Nighthawk and The Barrel Fit Challenge

Discussion in 'General 1911 talk' started by Au Jus in Bello, Sep 30, 2020.

  1. Au Jus in Bello

    Au Jus in Bello Well-Known Member

    492
    May 19, 2017
    There's an interesting thread in the Nighthawk subforum discussing NH's gunsmiths:

    https://www.1911addicts.com/threads/nighthawk-gunsmiths.112069/page-4#post-1859429

    Posted a question but it's slow traffic there. So...

    Most of us are familiar with Joe's barrel fit challenge and epic thread about it:

    https://www.1911addicts.com/threads/the-barrel-fit-challenge.52883/

    Rightly, I'd say, Joe elects not to comment on specific 1911 makers in regards to their barrel fitting or performance in the challenge, but many have posted their results and some have identified the company or the 'smith.

    In some circles NH gets the nod right now as the top semi-custom company for "building them right", but I haven't seen much discussion regarding NH's barrel fit philosophy, approach or results.

    Anyone with insight or experience on how Nighthawk fares with barrel fitting?
     
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  2. Nineteen-ElevenObsession

    Nineteen-ElevenObsession Well-Known Member

    208
    Jun 21, 2020
    If you're on Facebook, there is a post on 8/21/2020 from NHC with a picture of a barrel. Based on the picture, it has 100% contact with no bump, at least that I can see. No idea which smith it was, but at least some of them are doing it right.
     
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  3. Brennerman

    Brennerman Well-Known Member

    123
    May 12, 2020
    D0F2F20C-80B6-4A2D-AAB6-E8AD5A9F27EF.jpeg
    Here is a pic from NHC from their Facebook.

    Once I receive mine, I will be doing the test.
     
  4. JM44

    JM44 Well-Known Member Supporting Addict

    Feb 2, 2018
    I am in the camp that Nighthawk is the Top semi custom shop at the moment. My 2012 - 2014 Wilson’s are a close second. I personally do not care about their barrel fit as whatever they are doing there seems to work. At least that is MY experience from owning/shooting multiple guns from each semi custom shop
     
  5. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011

    As I understand it, this one isn’t very desirable. You want the contact point to be at the radius, not the flats.

    I don’t see any dykem removed at the radii
     
  6. puddi_nugget

    puddi_nugget Well-Known Member

    448
    Feb 5, 2014
    I don’t know diddly squat, but the pic posted by NHC is how my SACS Pro looks when I performed the test.

    100% on lower, not on radius. Not sure what this means though. I believe Joe explained it on Modcast but I can’t recall the details.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2020
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  7. Brennerman

    Brennerman Well-Known Member

    123
    May 12, 2020
    If you don’t mind sharing some insight on that, I would appreciate it. For I am no gunsmith.
     
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  8. Au Jus in Bello

    Au Jus in Bello Well-Known Member

    492
    May 19, 2017
    Maybe Joe will share his observations.

    Hey Joe, where you goin' with barrel leg cutter in your hands? ;)

    @Joe C
     
  9. Nineteen-ElevenObsession

    Nineteen-ElevenObsession Well-Known Member

    208
    Jun 21, 2020
    I know many of the smiths at NHC have received extensive training from Bob Marvel, so I'd imagine he passed on some wisdom in regards to barrel fit. Do they do it as good as some of the other guys? Probably not quite. But will the guns still shoot amazingly accurate and better than 98% of the people that own them? Probably so.
     
  10. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011
    See the picture below. The pic has been copied from the barrel for challenge thread, it’s a picture Joe Chambers posted.

    Note the dykem has been burnished at the radii. This burnishing is not present in the Nighthawk pic. Only the flats are showing contact with the slide stop pin.

    Please note, Joe Chambers is a prodigy of Bob Marvel’s tutelage

    5A6A7DA9-6751-46ED-8176-FA1672812B00.jpeg
     
  11. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011
    Do you realize who trained Joe Chambers?
     
  12. Brennerman

    Brennerman Well-Known Member

    123
    May 12, 2020
    I had seen Joe’s picture for his barrel fit challenge.

    I meant more insight as to why you say what contact on the flat isn’t desirable as opposed contact on the radius?
     
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  13. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011
    I think Joe explained that rather well in the thread.

    But ok, it’s my understanding that the more contact between the lower legs and the pivot pin, the better.

    The Nighthawk picture shows that the pin is contacting the legs with a very small contact patch. If fitted properly, the pin would contact the radii, this contacting a much greater surface area. More surface area, more stabile. More stabile and the parts’ wear is greatly diminished. This allows for a more accurate barre for over a longer period of time.
     
  14. Nineteen-ElevenObsession

    Nineteen-ElevenObsession Well-Known Member

    208
    Jun 21, 2020
    Yes, I'm well aware that Joe started under the tutelage of Bob. But Joe has also gone way beyond many of the things that Bob taught him, learning many things through experimentation and innovation of his own accord.

    All I'm saying, many of the smiths at NHC learned from one of the best. Does it mean they're on level with Joe? Certainly not all of them. But my point is they started with some expert level knowledge based on who trained them. What they're able to do with that afterwards is a different story.

    But the barrel fit in the picture is still pretty darn good. NHC isn't building bullseye level accuracy guns. They're just building very accurate guns.
     
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  15. Brennerman

    Brennerman Well-Known Member

    123
    May 12, 2020
    It looks a lot better than most of the pics in The barrel fit challenge.
     
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  16. EvolutionArmory

    EvolutionArmory Well-Known Member

    Sep 9, 2011
    Basically you want your lower lugs to contact the entire slide stop. Top and back. Wrap around.

    Train tracks are good, rabbit ears are better.
    3975996B-0582-4CBA-8EA8-2B0AD4746328.jpeg

    ^^ rabbit ears.
     
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  17. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011
    Thanks for the prolific explanation Dave. Appreciate the info.....as always
     
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  18. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011
    But......how long will they be accurate. As I’ve read it explained, when the pin wears, the accuracy declines.

    why not do it right the 1st time?
     
    simonp likes this.
  19. EvolutionArmory

    EvolutionArmory Well-Known Member

    Sep 9, 2011
    The “rabbit ears” markings happen because your lower lug radius also matches the radius of your slide stop and your barrel link is fit right. I use a .198 lug cutter instead of a traditional .195 that has become standard kit for barrel fitting. Ideally you would want a .200 diameter cutter but with that you run the risk of overcutting the lugs on a slide and frame that has vertical play.

    A barrel fit that doesn’t have wrap around contact either is being stopped by the link or the radius is wrong.
     
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  20. Bender

    Bender Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Aug 15, 2011
    I completely understand.....much thanks
     
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