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Page Handguns » Colt
Posted: 2/19/2006 10:06:19 AM EDT
I checked a few shops around town, and at one place they had a Colt Mark IV series 70 commander, and it appeared to be hard chromed. It looked like it was done at the factory, all numbers looked untouched and the pistol also looked like it hadn't been fired much, if at all. The action was extremely smooth and the frame to slide fit was great. Price was $549. I was probably going to purchase it next weekend if I can find out if Colt actually was hard chroming entire 1911's.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 11:11:16 AM EDT
I can't speak to the chrome issue, but I would buy it for that price, if the metal looked good. I could always strip the chrome and start over.

The other issue is that the owner might have shot the piss out of it and chromed it so the wear wouldnt be obvious. Be careful.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 11:14:44 AM EDT
I got the impression it was old, I don't know when they stopped producing these. But, it just looked like one of those oldies that was never shot.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 12:24:13 PM EDT
Most likely the gun you saw was a factory nickel plated gun. There is a theory that these were cosmetically the worst guns from the line, and were plated because it was easier to hide flaws than witha blued gun. I have stripped enough of these to know that they usually have more tool marks, but that might be because they were intended for plating, and more prep was not necessary.

The nickel Series 70 guns generally are worth less, that is when we're talking 5". Commanders, though not marked Series 70, will actually bring more to "collectors" if they are nickel. Anyway, though I see nickel Colt MKIV Series 70 guns listed all the time for $800 or $900, they usually sell for the $600 - $700 range. $549 is a good price.

They came from the factory in two finishes. I think older ones have wood grips, and the whole gun is nickeled. Newer ones had Pachmayr grips, a more "white" looking nickel, and certain parts were blued, like the thumb safety, grip safety, trigger, and slide stop. Don't take my word on the two versions and when they were made, though. Here are some pics of the types commonly seen.


Link Posted: 2/20/2006 2:14:14 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/20/2006 5:59:36 AM EDT
Thanks for the great info. Is Colt's nickel coating matte or glossy?
Link Posted: 2/20/2006 1:50:15 PM EDT
FWIW, nickel will scratch easily.
Link Posted: 2/20/2006 5:25:11 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 6:36:41 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2006 6:38:05 AM EDT by TBoneDetroit]
I had a nickle plated Combat Commander (many folks fail to make the distinction between Commander and Combat Commander) for about 18 years, was my daily carry. It was satin nickle, and held up beautifully. IIRC, the barrel was chromed (or nickel?) as well. It was a great pistol. Why in the hell did I sell it??

A friend of mine bought a 5 inch 1911 in satin nickle about the same time. Looked like Hobbs second picture. I recall there was something purportedly differrent about the finish (perhaps that was the electroless nickle?) and it had a slightly different look. Colt called the finish "Colt Guard" as I recall.
Page Handguns » Colt
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