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Old 08-31-2008, 10:33 AM   #1
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Changing out a trigger on a 1911

Got a question, guys. I've got a Kimber Raptor that I bought about two and half years ago. I'm very happy with the pistol, but I would like to change out the long trigger it came with for a short trigger (it just fits my stubby little hands better). I hesitate because the trigger on this gun is very good, and I'd hate to ruin it by changing out the OEM part for an aftermarket. I'd rather live with a good trigger with a slightly too long reach then a bad trigger with a more natural reach. And I'm afraid my gunsmithing skills are limited to drop in jobs. I wouldn't know where to begin if adjustments were necessary to keep the feel of the stock trigger pull. Any advice?
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Old 08-31-2008, 12:34 PM   #2
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Re: Changing out a trigger on a 1911

You shouldn't have to make any changes to the sear or hammer with just a simple trigger swap and if you know how to detail strip the gun you can do it.

There may well be a change in the feel, the weight should not change.
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Old 08-31-2008, 08:07 PM   #3
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Re: Changing out a trigger on a 1911

Thanks, Charlie. I can handle the swap.
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Old 08-31-2008, 08:23 PM   #4
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Re: Changing out a trigger on a 1911

Charlie's right about how easy it is. About the only thing to watch for is the fit in the frame. Before you start putting all the rest of the guts back in, make sure the trigger slides freely and smoothly in its slot. You might have to do a little stoning or filing on the trigger or the bow, or even a little bending of the bow in or out, to achieve this. Also don't forget that all your magazines should fit smoothly through the trigger--binding on the mag will not only keep the mag from falling free, but can keep the trigger from resetting. If the bare trigger moves smoothly and freely in the bare frame, you should experience no difference in pull weight in the assembled gun--that's a function (largely) of the hammer, the sear, and the mainspring, and you aren't changing any of those things.
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Old 08-31-2008, 11:08 PM   #5
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Re: Changing out a trigger on a 1911

In addition to the above replies, a word of caution:
Any time you replace or modify any fire-control part, verify proper function of all safeties; and load only 2 rounds in the magazine the first couple of times you shoot the pistol, then 3 rounds, etc. You shouldn't have a problem, but sometimes tolerance stacking will be an issue.
Full-auto with a 1911 can ruin your whole day.
Jerry Kuhnhausen's Colt Automatic shop manual has some great info on this.
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Old 09-01-2008, 05:01 AM   #6
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Re: Changing out a trigger on a 1911

Quote:
Originally Posted by darkd0r
. . . a word of caution: . . . Full-auto with a 1911 can ruin your whole day. . . .
Been there, heard that, seen that, from a firing point 2 spots to my left. Collected a mouthful of grass, seasoned with brass. My first experience with "friendly fire" that might have been, but wasn't, headed my way.

The cause was the first live firing of a home-brew 1911 trigger job. We would have expelled the guy, but he was the Secretary-Treasurer of our club, and a really nice, but dangerous, guy.
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Old 09-01-2008, 06:10 PM   #7
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Re: Changing out a trigger on a 1911

Buy a short Videcki Speed trigger and some 400 grit wet-dry. Take down the pistol and try the trigger. You'll find it won't go all the way in. Lay the sandpaper on a flat surface, place the bottom of the trigger on it and run forward and back about five times. Turn the trigger upside down and repeat. Try again. Keep going until it fits smoothly in and out. Like Snake said, check the bow with a magazine.

Once everything fits, assemble the pistol and set the overtravel screw to where it stops backwards movement immediately after the hammer drops and you're home.
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Old 09-12-2008, 07:25 PM   #8
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Re: Changing out a trigger on a 1911

Thanks to one and all for your tips and advice. Sorry it took so long to acknowledge them...been a busy couple of weeks!

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