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Colt 1911 refinish

tone59tone59 Member Posts: 670 ✭✭
edited July 2014 in Ask the Experts
The bright nickel finish on my commercial model 1911 is nice but does not appear to be factory original.
After I pay Colt for a letter I plan to have the gun refinished according to how it originally came from Colt.
I suspect it initially came blued.
Colt gave me the DOM at 1942(SER#C2207xx).
I understand as a refinished gun it has already lost most of its collector value.
Opinions on some of the best shops to send it to for the work(blued or nickeled)would be appreciated.
Thank You.


  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,346 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    It's your money but I wouldn't spend the money for a letter or a redo. Perhaps a CeraKote over the nickel, could be a DIY project. That would make touch up of the shooter easier.

    I understand. When I take the ones passed along to me shooting or even better hunting it's like "they" are going along, just like old times. Being a shooter is much more fun to me than collecting.
  • nmyersnmyers Member Posts: 16,798 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Well, since you asked for the "best", & you want it to look like it did when it came from Colt, there's only 1 place to go:

    But, if $2,000-3,000 is more than you want to put into this project, I'm sure that we can scale it down a little.


    "Expensive fun isn't always fun, but it's always expensive."
  • tsr1965tsr1965 Member Posts: 8,682 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    As Neal says, Turnbull, will make it look, just like it came from the factory. They are expensive, and I would at least get a quote from them before proceeding, so you know before you go there. Doug's shop is just "around the corner", about 25-30 minutes from me. I have been there several times, and there is a reason he is expensive.

    On the other hand, you will not be able to expect to get your money back out of it, no matter how hard you try. So Charlie, might also be onto something, to use it for a shooter.

  • KnifecollectorKnifecollector Member Posts: 3,267 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Ford's have a good reputation, especially on a nickle finish.
  • tone59tone59 Member Posts: 670 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    No cerakote for me.
    I am not much of a shooter.
    When I do occasionally shoot its with a scoped 22 rifle or one of my carry pistols.
    This 1911 wont ever be one of my carry guns.
    Besides this gun is not bad looking as it sits.
    It took a while for an expert to find a telltale sign of a non factory finish(a diminished line in the rampant Colt).
    Two very small areas of flaking have prompted my refinish notion.

    nmyers...thank you. $2000 does not seem like too much to put into this gun.
    So after a letter from Colt confirming the finish I think it will go to Turnbulls.
    Or if the finish was nickel then maybe Fords as suggested by Knifecollector.
    My dad slept with this gun at his side as his neighborhood declined.
    It will never be for sale by me.
    Still I would think that the 2000 spent at Turnbulls would not all be money lost.
    It seems that it would add some value over what it has now.
    I would like to get some more opinions.
    thank you.

    charliemeyer007...plenty of modern shooters here.
    I am familiar with the ones I carry and the home protectors.
    I simply don't care to send money down range.
    Would rather put it towards another Colt revolver,P&R Smith,or pre-64 Winchester.
    I don't have deep pockets and try to find good/fair deals on older
    mint guns currently rising in value.

    As a sentimental gun to me this 1911 may be one I end up spending more on than its worth.

    I will post photos this week.
  • Hawk CarseHawk Carse Member Posts: 4,320 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    If you showed pictures we could discuss refinishing better.
  • tone59tone59 Member Posts: 670 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Sorry for the poor quality.
    many more were taken but most were really bad and not worth posting
  • tone59tone59 Member Posts: 670 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    The 2nd to last pic shows flaking on the frame below the DEC 13 date on the slide.
    Same pic also shows the line is gone on the back of the rampant colt.
    The mag stamped colt is blued.
    Another blued mag has C-L.



    Tough to get decent pics.
    Its the best I could for now.
  • perry shooterperry shooter Member Posts: 17,390
    edited November -1
    I would leave the pistol as is It shows use but not abuse. This use was from someone That you want to honor. Over all it looks Great to Me
  • Hawk CarseHawk Carse Member Posts: 4,320 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I agree with perry shooter, it is a reasonably good job of plating and in very good condition. I do not think you would gain anything in looks or resale value with an expensive refinish.

    The magazines with letters on the lip are military magazines, the one marked C L was made for Colt by Little Mfg Co.

    I think the one marked Colt 45 Auto is a gunshow fake.
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