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Old January 14, 2019, 18:30   #1
johnnycobra
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Loose as a goose. Advice?

I’ve got a 1991A1 I picked up in the early 1990s. Shot it a bit, added some chip mccormick stuff - beaver tail, trigger, hammer, sear, extended guide rod, slide stop. Replaced the grips with wood colt grips and added a metal arched mainspring housing with a lanyard loop.
Used a little fine diamond paste originally and worked the slide well and moved on.

After all this time, couple of hundred rounds here and there, I noticed it isn’t all that accurate. I haven’t been a huge 1911 accurizer, but I feel like the barrel bushing and end link might be the key to shoring it up.

The barrel link is exceptionally loose in my opinion. I don’t want to just throw money at it, but is that a good place to start looking?
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Old January 14, 2019, 19:01   #2
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Sights are on the slide. Barrel locks to slide. A tighter fit on the bushing doesn't hurt - although I try to balance tightness with still functions under adverse conditions.

Links are tough, your'e dealing with Up and Down (lugs) and with rotational (link to slide stop). If the hood is a tight fit laterally to the breech face, then you can get away with more slop in the link. But if the hood has lateral movement in the breechface, then any wear on the link adds to it.

And the barrel will only shoot as well as it shoots. Getting a supertight lockup on a mediocre barrel may not work as well as a looser lockup with a better barrel.

So it's just a matter of reducing every variable, and then if it still sucks, consider replacing the barrel.

Can you get any movement out of the barrel when locked - up and down or side to side?
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Old January 14, 2019, 19:27   #3
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Sights are on the slide. Barrel locks to slide. A tighter fit on the bushing doesn't hurt - although I try to balance tightness with still functions under adverse conditions.

Links are tough, your'e dealing with Up and Down (lugs) and with rotational (link to slide stop). If the hood is a tight fit laterally to the breech face, then you can get away with more slop in the link. But if the hood has lateral movement in the breechface, then any wear on the link adds to it.

And the barrel will only shoot as well as it shoots. Getting a supertight lockup on a mediocre barrel may not work as well as a looser lockup with a better barrel.

So it's just a matter of reducing every variable, and then if it still sucks, consider replacing the barrel.

Can you get any movement out of the barrel when locked - up and down or side to side?
A scientific test of pushing around on the barrel through the ejection port and putting husky pencil down the bore and lightly levering the barrel didn’t give me much obvious play or movement.

I appreciate the insight! I’m going to try and eliminate some variables in my shooting to see if I can be sure it’s the gun or barrel and work from there.

Last edited by johnnycobra; January 14, 2019 at 19:50.
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Old January 14, 2019, 19:45   #4
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The key to accuracy is a good bullet and a good barrel.

If you have a good bullet, and a good barrel, and the accuracy is still poor, something is wrong with the gun.

Without a good bullet, and a good barrel, accuracy will always be less than you would like.
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Old January 14, 2019, 21:08   #5
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The key to accuracy is a good bullet and a good barrel.

If you have a good bullet, and a good barrel, and the accuracy is still poor, something is wrong with the gun.

Without a good bullet, and a good barrel, accuracy will always be less than you would like.
Thanks WEG

I hope this issue is not that I am turning into JohnnyJellyWrist
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Old January 14, 2019, 21:33   #6
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I like to start with ammo I know is accurate and I can get it to function in any 1911. I load my own and use a 200 grain lead semi wad cutter over 5.6 grains of Winchester 231. I have shot this round for decades and it shoots straight in 45 revolvers and autos. It's the foundation I build from.

The recoil is modest and very control able so when you put it in any firearm your thoughts can stick to sights and trigger pull. It will shoot straight in most any 1911.
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Old January 14, 2019, 21:42   #7
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Thanks WEG

I hope this issue is not that I am turning into JohnnyJellyWrist
Shoot it off sandbags. Not quite good as a Ransom Rest. But, if your technique is good, sandbags will show you 95% of what a handgun is capable of.
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Old January 14, 2019, 21:45   #8
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I’ve got a 1991A1 I picked up in the early 1990s.
So. . .what are we talking about?
A 1991, or a 1911?
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Old January 14, 2019, 21:47   #9
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I’ve got a 1991A1 I picked up in the early 1990s. Shot it a bit, added some chip mccormick stuff
If it's a 1911?!?!

Man... that ol' 1911 sounds like a great gun!
After you replace all of the important parts with expensive aftermarket shit, it seems to be average!! . . .

NowI know why all the old guys love it!!!

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Old January 14, 2019, 21:49   #10
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Old January 14, 2019, 22:15   #11
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Haha, I can take it and see your point.
The “expensive stuff” was a project for my father in law and I over 20 years ago.
It wasn’t expensive back then, but I hear you.
We live in the golden days now where a $400 plastic wonder holding 17 rounds can be had with no work needed to shoot as good as anyone has a need to.
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Old January 15, 2019, 10:04   #12
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Everywhere you have moving parts of a system you have to have those moving parts return to the exact same point every time to have repeatable accuracy. The 80 series was an attempt to help with that, with the bushings applying a hint of pressure to top, bottom, and the sides. What it didn't help with was slide to frame fit, and lug lockup inside the slide. all that has to be finely fitted to get repeatability, and an excellent trigger is necessary to get it all going. If the trigger isn't constant, nothing will be.

