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Posted: 9/26/2014 3:13:32 PM EST
Had some time the other day to tear down my problematic Colt Series 80 Combat Commander. It has feedway stoppages on a regular basis with ball ammo and a variety of magazines. Nature of the jam is consistent with illustrations of the "3 point jam" or "stem bind."

First thing I noticed was that the only point of contact visible on the barrel feet was towards the bottom. I didn't think to get a photo, but the pic I found online below is similar, but the contact is on both feet. Likewise the slide stop pin shows no sign of contact with the barrel other than at the point that it's fully in battery. In other words, the barrel is riding the link, and in a pretty extreme fashion at that.

It seems the easiest solution here would be to install a shorter barrel link, but that's something I've never done before. Do I run the risk of compromising upper lug lockup with a shorter link?

Any advice is appreciated.


Link Posted: 9/26/2014 3:40:48 PM EST
Weld up and re cut foot.
Link Posted: 9/26/2014 6:13:03 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Gregory_K:
Weld up and re cut foot.
View Quote


I don't have any welding gear. I'm guessing that ain't cheap from a smith.
Link Posted: 9/26/2014 8:11:15 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/26/2014 8:13:40 PM EST by Are-O-Be]
You could try a slide stop with a larger pin. I'm not sure about Colt, but some factory slide stop pins are less than .200". You can order slide stops with pins that are a true .200" and EGW sells one with a .203" pin. You may or may not have to ream the hole in the frame and/or link. Might also need to change link to a different length.
Link Posted: 9/26/2014 8:19:28 PM EST
I tried to solve three-point jam issues on a pistol that rode the link with a shorter link. I finally determined it was a feed ramp problem. When researching solutions I was told most newer factory 1911's ride the link. Looking closer at my pistols, it seems to be true.

If you have interest in modifying 1911's, the Jerry Kuhnhausen books are great. Even after reading the books, it still require lots of experience to be a competent 1911 smith.
Link Posted: 9/27/2014 7:27:41 PM EST
Two things come to mind after seeing this...

1.) Never cut, carve or drill into the frame when a smaller part can be altered or replaced and...

2.) If the gun doesn't run, does it matter the cost of fixing it if it's less than replacement value?

Welding is expensive and not all gunsmiths are as well versed in it as others. Roll the dice unless you have some good background info on the 'smith.

I think I'd buzz Colt and see what they have to say. The call is cheap at least and may give you a viable option.
Link Posted: 9/28/2014 6:38:04 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By J1911MCD:
Two things come to mind after seeing this...

1.) Never cut, carve or drill into the frame when a smaller part can be altered or replaced and...

2.) If the gun doesn't run, does it matter the cost of fixing it if it's less than replacement value?

Welding is expensive and not all gunsmiths are as well versed in it as others. Roll the dice unless you have some good background info on the 'smith.

I think I'd buzz Colt and see what they have to say. The call is cheap at least and may give you a viable option.
View Quote


2) It's an inherited piece. If the gun doesn't run it'll get tossed in the back of the safe.

I guess I should send Colt an e-mail. I've never heard much about their service, just assumed they wouldn't mess with a ~20 year old pistol.
Link Posted: 9/29/2014 1:49:03 PM EST
There is no real reason to install a shorter link. If the barrel won't contact the slide stop pin as it is, the real issue is that the lower lugs have been overcut. This is the norm for most production guns as it guarantees a more or less drop-in fit.

If you install a shorter link, you can run the risk of link breakage since the barrel's rearward motion may no longer be stopped by the VIS and will now stop on the link. You do lessen the amount of upper lug engagement but not by much, since the link lengths generally only vary by .005" up or down.

A better solution would be to install an oversized match barrel, something like a Kart Exact Fit, which doesn't require a lot of tools and can be installed by someone with a few basic tools and a modicum of mechanical ability.
Link Posted: 9/29/2014 2:29:08 PM EST
First thing I would do is to take the slide off the frame and stick a round up under the extractor and see how it hangs. It should not be tight to get the case rim under the extractor claw and the round should hang at about a 10 degree angle (approx.). If it passes that test, remove the extractor, put slide back on the pistol and see if it loads then. The unfired round should fall out of the chamber or at worst you might have to pull it with your fingernail. If it loads okay without the extractor, the problem is too much extractor tension or not enough clearance in the claw. I see its a Series 80 so you may as well pull the firing pin and pin block plunger while you're at it unless you can get the extractor out without doing that.

