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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Were all the 1903 mags hardened at the top with no blueing ?
Why aren't modern mags hardened at the top ?
 

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prewar nickle mags are all nickle and lack the annealment mark. modern mass manufacturing methods prevent a metal craftsman from tempering ea. mag. on a "one at a time" basis. it`s a sad fact of modern life.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
But were there ever 1903 unhardened blued magazines ?
 

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as far as i know all pre war blued mags should show the annealment mark, i cant quote the source but the the mag lips are not hardened, they are annealed{softened} the body being made of spring steel which cant be shaped till annealed. it is possible a pre war correct mag could be refinnished and be fully blued. /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
 

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As icdux1 said,it is a sad fact of life as far as the vanished care/craftsmanship that went into magazine mfg. decades ago.

As most know,I am strictly revolvers now,but used to dabble in Colt autos. I can recall an older dealer/collector graphically showing me,with a small caliper type micrometer,the difference in the thickness of the "sheet metal" in original magazines for several Colts I had,and then some Triple Ks. Naked eye can't tell-but it was "a lot". So,paid the exorbiant sum of $15.00 for factory mag for my .32 1903 vs.$8.00 for a Triple K. I used to carry the .32,so it was well worth it.

Last 2 autos I owned were a Challenger Colt,and an early AMT Backup.380(old S.A. type).The AMT was traded to an attractive female for......

Bud /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
 

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icdux1, I disagree strongly with your characterization of the "annealment" mark. It is just the opposite of what you state.

The magazines were formed out of stock that was too soft to not be deformed in use after bluing. Therefore, after the magazines were formed and blued, the upper portion was given a bath in liquid cyanide (about 1,450 degrees F. as I recall), then quenched in oil, to harden them, not anneal (soften) them. The liquid cyanide removed the bluing, but left the feed lips hard enough not to deform in use. The line on the magazines caused by the level of the cyanide bath is commonly called a "temper line," not an "annealment" mark.

This process is described in several Colt books. For instance, see Page 205 of Charles W. Clawson's "Colt .45 Government Models" (Commercial Series), Second Edition.
 

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judge, i yeild to your greater wisdom and larger library.as i stated i was quoteing from memory and do not remember the source, it is quite possible i have it backwards. /forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Were any of the type 3 or 4 mags made without the hardening process - i.e all blue magazine from the factory, not reblued ?
 

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icdux1, you do have it backwards. If you stop and think about it, it would be undesirable to have soft feed lips, which would deform in use. The feed lips and area around the magazine latch hole had to be hardened so as not to deform in use, and the cyanide bath was the method used.

bh, I apologize for ignoring your question about full blue magazines. I apparently became myopic on the "annealment" issue and ignored your question. It is my recollection that Colt changed the magazine material and process in 1938 or 1939, so late Pre-War magazines for all automatics are full blue. I suspect my Model "M" book, which is at my office as I write, gives a more specific answer, but I am not well versed in Model "M" lore off the top of my head. I can say that I am quite sure there are full blue Pre-War factory magazines for the Model "M," but I cannot say for sure just when the change occured.

If I have time and think of it tomorrow, I will check the Model "M" bible and report back.
 

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I actually remembered to check my source on Model M magazines! I have in my hand "The Colt Pocket Hammerless Automatic Pistols" by John W. Brunner, which is the "Bible" on Models M and N. It lists eight (!) variations of magazines. The earliest two variations are FULL BLUE! Starting in 1913 at about serial number 155000 (.32ACP pistols) and 15000 (.380ACP pistols), the cyanide hardening process was started. That continued until between 1938 and 1940 on the .32ACP pistols and between 1941 and 1944 on the .380ACP pistols, when the magazines were again full blue due to a change in materials, methods and the process.

bh, hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks, Judge. That's exactly what I was looking for.

Broom
 
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