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How does a 1911 ejector work?

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Post by mikemyers on Sun Jul 26, 2020 8:37 pm

I guess I have two questions, things I've been trying to read about, with little success.  This is about 1911 ejectors.

I've got three guns that I've shot recently.  One is a 1911 Baer, with full loads - Winchester White Box 230 grain ammo.  Ejected rounds are usually six to ten feet behind me, mostly on my right.  Then I've got a Salyer Caspian, which ejects my low power loads (Magnus #801 bullets over 4.4 grains of WST and sends them mostly behind me, but not very far.  Finally, I've got my Springfield, with the newly replaced extractor.   Both before the "surgery" and now, rounds can end up anyplace, mostly centered around the gun.  Some go out in front of the beech, some end up on the ground behind me, and some hit me, and end up on my bench.  My first question is how gunsmiths adjust this, to control where rounds are sent.

I tried to look up how an ejector can be configured to send the rounds to a location (preferably behind me), but what I found was descriptions and videos on how to install an ejector and tune it, but not one word about what someone might do to control where the rounds are ejected TO.  My second question is whether bullseye shooters even care about this?  Maybe it's a non-issue, something to be ignored, as long as the gun is shooting well.

This is just one more part of the 1911 I'm trying to understand.  On Monday I'll likely check mine out, to see if it shows any signs of damage.  Can anyone here point me towards a good reference source that explains this?  

(I did learn a lot from this excellent video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MqM36vFc5og which among other things made it obvious to me that doing something like this is way above my skill level - Jim, no need to worry about me getting into trouble.)
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Post by mspingeld on Sun Jul 26, 2020 9:23 pm

https://animagraffs.com/how-a-handgun-works-1911-45/  Scroll down

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Post by DA/SA on Sun Jul 26, 2020 9:26 pm

Have you tried a recoil spring that is a pound lighter to see if that alters the pattern?

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Post by mikemyers on Sun Jul 26, 2020 9:48 pm

mspingeld wrote:https://animagraffs.com/how-a-handgun-works-1911-45/  Scroll down
That is an Excellent!!! animation.  I wish I had seen it years ago, but I guess it's new.
Thanks for posting.

If I had to speculate, based on what I see happening, it's the front edge of the ejector that would influence which way the ejected rounds would go.  
I sort of visualized how this might work, but seeing it in this animation made it much more obvious, along with many other things.

If I'm correct about the front surface of the ejector (especially the angle of it) is what controls where rounds go, then there likely is an article to be found someplace explaining this.

It's amazing how "obvious" things look, once it's pointed out to me.
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Post by mikemyers on Sun Jul 26, 2020 10:00 pm

DA/SA wrote:Have you tried a recoil spring that is a pound lighter to see if that alters the pattern?
Nope, not ready to do any of those things yet.  I know how the Springfield shoots now, but I'm replacing the 30mm Ultradot II with a one inch Matchdot sight, like what so many people seem to prefer.   The reduced weight will probably influence a lot of things, over and beyond lightening the weight in my hand.  

I've got all the new Starline cases, but my #801 bullets from Magnus won't be here for a few more days.  (Speaking which, I had a few long talks with the tech guys at Redding, Jay and Don.  Following their advice, my reloads look so much better than they used to.  They suggested I buy a few things, and Jay made me a "seater" specifically for my #801 bullet, which alone made everything better.)

I've got what feels like unlimited free time, as the virus is keeping me cooped up in my apartment much more than ever before.  Among other things, I've gone back to Brian's shooting videos, going through those one at a time, and comparing what I thought I learned before, with what I see watching them again.

Anyway, one thing I learned is to only make one change at a time.  Thanks for the suggestion - I'll keep it in mind.  I thought the strength of the recoil spring was based on the force from firing the bullet, and the weight of the slide and what might be mounted to it.  Are you suggesting that the recoil spring is a way to tune the ejector??
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Post by SmokinNJokin on Sun Jul 26, 2020 10:32 pm

The violence with which the slide opens (due to recoil spring) will dramatically change your ejection pattern. Get proper recoil spring strength for your combo (will lock slide back and kick brass out anywhere from 18”-3’) before you start messing with the ejector. Will save you from going in circles.

