1911 guide rod


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TexasGunbie
August 25, 2010, 12:08 AM
Hi,

Just took apart my gun and realize the guide rod is quite short. I have seen on youtube that other people have longer guide rod on their 1911.

So what is the difference between the two? are there pros and cons to each type of guide rod??

-Gunbie!

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9mmepiphany
August 25, 2010, 12:28 AM
The short G.I. guide rod is part of the original design and is all you need for a functional 1911.

The full length guide rod (FLGR) makes the gun a bit more difficult to assemble and disassemble. it adds a bit of weight to the front of the gun and it seems to make the travel of the slide smoother when manually retracted

mljdeckard
August 25, 2010, 03:48 AM
When I get a 1911 with a full-length rod, I switch it back to G.I. style. I have never been able to discern a difference in how they shoot, I have never had any problems with springs twisting or binding, and like the man says, stripping is easier with the old-style plug. I can't tell if it makes the slide motion smoother or just a little quieter.

Full Metal Jacket
August 25, 2010, 03:51 AM
full length guide rods work great at lightening your wallet :D

9mmepiphany
August 25, 2010, 04:17 AM
hee hee

WardenWolf
August 25, 2010, 04:28 AM
A full length guide rod does somewhat regulate the motion of the barrel as the slide retracts, making it more consistent each time. In this way, it can make feeding more reliable. Less play means fewer things to go wrong. I installed a Dwyer Group Gripper from Wilson Combat in my father's old Colt Combat Commander. This, combined with a new Wilson bushing, made the gun much more reliable and accurate. I still have the original parts to convert it back, but it works much better now so I have no reason to.

Full Metal Jacket
August 25, 2010, 04:35 AM
i installed a wilson group gripper guide rod years ago, and all it did was make takedown a serious PITA.

other than that, it made no difference in groups or otherwise.

WardenWolf
August 25, 2010, 04:55 AM
Well, I didn't find it made takedown that much harder. Granted, I have the tools to make it easy. I have an entire hex driver / screwgun bit set full of specialty bits, including star and allen head (Boxer makes it, and I consider it a real must-have). It's no problem for me to quickly undo the screw for the front part of the guide rod, then field strip normally. I find it does make a difference in how that old gun shoots and how reliable it is.

I suspect it does, in fact, make a difference if you have a gun with loose tolerances. However, for a modern, well-manufactured 1911, it probably won't make any difference at all. Modern 1911's have better tolerances, better feed ramps, etc., and it's fairly hard to improve on that with a part like this. For older guns, particularly those made in the 1970s, there's a lot to be improved upon, and a part like this can make the difference between $400 to have a new barrel fitted to make it shoot and feed well. It's a good investment if it means you can fix your gun without breaking the bank.

loadedround
August 25, 2010, 05:59 AM
If a FLGH was necessary in a 1911, I would suspect that Mr. Browing would have added one.

1911Tuner
August 25, 2010, 05:59 AM
A full length guide rod does somewhat regulate the motion of the barrel as the slide retracts, making it more consistent each time.

:scrutiny:

Nahhhh....

mljdeckard
August 25, 2010, 06:06 AM
I must agree with Tuner, it sounds to me like something made up by the companies who sell them. If it's loose, it will still be loose. If it's tight, this won't make it tighter.

DeepSouth
August 25, 2010, 06:27 AM
A full length guide rod helps in feeding and extraction. It feeds manufactures with cash extracted from your wallet, basically they serve the same purpose as recoil buffers.:scrutiny:

1911Tuner
August 25, 2010, 06:51 AM
If it's loose, it will still be loose. If it's tight, this won't make it tighter.


Once the barrel has been completely disconnected from the slide...at roughly 1/4th inch of slide travel...it's loose, vertically. It's supposed to be loose at that point. In order for the guide rod to have an effect on the barrel, it would have to physically touch the barrel...and it doesn't touch the barrel unless something is wrong...and the only place that it could touch the barrel is at the flange, and only if the flange is out of spec.

Horizontal play in a linked down barrel is controlled by close fitting between the lower lug and its drop clearance recess in the frame...and usually only happens with an oversized/fitted barrel lug. That has nothing to do with the guide rod, however.

If the barrel contacts the flange, it has to contact it when it drops...and if it does that, the barrel can't drop all the way to the frame bed. If the flange is out of spec and holds the barrel off the bed, either the upper lugs crash, or the bottom of the barrel ramp is struck by the incoming round, and jams up the works.

It feeds manufactures with cash extracted from your wallet, basically they serve the same purpose as recoil buffers.

