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1911 Question

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by DelayedReaction, Jul 1, 2004.

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  1. DelayedReaction

    DelayedReaction Member

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    How do you determine if a model is a series 70 or a series 80? In particular I'm wondering about the SA Milspec, but I couldn't find the info anywhere for any gun.
     
  2. 45auto

    45auto Member

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    All SA 1911's are series 70 "style", i.e. no firing pin blocks activated by the trigger or grip safety.

    You can tell a "series 80" by looking underneath the slide. Lock the slide back ( or remove) and look for a "plunger" towards the rear and next to the disconnector track( wrong name). The plunger is usually silver in color...at least Colt anyway.

    Colt also says "Series 80" on the slide. :)
     
  3. Sean Smith

    Sean Smith Member

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    The question behind the question is, "why do you care?"
     
  4. cordex

    cordex Member

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    Easy way not even requiring you to unload the weapon:
    1. Point the gun in a safe direction.
    2. Ensure that the hammer is cocked.
    3. Look at the gun from the rear, so you're looking at the firing pin retaining plate.
    4. If you are holding a Series 80 pistol, slightly in front and to the right of the hammer is a small, shiny bit of metal that looks slightly out of place. This is one of the levers used in the Series 80 safety.
     
  5. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    Easier way yet.
    It will say "Colt" on the gun; it will say "Series 80" on the gun.
    Series 80 is a Colt trademark and mechanical design.
    Para Ordnance uses something mechanically similar, but can't call it Series 80 because that is a Colt trademark. The guns are not marked to indicate it because I think all complete gun POs have firing pin blocks. The kits don't.

    Nobody else I can think of uses that design in a 1911 mutant.
     
  6. bountyhunter

    bountyhunter member

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    If you work on both kinds, you already know the answer. The 70 is the essence of a pure design, the 80 is what happens when lawyers get involved.
     
  7. TODD3465

    TODD3465 Member

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    What bountyhunter said.
     
  8. shep854

    shep854 Member

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    Wasn't the collet (Finger) bushing a feature of the "Series 70"? Or did some of the pistols come from the factory without them?
     
  9. Lone_Gunman

    Lone_Gunman Member

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    Can you put a Series 80 slide on a Series 70 frame?
     
  10. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    70/80

    Series 70 denoted the 5-inch guns that came with the collet
    bushings. A good idea that didn't work out as well as intended.

    There were no Series 70 Commanders...no matter what the serial number says. No Commander was equipped with the collet bushing as a regular production item.

    Series 80 Colts used the firing pin safety system that made the pistol drop-safe, but didn't affect the safety of Condition One carry, one way or the other. Actually a very reliable system that gives problems only rarely. It
    uses four extra parts...two in the frame and two in the slide. The Series
    80 firing pin, extractor, firing pin stop, and grip safety are modified, and can be used in a non series 80 pistol...but not vice versa. All other parts, including the trigger, hammer, sear, disconnect, and mainspring housing are interchangeable between the two.

    All original design pistols are correctly referred to as pre Series 70 pistols.

    The Springfield is an original design, if you ignore the ILS system...which is
    easy to change.

    A Series 80 slide can be used on a Series 70 or pre-Series 70 frame if the
    plunger and spring are removed. A Series 80 frame can be sued with a
    Series 70 or pre 70 slide if the two levers are removed and a shim installed.

    Original design firing pin, FP stop, and extractor can be used in a Series 80 pistol if the lawyer parts are removed and a shim installed in the frame. The Series 80 grip safety must be retained, and the plunger and spring must be removed from the slide.

    And now you've got...the REST of the story!

    Tuner
     
  11. DelayedReaction

    DelayedReaction Member

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    I want to know what model parts I should use with it. Ed Brown Extractors come in "Series 70" and "Series 80" versions, and I don't know which I should use with a SA Milspec.
     
  12. shep854

    shep854 Member

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    I would say go with the Series 70. In looking at my Series 80 CC, there appears to be some sort of notch in the extractor for the firing pin safety.
     
  13. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    re: 70/80

    Howdy Delayed Reaction, and welcome to the forum. Sorry,
    didn't ntoice your New Member status before.

    You can use either one in your Springfield...with Series 70 type
    extractor preferred...but either will work. I prefer the Series 80
    type firing pin because of its slightly reduced weight. Speeds up
    lock time slightly and less likely to discharge when dropped.
    _________________________

    shep...the notch in your extractor and the hour-glass shape
    in the firing pin are the differences as noted above.

    Luck!

    Tuner
     
  14. Zach S

    Zach S Member

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    All that will tell someone is if it had a series 80 style safety when it left the factory.

    However, if one knows what he or she is looking for they can tell the difference in the spacer and seires 80 part.

    AFAIK all of them do have the FPS. But you can evidently get the frame kit with or without the machining required for a series 80 safety. A buddie's frame kit was series 80.

    Tuner, I had no idea that the series 80 grip safety was different. Interesting...

    edited three times because I'm huked on fonix and cant spell.......
     
  15. Alfadog

    Alfadog Member

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    I just wanted to note that not all series 80 Colts say series 80 on the slide. My Gov't. Model was made in 1986 and it is not marked "Series 80," even though it came with the lawyer parts.
     
  16. BluesBear

    BluesBear member

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    Technically only a Colt can be a true Series 80.

    The other companies each use a different manner of blocking the firing pin.
     
  17. crucible

    crucible Member

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    As a second to Alphadog, my 1991A1 is an 80-series as well, and is not marked as such.

    Cruc
     
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