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  #1  
Old 06-30-2020, 10:33 AM
Vigiance Vigiance is offline
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Cost to Fit Barrel?

Hi folks,
I was recently quoted a $400 cost to fit an aftermarket barrel w/ bushing to my Colt slide. Additional work is install of new ejector and plunger tube (which should be cheap considering how these two shouldn't be difficult). $400 to me is an exorbitant cost to fit a barrel and bushing. Is this in line with what other places charge? What would you expect to be charged for barrel fitting?
I was expecting ballpark $100-150...
Thanks, would love to hear your thoughts!
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  #2  
Old 06-30-2020, 10:46 AM
gunnut606 gunnut606 is online now
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Is it just for labor or barrel included ? I myself would pay around $150-$200 for labor IF it's fitted correctly.

I had a barrel fitted by a company in Tennessee a long time ago, it was just a Storm Lake barrel, but it was fitted correctly and shot very accurately for about 50K rounds before fading off.

.
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Last edited by gunnut606; 06-30-2020 at 10:57 AM.
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  #3  
Old 06-30-2020, 10:46 AM
roaniecowpony roaniecowpony is online now
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Price out the parts and see what's left for labor. If that quote was for a hard-fit match barrel by a well known smith, it was very cheap. If it was for a drop-in high quality American made barrel, it was very fair. If it was for foreign made parts, it gets a bit fuzzy.

I recommend you look into costs of parts here:
https://www.brownells.com/manufactur...rrel/index.htm

Whether or not something is a good price almost totally depends on the outcome. If it ain't right, no price is a good price. If it's extremely well done with high quality parts, it will please you for years, even if the cost was seemingly higher than you thought.
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Last edited by roaniecowpony; 06-30-2020 at 10:49 AM.
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  #4  
Old 06-30-2020, 10:53 AM
Magnumite Magnumite is offline
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If that includes cost of a good make barrel that is about right. I figure 2.5 to 3.0 hours minimum to fit a barrel. Many smiths charge $50 to $75 an hour. Considering how it will shoot and function when done by a good smith, it is worth it.

You need to also consider the equipment, expertise and experience costs.
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  #5  
Old 06-30-2020, 10:56 AM
Vigiance Vigiance is offline
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Hi folks, sorry, I should've clarified. I already have the barrel, bushing, link, and plunger/ejector on hand. The $400 quote is purely for labor. Based on your comments, $400 for fitment labor is straight-up wrong. Am I correct in interpreting that?
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  #6  
Old 06-30-2020, 11:00 AM
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BrokenGrunt BrokenGrunt is offline
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I supplied a barrel, link, and bushing to a local smith. It cost me $125 to have it fitted. It's not quite a hard fit as it's my EDC.

The gun is more accurate now than it was before.
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Old 06-30-2020, 11:02 AM
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Way too high. Guncrafter is installing a 9mm ramped barrel of theirs, bushing, adjust extractor and ejector in one of my 38 Supers for near that price, all inclusive.
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Old 06-30-2020, 11:15 AM
SFSMedic SFSMedic is online now
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Another question besides cost you should be asking is what method and tooling they are using. If theyíre using a milling machine versus a lug cutter. Makes a huge difference in precision of the work and what you should be paying.


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  #9  
Old 06-30-2020, 11:19 AM
roaniecowpony roaniecowpony is online now
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Some examples of costs

http://www.harrisoncustom.com/Services.aspx?cid=3

https://www.evolutionarmory.com/services

https://cylinder-slide.com/Category/1911PARAORD1
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Old 06-30-2020, 11:23 AM
roaniecowpony roaniecowpony is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vigiance View Post
Hi folks, sorry, I should've clarified. I already have the barrel, bushing, link, and plunger/ejector on hand. The $400 quote is purely for labor. Based on your comments, $400 for fitment labor is straight-up wrong. Am I correct in interpreting that?
As you can probably imagine, there's a lot of variability of what gunsmiths charge. Well known smiths tend to cost more, but not always, and lessor known ones can be a bargain or a bummer. There's just not much "standardization" of pricing.

But to your question about the labor, there's a big difference between just making a barrel function and a hard fit match installation, in labor to install. What type of barrel did you buy?
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Old 06-30-2020, 11:42 AM
Vigiance Vigiance is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roaniecowpony View Post
As you can probably imagine, there's a lot of variability of what gunsmiths charge. Well known smiths tend to cost more, but not always, and lessor known ones can be a bargain or a bummer. There's just not much "standardization" of pricing.

But to your question about the labor, there's a big difference between just making a barrel function and a hard fit match installation, in labor to install. What type of barrel did you buy?
I bought the Wilson Combat 5-inch "match grade" barrel. My intention is to have lots of barrel-to-slide lug engagement, and proper VIS impact fitment. Sounds like pretty standard correct fitment, no? Pic attached.
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  #12  
Old 06-30-2020, 11:55 AM
Magnumite Magnumite is offline
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That is high for just labor.

Any correctly fit barrel would have proper application of both.