Yep. It epitomizes one of the oldest marketing strategies in existence. First, convince the potential buyer that he needs it...and then sell it to him. At one time, it was known as "Snake Oil."

Here endeth the lesson.

The Lone Haranguer
August 25, 2010, 07:59 AM
Granted, I have the tools to make it easy.
It was originally designed to not need any tools to field strip it, something desirable for a soldier in the field. (I will grant that most civilians have the luxury of time and a warm house for gun maintenance.) A two-piece design introduces the additional risk of coming apart in the middle.

stork
August 25, 2010, 01:25 PM
Can't add anything more to whats been said other than DITTO.

If JMB wanted one on the 1911, it would have been put there in the first place. The more I find out about JMB the more I am in awe of him. 4th grade education. Designed the 1911 and the Garand in his head. And when the military thought the Garand would be too expensive to mass produce(because of all the machined cuts the receiver required) he designed the machinery to mass produce it, again in his head.

FWIW

Joe Demko
August 25, 2010, 01:30 PM
Designed the 1911 and the Garand in his head. And when the military thought the Garand would be too expensive to mass produce(because of all the machined cuts the receiver required) he designed the machinery to mass produce it, again in his head.

Browning did design the 1911. The Garand (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M1_Garand)was designed by John C. Garand.

rcmodel
August 25, 2010, 01:36 PM
Yep!

John Browning died in 1926.
The M1 Garand entered service in 1936.

He had nothing to do with it, even if he had still been alive.

rc

WardenWolf
August 25, 2010, 02:44 PM
Actually, the Group Gripper does include a replacement barrel link and does interface with said link. It claims it provides additional support for the barrel, and what I've observed tends to jive with that. The barrel seems much less loose during slide operation. I believe they can help in certain situations.

If I had a brand new Springfield 1911, would I go out and install a full length guide rod on it? No. If it works fine, I'd leave it alone. His gun didn't work fine. It jammed regularly and was inaccurate as hell. Now, between that and the match-grade bushing, it shoots very well. It's fixed. It was either that or a brand new barrel that would have cost us $400 after fitting. I was able to do this entirely entirely with the tools at hand. All in all, it was a cheap fix.

stork
August 25, 2010, 03:10 PM
Browning did design the 1911. The Garand was designed by John C. Garand.

Duh, I'm never gonna live this one down. Running on too little sleep and too much coffee.
Memo to me, sleep then post. But in justification I did just have my 3rd grandbaby yesterday and didn't do well on the 8 hours of sleep thing.

Please forgive me ghost of John C.
Stork

Joe Demko
August 25, 2010, 03:15 PM
We all make mistakes. Some, like me, even make a career out of it.

1911Tuner
August 25, 2010, 03:21 PM
What the group gripper does is lift the barrel higher into the slide on a barrel with an undersized lower lug and cause it to return closer to the same place between shots when the slide goes to battery. Accuracy enhancement varies from a little better to a lot better...or it can make very little practical difference...or none. It's an expedient "fix" for a loosely fitted or out of spec lower barrel lug. Sometimes the slide and frame vertical dimensions result in a loose fit, even with a good barrel.

And...once the link swings throgh its arc and links the barrel down, it has no more effect on the barrel.

The only real advantage with a full-length guide rod is in the badly worn pistol with grossly excessive vertical play between slide and frame...so badthat the slide rises enough during the recoil phase to cause the rear face of the dust cover...the impact abutment...to put the spring in a bind and ding the end of the standard guide rod. I've seen that a lot with old WW1-era pistols that have been rode hard and put up wet. The proper fix is to peen the frame rails and refit the slide to reduce vertical play...or...if you're a high-end smith...weld and recut the frame rails, though not many waste their time and effort on a dead soft frame in that condition.

1911Tuner
August 25, 2010, 03:22 PM
Duh, I'm never gonna live this one down.

Feh...You just got your Johns confused. ;)

Truth is that Browning didn't design the 1911 all by his lonesome. He had a lot of help, along with much input from the Army Ordnance Board. The pistol was essentially designed by a committee. Browning did a lot of the grunt work...along with a team of Colt's top engineers.

FLAvalanche
August 25, 2010, 03:34 PM
The full length guide rod (FLGR) makes the gun a bit more difficult to assemble and disassemble.

How?

Don't feel bad, I'm calling everyone to task who makes this silly statement.

mljdeckard
August 25, 2010, 03:41 PM
Because it does. I have pock marks in my ceiling where I have lost my grip on the plug and shot it up. Guess how many times I have done this with the G.I. style plug? ZERO.

