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Old September 13, 2013, 05:47 PM   #26
Doc Hoy
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It is a good point.

Magazines are not that expensive that if a spring gets weak, a person can just go out and buy a new one.

The ones I used in the NAV were old with a capital "O" and they worked fine.

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Old September 13, 2013, 06:00 PM   #27
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I've had a 1911 as a home defense and CCW gun for about 16 years, same 8 rd mags never a problem.

What I dont do is carry 8+1 or seat a full 8rd flush fit mag because I noticed a full 8rd flush fit mag has left dents in the top cartridge sometimes excessive if I tap it in place hard enough. I dont have this problem with the 8rd mags with an extended base pad it has much more final compression available after 8rds inserted.
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Old September 13, 2013, 06:50 PM   #28
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Posted by salvadore: If you fear for your life you should probably defend yourself and worry about the state laws later.
Personal thresholds of trepidation vary, and whether an individual experiences fear is but one small part of the equation.

It behooves everyone who possesses a firearm or a tire iron or a nine iron to read Frank's post on the fundamentals of use of force laws.

Having said that, I am compelled to add that one should not be looking for ways to justify the use of force, deadly or otherwise. Force should be used only when there is no other alternative.
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Old September 13, 2013, 07:32 PM   #29
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People have a choice. They can try to learn and understand the laws relating to the use of force to help them make the right decisions, or they can choose to remain ignorant and risk some serious consequences. If one chooses to remain ignorant, he doesn't have to visit here and ask questions.

Consider also that the consequences of violence can be serious even when even when your use of lethal force is ultimately found to be justified. Consider --

This couple, arrested in early April and finally exonerated under Missouri's Castle Doctrine in early June. And no doubt after incurring expenses for bail and a lawyer, as well as a couple of month's anxiety, before being cleared.

Larry Hickey, in gun friendly Arizona: He was arrested, spent 71 days in jail, went through two different trials ending in hung juries, was forced to move from his house, etc., before the DA decided it was a good shoot and dismissed the charges.

Mark Abshire in Oklahoma: Despite defending himself against multiple attackers on his own lawn in a fairly gun-friendly state with a "Stand Your Ground" law, he was arrested, went to jail, charged, lost his job and his house, and spent two and a half years in the legal meat-grinder before finally being acquitted.

Harold Fish, also in gun friendly Arizona: He was still convicted and sent to prison. He won his appeal, his conviction was overturned, and a new trial was ordered. The DA chose to dismiss the charges rather than retry Mr. Fish.

Gerald Ung: He was attacked by several men, and the attack was captured on video. He was nonetheless charged and brought to trial. He was ultimately acquitted.

Some good folks in clear jeopardy and with no way to preserve their lives except by the use of lethal force against other humans. Yet that happened under circumstances in which their justification for the use of lethal force was not immediately clear. While each was finally exonerated, it came at great emotional and financial cost. And perhaps there but for the grace of God will go one of us.

And note also that two of those cases arose in States with a Castle Doctrine/Stand Your Ground law in effect at the time.
Frank has some excellent points. By reading the above, and other post regarding SD shootings, tells me that just as important as a firearm, is CCW insurance. It's surprisingly inexpensive. A heck of a lot cheaper then loosing our home to prove your case.

Something else I hardly ever see covered in these topics is what happens afterwards.

I guarantee you, If you have to take another's life, and its a ligit shooting, no arrest, no trial, 100% free,.................its gonna haunt you the rest of your life. I don't care how mean and tough we sound on the internet, its gonna get you.

There is no property worth that in my opinion. If you're worried about some bandit running off with your wallet, or tv, buy insurance.

I would never consider using deadly force for property crimes.

