Grips Trouble

Discussion in 'The 1911 Forum' started by Phildo, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. Phildo

    Phildo New Member

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    Sep 8, 2009
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    I have a Colt 1911 Government Edition, manufactured in the late 70's (don't remember exact date now). Would like to install a set of custom grips but when I went to take the old grips off the screws are stripped and won't come out so I can't get the old grips off. Any ideas on how I could get these off without damaging my gun?
  2. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    If destroying the old grips doesn't bother you, you can carefully take them apart (with a knife, chisel, whatever) trying not to scar up your gun's grip. Then grab hold of the screw bushings with a pair of vice-grips and unscrew them from the frame.

    You are aware, aren't you, that the grip frame is threaded, that four bushings are screwed into the frame (two on each side, obviously), and the grips are then screwed into the bushings?
  3. Lotsdragon

    Lotsdragon New Member

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    Do you have a dremel type tool?I would first try to cut a new slot in them, if not there is always alpo's way.
  4. ms6852

    ms6852 Active Member

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    There are drill bits designed to drill a hole and than useds another drill bit to screw it out.
    If have also used gorilla glue or JB weld to a cheap screwdriver to the screw head let it set than screw it out.
  5. Slabsides

    Slabsides Member

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    I've gotten grips off with destroyed hardware by placing a small chisel length-wise (read: with the grain) just above the top screw and lightly taping with a 2oz hammer until they pop in two and fall right off.

    This is obviously done to grip panels you intend to trash, then carefully winding the hardware out with small vice-grips.

    If you want to save the grips and the screw heads are destroyed, use a small drill bit slightly larger than the screw shank and drill the center of the screw SLOWLY till the head pops off (another method which will not damage the grips is to us a drill bit slightly smaller than the screw shank and drill down till you reach the bottom of the screw head, then take the bit out, flip it over and insert it into the hole and pop the head off) then wind the stem out with small vice-grips. Hint: If you have any left-handed drill bits, they may bite and wind the screw out as well while drilling.

    If the screw turns freely but will not come out, wedge an old credit card under the grip near the troubled screw and gently pry up on the grip while loosening the screw, this will help it get a bite. If that does no good, use a Dremel with a small round (ball) bit to grind the head of the screw off. Grind at an angle to prevent the screw from spinning.

    If you get it apart and find that the screw insert has stripped out of the reciever, you can get oversized replacements, of course your reciever will need to be tapped for them.

    Please note when drilling: use moderate pressure at a very low RPM. Add a drip of oil (preferrably cutting fluid) every few seconds....when you see a nice curleycue piece of spiral metal come out around the bit, you are doing it some good. By no means hit it full speed.
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2009
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