The main reason I switched back, is because I often go out with my dad to the desert to piddle around, and I switch my carry gun to .22. I have come very close more than once to searching the sagebrush for it.

And if you say; "just use the wrench", this means A: Another item you have to keep handy, and B: If you have to use a tool to do something you could otherwise do with bare hands, that means it is indeed MORE DIFFICULT.

Butter
August 25, 2010, 03:56 PM
I agree with most here. No difference. I generally replace a longer guide rod if it came with the gun. As for taking down a 1911, anyone ever try taking down a Les Baer for the first time without a bushing wrench? Damn near tore the bushing wrench apart the first time I tried. After about 500 rounds and doing it a couple of times it becomes easier, but sheesh!

1911Tuner
August 25, 2010, 04:00 PM
I guess it comes down to two questions:

"What's so good about a FLGR?"

*shrug* "Nothin."

"Well...What's so bad about a FLGR?"

*shrug* "Nothin."

TonyAngel
August 25, 2010, 04:37 PM
If you get a full length guide rod, be sure to get a one piece. They allow disassembly without any specialized tools. A two piece guide rod is usually too long to be able to field strip the pistol without the use of a tool, if it's tight. If it's loose, it will unscrew during fire and eventually fall out of the front.

I've been messing with 1911's for about 25 years. A Combat Commander was my first handgun. The first of over 100 that I've owned at one time or another. The only benefit I've seen from the full length guide rod is that it stops the spring from kinking when the slide comes back, but I'm not sure that the spring kinking or twisting is detrimental to anything.

If you consider the Browning Hi Power, it has a similar (short) guide rod, with no provision for adding a longer one and those pistols run well.

WardenWolf
August 25, 2010, 04:38 PM
I agree with most here. No difference. I generally replace a longer guide rod if it came with the gun. As for taking down a 1911, anyone ever try taking down a Les Baer for the first time without a bushing wrench? Damn near tore the bushing wrench apart the first time I tried. After about 500 rounds and doing it a couple of times it becomes easier, but sheesh!

I installed that match grade bushing on my father's old Combat Commander, and I had to tap it in with a hammer and a wood block. Once it was in, I was able to turn it fairly easily with the bushing wrench (I oiled it before installing it). And I know I can get it apart again if need be.

What the group gripper does is lift the barrel higher into the slide on a barrel with an undersized lower lug and cause it to return closer to the same place between shots when the slide goes to battery. Accuracy enhancement varies from a little better to a lot better...or it can make very little practical difference...or none. It's an expedient "fix" for a loosely fitted or out of spec lower barrel lug. Sometimes the slide and frame vertical dimensions result in a loose fit, even with a good barrel.

That's pretty much the case here. The 1970s were a very bad time in American manufacture, and firearms were no exception. The firearms industry was transitioning into the first generation of automated equipment, and these early machines had horrible tolerances. My father's Combat Commander had a loose barrel. It shot horrible. A few retrofit parts made it shoot like a new gun. Better to spend $75 than $400.

1911Tuner
August 25, 2010, 05:02 PM
The only benefit I've seen from the full length guide rod is that it stops the spring from kinking when the slide comes back,

Unless there's a misalignment between the slide and frame, it won't kink with a short guide rod, either.

The spring's ID is a close fit with the rod. Its OD is a close fit inside the spring plug. The spring compresses equally at all points along its length. As it compresses, the plug covers it on the outside while it stacks over the rod. By the time the slide is at full travel, it's pretty nearly encapsulated and controlled inside and out. There's just not much opportunity for it to flex in either direction.

Wolf...Many consider the 70s as Colt's Dark Age, with a lot of pistols that weren't worth bringing home. One would be excellent, and the next one in line complete junk...but I've seen a good many that were made before and after that gave poor vertical engagement...or "lockup" if you prefer. Pushing down on the barrel would produce vertical movement...but about the only thing that it hurt was consistent placement when it returned to battery that usually showed up as vertical stringing. Only rarely was it bad enough to be of any real concern except for those who put great store in cutting cloverleaf groups at unrealistic distances in deliberate slow fire. As a close-quarters fighting tool, they were fine.

I studied the first group gripper that I saw carefully, and disregarded it. I saw several in use that cleaned up the vertical stringing...and the guns started horizontal stringing due to the barrel being supported only in the center...like long-linking a barrel to tighten the "lockup." Each gun gave different results, depending on how much barrel rotation the the lower lug and frame recess clearance allowed.

