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Exalted One
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Den, hard to explain. On my 181 Mini, has has over 1,000 rounds through it with the front and rear 1911 buffers with nary a problem or even signs of wear. They weren't the Wilson ones, but rather ones I made with vinyl baseboard. No real need to "cushion"; just eliminate the metal-metal slamming. They get hard over time, but hold up. Since I have a whole roll of the stuff, I have a lifetime supply. A .380 or 9mm casing is just the right size to punch the center hole.

For the newer (Ranch) models, there is a factory buffer, but it is metal and can break. The vinyl baseboard stuff works just as effectively (on top of the factory rear buffer) as 1911 buffers. Don't have near 1,000 rounds through my newer Minis, but they have held up pretty well. The Wilson 1911 buffers (or equivalent) are convenient, and I have some, but haven't seen the need to replace my old vinyl baseboard buffers.

All a function of material, I guess...The Wilson buffers are indeed softer.

For grins, I did put a 1911 buffer in my 1911. Certainly eased the felt recoil, with no cycling issues...
 

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355 Posts
Hey RJF:
As with you, I had the Wilson's for my Delta, so I thought I'd give it a try in the Mini
Put one on the Gas Tube too, but about 100 Rounds in, it ripped apart and jammed-up the Op-Rod
So I guess, that end REALLY gets a beating !
I have notice though; Just because they make a Shok Buff for it, doesn't mean it needs or can even cycle with it in
That 0.10 can make a huge difference !
 

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Exalted One
Joined
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1,662 Posts
Hey RJF:
As with you, I had the Wilson's for my Delta, so I thought I'd give it a try in the Mini
Put one on the Gas Tube too, but about 100 Rounds in, it ripped apart and jammed-up the Op-Rod
So I guess, that end REALLY gets a beating !
I have notice though; Just because they make a Shok Buff for it, doesn't mean it needs or can even cycle with it in
That 0.10 can make a huge difference !
Den the newer Minis (circa Ranch Rifles), have a protruding lip at the front of the op-rod. I have referred to that as a "slider/dicer", as it does indeed chew up front buffers. There are a few ways to address that, but the two main ones are 1) to gently smooth out the really sharp edges on the lip using a fine file - don't use a dremel(!), or 2) carefully remove the lip altogether (called a "Harris Mod").

My 181GB did not have a lip, as it was pre-Ranch. Worked very fine without one, and without that "slicer/dicer", front buffers lasted forever.

My 583 Tactical came with the lip and within 90 rounds, the front buffer was trashed. I didn't have a failure, 90 rounds was all I had. I discovered the pieces/parts when dismantling it for a thorough cleaning after firing. That pretty much affirmed many posts about front buffers.

So I started out patiently removing the sharp edges but then kinda got carried away and with a motorized knife/tool grinding wheel, eventually just ground off the entire lip. I wasn't overly nervous about this, it just sort of progressed to that. Knowing that my 181GB functioned 100% since I got it in 1980 (without that offending lip), I figured "what the heck!". I was very careful to only remove the lip down to even with the rest of the face and no more.

I figured that the lip may have served some sort of purpose, so I've pretty much accepted that I'll always need a front buffer at least the same thickness as the lip was deep. Another several hundred rounds without it and using my vinyl baseboard-made buffers it worked flawlessly and the front buffer is in fine shape. No regrets and I would opine that the Wilson buffers would work just fine.

I'm in a conundrum with my newest 583 Ranch Rifle (still to be cleaned before first firing) as to what to do with the front lip, but am inclined to do the same as I did with my 583 Tactical.

Rear buffers (in both my 181GB and 583 Tactical) seem to last just fine either way, and they certainly do change the felt nature of the cycling.
 

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Thanks RJF
I'll look into the mod
The Mini ran great after I pulled it apart and took all the pieces of thrashed Buffer out
The ArchAngel Stock absorbs quite a bit of the felt Recoil
So if I don't notice any abnormal wear to either the Op-Rod or the Gas Block, i may just go without the Front Buff
 
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