1911 reassembly slide stop problem - help


August 4, 2012, 05:07 PM
I bought a 1911 about a week ago, SA Range Officer. I just took it apart to clean it today and am trying to put it back together and am having trouble getting the slide stop back in

It looks like the plunger tube is blocking the opening. What is the trick to getting the slide stop to go in. I've tried watching the videos online and doing it from there to no avail. None of them address what to do with the plunger not does the SA owners guide. Please help. (note: I have some black tape on the frame to keep from scratching it)

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August 4, 2012, 05:11 PM
It takes some getting used to. You mostly kind of push it up and in diagonally. Try not to get an idiot mark on the frame, but if you do....it's not the end of the world.

It may be new and stiff. Both the plunger and the stop. You might try a slim object like a tiny screwdriver to push the plunger in to let the slide stop get past.

August 4, 2012, 05:15 PM

Sergei Mosin
August 4, 2012, 06:09 PM
I used to use a tiny screwdriver to depress the plunger. Then I realized that if the screwdriver slipped, I was going to have a really bad scratch somewhere on the gun. Something not sharp (like a thin plastic card) is better.

August 4, 2012, 07:06 PM
The inner portion (retaining portion?) of the slide stop is rounded. If you use a little force it will usually "snap" past the plunger, depressing it as it goes into the hole.

If it doesn't do it with moderate force, check to make sure the pin will depress. You shouldn't need to use a tool of any type. That spring is quite weak even in new guns.

David E
August 4, 2012, 07:16 PM
Put a drop of oil on the plunger. Make sure it moves in and out of the plunger housing.

Put a drop of oil on the exposed part of the plunger again and carefully place the contact portion if the slide stop on the plunger as you carefully push it up and in. (more in than up)

Should go right in!

August 4, 2012, 07:31 PM
Go to a guitar store and buy some picks. They're just the right thickness to slip in and push the plunger aside and won't scratch anything.

August 4, 2012, 08:23 PM
it seems like Springfield Armory guns are sticky at this point, more than others. (based on witnessed scratches and similar threads)

anyone know why? My 4 cheapo Armscor-built 1911s don't have any trouble at that point in assembly, it can't be me, because I'm not particularly skilled, so do they use a different style plunger or slide stop lever than SA? The plunger in the OP's picture does look a bit "squared off" compared to what I remember on mine, I'll have to compare some time.

August 4, 2012, 08:31 PM
Put a piece of scotch/masking tape and slide it up and in

August 4, 2012, 08:53 PM
Put a piece of scotch/masking tape and slide it up and in really? every time?
how am I avoiding all this extra work?

August 4, 2012, 09:23 PM
I ended up using a flathead screwdriver to puch the plunger in. Thanks to everone for assisting

August 4, 2012, 09:42 PM
It's a lot easier if the recoi spring isn't under pressure - just remember to insert the plug last. That way, you can finesse the slide stop back in place without fighting the slide to keep the notch in the correct location....

August 4, 2012, 11:34 PM
I'll post this here as well for those who have trouble with the slide stop. I never have but I've seen people struggle, an excellent thread: http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=654073

This is something I've done to all my 1911s since seeing it and asking log man about potential issues. Quite simply, it eliminates the frustration.


August 5, 2012, 12:49 AM
Some 1911's can have very stiff plungers until they've been disassembled and reassembled a few times. My advice is to put some oil in it and then work it back and forth with a punch several times. My father's 1970s Combat Commander was similar. He'd never field stripped it. I took it apart a few years ago and had a heck of a time getting that slide stop back in. Now that it's been done a few times and has been properly oiled, it's easy as can be.

August 5, 2012, 02:46 AM
I struggled a little with it in years past. It has gotten easier as it loosens up. I picked up a new 1911, and from day one it was a piece of cake. Hmmmmm. Comparing the 2, I noticed that the plunger stuck out further on the older model. It appears the counterbore on the one was too deep. I purchased a new stainless steel plunger spring assembly, all of about $5, inserted into the housing, yep its cut too deep, measured twice, marked the plunger chucked in a drill and shortened it so it stuck out of the housing per drawing. Easy to round like stock. The plunger still engages the slide stop BUT inserts very easy. :-) One other thing to look at while you have the stop out. Mine had a casting burr or sharp edge that would make an idiot scratch with NO pressure. I made one on my SS gun (other) cause i went to flip it away. The sharp point was easily dulled and now it would take some serious pressure to mark the frame.

August 5, 2012, 08:00 AM
I use Skylerbone's method (nice use of the NRA card) I generally use Visa because it's accepted everywhere.

August 5, 2012, 10:42 AM
I just push hard, but if it didn't go, Skylerbone's got the right idea. But just put it straight in and push hard; I have yet to have an idiot scratch on 3 1911's.

August 5, 2012, 11:32 AM
I generally use Visa because it's accepted everywhere.

At today's 1911 prices Eddie your method makes more sense, though this might be the only place American Express is accepted. I just hope they don't charge you 4% per transaction. :D

August 5, 2012, 11:50 AM
I find it easier to swing it up into position, depressing the plunger than to simply push it straight in. No special tools or credit cards and no scratched frames either. Some are easier than others.

Jim K
August 5, 2012, 02:08 PM
Those clone makers who care about specs make sure the plunger does not protrude too far, is rounded properly, and that the slide stop is angled properly so it will slip in easily with just thumb pressure.

Those who don't force the owner to use screwdrivers, business cards, guitar picks (!) and cuss words to reassemble the gun.


August 5, 2012, 07:18 PM
Study your tools a little closer. A business card is too soft.

August 5, 2012, 09:54 PM
I agree with Jim.

And it is a fairly simple fix if it doesn't pop in easily.

August 5, 2012, 10:37 PM
push hard, it'll go

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