What's your favorite 1911 to engrave?

Goldjockey

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Currently working a pattern for a 5" Springfield Armory 1911, and finding the factory logos and text on the slide a bit inconvenient and disruptive for good design flow. I'll make it work, but would like to work with something that provides a better all around blank canvas for the next project.

Looking for advice and recommendations from engravers with a whole lot more experience than I have.

Thanks in advance!

Mike
 

FANCYGUN

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Any of the slides from all the brands have lettering that in one way or another ruin the concept of a good flowing design. Especially if you want to engrave any scenes on the sides of the slides.
What most engravers en up doing is filing off lettering thus giving you a good clean canvas to engrave. Make certain the manufacturers name still appears on the frame and the serial number is intact
 

Goldjockey

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Looks really clean, Matthew. Nice Job!

Which model are you working on?
 

Goldjockey

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This is what I’m working with at the moment. Started out as an exercise, and understand it needs some adjustment, improvement, but I’m finding I really want to engrave it.
 

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flintdoubles

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I think a flowing border around the outside would help tie things together imho. I like where your going and with your design abilities it will just get better. The more I look the file may be the right approach.
 

Goldjockey

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I think a flowing border around the outside would help tie things together imho. I like where your going and with your design abilities it will just get better. The more I look the file may be the right approach.
I think you're on the money regarding a border. It's a great way to cover leftover space, and the elements can be used in other areas for a cohesive design.

This particular 1911 belongs to a good friend. A few years ago, before I ever picked up a graver, I polished the barrel and slide for him to a near mirror finish, and he's had the gun rebuilt with match grade everything since.

I've been asked to engrave his gun, but want to engrave one for myself first. Since this one will be for me, I believe I'll follow your and Marty's advice on cleaning up the slide, and starting with a truly blank canvas.

Thanks for the advice! And I do love me a Kimber, Matthew :) Hard to beat for out of the box shooting dynamics!
 

AllenClapp

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Currently working a pattern for a 5" Springfield Armory 1911, and finding the factory logos and text on the slide a bit inconvenient and disruptive for good design flow. I'll make it work, but would like to work with something that provides a better all around blank canvas for the next project.

Looking for advice and recommendations from engravers with a whole lot more experience than I have.

Thanks in advance!

Mike
Mike, Rex Pedersen uses the Rock Island GI Series for his 1911 engraving class at GRS. The slide is clean of stampings--just a printed logo on the back. https://www.armscor.com/firearms/ria/gi-series/gi-standard-fs/
 

Goldjockey

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Thanks Allen. I did not know that Rex has been using these, and I've been looking at Rock Island 1911s. For a first time project especially, I like the price.

There's also one from SDS imports I've been looking at. The SDS looks solid, sells for well under $500 and has got a black cerakote finish, which should come off pretty easily. I'll probably buy the Rock Island for the project though, as the gun itself is widely known, and well respected.
 

Roger Bleile

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If you are engraving one for yourself for a speculative sale, I recommend you use a Colt. With other brands you can put $5,000. worth of work into one to end up with a $2,000. gun. The more elaborate your work will be (gold inlay, figures, etc.) the more value you will lose on an inexpensive 1911 like a Rock Island. If you are just doing some simple scroll then a RI will be okay.

Also consider a version without the forward cocking serrations. They really interrupt the flow of the design.
 

Matthew Evans

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If you are engraving one for yourself for a speculative sale, I recommend you use a Colt. With other brands you can put $5,000. worth of work into one to end up with a $2,000. gun. The more elaborate your work will be (gold inlay, figures, etc.) the more value you will lose on an inexpensive 1911 like a Rock Island. If you are just doing some simple scroll then a RI will be okay.

Also consider a version without the forward cocking serrations. They really interrupt the flow of the design.
Preach!
 

papart1

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The forward cocking serrations are also dangerous on any handgun!!
 

Goldjockey

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There is a ton of logic in what Roger says about putting a whole lot of effort into a colt. The initial cost of the gun is miniscbule compared the cost/value of the engraving. A colt will always be a volt and hold its value better down the road.
I agree. Was thinking in terms of a purely personal project, but somehow all of my personal projects eventually end up as finished products or entire product lines. I can't remember the last time I actually held on to something I made 'for myself'.

You're correct in all respects. Good expert advice from all quarters, and that is what I particularly appreciate and respect about this forum.

Better to start up front with a top quality product for a canvas. I'm sure it works the same in firearms engraving as in Jewelry. The first thing you put out there is always what sticks.

Gold inlay background is definitely what I have in mind. Probably try it first on something a bit smaller.
 

707chrisa

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I think you're on the money regarding a border. It's a great way to cover leftover space, and the elements can be used in other areas for a cohesive design.
I think the border is a good idea , it would tie in the center element , may be just a line under the ejection port. I think a 1911 will be the first gun I do , I have 2 GI slides left over form my gun building days. Hmmm May be I could get some 12ga sheet stock cut to the size and out line of the sides of a 1911 . Time to see if there is any open time on the water jet. Ps I am going to need a lot more practice to get anywhere close to you guys.
 

Goldjockey

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I think the border is a good idea , it would tie in the center element , may be just a line under the ejection port. I think a 1911 will be the first gun I do , I have 2 GI slides left over form my gun building days. Hmmm May be I could get some 12ga sheet stock cut to the size and out line of the sides of a 1911 . Time to see if there is any open time on the water jet. Ps I am going to need a lot more practice to get anywhere close to you guys.
Great idea! Please post photos of your cutouts.
 
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707chrisa

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Great idea! Please post photos of your cutouts.
I will, the jewelry manufacture (I helped install their water jet) cant cut any thing for me till they are about to clean out the water and used grit tank. I can't tell you what they are cutting ;-) but I can say they don't want any steel cut till the end of there run. I may just buy some time on the H20 jet at the 4x4 shop. No I don't think you could do any type of surface cutting with a water jet I sort of tried to when we set up the machine made one hell of a mess. This machine is worth too much to let a crazy artist lose on it ( sadness) . But I think one of these shops will let me cut out some 911 slide profiles for practice will see.
 

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