I went to the Miami Gun Range today. The range was closed for a while as the local police guys were firing off fully-automatic weapons. It opened 45 minutes after I got there. I bought one of their big targets, and put two black dots on the back, intending to shoot 25 rounds at each.

Everything started great, with the Colt 45 behaving nicely, or was it me doing better. I dunno. The spent casings went flying over my head, which bothered me a little, but the grouping was good, until I started getting concerned about the casings, one of which plunked me square in my forehead! After that, the grouping got worse, as I was being bothered by the spent cases, even though I was wearing glasses. I started to flinch on every shot, as well as blink. The more annoyed I got, the worse my aim. That's the two shots at the bottom. If I do this again, I want the kind of glasses that completely surround my eyes, not just in the front - someplace I still have a set of my old "safety glasses".

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The Colt felt "better" than ever before, but it was behaving much more "violently". I didn't think of what was "different" until later. It wasn't more difficult to shoot; in some ways it was even easier - but the spent cases were REALLY getting violently ejected compared to what I've been used to.

I shot 20 rounds at one black "dot", as I wanted a reference point from before I change the bushing (which is on its way). For 20 rounds, I think 3 1/2 inches is what I'll use for the grouping size, which isn't all that great at only 10 yards.

(Later, the guy behind the counter told me that I probably needed a new ejector, that the difference couldn't be the bullets (FIOCCHI in stead of Winchester).

(Still later, the tech at Colt told me nonsense, the Colt 1911 is SUPPOSED to eject shells over my head, NOT off to the side, and all I need to do is use a firmer grip.)

(Still later later, I realized that these were 230 GRS. FMJ, not the lighter target rounds from before - that explains a lot, and next time I will grip the gun much more tightly.)

Since I had my reference grouping, I moved the target all the way to the back of the range, 15 yards, and tried again, but by now I was flinching WAY too much. I couldn't help it, as many of the shells were hitting me in the head. I'd rather forget about the second target. I "know" that the shells couldn't hit me in my eye, but without better protection, I just didn't want to deal with it any more. After 20 shots at the second dot, I called it quits.

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I did call Colt afterwards, and the technician told me that what I was describing is normal for a Colt. He told me I was probably "relaxing" my grip, as I was more comfortable with the gun. In a way he's right - I was holding the gun just the way I used to, but now it had a lot more powder, so in effect, my grip really was more relaxed........

I've got so, SO much yet to learn!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!