Cost question to have Blackhawk barrel shortened

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JWhitmore44

Blackhawk
Joined
Oct 23, 2008
Messages
987
Location
NW Kansas
$75 on a blued single six and several years ago (probably about 15) $50 on a Abilene in 44 mag. Both use the screw on front sight mount.
 

DGW1949

Hunter
Joined
Apr 10, 2005
Messages
3,638
Location
Texas
The one and only Ruger SA that I've ever had shortened was a .44 Mag SBH.
That was back about 1978 or so. Cost was a whopping $25 but included drilling/countersinking the front sight and remounting it with a screw.

I'd guess that would make it over $100 in today's money.....plus whatever it took to ship it back and forth, or if you find a shop nearby, whatever gas/time it might take to transport it twice.

My usual suggestion on this sort of thing is to sell it and buy one more to your liking. But beings how I think(?) I know what gun you're talking about, and being's how I already know that you are about as picky as me on the mechanical aspects of our personal revolvers..... you'd have to be real lucky to find another one that suits you as-is.

That don't leave a lot of options....do it yourself, or hire it done.
Wow.....I'm glad it aint me having to make that decision.

Sorry that I aint much help on this one.

DGW
 

J Miller

Blackhawk
Joined
Sep 30, 2000
Messages
977
Location
Not in IL anymore ... :)
In 1976 I bought my first OM BH in .45 Colt. It was a BKH44 ( 4/58" .45 Colt ). Later added an ACP cylinder to it. Great shooting little pistol. Didn't lead with anything, accurate, and handy.
Some pond scum stole it along with a few more of my shooters in 1977. Never got it back.
20 years later in 1997 I found the BKH45 ( 7.5" .45 Colt ) I have now at a gun shop for just over $300. It was the first one I had seen for sale in that 20 years. I slobbered on it and bought it.
But I hated that 7.5" barrel then, and I'm no great fan of it now.

From the first day I took it home I've threatened to have it bobbed. Just never did get it done. Last year when I got my Cattleman rebuilt I realized just how much I disliked that long barrel on the Ruger. It has now been relagated to the shelf and IJ goes to the range in it's place.

If and this is a really big IF, I could find another BKH 44 I'd leave the long barrel alone. But they are all but impossible to find. Flatgate, and all the other collectors have bought up the supply and are hogging them. ;D

Seriously though the short barreled guns are just not to be had. I won't buy over the internet anymore, done that once and when the gun got here I found some things about it that would have prevented me from buying it had I seen it in person. Am working on those issues, but I won't do that again.
And I've been in IL for 10 years now ..... yuck, and I've seen exactly 2 OM BH in .45 Colt. Both with 7.5" barrels and outrageous prices.

So yeah, I'm really thinking of chopping mine. I just might do it myself. Considering the cost of shipping which is added to the cost of the work, to the cost of buying the tools from Brownells, it would probably come out to be real close cost wise.

Joe
 

DGW1949

Hunter
Joined
Apr 10, 2005
Messages
3,638
Location
Texas
I'm hearing ya.
When I was reading "Blackhawk", my mind was seeing that OM-357 that you've worked on so much. Never dawned on me that you was talking about your .45 ....which yeah, as far as trading for a 4-5/8", would be all but impossable to do.

I aint against shortening a barrel. Heck, I've had it done myself, and have done a shotgun or two by myself. But I can tell ya ahead of time though, I doubt I could bring myself to whack an OM-45...just on account of how it would devalue the gun. That, and I got's no personal use for big-frame .45's anyway......but that's just me.

If it was me wearing them shoes, I'd get ahold of Mr Harton. But that's easy for me to say because his shop is just over in the next County. Don't know what I'd do if I lived in Illinois.

I'm doing a lot of yacking here, but still haven't offered a good answer. But if you want to look at the bright side....my non-answer did get your question bumped-back to the top, so maybe someone will see it that can help.

DGW
 

J Miller

Blackhawk
Joined
Sep 30, 2000
Messages
977
Location
Not in IL anymore ... :)
DGW,

The "collectors" value for my old .45 is long gone. It's just a good old shooter now.

The .357 we worked on is the one I was refering to when I said I'd not buy any more sight unseen.
I sent you an email via my Yahoo addy but you never answered.

Maybe I should try again.

One of these days the forum might just hear some demonic cackling from IL and then you guys can picture a mad hatter with a hack saw. :twisted: :twisted:

Joe
 

DGW1949

Hunter
Joined
Apr 10, 2005
Messages
3,638
Location
Texas
I don't own any collector-guns neither, so I understand that one too.

Sorry about the e-mail you sent. That one is all on me...I rarely even look at mine.
A PM through the Forum here would work much better. It's hard to miss that message reminder at the top of the page.:wink: .

But back to the barrel thing...

I've seen some hack saw and file jobs that looked good, but far more that were plain awfull, so I'm naturaly leary of that....Leastways, as far as my own ability to pull it off.
I guess it all comes down to how bad you want rid of that 7-1/2" barrel.

Something you might do though, if you haven't already.... is visit a gunshow, shop or something, and handle a 4-5/8" NM 45LC. What you feel in your hand (meaning the overall balance) won't be unlike a simular OM... both of which are decidely top heavy, a condition that only gets worse when loaded.
Aint saying that either is a bad gun. Just saying that as far as feel, balance, and overall handling goes..... an SAA they aint....which is a design that I happen to know you like a lot. That, and some folks find that the long barreled big frame gun balances better than the short version.

