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bin31z
08-17-2009, 10:23 PM
Its sad that today there are very few of the original 1911 gunsmiths still around today. If you check out American Handgunner's top 10 most collectible 1911 smiths, you'll see that 2 are dead, 2 no longer works on guns. I've had the chance to meet and talk to one of the remaining smiths and decided to start the road towards a full house custom. The pistol I decided to start with is a Springfield GI .45. I choose this pistol because of the classic serrations and markings. Also, the smith in question was telling me that he misses the days when he was able to modify every part of a gun to a customer and his specifications instead of having alot of the stuff done by machines at the factory. Stuff like: serrations, checkering, sights, barrel fit, slide fit, beavertail fit, safety fit. Thus, I decided to start with the most basic high quality forged steel frame and slide and wanted him to do all the work so that's a true full house custom as if I had given him an original GI 1911 in the old days. I would have preferred a classic Caspian frame and slide but you can't get the frames in California, which is a shame. I wanted this to be kind of a retro take on the FBI gun, kinda like...with 70's styling features but the basic shape of the current Springfield PRO. Here's a list of the work I'm going to have done, tell me what you think and give me some suggestions:

-Springfield frame and slide, stripped
-All Wolff springs
-All Wilson Combat pins, mainspring housing parts, plunger
-Fitted oversized Kart NM barrel and Ed brown oversized bushing
-Hand checker and high cut front strap. 20 lpi
-Fit oversize firing pin stop
-Heinie Straight 8 sights
-Checkered Ed Brown slide stop, extra for replacement
-Slightly break sharp lines on pistol
-Install and match Wilson Combat magwell
-Front cocking serrations to match rear GI vertical serrations
-Serrate top of slide in arrow pattern, do not flatten.
-Fit and match Wilson Combat beavertail
-Fit and match single sided Ed Brown thumb safety
-Trigger job with all Ed Brown Hardcore parts - 3.5lb
-Reliability package, dehone inside, polish, throat barrel, polish ramp, tune 2 Ed brown extractors
-Permanently install Ed Brown bar stock plunger tube
-Install extended ejector, match to rear of slide
-bead blast and Mil-Spec black parkerize
-Loctite grip bushings
-Lower and flare ejection port, scallop in front to allow ejection of live round


This is going to turn into a $2500+ project. Some may say, why not just get a Wilson gun or a Ed brown. Well, Just like Mr.Hoag told me, why spend the money to get a packaged gun with feature and styling that someone else thinks you should like when you can get a gun that is EXACTLY what you want. He promises that the gun will outshoot the best of the semi-customs like Brown, Wilson or Baer and be more reliable to boot. Turn around time is about 6 month. It'll prolly look a little like this when finished:

http://www.novaksights.com/images/GUNS/2008%20Shot%20Show/1911-FBI-specR.jpg

or this

http://www.coolgunsite.com/comm_pistols/custom/hoag/hoag_fbi.htm

I'm also considering get this gun cerakoted in graphite black, which is kind of a semigloss black. I do like the look of a good mil spec black parkerizing but the cerakote will provide better protection. We'll see how the parkerizing holds up I guess.

leelaw
08-17-2009, 10:32 PM
Weren't you the one complaining about expensive, full-custom 1911s just a couple weeks ago? :P

bin31z
08-17-2009, 10:38 PM
Weren't you the one complaining about expensive, full-custom 1911s just a couple weeks ago? :P

NO NO NO! haha, what I didn't like was guns with too much extra stuff that doesn't have anything to do accuracy or function. I mean, there are many options that I opted out of because I felt like they contribute nothing to function. The only mod I'm getting that is not function based may be the slide top serrations.

roc
08-17-2009, 10:39 PM
I just started working on my GI but not quite looking to get it to that extreme. Are you going to be updating this thread with your progress so I can keep track?

bin31z
08-17-2009, 10:47 PM
I just started working on my GI but not quite looking to get it to that extreme. Are you going to be updating this thread with your progress so I can keep track?

Yes, I will be stopping by the shop every once in a while and getting pics of the work in progress and keeping this thread updated. Here's the first update, I just bought the GI 45. 480 bucks! 25 shipping and 80 transfer at Ade's brings it to about 600 bucks out the door. No sales tax of course since its out of state.

ojisan
08-17-2009, 10:51 PM
Build it yourself.

bin31z
08-17-2009, 10:54 PM
Someone just asked me why I don't just get a Springfield PRO and call it a day. Well...a Springfield Pro just doesn't call to me the same way a true custom does. First of all, its not really a full custom since the work on it is performed by many people in a shop. Its the same as a factory gun except the shop is smaller and more skilled. A true custom is built by one man. I think a true custom commands a much higher value, just looked at any Larry Vickers 1911. Plus, there are so many things I don't like about the Pro. I don't like the S&A magwell, way too big for my taste, the Wilson unit is very narrow but still functional. I don't like Ambi safeties since I am right handed, why get an Ambi safety? I don't like the Black T finish. I've had experience with it on my Emerson knives and I just don't like the way it just looks like black spray paint. Also, I don't like the fact they put the finish on the barrel. Why?? The barrel is already stainless, why coating it at all? It wears away with shooting and looks terrible. I also don't like the modernized gold cup style cocking serrations, how they are so thick and angled. I also don't like how Springfield put their logos all over the slide.

bin31z
08-17-2009, 10:55 PM
Build it yourself.

I do work on 1911, mostly RIA and Mil specs. But I do the basic reliability stuff, fluff and buff if you will. There's no way I'ma trust myself to build a custom of this caliber.

Axewound
08-17-2009, 11:37 PM
good luck to you. ive got the itch as well

brassburnz
08-17-2009, 11:49 PM
I've always thought about having a gun built. Jim Hoag is someone I've always wanted to talk to. Alan Tanaka is another Guild member in L.A. County.

I've been sitting on a Caspian frame and 9mm/38 Super slide for many years. The slide just barely fits on the frame. It's really tight. I also have a Wilson Combat .38 super ramped barrel with the compensator, but it's threaded, so I won't be using that! (That's how long I've had the barrel, slide and compensator.)

