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Grandpa passed, looking for some advice about this Essex Arms SS 1911 .45

611 Views 13 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  kenhwind
Hey, first post here. Unfortunately my grandpa recently passed - he had many great firearms, though here is probably the worst one out of the collection.

Thanks to Revolverguy38's posts about this a few years ago, I was able to get a bit of info on Essex arms. This particular example was very early in the production run, as you can see by the serial.

Unfortunately, this thing shoots TERRIBLE. I pride myself on my shooting ability, but with this, you are hard pressed to even get it on a paper target from just 10 FEET away. It usually shoots super low and to the left, but not consistently (can rule out the sights being an issue?).

The slide has no markings on it, I believe it was original, just a cast "SS" which I can only assume refers to the stainless steel model. Further, the barrel has no markings at all.

I'm wondering where to start with this. I don't think the sights are an issue (Though I could be convinced otherwise). From what I've read, these slides and barrels were poor quality to begin with, so I'm wondering if next steps ought to be a barrel upgrade, or more.

Any input or advice would be appreciated - thanks!

Below are some photos. Tried to get some some quality pics so I apologize if you're browsing on mobile. Hopefully you enjoy the last photo, of a much better 1911 out of his collection
Air gun Trigger Gun barrel Gun accessory Wood
Air gun Gun barrel Trigger Gun accessory Everyday carry
Sleeve Finger Collar Electric blue Fashion accessory
Sleeve Electric blue Denim Collar T-shirt
Hand tool Tool Electric blue Wood Metal
Finger Toy Automotive lighting Watercraft Vehicle
Finger Nail Gadget Office supplies Electric blue
Air gun Trigger Gun barrel Gun accessory Electric blue
Hand Finger Bumper Gadget Eyewear
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It looks to me like the front sight is too high for the MMC rear sight.
The early Essex frames as posted had something to be desired but iirc they were about $40 when a new Colt was about $125-$150, and there were plenty of original GI parts available from Gun Parts, Sarco, and several other venders I can think of that are long out of business.
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This Essex is nothing more than a parts gun, but if the frame and slide are a decent fit a nice shooter could be made out of it.
Is it worth it? Who knows.
The parts including the barrel seem to be of the low end.
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