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11/22/2017 10:05:29 PM
Posted: 10/9/2004 9:30:09 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/9/2004 10:50:51 AM EST by cookie]
I recently picked up one of the Springfield Armory Mil-Spec 1911 pistols. This inexpensive model already has a beveled mag well, a relieved ejection port, and three-dot sights - so it makes a great base for the "Home Gunsmith." Springfield also sells a "loaded" model that has a lot of neat features as standard, but there's nothing like doing it yourself.



I added:
    Smith & Alexander Palmswell Grip Safety (Brownell's #849-009-027)
    Cylinder & Slide Tactical Match Trigger Pull Set (Brownell's #206-103-050)
    Lew Horton Cocobolo grips (from eBay)
    Brownell's 3-hole V Series (Videki) trigger (Brownell's #377-000-002)
    Ed Brown allen head grip screws (Brownell's #087-011-004)
The grip safety installation required cutting the frame. This was easily accomplished using Smith & Alexander's installation jig (Brownell's #849-009-000). All you need to do is strip the frame completely, install the jig (bolt it through the existing grip safety holes) and cut (grind/file/sand/polish) your frame until it matches the radius (.220") of the jig. I urge you to take your time during this step.

The trigger pull set (hammer, sear, & disconnector) was a drop-in installation; Cylinder & Slide really makes an outstanding product. The trigger itself was a different story. It is sold oversized to allow the installer to custom fit it to his pistol. All this requires is patience, a file, and some 600 grit sandpaper to smooth it up. I also used a Brownell's Trigger Track Stone (#080-721-230) to clean up the tracks where the the trigger bow travels.

Another goal was to remove the stupid Springfield Integrated Locking System (ILS), which requires a key to be inserted into the mainspring housing to enable the pistol. I used the following parts to accomplish this:
    Ed Brown blued arched mainspring housing (Brownell's #087-000-025)
    Wilson Combat mainspring cap (Brownell's #965-011-161)
    Wilson Combat mainspring cap pin (Brownell's #965-011-165)
    Wilson Combat mainspring pin retainer (Brownell's #965-011-163)
    Colt mainspring housing pin (Brownell's #160-116-133)
The Cylinder & Slide trigger pull kit included a new sear spring and hammer spring, which are also necessary to complete the ILS elimination.

I prefer the feel of an arched mainspring housing, but if you would rather have a flat housing, you can use the Ed Brown (or another brand) flat mainspring housing (Brownell's #087-816-120) in its place.

I'm pretty satisfied with how it turned out - so far. I'm still considering a set of night sights, and perhaps a slightly longer thumb safety.
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 12:58:34 PM EST
That's a "friggin" nice lookin 1911. I love Springfields. I own an SA 1911A1 'Fully Loaded" S/S and I love it. Accurate as hell. I have never had one problem with it and it has shot every type of ammo I've gotten for it. Give us a range report.
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 1:05:46 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 1:09:28 PM EST
What was the total investment in all those parts, plus the cost of the jig, etc?
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 3:23:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/9/2004 3:56:55 PM EST by cookie]
The total cost of the parts (excluding shipping) outlined in the first section was $166.56. This was for the:
    Smith & Alexander Palmswell Grip Safety (Brownell's #849-009-027)
    Cylinder & Slide Tactical Match Trigger Pull Set (Brownell's #206-103-050)
    Lew Horton Cocobolo grips (from eBay)
    Brownell's 3-hole V Series (Videki) trigger (Brownell's #377-000-002)
    Ed Brown allen head grip screws (Brownell's #087-011-004)
    Smith & Alexander installation jig (Brownell's #849-009-000)

To eliminate the ILS, I spent an additional $39.36. This was for the:
    Ed Brown blued arched mainspring housing (Brownell's #087-000-025)
    Wilson Combat mainspring cap (Brownell's #965-011-161)
    Wilson Combat mainspring cap pin (Brownell's #965-011-165)
    Wilson Combat mainspring pin retainer (Brownell's #965-011-163)
    Colt mainspring housing pin (Brownell's #160-116-133)
When you add the amount I spent for parts to improve the overall looks/performance, it puts me over what a new Springfield Armory Loaded would cost. I just happen to own one of those as well and - aside from the sights - I like the Mil-Spec better (since I've modified it). This Mil-Spec has a much nicer trigger pull than my Loaded and of course there's the "I did it myself" factor.

I do need to refinish the frame where it was cut for the grip safety, but this is a very small area. I'll probably tape off the rest of the frame and spray this area with matte GunKote, then bake it. After all, you can barely see it.

Thanks for the compliments, and I hope this helps.
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 4:44:47 PM EST
Nice job! Nothing like doing it yourself.
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 6:39:57 PM EST
Sexy.
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 6:42:09 PM EST
That's what it is all about...

