Springs in a 1911

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Springs in a 1911

Post by Sheriff1962 on Tue Oct 09, 2018 9:37 pm

Help me to understand springs in a full size 1911 45acp. For a pistol that is used with factory ball and 230JHP ammo, what is considered a standard ? What does a lighter hammer spring do?  How does one choose the weight of hammer and recoil spring weight ?

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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by cdrt on Tue Oct 09, 2018 10:06 pm

The factory standard spring for a 1911 is 16 pounds.  The current Colt Gold Cup comes with a 16 pound spring for "hardball" and a ten pound spring for lighter loads.  The Series 70 Gold Cup came with a ten pound spring standard.
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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by TargetShooter27 on Tue Oct 09, 2018 10:51 pm

The hammer spring (main spring) applies the force that drives the hammer into the firing pin.  I believe the standard hammer spring for a ball gun is between 23-26lb.  The heavier the spring the greater force it takes to cycle the slide, thus a heavier spring can absorb the recoil from a ball round.  Bullseye shooters typically shoot lighter loads that wouldn't cycler the pistol with a heavy hammer spring.  A lot of shooters use 18-19lb. springs.  I believe the standard recoil spring is 16lbs as the previous poster mentioned.  The trick is to find the right combination of ammo load, hammer spring and recoil spring.  An additional variable you see talked about hear often is if the pistol has a red dot mounted to the slide, which has different characteristics, compared to a pistol with a frame mount, due to the additional weight on the slide.

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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by Sheriff1962 on Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:12 am

So a 1911 , without red dot , that is used exclusively with factory match  ball ammo , should be set up with factory hammer spring and 16 or 18 1/2 lb recoil spring ?

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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by cdrt on Wed Oct 10, 2018 7:49 am

Sheriff1962 wrote:So a 1911 , without red dot , that is used exclusively with factory match  ball ammo , should be set up with factory hammer spring and 16 or 18 1/2 lb recoil spring ?
Yes.  The 16 pound spring should be enough, but if it will cycle with the 18 1/2 pound spring, go for it.
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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by kc.crawford.7 on Wed Oct 10, 2018 8:24 am

You're going to find that A LOT more things will depend on what your recoil and mainspring weights are.  Barrel fit, bushing fit, lockup on slide stop pin, chamber just to name a few.  Do some experimenting with your gun and find out what works for you.

I can just about guarantee that an 18.5 recoil spring will make the front of your pistol dip when it goes back into battery.
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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by Chris Miceli on Wed Oct 10, 2018 8:36 am

kc.crawford.7 wrote:You're going to find that A LOT more things will depend on what your recoil and mainspring weights are.  Barrel fit, bushing fit, lockup on slide stop pin, chamber just to name a few.  Do some experimenting with your gun and find out what works for you.

I can just about guarantee that an 18.5 recoil spring will make the front of your pistol dip when it goes back into battery.
What he said.
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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by SmokinNJokin on Wed Oct 10, 2018 10:10 am

Save that for your 9x25 dillon 1911.

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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by mikemyers on Wed Oct 10, 2018 11:14 am

kc.crawford.7 wrote:You're going to find that A LOT more things will depend on what your recoil and mainspring weights are.  Barrel fit, bushing fit, lockup on slide stop pin, chamber just to name a few.  Do some experimenting with your gun and find out what works for you.

I can just about guarantee that an 18.5 recoil spring will make the front of your pistol dip when it goes back into battery.
Interesting - the Les Baer Premier II that I bought a few years ago came with an 18# spring.  They sold me a 16# spring as something "lighter".  

For Bullseye shooting ONLY, using Magnus #801 bullets, and 4 grains Bullseye powder, what spring do you recommend?

Does anyone sell a simple spring weight tester?  I've seen a handmade tester in this forum, but I don't have the materials with which to make one.


KC, I don't understand - because of recoil, isn't the front of the barrel moving upwards?  Or are you so good that you can control this better than others.
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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by Aprilian on Wed Oct 10, 2018 11:20 am

mikemyers wrote:


KC, I don't understand - because of recoil, isn't the front of the barrel moving upwards?  Or are you so good that you can control this better than others.
Mike,   You can see in this video that the slide "slamming home" causes a rotational force.   The closer to "kissing" into lockup, the less that rotational force translates into nose dive.
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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by 1joel1 on Wed Oct 10, 2018 11:30 am

Even though this video is for steel challenge, it really demonstrates the effect of recoil spring weights.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3UVLm2GajI

Cheers,

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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by bdas on Wed Oct 10, 2018 11:37 am

mikemyers wrote:
kc.crawford.7 wrote:You're going to find that A LOT more things will depend on what your recoil and mainspring weights are.  Barrel fit, bushing fit, lockup on slide stop pin, chamber just to name a few.  Do some experimenting with your gun and find out what works for you.

I can just about guarantee that an 18.5 recoil spring will make the front of your pistol dip when it goes back into battery.
Interesting - the Les Baer Premier II that I bought a few years ago came with an 18# spring.  They sold me a 16# spring as something "lighter".  

For Bullseye shooting ONLY, using Magnus #801 bullets, and 4 grains Bullseye powder, what spring do you recommend?

Does anyone sell a simple spring weight tester?  I've seen a handmade tester in this forum, but I don't have the materials with which to make one.


KC, I don't understand - because of recoil, isn't the front of the barrel moving upwards?  Or are you so good that you can control this better than others.

Here's a spring tester you can buy... https://www.ebay.com/itm/45-cal-Spring-Tester/142966437284?hash=item214976b5a4:g:xlgAAMXQltxQ8NP4

For a 1911 45 Auto shooting light bullseye loads, with a slide-mounted red dot, I usually see people recommend 10lbs or 12lbs recoil spring (sometimes 9lbs), and 18lbs or 19lbs hammer/main spring.  Those are just starting points.  You have to see what works with your loads in your gun.

KC is referring to the front dipping down as the slide is closing / moving forward.  The heavy spring pushes (i.e. slams) the slide forward with more vigor.

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Re: Springs in a 1911

Post by mikemyers on Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:00 pm

Aprilian wrote:Mike,   You can see in this video that the slide "slamming home" causes a rotational force.   The closer to "kissing" into lockup, the less that rotational force translates into nose dive.
Thank you - that video made it quite obvious.  The slide is already moving "down", and the "slamming home" adds to it.  .....something I never thought of before.
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