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Old April 24, 2001, 11:18 PM   #1
kitman
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Ok, I was shooting with a friend who does some race gun shooting nothing realy that great just for fun, He had his 1911 grip safety deactivated in some maner where it would move like a regular but would not stop you from shooting if it was not held all the way in, My question is,

1) Is this an unsafe way to have your 1911, I personaly never cary my gun cocked or if Im not shooting it and its loaded I use the manual thumb safety.

2) is this bad for the gun? Or is is a change made to the grip safety itself,

3) how is it done? If I am satified with the above answers I may do the same to mine

Thanks

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Old April 25, 2001, 06:03 AM   #2
Mikey
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The only thing a grip safety does is prevent rearward movement of the trigger when the gun is not in the hand. None of the other safeties depend on the grip safety and few (if any) other guns have this feature so overall safety, in my opinion, is not compromised.

De-activating the grip safety does not harm the gun. The alteration is made to the grip safety only (unless you choose to pin the safety in the depressed position). It does permanently alter the grip safety and to re-activate it would require purchasing and fitting a new one.

To de-activate the grip safety you must remove it from the pistol and cut or grind away the part that protrudes into the frame and blocks the trigger bow.

I don't de-activate mine. I adjust the engagement during fitting so that it disengages as soon as it moves. That way it still does it's intended job but even the slightest grip pressure will keep it disengaged. The only other consideration, besides safety, is liability. If this is your carry gun, and you use it to defend yourself, some grief could come in court from the fact that a safety feature was altered. It would be pot luck trying to convince the jury that it had no negative effect in the shooting.

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Old April 25, 2001, 08:03 AM   #3
George Stringer
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Kitman, I don't see any advantage whatsoever in deactivating the safety. And if, God forbid, anyone ever got accidently shot by that gun no matter the reason I'm almost positive that you would be held at fault for doing it. I'd recommend against it. George
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Old April 25, 2001, 08:34 AM   #4
M1911
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George:

Apparently, there are some combinations of grip safeties and some peoples hands such that they can't reliably depress the grip safety. I've never had that problem with either my Kimbers or my Gunsite GSP2000. But for those people, I could see a reason to deactivate the grip safety. If you've never had this problem, then there's no reason to deactivate it.

I do agree with you, however, on the potential for added liability.

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Old April 25, 2001, 02:05 PM   #5
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I disagree with the statement that some peoples hands can't deactivate the grip safety. There are all sorts of grip safeties out there and one or more will work FOR EVERY PERSON, regardless of hand size, hand strength, etc. And the grip safety should never be deactivated unless YOU ARE WILLING to accept the responsibility THAT WILL be laid upon you if anyone (even you) is ever shot by a firearm that you disable a safety feature on. OF that, I AM SURE.

So, if you don't like the grip safety on the 1911 style pistol, go find another style of pistol.

IF it's just a matter of personal preference, then find a grip safety you like and install it. Then tune the trigger to work properly with that grip safety and forget about it.
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Old April 25, 2001, 05:23 PM   #6
clem
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I for one, would NOT de-activate any type of safety device or feature in or on any firearm. If it was not needed for a reason, then the designer, inventor would not of put it on the weapon.
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Old April 25, 2001, 08:36 PM   #7
Art Eatman
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Somewhere in the early 1970s, I discovered that little wad of tinfoil jammed between the mainspring housing and the grip safety would hold the grip safety "In".

After all these years and some 15,000 rounds or so with nothing bad happening, even in the heat of IPSC competition, it's generally a subject for which mine eyes glazeth over.

, Art
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Old August 19, 2010, 08:34 AM   #8
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JM Browning only added the grip safety to the 1911 because the US Army Ordinance office wanted him to.

Novak has been making one piece back straps that eliminates the grip safety for their custom 1911s since 2004.

I mean, anything that makes a gun safer is good in my opinion. However, I have a somewhat high grip style and the grip safety can hinder this.
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Old August 19, 2010, 08:42 AM   #9
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You should note that John Browning didn't include a grip safety with the High Power.
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Old August 19, 2010, 08:50 AM   #10
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"To de-activate the grip safety you must remove it from the pistol and cut or grind away the part that protrudes into the frame and blocks the trigger bow."