Just my humble opinion.
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Old September 13, 2013, 09:06 PM   #30
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A 1911 is fine for home defense or carry. I have carried one since Dec. 1969. I carry 7 in the mag ,1 in the pipe cocked and locked, 2 mags in a carrier that stay with 7 rounds each. I hope and pray that the only thing I ever shoot at is targets. Which rounds you carry in it is yours to decide, how you treat your mags again up to you. Learn the laws in your state, practice, practice, practice then practice some more. Finally if you ever do have to defend yourself learn these 3 quotes 1 I was in fear for my life, 2 I stopped the threat 3 I want to talk to a lawyer. This is the time to shut up till you can calm down and think straight before making any statement that gets you into more trouble because you misspoke. Having to take a life is something that each person has to deal with and no one can truly prepare you for it but if you are still alive you can learn to deal with it.
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Old September 13, 2013, 09:18 PM   #31
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kraigy's right, ya don't wanna shoot someone runnin off with your stuff. However, I don't think I'd be haunted if I was forced to shoot a sociopath in defence of my family or myself. Of course I haven't shot a lot of people..hardly any...OK, none, but hope I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.
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Old September 13, 2013, 10:58 PM   #32
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Great advice from Frank........I truly hope I never have to defend my home or family.

I know that if I do have will haunt me for the rest of my days.
Freedom is not free
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Old September 14, 2013, 11:21 AM   #33
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I would like to add about the psychological consequences. It's been found that with some males, they avoid the consequences which occur even with the 'good shoot'. That leads to substance abuse and family problems and worse. One should seek professional advice if suffering from such.

It's common on the Internet to say that "I" wouldn't because I'm tough, etc. Not necessarily true.

Psychological consequences of long term severity are not guaranteed but one should be aware of such and not be reluctant to act on such due to self-image, etc.
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Old September 14, 2013, 01:04 PM   #34
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There's a live discussion elsewhere on TFL about the mag spring issue ... I once saw a reply to such a question from an engineer who worked with springs for various uses. His comment ... springs wear out from use, not from being compressed and left alone. If you use the same mag at the range over and over, you might want to replace it after a while or swap the springs. If the mag springs are simply compressed, especially in understressed 1911 mags, they can last a lifetime. Unless the spring coils are mashed against each other, no problemo. I use a Springer 1911 Loaded for my nightstand gun, loaded with Hornady Critical Defense rounds, mag is full and there's one in the chamber. It got its place of honor because 1) it's got night sights, and I love seeing them glowing next to me when the lights go out; easy to find in the dark, easy to aim and 2) I shoot it better than any of my other guns and it has never failed to fire or eject in the six years I've owned it ... with a spare mag, 9p Surefire light and a SOG fixed-blade knife also in the nightstand, I think I'm good to go ...
"The welfare of humanity is always the alibi of tyrants." Albert Camus
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Old September 14, 2013, 02:24 PM   #35
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I carry a 1911 style handgun as a primary duty gun. Some of these facts have already been posted, but I'll reiterate:

1. It is not the compression of the springs that weakens them, it is the constant loading and unloading. Yes, I do carry five loaded 8 round magazines on my duty belt. When I got the magazines, I changed the factory springs with Wolff +5% springs, loaded them and left them alone. I do change the springs annually. Absolutely no problems.

2. There are two people that you should talk to about the legal aspect of shooting in self defense. The first is your local prosecutor. If the worst should happen, you will be seeing him or her once, at a grand jury--hopefully not twice, during the criminal trial. The second is your personal attorney, to discuss the tort that will follow from the relatives of the person who got shot.

3. Be aware that the person who confronts you--and is likely to be the one that gets shot--will ALWAYS be in the process of "turning their life around", "could not hurt a fly", "is a kind and funny guy", et cetera, ad nauseam, ad infinitum. In other words, public opinion may not be on your side.

4. Not only addressed to you, but to others as well: Be well advised that a shot person is NOT a quiet person. Their speech is normally not well ordered, and they don't just lay there. And it's never clean.

