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Just read some posts on breakage of mim parts. Folks, I'll be frank. A number of the makers out there have cut all the corners they can. Use of mim parts/castings is prevelent. That's not all bad, but in parts that see heavy useage and contact it's not the way to go...
I'm currently replacing all the factory parts in my Stainless Commander with forged and hardened parts for that very reason. Spendy, yes, but not as failure/wear prone.
The gent that had the safety fail isn't the first. The "line" he described in undoubtedly from soldering the parts together. When done properly it works well. He's seen the results of poor jobs:-(
As much as I love the 1911, there's darn few I would trust "out of the box".
I own Les Baer, Colt, and Springfield guns. The quality of them varies. Les Baer are tight from the factory, but run 100% with good ammo. I wouldn't carry one "socially" until they have 1,000 rounds break in...why? Because they are too tight! Other than that perfect.
Springfields are generally good guns, but have some corners cut in the parts area, as does Colt.
Colt quality varies. The early series 70 and 80 guns are good, but not great. The 1991A1's good dollar value. Again, mim parts show up in the later series 80's and 1991A1's and need to be replaced if heavy usage is contemplated.
Most internals will only go 5-6K before failure or excessive wear.
All for now, it's late.
Wes
Willamette Small Arms Academy
 

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Wes,
Please do not take this as a 'flame' or attack, but:
Which parts in your Colt are MIM/cast?
What is your source of 'forged and hardened' replacement parts?
Upon what data is your statement "Most internals will only go 5-6K before failure or excessive wear." based?

Chuck
 

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There is no reliable report's of Colt's being all Mim, when asked they say they tried a few parts (grip safety and one or two others) then went back to cast.

The line was probably a mold line, I've never heard of them soldering a piece togethor, it seems senseless with casting. Most problems with parts breakage are more likely due to heat treatment problems and variances.
 

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Originally posted by Wes Howe:
Just read some posts on breakage of mim parts. Folks, I'll be frank. A number of the makers out there have cut all the corners they can. Use of mim parts/castings is prevelent. That's not all bad, but in parts that see heavy useage and contact it's not the way to go...
I'm currently replacing all the factory parts in my Stainless Commander with forged and hardened parts for that very reason....blah......blah..........Colt quality varies. The early series 70 and 80 guns are good, but not great. The 1991A1's good dollar value. Again, mim parts show up in the later series 80's and 1991A1's and need to be replaced if heavy usage is contemplated.
Most internals will only go 5-6K before failure or excessive wear.
Only 5-6K....BULL.

I get so tired of these MIM phobia posts.
 

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Wes. I'm sure glad you have one good 1911. ( Les's) You are right about running 1000 rounds through it to make sure it's reliable.he makes a fine product. I built them different. Mine were 100% from the first round to now.SA's are what they are and so are Colt's. MIM parts are OK in these guns and they are harder than a preachers ----. The Filipino's are using them and the sears are too hard to cut. I think you may or may not be getting the right parts for your SS Commander. I have always found Colt's interior parts to be very good. I like Chip's Trigger group and have come as close with a drop in trigger job with his stuff as any. Good luck.
 

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Originally posted by FirearmsPlus.FL:
There is no reliable report's of Colt's being all Mim, when asked they say they tried a few parts (grip safety and one or two others) then went back to cast.

The line was probably a mold line, I've never heard of them soldering a piece togethor, it seems senseless with casting. Most problems with parts breakage are more likely due to heat treatment problems and variances.
I would respectfully disagree. the mag catch sear, disconector, have been mim for years.

"James
Only 5-6K....BULL."

I Agree, the Colt and Kimber hammer and sears are working. For a production gun they serve the purpose. Some Gunsmith types will not use them, but there ok.


"I get so tired of these MIM phobia posts."
For the hammer and sear, fine
the Barrel Bushing and slide stops that are mim, I would pass, they are out there and they work by and large, but for a defence gun I would want more.

"Gary
Theres a world of difference between MIM(Plasticized metel injected molding) parts and those derived from investment casting."