How long did Jim think the gun would take?

Can't wait to see how your project turns out.

roc
08-17-2009, 11:58 PM
Yes, I will be stopping by the shop every once in a while and getting pics of the work in progress and keeping this thread updated. Here's the first update, I just bought the GI 45. 480 bucks! 25 shipping and 80 transfer at Ade's brings it to about 600 bucks out the door. No sales tax of course since its out of state.

480 is a nice price. too bad the shipping and the transfer fees have to be so much. I got mine NIB from a local calgunner for $550 PPT and I DROS'ed it together with a complete lower which made the deal even better. It was a actually a gun that Taran Butler won in a tournament that he had his friend sell for him. I'm subscribing to the thread now so you better update with pics soon!!!

I had a local smith put on SA milspec sights I bought from the factory on my GI. Much better than the low pro sights but I am already feeling the desired to get new dovetails put in for some novaks. He showed me some nice checkering he did on the front strap of a rock island and it looks pretty amazing. I am starting to put together a wish list!

bin31z
08-18-2009, 12:00 AM
I've always thought about having a gun built. Jim Hoag is someone I've always wanted to talk to. Alan Tanaka is another Guild member in L.A. County.

I've been sitting on a Caspian frame and 9mm/38 Super slide for many years. The slide just barely fits on the frame. It's really tight. I also have a Wilson Combat .38 super ramped barrel with the compensator, but it's threaded, so I won't be using that! (That's how long I've had the barrel, slide and compensator.)

How long did Jim think the gun would take?

Can't wait to see how your project turns out.

What kind of caspian frame is it? basic? classic? carbon or stainless? I would love to buy this from you if possible.

Mr.Hoag is a super guy to talk to. He really opens your mind when he talks about how they used to do work on "45's". How its crazy nowadays how they have 24 pages in Brownells of just front sights. How they used to scavenge adjustable sights from K-frames to put on colts, make extended safeties by hand, weld on barrels to make them lock up tighter, buy GI 45's for 17 bucks each and turn them into working guns. Its really a pleasure to be able to speak to someone like that face to face. He quoted me 6 month for the custom cause we're pals and I stop by and bug him all the time :). He knows I'll start calling him once a week till he starts working on my gun, haha.

jdberger
08-18-2009, 12:12 AM
slide top serrations are functional. They diffuse glare.

For non-functional. I like French Borders and the ball mill at the end of the dust-cover thingy.

Congrats on your first Full House. Save it for your grandkids. Drive your children crazy.

bin31z
08-18-2009, 1:36 AM
slide top serrations are functional. They diffuse glare.

For non-functional. I like French Borders and the ball mill at the end of the dust-cover thingy.

Congrats on your first Full House. Save it for your grandkids. Drive your children crazy.

I thought about french borders but realized that they look weird with front cocking serrations. They looks very nice on guns with rear serrations only since they flow from front to back. With french borders and serrated slide top, i felt like it was just too many things going on. Ball mills cost a fortune. If you like ball bills, Caspian can put them on a slide free of charge when you order.

Z ME FLY
08-18-2009, 1:56 AM
Good luck! More power to you!

bin31z
08-18-2009, 3:20 PM
Only problem is that my gunsmith refuses to tighten up and lap the slide to the frame. He says it does nothing for accuracy and makes the gun unreliable. I believe what he says but I want that buttery smooth action. I don't know how I'm going to convince him...

funny to hear a gunsmith refusing money though, that's when you know you got a good one. Most will will do whatever you want, even its just a waste of money.

ojisan
08-18-2009, 3:38 PM
Automotive valve seat grinding compound is great for lapping frame rails.
There are coarse and fine grades so you can get things moving really smooth. Takes time, though.

The old tighten up the slide stuff by welding up or peening the rails seems to be going away with the improved, tighter dimensionsal tolerances on new manufactured slides and frames from today's CNC machines.
More important to accuracy is a tight fit of barrel to slide.
Many modern frame kits come with oversize rails and slides come with undersize grooves to allow the needed matching and fitting.
This is one of the problems starting from a production gun frame / slide set. If the pieces themselves are "loose" it is a lot of work to tighten them up.
It's easy to remove metal from oversized parts but hard to add metal to undersized parts.

dascoyne
08-18-2009, 3:48 PM
Why would you insist on a Springfield slide if you're going full custom?

If you want to learn about "full house custom" 1911s then you ought to look at Dane Burn's forum: http://www.pistolsmith.com/

There's a lot of information and many top smiths give great information and advice there.

bin31z
08-18-2009, 3:52 PM
Why would you insist on a Springfield slide if you're going full custom?

If you want to learn about "full house custom" 1911s then you ought to look at Dane Burn's forum: http://www.pistolsmith.com/

There's a lot of information and many top smiths give great information and advice there.

I was just at that site yesterday. Seems like Ed Brown posts there...odd.

dascoyne
08-18-2009, 4:02 PM
Ed Brown, Ted Yost, Ned Christiansen, Dane Burns and many others post there.

Understand that a "full house custom" is a gun that's built from the ground up for you. Which is different from customizing a springfield or any other 1911. That's why they can cost in the realm of $4000 and up. Even Dane Burns admits that a "full house custom" is essentially a luxury item and that $4000 is too much to pay for a practical gun for most hard use. You're mostly paying for the details, finish and other "extras" rather than performance.

FYI. Ed Brown, Les Baer, Nighthawk etc are considered in the middle ground between production and custom guns.

IPSICK
08-18-2009, 5:16 PM
You need to go to www.louderthanwords.us

Awesome examples of full house custom 1911's. Plenty of retro 1911's in their gallery as well. I don't recall recessing the slide stop pin on your work list. I think it is both aesthetically pleasing and functional.

Look to louder than words for even more ideas.

aplinker
08-18-2009, 5:55 PM
Custom 1911's are worse than ARs.

There are more options, they cost more, and you can't rebuild them once you finish.

