Recent Posts

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 10
Colt Automatics / New member posting his M1911A1 - 1945 all matching.
« Last post by pitfighter on April 20, 2018, 09:46:15 PM »
I found this 1911 a little while back.
Sniffing through info. in the books I have and on-line sources, but if anyone knows more about this one, let me know.

It is all 1945 dated, the finish is a great park that has turned a green shade -
There is a very light layer of oil on this as the box it travelled in was a little damp - I took the photos just as the sun was going down tonight - I'll add one with the oil wiped down and "dried."

United States Property M1911A1 U.S. ARMY
No 2267XXX
Matching P's font/size.
Not a re-issue - just a late war Colt.

Inspector is GHD: Guy H. Drewry Colt S/N 845,000 to 2,360,600
(Left side under take down lever.)

Marked with Ordnance Department Inspection Stamp (1943-end of war.)
(right side behind grip.)

Shown with:
1943 Ammunition. 
1943'ish Ek Commando Dagger.
WW2 Enger-Kress 1944 M3 shoulder-holster.
M1 Garand - Springfield.
USMC shirt.

Knives, Swords, 'hawks, etc / Re: Boot Knife
« Last post by pitfighter on April 20, 2018, 09:43:30 PM »
That is a very nice boot knife -

Navy Models / Re: 1851 Metropolitan Navy conversion - my first post here.
« Last post by pitfighter on April 20, 2018, 09:33:50 PM »
Some more pics:

What is fascinating is that both the conversion and the original cylinder have achieved a very distinctive and rather fetching "gray" patina - almost identical in color.
Look at the cylinder, it appears that someone purposely sanded, or used an abrasive, to remove the New Orleans River battle etching -

Look closely and you can see where the lower was repaired, many moons ago.

I could probably do with cleaning these grooves a little, lol - but, you can just make out the Colt style rifling.

The address plates wore out after the first 600 revolvers, and it says something that they were not renewed, by this revolver, 3000 or so into the production, the barrel address would have been lightly punched even on leaving the factory - that it remains at all is a blessing.

Check out the "smith's" work on that conversion - really quite interesting.

Navy Models / 1851 Metropolitan Navy conversion - my first post here.
« Last post by pitfighter on April 20, 2018, 09:30:30 PM »
Hi folks, I am new here, so thought I'd re-post my piece from Calguns.
I like this new one and probably did too much writing on it, but there you go.

This is a recent Calguns (CA shooting forum) purchase, this revolver meets the criteria of not being particularly valuable or prized by collectors but possessing of inherent interesting details and stuffed full of a rich and veritable history.  A wonderful example of, “…If only it could tell it’s tales…”
*Apologies for the length of this post, but I got enthralled in the research.

This actual revolver would have left the factory between 1864 and 1866.

History of Metropolitan:
(Abbreviated from several on-line sources and the page or so in Flayderman's book.)
An almost exact copy of the Colt 1851 Navy, considered to be a secondary issue during the American Civil War. In 1864, Colt's East Armory erupted into flames which destroyed all but two of its buildings. The event could not have happened at a worse time for the concern for America was embroiled in a Civil War and US government contracts were readily available.
With the need for more and more guns for the war effort ever growing, the now-damaged Colt production lines needed assistance in keeping up with demand. The Syms Brothers, formerly of Blunt and Syms, quickly formed the Metropolitan Arms Co, as such, the Metropolitan Arms Company of New York stepped in to offer production of Colt revolver copies, giving rise the oft-forgotten species of revolver known simply as the "Metropolitan Navy Percussion".

These firearms were aimed to satisfy the enormous demand for revolvers during the Civil War, and were used by both North and South.

Only about 6100 Navy’s were produced by Metropolitan. In order to give the impression of greater production, starting at about number 50 the serial number was increased by 1100. Thus, in order to determine the correct manufacturing sequence, 1100 must be subtracted from the serial number.

Variances from the Colt 1851 Navy included (1) No barrel address or rolled cylinder scene through serial number 1800, (2) a “Metropolitan Arms Co. New-York” barrel address after SN 1800, (3) a rolled cylinder scene depicting a ship battle at New Orleans April 1862 was added after SN 1800, (4) right hand twist rifling, and (5) hammer face recesses on rear of cylinder, instead of safety pins.

All had 7-1/2” octagon barrels and were of 36 caliber. During production there were some additional minor changes made to grip size and contour, and screw direction of the loading rammer.

