Kimber Ulta Eclipse FTE with +p advice please

Discussion in '1911 Gunsmithing' started by Gress, Jan 22, 2012.

  1. Gress

    Gress Don't need no education Supporting Addict

    Nov 21, 2011
    Hey guys, I posted this in the range report branch, but decided to repost here, as I am getting no responses over there.
    I am trying to make my Kimber Ultra Eclipse II 100% with all kind of ammo. here is the story.
    Shot it with .21lb spring assembly installed. Those are visibly longer springs comparing to my 18lb (although used) ones.
    Bad news/good news..
    Bad news is that it gave me consistent FTE with +p ammo. I only had Hornady +p 230gr XTP today, otherwise I would try a few different ones. All the FTEs happened on the last round in the mag.
    Good news is that the gun was free of any problems shooting standard ball ammo (WWB and UMC 230gr). I shot 100 with 21lb springs and then switched to standard 18lb springs for another 150. No issues with any of the spring sets.Got couple of case-into-face though. More with 21lb springs. Hope this is not my hold, but definitely could be one of the reasons for getting the brass fly into forehead...For now I more concerned with FTEs. So how would you guys explain the +p FTE issues?
    My thinking is that it's probably my extractor not holding the case in place, as with the faster slide cycling with +p ammo the mag did not have enough time to move the follower up to support the empty case which perhaps was too low for ejecting. Also as having a round in the mag did make a difference vs an empty mag, I think that two things helped:
    1. the round in the mag was able to support the empty case a bit higher than the empty mag follower would and
    2. due to mag's spring compressed more, next round moved up sooner and on-time for supporting the empty case from bellow for it to be ejected.
    But that's assuming my extractor tension issue. Also, shooting standard ammo I did not get any issues with 18lb springs, although the slide cycle is shorter with 18lb vs. 21lb springs or is it? Any other causes you might think of?
  2. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011

  3. Dwe

    Dwe I'm a terminal 1911 Addict!

    Sep 4, 2011
    It is unlikely that your gun will be 100% reliable with standard ammo and +P. Either decide to shoot +P or standard pressure ammo. Slide timing will be all wrong, With +P you need heavier springs to slow down the slide to allow the mag to feed the next round.
    So figure out what you want to shoot and set your gun up for that load, or find out what works for each and set up your gun for what ever your loading.
    And if your running a shock buff, get rid of it. it messes up the slide timing on short stroke guns
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2012
  4. DAT85

    DAT85 BIG OL' BALD HAID ! Supporting Addict

    Aug 26, 2011

    Great advice!
    It's been my experience that the sub compact 1911's are more ammo sensitive than 4.25 or 5" guns.If your gun chokes on +P,stick with standard velocity stuff that it runs consistently with.
    There is a lot of well designed .45acp bullets loaded in standard velocity offerings from all of the major manufacturers.
    And how much extra velocity are you REALLY getting in a +P load in a sub compact length barrel?


    PS:Everyone please note that for ONCE,I did not bash Kimber. I'm getting soft in my old age! :grin:
  5. knedrgr

    knedrgr Low capacity, low tech...

    Aug 15, 2011
    new FPS and reduce the radius on it to slow down the slide's rearward travel.
  6. Gress

    Gress Don't need no education Supporting Addict

    Nov 21, 2011
    :lol: you score, Mr. DAT :smile:
  7. Gress

    Gress Don't need no education Supporting Addict

    Nov 21, 2011
    Thanks guys, My springs are Wolff. No shock buff here :smile: Adjusted the tension on the extractor. We will see next time. Easy decision would be to give up on +p, but since the gun shot standard ammo with 21lb springs no issue, I will try to make it work with both type of ammo. If it would work with +p, then why wouldn't it work with standard ammo? Slide cycle will be slower sure, but it is slower with 5" slides too, however all my 5" ones shoot both +p and standard no choking.
    FPS could be another option to look at. Thanks knedrgr although I've heard some do not advise on going square on a 3" gun.
    Any other things I could do?
  8. Dwe

    Dwe I'm a terminal 1911 Addict!

    Sep 4, 2011
    The Ultra has a 3 inch slide, so there is much less mass to eat up the excessive energy of the +p. To slow the slide down enough to keep the +P from beating up the frame, will require too stiff a spring to work reliably with standard pressure ammo.
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2012
  9. Gress

    Gress Don't need no education Supporting Addict

    Nov 21, 2011
    I remeasured the slide..yes, it is 3" exactly :lol:
    See the thing is the gun is shooting no failures with 21lb springs and standard pressure ammo. It had issues with +p.
  10. bjg-1911

    bjg-1911 Member

    Oct 13, 2011
    You have two more springs you can "tweak." You can go from a 23lb. hammer spring to 24 or 25 if you want to slow the slide. And, you can go up to a heavier magazine spring to lift the stack quicker. Wolff also lists these springs.
  11. Gress

    Gress Don't need no education Supporting Addict

    Nov 21, 2011
    Yep, exactly my thinking. Although I think first is to go with a square bottomed FPS, but definitely two options to consider.
  12. Gress

    Gress Don't need no education Supporting Addict

    Nov 21, 2011
    After I adjusted extractor tension to hold 1 lb of weight (downforce on the case) the gun shot much better. I only had one FTE on the last round with +P 230gr XTPs. The gun is quite a fun to shoot in +P :smile:

    No faillures of any kind with 230gr standard pressure ammo.
    After I got back I adjusted the tension more to 2 lb of downforce on the case. Will see next time if this healed the problem. If not, next step would be a square bottomed FPS
  13. Gress

    Gress Don't need no education Supporting Addict

    Nov 21, 2011
    With extractor adjusted to hold 2 lbs downforce on the case the gun is 100% reliable now. Happy shooting 230gr ball Remington, WWB and my reloads. Only had few +P Hornady left, so cant say yet that it is g2g with +P, but no failures so far. Could not find a +P in local stores, so will have to wait a week for the delivery and then we will see as I will have 200 rounds to go through.

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