Author Topic: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test  (Read 2178 times)

Boggus Deal

  • WBAS Committee & Ambassadors
  • Hero Member
  • *******
  • Posts: 515
Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« on: April 16, 2016, 02:59:43 PM »
Now, I fully admit to not knowing very much about 1911s. Been shooting them for 35 years or so and have made nearly every mistake possible trying to work on them. But the other day n another forum, a couple of comments piqued my interest. The comments first.
A 1911 will slamfire if you close the slide too hard.
Early 1911s didn't have firing pin return springs and would fire when the slide was closed.
These may not be word for word but this was the jest of the comments.
My first thoughts to these comments were. "How do you close a slide too hard?"A 1911 slide will only close so forcefully under the tension of the recoil spring. How can you close it any harder? What would hold the firing pin stop and extractor in without a firing pin return spring?
As for not having a firing pin return spring, very quick research by others and myself showed that not only did 1911s have those springs by design but so did earlier designs, ie: the 1905, 1907 and 1910 predecessors to the 1911.
But the curiosity was still there. Could a 1911 slamfire? So, today, I took the firing pin return springs out of three 1911s and the extractors out of two. The third, a Sig 1911, was left in as it is an external one. The original 1911 extractor was not designed to slip over a chambered round. It was designed to have the cartridge slide under it as it was pushed in to the chamber and, while it may do so, it can be hard on the extractor.
Taking an empty, primed case, I placed it in the chamber and dropped the slide at least ten times on each gun. Not only could I not get the primer to go off, I could not get any sign of a mark on the primer. And this was a Winchester LP primer. Maybe not as soft as a Federal but certainly soft enough.

Tully Mars

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 319
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2016, 08:52:48 PM »
Today at GCWB I was the TO on the last stage of the day, a traditional shooter shot a magazine then seated a new one, he dropped the slide and BAM! I have not seen this before, but I did today. Luckily the gun was pointed in a safe direction, it rattled the shooter and others around us. So it apparently can happen.

Tully
« Last Edit: April 16, 2016, 09:26:01 PM by Tully Mars »

DUSTY BODDAMS

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 766
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2016, 09:26:52 PM »
As an interesting side note but not 1911 story.........I acquired a really nice p-38 ww2 dirty bird stamped with holster ,spare mag etc. took it out to my work bench checked it out put five rounds in the mag pulled the slide back and let it go and it promptly put 2 rounds thru the wall right above my work bench without any assistance from me! I unloaded it carried it down to a gunsmith friend and low and behold there was a sear problem. Long story short anything mechanical can fail.  Dusty Boddams ;)

Tully Mars

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 319
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2016, 09:49:55 PM »
Yep! At WR last year or the year before my 1911 went full auto! Surprised me just a tad bit  :) Again I was very fortunate it was pointed in the right direction.

Tully

Boggus Deal

  • WBAS Committee & Ambassadors
  • Hero Member
  • *******
  • Posts: 515
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2016, 09:59:31 PM »
Tully,
Where you able to figure out the cause of either? I truly do not think a 1911 will slamfire with out some other issue.
BD

Tully Mars

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 319
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2016, 10:19:07 PM »
Today it was the first round in the magazine, no problems before or after that one round. It's an issue of some sorts, but it happened none the less. Stuck firing pin, high primer no idea? The shooter was not on the trigger today, it went off on it's own. After my full auto incident, I gave the gun to Tom and worked his magic. I don't recall his answer to the cause or if I even asked.

This just reinforces safe gun handling, in both cases the guns were pointed down range at the targets.

Tully

Garrison Joe

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 764
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2016, 04:11:32 PM »
High primers can fire on slide going home.

A dirty disconnector can certainly be a culprit for a 1911 going full auto.  A drop of oil goes down on the disconnector tip each time I clean a 1911.

Light trigger spring pressure or a negative sear angle or a too-short sear to hammer engagement can all lead to a gun going full auto too.   It takes a real trigger wizard to get a reliable and safe 2.5 # pull on a 1911.   3 # - not that hard to do right.

Good luck, GJ
Good luck, GJ

Ride hard, shoot straight and speak the truth.    Col. J Cooper
Why else would you want to be here?

60708 Life/Regulator

Nawlins Kid

  • WBAS Committee & Ambassadors
  • Full Member
  • *******
  • Posts: 155
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2016, 06:12:33 PM »


Light trigger spring pressure or a negative sear angle or a too-short sear to hammer engagement can all lead to a gun going full auto too.   It takes a real trigger wizard to get a reliable and safe 2.5 # pull on a 1911.   3 # - not that hard to do right.

Good luck, GJ
[/quote]

+1


A few years ago my pistol smith had a customer come in with a 1911. All he told him was it was not firing properly. So Dennis went to the back of his shop where he has a 50 gal drum of sand. He pointed the 1911 into the drum and then it full auto. He ended up with a couple of rounds that went thru his rear door. When Dennis asked him what he did to his pistol he fess up saying that he was trying to lesson the trigger pull.

Nawlins

Silvertip

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 81
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2016, 09:34:19 AM »
I agree with Joe about high primers, as far as full I have had it happen twice
and both times had a broken sear both were Colt but had lots of rounds
through the guns.
ST

August West

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 165
Re: Kids, don't try this at home. 1911 "Slamfire" test
« Reply #9 on: April 21, 2016, 11:32:51 AM »
A dirty firing pin channel can bind a firing pin to the point where it will ignite a primer when the action of a firearm is closed.  I've always assumed this was the inspiration for the invention of Q-Tips.