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PostPosted: Sun Jul 18, 2010 7:56 pm 
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Here are some pics of a 1911 I did many years ago.

I can't call this guy a customer. He is a close friend, a mentor in many things, and a guy who has opened many a door for me. He is a police chief that any cop would want to work for. He is a real gun-man. He might have been a household name in competition, but for his burning passion is to find out how better to out think and out shoot the bad guy, and pass it on to other cops. This took precedence, and he lives it 24-7.

This is his duty gun and it has seen a lot of use; this is not the first time it's been back to me for a little rejuvenating. I'm guessing it's at the 45-50K rounds mark..... maybe more..... as you will see:


Crack at the slide stop pass-through window. It cracked up on the rail years ago and I simply milled out the bridge.

Image



Slide appears cracked at the slide stop notch. They used to make them very sharp like this one-- most I see nowdays are radiused. This is the first one I've seen cracked here.

The frame is cracked in the usual spot, right where the slide bangs the frame every shot, foward of the slide stop hole. This gun was cracked there 4-5 years ago and I welded it. It re-cracked, which is not surprising, but it's the first I've had re-crack. It didn't re-crack on the other side.

Image




The barrel bushing was cracked. Replaced it.
Image


And the barrel? Not cracked. And definitely not fresh! A good opportunity to replace it? Yes. A good opportunity to see how many miles we can get out of one? Yes! Barrel still delivers accuracy that is satisfactory to this top shooter, outer wear and locking surfaces are 100%, mating with slide locking recess 100%, so..... let the research continue.

New barrel on left, "J"'s barrel on right.

Image


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 19, 2010 9:07 am 
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I know the shooter, and if anything, the reported ammo usage has to be on the low side.

Ned, perhaps you can measure/gage the rifling start, to see how far forward "J" has worn the leade?

And have you experimented with drilling a stop-hole on a crack, to keep it from propagating further?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 19, 2010 3:25 pm 
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That round count probably IS lowballed.

I've done the hole thing to stop cracks in frames, yes. With very, very small holes (.013).... it didn't work but at that tiny size it was an experiment more than a fix. Went 1/8 with this one, trenched out the crack, and my welding genius is going at it tomorrow.

The owner of this gun gets to boss Patrick and me around several weeks a summer. And we still like him.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 19, 2010 6:25 pm 
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Thanks for sharing this info and pictures, Ned.


I am assuming this gun kept running despite the cracks, correct?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 19, 2010 8:54 pm 
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Yes. Nothing that's wrong with it was really inhibiting reliability... for the moment. And like many cracks in 1911's, most or all of these are the kind of thing that would go just so far and then slow way down or stop. The typical dustcover cracks have never been more than a cosmetic and theoretical problem in my experience. I have them on one of mine and at a certain point the crack gets into very thick metal and seems to stop.

The bushing, even if the crack went all the way from back to front, would have still held together and done the job, I believe.

The rear frame crack at the slide stop pass-through window was my biggest concern but even that one..... had it gone all the way to, say, the mag catch hole, I'm sure the gun would still run. And the crack would stop there.

The crack, or suspected crack, in the slide, "J" needs to keep an eye on that. If that really took off and went up, and around the top, and down the other side, that would not be good but I think it would make itself known before the slide actually went into two pieces.

Patrick, I will try and find the time to make a chamber cast..... I imagine it in a small glass case framed in walnut, on the wall of that office we kick back in after being run into the ground by this Whirling Dervish of a cop.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 19, 2010 10:36 pm 
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Thank you for posting this Ned.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 20, 2010 11:25 am 
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In case you were wondering about ammo consumption, "J" is the kind of guy who feels that unless his SUV is at the max load rating, he's under-equipped.

At our classes we have the opportunity to shoot on 50-to-300 meter computer controlled pop-up targets. One class, I'm testing some gear on that range before the class will be rotated there. I remark "Yes, I shot the targets with a handgun. Got nine of them." Next thing you know, it is a contest.

And the drop on a pistol shot at 300 meters is about ten feet. No doubt the pistol Ned is showing has been on that range, and thwacked some of those targets.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 20, 2010 4:27 pm 
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Very interesting to see the wear and get some insight into what it took to produce it. Be interested to know if "J" kept a round count on the gun and where it is at. Ned how about making this a work in progress picture thread, showing the weld ups and how it all finishes back out. I know at least 1 person here is interested.

Best
Mark

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 21, 2010 8:09 am 
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Yes, most informative.

Not to brag, except when I'm bragging on my friends. I have shot a lot of ammo. Typically, when I go to these classes, I take a couple of cartons of ammo with me.

I'll never forget the intro I had to real volume, when we're getting ready for some class down-time personal shooting. "J" opens his SUV, and proceeds to open an array of ammo cans containing pre-loaded 20-round AR mags, and then a two cubic foot cardboard box full of loaded stripper clips. And I thought I was zooming, with an eight-pound powder tub full of reloaded .223 rounds.

He shoots a lot of ammo.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 21, 2010 1:56 pm 
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You don't get as good as he is without shooting a few cases on the way. And he's.... well.... not a a greybeard or anything, but he's not a youngster either. In fact I believe he was the oldest or the next-to-oldest competitor at the National Patrol Rifle Conference and Competition this year. This is a cops-and-military-only shoot that is as gamer-proof as can be, and really puts one's skills, knowledge, wits and fitness to the test. Stages are as street-relevant as is possible within the constraints of it being, yes, a contest.

