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Looks good hhsmiley, your serrations turned out very nice. Hopefully your JEM frame will be proud of the back of the slide so you can try to match it to the slide. I serrated the back of a slide once and then when I got the frame for it I realized the back of the slide was sticking out past the frame.

I had to erase my serrations matching the back of the slide to the frame and redo them. It was good practice anyway, lol... Hopefully your JEM frame will stick out past your slide so you can match the frame to your slide.

I like doing work like this with hand tools. I'm comfortable with it because I have done it forever. Your work looks good, lot of elbow grease in it I know from experience.
 

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You kinda don’t want your slide to be in front of the frame and blend the frame to the slide. The other way is what you want.

if your slide in sitting in front of your frame, that’s a good indication that something is off. Either dimensionally or something you did wrong. Not a good place to be.
 

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Yea I see what you mean, never thought of that. I've always had the slide sticking out past the frame. Like the one I did, I serrated the slide and then had to do it again when I blended to the frame. Your right though, never thought about it but if the frame rails are sticking out past the back of the slide then there's issues.

hhsmiley, hopefully yours will be close as is. Mine was sticking out too far and I had to blend and redo the serrations to make it blend properly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Thanks for the comments on the slide to rear of frame fit. Every time I've fit a barrel, I used this cutter to fit the barrel lugs to the slide stop and get the barrel lock/unlock right:

BROWNELLS 1911 LUG CUTTER | Brownells

Now maybe I was just lucky, but when I fit a couple of barrels before, the slide was overhanging the rear of the frame by a little at first and when I finished with that lug cutter the slide and frame basically lined up just right at the back. Had to do very little if any blending.

In this case, if the slide is still overhanging the frame once the barrel is all fit, I'll just have to blend the slide to the frame and recut whatever serrations I need to. May have been jumping the gun to cut the serrations before all that other stuff but in the end it shouldn't hurt anything.

Even if the slide ends up a little forward of the rear of the frame I don't think that's necessarily a problem, as long as the barrel locks/unlocks correctly, the thumb safety fits the cutout in the slide and the disconnector moves up into it's little groove at the right time.

I've built guns on 2011 and Caspian frames but I've never used a Jem frame so we'll have to see.
 

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The slide mating up to the back of the frame and the thumb safety being able to go up are not indications of where you stop cutting the lower lugs. It can be used as a guide but not as the end all way to do it. In some cases, getting the slide to be flush with the frame when cutting the lower lugs will get you way over cut lower lugs and your barrel link will need to be opened up too much to get slide stop contact on the back. Your lower lug feet might be too thin if you use the slide being flush as a stop point too.

A good place to stop cutting your lower lugs is when you’ve cut them so the lower feet are about .115-.110 thick. You don’t want to go below that really. .100 thick is the minimum safe thickness.
 

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And usually if you stop cutting when you touch the existing barrel feet round on a Kart barrel, that will get you lower lug flats that are .045-.050 from the link pin hole, which is plenty. You don’t need to cut off much more barrel lug than when the cutter touches the existing barrel feet round. Just a tiny bit more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
@ EvolutionArmory - you're right. I literally did just get lucky when I had the slides and frames line up closely when I fit those other barrels. It's not something I'm ever going to count on.

Main thing is that the barrel fit is right. Using how the back of the slide/frame line up to judge anything to do with fitting the barrel is definitely not what I'm saying to do.

I'm not an expert but I've never heard of having to alter the cutout in the slide for the safety, so I would assume that this is at least partial indicator that things are fitted up correctly. The instructions for that lug cutter state:

Continue cutting the barrel lugs carefully, until the thumb safety will swing into the slide’s safety notch freely and without drag. There is another way to make certain the lugs are cut correctly. Install the disconnector correctly and cut the lugs until the disconnector rises properly into its clearance cut in the slide and the thumb safety swings into its slide notch freely. Do not be concerned if the back of the frame and slide do not line up after cutting the lugs. These areas can be recontoured to blend properly after all slide/frame and barrel fitting has been completed.
 

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What I’m saying is the thumb safety being able to go into the notch isn’t meant as a stop point. If you stop cutting right when the safety can go up, you still might need to cut the lugs back.

