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Gotta show off my old/new 1911

Posted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 1:30 pm
by O2HeN2
Back in the early 90s a Colorado Springs gunsmith, Gary Kimball, a member of the American Pistolsmith's Guild and who was the best-kept secret in IPSC for building 1911s (his guns appeared in the top 10 finishes at several Nationals as well as going to at least one World Shoot) built a single-stack .38 Super race gun for me. Used it for a couple years until he built an STI double stack in .38 Super to replace the single stack. So my single stack has been a safe queen for over 20 years. In the meantime Gary retired, but couldn't stay retired so he started gunsmithing again about two years ago.

So recently I gave Gary (he's still in the 'springs) my old single stack 1911 to create a carry gun from it. I was going to use the original slide and barrel, making a .38 Super carry gun but he discovered that the slide had cracked (back then Caspian used castings, now they're made from billets). At that point I decided to just go .45 ACP (which will enable me to sell my old Gold Cup at some point).

It's done, and boy is it done well. Not a single sharp edge on it, the entire gun feels all "roundy". It has my old Caspian frame sporting a new black Cerakote finish, a stainless steel Caspian slide that has been given the flattop treatment and a KKM Precision barrel (had to go with a ramped barrel due to the frame originally being cut for a ramped .38 Super barrel).

Impeccable fit and finish, hopefully I'll get some time on Sunday to take it out and throw some lead downrange!

If you look really close you can see a "beauty mark" just in front of the slide stop - that's where one of the screws for the scope mount was before he filled it in. He wanted to weld it up and smooth it down but I told him to just plug it, so that's my fault, not his! :) Actually I kinda like it - to me, it's a reminder of the gun's heritage!

Image

O2

Ps. Some gunsmiths may remember Gary as one of the Trinidad College gunsmithing instructors from back in the 80s -- he taught beside the likes of Ron Powers and many of the "old names".

Re: Gotta show off my old/new 1911

Posted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:51 am
by ACKF
I have built more than 300 1911's in my shop over the last 15 years or so. I learned 1911 smithing from the late great George Forrest. Because of my passion for building these fine guns I am quite critical when I see pics of so called custom builds. Most are not worth a second look. I must say yours is an extremely nice representation of a 1911. Now that you breathed new life into a fine old gun I am sure you will be happy with it for another 20+ years.

Re: Gotta show off my old/new 1911

Posted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 5:43 pm
by Bendersquint
ACKF wrote:I have built more than 300 1911's in my shop over the last 15 years or so. I learned 1911 smithing from the late great George Forrest. Because of my passion for building these fine guns I am quite critical when I see pics of so called custom builds. Most are not worth a second look. I must say yours is an extremely nice representation of a 1911. Now that you breathed new life into a fine old gun I am sure you will be happy with it for another 20+ years.
I need a custom 1911 for a demo gun, wish they weren't so expensive to get a nice one.

Re: Gotta show off my old/new 1911

Posted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 2:28 am
by kassenz
Wow! That turned out great!

Thanks for sharing!