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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an 8 year old 91-A1 CDR. I'm about to have some custom work performed. I was wondering if my '91 should have the throat job and feed ramp polished? It already looked shiny - even when new. And the barrel appears throated already. Do gunsmiths perform some finer work in these areas than Colt already does/did to mine?

I love my 91 A1. It has Wilson ambi-safety (I'm a lefty), Wilson drop in BvrTail safety and their #1 Match trigger (triggr job done a few years ago).

I'm getting Novak sites installed (LMC type) and getting rid of my drop in Novak site. Also having a Wilson Hi-rise Bvrtail safety and match style hammer installed. Gun will be dehorned and refinished in matte-black.. Can't wait!!

I've shot about 5000 rnds through the gun over the years and love it. I'll be using it for CC next year and wanted some changes done now. I live very close to the folks at www.tacticalshooting.com and they will do the work.

My frame/slide has a bit of slop in it, even brand new it was like that. But I guess it makes for a dependable gun too. I used to have problems with the last round failing to feed right, but over the last couple of years, it hasn't happened. Maybe because I use Wilson 7 round mags now?

Anyone ever have last round problems in their 91A1?

Sorry to ramble. First post.

David Sonnier, CPO USN
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For a carry gun, my general recommendation is to do as little gunsmithing as possible to it. I would not have any accuracy work done, because this can affect reliability.

In my opinion, reliability is the most important feature of a gun used for defense.
If your gun is reliable now, you don't need any polishing or throating done to your barrel.

I have two 1911-types. One went to the pistolsmith for a reliability package and a trigger job because it needed it. The other one is 100% stock.

I would get some independent recommendations before I gave my gun to a 'Smith. My friend had some extensive (and expensive!) modifications made to his Commander, and when he finally did get the gun back, it was never again reliable.

I had some early "break-in" jams, but since then, using Wilson 7 round magazines, The guns have been completely reliable.

It sounds like you have a nice 1991A1.

-Mk.IV
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the advice. I agree that getting acuracy work is a touchy subject when reliability is most important. I mainly want a better hi rise bevrtail grip safety and the Novak sights.

My quetion, muddled up in all the text of my post, was whether or not the barrels in 91A1's needed to be throated as well as polishing of feed ramps. It seems they come throated with polished ramps from the factory already. Do the gunsmiths add extra polishing or additional throating to these guns? Or is the job done to the mil spec 1911's which come unthroated and usually non polished feed ramps?

Do most of the readers on this forum agree that the throating of the barrel and feed ramp polishing is what a gunsmith would already perform?
Thanks!
David
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Dave,
Take your gun down (All safety rules in place of course) and look at the rear of the barrel. Hold it with the chamber facing you just as it would be in the gun (In other words the hood is up and link is down). If the funneled protion of the barrel is only at six o'clock then the barrel is stock 1911. My wifes has been throated and the ramp at the bottem extends from about 4 o'clock to about 8 o'clock.

That being said I'm of the "if it aint broke...." school as far as these things go. I've got a LWT commander and need to have the crown recut cause some dope before me took a file to it for some reason.. .was thinking of having it throated at the same time but just yesterday I pumped a mag of gold dots through it and it ran like a top.

Tony G.
 

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David

You did not mention what types of ammo you have been shooting through your pistol. So, I suggest that before you have any work done to your pistol, the next time you go shooting you buy a box of every JHP round that interests you, or is available in your area. Well a few diferent brands and grades to start at least, since JHP can be expensive.

Shoot this ammo using all of the magazines you plan to carry. Reject any brand, or grade of ammo that will not feed every round in the box through your pistol. If they all feed properly then you do not need to have your barrel throated right now. Pick a brand and try some more. Shooting 100 rounds of one brand/grade of JHP with out feeding problems is a good indication of reliability. The more brands and grades of JHP that fail to feed in your pistol the more likely it is you need to have the throat and ramp worked on. If only one brand/grade will feed reliably you may choose to forgo the work as long as you only carry this one brand/grade of ammo.

Also, number your magazines so you can see if there is a trend to any feeding issues you find. Like #1 never feeds anthing after the first round is fired, or wont feed the last round, but #2 & #3 feed everthing fine.

I hope this helps.
Str8_Shot
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks all,
I've shot all sorts of premium hollopoints, namely, 185 gr silvertips, 185 gr Golden Sabers, 230 gr Hydras, and more recently I shot a box of Cor-Bon 230 gr +P (my favorite so far). No failures with any of these.

I also shot 6 rounds of the MagSafes a year or 2 back. Those were interesting as to what they did to 5 gallon water containers, but no failures.

I have to say, I've had a blast with my 45.

I checked my barrel and yes it seems to be throated from the 4pm-8pm points. But that's how it came from the factory, and I wondered if that's what all the gunsmiths do when they throat a barrel. Meaning that the 91-A1's don't need a throat job and polished feed ramp.

