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Doc Coles SASS 1188

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Posts posted by Doc Coles SASS 1188


  1. I understand that some folks take issue with dressing up in western gear, but in my opinion, if someone is unwilling to meet the dress requirements, minimal as they are, they are unlikely to be happy in SASS.  SASS was started in response to more serious shooting sports.  In many ways, dressing western is the key to our sport.  It requires you to join in and not take yourself too seriously.  Abandoning that would make SASS a very different sport.  

    • Like 2

  2. The major issues facing the sport are high cost and demographics.  
     

    The gear for this sport has never been cheap, especially if you want guns that are competitive.  Some have suggested that we have a one handgun class, which could help some but does not do that much to lower costs.  

     

    The demographics are just as daunting.  Most younger folks today did not grow up on westerns.  Fewer of them are shooters and when they are most are interested in modern guns.  So if they shoot competitively they are more interested in sports like IDPA or three gun shooting.  
     

    I some ways we are swimming against the tide.  In my opinion, increasing membership is done at the personal level by building relationships and bringing people into the fold.  Good public relations and increasing visibility is the place to start, but where the rubber meets the road is personal contact with perspective shooters and support to get them involved while they get their gear together.  Personal relationships are what makes SASS strong.

     

    just my thoughts.  

     


  3. Based on the curve on the back of the block and the shape of the trigger guard/lever it looks like a Stevens Favorite.  The small barrel size would argue for it being a .22 but it could be a model 44, which was a slightly larger version for small game center fire cartridges.  Here is a picture of my son’s Model 1894 .22 Favorite at the same angle for comparison. 

    8C8A4667-9A4B-41F3-9EF3-7A6A3C1D77B0.jpeg

    • Like 4
    • Thanks 1

  4. Interesting gun but I expect that by lengthening the cylinder as they did with the Schofield and Russian to fit .45 lc, they will have issues shooting real BP.  Too bad they felt the need to “improve” them.  .44 Russian or Schofield would have Kept the dimensions the same as the originals and allowed you to shoot BP without jamming the cylinders.  


  5. The gun would be popular as a  shooter since it’s a 9mm.  You could submerge it in Hoppes No9 for a long time (months) and see what happens.  The nickel does not look that thick and it does not look like it was polished before it was plated Soaking it in Hoppes for a few months might remove the nickel.  If you were lucky, there might be original finish under there.  In any case, Hoppes wouldn’t hurt the steel.  


  6. Slick,

    you would have to show that these pistols were produced with a factory nickel finish and that this gun met all the criteria for factory nickel guns to be able to sell it as factory original finish.  The appearance of the nickel is irrelevant if the guns were never produced with a factory

    nickel finish. 
     

    I am sorry to say that a non-factory nickel finish luger would be rated far below 60% finish and have no collector value.   At best, it would be valued as a shooter.  People have stripped nickel finish from plated Lugers and had them refinished, but this is costly to do right and not generally worth it for most guns because when they are done they are still worth a lot less than a gun with factory finish.  
     

    lugers are a very specialized and tricky field of collecting.  People can get in pretty deep if they don’t do their research.  


  7. The “Rust” marking on the safety of your Luger makes it a  gun produced for the Dutch (“Rust” is “Safe” in Dutch and is only seen on Dutch pistols).  There were several contracts to produce Lugers for the Dutch government and the Dutch East Indies military in the early 20th century.  You would have to do a very careful analysis of the gun’s features and markings to determine exactly which contract it is.  A lot of these were captured by the Japanese during the fall of the Dutch East Indies during WWII.  I am sorry to say that, based on what I have read, the Dutch pistols were not factory nickel plated.  For some reason, a significant number of Lugers brought to the US after WWI and WWII were plated, which unfortunately severely damages their value.  

    • Like 2

  8. 1 hour ago, Bugler said:

    I don't understand your statement......please explain this. My calipers are measuring the side to side distance of the chamber. Why is that an impossible measurement?

