What is the cause of the first shot flyer on a 1911

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What is the cause of the first shot flyer on a 1911

Post by dlouque@yahoo.com on 5/23/2016, 10:05 pm

I did a search but couldn't find the answer, I know I saw it somewhere. I bought a used S&W 1911 Pro Series 9mm Saturday. Today I decided to shoot it and see how accurate it was both from the bench and the ransom rest. Every first shot of all the groups was about 4 inches to the left of the group (10 shots at 25yds) between 9 and 11 o'clock. I know it has something to do with barrel and slide fit, but don't remember where I read about it. All my .45 1911's I never had this issue. My sig 226 legion and my CZ don't have this issue either. I really like the gun and think I should either send it back to S&W, of find on of the good bullseye gunsmiths that can refit or rebarrel it. I haven't torn it down yet to check the bushing fit and the barrel feet. Looking for suggestions and experience with same issue.

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Re: What is the cause of the first shot flyer on a 1911

Post by LenV on 5/23/2016, 10:56 pm

The only thing different with the first and the second shot is how you are loading the first round. I never baby the slide forward. I don't know if you are but that is the first thing I would change. Well, unless your loading more than 5 rounds then it could be too much spring pressure.

Len
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Re: What is the cause of the first shot flyer on a 1911

Post by spursnguns on 5/24/2016, 9:59 am

Hello dlouque@yahoo.com,

First shot flyers are not unheard of with M1911s.  If everything else checks out, and I doubt if Smith and Wesson will see this as a warranty issue, look into a "Marvel disconnector slot/cut".  As Len alludes, the first round out of a loaded magazine from a locked back slide is presented substantially differently than any of the other successive rounds.  This modification smooths everything out and provides some uniformity and consistency.

Jim
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Re: What is the cause of the first shot flyer on a 1911

Post by C-Train on 5/24/2016, 10:02 am

It is probably the first manually-chambered round from the magazine. This is especially noticeable in 9mm's, not just 1911's. I don't think it's anything you are doing wrong, even if you let the slide fly forward on your first round of the mag I suspect it will still happen. A good test to verify this is the cause would be to setup 2 targets at 25 or 50 yards. On target 1, manually pull and release the slide on the first shot of each string. On target 2, have the slide locked back and chamber the first shot of each string by dropping the slide release. See if there is less of an effect of the first shot flyer. On mine, the effect was about half when dropping the slide release vs. racking the slide by hand.

I've done some research on this and going to do some more testing with my own. This is more noticeable with 9mms than other calibers. My NM Beretta M9 has the same issue, even though the gun is extremely accurate and well built. I contacted my gunsmith and he says he has seen this in about 1 out of 20 9mms he builds. He's tried every conceivable way of testing. The only resolution he's found is to try different loads, or if reloading to change powder charge or bullet type until it isn't noticeable. That's my next step as well.

It has something to do with the manually-chambered round vs. the automatically chambered rounds. Obviously, the force and speed with which they are chambered are going to be more with the auto chambered rounds. I've also wondered if the powder in the round is settling differently and if that would cause a difference?

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Re: What is the cause of the first shot flyer on a 1911

Post by spursnguns on 5/24/2016, 10:17 am

I think you will find that it is a solely "mechanical" problem and solution.

Jim
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Re: What is the cause of the first shot flyer on a 1911

Post by Rob Kovach on 5/24/2016, 12:31 pm

I let the wrist go early sometimes. A 6 at 12'oclock. Try dry firing a few before your first slow fire shot with extra focus on keeping the sight from moving on that 1st live round. I'm betting it's not a mechanical issue.
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Re: What is the cause of the first shot flyer on a 1911

Post by dlouque@yahoo.com on 5/27/2016, 10:32 am

Thanks guys for the help, but even through bench testing and ransom rest testing the first hand cycled round whether pulling the slide back or using the slide stop the first shot is always off to the left. It doesn't matter what the load is or bullet weight. I don't have that issue with my CZ, Sig 226 Legion, or EAA Witness limited. My EAA is my most accurate 9mm and I usually do all my load development with it. Just frustrated that I bought a nice looking S&W 1911 and since it is a Pro Series I expected it to shoot a lot better. My PC1911 .45 will put them all in one hole at 25 yards. Haven't found a load that shoots better than 1.58 inches in the 9mm.

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