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  #1  
Old 07-28-2013, 05:54 PM
roadblock roadblock is offline
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Removing staked frame grip bushings from my new COLT?




I just picked up a new COLT XSE and I happened to notice the frame grip bushings are staked almost better then the carrier on my AR-15!

Seriously though, do I need to do anything to remove the bushings other then unscrew them? I've taken plenty of frame grip bushings out over the years but none that were staked like this, most just had Loc-tite on them.

My concern is stripping the threading out of the frame. My XSE is a 01980XSE with the carbon steel frame.
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  #2  
Old 07-28-2013, 06:01 PM
dakota1911 dakota1911 is offline
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Know any good gunsmiths in your area?
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Old 07-28-2013, 06:09 PM
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dsk dsk is offline
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To do it right you need to take a Dremel and grind off the staking, otherwise you run the risk of buggering up the frame threads assuming you can even get them loose without crushing the bushings.

Funny thing, but Colt used to always stake the bushings, then stopped 40+ years ago when people began customizing/refinishing their pistols and griped about having a hard time removing the bushings. Then folks started complaining about non-staked bushings coming loose or getting trapped on the grips, and I guess Colt has finally relented and started staking them again. Now they'll probably start hearing from the "I want to be able to remove them easily" crowd once again. I'm beginning to think that Colt needs to start selling unfinished, unassembled 1911 kits so that people intent on tearing apart brand-new pistols and customizing them don't have to deal with staked-on sights, bushings, and plunger tubes.
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Try not to fall into the common trap of wanting to replace everything on your new 1911 just to make it "better". Know what you're changing out, and why. You may spend a lot of money fixing things that weren't broken to begin with. Shoot it for at least 500 rounds, then decide what you don't like and want improved. Vintage 1911's should NEVER be refinished or modified because it ruins any value they had as a collectible firearm.
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  #4  
Old 07-28-2013, 07:35 PM
roadblock roadblock is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dakota1911 View Post
Know any good gunsmiths in your area?
Well there is this one guy I know by the name of Ned Christiansen, I'm told he might know a thing or two about 1911's.

Lives about 20 minutes from me but sometimes he is pretty busy. He did a Dawson Light Rail install for me a while back, took a couple months for him to find the time.

If I had to go see a smith though, it would be him if his schedule permitted.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dsk View Post
To do it right you need to take a Dremel and grind off the staking, otherwise you run the risk of buggering up the frame threads assuming you can even get them loose without crushing the bushings.
I don't like you very much right now! Damn, that is what I was afraid I would hear.

Seriously though, maybe if I get one of those ball shaped bits and grind JUST the stake out, well it can't we worse then turning the staked area of the bushing ALL the way threw all the threads now can it?

I would much prefer they be just loc-tited in there, I can re-tighten them if need be. I mean hell, the grip screws were falling out after 50 rounds anyway so at that point, who cares about bushings being staked or not!

Last edited by roadblock; 07-28-2013 at 07:45 PM.
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  #5  
Old 07-28-2013, 07:49 PM
BBBBill BBBBill is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadblock View Post
... maybe if I get one of those ball shaped bits and grind JUST the stake out, well it can't we worse then turning the staked area of the bushing ALL the way threw all the threads now can it?
Depends on how good you are with a Dremel. That ball shaped bit can make some interesting marks when it runs off the bushing and starts skating around on your frame.
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  #6  
Old 07-28-2013, 08:38 PM
roadblock roadblock is offline
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I'm honestly not worried about the inside of the frame, the magazines are going to SCRATCH the hell out of that in a month or two anyway.

I just don't want to have to have the frame drilled and tapped for a grip bushing helicoil insert!
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  #7  
Old 07-28-2013, 08:43 PM
KPSquared KPSquared is offline
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On the new Talos CCO I just bought 3 of the four bushings came out when I changed my scales to black VZ 320 G10s. They were very lightly staked.
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  #8  
Old 07-28-2013, 10:22 PM
roadblock roadblock is offline
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YEAH! So that went horribly sideways really fast!

I tried to turn the bushing out very carefully to see if any of them were loose and I swear to god they were made of soft lead. The screw driver RIPPED the bushings apart.

The only reason I wanted to remove the bushings was so I could cut them down to use them with slim grips. I ended up taping up the frame and cutting them down with a Dremal cut off wheel in place on the frame. I think they turned out fine.

They are the exact same height as my slim bushing on one of my other 1911's.

If I ever had to remove the bushings, I'll probably have to have a smith do it but they should be fine.
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  #9  
Old 07-28-2013, 10:39 PM
BBBBill BBBBill is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadblock View Post
YEAH! So that went horribly sideways really fast!

I tried to turn the bushing out very carefully to see if any of them were loose and I swear to god they were made of soft lead. The screw driver RIPPED the bushings apart...
A screw driver is not the correct tool for grip screw bushings. You will destroy them every time with a screw driver. Get a proper bushing driver. They are available for standard and slim bushings.
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  #10  
Old 07-28-2013, 11:10 PM
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dsk dsk is offline
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Grip screw bushings are purposely made of butter-soft steel so that they stand less chance of ruining the frame threads if they get stripped or cross-threaded. And like BBBBill said there is only one correct tool for the job, a bushing driver sold by Brownells that supports the head of the bushing as you try to turn it.
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Try not to fall into the common trap of wanting to replace everything on your new 1911 just to make it "better". Know what you're changing out, and why. You may spend a lot of money fixing things that weren't broken to begin with. Shoot it for at least 500 rounds, then decide what you don't like and want improved. Vintage 1911's should NEVER be refinished or modified because it ruins any value they had as a collectible firearm.
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