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Thread: Pawn Shop Purchase

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  1. #11
    Join Date
    6th December 2013
    Posts
    264
    Posts liked by others
    10
    Sounds like you're gonna have you a sweet one. Yeah that finish is just full of character. Once again congrats on a nice find.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    6th November 2014
    Posts
    12
    Posts liked by others
    3
    So I detail stripped it tonight and I have a new found respect for the 1911. I have no idea why I was so worried about working on my other ones. Detail stripping was so easy.

    It did make my decision about the finish pretty easy when I tried to drift out the rear sight and scratched the surface pretty good. Looks like she's going to get ceracoated. Now I have to decide on colors...

  3. #13
    Join Date
    13th August 2005
    Posts
    74
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    1
    Just a suggestion: You said that you bought this pistol so you could do a little gunsmithing. Why not do the front sight yourself? You can buy a narrow tenon front sight for next to nothing, and Brownells sells the front sight staking tool - looks kind of like an upside down question mark - for $50.00. Buy a machinist's vise at Home Depot along with a set of Nicholson precision files, and you are in business.

    I replaced the sights on my (newer) AO with a set from Maryland Gun Works because my old peepers couldn't see the tiny original slghts any more, and the staking job went well:



    My policy is that, if I think I can do the job (which includes pretty much anything that doesn't require welding or a machine tool), I just buy the tool and the parts and have at it. Owning 1911s there will come a time when you will probably have to contend with things like staking a new plunger tube, sight work, etc. I try to be self-sufficient, and I like to learn how to do these jobs myself.

    Taking it to a gunsmith, all you learn is how to do is count money out of your wallet.

    (And I'd vote for leaving the finish alone as well. It's called "patina". Gives it kind of a "Been there - killed that" sort of look.)

    Congratulations on the experienced pistol, and good luck with it.
    Last edited by tpelle; 9th November 2014 at 14:32.


  4. #14
    Join Date
    10th November 2014
    Location
    TN
    Posts
    35
    Posts liked by others
    0
    Agree with tpelle to just leave the finish as-is. Really helps give it a unique worn look.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    6th November 2014
    Posts
    12
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    3
    I've been researching on how to replace the sights. My only qualm on installing the sights my self is buying the special tool that I may never(hopefully) use again. I'm also afraid that if I start buying all the tools this may become a habit. Because, you know, why not I have all of the tools! It's happened before with AR-15s. I now own 5 that I've assembled.

    I'll have to see how it comes together before I decide on the finish. I'm doing this (somewhat) budget conscious. So if I end up with a hodgepodge of parts that don't look very good together, I'm going to refinish it. Or it depends on how badly that scratch bothers me. I have a hard time not wanting it when looking through pictures of nice 1911s.

    tpelle, how many rounds do you have through yours after the sights? I've heard that the narrow tenon isn't strong enough to hold up to the weight of full sights like that and people have had issues of them flying off. I do however really like those style of sights and am considering them. From Brownells they're pretty reasonable.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    6th November 2014
    Posts
    12
    Posts liked by others
    3
    I know you were all waiting with bated breath to find out what I was going to do with the pistol. I had some time recently to actually work on this project and I decided that I was going to reblue it. I figured cerakote was too modern a finish for a firearm such as this and wanted to make it look better while keeping that "been there killed that" look. After some research, I decided to cold blue with Brownells oxphoblue. I started by sanding with 400 grit paper. I did just enough to take off what was left of the old bluing. I left a lot of the pot marks to keep some of the character. The flats I then progressively sanded to 1200 grit. I didn't want to go any further as I thought it would mirror polish it. Which wouldn't have been bad, just not what I was going for. Here is what the pistol looked like after sanding:

    IMG_2174[1].jpgIMG_2175[1].jpg

    After a lot of research on the best way to do the cold blue I decided that completely submerging the parts rather than "painting" the bluing on would be best. I used a 1 gallon ziplock and poured about 1/3 of the bottle in. I had read that the parts would blue better if I heated them up first. I also red that placing in boiling water was a good way to heat them up. This is not the case. The part immediately started to rust when placed in the water. Oxphoblue is supposed to displace current rust so I just placed them in the bag and let them sit for a min. Then I took them out and wiped them down. Then repeated. When looking at the slide I can tell where the water rust was before I blued it. Anyways, here's how they came out:

    IMG_2179[1].jpg

    The light makes it look like there is a spot that didn't blue but I assure you it's all almost dark black. Immediately after wiping them down for the final time they received a Breakfree bath for a couple of days. This really brought out the rick black and the shine. The picture doesn't really do it justice. It's tough to get a good picture of it because of the light and the residual oil on it but I will try and get a better one when I assemble it. In all, the process was very easy and I am very pleased with the results. I also blued several of the smaller parts and will be assembling soon. I'm still waiting on those sights though. It's only about $50 to have the front milled for a dovetail then the staking tool would be obsolete.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    12th October 2013
    Posts
    39
    Posts liked by others
    0
    Boy, it looks good Schmitty, keep us posted!!
    Pedro.
    Last edited by Pedro 1; 2nd January 2015 at 20:04.


  8. #18
    Join Date
    3rd April 2007
    Location
    Philadelphia & Shohola PA.
    Posts
    6,783
    Posts liked by others
    0
    Looking good!
    Certified NRA Instructor Pistol & Shotgun
    ~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~-~
    "There Is No Greater High Than Defeating Armed Felons" Rich-D

  9. #19
    Join Date
    26th October 2010
    Location
    Phoenix, AZ
    Posts
    236
    Posts liked by others
    3
    For $200 I would have been all over that too. Enjoy yourself.
    SEMPER FI

  10. #20
    Join Date
    2nd June 2004
    Location
    Terra
    Posts
    20,608
    Posts liked by others
    160
    $200 for a West Hurley A-O is a very good deal.

    Good choice on bluing it yourself. I always keep a bottle of Oxpho Blue on my workbench.
    Hawkmoon
    On a good day, can hit the broad side of a barn ... from the inside

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