Here is a guide for you. It will cost to ship both ways. Compare that to your labor only. You may be better off sending it to Wilson and sitting on or selling your acquired parts.

https://www.wilsoncombat.com/wp-cont...orm_1911-1.pdf
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Old 06-30-2020, 11:56 AM
roaniecowpony roaniecowpony is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vigiance View Post
I bought the Wilson Combat 5-inch "match grade" barrel. My intention is to have lots of barrel-to-slide lug engagement, and proper VIS impact fitment. Sounds like pretty standard correct fitment, no? Pic attached.
Their "match barrel" will need fitting on the lower lugs, upper locking lugs, hood and the chamber may need to be headspaced/chamber finish reamed.

There are plenty of good/great smiths on this site. If you look in the Merchants Deals section, you can find some of them. I like the service I received at Evolution Armory https://www.evolutionarmory.com/contact.php
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:03 PM
roaniecowpony roaniecowpony is online now
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Here's a thread about smiths in the SLC area, if you don't want to ship.
https://forums.1911forum.com/showthread.php?t=488363

If your gun is an unmodified Colt, Wilson Combat will work on it. They may even install the barrel you bought from them if you haven't fiddled with it.
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:08 PM
Vigiance Vigiance is offline
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The $400 quote for labor is from MARS Armament, from the SLC gunsmith thread on this forum, which is why I was so surprised. Looks like Bullock (the other gunsmith in that thread) isn't taking any new work currently. I don't know how comfortable I feel about sending my gun off somewhere, have never done that before. I think I'll just sit on the parts for now. Might do Evolution or Wilson Combat after some more research on sending my gun out.

Once again 1911forum pulls through and is laden with useful info and amazing forum members.
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  #16  
Old 06-30-2020, 12:09 PM
Serpico1985 Serpico1985 is online now
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Knowing what goes into properly fitting a barrel and bushing to a gun $400 is cheap.
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:12 PM
Vigiance Vigiance is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roaniecowpony View Post
Their "match barrel" will need fitting on the lower lugs, upper locking lugs, hood and the chamber may need to be headspaced/chamber finish reamed.

There are plenty of good/great smiths on this site. If you look in the Merchants Deals section, you can find some of them. I like the service I received at Evolution Armory https://www.evolutionarmory.com/contact.php
Uh oh, Evolution does ion bonding. You're leading me down a different rabbit hole now! This hobby sure is a money pit.
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  #18  
Old 06-30-2020, 12:14 PM
Vigiance Vigiance is offline
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Originally Posted by Serpico1985 View Post
Knowing what goes into properly fitting a barrel and bushing to a gun $400 is cheap.
Wilson Combat quotes $340 for Match Grade barrel fitment, and that's already including the $200 for the barrel itself.
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vigiance View Post
The $400 quote for labor is from MARS Armament, from the SLC gunsmith thread on this forum, which is why I was so surprised. Looks like Bullock (the other gunsmith in that thread) isn't taking any new work currently. I don't know how comfortable I feel about sending my gun off somewhere, have never done that before. I think I'll just sit on the parts for now. Might do Evolution or Wilson Combat after some more research on sending my gun out.

Once again 1911forum pulls through and is laden with useful info and amazing forum members.
I can highly recommend Evolution Armory. They have fitted a few barrels for me.
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  #20  
Old 06-30-2020, 12:16 PM
roaniecowpony roaniecowpony is online now
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Just keep in mind, buying parts and finding a gunsmith to install them is akin to buying a bunch of custom engine parts for your car and finding a engine shop to install them. Both of these businesses have intimate knowledge of what it takes to install components they source regularly and prefer to use what they're familiar with. When you ask them to use what you purchased, you also cut them out of a small profit on the component as well as possibly introduce some unknowns about the labor to fit them. You'll get the best deal by seeking a smith that provides and installs the components, in most cases.
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:20 PM
roaniecowpony roaniecowpony is online now
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Originally Posted by Vigiance View Post
Wilson Combat quotes $340 for Match Grade barrel fitment, and that's already including the $200 for the barrel itself.
I'd call them and tell them your story and tell them you didn't quite understand what you were getting into. Maybe they'll be gracious and let you send what you have in and just charge the difference. Worth a shot. $140 to have them do it is a good price....
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:26 PM
Serpico1985 Serpico1985 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vigiance View Post
Wilson Combat quotes $340 for Match Grade barrel fitment, and that's already including the $200 for the barrel itself.
Yea. I'm saying that most smiths don't charge near enough to properly fit a barrel. Just because someone charges $140 labor to fit a barrel doesn't mean that's what it's worth. If properly done, it's worth a lot more.
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  #23  
Old 06-30-2020, 01:34 PM
Oldpistol Oldpistol is online now
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Or........ you can fit it yourself. If you screw up, you are only out a barrel. You will be paying yourself 5-10 dollars an hour. If that. And risking a nice barrel. You may have to finish ream it when you are done. If you want bullseye accuracy, have an excellent gunsmith do it.
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Old 06-30-2020, 02:20 PM
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Steve Morrison of MARS Armament knows his stuff.
I'd wager you would receive full value for the price.

Plenty of 'hacks' that would install your barrel for $100.
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Old 06-30-2020, 02:29 PM
SFSMedic SFSMedic is online now
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Cost to Fit Barrel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pistolwrench View Post
Steve Morrison of MARS Armament knows his stuff.
I'd wager you would receive full value for the price.

Plenty of 'hacks' that would install your barrel for $100.

This!

Be weary of someone who has no back log or prices are really low.


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Last edited by SFSMedic; 06-30-2020 at 02:31 PM.
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