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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am seeing with increasing frequency the use of the term "butchered" used to describe revolvers with custom touches, and that sort of bothers me. To call the work of Hamilton Bowen, Alan Horton and others "butchery" is to discredit the work of skilled craftsmen who ply their trade. It is particularly offensive to apply this term to any skilled modifications, despite the disapproval of those hereabouts who look down their noses at such work. A gun is made to be fired for whatever use or reason the purchaser desires, and if that owner sees fit to shorten the barrel, lower the hammer spur, add sights, or in any way makes the gun better, or easier, for his use, then why demean his efforts?

Granted, some work does fall into the category of butchery when done by a hammer-fisted do-it-yourselfer equipped with a file and hacksaw, but those are few and far between. Gunsmithing is an old and honorable trade, and demands respect as any hardworking craftsman should. There are those of us on this forum who actually use their Colts, and tweak them when required to wring a little more accuracy or pleasing looks to our firearms.

So, how about reserving the term "butchered" for the truly applicable?

Bob Wright
 

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I couldn't agree more Bob.

I've always said to people that there is a huge difference between "home made" and hand made".

Hand made requires a degree of skill, where no skill is needed to make something at home.

Bud


I am seeing with increasing frequency the use of the term "butchered" ........................

So, how about reserving the term "butchered" for the truly applicable?

Bob Wright
 

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There is custom work that is most admirable. We see it here on Colt Forum frequently. There is also undeniably butchery that has been done to formerly fine guns. Butchery equals "bubba'ing" to my mind. Done by compulsive people who can't leave well enough alone. My brother-in-law knows a fellow like this. Just has to crudely modify anything he gets his hands on. Was telling me recently that the fellow had just bought a brand new Marlin Model 94 .44 Magnum carbine. Took it home and pointlessly hacksawed off the barrel and magazine tube by one inch. It's his business but has to be seen for what it is, daft. This is seen much more often than "few and far between" around these parts.

Butchery is very subjective and it's their business alright but if they are fishing for compliments by showing such butchery on firearms forums then they are afflicting the sensibilities of others. Sometimes a spade needs to be called a spade.

On the other hand I can think of several forum members who have either rescued shabby Colts and remade them into unique firearms that are interesting. Twaits for one with his Police Positive "stub." Also some formerly butchered New Service .45s are known on the Forum that were rehab'ed to soften the ravages of butchery to become appealing big bore snubs.

I find a Fitzed revolver to be particularly pointless and very unappealing but others love them. Even the rare Colt factory fitzed models seem so pointless. However I'd be tickled pink to add a factory Fitz'ed Colt to the collection and it and its factory letter would be most prominent.

And then there's this abominable aberration.

GLOCK 23/19 (1 GUN PACKAGE) RTF2 WOW! : Semi Auto Pistols at GunBroker.com

Butchery at its finest!
 

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I think you're on to something here. I remember literally dozens of 1911s that were worked on for bullseye in the 60's and 70's. The stock guns weren't considered collector items then (what could you do with a clunky old "Army gun"?), so adding adjustable sights, some stippling, another barrel and some "tightening up" was a good thing. Some of those guns were very nice (I had a few done when I was in the Army, and still own a GI gun that was rebuilt by the AMU in FT Benning). Now those guns are disdained and considered "mutilated". You're right; guns are made to be shot, carried and used. A personalized gun, modified to your specifications, is a good thing. Going in another direction, here's a '43 1911A1 that was rescued and restored by the late Bill Adair.
Bob

 

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Wow!! I read that entire piece of information that person wrote about that abomination of a once fine handgun and came away with the opinion that he is nothing more than a filthy mouthed individual who would get less than zero respect from just about any member of the Colt Forum.

What a shame that there are people in the firearm community with so little respect for themselves.

Bud

There is custom work that is most admirable......................... and then there's this abominable aberration.

GLOCK 23/19 (1 GUN PACKAGE) RTF2 WOW! : Semi Auto Pistols at GunBroker.com

Butchery at its finest!
 