While I don't like for a pistol barrel to drop when pushed, unless it's really bad, I don't consider it detrimental to a service or duty pistol. .005 inch or so isn't of any real consequence.

Full Metal Jacket
August 25, 2010, 06:12 PM
Don't feel bad, I'm calling everyone to task who makes this silly statement.

:eek:



The only benefit I've seen from the full length guide rod is that it stops the spring from kinking when the slide comes back,

in 75 years of use by the military, and far longer use by the private sector, i've never once heard of a 1911 recoil spring kinking. it's nothing more than a non existent problem contrived by the FLGR makers in order to advertise their products.

omegaflame
August 25, 2010, 06:26 PM
Mine came with an FLGR, but I wouldn't spend money changing one in or out.

TexasGunbie
August 25, 2010, 06:47 PM
umm... I live in Houston, where do I find a 1911 guru to show me a few things??

You guys have mentioned replacing the bushing with a wilson bushing??

I thought the original part is designed to fit the barrel for your specific gun. Is Wilson the universal bushing that fits everything??

9mmepiphany
August 25, 2010, 06:52 PM
How?

Don't feel bad, I'm calling everyone to task who makes this silly statement.
I don't, I can do it either way, but... i do know folks who, having learned to do it with no tension on the recoil spring, have a very hard time getting the slide back on the frame while the recoil spring is tensioned. I've also had folks complain that they have a hard time chambering a round one-handed with the FLGR installed...but then I've always used the rear sight (I won't even mention doing a press check)

That is with the one-piece FLGR, a two-piece is just silly in my mine as then you are supposed to unscrew the rod to take it out.

I'm reminded of Ed Brown saying that the only reason they installed a FLGR in his 1911s was because it was expected by his customers

Full Metal Jacket
August 25, 2010, 06:57 PM
I'm reminded of Ed Brown saying that the only reason they installed a FLGR in his 1911s was because it was expected by his customers

les baer has always said FLGR's in 1911's are completely useless as well.

Magnumite
August 25, 2010, 07:19 PM
I don't understand the persistant need for GI rod fans to persistantly demonize the flgr. The worst argument against the flgr is JMB didn't design it. He didn't design in the aluminum trigger, beavertail grip safety, the extended thumb safety nor the high hold cut on the front strap. But these are ackowledged as positive improvements. So put some weight in the front of the pistol and give the recoil spring a positive track on it's ID and things run smoother in some guns.

Can't disassm nor assm a 1911 with an flgr? That is a personnel issue not a flgr issue.
Too many tools for maintenance with flgr installed? Get a one piece as mentioned earlier.
Don't like the flgr? Sounds like personal preference, but nothing wrong with using one.

For the record, I use and like both GI and flgr and will select according to my vision and use of the pistol.

Full Metal Jacket
August 25, 2010, 07:20 PM
I thought the original part is designed to fit the barrel for your specific gun. Is Wilson the universal bushing that fits everything??

you might have to fit it, might not. each 1911 is different. personally though, i would choose the EGW flanged bushing over wilson's. tightens up the gun/groups better, and is usually drop in.

not sure who you can go to in houston, but there's plenty of videos on youtube to look at if you're unfamiliar with 1911's.

WardenWolf
August 25, 2010, 08:44 PM
The Group Gripper and the bushing tightened it up nicely. 1911Tuner, my father's Colt Combat Commander dates to approximately 1972. It's one of the early production ones. As a result, it suffered from the problems you described. The bushing in question did require a bit of effort to install, but I wasn't hitting it hard enough to damage things or that it would be impossible to remove. It was pretty much just tapped in. Then it turns fine with a bushing wrench. Overall the gun is good. It just needed those two things fixed.

Magnumite
August 26, 2010, 02:12 AM
I used a group gripper in two guns and the accuracy definitely improved. But I also coupled this with a fitted NM bushing.

1911Tuner
August 26, 2010, 05:09 AM
Wolf...I recently bought and sold a 1973 production Combat Commander in which the slide lugs were off-center badly enough to see it. The gun was perfectly functional, and very reliable...what little I shot it...which was about 70 rounds. I'd seen it before in a Series 70 Gold Cup and a Government Model. Just an example of Colt's Dark Days.

If you still have access to that Commander, you can lap the bushing with J&B Bore Cleaner for a better fit and easier removal.

FLAvalanche
August 26, 2010, 08:21 AM
Because it does. I have pock marks in my ceiling where I have lost my grip on the plug and shot it up. Guess how many times I have done this with the G.I. style plug? ZERO.

