looking to build a gun

This is a discussion on looking to build a gun within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; i am looking to build a 1911 from parts, now i know that i am going to have to have one of the local gun ...

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Thread: looking to build a gun

  1. #1
    New Member Array vitals's Avatar
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    looking to build a gun

    i am looking to build a 1911 from parts, now i know that i am going to have to have one of the local gun shops order me the frame since i have no ffl. now i want to know after the frame is registered to me since it is like purchasing a pistol anyways, do i need to have any license or anything to complete the gun(i live in PA btw). or is the frame registered to me all i need to have done. thanks ahead of time

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array luvmyglock's Avatar
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    The only part that is mandated by the ATF is the frame. The rest may be bought without regulation, background checks, etc. No further documentation is required. I am not a lawyer, so take what I say with a good dose of research of your own.
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    Member Array spooter66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vitals View Post
    i am looking to build a 1911 from parts, now i know that i am going to have to have one of the local gun shops order me the frame since i have no ffl. now i want to know after the frame is registered to me since it is like purchasing a pistol anyways, do i need to have any license or anything to complete the gun(i live in PA btw). or is the frame registered to me all i need to have done. thanks ahead of time
    Pa has no gun registration. Once you order the frame thru a FFl thats it, do what you want. Once built just follow Pa firearms laws for transport and carry.

  5. #4
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    May I suggest that you give Brownell's a call & ask them to send you a copy of their 1911 catalog.
    The catalog features photos of 1911s that have already been built using parts from Ed Brown, Wilson, Nowlin, Smith & Alexander etc...and it's GREAT.

    Also take a look at the forged and machined from bar-stock slides with pre-fit barrels being sold by Fusion Firearms. They are very high quality.
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  6. #5
    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Sorry to hijack this thread, but I was about to post something very similar only my question is;

    What is an average cost of a "good" (not best) quality built-from-parts 1911?

    I would like to build one, not to race/compete and not to store in a safe, but one to use and carry occasionally.
    I am consistently on record and will continue to be on record as opposing concealed carry.
    - Barack Obama Chicago Tribune, April 27, 2004

  7. #6
    Member Array Benthic's Avatar
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    So, it's reasonable to purchase a 1911 frame and build it up from parts, say the same way many folks build AR-15s? I'm asking because I was considering this myself, but didn't know if it was a realistic idea.

    Brian

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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    Like QK said fusion sells barrel slide fitted kits,but I believe they are in the white,in other words they need to be blued or finished with some other gun coating like duracoat etc.Once you buy the frame and get the parts you can assemble the frame within 15 minutes,but being your first time may take a little longer,also if I remember right the slides come without sights but have the dovetail cut in them ready to accept a set
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    Oh yep, you can do it.
    The problem is that there might be some things that you can't do yourself without the proper machine equipment.

    Many high quality "drop in" parts will drop right in.
    A few may not.

    It's probably best if you buy a complete top end with your desired sight cuts already milled in and the barrel and bushing pre-fit to the slide - which is why I suggested Fusion.
    That gets some big problems out of the way right away.


    Usually if you stay with the highest quality parts things will go your way but, not always.
    Usually though if you come across something that you can't handle yourself - a local smith can tackle that individual fit job for you and you'll still get a great shooting ultra reliable gun for your money.

    Be aware of the fact that best quality parts are not cheap.
    Just do not buy parts unless you can be certain who made them.
    There are a ton of junk no-name import parts floating around at gun shows and the Internet and they can cause real problems.

  10. #9
    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    OK, points taken. What about general cost? Can a good 1911 be hand assembled for around $500?
    I am consistently on record and will continue to be on record as opposing concealed carry.
    - Barack Obama Chicago Tribune, April 27, 2004

  11. #10
    Member Array gold40's Avatar
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    Most of us are better off purchasing a completed 1911 pistol at whatever price level we can afford.

  12. #11
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    A LOT depends on how much time you're willing to spend shopping around for decent deals on parts.

    If you are just wanting to build a basic workable gun then you still need to start out with a decent quality frame.

    Many times you can find brand new factory Colt parts at a decent price when folks "upgrade" parts to build a full blown custom.

    They usually dump most (if not ALL) of the factory parts and there is really nothing physically wrong with them at all.

    How much actual money will you save by building your own if you just want a shooter?

    It's almost impossible to say. It just depends on what you are willing to accept in the way of parts.
    Are you willing to take a used but, in good condition barrel or must your barrel be new?

    Are you willing to accept a refinished/reblued slide or must it be new?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tally XD View Post
    OK, points taken. What about general cost? Can a good 1911 be hand assembled for around $500?
    Nope. Builing one yourself always costs more. Unless you are in the industry and can get most of the parts and work for free. I built a Mauser a few years back and thought going in that it would be fun and cheap. Well it was fun and a great learning experience but it was most definitely not cheap.
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  14. #13
    New Member Array vitals's Avatar
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    well the reason i want to build one is that i already have a decent "shooter" pistol that i take to the range and carry. its not the best but it does its job its basically a Springfield armory mil spec wwII edition. it shoots accurate and is reliable as a carry and range gun. i know i can fit the gun with anything i want, but i think it would be a great learning experience and also fun to build my own 1911 setup exactly the way i want it. you might ask why i just don't do it to the mil spec, i like it the way it is and i don't see a need to change anything on it, as long as it continues to operate for what i need. besides i want something in stainless maybe a two tone i am not sure right now but i know it will be pricey but it will be fun. before i would go ahead with anything i would always make sure what i am in for not only with the money side of it but i would say to myself "am i sure i have the right skills to take this on."

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    New Member Array TodaysBushcraft's Avatar
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    I realize this is an old thread, but I am new here.
    I want to build up a 1911 Officer Model, but from a 60% frame.
    Does anyone know where I can get the smaller frame?
    Thanks!

  16. #15
    Distinguished Member Array dangerranger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TodaysBushcraft View Post
    I realize this is an old thread, but I am new here.
    I want to build up a 1911 Officer Model, but from a 60% frame.
    Does anyone know where I can get the smaller frame?
    Thanks!
    A 60% frame is not smaller, its only 60% finished. The ATF ruled that some 80% frames were not built by the owner so they have gone to only 60% completed. it means you have to do more of the machine work to complete the frame. But it will finish out to a full sized gun. If you are really interested in this there is a group starting on Calguns to build a frame that uses 1911 parts but is not a 1911. they designed the frame to need the least machine work possible. I believe it could be done with a drill press and a good vise.

    Rudius 1911 80 Percent Frame - Ares Armor

    There have been some delays and grumbling lately so check them out before you buy. Oh and by the way in CA you would have to build it as a single shot and then convert it into a 1911.
    As others have said you can buy a Rock Island basic 1911 cheaper and build a custom off that frame. Check out Caspian and Fusion for custom parts. Good luck DR

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