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Wilson "Bulletproof" extractor....

Discussion in '1911 Forums' started by ERASER, Jun 18, 2012.


    ERASER Nyuk,Nyuk,Nyuk!

    Jan 23, 2000
    I have a used Norinco 1911A1 which barely tossed the brass out of the gun (often wedging the last fired round's case in the magazine lips upon trying to extract and eject it).

    I checked various videos and tutorials on how to "tune" an extractor.

    Upon slipping a loaded round under the extractor and against the breech face, I noticed two things:
    1). The extractor was not pressing inward against the round.
    2.) The round had a lot of play between where the extractor hook's groove was and the breech face.
    Under no circumstances would a loaded round come close to staying in place.

    Well, being a schmuck, I tried to adjust the extractor. A little knowledge is, indeed, a dangerous thing.

    After some trial-and-error (mostly error) I snapped the extractor in half!!

    Fast forward.........bought a Wilson's Combat "Bulletproof" extractor and FPS (just to be sure).

    The new extractor literally falls into the tension or resistance at all. And a loaded round fits the same as it did with the old, and now broken, extractor.

    I tried to gently tweak the new extractor but I don't seem to have bent it at all..........the extractor still falls into the channel without resistance.

    I guess this is my long-winded way of asking:

    1.) Are these "bulletproof" extractors just THAT hard to bend?
    2.) How do you adjust for the hook being too far forward of the breech face?
    3.) Should I just take it to a gunshop and let them do it? If so, what should I expect to have to pay?

    Last edited: Jun 18, 2012
  2. 1.) I've never had to replace mine, but I've handled the wilson. I could barely flex my stock extractor between my fingers and thumbs, the wilson was very stiff. May need a jig, or at least a vice.
    2.) I would probably say that's just the way it looks because your ejector isn't adjusted properly, and once you get it bent in, it'll be better.
    3.) maybe, but I dunno about the cost, I do my own work.

    To tweak my ejector, I'd use the slide to hold it, while I tuned it by feel, and trial and error. Federal brass lands about 2' to my right, near my boot. It's very tidy.

  3. fastbolt


    Jun 9, 2002
    CA Central Coast
    Most 1911 extractors of the original internal design may require some adjustment when used in any particular slide. They're essentially a "spring", and they generally aren't a "drop-in" part.

    They aren't adjusted by using only your fingers or putting them in a vise. The "tool" used is the slide.

    Unless you've been shown how to do it properly, though, it's best to take it to a gunsmith (and ask if he'll show you how to make any future minor adjustments yourself).

    FWIW, the most common cause I've come across of an extractor requiring an adjustment is from an owner repeatedly letting the slide run forward on a round that was dropped into the chamber (versus loading the chamber from the magazine, as intended).

    Some extractors may also require some minor adjustment of the hook's forward bevel, or underneath and/or behind the bottom of the hook. Another thing best left to someone familiar with making such adjustments (and more importantly, determining if they're even required in the first place ;) ).

    It's been said that the 1911 style pistol requires a bit more knowledge and understanding on the part of the owner/user in how to support, maintain & make minor repairs. I won't disagree. (Presuming it's personally-owned, or the issued user is permitted - and trained - to do things beyond the basic field-strip, cleaning, lubrication and some spring replacement.)

    I'll freely acknowledge that as a long time 1911 owner & shooter, before I was trained as a Colt Model O Pistol armorer I certainly made my own fair share of mistakes while "doing my own work" that created more problems than they resolved. :shocked:
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2012
  4. Yeah, like this. Mine works, 100%.
    RPMSTL likes this.

    ERASER Nyuk,Nyuk,Nyuk!

    Jan 23, 2000
    Thanks for all of the input!

    I may decide to try to tighten the extractor's grip against the case by partially inserting it into the slide and pulling on it to try to SLIGHTLY bend it. The first time that I tried it, I used more force on the Wilson Combat "bulletproof" extractor than I used on the original extractor and that Wilson extractor didn't budge at all!! I don't know if the Wilson extractor is that strong or if the original extractor was that weak.

