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Effect of dropping in a used hammer on a 1911

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing and Repairs' started by kel, Jun 28, 2006.

  1. kel

    kel Well-Known Member

    I am looking to change out the grip safety and hammer. Fitting the grip safety is simple enough, but I am worried that changing the hammer will cause problems with hammer follow or ruin the trigger pull. I am looking for 4.5-6 lbs trigger, basically what my stock S&W 1911 came with.

    My inspiration comes from here.

    I bought a takeoff grip safety and hammer from a Colt Series 70 to put on the gun. Is there anything I need to look out for?
  2. Dale Taylor

    Dale Taylor Well-Known Member

    You may need to file grip safety very carefully and SLOWLY. Check fit often. daleltaylor@att.net
  3. Dale Taylor

    Dale Taylor Well-Known Member

    You may need to file grip safety very carefully and SLOWLY. Check fit often. Unless you drop in beavertail and commander hammer why change? daleltaylor@att.net
  4. kel

    kel Well-Known Member

    Purely cosmetic

    Just want to try out a different look. Parts were 25 shipped. I don't think a beavertail makes a big difference for me, if I find out otherwise I can always put the stock parts back in. I bought a spur hammer, I wish I had gotten a USGI spur hammer, but I was not sure what to look for and ended up with a different style of spur hammer that I like better, but not much better then factory hammer.
  5. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus


    Hi kel,

    It depends. Are the hammer hooks worn? How much? Will the hooks maintain a safe, workable relationship with the sear primary angle? That can vary according to the sear's length...the primary angle...the location of the hooks...location of the hole in the hammer...location of the sear and hammer pin holes and their distance apart...things like that. You can also run into problems with the depth of sear reset into the hammer at full cock that cause
    problems with the thumb saety...either too hard to engage, or not blocking the sear's movement on pulling the trigger.

    Or...you can sometimes drop it in with zero problems. Not highly likely though.
    Most of the time, you'll have to make some adjustment, somewhere. I've seen it go both ways. Highly unlikely too, that the trigger pull will be what you want it to be. Even with the So-called "drop-in" trigger jobs, there's usually something that needs attention. The old saying that there's no such thing as a (guaranteed) drop-in part goes double when you're swapping out any part of the fire control group...and triple when you deal with the more critical parts like the hammer, sear, and disconnect.

    The hammer doesn't have anything to do with the grip safety, other than to
    whack it when the slide slams it backward on firing. The grip safety blocks the trigger. Changing triggers may require some light adjustment to the lug...but that's about it. Once in a while you'll run into an issue with the strut
    making contact in the grip safety's channel, and that may need relieving a bit,
    but that's unusual unless something is out of spec...either with the strut, the strut's pin hole location...or the grip safety itself.

  6. kel

    kel Well-Known Member

    They seemed to drop right in


    The grip safety is %100, it passed a function test and it let go of the trigger after a reasonable amount of travel. The hammer seems to be okay, half cock seemed to work, forogot to check for push off, the trigger feels the same as with the old hammer.

    I had some trouble with the hammer pin and strut. The hammer pin on my SW1911 was stuck in their real good so I couldn't reuse it. I bought a new strut and pin from CDNN, and the new pin seemed a little long for the hammer, a tiny bit of it sticks out the side of the hammer, but it doesn't seem to stop the hammer from rotating or drag much. I noticed while function testing that the force on the hammer felt a bit weak, I wonder of the strut is dragging on the grip safety?

    I will single load a box of ammo to see how it runs some time this weekend.
  7. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus


    If the strut is dragging in the grip safety's channel, you can usually feel it by gripping the safety hard and dry-firing the gun. You'll feel a slight bump through the safety, usually just below the web of your hand.

    The hammer strut pin was probably staked into the old hammer. Cut the new one down to just barely below flush with the sides and use a prick punch to deform the metal around the hole adjacent to the pin. I normally use a heavier punch and brad the center of the pin itself. Expands the pin for a press-fit, and makes removal a little easier. Staking the sides of the hammer is more "permanent".

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