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Post by mikemyers on Sun Jul 26, 2020 11:09 pm

Does all or most of this apply to Bullseye?
https://cajungunworks.com/how-to-select-the-proper-recoil-spring/
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Post by dronning on Sun Jul 26, 2020 11:23 pm

2015

2018
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Post by mikemyers on Sun Jul 26, 2020 11:46 pm



Dave, that 2018 video you posted is the most useful video I have found.  I would watch it over and over, endlessly, trying to understand.    I guess all the videos are good, as some show certain things better than others.  

I need to post a WTB thread in the forums, to get one of the two shop manuals I know of for the 1911.  Will do that now, before I forget - and if nobody is selling one, I have one in my shopping cart at Amazon.
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Post by DA/SA on Mon Jul 27, 2020 7:32 am

mikemyers wrote:
DA/SA wrote:Have you tried a recoil spring that is a pound lighter to see if that alters the pattern?


Anyway, one thing I learned is to only make one change at a time.  Thanks for the suggestion - I'll keep it in mind.  I thought the strength of the recoil spring was based on the force from firing the bullet, and the weight of the slide and what might be mounted to it.  Are you suggesting that the recoil spring is a way to tune the ejector??
Pretty sure that changing a recoil spring is only one change! (and takes about a minute to do and would be the simplest thing to try to see if it alters the ejection pattern in a favorable way...)

No. A recoil spring isn't a way to tune the ejector or alter it in any way, but it's a way to alter the ejection pattern.

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Post by dronning on Mon Jul 27, 2020 11:10 am

With light loads I always start with the strongest recoil spring I can use and still get the slide to lock back on the last round.  I should add I use a 19lb main spring and a large radius firing pin stop too.  If cases are not ejecting correctly I will go down 1lb in my recoil spring.  This will get a more robust ejection because the slide isn't slowing down as much.  If the direction is wrong then I start looking at the ejector shape/length and the extractor shape.
- Dave

ps remember if your loads are so soft so that you have to run a spring so light that it's questionable if your gun is going back into battery in a consistent manner you may have to increase your loads so can use the stronger recoil spring.  Guns made by good smiths can run with lower spring weights and still go into battery.

How does a 1911 ejector work? Attachment

How does a 1911 ejector work? Attachment
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Post by mikemyers on Mon Jul 27, 2020 12:24 pm

Dave, it might take only a few minutes to do, but I would first need to order one.

My "one change" will be later today (I hope) when I install the 1" Matachdot sight.  It should be here by 8pm.

The gun always locks back, and goes into battery with what I think is still a lot of force.  I'll need to measure the spring, but the spring Dave Salyer originally installed was the correct weight (I think with a Matchdot II).  I'll check with Dave once I know what the spring now in the gun measures.


About those two sketches?  Where did they come from?  Do you know if they are correct, and if so, what is the reason behind each of them?
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Post by dronning on Mon Jul 27, 2020 12:55 pm

pics are self explanatory if you think about how a case slides into the extractor - the suggested mods help the case position itself into the extractor.  

Just like the pic shows the lower the ejector impacts the case the higher it will eject.  The longer the ejector the sooner it will start moving the case.  The black outline is the original GI ejector which works fine with full power loads.  Most newer ejectors are longer and profiled like the green outline but have the end (tip) modified depending on who set it up.  In the pic the end shapes are exaggerated to help demonstrate how they would impact the case & it's ejected trajectory.
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Post by shooter12 on Mon Jul 27, 2020 4:18 pm

Mike,

I think you need to handle these ejection problems one gun at a time.  If possible have an experienced Bullseye shooter, master classified if possible, shoot them.  Observe the trajectory of the spent cases.  This will give you a better idea of whether or not there is a problem.

In my experience empty cases that don't go into my brass catcher are CAUSED BY ME.  A weak wrist, infirm grip or a non-locked elbow will cause my empties to miss the catcher.  As will recovering from a sustained fire shot with the gun canted 4-5 degrees off of vertical when the next shot is fired.  When any of those things happens it shows up on the target (if it even hits it) as a poor shot.

I would start with your Salyer wadgun.  Have someone observe where the cases are going when you shoot. This way you will only have your sights to concentrate on.  Don't concern yourself with the empty cases.  See if you can correlate good shots on the target with a certain ejection trajectory.  My guess is that your good shots will eject to the right at about a 30 degree angle to the rear.

To add Bullseye Pistol to one of my former bosses favorite sayings:  Bullseye pistol shooting is easy.  Any 15 year old with 25 years of experience can do it.

