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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I have an older set of Python stocks where the gold medallion has been signficantly worn down to the point where the gold only exists in the depressions that wouldn't rub against a holser or whatever I assume took off the remainder of the plating. I was wondering what my best option is here; can I get the medallions replated or can I purchase replacement medallions? I am planning on having the stocks restored by SwampRat so as much as it pains me to replace the original medallions with reproductions I suppose I could live with it. However, I would feel better if there was a way to restore the originals.

Thanks,
Mark
 

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Swamprat can replace them. But I wouldnt..because then its replaced and you lose the nice patina on the back of the medallion. When I am buying stocks I look for the green build up on the back side to verify its orginal. They just dont look the same after replacments.
 

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A good jewelery store that actually does work on-site can gold plate the medallions for you.

You will have to remove them and that requires care to prevent splitting the wood.
If you're having Swamprat do the work, I assume he removes the medallions for re-working the grips or probably can remove them.

I'd remove them or have him remove them and find a good local jewelery store or metalsmith shop.
If Swamprat doesn't/won't remove them post again and I'll give you instructions on how to do it without damaging the medallions or grips.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Swamprat said he can remove them and replace them, but I'd rather not send them to him to be removed and have them sent back so I can have the replated, just to send right back to him a second time to finish the job! I will do some searching and see if I can find a solution. If they weren't so worn I'd leave them be, but as it is I'd say about 60% of the gold plating is gone.
 

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As above, you want to look around for a jewelry store that does ring work on-site. In order to do setting and other work they need to have a plating setup to do gold and rhodium plating.
Also look for a metalsmith who does fine metal work on other types of jewelery.

Getting a "flash" gold plate on a set of medallions should not cost a lot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Dfariswheel- do you have any idea what the medallions are made of and what Colt used for the 'gold' coating?
 

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I suspect the metal may have changed over the years, but it's some sort of base metal.
"Base metal" is a jewelers term for a metal that's not a precious metal like gold or silver. It's a "baser" or lesser metal.
The medallions are a dull silvery metal, but not soft like zinc or aluminum, nor is it magnetic.
It's not a brass alloy, so that leaves a big range of what it could be.
Sorry, I'm no metallurgist.

I have no idea what Colt plated them with, but it's not real gold. I would think it's some sort of gold colored metal that doesn't easily tarnish, something like the "gold" plating on Marlin 39-A triggers.
Earlier medallions from the 50's and 60's have a more true gold color. Later medallions from the 80's on have a more shiny, "brassy" gold color that looks like something other then gold.
 

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I'm revisiting this because inquiring minds want to know: are the early Python medallions plated in real gold? They sure look like it to me in my 61 grips, I'm pretty good at judging real gold plate. I also note the green verdigris, indicating the base metal has some copper in it. I'd guess the early medallions are gold plated brass.

 

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Gentlemen, and Ladies, does anyone know what would cause the gold medallions to tarnish? Please see attached photos. My 1971 (DOB) Python is in excellent condition, but the checkered stock's gold medallions are really tarnished. I put Eagle grips on to save the original Stocks.
 

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The medallions tarnished because they weren't plated with a non-tarnishing metal like real gold.

As above, I don't know what the maker of the Colt medallions used to plate them, but it doesn't look like real gold, but when new they were too shiny for that.

As above, about all you can do is to clean them off as best you can, remove them and replace them with new medallions, or remove them and have a jeweler plate them with real gold.

If you remove them you have to be very careful not to split or crack the wood.
The trick is to use small pliers to unbend the staking on the back side as much as possible, then put them on a firm rubber or soft plastic pad with a hole big enough to pass the medallion then use a punch to tap them out of the hole in the grips.
 

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Yes, I bought new medallions for the stocks already, just don't won't to replace the originals yet. I'm thinking about putting the Python back on the market. It came with Pachmayr grips too that weren't in to bad of shape. I found a red front sight post for it as well.
 

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Update, apparently the guy who owned the Python before me lacquered the stocks and turned the medallions that odd color. I'm the third owner of this 1971 Python. I had my Gunsmith properly fit and fix the stocks. He did a excellent job! With Colt in chaos and forever behind at their service center, I went ahead and had them corrected. I'm a happy guy. Lol
 

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Update, apparently the guy who owned the Python before me lacquered the stocks and turned the medallions that odd color. I'm the third owner of this 1971 Python. I had my Gunsmith properly fit and fix the stocks. He did a excellent job! With Colt in chaos and forever behind at their service center, I went ahead and had them corrected. I'm a happy guy. Lol
BIG improvement over what they were before! (y)
 
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