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Fake Ithaca M1911A1 - Any Other Examples?


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#21 dalbert

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Posted 13 September 2016 - 06:19 PM

kwill,

 

More good points were made in your post.  Thank you for being a part of this conversation.

 

Machodoc,

 

Not that it really matters to the conversation, but can you post photos of the box, with a close up of any hardware, as well as the medallion?  

 

David Albert

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#22 Machodoc

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Posted 14 September 2016 - 08:52 AM

I need to find some time to organize what currently seems to be certain (or almost so); probable; and unlikely.  That might help a clearer picture to emerge.

David - I sure will ... probably later today.

I found this comment on a treatise about National Match Colts, posted on another board.  Can anyone source the origin of this information?


 "Colt records show that in 1921 the first match barrel was shipped. It was specially marked with a "MB" in a circle, meaning "Match Barrel".


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#23 kwill

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Posted 14 September 2016 - 11:47 AM

I think that may have been my comment.  It is based on an analysis of the shipping records.  Do you have my article on NM pistols?


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#24 Machodoc

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Posted 14 September 2016 - 08:31 PM

I think that may have been my comment.  It is based on an analysis of the shipping records.  Do you have my article on NM pistols?

 

Kwill - I saw one posted--in several parts--on another board.  It was quite good, but I didn't see the source of the information.

 

David Albert - I'm attaching some photos of the case, but need to take others when I'm outside in the light.  It has a glass top, and that mirrored everything in the room.  I can show the interior, the lock and the wood, though.  I've had some experience with restoring antique musical instruments, and know that hardware design for cases doesn't seem to change a whole lot over time.  I've even got a source for a place that sells hardware that is surplus from the 1920s--left over from a bankrupt company--so it's not hard to make older cases out of new materials.  If I had to speculate, though, based upon materials and construction, I'd have to say that this one *might* go back into the '20s,* but is certainly in period for the late '40s to early '60s.  I'd be comfortable guesstimating that this case was made in the '50s, or earlier.  

[*Cases of similar construction can be identified that were used to hold and display watches and other items in jewelry stores that are from the '20s and '30s -- but it's really hard to tell.  Hardware that looks fairly new can either be old and well-stored over the years ... or it can be fairly new.  It looks like someone else tried to find marks on this case and failed.]

The medallion was made by Juan Gottuzo, a rather well known craftsman in Argentina.  It would be typical for such a medallion to have been stamped in bronze, silver, perhaps silver-plated bronze, and gold.  I have found no examples of this in gold.  Based upon some small scratches and one "dinged" corner, this one appears to be silver.  In the same time period, in the U.S., it was not uncommon for silver medals to be made of "coin silver": literally, melted silver currency, as it was plentiful, sturdy, made to be stamped, and relatively cheap back then.

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#25 Machodoc

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Posted 14 September 2016 - 09:13 PM

Do you have my article on NM pistols?

 

Kwill -- I sent you an IM to verify the name on the article that I found posted elsewhere.  That was from 2012.

Thanks for posting photos of the Colt-reworked 1911-turned-National-Match.  I don't think I could have let go of that one.


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#26 kwill

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Posted 15 September 2016 - 07:23 AM

Kwill - I saw one posted--in several parts--on another board


Do you mind sharing where?


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#27 Machodoc

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Posted 15 September 2016 - 11:56 AM

Kwill - I saw one posted--in several parts--on another board


Do you mind sharing where?

 

https://forums.1911f...ad.php?t=386144


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#28 Machodoc

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Posted 15 September 2016 - 01:24 PM

Let's look at just the slide for a moment, if we may.  All the roll marks on it are crisp, but the main reason why I think this slide has not been restored or re-blued is the displaced metal from the "pony" stamp.  I'm including a closeup of that stamp.  You can see that the raised/displaced metal hasn't been flattened or lowered in any way, and that those parts still retain the "grain" of the finished metal.  

When that mark is buffed even a little after it has been stamped, the tops of those raised bits get flattened and/or shiny--if not go away entirely.  I'm not seeing that at all here.

 

Also, the only mark on this slide is the "B" above the FP stop plate.  I'm not sure what that means (haven't found where my Clawson ended up yet), but if this part went into service, it should have had other markings, shouldn't it?  How about the amount of wear showing--not only through the finish, but in the metal itself--does this slide look virtually unused to others here?

What do you think?  Has this slide been re-finished since it was marked, or not?

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Edited by Machodoc, 15 September 2016 - 02:08 PM.

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#29 Tman

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Posted 15 September 2016 - 01:45 PM

I pulled my Clawson book and could find no reference to the 'B' stamp in your photos.


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#30 Machodoc

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Posted 15 September 2016 - 02:05 PM

I pulled my Clawson book and could find no reference to the 'B' stamp in your photos.


Thanks for looking, Tman!  I found the box of books that I thought held my copy of Clawson, but no joy.  Still looking for mine.

I've edited my last post since you replied to it -- care to tell me what you think about the slide?


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#31 Tman

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Posted 16 September 2016 - 11:18 AM

Not being an expert, I think the slide looks very original. You have made excellent points about the metal displacement and bluing.


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#32 Machodoc

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Posted 16 September 2016 - 04:15 PM

Not being an expert, I think the slide looks very original. You have made excellent points about the metal displacement and bluing.

 

That the pony stamp was applied after the last time the steel was buffed seems even more apparent in this photo -- taken with a low-power microscope.

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Edited by Machodoc, 16 September 2016 - 05:00 PM.