I'm curious though - given your high portion of Brown parts, why not start with a Brown gun?

jdberger
08-18-2009, 5:56 PM
You need to go to www.louderthanwords.us

Awesome examples of full house custom 1911's. Plenty of retro 1911's in their gallery as well. I don't recall recessing the slide stop pin on your work list. I think it is both aesthetically pleasing and functional.

Look to louder than words for even more ideas.

Evil site.

After the first "hey look what I did" Nedley thread you feel yourself start to get sucked in....

Then you try to figure out how to hide the money you'll need from the wife...

dascoyne
08-18-2009, 6:00 PM
I'm not even sure if it's legal to own a true full house custom pistol in California. You're not going to find them on the approved list, that's for sure.

leelaw
08-18-2009, 6:13 PM
I'm not even sure if it's legal to own a true full house custom pistol in California. You're not going to find them on the approved list, that's for sure.

The base gun is approved, purchased, then sent out for the work. Totally legal.

dascoyne
08-18-2009, 6:38 PM
Working off a base gun makes it a "custom" gun, not a "full house custom"

Sam
08-18-2009, 7:12 PM
Run, do not walk, and go delete those forward serrations right now.

tpowers
08-18-2009, 7:31 PM
If you are in my area and when you are ready I can hook you up with the Cerakote. I did my old Kimber pro eclipse 2 in graphite black and afterwards felt like I had a brand new pistol.

bin31z
08-18-2009, 8:12 PM
If you are in my area and when you are ready I can hook you up with the Cerakote. I did my old Kimber pro eclipse 2 in graphite black and afterwards felt like I had a brand new pistol.

yea, i've been emailing you man. i was the one asking about the graphite black for a 1911. It won't be done for a while though.

bin31z
08-18-2009, 8:13 PM
Run, do not walk, and go delete those forward serrations right now.

ahhh...i know. I was thinking about not getting serrations and french bordering the slide but personally I just LIKE the way they look, especially vertically cut forward serrations. Just a matter of taste I guess.

bin31z
08-18-2009, 8:17 PM
Working off a base gun makes it a "custom" gun, not a "full house custom"

Ok...if you go look at any of Armand Swenson's full customs or Ted Yost over at Heirloom, they all start with a standards gun like a series 70 Colt or Springer GI. You'll be hard pressed to find any full customs that didn't start life as a production gun. go ahead check this out:

http://www.heirloomprecision.com/photos/

these are all $3000+ gun and every one of them is a springer, series 70 or series 80.

I do want to start with a Caspian slide and frame combo but its hard to find in California. GOD, i'm so mad. They are so cheap too..200 for frame and 200 for slide. Its alot cheaper than paying 600 for a GI 45 but not using anything but the slide and frame. Sigh...

bin31z
08-18-2009, 8:22 PM
Custom 1911's are worse than ARs.

There are more options, they cost more, and you can't rebuild them once you finish.

I'm curious though - given your high portion of Brown parts, why not start with a Brown gun?

I would start with a Brown gun except I would want additional features and some changed. it would equal probably 500 bucks of extra work. On top of 2600+ for the base gun, that's alot of money. Plus, it'll just a Ed Brown Semi-custom tuned by a gunsmith. I wanted a pistol that has been uniquely modified by one gunsmith. Its just pure that way. I guess I was talked into this by Jim, when he was talking about how him and Swenson used by buy Old GI 45 and commercial Colts and weld on them and cut on them into target guns for customers. There's just something magical about that.

bin31z
08-18-2009, 8:34 PM
Does anyone know of a way or someone that can get a Caspian frame into California? I'm out of ideas.

1923mack
08-18-2009, 8:46 PM
Swenson did some nice work!

Sam
08-18-2009, 9:23 PM
Does anyone know of a way or someone that can get a Caspian frame into California? I'm out of ideas.


Here's an idea, have your smith buy a caspian frame and slide and treat the custom build as if you didn't live in California. Then when it's finished, have the gunsmith convert it into a single shot status so it is exempt from the roster. When it's in your possession convert it back into semi-auto.

Did your smith say anything as to the frame to slide fit after he is done with the SA GI? I'd imagine starting from a blank caspian frame and slide would produce a nice fit considering they were not already fitted together.

bin31z
08-18-2009, 9:38 PM
Here's an idea, have your smith buy a caspian frame and slide and treat the custom build as if you didn't live in California. Then when it's finished, have the gunsmith convert it into a single shot status so it is exempt from the roster. When it's in your possession convert it back into semi-auto.

Did your smith say anything as to the frame to slide fit after he is done with the SA GI? I'd imagine starting from a blank caspian frame and slide would produce a nice fit considering they were not already fitted together.

I don't think I can talk him into it, he's an older fellow and I don't think he wants to play around with the law like that. He says to not worry about the frame slide fit. He said it contributes nothing to accuracy and a tight gun will malfunction alot more than a looser one. However, I want that smooth tight fit. He absolutely refuses to peen the rails and squeeze the slide. I'll try to talk him into peening the slide at least.

2new
08-18-2009, 10:00 PM
You seem to know Mr. Hoag pretty well, is there a good day to go to his shop and talk to him(Saturday's would be best). He has to be pretty busy! I haven't seen his work up close, does the fit and finish compare to Heirloom Percision? Love the style that Jason Burton has. Lets us know when you convince Hoag to work on the slide to frame fit!

dascoyne
08-18-2009, 10:19 PM
Here's an idea, have your smith buy a caspian frame and slide and treat the custom build as if you didn't live in California. Then when it's finished, have the gunsmith convert it into a single shot status so it is exempt from the roster. When it's in your possession convert it back into semi-auto.I wouldn't condone doing anything illegal just to get a caspian frame in California. It's not worth it.

bin31z
08-18-2009, 10:22 PM
You seem to know Mr. Hoag pretty well, is there a good day to go to his shop and talk to him(Saturday's would be best). He has to be pretty busy! I haven't seen his work up close, does the fit and finish compare to Heirloom Percision? Love the style that Jason Burton has. Lets us know when you convince Hoag to work on the slide to frame fit!

