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1911 Full Length rod or not?

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  • 1911 Full Length rod or not?

    Whats the reason behind the full length guide rod?
    I two 1911's one has a full rod and the other is original. I cant tell where the full length rod is any better. The oly thing I have found is that it's harder to disassemble.

    Anyone? Shep?

    Thanks Casey.
    No man knows how bad he is, until he has tried very hard to be good.
    C.S. Lewis

  • #2
    The thought behind the full length guide rod is that it makes the recoil spring "stack" evenly so that you get the full power of it. Theoretically, it will increase spring life by reducing stress.

    The guide rod adds a little weight to the front end of the pistol, which can help keep the muzzle down during recoil. I don't know that you could really tell the difference between the recoil of one with and one without a guide rod.

    I'm not really one way or the other about full length guide rods. Some of my 1911's have them and some don't. I don't feel that they are necessary, but they don't hurt anything if you want one or have one.

    Some folks don't like the guide rod cuz they press check using the front of the slide: they hook their support hand thumb in the front of the trigger guide, put the support hand index finger at the front of the slide where they guide rod would protrude, and squeeze together to do a press check. This will only work if you don't have a guide rod. I do not recommend or teach this method, as it puts the thumb too close to the trigger at the same time the index finger is too close to the muzzle. One slip and you won't pick you nose with that finger anymore.

    It's knowing that when I get up in the morning and my feet hit the floor, the Devil says, "Shit! He's awake!"

    Shortly before World War I, the German Kaiser was the guest of the Swiss government to observe military maneuvers. The Kaiser asked a Swiss militiaman: "You are 500,000 and you shoot well, but if we attack with 1,000,000 men what will you do?" The soldier replied: "We will shoot twice and go home."

    "There are so many Russians, and our country so small, where will we find room to bury them all?" - anonymous Finnish soldier


    • #3
      No you sure wont. Thanks Shep. I was just wondering if there was any real purpose in it. Like you said I can't tell the difference in the way the pistol shoots.
      No man knows how bad he is, until he has tried very hard to be good.
      C.S. Lewis


      • #4
        I'm like Shep, some of mine have it, some don't.
        Pistolsmiths like to sell them because it's more $$$, but I don't think any definitive advantage or benefit has been proven.
        Bottom line, it's YOUR job to shoot the darn thing accurately, a guide rod won't make any difference in that!
        "Kill evil. It's how quality of life is achieved. Carry on."---Ted Nugent


        • #5
          Personally, I've always considered FLGRs to be a solution in search of a problem. JMB's original design works fine by me.


          • #6
            My 1911-A1 had a full length guide rod when I bought it, I replaced it with a standard guide rod. The only reason I did that was for the simple fact that I went with something that I had used in the military. I'm not for the full length or against them, I like them both. It just depends on your liking!


            • #7
              I have a bunch of one piece my tool box. If you measure the recoil spring tunnel and a normal recoil spring plug, you will find there's no room for any real movement of the recoil spring other than compression/expansion. So the myth that one piece rods keep springs from side movement or anyother such is BS. Moses knew what he was doing, if it needed the rod it would have had the rod. Now if some over sensitive dilettante can't handle a little muzzle flip the tungsten or other heavy rod may help the poor little metromale by adding a slight amount of weight to the front of the dust shield. The "Rod" is just like fishing lures, made to catch more fishermen than fish The more some smiths can add in replacement parts the more he makes, plus he can sell a bushing wrench then too lol.

              I've carried the 1911 for almost half of it's near century of service to the USA and never felt a need for the "Rod" lol.

              Take care...Jim

              "But I've a rendezvous with Death, at midnight in some flaming town, when spring trips north again this year, and I to my pledge word am true, I shall not fail that rendezvous"

              Alan Seeger, KIA Belloy-en-Santerre 4 July 1916, Legion Entrangere, American poet.


              • #8
                +1 on JY (of course)

                when I built mine along side a well versed 1911 guy I was working with at the time, I asked him the same thing about FLGR's. his response was basically; in order to build a "grass roots fight gun" which is what I wanted, there is no room or need for the rod, or the tool you have to have along to fix it if anything were to go wrong.

                mine shoots wonderfully, its not pretty, its not "tricked out", but what is inside is all the right stuff, and no rod...


                -- An AR-15, a good, loyal guard dog, and a nymphomaniac that runs a liquor store. The simple life.

                -- All great things are simple, and many can be expressed in single words: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope.

                An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.

                --Sir Winston Churchill


                • #9
                  ...If you measure the recoil spring tunnel and a normal recoil spring plug, you will find there's no room for any real movement of the recoil spring other than compression/expansion. So the myth that one piece rods keep springs from side movement or anyother such is BS. Moses knew what he was doing...[/b]
                  Correct. While I'll agree with Shep that people like the traditional for press checks, the REAL advantage of NOT having a 1-piece guide rod is for malfunctions. If you have stovepipe, flipped/jammed case and can not tap/rack the slide can quickly ram the lower half of the slide up against a solid surface (edge of a wall, the heel of your boot, whatever) to force that slide back. Of course, this type of activity would only be advised during a firefight...but then again, that's when you WANT the ability to do so, as the stakes are higher.
                  Americans sleep well in their beds, because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would harm them.


                  • #10
                    I have full length in all my 1911's. The two that did would always end up with bent springs. Which ended up causing problems. I went to a different spring from Wolf. Wilson Brown all the same pretty much and all ended up bench to some degree or the other so for me it will be full length.
                    As they say in the Movies. " Bring the Rain"


                    • #11
                      I dislike them because they can make disassembly more difficult. If you have a tight bushing and a full length guide rod, you have to use a tool to 'field strip' your gun.


                      • #12
                        Hey Guys,
                        My Para has one and it doesn't seem to make take down any real issue. Now, my original Grizzly didn't have one, and was much as JMB designed, albeit much larger. My newest one has one, and it HAS made take down an issue to this point. The end of the guide rod has what looks like a screwdriver slot in it, which is quite buggered up from the previous owner. It also sticks out just enough to get int he way of the bushing rotating. I'm guessing the reason for it is a double spring set up mu original didn't have that seems to be riding it at the moment...If I don't figure out a nice way to remove it, the Dremel is coming out and I'll return it to the more traditional set up.
                        "It's better to live one day as a lion, than one hundred years as a sheep", Old Roman Proverb.
                        "For those who have fought for it, freedom has a flavor the protected will never know", Author Unknown.
                        "Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war!", Shakespeare, Julius Ceaser, Act III, Scene I.