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Show off your 1911

OK…all you fancy boys with your fancy .45s. Take a gander at some working .45s. Three Ballesters; one Riguad, and 2 Molinas. Bought them in the 80s for $100 each, when Century was importing them from Argentina. All work well, the Riguad, bottom was used by Customs, the Molinas were by the National Police. Originally made in the 30s, they soldiered on until the 80s when replaced by the Argentine version of the P-35.
What's up with the fancy talk?
 
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OK…all you fancy boys with your fancy .45s. Take a gander at some working .45s. Three Ballesters; one Riguad, and 2 Molinas. Bought them in the 80s for $100 each, when Century was importing them from Argentina. All work well, the Riguad, bottom was used by Customs, the Molinas were by the National Police. Originally made in the 30s, they soldiered on until the 80s when replaced by the Argentine version of the P-35.
 

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Fancy is as fancy does. Ballesters are anything but fancy, kinda like me…
Should have also mentioned that I carried a 1911 during my tour in the Nam. Shot one VC with it. We had ambushed a combo VC nurse and paymaster unit on a small island on the southern edge of Go Noi Island in 1969. He had swum across a 8 yard channel. And hidden in a hollow behind some tree roots. He was also carrying a 60mm mortar round. My assistant FO had spotted h8m and he, my radio operator and myself, all with .45s, closed in on him. As we got a couple of yards away, he stood up in the hollow, raised the mortar round , yelled something and jumped at me, as I was in the middle. All of us emptied our pistols. He fell down into the water and sank. He surfaced but would not raise his arms, so we were not sure if he still carried the 60mm. Finally determined he had dropped it and we got him to shore. He had originally been shot by a N-16 in the leg and had an additional 9 .45 holes. Died in a bit…was a VC warrant officer…one tough SOB.
 
1970 Series '70. Bought new that year by my dad for combination birthday/enlistment. First presented in the original box at a nice steakhouse & no one thought a thing about it (or if they did, they kept it to themselves).
A few months later I surreptitiously packed it for my deployment to Vietnam. Bringing it back was trickier & I disassembled it & had some bits sewn in field jacket/liner. I had several edged weapons but left those behind to keep the steel minimal in my footlocker. It went undetected during the usual DEROS baggage inspection.
It had picked up a few dings but noted gun builder Gary Reeder helped me clean those up back in Santa Fe mid-'80's.
It's the basic Colt blued steel but the reflection makes it appear as stainless or plating in this photo. It's "retired" now, but has never given me any barrel bushing issues. A plunger tube came unstaked once (a known failure point on Colt 1911's) but Gary fixed that at the same time.
 

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OK…all you fancy boys with your fancy .45s. Take a gander at some working .45s. Three Ballesters; one Riguad, and 2 Molinas. Bought them in the 80s for $100 each, when Century was importing them from Argentina. All work well, the Riguad, bottom was used by Customs, the Molinas were by the National Police. Originally made in the 30s, they soldiered on until the 80s when replaced by the Argentine version of the P-35.
And they were all chambered in .45ACP? I had the impression that most 1911's called to serve in S. America were in .38 Super. Was the Super just the "limited caliber" for the civilian market* or did regional armies opt for .45 in military service?
*I seem to recall that .38 &/or 9mm was the largest caliber(s) available on the civilian market in some/most S. American countries (or at least the ones with some capacity to manufacture).
 
These are Argentina government pistols. Many LatinAmerican governments did not like the idea of civilians having pistolas in .45., hence the
.38ACP/Super, especially in Mexico. Brazil adopted the.45 S&W wheelgun, as the Model 1937. By the 1980s all this became academic when many of these countries adopted the 9mm.
 
These are Argentina government pistols. Many LatinAmerican governments did not like the idea of civilians having pistolas in .45., hence the
.38ACP/Super, especially in Mexico. Brazil adopted the.45 S&W wheelgun, as the Model 1937. By the 1980s all this became academic when many of these countries adopted the 9mm.
Thx, generally the impression I had. Kind of ironic given the potency of the Super, which enjoyed wide use during the era of depression-era gangsters (penetrating power, including on cars). Collector guns sources/brokers seem to do very well placing pistols from South of our border when someone decides they just have to have one in that caliber.
 
Thx, generally the impression I had. Kind of ironic given the potency of the Super, which enjoyed wide use during the era of depression-era gangsters (penetrating power, including on cars). Collector guns sources/brokers seem to do very well placing pistols from South of our border when someone decides they just have to have one in that caliber.
They started with Colt 1911s, then to Argie made ones under contract, then altered Colt/Star hybrids to save money.
 
They started with Colt 1911s, then to Argie made ones under contract, then altered Colt/Star hybrids to save money.
Back in the day when short 1911's were not widely available (and what there was tended to be heavy) I carried a Star PD for years. One reason I took up handloading was to be able to make ammo that would function in other 1911's as well as the Star. (HP ammo in .45ACP was rare in the '80's). Not a "range gun" as it was snotty in recoil with it's light weight, and hotter loads would smash and extrude those little fiber pads that cushioned it. Star sent me a little baggie with 10 of those at no charge.
 
Back in the day when short 1911's were not widely available (and what there was tended to be heavy) I carried a Star PD for years. One reason I took up handloading was to be able to make ammo that would function in other 1911's as well as the Star. (HP ammo in .45ACP was rare in the '80's). Not a "range gun" as it was snotty in recoil with it's light weight, and hotter loads would smash and extrude those little fiber pads that cushioned it. Star sent me a little baggie with 10 of those at no charge.
PDs,and other Spanish steel, are highly underrated!
 
PDs,and other Spanish steel, are highly underrated!
The PD really had it's place when the market was thin on lightweight & compact 1911's. To achieve that they made some compromises (single locking lug, plastic buffer thingies with short lives) that made it ill-suited to be a regular shooter or range gun. I'd shoot sparingly to maintain proficiency but carried it a lot. I used the Colt in my previous post for regular shooting. The PD left me after years of good service when I traded up for a Colt M1991 (basically the short General Officers model without the finish) that also gave years of carry service.
 
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