Bruce

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Post by mikemyers on Mon Jul 27, 2020 7:11 pm

shooter12 wrote:Mike,

I think you need to handle these ejection problems one gun at a time.  If possible have an experienced Bullseye shooter, master classified if possible, shoot them.  Observe the trajectory of the spent cases.  This will give you a better idea of whether or not there is a problem.

In my experience empty cases that don't go into my brass catcher are CAUSED BY ME.  A weak wrist, infirm grip or a non-locked elbow will cause my empties to miss the catcher.  As will recovering from a sustained fire shot with the gun canted 4-5 degrees off of vertical when the next shot is fired.  When any of those things happens it shows up on the target (if it even hits it) as a poor shot.

I would start with your Salyer wadgun.  Have someone observe where the cases are going when you shoot. This way you will only have your sights to concentrate on.  Don't concern yourself with the empty cases.  See if you can correlate good shots on the target with a certain ejection trajectory.  My guess is that your good shots will eject to the right at about a 30 degree angle to the rear.

To add Bullseye Pistol to one of my former bosses favorite sayings:  Bullseye pistol shooting is easy.  Any 15 year old with 25 years of experience can do it.

Bruce
Thanks, Bruce.  Maybe you can help with the following.
First, this is my first target from this morning, Springfield, 25 yards, shooting a 50-yard target because Dave thought it would help me to concentrate only on area aiming.  Bullseye ammo, in junk X-TREME cases:

How does a 1911 ejector work? Img_2914

I don't know anyone coming to my range, shooting 45, one handed, who is shooting better than me.  I'd love to have a good shooter try out my gun.  Maybe one of you can teleport here for a couple of hours?   As for my own shooting, 80% landed behind me, maybe because I was gripping a little harder.  As to my group, as of July this year, that's what I'm capable of (but I did change the sights right afterwards).

I highlighted part of what you wrote in bold face.  I agree, but the way I see things, for me, all 10 of those holes represent a "good shot", where "good shot" means being inside my wobble area.  I will ask someone to watch where my cases go once I get more ammo loaded, maybe towards the end of this week if my new bullets arrive.


I'm doing two things differently than last week.  First, based on what you guys have suggested, I grip the gun as hard as I can, to where it starts to vibrate, then back off a little and shoot.  The other thing was that after watching one of Brian's videos for maybe the 15th time, I moved my shooting hand a little more to the right, so the gun was even less so resting against the side of my hand.  Brian says this is to align the sights with my eye a little better, but I think it also (somehow) reduces the wobble of the gun in my hand.  The difference is very obvious - when the gun is pushing INTO the part of my hand between right thumb and fingers, my sight shows that the gun is moving around more, almost like it's vibrating.  But if I move my hand a little further around the gun, as I think Brian wants me to do, the gun gets more stable.  I don't understand "the why".  All I can write here is what I "feel" and "see".

Oh yeah, my 1" Ultradot arrived around lunchtime.  It's now mounted on the gun.
Benefits include:  lighter, simpler, 2 MOA dot
Detractions include: much less field of view, no "gimmicks" for changing the dot.

Lots of people I respect here have this sight, so I'm copying.  Jim probably has 100 of them, to go with all his guns.   :-)
I don't like the stock mounting rings, for many reasons, but as of today, that's all I have.
If I remove the sight from the rail, I'll have to sight the gun in all over again.
For now though, it's fine.  New rings are on order.
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Post by mikemyers on Mon Jul 27, 2020 7:17 pm

dronning wrote:pics are self explanatory if you think about how a case slides into the extractor - the suggested mods help the case position itself into the extractor.  

Just like the pic shows the lower the ejector impacts the case the higher it will eject.  The longer the ejector the sooner it will start moving the case.  The black outline is the original GI ejector which works fine with full power loads.  Most newer ejectors are longer and profiled like the green outline but have the end (tip) modified depending on who set it up.  In the pic the end shapes are exaggerated to help demonstrate how they would impact the case & it's ejected trajectory.
Dave, I don't think I have the ability, or the knowledge, to start making changes with any of this.  Or, to put into words that make me feel more comfortable, working on this is several steps above my skill level. 

*IF* I ever wanted to do anything, I would buy a new ejector, and work with it.  I could always put my original back in the gun if I mess up too badly.

