Stiff Thumb Safety

Discussion in '1911 Gunsmithing' started by CanIhaveGasCash, Dec 6, 2011.

  1. CanIhaveGasCash

    CanIhaveGasCash Member

    Sep 11, 2011
    I just picked up a Springfield Mil Spec and the thumb safety is extremely tight. Is there anything I can do to loosen it up a bit? I've put 200 rounds through it so far and haven't had much luck loosening it up.
  2. Drgracin72

    Drgracin72 Supporting Addict Supporting Addict

    Oct 9, 2011
    you can polish the part that runs along the plunger

  3. 50GI-Jess

    50GI-Jess Member

    Aug 24, 2011
    You can fix that several ways.
    Shorten the plunger, and make the the end a little less round shaped, so it won't sit very deep into the safety.
    File polish the detent area of the thumb safety, so there's no burrs or sharp corners for the detent to overcome.
    Or simply shorten the detent spring. However doing so will change the dtent effect on the slide stop too, and could lead to premature slide lock.

    Best way to start, is simply to shorten the detent and polish the end. Easier to touch up with a blueing pen too.
  4. Mechanized

    Mechanized He's a large "member" Supporting Addict

    Sep 24, 2011
    Easiest way is call springfield. Yes you loose your fun for awhile. They will fix it for free and ship for free. Some people have had them look at the their guns and fix other things. One guy even noted the fixed some slop in the slide and did a trigger job reducing the pull from 9lbs to 4.5 lbs. I can't guarantee they will do this for you however I would give it a shot. The turn around is usually pretty quick.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2011
  5. knedrgr

    knedrgr Low capacity, low tech...

    Aug 15, 2011
    Is it harder to engage or disengage? I prefer mine to be a little stiffer to disengage, but easy to engage. This helps to avoid any unwanted disengagement of the TS while holster.

    This is all about how the corner is shaped on the TS.

    Also, like others have mentioned, polishing the plunger spring's end w/ some 600-800 grits for a nice finish will help with reducing friction.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2011
  6. EvolutionArmory

    EvolutionArmory Well-Known Member

    Sep 9, 2011
    Before going after the plunger I would look into any clearance issues between the frame and the engagement lug.

    If it moves smooth with a stripped frame I would then put the gun back together and see if it engages fully with the plunger and spring out. It should go all the way up smooth or stop just short of full upward travel and need just a very slight nudge up. If it doesn't go all or most of the way up you can file some of the sear engagement surface till it does.

    If those things check out fine, I would then look into the safety rubbing the plunger tube or polishing the plunger.

    Any unusual wear marks? Wear marks tell the story.
    B81 likes this.
  7. Kokopelli

    Kokopelli Schütze

    Aug 17, 2011
    Springfield will take care of business and most often anything else they see while looking. I have not availed myself of this service, but know lots that have.. I'm fortunate in that I have a GS close by and that's the easier way for me.. Ron
  8. CanIhaveGasCash

    CanIhaveGasCash Member

    Sep 11, 2011
    Unfortunately Springfield already has two of my guns (one in for warranty and one in the custom shop), and I am taking a handgun course m-f next week. So I am running a little low on full size 1911's to take with me. I'll be taking the mil spec and my GC NN.

    The TS is harder to engage than to disengage. I might try polishing up the plunger.
  9. knedrgr

    knedrgr Low capacity, low tech...

    Aug 15, 2011
    Last night, I just fitted a STI ambi on my SA Compact. To get the easy engagement, I took a round needle file and created a small channel from the detent hole to the corner of the TS. And then gently breaking that corner with an ever so slightly.

    And to get the positive disengagement of the TS, I increased the concave at the bottom of the TS. This should yield a positive "snap" to the TS. Note the file area in the picture.


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