Video — Alternative View on the Term, “Idiot Scratch”

I first heard this term maybe 15+ years ago and it really seems to have taken off since then. I attribute it to the plethora of NIB 1911 options available these days.

But the rest of the story seems to have been dropped. Let me explain.




“Shooting Guns & Having Fun”

Marky Mark

Marky Mark

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Writer for Co-Host of the John1911 Podcast. Video content provider for John1911-TV.

Areas of focus: Defense and National Security, Modern Light Weapons, Analysis of the Geo-political / Military Relationship in the Context of Strategic Goals.
Marky Mark

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  • Mikial

    Idiot Scratch certainly seems to be the appropriate term. Many years ago . . . more than 15, I had a “friend” who swore he could customize my 1911 Government Model to be a better shooter by changing the angle of the bend of the three prongs of the sear spring. He seemed to know what he was doing, and certainly claimed to, so I let him have a go at it.

    Big mistake. By the time he was done with it, all semblances of reliability were gone . . . gone . . . gone. Needless to say, I went back to him and, to his credit, he pulled the spring out of his 1911 and swapped it out with mine to good effect.

    My point? IMHO, a great deal of the garage workbench customization of competition and target guns fit more in the category of a nuisance than an improvement. And if it is your EDC, you are a simple fool to mess with it too much.

    • It’s a lot like staring a fire in the Boy Scouts. With a little training any kid can do it, but that same fire has the possibility to burn the entire town down.

      My point? Have a plan.


  • Skyviking

    Marky, great demo. on the best way to field-strip a 1911… except, after getting the slide assy. off the frame, you forgot to push the barrel forward to get the fitted part of the barrel clear of the bushing before turning the bushing…

    • Andy, you are correct! I was focusing more on the slide-stop and keeping the gun in video.

      That is the proper bookend and should have talked about it!

      I appreciate you stopping by.


  • Outlaw

    And I would suggest that if this gun is the gun you are counting on to save your butt and you get bent and butthurt because of a “Idiot scratch” you have a bigger issue. You’re making it a “safe queen” not a self defense weapon. I want all my guns primo too, and I am totally OCD on cleaning them, tuning them to be perfect just for me, grips and sights the way I want them etc, but a scratch? That is a badge of usefulness. I don’t like em’ but they don’t hurt anything important other than pride. IMO of course everyone’s is different.

    • When guns are part of your job and not your full-time hobby, they get wear. They have to. Because you need to keep working…at your job…not babying your precious.