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Thread: Grip safty trouble

  1. #1
    Boolit Bub
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    Grip safty trouble

    I had to put a new trigger in Kimber commander, adjusted ears on trigger bow and set over travel on trigger. 1st shot on new mag GS works perfect but all followup shots I have to mash GS several times to engage trigger. I backed off trigger over travel screw but no change. I pulled and marked GS with black sharpie to see contact point but dont know where to look from here and I diffently have not touched with a file or sand paper. I have read about triggers being shorter and needing to cleanup lip of GS but I need to understand why and what Im doing before trying to make adjustments. The reason for changing trigger is slapping in a new mag caught the trigger bow and bent enough that a new trigger was in order.I have run about 250 rds through it and nothing has smoothed up so far. Thanks for anyone advice!

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    Check the slots the trigger parts that go around the magazine. I had to stone the ones on a friends 1911A1 as the surfaces were very rough and scratched the heck out of the trigger bow. Cleaned the slots out of any residue and repolished the bow. Big difference. May not be the answer to your problem. Frank

  3. #3
    Boolit Grand Master
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    ",..... adjusted ears on trigger bow......"

    More information please.

    What exactly did you do to "adjust" the "ears" on the trigger bow?

  4. #4
    Boolit Bub
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    I bent the 2 tabs out slightly at the front of trigger bow then finished taking up free travel with set screw in trigger. I can cock and dry fire all day and the grip safty work perfect, either by racking slide or just cocking hammer .I will pull tenison on trigger and slowely engage grip safty and works every time dry fire but when I shoot first rd its like the GS does not reset and takes deperssing GS several times to get trigger to release. I can rack the slide and it will work every time for the first shot only though. All I have have done is take apart , clean and install new trigger and everything feels smooth. Could the grip safty spring tenison have somthing to do with this? Im no bubba gunsmith so no sanding or filing unless I know for a fact what Im doing is needed to fit the new to old parts. I have read about new triggers being shorter which eliminated the GS all together, but first shot and dry fire everything works.Thanks for listening

  5. #5
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    You may need to peen the contact nose on the safety a few thousandths.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Divedigger View Post
    I bent the 2 tabs out slightly at the front of trigger bow then finished taking up free travel with set screw in trigger. I can cock and dry fire all day and the grip safty work perfect, either by racking slide or just cocking hammer .I will pull tenison on trigger and slowely engage grip safty and works every time dry fire but when I shoot first rd its like the GS does not reset and takes deperssing GS several times to get trigger to release. I can rack the slide and it will work every time for the first shot only though. All I have have done is take apart , clean and install new trigger and everything feels smooth. Could the grip safty spring tenison have somthing to do with this? Im no bubba gunsmith so no sanding or filing unless I know for a fact what Im doing is needed to fit the new to old parts. I have read about new triggers being shorter which eliminated the GS all together, but first shot and dry fire everything works.Thanks for listening
    You "improved" the pistol by taking a functioning pistol and tweeking it so that it is now a non-functioning pistol.

    OK, not trying to rub it in.

    if you look at the grip safety you will see that it doesn't move in a linear fashion. The grip safety pivots on the shaft of the thumb safety. When the grip safety is depressed the lug on the GS moves in an upward arc and then allows the trigger bow to move to the rear.

    When the GS is released that lug moves in a downward arc and intercepts the rear of the trigger bow, preventing the trigger from moving to the rear.

    When you bent the trigger bow outward you introduced just enough friction that the sear spring cannot completely reset the trigger. The rear of the trigger bow is now "trapping" the lug on the grip safety instead of allowing the lug to freely move up and down. The action works when you dry fire the gun because the recoil forces are absent and the GS lug isn't being trapped as solidly as it is when the pistol is fired.

    The first thing I would suggest is removing the trigger and attempting to return the bow as close to its original geometry as possible. A small anvil that fits inside the bow may be helpful in that task. You may need a new un-molested trigger.
    While the trigger is out of the frame, check the "ways" that the trigger bow travels in. A small burr can cause a lot of headaches. There are flat stones specifically made to clean up those "ways" [cuts] but a small stick of wood with some 600 grit sandpaper will do the trick. You are NOT trying to take any metal off, you are just trying to clean up any burrs or machine marks.

    Same is true with the trigger bow itself. Some judicious polishing of the surfaces that ride in those frame cuts goes a long way. Again, not trying to change the shape of the metal bow. Just cleaning it up a bit.


    Same holds true for the lug on the grip safety. Some very careful polishing of the surfaces that intercept the trigger bow so that any small burrs don't trap the bow can help. Do not remove metal.

    I like to fit the trigger to the cuts in the frame and not mess with the trigger bow at all. A carefully fitted trigger that moves smoothly in the frame is the goal. You shouldn't have to alter the shape of the trigger bow AT ALL.

    Good Luck.