The main reason I switched back, is because I often go out with my dad to the desert to piddle around, and I switch my carry gun to .22. I have come very close more than once to searching the sagebrush for it.

And if you say; "just use the wrench", this means A: Another item you have to keep handy, and B: If you have to use a tool to do something you could otherwise do with bare hands, that means it is indeed MORE DIFFICULT.
Why is it I can manage to not shoot a plug across the room with my FLGR?

And no, you don't need a tool. People who can't handle FLGR all act like there is 120x time spring tension on a FLGR when it's about the same as a stock setup.

RobMoore
August 26, 2010, 09:29 AM
^ I'm with this. The only guns of mine I need to use a bushing wrench on are ones with tight bushings. Nothing to do with the FLGR. If the FLGR comes long, and interferes with hand turning the bushing, I shorten it a touch. The only difference I feel between pushing down the plug on a FLGR setup and a GI setup is the GI doesn't leave an impression on my thumb. I normally have a wrench handy anyway, so it doesn't matter.

I find dis/ass easier with the FLGR because I use the method with the spring and plug out first, in last.

The Lone Haranguer
August 26, 2010, 10:07 AM
When you remove the spring, plug and rod from the gun and lay them end to end, it seems as if the spring is completely unsupported in the middle and would kink and twist all over like a Slinky toy. However, when the parts are assembled in the gun and the spring compressed, there is very little gap, perhaps the width of two coils.

If an otherwise desirable pistol already has a FLGR in it, it shoots well and does not interfere with its other functions, I might leave it in. But would I go out and buy one to put in a gun that did not already have it, just because? No.

mljdeckard
August 26, 2010, 10:54 AM
To me, it's not a big difference, I just don't want to keep guns in a configuration other than what I prefer, and wish they were different.

SlamFire1
August 26, 2010, 11:10 AM
I have replaced every full length guide road with the standard GI configuration of recoil plug and guide rod.

I found the full length guide rod was just another thing to go wrong.

I used to seat my bullets out so that the base of the cartridge was level with the barrel hood. That worked in a Colt chamber but those same cartridges now were too long for a Kimber chamber. What happened in my new Kimber Custom classic was that my reloads now jammed in the throat and prevented the slide from going fully into battery. I could not beat the slide closed and shoot the thing out and the cartridge was so jammed in the throat that I could not pull the slide back.

Before stupid full length guide rods, all I had to do was put the muzzle over the edge of a table, recoil plug resting on the table, and push. A full length guide rod prevented that mode of cartridge clearance.

I decided, you know, while this failure mode is due to my crappy reloads, it could still happen with decent ammunition and I would not be able to clear the pistol if it had a full length guide rod.

So I dumped it. And in each M1911 that had one, I got rid of those full length guide rods.

Life is better, the M1911 is easier to take apart, function is a perfect as it ever was, and I elimanted a failure mode.

TexasRifleman
August 26, 2010, 11:29 AM
I use full length GR's on my 1911's, but only one piece, no 2 piece things for me.

One thing I do to mine is drill a counter sunk hole through the GR just in front of the bushing when the slide is locked back. I took a piece of drill bit stock and made a small pin. When I take the gun apart for cleaning I lock the slide back, slip in the pin, and now I have the spring captive under pressure. I release the slide lock and remove the slide stop, push the slide forward, and now I have the gun apart with no need for a bushing wrench and no danger of flying springs and pieces.

Been doing it that way since the mid 80's when an IPSC gunsmith friend of mine showed me the trick.

I'll try to take a photo in a bit to show how it works.

John Holbrook
August 26, 2010, 12:09 PM
Here is an absolutely stock, as issued Colt M1911A1. I took out three VC with this pistola, all one shot stops.. I does not have or need a FLGR....

This thread reminds me of the Mexican bandito in the "Treasure of the Sierra Madre" when asked if he had a badge,

Badges, we don't need no stinking badges!!!

http://www.fototime.com/%7B388F8F11-3FFC-44FE-AFEB-D5BA6A89B598%7D/origpict/picture%5B5%5D.jpg

FLAvalanche
August 26, 2010, 01:09 PM
I guess it comes down to two questions:

"What's so good about a FLGR?"

*shrug* "Nothin."

"Well...What's so bad about a FLGR?"

*shrug* "Nothin."
BINGO!

A 1911 doesn't benefit from a FLGR. Doesn't hurt it either. Doesn't make it shoot better or worse, doesn't make it easier or harder to disassemble.

I call everyone to task who says they do because 99% of them simply repeat what they've heard or simply can't handle anything that varies from the original design.

