View Full Version : 1911A1 pattern feed issue

May 26, 2012, 02:55 PM

I have an Auto-Ordnance 1911A1. It's not as nice as my two Colts, but I still like the pistol

One thing that's always bugged me is that it will function-check just fine with 7 snap caps, no feed problems. But if I put hardball in it and actually shoot, it jams. I've tried several different commerical brands of ammo: Winchester, Remington; same results

I've never done anything to it other than take a bit of scotchbrite with gunoil on it and polish the feedramp parkerizing with finger pressure, and swap in a USGI trigger. Pistol is clean as a new pin.

I have tried the factory mag, no-name cheapo mags, Chip McCormick mags and an original two-tone Colt mag

My next step is replacing the recoil spring. Any other advice?

James K
May 26, 2012, 03:03 PM
There are too many possibilities to even consider an answer. A jam can result from many causes, though I can't figure out what the trigger could have to do with it.

There are several follks here who can help, but we just need more information on how and when the jams occur and what the result is, like failure to feed with the round stovepiping, or failure to extract/eject, or a round jamming into the feed ramp. Or ???


May 26, 2012, 03:22 PM
Thank you Jim. I didn't say the trigger could cause the issue. I said I've only ever done two things to the pistol, and changing the trigger was one. It was an affirmation that the pistol was in it's factory configuration with the exception of those two things, not a suggestion that it was a possible cause of trouble. Pistol did this before the trigger change, and the change was not intended to solve the issue

Occasionally it does stovepipe, but that's because of the ejection port I'm sure- the rim of the brass is perfectly sized to catch there and occasionally does.

The jam is almost always a failure to feed (spent brass ejects)- the new round will not chamber. Usually this is a 'bullet nose down' problem. That's why I polished the park on the feedramp with my fingertip, and later tried the dimpled follower, original mag, actually. Funny thing is I lent my weirdo A-O mag to another A-O owner once that was cursing out his pistol, and his A-O 1911A1 ran like a triple-crown winner with that mag, but when I use it, it seems to jam even more frequently.

I was hoping that by now, a "A-Os may jam because of X Y Z" general tribal knowledge had formed

My Pop is looking at new A-Os and I'd like to instead sell him mine at a vastly reduced price, but I want it to work reliably first

May 26, 2012, 03:49 PM
Try a heavier mag spring.If the bullet nose is catching on the feedramp or bottom mouth of the barrel it usually means a weak mag spring or the lips on the mag are not allowing the round to be presented "nose up" enough to clear the ramp or get an angle high enough to be able to guide it up correctly.

So I would try a heavier spring and play with one of the mag lips(slowly and only a little bit so you don't mess them up to bad). The only other thing is to have the feedramp recut to a flatter angle(which may be part of the issues to begin with).

May 26, 2012, 05:17 PM
As has been mentioned,not much info.

This is a wild stab at it.Could be wrong.

1911 is controlled round feed.That means the round must slide up the bolt face under the extractor on the way in.

If the bolt face is smooth,clean,no burrs,no point in compromizing the finish.If there are any high spots,float them off .I'd use a fine india stone.

But the next thing I would look at is the extractor.One issue could be;There are a couple of small bevels that need to be filed on the hook to help the round funnel up and in.It needs to be done right,I do not suggest you just start carving.

And,the extractor tension needs to be right.There are some vids on you tube that will give you an idea.Too much tension will make it hard for the round to feed up.

Or,it could be something else!

Is the AO Phillipine?If so,if they use the same slide stop as the ATI I bought,that part was pretty disappointing on mine.Looked Harbor Freight.I got a forged,parkerized drop in Springfield Armory from Midway for about $20.

Thats not about your feed problem,but it is a critical part.

May 26, 2012, 05:55 PM
Thank you. I'm not sure what other info could be useful. I have described the overwhelmingly usual cause- the bullet is usually nose down in the mag when it jams. The pistol is as-made except for the two things I have mentioned.

May 26, 2012, 11:26 PM
I wonder about the magazine catch. Can you push up on the magazine and have these problems cease or reduce? Could be (in addition to extractor, etc) that the mag catch is not holding the mag high enough to it to transition the ctg and the empty. If you look at the mag catch itself (easy to remove) you can see how little of it actually holds the mag and how just a little bit of it being mis-ground/fitted/worn/etc can gum up the whole works. Yessir, could be quite a few variables there.

Harry Bonar
May 28, 2012, 05:28 PM
You need a "reliability package" done - as most all 1911s do!
Harry B.

Sean B
May 29, 2012, 02:51 PM
I just got my 1911PKZESE back from A.O. for the 2nd time since I bought it in July 2011. I have yet to fire it, but I'll keep you posted on how it goes. Just curious......Is your slide not returning all of the way forward after a shot is fired? That's what the problem has been with mine.

May 29, 2012, 03:18 PM
Sean B,I suggest you post a new thread,titled "1911 slide fails to return" or whatever,and you will get answers specific to your issue.

If you are shooting handloads,I would look there first.You start a new thread and we'll talk about it.

May 29, 2012, 05:23 PM
Pictures of the jam. Pictures, Pictures!

Clifford L. Hughes
May 29, 2012, 05:23 PM

Have the throat polished and recut to feed all types of ammo. A heavier recoil spring might be needed.

Semper Fi.

Gunnery Sergeant
Clifford L. Hughes
USMC Retired

May 29, 2012, 07:59 PM
There are gun forums that specialize in the 1911 platform. Do a search for "1911Forum" and "The M1911 Pistols Organization", and they will jump on your malfunction like a duck on a June bug. This forum is more generalized.

May 30, 2012, 04:20 PM
Thanks all. We'll see what can be done. I'm a member at 1911.org; have been for years but mostly I only participate in the military-issued 1911 section. Actually, the very same 1911 that is giving me problems was their "Miss December" photo for their calendar back in 2009.

But TFL has a lot of practical experience, and respectfully, the 1911 is a quite well known platform; I like 1911-dedicated sites but there's no secrets to making 1911s work, 100 years in ;)