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Discussion Starter #1
We have a Colt 1911, serial number 145118 originally sent to San Antonio Arsenal April 3, 1917 (per Goddard) that has been rebuilt. It maintains the original 1911 parts, but has a commercial replacement slide from the 1949-1955 period and a replacement barrel from the 1949 to 1970 period. The frame refinish was apparently a sand blast as the lettering, numbering, and edges remain very sharp. I has sort of black dulite type of finish which closely matches the slide. There is a large "G" stamped on the left side of the frame above the "GHS" inspectors mark. It was applied before the refinish. The top of the barrel has a small mark forward of the lettering which appears to be four small squares or diamond arranged in a circle. Appreciate any information as to if it is a military refinish/rebuild job and what the "G" and additional barrel markings are.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
On Page 41 of Scott Meadows book "U.S. Military Automatic Pistols 1945-2012 there are pictures of the Colt replacement slides which match the slide on this pistol. The refinish without the buffing down of the edges or lettering make us think that it could very likely a military refinish/rebuild.
 

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The post war replacement slides from Colt were used just as they came from Colt, and would not have been sandblasted unless in subsequent rebuild.

The post WWII military replacement barrels had the COLT .45 AUTO on the top of the chamber as well as a C in a square on the lug. Look to see if there are any markings on the sides of the barrel lug. Can't help you with the G.

At some time in the past I had one of the Colt replacement slides like yours still in the military packing dated 1952.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The post war replacement slides from Colt were used just as they came from Colt, and would not have been sandblasted unless in subsequent rebuild.

The post WWII military replacement barrels had the COLT .45 AUTO on the top of the chamber as well as a C in a square on the lug. Look to see if there are any markings on the sides of the barrel lug. Can't help you with the G.

At some time in the past I had one of the Colt replacement slides like yours still in the military packing dated 1952.
To clarify, only the frame was refinished, not the slide. The slide appears to be the original Colt finish for replacement slides. There are no other marks on the barrel lugs.
 

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To clarify, only the frame was refinished, not the slide. The slide appears to be the original Colt finish for replacement slides. There are no other marks on the barrel lugs.
Yes, your photos indicate that the slide is just as it came from Colt.

If a GI replacement, the barrel would have been finished all over (would not have a bright chamber area) with the feed ramp polished. Photos of post WWII replacement barrel with C in square proof mark.



 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yes, your photos indicate that the slide is just as it came from Colt.

If a GI replacement, the barrel would have been finished all over (would not have a bright chamber area) with the feed ramp polished. Photos of post WWII replacement barrel with C in square proof mark.



Got it Johnny...so the barrel is not a USGI replacement. Any idea about the finish on the slide as it is so well done, crisp, sharp edges, no buffing evident? I just don't think that it was a Bubba job.....too professional looking to us. By the way, the pistol also came with two post WW2 replacement magazines and a Boyt 44 holster....understand that could have been put together at anytime in the past. I appreciate you insight!
G
 

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As noted, your slide is in original finish, but at one time they were fairly common on the surplus market. During the military rebuild process, Model 1911 parts were reused on 1911 receivers where possible rather than using them on 1911A1 receivers. The barrel appears to have originally been finished in blue.

During rebuild the parts to be retained were sandblasted to remove any rust or remaining finish, but most any gunsmith has the equipment to do this. This included barrels and magazines that were to be reused. One stock is early Keyes while the other is the later Keyes. The G above the acceptance mark (GHS) is not normal, and appears to be finished over.

With the information at hand it is not possible to say if the pistol was an original military rebuild or not. Some things look right, others don't.

Forgot to ask, but is the UNITED STATES PROPERTY missing from the left front of the receiver? I can't make it out in the photo.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
As noted, your slide is in original finish, but at one time they were fairly common on the surplus market. During the military rebuild process, Model 1911 parts were reused on 1911 receivers where possible rather than using them on 1911A1 receivers. The barrel appears to have originally been finished in blue.

During rebuild the parts to be retained were sandblasted to remove any rust or remaining finish, but most any gunsmith has the equipment to do this. This included barrels and magazines that were to be reused. One stock is early Keyes while the other is the later Keyes. The G above the acceptance mark (GHS) is not normal, and appears to be finished over.

With the information at hand it is not possible to say if the pistol was an original military rebuild or not. Some things look right, others don't.

Forgot to ask, but is the UNITED STATES PROPERTY missing from the left front of the receiver? I can't make it out in the photo.
Thanks a lot Johnny. In my previous note about the finish I meant to say RECEIVER, not SLIDE. You are correct about the stocks. And the UNITED STATES PROPERTY mark is missing from the left side of the receiver. That is probably the defining clue. Any military refinish/rebuild would not remove that mark. I never picked that up, so thank you very much for your insight and help!!
 

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I highly doubt this Colt is a military re-do. They are no arsenal rebuild marks to be found and if I were to guess somebody came up with a World War I-era military frame and a commercial slide somewhere along the way and pieced them together and had the gun refinished. At least that is my opinion. This is also true and somewhat unusual: "The G above the acceptance mark (GHS) is not normal, and appears to be finished over"
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I highly doubt this Colt is a military re-do. They are no arsenal rebuild marks to be found and if I were to guess somebody came up with a World War I-era military frame and a commercial slide somewhere along the way and pieced them together and had the gun refinished. At least that is my opinion. This is also true and somewhat unusual: "The G above the acceptance mark (GHS) is not normal, and appears to be finished over"
We agree.....definitely not a military re-do, just a nice put together.
 

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It may or may not have been a military rebuild, but not all military rebuilds were marked as such. The slide is a military contract from Colt. Ever see a Colt commercial slide from the 1950's period with that rough a finish?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
It may or may not have been a military rebuild, but not all military rebuilds were marked as such. The slide is a military contract from Colt. Ever see a Colt commercial slide from the 1950's period with that rough a finish?
Certainly agree that it is a post war government contract replacement slide from Colt, but can't help but feel that it is not a military rebuild because any arsenal would not have removed the UNITED STATES PROPERTY mark. The left side of the frame where the property mark was is considerably and noticeably thinner than the right side. Pretty strong clue that it was a deliberate removal......I think.
 

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No way to prove one way or the other, or to know what some subsequent owner has done to it. It is what it is right now.
 
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