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Old 06-19-2001, 08:39 AM   #1
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I've been reading posts where guys state "I have 5,000 rounds through my Kimber, Springfield (etc.) and haven't had one problem." Based on my experiences with 1911s I'm suspect of this. First, in 5,000 rounds you are sure to have some out of spec ammo, even if you only shoot factory stuff. Second, what kind of shooting do these guys do? Almost all my 1911s are _very_ reliable if I'm shooting on the line, using timed shots, and using a firm grip. Where some of my guns start to break down is when I'm running them hard, such as during an IPSC match where you hose targets in 30+ shot sets or in intensive training courses where you fire 1,000 rounds in two days. So, I'm starting to distinguish between combat and firing line reliability -- two different kinds of shooting. BTW, I like IPSC matches since I find them to be a good test of my equipment.

Given the fact that guns are mechancial and no mechanical system is 100% reliable all the time, what is an acceptable measure of combat reliability?
 
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Old 06-19-2001, 08:49 AM   #2
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I think you'll see that they do have failures, but they blame everything except the gun. i.e. ammo, limp wrist, magazine, ect.

Although, not a 1911, the only gun I've shot for thousands of rounds without a failure of any kind, regardless of ammo, magazine, ect, has been my Sig 226. Absolutely nothing has made this gun fail yet.
 
Old 06-19-2001, 09:06 AM   #3
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Well I disagree...If someone says they have 1000 or whatever non-failures, why would you say they are...what? You didn't use the word lying but you might as well have. I kinda' give people a little more credit unless I know better...I haven't had any gun that's 100% in a lifetime, but that certainly doesn't mean they aren't out there...Poor choice of wording I think...It IS morning after all...
 
Old 06-19-2001, 09:21 AM   #4
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What I'm saying is that it's possible to fire 1,000 or more rounds without an FTF or some other problem in firing line shooting. My question regards combat (action shooting) reliability.
 
Old 06-19-2001, 09:28 AM   #5
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I see...I understand the difference you're shootin' at :wink:
 
Old 06-19-2001, 10:34 AM   #6
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I trust my guns once they are broken in, and I can run 750-1000 rds. between stoppages.

The main thing I look for is how many failures I get WITH THE FIRST MAGAZINE, after the gun has been cleaned and lubed. I have never had a FTF/FTE with any first magazine ever, in any of my guns. This is the condition my gun would be in when needed for self-defense (clean/lubed), and I KNOW that my first mag will run no problem. To me, this is combat ready.
 
Old 06-19-2001, 03:03 PM   #7
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Well let me relay my experience. The 1911 that I've had the most rounds through without any kind of stoppage is a SA with just some standard reliability work and basic touch ups. It had 2 maybe 3 failures to go into full battery in the first 100-150 rounds. Since then it's seen about 2500 without a stop. This includes shooting at the range, and 2 different handgun courses, one with a 500 round count, another with 250. During those course and all subsequent range shooting since, I've not had a failure of any kind. I'd say that's pretty reliable and certainly speaks well of the design.

Regarding the 2 handgun courses. We did, strong and weak hand shooting. Shooting from barricade. Shooting from prone, upside down, you name it. Clearance drills. I think that would qualify as something other than your typical range shooting.

The only gun I've never experienced a failure of any kind on was Berreta 92F that had about 700 rounds through it before it was sold.

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<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Mute on 2001-06-19 16:03 ]</font>
 
Old 06-19-2001, 04:12 PM   #8
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Back in the late 80s, I built a 1911 on an Essex frame, using GI parts. It was as close as you could get to an original 1911 with the exception of the relief cuts in the frame and better sights.
I kept a Weapons Record Book on it for the first 5,000 rounds.
First three rounds were failures to feed. I adjusted the extractor and then didn't have another failure to feed again in those 5,000 rounds.
I quit keeping the record book after that, it was pretty pointless.
Sure, over the years, I've had a few FTFs. Every single one of them has been because of crappy, GI surplus magazines. Tossed the mags, and the FTFs went away.
For the record, two months ago, I had my first parts breakage on that gun. The sear pin snapped in half, causing the hammer to drop to half cock every time I pulled the trigger.
I replaced the pin and have had no failures of any kind since then.
How many rounds do I have through it?
I'd hate to have to guess, but any number between 75,000 and 100,000 rounds wouldn't be too wild a guess.
Even if you include the magazine failures, I think the failure rate is something like 1 in 5 to 7 thousand rounds so far.