I cut my lugs by machine now so I know exactly how much lug flat I have. A Kart barrel will usually want .045 or more flat before your cutter even touches the existing feet curve. Usually I set mine for about .050 of lug flat from the center of the link pin hole. You can’t measure that very well using a hand held cutter so what I’m telling you is, measuring your barrel feet thickness is a good way to gauge how long your lug flats are and when to stop. Using the safety and the back of the frame as an indicator is a good way to undercut or overcut your lugs.

Measuring how thick your barrel feet are is a much better way to know when to stop cutting. These just measured at .120 thick. This thickness gives me plenty of lug flat, the feet are thick enough to not break, the link doesn’t have to be modified too much to allow slide stop contact at the back and my disconnector doesn’t click in the notch. As you can see, the lower lugs wrap around my slide stop pin 100% like rabbit ears.
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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
I'm just saying, I've never had a thumb safety not fit right up into the notch once the barrel was fit properly. Admittedly, I have not fit as many of them as some, but I've never had the safety not fill that notch in the slide more or less perfectly after fitting the barrel.

On one of my 1911's the slide can move backwards a TINY amount with the thumb safety engaged because there is a very small gap between the front of the notch and the safety. Fitting the barrel properly resulted in the front of the notch being VERY slightly forward of the front of the safety. This means I did in fact have to cut the lugs a bit past where the safety could very first swing up. On another gun, there is no gap, and the slide cannot move at all.

I guess what I'm saying is "just because the safety can go up doesn't necessarily mean you're done fitting the lugs but the safety NOT being able to engage means you have further to go". Is this not right?

I ask because I've never heard of having to "open up" the thumb safety notch on a slide or taking material off the front of the safety in order to get it to fully engage in the notch once the barrel was fit. Did I just get lucky again?
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Small update. Got the Stan Chen Gen 2 magwell in. It looks great and the machining is very nice. I got one with 25 LPI checkering. They have been out of stock for a while, so anyone wanting one, now's your chance.

BTW, Stan Chen Custom has been great to deal with. I think it was his wife checking the emails and she kept me up to date on the ETA while the magwells were out of stock and once they were back in stock they got it out to me very quickly.
Subpar customer service seems to be the norm these days so I like to point out when a company does a great job with it.

Jem says my frame should be shipping within a couple of days, so if anyone cares, I'll have some more progress to report before long.
 

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I just orderded a Remsport barrel so glad to see some positive talk on them. my last build was a 9mm CCO. this one is going to be a 45 CCO.

yours is going to be interesting to keep up with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
Got the frame in and got the slide fit to it. I used a Matrix Precision jig to stone the frame rails to get them to fit, and I did not need to take much off to get that done.

Now I'm fitting the barrel and have run into a stopping point that I've not experienced before, that I'm not sure how to resolve.

I got my lug cutter ready to go to cut the bottom feet, but when I installed the barrel in the slide, put the slide stop in and then pushed the slide forward, the slide went forward all the way to the point you see here, where the thumb safety can easily move up into position (and even has a small gap between the front of the safety and the front of the safety cut out in the slide. This seems to lock the barrel up nice and tight when I push the slide forward, so I guess maybe I got "lucky" again?


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The issue now is that the slide can only move about .25" to the rear from barrel lock up. It's pretty obvious that the barrel hood is binding on the area of the grooves on the top inside of the slide, as you can see in the pictures. Looks like the barrel moves about .0475 down from the fully locked position as the slide moves rearward.

So what is the next step to get the slide to be able to continue to move backward? Would it be lowering the barrel bed/seat, or removing material from the lug groove area of the slide? My understanding is that you'd like to have .040 of engagement with the lugs, so it would seem that some material could be removed from the slide there.

Thank for any help!

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You do not test for upper lug engagement depth with the gun assembled. Slide and barrel only. Find out what that measurement is with just the slide and barrel and report back.

Also, don’t test for slide to barrel clearance at link down with the link installed. See what it is without the link first. Linking a barrel is the LAST thing you do.

looks like you have a drop in barrel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Thank you EA for responding. I appreciate it.

The .1205 and .1680 measurements I show were actually with just the barrel in the slide. Lower number was with lugs fully engaged, higher number was with the barrel slightly forward with the top of the hood physically touching the bottom of the groove area in the slide.

