Re: Tuning the M1911 for Reliability.
A couple of things:
1). A couple of years ago someone here contradicted me about the following that is covered in the article:
"When the barrel is placed in the frame and pushed all the way rearward, there should be a gap of about 0.030 of an inch between the feed ramp and the barrel. The absence of such a gap can produce feeding problems and must be remedied by a professional pistolsmith."
The claim was that the gap should be zero. supposedly some famous 1911 gunsmith that the guy had worked with always did it to zero. This probably puts that to rest. This is only one of many places that this (0.030 inches gap) dimension appears.
2). Loose is typically reliable. Accuracy is usually gained by tighter fits. But there is more to it than just a loose or tight slide to frame fit as the article points out well.
I have done a couple of 1911's and the most is to be gained accuracy wise by a tight fitting barrel bush with it still being able to rotate vertically to allow the rear of the barrel to rotate up and down without barrel springing. This combined with the Wilson Combat Dwyer Group Gripper that uses a little leaf spring inside their special recoil spring guide and their link with a step in it to allow the barrel to be stuffed up into the slide. It makes the barrel always come back to exactly the same place vertically. These two changes can increase accuracy by 30% and it cost significantly less than a frame tightening and barrel link length adjustment job and does not measurable reduce the reliability if the barrel bush is fitted correctly.
Another supposed adjustment that increases the durability of the gun is fitting the hood for virtually no looseness when the slide is fully closed. It can take welding and grinding or machining the barrel hood to get it just right. If this fit is too loose the barrel will beat the groves in the underside of the slide to death and ruin the slide, eventually, on a heavily used gun.