RobMoore
August 26, 2010, 01:18 PM
Not all guns come with or need night sights, but some people prefer them.

I've never heard anyone say their 1911 NEEDED a FLGR.

I found the full length guide rod was just another thing to go wrong.


What is there to go wrong with a solid piece of metal? It doesn't do anything. It sounds to me like everything going wrong with your gun happened at your reloading press.

akadave
August 26, 2010, 02:26 PM
How about..."They look kinda' cool"?

....Or maybe if they are hollowed out and held a single .22LR round that could be activated by a seperate "trigger" for that emergency/ surprise shot when the mag was empty?

Now we are getting into Bond territory...hehehe!

Clarence
August 26, 2010, 03:29 PM
Full length guide rods? I tried a couple of them back in the 90's............I consider them a complete waste of money.

None for me thanks.

Full Metal Jacket
August 26, 2010, 07:21 PM
I call everyone to task who says they do because 99% of them simply repeat what they've heard or simply can't handle anything that varies from the original design.

say what? :confused:


99% of posters on this thread are speaking form personal experience, including me. not from what was heard somewhere. re-read the posts.

SlamFire1
August 27, 2010, 09:34 AM
What is there to go wrong with a solid piece of metal? It doesn't do anything. It sounds to me like everything going wrong with your gun happened at your reloading press.

Any device that prevents me from clearing a jam is an undesirable device, regardless of what caused the jam.

Strahley
August 27, 2010, 10:58 AM
I'll stick with the original short guide rod. If it needed to be full length, JMB would have made it full length to begin with

I find it funny that people will claim "oh this and that will make the 1911 feed/extract/yadda yadda better!" yet when I'm at the range the only people with problems on a 1911 are the ones with some fancy $1k+ one. I've never had a single problem with a GI spec 1911, and can shoot them just as well as I can the "tricked out" ones

SlamFire1
August 28, 2010, 10:23 PM
At the range today, I got to talk to a guy with a Ruger 40S&W double action pistol, I donít remember the model, but I think it is a P series.

His Ruger has a guide rod. And it caused malfunctions. A burr developed on the guide rod, probably caused by a sharp edge on the slide. The combination of the guide rod burr and sharp edge caused jams.

While this is on a Ruger, it is not beyond the ream of possibility for a M1911 guide rod to develop a burr and create drag.

Which goes back to an earlier statement of mine, a guide rod is just another thing to go wrong.

bigfatdave
August 29, 2010, 12:06 AM
Dr Bullseye (of guntalk-online fame) posted this picture a while back:
http://www.armoryblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/xray-1911.jpg
It would seem that there is nowhere for a spring to go.
So that makes the "prevent kinks" seem sort of nonsensical.

If the forward weight is helping the balance or return to target, why not add weight to a non-moving part, like thickening the dust-cover?
(I'm laying claim to the "thickened dustcover" and "lead-loaded dustcover" concept, I'll sell it to Kimber for millions!)

The concern for a fault in the guide-rod is valid, but not something I spend a lot of time worrying about. But you won;t ever see me adding one.

Manufacturers add the FLGR because it is another feature to advertise and markup the price based on. They get away with it because most of the guns they sell sit in a safe and go to the range once a quarter (or less) to eat some hardball ammo, and then go home to have their bores cleaned out really well (and the moving parts ignored).
I'd guess (and I admit to speculation here) that a FLGR setup would take more precision manufacturing and QA than a basic GI guide-rod does, for the same reliability percentages across a production run.

when I'm at the range the only people with problems on a 1911 are the ones with some fancy $1k+ one. I've never had a single problem with a GI spec 1911Same here. Beyond a few not liking HP rounds or exotic target ammo, a basic 1911 has enough battle rattle to cycle smoothly and should be nice and stable locked forward with the front of the barrel captured and the rear held by the lugs ... your sights and barrel will always be indexed together and the difference between that and the frame's alignment will be microscopic.

Magnumite
August 29, 2010, 07:53 AM
I don't know where you guys are shooting your guns at to see all the higher end guns having problems, my experience has been almost the opposite. Its mostly the parts guns assembled by who ever without understanding how to tune the gun that I see the most problems. Or something like an Auto Ordnance or now defunct AMT that has a rep for not being reliable.

And I bet good money you don't see Wilson's and Baer's choking in any significant number. As for the $1K plus guns, I'd wager its a mostly a certain manufacturer that changes aesthetics like we change socks. And most of the cost is in those aesthetics.

