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Discussion Starter #1
I've been gearing myself up and doing research on a 1911 purchase. The SA Loaded has a lot of the features I'm looking for, so I went and shot one yesterday at the range. I realized very soon into the shoot that I had never shot a 1911 with the enhanced "bump" on the grip safety. Absolutely hated it. Didn't even go through my whole box of 50 because it gave me an ugly pain in the hand.
This really throws my choices on 1911 off. I've been looking at the Ruger SR1911 very strongly, but now that I notice its beavertail has the lump on it, I am not too sure. I do know I want a beavertail, instead of the military-style grip safety. The only pistol I've found in my brief searching since the incident that has a beavertail, without the lump, is the Kimber Custom II.
While this is a fine pistol from what I have read, I was pretty sold on the Ruger. How hard is it to put a new beavertail in, one that doesn't have that atrocious brick on the safety?
 

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I've been gearing myself up and doing research on a 1911 purchase. The SA Loaded has a lot of the features I'm looking for, so I went and shot one yesterday at the range. I realized very soon into the shoot that I had never shot a 1911 with the enhanced "bump" on the grip safety. Absolutely hated it. Didn't even go through my whole box of 50 because it gave me an ugly pain in the hand.
This really throws my choices on 1911 off. I've been looking at the Ruger SR1911 very strongly, but now that I notice its beavertail has the lump on it, I am not too sure. I do know I want a beavertail, instead of the military-style grip safety. The only pistol I've found in my brief searching since the incident that has a beavertail, without the lump, is the Kimber Custom II.
While this is a fine pistol from what I have read, I was pretty sold on the Ruger. How hard is it to put a new beavertail in, one that doesn't have that atrocious brick on the safety?
Completely understand. I had the BT changed on my first couple of 1911s but everyone is including them so I had to eventually got used to the bump. It took a while but my last two pistols came with them and I just kept shooting and eventually noticed my palm didn't hurt. Even my wife got used to them.

As to installation, they have to be fitted which generally requires modifying the frame. There is a tool for fitting but you would be better off sending it to a smith if you've never fitted one before. You will need to fit both the frame to the BT and the front where it blocks the sear. Not a quick and easy job unless you are familiar with the internals. There are some drop-ins but because they have to fit a wide variety of guns, you end up with a huge gap that is not attractive.
 

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Buying a beavertail safety grip without the bump can be had relatively cheap and honestly most smiths won't charge much to fit it if it's needed to your 1911. I don't really get the grip bump much either I have a GI version without the beavertail safety grip or the bump. I honestly don't see the need for it I've neverhad a problem engaging the safety and have never met anyone who did either. I tend to lump it into the "a solution to a non-existent problem" category.
 

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I have pistols with all three, bump, Kimber, and original 1911A1. I never even notice the bump and I have relatively soft hands (office work), so this OP came out of the blue for me.

I think the bump is over rated and doesn't really work as well as advertised, especially if you use a thumb-on-safety grip like I do. This gets my hand very high into the pistol and sometimes not high enough to disengage the GS with a bump unless I have a correct grip.

The Kimber sort-of extends the bump higher and puts more metal in the web area for surer disengagement of the GS, IMO.

Using the original 1911A1 safety, I sometimes get hammer bite. When I took the Cooper course years ago with it, by the second day (after so many presentations) I had raised blisters on the web of my hand to go with the bleeding bite marks on the top of the web. The rest of the course I had to wear bandages. A gunsmith rounded off all the sharp edges and bobbed the hammer, so hammer bite is much less of an issue now.

CX
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the advice y'all. I still have half that box of shells, I may go give it another shot, see if it gets more comfortable. I grew up shooting my grandfather's 1911-A1 from the Pacific campaign, and never had an issue with engaging the grip safety on that 1911, or any other variety of pistol with one.

My biggest issue I'm seeing is that most of the pistols, with the features I'm looking for, all have the enhanced bump. I'd like a step up from the GI version, such as lowered and flared port, checkering, etc. It just seems the "step up" for which I'm searching always comes with the step up bump!

The Kimber Custom TLE II is also starting to look better and better...I still have until next year until I can get another pistol by SWMBO, so I have some time to debate options. Any ideas on some similar guns, ideally in the 1k or under range?
 

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After reading this I had to go take a look at my Kimber's bump. I had always considered it to have an enhanced grip safety bump, but I guess in comparison to some of the newer 1911's its not so bumpy. I do love how the Kimber one feels and functions. I use a high grip and feel that the bump is critical to positively deactivate the grip safety when using this type of grip. If you grip low, then a bump is probably unecessary.
 

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The bump is called a "Palm Swell". Some shooters love them, some hate them, some don't care. I like it on mine. You can easily find 1911's without the palm swell but a lot out there will have them. I find that the 1911's that have an arched mainspring housings with a high rise beavertail will have one without the palm swell. Then it's just the simple switch of the arched MSH to a flat MSH if you choose too.
 

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Buy the Ruger than have a smith change the grip safety to one you like. Wilson, Smith & Alexander and others make grip safeties of all kinds and they run about 60 bucks or so.

I always have the flat mainspring housings swapped on all my 1911s...if they don't have one. I grew up shooting Dad's issued M1911A1 and it had an arched housing. When I shoot a 1911 with a flat housing...I shoot about 5 inches low, unless I really concentrate. Dad always said that the arch was ADDED to the original M1911 because everyone was shooting low with the flat housing....now every 1911 you buy has a FLAT housing! LOL

This is just part of the 1911 world: you may have to change a small part, in order to make it just how you want it and make it "fit" your hand and needs. This...if you ask me....is the beauty of the platform.

- brickboy240
 

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I have fat chubby little hands. I have a standard gi style 1911 with a flat mainspring housing and a kimber with a beavertail. No bump.
I have tried the hump back mainspring housing and don't like it. Small hands, it just don't work.
The Kimber beavertail is really nice, but I haven't had a chance to try one with the bump. Not sure yet if I'll like it or not. Have to try it first.
But I do prefer the flat MSH on both.
 

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Here is a photo of all three grip safeties. Colt standard on top, Kimber in the middle, and Ed Brown on the bottom.



Notice that the Kimber and Ed Brown stick out further than the standard Colt but they have about the same amount of extension if measured at the bottom edge towards the mag well? Also notice that while the Ed Brown, which is pretty representative of these palm swell GSs, then dips in or has a scoop in it as you move up towards the slide? The Kimber doesn't. Therefore I submit that the Kimber with its higher overall surface will have surer disengagement. I was a bit surprised when I first noticed this.

Note also the Colt has the tang of the frame and GS rounded off (melted) and the hammer bobbed slightly to reduce the sharp edges cutting into the web of the hand and hammer bite.

And yes, I like arched MS housing for the reasons mentioned above.

And the thumb safety is the Gunsite low safety, which I have come to really like since I had my thumb operated on for arthritis.

CX
 

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This is just part of the 1911 world: you may have to change a small part, in order to make it just how you want it and make it "fit" your hand and needs. This...if you ask me....is the beauty of the platform.

- brickboy240
Amen to that! The 1911 is very tunable to personal taste. True, many "dodads" do nothing more than take your money and bring nothing of value to the party, but many are very helpful, can improve the system and your ability to get more out of it. While they may help they will never make you a great shot like training and practice will.

(I will get off my soapbox now.):rolleyes:

CX
 

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Excellent pictures there Charlie that really demonstrate the differences between the three grips.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I agree, that is a marvelous picture for my files! I've been thinking the Kimber TLE II may have the SA Loaded beat on the palm swells. I noticed after shooting the loaded that I had an actual imprint of the swell on my hand. I attribute this to the smaller raised area impacting my hand. The TLE seems to have the same total rise, but since it is not a single lump, has felt better in my hand (had to go by the LGS after work and fondle a Kimber, luckily it wasn't a TLE, or it might have come home with me!)
 

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I can highly recommend the Kimber TLEII ... mine has been totally reliable and a very accurate pistol.

I swapped the flat housing for a Smith & Alexander arched and it is VERY comfortable.

Sorry...but if you grew up shooting 1911s with arched housings...the flat housing feels very odd. Ditto for those "bobbed" 1911s...those feel totally odd to me and ruins the nice feel of the 1911 grip.

Since I have never been "bitten" by the hammer on any 1911 or my Hi-Power, I am not really a huge fan of the high sweep beavertail, as I don't see what it buys me. My TLE has this beavertail, but my other 1911s do not.

Everyone is different and the beauty of the 1911 is the flexibility of the design. Make it how you like it....however you like it! LOL

- brickboy240
 
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