Coltwood Shrinkage Question
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    Coltwood Shrinkage Question

    Regarding the colt wood bakelite grips on the 1960's era Government Model and LW Commander, I was wondering if they will inevitably shrink to the point of cracking? It is also my understanding that it is better to leave them on the gun because if they are removed to preserve they will shrink to the point they will no longer fit, is that correct?

    Thanks
    JD

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    Bingo... You're better off leaving them on the gun.
    "Well we don't rent pigs and I figure it's better to say it right out front because a man that does like to rent pigs is... he's hard to stop"
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    And YES...I have seen them crack while still on the gun...
    USMC - 1970's

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  5. #4
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    The Coltwood grips are not Bakelite, they're an early plastic..... Styrene I think.

    One person I knew made up wood planks with 1911 bushings installed so he could prevent shrinkage on his collection of WWII grips.
    Maicobmw and arjay like this.

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    I personally think there are more than one type of material in these grips. I have noticed in my collection there are 7 Commanders and 5 Governments that have that type of grips. Some seem to shrink even when they are kept on the gun they came on. Others exhibit no shrinkage at all. The ones that don't shrink are even brown colored. The ones that do are a motled brown with other colors in the plastic. Some are quite striking. In all the years I've had some of these, I've never had one crack.
    rock185, Maicobmw and OD like this.
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    The WWII Coltwood stocks did not shrink. Whatever the substitute plastic was (it wasn't Coltwood even though that was what Colt called it) that Colt changed to in the 1960 time frame did shrink to varying degrees. Some only shrank enough to elongate the screw holes, while others shrank enough to split out the screw holes.

    While unissued WWII Coltwood stocks will still fit a WWII Colt pistol perfectly, the 1960's era stocks don't have to be off a pistol but a short time to no longer fit.
    arjay, Maicobmw, az_colt and 1 others like this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by flintsghost View Post
    I personally think there are more than one type of material in these grips. I have noticed in my collection there are 7 Commanders and 5 Governments that have that type of grips. Some seem to shrink even when they are kept on the gun they came on. Others exhibit no shrinkage at all. The ones that don't shrink are even brown colored. The ones that do are a motled brown with other colors in the plastic. Some are quite striking. In all the years I've had some of these, I've never had one crack.
    Yes - the solid "Hershey brown" ones are a different material and don't shrink.
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    The early (earlier 1950s) injection molding process Stocks with the smaller/thinner circle around the screw hole seem to be more stable (less prone to shrinkage) than the later thicker/larger circle. (See COLT'S Super .38, by Sheldon, page 61.)
    73shovel likes this.

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    How about the early post war Type 2 Woodsman stocks (1948) ? Do they shrink.

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    Quote Originally Posted by saemetric View Post
    How about the early post war Type 2 Woodsman stocks (1948) ? Do they shrink.
    saemetric,

    Here's some late 1948 through mid 1950 Model O (Commercial) Stocks. They do Not Shrink.

    Best Regards,


    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by stan3; 09-03-2019 at 11:46 PM.
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