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Old 02-09-2009, 12:33 AM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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Default For classic and vintage fans...

I bought one of my holy grail pistols today. I'm posted to Edmonton doing workup training for Afghanistan, and went to the local gunshow on Saturday (much better than the Winnipeg show back home). An old fellow was there with a table full of his very impressive collection of very rare and good quality old military handguns he was getting rid of. And selling at prices that would have been fair 10 years ago. He had a few things that interested me, but a dealer snapped them up as soon as he brought them out.

But when I talked to him afterwards he showed me the list of everything he had, including everything he left at home - which, as it turned out, was the good stuff. As soon as I saw this on the list, I offered him a deposit sight-unseen. He saw my army hoodie and told me I didn't need a deposit. I showed up an hour and a half into the show today carrying $900 cash and he told me he'd already turned down half a dozen offers on it.

Why all the fuss? It's all matching, all original Colt M1911 chambered in .455 Webley & Scott auto as part of the 1919 RAF contract (sorry about the pictures, I just snapped them quick at the show):




These are super-rare, original condition 1911s are hard enough to find, but on top of that most .455 1911s were rechambered to .45ACP by swapping out the barrel and mag - I've seen .455 mags alone sell for $300. You can see it's got the W (for Webley) prefix serial number and "CALIBRE 455" rollmark, the RAF stamp and is covered in British crossed flag proofs.

As an example of how good a deal this was, here's one in similar condition and without the RAF stamping. http://www.simpsonltd.com/product_in...f059ee4fafceb3 While US prices of original 1911s are higher than Canadian, this was still an amazing bargain.

When I pick up the gun I'm going to look at some of his other stuff, including a Webley-Fosberry he wants $5000 for. I might. There's some other stuff I probably will buy, including a Rast-Gasser M1898, a Webley-Green and Prussian-contract "Red Nine" Broomhandle.
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:56 AM
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Gunmaster45 Gunmaster45 is offline
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Congrats on the buy, the 1911 looks great (a little scratched up but in great shape), glad to see you got such a good gun.

I personally recommend you buy that Red 9, Broomhandles look and shoot great and Red 9s shoot 9mm, which is a lot easier to find than 7.63 mauser pistol rounds.

My dad fixed up a Luger P08 from 1944, a war bringback with all matching parts for a friend who just sold it on Gunbroker for $2500 dollars! I got to put two mags through it for testing and it shot great. I'm glad he got such a good price for it. Personally I don't like the toggle on Lugers but they shoot great.

But again, that's a damn fine 1911.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:26 AM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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It is a little scratched up - the flash on my camera (wasn't my usual gun camera) makes them stand out more. You gotta remember it's the mirror polished bluing Colt put on the commercial 1911s up until the 20s (the .455s are part of the commercial series) so it shows wear alot more than a parkerised A1.

As you may recall, I have a Broomhandle in 7.63mm, and I no problem getting enough ammo to shoot it as much as I care to shoot a gun that valuable. And while Broomhandles do shoot fairly accurately, the're quite uncomfortable to shoot as they have terrible ergonomics. My Luger shoots very well as well, though it's quite finnicky about ammo.

What I'm really excited about is actually the Rast & Gasser, they're incredibly hard to find.

Last edited by Nyles; 02-09-2009 at 01:29 AM.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:41 AM
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Wow, that is quite the purchase. Congrats! It may be pretty beat up, but still, quite a nice find.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:23 AM
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I for one think the Broomhandle fits great in the hand but it may just be me. I'm just saying a Red 9 is more conveniant because 9mm is pretty universal but if you can get 7.63s enough, it's your choice.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:34 AM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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Oh, it fits the hand well enough when you pick it up, but when you actually fire it the left hand edge of the frame is sitting right on your thumb joint. Combine that with the heavy muzzle flip you're getting from the grip being that far back and you don't have a particularly ergonomic pistol.
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Old 03-07-2009, 07:34 AM
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Now that's a real beauty.
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Old 03-07-2009, 06:58 PM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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Thanks. I've recently bought a very nice Rast & Gasser 1898 from the same fellow, and he's got a couple of French M1892s left to show me. He also has a Webley-Fosberry, but I don't see buying that until I get back from overseas.
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Old 03-07-2009, 10:47 PM
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I used to keep a C96 "non-gun" in my room, which was basically a replica pistol composed of Zinc. I recently took it out because whenever I pick it up my finger swell with some type of allergic reaction, I assume it's the zinc.
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Old 03-13-2009, 03:19 PM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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Thought you might appreciate my most recent purchase:

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