Accurizing a 1911 style pistol


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jtuck
March 16, 2009, 04:51 PM
I have Para-Ordnance frame kit that has been fitted with a Colt Officer's slide. Lately the groups have been opening up some and I trying to come up with some ideas why. This occurs when shooting with and without a rest. Does anyone have any ideas or tips that they have tried in the past to help these pistols with accuracy?

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Quack
March 16, 2009, 04:56 PM
check the barrel, bushing & slide fit.

Iowa Don
March 16, 2009, 05:12 PM
You can do it the hard way: buy all the tools needed from Brownell's, buy the books. and learn to be a 1911 specialist. Or do it the easy way and send it to Cylinder and Slide in Fremont, Nebraska. That's just a 3 hour drive for me from Des Moines. You may have lock-up issues, slide to rail problems, or a host of other things or maybe even all of them at once. I don't know how much time you have, but Bill Laughridge has spent the last 30 years at least working on 1911's, including my "one and only". For a defensive piece his standards are 1: absolute reliability, 2: 5# trigger pull (no "AD's"), 3: accuracy consistent with but not ahead of reliability.:D

jtuck
March 16, 2009, 05:25 PM
Ok, thanks for the feedback guys. I'll explain a little more.

This pistol has a (what I consider) very good trigger pull at 3.5 pounds. It's a little loose in the frame to slide fit, but not overly so. I have had zero issues with functionality. The barrel is a little loose in the bushing when in battery, but to be honest I'm not sure what kind of fit is the best in that area. I also understand it's hard to describe proper fit and feel over the internet. It's never been a "tackdriver", but it was capable of 2-3" groups at 15 yards, but has now opened up to 5-6"+.

Jim Watson
March 16, 2009, 05:45 PM
The barrel is a little loose in the bushing when in battery

Undesirable. The bushing should be snug in the slide and the barrel should set up snug in the bushing when in battery. It is possible to get the barrel too tight and "spring" the bushing, that is what you pay the gunsmith to avoid while getting it tight enough to improve accuracy.

Quack
March 16, 2009, 05:47 PM
the barrel should be tight (0.001" or so) in the bushing, and the bushing should be tight to the slide.

best bet is to have a smith look at it.

Steve C
March 17, 2009, 03:33 AM
Check to make sure your sites are not loose.

Then check the shooter....Have you had a change in your eyesight or health recently, been under more stress, working extra hours, picked up hypertension, reached that mid 40's age where presbyopia may be sneaking up on you?

Been drinking more cafine or heaven forbid energy drinks or expresso.

If it is not YOU then:

Clean the barrel and get rid of any copper and lead fouling. An Outers foul out is the best method. Copper and lead remover specific bore cleaners are the next. When the barrel is absolutely clean, try it again and see if your accuracy hasn't returned. If you've been shooting it quite a bit that's the most likely problem with degrading accuracy if everything is mechanically good.

If you have 10 or 20K rounds (or more) through the pistol then it may be the gun and taking it to a professional for evaluation and some work if required may be the real cure.

jtuck
March 17, 2009, 06:48 AM
I really don't think it is the shooter. None of my other pistols have had their groups open up like this. The barrel is clean, it gets scrubbed down after every session. I'm just not sure what it could be. I'll take it to the gunsmith on Thursday and see what he thinks.

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