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S&W 1911 9mm Pro Modifications


Quag

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I just got a 9mm SW 1911 pro for use in IDPA and USPSA. So far the only 2 modifications I'm thinking about is adding a Wilson Combat extended mag release and a lighter recoil spring. Any thoughts on the recoil spring, reading this forum I see that some have opted for 9# spring. I reload my own and load to about a 130 to 140 PF and a 1.135 COL. I'm still getting used to it but after putting about 100 rounds through it, its started to loosen up. So far no failures to feed or FTF. So far the trigger seems perfect I'm no going to touch it for now.

Also I have been running a G34 and G17 for the last couple of years any tips on transitioning to a 1911?

Thx

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It took me about 6 weeks to get where I was with my glocks on the 1911. Granted it was my first experience shooting a 1911 platform so others may transition faster but it was tough for me. There is no shortcut unfortunately

Sent from an iDevice. Please forgive any grammatical or spelling errors. If the post doesn't make sense or is not amusing then it is technology's fault and most certainly not operator error.

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It took me about 6 weeks to get where I was with my glocks on the 1911. Granted it was my first experience shooting a 1911 platform so others may transition faster but it was tough for me. There is no shortcut unfortunately

Thanks how was the reloading, I can just catch the stock mag release with my thumb, I'm hopping the extended mag release helps. BTW its my first 1911 too.

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An extended mag release will probably be illegal for IDPA. You might try some new grips with a thumb relief eg. VZ super scoop.

Not sure about that I shoot a G34 with an extended slide release in the SSP division of IDPA, I intend to shoot the 1911 in the ESP division which allows a bunch of modifications compared to the SSP (production division) which does not. But I'll check it out. I'll keep the VZ super scoop in mind

thx

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I have been running a 7lb spring in my 9mm 1911 with 128 Pf ammo, but it's just not enough spring and the slide tracks a little too slowly. I will be switching out to an 8/9lb next.

I shoot Glocks in Production right now, but plan on moving to SS division after Area 4. I think the big thing is working your draws, safety manipulation and getting your first shots off. The point differently due to the grip angles/bore axis and I think some dry work would make a big difference. I use to shot 2011s in Limited, but prior to a few months ago, had not handled the platform in years.

One thing is for sure, after getting good at mag changes on a 1911, Glocks are going to be easy peasy!

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I have been running a 7lb spring in my 9mm 1911 with 128 Pf ammo, but it's just not enough spring and the slide tracks a little too slowly. I will be switching out to an 8/9lb next.

I shoot Glocks in Production right now, but plan on moving to SS division after Area 4. I think the big thing is working your draws, safety manipulation and getting your first shots off. The point differently due to the grip angles/bore axis and I think some dry work would make a big difference. I use to shot 2011s in Limited, but prior to a few months ago, had not handled the platform in years.

One thing is for sure, after getting good at mag changes on a 1911, Glocks are going to be easy peasy!

Thanks Ruger, BTW both my CCWs are Rugers and I sold my old Ruger O/U Red Label to buy the SW 9mm 1911. Ruger is big up here in the NE. You are exactly in the same mode going from Glocks to 1911. What kind of 1911 do you have I am right now I'm running my G34 in Production right now but I'm going to be dry firing my new 1911 to get used to it. Its still very stiff. I still have the factory SW recoil spring in mine and I cannot find out what the lbs are I think its a 16 or 17. I have ordered and I should get an 11# and 12.5# spring from Wilson. I reload my own ammo to about a 130 to 135 PF. I'm going to shoot my 1911 in SS. One surprise I had was the second time I fired my 1911 at an IDPA practice, with my weak hand only from 10 yrds, I hit all down 0s (6 shots in a row semi rapid fire). I've never done that with my G34. PS I also ordered a Wilson extended slide release I think that will help

You are right the G34 mag changes are pretty easy right now.

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It took me about 6 weeks to get where I was with my glocks on the 1911. Granted it was my first experience shooting a 1911 platform so others may transition faster but it was tough for me. There is no shortcut unfortunately

Thanks how was the reloading, I can just catch the stock mag release with my thumb, I'm hopping the extended mag release helps. BTW its my first 1911 too.

Typo I was referring to the slide release not the mag release. Mag release is ok

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I was reading the Dawson Precision website and they recommended a #9 recoil spring for minor 9mm/.38 super. I also bought a Dawson aluminum recoil spring guide at $19.95 or so. It takes the place of a buffer and is intended as a sacrificial part. So far no issues with the rod and it has held up for about 1300 minor PF rounds. I found that the #9 spring and Froglube to be a poor combination. The Froglube became pasty/sticky and retarded the slide movement to the point of frequent failure to return to battery at around 750 rounds.

