A little help from 1911 shooters

Discussion in 'Carolinas 1911 Forum' started by Timor, Apr 4, 2015.

  1. Timor

    Timor Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    I like 1911s and often consider carrying one. However I usually have one or two accidental discharges (ADs) during a shooting session. I think it's because I leave my finger on the trigger between shots and with the 1911 short take up (that may not be the correct word) my finger bumps the trigger just hard enough to fire a second, unplanned round.

    As a result I'm carrying a striker fired pistol, which tend to have longer trigger pulls. I can shoot a 1911 a bit more accurately and love how they feel in my hand so I would like to carry one, but don't want to risk an AD in a "social situation".

    I'd appreciate any suggestions on how I can correct this problem. Thanks ahead of time.

    Tim
     
  2. B00GER

    B00GER Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    Taking a class with a qualified trainer would be my first recommendation, as they may be able to correct or at least identify some training scars you have.

    Another benefit would be that the shooting drills they would put you through would be more "life like" and you may find that your trigger issues are relegated to one scenario (how you are currently target shooting).

    Another thing to pay attention to is the trigger reset. You may have a pistol that has had its trigger lightened to a point that it causes these issues.
     
  3. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Staff

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    If your second, unintentional shot comes quick while the gun is in recoil...like full auto...you may be bump firing the pistol. Does the trigger have an overtravel screw? If it does, and it's adjusted to remove all overtravel...that may be what's happening.
     
  4. MacEntyre

    MacEntyre Vendor Vendor

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    Sounds like a very light trigger. Find a trigger pull scale and measure it. If it's less than 4 lbs, that could be the problem.

    Does this happen with only one particular pistol?
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2015
  5. Esp62

    Esp62 Member

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    I agree that it sounds like a lack of over travel combined with short reset issue. Do you just leave your finger touching the trigger between shots or keep the trigger pressed back, releasing to reset when you're back on target?
     
  6. Timor

    Timor Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    1911 Tuner: Based on what you said, I would have to say that what I'm doing sounds like bumpfire. I just took a quick look at both pistol I fired yesterday and both have overtravel screws. So I check my other 1911s and all but two (a Colt Defender and a RIA officers) have overtravel screws. I know I"ve had ADs with the Defender. I can't remember if I have with the RIA.

    MacEntyre: I had bought the Springfield a while back and the first time I took it shooting I had multiple ADs. It had a "too light for me" trigger so I took it to the gunsmith in Wendell and had him increase the trigger pull to 5lbs.
    It pretty much happens with any 1911. I picked up a new Rock Island 5" Friday and I took it and a used 3" Springfield out yesterday and it happened once with each pistol.

    I'm wondering if having shot glocks for years I've just gotten lazy about leaving my trigger finger on the trigger. I may even be slightly pulling the trigger to maintain contact with it during recoil.

    I had a 500S&W years ago and had a problem with the cylinder moving out of alignment for subsequently shots because I was leaving my finger resting on the trigger. Recoil was moving my finger enough to start the next trigger pull just enough to allow the cylinder to move. I had to train myself to pull the trigger all the way back and hold it until the revolver came back down.

    ESP62: Just saw your response. I think I'm leaving my finger between shots.
     
  7. Sadie Thorne

    Sadie Thorne Registered Member

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    What they said... I put up a post on my blog last night about trigger pull after work to lighten it on my XDS, but in the post I describe how to measure the trigger weight. It's easy to get a 1911 that is just too light:
    • Trigger weight before the XDS spring kit: 8 lbs
    • Trigger weight after the spring kit &sear replacement: 4.75 – 5 lbs
    • Trigger weigh of my S&W 1911: 3.25 lbs (from the factory)
    If you have a gun smith you work with, they should be able to measure the trigger weight for you. Here's the post I mentioned if you want to see a (very short) video testing the weight on my upgraded XDS: http://girlgoesbang.com/xds-trigger-job-part2/.
     
  8. 1911Tuner

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    That's not what was doing it. I've had the same thing happen with older 4-inch Model 29s. The problem was that the cylinder stop's inertia was compressing its spring, and the cylinder obeyed Newton 1A and stood still when the gun torqued.

    If you can find the right size allen wrench...I forget the size...you can probably back the overtravel screw out a couple turns and squash the bug without taking the gun apart.
     
