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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently got a screamin' deal on a Sig Nightmare Carry. It's a 4.25" commander with a "fastback" rounded butt. I've carried it around the house in a Comp-Tac IWB hybrid holster, and in terms of comfort it's very close to being on a par with my S&W Shield. Before I carry a firearm for "social purposes" I like to make sure that it will perform as advertised (i.e. I want it to be able to fire at least 100 rounds of the defensive ammo I'm going to feed it without any stoppages).




Now this pistol runs like a top with hardball - but when I feed it my defensive rounds (230 grain +P Federal HST) it chokes about once every 20 rounds. Most of the time, the issue is that it just doesn't go all the way back into battery - a quick press of the thumb on the rear of the slide will put it into battery, but in my mind that still counts as a stoppage. About once every 50 rounds, it will really hang up - the bolt face will start to pick up a round from the magazine, but the nose of the round won't ride up the feed ramp and the shoulder of the barrel like it should - the round ends up sitting horizontally, propping the slide open - and it's still being retained by the feed lips of the magazine.

Yes - because it's a semi-auto my first thought was mag problems....but this is happening with a total of six magazines that I own. One Sig factory mag, two Brownell's 8 round mags, and three Chip McCormick 10 rounders. All of these mags are reliable and trouble-free with hardball. They feed smoothly, lock the slide back when empty, and drop free every time.

I took a very close look at the feed ramp and barrel shoulder when the pistol was still dirty, and I saw that there is a broad inverted "v" worn off of the carbon deposit left from firing. Based on that, I am thinking that the open noses of the HST rounds are dragging enough on the feed ramp and/or shoulder to slow the slide's trip back into battery - but both of those areas are nice and smooth.

I'm thinking that there are two potential fixes.

#1. Different ammo - I've ordered some Hornady Critical Duty (not the Critical Defense). It's an expanding round that does not have a hollow point - it's got a polymer tip like the "cool" ammo for your 30-30. I'm going to try running 100 rounds through the pistol and see how it does.

#2. If that doesn't work, I'll look at doing a polish on the feed ramp and barrel shoulder - I haven't yet decided if I will do it myself or get someone that knows what they're doing to take care of it. I'm perfectly happy beating on my M14's with a hammer...but this is new territory for me and I've heard many a horror story of 1911's being butchered by amateur gunsmiths with dremel-itis.

Thoughts? Suggestions? Should I just "cowboy up" and run hardball in it all the time because that's what JMB designed it for? I'm very much hoping that I can get this sorted out without a lot of trial and error. At a minimum of 100 rounds of defensive ammo at a sitting, this reliability testing gets expensive in a hurry.
 

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The 45 caliber Speer Gold Dot bullet, any bullet weight, works just fine in my SIG C3 which is essentially the same gun. I did load development testing with 230g Speer Gold Dot bullets and they worked flawlessly over a wide range of powder charges from +P to barely strong enough to cycle.

I keep the feed ramp pristinely clean. I use Bore Tech Eliminator to dissolve the copper jacket material off the feed ramp.

Fitch
 

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Just polish the feed ramp to a mirror finish, clean with frog lube or like cleaner will keep it slick. Nothing wrong with hardball for cc
 

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the issue is that it just doesn't go all the way back into battery - a quick press of the thumb on the rear of the slide will put it into battery
99% percent of the time that type malfunction is caused by an overly tight extractor not allowing the case rim to slide up under the extractor head. But, yours being an external variation? I would still test the extractor's tension before doing anything else (also check the breech face for roughness).
 

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If I couldn't find/carry this:

or the .45 auto TAC-XP, I'd go for the FTX.

During my days with CW of a customized 97B and later DW CBOB I carried and shot mostly
DT ammo in Gold Dot variety.

That was before the FTX and HST, Ranger, ect.

Finding a JHP or such load that runs in your gun is better than the most hyped bullets that won't
feed.

I wouldn't mind getting a Dan Wesson Guardian in 9mm since I'm not really into .45 ACP
and they don't offer any .38 Supers, nor does Ruger.
 

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If you bought it new, contact Sig about the issue before doing any work on it yourself. For that matter contact them any way, they may fix it for no cost.
 

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If you bought it new, contact Sig about the issue before doing any work on it yourself. For that matter contact them any way, they may fix it for no cost.
Excellent advice. The great thing about a 1911 is that you can do so much to it. The bad thing about a 1911 is that you can do so much to it.
 

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That's a perfect, and beautiful carry piece!

I avoid 10 round 1911 magazines. Sorry, but I defer to the 1911 companies. Run a few hundred rounds of ball ammo before loading a FMJ. If issues persist, I'd go with archer51 and OD's posts.
 

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Had the same issue with my Wilson. The CS rep directed me to YouTube for extractor tension test and extractor adjustment. To my surprise, not only was I able to make the adjustment, but it worked as well.