Mine is a Colt .38 Super Auto.

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I should have done this in the first place but after a fruitless search on the forums and internet to find the weight of the factory spring on the 9mm S&W 5 inch Pro Series 1911 I called S&W and got the answer in 5 minutes. The factory springs measure out at 14 to 16#s in the 9mm. I'll start off dropping mine to 11# and see how it cycles from the there. BTW the factor trigger pull is 5.5#s but it sure feels like 3#.

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  • 1 month later...

I have installed 11# after market springs and the 1911 will not go into battery from slide lock when I use the extended slide release I have to rack it to go into battery. Anybody else have a similar problem? Other wise cycles fine. Using low PF loads about 130 PF 9mm

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I don't remember seeing an ambidextrous slide release ???

not sure what you are getting at my extended slide release is not ambidextrous

I re-sprung one for a buddy of mine and I settled on a 17 lb mainspring paired with a 12 pound recoil spring.

what's a "main spring? I'm not familiar with that terminolgy

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I don't remember seeing an ambidextrous slide release ???

not sure what you are getting at my extended slide release is not ambidextrous

I re-sprung one for a buddy of mine and I settled on a 17 lb mainspring paired with a 12 pound recoil spring.

what's a "main spring? I'm not familiar with that terminolgy

He's referring to the hammer spring. Also known as the mainspring. Changing that changes how much force it takes to cock the hammer and can change the slide speed on opening.

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If it runs and you like the trigger, leave it. I really like the Dawson fiber optic front site on my STI and I got the hogue grips/ mainspring housing that forms a magwell. I did the hogue grips because I was up against weight limit with a steel magwell.

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I have installed 11# after market springs and the 1911 will not go into battery from slide lock when I use the extended slide release I have to rack it to go into battery. Anybody else have a similar problem? Other wise cycles fine. Using low PF loads about 130 PF 9mm

To others I solved the problem its not the springs, I put the original slide release back in and it cycles fine as it turns out the Wilson Combat 1911 extended slide release I bought is for 45s not 9mm. Back to the drawing board. Got to make sure I read the fine print next time

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Quag, I'm new to the sport and currently only shoot steel. I am also working on tuning my 1911. I have a rock island in 9mm and put a Wilson combat extended slide release and ambidextrous safety on it and have no problems. I didn't think there was a difference between 9mm and 45 when it comes to safeties and releases . How does it shoot with the 11# spring? Just wondering because my next step is to change the spring. I thought a 9# might run nice. Not sure if it will be too light.

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It took me about 6 weeks to get where I was with my glocks on the 1911. Granted it was my first experience shooting a 1911 platform so others may transition faster but it was tough for me. There is no shortcut unfortunately

Sent from an iDevice. Please forgive any grammatical or spelling errors. If the post doesn't make sense or is not amusing then it is technology's fault and most certainly not operator error.

Oh, yes. This.

It took me even longer to make the transition and I still nearly cost myself a class win at a major match recently due forgetting I was using a 1911.

The stage required you to start with both hands on a rope that you would pull to activate a quick max trap. I decided to be cute and pull the rope with one hand and then draw and engage the target with my strong hand. I'm good at one handed shooting so why not take advantage of that? I practiced the motions while visualizing what I was doing and had it down.

It's my turn to shoot the stage. Load and make ready. Everything is feeling good. Buzzer goes off. I start executing on my plan. I move my right hand to the pistol while pulling the activator rope with the left hand. It's fluid. It's awesome. It's working! I take my sight picture as the target becomes visible, pull the trigger...and nothing.

I forgot to take the safety off. I'm rewarded by watching in horror as the no shoot now covers almost all of the target and I'm starting at a little sliver of tan at the headshot. I know I have to engage to avoid an FTE so I decide to just take a second, aim carefully to hit the headshot...wait for it...wait for it....Boom!!....one round right into the head of the no shoot. Super.

To my credit, I do manage to keep my composure and run the rest of the stage according to plan so I ended up with a 1.9 hit factor rather than 0, but it really cost me.

Moral of the story? If you are transitioning to a 1911 and you don't have a background in it, make sure your dry fire includes one handed safety disengagement. I had gotten so used to taking off the safety with my normal draw that I figured I was done screwing that up. Nope.

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