1911 Parts Questions


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sprice
February 10, 2010, 12:59 AM
I have a few questions- to say the least! What is the difference between all these different types of 1911 parts and how do they change the gun(like the operation or feel or reliability?

Specifically:
Mainspring housing (curved/straight)
different grip safetys
hammers (spur type/combat)
triggers (short wwII type and longer modern type)
throated barrels and other minor internal things
full and original recoil spring guide rods
ejection ports (standard vs. lowered and flared)
barrel bushings
serrations
manual thumb safeties


any other parts I didn't think of?

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Magnumite
February 10, 2010, 01:22 AM
I'll nibble first.

The flat mainspring housing allows (for me) a more reliable grip when using strong hand thumb over thumb safey hold. The arch housing is good for traditional grip or to raise point of the pistol (that's why it was an upgrade for the 1911-A1 pistol.

Upgrade "high hold" grip safeties (and the original short tang 1911 grip safety) allow for a higher hold on the pistol. This reduces muzzle flip and allows for faster followup shots.

I'll let the others join in on their pointers and observations.

The Wiry Irishman
February 10, 2010, 03:03 PM
Here's my take. I'm no expert so I'm sure I missed plenty, but I'm sure one of the boards many experts will be along to fill you in.

Mainspring housing (curved/straight)
triggers (short wwII type and longer modern type)

Combinations of different trigger lengths and mainspring housings can be used to tune grip size and trigger reach perfectly for your hand.

different grip safetys

I like the ones with the bump. For some reason the just seem to offer me a better grip and deactivate easier. Its probably personal taste more than anything.

hammers (spur type/combat)

The spur type is a benefit if you like originality or if you like Condition 2 carry, since the spur makes for safer decocking and easier manual thumb cocking. The spur can bite some people with high grips or large hands, though. The loop style hammers won't bite you, but are difficult to manipulate with your thumb. Also race guns will have lightened loop style hammers for minimum possible lock time.

throated barrels and other minor internal things

Throated barrels help with feeding, especially hollow points. There are so many "minor internal things" that can be done to a 1911 you could start another thread on it.

full and original recoil spring guide rods

Some people say the full length guide rods make recoil smoother. I haven't noticed this. I prefer GI length because it allows you to rack your gun one-handed by pushing the slide against tables, fencposts, bootheels, etc. and it makes stripping easier.

ejection ports (standard vs. lowered and flared)

A bigger hole for the spent brass to come out of = more reliable ejection

barrel bushings

Its not so much what kind of bushing you have, but how well its fit. The key to accuracy in an auto is the consistency with with the barrel returns to battery relative to the sights. In a 1911, a well-fit bushing is a big part of this.

serrations

Adds more grippiness. How grippy you want it and where you want it is all personal taste. Some people love or hate front cocking serrations, front strap checkering, etc. Its all up to you and what you want to do with your gun.

manual thumb safeties

If you're left handed or very defense-minded and practice weak-handed in case of an injury, you might want an ambidexterous safety. If you want to be able to reach the safety easier or use it as a shelf for your thumb, you might want an extended safety. There's also a huge variety of widths of safeties to fit your personal tastes as well.

SSN Vet
February 10, 2010, 03:35 PM
I wrote up some comments that you might find helpful in your other thread....

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?p=6266389#post6266389

sprice
February 10, 2010, 07:30 PM
any more info?

Zerodefect
February 10, 2010, 07:40 PM
Check out alumagrips. They have a thin grip that is......well, thin. Really make a 1911 better to carry, but slightly odd to shoot. The Olive Grey is really cool.

1911Tuner
February 10, 2010, 07:57 PM
triggers (short wwII type and longer modern type)


A short sidestep, just as a point of interest...

The long triggers predate WW2 by a good many years. The short triggers were incorporated into the "improved" version that was later designated The Model of 1911A1 US Army.

The transition was complete by mid-1924, along with the arched mainspring housing and the scalloped areas of the frame behind the trigger. The changes were made to alter the pistol's pointing characteristics and to better accommodate shooters with smaller hands.

Carry on!

The Lone Haranguer
February 10, 2010, 08:07 PM
Responses in bold.

Mainspring housing (curved/straight)
These change how the gun points (arched points higher) and the grip circumference, making it possible, in conjunction with different trigger lengths, to conform the gun to your hand.
different grip safetys
Shooting comfort (beavertails do not gouge your hand or allow hammer bite); also affect your hold on the gun (higher or lower).
hammers (spur type/combat)
The spur type is easier to thumb cock. It cannot be used with a beavertail grip safety, however.
triggers (short wwII type and longer modern type)
These affect your finger positioning on the trigger.
throated barrels and other minor internal things
Better feeding with hollowpoint ammunition
full and original recoil spring guide rods
The full length guide rod supposedly prevents spring kinking during recoil and enhances functioning. IMO it is superfluous, a solution to a non problem, and also complicates field stripping.
ejection ports (standard vs. lowered and flared)
A lowered port is beneficial; it reduces the chance of a "stovepipe" malfunction or that the case will be flung at your head, as well as allowing full ejection of a loaded round. The "flaring" reduces case denting, a consideration if you reload. Most newer pistols will come with one.
barrel bushings
A fitted barrel bushing can enhance accuracy. However, if improperly fitted it will affect functioning as well as require a wrench for field stripping.
serrations
Some people like forward cocking serrations, feeling that it makes it easier to chamber check the gun. I personally dislike them.
manual thumb safeties
An extended thumb safety is easier to manipulate quickly, and an ambidextrous safety is a necessity for left-handers.

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