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Discussion Starter #1
Is anyone aware of any failures, on the street or on the range, that have been attributed to the Swartz safety?

I have heard of grip issues in that someones grip was just strong enough to release the grip safety, but not enough to disengage the Swartz, thus blocking the firing pin from traveling forward.

I also hear a lot of people cite reliability as an issue. Is this just a case of it is one more thing to "possibly" break or are there documented real world failures because of the Swartz system.

Any feedback on documented failures is greatly appreciated.
 

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Yes, I've had a number of failures with the Swartz safety. A couple of times out of each 100 - 200 rds my Kimber Pro CArry II would fail to go bang. The problem is my grip. If I didn't get the correct grip my hand wouldn't press the grip safety enough to deactive the firing pin safety and the gun wouldn't fire. For a range gun it wouldn't be a big problem but this is my only carry piece, not good. During a serious confrontation you will not have time to make sure your grip is correct!

This is not a problem with Kimbers gun or the Swartz safety but with the ergonomics of my hand and the way I grip the gun. Many people don't have a problem with the safety. I did and I replaced the firing pin with a series 70 pin and cured the problem. I have fired 2300 rds since then with no problems. And there have been no problems with the firing pin dragging or damage to any of the parts. YMMV
 

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Discussion Starter #5
gunfighter48 said:
Yes, I've had a number of failures with the Swartz safety. A couple of times out of each 100 - 200 rds my Kimber Pro CArry II would fail to go bang. The problem is my grip. If I didn't get the correct grip my hand wouldn't press the grip safety enough to deactive the firing pin safety and the gun wouldn't fire. For a range gun it wouldn't be a big problem but this is my only carry piece, not good. During a serious confrontation you will not have time to make sure your grip is correct!

This is not a problem with Kimbers gun or the Swartz safety but with the ergonomics of my hand and the way I grip the gun. Many people don't have a problem with the safety. I did and I replaced the firing pin with a series 70 pin and cured the problem. I have fired 2300 rds since then with no problems. And there have been no problems with the firing pin dragging or damage to any of the parts. YMMV


I 've seen serveral posts regarding the grip safety issue. I have not experienced this problem myself but I have thought about installing the grip safety that Kimber uses on the Warrior on my Gold Combat. It seems to protrude back a little more. A little extra insurance that I deactivate the grip safety in the heat of the moment.
 

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Just one more reason to consider other options in my humble opinion.

The Swartz safety is unnecessary and is a huge liability to anyone carrying a 1911 so equipped for personal protection.
 

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I'm another anti-Swartz voter....

My Kimber doesn't have it, although a buddy's does, and we had some minor issues with it.

However, another buddy has a Swartz in his Llama Minimax .40. The gun wouldn't fire "factory" loads.

The Swartz block had been battered by the firing pin (due to timing issues) to the point that it raised a nasty burr on the underside of the block. That rested on the pin with enough drag to soften the strike a little too much.

Easy to fix, and unlike some Kimbers, no arbor press (or 10# sledge) was required to remove the rear sight, and the Llama folks did a better (IMHO) job on the connection between the grip safety and the block, but it scares me.

One of the gang hereabouts is an Armorer for a Sheriff's Department "out west". He's had a couple Deputies bring in Kimbers that no longer shot.... They'd managed to behead or damage the Swartz pin in the frame.

In essence, you really need to pencil test the gun after each cleaning. Especially if you're a jock....

That said, my buddy's Kimber is now fine, and another friend has a Swartz-equipped (and rather expensive) gun that's been 100%. A real YMMV thing....

My vote is to NOT buy a gun so-equipped for carry.

I've got the Colt drop safety on a couple 1911's here. I'm not 100% about them, but the only problem I can report is that I once found a way to re-assemble the gun so it didn't work.... Ten or fifteen minute fix....

Regards,
 

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I have a really early Eclipse II. (When they were still going to be a "limited" run.) Part of the piece under the rear sight broke, falling out of the slide, but enough was still intact that it blocked the firing pin. A trip back to Kimber repaired the problem.

I carry a TLE II quite often. It's been flawless through almost 2.5K rounds now, including USPSA competition. To make sure I never had the same problem as the Eclipse, I knocked the rear sight out and dumped the JUNK!
 

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Both of my Kimbers are Series I, and until they do away with that insane Schwartz rig, I wouldn't carry one on a bet. If it's a play gun, then it's merely annoying. If it's a PD gun that's a different animal. It has to go Bang when you pull the trigger. I don't have to have owned one to not like it. The mere fact that there are documented problems with it is enough for me. There's a reason the Army turned it down back in 1934. That safety is the reason Kimber lost my business and support. They came to their sense with the external extractor, and maybe the same will happen with this. Until then, it's STI for me.. It's sad, because they used to be the best out of the box 1911 you could buy. JMHO..
 

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Kimberguy:

Which reminds me.... My buddy's gun has the external extractor. It's been 100%....

I really think Kimber actually got that right before they quit shipping 'em....

Probably the only choice inside the Kimber line is the Warriors if you can't find a pre-Series-II....

Regards,
 

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I've seen a few push rods broken by operators trying to remove the slide with the grip safety engaged. To me, this is the main problem with the Swartz. As noted, when people do this and aren't familiar with the operation of the safety, they don't know their gun will go click and not bang.

Another weak point of the Swartz it that if the gun has an issue and the hammer follows, the FP block won't stop it. On a Series 80, it can be stopped if the finger is off the trigger.
 
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