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Old 12-27-2012, 06:26 PM   #1
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tell me about the .45 super

I'm not sure if this belongs here or in the 1911 section. I put it here because my question has more to do with the conversion. I plan to build it on a rock island frame. I know that the frames are probably cast. I've been told that the heat treatment has more to do with the strength of the frame, provided the casting is done properly. The question I have is this. I've been told that a square bottom FPR will slow down the slide for me without the need for an exceptionally strong recoil spring. It's my understanding that this a better way to do it, as an overly strong spring can batter things going forward. I plan to use an 18# Wilson spring. Now, I'm a youngster at 22. I only heard of this cartridge recently and have no experience with it. I know I'll have to either make my brass or pay top dollar for it. I also know that making it is a PITA. So is making 300 blackout from. 223. I also know that the gun won't last as many rounds. Such is life. Anything else you can tell me about the guns or the cartridige would be appreciated. I considered the 460 Rowland. You don't get very much velocity gain for the pressure increase.

Last edited by judge sam; 12-27-2012 at 11:15 PM.
 
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Old 12-28-2012, 02:19 AM   #2
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A suggestion would be to take a look at what guns Clark's will do the .460 Rowland on before your conversion.
I trust that they have done their research and have determined what can hold up and what can't.

Taurus did not make their list. 460 Rowland Conversion Kits for your 1911

For a quick comparison of .45 ACP to the .45 Super: .45 Super - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

With the pressure, I would consider using the same guns that can be converted to .460 Rowland.
 
Old 12-28-2012, 10:57 AM   #3
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45 super-28,000 psi
10mm auto-37,500 psi
460 Rowland-40,000 psi

I'm not considering the 460. That thing is getting into rifle territory in terms of pressure. If I need 44 mag performance, I'll get a blackhawk.
 
 
Old 12-28-2012, 01:03 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by judge sam View Post
I've been told that a square bottom FPR will slow down the slide for me without the need for an exceptionally strong recoil spring. It's my understanding that this a better way to do it, as an overly strong spring can batter things going forward. I plan to use an 18# Wilson spring. .
The recoil spring is named wrong. It is a slide return spring. It does not control the rearward motion of the slide...the main spring does. The recoil spring need only to be able to pull a round off the mag and load it.

To your point of the FPR: If it square, it will delay the opening of the slide, as it requires more force against the hammer to begin the rearward motion. This, in essense, mimics a stronger main spring. You will need to find a combination of main spring and FPR contour to get the slide action you desire. My suggestion: Copy the 10mm 1911 that Colt builds as a starting point, and tune from there.

In my 1911 .45acp, I run a 17lb main spring with a longer (.030 longer) firing pin for reliable ignition with that light of a spring. The spring is light because A) I run 230grn bullets at 820fps (low power), and B) the lighter spring helps with the feel of the trigger break. I run a 14lb recoil spring because it returns the muzzle to the original firing point with my grip and stance. Yours may vary.
 
Old 12-28-2012, 03:32 PM   #5
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I once had a rock island government model. It was my first handgun. I thought the recoil felt a little more stout than the Springfield G.I. that I had shot, and the the cases were flying everywhere. I took it to my gunsmith. He said that it had a "wadcutter" spring. I guess they did that to ensure that the gun cycles with whatever ammo people feed it. He told me that I needed a 20 pound spring if I was going to shoot a lot of hardball, and it would lessen the recoil and fix the erratic ejection. It did. The gun shot much more accurately too. I've noticed that when the SRP in automatic pistols gets too weak, the start to shoot crappy and kick like a mule, so it has to do something. I've also noticed that they shoot very low in these cases. I'm not disputing your suggestions. I'm just relating my observations. I may not do the build, since rock island has introduced a 10mm that has been getting good reviews on other forums. I don't expect colt performance, but all the RIA guns I've owned or tried performed well above their price point. I hear they've moved to forged frames as well. I know people will say there's no way at their prices, but keep in mind that labor costs are lower in the Philippines.

Last edited by judge sam; 12-28-2012 at 03:51 PM.
 
Old 12-28-2012, 05:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by judge sam View Post
I once had a rock island government model.... He told me that I needed a 20 pound spring... I've noticed that when the SRP in automatic pistols gets too weak, the start to shoot crappy and kick like a mule, so it has to do something. I've also noticed that they shoot very low in these cases. I'm not disputing your suggestions. .
SRP? Not sure what that is an acronym for.

What I am sure of is that JMB designed his original pistol to work with ball ammo and a specific spring of a specific free length, wire diameter, number of coils, diameter of coils, and load at two compressed lengths. Some simple math shows the recoil spring as designed for the original 1911 configuration to be about 15# at full compression of 1.375", and about 14# at the full recoil compression of 1.625".