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#33 Machodoc

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Posted 16 September 2016 - 05:49 PM

kwill, on 13 Sept 2016 - 18:25, said:
Colt didn't use that italized serifed font until after the 1924 switch to the new A1 features. For your SN, which would have originally shipped in 1916 they were using a straight up non-serif (Gothic) font. I think Colt used a new frame when they reworked the pistol in the 1930s but put the old SN on it. Usually when they did that they put an "R" at the end of the number to signify that the frame had been replaced but they obviously didn't in this case. I don't know about the Argentine connection, which seem tenuous to me but all this is really a mystery and this guess work is kind of pointless, I suppose. That's what makes collecting fun.


Here's a comparison of the SN and Government Model markings for the pistol in question, and a verified (but park'd) Hartford Marina gun from the small group shipped in 1925 (the small group from 1924 had the same markings).

EDIT: Here's a link to another Government Model Colt. The "Government Model" seems to be a very good match, with the exception of the last "E" (broken die?). The serial number font also appears to be a good match, with the exception of the "C".

http://www.coltautos...m_C200617b1.jpg

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Edited by Machodoc, 17 September 2016 - 10:40 AM.

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#34 ron_brock

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Posted 16 September 2016 - 07:47 PM

Ill preface this with I know nothing about 1911s but have enjoyed this thread.

I notice the O V and at least the last E in yours are quite a bit different than the reference. Of course I understand the large gap in serial numbers. Are these consistent with 1911 stamps more so than A1s? How about the way numbers are stamped. The three seems slightly higher than the others.

I like the 1911 was sent back to Colt and upgraded theory. Seems most logical to me.

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#35 Machodoc

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Posted 16 September 2016 - 09:21 PM

Ill preface this with I know nothing about 1911s but have enjoyed this thread.

I notice the O V and at least the last E in yours are quite a bit different than the reference. Of course I understand the large gap in serial numbers. Are these consistent with 1911 stamps more so than A1s? How about the way numbers are stamped. The three seems slightly higher than the others.


The Parkerized example comes from the early transitional period to the 1911A1.  We aren't sure about the frame/receiver on the other one.  The last E is indeed puzzling, if not troubling, but the differences in the O and V may be due to camera angle.  


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#36 dalbert

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Posted 17 September 2016 - 04:41 PM

One thing I saw mentioned join the 2nd edition Poyer book, on page 311, he indicates that "Commercial or military pistols repaired or overhauled at Colt were usually marked "K" on the right side of the trigger guard."  (Poyer italicized "usually")  I guess if the frame were replaced, this would not apply, but in your photos, the trigger guard is obstructed by the wood dowel used to prop it up.  Does the trigger guard have such a marking?

 

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#37 Machodoc

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Posted 17 September 2016 - 09:25 PM

Unfortunately, no markings whatsoever are on the trigger guard.  I haven't pulled the grips/stock off yet, but no other marks are showing on the receiver/frame, so far, except for those noted. 


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#38 Machodoc

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Posted 18 September 2016 - 09:37 AM

Interesting Coincidences?

The Argentine battleships Rivadavia and Moreno both underwent powerplant conversions in the U.S.  Over a period of roughly two years, their propulsion systems were upgraded from coal to oil, they were re-armed, and they received new fire control systems.  Work was completed on the Moreno, the second one completed, in July of 1926.

It's interesting that the odd and out-of-place serial number on this gun happens to be 7 13 26, and it has upgrades that apparently would have been available in 1926.  The font style used on the serial number also matches that used in 1926.  

During this time, both Argentine ships apparently received 78 (each) Colt government models.  With slides marked "Marina Argentina" in the same font as that placed on the earlier style slide that's on the "mystery Colt" in question.  

Kind of makes you go, "Hmmmm ...", doesn't it?  Coupled with the display that includes a silver medal from the Argentine Naval Academy, might this have been prepared as a presentation piece for a U.S. Naval officer who was a liason, or perhaps some shipyard official?


Edited by Machodoc, 18 September 2016 - 09:52 AM.

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#39 Machodoc

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Posted 29 October 2016 - 12:06 PM

I've had a little setback due to an accident that caused me to take a hiatus from my research, but here's an update--something that I think is significant.

You may recall that I was concerned about the roll marks on the receiver of this gun because the third "E" in "Government Model" had a middle horizontal line that was shorter than that on the other two letters.  Well, a close-up of a photo of a 1927 Colt made for the Argentine Navy (from Clawson) shows the same flaw in that letter.  The size proportion between the serial number and the "Government Model" roll mark also match: something that changed over the years.  

This suggests that even though the slide appears to have been an NOS part made about 1914-16 for an earlier Argentine Navy contract, the receiver appears to have been marked with the same die used in 1927.  Maybe my straw-man theory that the out-of-sequence serial number could be a date (7-13-26) has some validity after all?


Clawson repeatedly notes that Colt never threw anything away, that they re-used parts that were rejected for U.S. military contracts to make commercial guns, etc..  He also notes that it was common for Colt to make 10-11% overrun parts for commercial gun contracts, so it's not unrealistic for them to have retrieved an earlier slide from the parts bin to make a presentation gun for someone who might have influence over Argentine purchases.  Keep in mind that the concept of "oxygen" (incentives/bribes) has long been part of the Argentine way of doing business.  Later I'll post some more reasons why I think this was made in Colt's shop, probably of bits and pieces from the bins, but may have been kept off the records as a present.


 

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Edited by Machodoc, 29 October 2016 - 06:06 PM.

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#40 Machodoc

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Posted 30 October 2016 - 07:57 PM

Here's a 1924 Argentine Navy contract Colt with the same faulty last "E" in the roll mark.  

 

 


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