The barrel has a Wilson/Nowlin ramp. I did discover that if I took the barrel and really pressed it into the bed, when I slide the barrel back towards the rear, the barrel ramp had to "jump up" slightly to clear the bottom of the cut out in the frame. It was only a couple thousandths but that was apparently pushing the barrel up enough to bind on the slide. I filed a little bit off the bottom of the ramp and now the barrel slides straight back into the cut out without having to move upward the clear that area of the frame.

I have not had a link installed for any of the above. When I'd moving the slide back I'm just pushing the barrel hood down with my finger.

After correcting the barrel ramp, it still binds but instead of only going back .25" it goes to here:

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Your picture clearly shows a frame and slide stop installed where you list your upper lug engagement as .0475. Are you saying you verified those numbers without the frame attached?

What I would check now if I was you is how deep the barrel cut is from the top of the deck. It should be .300. You also need to make sure that what is left of what would be the barrel bed isn’t keeping the barrel from dropping all the way down. Your barrel should be impacting the flat, not the sides of the bed that are remaining.

The barrel needs .010-.015 of clearance from the slide bore at link down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Your picture clearly shows a frame and slide stop installed where you list your upper lug engagement as .0475. Are you saying you verified those numbers without the frame attached?

What I would check now if I was you is how deep the barrel cut is from the top of the deck. It should be .300. You also need to make sure that what is left of what would be the barrel bed isn’t keeping the barrel from dropping all the way down. Your barrel should be impacting the flat, not the sides of the bed that are remaining.

The barrel needs .010-.015 of clearance from the slide bore at link down.
Yes, I measured the lug engagement with barrel/slide only before I started messing around with putting the slide/barrel on the frame and took/used the pictures.

The ramped barrel cut out in the frame is .2980 deep. After removing a small amount of material from the barrel from the flat horizontal surface under the barrel ramp, the barrel will now slide back and forth on the deck area without having to move upward to clear the bottom of the frame cutout.

From lockup, the slide will move backward with basically zero clearance (barrel hood in contact with slide) but binds up with about 1/2" of the barrel hood still visible through the ejection port.

It would seem like moving material from the deck or slide would be necessary, but I'm not sure which.
 

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I already told you what to do if your frame slot is .300 deep. Check to see that your barrel isn’t hitting what is left of the barrel bed. There should be space making sure the barrel is hitting the .300 deep slot and not being stopped by the sides of what would be the barrel bed on a standard ramp frame. Does that make sense?

The deck won’t be the problem. If your barrel has zero slide gap when in link down, it sounds like you might need to lower what is left of the barrel bed, drop your .300 ramp cut down to .310 or maybe both.

You need to answer this. If your frame slot is .300 deep (.298 is close enough) does your barrel get stopped by what is left of the barrel bed before it hits the bottom of the slot at link down?
 

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I've made a couple 1911s, a blued government model and a stainless commander. I'm partially along with my 3rd, it's going to be a blued government 10mm. All of mine (and one I helped my brother with) came from 1911builders. They are really striking and get lots of comments when someone sees one of them.
Nice work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
I already told you what to do if your frame slot is .300 deep. Check to see that your barrel isn’t hitting what is left of the barrel bed. There should be space making sure the barrel is hitting the .300 deep slot and not being stopped by the sides of what would be the barrel bed on a standard ramp frame. Does that make sense?

The deck won’t be the problem. If your barrel has zero slide gap when in link down, it sounds like you might need to lower what is left of the barrel bed, drop your .300 ramp cut down to .310 or maybe both.

You need to answer this. If your frame slot is .300 deep (.298 is close enough) does your barrel get stopped by what is left of the barrel bed before it hits the bottom of the slot at link down?
I THINK I'm following. It appears that both the areas under the ramp and the bed area are making contact with the barrel at the point it's binding. So it does sound to me like the bed and ramped barrel frame cut need to be moved slightly downward.

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No, you need to make sure the barrel is not hitting what is left of the bed FIRST. Don’t just lower both. I’m trying to be very clear in the directions I’m giving you. SPECIFIC orders of diagnosis. If you don’t fully understand what I’m saying, please read it again and again until it makes sense. DONT just start lowering things until you understand what needs to be done and why.
 
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