I need a new slide for my 1911


PDA






TonyAngel
June 23, 2010, 11:18 PM
I have a somewhat custom 1911 that has the look of an older Combat Elite. It had anyway. Due to Katrina flooding, the slide is badly pitted and the sights are all messed up. I don't mind the pitted slide, because it still shoots like a dream. My problem is that the slide was milled for the very old style Wichita sights and I can't find another to replace them.

I was going to see about getting a new slide built, but ran across Rock Island Armory 1911's. Considering the price of a complete RIA 1911, I was considering just getting one and putting the slide on my Colt frame.

What do you guys think?

If you enjoyed reading about "I need a new slide for my 1911" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Ratdog68
June 23, 2010, 11:23 PM
I think some pix of the existing set-up would be in order. A more "edjumicated" opinion might be netted.

TonyAngel
June 24, 2010, 12:05 AM
OK, pics as requested.

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s265/ajangelettejr/DSC_0008-1.jpg

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s265/ajangelettejr/DSC_0009-1.jpg

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s265/ajangelettejr/DSC_0010-1.jpg

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s265/ajangelettejr/DSC_0011.jpg

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s265/ajangelettejr/DSC_0012-1.jpg

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s265/ajangelettejr/DSC_0013-1.jpg

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s265/ajangelettejr/DSC_0014-1.jpg

Like I said, I don't mind the pitting. If I could get the sight situation sorted out, I'd just have the slide parked and be done with it. It's a great shooter.

I guess the question I should have asked is whether the cuts for the Wichita sights changed when they changed the profile of the rear sight.

David E
June 24, 2010, 12:27 AM
It looks like a different cut than the Bo-Mar/Caspian/STI, but I'd contact a knowledgeable gunsmith and find out for sure.

You could have the slide welded up and recut for the sight of your choice.

Were it mine, tho, I'd replace the slide with a Colt if I could find one, or a Caspian if I couldn't. I'd make the gun look like it should. Putting a RIA slide on a Colt frame is just.........wrong......

Greg528iT
June 24, 2010, 12:40 AM
As much heat as would go into that slide to have it filled with weld material, I'd worry that the slide would warp... any heat treat put into the steel will take away any heat treat of it.
I'd look at Wilson or other for a replacement slide.
As for the Rock Island, buy it and shoot it. Nice to have a nicer target gun and a ummm beater.

Ratdog68
June 24, 2010, 01:08 AM
That is a heart breaker for sure. :( Have you tried finding out from Colt if a replacement slide would be available from them? M'be a set of some older Wilson Combat sights on it? The milled out portion wouldn't be "filled" by them like the Witchitas... but, they might work fine with the existing slide if you end up opting to keep it as is. Here's a pic of the older Wilson set... about 20yrs. ago is when they were offered. I'm wondering whether the pits would do ok with a silver solder type of "fill"... followed by a Duracoat treatment?

http://i677.photobucket.com/albums/vv134/Ratdog68/Modern/Pistols/45s002.jpg?t=1277355595

David E
June 24, 2010, 01:16 AM
As much heat as would go into that slide to have it filled with weld material, I'd worry that the slide would warp... any heat treat put into the steel will take away any heat treat of it.

There's a way to do it safely. I wouldn't take it to the muffler shop and have the muffler tech weld 'er up!

Still, I agree it'd be easier to find another slide.

rklessdriver
June 24, 2010, 08:49 AM
I'll bet that if you called COLT's customer service and told them your story about Katrina damaging your COLT, that they would give you a very fair price on fitting a new slide to your COLT.

Since you have an 80 Series, you have a few options w/Colt.

1. Any of the newer XSE slides will work, which use low mount Novak sights (including the new Combat Elite).

2. The 01991 slide, which use std COLT sights and can be fit for any style sight cut you want.

If you want to stay like it was (with adjustable sights), the new Gold Cup Trophy's and Special Combat's have a Champion mfg Bomar cut adjustable rear sight and the custom shop could fit that to a new 01991 slide.... COLT has everything you need to either change your gun to exellent fixed sights or put it back nearly identical to what it was.

IMO this is the best fix for your pistol.

Are you a member of the 1911 forum? If so send me a PM here and I will send you some info that might help speed up the process if you'd like COLT to do the work.
Will

Vern Humphrey
June 24, 2010, 09:31 AM
Why not go the other way and make a sight to fit the slide? Anyone with a milling machine could make a fixed sight to fit your gun.

ghitch75
June 24, 2010, 10:21 AM
boy when i seen the pic's almost brought a tear to one's eyes.....sad to see a pony like that....good luck..

mljdeckard
June 24, 2010, 10:42 AM
I would order the free Brownell's 1911 catalog to start with, you might find other parts you can swap out while you're at it. And yeah, find a smith that specializes in 1911s.

gbw
June 24, 2010, 11:23 AM
Unless something changed a Colt slide from Colt or Brownells will cost more than the gun is worth.

That looks almost identical to a Bo-Mar rear sight installation. As another choice, look at Caspian Arms - they will provide a top quality slide pre-milled for whatever sights you want for far less than Colt, and they can probably supply and install the sights if you wish.

HOME DEPOT GEORGE
June 24, 2010, 02:08 PM
Rock island has the tactical slide with Novak sights I believe for 135.00 link http://i293.photobucket.com/albums/mm51/homedepotgeorge/RIA_Slide_Tactic_4b8cc3cded296.jpg If you call them ask for Arnell or Ivan, Arnell is the gunsmith and Ivan is owner they always pick up the phone

TonyAngel
June 24, 2010, 02:35 PM
Thanks for all of the suggestions. I looked around for a colt slide and unless I can find one used, it's going to be out of the question. The reason that I was looking at the RIA slide is because it's reasonably priced and it will come with sights.

