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hey guys,
let me start by saying hello and thanking all of you for your help.

i have had a SA GI for 4-5 months and have become pretty comfortable with it. i also have to say that i do not know much about assembly/disassembly of the 1911 models. i was looking to maybe start adding some parts to the GI but, do not know what i can change. the first thing i would like to do is change the sights. can i change those to maybe night sights or maybe adjustables. beaver tail? any suggestions on how to make it a better shooter.

thank you all for your suggestions.

alex
 

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I picked up a ww2 Gi SA. Shot pretty well out of the box. I got a Les baer match bushing and fit it to remove the slop in the barrel. I also got a long aluminum trigger as my index finger was rubbing on the bottom of the trigger guard with the short trigger. Next step was to get a .200 slide stop to tighten up the barrel lockup. I also got a new barrel link, but haven't installed it yet. I started having extractor trouble, where it was doing the horizontal stovepipes. The tension was too strong and the front edge of the extractor was hitting the case bevel near the rim. I put in a Wilson extractor, works fine now! But the back doesn't fit flush. I am working on redoing the SA so it fits properly and has the right tension. Next step is to do a S&A beavertail ($35 plus $20 for the jig). As for the sights, you will prob need to do some work with that. Kings makes a sight for the SA (it uses a medium tenon for the front), but they aren't night sights. You can get the trijocon wide tenon NS and then mill the front tenon to the proper size and stake. I will either have the slide milled for Novaks or Heinies. I am going to contact Ted Yost; he came out with new night sights for 1911's, and I am going to see if he can do some with the medium tenon for the SA's. If not, I will send him the gun when I am done with all the mods to do the sights and refinish.

$15 bushing, $15 slide stop, $20 trigger, $25 extractor added to a $460 pistol isnt too bad! Then the sights and refinishing. Oh, I shot a 3 shot group at around 55 feet. It measured .75" edge to edge of the burn holes in the paper with the match bushing and regular tiny sights :) That new bushing made a huge difference in how it shoots, for very little cost. I was going to replace the barrel, but don't need to now!
 

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Bushing is probably the #1 thing I've changed in Mil-Specs... look at an EGW Angle-Bored bushing... measure twice, buy once!.. will greatly improve accuracy without any other work, most of the time!
 

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Dunno bout the guide rods. I know I can feel my spring in my SA when I shoot it, but I can't remember if I felt it or not when I had my Kimber. I can def feel it in my SA, but I don't think its really affecting it, its a plinker. Would be nice to get rid of that feel, but it works and isn't really annoying, just noticeable. Full length might make it smoother.
 

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Well, Jeff Cooper says you need sights you can see, a trigger you can control, and removal of sharp corners that make handling the gun unpleasant.

Of course he assumed adequate accuracy; if you are not getting it, a bushing will often tighten things up enough to matter. And functional reliability. So shoot ball ammunition.

A full length guide rod has the advantage that it is user installed and the disadvantage that it doesn't really do much.
 

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GI mods

Please see my post on "Just got my SA back f/ Clark's." I went through the same thing and had the sights changed out. They are not night sights since it is not a carry gun. The sight picture is 100% better. The trigger was a nice addition, too, if only for looks.
 

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alexshadow,

I have done the same to my GI WWII Champion. The changes made are:

Change sights to Novak Extreme Duty Adjustable (installed by Springfield)
Dehorn the slide, lower and flare ejection port
Replace Ejector and Extractor with Wilson's
Change thumb safety to Wilson Ambi-Extended model
Change trigger to McCormick Black Aluminum Combat style
Change grip safety to parkerized beavertail model from Springfield
Change to flat, checkered mainspring housing from Wilson
Send frame and slide to Springfield. Have slide milled for Novak sight installation and have Slide & frame reparkerized.
Install Cylinder & Slide Drop In Trigger Pull Set
Chamfer barrel entrance and polish ramp for feeding purposes

I still have less than $700.00 invested in the gun and man what a carry weapon it is. I performed all the work myself except the milling of the slide and re-parkerizing. Here is the end result:

 

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The easiest sight change is to buy a set of milspec three-dot sights from Springfield's parts department for about $25.00 and have a local gunsmith install them for you.

If you want an adjustable rear sight LPA makes a set to fit the existing dovetail and tenon hole for about $80. I had the LPAs installed on my GI and they're quite nice.
 
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