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Local GS with a Giles

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BE Mike
Jon Eulette
inthebeech
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Post by inthebeech 2023-02-06, 11:23

A local shop has what is claimed to be a Giles 1911 in 38 Super.
From web images it appears to be genuine.  This is based soley on the two features that seem consistent among many images that I found; a particular style of FS stippling and the characteristic wagon wheel rib.
But the frame/slide fit is about what you get from the original 70 series Colt that it was built on.
I've no experience with this famous smith's workmanship or style so I am asking if he might have left the original tolerances as well as whether you can recommend I check for other confirming features.  
I relieved spring tension and removed the SS pin but did not closely examine it for anything else that I can share here that might help guarantee its pedigree.  
The characteristic wagon wheel heavy rib and stippling are all I noticed, along with a great trigger.

I'll head back if there are any useful features you here can recommend I look for.
I also want to see if it is actually a Special and not a Super.  The GS may have just looked at the donor barrel marking and concluded it is a Super.  I'll bring 38 Special dummys.

Thanks,
Ed
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Post by Jon Eulette 2023-02-06, 11:33

Most/majority of Giles I’ve worked on the frame to slide is not tight, similar to 70 series as you described. He put a brazed metal tab inside the slide (opposite ejection port) that barrel rest against to get centered firing pin strike. So barrel does not fully engage into slide lugs. Normally no additional markings and name only on his rear sight or rib.
Jon
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Post by BE Mike 2023-02-06, 12:10

Giles had an extremely good reputation for building bullseye pistols back in the day. He and Jim Clark used to trade ideas. In the mid '70's I used to drool over new Giles' bullseye pistols at Joe Maszk's gun shop in Bunnell, FL. My only experience with his work is that I traded for one of his bullseye pistols many years ago. it was very well used. My wife and father used to compete with it. About 20 years ago, my father and I decided to machine rest test it at 50 yards with the "Marine Load". The first 10 shots were under 2".
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Post by Multiracer 2023-02-06, 21:15

Some of his barrels were converted to 38spc from 380.

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Post by spursnguns 2023-02-07, 14:07

Multiracer wrote:Some of his barrels were converted to 38spc from 380.

Hello Multiracer,

380....as in .380ACP?

Jim
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Post by Multiracer 2023-02-07, 22:29

spursnguns wrote:
Multiracer wrote:Some of his barrels were converted to 38spc from 380.

Hello Multiracer,

380....as in .380ACP?

Jim
38 super..not .380

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Post by Sevens 2023-02-08, 05:18

If you see a Giles in ".38", it's almost surely a .38 Wadcutter gun.

Many of them were made from Colt .38 Kits. If the serial number is two zeroed and a dash-B at the end, it's one of the Colt Kit frames, and if it's original as he built it, it should say Colt .38 Kit on the slide, left side.

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Post by Jon Eulette 2023-02-08, 06:24

-B is 45acp Kit Gun, -H is .38 spl Kit Gun
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Post by mhayford45 2023-02-08, 08:47

if it is a Super I am interested and would like to know the gun shop.

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Post by inthebeech 2023-02-08, 10:45

I will be heading out there again probably this week. I'll confirm caliber if they let me and also whether it was built from a Colt kit or standard gun.  I don't have a smartphone so can't take photos.
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Post by inthebeech 2023-02-08, 18:05

Serial is 70S08735
The small shim that Jon mentioned is there; about a 3mm dia spot of weld that is machined down to being proud of the side of the slide by only about 15 mils.  
Slide has "38 Super" marked in addition to the traditional Series 70 characters.
Definitely a Super as we could not drop a 38 Sppecial dummy in to the barrel or get it to push out of the top of a mag.
Wagon wheel rib has correct "Giles" markings.
$1,800 and gas to Americal Arms and Ammo in Colmar PA and its yours.  If you want something like this badly enough to make the trip, it might be wise to bring MUCH more money.  The deceeast shooter's entire arsenal is on consignment.  I lost count of the 41's, 52's, other 1911's, and High Standards that are there. There's one of those european 22's also; don't know them well enough. (The 208's are gone according to the owner).
Anyone intending to make the trip, please look me up.  We can go have a beer and talk BE if you'd like.
Ed
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Post by inthebeech 2023-03-21, 21:50

It is a 38 special.  We confirmed it today.
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