode and a new sear spring allows the trigger to function...even if you are not touching the the grip safety. I always follow the safety rules so it's not much of an issue unless I join the mounted CAV I guess. I had a ruger MKI that fired when I switched the safety off once at the range. My 3 year old son (20 some odd years ago) was with me, and I followed the rules, as did he about the line of fire (remaining behind the shooter). Total price of the incident...replace a broken sear, leaving the range early, and minor irritation. Pretty cheap I'd say. I guess I need to look at the relationship of the arm of the grip safety in relationship to the trigger anvil to see if it is in fact too far rearward to actually block the anvil from moving. I feel like such a MORON on this one. Thanks for the input Ken...I'll get right on it.:) Tuner...Collies have tooooooo much hair! Excellent dogs though.

Ken Rainey
August 1, 2006, 06:29 PM
If it just needs a smidge more length on the grip safety's "finger" to block the trigger....you can lay the "finger" on a block of metal and beat it with a hammer to "stretch" it just a mite....easy enough to try instead of/or while ordering a new one, if necessary....;)

1911Tuner
August 1, 2006, 07:43 PM
Okay...Vic, it sounds like you've a couple of issues. The trigger isn't supposed to function with the grip safety undepressed. The arm should block the trigger. Does the hammer fall normally when the grip safety is depressed? Maybe a better question is: When you grip the safety, does the disconnect fall into the disconnected position?

Vic
August 1, 2006, 08:53 PM
Grab on to your hats, gents. I've taken all you've told me past and present (and Ken) and come up with the solution that actually worked. I like to use as-issued parts for ease of changing and uniformity. Unfortnately, Essex quality isn't on the same page as everybody else (but they are close). The grip safety arm was not contacting the hammer anvil correctly, allowing the anvil to travel rearward even though the grip safety was not depressed. I have a wire welder that can do pretty intricate work so I added to the grip safety arm (.003-.005) and re-shaped it (roughly). The grip safety NOW blocks the anvil until you depress the grip safety which then allows the trigger anvil to travel rearward, causing the hammer to drop. In other words..."works exactly as advertised". Right now, the trigger is a bit tough to pull back and seems mushy when you push the grip safety in but that's a matter of stoning/polishing it into perfection. Get it working correctly, then tune it in. I now know that the disconnect is working properly, the spring is fine, the hammer is fine. The part that I was looking for in an answer was Ken when he stated that it mearly "blocks the trigger". I knew it was an easy fix...I had to find the problem first. You cannot see the grip safety arm function because it's recessed in the frame (I know it's rubbing on the frame a little right now because I feel the resistance). I'll do the finishing and tell you how it turns out Thanks a bunch guys!:D

BBBBill
August 1, 2006, 09:14 PM
...You cannot see the grip safety arm function because it's recessed in the frame ...
Little tip for you guys who haven't thought of this. Take off your grips and you can observe much of the inner workings of your pistola.

Vic
August 1, 2006, 10:21 PM
OK!!!I did some dremmel and 320grit work here. The mushiness is gone, the trigger is crisp. The grip safety will NOT allow the trigger to be pulled unless it is pushed in...period. I now have a fully functional and accurate (within reason) 1911A1 (at least it was before I worked on it). The grip safety hole was (had to be or is) a little too far rearward. Friday, I'm taking it to the range to run it hard to help smooth things out a little. I still may have to do a little more polishing on that arm before I put bluing on it and make it perminate. I may also have to case harden it (I threw it in water after I welded it, so it may be OK for hardness). 1911Tuner and Ken...make a note to self that ESSEX holes are STILL off a little (10/95 purchase). Someone had stated earlier in the year to peen the arm (stretch it out). I had a problem with that suggestion such as work hardning, weakening of the arm, etc. To be honest, I got lucky. My weld job brought it just a little too much but it would function. Polishing and grinding made it MUCH better in operation. Hey...even a blind squrrel finds a nut once in a while. SInce I've been trying to solve this problem since January, I can't say it was an easy problem to nail down but without the support of people like you, I might have scrapped it and bought a different frame.:)

Ken Rainey
August 3, 2006, 02:12 PM
Vic says "Ahhh, relief at last !" :) ..... congratulations friend...:D

1911Tuner
August 3, 2006, 03:48 PM
Yup yup yup...Another satisfied cusromer!:cool:

Canuck-IL
August 3, 2006, 03:48 PM
Vic...glad you got it working ... question about ESSEX holes are STILL off a little (10/95 purchase).
should that have been 10/05 ... ie. Oct of 2005?

Also, when you say the grip safety hole was too far rearward, is that a dimension you measured against a print or simply tried by fitting the grip safety you had on hand? That is, why are you assuming the frame was off rather than the arm of the safety?

Thanks
/Bryan

Vic
August 4, 2006, 07:59 AM
yes...10/05. The grip safety is know GOOD off a new (converted springfield) 1911. I am as reasonably sure the frame hole dimensions are off as I can be. I did mic all the holes IAW the 1936 revision for the reciever print off of www.1911.org (I think it is). I could have been off as far as .005 on my readings. All I know for sure is adding length to the arm and re-forming it made it work as advertised, and I didn't add much. I had two NEW grip safetys so I could afford to experiment with one of them. Since I replaced nearly all components in the proximity of the grip safety (hammer/sear spring/etc), there was nothing else left to try except modification of the grip safety. I'm not happy about having a non-spec conforming part in it, but I can live with it working correctly more. If I put a spec grip safety in, it goes back to being able to pull the trigger and the hammer falls without touching the grip safety. Man...I got my butt kicked by this one. It took 8 months to nail it down. This little 1911A1 was a real education. I put a lot of work into ensuring lock-up, slide to frame fit, barrel bushing to barrel fit and barrel bushing to slide fit. I wanted a tight and accurate 1911A1 that was fully functional...I have achieved that goal. Thanks Guys!:)

1911Tuner
August 4, 2006, 08:46 AM
You can still run into a little issue with the arm failing to block the trigger, even with an in-spec safety. .005 inch isn't much, aznd it doesn't take much tolerance stacking to make one run that short. For stretching, I've found a better method than peening it with a hammer, with much less chance of bending the finger. I use a sharp punch at the contact area, just behind the edge...both sides. It displaces a good amount of metal and usually requires a
little stoning to refit it. Works like a champ, but practice it a few times on a junk safety. Murphy is more active than ever...:scrutiny:

Vic
August 4, 2006, 09:30 AM
It sounds better than peening. I haven't run live rounds yet to check stability of the work yet because I've found that if you're tired (worked all night), it's prime conditions for a mis-hap (I've had it happen twice in my life). Like you say about Murphy....SHappens. No one or anything got got hurt except my pride and my wallet for a couple dollars to patch holes. Handling firearms is like driving...the more mileage you accumulate, the better your chances for an accident, the more careful you MUST be. I am convinced that this unit is 100% at this point though. I had an original WWII Colt "43" a few years ago, this one now feels identical to that one except this one is way more accurate and tight.:cool:

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