Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

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Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by DeweyHales on 12/2/2013, 12:50 pm

What are the must have tools for fitting a 1911 barrel?
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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by Virgil Kane on 12/2/2013, 12:57 pm

I'm not a gunsmith but have built my own 1911 Wad gun. Most things you can do with files, stones and lapping compound, maybe amateurish but it can be done and done well. The one thing I couldn't do without was the lower lug cutter from Brownells along with a good micrometer and dial caliper.


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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by WVBE Shooter on 12/2/2013, 9:35 pm

I bought I bought a tool kit from Kart, it has the file for lugs, .ooo1 feeler gauge, jig for lining up barrel, machinist glueing dye.  Also helpful instructions. Oh it also had a easy off bushing that allows you take the barrell out without using your bushing.

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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by Virgil Kane on 12/3/2013, 7:26 am

I guess the question to DeweyHales would have to be.

Are you taking about a Kart Easy fit barrel, a gunsmith fit barrel or a ramped W/N barrel?

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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by DeweyHales on 12/3/2013, 1:58 pm

I have done an easy fit barrel.  I want to do a standard Bar-Sto for a hardball gun.

I have the Kart kit, swiss files, and Dykem. 

Are the guys on this list fitting barrels with files, a lug cutter or a mill?  There's probably some in each group.
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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by Dr.Don on 12/3/2013, 7:08 pm

Dewey,
I've done at least a half dozen good shooting bullseye guns over the years.  You can get by without Brownell's lug cutter, but it is well worth the money in time saved.  You will still have to finish the fitting with a good quality fine cut round file, but the lug cutter gets you close.  Obviously you have to fit the tang first so the barrel will seat while you cut the lugs.  You can pretty quickly put together a jig that will hold the barrel up and locked into the slide while you cut the lugs. You'll also need a tool to push the slide/barrel into the lug cutter.  Brownell's sells a kit of all of this I believe.
I also silver soldered a "handle" on a modified Series 70 collet style bushing to use as a bushing while fitting the barrel.  You will put it in and take it out a hundred times and this tool is very useful.
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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by Dr.Don on 12/3/2013, 7:21 pm

Dewey,
One other thing.  The full fit barrels are often short chambered.  The idea is that fitting the barrel tang changes the headspace, so they are intentionally short chambered.  After you fit the barrel you have to finish the chamber to the new tang length.  That requires a chambering reamer and headspace gage.  I bought them because I have a lathe and wanted to build several guns with minimum chambers.  If you haven't already bought a barrel you might want to ask about the chamber before you buy.
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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by DeweyHales on 12/3/2013, 8:25 pm

Yeah. I'm expecting a short chamber. I've got gunsmith buddies that I can pay, but I'd like to learn myself one day. 

I'm the kind of guy that wanted a new bathroom and learned tile, electrical and plumbing to make it happen. Nothing says "committed to a project" like using a sledge hammer to break up a cast iron tub to guarantee no turning back.
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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by Virgil Kane on 12/4/2013, 7:13 am

Looks like you have the right attitude to get this project done.

The only other thing I would say is a necessity would be Jerry Kuhnhausen's book "The Colt .45 Automatic  A Shop Manual" if you don't have it already. Lots of good information on how to do things properly with lots of specks and pictures.

Have fun and enjoy the ride!


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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by DeweyHales on 12/4/2013, 10:33 am

Virgil,

I have both JK books.  So, I should be good to go once I assemble my tool kit. 

Thanks
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Re: Tools for Fitting a 1911 Barrel

Post by Wes Lorenz on 12/4/2013, 3:04 pm

Dewey,
I prefer to use candle soot instead of Dykem blue and use chalk on my files to keep them clean. Good luck, you'll get the satisfaction of doing it yourself, but watch out that you don't get more work than you can handle that will keep you away from the range.
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