1911(or other) carry gun test!!!


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hapuna
August 25, 2007, 06:53 PM
OK as I read many different threads, mostly regarding the 1911, many folks are fond of saying that the gun is not reliable for carry unless you do x, y and z to it first. My question is a simple one:

Is there a practical test that I can put my gun through at the range to verify whether or not it is reliable enough for ccw?

Don't let anything stop you from answering the only requirement is that the test be practical and doable by a normal person with normal resources. And of course I understand that nothing will result in a 100% situation but something that would indicate the gun will make a good ccw weapon.

Any thoughts?

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Hoppy590
August 25, 2007, 07:06 PM
its the internet, and people are stupid, always remember that.

WOODROW
August 25, 2007, 07:45 PM
I don't know about a test but for me the weapon MUST be reliable 100% of the time and it should shoot better than me, and yes I prefer the 1911 in .45 or my XD in .45 runs a close second. If you are comfortable and can hit you target consistently with with your choice of CCW then why worry about what anyone else thinks / cares. The bad guy won't complain about what brand of felon repellent you use. SEMPER FI

mballai
August 25, 2007, 07:57 PM
You should be able to put enough rounds downrange without any failures to alleviate your concerns. That's the basic test of any gun. So assuming your gun is clean and properly lubricated, start by shooting 100 rounds. If you can go 200 rounds without a hiccup, I would say it passes a reasonable test for reliability. Ideally I like to put about 500 rounds without burping
before declaring it truly fit for duty, but that's somewhat idealistic. You might need to do that over a few range sessions.

The goal is to see how well a gun can run, even dirty. If a gun can go hundreds of rounds, more than it would ever do in a street encounter, you can be assured that it will be trustworthy if it ever needs to clear leather. In any event shooting that much with a gun is as much necessary for you to be fully comfortable with it anyway.

Do learn how to clear your weapon if it should fail. And do carry a backup if possible. That's regardless of what autoloader you buy.

hapuna
August 25, 2007, 09:41 PM
Mballai You should be able to put enough rounds downrange without any failures to alleviate your concerns. That's the basic test of any gun. So assuming your gun is clean and properly lubricated, start by shooting 100 rounds. If you can go 200 rounds without a hiccup, I would say it passes a reasonable test for reliability. Ideally I like to put about 500 rounds without burping

So I assume you mean self defense ammo in this case. HP etc. of sufficient power to make sure the gun digests this stuff without a problem or would 500rds of ball be good enough???:)

Geno
August 25, 2007, 09:50 PM
Yes, there is a test...3,000 rounds, no cleaning. In the 3,000 rounds that I fired through my NIB Colt Series 70 reissue, I had zero failures of any form. I did the same with my G17...also no failures.

hapuna
August 25, 2007, 09:59 PM
Doc, Did you do that in 1 day, a week, what? You could almost buy a fancy gun for what you spent on ammo.

AK103K
August 25, 2007, 10:16 PM
its the internet, and people are stupid, always remember that.
There ya go. :)

Take YOUR gun, the mags you plan on using for your reloads, and the ammo you plan on using to the range and shoot them all together. If it goes bang every time you pull the trigger and hits where your looking, and your comfortable with it, your cookin'. :)

If it doesnt, you may want to look for something else.

MICHAEL T
August 26, 2007, 12:18 AM
Shoot it Till you think its relieable be that 10 or 10,000 rounds your the one thats going to carry.

Sylvan-Forge
August 26, 2007, 01:03 AM
To test any arm that I might carry, this is what I usually do:

Tests to be undertaken AFTER any recommended break-in period.

1. With a loaded magazine, slowly and carefully cycle the slide by hand to chamber a round. You want to ride the slide forward. Imagine that you must chamber each cartridge with as little noise generated as possible. If every cartridge in the magazine will chamber during the last 1/2" or so under it's own spring power, I consider that a pass of test one.

Tests to be undertaken AFTER any recommended break-in period AND with the approval of your range-master.

2. Load one cartridge only. Cant the weapon 90 degrees (gangsta style) and fire on target. Load three, five, ten, etc..
Cant the weapon to the opposite side and repeat, starting with one cartridge.

3. Load one cartridge only. Set the weapon down within reach, pointed down-range. Perform whatever contortions needed for your situation in order to fire the weapon upside-down. Load three, five, ten, etc...

I would like to see at least two or three magazines worth having been fired in each position minimum, preferably a box of fifty in each. The more the better.

4. Fire two hundred rounds minimum in each magazine to be carried. Tests carried out above may be counted toward the total.