MT
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 6:04:29 AM EST

Originally Posted By cookie:
The Cylinder & Slide trigger pull kit included a new sear spring and hammer spring, which are also necessary to complete the ILS elimination.
.



Huh? The ILS is all contained within the mainspring housing. It was the first thing to go in my milspec. IIRC i used a Smith & Alexander Arched Mainspring housing, Kings grip safety, McCorminck trigger and hammer, Ed Brown 19# Mainspring and Wolff 18.5 Recoil spring.
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 7:30:52 AM EST
Beautiful! In considering a 1911 one of the things that keeps me coming back to a mil-spec is the lack of front slide serrations. I love it!
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 8:06:14 AM EST
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 8:52:20 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/11/2004 8:53:02 AM EST by cookie]

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Originally Posted By cookie:
The Cylinder & Slide trigger pull kit included a new sear spring and hammer spring, which are also necessary to complete the ILS elimination.
.



Huh? The ILS is all contained within the mainspring housing. It was the first thing to go in my milspec. IIRC i used a Smith & Alexander Arched Mainspring housing, Kings grip safety, McCorminck trigger and hammer, Ed Brown 19# Mainspring and Wolff 18.5 Recoil spring.



I think you're misunderstanding my post. The sear spring I'm referencing is the flat spring located behind the grip safety, and the hammer spring I'm referencing is also called the mainspring. We're talking about the same things, I just didn't have to buy these springs individually as they came with the trigger pull kit.
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 9:27:55 AM EST
gee, i think i just found my next pistol.

any reliability issues with hp ammo?
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 12:02:29 PM EST

Originally Posted By cookie:

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Originally Posted By cookie:
The Cylinder & Slide trigger pull kit included a new sear spring and hammer spring, which are also necessary to complete the ILS elimination.
.



Huh? The ILS is all contained within the mainspring housing. It was the first thing to go in my milspec. IIRC i used a Smith & Alexander Arched Mainspring housing, Kings grip safety, McCorminck trigger and hammer, Ed Brown 19# Mainspring and Wolff 18.5 Recoil spring.



I think you're misunderstanding my post. The sear spring I'm referencing is the flat spring located behind the grip safety, and the hammer spring I'm referencing is also called the mainspring. We're talking about the same things, I just didn't have to buy these springs individually as they came with the trigger pull kit.



Okay, yes the Mainspring/hammer spring must be replaced when removing the ILS. The flat three pronged trigger/sear spring however is not part of the ILS.

Springfield also sometimes uses a heavier than normal firing pin spring and titaium firing pin to make the pistol "drop safe."
Link Posted: 10/11/2004 12:04:41 PM EST
For those that dont want to tackle fitting a grip safety, the Kings grip safety is a drop in on the Milspec. there is at least one version of the Wilson grip safety that is also drop in.
Link Posted: 10/25/2004 12:02:12 PM EST
nice work!

tag.
Link Posted: 10/25/2004 12:06:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/25/2004 12:07:13 PM EST by cookie]

Originally Posted By AR15fan:
For those that dont want to tackle fitting a grip safety, the Kings grip safety is a drop in on the Milspec. there is at least one version of the Wilson grip safety that is also drop in.



This is true about the Kings (I can't say about a Wilson model), and I don't want to knock anyone's choice - but the drop-ins don't look nearly as "clean" as a fitted safety.
Link Posted: 10/25/2004 1:35:35 PM EST
Very nice! A classic 1911.

Link Posted: 10/25/2004 6:19:04 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/25/2004 6:20:24 PM EST by phrkshw]

Originally Posted By BookHound:
Very nice. You're giving me ideas for my Mil-spec. hr


+1

i have been considering adding some custom touches to my milspc but have wondered if i could do it myself. That bolt on instalation jig removes the only issues i really had with doing it myself. very cool. very nice pistola.

i would have added the longer safety. Mine is a real bitch to work with, but that new sear prolly made it nice and smooth if it wasnt already.

AA
Link Posted: 10/25/2004 6:20:04 PM EST
Thanks again for the compliments. You guys can definitely do this; all it takes is patience.
Link Posted: 10/25/2004 6:27:55 PM EST
Cookie-Great work, VERY clean! I love the upgraded Mil-spec's.

+1 on anything from King's Gunworks, parts and their 'smithing craftsmanship.
Link Posted: 10/25/2004 6:35:17 PM EST
I have a Colt Series '70 Mk IV that is basically cherry. I just might follow your lead. I'll still send the slide to Heinie for sights though. Render unto Caeser what is his.
Link Posted: 10/25/2004 6:43:56 PM EST

Originally Posted By stony275:
I have a Colt Series '70 Mk IV that is basically cherry. I just might follow your lead. I'll still send the slide to Heinie for sights though. Render unto Caeser what is his.



Oh come on now, you can do those sights. All you need is a couple of files, some JB Weld, and two six packs.
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