As far as tight and reliability goes, there is no correlation. If the gun is built properly a tight gun is as reliable as a loose gun. Moreso even, because all the parts are in proper alignment all the time. That's been my experience. Battle rattle is for guns seeing hard use that may not be cleaned regularly or used in harsh conditions.

As a matter of fact, a major name in building custom 1911's did a sand test using a major name 1911 custom, a Glock and a European gun (Sig I think). The guns were buried in sand. Each gun was cleared as you would any gun treated like this, the magazine reinserted after also being shook out and fired. Guess which one had the best record...you're right, the tight 1911.

Jimmy10mm
August 29, 2010, 09:23 AM
Just curious, I recently bought a Delta Gold Cup 1911. A used 1991 model with a full length guide rod. This is the first 1911 I've had with a FLGR and it is factory issue in that model. If it wasn't of some benefit why would the factory go to the added expense of installing it ? BTW, this is an honest question, I am not advocating FLGR use. This is my first encounter with a pistol equipped with one and I haven't had a chance to fire it yet. Just wondering why Colt put them in the Gold Cup if they are as useless and troublesome as I'm reading here ?

bigfatdave
August 29, 2010, 09:43 AM
If the gun is built properly a tight gun is as reliable as a loose gun. Sure, it can be until it gets dirty or gets fed ammo that a loose gun would digest without a complaint. But it will cost a lot more to do the same job.

And I bet good money you don't see Wilson's and Baer's choking in any significant number. I don't see Wilson or Baer guns in any significant number in the first place. A lot of them are "custom" jobs from a couple certain manufacturers, a lot of them are target guns built to run nothing but match-grade ammo, and a lot of them are poorly maintained.

DeepSouth
August 29, 2010, 10:06 AM
If it wasn't of some benefit why would the factory go to the added expense of installing it ?

So they can pass that added expense down to the customer, with an increase. Therefore increasing profit margin. There are also lots of people that think the FLGR is the best thing since sliced bread, and the manufactures don't want their customers calling up and asking why such an expensive gun doesn't have one.

They know it doesn't hurt anything either so just stick one in there to make everyone happy, and add more to the price for the "extras." It's not about the gun it's about money and customers.

Zach S
August 29, 2010, 10:11 AM
The main reason I switched back, is because I often go out with my dad to the desert to piddle around, and I switch my carry gun to .22. I have come very close more than once to searching the sagebrush for it.
Actually, this is one occasion where a FLGR makes sense to me. You see, with a FLGR, all you have to do is remove the slide stop and take the slide off as an assembly. The FLGR keep the spring captive so there's no need to remove it.

Magnumite
August 29, 2010, 03:51 PM
Let's see, tight guns built for match and professional shooting or even a high end Production guns such as a SA Trophy Match, shoots many hundreds of rounds between cleanings without malfunctions. And that isn't reliable? And if one asks around the proper websites, they would notice the Baers, Browns, Wilson's and high end SA production guns are highly reliable during extended shooting sessions.
I am a competitive shooter and use tight 1911's. I frequently will put over 1000 rounds down the tube while lubing frequently (as I do any firearm) and running a quick brush down the barrel once in a while. And I don't have gun related malfunctions. These guns eat ball, SWC and hollow point ammo with equal effectiveness.
I'd say that's reliable.

mljdeckard
August 29, 2010, 03:56 PM
No. With the spring captive, it is to difficult to either remove OR replace the slide stop. Certainly not easier than just replacing it with a GI style plug.

rcmodel
August 29, 2010, 04:02 PM
A mil-spec 1911 GI plug has a lock tab inside it the spring "screws" into.
The other end of the spring is smaller and a tight fit on the recoil gude.

If the parts are mil-spec and properly assembled, the plug or spring simply can't shoot off into the weeds.

No way the 1911 could have successfully fought so many wars if parts went flying every time you took it down to clean it in a foxhole full of mud & water!

Unfortunately, an awful lot of todays 1911 parts are not even close to mil-spec, or the way John Browning designed them.

rc

TexasRifleman
August 29, 2010, 04:07 PM
with the spring captive, it is to difficult to either remove OR replace the slide stop. Certainly not easier than just replacing it with a GI style plug.

That's why I use the captive system installed by my gunsmith years ago, it allows for the ease of removal and installation since nothing is under spring pressure when you pull the slide stop.

Apologies for the fuzzy pic, I don't do macro well. It's hard to see but there's a hole right in front of the frame shroud through the FLGR.

What you see here is what I have on all my 1911's. It's a single piece FLGR with a hole drilled through just in front of the shroud of the frame, and the hole is chamfered so it won't catch on anything.

The small pins are pieces of drill stock.