That sounds a lot simpler than suggested by S Skelton, drill a hole thru the frame and depressed safety and pin it in place.

Sometimes opinions are worth even less than what you paid for them.
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Old August 19, 2010, 09:25 AM   #11
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or do what the Texas Rangers did.

Tie rawhide laces around the grip safety so it's "permanently" depressed.
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Old August 19, 2010, 11:34 AM   #12
HiBC
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For my hand,if I have a hi ride grip safety and use a hi-thumb hold,a standard shaped no-speed bump grip safety can be a problem.I simply choose the grip safeties with a hump.They work for me.
While many other handguns do not have a grip safety,for me,that is another good reason to choose a 1911.
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Old August 19, 2010, 12:15 PM   #13
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I carried my 1911a1 for a while in LE before (for other reasons) I went back to my Model 28.

I disabled my grip safety in fear of I might have to use it in a hurry with a not so perfect grip. I carried in Locked and Cocked and never had a problem. That was about 20 years ago and never got around to enabled it.

It doesn't take much, just bend the lip a tad so it doesn't catch. I still have the grip safety enabled in my Gold Cup but I use it mostly in Bullseye so you have all the time in the world to get a good grip.

I guess it depends on how you feel about it, if you think it will bother you, disable it, if not leave it a lone. Never really heard of anyone not getting the shot off in an emergency situation because of the grip safety, then I never heard of any problems disabling it either.
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Old August 19, 2010, 01:07 PM   #14
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With 35 years of carry, hunting , and competition my 1911 has it's grip safety locked with no problems !!
Unlike Art's garage mechanics solution , mine has a carefully fitted piece of titanium to lock the safety ! No permanent changes to the gun.
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Old August 19, 2010, 08:34 PM   #15
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You do realize, post number 8 took us from April 2001 to the present in one shot.
Why do first-time posters insist on dredging up a nine-year-old thread?

Happens so often it is almost cliche.
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Old August 19, 2010, 08:48 PM   #16
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Quote:
Why do first-time posters insist on dredging up a nine-year-old thread?

Happens so often it is almost cliche.
Well, we crap on them for reviving old threads, and if they start a new thread, we crap on them for not using the search feature - seems like they can't win.

The thread seemed to get past the nine-year gap pretty seamlessly, so perhaps it wasn't a bad candidate for resurrection.
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Old August 19, 2010, 09:03 PM   #17
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Quote:
JM Browning only added the grip safety to the 1911 because the US Army Ordinance office wanted him to.

Novak has been making one piece back straps that eliminates the grip safety for their custom 1911s since 2004.

I mean, anything that makes a gun safer is good in my opinion. However, I have a somewhat high grip style and the grip safety can hinder this.
One minor correction. JMB added the thumb safety per US Army request. The grip safety was always in the design. Otherwise I agree, I don't alter any safety feature.

Quote:
You should note that John Browning didn't include a grip safety with the High Power.
Also of note JMB died several years before the High-power design was finalized, who knows if a grip safety was or wasn't intended in the final design since he wasn't around when it was completed.

Last edited by doctruptwn; August 19, 2010 at 09:08 PM.
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Old August 19, 2010, 11:02 PM   #18
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Actually, both the grip safety and the manual safety were added at the request of the Army, just that the grip safety was added to earlier models in earlier tests. JMB considered the half cock enough safety and that is all that was used on his previous hammer guns, including his rifles and shotguns.

The normal way of deactivating the grip safety is by drilling and pinning and has the advantage of being easily reversible without replacing the part. While it might be OK for a pure range gun, in today's society I would not deactivate any safety on a defense or carry gun. Doing so would almost certainly be considered as reckless and showing disregard for the safety of others, telling points in a civil suit.

Jim
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Old August 20, 2010, 12:23 AM   #19
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I realize that this is an old thread, but I'm going to respond to the initial poster because it's an important point.
Quote:
He had his 1911 grip safety deactivated in some maner where it would move like a regular but would not stop you from shooting...
Deactivating a safety is one thing. There are reasons for and against doing such a thing.

But, deactivating a safety and leaving it in such a condition that it is not immediately obvious that it is deactivated is absolutely a horrible idea.

There is never a good reason to have a safety that LOOKS like it works and seems to operate normally but doesn't provide the proper function.