I've also got a Kimber Ultra Elite with over 2,000 rounds through it and ZERO malfunctions to date.

I've also got a REALLY nasty little IAI Israeli made Commander. Slide sounds like it's full of ground glass when you pull it to the rear, but it keeps inside 4 to 5 inches at 25 yards and I have not yet had a malf with it either. I've probably only run 1000 rounds or so through it so far, it's not much fun to shoot, but it was reliable "out of the box."

Maybe I'm just "lucky?"
 
Old 06-19-2001, 05:43 PM   #9
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In my experience, stock factory 1911s are as reliable as any of the other guns I shoot alot i.e. Glocks, S&W revolvers, and SIGs. My Kimbers and Springfields even work with the junk magazines that came with them.

Invariably, the 1911s I see malfunction in competions and gun classes have been due to being "customized", operators inducing the malfunctions, and improper lubrication or the lack of it.
 
Old 06-19-2001, 11:56 PM   #10
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first. let me say that i only have about 2500 rounds through my duty colt.

second i will say that i have never had a failure to feed, or eject, or ammo problem at all. i look at the primers when i load my mags.

i come to this board to get advice on guns, i say that i have never had a problem out of my colts, why would i lie? if i was having trouble i would want to ask so i could figure out what was wrong. i have no intention of wasting my time on a board lieing about the guns.

i think the trouble is many companies now days try to make a combat weapons competition accurate, and they get the tolerances too tight. thats why i stay with the basic colt models, because they are combat weapons.

anything man made can fail, but the fact that mine hasn't yet doesn't make me a liar, and I MUST GIVE THE OTHER PEOPLE ON THIS BOARD THE SAME RESPECT.

just my thought

russel the cop
 
Old 06-20-2001, 01:44 AM   #11
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A lot of this hangs on exactly what people would call a malfunction. The last malf I had with a 1911 was a squib load, certainly not the gun's fault. The last one before that was a slide-lock with rounds in the gun, most likely caused by me bumping the slide release with my thumb. One of my 1911s may occasionally balk, but unless it definitely appears to be gun-related I don't sweat it. I don't think I've ever fired a gun of any type beyond 1,000 rounds without at least one stoppage of some sort.
 
Old 06-20-2001, 09:05 AM   #12
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Quote:
Although, not a 1911, the only gun I've shot for thousands of rounds without a failure of any kind, regardless of ammo, magazine, ect, has been my Sig 226. Absolutely nothing has made this gun fail yet.
Have you tried USA magazines? :wink:
 
Old 06-20-2001, 08:38 PM   #13
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due the high prices of factory ammo in mexico where a 50 rounds box of any centerfire handgun retails for about 40-50 us dollars,all my shooting budies and I use reloads consisting of 200 lead SWC over 4 grains of bullseye.

I've been seeing many many stopages during machtes,and all are related to: lack of powder or cahrges of powder below the recomdation of the handbooks,poor customizacuion (butcherisation) and dirty ammo.

For many years I experienced very few stopages till some months ago,my pistol began to trow the empties in all directions even hitting my face,well I change the firing pin and the extractor to and began to to have stopages,the slide didn't close at all and having to hit the slide to close the action.
I was mad cause my pistol was very reliable and afther months of testing and testing at last could tune the extractor.
I've been puting 200 reloads (using cast bullets) and only had one malfunction ( a stovepipe)but could not blame the gun,it seems it was a low charge of powder.

Well now I'm conducting a test were I'm gona shoot my pistol without cleaning to see how much rounds can I shoot with a dirty gun till stops or begin to jam.

Now, we must realize that the semiautomatics pistols need to be superclean and lubed to work fine,if we don't keep them this way we are looking for troubles.

In the other hand I can only recall two stopages using da revolvers and one was a very old and abuse revolver and the other stopage was a crack factory round that under recoil the bullet projected and didn't allow the cilinder to rotate.