However, if you make the conscious decision to arm yourself for the protection of yourself and your family, good for you. That's one of the things we do as the heads of our households--the "leader of the pack". And note I did not mention "men"--women are just as capable. (Don't think so? Try playing with a bear cub anywhere around momma. )

I believe the .45 ACP cartridge to be the ultimate defensive cartridge--and the 1911 to be the quintessential defensive handgun. If I could not have a 1911, I'd go for a Model 625 Smith and Wesson (pre-sidelock, thank you) with a number of moon clips loaded with 230 grain Hydra Shok.
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Old September 14, 2013, 02:35 PM   #36
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1911 w/laser grips for me.. wife has the 12ga and a 44mag.
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Old September 14, 2013, 03:25 PM   #37
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You cant trust them gms when they're drunk! (This from a torpedoman 3/ss)
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Old September 14, 2013, 04:02 PM   #38
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Powderman, Zenfly and TM3

Thanks for the wink back guys.

To FM12, I agree with the drinking habits of the GMs. I knew a GM who got into a fist fight with a urinal in Toulon. The urinal was destroyed but his hands were so beat up, he nearly died from loss of blood.

But there was no more capable breed when it came to small arms.

To Powderman,

My thought is that your sense of human nature is pretty accurate. As I said in my very first post, the purchase of this 1911 had nothing to do whatsoever with home defense. It was motivated purely by nostalgia. I am under no illusion regarding the sobriety that must accompany any plan which might result in the use of a firearm against someone else.


The first thing I did with my RIA was to replace the grips. Got black hard plastic checkered grips. I am a sucker for nostalgia.

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. Thomas Jefferson
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Old September 14, 2013, 07:55 PM   #39
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Try this exercise. With an unloaded and cleared 1911 set your alarm for 3am. Make sure the alarm is on the loudest setting. Immediately after the alarm goes off then grab the 1911 and see if you can work it.

I woke up from a good sleep this morning and was asked to move a car. I couldnt do it...not immediately.

Most people will find a revolver is good for bedside defensive needs. Its easier to work coming from a deep sleep.
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Old September 14, 2013, 08:29 PM   #40
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If you're too tired to figure out a thumb safety that you've trained with, you're probably not in a state of mind to be making judgement calls that could involve possibly shooting someone.
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Old September 15, 2013, 04:07 PM   #41
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Doc Hoy: Thanks for your service!!
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Old September 15, 2013, 06:47 PM   #42
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he Gunners Mates always said that keeping rounds in the clip weakens the spring

That advice above is false. They have found 1911 mags loaded since WW2 and they functioned fine even after being compressed for 40 years.

Now as long as the 1911 has a 5 or 6 lb trigger you simply keep it at home chamber empty (one of the few times I feel that is a good way to keep it as if you have time to run to your gun in the house you have time to rack the slide.)

“To you who call yourselves ‘men of peace,’ I say, you are not safe without men of action by your side” Thucydides
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Old September 15, 2013, 07:00 PM   #43
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The way I look at the spring issue is that if you're worried about the springs wearing out from the magazines being left loaded, just replace the springs periodically. Replacement magazine springs are very inexpensive ($17.29 for a package of three from Wolff Gunsprings) and are good preventative maintenance. Personally, if I were to keep a semi-auto magazine loaded all the time (I don't because my home defense handguns are revolvers) I'd simply replace the magazine springs annually and not worry about spring fatigue.'T%20PISTOL/cID1/mID1/dID1#805

That being said, you still need to have at least two magazines. This is because one of the most common causes for jams in a semi-automatic is problems with the magazine. If your gun jams while someone's trying to kick in your door in the middle of the night, you're not going to have time to fiddle with a magazine, it's much faster and more efficient to just drop the bum mag and insert a fresh one.

As for ammunition, I also recommend factory JHP ammo. The use of handloads presents several possible legal issues not the least of which is the potential for discrepancies in forensic examination of gunshot residue. If, for example, your handloads are loaded in Winchester cases, the police might compare the GSR from the shooting from that left by factory ammo. If your handloads leave less GSR at the distance you say you shot your attacker from than factory ammo does from the same distance, the cops may believe that you shot from a greater distance thus calling your entire story into question.

One of the nice things about the .45 ACP cartridge is that there are very few "bad" JHP loadings for it. Pick a 200-230gr JHP from a major ammo maker like Winchester, Remington, Federal, Hornady, Speer, or Cor-Bon, shoot at least 100 rounds of it to make sure it functions reliably in your gun, and then use the handloads for practice.