  7. #7
    Boolit Bub
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    Thanks for helping out but I did not bend the trigger bow but gently pushed out the 2 tabs on the front of the strap that sets the over travel . The trigger bow got bent when I shoved a mag in and it caught the side straps enough that I bought a new trigger instead of trying to strighten the side that bent . This is a new factory Kimber trigger the mate to the orginal with the over travel tabs made for adjustment right behind the trigger pad. Thanks for help.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    you just need to adjust the little step looking piece on the inside of the grip safety. file up on the bottom side of the first step, until the grip safety cleanly disengages. back of the new trigger bow is probably a couple thousands thicker/higher than the old one.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master

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    To help, you might be able to see your trigger bow and grip safetey interaction by removing your thumb safety and reinserting the thumb safety shaft in through the other side of the frame and grip safety then peeping in through the thumb safety frame cutout. Cheeters and a light or a lit magnafier ae your friend here. G

  10. #10
    Boolit Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Divedigger View Post
    Thanks for helping out but I did not bend the trigger bow but gently pushed out the 2 tabs on the front of the strap that sets the over travel . The trigger bow got bent when I shoved a mag in and it caught the side straps enough that I bought a new trigger instead of trying to strighten the side that bent . This is a new factory Kimber trigger the mate to the orginal with the over travel tabs made for adjustment right behind the trigger pad. Thanks for help.
    I think you are combining the terms "pre-travel" and "over-travel".

    The tabs you speak of do not affect Over-Travel (how far the trigger moves to the rear after the sear releases).

    The tabs limit how far forward the trigger travels when re-setting or Pre-travel. The trigger needs to move far enough forward that when it resets the sear completely engages the hammer AND the grip safety is able to function properly.

    I stand by what I wrote, The trigger is not resetting completely and the trigger bow is trapping the lug on the grip safety.

    If the trigger has a set screw in the face of the trigger, that screw limits Over-Travel.
    If the trigger has those tabs on the trigger bow near the trigger, they can be bent to adjust Pre-Travel.

    Personally I do not care for those tabs. A trigger that has a tiny bit of take up will remain reliable when the pistol gets dirty. I think the old style triggers were more reliable. An over-travel screw is useful but those tabs are not needed.
    Last edited by Petrol & Powder; 02-06-2019 at 08:01 AM.

  11. #11
    Boolit Bub
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    Making the assumption, the pistol functioned flawless prior to replacing the trigger bow. Did you use an aftermarket or a Kimber trigger bow? A 1911 is sensitive to different parts. Mostly, you cannot simply replace a part. There will be some minor fitting involved with most part replacements.

    The grip safety is meant to block the trigger bow travel until it is pressed by your hand. I suspect the recoil from firing is causing the grip safety to "bounce" and it is engaging and being caught by the trigger bow. To test, fire then remove your firing hand from the grip. Grip the gun again and attempt to fire. Two ways to fix. The grip safety pivots upwards, remove a slight amount of metal from the bottom of the grip safety tab, reassemble and test for function and then test fire. Or, you could remove a slight amount of metal from the top of the area of the trigger bow that contacts the grip safety tab. Reassemble, test for function and then test fire. I'm not sure what you did to the new trigger bow, you may need to replace it, but maybe not.

    I hope this helps, it makes sense to me.

  12. #12
    Boolit Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Divedigger View Post
    Thanks for helping out but I did not bend the trigger bow but gently pushed out the 2 tabs on the front of the strap that sets the over travel . The trigger bow got bent when I shoved a mag in and it caught the side straps enough that I bought a new trigger instead of trying to strighten the side that bent . This is a new factory Kimber trigger the mate to the orginal with the over travel tabs made for adjustment right behind the trigger pad. Thanks for help.
    The trigger is not completely re-setting. It is not going FORWARD enough when released. The problem isn't over-travel. The problem is Pre- Travel .


    Remove the trigger, bend those little tabs back IN, closer to their original position before you bent them out and re-install the trigger.

    I'll bet you the problem will go away.

    If this is a pistol used for self-defense, I would use a trigger that didn't have those little tabs at all. A tiny bit of take up (slop) in the trigger is preferable to a trigger that occasionally fails to re-set.

    The quest for a target trigger that has JUST enough movement to release the sear and re-set is fine if you're just making holes in paper. If you're relying on that gun for serious social situations it needs to be 100% reliable.
    Extremely tight tolerances concerning pre-travel and over travel are not desirable qualities in that type of pistol.

  13. #13
    Boolit Bub
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    If you were a betting man you won ,I did as you said and gently returned the tabs to orginal position, cleaned and installed and it works perfect. Everything is stock parts and specs, i just tried to set the tabs on new trigger to match the orginal trigger and that little bit made a big difference. I want to Thank everyone especially P&P for paitence and understanding for explaining things and and followup on finding the problem and how to fix correctly.

  14. #14
    Boolit Grand Master
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    Awesome !

    Glad you got it sorted out.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check