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Discussion Starter #1
I have been reading through the archives and have not been able to find any specific range of numbers for a physically safe and "legally safe" trigger pull weight for a CCW. I measured my Kimber yesteday because it seems a bit lighter than my Stealth and it came out consistently at 3 1/4 lbs. I would like to be able to carry this gun and was wondering if this is bordering on being too light. There have been no modifications or trigger jobs...just factory out of the box like this.

H
 

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For a good many years now, I have heard 4-4.5 pounds as a recommended range for 1911 style carry guns. I don't know that this is carved in stone any where.

I have always been comfortable with 4# triggers in all my guns. YMMV!
 

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Check the county regs to see if they say anything regarding trigger pulls. I know that in Orange County, CA (yes, there ARE CCW's being issued somewhere in CA), the minimum pull is 4 lbs, regardless of the weapon (1911, Sig, HK, Glock) you're carrying.

From a CYA standpoint, it's best to carry a gun that hasn't had a trigger job, especially to lighten the trigger. This brings headaches if you DO shoot a BG. Whether or not it was justified, the DA will try to make you look evil to get a conviction, so he can keep his job.
 

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If 3.5 is the stock kimber pull out of the box, I wouldn't worry about it; after all LAPD SWAT uses Kimbers, and most well-broken in Glocks pull about 3.5 to 4.0. However, I wouldn't lighten it from where it is now, 3.0-2.0# is asking for trouble on a defensive gun.
 

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I had no idea that California had laws stipulating trigger pull weights. What a bunch of poo!

Other than CA, I don't know of any other states that do. Texas certainly does not and I would suspect that Florida does not either.

As noted, most people suggest nothing less than 4 lbs for a carry 1911. I have found that a crisp trigger with 5 lb pull can feel better than a 3.5 # trigger with a little more squish. So even if you have to have an adjust done on the gun, if you get a properly crisp trigger job, it can offset the feel of the heavier trigger pull.

You Stealth with a 3.25# trigger may be NIB that way and so you don't think it has had a trigger job, but Wilson specifically works on their triggers to have a trigger pull in about that amount. It is something of a new condition NIB trigger job.

What is legally safe? I suspect this question is Ayoob-inspired. If there are no specific laws where you are, then any trigger pull weight is legally safe so long as you don't unintentionally shoot somebody. If you unintentionally shoot somebody, a light trigger may end up a concern in civil court, as will everything else about your life. Heck, Ayoob's lawyer quoted by Ayoob in a recent gun rag publication suggested that folks not carry 1911s because they are hard to defend in court. Of course, at the same time, Ayoob had an article in Guns and Weapons for Law Enforcement on "Mastering the 1911."

While the issue of legal liability for trigger pull weights often comes up for handguns and people often claim that a light trigger will get you into trouble in court for an intentional shooting, nobody ever seems to express a single concern for using a hunting rifle with a 1.5# pull, jeweled specialty trigger job, for a home defense shooting.

The liability in an intentional shooting is NOT in the gun type, maker, caliber, trigger pull, ammo type, etc. It lies with the shooter.
 

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Double Naught Spy, AMEN!

I just posted a thread with it in in and I will say it again.

Show me where a Shooter involved in a "legally justified" shooting was tried and/or convicted based on trigger pull!

Ive got a 300 Weatherby Mag thats measured in ounces, and if thats what I needed to defend myself and family I would have zero qualms using it.

If you shoot someone you shouldnt, the trigger pull will be the least of your worries.

FWIW if thats the case they can show where LEOs have shot Revolvers accidently DA, Glocks are conisdered unsafe in NY even WITH a NY trigger etc etc etc.

Pure Bunk I say!

Be happy with your 1911s

YMMV
 

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My view is irt a self defense shooting trial, I WILL NOT give opposing counsel any reason to convince the "soccer mom"/Oprah bookclub member/tree-hugging activist jury member that I was "reckless" and/or of "evil" intent.

So, my SD pistols have better/upgraded sights, more positive thumb safety lever, stippling for a more positive grip, etc... But no safety devices are removed/deactivated and no trigger jobs that will feel like a "hair trigger" when the DA passes my firearm around to the jury to "examine" during deliberations. JMO

regards
 

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Playing devil's advocate here, Russ45, your efforts may be counter productive to your reasoning. You have obviously become fixated on developing/improving your gun to be a combat weapon, making changes to it that will make it easier for your vigilante activities. You added new sights to make it easier to shoot people you feel have done you wrong in some manner. You improved the thumb safety so that the safety can be deactivated much more quickly, thereby making it possible for you to shoot people faster.