The 1911s I shot in the Navy were armory rebuilds of rebuilds, and you seemingly could move the barrel a 1/16th or better around in the bushing. I managed to somehow shoot Expert with one, but 15yds was the furthest we shot, and with trying I might have managed 5" groups at that distance. Fortunately I had a 1911 guru build mine with all quality parts, and at 25yds, even with my lack of practice, I can typically put most rounds in the 10 ring. I've never shot it for a group but I believe it to be well under 2" at 25yds. It started life as an AMT Hardballer, but it now has all hand-fitted STI innards and a ramped Clark match barrel. The slide was tightened to the frame, the parts all hand fitted and stoned where necessary, and the barrel matched to the bushing. It is tight but slick as cow snot, with the best handgun trigger I own, like a proper 1911 should.

So what it comes down to is if you put a 1911 together like a dump truck it will function, but if you put one together like a Swiss watch, it will function like a Swiss watch. No matter how many parts you replace in one, however, will make for a lot of difference if those parts aren't properly mated. YMMV.
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Old January 15, 2019, 10:11   #13
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Had a Colt with a "jugged" barrel just forward of the chamber that wouldn't shoot for beans. It was also a bit loosey-goosey in fit up, but at least it was reliable and I could leave it in the sun if I wanted.

I fitted a "match" or oversize Wilson Combat barrel and it turned out well, but if I were to do it again I'd use a Kart or Bar-Sto. The Wilson seemed to be soft in the lug area, but that's just speculation on my part. I am happy with the accuracy of the Wilson.

If you decide to throw some money at improving your 1991, consider a barrel-link-bushing kit. If you don't have the stones and hones along with the patience of a Rattlesnake, have a gee-whiz pistol guru fit it up for you.

I used to have patience, but now I don't seem to have the time to screw with it anymore.
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Old January 15, 2019, 16:47   #14
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Everywhere you have moving parts of a system you have to have those moving parts return to the exact same point every time to have repeatable accuracy. The 80 series was an attempt to help with that, with the bushings applying a hint of pressure to top, bottom, and the sides. What it didn't help with was slide to frame fit, and lug lockup inside the slide. all that has to be finely fitted to get repeatability, and an excellent trigger is necessary to get it all going. If the trigger isn't constant, nothing will be.

The 1911s I shot in the Navy were armory rebuilds of rebuilds, and you seemingly could move the barrel a 1/16th or better around in the bushing. I managed to somehow shoot Expert with one, but 15yds was the furthest we shot, and with trying I might have managed 5" groups at that distance. Fortunately I had a 1911 guru build mine with all quality parts, and at 25yds, even with my lack of practice, I can typically put most rounds in the 10 ring. I've never shot it for a group but I believe it to be well under 2" at 25yds. It started life as an AMT Hardballer, but it now has all hand-fitted STI innards and a ramped Clark match barrel. The slide was tightened to the frame, the parts all hand fitted and stoned where necessary, and the barrel matched to the bushing. It is tight but slick as cow snot, with the best handgun trigger I own, like a proper 1911 should.

So what it comes down to is if you put a 1911 together like a dump truck it will function, but if you put one together like a Swiss watch, it will function like a Swiss watch. No matter how many parts you replace in one, however, will make for a lot of difference if those parts aren't properly mated. YMMV.
Army had the same rattle traps. Still used them in Germany 1989.
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Old January 15, 2019, 17:12   #15
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Now I know why all the old guys love it!!!

As a young man in the early '80s when the plastic peestool rage was in it's infancy, Colt & Smith wheel guns along with 1911s and BHPs were considered the "the best of the best" and that's what I was taught.

Fast forward to 2019 and I suppose I am now one of those "old guys" you are referring to. No worries bro. I still know what I know, and I still don't routinely shoot plastic peestools



BTW - The Browning 1919 is celebrating 100 years this year and I still love it as well. I am already planning a birthday celebration for mine on 4th of July weekend
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Old January 15, 2019, 17:51   #16
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I love the 1911.

Problem is, it doesn't love me.

I've been through about a dozen of them. Admittedly most were guns that belonged to others. I owned two Colts, a Para-Ordnance, and a Ballerina Molester. But, SIG, and Smith and Wesson, and several other Colts owned by others.

All of em.

Threw brass off my forehead like they were possessed.
Most times, I was lucky if I got through a whole magazine where even one casing DIDN'T hit me in the forehead.

Fugk that.

Much respect for the gun.
But done with it.
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Old January 15, 2019, 20:06   #17
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I love the 1911.

Problem is, it doesn't love me.

I've been through about a dozen of them. Admittedly most were guns that belonged to others. I owned two Colts, a Para-Ordnance, and a Ballerina Molester. But, SIG, and Smith and Wesson, and several other Colts owned by others.

