Caspian Frame w/ Parts - What would you do with it?


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Shytheed Dumas
February 27, 2012, 09:53 PM
I have the opportunity to buy the Caspian frame in the picture below. It appears to to be a basic carbon steel government frame with miscellaneous gun show parts. There are some scratches around a couple of the pins, and I believe it was home assembled. The more I look at it, the more I think it has been fit to a slide, although I will be the first to admit that I can't say so with certainty.

Two important questions:


What is it worth? Very little out there to compare it to, but I'm guessing it's not worth much...
What would you do to complete it as a the "best bang for the buck" range gun?


I'm not looking for a carry or home defense piece, but I would love to have a decent and reliable 1911 for the range that won't break the bank. I am open to stripping it back to a bare frame again if necessary, but I am not looking for a top dollar custom job - especially with a base carbon steel frame. Thanks for your help!

http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h285/guttingkw/CaspianFrame.jpg

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Shytheed Dumas
February 28, 2012, 05:37 AM
Maybe better to take a pass on it, I guess?

I have a little concern that once I buy parts and pay a gunsmith to fit them, I will be out every bit as much as if I had just bought one outright...

OARNGESI
February 28, 2012, 06:13 AM
Id buy a nice one assembled unless your goal is to have something better than off the shelf guns, its never cheaper to build your own.

Shytheed Dumas
February 28, 2012, 06:42 AM
Any idea of what it would be worth? Based on the scratches (not to mention what look like cheapo parts), I don't think it's ever destined to become better than an off the shelf gun. It's just a matter of whether I make a low offer or pass all together.

Road Less Traveled
February 28, 2012, 08:42 AM
Caspian is known for the quality of their frames. A gunsmith I know says that a lot of high-end custom smiths use Caspian frames exclusively.

Search for the frames on gunbroker.com, it seems like there are always a few for sale.

LeonCarr
February 28, 2012, 10:31 AM
1. I would trade it for a Glock, but that is just me :)
2. A good gunsmith could turn that into a great 1911. Don't go cheap on a gun that might be used to defend you life or your family. The beauty of having a gun built is you can do it in stages as the budget allows. A Caspian frame is a quality part.

Just my .02,
LeonCarr

lathedog
February 28, 2012, 11:21 AM
As far as worth, I'd check the Caspian website or Brownell's to see what they get for a frame.

If someone did some work to it (ie fitting the assembled parts), it may be worth more or less depending on the quality of work. All the other parts on there can be valued the same way. Not sure, but the parts currently in the frame look like basic parts, nothing fancy.

A cheap way to finish that frame out would be a complete top end from Sarco. Not the best stuff, but if you are looking for cheap they can hook you up. You might consider buying a slide, barrel, and other top end parts from Caspian, or checking for top end assemblies on Gunbroker. Brownell's is another source for all 1911 parts but not necessarily at the lowest prices.

Keep in mind that fitting of 1911 components is a skill like any other.

I would not go over $150 for the frame assembly, and only then if it function checked OK. If it looked poorly fitted I would pass. If all the internals were properly fitted (by someone who knew how to do that) it might be worth up to $250. Maybe.

wickedsprint
February 28, 2012, 11:23 AM
Ive considered this route to make a dedicated 1911 .22.

316SS
February 28, 2012, 04:10 PM
You could get a Ruger SR1911, then you'd get an entire working gun based on a "Caspian" frame* with similar (maybe better) small parts. and it would be stainless. It wouldn't break the bank, but you might have a hard time finding one. The best part is, if it doesn't work, you could send it back and Ruger will take care of you. Not true of a DIY gun.

*Investment cast Caspian frames are/were made by Ruger's Pine Tree Foundry.

theQman23
February 28, 2012, 04:35 PM
You certainly can build a nice custom 1911 out of parts cheaper than you can buy one, absolutely, people do it all the time, I just did one myself. Here's what you need to do to make it work though:

Start with an inexpensive foundation, like this one. Negotiate with the guy that you'll have to do a ton of work to fit this into a completed, and cosmetically finished gun. Then, if you can buy what's in the photo for 250-300 bucks, then go buy a used stainless slide complete with barrel and bushing, for say........ 400$. Add a hammer and high rise grip safety, a checkering file, a brownells sear tool for the trigger job, and you could have a total investment of under $1000 and if you fit the barrell properly, and do a nice trigger job and straight checkering work you could have a gun just as nice as a sig or a s&W for a little less money. Bead blast the cold steel frame, put the stainless slide, (after yo polish it of course) on top (you'll have to fit it, not hard, just something you'll have to learn) and viola. After about a thousand bucks, and roughly 20 or 30 hours of project time, you could have your very own, custom build, that you are very proud of and can have for 1/2 the cost of a EB or WC or LB.
This is what I did, and it was a TON OF FUN.
In full disclosure, I have to admit I'm not holding the inch and half at 25 yards the big boys claim, my gun is probably only good for 2 to 2 1/2 inches at 25, but it looks really nice, I built it myself, and I've learned a TON from doing the project.

scramasax
February 28, 2012, 06:01 PM
Caspian builds good frames. You can get all the parts to finish it from several sources and vidios on builds. If it were me I'd get a MecTec carbine upper for it.

Cheers,

ts

1KPerDay
February 28, 2012, 07:24 PM
Two important questions:

[LIST=1]
What is it worth? Very little out there to compare it to, but I'm guessing it's not worth much...
What would you do to complete it as a the "best bang for the buck" range gun?
Depending on the price (IMO $150-200ish? just guessing) I'd get it and buy a colt conversion unit or Advantage Arms or Marvel or (etc.) .22 upper. I'm looking for something similar myself.

cfullgraf
February 28, 2012, 07:40 PM
Caspian makes good stuff.

Buy a Caspian slide to go with the frame. You can get it outfitted to your wants.

Shytheed Dumas
February 28, 2012, 08:11 PM
Okay, a quick look at Advantage Arms .22lr kits really got me thinking this is the way to go. I've been wanting to buy a suppressor some time in the next year and was going to have to replace my S&W 22a with something that would take a threaded barrel, anyway.

Are there any .22 kits on the more economical side available with a threaded barrel that anyone would recommend?

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