  9. bamashooter

    bamashooter Registered Member

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    Doubtful being trigger pull weight if it's happening with multiple brand / size 1911s. So you pull the trigger, release the trigger fully?, then what happens? Are they going boom / pause / boom or is it more of a staccato - like boomboom? Lastly you say this happens with multiple pistols to include those without the screw. Are they all the same boom pattern as I just mentioned or do they vary pistol to pistol or none of the above? Very lastly, next time you fire one of the 1911s, try this. Pull the trigger and discharge weapon. During a quick release of the trigger, in a very deliberate manner, move your trigger finger away from the trigger to the inside of the front of the trigger guard and leave it there 2 solid seconds. If the pistol doesn't discharge during that time, repeat until magazine is empty. If all is well, repeat the exercise at 1 second intervals. Almost sounds like you're letting the pistols come to your trigger finger instead of the reverse. Don't worry with hitting areas of targets or anything else. Do make sure downrange is safe and clear. Make sure the grip is very firm when discharging weapon.
     
  10. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Staff

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    aka Bump firing.

    You can pretty much cause one to do it on demand if you understand how it works.

    Look closely at this guy's grip.

     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2015
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  11. georgel

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    "I had to train myself to pull the trigger all the way back and hold it until the revolver came back down."

    I'm speculating this is the problem. While you think you're maintaining sufficient trigger pressure to hold it down solid, in reality, the recoil is moving the gun in the hand enough to release trigger pressure and reset the trigger. So, when it comes back into battery and you're consciously trying to maintaining trigger pressure, you're actually pulling a live trigger again, without realizing it. It's an unintentional variation on the bump firing technique as outlined above.
    Try easing up on the trigger and un-train the death grip.
     
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  12. Timor

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    Appreciate all the responses. I'll try to get out next weekend and try some of your suggestions.

    Thanks
     
  13. Timor

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    Can't believe it took almost two months to get back to the range.

    Went out Sunday with a Ruger Commander and LW Commander. No AD with either one.

    THEN I had one with a double action 44 revolver. Dang
     
  14. bamashooter

    bamashooter Registered Member

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    The revolver aside, how did you resolve your issue? Have you considered carrying a knife?;)
     
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  15. Timor

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    Haven't resolved it yet (SIGH). Two knives and a box of band-aids. LOL
     
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  16. JimB

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    Well, at least we all know where the problem is. I rarely suggest that hobby shooters get professional assistance because nobody listens, but in your case I'll suggest that you get some professional assistance.
     
  17. MacEntyre

    MacEntyre Vendor Vendor

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    I don't think your issue is properly called an "AD."

    Perhaps "Unintentional Double Tap"
    or "Negligent Bump Fire."
     
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  18. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Well-Known Member

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    If you are having "Accidental Discharges", ESPECIALLY across different handguns and different platforms, then you need to start with the common denominator: you.

    This isn't a slam, mind you. It's an honest evaluation based on what you've posted here.

    Trigger control is vital to gun control, whether that means being able to put bullets on target, accurate and speedy follow-up shots, accidental discharges, or negligent discharges.

    While I've never had any "formal" training (I don't count family or my basic Navy experiences), I quite agree with JimB: get some professional assistance. I believe it was a moderator here who said "you don't know what you don't know until you know it". It's often difficult to see what we're doing wrong when we're in the thick of it and can't see because of that.

    Whenever you figure it out, be sure to follow-up here and let us know what you found out!
     
  19. Web tobasco

    Web tobasco Registered Member

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    I agree with retiredUSNchief. if its happening with multiple weapons with both pistols and wheel guns then I think its shooter related and not the firearm. although subsequent "bump fires" on follow up shots are not uncommon among shooters new too the 1911. most factory triggers come in under 5lbs and some under 3lbs. My remington R1 enhanced breaks at 2.75lbs factory while my s&w e series custom shop breaks at 4lbs even. Yours sounds like you may need a professional instructor to aid you in trigger control. Also you might want to practice dry firing while maintaing a firm grip and relaxing your index finger completely off the trigger. Good luck be safe.
     
  20. ulflyer

    ulflyer Registered Member

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    As said above, go out to a range and work on finger control. I had the same problem initially of letting off the second round prematurely when I recently got a Sig 230 double/single action if I fired the first shot in double action. Had to consciously work on that as I like to carry that gun on occasions. Most of my carry guns are striker fired and I never had the DA/SA memory ingrained.
     

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