Bullseye-L Forum
Would you like to react to this message? Create an account in a few clicks or log in to continue.

Dry Firing a 1911

+3
kc.crawford.7
Jon Eulette
Allgoodhits
7 posters

Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Allgoodhits Sun Feb 26, 2023 1:46 pm

Hoping Jon, KC others will chime in on this one.

If one dry fires a 1911 a lot, a whole lot, should they hold the trigger to rear while cocking, then release the trigger to capture the hammer? IOW, does dragging the hammer hooks over the sear degrade the quality of the trigger over thousands and thousands or tens of thousands of empty gun cockings?


Last edited by Allgoodhits on Mon Feb 27, 2023 3:14 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : sp)
Allgoodhits
Allgoodhits

Posts : 874
Join date : 2017-09-17
Location : Northern Virginia

SingleActionAndrew likes this post

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Jon Eulette Sun Feb 26, 2023 2:12 pm

Martin,

I don’t think it’s a problem cocking the hammer to dry fire without doing anything special, other than just cocking the hammer. Some pistols hammer and sear reset require the disconnector to reset each time for a consistent trigger pull, some do not.
I have a 1911 38 spl that I did the trigger job in 1990. It’s been shot and dry fired uncountable times over the years. It has old Colt hammer and sear which is softer than the modern parts and it’s fine. Over 100k rds fired.
The only problem I see is letting slide slam forward (empty chamber especially) without holding trigger to the rear. The hammer bounces on the sear and will batter the parts. I’ve seen a lot of sears over the years with grooves worn into them from hammer hooks digging in during/from the bounce.
My 2 cents.
Jon
Jon Eulette
Jon Eulette

Posts : 4399
Join date : 2013-04-15
Location : Southern Kalifornia

Ed Hall, ric1911a1, Sc0, Allgoodhits, Arthur, Single_handed and RADJAG like this post

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by kc.crawford.7 Mon Feb 27, 2023 7:20 am

I recommend cycling the slide.  You actually get a different trigger pull if you thumb cock the hammer verses cycling the slide and having the disconnector reset the sear as in firing.  And to answer your question, yes hold the trigger to the rear just as it would be in firing.
kc.crawford.7
kc.crawford.7

Posts : 711
Join date : 2012-12-09
Location : Maysville, NC

http://www.kcskustomcreations.com

Sc0, Allgoodhits, Arthur and Single_handed like this post

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Froneck Mon Feb 27, 2023 9:36 am

I hold the trigger back, pull the hammer back, then release the trigger. As Jon mentioned there is very little wear but there is some.  Only wear pulling the hammer while holding the trigger is when the sear is pulled off the hammer hooks to dry fire. Using the slide allows the sear to rub the entire distance down over the half-cock hook and down to the hammer hook because the disconnector removes the trigger from the sear. Since the slide don't move when pulling the hammer back method there is very little if any disconnector movement. Though most of the distance traveled is on the edge of the secondary angle but entire sear surface will contact the half-cock hook and hammer hook. But both secondary angle and sear will rub on the half-cock and worse the hammer hook. So there is one rub when the hammer is released and 2 rubs when hammer is pushed back with the slide.
I use my thumb of the left hand to pull the hammer back when dry firing. When doing a trigger job I test the actual pull weight in ounces. Not the legal weight but actual hammer release weight and it must repeat in +/- 1 ounce or less. Therefore I want as little wear as possible. If I do notice any difference in trigger pull is slide vs hammer pull method is used I start looking at the disconnector.

Froneck

Posts : 1555
Join date : 2014-04-05
Age : 76

Allgoodhits likes this post

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by SingleActionAndrew Mon Feb 27, 2023 11:16 am

So which is it? Very Happy

Thank you Allgoodhits for asking this question. I have a real tight 1911, still pretty new (RRA nm hardball 45). It's a chore to rack during dry firing- there's a lot of resistance once the slide is in battery. But I've only cooked the hammer on a bullseye gun Once, under supervision of a customer of KC's and was told not to do that and haven't since (as the trigger pull would be different).

I wonder if the repeated racking and (ease forward) return to battery on a tight gun like this is maybe wearing other surfaces prematurely and perhaps I'm better off with the compromise of not 100% representative trigger, cocking the hammer rather than retracting the slide between dry shots? Or is this a non issue, assuming the gun is oiled?
SingleActionAndrew
SingleActionAndrew

Posts : 556
Join date : 2019-11-19
Location : IL, USA

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Ed Hall Mon Feb 27, 2023 11:49 am

I'll weigh in that I do use the method described by Froneck AND the methods described by K.C. and Jon at different times, depending on what I'm focused on for training.  If you have a gunsmith "built for you" gun, you should listen to them as to how they want you to treat their work.

