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Discussion Starter #1
I came across an excellent deal on 6 firearms several weeks ago. I ended up selling 2 pistols that paid for all of them and left me with $2600!!! :banana: :banana: :banana:
Feel like a total tool coming on here and asking for some advice about this, but there are so many freakin opinions on the 1911 sites about what looks good, what works best...it starts to all run together.

Anyway. I got to shooting the "cheap" 1911 of the group, a Colt Gold Cup National Match Series 70.

She isn't a perfect National match, she has a bit of the finish missing on the bottom, had a tad bit of rust around the grip safety and has some very minor finish wear.

I want to make a really over the top carry piece that looks good as well. My step father carried a fully engraved Series 80 when I was a kid and I loved it.

I really need help on deciding what to do with action, extended slides, hammers ect.

I know I want to change the
trigger
hammer
extended slide release
keep the same sights from factory but put night sights on it and round the sharp corners
ambi safety
match barrel/bushing
full length guide rod


I have read about different finishes until I'm blue in the face, I think I will just have a real deep factory style blue put on it and throw some ivory grips on it.

Spend the rest of the excess on engraving?

What else am I missing? It has had the internals worked over by a smith obviously, trigger pull is 2.9lbs.
 

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2.9 lb trigger! thats pretty good but if you change up the hammer out it might mess with the sear engagement and have to be re worked.
 

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Cameron said:
I know I want to change the
trigger
hammer
extended slide release
keep the same sights from factory but put night sights on it and round the sharp corners
ambi safety
match barrel/bushing
full length guide rod
.
I dont have personal experiance with the extended slide release but from everything I read on them they seem to interfere with feeding. I forget if it was ejection related or chambering but they do.

Full length guide rod is not needed and does noting.

If you're carrying this i'd stay away from "match". 1911s are accurate as it is and match Is great for target shooting, the parts are a tighter fit and all but thats not going to do anything in a gun fight and depending on how tight the tolorance is it might be a bad thing. Maybe it wasnt oiled or you got some lint or something small and it jams.

I you're changing the hammer you have to be carefull. Some of them are light and this will efect the timing of the gun.

1911s are money pits, the key is to keep it simple (and buy quality parts) for SD and add what will give you the most advantage.....for instance ....night sights instead of the 3 white dots, ambi safety over the single sided safety....stuff like that. Everything else is just fluff. After all you're not going to impress your attacker with how "pretty" it looks.
 

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Why not sell it too and buy what you want, already built, from Kimber or Wilson or one of the other high end companies? Old Colts bring good money - why dork one up with a bunch of aftermarket parts and ruin the value?
 

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Does the gun function properly now? If so, keep all the old parts so you can go back to a known-good configuration if a mod doesn't work out.

I recommend by finding one of the "detail strip" pages and taking the gun all the way apart to individual pieces and pins, then putting it back together, paying particular attention to how the fire control group bits relate to each other. Looking at pictures and videos is good, having a pile of parts is even better.

Note that many (particularly high-end) 1911 parts require filing, grinding, or other fitting to install and function properly. They're deliberately made oversize to accommodate variations between brands of gun and the ideas of the gunsmith. Mostly, you may need some good-quality files and/or stones to do final fitting.

Any fitting is done on the new parts, not the frame or slide. Any work on those is normally just cosmetic.

The trigger, disconnector, sear, safeties, and hammer are an interlocking system. Sometimes changing a single part can cause odd problems. The answers are all out there, but finding and solving them may still take a little time.

Probably 90% of a 1911 accurizing job is a properly-fitted barrel bushing. The other 10% is the fit of the barrel hood to the slide and the underlug to the sides of the frame. You can fit a bushing with a file and time, but the other end of the barrel requires starting with a "gunsmith fit" barrel or welding; it's rather advanced stuff, and doesn't pay back a whole lot in accuracy.

Checkering is more difficult to do than it looks. Practice on some steel rod or something before you start on a real frame.

Smithing a 1911 isn't rocket surgery. It's just that if you're used to Kalashnikov designs, the 1911 seems awfully precise and finicky until you get used to it.
 

