Quantcast
  1. Sign up now and join over 35,000 northwest gun owners. It's quick, easy, and 100% free!

1911 grip problem

Discussion in 'Handgun Discussion' started by MountainBear, Sep 26, 2009.

  1. MountainBear

    MountainBear Sweet Home, OR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,650
    Likes Received:
    2,374
    So the first 1911 I got had a beavertail safety. So I learned to shoot it with a very high grip. Recently I acquired a early (1918) Colt Gov't Model. I'd like to shoot it more often (its a shooter grade, Augusta Arsenal rework), but every time I do it bites the heck out of my hand. In fact, I had to stop my range trip early last time to go and wash the blood off of the rear of the gun.

    Considering I don't want to swap out parts, how can I adjust my grip to not bite my hand? How do those of you who shoot both kinds of grip safetied 1911's adjust to keep from getting bitten?
     
  2. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,374
    Likes Received:
    797
    There really isn't anything to adjust without giving up something.

    I would suggest installing a drop-in beavertail. There's no mod to the frame, and you can take it out anytime to restore the gun to its original configuration.
     
  3. MountainBear

    MountainBear Sweet Home, OR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,650
    Likes Received:
    2,374
    I thought about that, I just wanted to preserve the aesthetic integrity of the gun while still being able to shoot it effectively. Not sure that's going to be possible...
     
  4. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,374
    Likes Received:
    797
    I have fairly large hands, so its needed for me. All my guns have beavertails, some fitted some drop in, as to not mess with the value of the gun.

    When I work on them, I just make sure I hold the gun a bit higher in the hand. Not good for general shooting, but works ok for reliability testing.
     
  5. Oro

    Oro Western WA Active Member

    Messages:
    403
    Likes Received:
    43
    Another option is to install a later type spur hammer. Usually, it's the way the original style long, wide spur hammer would arch back and pinch the fleshy area between the thumb and index finger. A later, shorter spurred hammer might give you relief and not too badly alter the aesthetic to offend you. It may or may not work for you, but a cheap second hand 70 type or post-war GM hammer may be worth trying. The drop-in beavertail is sound advice, but as you point out, it does spoil the looks.

    Also, if you are used to shooting with a high-hand hold because of the beavertail, you might try consciously re-adjusting to a lower hold. I had to make this transition a few years ago when I also switched from shooting my high-ride beavertail equipped guns to shooting my older guns more.
     
  6. Southridge

    Southridge Orting WA. Member

    Messages:
    70
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have the same 1911 that you have, and I have tried adjusting my grip and it still bites me every one in a while. "Maybe I have a little to much hand padding"
    So since I am not going to alter mine ether I just enjoy the pain of shooting a classic. if it continues to get you try glove when you fire the old war horse.
     
  7. huntpotter

    huntpotter SW WA Negotiator Bronze Supporter

    Messages:
    1,800
    Likes Received:
    44
    If you don't want to alter the hammer, or grip safety. Wear a pair of leather drivers gloves. I also have a 1918 GI 1911. Same thing, arsenal rework, 40's era HS barrel. I don't shoot it, just because I shoot my modern 1911s a lot. But when I got bit, by other 1911s I just put on gloves, and it took care of the problem. Not ideal, but still works.
     
  8. RickB

    RickB Greater Seattle area Member

    Messages:
    146
    Likes Received:
    6
    Early M1911s had short-spur hammers, which were soon exchanged for, and replaced by the meatgrinder that we all know, and some hate. I found an early hammer and installed it in my 1918 Colt, and no more hammer bite. The original hammer can be put back if necessary.
     
  9. Bill Siegle

    Bill Siegle Oregon Active Member

    Messages:
    494
    Likes Received:
    184
    An old friend of mine carries Bandaids in his shooting bag for his old 1911s and PPK. Puts one on before shooting and it takes the hits for him. Doesn't add anything too bulky to his grip.
     
  10. MountainBear

    MountainBear Sweet Home, OR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,650
    Likes Received:
    2,374
    Yeah, the band-aid idea was where my thought process was going as well. I can't shoot well with the gloves I have.
     
  11. Bill Siegle

    Bill Siegle Oregon Active Member

    Messages:
    494
    Likes Received:
    184
    I'd like to add that I would opt for the cloth type Bandaids. They seem to flex/fit better than the platic looking ones. I work in a metal shop around oils and the cloth ones will stay on for a whole shift when I have a cut :D
     
  12. MountainBear

    MountainBear Sweet Home, OR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,650
    Likes Received:
    2,374
    I used to superglue my cuts when I was woodworking. But I think you're right on the cloth band-aids for shooting. Excellent point. Problem is, I just love shooting the classics and I can't bear (no pun intended) to change the gun. Even non-permanent modifications hurt. Makes me feel like I'm second guessing John M.

    Thanks for all the responses.
     
  13. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,374
    Likes Received:
    797
    I don't believe you're second guessing JMB, as he didn't think of everything.

    He was given his marching orders to go in a certain direction, to design a gun to meet a specific need, for a specific person...that being the Military.

    The original design offered by JMB did not have a thumb safety. It also had a lighter recoil spring, and a small radius bottom on the firing pin stop. Then there's the longer hammer spur, and grip safety.

    So right from the get go, there was hammer bite, the sights were awful, and there was no safety.

    Adding a drop in beavertail does not change the design...just the looks and function.
     
  14. MountainBear

    MountainBear Sweet Home, OR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,650
    Likes Received:
    2,374
    So John M. can roll over in his grave if he wants, but I'm going to have to change the beavertail on this gun. I hate to do it, but I want to shoot it, not look at it.

    I took it out today with a bobbed hammer and it still killed my hand. So I'll have to get a drop in beavertail (no way I'm bobbing the frame) and a new hammer. It won't look original, but at least it will be shootable. No dang point in just looking at it...