View Full Version : New Project 380 Llama

February 20, 2009, 04:15 AM
I put this here in the Smitty section since this is sorta a refurbishing project that I decided would be intersting to take on.

I recently aquired a new OLD pistol. A buddy of mine mentioned to me a while back that he had an old single action semi auto 1911 pistol that he essentially had no interest in. Well I of course expressed an immediate interest in such a weapon. At the time he wasn't interested in selling it so I forgot about it for the time. The same fella and I were talking last week about his garage that he built and how he was currently in need of insulation to finish a section of the garage that had not yet been insulated. I just so happened to have over 500 square feet of insulation in my garage that I had no intentions of using and he agreed to swap the gun for the insulation. I thought not a bad deal since I paid less than $9.00 for each of the six rolls at the time. Since I know that this thread is useless without pics I've included a few pics for your viewing pleasure. Included in the pic is also my Glock 19 just so you have an idea of the size of the Llama that I'm refering to. Can anybody confirm what model of Llama this is?

Slide open...


Slide closed with hammer back... You can see that the Llama is even a bit smaller than the Glock 19 Compact 9mm that I put it next to for visual comparison.


It turns out that the gun is a Llamma .380 Semi-auto. The gun is missing it's grips and the finish is in rough shape so I'll be looking into redoing the finish along with picking up a set of grips. The mechanical workings of the gun are smooth and the gun appears 100% functional. The gun does appear to be based on the Colt model 1911 though isn't what I would consider a full size. It's almost like it's about a 2/3 scaled down model of a full size colt 1911. Based on several pics that I looked at my best guess is that it's a Llama Compact Frame Semi-Automatic pistol but I can't be for sure. The firearms reference book that I'm using makes no mention though of a 380 in this version only a 9mm and a .45acp. The best I can tell the pistol is a current model production as the slide reads ]"LLAMA CAL 380"[/I] on one side and "GABILONDO Y CIA VITORIA (ESPANA)" on the other side of the slide. The barrel needs cleaned out but over all appears to be in pretty good condition. Besides the grips the only other thing that is incomplete is a single grip mounting screw. I imagine I could get one of those easily enough... Or maybe not..any ideas?

Should be a fun little project getting this thing back into shape.

Where can I get ahold of a set of grips for this thing?


Bill DeShivs
February 20, 2009, 04:41 AM
All the Llama .380s are the same size. Yours is a later model. Is it a blowback or locked breech?
Instead of refinishing, try this: soak the gun liberally with WD 40 for a few days. Get some 0000 steel wool at a hardware store, and gently scrub the rust spots down with it. Flush the gun with WD 40 again. Wipe dry. I think you will be amazed at how much better the gun will look. The gun is not really worth paying a pro to refinish, and any cold blue home refinishing will not hold up, and it will look terrible.
http://www.gun-parts.com/index.html/ probably has grips and screws. Grips for these guns are pretty straightforward and easy to make.

February 20, 2009, 08:46 AM

Yeah. I knew the gun wasn't worth too much money. That's why I decided it wouldn't hurt to make a project out of it incase things didn't work out.

Thanks for the advice. I'll give it a try. The gun has a good bit of rust on it down in some pretty tight crevices such as the rear of the slide where the "grip groves" (<~~???) are machined.

Supposedly the chemicals I picked up from the local gunshow are commercial grade products. The guy claimed he made a career out of training other people to finish guns and has been in business since the 50's. But who really knows how much of it is snake oil or not. He did have a pretty good convincing demonstration but again. I'm pretty new to all of that type of thing.



February 20, 2009, 09:42 AM
You can take your basic Llama.....

and with a little work..... spruce it up to a tricked out Llama.....

And they make good Carry Weapons too

Especially if you get the compact model.....

Ok.... I promise.... no more Llama pics. Hope everyone got a laugh out of it.

45Marlin carbine
February 20, 2009, 09:46 AM
I shot one of those some years back, a relative's he got at pawn. it shot good - accurate.

February 20, 2009, 10:18 AM
How much is a fair price for a set of grips for this thing?
I seen a set of grips on Gun Broker for someting like $45.00 and a Clip for $10.00.

How do those prices compare? I don't know much about pistols but I found that when I was in the market for a shotgun that GunBroker was overpriced when compared to my local market. Noticed the same thing when comparing the going prices for your run of the mill Glock pistols as well.


February 20, 2009, 10:29 AM
If you know someone that has an airbrush or paint gun, you can DuraCoat it fairly inexpensively yourself. Check out their website at http://lauerweaponry.com/

Bill DeShivs
February 20, 2009, 02:12 PM
Any do-it-yourself reblue will be substandard, at best. Even if you think it looks good, anyone into guns will be able to spot the work across the room.
Rust removing chemicals will remove bluing also-as bluing is basically rust.
0000 steel wool can be worked into the slide grooves with a toothpick. You may have to use my treatment a few times to remove all the surface corrosion, and some pits will probably show. It's worth a try before you get yourself in over your head. Refinishing a gun is not like doing furniture.
Duracoat paint is good paint, but unless you are set up to sandblast, Parkerize, and airbrush-it's hardly a home project.

February 22, 2009, 07:51 PM
The gun has been soaking with a coat of WD-40 for a couple of days now. I think I might go home after work tonight and get the steel wool to work and see how well it cleans up. I'll coat it again after I'm finished and repeat the process a time or two. I'm not expecting anything great and I'm not in any kind of a hurry. I simply want to see how much I can improve the condition on my own without putting a lot of money into it. The gun was pretty much a freebie since I wasn't using the insulation I traded for it anyhow.

Can anybody determine the exact model of the gun given the Serial #? If so give me an PM. I'd like to know exactly what I'm working with prior to ordering a set of grips and then finding out I ordered the wrong grips.


February 25, 2009, 05:26 PM
I have a similar one in mint condition with box. Mine is a Model III-A. Good little shooter. My wife really likes this one. My guess is that this one is from the late 1970's or early 1980's.

gunney 67
February 25, 2009, 06:38 PM
Thanks MrClean. I laughed til my sides hurt. Hope everyone else enjoyed it too. But then, I don't have a llama in this fight! (sorry.....)

Triple T
May 13, 2009, 04:53 PM

I am curious, would you be interested in selling your Llama? Please let me know...

May 16, 2009, 08:05 AM
The gun is a later model I believe, there are no rounded cuts on the bottom of the slide in front of the dust cover. I've never owned the later ones as only the locked breech models interest me, and the later ones are straight blowback. I've heard and read so much that differs on this that I'm unsure of when they started the blowback models, but I believe it was the 80's.