View Full Version : My 1911 wont stay locked back

October 9, 1998, 09:11 PM
I have a customized 70 series 1911 with what looks like an aftermarket slide lock, (I'm not sure of the exact name) and while the gun is resting in an opened position the slightest bump on the table will cause the gun to close shut, should I just replace this part with a Colt part or can the problem be in the slide which means that I have to lug it back to the gunsmith.
I had the gun customized and it works great except for this one problem.

Anthony L
October 9, 1998, 10:59 PM
Dump that extended slide lock.
Learn to drop slide with left hand(if you are a righty, trigger finger if you are a lefty).

A gunsmith should be able to correct the release angle on the tab to better engage the notch in the slide, but a stock stop should work fine

Mac Scott
October 10, 1998, 12:27 AM

There should be a Colt parts dealer somewhere in your locale. You might check with you local firearms retailer.

If you have no luck with that, the following info should net you a new Colt slide stop with a little perseverance on your part. I'd first throw a call into:

Gary Thiry
Gary Thiry Parts
Sacramento, CA
Gary has something like a million gun parts on-hand --- and he keeps track of the darned things without benefit of a computer! I've never quite figured out how he does it, but he's famous for it. He should have what you seek but, if not, try going direct:

Colt's Manufacturing Co.
West Hartford, CT

Might take a bit to get through their voice-mail maze. They also have an 800 number, which I don't have near me at the moment. You can get that through 800 information if you prefer.

FWIW, it sounds as if you're on the right track by first changing out your after-market slide stop. Major chance that'll resolve the problem for you.


----Mac Scott

October 10, 1998, 05:02 PM
Thanks again for the info, I didn't think about calling COLT because as you said it is real hard to get through their phone system and no one ever picks up the phone there. Also anything I ever get from them is real expensive so I assumed they would charge full retail and then some for their parts. I will give them a call and if I cant get through I'll call Gary Thiry, thanks again for the info,

George Stringer
October 12, 1998, 11:00 AM
Donna, have your gunsmith adjust the lock as Anthony L suggested. If it is an extended lock, the one thing most folks don't like about them is that they have a tendency to lock the slide back during firing due to simple inertia. Your gunsmith can also correct this by simply cutting a small detent for the plunger. George

October 20, 1998, 03:26 PM
I had this problem with my HK USP when I first got it. The slide would never lock back on an empty mag when I'm shooting. I figured: Hey this is an H&K, what is going on here? This is not right! I had my coach stand to my left and look to see what I am doing here. The answer. My grip position puts my nonfiring hand thumb on the slide release. So I was actually releasing the slide each time. I held my thumb off... no more problems. Actually this is little problem since I count my rounds and reload when I have an empty mag and one in the chamber... a trick I picked up in the 19th.
Okay, so this has almost nothing to do with the thread... I'll go now...

November 20, 2005, 04:02 AM
Those things scare me but then again I am new to guns and know very little about Pistols. But I do like the Manual Safety on the Ruger P345.

November 20, 2005, 12:50 PM
Examine the slide stop cut in the slide and see if it has been damaged. It should be +/- 90 degrees to engage the slide stop. Sometimes a slide stop will damage the slide if it is a harder metal.

November 20, 2005, 12:58 PM
First do what ledbetter said.
Than get yourself a new slide stop (not an extended).
Also you should check to see if your magazine is pushing up on the slide stop.


November 20, 2005, 04:55 PM

Take a close look at that slide stop notch and see whether it is peened out any? This was always a trouble spot on original G.I. .45's, sometimes referred to as soft slides. This point is supposed to be spot hardened on modern guns, but the one on my Series 70 Goldcup still gradually burrs out.

If it gets bad enough, this can be repaired by a TIG weld build-up of the metal around the notch, then reshaping. Usually, though, it can be tapped back into place and the edges cleaned up by filing, stoning or honing.



November 20, 2005, 10:44 PM
Fellow members: this is an excellent thread, particularly because I'm having the same problem with my Kimber Custom Classic (first edition) -- the slide won't lock back on an empty mag (or after the last shot) unless I manually press up on the slide release. My slide stop notch looks fine. Would you suggest a particular brand of slide release for a Kimber, or am I O.K with simply buying one from Brownells?

UncleNick: great graphic!

November 22, 2005, 08:23 PM
It can be the magazine. Especially the 8 rounders tend to be a bit weak in the spring at the end of travel, so the follower doesn't always push the slide stop up correctly. That's a little different than it slipping out once in place, and more common. Check that the slide stop moves freely. If you have a detent in your for the spring plunger on the side, make sure it isn't over done. Put a dab of grease there. It doesn't hurt to be sure you have a little lube on the slide stop pin, either.


Jammer Six
November 23, 2005, 07:24 AM
Why do you guys think Donna's slide lock is extended?

A slide lock that drops on bumping is a different problem from a slide lock that locks open early.

If the notch is clean, it can be dimpled.

Unfortunately, it's not easy to tell by looking.

I don't use my off hand to drop a slide. I use my right thumb.

Kodiac is right, and that problem can go the other direction: you can lock a slide open early with a bad grip.

November 23, 2005, 08:22 AM
Your slide stop should not do this. One of two things is occuring. Either it does not engage the slide enough, or the angle of the interface between slide and slide stop has to much of an angle.

If it does not engage the slide stop enough, figure out why. I could be the magazine, the magazine follower/slide stop interface, or a burr on the slide or slide stop.

If the angle between the stop and slide is to much, then the quick fix is a new slide stop. Especially if you have an extended type. There are $12 slide stops available, then there are good ones (http://www.brownells.com/aspx/NS/store/ProductDetail.aspx?p=1334&title=1911+AUTO+HARDCORE+SLIDE+STOP) available. I would advise a good one, as a Colt Series 70 is a good gun, and the slide stop is a part that gets peened easily. If you put junk parts in a nice gun, you are making a junk gun. A gunsmith could adjust the angle of the existing slide stop, but chances are the job would cost about the same as a Brown replacement. The replacement may or may not need fitting. Buy quality though.

If the slide notch itself is worn down, Uncle Nick's solution is the way to go. I'm betting that is not the case though. Since your gun is a custom job, I'm betting the builder used a cheapo MIM slide stop that has gotten worn down over time. Replace it, and you will likely be in business.

I would not try to cure this problem by carving a detent recess in the stop. I would only carve a recess to hold the slide stop down, not to make it go up. If you need the part to go up, figure out what is preventing it. Correct that. To many people have solutions before they see the problem.