Bearing matching serial numbers 4344, this included the Metropolitan Arms Company barrel address. The letters “ME” is missing from the word “Metropolitan”, an indication that the roll die began to fail after less than 600 applications.

As can be seen in the photos, serial number 4344 is strongly visible on frame, back-strap, trigger guard, 344 remains on the cylinder, and wedge. The abbreviated number 44 was applied to the loading lever. Unlike Colt, Metropolitan did not number the cylinder arbor (pin), which was built as an added part of the frame.

The original one-piece walnut grips are nice.
The rifling is the Colt style graduated = starts out almost straight and then twists just a little towards the second half of the barrel.

Production of the Metropolitan Navy continued until 1866, when Colt was able to come back online. A few of the post-Civil War production revolvers were sold through dealers such as St. Louis based H. E. Dimmick. These Navy’s saw service all over the American West, along with the Colt counterpart, through the late 1870’s. Unlike some of the newer cartridge guns, percussion caps, black powder, and lead remained available – even in the more remote frontier areas.

Ok - history lesson done :oji: - now onto this revolver in particular:

What is interesting about this Metropolitan revolver:
It has been period-converted to fire the .38” short cartridge - this has been achieved by a fairly-talented gunsmith, permanently altering the revolver in a rather basic but extremely-practical manner.
The patina is identical for conversion parts and gun alike.
1. The hammer has been replaced with one that has a firing pin designed for a center-fire cartridge.
2. The original cylinder (serial number still showing) has been lathed and permanently fitted with a end cap, to accept center fire cartridges,
3. The cap-loading area has been widened and polished to allow loading of center fire cartridges.  Yes, if you aimed upwards at a steep angle you ran the risk of your brass sliding-out.
4. The top of the frame has been cut and then fitted with a cover, to fill the gap that would have allowed for the “percussion” hammer to pass.
5. The lower-barrel-frame area has been trimmed, this is the original barrel, but a new lower piece has been very carefully applied, either for extra strength or to fix an old break - this is the work of an artisan and would be difficult to notice if the serial number had not been lost in the fix.
6. The Cylinder scene has been evenly lathed or re-fin shed and removed - only the remains off the serial number remain visible.

Photographed alongside some items picked up last week in El Paso, where I think a revolver like this "might" have lived on into the 20th century, and would have served someone not able to buy himself a new 1873 style revolver, perhaps a farmer or South of the border bandit for whom a disposable cheap firearm served a practical purpose.  Whoever it was went to a LOT of trouble fixing and converting this revolver, it was truly loved - or cherished:
1. Mexican, Caballero style spurs.
2. Two 1915 era State of Chihuahua bills.
3. Two bandolier's full of .30-30 and a few .30-06 just awesome old leather work, and the real deal.
4. The holster, is a steel clip, open-back style quick-draw - barely fits this revolver, but beggars and bandits can't be choosers.

The loading lever now serves no purpose, except to aid in take down - apply half-cock, tap out edge, and then depress loading lever, which pushes against the cylinder to evenly remove the frontal assembly.  On many conversions, they removed the lever altogether and smoothed the under carriage, to make it lighter in weight - see the sales-ad at the bottom of this post.

Could that be an original percussion hammer, filed and machined, into a firing pin?  I checked the thumb grooves and they are identical to a factory Metropolitan.
Also, it looks like the right side wood grip was repaired, and repaired well, many years ago - as mentioned, someone cared a lot about this revolver!

A similar 1851 conversion system in a catalogue from the 50’s -
Welcome Wagon / Hello - new member here -
« Last post by pitfighter on April 20, 2018, 09:27:29 PM »
I am starting a small collection of original or period copy guns.

I am based in CA and AZ - work in entertainment and collect pre-1945 things.

Good to meet y'all,


Walkers & Dragoons / Re: The Walker Colt; a primer
« Last post by Captainkirk on April 20, 2018, 09:15:20 PM »
Thanks, Terry! (7&
Photo Gallery / Re: March 2018 Woods Run
« Last post by Yolla Bolly Brad on April 20, 2018, 08:26:41 PM »
Dang, that's some hardcore camping!
Walkers & Dragoons / Re: The Walker Colt; a primer
« Last post by tljack on April 20, 2018, 06:43:17 PM »
NIce article Capt!
Walkers & Dragoons / Re: World's finest Walker up for auction
« Last post by tljack on April 20, 2018, 06:39:59 PM »
I find it interesting that the mold handles are straight. Very nice set! Doubt I will ever see it .
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 10