     

    Bugler

    Also, most calipers have flats on the part that comes in contact with the part measured, which means that they read slightly undersized when measuring the inside of a hole.  This property is magnified as the holes get smaller. 

    • Like 1

  9. No worries, I too have a soft spot for real Henry rifles and copies.  I own an  engraved uberti and navy arms  and an engraved uberti improved Henry (1866).  One Henry is engraved after the one owned by a relative Capt. Samuel Hymer who was awarded the Medal of Honor during the civil war.  The other is engraved to my taste and the 1866 is engraved to match a set of three that came out of South America.  

    • Like 1

  10. I have Colt SAAs made from 1876 to current production.  I love them all.  I warn you that they are addictive.  The best advice I can give is decide what you want it for then buy the best one you can afford.  Personally, if I were interested in a shooter, I would buy a current production 3rd gen (with the removable cylinder bushing).  They are very well made of excellent steel (much better that the 1st gen gun’s) and the don’t have 50-140 years of wear and tear.  I bought one with ivory grips for my son when he was born and it is a very nice gun.  I don’t like the older 3rd gen non removable  cylinder bushing  gun’s as well (though I own several) and would not pay as much for one as a new production.  They tend to be poorly fitted, badly polished and finished, and not as nice as the more recent crop.  If you find a good 2nd gen at a good price by all means buy it.  1st gens are great as well but a nice one might cost enough that you might not want to shoot it, though I shoot several, including an original cavalry model, some bisleys, and one made in 1905.  The 1876 one is a little too old to shoot for me.  Have fun and enjoy what you buy.  

    • Like 1

  11. I agree with all the advice about the Henry not being a good choice for this sport, but let me address your question about its similarities to the Winchester 1894 by pointing out that the pistol caliber 1894s are also not a good choice for the sport.  30+ years ago, I started out with a Winchester 1894 trapper in .45 colt and had a lot of problems with it.  Many times I levered it fast enough to throw shells right out the top and I had feed jams.   I got rid of it as soon as I could afford a Uberti 1873 (which I still have and shoot).  Life is too short to buy guns that will just frustrate you.  If money is an issue (and when is it not) I would borrow a rifle at matches till you saved enough for a decent used or new 1866 or 1873 or a marlin (though they are are not my cup of tea).  You don’t need to spend a fortune on tuning your rifle.  For a 1866 or 1873, polish up the internals, put in some better springs, get the spring tensions properly adjusted, and it will be great.  Have fun.  
     

    Amendment:  I just noticed that I read your original post incorrectly.  You asked about the Marlin 1894 not the Winchester 1894.  As noted above, Marlin is not my cup of tea, mostly because when I started in SASS Marlins had a very poor reputation for liability.  It was very common for them to jamb open.  You had to take the gun apart to clear the problem.  It was a bit of a mystery back then why this happened.  I understand that Marlin fixed that issue and the guns can be quite competitive, but I like the 1873 action.

    • Thanks 1

  12. Colt never offered short barreled SAAs with ejector housings in the 1st or 2nd generation.  However, given the fact that Colt would pretty much make whatever you wanted on special order, it is possible that they built one as a custom order.  But, I have never heard of one or seen one in a collector book.  Such a gun (if it ever existed) would be a very rare and expensive collectors item.  I would look on such a gun as a non factory modification unless the Colt records proved otherwise.  


  13. I have a couple of original colts that started out in other calibers.  They loose something in the collector value but the shoot beautifully.  Many years ago I worked for the Old Sacramento  Armory.  When I started, they were one of the biggest distributors of Colts in the US and they had a cabinet full of Colt factory parts including 1st and second generation SAA and Bisley parts.  I bought several barrels and cylinders  in .45 and used them on guns that were in bad shape, several of which I still shoot today (30+ years later).  I have a 1905 gun that has a later .44spl barrel and both .44spl and 44-40 cylinders. That came from a friend.  It was rebuilt and blued by Christie’s at some point.  I would love to get a good 44-40 barrel for it, but they are hard to come by.  It is too bad that Colt does not make replacement barrels for the 1st and 2nd generation SAAs.  There would be a good market for them.  
     