My guess is that you have also been to at least one gun school and so you are obviously a paranoid closet militant who had the expert training to shoot a person in the manner to wound and not kill, and yet you intead chose to kill the poor deceased guy who was only in your home to take food as he was unemployed and starving.

Do you use hollowpoints? Obviously you intended to kill (if the guy is dead). Obviously, you intended to inflict the maximum amount of pain (if the guy survived). You used ball ammo? Those are known for their bone crushing abilities and so you obviously wanted to cripple.

Russ, any aspect of your guns or your experience can be turned against you. Don't think that just because you haven't had a trigger job on your gun that you have not given the opposition lawyer plenty of fodder to use against you.

Yes, it is all pooh, but for the reason you think no trigger jobs will prevent giving the opposition stuff to use against you, you have managed to given them several other things to use against you.

For intentional shootings, this is all stuff that is pretty pointless to worry about. If you end up on trial, it won't be a pretty experience - no matter what you have chosen in guns, ammo, training, or your behaviors during the event.
 

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Keep in mind that the INDIVIDUAL is probably a greater 'variable' in a shooting than the gun. By that, I mean if you have "documented proficiency", such as your last IDPA qualifier score or a Thunder Ranch diploma, that could be used to demonstrate to a jury that you're an "expert" who is highly qualified with a 1911.

On the other hand, a green shooter who is carrying a 1911 after having only rudimentary instruction with a revolver could be in for a rough time in court..like the old analogy of a "100 mile an hour pilot with a 200 mph airplane"

Citizens in righteous self-defense shootings are very rarely indicted or convicted, but if you have any assets at all, you're likely to be sued, and the burden of proof is WAY lower than in criminal court. Anyone with a CHL should consider an "umbrella coverage" rider on their homeowners or renter insurance, it's not expensive at all, and can cover everything from a shooting to your Rottie biting a chunk out of someone.:D
 

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Discussion Starter #10
There have been two recent "self defense" shootings here in Florida. One of them involved a neighbor playing a prank and ended up running away and getting shot in the back because the homeowner thought it was a burglar. Now counter to everything that I have ever been taught as "reasonable", this guy has not yet been arrested or charged with anything! The other incident was maybe a bit more "reasonable" and he has not been charged either. This may change, but pretty weird. It amazes me, but it seems that the Florida court system is actually leaning toward gun owners rights! It also states somewhere in the law that if a shooting is the result of a crime, you cannot be sued in civil court.

That being said, I measured the trigger pull on my Wilson Stealth yesterday (which I thought was heavier than the Kimber) and it weighed in at an even 3 lb's. It has a different feel to it, but is obviously also quite light "out of the box".

H
 

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Most folks advocate a CCW 1911 trigger pull weight of 4.0-4.5#, though some (eg, Massad Ayoob, Dave Lauck) suggest even higher weights, like 6.0#.

When you think about it, the trigger pull weight and action (lack of grittiness or significant "creep") should be conducive to ACCURATE shooting.
That's the point, after all, isn't it?
If a "lighter" trigger produces better accuracy for you, then so much the better, so long as the trigger action remains automatically safe, that is, without hammer follow, without doubling.

All of these discussions seem to presume that you have your finger on the trigger, and that a "too light" pull permits accidental discharge of the weapon.
In fact, obedience to Rule Three should take care of the whole problem in a mechanically-sound gun, and no "heavier trigger" can guarantee safety if Rule Three is disobeyed.
Furthermore, the issue of a "too light" trigger shouldn't even come up, EXCEPT in a charge of "accidental shooting". If a shooting was morally justified and purposeful, it isn't an issue.

The idea that weapons safety can be enhanced by making the weapon harder to use well is so obviously wrong that only police administrators and advertisers could possibly accept it!

Best.
 

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Double Naught Spy said:
I had no idea that California had laws stipulating trigger pull weights. What a bunch of poo!
Actually there aren't any. The trigger weight pertains specifically to CCW and is arbitrarily determined by the issuing agency. It may be perfectly alright in another county to have a 1/2 oz trigger (legally speaking that is).
 

