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The little Colt that could.

Discussion in '1911 Forums' started by samuse, Aug 1, 2010.

  1. samuse


    Jul 30, 2008
    South TX
    I just passed the 1500 round mark with this Colt O1991 NRM this weekend. I think I have 1600 rounds through it, but I'm not sure, so we'll just call it 1500.

    I bought this gun new about a year ago, it was my first series 80. The plunger tube was a little loose, so I sent it to Colt for a dehorn, frontstrap serrations and a trigger job. Oh yeah, and to restake the plunger tube.

    Then I had Bennie Hill at Triangle Shooting Sports install a 10-8NM rear sight and fit a Harrison Hard Use short trigger.

    It shot to POA, so I sent the slide to Novak's for their dovetailed gold bead front.

    I slid in the Ed Brown arched mainspring housing myself.(wow huh?)

    I have shot primarily 230 grain FMJ, mostly WWB with some Federal Champ, Remington UMC, Sellier and Bellot, Monarch (from Serbia) and PMC. I ran a box of 50 WWB 230 grain JHP through it yesterday.

    Earlier this week, I detail stripped it, cleaned, lubed, and stuck in a new recoil spring and mainspring (factory standard weight for both).

    There are no signs of wear anywhere except the finish. The lugs are sharp, sear and hammer are perfect, slide stop shaft shows proper finish wear, the firing pin does not appear to be hitting the firing pin block and there is no peening anywhere. The hammer seems to wobble a bit, but does not hit the slide and doesn't show any wear on the sides(maybe it's because of the frame being cut for the series 80 stuff. IDK?)

    The Colt bluing has held up suprisingly well and the gun does not exhibit any of the common cosmetic flaws that I have seen on a lot of Colts(and others). The slide to frame fit is pretty loose, but acceptable for a gun like this.

    This pistol has been kept lubed, but not obsessively cleaned. I just wipe it off with a paper towel and scrape off any carbon deposits and brush out the extractor hook. I've never cleaned the bore, but I have brushed the chamber twice. I have only used Breakfree CLP as a lube.

    This pistol has never failed to feed, fire, extract and eject every cartridge I've put in it. The mags I use are:
    -Colt factory 7 round (blued and stainless, made by Checkmate)
    -Checkmate 7 round, hybrid lip, dimpled follower (blued and stainless)
    -Checkmate G.I. spec, full taper lips
    standard weight springs in all the mags

    Occasionally, the follower will jump the tab on the slide stop, failing to lock the slide back. It may be a magazine, but I haven't tried to single it out, as I don't consider it a failure of a critical function.

    All in all it looks like a keeper and I'm happy with it's performance. 8" steel plates and stop plates are easy to hit and it's plenty accurate for self defense, IDPA and everyday plinking. I shot it from the bench for the first time today and I could only get about a 6" group at 25 yards, but I'm sure a better shooter could could wring out a little more accuracy.

    Sorry for the long-winded post, here's some pics.
  2. samuse


    Jul 30, 2008
    South TX



    Galco holster, kinda floppy, but works for the range...

  3. rsxr22


    Feb 25, 2009
    Youngstown, OH
    Beautiful gun!
  4. ijacek


    Jun 21, 2008
    Wow, that's awesome! Good looking gun too. How do you like the sight set up you have?
  5. Thanks for the post and pic.s. I like the subtle changes you made. The only thing I would have done different is add an extended thumb safety. I know it is retro, but I can’t get use to standard thumb safeties.
  6. bac1023


    Sep 26, 2004
  7. Always nice to hear good stuff about guns.
    I'm glad she works well for you.
  8. Nice, and it's always good to hear from shooters who find the time to really wring out their guns.
  9. samuse


    Jul 30, 2008
    South TX
    I love 'em. I have 10-8s on most of my Glocks too.
  10. BlayGlock


    Feb 18, 2010
    Very nice. Thank you for the report.
  11. KalashniKEV


    Sep 24, 2003
    Nice looking Series 80!!!

    But... 1,500 or 15,000?

    I doubt it really needed to be resprung...
  12. samuse


    Jul 30, 2008
    South TX

    1500. The springs were quite a bit shorter than the originals, I could have gotten a lot more miles out of the mainspring for sure, but the recoil spring was about 3/4" shorter than a new one and felt pretty soft. They're cheap and I had the gun apart anyway.
  13. paul45


    Jul 18, 2004
    This can't be. How do you explain a new Colt that works well and looks good?

    The internet tells me that Colt quality and CS is horrible, they don't sell to the public, they hate the public consumer, in fact, Colt isn't even in business! :supergrin:
  14. samuse


    Jul 30, 2008
    South TX
    I've had a few Colt lemons. I was able to thoroughly inspect this one before I bought it.
  15. den888


    Sep 4, 2009
    SF Bay Area
    Very nice Colt !
  16. airflyer


    Feb 3, 2007
    Me too you must have better eyes on what to look for, i just gave up after 2-3 guns and never looked back , nice looking gun
  17. samuse


    Jul 30, 2008
    South TX

    I believe it. I'm not a Colt fanboy, it's just hard to find a decent 1911 in basic confguration. And don't anyone chime in with RIA or Springfield. Those guns are fine if you don't shoot 'em much and like to tinker. They're toys. If you want a good usin' 1911, IME, Les Baer is the best value.
  18. samuse


    Jul 30, 2008
    South TX
    The lookin' good part was just a fluke!

    The internet ain't all wrong.

    Colt's usually do work good, a restaked plunger tube and an extractor tune had mine runnin' like a song.

    Colt's quality is horrible, IMO.

    Their CS is decent, but their gunsmiths still suck.

    I guess they'll sell to anyone with money.

    I don't know how their still in business.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2010