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I have used the term myself. Of course there are many degrees of modification from awful to great. It will always mean a loss of value besides the added cost of haveing it done. I have had about 5 or 6 customs done myself for various reasons. I have converted several guns to .44 special etc. I had smith & wesson engrave my name in gold on a model 27-2. No one but me or possibly a grandkid will want it. (Unless I get famous real soon). Unless it is a well known expensive guru that did the work the value nose dives even faster no matter how great the craftsman did.
 

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1. That Glock owner is definitely foulmouthed. I'm surprised that GB has not pulled his ad.
2. As a firearms instructor, I would not allow such a gun on my firing line. Nor do I allow commie ammo. Both for the simple reason they are unsafe.
3. But on the other hand, what people shoot on their own time that does not endanger me or other innocents, is up to them.
4. The internet does allow anyone with a computer to whine incognito.
 

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Agreed:
I wonder how many times the item will be RE-listed before sold or no longer offered

Wow!! I read that entire piece of information that person wrote about that abomination of a once fine handgun and came away with the opinion that he is nothing more than a filthy mouthed individual who would get less than zero respect from just about any member of the Colt Forum.

What a shame that there are people in the firearm community with so little respect for themselves.

Bud
 

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The guy in that Gunbroker ad probably wears his ball cap sideways and shoots his pistol held horizontally. You want to see a butchered gun just look at an SAA that has been de-activated to current UK standards - guaranteed to bring tears to your eyes!

Rio
 

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Times change. As one poster touched on, when the NRA/DCM sold the 1911 and 1911A1 pistols for $14 they were just a cheap pistol. The NRA even put out information on how to modify and accurize your new pistol, and nothing was thought about modifying these pistols. Fast forward 60 years and these old worthless pistols are now worth four to six figures if in original condition. Their monetary value today far exceeds their value as a shooter. You can buy several high grade target pistols for what one of these old pistols will bring today.

A friend has a Colt 1911 modified by Jim Clark in the 1960's. I have shot it in the past, and never paid much attention to it until I got interested in the military .45's. One day I noticed that his pistol is a 9000 serial number range with the original MODEL OF 1911 U.S. NAVY slide. It's value today would be in the $1200/1500 range, but if left in the original military configuration it's value could easily be in the $5000/15,000 range.

Jim Clark was in the business of selling pistols, and at that time the old military pistols were a cheap source of pistols to modify. Still, I can't look at the pistol and wish he had never found that one.

 

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I'm sometimes on the receiving end of comments about cutting up a good gun, a piece of history, etc -- "it's your gun, go ahead, etc". The only ones I make into one of my projects are those that have had some kind of bubba attention, damage, etc. A few pix to illustrate:

1921 New Service with front sight and grip problem:



Same, reworked same sight & grip




This one a beater 1917 frame, a batch of parts from a police destroyed 1909, a 1880s SAA barrel, ebony & ivory for grips from Africa 1950s. I love projects like this.

 

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I have this remington rand that was customised and accurised by pachmyere many years ago. He was the top guru many years ago and his work cost big for that era. Yet the gun wont bring a fraction of what it would have left alone.

 

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"Butchery" is in the eye of the beholder. Those who like modified guns may modify at their discretion. When the gun modified is a an historical collector's item, those doing the modification should expect some to be critical. They should put on their big boy pants and ignore the criticism. Third parties should do the same.

In this overly politically-correct world, I get tired of hearing someone complain about what others say. If it bothers you, just ignore the speaker. Too bad that does not apply to the media as it crucifies poor Paula Deen for something said one time thirty years ago. Fortunately, "butchery" is not the equivalent of claimed racism, or is it in this case?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
"Butchery" is in the eye of the beholder. Those who like modified guns may modify at their discretion. When the gun modified is a an historical collector's item, those doing the modification should expect some to be critical. They should put on their big boy pants and ignore the criticism. Third parties should do the same.
I beg your pardon, Judge. I was raised in the South where manners dictated that one would not attempt to be offensive in their speech.

Bob Wright
 
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