But, my main response is to focus on what gives you the best dry fire training, not what will wear something out.  If you do enough dry fire to wear things out, good for you.  If things wear or break, get more work done to bring the gun(s) back to optimum.

I would challenge all to try to wear/break things through dry firing.*  This is directed at the 1911 (as per the subject), but within reason (such as chamber/firing pin protection), I include other guns.

Your focus should be on training. Rework equipment as necessary.

* I've been able to do enough dry firing, back in the day, that I've broken firing pins and firing pin blocks, but I don't think I even noticed trigger wear from it.

Ed Hall

Posts : 1048
Join date : 2012-09-11
Location : Adirondack Mountains

http://www.starreloaders.com/edhall/

Steve B and chiz1180 like this post

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Froneck Mon Feb 27, 2023 12:11 pm

If trigger were not properly done there might be a change. In addition letting the slide go without and ammo is not good. However lowering the slide on a tight gun slowly might alter trigger pull if the slide doesn't completely close.
 Being the disonnector is not moved when the hammer is pulled there should be no change in trigger pull. As I said I test the pull weight required to drop the hammer in ounces and don't see any difference unless there is a problem. That problem is often noticed when attempting to pull the trigger during a match and pull weight seems to change. I have a very slight roll on all my triggers.

Froneck

Posts : 1555
Join date : 2014-04-05
Age : 76

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Jon Eulette Mon Feb 27, 2023 12:21 pm

Frank, you are mistaken. The disconnector moves immediately after the trigger take up is finished. Disconnector then pushes the sear until sear releases from the hammer. Disconnector feel varies from gun to gun. Some make contact with the slide when pulling the trigger. Others slightly shift in the receiver’s disconnector hole.
So the disconnector is always moving/shifting when pulling the trigger. It’s not a static part.
Jon
Jon Eulette
Jon Eulette

Posts : 4399
Join date : 2013-04-15
Location : Southern Kalifornia

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Froneck Mon Feb 27, 2023 1:22 pm

Being that the trigger moves straight back and the sear pivots there's movement. Some disconnectors rub on either the top or the side of the disconnector slot. On my guns I make sure that don't happen. But as the trigger pushes the disconnector back and sear pivots there must be some sliding action. However the amount of movement since on most 1911 the sear must only move .020 to .030" there is very little movement. I'm willing to bet the vertical slide amount between the disconnector and sear is not more than a few thousandths. If there is a difference in trigger pull when using the hammer or slide to reset the sear then that will happen when shooting and should be looked at. I have found that to be quite often the problem with hammer release weight changing while shooting a match.
 The AMU shooter shoot a lot so their triggers wear more than on non funded shooters. Most of them have changed (when Adam was still there) from roll to crisp because the smiths could not get an exact same roll all the time. Nothing worse that training with a trigger pull, wear it out then before a match get a trigger job and the feel is different. If dry firing quite a bit and slide movement actually causes 3x the wear of hammer only then the same situation will recur. So if live fire will wear the trigger assembly for the AMU then quite a bit of dry fire coupled with a small amount of dry fire will do the same. As for the AMU they have a smith with them all the time but for others sending a gun to a QUALIFIED bullseye smith is not easy and may require a bit of turn around time. Not to mention wear on slide stop pin and lower lug.

Froneck

Posts : 1555
Join date : 2014-04-05
Age : 76

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by mikemyers Mon Feb 27, 2023 1:42 pm

A rather un-scientific reply....

I don't dry-fire to improve my gun.  I dry-fire to improve ME.  Sgt Keith Sanderson has said that for ever live-fire shot you take, you should dry-fire 100.  So, every day I get out a 1911 and spend an hour or two dry-firing, pulling back the hammer, holding up non, applying pressure until the gun "fires", continue holding for follow-through, and repeat.  I have a schedule where I do this, then take a break, then continue to dry-fire, then break, and so on, for about 45 minutes.   Then a long break.  And maybe I repeat this two or three times a day.

For a while, I did this, then found a better grip, or position, or whatever.  Make notes, and try again the better way.


(My biggest issue was if my right thumb wasn't in just the right position, the grip safety could open a little, meaning the gun won't fire.)

For me, dry-firing is when I do the learning, the work, and get used to the gun so it feels like part of me.  Then, going to the range is like an exam, I just do what I've learned for a few targets, then stop.  If my score is increasing, I figure I'm doing well.

I also stopped firing at targets - now I use a blank wall.  
I also dry-fire sometimes with my eyes closed, to "feel" what is happening better.

I know I can do this with my center-fire guns.  Larry Nelson assures me I can dry-fire my Nelson Conversion all I want, with no fear of damage.  When I bought my Clark barrel for my Model 41, the lady on the Clark shooting team assured me I could dry-fire with that gun all I want.  With my 22 S&W revolver, I always put in snap caps.
mikemyers
mikemyers

Posts : 4234
Join date : 2016-07-27
Age : 80
Location : South Florida, and India

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Allgoodhits Mon Feb 27, 2023 3:05 pm

Wow! Thank you all. My inquiry was based on two things. 

