View Full Version : Manufacturers of 1911 components.

Michael Carlin
January 31, 1999, 09:55 PM
It appears that I may have the wherewithal shortly to build a 1911 pistol.

In the past I have acquired a 1911 Colt or Springfield and sent it off to Clark, or Best,(now departed, and missed!).

This gun shall be a single stack, long slide (6") ramped barreled, spherical bushed gun in 10mm. da 10 be da ONE!

So whose frame shall I use? McCormick has good prices and I am told that all the single stack frames are out of the same factory. Is that the case? If not whose from would you recommend?

Long slides, and barrels whose and why?

About 10 years a ago I put an Omega Kit on top of a Springfield frame, but the gun's reliablility never was that great. Incredibly accurate though :) !

Help me out here.

Or shall I just go out and buy a Delta Elite and then fit a long slide and 6" barrel to it?

Ni ellegimit carborundum esse!

Yours In Marksmanship


[This message has been edited by Michael Carlin (edited 01-31-99).]

Walt Welch
January 31, 1999, 10:53 PM
I read an article perhaps 6 or 8 months ago about Les Baer, and the difficulties he was having keeping his long slides within tolerances; it seems that that extra inch of slide length really does make it very much harder to machine correctly. It seems that he has overcome these problems, however, so I would probably go with Les Baer making me a custom pistol, if I really wanted a long slide.

I feel confident that a master craftsman like Les, or his fellow smiths could handle such a project even in the dubious utility, near moribund, poorly regarded by rational people 10mm. caliber. :) Walt

George Stringer
February 1, 1999, 08:38 AM
Michael, everybody and their brother are selling frames these days. Pricing usually depends on how much work is already done for you. I haven't built on the McCormick yet but it has some nice features. Wilson and Baer also market great frames and all three a priced about the same. If you've had good luck with Baer in the past I probably wouldn't change. But, if I could find a used Colt or Springfield for under $400, I'd go that route. They are both good frames and you would already have most of the parts you'd need. George

Michael Carlin
February 2, 1999, 12:22 PM
Thanks George and Walt,

Walt, moribund? You apparently must have missed the latest epistle concerning the mighty 10 (da 10 be the ONE! ;) ) by no less luminary than Mas Ayoob!

Moribund, indeed! :D How could you be so confused?

Ni ellegimit carborundum esse!

Yours In Marksmanship


Rob Pincus
February 4, 1999, 11:40 PM
I have to put in a good word for Caspian. Not only have I found their frames/slides to be awesome, they are also one of the favorites of Clark Custom.. should you decide to use them again.

I own one Caspian right now and am seriously considering another.

OTOH, If you are going to spend a lot of "custom" money witha gunsmith.. any frame should do. the trick is to talk to the smith BEFORE you guy buy a Norinco frame.. Make sure he knows you are serious and that you are also on a budget, ask him what he thinks.. Many competent gunsmiths hold the Norinco frames in good regard as foundations for custom guns.. if you don't mind the "uncool" markings on your piece. ;)

February 14, 1999, 10:21 PM
I've found norinco frames and slides metallurgically quite excelent. There allso happens to be a brand of Very expensive german target pistols called "Simson" that are made in Suhl and are based on norinco frames and slides. They have briley sphere bushings and suhl made barrels.
I think that says a lot.


Daniel Watters
February 14, 1999, 11:19 PM
Then again, I've seen some pretty spotty machine work on some Norinco slides and frames. I think your gunsmith will like you better if you just went ahead and bought a fitted frame/slide kit from Caspian. While you're at it, Caspian can cut the slide for a BoMar or Novak, and cut the frame for a ramped barrel and a beavertail.

Don't get me wrong, the Norinco can be a great deal if you intend to keep the majority of the pistol intact after customization. But if you just want a frame, it is an example of poor economy to buy an entire pistol.

Another thing to watch out for on Norinco frames is the non-standard grip screw bushings. Many refinishers will want to remove them before plating or blueing. If you don't, any rust which might be hidden there can defeat the integrity of the plating. (One friend found this out the hard way.)

Unfortunately, the bushings are staked in and their threads often get stripped during removal. You might as well recut the frame now for the over-sized grip screw bushings. Another chum figured this out _AFTER_ his Norinco frame was hard chromed and the factory bushings thrashed.

Best wishes,


Gun Plumber
February 21, 1999, 02:17 AM
I built a nice commander last year useing a Wilson frame and a Colt enhanced slide. The result was quite good. BTW Kimber makes the Wilson, McCormick, Nowlin and Ithica frames and slides.

Ken Cook
March 8, 1999, 03:40 AM
I for one didn't know about the non standard Grip screw bushings on the Norinco.
Considering that I was about to go out and buy one to build up for a friend, the info is VERY timely. Any non standard parts are reason enough for me to avoid a frame like the plague. When I build a pistol for someone, I figure that it should be something that their grandkids will prize someday. I'd hate to think that they'd be starting out with oversize grip screws. (No one makes over-oversized screws!)
Learn something new every day and I've been building .45s for eighteen years now!

Your mind is your primary weapon.

March 8, 1999, 08:26 PM
My Wilson is builton Caspian frrame and slide. It is a magnificent weapon. - Doc

Walt Welch
March 9, 1999, 12:15 AM
Gentlemen: the Norinco has non standard stock screw bushings, to be sure. Further, there is no Norinco anymore. It was a number of factories banded together under the auspices of the Chineese Government, but no longer exists. I certainly wouldn't use a Norinco for anything other than an anchor.

It is not true, however, that no one makes larger than normal stock screw bushings. Brownells does, as the bushings are often stripped by careless people. Brownells even has the tap required to thread the larger hole, and the drill to make it, if I recall correctly. They certainly do sell the larger stock screw bushings.

Hope this helps. (10mm? sticking finger down throat). ;) Walt

Daniel Watters
March 9, 1999, 01:28 AM
Walt, I believe Ken was referring to scenario in which someone strips the frame's threads for one of the Brownells' Oversized Grip Screw Bushings. No one makes a 'double' oversized version.

The scenario would work like this. You remove the staked-in Norinco bushings in order to polish and refinish the frame. The staked-in, non-standard (unavailable) factory bushings are probably torn up during removal, so you have tap the frame for the over-sized bushings. The fear is that sometime in the future, someone manages to strip the threads in the frame when over-tightening a grip screw. How do you repair this without welding up the hole?

Admittedly, this is an outside chance. Hopefully, the threads on the bushing or the grip screw itself would give up the ghost before damaging the frame's threads.