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Discussion Starter #1
Do installed shok-buffs change cycling time?

Also, If added/taken-away would they cause malfuntions?

Thanks and Happy Shooting, Thunder25
 

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Some people love them, some hate them. I hate them! I believe John Browning knew what he was doing when he designed the gun. Stay with the 16# recoil spring and NO shok-buff's. When I did use shok-buff's and a 18 1/2# recoil spring (variable), I always had an occasional malfunction.
 

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John Browning knew about about the 1911 while he was developing it, but it was not his gun to develop, but the military's and their standards. Plus, the materials needed for shok buffs did not exist then in a manner that would last like today.

To answer the question, shok buffs shorten slide movement. This can change the timing and can be such that it causes various forms of malfunctions like not picking up the next round. The general consensus is that if it works on your gun and you like it, then fine for you. Try them and see. They aren't very costly. Be sure you check them for wear each time you clean your gun and change them BEFORE then look like they need it, usually at 1000 rounds or less. I have gone as far at 1800 without a failure of the buff or it causing a malfunction, but that was just to see how far I could push the product. I use Wilson shok buffs.

As for the 16# spring, if you are using vintage military ammo and a full-sized 1911, that is an excellent call as Browning's decision on the 16# sprintg was dependent on shooting a 230 gr lead ball round using the gunpowder of the period out of a full-sized 1911. After you shoot a variety of ammunition, you will find some burn much slower, some faster, some higher pressure, some lower, some higher felt recoil, some lower felt recoil, some faster rounds, and some slower. The recoil spring poundage should correspond to the gun's slide size (higher poundage for shoulder length slides such as Commander's and Officer's sizes) and to the weight of the bullet being fired and the powder used. Too little spring and your gun gets beaten unnecessarily. Too much spring and your gun may not cycle properly.

As for Browning being so great, and he was, I have to keep asking myself that while he developed a good gun, why could he not have spent a little more time working on the magazines?
 

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Do not put shock buffs in any gun that you carry for self defense, they can and do compromise the proper funcition of the weapon. We will not allow our Officers to put shock buffs in their duty weapons.

7th

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Have to agree that shok buffs do affect timing. This can be addressed by selecting a spring weight that allows correct function with the particular load you are using. I do use shok buffs for my competition guns because I believe it does do what it was designed to do and that is to provide a measure of protection for the frame. This is especially of value with competition guns that shoot a high number of rounds over its life. In a gun carried for defense however, I am a firm believer that a shok buff should not be installed. Although the chance is small that a shok buff will break apart it is still an event which can, as I've personally experienced in my competition guns, intefere with proper slide function.
 

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Have used buffers on standard 1911 .45's for some time now with no problems. This is with the standard 16lb. spring and 200grn. reloads at 900fps. Although I don't carry with a 1911 friends that do (including a couple of cops) glue the buffer in place in case it does break up. No problems so far.
 

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HI,

There is one other affect to mention. This applies to using an aftermarket slide stop with the narrow pinion which holds the slide open on an empty magazine.

This assumes you have inserted a full magazine after the is slide locked back on the empty and you choose to close the slide by pulling the slide to the rear by the slide serrations and releasing it. The slide stop will not get pushed down because the slide will not move back far enough to push down the slide stop down.

A little FYI.
 

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I find it real interesting that one of the strongest proponent of shokbuffs, Wilson Combat, doesn't design their own guns so that the SBs will work properly in them. That is, if I put the factory SB in my LW Protector 5", I cannot drop the slide from slidelock unless I depress the slide stop.

Real great feature on a carry gun. I threw the damn SB away. When I asked the Wilson rep about this at the IDPA nationals, all I got was "they're all like that".

I should have saved a thousand bucks and bought a Springfield. I am not impressed.
 

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I personally have not had any problems with using buffs. It is known, though, that on some Commander length guns, the rearward slide travel is shortened just enough to cause problems. If you want to use buffs in the commander length guns, you can find some at Brownells that come in varied thicknesses. This would allow you to fine tune the buff to the gun.

On 5" guns, there shouldn't be any problems. As far as the buff breaking up, this is merely a matter of maintenance. The buff should be inspected when cleaning the gun or just periodically. The harder of the buffs, like the CP Buff, can last for up to 5000 rounds, but why push the envelope. They're cheap and they do provide a benefit to the lifespan of the frame parts.

