View Full Version : 70's Era GM
1st June 2004, 21:41
I recently aquired an early 70s Government Model, the first Colt I have had that is not a Series 80. In the course of looking it over a couple of things puzzle me:
The bushing (solid) is stamped N M on the front, would this be National Match? Did Colt put them on plain GMs? It is also wicked tight, the first I have needed a bushing wrench for. All my others (Colt and SA non-match) are much looser. The barrel also has a small ridge or ring about 1/4 inch from the muzzle, again a first for me. Normal?
The stocks/grip panels are by far the grossest excuses for something that may have at one time been in the vicinity of a tree that I have ever seen. I may eventually get some really nice ones, but in the interim, did Colt use the same wooden stocks for long periods or were there periodic changes in material. My goal is to keep this pistol as close to stock as possible. Would any Colt stocks do or do I need to look for a specific wood and color?
Thanks. I am looking forward to the new forum, particularly if I will not be tortured and killed if I post in the wrong section by mistake.
1st June 2004, 22:07
I have some nice original Colt wood grips with medallions. Like new. $20 and they are yours.
Somebody replaced the original spring-finger bushing in your pistol with a hard-fit solid bushing. The spring bushing worked in conjunction with the special tapered barrel you have to tighten up the lockup in a factory pistol. Unfortunately it didn't always work as advertised, and either the pistol would still be too loose, or it'd be too tight and the fingers might break.
If it shoots good with the NM bushing I'd say leave it as-is. As for the "rough-sawn" original Colt wood grips, it's in the eye of the beholder. I always thought they looked kinda neat :D
1st June 2004, 23:40
I would have to guess that what you are seeing is normal. Normal as far as NM Bushings were (and still are) often fit tight enough to require a bushing wrench to remove them, Again, without the benefit of looking at the barrel, the ridge you describe is more than likely where the barrel outside diameter was stepped down to provide clearance for the rear of the bushing and assist in barrel linkdown. If you meassure it, the first 1/2 inch (maybe a little less) of the barrel (where the bushing locks up when in battery) should measure a few thousandths larger than the rest of the barrel.
Sounds like you may have gotten a nice pistol with a well fitted barrel and bushing. Grips are easy to replace.
1st June 2004, 23:56
There was some talk that the origional collet bushing fingers would fail on the series 70. I did see one fail. But it was a gun that had been shot a lot. In fact it was a stainless frame and it had a crack on the dust cover too. I think the theory for the collet bushing was a good idea but it did not work out under heavy stress. I'd just leave the N.M. bushing in it and call it good.
The bulge at the muzzle end of the bushing was so the sping fingers could expand out and wedge between the barrel and slide. However, if the slide inside diameter was too small the fingers had no room to go, and would stress and buckle. The result was broken fingers.
Usually if a pistol had a high round count and the fingers hadn't broken it would be fine.
2nd June 2004, 16:47
I own a few Colt Pistols with collet bushings & I've never actually had one break or heard (first hand) about one breaking. If the NM bushing fits well then leave it on. That type of "bulged muzzle" barrel was normal with the collet bushing but is OK for use with either the "finger bushing" or a solid bushing.
Selecting your own personal grips is a GREAT place to exercise a little bit of "Artistic Freedom" - There is a whole world of BEAUTIFUL grips waiting out there for you to choose from.
Checkered or Plain - Walnut, Ivory, Snakewood, Stag, Micarta, Mammoth Ivory, Ebony...pick something that you really like & enjoy your great Series '70 pistol.
2nd June 2004, 21:49
Thanks for the replies. I had expected to find a collet bushing, but I'll wring it out and see how it performs.
As for stocks, everything else I have has Hogues or Pachmyers on it, so I will go for something with a little style.....
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