Link Posted: 9/30/2014 12:56:21 PM EST
Have a slight problem with barrel lock-up on a M1911. Steve Pitt (gunsmith) welded up the feet and properly fit barrel/link for very affordable price (about $50) but I had some other work done with that job. try contacting him at stevepitt@yukonarms.com

There are most likely other smiths in your area that can do this you should ask around local it you might shipping your pistol out of town.
Link Posted: 9/30/2014 5:20:20 PM EST
Welding and cutting used to be SOP before the wide availability of quality 'gunsmith fit' parts.
Not worth the trouble any more.
New barrel with correctly cut feet.
Link Posted: 9/30/2014 5:51:40 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/30/2014 6:10:47 PM EST by Derek45]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By ken_mays:
There is no real reason to install a shorter link. If the barrel won't contact the slide stop pin as it is, the real issue is that the lower lugs have been overcut. This is the norm for most production guns as it guarantees a more or less drop-in fit.

If you install a shorter link, you can run the risk of link breakage since the barrel's rearward motion may no longer be stopped by the VIS and will now stop on the link. You do lessen the amount of upper lug engagement but not by much, since the link lengths generally only vary by .005" up or down.

A better solution would be to install an oversized match barrel, something like a Kart Exact Fit, which doesn't require a lot of tools and can be installed by someone with a few basic tools and a modicum of mechanical ability.
View Quote



yep

when I was young and poor, I'd pay a local machine shop to weld up the lugs on surplus 1911 barrels and hand fit them.
They shot well, but it took a lot of work.

the KART Easy Kit is a great barrel that really is easy to fit.




also....barrel fitting is an accuracy game, not usually a feeding trouble fix.

Barrel fitting, tuning the extractor, etc, has a learning curve.
Some are better off just sending it to a competent 1911 gunsmith

If you want to learn it, Kuhnhausen , hallock and Wilson have good books
these days, 1911's are a lot better fitted than in years past.
Link Posted: 9/30/2014 9:27:24 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By ken_mays:
There is no real reason to install a shorter link. If the barrel won't contact the slide stop pin as it is, the real issue is that the lower lugs have been overcut. This is the norm for most production guns as it guarantees a more or less drop-in fit.

If you install a shorter link, you can run the risk of link breakage since the barrel's rearward motion may no longer be stopped by the VIS and will now stop on the link. You do lessen the amount of upper lug engagement but not by much, since the link lengths generally only vary by .005" up or down.

A better solution would be to install an oversized match barrel, something like a Kart Exact Fit, which doesn't require a lot of tools and can be installed by someone with a few basic tools and a modicum of mechanical ability.
View Quote


Thanks for the info.

I swear the other day I checked a to see if Kart made a Commander barrel and found nothing. After your post I checked again and sure enough there they were on Brownell's site.

When I get a chance I'm going to dig out a GI mag and see if the long taper lips make this thing any happier, and take a second look at the extractor. If it does turn out to be the barrel, though, like I said I'll probably back-burner this one.
Link Posted: 10/2/2014 3:20:07 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/2/2014 3:20:42 PM EST by 789]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By brickeyee:
Welding and cutting used to be SOP before the wide availability of quality 'gunsmith fit' parts.
Not worth the trouble any more.
New barrel with correctly cut feet.
View Quote


Yea not so much.... or Just my luck.... I got a BAD FIT from a "Wilson" drop in Barrel so they are out there. There are other people out there that can fix that usually for less $ that a new barrel.
Link Posted: 10/2/2014 3:30:09 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/2/2014 5:40:51 PM EST by Derek45]
properly radius and tension the extractor
Gently polish the breechface and feedramp and possibly throat the barrel
....that will probably make it run

Fucking around with the link can goof up all kinds of things including zero, how the back of the frame and slide fit together, and were the firing pin strikes



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