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  #1  
Old 04-28-2021, 01:41 AM
C.D. C.D. is offline
 
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Location: South Central Texas
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Default What is used to identify if a 1911 was used in the Navy, Army or U. S. M. C. ?

I was looking at the photos for the 1911ís on the CMP Auction and noticed that on the Data Sheets for the two Colt pistols there were check marks by Navy. Is the branch of service that used the pistol determined by cross referencing the serial number or are there unique identifying marks or a paper trail to identify the associated branch of service?
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  #2  
Old 04-28-2021, 06:21 AM
ken792 ken792 is offline
 
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In that case, it’s probably specific serial number ranges for certain years.

http://www.coolgunsite.com/pistols/c...production.htm

You can also purchase a Colt factory letter for Colts. That will tell you where it was shipped, but it won’t tell you if it got transferred to another branch, sometimes immediately after the Army accepted it.

https://www.colt.com/page/archive-services
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  #3  
Old 04-28-2021, 07:22 AM
msmith5150 msmith5150 is offline
 
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Just don't bother with the Colt Archive inquiry if you happen to have one in the 600k range, they'll tell you those records, unfortunately, got lost.
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  #4  
Old 04-28-2021, 04:02 PM
davisjc1914 davisjc1914 is offline
 
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Having spent 21 years (1960-1981) in the Navy and having dealt with 1911's that whole time I would certainly like to be able to say that the 1911 I will get from the CMP soon (I hope soon, RGN 21,403) was one used somewhere within the Navy. When I get the call will it do me any good to ask the CMP person if they can look to see if sending me a "Navy" 1911 is possible? Or would it simply be wasting my time and theirs by asking? Thanks for any help/advice.
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  #5  
Old 04-28-2021, 04:31 PM
ken792 ken792 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davisjc1914 View Post
Having spent 21 years (1960-1981) in the Navy and having dealt with 1911's that whole time I would certainly like to be able to say that the 1911 I will get from the CMP soon (I hope soon, RGN 21,403) was one used somewhere within the Navy. When I get the call will it do me any good to ask the CMP person if they can look to see if sending me a "Navy" 1911 is possible? Or would it simply be wasting my time and theirs by asking? Thanks for any help/advice.
I think the Navy specific guns have been set aside for auction. There are two 1939 Navy guns on auction right now. I believe the entirety of 1939 military M1911A1s went to the Navy. There were also small Navy serial blocks of A1s in 1937 and 1942. Those are guns that Colt shipped directly to the Navy and does not include ones that they received from the Army or USMC. The total number of A1s shipped directly to the Navy by Colt is less than 10k.

Other manufacturers probably shipped A1s to the Navy as well, but they did not keep such serial number records that are known to still survive.

https://cmpauction.thecmp.org/detail...11A1-SN-716723
https://cmpauction.thecmp.org/detail...11A1-SN-716567
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  #6  
Old 04-28-2021, 04:33 PM
ZvenoMan ZvenoMan is online now
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davisjc1914 View Post
Having spent 21 years (1960-1981) in the Navy and having dealt with 1911's that whole time I would certainly like to be able to say that the 1911 I will get from the CMP soon (I hope soon, RGN 21,403) was one used somewhere within the Navy. When I get the call will it do me any good to ask the CMP person if they can look to see if sending me a "Navy" 1911 is possible? Or would it simply be wasting my time and theirs by asking? Thanks for any help/advice.
All CMP 1911s came from the Army. I would assume many originally served in the other branches but all CMP knows is they came from the Army.
They sort them into the 3 grades.
You may make a request when called, but typical requests are for manufacturer, new or old finish, top/bottom match, yes/no rebuild; something easy to identify without research, charts or disassembly.
If they see a request all they can do is look among the group of pistols in the shipping area (so maybe a few dozen at most?) and if what you request is there, they may fill it. If it isn't there they will pick something of the grade you paid for.

Since "US Navy" is not a prominent feature how would you request it, and more importantly, how would they fulfill it given the process as it exists today?
Think of it like rubbing the lamp. You only get 1 wish, don't waste it on something they can't reasonably fulfill.
Examples of those wasted wishes:
Please send one like I carried in the service
Please send one used by xyz unit in 1944
Please send one carried by an officer
Please send one with all parts correct for the s/n
My uncle served in the battle of the bulge, please send me an all matching Colt never rebuilt so I have one like his

And remember, it is no more than a request; they do not offer hand select for a fee; the only guarantee is it will meet the grade description. so read those carefully.

FYI, those are my opinions based on observations, discussions with many and personal experience.
JH
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  #7  
Old 04-29-2021, 10:15 AM
davisjc1914 davisjc1914 is offline
 
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Thanks to all for the replies. I think that I knew what the answer to the question was before I even wrote the post but it's good to get feedback that solidifies my thought. Appreciate it.
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  #8  
Old 05-02-2021, 03:18 PM
junnie junnie is offline
 
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Curious: Can I obtain a Rack Grade without parkerization?? Was 5th Marines 1966-67 Nam. Don't remember any 1911 being parkerized .... Perhaps I'm wrong, happened a long time ago..... Plus 1911s were far and in between and hard to come by.
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  #9  
Old 05-02-2021, 04:21 PM
MajorD MajorD is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by junnie View Post
Curious: Can I obtain a Rack Grade without parkerization?? Was 5th Marines 1966-67 Nam. Don't remember any 1911 being parkerized .... Perhaps I'm wrong, happened a long time ago..... Plus 1911s were far and in between and hard to come by.
By the Vietnam era it would be unusual for a 1911 not to be parkerized. The vast majority of 1911ís that may have still been in service at that point would have been rebuilt and refinished at least once. By Vietnam I would actually doubt there were any 1911ís still in service, but anything is possible
For 1911A1ís with the exception of some 1920ís and 30ís guns which were ordered in rather small quantities, the A1ís were parkerized.
Some early WWII A1ís were finished in a brushed blue or another finish called DU-lite but again small numbers, most would have been rebuilt and refinished after WWII and Korea not to mention regular wear and tear in guns used in training in peacetime.
I suspect ( no offense) your memory may have failed you.
I have talked to lots of vets over the years than seem to have misremembered firearms details, insisting they were issued a firearm made by ( fill in the blank). These stories are often associated with telling me the maker which was never a known maker of the weapon.
Like when someone insists they were issued an M-1 garand made by Remington for example.
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  #10  
Old 05-02-2021, 07:14 PM
aim120c aim120c is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2021
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As a courier, I carried a 1911A1 and it proved valuable since I had to defend myself and 3 others against VC infiltrators. 4 shots and 2 dead VC over 50 years ago, 1970
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