A better option, for me, would be to send the gun back to Dave for re-grooving.    :-)
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Post by shooter12 on Mon Jul 27, 2020 11:13 pm

Mike,

I will tell you what I would try if this were my target.  First off I would not be unhappy.  Your shots are not sprayed all over the target.   If the group was moved 1 1/2" to the right I think you would be pleased.  Second, I would try to recall if I saw the dot moving to the left as I squeezed the trigger.  If so work on pulling straight back.  Third, if you didn't see the dot creeping to the left, I would try shooting 2-3 more targets but move my back foot a little to the left (the same direction the group) an inch or so.  This should move the group to the right.  Fourth, if it doesn't move to the right then I'd move the dot to the right 4-5 clicks and fire a couple more targets.

When you say the cases are landing behind you, do you mean they are coming over your right shoulder or are they coming out of the gun at a 45 deg. angle or more and bouncing on the concrete to where they are behind you 3 positions away?

As far as finding a master class shooter to shoot your pistol, why not look at your state rifle and pistol association's web site?  Find a 2700 match that is within driving distance.  Contact the person running the match, tell him you would like to come to observe and ask Precision Pistol related questions at an appropriate time (such as lunch time or after the match is over).  Also ask whether he could suggest a qualified person at the match that might take an extra few minutes after the match to shoot your gun and give you an informed, "educated" opinion of its' setup.  Just attending and observing such a match will be a real education for you.  Most of all you will see that most everyone has a good time, the people are friendly anxious to help and encourage you and that you can jump in and compete at your own level without being intimidated.  Remember you are shooting with them not against them.

Sorry for the length.

Bruce

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Post by mikemyers on Tue Jul 28, 2020 11:22 am

Thanks, Bruce.  
A few of my thoughts as I read this....
1) I wasn't "unhappy", quite the opposite.  If the holes are close together, regardless of where on the target the group happened to be, I'm pleased.  My "fix" was to adjust the windage 4 clicks to the right.  I didn't know about your third "fix" - 


  1. If the group was moved 1 1/2" to the right I think you would be pleased.  

  2. Second, I would try to recall if I saw the dot moving to the left as I squeezed the trigger.  If so work on pulling straight back.  

  3. Third, if you didn't see the dot creeping to the left, I would try shooting 2-3 more targets but move my back foot a little to the left (the same direction the group) an inch or so.  

  4. This should move the group to the right.  

  5. Fourth, if it doesn't move to the right then I'd move the dot to the right 4-5 clicks and fire a couple more targets.



Yes about #1
2, no, I did not see the dot moving to the left.
3, I didn't know this at the time - brilliant!!  I will remember this for the future
4, that's what I did.  Strange, as I thought the gun was sighted.  Again, thanks for pointing out how I could have moved my rear foot  a little to the left.  I need to pay more attention to this.

Cases seem to be coming out over my left shoulder, and they sometimes bounce back onto my bench.  Another thing for me to pay attention to.  The more stiff my right hand is, the more consistent the ejections are.  Maybe everything is fine, and the rounds that hit me and bounce off are just not getting high enough?

Your last idea is excellent - user 'mustachio' invited me to visit his club, which isn't all that far away, and they have a good sized bullseye group.  Unfortunately, my reaction to the virus is that unless I'm driving to see a medical person or my range, I stay home in my condo.  I don't go outside other than for walks to get exercise when the nearby streets are empty, and occasionally to take photos for my m.smugmug.com photo gallery.  I'm in the age group where if I do get sick, it's likely to be the end of my bullseye shooting along with everything else, meaning I'm very cautious.  



My new one inch Ultradot is mounted (but needs to be sighted in).  I'm out of bullets, but the Post Office notified me that my package is arriving today.  So tomorrow morning, early, it's time to go back to the range.  As for the virus, to me, it's like being home while watching a hurricane outside my window.  Chances are if I stay protected, I should be safe.  So I stay home, see doctors when my appointments come up, and wear a good mask, always, when I step outside my door.  Oh, and I go to the range Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings, trying to be there at 9am when the range opens, so it won't be crowded..........  

Sorry about how long my answer got, but feel free to write as much as you want - if you write a response four pages long, I'll read every word.
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Post by dronning on Tue Jul 28, 2020 11:33 am

shooter12 wrote:Mike,
In my experience empty cases that don't go into my brass catcher are CAUSED BY ME.  A weak wrist, infirm grip or a non-locked elbow will cause my empties to miss the catcher.  As will recovering from a sustained fire shot with the gun canted 4-5 degrees off of vertical when the next shot is fired.  When any of those things happens it shows up on the target (if it even hits it) as a poor shot.
Bruce
No statement is more true.  If your shots are going all over so is your ejected brass.  If your start being more concerned about where your brass is going than where the shot is going your target will suffer and your brass will be even harder to find.


