View Full Version : 1911 full length guide rod questions

05-02-2012, 11:56 AM
So I just got a RIA tactical and it came with a FLGR. I've read a lot lately that these only serve to make the gun harder to take apart and they don't have any real value to shooting or operation of the firearm.

Anybody have any other insight on this?

Also what about shock pads, aka recoil pads? Does anyone use those?

05-02-2012, 12:03 PM
I can take down all my 1911's with FLGR with my thumb no problem. I can rack a round on a hard surface no problem. Do they serve anything as far as operation, I don't see it. So if you don't really have trouble with it leave it, if you want to swap it go ahead. The reason I like the GI rod and plug set up more is because I like taking the slide off complete and removing the guide rod and spring first, since that's the way I learned to field strip. The FLGR doesn't give enough clearance to do it that way.

My friend got a recoil pad off ebay once and it caused his gun to jam, so I don't think they are worth it personally.

05-02-2012, 12:07 PM
You only need recoil pads for aluminum frames.

The full length guide rod does little to nothing, you don't need it and I would personally remove it.

Now, if you paid big bucks for your 1911 then I would just leave it be, but since it is an RIA then I would remove it.

Black Majik
05-02-2012, 12:09 PM
Recoil pads, or shok buffs are not needed in your 1911. After it gets chewed up with use, it can jam your gun up.

FLGR is useless as well, but if you have it (and as long as it isn't the 2 pc screw in type) then just leave it. The guns that came with the short GI rod and plug I've left it, the guns that came with a FLGR I also left it. Personal preference but I doubt you'll notice any measureable quanity in the way they shoot with or without one.

The only advantage I see using a FLGR is the ability to break the upper and lower halves apart without the gun disassembling. It makes it easier to lube and go. 1911s don't need to be absolutely clean, so as long as it's well oiled it'll be fine.

05-02-2012, 12:17 PM
Go thread OP. You beat me to it. All my guns have a FLGR, which I prefer for no reason other than, it looks cool when the slide is locked. All except my springfield 1911 (need an alan to screw off GR), I can take apart my guns by hand with ease. To me personally, I think it offers support and balance for the recoil spring; sort of like a shock absorber.

Lead Waster
05-02-2012, 3:08 PM
I don't know it the FLGR does anything, but mine is pretty easy to strip anyway. Seriously, follow the steps int he manual!

But I would NOT spend money to swap it with a more "traditional" recoil plug and guide.

05-02-2012, 6:14 PM
I agree with all the folks who said, if it's already there, there is no pressing need to change it as it isn't harming anything. I've owned and shot both and it really doesn't do anything on a pistol using a bushing.

The Shok-Buff on the other hand should be disposed of right away. Unless you're OCD about putting it in at the range and taking it out after. The downside of having one in a defensive gun is too great to chance

05-02-2012, 6:37 PM
Yes to FLGR since they add a little weight to the front. I like them more than the GI rods and replace w/ FLGR on new guns when I can. I have used buffs before and know others using them for many years with no issues w/ cycling, ejection or timing. They could reduce wear on lighter framed guns.

05-02-2012, 7:21 PM
Buffs (if used) are for the Government / full size slides and frames.
Buffs reduce the rearward slide travel too much on Commander and Officer size models.

I like a FLGR for the range beacuse it adds weight out front.
For a carry gun I would use the GI set-up or whatever is lightest.

05-03-2012, 8:22 AM
Shock Buff = Snake Oil of the 1911 cottage industry.

They get chewed up with use and can potentially lock up your gun. Good marketing by Wilson Combat though.

05-03-2012, 8:53 AM
Keep it.

05-03-2012, 8:58 AM
I don't like either. My Dan Wesson had one and it was more of a pain than its worth. Apparently trying to fix non-existent problems are abundant in the gun world. My custom Colt shoots better than the wesson (although it has a LOT more custom work done to the slide/frame/barre/bushing) and it has a regular plug and guide rod.

Press Check
05-03-2012, 9:35 AM
Aside from the slight reduction in muzzle flip, there's no real benefit in the FLGR, especially on Springfield models. I immediately switched to the GI set-up.

With regard to the Shok Buff, remain mindful that anytime you shorten the recoil cycle, even when only by a small margin, your pistol is subject to having FTF or FTE malfunctions. For a range pistol where a malfunction is nothing more than a minor inconvenience, that's fine, but personally, I would never use them in pistol that I intended to defend life or limb with.

As it stands, if you use heavier recoil springs, your slide is already struggling against that spring to complete a full recoil cycle, so if you insist on using a Shok Buff, you should consider using a softer recoil spring.

05-03-2012, 9:42 AM
IMHO FLGRs don't really add anything to the system, but I don't mind them either. I personally prefer to keep my pistols stock so even though I prefer the GI setup I wouldn't bother to switch.