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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 3/12/2006 11:22:17 AM EDT
The mil spec I have has the .220 radius and I want my hand to sit higher on the gun(for more accurate rapid fire fun). I am curious to see what others have done to get that beaver on their Milspec.
Link Posted: 3/12/2006 12:37:16 PM EDT
I had a King's Gun Works #204 drop in safety that worked fine, but I'm in the process of having a Smith & Alexander safety with the .220 radius installed.

King's Gun Works

Smith & Alexander
Link Posted: 3/12/2006 1:15:01 PM EDT
So the smith and alexander requires some frame work?
Link Posted: 3/12/2006 3:10:45 PM EDT
There are two types of beavertails. There are ones that require no modification to the frame, referred to as drop in. Drop in's requires other fitting be done internally, but no machining or cutting to the frame is required.

The second type is fitted. This requires that the rear of the frame at the frame tangs (the pointy area just behind the thumb safety pin that the grip safety pivots on) be cut. The original beavertails had a compuound radius in reference to that thumb safety pin.

Most popular beavertails have a .250" radius cut as measured from the center of the thumb safety pin. Smith and Alexander came out with a smaller radius, a .220". because of the difference with Springfield Armory frame tangs.

On SA guns, the top level of the frame tangs are lower profile than Colt or other Mil-Spec guns. So, the SA Mil-Spec, which is just their name for your gun, is really far from Mil-Spec. It has a lower top level of the frame tangs. This means nothing for function, but when you cut the frame for a .250 radius beavertail, the top of the beavertail sits higher than the top of the frame tangs.

S&A realized they could make a beavertail with a lower top level, but to do this, they needed a smaller radius. Wilson Combat has a shorter radius at the top of the beavertail, and it too can be fit to a SA gun. All the other beavertails out there can be fit to SA guns too, but there will be an unattractive gap at the top level of the frame tangs and the beavertail.

You gun is stock, and the frame tangs are not cut. That means a beavertail, like the Smith and Alexander .220 radius will not fit until your frame is cut. They sell a jig with .220" buttons to make the cut with. After that, you would most likely have to file right up against those buttons to make it fit. You would laso have to cut the internal stirrup to the correct dimensions, leaving enough for the grip safety to disengage, but also block the trigger at rest. Also, S&A leaves enough extra on the stirrup to act as an overtravel stop, so you need to know where to cut the stirrup back to allow for sufficent overtravel.

After all that is done, you will still need to blend the top if you want it to look professional. Many don't do this, and it looks okay, though not like it was done by a pro. It's simply a cosmetic touch. This requires the correct tools and the proper attachments for blending out grindin marks, plus a bead blaster. Again, it's just cosmetics, but if you want it to look good, I would pay a smith the $35 - $60 it takes to make it look good. Also, you will need to either bob the hammer or go to a commander hammer.

With a drop in beavertail, all the blending is not an issue. Also, you can keep your stock hammer. You won't have a much higher grip though. If you go this route, I would recommend a Wilson Combat drop in.
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