Discussion in 'The 1911 Forum' started by patrol, May 22, 2007.

  1. patrol

    patrol Member

    May 19, 2007
    Today at the range I had something happen that has never happened before with my two favorite 1911's. Both my Kimber ProcarryII and my Smith 1911 consistently double fed and jammed on falling to feed both with various magazines and good new winchester ball ammo 230grain!! I was so pissed off after I shot 200 rounds I put it away and spent the rest of the afternoon shooting my Hipower 9mm. Im actually depressed over the issue. They are both known for excellent quality. I have three other 1911's that I have shot way more rounds out of two of which are older 1911's the Colt and the Springfield that both have never malfunctioned and the Para LDA which used to misfeed consistently til I got it back from the factory. Do I really have to expect to pay $1000 or over for a 1911 that will be reliable? Im actually considering trading them both in. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
  2. punchie

    punchie Member

    Apr 27, 2004
    Chesterfield, VA
    Sounds like a imroperly fitted or gummed up extractor to me. I believe the Pro-Carry and the Smith both use external extractors (read that as cheaper, easier to assemble) instead of the original design.

  3. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2003
    Hesperia, CA
    Ship those turkey guns back to the factory for evaluation and repair, the sooner the better. Explain you depression about their performance with good Winchester ball ammo.

    Personally, Kimbers have never impressed me much. I think they are overpriced. The S&W 1911 looks good but has a very high price tag for what you get. I took the bottom of the barrel route and got a Rock Island and totally customized it. I'll bet mine shoots better than most Kimbers or S&W do in their stock form and I probably have less invested. My RI is not as pretty (finish cost extra bucks in any firearm...hand labor) and may not be as robust (durable) but it sure is a lot of gun for the least money. As for 45ACP my favorite has to be my Sig P220. Both my Witness and CZ97 are good guns, just too big in the grip area for my small hands. My Colt Delta Elite in 10mm is the best 1911 I have seen so far that did not cost an arm and a leg (well maybe only an arm) and fits my small hands well.

  4. patrol

    patrol Member

    May 19, 2007
    Thanks for the advice. The accuracy of the pistols is excellent, especially the Smith but I can't have misfeeds. Im going to try my friends Wilson combat mags first and if they work I will just get a couple of those but they sure are pricey at 30bucks a piece on sale. Anyone have a Para with the newer power extractor? My 03 model LDA doesn't have that i wonder if the newer models with the power extractors feed flawlessly. Back to the factory they go. Thanks guys.
  5. Tomcatt

    Tomcatt New Member

    May 15, 2007
    Wakulla, Co., Florida
    Seems kinda funny that two different guns from different manufacturers would malfunction the same on the same day... Are you sure it wasn't something that you were doing? Or maybe you got a bad batch of ammo.

  6. Pat Hurley

    Pat Hurley Former Guest

    Sep 30, 2006
    Naples, Florida
    My thoughts exactly. It's rare, but maybe that box of ammo is really bad. Too much coincidence here. Take a look at your ammo before burying your pistols in the back yard.

    Those are quality guns that shouldn't be acting that way. But again, both on the same day, displaying the exact same problem? Hmmmm.
  7. patrol

    patrol Member

    May 19, 2007
    I thought the ammo also could have been a factor but the other 45 I shot my XD about 60 rounds with the ammo and not one misfeed or malfunction. Im going to try the factory mags only again then my friends Wilson mags and if they feed with same ammo Ill know it was the other aftermarket mags but still...even with aftermarket they should feed.
  8. Shooter45

    Shooter45 *Administrator* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2001
    Here at TFF
    Alot of 1911 problems are mag related.

    Also, a lot of aftermarket mags are crap. Use only quality 1911 mags such as Wilson Combat, Metalform or CMC.
  9. stash247

    stash247 New Member

    Oct 18, 2003
    Central Texas
    Shooter, that was a mouthfull, but accurate; somewhere around 90%, I would guess!
    The commonalities are two; shared mags, for the failing pistols, altogether different mags, for the XD, and ammo, which is fine in the XD, but causes failures in the two pistols with shared mags.
    Were it my problem, I would have already ordered a set of lip forming dies from Brownells, or gone to Austin and bought a half dozen McCormic mags!
    Since I already have the die set, cheap mags are repairable, but the idea of having to wonder "IF?" is unacceptable, in a carry gun!
    My "Officers Model" is the fifth I went through, for reliability, as the first four were worth more to others; It is absolutely reliable, and acceptably accurate (3 1/2", at 50 yds), so, likely, will stick around for a while; it's been here at my side for nearly ten years, now!
    I'd bet anything, Patrol, that mags will sove the problem!
  10. patrol

    patrol Member

    May 19, 2007
    Thanks for your input. I think I will try out my friends Wilson combat mags before I send both of them back. stash, thanks for the tip on the Chip Mccormick mags but thats mainly what I use and used that day. The eight rounders.
  11. deinonychus75

    deinonychus75 New Member

    Mar 19, 2004
    Mmmm...sorry to hear about your troubles, patrol, but good to know as I was just drooling over a Kimber Ultra Carry II at a gun shop a couple of days ago. It'll be interesting to find out if the mags fix the prob. Odd that two different pistols would have the exact same issue on the same day.
  12. stash247