I know guys that shoot a buff until it starts to tear through and then they turn it around! Jeez! Shock buffs have a place on MY guns, but like springs, are items of short lifespans that require attention and maintenance.
 

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All I can imput is that I have a $2800 WILSON and they say use buffs....so that's the way I'll go..........
 

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I do not use them in my carry guns because in certain models, such as some SA guns, when the slide is locked open, they do not allow enough rearward movement to release the slide release. Since I use the mass of the slide to rechamber a round, this sometimes causes a problem.
 

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What a nicely polarized issue. On the extremes are those who disregard shok buff use as a foregone conclusion that buffs are bad and then there are those that use them simply because they are told to use them.

I see where 7th Fleet has said not to use buffs and where he said that they don't let their officers use buffs. Given that buffs are an item that should be checked regularly during cleaning, I would not let officers use them either given how poorly proficient many officers are with guns. I don't mean that as a slam against law enforcement in general, but every department has its share of Barney Fifes and as such, things need to be kept as simple as possible. Tactics, training, and maintenance must all be done at the lowest common denominator when dealing with groups like police officers, military, etc. Shock buffs and their upkeep seem to be above that level.

At the other extreme is JOEE's statement that if Wilson says to use shok buffs in his gun, then that is what he is going to do.

Has anyone noticed that even thought Wilson is a big proponent of shok buffs, they have done little or nothing to really explain what the buffs do, how they do it, and why guns should have them? What I have learned about buffs has not come from Wilson except when to change the things.
 

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Over the years, numerous articles have been published regarding the need and use of buffs. I find that they function flawlessly in my Kimber SM. I change the buff after 1,000 rounds, whether it needs to be changed or not. When you pay $1,800 and up for a pistol and put a minimum of 15,000 rounds per year thru it, the use of the buff seems is a good hedge against a cracked frame, IMHO.
 

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Just the fact that the buffs wear out, from impact, should tell us that they are performing SOME service to the life of the gun...

I must admit, however, that there are an boatload of old 1911s out there that have never seen a buff, but have seen tens of thousands of rounds.

Hmm...
 

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Originally posted by Magnumite:
HI,

There is one other affect to mention. This applies to using an aftermarket slide stop with the narrow pinion which holds the slide open on an empty magazine.

This assumes you have inserted a full magazine after the is slide locked back on the empty and you choose to close the slide by pulling the slide to the rear by the slide serrations and releasing it. The slide stop will not get pushed down because the slide will not move back far enough to push down the slide stop down.

A little FYI.
Good one.
also why some guns need a detent in the slide stop so it does not work in the middle of the mag. With no buff some slides come back far enough that if the slide stop bounces up it can not lock the slide back as it is blocked.

I have read that in the 30's they made some from leather.

One other jam can happen when a buff swells from gun oils, this can hold the barrel up and cause malfuntions.

Ironically the buff which is to help the gun I think ?? can cause some of the cracked dust covers out there. where does the buff gush to when it gets squished??


geo ><>
 

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You REPLACE the buffer before it starts to get too squished out
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks for all the info...

I think for my personal carry sidearm it's NO Shok-buffs.

Why introduce something that may/may not fail.

Thanks and Happy Shooting, Thunder25
 

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I noticed that my new M1991A1 put more wear on a Wilson Shok buff in 200 rounds than my old M1911A1 does in 1000+. I think the condition of the rear of the recoil spring tunnel makes a big difference in buff longevity. If the tunnel is sharp on the egdes, it will cut the buff in fairly quick order. How much do the big-name 'smiths charge for dehorning the spring tunnel?!?!??!
 

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You got that right, I think it's about sharp edges and how much area is making contact upon bang-off of slide to frame, that determines the life of a buffer. Buffers will last longer in some guns than others. Some of the well-known trainers advise against buffers, but they are assuming the worst maintenance scenario. Those of us who are anal about it will fire three rounds and change the damned thing! George has a good point about >where< does the buffer material go when the slide bottoms out, but I think the rearward motion translated into lateral motion through the buff is less destructive than the steel-against-steel pulse that is had without the buff... but I can't prove it.

I have no prob with buffers in any of my personal 1911's, except Officers ACP's (and I don't personally own a Commander, so not sure), be they for competition or carry, but I do fit into the "ridiculously frequent" maintenance category.
 

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In an article about Bill Wilson and his business (can't remember what mag but fairly recent), he described the "shock buffer" as his "cash cow". Makes me wonder!

[This message has been edited by DBR (edited 11-27-2001).]
 
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