"J" has been a guest speaker at the conference for 4-5 years running, and what a speaker he is..... authortitative and inspirational. After hovering around first place for these several years (second place past year), he was the overall winner this year.

OK..... this is a post about a gun...... sorry to be so gushing about the owner. It's not about Patrick and me looking for points with him, far as I know he's not onto this thread and I doubt Patrick has mentioned it..... not that the guy has time to be cruising LTW either way. But it's just cool that if you want to imagine a "real deal 1911 guy"...... well, that is our friend "J".


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 23, 2010 3:53 am 
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Ned, if you still have the file, can you post a pic of the gun when you first worked on it? thanks


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 23, 2010 7:46 am 
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Marv, that's a tough one...... let me work on that though.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 2:57 am 
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thanks Ned... i've been an admirer of your work....... and if possible pls. also post a current photo of this 1911... i like the look of hard use pistols. It gives them character :)


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 9:18 pm 
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I love this thread. I enjoy real users and real wear. Such a change of pace from, "I scratched my pistol. I am going to jump off a bridge".

Did I truly convey I love this thread?

Regards,
Greyson


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 9:19 pm 
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marv wrote:
thanks Ned... i've been an admirer of your work....... and if possible pls. also post a current photo of this 1911... i like the look of hard use pistols. It gives them character :)


I concur. "After" pics are in order please, Ned.

Regards,
Greyson


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 7:28 am 
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Here is one with it just-welded and one with the welding trimmed off. The slide stop pass-through now has a nice radius where the sharp corner that probably caused the crack once was.

Image

Image


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 10:55 am 
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Great info...Thanks!


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 11:32 pm 
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Hey Ned-
Excellent post. Any updates?


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 11:25 am 
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Ned and I (well, at least I did) got a chance to shoot the beast, earlier this week. Right nice, it is.

Once we'd ascertained the zero (with a bit of brass rod and hammer work, sorry about that Ned) "J" was off shooting the 50-300 meter pop-ups. And annoyed that he was only getting 11 of the 20.

Me, my best run was 9.

Looks like I'll have to take Longbow to the next class.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 10:47 am 
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Breech face wear:

Image

Less than I would expect, but this varies depending on ammo used, how clean the gun was kept and probably a few things I don't realize. Max actual depth in this case is less than .002", nothing to worry about..... it looks like more than it is and is not an issue in any way.

Pic shows where I've put layout dye on it and then run a very flat stone lightly over the surface to highlight the areas worn low.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:20 am 
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Oh, and interesting data point I'm taller than "J", so when I stood behind him with binos to spot, I was looking directly over his head and I could see the bullets going downrange.

Honest to god. He had loaded a bunch of ammo for this class, and was shooting hard-cast 200 gr LSWC. A bright but flat overcast day.

Each one was a little silver dot, rising to interesting arcs on the longer ranges, and then diving down. on the 50 meter targets, I could watch the bullet zoom right through the plastic, see the target wobble and shiver, and then be pulled down by the computer.

Ned, breechface wear? I'd think that after a small amount of peening, the surface would be work-hardened and not set back any more. As if .002" is much.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 9:16 am 
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I never found a breech face that was hard. I don't think the "blow" is instant enough to do it-- it's not an "impact" as much as a very rapid buildup of impetus.... I think.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 11:24 am 
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Ned and Pat get out of my head! I thought I would be the only one quirky enough to be thinking about this....
Was drinking coffee and pondering the work hardening and the breachface wear myself this morning after seeing the pics. I find "the normal" wear from use interesting and educational, I guess for lack of a better explaination. Kind of cool, to see the deformation from the softer brass into the slide's breach face. Noticed a few small ridges in them before never went so far as to dykem one up to "expose" it or measure it...probably will now though :wink: Thanks alot! :lol:

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 1:58 pm 
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Welcome to our universe.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 31, 2010 6:46 am 
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"J", Patrick and I were together last week for a class. "J" put another thousand rounds through the pistol to make sure all was well prior to a refinish (he will have it Rogarded).

But... all was not well. He'd been experiencing feeding problems intermittently-- and it had me stumped. Finally, it happened in front of me. He tapped the bottom of the magazine and the pistol jumped into battery, so I looked at the mag catch and found that it was severely worn. Put in a new Colt part and the next 800 or so rounds went without incident.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 31, 2010 2:16 pm 
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And, we found out that it was not the first magazine catch that "J" had worn to scrap.

Honest to god, the man shoots his 1911s enough to wear out the mag catch. I'm in awe.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 31, 2010 3:33 pm 
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Well, if we are anywhere near right and 50K is the count, I suppose that's 6-7000 mag changes....! And if 50K is short, and I think we agree it is...... could be more like 10K mag changes!


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 2:09 pm 
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Hadn't thought of that before; every seven rounds is a magazine in and a magazine out. So, in 70,000 rounds, that is an absolute minimum of 10,000 in-and-outs. More, with daily loaded checks, reload practice and top-offs.

It's a wonder the mag catch and its spring lasts as long as they do. I'm not going to take them for granted after this....


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 02, 2010 11:45 am 
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Mag catch?? Hell, my THUMB aches just from thinking about loading that many rounds!!!
:lol: :lol: :lol:


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 03, 2010 10:06 am 
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Great pics Ned.


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