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Thank you TRX. Ive been considering up grades on mine, but your info has put it into perspective. It works, its accurate, it isn't perfect. If i want a hi end show gun Ill buy a Kimber but Ill carry what I have. Great info.
 

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An "over the top" and "carry piece" may not end as well as you hope. A Gold Cup is the least desirable model to make into a carry piece. They were intended to target shoot wad cutters at 50 paces and that's what they are good at.

Find a regular 70 or 80 with fixed sights and go from there.
 

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Sell the Gold Cup National Match on Gunbroker for some silly price and buy a Ed Brown Kobra Carry LW and you'll never look back.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well, I am a little sad after reading the responses. I think I just have money burning a hole in my pocket. The gold cup is just so damn accurate. I changed the spring out (I'm guessing it had a 12lb spring) and it shoots so damn well. My step dad carried a series 80 national match while he was a sheriffs deputy and loved it. He had it decked out with engraving and everything and he traded it to the sheriff when he became a judge.

I did get a set of real ivory grips, going to get some ss engraved "COLT" grip screws and call it a day. Great shooting pistol.

I may get some stippling or french border put on it and have it refinished at a later date. Thanks for talking me off the ledge!

 

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DO IT!!!! turn that colt into the nicest lead slinger on the block and cc in style! those grips with a french bordered slide and a deeeeeep blue finish would be awesome! :hail: that gold cup will perform just like anything else, probably better! :wink:
 

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I'm not sure if it was so with the NM series 70, but a buddy of mine had a regular series 70 and it had the 'finger' style barrel collet bushing, which would crack in half if he put loads too hot through it, or just at random times - usually when he was halfway through an IPSC match. After dealing with this for a handful of changeouts, he went with another Colt with the regular solid bushing. At any rate, if you start getting weird malfunctions, that might be something to look at.

Lets see a pic of your gun with the pimp grips on it, which are slick looking by the way.
 

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Cameron said:
Well, I am a little sad after reading the responses. I think I just have money burning a hole in my pocket. The gold cup is just so damn accurate. ... Great shooting pistol.
I have one of the old Norinco 1911s, made by real Communists. (becoming an endangered species...) It's a bit rough here and there, finished in black Parkerize. It points like my finger, and it will make little cloverleaf holes in the target. It feeds wadcutters just as reliably as FMJ.

I made a vow never to change anything, which is why I'm slowly assembling another 1911 from a Caspian frame and a mix of good-quality new and used parts. The Norinco isn't pretty, but it works so well I'm afraid to do anything to it.
 

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TRX said:
Cameron said:
Well, I am a little sad after reading the responses. I think I just have money burning a hole in my pocket. The gold cup is just so damn accurate. ... Great shooting pistol.
I have one of the old Norinco 1911s, made by real Communists. (becoming an endangered species...) It's a bit rough here and there, finished in black Parkerize. It points like my finger, and it will make little cloverleaf holes in the target. It feeds wadcutters just as reliably as FMJ.

I made a vow never to change anything, which is why I'm slowly assembling another 1911 from a Caspian frame and a mix of good-quality new and used parts. The Norinco isn't pretty, but it works so well I'm afraid to do anything to it.

I have one as well. The trigger isn't what a 1911 should be but i'll be damned...it feeds anything and everything and accurate at a 100 yards (steel plates)
 

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I'm not big on extended slide stops, for one I don't use the the slide stop. However I think an extended safety is a must for 1911. "I prefer a low pro single sided safety". I think a mag well and extended mag release would be nice on a gold cup as a competition gun, as that's what it was intended for. Maybe a drop in beaver tail. All of which is reversible, and just makes the gun more user friendly. I wouldn't mess with anything internally and I wouldn't do anything permanent to it. Really a hell of a gun as is. Nice score!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Picked up my 4" colt commander AD Swenson modded 1911 from the smith today. Had to get the sear replaced. It would drop the hammer just by pressing on it. Trigger pull was fantastic, sadly this will take some breaking in :( Grips look better on it than on the gold cup.

 
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