You lock the slide back and insert one of these small pins through the hole. You slowly lower the slide until the plunger hits the drill stock, locking the spring in place. At this point you can push the slide on forward til you can remove the slide stop with no spring pressure at all applied.

You then remove the FLGR with the spring in place from the slide, take out the barrel for cleaning or whatever with no worries about losing springs etc.

Assembly is simply the reverse but since there is nothing under pressure when you are putting it together the slide stop goes in easily and you can easily move the link around to get everything to line up if you want.

If you do want to take it apart the old way you can still do that of course.

I've been doing it this way for 20+ years. It's the only reason I use FLGRs. Especially in IPSC or something similar where you want to open the thing up often for a quick clean and lube, this way is great. And I've never shot a spring across the room doing it this way either :)

mljdeckard
August 29, 2010, 04:19 PM
What YOU are suggesting would. What Zach S. is suggesting would not.

Robert101
August 29, 2010, 06:38 PM
I'm not a gunsmith nor do I claim to be more "knowing" than the novice 1911 owner. Both my SA Loaded and DW Pointman 7 came with a FLGR. I see no reason to change. My only experience, by owning these guns, tells me that the FLGR works extremely well. I personally don't care if it takes 60 seconds or 10 seconds to dissassemble my gun. I'm not in or on a combat front line. So many of you are saying length doesn't matter? Just having some fun guys.

TexasRifleman
August 29, 2010, 08:18 PM
What YOU are suggesting would. What Zach S. is suggesting would not.

Oh absolutely, that's why I'm recommending drilling one little hole :)

sleepyone
August 29, 2010, 08:39 PM
Browning designed plenty of guns w/o having to assign the Garand to him. None of his weapons ever failed an ordinance test; we are talking 1911, machine guns, rifles, aircraft machine guns, 30 and 37 mm cannon etc... An amazing feat that has never been duplicated and never will.

And the FLGL, was supposed to improve accuracy, but the DW Valors, Les Bears, Ed Browns, etc... do pretty well with the GI style design.

Magnumite
August 30, 2010, 01:53 AM
The FLGR is not intended to improve accuracy, the claims are it smooths spring compression and rebound.

What Zach S. is suggesting does work, without the little hole in the FLGR. You move the slide slightly out of battery, remove the slide stop and remove the upper assembly. It will stay together. It has for me for many years.

mljdeckard
August 30, 2010, 05:47 AM
I didn't say it wouldn't work. I said it wouldn't be easier.

Magnumite
August 30, 2010, 07:37 AM
No drilling, no little pin, no extra steps. That's not easier? I don't get it. If one likes the. Hole and pin, that's cool with me, I have a FLGR with the hole. But how can one say not doing the hole thing is easier than the no hole?

CDR_Glock
August 30, 2010, 09:13 AM
I don't understand the persistant need for GI rod fans to persistantly demonize the flgr. The worst argument against the flgr is JMB didn't design it. He didn't design in the aluminum trigger, beavertail grip safety, the extended thumb safety nor the high hold cut on the front strap. But these are ackowledged as positive improvements. So put some weight in the front of the pistol and give the recoil spring a positive track on it's ID and things run smoother in some guns.

Can't disassm nor assm a 1911 with an flgr? That is a personnel issue not a flgr issue.
Too many tools for maintenance with flgr installed? Get a one piece as mentioned earlier.
Don't like the flgr? Sounds like personal preference, but nothing wrong with using one.

For the record, I use and like both GI and flgr and will select according to my vision and use of the pistol.

He didn't design the Internet either. :ROTFL: neither did Al Gore. LOL!
------
I had a standard Short guide rod in my Para. My gunsmith replaced it with a two piece about 12 years ago. Although it would loosen, it never came apart during shooting.

I don't think we will come to a convincing resolution to this discussion. It's like the Revolver v Semiauto or caliber wars, to each his or her own. YMMV.

Magnumite
August 30, 2010, 03:09 PM
Yeah, I agree, CDRGlock. It's just amazing how quick the flgr gets electronically castrated in these threads. Purism is irrational dogma. LOL. Just calling out irrational logic

45auto
August 31, 2010, 06:37 AM
I could be mistaken, but I have a Colt with a loose slide/frame fit and with a FLGR, it rattles less and the ejection pattern is much more consistent than with the GI rod.

Obviously, it works fine with the GI rod, but it would seem the FLGR has some "influence" on how the slide rides the frame??

Magnumite
August 31, 2010, 07:30 AM
It's possible, smoother spring operation, more consistant lockup and recoil patterns.

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