Wow! That looks like a TT 33!
Wow! That looks like a TT 33!
Thanks for the comments fellas. It should be finished within a couple weeks. I'll add pictures as I work. I think I'm going to nitre blue the trigger, extractor and maybe the safety. That'll give those parts a bright blue finish that will stand out a little from the rest of the pistol. Ordered some walnut grips last night too.
WR - yes it does look like a TT33. Well, technically the TT33 looks like the 1903. Like many other gun makers, the Russians borrowed heavily from Browning's designs. I'd like to pick up one of the Tokarevs.
I'm almost done with this project now. Here are some more pics of the final polish:
Those aren't weird lines on the frame. That's the reflection of the wall. The barrel isn't polished to the same finish as the other parts because there's no need since most of the barrel is obviously hidden from view. Sorry the pictures aren't the best. I took them with my phone.
I'm actually done with the bluing but I didn't get any pics of the bluing process because it keeps you pretty busy. I'll be doing a Ruger Blackhawk next and maybe I can get some pics of the parts in the tank.
I used a different process, nitre bluing for the trigger, safety and extractor to give them a bright blue finish that will stand out against the black finish on the rest of the gun. Right now everything is slathered in RIG grease and wrapped in wax paper and newspaper. It'll sit there for a couple days, then I'll clean off the grease and see what I've got.
I did run into a couple hiccups with the bluing. The tank got a little hot which caused a very slight rusty reddish tint when I checked the parts. I boiled them in clean water for a while and when I pulled them out of the water I didn't see any rust. Then I soaked everything in water displacing oil before putting it in the grease. It seemed to be fine but you've got to get the parts cleaned up before you know for sure. The RIG is awesome **** and has been known to magically save parts that come out of the tanks completely covered in rust. I highly recommend it for long term gun storage and protection of blades as well.
In a few days I'll get it reassembled and show you the finished product.
I've never shot a 1903 but I love the Colt Mustang in .380...
She's a beauty, devil. Congrats on a fine piece of restoration work.
Were there any surprises with the bluing part of the restoration?
She's a beauty.
Ace work there, Devil.
Thanks for the comments fellas.
Yes, there were surprises and setbacks. My first problem was that I got the frame polished up all nice and pretty and was putting the final touches on it with a soft buffing wheel when the wheel snatched it from me and threw the frame onto the concrete floor. ****!!!!!! So I had to go back to polishing stones and rough grit paper to get my fresh scars out. I was not happy.
Then the bluing tank got a little too hot. I think it may have been a bad thermometer. There's a black band on the bluing thermometer that shows you the temperature range you need to keep it in. If it's too hot you get rust. The thermometer showed I was in the correct range but I saw a light rusty tint when I checked a couple of my parts, so I put them back in the tank and cooled it down.
When I took the parts back out a couple of them still had a slight hint of rusty color. Like I mentioned earlier, I know RIG grease is some magic **** and I was confident it would get rid of the rust. However, that turned out not to be an issue. I boiled the parts in hot water for a while to remove all the bluing salts and when I took them out of the water all the rust was gone. Ended up with a great finish. It's hard to tell from the pictures exactly what the gun looks like because of the way the light reflects, but it's a deep jet black finish.
Then I got to find out what a treat it is to put together a completely disassembled Colt 1903. It's a goddamn motherfucking pain in the ass. I almost hung myself in the closet. I had read that it was a bitch to get the grip safety and hammer back in correctly so I had prepared and read everything I could find about how to do it. But it was very fucking hard.
You have to get several parts aligned a certain way and you have to do **** in a certain sequence. You have to keep the grip safety partially compressed while you apply a considerable amount of force to install the hammer, insert a slave pin to hold everything, then slowly replace the slave pin with the safety that holds it all together. You need a vise and three hands. After you get the hang of it, it's not so bad. I could do it again with no problem but the learning curve is steep on this gun.
Once I got the little fucker together and calmed myself with a few beers I was happy with the final product.