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Durkin Tactical Franklin Armory
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Posted: 12/3/2007 3:50:12 PM EDT
Okay, here's the deal.  I have a Springfield 1911A1 GI model .45.  I love the look, reminds me of my younger days as a army medic.  

What I want to do is replace some of the innerds to make it a more reliable/accurate gun.  I want the exterior to look like a parkerized weapon of old.

I have owned some 1911s, Colts and Kimbers, but I have never tinkered with them.  What kind of barrel, triggers, etc. would I need to turn a good pistol into a great pistol?

I love the look as is, but I know I can rebuild it, make it stronger, faster . . . like the Six-Million Dollar Man.

This is going to be a monthly project for me . . . once a month, buy and add some top-shelf components.

Any helpful advicw would be appreciated.


Link Posted: 12/3/2007 4:55:57 PM EDT
I'm going to share my opinion since you asked !

I guess that depends on what you consider a "great" pistol to be.  A gun that shoots reasonably accurately and is reliable is what I consider to be a great gun.

I've often thought of sending my Colt Series 70 repro to a smith.  But then I wonder why.  It's been incredibly reliable with over 2k rounds through it and an assortment of JHP.  It's more accurate than I could ask for.  It's quite beautiful as is.  

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that if you spend some time with the gun you'll probably realize that it's just fine as is.  I do understand how this place (arfcom) can make your firearms feel inadequate -- seriously, but don't buy the hype.  This place has put me in that trap a couple of times only to realize that that latest "bestest" product really didn't make my life better or provide me with a better toy/tool.
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 4:57:59 PM EDT
I suggest you replace the extractor with a spring steel one. Like it was org designed with
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 5:03:27 PM EDT
As long as you stick to the Big Boys on part brands, I would imagine you'll be just fine.

Some of the better/best bbl makers in no particular order: Wilson, Kart, Nowlin, Bar-Sto & Ed Brown.

Ditto for internals, IMO.

Brownells, Midway & Denny's Shooter Supply will have all of the goodies you'd want. You didn't list it, but *I* would also swap in some better sights than the narrow GI-type sights. If you have the 3-dot version, then disregard.    

Brownells has THE best customer service in the world, IMO. Their no BS return policy made me a loyal customer years ago. Not to mention one can spend both a month reading their catalog as well as wanting to spend $10,000 with them by doing so.    

Good luck!  
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 5:43:01 PM EDT
It looks like the sights would be a PITA to tinker with.  If I can find some rear sights that match the front sights, then I would like new rear sights, Bomar, or something low-profile.

Like I said, it is a project/hobby gun to tinker with until I am happy as a pig in slop.

Link Posted: 12/3/2007 6:00:22 PM EDT
Measure the Barrel OD and the slide ID where the barrel bushing goes.  then Call EGW and have them machine a bushing for you.

Replace extractor with a ed brown hardcore  or Wilson bulletproof part.

Replace sear with an EGW Hard sear. Replace hammer with a toolsteel one. Have gunsmith fit hammer and sear for a crisp trigger.

replace grips with some with some bite.

ditch that dam ILS system.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 2:32:42 AM EDT
What's an ILS system?

Also, does the GI use Series 70-type parts?

I am liking the advice thus far.


Link Posted: 12/4/2007 2:53:00 AM EDT
ils is the sprinfield mainspring housing saftey system. Real easy to replace. just buy a new mainspring housing (i like ed brown) and all the guts (4 parts).

All SA are std 1911 fire control, what most people call series 70.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 9:42:12 AM EDT
post some before during and after photos!
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 3:20:47 PM EDT

I suggest you replace the extractor with a spring steel one. Like it was org designed with

That one probably takes the prize!

In fact, its the first thing I am doing. I am waiting on my Cylinder and Slide made one as we speak.  
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