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Id An Actuator Please


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#1 hughlong

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Posted 22 August 2005 - 09:47 PM

I recently purchased on Ebay a "Colt 1928" actuator". It arrived today I am not exactly sure what it is. It is unmarked in any place...a WW2 actuator should be marked with the makers initial on the left side, behind the slot for the locking block. This one is not marked and doesn't appear to have been messed with in any way.

It looks , except for the lack of markings, every bit like a remington® made actuator that I have in my collection of spares. Knurled or checkered(just like the WW2 checkered actuators that are pretty common)

The finish looks just about mint, but reminds me more of the black oxide on some other new TSMG parts that I have rather than the high polish colt blue on my 1921.

This was sold as a Colt 1928 Navy actuator...could it be?? What do you think?
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#2 Arthur Fliegenheimer

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Posted 22 August 2005 - 10:08 PM

hughlong,

The real deal Colt Navy actuators were made from two pieces which can bee seen by the two rivets showing through on the top of the actuator. These actuators were made from existing Colt 1921 actuators, either the early 1921's with the channel in the front, or later smooth fronts, and the weighted bottom portion similar to WWII Savage types. This part should be nickel if it is a Colt, and with no markings other than in the Bluish lock area on some.

There was recently an ebay auction where the seller had a difficult time getting his reserve that was somewhere over $250. Maybe because his pics were so poor it was difficult to determine what he had.

What did you pay? Since you seem in doubt as to what you have purchased, what info were you using to guide you before you decided to bid? How about a pic?

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#3 hughlong

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Posted 23 August 2005 - 06:57 PM

Orignially the 1928 actuators were made from 1921 actuators and are a rivited 2 piece design. Later ones were one piece.

I will post a picture, but this one looks like an early WW2 checkered or knurled actuator. Again, it is exactly like a R marked one that I have, but this one is not marked in any way.

Could it be a Colt? Could it be an early savage commercial type that was not marked with an S?

If it is a colt, then the 350+ I paid was ok...if not, then I have about 200% of value in it.

As I look at it, it just doesn't look like a colt made product to me. The main clue for me is the knurling on the knob verses the hand checkering on my 1921.
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#4 PK.

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Posted 23 August 2005 - 07:35 PM

I don’t think the ’21 knobs were hand checkered, at least none that I have seen were. The knurling was quite good however.

Some of the most notable differences will be found in the shape of the knob, particularly in how it is hollowed out. The knurling band is wider and placed a bit differently on the Colt as well. Some photos of the knob will surely answer the question; “a picture is worth a thousand words”.

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#5 Arthur Fliegenheimer

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Posted 23 August 2005 - 09:56 PM

QUOTE
Originally the 1928 actuators were made from 1921 actuators and are a riveted 2 piece design. Later ones were one piece.
Hughlong

There is a huge difference in value between the two-piece non-blued actuator made for the Colt Navy as used by the Marines in the 1920's and the one piece type indistinguishable from the WWII version, aside from the "S/AOC/R/5" markings, as used on later U.S. Navy models that went to the FBI/PD. These two piece actuators using the first type 1921 actuator with front channel groove and the 1921 actuator without the groove have sold from $1000-$1500.

I'm thinking what you have is an actuator of more recent manufacture.

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#6 gijive

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Posted 24 August 2005 - 08:52 AM

QUOTE (PK. @ Aug 23 2005, 07:35 PM)
Some of the most notable differences will be found in the shape of the knob, particularly in how it is hollowed out.  The knurling band is wider and placed a bit differently on the Colt as well.

Let me echo PK's remarks on this topic. If you have a Colt 1921 Model actuator to compare it to, you should easily be able to distinguish the difference in the knob shape and the milled interior area of the knob. The WWII knobs are slightly smaller and the hollowed out area is usually not as polished.

Sometimes the pictures on auction sites are purposely out-of-focus so discriminating buyers can't determine if they are being scammed. I am not saying this is the case with your actuator, but I saw the pictures of the actuator you purchased and purposely stayed away from it because of the out-of-focus pictures.

Some time ago I purchased what was purported to be an original Colt nickel oil can for the butt stock, from the same seller. It turned out to be a WWII variety oil can that had been bead-blasted and re-nickeled to appear to be an original. I compared it to my original and determined it wasn't the real McCoy. Let the buyer beware!
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#7 OldFalGuy

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Posted 24 August 2005 - 08:03 PM

Haven't been over to Ebay in a while and just now while there saw a front sight advertised as Colt Thompson, WWii West Hurley and parkerized to boot! Amazing how the time and space can get warp to bring us this find!!
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#8 OldFalGuy

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Posted 25 August 2005 - 03:33 PM

Phil,

I forgot to add it was a 1927 model Thompson- go figure- wasn't that a funny model semi only or something?

Mark
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#9 hughlong

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Posted 25 August 2005 - 09:18 PM

just looked over the "colt 1928 actuator" again and compared it with my 21 colt and several military actuators.

the knob is slightly smaller than the 21 colt. the knurling is somewhat narrower than that on a 21 colt but looks very very similar; as you look into the knob from the top, the "1928 colt actuator" has a concave "crater" at the bottom of the knob just like the 21 colt.

The military actuators have a somewhat larger knob than this "1928 colt actuator" and when viewed from the top, down into the cavity in the knob, there is no concave "crater" in the bottom as in the 21 colt and in the "1928 colt actuator"

there are no markings at all on the supposed "1928 colt actuator" and no evidence that any have been removed...but who knows.

I also compared it to a west hurley cast actuator, but it is nothing like it..mush more finely made than a west hurley and better made than a ww2 military...but not quite as fine as a 21 colt actuator.
What do you think?
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#10 gijive

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Posted 25 August 2005 - 09:27 PM

Hugh,

I think some members here could make a better estimation if you could provide a picture. I had a WWII actuator with a smooth knob that was unmarked. It looked identical to an AOC or Remington made actuator. I know it is WWII because it was a post war repack (for long term storage) with the original cosmoline wrapping and RIA (Rock Island Armory) on the paper label.

The smaller knob would tend to indicate a WWII actuator.
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