1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

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1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by Sa-tevp on 1/21/2015, 9:03 am

I recently picked up a 1975 Clark Heavy Slide built on a Colt Mark IV frame and would like to return it to its original configuration as a period wadgun. The frame has the Clark front strap treatment and the slide has the Clark logo from Keithville and date info stamped on the disconnector rail.

Here are a few details:

It has a Colt Gold Cup style or Series 80 hammer, with the half cock notch just about worn away. Need to replace.

Hard to tell if the sear was a Gold Cup style or standard sear. Need to replace, hammer follows slide and sear is beat up.

It has a Bomar Tuner rib, but the tuner block is gone. Maybe it was removed for better ejection?

A Kart barrel, tight bushing in frame and on barrel.

Serrated aluminum trigger with a silver soldered plate on the sear end of the bow. A trigger shoe is mounted.

A three finger sear spring, looks like a Colt spring.

The mainspring has been cut. Need to replace.

Someone installed a two piece recoil rod and a plug that barely engages the bushing. Need to replace with a Colt plug.

The slide looks like it was tightened to the frame by pinching. Still pretty tight, not as tight as my range officer.

The disconnector hole was tightened by staking near the front of the hole.

The pistol looks like the Bomar rib examples in the Kuhnhausen Book 1. I'd like return this to original shape and also would like to hear about Jim Clark Senior's shop. I'd expect that from the serial number this was a pistol the shop bought new in 1975 and one of their gunsmiths work it up under Clark's supervision.

Stephen
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Sa-tevp

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Re: 1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by Jon Eulette on 1/21/2015, 9:07 am

If it has a Kart barrel the Bomar Tuner would be removed. The tuner was for stock Colt barrels that were welded up. The Kart doesn't need the tuner! It has oversized upper barrel lugs that make up for the deficiency of the welded up barrel. Sounds like you should send to a BE smith and have them go through the pistol and replace parts as required.
Jon
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Re: 1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by Sa-tevp on 1/21/2015, 9:12 am

Thanks Jon,
That was a piece of the puzzle I was missing. At some point it will go to a BE smith but I'd like to sort out a few of the simple parts, like the recoil guide and plug myself. The ignition parts are definitely a gunsmith job.

The slide is drilled for the tuner block, so I wonder if the Kart barrel was installed later. It was fun to de-gunk the pistol and look for small fitting and adjustments made to it, looking for signs of craftmanship.

Stephen
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Re: 1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by BE Mike on 1/21/2015, 9:21 am

Some of the things that were done back in the day aren't necessary today, due to CNC machining and quality after market parts. The Bo Mar tuner could be re-installed, but it would be cosmetic. My Clark wad has a Kart barrel, but the tuner was left in place. You really wouldn't want to replace the Kart barrel with a built up Colt, would you? I would send it back to Clark Custom for a tune-up and tell them what you'd like done.
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Re: 1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by Jon Eulette on 1/21/2015, 10:17 am

If you're wanting a "REALLY" competitive match pistol I personally wouldn't let Clark touch it! The quality and workmanship absolutely sucks. I regularly rebuild Clark's and it is a huge disappointment to see what is coming out of they're shop. Get a real BE smith to work on it. My very opinionated 2 cents Razz)
Jon
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Re: 1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by C.Perkins on 1/21/2015, 10:25 am

Jon Eulette wrote:If you're wanting a "REALLY" competitive match pistol I personally wouldn't let Clark touch it! The quality and workmanship absolutely sucks. I regularly rebuild Clark's and it is a huge disappointment to see what is coming out of they're shop. Get a real BE smith to work on it. My very opinionated 2 cents Razz)
Jon

+1 on the above statement by Jon
I traded for a 1968 long slide that had a tune up done in 2012(have the receipt the owner gave me to prove it was done).
I will not get into details in a public forum.

Clarence
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Re: 1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by Sa-tevp on 1/21/2015, 5:49 pm

Thanks guys.

I will be using the services of a local outfit that has done good work for our club. This will just be a back-up gun, bought for its history and classic style. One part of the classic style I don't want is holding the trigger back while releasing the slide stop.

If it was really, really old I'd have to put on a tie and pull the waistline of my pants up to the bottom of my ribcage before shooting it, right? Wink
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Re: 1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by Sa-tevp on 6/16/2015, 7:58 pm

I thought I should follow up on this thread after getting the pistol sorted out. A local BE smith replaced and tuned the ignition components, being careful to make the replacement hammer look original. No more hammer following the slide on slide release. The Kart barrel had been someone's idea of a drop-in part, but it got fit properly now. A filler was made for the Bo-Mar tuner. A Colt recoil plug and a set of slightly worn Gold Cup walnut grips were installed.

Best of all, with 200gr lswc over 4.2gr of BE it is a lot of fun to shoot at 50 yards. Shoots like a good 22. The old pony likes to run. I'm thinking of putting the Range Officer in the back of the box. I figure I'll use one on Center Fire and the other in 45 and settle the issue by comparing scores.
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Re: 1975 Clark Heavy Slide questions

Post by Dr.Don on 6/16/2015, 9:42 pm

My Clark, which was built in 9/83 and is so marked on the disconnector rail, has good workmanship and is still going strong.  I think the movement downhill mentioned above is likely tied to the shift towards race guns and the volume of work that came with popularity.  Staking around the disconnector hole to tighten it up is common on Clark guns.  As Jon has indicated, the tuner was needed with welded up Colt barrels but isn't needed with oversize match barrels today.  Mine is a weld-up and it shoots very well, but I would not choose to go that way when building a new gun today.
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