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Help with Ivory Colt Grips???

mmppresmmppres Member Posts: 2,856 ✭✭✭
edited September 2016 in Ask the Experts
Found these wrapped in old bridle brown paper written colt 6 shoter. Thats how it was spelled not my bad spelling. How do I know that this is real ivory? tried red hot pin nothing happened. feels real heavy both in nice shape. lots of marks hope pictures are clear enough
thanks Mike


  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,346 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Look single action army to me. You need a quarter for scale or a tape measure.
  • Spider7115Spider7115 Member, Moderator Posts: 29,704 ******
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by charliemeyer007
    Look single action army to me. You need a quarter for scale or a tape measure.

    I agree. Colt Single Action Army.
  • tsr1965tsr1965 Member Posts: 8,682 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    The OP is asking if they are real Ivory, not if they are Colt SAA grips.

    If the red hot pin, does not yield the burning hair smell, then they are Faux Ivory. Faux Ivory has been around for at least 50 years. They do look like they are Ivory Grained.

    EDIT 1

    The grain on the back side look like Ivory grain, but the photo's are not in good focus...or at least not good enough to tell. Those marks could also be from sanding on a wheel. The staining on the grips looks too spotchy for real Ivory. Most real Ivory stains are larger, and are more yellowing than those, and are from aging...if those are real Ivory, someone has tried to artificially age them.
  • nmyersnmyers Member Posts: 16,792 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Are you aware that Colt SAA grips must be fitted to a specific gun?

  • perry shooterperry shooter Member Posts: 17,390
    edited November -1
    THEY look like BONE of some kind to me That is better than PLASTIC.

    FOR THE MOST PART each generation the factory grip frame got bigger and bigger THUS third generation could be made to fit both First and second gen like most items you can make them smaller but not larger to fit your pistol
  • mmppresmmppres Member Posts: 2,856 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Thanks guys was thinking one of the single action colts will post some measurements in morning. Thanks Mike
  • v35v35 Member Posts: 13,200
    edited November -1
    I'm a long way from home now so can't compare features with real SAA ivories and must speak from memory.
    LOwer locating pin holes look too high . I can check on 6Sept to compare.
    IF this is so, they could be Remington.
    IN the late 50s you could buy real ivory grips from DGW for $20, fully checkered with narrow border. IN 1961-2 I bought ivories for a mod 37 S&W 37 for about $35 new so it wasn't a big deal then. CUrrently, powdered ivory in an epoxy base has replaced real ivories.
    Scrape some shavings from the underside and burn them.It should smell like burnt hair or fingernails.
    As to stains, my SAA grips came with an attempted aging from tea stains.
    FOrtunately, a light scraping using a razor cleaned them up as the staining was very superficial.
  • Bill DeShivsBill DeShivs Member Posts: 1,264 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Forget scraping, burning, hot pins and other destructive methods.
    The grips are ivory. You can take that to the bank.
  • mmppresmmppres Member Posts: 2,856 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I do not want to damage these grips. I did try hot pin an nothing happened. Grips feel real heavy real dense actually cool to the touch. very comfortable in hand. Would be nice to know what they would fit so i could list them for sale. Unless I buy a colt to fit them.[:D].
    measurements are from base to centre hole 1 5/8. base is 2 1/4 long top flat 1 1/4 inch front flat is 1 inch. height from base to top flat is 3 1/8. thanks for the info guys
  • TANK78ZTANK78Z Member Posts: 1,279 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I would try the pin method again on the in side of the grip panel, if the RED HOT pin did nothing and there was no smell of burnt hair , they are most probably Bone.
    The only thing that is still puzzling,{ I can't make either one out] is the seeming lack of grain (ivory) or any porosity(bone)
    Bone can be cool to the touch and can be heavy, the color seems good for either one.
  • mmppresmmppres Member Posts: 2,856 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I did the hot pin again an got a faint smell of burnt hair does that mean they are ivory?
  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,346 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Yes Burnt protein.
  • TANK78ZTANK78Z Member Posts: 1,279 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    The burnt hair smell is a good indicator
    now my the question is,,, what type of ivory.. very possible it is elephant ivory but as a betting man I am leaning towards sperm whale ivory, looks like gold spotting in the grips, a supposed tell for that type.
    I have only seen one pair of what I was told were whale grips( many years ago) and they were on a colt 1911,and had this same coloring and "spotting". not sure if the hot pin test works the same on these or not.
    Before that one set I had never seen or heard of grips made out of sperm whale ivory.
    I would seek out an expert worker in these materials to be sure.
    In any case a nice find , great look and i would guess worth a few bucks.
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