    I too recall the San Francisco Gun Exchange fondly.  Great shop with great stuff.  I almost bought a 45-70 1886 winchester there when I was a kid.  I just couldn’t swing it on what I made at that time, but I never forgot it.  I didn’t get an 1886 till last year when I bought a deluxe made in 1888.  

    • Thanks 1

  14. I don’t have any Dillon dies, but I load about 30 different calibers using a mixture of rcbs, Lee, Lyman, 4-D, and a few other makers dies.  A lot of what I load is obsolete American cartridges for old western guns so I buy dies from the folks who offer them.  I do load some modern calibers (primarily military ones) but I don’t shoot long range target competition, where small differences can lead to big differences in success.  For the stuff I load and especially for sass cartridges, I have never really noted a lot of differences between the dies of different makers.  Thee are some dies I find more convenient to use, for example I like carbide dies for straight walled cases and I have a lot of Lee factory crimp dies, but other than that, as long as the round fits the chamber, the bullet is the right diameter, and the overall dimensions are within the envelope, the cartridges all shoot fine.  You would have to have some pretty serious problems with your dies to make any kind of noticeable difference in performance in sass calibers at sass ranges.  


  15. Texas is an OK little state with some oil, but up here in Alaska we like things a bit bigger.  Its cold half the year, but that just keeps the Texans from moving in. 

     

    I don't get to the lower 48 (what we call "outside") much these days.  Too much work and a young boy to raise.  I would love to go to the museums and will if I get the chance.

     

    When I was a kid in Santa Barbara we had the annual fiesta, which was a heck of a party with parades over multiple days.  My favorite was the cablagata, where everyone rode on horseback or in period horse drawn wagons.  Folks, including a lot of the old Spanish/Mexican families that started the town, ranchers from the surrounding area, and the Sheriff's posse (which was a collection of the influential folks in the county, which was saying something for there) would ride in their best gear.  Not the Bohlin stuff like the rose parade, but very nice stuff.  This often included very fine guns, in tooled gun belts.  It was not common to carry a gun at other times, laws being what they were.  Not that many cattlemen I know carried handguns while working, and I think actually showing up at a barbecue carrying a gun would not be considered polite, even on a ranch.  None the less, a fancy handgun was called a barbecue gun. 

     

    The only LEO that I know who carried a fancy gun was Dick Price (the late great Diamond Dick), who carried a nickle Colt sheriffs model with ivory grips when he was Captain of Homicide for the Sacramento county Sheriffs Department.  The term barbecue gun would have applied to it but I don't recall if he called it that.  He told me that the deputies under his command thought it was funny when he showed up to serve warrants etc. and pulled it out.  The only reason he could carry it was that as a captain he could establish the TO&E for his unit, so he put in a provision that a Colt sheriffs model was authorized for the homicide captain.  So technically, it was a duty gun. 

     

    Up here in Alaska it is still free America and you can wear open or concealed without a permit and I carry a gun in the bush for work and when I am out, but those are always working guns, usually a shotgun with slugs for bears or moose.  If I carry a handgun, its concealed. 


  16. 26 minutes ago, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

    These are my personal idea of BBQ Guns.  Also Main Match

    IMG_0280.jpeg

    Very nice!  I love engraved cap and ball guns.  I have a 2nd gen 1860 fluted cylinder that came from the factory in the white that I am trying to get dad to engrave with a period pattern.  


  17. Levi, to be clear, I got the term from my family as well.  My great grandad was raised Oklahoma in the 1880s and ran away to Texas as a cowboy at 14.  He came to California around the turn of the century and ran ranches in Ventura county.  A number of his kids and grand kids were also cattlemen.  I didn’t learn the term from a book.  
     