Manny
 
Old 06-20-2001, 11:19 PM   #14
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Quote:
On 2001-06-20 02:45, Test User wrote:
A lot of this hangs on exactly what people would call a malfunction. The last malf I had with a 1911 was a squib load, certainly not the gun's fault. The last one before that was a slide-lock with rounds in the gun, most likely caused by me bumping the slide release with my thumb. One of my 1911s may occasionally balk, but unless it definitely appears to be gun-related I don't sweat it. I don't think I've ever fired a gun of any type beyond 1,000 rounds without at least one stoppage of some sort.

Would whomever posted this message PLEASE send me email at [email:1umuibzh]peterl@cnw.com[/email:1umuibzh]! Somehow your posts got disconnected from your account.
 
Old 06-21-2001, 03:36 PM   #15
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I'll agree that guns malfunction more than people will admit. If a round doesn't go in the chamber, that's a malfunction. Doesn't really matter if it's the mag or the beat-up case rim, the gun failed to work. If we're talking "combat", then we can't say, "Oh, wait a minute, my gun isn't working; but it's not a malfunction, it's a bad magazine." I'll also agree that the first mag from a clean/lubed defense gun is more important than the last-of-the day round at a shooting school. Even in combat, how many people are going to (still) be depending on their handgun after 500-1000 consecutive rounds? My Colt M1911A1 has failed to feed exactly twice in the last 6000 rounds. No parts breakages or other problems. That's using eight different mags, and nothing but range-brass reloads. I have never seen a gun run more reliably than that in IPSC and IDPA matches. Glocks are legendary for their reliability (just how does a service pistol develop legendary status in fifteen years of relative peace?), but in my experience they fail to feed and break parts, in competition, at least as often as the typical competition 1911.
 
Old 06-21-2001, 04:53 PM   #16
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I am more carefull about analysis of a 1911 problem. I now think about when the recoil spring was changed last or what change was made with the ammo. It was so easy to change a recoil spring and clear a failure with the 1911. When I changed reloading from a lead to a copper clad bullet a minor problem with the slide not locking back on the last round showed up. It only happened twice but at least I know why and didn't rush to change something on the gun or send it off to be "fixed". So, yes I do see a failure once in a while but usually its my fault because I overlooked changing a recoil spring or changed the ammo type being reloaded. Dane made a good point when he said when you have a good gun shoot good factory made bullets. I now shoot factory stuff once in a while to make sure the gun is indeed shooting well. I reload good ammo with few failures but now agree with those who say only use factory ammo to carry with.
 
Old 08-01-2001, 12:22 PM   #17
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I have put over 5000 trouble free rounds through Berettas, SIGs, BHP, CZs and Rugers. I have never gone more than 2000 with a 1911 or a Glock. YMV?

1911s are more than reliable enough to bet your life on, but I do not think they are the _most_ reliable design at the service grade level anymore.

IIRC, the MRBS (mean rounds between stoppages) for the 1911s used as a reference in the original XM9 trials was 1/450. The Beretta did 1/2000, the SIG 1/1000. Latest stuff I've seen has the Beretta up to 1/30,000 and the SIG 1/15,000. The M9/M11s we were issued were more reliable than the 1911s they replaced (to be fair, the 1911s were 40 yrs old).

Best documented results I've seen for the 1911 was the FBI SWAT pistols, about 7 or 8 in 80,000 (20K x 4 guns?). Std to beat was 1/2500, and some did 20K with no problems? The FBI Glock 40s did 0 in 120K (20K x 6 guns), but who knows what they allowed as alibis? And two Glocks did break parts (trigger bars) under 20K BTW (they were only scored to 10K).

Go to the store, put down $700 retail or less, I have had/seen better reliability out of the box or 5000 rounds down the road with Beretta, SIG, Glock, HK, Browning, CZ, Ruger than any 1911s from Colt, SA, Kimber.

See that on the LE ranges here all the time. Not the most reliable, but good enough, and durable in the extreme and easier to hit better with faster; you can do as well w a DA auto, but it is harder.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: MichaelOrick on 2001-08-01 13:24 ]</font>
 
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