Couple of 1911 questions


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Gryphon1410
June 16, 2009, 06:41 PM
Good evening ladies and gents. I have recently acquired a new to me 1911 and am in the process of tarting it up a little. It's comprised of a Charles Daly slide and an Essex Arms stainless frame and it was built by a gunsmith named Butch Warner from Minnesota.

First thing that I am doing to it is replacing the recoil spring as I don't know how many rounds have gone down the pipe. I figure a standard 16 pound spring would do just dandy as I want to avoid having an oversprung pistol.

Second, I want to remove the little shock buffer that came with it because call me crazy, I dislike the idea of some plastic thingy breaking on the inside and possibly tying it up.

Now for the questions:

1. I've been wondering how hard or soft are Essex Arms frames and Charles Daly slides?

2. If they are a little on the soft side, I was wondering if the EFKFiredragon frame saver guide rod would help. Has anyone used one of these? If so, what are your thoughts about them?

3. I was trying to detail strip it and I just can't get the dang thumb safety to hit that sweet spot where I can take it off. Can I just squirt some CLP into the gap while the hammer is cocked and then blow out the crud with some canned air? The grips would be removed for that operation of course.

Thanks for your time.

Respectfully,

Andrew

P.S. Is it just me, but does anyone else get the feeling that the more they learn about the 1911 the less they really know???? :D

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ROBBY.1911
June 17, 2009, 11:48 PM
your slide and frame are just fine for hardness. there is a minimum requiremennt that must be met so that the gun doesn't start to actually compress and hang up forever. as far as the efk recoil reducer, with your 16 # spring and say winchester white box 185 gr. you might find that you have a gun that shoots itself. i had a springfield light weight with the same setup and it shot like a 9 mm. the thumb safety is tricky. it will NEVER come out unless the hammer is cocked. from there, the best position to start your "wiggle" is with the safety just above its position when engaged by the plunger pin. it's a matter of practice. what is worse is trying to put it back in without the proper tool. brownells sells it, get yourself their free 1911 catalog. it goes back in from the same position. the safety should be pushed in until it bottoms on the plunger pin. that's where you hold it with downward pressure. you slip the tool from the rear and depress the plunger pin. pull the tool back and your downward pressure on the safety should be enough for it to pop back into place. email me right before you go to trade the gun because the thumb safety won't cooperate.:evil:

Gryphon1410
June 18, 2009, 09:31 PM
Thanks for your input Robby. Hehehe, nah I won't be trading that one in. :D

Last night I was tinkering with it and finally was able to detail strip it. I found the sweet spot but I'll have to get that nifty tool from Brownells.

I have a WWI 1911 that is much easier for me to detail strip but I've retired that one because I wanted to preserve it for historical reasons. However I'll shoot it on special occasions.

185 grain WWB, eh? WWB has been a little scarce around here so I usually just stick with 230 grain ball ammo. Independence ammo is easy to get here although it's very dirty.

I even picked up some stag grips from Sportsman's Guide. A word of warning on those grips: They're very thick and tend to look out of proportion so they must be sanded down from the back side. Unless one has big ole meat hooks for hands and happens to like chunky aesthetics. :lol:

Oro
June 18, 2009, 11:16 PM
what is worse is trying to put it back in without the proper tool. brownells sells it, get yourself their free 1911 catalog. it goes back in from the same position.

There's no need for an expensive one-purpose tool for this. Here's what you do:

1) cock the hammer as before
2) insert the safety and lower it until it rides on top of the plunger tip

3) Now you have options:
a) take a ball point pen, slide it from the top underneath the TS edge and depress the plunger forward into the tube while pressing down on the TS. It will pop right in.
b) Take a paper clip, unbend it and make a gentle "U" out of it. Put it under the TS, and press the plunger in with it while working the TS in. Then withdraw the paper clip once the plunger is started and trapped by the TS, and then finish pushing the TS in.

Both of these methods work easily and quickly with items you probably have within an arm's reach, anyway. Since both of them involve rounded surfaces softer than the steel of your frame, you won't risk any scratches. If you are a gunsmith or armorer and do three or four installations a day, yes, I'd spring for the overpriced tool. But if you are just a handgun owner who does it once in a while, make your own tool.

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