Last edited by dronning on Tue Jul 28, 2020 11:54 am; edited 1 time in total
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Post by mikemyers on Tue Jul 28, 2020 11:41 am

Dave, makes sense to me.  

I'm trying to not be concerned with anything other than go/no-go.  My mind is as blank as I can make it.  If there ever is any doubt, or hesitation, I lower the gun and start over again.  .....and yeah, I should order a brass catcher today.
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Post by -TT- on Tue Jul 28, 2020 12:04 pm

Unless you're planning to reload, forget the brass catcher for now. Especially if you're going to play catch with it on every shot. Work on one thing at a time.

Your group looks great to me. Work on understanding why it lands left. I agree with others that you're probably pushing the gun when triggering. Correcting with windage is ok, but as you understand and get more controlled, be prepared to move back to the left.

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Post by mikemyers on Tue Jul 28, 2020 12:40 pm

-TT- wrote:Unless you're planning to reload, forget the brass catcher for now. Especially if you're going to play catch with it on every shot. Work on one thing at a time.

Your group looks great to me. Work on understanding why it lands left. I agree with others that you're probably pushing the gun when triggering. Correcting with windage is ok, but as you understand and get more controlled, be prepared to move back to the left.
I hadn't thought about it that way before, but maybe you identified why the first target yesterday looked the way it did.

First of all, I only shoot my 45 reloads, for lots of reasons.

I was thinking over last weekend why my dot "vibrates" the way it does, and that led me to watching Brian Zins videos again.
https://www.visualcapitalist.com/infection-trajectory-flattening-the-covid19-curve/

I noticed that my grip had changed since I last watched this video, and copied Brian.  Brian wants my hand wrapped more around the gun (starting one and a half minutes into the video).  I used to do that correctly, but over time, my grip changed back to what "felt" more natural.  So in dry-fire Sunday, and live-fire Monday, the gun was more "parallel" to my hand, which might be why my group moved to the left, or should I maybe write, the group was no longer being pushed to the right.  Same effect.  Adjusting the sights put the holes back where they belong.  As Brian put it, "all the meat on the back of the hand", which results in the gun moving to the right when fired.  That's how I guess I last sighted in my gun.  Now my hand will be where Brian wants it to be, and he goes on and on to explain why this will be better.  

I thought I "knew" this, and I was carefully repeating my grip every time, which I guess means I was repeating my mistake every time.  You and Brian are essentially saying the same thing.

Tomorrow will be a fresh start.
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Post by -TT- on Tue Jul 28, 2020 2:22 pm

Sounds good! A new grip can definitely lead to new revelations in your technique. And, you'd be surprised how consistent you can be even with a fundamental flaw in technique, which is why I say be prepared to re-re-adjust when you fix it!

Dryfire, dryfire, dryfire. On a blank wall.

[edit]
OBTW, are you saying you're left-handed? If so, my comment still stands, but perhaps you *were* pushing it and now you're *not*, or maybe you're *puling* it, or something. Work on that triggering.

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Post by mikemyers on Tue Jul 28, 2020 3:13 pm

Yep.

Also, I'm right handed.

What I meant, for whatever reason, when I shot Monday morning, having also changed the wood grips to sharkskin grips, a little thinner, the group was offset to my left, like in the photo.  I thought adjusting the sights would be the proper thing to do, and the following groups were on center.  Now that I've changed my grip to be what Brian suggests, the POI most likely changed as well, none of which is relevant any longer as I removed the 30mm Matchdot II sight assembly and installed a one inch Ultradot, smaller and lighter, and still needs to be sighted in.

I've been doing this long enough that I should "know" these things.  All it takes is ten seconds to grip the gun, hold it out in front of me, and see if the wrist is "straight" or "bent".  I guess I need to add this to my checklist.
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Post by Roe Hicks on Thu Jul 30, 2020 11:47 am

Before you fiddle with the ejector, be sure your extractor and firing pin stop are well-fitted. 
If Dave Salyer built your gun, then they are OK, based on his fine reputation. 
If the extractor is loose, then ejection pattern will vary.

Roe Hicks

Posts : 9
Join date : 2011-09-07

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How does a 1911 ejector work? Empty Re: How does a 1911 ejector work?

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