As far as the legal and psychological ramifications of shooting in self-defense, both Frank Ettin and Glenn E. Meyer are far more knowledgeable about such things than I (law and psychology are their respective professions) so I'll defer to them on such matters. My only advice on the matter is that in most of the U.S., the legal threshold for deadly force is the reasonable fear of imminent death or great bodily injury to yourself or another present innocent person. If you have any alternative to deadly force that does not place life and limb in equal or greater danger, it's always best to take said alternative.
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Old September 16, 2013, 07:42 PM   #44
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Just a couple of comments
I have two .40SW handguns, XD 4" barrel and Sig 229. I wear one of them all the time. The majority of the time I carry the XD and I've had the same 12 rounds in for over a year. These are my sd rounds. I've never in the ten years I've had the gun did I ever have a problem with a weak magazine spring. I do practice shooting and empty the mags about once a year.

I love bullseye also, every handgun I load for has bullseye. But I do shoot a lighter load for the Sig

As far as the self defense issue. I always have 13 rounds, one in the chamber and 12 in the mag. If a person is worried or concerned about shooting someone then they would be better off not carrying a gun. It just doesn't make sense to me if you have a CCW and you have to draw your gun it had better be loaded and you have to be prepared to use it.
And just a couple of things I learned.
1. You shoot to stop someone, your intention is never to kill anyone. I learned that from a couple of state prosecutors.
2. If you're a position where retreating is not an option and you have to draw a gun. Point the gun at the crotch rather than center mass. The offender can see where the gun is pointed and there's a very good possibility the offender with turn and run.
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Old September 16, 2013, 08:44 PM   #45
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1911 for home defense

You will be fine. Don't trust your life to the factory RIA mag. Buy a few Wilson Combat magazines and use those. Don't be concerned about leaving the mags loaded.
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Old September 18, 2013, 06:11 AM   #46
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The thing about 1911s, in my humble opinion mind you, is they all need a lot of customization to make them shoot the way you want. You need to buy a bunch of aftermarket accessories and have an account at the local gun store. Its almost as if the gun makers wanted it this way so they can sell more stuff. In fact, there are some aftermarket fitters like Wilson Combat who have made it their business modifying 1911s.

IMHO, get yourself a Sig. It shoots straight right out of the box without the need to go to an aftermarket fitter like Wilson Combat.
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Old September 18, 2013, 08:45 AM   #47
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I think everyone, no matter what type, spends money on aftermarket stuff for their particular gun or guns. It's human nature.
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Old September 19, 2013, 12:06 PM   #48
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I got the grips on....

But prolly my next purchase will be some more mags.

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. Thomas Jefferson
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Old September 19, 2013, 02:18 PM   #49
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But prolly my next purchase will be some more mags.
And that's a good idea. But before you buy any, see if you can't borrow as many different mags as possible to see if your particular pistol has any sort of preference. Someone above mentioned Wilson. That's a good choice, but there are other choices too and you owe it to yourself to take a little time to see if there are any that work particularly well in your pistol.
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Old September 19, 2013, 02:50 PM   #50
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I think shooters go overboard on the customization of M1911s and thinking NIB is not good enough. My AMT Hardballer was shooting too low, I sent the slide to them, it came back fine. Pachmayr grips and a white outline rear sight are the only modifications I have made to it. I had high fixed sights installed on the slide of my Colt Mark IV-then got another Colt slide for it. I had MMC sights installed on my Satin Finish Combat Commander as I simply could not see the factory sights, especially in bright light. The safety on that is stiff when being engaged, probably some very gentle polishing would solve that. Triggers on all 3 are fine as is. I did install flat mainspring housings on the Colts-the Hardballer came that way, decided that felt better in my hand. Otherwise they are stock. It seems to me the Glock shooters like their favorite "as is", likewise the SIG and S&W shooters don't go in for customizing. Better to spend time at the range and dryfiring to get familiar with it.
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