    stash247 New Member

    Oct 18, 2003
    Central Texas
    Patrol, we await your results: please change nothing, do not clean, dis-assemble, or otherwise change anything on either pistol until you have tried the Wilson Mags, otherwise, we may never know what 'fixed the problem, or, even, what the problem was.
    DO compare the profile of the bullet, in the ammo that gave malfunctions, to other 230 Gr Ball ammo that you may have, or better yet, have shot in the past with good reliability
    I doubt you have an Optical Comparator, in the garage, but a local machine shop might just have one, and this would be the ultimate tool for profile comparison, of ammo.
    Assuming the mag change does not fix the problem, let's go back to your original post' "Double fed, and Jammed, on failing to feed".
    A 'double feed ' malfunction is when a mag lets two rounds go, at the same feed cycle; this surely congests the available space in the slide, behind the chamber; if you rack the slide, lock it back, and rotate the pistol to the right, 2 loaded rounds ought to fall to the ground. I have never seen this in a running 1911 pistol.
    'Jammed', in terms I understand, is a single round, wedged between the breech face, and the top of the chamber mouth, or, the Breech face, and the feed ramp. These (either) could be caused by magazine lip dimensions, or geometry, or feed ramp condition, or geometry, but are usually, at least in the second case, associated with short, light, huge hollwpoint bullets, not ball ammo. They could also be caused by a tired recoil spring, really grungy slide ways, lack of lubrication, or any combination of these three; I lubricate the slide /frame ways with a dot ot two of Molebdenum Disulfide grease, (Nasty, Staining, Gray **** that works miracles, in many fields besides guns), and nothing else; dare to use more than two little balls of this stuff, balls the size of the one in a cheap ball point pen, per side, and it will come out, and stain your clothes, forever, when you fire the pistol! The recoil spring should be an 18, or 19 pound spring, for Ball ammo, in a 5" 1911;
    shorter slides will require heavier springs. My Officer's model needs 22#, likes a 24# spring even better. When was it last changed, or, even seriously looked at? If you are not absolutely sure, replace it! And keep doing that, every 3-5,000 rounds, depending on the intensity of the loads you shoot! A Failure of this type would drop a single, loaded round, often with the bullet marked, or defomed, when the slide was jackedto the rear, and the pistol, rotated right.
    A 'failure to feed' would say no round was stripped from the mag, as the slide ran forward, pushed by the recoil spring, into battery; the suspects here are the mag feed lips, the mag catch slot (Too high; round too low to be 'stripped' and shoved forward, into the chamber, and the mag spring, too weak to get the round up , before the slide has passed the base of the case, or, really dirty mags, binding the follower, and slowing it's rise.
    In this case, jacking the slide, and locking it back, absolutely nothing would fall to the ground, when the weapon was rotated to the right.
    My Detonics 'Combat Masters' all demand mag springs that would work well in mags an inch longer than theirs, because their slide 'cycle time' is somuch faster than a Gov't (5") model. A rare but possible longshot is a "too powerful" recoil spring, short cycling your slide, so as never to get behind the case head, in the mag, but rule out the 'cleanliness', and 'lubrication', issues, before ever considering this long shot!
    If you want help, in finding and fixing this problem, you are in the right place; please, as you've gotten me interested, tell us all what, exactly, these pistols did
  13. mo jenkins

    mo jenkins Member

    Mar 25, 2003
    New Hampshire
    Hey stash,

    Thanks for the excellent write-up on 1911 malfs. I'm going to add it to my files of favorite "short and sweet" firearms info manuals.

    Your buddy,
  14. stash247

    stash247 New Member

    Oct 18, 2003
    Central Texas
    Mo, and all, I am no ''Guru" on the subject, rather, way too familiar with what does NOT work, in certain areas; for that education, the tuition was sometimes very high!
    In another light, I got some of the finest 'hands on' training that money could NOT buy!
    Some of the old guys, most dead now, but a few still living, like Cooper, Swenson, Willing, Day, Ingraham, and Velchoff, were first my role models, then 'dream dates', finally, mentors; I often worked more or less free, simply to learn more of the craft they knew and plied so well.
    I asked every one of them, at some time, to put the knowledge on paper, lest it be lost, but only one, ever did, and Jeff Cooper's writings addressed the mechanics in a superficial way, for the most part.
    This is my position: Knowledge is only useful, if shared; otherwise, it is ultimately wasted, as we pass on, leaving others to pay the same 'dues', to acquire it, as we did!
    I want my kids, my friends, my world, to be more than I could be,and will freely share what I have learned, with anyone; feel free to agree, and use the info, disagree, and look elsewhere, or call BS on me, if the spirit moves you to do so!
    My grandfather was a Master Machinist, my uncle, a Tool and Die Maker, and I grew up with Grandpa, so it is no great surprise that I spent some time in that business, running everything from little Shaubln 'chucker' lathes, to 240" Cadillacs, Bridgeport mills, to Kellers.
    At 18, I was running a Pratt and Whitney Jigbore, for Northrop Aircraft, at a better wage than many twice my age, because I could!
    Forget all that bs, and focus, on WHY?
    I had both a Grandfather, and an Uncle, who believed to the death, that the only worth of knowledge was in sharing; They had me competent, by nine or ten, with more tools and machinery than I could ever own!
    Mo, what I gave to you was a synopsis of some of the mistakes, and tutoring, I have gone through, over several years, simply to first, truly identify the problem, and second, to save you, and others, some money.
    Swenson was building "Ultra Compact" .45's, in the 60's, and I was watching; if he said a 24# spring would do, nothing less, that was the law; He, truly, was the first GURU; he could make anything work, if done 'his way'.
    And he was not in the least, in my experience, stingy, about sharing his knowledge, whether of success,or failure! He was a cherished mentor!
    To the point, this forum is a valuable resource, to me, and others, as we share what we know, and that is a 'Good thing'!. But, what I offered ought rightly be attributed to A. D. Swenson; I was but the messenger.
    Last edited: May 29, 2007
  15. patrol

    patrol Member

    May 19, 2007
    Thats why i thought it could have been the ammo.