If you decide to deactivate a safety then make it obvious that it no longer works.
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Old August 20, 2010, 10:50 AM   #20
jborushko
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i dont see the problem here! while PERSONALLY i wouldnt deactivate a safety on a pistol.

XD has grip sleeves that are designed for the sole purpose of deactivating the grip safety!http://img5.imageshack.us/my.php?image=xd45t02sm.jpg

here is one way for the 1911.. very old school. i believe that it was texas ranger somebody who did this



again i DO NOT SUGGEST DOING THIS, DISABLING A SAFETY IS BAD IDEA
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Old August 20, 2010, 11:58 PM   #21
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Just because the thread is 9 years old doesn't mean there isn't a whole new generation of people that might conceivably have the same question.

Damned if you do, damned if you start a new thread.
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Old August 21, 2010, 03:21 AM   #22
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Quote:
Just because the thread is 9 years old doesn't mean there isn't a whole new generation of people that might conceivably have the same question.
I agree. Reactivating an old thread is, in affect, starting a new one and doesn't preclude it from being interesting. Makes better sense than the same subject coming up repeatedly, time after time.

With the way grip safties are designed these days, I don't think it's necessary. Even the smaller hands seem to deactivate them reliably.
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Old August 21, 2010, 07:59 AM   #23
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Quote:
Why do first-time posters insist on dredging up a nine-year-old thread?
Because otherwise the second post would be "use the search function"?
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Old August 21, 2010, 09:00 AM   #24
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We need a hall of fame for repeating topics.

The grip safety issue probably deserves a little discussion. My dad is a person who's palm forms a pocket in his grip over the bottom of the grip safety. When we took our first Gunsite class he had repeated occasions in learning the presentation when it wouldn't let him press the trigger. He'd never had that problem shooting the Goldcup in bullseye matches, so apparently this was something that only happened when he was shooting fast, or else the Springfield 1911 grip safety needed to be depressed further than the Goldcup safety did to deactivate. Maybe he still had the arched mainspring housing on the Springfield and that was an issue? I don't recall? The smithy installed a metal clip that retained the grip safety for him during the class.

The military may have added the grip safety, but I do see a purpose for it, which is to prevent discharge when the thumb safety is off and the gun is dropped, muzzle up, onto the grip frame. It's a pretty specific accident, but if you try to train enough recruits with a weapon for a long enough period of time, it will eventually happen. I expect that's what the military considered.

Unlike the 1911, the High Power has a pivoting trigger. It is dramatically more difficult to get inertia from dropping it to fire that mechanism than it is with the 1911 design, where inertia can drive the trigger straight back. I am always astonished by how many target shooters and 1911 owners with custom trigger jobs have guns which allow the hammer to follow when the slide goes forward if they don't remember to depress the trigger first. The half-cock is not adequate for these. Indeed, the rollover angle most trigger jobs put on the back edge of the sear nose to prevent bounce on engagement can defeat the half-cock if it's hook is rounded, as it often is. Such a gun is precisely the kind that will go off when dropped as I described, and should have a working grip safety.

You can, as HiBC said, get a grip safety with a hump that extends it back to meet your palm. On any grip safety you can remove excess engagement by filing the underside of the step in the extension until the safety releases earlier in its travel, but still works in full rearward position. The pivot radius ratio is close to 2:1, comparing the nose of the step to the bottom edge of the grip safety. So, filing 0.010" off the step releases the safety about 0.020" earlier in its movement at the bottom. And that may be all it takes. This is one of those take-just-a-little-off-at-a-time-and-try-it jobs.

Don't chamfer the bottom edge of the extension nose to do more than remove burrs if you the above, or the trigger may slip under it. Be aware you are marrying the grip safety to your particular trigger bow, and that it may not work with a different trigger afterward. Install the trigger your heart desires first.

If, for some reason, you just can't find a way to live with a functioning grip safety, at least invest in a flyweight trigger and don't have the trigger adjusted extra light. The lighter weight the trigger, the less inertia it has to slam against the disconnector, and through it, the sear. The heavier the trigger pull, the less likely it is that slam will knock the sear off the hammer hooks.
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Old August 21, 2010, 09:56 AM   #25
rickyjames
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i'd say that if you don't like the design then buy another type of gun.
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