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Discussion in '1911 Gunsmithing' started by Jason Burton, Sep 12, 2016.
Love, love love reading this thread and watching a master work! Thank you for sharing!
I'm just lucky to be doing work I enjoy... and I did manage to get some holiday weekend range time in with my mimi-me. I guess that makes me lucky in more ways than one.
That it does Sir. Enjoy.
That is very helpful Jason! Thank you for sharing!
Not much is a secret for me... I may not have all the answers but I'm generally willing to entertain the questions.
Roger. On a basic level I get that it's pretty straight forward, everything needs to be straight and parallel. Then when you start thinking about it, it can get a little wonky in your head.
Like do you need to get the exterior of the slide parallel first before addressing the slide's raceways since you clamping on the exterior of the slide to make your cuts?
Then how do you determine if the frame rails are parallel to the center line of the frame and not crooked one way or the other?
Stuff like that is intimidating to wrap your head around when you don't have the answers.
Some of those things can be harder to tackle than others and, as I mentioned previously, the base gun can add to the difficulty. For example, older Colts can be harder to correct the slide on because they will often taper externally towards the muzzle and sometimes vertically too. If the slide flats are parallel to each other it makes life much easier, but everything has to be taken into consideration. For example, getting an older Colt flat externally can often result in the roll-marks becoming less visible. Easy enough to fix afterwards but it's another thing that will need to be addressed.
So how do you hold it to make sure the cuts you're going to make are 'in line' with the slide bore? Where do you hold it to account for the slide compressing and springing back? Or how about holding it so it does compress then make the cuts and let it 'spring' to the dimension you want? There are lots of way to accomplish the same thing with the 1911 and it's often like an equation that you already know the answer but only part of the equation... figuring out how you get to the answer is the trick. If the slide is "perfect" it's easy enough to hold it relatively high in the mill vise and machine the raceways as desired.
Frames are actually more straight forward; the slide stop pin, the existing frame deck, and the barrel bed can all be starting points. At a certain point you have to decide on what/where your 'zero' will be for both the frame and the slide. The hard part is that, with Colts, often times the best tools for being able to make that decision is the experience of having seeing and measuring a lot of frames and slides so you can know the difference it takes to fit them well.
Photo of the day... first steps for barrel fitting on the Colt Government Model project... measure, measure, indicate, then cut.
Photo of the day... barrel fitting continued, before and after squaring the breech-face on a current Colt Government Model project. Now that it’s square the hood length can be cut to insure solid contact with the breech-face when in battery resulting in a barrel with no end-shake.
Ok, dang. Now I got to ask about how you square up the breech face. Just with a file?
Files and stones.
Photo of the day... machining the barrel feet on the a current Colt Government Model project.
Photo of the day... back in the shop after being on the range for the earlier part of this week. Making chips and machining the barrel bushing fit for a current Colt Government Model project.
@Jason Burton man, excellent level of precision! Always enjoy seeing your work Jason.
I soooo wish I weren't 75 years old. If I ordered one of these masterpieces today, by the time it got me my kids wouldn't allow me to take it with me when they ship me off to "the home".
Photo of the day... barrel fit finished, feed-ramp and barrel throat set up on the current Colt Government Model project.
Photo of the day... re-machined ejector slot to accommodate a larger ejector and allow for more positive contact with the fired case. Also looks good when blended.
Got some years on me, but not sure I'd be around to enjoy it, if I had one done for me.
Wish Jason was around 3-40 years ago.
Photo of the day... beavertail blending from start to finish on a current Colt Government Model project. The first four photos show the part once is is on the frame in both the on (out) and off (in) position. The remaining photos show the part after it has been blended and shaped the way I like.