I like to find reasons to stop by his shop and bug him. He's very busy and also a 1 man shop as far as I know. The shop is the most unassuming thing you'll ever see. Its like a shack next to a bunch of what looks like storage units. He is open on saturdays. You can go see him any time, just remember to cough a little when you walk in cause he's usually in the back working and won't hear you come in. You'd think with as much work as he as, he'd be hard to get ahold of, but he told me that in his 30 years of working in that shop, he's NEVER taken a day of vacation. He also works full days on saturdays. He's pretty quiet when you first meet him, but if you keep stopping by, he'll get to know you before long.

I really like the guy cause I brought a gun in for him to do a trigger job and reliability package once. After that, I brought the gun in 3 separate times. To install a new hammer, to correct a dis connctor click, to solve a problem with the grip safety. All three of these works had nothing to do with the original work that I had done and the last problem involved testing firing at the range. You know what, he did 3 three free of charge. He only charged me 80 bucks for the trigger job and 70 for the reliability package. The gun runs like a top and I've only had 1 jam in 1000 rounds that might have been operator related. Trigger pull is magic too, no creep at all. Even though I pull as soft as I can, I can't get the thing to creep at all before breaking. I'm literally watching the trigger to see if it moves at all. And the pull is a little heavier than the weight of the pistol itself, prolly a little under 4 lb.

Sam
08-18-2009, 10:22 PM
I wouldn't condone doing anything illegal just to get a caspian frame in California. It's not worth it.

Can you explain how the action is illegal?

Bin, what would be the matter with having him do the work then transferring it to a competent FFL to do DROS?

bin31z
08-18-2009, 10:22 PM
I wouldn't condone doing anything illegal just to get a caspian frame in California. It's not worth it.

IT IS WORTH IT!!!

bin31z
08-18-2009, 10:23 PM
Can you explain how the action is illegal?

Bin, what would be the matter with having him do the work then transferring it to a competent FFL to do DROS?

Well...I don't know if he'd order the frame for me. If he orders the frame, its under strict instructions to never sell it in the State of California. How does one convert the gun into single shot anyways?

Sam
08-18-2009, 10:30 PM
I researched this before for myself to try and get a customized Supergrade (but school and life have gotten in the way temporarily). If I remember correctly the barrel needs to be a certain length, and can only fire one shot per reload. The same laws are used to get AR/AK pistols into the state.

Why would it be under strict instructions to never sell it in the State of California?

Colt
08-18-2009, 11:34 PM
+1 to Louder than words. Great smiths, one and all. I have had work done by Don Williams and by John Harrison. They not only do great work, they are terrific gentlemen.

Good luck!

bin31z
08-18-2009, 11:40 PM
I researched this before for myself to try and get a customized Supergrade (but school and life have gotten in the way temporarily). If I remember correctly the barrel needs to be a certain length, and can only fire one shot per reload. The same laws are used to get AR/AK pistols into the state.

Why would it be under strict instructions to never sell it in the State of California?

so this means that it needs a 1 shot fixed magazine?? how do you do this for a 1911, you would need like a magazine lock right?

He's a FFL, so he can order stuff that isn't on roster. But when he buys them, he's legally not allowed to sell it in the state of california unless its to LEO. Its same for a gun store, that's why you see all those LEO only guns.

leelaw
08-19-2009, 12:18 AM
I wouldn't condone doing anything illegal just to get a caspian frame in California. It's not worth it.

What was suggested is completely legal, due to the single-shot, dimensionally compliant exemption from the handgun roster.

The problem would be finding the single-shot top-end. It'd probably be easier to get the frame and single-shot top end first, then have the gun built, so a single-shot top end is not stuck onto an already matched frame.

As for other options for getting an off-roster frame:

1. parents or grandparents who live out of state buy a frame and gift it to you, through an FFL. Good to go as an intrafamilial exempt transfer, just make sure the FFL will cooperate.

2. A LEO or other exempt person purchases the frame, then decides to sell it off because he's lost interest, or some other reason (not because he bought it with the intent to resell it). PPT from the LEO to you.

3. Wait for someone who has been sitting on their unused frame to sell it. That's where I got my caspian frame and slide for my commander/officer project last year.

4. Someone who is moving into California purchases and brings in their frame, registers it per CA law, and then PPTs it to you.

Sam
08-19-2009, 12:18 AM
Penal Code 12133 (b): The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to a
single-shot pistol with a barrel length of not less than six inches
and that has an overall length of at least 10 1/2 inches when the
handle, frame or receiver, and barrel are assembled.

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=184060&highlight=single+shot

I don't see why it would need a magazine lock. It is my understanding that magazine locks are designed to make a firearm not an "AW."

aplinker
08-19-2009, 12:28 AM
I thought we covered this before in one of your 11 other custom 1911 threads. :p

There are several guys on here who has Springer SASS or Pachmayr Dominator SS uppers for 1911's.

You can also use a longer barrel and lock in 0 shot mag (have to single load into chamber).

Honestly, with all your spending, it's worth it.

Sam
08-19-2009, 12:54 AM
I thought we covered this before in one of your 11 other custom 1911 threads. :p

There are several guys on here who has Springer SASS or Pachmayr Dominator SS uppers for 1911's.

You can also use a longer barrel and lock in 0 shot mag (have to single load into chamber).

Honestly, with all your spending, it's worth it.

I don't quite think it was 11, but I can always come up with something if you'd like to make it to 11.

I agree with this: Honestly, with all your spending, it's worth it.

Make it truly special

bin31z
08-19-2009, 12:58 AM
I thought we covered this before in one of your 11 other custom 1911 threads. :p

There are several guys on here who has Springer SASS or Pachmayr Dominator SS uppers for 1911's.

You can also use a longer barrel and lock in 0 shot mag (have to single load into chamber).

Honestly, with all your spending, it's worth it.

