My 1991A1 came from the factory with the Videcki aluminum trigger, so that isn't an issue for me. At some point I will probably replace the plastic m/s housing. No real reason for this other than I like steel stuff better than plastic stuff. Sometimes my gun has a very slight amount of trigger creep - not on every shoot- just once in a while, so I may have a good smith take care of that if it doesn't clear up on its own after I put a few hundred more rounds through it. Other these two very minor items, I don't plan to do a thing to it except shoot it!-TR
I mostly shoot stock Colt guns with LIGHT modification. Usually do the following:
1. Change steel/plastic triggers to oversize Nowlin (current preference) aluminum 3 hole to get rid of all play. Makes a big difference in how trigger pull feels even without modifying other factory trigger group parts.
2. 18 lb recoil spring for hardball and +p hollowpoints. 16 lb for reduced and lead .45 loads. 16 lb for 38 super/9x23 max loads (less a coil or two for +p 9mm). Extra power firing pin spring in all cases.
3. 19 or 17 lb mainspring depending on target or carry use.
4. Stone hammer and sear. Basically polish at factory angles but add relief cut which is small to non-existent on most factory colt sears. Lower hammer hooks to .02. This will fix the creep.
5. Add full length guide rod to smooth recoil spring function. I know it doesn't add to accuracy and in most cases doesn't help reliability but there is a lot less spring noise with one of these in place.
6. Relieve hammer to reduce overcock. On blued 1991s, I polish the hammer sides as well.
7. Polish all internals as needed: disconnector, sear and hammer (none engagement related surfaces), trigger bow, trigger track in frame, series 80 parts
8. Improve magazine funneling - Factory job leaves a bit to be desired.
9. VERY IMPORTANT - Check barrel and slide fit for proper clearance to prevent lug rounding and battering. Seems to be most prevalent in early 80 series guns. I will also polish out rub marks in direction of slide travel rather than with grain of barrel material and polish slide to reduce future rub marks. On blued 1991s - usually remove blue and polish entire barrel - look better and functions a little smoother (Factory metal finish on 1991 barrels is usually pretty rough). 1500 - 2000 grit wet/dry sandpaper and a little oil works great.
10. Change front sight to post for target and competition to eliminate glare. Stock Colt front ramps get pretty shiny.
11. Prefer arched mainspring housing. Plastic is ok with me.
Shoot Kimber too but most of this is done already on Kimber.
[This message has been edited by James P (edited 05-21-2001).]
I prefer the flat mainspring which is on the 1991s. I think it is steel on mine. I already have a custom S/S 91. I had night sights installed, commander hammer, trigger job, group gripper package, fitted barrel bushing. And it outclasses my 68 National Match on accuracy. And almost matches it on reliability. Trigger pull comes up short, but its a pre 70 Gold cup i'm comparing to.
I'm with James, almost. I'd stick with the stock spring rates and skip the guide rod, but everything else is pretty much what I've done to my '91 or other Series 80 Colts. The Videki lighweight trigger required just a very little filing top and bottom for a perfect fit. The long steel Videki trigger should drop in, and will look virtually identical to the stock plastic one.
I was debating a trigger job on my Delta Elite, but found that lowering the hammer hooks to .02" (down from .03"+) and putting a slight relief on the stock sear - with no other "gunsmithing" on my part - gave me a very nice, 5# pull.
I am going to have to look at my feeler gauge to be sure but I think its .02. They seem to come standard between .025 - .03. As long as the sear is properly engaged with no more than 50% relief angle, the hammer isn't going to follow unless the mainspring is dropped below 17lbs or the sear spring is tweaked too much.
EDIT: Yuup, get it close with the .022 (the one with all of the file marks) and then finish with stones until it matches the .020 gauge. It has been so long since I actually looked at the print on the gauges that I had to make sure that I wasn't still using the .018.
[This message has been edited by James P (edited 05-21-2001).]
i would have to say shoot the gun first too, get used to the gun, see how it runs. there are really good idea's that have been posted, but remember its up to you. for me, i didn't feel i needed to do anything. when i started carrying my colt 91A1 on duty i did get night sights. personally i don't care for full length rods, its just more than i think i need. and i also don't worry about changing the spring, the ones colt put in the gun seem to have worked for me fine.
i'm not saying don't do these things, i'm just saying that there is nothing wrong with leaving it stock if it runs good.
have fun with your colt, i wouldn't trade mine!!!!
russel the cop
CHANCE FAVORS THE PREPARED MIND....
Shoot, shoot, shoot it until you determine if it needs anything. My 91A1 has had a trigger job and feels as good as a Series 70 gun. Trijicon night sights installed. Smith & Alexander mag guide installed. Full length guide rod with an 18.5# recoil spring and shok buff. Softens recoil and makes slide movement more consistent. And, for the last 10 years, the plastic Colt trigger has worked like a champ. Have used Shooting Star 8 round magazines and they have been excellent for the past 10 years. The 91A1 is a great gun.
Hammer follow generally happens when you get your trigger pull too light as either the sear bumps off the hammer by itself or the trigger "bounces" on to the sear from the hammer.
The things that prevent trigger bounce are: Sear spring pressure on sear, sear spring pressure on the disconnector, series 80 plunger spring, and friction/fit between all of these moving parts of the trigger. If any of these are lightened or if there is any tolerance/slack problems, the trigger will be more likely to bounce.
The things that hold the hammer back are the pressure on the sear (sear spring), tension on the hammer (mainspring), and quality of the hammer/sear engagement. Obviously, if you lighten any of these , the hammer is less resistant to following.
With all of the above modifications: polished internals, hammer/sear stoning, heavier recoil spring (which has more forward momentum going back into action and creates a bigger pulse) , and depending on the sear spring - the gun is more likely to trigger bounce. This is more of a concern if you are in the habit of releasing the trigger after some or all of your shots rather than holding it back through the recoil cycle until reset.
If you have reduced your mainspring "too much", thereby lessening the resistance to the "bounce", you may get follow. Notice I didn't say the gun would necessarily fire. In series 80 guns, it is possible for the bounce to cause the hammer to follow but the series 80 levers may not engage the safety enough to unlock the firing pin.
A particular gun may be safe below 17lbs (It could be assumed that a 17lb spring will set to 15-16 lbs after use). But at some point, the gun is going to be unsafe whether it is because the hammer follows, the trigger pull is so light that you bump it and goes off, or that ignition is so inconsistent that you don't know if it is going off or not. It is more likely that inconsistent ignition would occur first with the heavier firing pin spring but the point was more related to cutting hammer hooks and not proper ignition.
As others have already said - I would recommend shooting it a while to determine what you need/want and don't just do someone else's shopping list.
[This message has been edited by James P (edited 05-24-2001).]
I just finished tunning one myself, mostly prefernce things (grip and controls)that I like: Here is the list of what I did to the commander and the cost, all is stuff that you can generally do your self and order on brownells.com:
Wilson Beavertail Grip $32.95
(had tang bite going on!)
Ed Brown MS Housing Flat 20 LPI $44.95
(old was plastic and slick)
WILSON 1-PC COMMANDER GUIDE ROD $24.95
Ed Brown HEX MAG CATCH LOCK $3.95
Masen EXT. SLIDE STOP, SERRATED $17.95
Wilson Combat OVERSIZE MAG RELEASE $34.95
ED BROWN SLIDE BUFFERS $5.95
AUTO GRIP SCREWS (hex)$6.95
Hogue Front strap grip $12.95
The gun runs great with the stock springs, sights, trigger, and safty so I wont change.
Have Fun shoot safe, and always consult your local smith if you feel your in over your head.