All of em.

Threw brass off my forehead like they were possessed.
Most times, I was lucky if I got through a whole magazine where even one casing DIDN'T hit me in the forehead.

Fugk that.

Much respect for the gun.
But done with it.
You a right or left handed shooter?

I shoot right handed and since 1965 don't believe I've ever been beaned with a 45 ACP case from a 1911.
Now, there was a 9MM Luger that seemed possessed to fling hot cases on my head so I can understand your sentiments concerning ole Slabsides.
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Old January 15, 2019, 20:28   #18
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Right handed for primary support.

I hold handguns with two hands.
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Old January 15, 2019, 20:35   #19
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My new series 80 Government .45 shoots like a laser, very accurate, she likes Wilson & McCormick mags & has so far been a very good shooter, left hand, right eye dominant shooter w nary a shell casing off my forehead...although some in the back of my hoodie LOL & down my hoodie in the front...Modified Weaver but oriented to my right side....partial retinal tears ruined my previous left eye dominant shootin but that's another story....
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Old January 15, 2019, 22:36   #20
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I'm far from an expert on the matter , but articles that I read the guys at cylinder & slide insist that slide to frame fit isn't as important as the other stuff a slightly loose and I mean slightly helps with reliability, a certain amount of play is required for the pistol to stillfunction reliably when dirt and grime is added their claim to fame and I believe them is the barrel on a cup is most important Barrel to slide , link pin and Barrel bushing are what make accuracy ( of course one needs decent consistent ammo)

Last edited by Olaf; January 15, 2019 at 22:40. Reason: Dead tired
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Old January 16, 2019, 08:56   #21
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I love the 1911.

Problem is, it doesn't love me.

I've been through about a dozen of them. Admittedly most were guns that belonged to others. I owned two Colts, a Para-Ordnance, and a Ballerina Molester. But, SIG, and Smith and Wesson, and several other Colts owned by others.

All of em.

Threw brass off my forehead like they were possessed.
Most times, I was lucky if I got through a whole magazine where even one casing DIDN'T hit me in the forehead.

Fugk that.

Much respect for the gun.
But done with it.
I think I may know what the problem is...

https://www.quora.com/Why-do-gangste...-guns-sideways
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Old January 16, 2019, 09:54   #22
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I would try an aftermarket or OEM Colt barrel to retro fit, see it accuracy improves., or a new barrel bushing first maybe...as for full length guide rod use, I never got that as a desired upgrade on a 1911, after 100 years that's needed why exactly??
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Old January 16, 2019, 12:24   #23
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How is your slide to frame fit? Lots of variables. I shoot 200 grain cast SWC with Unique and if doesn't shoot well something is wrong with the pistol. Have used every barrel, bushing and link system can imagine. My favorite was the Quadralock where barrel is fit to slide without a bushing for carry. If do not have the tools, such as required to fit slide to frame, experience with proper fitting of lug, barrel hood, etc and how they all interact save money and send to reputable 1911 smith. I took four weeks of 1911 smith classes from Jim Stroh at Alpha Precision long ago which has paid off with number of 1911's have had to troubleshoot but still with big pile of specialty tools and years of wrenching on them send my most important 1911's to guys who work on them daily.
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Old January 17, 2019, 20:09   #24
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I owned two Colts, a Para-Ordnance, and a Ballerina Molester.
May I use that in my sig? the Ballerina Molester made my day
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Old January 18, 2019, 13:18   #25
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Threw brass off my forehead like they were possessed. Most times, I was lucky if I got through a whole magazine where even one casing DIDN'T hit me in the forehead.
This behavior is a symptom of a sick extractor that needs attention or needs to be replaced. It is a deceptively simple looking piece of steel but it's critical to 1911 functioning.

Here's a link about extractor fitting that may be of some passing interest: https://forums.1911forum.com/showthread.php?t=829865
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Old January 18, 2019, 14:42   #26
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May I use that in my sig? the Ballerina Molester made my day
That went right by me the first time ...hilarious!
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Old January 18, 2019, 17:05   #27
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Most drop in parts won't do much for accuracy - you want the barrel to be fitted to your slide. I've had great luck with Kart barrels. Also had good luck with later production SA barrels in SA pistols.

You also need good sights and a nice trigger...and good ammo.
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Old January 19, 2019, 02:12   #28
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Please define "isn't all that accurate."
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Old January 19, 2019, 06:26   #29
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Mark is correct. These guys have a long discussion about the 1911. They discuss the link fit, barrel and slide fit, etc. https://youtu.be/O_NrooMVMms
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Old January 19, 2019, 09:10   #30
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Please define "isn't all that accurate."
Saucer sized 5-6” groups at 7-10yards. Not really stringing, just a group.

Shot a ppq 9mm, s&w 22 revolver and smith model 19 much better in the same session.
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Old January 19, 2019, 13:14   #31
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Saucer sized 5-6” groups at 7-10yards. Not really stringing, just a group.
So, minute-o'-pie-plate? Sounds combat accurate to me.
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