    My larger concern is that the Wilson extractor seems to be a bit doesn't come close to holding the case against the breech face. How do I adjust the extractor for this symptom?

    Thanks again!
  6. Yes, it's likely to be a bit long...on the back-end, and will need to be ground/filed off and contoured to fit properly at the rear of the slide. (The FP stop should calibrate the length on the hook end OK if the slide dimensions are within spec). You'll need to be able to deal competently with tension and contouring when fitting an extractor if you want it to both function properly and look "factory". If you're not real comfortable doing this, you might be better off having a professional do the fitting for you. And, BTW...if your factory FP stop is not fitted properly and allows the extractor to "clock', then that's another issue to address.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2012

    ERASER Nyuk,Nyuk,Nyuk!

    Jan 23, 2000
    Thanks for the quick reply and the helpful advice.

    I have already filed-down the extra length at the back of the slide and cold-blued it. I also replaced the original FPS with Wilson's "Bulletproof" version. Both the old and new FPSs slide in without any effort. Whether the new extractor "clocks" with the new (or old) FPS remains to be seen.
    The "Bulletproof" extractor is supposedly already contoured. I don't plan on touching those areas until the tension and the gap between the bullet case and breech face can be dealt with. If I can tension the extractor, eliminate that gap and get reliable extraction, I'll leave "well-enough alone".

    Will adding tension to the extractor eliminate that gap between the case and the breech face? If not, is there a "fix" for that gap?
  8. 1911Tuner


    Feb 24, 2003
    North Carolina
    In the law enforcement community, that there's whatcha call...a clue.

    The extractor is clocking and dropping the last case. The claw has enough bite on the rim to stuff it part-way back into the magazine, depressing the follower and keeping the slide from locking. Slide runs forward and tries to feed the case...and crushes it between the breechface and the barrel hood. There are two crushed points about 15-20 degrees apart.

    More tension may help stabilize the extractor, and it may not. It depends on two things.

    The clearance between the firing pin stop and the wall of the FP stop's channel in the extractor and how much of the extractor's tensioning wall is protruding into the breechface area. Too far, and the rim impacts it hard and twists the extractor. Too little, and you can't get the proper amount of tension on the rim to hold it. It's known as "deflection" or how far the rim causes the extractor to spring open.

    I like to see about .010-.012 inch of deflection. With that amount, the pistol will tolerate quite a bit of tension without causing failures to return to battery. The depth and deflection is determined by the front pad behind the claw. If there isn't enough, you reduce the pad. If there's too've got a problem. Either mislocation of the extractor channel or the channel is cut on an angle. Neither one is good.

    Another clue. Carefully reduce the forward pad to move the claw and tensioning wall closer to the breechface centerline for proper deflection. SLOW and CAREFUL is the operative term. Cut a little and check it. If you don't know how to follow a radius with a file, stop by a local machine shop and have someone demonstrate it. It's not done the way you think it is.

    You don't. The gap between the back of the claw and the breechface is normal and it has to be there in order to let the rim enter because it starts its entry at an angle.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2012

    ERASER Nyuk,Nyuk,Nyuk!

    Jan 23, 2000
    Thanks a ton for all of that advice!!

    I sounds as though I really should try to add tension to the extactor as a first step. As I said, it will literally just drop all of the way into the channel with absolutely no resistance at all, so I suppose that it's safe to say that it does need adjustment. That Wilson "Bulletproof" extractor did not seem to budge at all for me when I first got it and I was afraid to yank too hard on it for fear of breaking it. Perhaps the Wilson extractor is just that much harder than the original extractor was.

    I did notice that the Wilson extactor did seem to want to rotate slightly with the Wilson FPS installed. Perhaps I will get a tighter fit with the original FPS (though I bought the Wilson with the expectation of a good match). If the extractor still wants to "clock" slightly, is there a way to snug it up?

    Thanks again, guys, for the help!!
  10. owl6roll


    Sep 9, 2004
    What he said!!!