Yes I also agree, Even in ecramasa's litrature it states that mim is NOT as strong as Cast parts. The pecking order would be

Billet or forging
Cast (and by Whom is a very good question)
Mim (and more so by whom, who's feed stock, how much experience, how hard..... )

geo ><>
 

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George,
Are you sure about the sear, disconnector and mag catch being MIM?
I was under the impression they were 'sintered metal technology', the same process used for Dan Wesson revolver parts.
I think powdered metal is subjected to heat and pressure in this technique.
At any rate, I actually prefer Colt disconnectors above all others. I have only rarely seen the top of one with significant wear, and in those cases it was a result of an unusually rough disconnector track on the bottom of the slide.
It only takes a few minutes with a file and stone to clean-up the part lines.
As to modern Colt sears, I have never had a problem. I offer a 'lifetime warranty' on my trigger jobs and will gladly use a Colt sear.
I'm sure my success has much to do with my prep of both the hammer and sear, such as stoning a small radius of the top of the hammer hooks to prevent digging into the sear.
Metalsmith has reported mid-forties Rc 'C' scale on the sears which is adequate using my techniques, but not ideal.
I'd guess there is more to abrasion resistance in these components than the Rockwell numbers would indicate.
As to the cast/sintered/MIM mag catches.....
NEVER again will I attempt to drill and tap one of those SOB's. They have resisted my best annealing attempts and eaten a handful of 4-40 taps. In 15 years, I have seen two fail. One broke clean in half, the shelf of the other was worn down. I suspect just a bad part on the former, and a darn burred, and too hard magazine on the latter.

Chuck
 

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Here are some pics of a Colt disconnector. The part was removed from a Delta Elite.I think it was '89 manufacture?


I changed the part because of the looks.It actually worked fine.
 

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Bodeen
Thank you! I apreciate the help!

Chuck buddy, the back spot is the gate
where the squirt the feed stock in
the side round circles are ejector marks where they pop the green part out of the mold.

the Dan Wessons we played with you always cut the part and had them hard chromed in the hopes they would hold the cuts you put on them.

I found out by accident probably in 87 or 88 when trying to anneal a mag catch, the goo came out and I thought, um what is that??

now someone tell Col Colt.


geo ><>
 

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Originally posted by Gary Smith:
Theres a world of difference between MIM(Plasticized metel injected molding) parts and those derived from investment casting.
gary which is better? casting or mim?
i have read about mim a little but what
makes one better or worse i the end. just
wanted to know. thanks
 

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...when trying to anneal a mag catch, the goo came out and I thought, um what is that??...
George, please expound on your experience. What goo? As I mentioned in the direct email, I have a problem with the MIM parts being so hard (& hard to stone smooth)as well as the dimensional problems. The disconnector spec that I reference is in Kuhnhausen's manual, however I also have a copy of the original military prints. I've not confirmed that the 2 prints are the same, but suspect that they are. The MIM disconnector seems to be oversize in almost every dimension. Some would cause no problem, but others will affect clearance in certain positions as well as safety if I'm measuring/understanding the function properly. One point in particular, the top of the paddle on the bottom of the disconnector has a specified distance down from the hole. That dimension had been off on every Colt MIM part that I've measured. What that means is that the paddle may not pass cleanly under the foot of the sear when the disconnector (even an extra long one) is pushed down by the track on the slide. A possible safety issue. That's where I was going with the email.
I, too, like them long. i usually replace them with a GI spec part from my secret stash. Easy to polish, in spec, and clean ( no mold lines).
 

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I beg to differ with Larry. Colt could care less about the parts you break. The Officers model has a reverse plug that is a guaranteed failure and they have used it for years. I have several in my failure drawer. I have sent parts that broke back to Colt never to be seen again, mostly slide stops. You can't get to a human being at Colt on the phone and they don't call you back. The quality parts people like Caspian, Ed Brown, Bill Wilson, Chip McCormick, or Brownells are the ones that are honorable and will back up what they sell.
 

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Originally posted by Dave Sample:
I beg to differ with Larry. Colt could care less about the parts you break. The Officers model has a reverse plug that is a guaranteed failure and they have used it for years. I have several in my failure drawer.
KooL, I get to agree with Dave on this one.

But
" I built them different. Mine were 100% from the first round to now."

I Can't begin to make that statment. I have built many guns, I have Learned much more from the ones that did not work. Often I will go out a second and third time changing and adjusting till I am satisfied that the Gun is Right before it goes out. I once spend a week getting a first off gun to run.
geo ><>

Ps, My failure drawer's bigger than yours
 

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Originally posted by Dave Sample:
I beg to differ with Larry. Colt could care less about the parts you break. The Officers model has a reverse plug that is a guaranteed failure and they have used it for years. I have several in my failure drawer.
KooL, I get to agree with Dave on this one.

But
" I built them different. Mine were 100% from the first round to now."

I Can't begin to make that statment. I have built many guns, I have Learned much more from the ones that did not work. Often I will go out a second and third time changing and adjusting till I am satisfied that the Gun is Right before it goes out. I once spend a week getting a first off gun to run.
geo ><>

Ps, My failure drawer's bigger than yours
 
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