Thanks!
David
 

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David: I've read all the posts, including your last one, I think. If you brought you pistol to my shop and told me what you just said about feeding JHP's, I'd urge you to leave the throat and ramp alone. Like the man said, "if it ain't broke....."
 

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Colt has been routinely throating and polishing their 1911s since the Series 70 guns. The reason why people think they still need to have it done out of the box is thanks to all those ignoramous gunwriters.

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D. Kamm
USGI M1911/M1911A1 Pistols Website
http://www.geocities.com/M1911_M1911A1
 

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Ref what DSK just said, I was supprised to see just HOW throated the barrel on my wife's compact model is. Compaired to my LWT commander and first M1927 it's wide open. But the LWT and Argie feed and function with every thing I want them to so I'm not inclined to cut them further.

Tony G.
 

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dsk is right on top of this one. Dont mess with, Colt has taken care of it for you. If your gun shoots the assortment of ammo you mentioned there is nothing more to do to the ramp or barrel.

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No man is above the law and no man is below it. Nor do we ask any mans permission when we require him to obey it.
 

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I can't add anything to what has already been said but simply wish to add my support to " If you have fired 150 rnds of what you intend to carry and it fed perfectly then you are OK".

I have issues with Colt magazines. Your Mileage may vary. Personally, I do not consider them reliable enough to carry. I don't have any real new ones but the old ones often malfunction for me.

PigPen
 

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I purchased a Combat Commander new and I'm getting some throat work done. The weapon simply will not feed hollow points reliably; rarely making it through an entire magazine without a round hanging up on the barrel. Though the barrel is throated from the factory, the gap between the top of the feedramp and the barrel is inadequate. If I wasn't having problems I wouldn't be having anything done to it.
 

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First of all, if it ain't broke don't fix it. I agree 100%.

Second, ALWAYS have your work done by a top-end gunsmith, period. The chump down the road who talks a good game will likely as not wreck your pistol. This comes from my own personal experience being duped. (Note: this isn't a comment about the people you said would to the work, just a generic warning).

Third, it is inaccurate (uh, no pun intended
) to say that having accuracy work done on your weapon will make it less reliable. Having a dips*it gunsmith work on your weapon will make it less reliable. A GOOD gunsmith will fit the barrel, then test it and make it work. I have shot my Delta Elite until it got too hot to hold after it had a Bar-Sto barrel fitted and it worked great... even though the insides were pure gunk. This with a barrel-to-slide fit like a vault and a tight slide-to-frame fit to boot. Of course, if you ask for extreme degrees of tightness (e.g. what some Les Baers come with) then all bets are off.


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CastleBravo
The Pit: http://www.geocities.com/mr_motorhead/index.html

[This message has been edited by CastleBravo (edited 07-30-2001).]
 

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Originally posted by CastleBravo:

Third, it is inaccurate (uh, no pun intended
) to say that having accuracy work done on your weapon will make it less reliable. Having a dips*it gunsmith work on your weapon will make it less reliable. A GOOD gunsmith will fit the barrel, then test it and make it work. I have shot my Delta Elite until it got too hot to hold after it had a Bar-Sto barrel fitted and it worked great... even though the insides were pure gunk. This with a barrel-to-slide fit like a vault and a tight slide-to-frame fit to boot. Of course, if you ask for extreme degrees of tightness (e.g. what some Les Baers come with) then all bets are off.


I think the reliabilty issue relates mostly to a combat situation where closer tolerances tend to jam and malfunction before a looser fitting Barrel-Bushing, Slide-Frame etc.

It simply follows that a tighter fit will tolerate mud, sand, powder rersidue, or other foreign debris less well.

So if you are interested in self defense at close range (less than 10 yards) under the most extreme circumstance (e.g. shooting your way back to the rifle that you never should have left
)some (Chuck Taylor and Jeff Cooper among them)would argue that it does not make since to give up that extra measure of reliability and ruggedness to gain the extra accuracy which they would argue you do not need in the first place. That is, they would say that you do not need to shoot 2inch groups at 25 yards but instead only need 8 inchs groups at 10 yards.

PigPen
 

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Sorry, I was assuming that people woudln't immerse their 1911 in mud and let it soak in prior to shooting whoever broke into their house... if you plan on doing that I'd suggest getting a Glock instead. They are more rust resistant and you don't have to worry about abusing them because they are already butt ugly.


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CastleBravo
The Pit: http://www.geocities.com/mr_motorhead/index.html

[This message has been edited by CastleBravo (edited 08-01-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Ok, thanks to all the advice. I think the question was answered. Yes I assume my barrel was already throated like what the gunsmiths advertise. I guess it's for barrels that are mil-spec.

Yep, I'm more than happy with my functioning. Just a few minor parts like the Bvrtail safety soon.

Thanks all!
David
 
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