My problem is that the only gun smith I trusted in my area left after the storm. I don't want to take the work to a machinist that doesn't have knowledge of firearms.

Really, I'd dump the whole thing and get a new one, but this one is kind of special. If you look at the pics, you'll notice how under cut the frame is under the trigger guard and the checkering was done by hand. Well, not by hand, but manually on a milling machine. It was all cut to fit my hand. Going out and buying another just isn't an option.

Heck, I may just order the parts that I need from Caspian then send all of it off to someone and just wait however long it takes. I'm just undecided on what to do.

Anyway, thanks again.

jfrey
June 24, 2010, 04:24 PM
Call Claudio Salasa at Briley Mfg. in Houston. He is a whiz on 1911's and can make you sights to fit if necessary. He can also rebuild the slide if you want to get it back to normal. Claudio knows what he is doing. Otherwise, call Dawson Precision, just north of Austin, and see if they could mill you a set of sights to fit. They make great products to fit almost all sight cuts. Give 'em a call and see what they can do for you.

mljdeckard
June 24, 2010, 11:22 PM
This thing isn't a cost effective project at all. It's totaled no matter how you look at it. This guy has a gun that works for him, and he wants to keep it anyway. If he wants to make it work, he has to get a slide from somewhere.

Another idea that comes to mind, is poking around to the local smiths and dealers to see if one of them has a gun with a ruined frame but an intact slide. Just sayin'.

.45Heater
June 24, 2010, 11:31 PM
Pick a good 1911 gunsmith... he'll determine the right slide replacement. Chuck Rogers or Bob Rodgers would be a nice start.

Magnumite
June 25, 2010, 06:31 AM
You may just throw in the towel, surrender and have a good slide fit to it. You like this setup enough, you're confident with it and you want it nice. From personal experience, you probably won't rest until it is just right.

A good slide of your choosing is is within an additional $100 of your present price. You may consider going on gunbroker, get the Competition series Colt slide and have it fit to the pistol. CDNN was selling those slides also.

Old Shooter
June 25, 2010, 06:57 AM
Another idea that comes to mind, is poking around to the local smiths and dealers to see if one of them has a gun with a ruined frame but an intact slide. Just sayin'.

Not recently, but I've sen some gunshops parts boxes that had all sorts of oddball left-over slides, barrels and assorted auto and revolver parts.

Might be worth a day of your time either riding around checking and talking or giving them a call.

Is there a gun show coming up in your area? I frequently see a lot of them at the Roanoke show in various conditions ranging from pretty good to paperweights.

railroader
June 25, 2010, 08:39 AM
Here's a used slide for sale. http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=314986 Mark

Greg528iT
June 25, 2010, 09:24 AM
I vote again for new slide and rebuilding. Who cares that it may cost more to repair it than the gun was worth before the damage or maybe worth after repair. We do not own guns for their cost efficiency. We own them, cause they are cool, and it sounds like you have the frame set up to your liking.

The hardest part may be deciding on what gun smith to send it to. Several others have listed some good sources for slides, a new barrel, some other little detail parts.

AmEngRifles
August 26, 2010, 12:23 AM
Dang! There must have been some caustic mud in that flood. Did not think it would look THAT bad after even a few months! Was that water from a nuclear cooling system? :-)

I think "Don't drink the water" now applies in New Orleans and Mexico!

JTQ
August 26, 2010, 07:27 AM
My problem is that the only gun smith I trusted in my area left after the storm.

How about Clark Custom Guns? How far are you from Princeton, LA.

http://www.clarkcustomguns.com/

FLAvalanche
August 26, 2010, 08:18 AM
Dang! There must have been some caustic mud in that flood. Did not think it would look THAT bad after even a few months! Was that water from a nuclear cooling system? :-)

I think "Don't drink the water" now applies in New Orleans and Mexico!
You have to remember that flood water is some of the nastiest stuff around. All the toxins, chemicals, fertilizers in the ground leech back into the flood water. Not to mention all the chemicals and toxins it picks up from houses, cars, and sewage systems.

ugaarguy
August 26, 2010, 02:13 PM
Folks y'all are ignoring a major issue. You can't just replace a slide on a 1911 in most cases. Unlike more recent designs, which lock up on the barrel hood, 1911s have locking lugs forward of the chamber which are machined oversize, and then fitted individually to the slide. You might get lucky and get a close fit, you might get really lucky and get a very tight slide that the existing bbl can be fitted to; or might get a really loose fit that requires the lugs to be rebuilt with weld, and then fitted to the slide. You also need to ensure that the new slide is generous on the rail dimensions so that it can be fitted to the frame rails. Another issue a new bushing fiited between the old bbl and new slide. Last, the RIA guns don't use a firing pin safety. If you want to convert it to 70 series type pistol you'll need the frame spacer shim to fill in where the 80 series lever go, and you'll probably want a standard (non 80 series) firing pin. This stuff doesn't just drop in on a 1911.

BullfrogKen
August 26, 2010, 09:47 PM
Give my friend Jim Garthwaite a call. I had him build me up a custom 1911 several years back, and I requested a completely new top end. He gave me credit for my original, and I know he used it on another project for a different customer.

I've been in Jim's shop. He's got 35 years worth of parts from customer's guns in his shop for guys exactly in your predicament. If he's willing to do it for you, he'll treat you right. If he can't do it, he'll be up front about it and not B.S. you about why it shouldn't be done.

If you enjoyed reading about "I need a new slide for my 1911" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!