:D

1911 guy
August 26, 2007, 01:57 AM
Gather up about 1,000 rounds of hardball and a few boxes of your chosen HP ammo and go to the range. Leave the cleaning kit at home. Take the magazines you'll be packing for bear. go home when you've got enough ammo for a mag and reload to carry home. Shoot singles, double taps, mag dumps, in any combination and position you can think of.

vanilla_gorilla
August 26, 2007, 04:30 AM
Take YOUR gun, the mags you plan on using for your reloads, and the ammo you plan on using to the range and shoot them all together. If it goes bang every time you pull the trigger and hits where your looking, and your comfortable with it, your cookin'.

If it doesnt, you may want to look for something else.

I'll add only that I prefer at least a hundred trouble-free rounds of my carry ammo without a failure before I trust it, but otherwise, this is the way to go.

Geno
August 26, 2007, 09:42 AM
hapuna:

Due to working, and the fact that I was "torture-testing" two pistols at the same time (Colt Series 70 reissue and Glock 17), it took a LOT of time...about 1 month, and yes, as you said, ammo.

I did the test because I was tired of people claiming that 1911s "have a break-in period". They, when properly manufactured, require no more breaking in than a Glock.

When the Colt 1911 was adopted by the military, it had to fire 6,000 rounds with no failures.

AK103K
August 26, 2007, 09:57 AM
I did the test because I was tired of people claiming that 1911s "have a break-in period". They, when properly manufactured, require no more breaking in than a Glock.

When the Colt 1911 was adopted by the military, it had to fire 6,000 rounds with no failures.

The key word here is "COLT". When a 1911 is built to correct specs, as the Colts are, they work out of the box, its all the other makers and their "ideas" as to what the specs are, that causes the problems.

hapuna
August 26, 2007, 01:09 PM
oo7!!!
I like a lot of the stuff you suggest. What is with the gangsta part of the test however??? Is it that you think the gun may not fire properly if held in unusual positions??

Geno
August 26, 2007, 01:27 PM
In our Tactical and Advanced Tactical classes we too had to fire from unconventional positions. If you fall down or have to fire under something, you may not be firing vertically.

browningguy
August 26, 2007, 02:07 PM
Any decent 1911, or other pistol, will fire fine from any position you hold it in, as long as you aren't limp wristing it. I can't believe some people are shooting 1000 rounds or more to prove a gun is reliable. Shoot a couple of boxes of FMJ, then a box of your carry ammo using the magazines you will be carrying, that's it. All you need to do is make sure there is not a manufacturing defect that is going to cause the gun to fail immediately. Most unrelaible 1911's I have personally seen are due to enhancements by the owner or a gunsmith, work on the trigger, let's try some different weight recoil springs, maybe I'll add a recoil buffer to help protect the frame. Most of us are not going into combat with no time to maintain our weapon, shooting 1000 or 3000 rounds without cleaning and lubing is one of those tests that is completely meaningless for us. All that it tells you is the gun is built with wide tolerances.

Personnaly I carry BHP's in .40, and sometimes a Bersa .380 or a Baby Browning/Beretta 21 as a pocket gun. Any one of those can be loaded and not fired for an extended period of time, then take it to the range and empty a mag with no problems whatsoever.

Nil
August 26, 2007, 04:16 PM
Before I consider a gun reliable, it has to go through at least 500 rounds malfunction free without any cleaning. This includes firing it from unusual positions (e.g. limp wristing, side ways, upside down, etc.).

Any self defense ammo goes through at least 100 rounds malfunction free before being used in that capacity.

mballai
August 26, 2007, 04:27 PM
Ball ammo is fine for basic reliability testing. I would add maybe fifty rounds to test out whatever hollowpoint ammo you care to shoot. I'd make sure that you have three to five magazines and they all get some use in your testing time. And don't get cheap on the mags--your best bet is Wilson. That will help eliminate half of your potential problems right there.

Kevin108
August 26, 2007, 05:31 PM
If it's new, I'd run at least 500 rounds through it before I'd carry it. Next I would run 100 rounds of whatever SD ammo you plan on using. If it's not running reliably, you need a different brand. If it goes through with no problems, clean and lube and you're good to go!

hapuna
August 26, 2007, 05:36 PM
I appreciate the pragmatic group that has posted lately!!! Seems to be reasonable methods with reasonable costs.
Doc, Shooting from different positions is fine but if the issue is limp wristing its not a matter of the gun being a problem.

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