I love my 1911's! :cool:

anyways, I have no idea what's going on with this single shot thing. So I have to get a special slide?? Then take that slide off and put on the one I want?? what is my gunsmith going to do, fit my regular slide to the frame, take it off and put a differnt one on then send it to an ffl to transfer to me?? This is just too much work. The only reason I want a Caspian to make things easier, ie having an integral plunger tube and oversized frame and slide to lap in a smoother fit. But if its all this trouble, I'd rather stick with my springer and try to talk Jim into peening the slide rails. OR...I can get the Caspian slide and have that fitted...hmmm....

bin31z
08-19-2009, 1:22 AM
I thought we covered this before in one of your 11 other custom 1911 threads. :p

There are several guys on here who has Springer SASS or Pachmayr Dominator SS uppers for 1911's.

You can also use a longer barrel and lock in 0 shot mag (have to single load into chamber).

Honestly, with all your spending, it's worth it.

Wait, since I imagine that people with these single shot uppers are only using them to get off list receivers into california, shouldn't they just get rid of them after they are done with the build? Unless the are building multiple customs. Maybe they can let me borrow it for a while.

bin31z
08-19-2009, 1:37 AM
Man...now I have a guy with a Series 70 Government customized by Craig Wetstein from the Auto Shop in Culver City in the 80's. He dropped the price to 1500 bucks, never fired. Hard chromed frame, reblued slide, bomars, the works. Man...if I had more money....

dascoyne
08-19-2009, 6:43 AM
What was suggested is completely legal, due to the single-shot, dimensionally compliant exemption from the handgun roster.

The problem would be finding the single-shot top-end. It'd probably be easier to get the frame and single-shot top end first, then have the gun built, so a single-shot top end is not stuck onto an already matched frame.

As for other options for getting an off-roster frame:

1. parents or grandparents who live out of state buy a frame and gift it to you, through an FFL. Good to go as an intrafamilial exempt transfer, just make sure the FFL will cooperate.

2. A LEO or other exempt person purchases the frame, then decides to sell it off because he's lost interest, or some other reason (not because he bought it with the intent to resell it). PPT from the LEO to you.

3. Wait for someone who has been sitting on their unused frame to sell it. That's where I got my caspian frame and slide for my commander/officer project last year.

4. Someone who is moving into California purchases and brings in their frame, registers it per CA law, and then PPTs it to you.neat. I didn't know that.
thanks

dascoyne
08-19-2009, 12:45 PM
Two years ago I had a few $$$ to spend on a 1911 but I didn't go custom. I went in the opposite direction with my 1925 Colt Commericial 1911A1

http://i75.photobucket.com/albums/i308/longbough/IMG_0037a.jpg

IPSICK
08-19-2009, 1:04 PM
+1 to Louder than words. Great smiths, one and all. I have had work done by Don Williams and by John Harrison. They not only do great work, they are terrific gentlemen.

Good luck!

My suggestion for louder than words was not for gunsmiths but for ideas on what to do. Sounds like bin has already chosen an excellent gunsmith.

I only wish I could get a full-house custom gun. Funds are limited right now though.

bin31z
08-19-2009, 4:02 PM
Two years ago I had a few $$$ to spend on a 1911 but I didn't go custom. I went in the opposite direction with my 1925 Colt Commericial 1911A1

http://i75.photobucket.com/albums/i308/longbough/IMG_0037a.jpg

NICE

bin31z
08-19-2009, 4:02 PM
My suggestion for louder than words was not for gunsmiths but for ideas on what to do. Sounds like bin has already chosen an excellent gunsmith.

I only wish I could get a full-house custom gun. Funds are limited right now though.

O man...there are alot of nice guns on there...

Sam
08-19-2009, 7:19 PM
How is throwing on a single shot slide alot of work? He doesn't have to fit it or anything. Just take the regular slide off and put the single shot slide on. That takes what, 30 seconds?

bin31z
08-19-2009, 8:44 PM
How is throwing on a single shot slide alot of work? He doesn't have to fit it or anything. Just take the regular slide off and put the single shot slide on. That takes what, 30 seconds?

The problem is finding the single shot and talking someone into ordering a frame for me. I asked my local gun shop and they want nothing to do with it. Said those Caspian frames are LEO only. It'd be hard find someone that's cooperative enough to help me out. I'm looking though.

bin31z
08-19-2009, 8:49 PM
Man...getting a pistol to exactly what you want is alot harder than I thought. Hoag told me I can't serrate the slide top unless I flatten I ditched the whole serrated slide top idea. Finding the perfect grips is also hard. I wanted some thin checkered cocobolo grips that have a flat bottom to match the thinner wilson magwell. If you look at the wilson combat page, you'll see their magwell does not match magwell style grips at all. I've looked all over and found some rosewood ones made by Chip Mccormick, but they are cut for ambi saftey, which I won't have. I decided to get custom ones built by Ahrend.

Also, Mr.Hoag informed me that they can no longer parkerize guns because of EPA regulations, so its either blue or I take it to get cerakoted. I decided on graphite black cerakote.

I also decided to have have Mr.Hoag grind down the Made in Brazil rollmark and the Genosa, Il rollmark and replace it with a simple United States Property rollmark above the serial number. I also decided to have the last 4 digits of the serial number stamped on all the fitted parts such as barrel, grip safety, mainspirng housing, thumb safety. I wanted that retro feel as if this was a gussied up GI bring home. Building a custom is harder than I thought :cool2:

Sam
08-19-2009, 9:22 PM
I really, really, really like these things:


I also decided to have have Mr.Hoag grind down the Made in Brazil rollmark and the Genosa, Il rollmark and replace it with a simple United States Property rollmark above the serial number. I also decided to have the last 4 digits of the serial number stamped on all the fitted parts such as barrel, grip safety, mainspirng housing, thumb safety. I wanted that retro feel as if this was a gussied up GI bring home. Building a custom is harder than I thought :cool2:

Is there a particular reason you want the Wilson mag well then? It would open up the grip options. I also don't see why you couldn't use ambi grips on it.

Hoag told me I can't serrate the slide top unless I flatten I ditched the whole serrated slide top idea.

