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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
New acquisition. Looking for advice on shooting and proper care for it. Seems to be in used but not abused shape, bluing good, except some rub marks on lower right front. Elliason adjustable rear sight, square notch. Don't know enough to know if the front is original or not, but it gives a good sight picture with the Elliason rear. Mounted on a frame marked:

FEDERAL ORDNANCE INC.-S.E.M. CA. "MADE IN USA"

The markings are in all caps, i'm not shouting.It may have had an ambidextrious (sp?)safety at one time, but not now.

Colt plastic grips with medallion, stippled/rough plastic on front installed, attached hex head attachment screws . Could not find a serial number on the conversion unit. Came with a Wilson Combat magazine.

Any advice on shooting it? Are these ammunition picky?Standard velocity only? Other things to consider?

Any special assembly or disassembly tricks that i need to know? Special lubrication requirements? Tricks that a reasonable operator should know?

i'm not an armorer or gunsmith, just a shooter. I have some experience with the government model, but again, i'm not a gunsmith.

Thank you in advance for any advice or references for information.

rayb
 

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The frame is a rather low-end, cast steel version made by the somewhat notorious Fed-Ord, or Federal Ordnance.

Fed-Ord was noted for surplus and bargain basement guns and parts.
As long as it works, it should do fine with the conversion unit.

As for the unit itself, these didn't have serial numbers, and usually, but not always came with the standard Colt Accro rear sight. The Ellison is a definite plus.

The only "watch-outs" with the unit are to closely watch the floating chamber to insure that it doesn't lead up and stick, and to take care when reassembling to insure the loose ejector is installed carefully to prevent damage.

Floating chamber fouling can happen very quickly, and you can find the chamber actually "lead soldered" tightly in place.
This is a major PITA to get disassembled and cleaned off.
The problem is, you can shoot many rounds with no problems at all, then suddenly, for no discernible reason the same ammo will lead the chamber.

I always cleaned mine EVERY TIME I shot it, and if I fired more than a few hundred rounds in one session, I at least did a quick field strip to inspect the chamber.

To clean the chamber and it's seat in the barrel, use a "Lead-Away" type cloth, This is a heavy, waxy feeling yellow cloth that is used to remove carbon and lead from guns.
DO NOT USE THIS ON A BLUED GUN. Not only will it strip leading right off, it will also quickly strip bluing right off.

In this case, since the chamber and it's seat in the barrel are "in the white" bare steel, the cloth will do no harm.
You can also use a BRASS scraper to scrap some of the leading off.

DO NOT use ANY steel tools or ANY abrasive to clean the chamber or it's seat in the barrel.
Any scratches at all will cause the chamber to foul worse.

If I still had a conversion unit today, I'd think hard about sending the chamber and possible the barrel out to have the chamber and the barrel seat area hard chrome plated.
This makes leading much less likely and far easier to clean.

I'd lubricate the outside of the chamber unit with CLP Breakfree. This is a heat resistant lube that combines with a "solvent" that helps moving parts to sweep fouling out of the way, and to prevent fouling from sticking.

I shot both high velocity and standard velocity ammo through my unit and noticed no appreciable difference in operation, BUT the better grade ammo with a plated bullet fouls less than un-plated, cheaper ammo.

Accuracy is typically just so-so, due to the floating chamber, so trying s wide variety of ammo to find the most accurate in THAT gun is even more important.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the information and voice of experience. That was exactly what i needed.

rayb
 

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dfariswheel, great info as usual. I have a Colt Conversion that I haven't shot since the early 80s. I sent it back to Colt 3 times and it still leads up solid after 1 mag, maybe 2 if I'm lucky. I never thought about hardchroming the barrel and floating chamber.
 

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Occasionally you get one that does for no known reason.

The one I used to have was great. I could shoot even the early Thunderbolt's and it worked just fine, with no major problems.

The one summer day, right out of the blue it just flat soldered the chamber in place within 100 rounds,
Nothing had changed, and the ammo was out of a batch I'd been using.

After a MAJOR job of getting it out and cleaned off, it went right back to shooting with no trouble.
 

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I shoot nothing but high speed, copper washed ammo in my conversion kit. The faster the better, in my experience. These things are fitted with a Gold Cup slide spring, if my memory is correct. Try a teflon liquid lube (Triflow, etc.)on the floating chamber to prevent leading? And of course, they must be kept clean to run properly. As with any auto loader, good magazines are a must and new ones, for these kits, are expensive and hard to find. I think it takes a little luck to get these things running right, but the one I have now will go in the neighborhood of 200 rounds before failures start showing themselves?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you

rayb
 
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