9mm 1911 Project: Part Five- Fool! This Isn’t Even My Final Form!

Gotta have the glam shot.

OK, but it’s at least getting close. After determining the sources of my woes- mysteriously key-holing bullets being among them- I made a steel barrel weight and had the gun up and running just before Christmas.

At New Year’s I happened across an interesting piece of Walnut in the ship and made a set of grips. They aren’t perfect, but they look pretty good. Yes, they are smooth; I grip the gun front-to back with a thumb riding the safety. The grips could be greased and it wouldn’t make any real difference.

The other day I decided that a) I wanted a bit more weight at the muzzle and b) I really didn’t like the look of screw-heads sticking out the bottom of the dust-cover. I figured 1-1/2 – 2 ozs. would do it. After considering steel I decided to go with aluminum. I made a piece to fit the dust cover then trimmed it until it felt right, at about 1-1/2 ozs. This did, uh, interesting things to the gun’s profile but it feels awesome!

Yes, it looks weird.

I have to say I am underwhelmed with the effects of the Birchwood Casey Aluminum Black on this project. I expect different alloys of aluminum react differently; it did a great job on the frame of my Airweight Chief’s Special.

Lookin’ good, feels good… but how does it shoot?

The Pudding

I had picked up a box of Fiocchi 115gr FMC at Pinto’s, and my buddy Lia handed me a box of Norma 115gr. FMC practice ammo for a favor so I had enough to make the trip worthwhile. First things first: the gun ran flawlessly. Excellent. Second things…

7-year rapid-fire. Not tragically bad, but I obviously needed to focus.
7 Yards, 1 shot/second. That’s more like it.
10 yards, 1 shot/second. This pleases me.
15 yards, 5 shots at 1 shot/second. THIS is what I’m talkin’ about!
Time for double-taps at 7 yards. Not impressed, try it again.
This time I remembered that I know how to shootThe second string of double-taps at 7 yards.

I’m deliriously happy and somewhat surprised that the gun is working as intended. I’m always a bit surprised when some mad idea I’ve had actually works. Hell, I don’t take the sensible ones for granted. But it’s still not quite done. The trigger is good, but it’s not ‘competition pistol’ good so I’ll be doing a trigger job. Also need to address the final finishing. Maybe a coating. We’ll see.

Then it’s time to practice a lot. I mean really a lot. Got some matches that need shooting…

Stay Safe and take care,

Michael Tinker Pearce, 7 January 2022

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