Colt - a long strange trip

Discussion in 'Range Reports & Reviews' started by simonp, Dec 9, 2019.

  1. simonp

    simonp Well-Known Member

    May 27, 2016
    0AFA50B6-2514-4984-9827-0526F39E917C.jpeg 8F24C250-576D-4E43-95C4-1BDCA23DB49B.jpeg D45D3B32-A0F4-4168-B15C-B4A1F0D66339_1_105_c.jpeg 8C1CA497-27AA-4958-B75F-4DCA2FCE52E0.jpeg This old Colt S70 Combat Commander took quite a while to build and quite a route, probably safe to say not the normal route.

    I bought this gun about 18 years ago, it was all stock, tight, nothing wrong with it per se apart than the satin nickel looked dirty, stock sights and had about a 10# trigger! I picked it up at a time when I would get up on Saturday morning, go to Starbucks then make a long drive through 5-6 local FFL's looking primarily for Colt S70 base guns - back then some could still be found without getting bent over here in the PRK. This gun probably would have been the first one I would have sent to Chuck Rogers other than I bought a SS S80 Commander that I sent to him first - that gun was my introduction both to Chuck and to custom guns. I did send Chuck this gun's uncle, a S70 Satin Nickel Govt model which Chuck built into a full house gun, but I digress.

    This Combat Commander sat in my safe, coming out a couple of times a year for a range trip and reminding me that I needed a plan for it. Guns kept getting built and this one kept sitting, couple of times I toyed with selling it off to pay for others but something always held me back.

    About 2 years ago I gave it John Jardine and asked him to put his sights on it, one of the best sights out there in my opinion. Once that was done I contemplated having him do the whole build but he had a couple of my guns in line and frankly he doesn't like to have more than one at a time - so after shooting it and confirming that I still hated the trigger even with great sights back into the safe it went.

    About 18 months ago or so Chuck posted that he occasionally took in guns to add to his batches of machine work. I reached out and was fortunate enough that Chuck had space and agreed to take a gun from me. Looking through my safe I saw this one, idea started to percolate to have him work on this one, similar but different from his first build for me - so off it went. Chuck bead blasted it, fitted a chen MSH to it, did his masterful high cut and wrap around golf ball treatment, ball cuts and sent it back to me - worn satin nickel plus bead blasting doesn't normally produce a thing of beauty but this was beautiful, it fit my hand so well, perfect grip like only Chuck's golfball can provide.

    Now I was in a real quandary, the exterior of the gun was mostly done but I needed the rest of the work to be completed, I didn't want to wait 5 years, I admit I was impatient at this point. I reached out to a few smiths that I hadn't worked with before to get a feel for their personality, pricing and time frame, during the process speaking to Jim Milks I got the best vibe as to timing and sharing my vision for the gun. So I packed it up and sent it out to him. There were a couple of delays along the way, nothing major, couple of calls to discuss the project where things grew as they always do and in the end, this is pretty much a full house gun although that wasn't my initial intent, nothing Colt on the gun any longer apart from frame and slide but if my first range outing with it last friday is any indication, I couldn't be happier with the end result.

    Jim performed the following work:

    • Weld slide to frame
    • Fit Kart barrel, EGW bushing, polish and throat the barrel
    • Crown the barrel
    • Tune spare extractor (both are Wilson BP)
    • Fit EGW firing pin stop
    • EGW spring guide and plug, bevel spring guide for barrel lugs
    • EGW HD ejector - machined for minimal gap
    • EGW Firing Pin
    • EGW ignition and trigger job
    • Greider Trigger (Medium)
    • Blended rear of slide and spare extractor
    • Fit Wilson BP ambi safety
    • Fit Wilson BP Beavertail
    • Fit Wilson BP Mag Catch
    • Melt job and cleaned up machine marks
    • Hard Chrome the gun (homage to its beginnings)
    • Spegal Grips

    I received the gun back last Thursday, in time for my Friday night range trip, I was dealing with another gun with issues so I only put 100-150 rounds through this one.

    Zero malfunctions
    Zero Issues
    I will post the test target, 25 yards, first 10 rounds fired of the night, first rounds fired from this gun - after that, bringing the target in closer the bullets just went through the same hole ;)

    First photos are from Chuck
     
  2. simonp

    simonp Well-Known Member

    May 27, 2016
    [​IMG][​IMG]


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  3. simonp

    simonp Well-Known Member

    May 27, 2016
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]


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  4. Integrity Arms

    Integrity Arms 1911 Pistol Smith

    Mar 20, 2017
    That is quite the story, and quite the end result... I do like that rear sight, some just don't see to have any real flow with the gun.. There are a few right now, that I am really starting to favor... Check out Lou's from BEC sometime as well. ;)
     
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  5. pistolwretch

    pistolwretch Dremel jockey Supporting Addict

    Aug 26, 2011
    Jim Milks is a cool cat.
     
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  6. simonp

    simonp Well-Known Member

    May 27, 2016

    Chuck and Johns are my favorites, I’ve seen Lou’s and see the influence there, suspect it is excellent as well


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  7. bnaples

    bnaples Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2013
    Congrats on a sweet gat sir.
     
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  8. azguy1911

    azguy1911 I'm done buying guns, I'm just a bystander now

    Oct 22, 2015
    Nice, very nice
     
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  9. FWoo45

    FWoo45 Well-Known Member

    Jan 13, 2017
    Love it Simon! My wheels are turning, you know that already, seeing this come to fruition is really inspiring. ;)
     
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  10. Integrity Arms

    Integrity Arms 1911 Pistol Smith

    Mar 20, 2017
    I like those too but I can't afford to buy a gun to get one of Chuck's LOL.. ;) But, that's the difference in mass production and making each sight a one of..on an as needed basis. :p I tried to procure a few, I like em also.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2019
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  11. Dub

    Dub born in the wrong century

    Mar 19, 2017
    Outstanding results in hand there, Simon.

    Really sharp looking commander that looks like it would be an absolute joy to shoot and carry.

    The wrap-around golfball treatment is super and looks like it'd weld the gun to your hand.

    Sights and trigger look ideal.

    I'm a sucker for hard chrome, too.


    Congrats on getting this one back home. Looking forward to hearing about your future range sessions with this gem.






    That teddy bear's crotch was put to good use for the photo op. :p
     
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  12. gaijin

    gaijin Well-Known Member

    May 18, 2015
    Excellent finished product. I like the combination of flavors.

    I have a couple/three projects Jim has done.
    He IS a "cool cat"- and a pleasure to work with.
     
    simonp likes this.

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