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Discussion Starter #1
I bought a 10mm Colt Delta Elite 1911A-1 semi-auto last weekend. The dealer/gunsmith I purchased it from installed a new thumb safety in 10 minutes time after I noticed that the aftermarket one already installed did not function correctly, i.e., when engaged, it did not prevent a fully-cocked hammer from falling when the trigger was engaged.

When I asked why the replacement didn't require some amount of fitting (a few thousandiths off the safety where it merges with the sear), he indicated that he never has had to do this step, and that they basically just "pop-in".

The new, replacement safety functioned correctly, although moving it through the engage/disengage positions took more effort than normal. The dealer commented that it would move more freely after some range shooting.

So, my questions are: Should the thumb safety be fitted to at least some degree - or do they just pop in? And do I need to be concerned that the replacement safety will fail at some near future time? Or could an even worse safety condition arise because of the absence of fitting?

Would appreciate your thoughts.

Best regards, Jack M.
 

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New safeties almost ALWAYS require some fitting.

A replacement safety may:

A. Not fit in place at all until a small amount of metal is removed from the front face of the area that actually engages the sear and prevents it from moving.

B. Drop in with so loose a fit that it fails to engage the sear at all.
Probably what was wrong with yours.
I'm sure it just "Popped right in" too.

C. Not snap on and off with a sharp "click".
(Mushy operation).

D. Lock in place and be very difficult to operate, or be so tight it won't operate at all.

All this should be checked and tested by somebody QUALIFIED.

To test your safety for safe operation:

Does it snap on and off with a sharp, clean "Click"? (No mush).

Does it go on or off TOO easy?

Does it STAY on or off when fired or carried?

Does it stay put in the frame under recoil?
(Recoil make it move out of the frame?)

To test:

Cock the hammer.
Put the safety ON.
Pull the trigger (not TOO hard, just a firm pull).
Do you feel the sear move ANY amount?
Hold the gun close to your ear (safely) and pull the hammer back.
Do you hear a tiny "click" or detect any sear movement.

When the safety is ON, the sear MUST not move ANY amount. The safety MUST block the sear firmly and positively.

On of the great hazards of guns, are gun store "experts" that tell you CRITICAL parts like safeties are "drop in".
THEY AREN'T.
They need to be checked, and usually need fitting.

Don't trust your's until you VERIFY it's operating correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
dfariswheel,

Thanks. You've confirmed what I believed to be true, and I'll have it fixed - and feel a lot better (and safer!)about the matter.

It's good to "forumize" with someone who has the sensitivity and character to warmly welcome a new member, while also having the wisdom and knowlege to properly advise. Thanks again, particularly for the detailed instructions .

I'll try to post a range report on the Delta after the repair and when some rounds have been put through it. Some folks say that this model is a great flat-shooter like a 38 super, but also quite a handful.

Best regards, Jack M.
 

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If you can shoot a six inch barreled 357 magnum with full power 158 grain loads you should have no trouble with the mighty 10mm, it isn't the wrist breaker that some claim. In my hands, the recoil impulse is almost identical. As for thumb safeties, I have installed a few and none just popped in.
 
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