    As for me, I grew up with guns, dad is a gunsmith an engraver (he did the work on a number my guns including the 7.5 inch).  I have been shooting a handgun since I was five and worked in the gun trade as a salesman and gunsmith for more than 20 years, ran shops, was a partner in a shop.  I have bought and sold a lot of very fine western guns over the years and have a decent collection of it myself.  I left the trade when I finished my Ph.D in historical archaeology so now I repair and restore primarily western guns as a hobby.  Between my dad and having worked in good shops, I have seen a lot of engraved guns and read a lot of good books on engraving.  So, I am not exactly “uneducated” in the field. 

     

    Now that we have both trotted out our great granddaddys and said we didn't just fall off the turnip truck, can we can calm down a bit?
     

    I am not saying that your definition is wrong, I am just pointing out that that is not what it meant where I grew up in California.  Saying that it’s a Texas thing and we don’t know what we are talking about does not change that. 

     

     

    • Like 1

  18. Well now we know what it is for Texans.  But given the fact that 1911s are the primary gun that qualify, and the focus on concealed carry, this would seem to be a 20th century definition and probably associated with cities or towns, where carrying a gun openly in public is frowned upon. 
     

    The tradition of fancy guns goes a lot further back than that.  Back to the days when a gun was a piece of working gear worn openly and carrying a concealed gun was viewed on as underhanded or shifty.  


  19. 16 minutes ago, Waxahachie Kid #17017 L said:

    Seeing all of these really nice photos, of the Colt single actions, sure makes me wish there was a calendar produced, somewhere of the Colt's. I see calendars all the time with all kinds of subject matter, so one that had Colt single actions, as the main theme, would really be great to have.

     

     

    W.K. 

     

    Good idea.  A lot nicer than what my bank, or even my gun shop hands out. 

     

    Doc


  20. A discussion in another thread took an odd turn when I used the term "barbecue gun" to refer to my engraved 7.5 inch Colt with checkered ivories.  A fella said that he had never heard of a long barreled gun referred to as a barbecue gun and stated that the term was used in Texas to refer to short barreled guns used for concealed carry and there is a very short specific list of what qualifies as a barbecue gun.  I learned the term in California where my family worked with cattle since the turn of the last century but there was never any talk of a required barrel length or association with Texas.  The way I learned it, the term referred to a fancy l gun that was worn to public events instead of your every day gun.  Obviously they would be functional (who is stupid to wear a gun that wouldn't shoot?), but they were a way to show off or at least dress up a bit.  I did some checking on line and and the top result came up with the following definition, which is in keeping with the term as I learned it:

     

    "An old term from the Southwest that refers to a gun that is not worn daily. It won't have the scratches, wear marks, etc a daily wear gun would have. These guns were not something that were never used or "useless." In the time the term came about they were functional guns (sometimes, heavily modified for better accuracy/reliability/etc) that might have some custom engraving, polishing, or custom grips. They didn't make many guns purely for show - they made guns to use and users modified them for show. They were normally worn in tooled leather holsters as opposed to daily wear holsters - which were plain."

     

    other online references indicate that in modern times, the term applies to  a "...large, intricately engraved pistol with custom handles, and it rests comfortably in a belt holster in plain sight. The holsters are usually leather and may also be intricately carved. This would be for formal wear worn with your suit to parties, weddings and you guessed it barbecues.  These guns usually are bigger, since concealment is no longer the objective. They have longer barrels, thus a longer sight radius, which improves accuracy."

     

    The whole discussion got me wondering if or how the term is used or was traditionally used in other necks of the woods.  And what exactly is on the list of Texas barbecue guns?  Not intending to start a ruckus .  Everyone gets to use the term as they like, just wondering about the variations.  Let the games begin!

     

    Doc

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