Good call, tell him you want the front cocking serrations ditched too! :p

Sam
08-19-2009, 9:25 PM
The problem is finding the single shot and talking someone into ordering a frame for me. I asked my local gun shop and they want nothing to do with it. Said those Caspian frames are LEO only. It'd be hard find someone that's cooperative enough to help me out. I'm looking though.

I think I've seen a picture of one that AR-15 barrels has. There was also a poster on the thread I linked too that has one.

edit: If you absolutely cannot get a caspian frame, I also like the caspian slide idea. Get rid of those springfield roll marks on the slide!

bin31z
08-19-2009, 9:55 PM
I think I've seen a picture of one that AR-15 barrels has. There was also a poster on the thread I linked too that has one.

edit: If you absolutely cannot get a caspian frame, I also like the caspian slide idea. Get rid of those springfield roll marks on the slide!

yea...i'm thinking about it. if I can find someone to buy a complete GI 45 upper assembly, I'd definitely get the Caspian slide. Or else it just seems like a huge waste. I'd have an extra slide with no frame to match it to. Anyways, I really like the idea of the matching numbers on the fitted parts and US property mark. It'll be a little like the MEU SOC pistols that have the Springfield slide fitted to the old USGI frames and cobbled together using commercial parts. Serves me no real purpose cause I'm not an armory that can get those parts mixed up, but still very neat.

Now that the gun is shaping up like a MEU SOC replica, i'm debating keeping the magwell at all. I like the Wilson magwell because its not as gargantuan as the S&A unit or other makers. The other ones are just too huge and mess up the lines of the gun I think. The wilson unit is very slim and still provides good real estate for the magazine to ride on.

Two reasons I wanted slim grips. First I have smaller hands and second is this pic:

http://www.vzgrips.com/Images/bpusBIG.jpg

is that sexy or what?

jdberger
08-19-2009, 10:37 PM
Wait?...

You're gonna do a bake on finish with a full house custom?

To me, that's like asking my kids to spray paint my '64 Thunderbird....







NB: I don't really have a 64 T-bird - or even kids, a car or spraypaint. I was trying to make a point...

bin31z
08-19-2009, 10:44 PM
Well...its either that or stay with bluing. I don't want this to turn into a safe queen. I still want to shoot it. So I don't want to have to wipe it down everytime I touch it, especially in California.

Its either cerakote or ionbond. I wanted parkerizing but they can't do it anymore. Bluing is just not that resistant to rust...its fine for safe queens but I want to shoot too!!

bin31z
08-19-2009, 10:47 PM
Wait?...

You're gonna do a bake on finish with a full house custom?

To me, that's like asking my kids to spray paint my '64 Thunderbird....







NB: I don't really have a 64 T-bird - or even kids, a car or spraypaint. I was trying to make a point...

Well...plenty of semi-custom makers use it...wilson, ed brown, nighthawk, springfield pro etc etc. I think its the best compromise between having a blued gun/dealing with rust and going stainless. I don't want a stainless gun, but I also want rust resistance. There's no other way. Ionbond like I said is good, but the guy won't answer his phone.

aplinker
08-19-2009, 10:59 PM
Man, you are like trying to deal with a 3yr old who just guzzled a bottle of kool-aid. You read posts and then either immediately forget everything in them or just don't understand what's being said.

Sit down, read slowly, and think this through.

1.) You get (buy/borrow) a single shot dedicated upper.
2.) You find a seller out of state (gunbroker, EE on arfcom, CA-friendly dealers) who is willing to sell and attach the upper to a Caspian/Baer/whatever frame you want.
3.) You locate a local dealer who understands single-shot pistols and will accept the transfer (since you're in socal, I would recommend Bright Spot Pawn, Riflegear, PRK Arms, Cold War Shooters, Independetn Armament...
4.) Ship the single shot upper to your out of state FFL, pay them, and they will attach it to the frame and ship to your local FFL for DROS.
5.) DROS
6.) Wait 10 days
7.) Pick up the gun
8.) Remove single shot upper, return to its proper owner (if you borrow) with a gift/cash/anything to say "thank you"
9.) Bring frame to your smith.

Sheepdog1968
08-19-2009, 11:03 PM
I have no problems with this. Go for it. What will the grips be made out of? You will own it forever so get what you want. FWIW, the car I bought 18 months ago I had the dealer order from the factory so I could get it just the way I wanted. It took an extra 2 to 3 months when all was said and done. I have no regrets on doing this and neither will you. Please keep us posted.

Sheepdog1968
08-19-2009, 11:09 PM
With eight or so pages I'm sure you will have lots of opinions. It can be good to hear other thoughs. At the end of the day, make sure you choose what you want. No matter what you choose it looks to be an awesome build. Is the gunsmith as excited as you are?

Sam
08-19-2009, 11:17 PM
Ionbond like I said is good, but the guy won't answer his phone.

Take a look at Harrison's Ionbond pictures. Maybe he'll do it? Oh, and take UCLAplinker's advice. I so want to see a full custom build on a caspian frame in CA.

bin31z
08-19-2009, 11:27 PM
I'm trying hard on the Caspian frame. Let me make a post about the single shot upper. I'm pretty friendly with Andrew from Henderson Defense in Neveda, he'll prolly help me out. Now to find a single shot upper. I'll make a post and see what happens.

As far as ionbond, I don't have alot of details on the process and how if effects the tritium sights. I want to get in touch with Dave's Metal works since he's very close to me but his phone has been busy all day.

bin31z
08-19-2009, 11:44 PM
Man, you are like trying to deal with a 3yr old who just guzzled a bottle of kool-aid. You read posts and then either immediately forget everything in them or just don't understand what's being said.

Sit down, read slowly, and think this through.

1.) You get (buy/borrow) a single shot dedicated upper.
2.) You find a seller out of state (gunbroker, EE on arfcom, CA-friendly dealers) who is willing to sell and attach the upper to a Caspian/Baer/whatever frame you want.
3.) You locate a local dealer who understands single-shot pistols and will accept the transfer (since you're in socal, I would recommend Bright Spot Pawn, Riflegear, PRK Arms, Cold War Shooters, Independetn Armament...
4.) Ship the single shot upper to your out of state FFL, pay them, and they will attach it to the frame and ship to your local FFL for DROS.
5.) DROS
6.) Wait 10 days
7.) Pick up the gun
8.) Remove single shot upper, return to its proper owner (if you borrow) with a gift/cash/anything to say "thank you"
9.) Bring frame to your smith.