Last year I had a 1911 Bianchi gun with just over a 2 lb trigger. I dry fired it a lot going into the Cup. My recall was in excess of 30,000 times. That gun during the match in Michigan the weekend before Bianchi "doubled" during the match. It had never done that. I could not get the gun to not double unless the trigger was closer to 3 lbs. I went to back up gin for the Cup, since I didn't have a new trigger, sear of tools, not time to fool with it. Since then, it has been corrected, by correcting the sear/trigger engagement.

I finished last year with over 55,000 dry fires. My mission this year is to surpass that, which I am well on track to do. Those amounts of dry fires is a lot of slide racking, so I have been cocking the hammer. The two distinct clicks can be heard. I became concerned about the half cock notch and full cock notch and any possible degradation as that occurs thousands and tens of thousands of times. Thus, I have been pulling the trigger, then cocking the hammer, then release the trigger, then do my dry fire, repeat. 

So it appears, even though opinions vary slightly, that some minor amount of wear may take place by simply cocking, and that the trigger may well feel different. Is it true to state that there is no harm what so ever by holding trigger, before cocking then releasing hammer?

FWIW, many of those dryfires are with DA revolvers and more than one 1911 and a Pardini. Just trying to mitigate damage or need to redo things as much as possible. It is more difficult to get supplies or find people to do work, as well as more risky than ever to ship things around the country.

Thanks all for the excellent discussion on the matter. Opinions from those who chimed in are valued.

Martin
Allgoodhits
Allgoodhits

Posts : 874
Join date : 2017-09-17
Location : Northern Virginia

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Froneck Tue Feb 28, 2023 1:59 pm

If in pulling the hammer back you hear 2 distinct clicks I assume your not holding the trigger all the way back. The first click is probably the sear dropping of the half-cock then as the sear reaches the hammer hook you get another click. If you want to eliminate any excess wear while dry firing you should hold the trigger back while pulling the hammer back then release the trigger. Being the leading edge of the half-cock does nothing except rub on the sear and the hammer hooks will do the same. That is why I said you will get 3x more rubs on the sear and 2x on the hammer hooks if the slide or not holding the trigger back is used. As I mentioned the AMU does have sear and hammer hook wear issues due to the amount they shoot. I doubt they do much dry fire as they have the luxury of doing live fire all the time. Adding 55,000 times of dry fire to the amount of live fire will most likely wear out a hammer hook and sear. But holding the trigger back while pulling the hammer will result is less wear.
 As to difference in trigger feel I doubt if most of the top shooters completely release the trigger to rest the disconnector but allow the trigger to advance just enough so disconnector will reset. I do the hammer back then release the trigger style rather that use the slide, I have never noticed any trigger change even when measured with my 1oz. weights.

Froneck

Posts : 1555
Join date : 2014-04-05
Age : 76

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Allgoodhits Wed Mar 01, 2023 3:39 pm

Froneck wrote:If in pulling the hammer back you hear 2 distinct clicks I assume your not holding the trigger all the way back. The first click is probably the sear dropping of the half-cock then as the sear reaches the hammer hook you get another click. If you want to eliminate any excess wear while dry firing you should hold the trigger back while pulling the hammer back then release the trigger. Being the leading edge of the half-cock does nothing except rub on the sear and the hammer hooks will do the same. That is why I said you will get 3x more rubs on the sear and 2x on the hammer hooks if the slide or not holding the trigger back is used. As I mentioned the AMU does have sear and hammer hook wear issues due to the amount they shoot. I doubt they do much dry fire as they have the luxury of doing live fire all the time. Adding 55,000 times of dry fire to the amount of live fire will most likely wear out a hammer hook and sear. But holding the trigger back while pulling the hammer will result is less wear.
 As to difference in trigger feel I doubt if most of the top shooters completely release the trigger to rest the disconnector but allow the trigger to advance just enough so disconnector will reset. I do the hammer back then release the trigger style rather that use the slide, I have never noticed any trigger change even when measured with my 1oz. weights.
Excellent. The clicks mentioned were if I do not pull the trigger before manually cocking the hammer. Correct or not, it made common sense to me to start pulling the trigger before manually cocking the hammer, since that must reduce the contact between the sear and hammer hooks. You and others have validated this. Thank you Sir.

Martin
Allgoodhits
Allgoodhits

Posts : 874
Join date : 2017-09-17
Location : Northern Virginia

Back to top Go down

Dry Firing a 1911 Empty Re: Dry Firing a 1911

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum