1911 trigger installation

This is a discussion on 1911 trigger installation within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I decided to try to install a short trigger in my PT1911. I ordered a short, black trigger from Brownell's, from Harrison Custom. I really ...

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Thread: 1911 trigger installation

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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    1911 trigger installation

    I decided to try to install a short trigger in my PT1911. I ordered a short, black trigger from Brownell's, from Harrison Custom.


    I really didn't know what to expect; just dived right in

    I disassembled the gun beyond a regular field strip, something I haven't ever done...




    So far, so good. The ambidextrous safety, which has given the PT1911 a bad rap for falling out or breaking, was actually quite the pain to remove. I really had to work it back and forth for about 10 minutes, before it came free.




    A shot of the triggers, the stock one from Taurus is on the top:




    You'll notice that the bar that is attached behind the trigger (don't know the technical name, sorry) is larger than the Taurus one. I didn't know that would be a big deal.

    I was unable to get a decent pic of the internals of the frame. But, the channel in which the trigger bar/strut/truss thing is supposed to slide, was not cut straight. I don't know if this is a Taurus thing, or just a general thing. There was a hump, or peak, right in the center of the channel, as it dived into the trigger opening in the frame. I'll try a pic, tomorrow.

    Anyhow, the smaller bar on the stock trigger allowed the assembly to move up and down a bit, which let it get past the bend in the channel.

    I also noted, that the replacement trigger is ever so slightly wider and taller, than the Taurus one.

    I'm too tired, and it's too late to break out the Dremel, so I bagged it for tonight:




    I apologize for crummy phone pics, and a disgustingly dirty 1911

    This pistol hasn't ever malfunctioned on me, I just wanted to try to improve the length of pull for my small hands.

    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    I only know this from watching Youtube vids, but apparently there are "drop in" aftermarket parts and "fitted parts".

    Sounds like you might have gotten a fitted part that may need some stone work.
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    Welcome to the world of amateur gunsmithing. The subtitle might read "why gunsmiths don't build custom guns on Taurus platforms."

    I would look closely at other trigger options and make calls before I used a Dremel on your frame*. I've never built a 1911 from the ground up, but your aftermarket trigger bow looks normal and the Taurus one doesn't. Note the bump in the Taurus trigger bow is about the same top-to-bottom dimension of your replacement trigger bow... the latter will have less top-bottom play if it rides in a properly dimensioned frame.

    *The Dremel tool ensures job security for a host of American gunsmiths.
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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    Yeah, I expected that I would have to do a bit of fitting.

    I'm not going to take the Dremel to the frame, I'm going to grind the trigger bow a bit so it will slide into the channel.
    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    Rather than use the Dremel on the trigger bow use a very fine grit stone such as a hard Arkansas stone to thin out the trigger bow. The stone will help keep both sides parallel and will not remove too much material too fast. It will take a bit longer but will insure a better fit.
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    Why don't you just turn your factory trigger into a short trigger? You can Dremel the factory trigger down as short as you want it and then fill what remains of the holes with Epoxy putty.
    There is a dark grey (almost black) Epoxy putty for plumbers. It is sold in a small plastic cylinder & it looks like a log - the black resin is a core inside an outer ring of hardener. You slice a piece off like salami and then knead it until it's all one solid color.
    It's a hardware store item and it's tough as nails. Be quick as it sets up very fast.
    You can knead it - then quickly wash the residue off your hands - fill in the trigger holes - VERY QUICKLY wet a finger with some dish soap mixed with water - that will allow you to mold & smooth it - you can also sand it after it completely sets.

    Then you don't need to gunsmith the trigger run in your pistol frame since it does not sound like you are a gunsmith.
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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tips.

    I think that I have some of that plumber's epoxy laying around somewhere. I may give that a try

    No, I'm not a gunsmith, so I'm not going to modify the frame. I'll mess with the trigger that I bought, that way if I mess up I can throw the old one back in. I'm going to file the bow until it glides in the frame channel smoothly.
    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    You may run into a problem with the grip safety working also. This is not a job for somone without 1911 experience. The bow must be bent properly to set overtravel. A 1911 trigger job is not easily done.
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    1. The Harrison trigger is designed to be "fit" gun by gun. You work the trigger with a fine cut file to fit the trigger opening.

    2. It is not uncommon to "dress" the bow for a slip fit but "I" have never seen one that needed reduced that much. Are there forward travel tabs just behind the front shoulder of the bow? If not the narrow channel of the frame may be Taurus's way of shortening the reset but not normal. I am guessing on this, just a thought

    3. As xpertz1 stated you may need to re-fit the GS. They some times come up a few thousands off requiring you to peen for length or bend an outbound bump/tab in the back of the bow if too short or remove some from the nose of the GS if too long.

    4. The GS/trigger bow also affect dis-connector timing as to sear release...VERY important to check and have operating correctly...did I mention dis-connector timing is critical to safety...by the way make darn sure the dis-connector is properly timed...

    It's fun to work on your own 1911 but please remember; the GS, TS, sear, dis-connector, hammer and trigger work as a "unit" for all practical intent and purpose in a 1911...THEY MUST ALL be correctly fitted as a unit to maintain safety and function. Take your time, get a manual and ask questions. I recommend the 1911 forum for a great store of information.
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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    The Taurus trigger bow has tabs on the front. The Harrison does not.





    Here's a shot of the trigger channel inside the frame:



    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    Quote Originally Posted by gasmitty View Post
    Welcome to the world of amateur gunsmithing. The subtitle might read "why gunsmiths don't build custom guns on Taurus platforms."
    I would look closely at other trigger options and make calls before I used a Dremel on your frame*. I've never built a 1911 from the ground up, but your aftermarket trigger bow looks normal and the Taurus one doesn't. Note the bump in the Taurus trigger bow is about the same top-to-bottom dimension of your replacement trigger bow... the latter will have less top-bottom play if it rides in a properly dimensioned frame.

    *The Dremel tool ensures job security for a host of American gunsmiths.
    I've been reading this a lot on 1911 forums, the PT1911s seem to be non-standard on many of their parts.

    I've installed 5 of John's "Extreme Service" triggers in my Colt's, S.A. Professional and my Thunder Ranch, none needed work on the stirrup. As mentioned, they are a fitted part, but the only fitting needed usually, is on the top and bottom of the pad and the over-travel adjustment screw, on frames within spec.
    jem102 likes this.
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    Member Array gigamortis's Avatar
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    That Taurus trigger has pre-travel adjustment tabs at the front of the stirrup. These can be bent outward/forward to obtain the desired pre-travel. The thinner/narrower stirrup on the Taurus is typical of a lot of the lightweight target triggers on the market. I do know for sure that STI makes triggers with the pre-travel tabs and the narrower stirrups. There may be a few other manufacturers that make a similar product, too.

    Most trigger shoes on a lot of aftermarket triggers are oversized. This way, you can file the top and bottom as well as the sides to get a good fit in your particular frame.

    Good luck on your trigger fitting project.

  14. #13
    Senior Member Array HK Dan's Avatar
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    The Taurus 1911 has several proprietary parts/ They did that on purpose, as with the PT92 and other guns they have licensed. I wish they hadn't, but they did.
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