Sorry for the long post. Seems the older I get, the more I yack.

DGW
 

J Miller

Blackhawk
Joined
Sep 30, 2000
Messages
977
Location
Not in IL anymore ... :)
DGW,

In years past I've owned both OM and NM Blackhawks in .45 Colt. I know how they feel and I like them.

I suspect if I actually undertook this myself I'd buy the tools Brownells sells to do the job. I have no power equipment so everything I do is by hand.

Joe
 

tek4260

Buckeye
Joined
May 31, 2008
Messages
1,883
Location
carroll county ms
101_0840.jpg

101_0944.jpg

101_0845.jpg

101_0509.jpg

101_0512.jpg



Hacksaw
Torch
Sliver Solder
Flux
Brownells 79deg crowning tool
Copper pipe cutter to mark barrel for cut
Drill to relocate sight alignment pin

And a little bit o bravery :D

2 50th 44's I have cut

Of course I am not brave enough yet to get out the file and sandpaper to remove the lettering on the barrels by draw filing them.
 

tek4260

Buckeye
Joined
May 31, 2008
Messages
1,883
Location
carroll county ms
The factory solder is tough. I think it is more of a braze. It will discolor the sight and the barrel some when you remove it. But, you will cut off the discolored part of the barrel. The sights on both of the guns above now look like factory. In the pics, they are discolored from removing them, plus marked up pretty good from me checking the stregnth of my solder job. I clamped the revolver in a vise and gave the sights several twists and hard pulls with vise grip pliers, then pecked at them with a punch and hammer just to be sure.

Since then, I have polished the marks out of the sights with 600 grit sandpaper wrapped around a file and reblued with several applications of Brownells Orpho Blue. The secret to cold blue is that the metal has to be highly polished and clean to darken as much as real blueing. It is not that hard to do, just time consuming.


101_0372.jpg

101_0239.jpg


Here is the discoloring I got on my two 45 Blackhawks after replacing the front sights with the correct height. I will post some pics of them now after I polished and touched them up. Of course, I'd rather have a little discolor and be able to hit my target than a gun with perfect bluing that shoots a foot high at 25yds with the sight adjusted all the way down!!!
 

steelheadnw

Bearcat
Joined
Feb 2, 2008
Messages
67
Location
montana
TEK could you show us a close up of the 79 degree crown? I got the 90 cutter from Brownells and did three cut offs this year, there is a learning curve but it comes out looking nice. in your case if I was cutting that 7.5" down I'd cut it just behind the sight and practice for a while, then do the final at 4 5/8". It is very satisfying when you are done. None of my guns suffered diminished accuracy with the shortened barrels.

You can do it,

James
 

Hammer

Single-Sixer
Joined
Oct 1, 2006
Messages
231
Have paid to have a few shortened.

From $50 to $500.

Quality did vary.


Am getting ready to have another one done. Will pay $135 on it.

.
 

steelheadnw

Bearcat
Joined
Feb 2, 2008
Messages
67
Location
montana
Tek, thanks for the pictures. Nice work. I have shorted a lot of barrels and finally this year I decided to invest in the tools, my turn around time is much faster and I have the satisfaction of doing the job myself. The tools have already paid for themselves.
james
 

steelheadnw

Bearcat
Joined
Feb 2, 2008
Messages
67
Location
montana
I did these three, an old NM SBH, added the aluminum grip frame and millet sight. The second, a externally beat OM .357 that I payed too much for, and a first year NM Single six.
IMG_0821Medium.jpg


the 44 crown
IMG_0823Medium.jpg


the .357 crown
IMG_0822Medium.jpg


the .22 crown, I did not buy the .22 90 degree facing cutter, this is all hacksaw and file, with a finish using the 45 degree lapping tool in an old hand drill with jb bore paste (it cuts nice and slow).
IMG_0824Medium.jpg


The tools L-R PTG 90 degree facing tool with interchangable bushings from Midway( I used a large tap handle to run this tool), the Brownells 45 degree chamfer kit. the little brass 45 degree lapping tool is the key to getting a nice looking crown and comes separately from the kit.
IMG_0819Medium.jpg


There is a learning curve to all of this, reading the instructions 10 times helps, cutting off your barrel a little long and practicing on the cut off is where you will learn how to do it.. I did the outer radius with a random orbital sander and the finest sandpaper I had then finished by hand to take out the orbit marks with 400 w/d. I did not re-blue because a gunsmith once told me it will ruin the accuracy. Do I believe it? Not really, but cold blue doesn't seem to last long and these are all shooters.

James
 

tek4260

Buckeye
Joined
May 31, 2008
Messages
1,883
Location
carroll county ms
Looks good. I am stil debating weather to leave the 11 degree alone or break the edge with a 45 cutter. Seems pointless to cut the edge and have the 11 degree other than looks. Might as well just stick with the 90 followed by 45 if you are going to do that..... I think :?
 
Joined
Sep 1, 2003
Messages
5,244
Location
Richmond Texas USA
J Miller":1l10k3zy said:
James,

Thanks. I've done enough tinkering that I could do that.
Now to pony up some cash for Brownell's.

Joe

Joe,
I don't know if you still need a price to cut the barrel or not.
Toooooooooooo many post to read.
Alan Harton charges $120 up from $90 aboyt 5 years ago.
He cut a 7 1/2" NM 45 to 5 1/2" for me
Jim
 

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