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FIRST TRY AT TRIGGER JOB ON 1911 - NEED INFORMATION

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing and Repairs' started by johnny blaze, Aug 21, 2006.

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  1. johnny blaze

    johnny blaze Member

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    I decided to try my first trigger job on a 1911. I got a trigger job kit, and installed it. I followed the directions from several manuals.
    I installed the new adjustable trigger, new hammer, sear, disconnector, and leaf.
    I have been trying to function the pistol with just the lower frame of the pistol, without the slide safety lever installed.
    I pull back the hammer and it locks back, I pull the trigger, and the hammer will not fall. The trigger moves, but it will not make the hammer fall.
    I installed the original parts back, (as I thought that there may be a problem with the new parts) , in the pistol. I left the new trigger installed. I have the same problem, the hammer will not fall when I pull the trigger. (it worked fine before)
    Any suggestions as to what may be the problem?
    Should the trigger and hammer function with just the lower frame?
    At first I thought that it may be the adjustable trigger, so I ran the screw out to make sure that I was getting enough movement for the trigger.
    When I look at the sear and disconnect with the hammer out of the pistol and pull the trigger, the sear and disconnect are moving.
    I have taken it apart probably 8 times and checked everything with the same results.
    One thing on a positive note, I know how to strip a 1911 now.
    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.:banghead:
     
  2. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    re:

    Assemble the gun without the grip safety. Use a good light to look into the sear/disconnect interface area to see if the disconnect moves up far enough to cause the sear to rotate when the trigger is pulled...or if it slips under the bottoms of the sear feet
     
  3. XavierBreath

    XavierBreath Member

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    My money is on a binding sear spring.

    Remove the MSH, take out the sear spring, lay it back into place, making sure the tab is in the frame slot. Leave the grip safety off so you can see what is going on. Slide the MSH back up making certain the hammer strut aligns correctly. For ease of troubleshooting/disassembly, slide a punch in the MSH pin hole to hold it in place.

    Try again.

    You probably want to pad the area where the hammer could strike the frame. Allowing that to happen can quickly damage both hammer and frame.
     
  4. johnny blaze

    johnny blaze Member

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    Thanks for the information.
    It is now working. Seems as though for some reason, I was not getting any movement on the sear. I reinstalled everything (twice), and now it is fine.
    The trigger pull is about half of what it was with the stock equipment .
    The kit also came with a new mainspring housing spring. Should I install the new spring also? Is it hard to get in and out? The new spring is quite a bit longer that the housing, so I assume that it is pretty tight. The new spring would probably make the trigger pull even better.
    thanks again.:D
     
  5. johnny blaze

    johnny blaze Member

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    Got the new spring in the mainspring housing, it was easy.
    The trigger pull is really smooth and light.
    I have one problem however. The new hammer is hitting the grip safety. I really never thought about it before. The grip safety is the old type as on the military models years ago. It is thick and does not have much of a curve to it.
    I guess with these new triggers, you have to use the thinner, curved grip safety.
     
  6. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    Hammer Hit

    The hammer hits the grip safety on all of'em every time the slide cycles.
    The hammer doesn't follow the slide and cock smoothly. It gets slammed
    back past full cock...bounces off the top of the tang...and hits the slide.
    The slide goes to battery and drops the hammer hooks back onto the sear.

    If it hits the safety just as it reaches full cock, when you hand-cycle it, you might have an issue. It should travel past full cock a little.
    If you've used a Commander-style hammer with a standard grip safety, the safety will need to be relieved for the hammer.
     
  7. johnny blaze

    johnny blaze Member

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    Thanks 1911Tuner for the reply.
    I would assume that you mean to cut, grind the grip safety down some. What would I do about the finish?
    I was considering buying a new grip safety, but I am not sure if a new one would work or not. It may have the same problem.
     
  8. XavierBreath

    XavierBreath Member

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    Johnny, what kind of hammer do you have? If you have a spur hammer, I might think about bobbing the hammer a bit rather than grinding the grip safety. In fact, what kind of 1911/hammer/grip safety are we dealing with here? It makes a difference.

    Just my two pesos.....;)

    I am not a professional gunsmith and my advice is worth what you pay for it.....
     
  9. johnny blaze

    johnny blaze Member

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    The hammer is a commander style hammer. It comes down fairly far and is hitting the Grip safety. It will not get to the cocking point before hitting the grip safety.
    I considered bobbing the hammer, but the bottom is way too thin.
    The grip safety is a 20 year old standard military grip safety. It is very thick and does not have much of a curve to it.
     
  10. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    Hammer

    Yep. It'll require modification to the grip safety. Try to pull up Colt's website and take a look at the safety on a Series 80 Commander NRM. The XSE..if it's still available...comes with a beavertail. The NRM Commander/Combat Commander has the style you need. It's a little tedious to do one and make it look right, but it can be done.
     
  11. Dale Taylor

    Dale Taylor Member

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    Wilson drop in beavertail is easy to fit. Looks ok to me but not as good as file shape with jig. Quick and easy. Protect against hammer bite, preserves original parts. Mods hate them. daleltaylor@att.net
     
  12. johnny blaze

    johnny blaze Member

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    Thanks for the replies.
    I will check out the colt pistol. I will also check out the Wilson beavertail.
    First mod to a 1911 that I have done. It has been a learning experience.
    I now know how it functions and how to take it apart (many times).
    I am really impressed with the simplicity of the 1911.
    I do now have a smooth, much lighter trigger pull that I can live with.
    I still have alot to learn.:D
     
  13. EllisWyatt

    EllisWyatt Member

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    Not to be a spoilsport, but I hope this isn't your carry piece. The trigger on a serious pistol is not something to be experiemented on. If you're learning on a range gun, good for you. Just...you know...be careful.

    I saw (and answered!) your other question on beavertails today. Now I'm thinking the best advice for you is to pick up the 1911 books by Kuhnhausen (or any of a million others).

    Tinkering is fun! Just don't dive headlong into disaster! Google and Brownells are your friends.
     
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