Nowadays, manufacturers are using variable rate springs. Most manufacturers like Springfield Armory, Smith and Wesson, Kimber, and others specify 18.5lb recoil springs in a 5" 1911. Wilson uses 17lb in theirs.

A 'smith telling you that a 20lb spring needs to be in the gun is politely telling you that the gun has many other issues and won't function properly with what other QUALITY manufacturers use. Putting a 20lb spring in a 5" 1911 just masks the other issues it has.

Yea, it'll fire. No, it isn't correct. He did you a favor and "fixed" it. But, the real issue hasn't been addressed, and would probably cost more than the gun did to correctly address it.

You asked a question and I answered the best I could by giving you a starting point.
 
Old 12-28-2012, 09:50 PM   #7
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The gun functioned just fine with the factory spring. I just didn't like the fact that it threw my brass everywhere. It had decent accuracy as well (4" @ 15 yards). It just so happens that my groups shrank to about 2.5" after I added the spring. I guess it forced the barrel into the locking recesses more consistently. The gun sometimes had trouble stripping off the top round on a full magazine. It wasn't nosediving. The stock spring just couldn't seem to break the friction. The new spring fixed that too. I should've probably explained how weak the spring was. It wasn't even 14 pounds. He pulled the 15 pounder out of his gun and I put it in mine. That spring stripped the top round. I probably could've gone with a 15#. He just had the 20 pounders on hand. 230grain or heavier loads were the only thing that would cycle reliably with that spring. He never disassembled the gun. Again, I'm not trying to dispute you, nor am I defending the quality of armscor. I'm simply trying to gain a better understanding of how a 1911 works. You've been very helpful with that by the way. SRP is an acronym for "this stupid smartphone auto correct sucks." It was supposed to be SRS (slide return spring). I don't know what SRP is either, but my phone apparently does.

Last edited by judge sam; 12-28-2012 at 10:35 PM.
 
Old 12-29-2012, 03:00 AM   #8
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Just a question.
Your experience with RIA has already shown you that the parts are not the best quality (referring to the spring issue), but you want to build a .45 Super on that platform?

To understand how a 1911 works, spend a couple of bucks and get Kuhnhausen's books on the 1911. Take your RIA and spec it out using these books. Replace everything that is out of spec.

You will find the correct spring poundage required, trouble shooting, and suggestions on how to make a 1911 better than before.

When I was suggesting to use a platform that Clark's would use for the .460 Rowland, I was not suggesting the .460 Rowland, but to use the platform that Clark has already determined works with the higher pressure.
 
Old 12-29-2012, 09:40 AM   #9
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I haven't encountered the spring issue with other rock islands. It may have been just mine, or the run that mine was part of. After the new spring, I shot the ever living crap out of it. Nothing broke. Nothing cracked. The gun didn't get loose. I traded it to a friend for an unfired no.4 enfield (yes, they do exist). He has put more rounds through it than I ever did. Everything was still intact. His father now has it and shoots it almost exclusively. Now, are there higher quality guns out there? Sure there are, but the rock islands aren't out-of-spec trash just because they're inexpensive. I don't want anybody to read this and think otherwise. Rock islands are the only way some people can afford to experience a 1911. Anyway, I will get some sort of manual before I attempt the build. I was thinking about the AGI course. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. I was going to use the rock island frame and slide kit from sarco, a kart barrel, a Wilson combat spring kit, and other assorted parts from brownell's. If Springfield frames are OK for the Rowland, rock island is. I won't go into that further, as I don't want any brand loyalty zealots converging on this thread. Funny story. I had a friend bring me his springfield GI so that I could show him how to detail strip it. He saw my rock island on the table and asked, "why you foolin with that foreign junk? You need one a these 'merican guns. " I removed the right grip panel and asked him to read what was there to me.

Last edited by judge sam; 12-29-2012 at 10:00 AM.
 
Old 12-29-2012, 07:39 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by judge sam View Post
If Springfield frames are OK for the Rowland, rock island is.
You are making the assumption that because a frame is manufactured in the same building/place/country/manufacturing line, that the quality is the same.

Go read about tolerances and how they factor into the cost of manufacturing, specifically contract manufacturing. Couple that with stacking tolerances, and I can assure you that a SA frame is quite different than a RI frame. If you do not wish to believe me, get a good set of gauge pins and start measuring the frame pin holes and their respective locations.

Better yet, don't take anything I say for fact. Call Wilson...Call Les Baer...Call any good gun builder...Severns Custom, Warner Pistols, Jerry Keefer...ask them about RI frames and quality.

Let me know what they tell you.
 
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