But, please call SIG first.
 

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I bought one of the first Sig 1911 c3's. Liked the way it fit my hand liked the way it handeld liked the lightweight liked the .45 acp chambering.

Did not like the fact it would sometimes not run useing hardball! No matter what brand (or how many) magazines I bought for it. Cracked 2 barrel bushings in the 3000 or so rounds that I owned it. Sent it back to Sig twice, still would not run.

So I traded it off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
99% percent of the time that type malfunction is caused by an overly tight extractor not allowing the case rim to slide up under the extractor head. But, yours being an external variation? I would still test the extractor's tension before doing anything else (also check the breech face for roughness).
Here's the thing....it runs just great (250 rounds without a stoppage) when I give it plain old FMJ. The problem only cropped up when I tried to run 100 rounds of the HST (really just bonded JHP rounds) through it. Given that it's a fairly new gun (600 rounds total through it) I'd expect that the hotter +p load would work better than the moderately powered FMJ - but that's not the case here.

As far as the Critical Duty ammo goes? In my mind it's really just JHP - the difference is that the nose is a wee bit pointier, and it has a ballistic tip. The only reason I'm looking at it is to see if it'll be easier for it to feed.

I looked at the size of the hole, shape of the lip, and general construction on the front of some .45ACP Speer Gold Dot, it seemed to be almost identical to the HST bullets. I'm skeptical as to the Gold Dot feeding any more reliably in this particular 1911. It runs flawlessly in my HK45c....but then again I'm pretty sure that I could load 200 grain gravel over a moderate charge of Varget and my HK would still digest as long as I kept the OAL within spec.
 

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Here's the thing....it runs just great (250 rounds without a stoppage) when I give it plain old FMJ. The problem only cropped up when I tried to run 100 rounds of the HST (really just bonded JHP rounds) through it. Given that it's a fairly new gun (600 rounds total through it) I'd expect that the hotter +p load would work better than the moderately powered FMJ - but that's not the case here.

As far as the Critical Duty ammo goes? In my mind it's really just JHP - the difference is that the nose is a wee bit pointier, and it has a ballistic tip. The only reason I'm looking at it is to see if it'll be easier for it to feed.

I looked at the size of the hole, shape of the lip, and general construction on the front of some .45ACP Speer Gold Dot, it seemed to be almost identical to the HST bullets. I'm skeptical as to the Gold Dot feeding any more reliably in this particular 1911. It runs flawlessly in my HK45c....but then again I'm pretty sure that I could load 200 grain gravel over a moderate charge of Varget and my HK would still digest as long as I kept the OAL within spec.
Hmmm, interesting.

It might sound odd, but believe me it can make a difference, can you measure the rim thickness on the cartridges that work vs those that don't?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I don't have a caliper or micrometer here - the tools I use for reloading are up in Canada at the moment. I need to hit a hardware store and get a set of files anyways - maybe I can find an inexpensive set when I pick up the files. I'll see if I can get the stars to align to compare cartridge rim thickness when I get back to Houston later this week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Just polish the feed ramp to a mirror finish, clean with frog lube or like cleaner will keep it slick. Nothing wrong with hardball for cc

Oh...and by the way - I do use Frog Lube. Both the solvent and the CLP. I've been running it for a few months now, and I like it a lot. Minty!
 

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I'd check with Sig before I monkeyed with it much. I'd think it was maybe a break-in issue but not if it runs ball fine. The Sig 1911s I've seen or used have all run well. Nice looking gun! It should be sweet once you get it running right. But just out of curiosity, why the Carry Nightmare if you already have an HK45C? Seems that the HK would be perfect for CCW and nearly a pound lighter. I don't have an HK45C but my understanding is that it's nearly the same size as a P30, which I carry IWB under just a T-shirt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
#1. Because guns with steel frames are good for your soul. Or so I was told....by a little voice in my head. :danceban:

#2. Because I wanted a 1911.

#3. Because despite what the tape measure may say (I don't know because I haven't directly compared the width) I find that it carries very, very comfortably.

I think that I will see how the Critical Duty ammo does. If it feeds properly, I'll call it good and start carrying it. If it doesn't, I'll call Sig.
 

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did you buy it used? If so, replace the recoil spring and try again. If not, try a different JHP. I would suggest Winchester Rangers. The tips are a bit more rounded than the HSTs and may feed better.
 

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Nice looking gun. Hope you find a reliable carry round
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
did you buy it used? If so, replace the recoil spring and try again. If not, try a different JHP. I would suggest Winchester Rangers. The tips are a bit more rounded than the HSTs and may feed better.
Got it new. I have already ordered some HST's, so I'll give those a try first. Thank you for the suggestion.
 

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Nice looking gun, own a few sigs had one new out of the box p238 doing similar things sent it back to sig they repaired it and returned it in just over a week, changed a spring don't remember which one, never had an issue since...
 
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