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Mute said:
Actually there aren't any. The trigger weight pertains specifically to CCW and is arbitrarily determined by the issuing agency. It may be perfectly alright in another county to have a 1/2 oz trigger (legally speaking that is).
Sorry for the confusion. I should have been more specific, and said that the regs cover ONLY the CCW
 

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DNS,

Got some time on my hands so I'll play :)

1. No counselor, I'm fixated on developing/improving my firearms to be a more accurate and safer to use/manipulate self-defense firearm. Yep, I added all those things to my stock firearm with regard to the same mindset that you, counselor, have added all those options to your stock automobile of choice...safety, comfort, better performance, etc....

2. No counselor, not one school, I've attended over 15 schools in both my military and civilian life. In the military the courses I was requried to attend were to prepare me to both fight for this country and save my life, and the life of others, when ordered to do so.

In civilian life the self defense courses I attended were to both learn and maintain my ability to defend myself against a threat of death or grave bodily harm. Not one course of instruction taught me to wound or even kill an attacker, I was only taught to stop the immediate deadly threat. In fact, I've even been taught to walk away from a deadly threat if possible, but your deceased client who broke into my home that night and rushed me with the paring knife he was using in my kitchen, after I ordered him out of my home, made walking away not an option.

3. Hollowpoints? Speer Gold Dots. Why? My local sheriff's department uses/issues them. They, and other agencies, have done the research into self defense ammunition irt officer safety, rapid incapacitation of a person representing a deadly threat, innocent citizen safety and have concluded that hollowpoints meet those needs. For the same reasons I use what they use.

Well, I could go on, but as you see I'm prepared to explain my actions on the above issues. What I'm not prepared to do is explain why I removed or deactivated a firearm safety device or had a perfectly usable trigger pull weight of 4.5 to 5 pounds lowered to 2 - 3 pounds.

Oh, and as to courts, trials and juries. BTDT once and yes, it is costly in more ways than $$$, but opposing counsel is not as big an enemy as that soccer mom on the jury.

This has been fun.

regards
 

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Discussion Starter #15
These are all interesting arguments, but my original question of a trigger pull of 3 - 3 1/4 lbs out of the box seems to be still in question. I have not had a trigger job on either gun. I have no problems with either gun at the range. It seems that I can increase the trigger weight by simply bending the sear spring slightly. Does that constitute a "trigger job"? I would probably have a gunsmith do it since even a simple job like that requires measuring the weight of the middle and left springs seperately with the middle being half the weight of the left.

H
 

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Its a waste of your time to increase the weight IF you are comfortable with the gun. IF youre not by all means increase it.
IT has never been a legal factor in a legal in a shooting. Accidental is different. Untill someone SHOWS me the Court case It's a MYTH!

Trigger:

The advice you got on the gunsmithing site is right on "for SOME" but for your purposes the same can be done by increasing eithe the middle or left leg.

the middle will increase the take up the left will only effect the break weight each person likes something different, hence the difference you feel between your two guns.

FWIW MOST home town gunsmiths wont measure it independently.

FYI

HTH

Larry P
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Just got back from the range. 100 American Eagle 230 gr and 50 Winchester Ranger 230. Not a blip and trigger pull was just right. I didn't bring my Stealth, but I'll be damned if this Kimber isn't more accurate...:confused: A pleasure to shoot.

I was talking to one of the guys at the range about trigger pull weight and he looked at my hand and I forgot to mention this, but I have arthritis in my right hand. Specifically my trigger finger. I wear a silver ring brace to keep it from flopping around and this is why I went to a single action only gun like the 1911. I would say that this adds another pound or two...for me...to the trigger pull feel since I can't really bend it at the middle joint. I don't think heavier would be better, or safer for me. It seemed "just right". :cool:

H
 

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Why would you do a trigger job to increase the pull weight on a trigger? Lets use some common sense here.
 

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Agree with Mus & Larry.

If that stock Kimber of yours has a trigger that good and you can safely and effectively use it, I wouldn't make it heavier.

regards
 

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Instead of increasing the pull, you could get in the habit of always using your NON-SHOOTING index finger to pick your nose, that way the muscles in your shooting finger will atrophy from disuse, making the trigger feel "heavier".:D :D :D :D :D :D :D
 
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