Originally Posted by Nubs0311
I am curious as to see who uses grease on their Kimber 1911s. I use gun grease on all my firearms, including my Springfield TRP Operator. Never had a problem with any of them. However, I do like to read through the owner's manual of every gun I purchase and Kimber says to use only high-quality oil, no grease. Any thoughts or suggestions? Thanks!
You have to look at 1911s in general and then Kimber specifically to help understand that question. I'll give you my opinion.
Kimbers are tight fitting. Compared to some other non 1911 guns very tight and in some cases and even very tight compared to other 1911s. That tightness has helped with me personally never ever hearing of anyone saying a Kimber is not accurate.
But Kimber is a mass production gun. There are variances from gun to gun. The main resistance or friction on a 1911 is not the tight slide rails. Even the tightest slide rails takes virtually no amount of force to slide maybe measured in less than an ounce compared to many pounds of recoil spring. Sure they will wear and need lubrication being metal against metal but that's not a major concern. The most resistance is in chambering a round (stripping a bullet from magazine and loading into chamber) and barrel fitment causing most of the friction of the slide in various places and locking lugs. The reason that Kimber recommends 500 round break-in is because instead of spending countless hours with a very very skilled gunsmith properly fitting the barrel they get it close and tight and just shooting it will wear it in to where less resistance (friction) will occur and it becomes much smoother. A properly smith'd barrel would not require a 500 round break-in but the cost would be enormous and that is not the market that Kimber targets. Many are so close to a great fit, although tight, that they are great running from day one out of the box. But I have found to keep it shooting more reliably before that smooth barrel operation a few more pounds on the recoil spring helps along with polished feed ramp and chamber.
Because a Kimber is built so tight it makes one decide with a new Kimber with a dragging barrel what is best...to slick it up to help it be more reliable before it has worn in the friction spots or put up with some failures for it to be able to wear in faster with metal scraping. Most choose slicker than snot. For a range gun fired little and cleaned often I think a light film of grease is less of a mess, easier to apply, and does a great job. On the other hand if the pistol is a carry/field gun and exposed to lots of dirt, grime, lent, burnt powder, etc the tightness of a Kimber will collect debris on the stickier grease and cause friction or gum up which is not so good.
As a recap I think that either light grease or oil works fine on a broken in smooth shooting Kimber. Grease and dirt don't get along in tight fitting guns but short term works very well. Just my opinion and I am wearing flame retardant coveralls.