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So... Using all stock parts, what can be done to improve this gun?
Assuming all the needed tools are owned. Lapping this or tuning that or wha have you...
I am not one inclined towards the whole "If an aftermarket part is made, an aftermarket part must be needed" school of 1911'ry.
I know Smiths like Bob Day used to take bone stock USGI Govt models and using nothing more than their skill, tools and time cranked them into something better.

I'm mainly looking for tricks and whatever information you folks would be willing to share.
I've done a number of searches, and have only found smattered info.
Thanks

V
 

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I recently got a Mil Spec myself with plans for making it into a Bullseye Gun. Just out of curiosity I plan on modifying it in steps instead if just doing it all at once.
The trigger will be the first thing I will modify. I will be replacing the factory trigger with an aluminum one but the other parts, hammer, sear etc will be kept. (Modified of course)

The only other items that will be replaced that I can see will be the barrel and bushing, and possibly the ejector.
The barrel could even be modified by welding up the feet and hood and re-fitting but with a Kart barrel in the $100.00 range it really isnt worth the trouble.

What do you want to improve in the gun?? Accuracy?? reliability??

Adam
 

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The ejector and the slide stop probably want replacing.
 

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A customer brought me a new SA milspec with the request that it be made into an NRA match-grade ball gun. I installed a new trigger, did a trigger job, adjustable sights, barrel bushing and that's it. That Springfield was the best fit factory 1911 I've seen since 1963 (Colt National Match).

Same thing about a Kimber Eclipse Target II brought in last year. That pistol was also an excellent one right ouit of the box, except for the trigger job, but the SA was even better.

So, use caution in determining replacement parts. I modified the sear, disconnector, hammer and did a little polishing, but the only parts I actually changed were the trigger itself and the barrel bushing...and sights, of course. I would ordinarily change the barrel also, but this was a one-piece barrel and it was fit to the pistol exactly like it should be for a match pistol. I don't know how that SA barrel will shoot, but we'll soon find out.

Bob
 

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Thats good to hear Bob, I too was pleasently suprised at how tight the Springfield was. Ill be putting a Dot sight on mine and finding out the potential as soon as this Ohio weather is a little more bearable and the trigger job is done.
I made a half hearted attempt with the military sights and the 6+ pound factory trigger pull but all I accomplished is verifying why everyone wants sights and a lighter trigger :rolleyes:

Adam
 

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Before you go dropping gobs of money on aftermarket parts see what you can do with the stock ones.

I had an old knife sharpening stone laying around which had never been used. It's a white Arkansas stone and since it was still new I knew the surfaces were still flat and the corners a sharp 90 degrees. Using this stone and some WD40 for lube, I lightly polished the sides of the hammer, squared the hooks, and cut the hooks down to .020". This is not for the faint of heart because one needs to be very careful to keep from rounding off any corners. I laid a .020" feeler gauge on the stone, then carefully slid the hammer back and forth across the stone to get the hooks down to .020".

I then proceeded to polish the sides of the trigger bow as well as the rear. The face of the disconnector where it meets the rear of the trigger was smoothed up a bit with the stone as well. All of this was accomplished in an afternoon.

The trigger is now very crisp and much shorter to get a release. Some smiths like to cut the hooks down to .018" but in my experience .020" seems to be perfect for me. The pull is still a little heavy but the trigger has much improved feel now, which was what I was after. There's also zero creep.

The best of all this cost me nothing but time and was a great learning experience. And I was fully prepared to buy replacements parts if need be in case I buggered anything up. Thankfully I didn't.
 
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