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Hand Fit or Mill


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Mill it so slide goes on frame then lap

Hand fit barrel

Hand fit ignition group

Baer does a nice job in general

Lots of good custom builders make them smoother and nicer imo 

i.e Bedell, Akai, etc etc

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3 hours ago, Fo0 said:

I just saw a commercial on TV - Les Baer saying their hand fit 1911 are fitted to tolerances no cnc machine can match. Your thoughts?

 

That statement is a stretch IMO... the right machine, tooling, process, operator, & PM schedule can hold insanely tight tolerances... but is probably cost prohibitive for gun building.  

 

 

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I will say that the Les Baer Premier II .45 I shot NRA Bullseye with years ago was the most accurate 1911 I ever owned.  My best group ever from a ransom rest was 1.1 inches at 50 yards using the Marines load with a Nosler 185 grain bullet.

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I completely hand fit the slide and receiver on the first 1911 I built.  Same with the barrel.  It shoots the lights out.

 

I am currently working on 1911 and a 2011 builds.  The manufacturer I bought the receivers from brags about the quality of their machining, so I decided to give machine fitting a try.  Since I have a full custom Gans Open gun that also had a machine fitted frame and slide, I knew it was possible.  What I got were slides that would go on the respective frames with an interference fit.  They would go on and slide back and forth, but too tightly to actually operate.  All that was required was burnishing them by coating with motor oil and running the slide back and forth a lot of times.  A lot of that was accomplished during barrel fitting.

 

Based on these findings, I will never, ever fit a slide by hand again.  It simply is not worth the time.

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Realistically most of us can't use the difference between a good cnc mill job and a hand fit job.  But a hand fit will last longer, again probably would never really notice it, and cost more.

Les does do fine work, and has been for a loooong time.  

It all depends on what you need too.  Doug Koenig tests barrels in a fixture so he can find the most accurate barrel for his Bianchi Guns.  He "can" use the difference too!

And then Pride of Ownership means something too.

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There is no way to achieve what a machine can. Brandon bunker is working to .0001 on barrel and slide fitting. I have done it both ways and it really doesn’t matter. Either way can be done very well. 

 

Few people can grind, file, or sand perfectly square. Most mills and operators can. 

 

 

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2 hours ago, mach1soldier said:

There is no way to achieve what a machine can. Brandon bunker is working to .0001 on barrel and slide fitting. I have done it both ways and it really doesn’t matter. Either way can be done very well. 

 

Few people can grind, file, or sand perfectly square. Most mills and operators can. 

 

 

 

Not exactly true.  Hand lapping is as accurate as you can get, since you're abrasive fitting two pieces together.  If you mean mechanical processes, that's correct.  And of those, grinding is the most accurate.  For what we do, I'd say the best approach is to grind then hand lap.

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