Yes...I know I sound frantic and stuff right now trying to get everything together. Its because I have a very involved job in audits of governmental entities. I travel 6 month out of the year and work 10 hours a day on average. I recently broke my leg so I've had alot of time at home to follow through on alot of stuff I've been planning. I finished my LWRC AR 15 project, I ate at all my fav restaraunts. However, I have to start work next Monday and I don't know when's the next time I'm going to have time during business hours to drop the stuff off with my gunsmith and sit down with him and talk about what I wanted. I'm really trying hard to get everything together. Fortunately, for the coming month, i'll be in the LA area still, but after that, its all over the place. And its also the hunting season, so that doesn't make it any easier either.

smokingloon
08-19-2009, 11:49 PM
I talked to the people over at Fusion Firearms and they are willing to add a single shot upper on one of their 1911s for me. Not sure if you are hard pressed on the Caspian.


http://www.fusionfirearms.com/

Sam
08-19-2009, 11:50 PM
I'm trying hard on the Caspian frame. Let me make a post about the single shot upper. I'm pretty friendly with Andrew from Henderson Defense in Neveda, he'll prolly help me out. Now to find a single shot upper. I'll make a post and see what happens.

As far as ionbond, I don't have alot of details on the process and how if effects the tritium sights. I want to get in touch with Dave's Metal works since he's very close to me but his phone has been busy all day.

I believe I was told by Harrison that even the sights could be Ionbonded without trouble.

TitanCi
08-19-2009, 11:51 PM
it's just like buying someone else's custom car vs. customizing your own: you get a bit of satisfaction knowing you had it done the way you wanted it to (even if it looks like everyone elses') vs. actually buying it already done from someone else. I would say in your case, the money is well spent. :)

jdberger
08-19-2009, 11:59 PM
Take
your
time

A full house might take a year to complete (depending on how busy the shop is).

There's nothing wrong with sketching out some general guidelines.

Remember that the 'smith is an artist. Let him create. The best results I've seen are products of collaborations - not dictation.

You can always change things down the line.

Blue is plenty rust resistant (it IS rust). And a decent blueing job is nigh gorgeous.

Paint is...well, paint. (again, this is my opinion - it's worth what you paid for it).

bin31z
08-20-2009, 12:29 AM
I talked to the people over at Fusion Firearms and they are willing to add a single shot upper on one of their 1911s for me. Not sure if you are hard pressed on the Caspian.


http://www.fusionfirearms.com/

Thank you SO much! I'll give them a call in the morning and twist their arm a little. Any idea of price?

Mr.Hoag said he could get it done in 6 month. I always bug him to work on my stuff first :p. I'm like...soooo...Jim...my pistol....how is it looking....The more times you ask, the more your pistol goes to the top of the list! hahaha, i'm just kidding...kinda.

bin31z
08-20-2009, 12:30 AM
Take
your
time

A full house might take a year to complete (depending on how busy the shop is).

There's nothing wrong with sketching out some general guidelines.

Remember that the 'smith is an artist. Let him create. The best results I've seen are products of collaborations - not dictation.

You can always change things down the line.

Blue is plenty rust resistant (it IS rust). And a decent blueing job is nigh gorgeous.

Paint is...well, paint. (again, this is my opinion - it's worth what you paid for it).

Bluing is probably the least effective means of preventing rust. Its one step above bare carbon steel and will need to be oiled at all times. I'll have him blue it first and see how it holds up I guess. The nice thing is that he's bluing the whole gun for free cause of all the other work. He usually charges 225.

bin31z
08-20-2009, 6:48 PM
Cold War Shooters said that they can handle the transfer for me and turn into single shot. I just need to get the single shot upper, someone had one for rent here and I sent him a message. Hopefully he'll get back to me soon.

aplinker
08-20-2009, 8:53 PM
Fjold has done it before with his, PM him.

I'd go with Caspian over Fusion, just for the length of time they've been at it.

If I could get a gun blued for free I would stick with that finish. You won't be disappointed with it. Sure, it's not the best finish in terms of rust resistance, but it's stunningly beautiful, patinas so appealingly. Remember, 1911's are functional art. Let it wear. If it gets bad, it was free, you can have it IonBonded.

bin31z
08-20-2009, 9:23 PM
Fjold has done it before with his, PM him.

I'd go with Caspian over Fusion, just for the length of time they've been at it.

If I could get a gun blued for free I would stick with that finish. You won't be disappointed with it. Sure, it's not the best finish in terms of rust resistance, but it's stunningly beautiful, patinas so appealingly. Remember, 1911's are functional art. Let it wear. If it gets bad, it was free, you can have it IonBonded.

Fjord sold his! He said only 1 person borrowed it in 2 years and he sold it. I am in contact with someone else. Anyone know if Caspian uses 4140 ordnance steel on all their forgings?

ojisan
08-20-2009, 9:27 PM
Not sure where you are located but Techplate in Orange County has a whole variety of metal finishes.
They charge around $100 for a frame and some small pieces, price depends I think on if they are currently running the finish you want.
They do all kinds of finishes.
You have to give them the gun stripped to each part.

www.techplate.com

Take a second, click here, look at all the options you have!
http://techplate.com/specchart1rev.htm

bin31z
08-21-2009, 2:16 AM
Not sure where you are located but Techplate in Orange County has a whole variety of metal finishes.
They charge around $100 for a frame and some small pieces, price depends I think on if they are currently running the finish you want.
They do all kinds of finishes.
You have to give them the gun stripped to each part.

www.techplate.com

Take a second, click here, look at all the options you have!
http://techplate.com/specchart1rev.htm

yea, I think the other members have convinced me to stick with a nicely blued finished...we'll see how it holds up and maybe get it coated later.

bin31z
08-21-2009, 2:29 AM
Alright...after some research, I decided that if I am able to acquire the Caspian slide and frame. I'll incorporate a little homage to the WWII period 1911A1 by stamping Model 1911A1 U.S.Army on the right hand dust cover. Maybe grind down the Caspian maker's located and replace with United States Property.

HOWEVER...someone gave the great idea to go over to the Louder than words forum and I found something...AMU's prototype 1911A2:

http://www.louderthanwords.us/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=5624

apparently, they are built on caspian recon receivers and slides. They have a mish mash of features, some have the external extractor (bleh) and different sights also. this is VERY INTERESTING....

NAhhhhhh...i'll save it for the NEXT one :)

paladin4415
08-21-2009, 7:38 AM
Anyone know if Caspian uses 4140 ordnance steel on all their forgings?

Caspian frames are cast not forged. Their slides are forged.

Centurion_D
08-21-2009, 9:04 AM
Right now I'm gathering parts for my SA 1911. I'll have a local gunsmith work on it and I'm looking forward to it.

CamW
08-21-2009, 9:45 AM
Here's a 1911 that Dave's Metal Works built for me a few years ago.It's nice having a gunsmith that will listen to your ideas and suggest other options. The pistol came out great, about the only thing I would change is the finish. At the time Ion Bond and Ceracoat weren't available, so I went with Durakote. The finish is starting to rub off with holster wear. I'll probably have Dave Ceracoat the pistol .

http://img228.imageshack.us/img228/5941/gray19111cl.jpg (http://img228.imageshack.us/i/gray19111cl.jpg/)

bin31z
08-21-2009, 9:45 AM
Caspian frames are cast not forged. Their slides are forged.

I actually read that earlier. Did some research, seems like there's no real difference between forging and casting if done right so no biggie I guess.

bin31z
08-21-2009, 9:47 AM
Here's a 1911 that Dave's Metal Works built for me a few years ago.It's nice having a gunsmith that will listen to your ideas and suggest other options. The pistol came out great, about the only thing I would change is the finish. At the time Ion Bond and Ceracoat weren't available, so I went with Durakote. The finish is starting to rub off with holster wear. I'll probably have Dave Ceracoat the pistol .

http://img228.imageshack.us/img228/5941/gray19111cl.jpg (http://img228.imageshack.us/i/gray19111cl.jpg/)

Looks freaking sweet dude! Duracoat does wears pretty easy, its pretty much like spray paint to me. What are the specs on your gun?

bin31z
08-21-2009, 9:48 AM
Right now I'm gathering parts for my SA 1911. I'll have a local gunsmith work on it and I'm looking forward to it.

You are the one who wanted the trigger job right? So did you end up getting a nice sear and hammer?

CamW
08-21-2009, 10:08 AM
Specs on the gun:
Springfield frame
G.I. National Match hard slide
Bar Sto barrel (Fit by Bar Sto)
Cylinder and Slide hammer and sear and ambi safety
Novak rear , tritium front sight
S&A magwell blended to frame and rounded off
20 LPI checkering
Flat top slide
VZ grips

Here's a shot of the muzzle that Dave machined flush with the bushing.

http://img51.imageshack.us/img51/4800/gray1911muzzle4wp.jpg (http://img51.imageshack.us/i/gray1911muzzle4wp.jpg/)

Dave does great work,and he's local. I hate shipping guns off to be worked on.

bin31z
08-21-2009, 12:06 PM
That's a nice crown he put on the barrel. How did you manage to snag that NM slide?

CamW
08-21-2009, 12:28 PM
I picked up the slide at one of Pomona gun shows many years ago.I wish I had bought more of them.

bin31z
08-21-2009, 10:45 PM
Ok. Canceled the order on the GI Springfield. Went ahead and placed the order for my 5" caspian carbon slide

-classic vertical serrations
-no front serrations (i'ma have the smith do it the way I like them)
-Heinie sight cuts
-Caspian word logo only
-Lowered and flared

Total was about 280 includig shipping. The classic frame w/o perm plunger tube is going for 150 on midway with dealer status, classic frame w/perm plunger tube and .250 beavertail cut is going for 200 on brownells with dealer status. Neither are in stock right, so whichever one comes back in stock first I'ma have them order for me. I like the idea of the a integrated plunger tube, but the beavertail cuts limits my choices for which beavertail I can get. I'll go with a chip mccormick unit if I end up with that frame, its the only .250 beavertail I like. I like the Wilson unit, but it requires a different cut. Other obvious choice is the Ed Brown, but those "memory humps" look ridiculous.

bin31z
08-21-2009, 10:46 PM
I picked up the slide at one of Pomona gun shows many years ago.I wish I had bought more of them.

Yea, custom build on a NM slide kit is sweet.

randy
08-22-2009, 12:42 AM
Camron before you get it refinished with Ion Bond have Dave mill in some forward cocking serrations.

Then let me know how much I owe you for the pistol

Randy

aplinker
08-22-2009, 12:59 AM
Forward serrations, stamping on the slide, logos... YUCK

bin31z
08-22-2009, 1:04 AM
Forward serrations, stamping on the slide, logos... YUCK

I guess you hate like 80 percent of the custom 1911's out there then.

CamW
08-22-2009, 7:56 PM
Randy,
Why would you want this old gun when you have all those nice Kings Gun Works pistols?Besides I'm not a fan of forward serrations.:D

Sam
08-22-2009, 10:58 PM
I guess you hate like 80 percent of the custom 1911's out there then.

There is a vast difference between hating a 1911 and preferring it a different way. I would have ordered my Wilsons naked but I love them anyway in spite of their faults.

bin31z
08-22-2009, 11:30 PM
I decided against marking the frame. I guess that looks good for a beater gun but not a full custom like this. I will also build a MEU(SOC) replica down the road thought...(so a commander, railed, and now a Meu(soc) haha). It won't be completely sterile, it will still have the word marking on the left hand side. Forward serrations are very functional to me and I just like the way they look. No serrations if fine as well but that's just my preference.